RateBeer
overall
86
76
style
Brewed by John Martin
Style: Scotch Ale
Genval, Belgium
Serve in Thistle

bottled
available

on tap
available

Broad Distribution

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RATINGS: 463   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.46/5   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 264   ABV: 8.8%
COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
Created in the thirties, Gordon Xmas initiated the tradition of Christmas brews.


3.9
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Travlr (19889) - Washington, Washington DC, USA - JAN 4, 2010
Deep maroon color with a thick light tan head that lingers. Nice lacing. Aroma of toffee, dates and vanilla. Flavor is fairly complex, starts sweetish with butterscotch and progresses to malts and light spice. Reasonable body. Very nice Christmas beer.

4.1
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
fiulijn (18057) - Vancouver, British Columbia, CANADA - JAN 21, 2003
UPDATED: DEC 2, 2012
2012-12-02, bottle from Tonneau Verre, Yverdon-les-Bains, 8.8% ABV
bb 10.11.12, maybe a couple years old, 8-5-8-4-16=41

It pours a clean dark brown color, with generous beige creamy head, and nice lace. It’s a good malty brew, with caramel accents, perfectly mature, with a delicate nuttiness; quite sweet but balanced, with correct bitterness.
Delicious.

2007-11-20, draught at Den Tatoverede Enke, Copenhagen, 7-4-8-4-16=39
Mahogany color with red hue. It has a bit soapy aroma and some rhubarb, with good caramel flavor; light roasted malt, chocolate and rhubarb. The bitterness is a bit above its ordinary level. Balanced, very good!

2006-11-27, draught at Den Tatoverede Enke, Vintage 2003, 7-4-8-4-16=39
Beautiful dark amber color; thick head. The aroma shows some age and some alcohol. What the aroma lost, the taste gained, in complexity: malt, caramel, Madeira wine, candy, Caribbean rum…

2003-01-21, bottle, 2-4-8-4-15=33
Dark color, beautiful head. Unpleasant aroma: cardboard, wet paper… Strong malty body, sweet, well balanced only at the end, with a sharp caramel character (and some hop).
Not complex, but robust, sweet Christmas beer.

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
rlgk (16898) - Göteborg, SWEDEN - DEC 2, 2003
UPDATED: DEC 6, 2005 Rerate, bottle stored for one year. Dark amber with a nice lasting offwhite head. Malty aroma, juniper berries, some fruit, x-mas spices, some toffee and figs. Flavor from figs, some pine, malty and with some alcohol, toffee and vanilla. Quite mild pleasant malty finish. (Old rating: 6/4/6/3/13)

2.9
   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
harrisoni (16706) - Ashford, Kent, ENGLAND - JAN 15, 2013
Bottle from Terre de Boissons Calais. Deep clear deep ruby and brown beer with thin white head. Some strong malty aroma. Some newspaper. In mouth some toastyness. Bit of fruit. It’s ok. Easy drinking. Just got a bit of paper to it. Nah.

2.8
   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 11/20
yngwie (16309) - Kristiansand, NORWAY - JAN 27, 2010
UPDATED: DEC 8, 2010 Bottle, at Esbjerg Beerfestival. It’s a clear, copper-colored beer with a small, beige head. Alcohol, malty sweetness, raisins in rum notes and dark caramel in the aroma. It’s full-bodied and warming in the mouth, with some dried fruits, but mostly sweet caramel. Warm, malty and slightly bitter finish. Not very much Christmas in this one, sort of like a Christmas edition of a strong euro-lager. Rating: 5-3-6-4-11-2.9. 091022

Bottle, thx to Peer. A clear, dark golden beer with a dense, beige head. Some alcohol on the nose, with grains and caramel, sugar and a fruity touch. Sticky on the palate, with caramel and grains, some bitterness and a touch of alcohol. Well, it’s not a bad one, but it’s not a good one either. Quite christmasy though, but I know of lots of other beers that are more beery. 101208

3.7
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
saxo (16111) - Højbjerg, Aarhus, DENMARK - FEB 14, 2009
Bottle. Nice head with good duration. Color is dark amber. Aroma and taste are dark fruits, malt, spices and caramel.

3.1
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 12/20
Rasmus40 (15945) - Beder, Aarhus, DENMARK - FEB 10, 2011
Clear red brown with a beige head. Aroma is sweet, malty, dried fruit, yeasty and spicy. Flavor is rather sweet and bitter. The finish has a sharp and unpleasant bitterness - almost astringent. 121209

3.6
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Theydon_Bois (15945) - Tourist Town (West), Berkshire, ENGLAND - DEC 25, 2013
Bottle at home, between Xmas day chores, acquired from the cellar at Kulminator - 2001 vintage, 25/12/13. Opaque dark mahogony brown with a moderate light beige covering that dissipates and retains as a pond. Nose carries a good level of oxidisation but coming through are also notes of date, prunes, toffee, fruit loaf and brown sugars. Taste comprises rich Xmas cake, dates, brown sugar, hint of cocoa, leathery old sofa, tobacco, dates, prunes, figs, dark fruit cocophany, pinch of spice. Medium bodied, fine carbonation, easy drinking with a sweet closure. Overall this has held up fairly well and I enjoyed drinking it, the initial over oxidised nose gave way to a complex fruit cake of a beer in the taste. Not bad at all for the age, be interested to rate a fresh example!

3
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
Koelschtrinker (15751) - Köln (Cologne), GERMANY - MAY 23, 2011
Würziger und tiefmalziger Antrunk mit spürbarem Alkoholeinfluss. Kräuterartig, die Malzigkeit wird dominanter und wird gleichzeitig auch alkoholischer. Dadurch etwas scharf wirkend, hintergründig vergoren fruchtig, in Teilen penetrant wirkend. Im Abgang stärker gewürzig werden, etwas überladen. Wenn diese Noten nachlassen, wird das Bier etwas herber. 10/10/8/9/9/9

3.5
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
TBone (15601) - Pori, FINLAND - DEC 28, 2004
Bottled, alc. 8,8 % (BB 05/2005)
Ruby brown color, nice brownish head. and lots of lace. Fruity aroma with raisins and plums, even a bit roasted. Starts with attacking hops then full to medium body gives plum sweetness. Then finishes with alcoholic kick. Aftertaste is warming and slightly bittersweet. Interesting and complex but a bit unbalanced.


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