RateBeer
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99
style
Brewed by St. Bernardus Brouwerij
Style: Belgian Strong Ale
Watou, Belgium

bottled
common

on tap
common

Broad Distribution

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RATINGS: 1234   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.88   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 300   ABV: 10%
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COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
St. Bernardus Christmas Ale is the youngest descendant in the illustrious family of delicious Abbey Ales by Brewery St. Bernardus. This specialty beer of 10% alc. vol. is characterized by its deep dark colour, with a creamy, thick head and a full, almost velvety taste with a fruity nose. It's a seasonal ale, brewed annually for the holiday season. The long winter nights are perfect moments to savour this ale with or without friends and to enjoy its unique, complex taste and after-taste.


3.9
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Parket (570) - Bruges, BELGIUM - DEC 7, 2009
75 cl bottle, hazy dark reddish/brown colour with beige/white head. Smell: dark fruits, plums. Taste: banana, artichoke, candysugar, yeasty, alcohol and light bitter finish. A warm feeling in the aftertaste. Brilliant Xmas ale!

3.7
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
zathrus13 (1733) - Mount Laurel, New Jersey, USA - DEC 6, 2009
Bottle. Pours brown, with a large, tan head. Aroma is malt, spices, and dark fruit. Flavor is malt, spices, and dark fruit. Body is a little thinner than I expected. Ends a dry. Rating #1299.

3.4
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 15/20
drseusszb200 (687) - Florida, USA - DEC 6, 2009
poured brown with a nice white head that faded quickly. smells sweet with a slight sourness if you look for it. tasted sweet to start finished with a sour tastre and an alcohol aftertaste.

3.6
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
cbeers21 (693) - Miami, Florida, USA - DEC 6, 2009
Chestnut brown with a decent head. Super sugary sweet malty cloved aromas with a touch of the spiced Christmas spirit. Body was a tad viscous and the flavor itself was rather sweet, almost to the point of cloying. A bit of caramel, peppermint and cinnamon are there for indulging upon. A nice offering, yet a little too festive in the exuberant spice department and its lingering sweet finish. drinkble though

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
ContemplateBeer (1661) - Louisville, Kentucky, USA - DEC 5, 2009
Aroma of rum balls and roasted caramel. Appearance was dark reddish brown with creamy tan head. Flavor of rum cake, molasses and dark chocolate. Palate was bubbly. A masterwork.

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
ilovedarkbeer (2393) - Dallas, Texas, USA - DEC 5, 2009
Reminds me a lot of pannepot. Pours a nice mahogany color with a medium to large sized foamy tope colored head that does not persist. Notes of nutmeg and cinnamon, with belgian candi sugar, dark brown sugar, banana, chocolate, and yeast. Very well balanced, with a nice medium to thick mouthfeel. Cleanses the palate well. Nice beer.

3.9
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 17/20
RAYBOY01 (2012) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - DEC 3, 2009
Great purply-black pour with moderate off-white head that tends to linger briefly then fades into a light lacing. Very rich roasty aroma, burnt grain and lightly spiced highlights. The flavors are roasted barley malt, coffee, dark sweet fruits, plums, carmel, toffee, and hints of holiday spices. Very creamy texture, not clying or overly sweet. Very well balanced and luxurious.

3.9
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
tastybeer (1837) - Indiana, USA - DEC 3, 2009
On draft Pizza Paradiso Dupont circle. Pours dark brown with tons of head/lacing. Tastes like candy sugar, honey, chocolate, and some citrus. Goes down easy. This beer is excellent.

4
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
17thfloor (2436) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - DEC 2, 2009
2009 Bottle. Pours a very dark but still clear and glowing brown orange with a nice fizzy frothy creamy colored head. Aroma is wonderful, lovely plummy trappist yeast, lightly sweet, moderately spicy, a hint doughy, a bit of fruit, a touch of brown sugar and nuts, really well balanced. Flavor follows but is a bit on the tinny metallic side, but just a touch, some more esters than what the aroma indicates, more doughy, chalky with just a subtle hint of banana, ginger bread, some rich brown sugar, a bit more than medium sweetness, very yeasty, the finish is fairly hot with a cleaner spicy nutty yeasty aftertaste. Medium/full bodied, closer to medium, slightly sugary chalky with plenty of sharp carbonation.

3.9
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
SamGamgee (2452) - down the whirlpool, California, USA - NOV 30, 2009
75cl bottle split with larryLSB. A very nice and very typical Belgian christmas specialty ale that reminds me of Gouden Carolous or Nice Chouffe to an extent. Spiced and perfumey, but with a smooth fruitiness. Murky brown in color with a creamy light beige head. Purple highlights. Floral, perfumey aroma with a touch of anise, some figs, light dough, fruity yeast, orange peel, and sweet honeyish, syrupy malt in the aroma. The flavor is almost like a spiced cookie with just a few raisins in it. Light clove ginger and alcohol. Sweet, but alcohol just wins out in the end without being harsh. Low bitterness makes the sweetness stand out more, but the finishing gravity is still pretty low, and shows in the light and clean body, aided by high carbonation. The carbonation is appropriate for the style, but is just a tad too coarse and only becomes pleasant with a good deal of swirling to knock it down a couple notches. Great beer besides this. Definitely a solid christmas ale, and the Belgians make what is probably my favorite style of the season.


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