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


on tap

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RATINGS: 1142   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.89   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 300   ABV: 10%
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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.

beermatrix's rating

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 18/20
beermatrix (1497) - Twin Cities, Minnesota, USA - DEC 20, 2007
Pours out a dark brown to settle a nearly mat black with a small sense of brownness to its body. Very heavy looking and an impressively tall capping to top it off of light crispy brown foam thats a bit rough and tumbled. Kinda crunchy looking at first but developes into a moderately creamy bubbleness and density as it sits. It keeps well and stretches all sorts of wonderful lacing that looks of wet powdered sugar. Nice lofty aroma of cookie dough and spice. Crisp yet round with a full on malt tilt of breads and dark fruits. Mostly figgy, touch of raisin, perhaps some dates and molasses covering the big breadyness. Nice yeastyness to it which seems to be adding a root beerish type of hints to its dryness. Slender hops add some grassyness to its spicy complexity which included some anise, cinnamon, mint, and ginger cookies. Flavors are bold, lasting and carry alot of what the smell leads to with its big maltyness and yeastified balance. Firm grip of dark candish malts leads right in with a nice holiday cake-like dimension of figgyness first, then dark cherry, dates, chocolate covered raisins, and then the peppy spices. Notes of root beer, anise, pepper, carrot cake, and ginger make their way in and out of the malty doughy darkness but linger mostly across its finish with a slender, delicately woven dryness of grassy hops. Pretty damn solid! Perhaps not quite a match to the Abt 12, but damn if its not close! Feel is big, bold, and beautiful. The girth is massive in the body of this stuff. Heavy yet smooth, crunchy and crisp yet creamy with a whole lotta malts to create an exceedingly thick bread/cake-like structure of body. Not to mention the subtle details of yeasty play, dark fruity tang, perfectly intensed warmness, hoppy dryness, and spice. Which all lasts forever and a day the second it spills on to your palate. Wow! Great stuff! No big surprise really. St. B knows how to impress and this is perfect for the holidays!

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
HopsandBolts (112) - Ontario, CANADA - DEC 26, 2014
750 bottle from the LCBO.

Appearance: Pours a murky brown with three fingers of dense tan head that lasts a couple of minutes. It then fades leaving little lacing.

Aromas: Belgian yeast, appricots and candied fruit.

Flavours: Candied fruit, Belgian yeast, prunes, plums, figs, hop notes.

Mouthfeel: Moderate viscosity with high carbonation.

Overall: A nice quadruple with lots going on in the way of aromas and flavours. It isn’t something I would want to drink all the time but it is nice on occasion like at Christmas.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
beer_est_deus (750) - örebro, SWEDEN - DEC 26, 2014
Lite dimming och brun aktig med ett brun-orange skum. Doft: Belgo, örter, kola, frukt, "godis malt", läsk. Smak: Malt, must, belgo, läsk.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
lukin (498) - Ontario, CANADA - DEC 26, 2014
bottle. Earthy red colour and large lively head. Malty, breads and caramel, dark fruit and apple. Spicy and boozy. Very lively carbonation. Nice winter warmer beer.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Beersiveknown (3264) - NORTHERN IRELAND - DEC 26, 2014
Bottle at home from drinkstore
hazy dark chestnut with beige head collapsing to lacing. Fruity prunes, dates and candy sugar. Lively carbonation, fruity full bodied, sweet, apple. Fairly light bodied and not Ott on yeast esters.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
lesifflebiere (1355) - Gatineau, Quebec, CANADA - DEC 25, 2014
Imposante mousse à la surface de cette bière rougeoyante mi-épaisse, qui présente aussi un nez acidulé qui rappelle même un peu les levures bretts, avec quelques fruits (baies, cerises) pour terminer. Bouche en punch aux fruits, riche et décadente, savoureuse et complexe, superbement balancée. Elle est un peu trop pétillante, comme c’est souvent le cas pour cette brasserie, mais il s’agit d’un de leurs fleurons, un délice de tous les instants.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
high_on_hops (673) - Burlingame, California, USA - DEC 25, 2014
Pours a deep, hazy brown with an off-white head and lacing. The aroma is lots of spices like cinnamon and coriander with some dark fruit as well. The flavor is spices and rich malt up front with a solid backbone and slightly sweet finish over a heavy body. ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
CRock (70) - Ontario, CANADA - DEC 25, 2014
Pours a brown colour with a head that disappears quickly. I find its a fruitier version of the 12.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
hman43 (412) - Pinehurst, North Carolina, USA - DEC 25, 2014
It pours brown with a full head that produces a fair amount of lacing. It has an aroma of fruit and spices. There is also a bit of alcohol and malts. Finally, there are earthly notes as well. There are flavors of spice, alcohol, yeast. It does have a moderate, dry bitter finish.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
beertholomeus (893) - California, USA - DEC 25, 2014
Pours a burnt amber color with an off white head. Yeast, fruit, spice, malt and sugar aroma. Yeast, raisin, plum, apple, banana, fig, sugar , malt, caramel and spice flavors. Medium full body with lively carbonation. Fruit, yeast and caramel finish.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
goozen (3070) - Leiden, NETHERLANDS - DEC 25, 2014
Tap at Lemmy's, Leiden: Dark brown colored brew with an sweet bitter taste, hints of chocolate, cinnamon and some banana.

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