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Kerstvuur (2011-)

Brewed by Pirlot
Style: Belgian Strong Ale
Zandhoven, Belgium


on tap


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RATINGS: 50   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.13/5   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 270   ABV: 9%
All vintages from 2011 and onwards should be rated here. Previous vintages where brewed at De Proefbrouwerij.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 9/20
Alengrin (4604) - BELGIUM - SEP 2, 2016
As Kempisch Vuur Winter with blue label, which is apparently the same thing as Kerstvuur. Bottle from Wijnegemse Drankenhal. Way too soon for a Christmas beer, but why not... Medium thick, lightly lacing, off-white head retaining as a creamy rim around the edge and in a thin greyish veil on top of a hazy, orangey peach blonde beer with dots of proteins floating throughout - clearly an older bottle (best before October 2017 though). Adding the sediment unsurprisingly brings no relief, as the beer becomes very murky, a deep ochre-tinged brownish orange, like the content of a rain pool on a malm-rich soil. Aroma of allspice, coriander seed, apricot, fried egg, white rum, candied banana, gingerbread, butterscotch, toast, peach, stewed beef (the proteins at work), ginger root, cooked pumpkin, bubblegum, soggy sandwiches, red apple, cloves, glue, some fusel alcohols. Sweet onset, estery, hints of candied fig, peach and banana with an apple-like crispness and gooseberry sourishness somewhere, quite some residual candi sugar sweetness but not cloying, spritzy carbonation (in fact overcarbonated even for the style) with a souring and coarsening effect but dramatically settling down after a while, alcohol and spices becoming (way too) apparent at a very early stage over a caramelly and very lightly nutty malt basis, gaining strength towards the end, very phenolic (cloves but solvent-like as well, to the point where it becomes obnoxious), some deep earthy hop bitterness, a truckload of soapy, sweetish, perfumey spices (mostly star aniseed and coriander I suppose), some bready and - with sediment - even ’beefy’ yeastiness, and (more than anything else) a very astringent and tiring rum-like alcohol dominance, heating and leaving a very wry effect on the root of the tongue, overpowering all the rest. Not so much a Scotch ale-based Belgian Christmas beer, lighter in colour and in that sense almost a Belgian barley wine if such a thing exists, so still sweet and (over)spiced. Regardless of (sub)style: this is clearly a messy, rather unpleasant brew, looking unattractive from the start, overspiced, totally unbalanced and, most of all, way too alcoholic, though this astringent effect softens with adding the sediment. A failure from both a technical and a conceptual point of view, at least the bottle I got; one of the most ill-fated Belgian Christmas beers I ever had to gobble up, near to drain pour, actually. Sorry mr. Pirlot!

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
RW80 (2052) - Hoogeveen, NETHERLANDS - MAY 1, 2016
33cl bottle. Appearance: Orange golden light hazy body, with a small offwhite head. Aroma: Malts, hay, apricots, yeast. Taste: Sweetish, light malts, caramel, apricots, peaches and Belgian yeast, some alcohol and a hint of wood rounding it off. Above average body and moderate carbonation. Ok.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
jfb (5574) - Freising, GERMANY - APR 20, 2016
(bottle) clear golden-amber colour with a couple of floaties and a frothy white head. aroma of rotten apricots, ethanol and sugar icing, with a touch of cinnamon and floral hops. flavour is mostly caramelized malts and rotten fruit, with a hint of treebark, some chai tee, gletschereis and chestnut honey in the finish. heavy-bodied with lively carbonation.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
Wixie (406) - BELGIUM - MAR 20, 2016
Kempisch Vuur Winter. Hazy golden blond liquid, little head. Weak aroma of citrus. Light body, average carbonation. Taste is bitter and a bit sour.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 10/20
DJoer (1196) - NETHERLANDS - MAR 6, 2016
Medium white head, golden copper coloured body, yeasty some herbs fruity melon cinamon smell, medium carbonation medium bitter warming some cinamon yeasts malts taste

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
josanguapo (1159) - SPAIN - FEB 26, 2016
From cervezasespeciales. In La Trappr chalice. Watching Sons of Anarchy. Fruity. Enjoyable. Not the typical christmas beer. More like a tropical dipa

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Bierridder_S (720) - BELGIUM - FEB 2, 2016
29/01/2016 @home - 33cl bottle from brewer. Hazy dark yellow with huge head. Nose is light fruity hops, some sourness. Taste is bitterheid, accents of fruit, sour touch, dry light bitter ending. Nothing like the typical winterbeer and than should be appreciated.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Icedwarf (1312) - Etten-Leur, NETHERLANDS - JAN 2, 2016
Donker geel bier met schuim. Smaak en presentatie is niet als standaard kerstbier, echter zeker niet slecht. Fruitig, krachtig en licht bitter hoppig, licht zoet, kruidig en met iets van abrikoos en citrus.
Earlier Rating: 6/1/2014 Total Score: 3.7
Helder oranje bruin bier met weinig schuim. Smaak is krachtig, bitter en licht zuur, citrus en caramel. Blijft lang hangen, uitstekend bier.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
The_Mango_Kid (39) - BELGIUM - DEC 23, 2015
Bij dit bier is het aroma best overweldigend, een geur die hoge verwachtingen schept. Fleurig en kruidig met een uitnodigend karakter. Het uitzicht is neutraal, beetje amberkleurig, zeker niet donker. De eerste smaak- indruk is zuur, maar niet afstotelijk, eerder complex. Het smaakpallet doet eerder denken aan een cider of iets anders fruitig, zonder echt een fruitbier te zijn. Zeker niet slecht maar te complex om zomaar voor te schotelen. Goed als proeverij voor éénmaal.

   AROMA 1/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 1/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 2/20
kraddel (6384) - some beerplace, BELGIUM - DEC 21, 2015
At Kerstbierfestival 2015. Pours clear, dark brown. Small white head. Smell is honey-sweetness. Madeira-like sweetness. Chemical fruityness. Taste is likewise, honey, sweet, chemical, madeira. Very bad !
Earlier Rating: 10/7/2013 Total Score: 3.7
modeste 2013 pours amber, small white head. smell is a bit bourbonish ? is this even barrel aged cause i assume not, so thats weird... taste is sweet, grainy, slighlty sour touch ( intresting) and i do taste a bit bourbon as well, somehow ..

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