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88
75
style
Brewed by Microbrouwerij Achilles
Style: Belgian Strong Ale
Heist op den Berg-Itegem, Belgium

bottled
available

on tap
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RATINGS: 142   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.42   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 240   ABV: 8%
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COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
This hearty amber brew, well-balanced and warming, is the brewer's special celebration of this wonderful season, when the herald angels sing. A Merry Christmas, and Happy New Year to all, from Brouwerij Achilles!


3.5
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
jercraigs (7812) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - FEB 26, 2008
2008-02-20 Bottle. Hazy amber body with a foamy fingers worth of off white head. (3+) Sweet yeasty aroma, light hints of bubblegum sweetness and alcohol. (7+) Sweet foundation to the flavour, light sugary notes, dry lightly alcoholic overtones and finish. Interesting underlying not-quite-spice character that I can not place. A sharp note on the back of the tongue lingers into the finish and aftertaste. (7+) Smooth average to medium palate. (3+) Pretty solid but does not distinguish itself much from many similar Belgian brews. Bottle in Belgian Christmas pack from Premier Gourmet. Shared with Mabel

3.1
   AROMA 4/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
JackMehoff (18) - Boston, Massachusetts, USA - FEB 25, 2008
(750 bottle) Not an overly malty aroma, but an offensivly overbearing head off of a slow pour. The head almost overflowed my 12oz glass and, after subsiding, left me with about 4 oz. After that initial shock the sweet candy-like flavor left me very suprised and happy.

3.1
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
jake65 (2615) - Williston, North Dakota, USA - FEB 20, 2008
Bottle: Murky reddish brown with a huge beige head. Aroma is fruity and warming. The 8% ABD is easily noticable tonight. Sweet fruity and malty notes are second. Tastes muddled with bready malts, yeast, dark fruit, and more warming. It was good, but for whatever reason, I just couldn’t really get into this brew. Seemingly average to me at this point.

3.6
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
FlacoAlto (3800) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - FEB 13, 2008
Pours with a frothy, initially four-finger thick, dirty, light tan colored head that leaves some slight lacing as it slowly recedes. The beer is an amber color, but shows a brilliantly clear, red-copper color and lots of carbonation when held up to the light. The aroma has an interesting soft spiciness to it that accentuates a light, fruity sweetness. Aromatic notes reminiscent to woody black pepper, old ginger, bright plum notes, a touch of apple, some berry aromatics, some soft citrus and a slight musty / slightly moldy cotton note combine with a touch of dusty grain character towards the finish. This is an interesting aroma, it is a bit more complex than I expected. It also picks up some notes of tropical fruit, fresh cut tangelos and even a hint of herbal character to it as time goes on.

Fairly dry and carbonated up front, the beer picks up a fruity sweetness towards the middle though. This is quite light bodied for a beer of this strength, or really it has a lightness that I really like to find in Belgian ales of this strength; the peppery, zippy carbonation helps to keep this light and while ample does not detract from the experience of the beer. The long finish has a touch of musty malt to it, hints of browned vegetables as well as a pepper like bite to it. The sweetness in this brew, which is fairly noticeable, incorporates flavors of plums, caramelized apples, perhaps a touch of sweet citrus fruit and a bright berry note. As the beer loses its carbonation it begins to pick up a soft creaminess to the mouthfeel, but still remains quite drinkable. While the dominant spice note is that of black pepper (with a touch of woodiness) there is also some hints of ginger, clove and ephemeral nutmeg.

This is a nice surprise as I was not expecting too much from this beer for some reason. It really has a nice balance between piquant, peppery spice notes and sweet fruit notes, plus it is all wrapped up in a light bodied, easily quaffed package; all of which fit the bill for a good Belgian beer.

Purchased: <a href=http://www.ratebeer.com/Places/ShowPlace.asp? Liquors, Tucson AZ

3.8
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
RblWthACoz (964) - Brooklyn, New York, USA - FEB 5, 2008
Pours a fully clouded ruby hued orange. Nose is laden with sugar and also a nutty touch almost. Flavor is thick with sugar and funk. Spice edge on the back side. Nice and even and smooth. Level feel for both liquid and carbonation. A good one to drink.

3.5
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
sheatripper (863) - Brooklyn, New York, USA - FEB 4, 2008
33 cl. bottle. Cloudy orange/amber with a moussy off-white head. Aroma of bready/bicuity malts with light fruity esters, banana yeast and dusty spice. Slightly sweet bready malt with pear, apple, white grape and banana. Herbal hops and spice lead to a mostly dry finish. Finely carbonated. Fairly decent, though nothing extraordinary for a Belgian.

3.1
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
marcus (6497) - Sacramento, California, USA - FEB 1, 2008
This copper ale poured with a frothy white head, eliciting a spicy aroma. The flavor is yeasty, spicy and fruity with a sharp bitter finish.

2.9
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 11/20
JPDIPSO (4956) - Wauwatosa, Wisconsin, USA - JAN 30, 2008
Lightly hazed bronze to copper colored brew. Tall ecru head. Light sweet aromas with fermenting fruit, bananas and pears, roses and a touch of orange zest. Not nearly as sweet as the scent suggest. Some caramel and exotic fruits mamboing about, but not the sticky stuff that the nose hints at. Alcohol is rather present. Let this set on the tongue and the nasal passages are filled with the alcohol vapors and a touch of nail polish remover. Not enough depth for all the alcohol. The stomach is starting to burn. I was really hoping for a little better showing in this one. Just one of those nights.

3.4
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
hayduke (3369) - Eureka, California, USA - JAN 27, 2008
From an 11.2 oz bottle this poured a cloudy amber with a white head and good lacing. Nose of citrus, bananas, and apples. Medium mouthfeel. Favor of caramel malts, fruits, and spices. Nice enjoyable beer.

2.9
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 11/20
beerbuzzmontreal (3490) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - JAN 24, 2008
Pours a cloudy amber color with a medium white head. Aroma of yeast, spices and sweetness. Flavor of yeast, spices and sweetness, there’s an unpleasant acrid flavor in the end. The body is medium with a creamy texture and gentle carbonation.


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