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


on tap

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RATINGS: 1237   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.83   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 315   ABV: 10.5%
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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 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
iwantalambic (1478) - St. Louis, Missouri, USA - JAN 20, 2003
UPDATED: DEC 23, 2003 ReRate: 750 corked [2003 fresh]:Murky mahogany copper rests in the glass as a patch-work of wispy taupe coloured clouds disperse like the Pangaea of old. . . The aroma fills my nostrils and head with sharp anise, nutmeg, tea leaves, cherry skin and fruity dough. Full spicy flavour that begins with white grape skin, buttered toast , bitter cranberries and finishes with coarse black pepper and other spices.

Orginal [2002 fresh] (3.5): Dark brown, minimal head, but lingering. . . Nice nutty/malty aroma. . . Good amount of alcohol on the palate, good spices in the back of the mouth and on the way down. Lingering malty flavours with some fruit, another great Christmas present.

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
Ringo (963) - Loveland, Colorado, USA - JAN 19, 2003
Very tasty ale. Malty and creamy, the mouthfeel is so soft that you hardly know it's there. The aroma is fantastic, I don't know what it is but it smells great. I need an air freshener that smells like this. 10.5% very well hidden. I like this brewery so far.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
hopscotch (9161) - Vero Beach, Florida, USA - JAN 18, 2003
The aroma is malty and soapy with notes of caramel, yeast, winter spices and a whisper of mint and alcohol. Sparkling clear, deep ruby hue with a copper tint. Large, frothy khaki-colored head. Mostly lasting with very impressive lacework. The flavor starts with pears and fuzzy fruits with blasts of caramel, toffee and butter. Nicely balanced with light bitterness on the backside. The high ABV is fairly well-hidden. Medium-bodied with a creamy mouthfeel and lively carbonation. Medium-length, acrid and dry finish. Very good Belgian ale excepting an unfamiliar, and not entirely welcomed, hop or spice addition.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Jokes (1453) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - JAN 17, 2003
Pours a deep red color with a nice tan/off-white head. The aroma is sweet and fruity, marked by apples, cherries, prunes, raisin, and alcohol. Nice fruit in the flavor, but also a bit of nut, whole grain, caramel and subtle spices. A nice holiday brew even though it's been awhile.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
TAR (2494) - Lafayette, Colorado, USA - JAN 3, 2003
UPDATED: JAN 18, 2004 2002: Light chestnut. Dense, rocky, light tan foam. Fruitcakey malt amid oodles of plum, fig, and bubblegum notes. Hints of icorice, ginger, butter rum, clove, aniseed, mint, and rock candy. Firm, velvety carbonation. Chewy. Huge fruitiness mixed of aniseed and plummy malts. Traces of mint and ginger. Beautiful finish shows long notes of caramel malt breadinesss and licorice. Lingering fruitcake flavors with soft spices.There's nothing quite like this. A winner of a holiday brew.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
jaymobrown (1664) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - DEC 29, 2002
Medium brown color with a good sized head sittin atop. Muted dark flavors with black licorice, plum, raisins, and some cherries. Noticable alcohol with some balanced hops.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
beerslayer (753) - New Jersey, USA - DEC 28, 2002
Good ale goes down warm. Creamy malty carmel flavor. Well hidden Abv. Recommended

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 12/20
JPDIPSO (4956) - Wauwatosa, Wisconsin, USA - DEC 26, 2002
Dark amber/garnet color with a bit of cloudiness. Tan foamy head. Spicy aroma with licorice dominating. AS this one warms smells more like night time cold medicine. Tastes like licorice infused date. Nice solid mouth feel. Unfortunately I am not a fan of either licorice or date. This is a well made beer, but it contains flavors I do not favor. For the right person, this is a awesome beer, bbut my overall is a personal one.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
JoeM500 (1905) - Crown Point, Indiana, USA - DEC 23, 2002
UPDATED: JUN 9, 2003 Totally different after aged a year. It was a black licorice catastrophe but now yields delicious flavors of ripe plums and juicy raisons. Alcohol is better masked and aftertaste is complex and yeasty.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
estoppel (1028) - Buffalo, New York, USA - DEC 20, 2002
Reddish body, huge head, sweet malty and fruity nose. My second 10+ ABV of the night; not a good idea. ;) Lots of fruit in the body, with some mild spice. Pretty good stuff.

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