Brewed by Brouwerij Het Anker
Style: Belgian Strong Ale
Mechelen, Belgium


on tap

Broad Distribution

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RATINGS: 1343   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.82   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 315   ABV: 10.5%
For the Christmas and New Year festivities the Gouden Carolus range is now extended to include this seriously heavy strong brown ale. Het Anker are thus rekindling a long lost tradition from the days of yore when they marketed Cardinal Christmas and Anker Christmas.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
sayravai (4691) - Helsinki, FINLAND - NOV 7, 2004
UPDATED: FEB 25, 2006 (Bottled, 0.75l, 6 months old, sampled 2/2005) Deep, dark red-amber color with a largeish, light beige, lacy head. Sweetish-caramely, slightly alcoholic aroma with lots of anise and licorice. Very smooth, sweet, very anise-licorice-malty, spicy and herby, cough-syrup-like flavor. Long, sweetish and sticky anise finish. Medium to full-bodied, quite soft-carbonated, slightly liqueur-like palate. Alcohol is quite well hidden. A nicely spiced and herby, sweet herb-liqueur-like brew. Maturing even for a few months makes the brew clearly more balanced and enjoyable. A quite original brew, no matter what. (15 months old, sampled 11/2005, BBE 10/2006: no real change, maybe some smoothing in the flavor and flowery hops, too. Alcohol is now perfectly hidden. Still not quite ready yet - or maybe it just is what it is. Stored too cold (in +6 C), though. Quite sweet - like anise liquour.) (18 months old, sampled 2/2006, stored in room temp) Clearly dried flavor with immense fruitiness and huge amounts of salty licorice. Quite yummy, but not close to its peak, I guess.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
MiP (14446) - Snderborg, DENMARK - OCT 26, 2004
Bottle. Sweet, spicy, anisy aroma. Dark chestnut colour, small light-brown head. Flavour is sweet, spicy, anisy, cough-syrup-like. Very complex.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
muzzlehatch (4420) - Burlington, Vermont, USA - OCT 7, 2004
750 ml bottle, 2003-4 presumably. Dark, rich molasses in color, soupy off-white head. Rich bourbon-vanilla in nose, with hints of orange, juicy thick spicy Seville orange. Whiskey and smoke join the lusciously complex fruit on the tongue, combining for a very drinkable, "wet" approach, alcohol well-hidden throughout, great sweet-sour balance; another work of art from Het Anker.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
harvey (40) - Milano, ITALY - OCT 5, 2004
Great beer! Dark brown/red with a wonderful beige creamy head. Mature and dried fruits aroma with powerful alcohol hints. Taste has notes of orange peel, raisins, chocolate, ruhm and a lot more. Great body, very balanced in carbonation, hops and sweetness.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
Crosling (1864) - Fort Collins, Colorado, USA - OCT 3, 2004
Pours with an amazing color. Purple with ascents of yellow, orange and red. Beautiful color, it glows in the light. However, a pretty lousy Belgian head. Smells like fruit punch. WOW! Sour red grapes, cherries, red licorice, raisins and caramel up front. Finishes with a somewhat sour, sweet malt and chocolate-caramel combination with a hint of alcohol. Tastes unbelieveable!

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
TheBeerGod (5568) - Newport News, Virginia, USA - OCT 3, 2004
Bottled. Purchased at Delirium Cafe. Dark ruby body with foamy brown head. Nose is malty with chocolate and spices (ginger and nutmeg) along with dark fruits and anise. Taste is malty and rich with chocolaty notes, dark fruits, and spices. Sweet and spicy would sum it up best. Carbonated with light sharpness. Finish is somewhat dry with cocoa, dark fruits and spice. Great beer!

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 18/20
Pigfoot (2268) - Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA - SEP 27, 2004
OOOOO!, is all I can think, at first, as I merely sniff the bottle-top before pouring...a gorgeous garnet hue fills my glass, with a creamy tan head on top. Aroma is fresh, sweet, buttery, strangely fruity, apricots, peaches, and others Im not as familiar with, but damned, if aint fruitiness! Smooth mouthfeel, mellow texture, tingly, but minor hop sensation. Loads of maltiness! Utterly gorgeous, and an instant favorite on first sample! Wonderfully warm and alcoholic, but deceptive in its strength. Can this little sweetie-pie really be 1O.5%? And she said she was...

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
Nate (3827) - Indiana, Pennsylvania, USA - SEP 12, 2004
Sweet syrupy nose with fig, anise, caramel. Dark brown clear with off-white lacing head. Thick bodied with light carbonation. Sweet start, spices, anise, alcohol. Nutty flavor, pistachio, baklava. No acidity, light bitter. Vapory finish, with sweet nutty spicy after.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
5000 (6300) - Hardened Liver, Washington, USA - AUG 20, 2004
Bottle pours brown, amber hues, medium off-white frothy head that quickly settles, small bits floating about, light carbonation with fairly attractive lacing. Aroma is of dark pitted fruit, sweet, candi sugar, with hints of licorice. Flavor is of plums, some fig, raisin, candy, and some licorice. This one seems quite the treat. Great body, full mouthfeel. Finishes with even more of a licorice bite. Probably one of the better Winter offerings to come out of Belgium. Highly recommended, and its even much better on draught.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Sancho (245) - Da Bronx, New York, USA - AUG 17, 2004
UPDATED: AUG 18, 2004 2 for 1 deal at freakin frog las Vegas dark brown color nutty fruit taste strong Alcohol there but not overwheming. Gotta have this again in the winter

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