Brewed by De Struise Brouwers
Style: Belgian Strong Ale
Oostvleteren, Belgium


on tap

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RATINGS: 190   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.71   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 300   ABV: 10%
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Bottle conditioned.
Ingredients: Barley malt, hops, cane sugar, yeast and spices. Aged in port barrels

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
SlovakSniper (3013) - Candiac/Frelighsburg, Quebec, CANADA - SEP 20, 2013
Une petite bouteille que j’ouvre en compagnie de rodenbach99. J’observe que la fin de vie utile du liquide est prévue pour le 26 décembre 2017. En le versant, je découvre que sa robe cuivrée est bien sale. Sa petite couronne de mousse beige agrémente sans doute mon regard. Je plonge mon nez de métèque dans cette sauce signée Struise pour me rendre compte assez rapidement que nous sommes ici dans une confiserie pour adultes. Je capte beaucoup de douceur: du sucre belge, du miel cristallisé, des fruits de toute sorte et quelque chose qui me fait penser à la vanille. Je trempe mes lèvres une première fois pour découvrir que les saveurs ne trahissent guère les arômes. Je goûte pour une deuxième fois pour me convaincre que cette potion sucrée manque d’atténuation. Sur mon palais, j’ai l’impression d’un liquide lourdaud. Le pétillement faible et la texture légèrement collante ne sont pas deux arguments susceptible de me convaincre. En finale, je note la présence d’une chaleur d’alcool qui freine avec bonheur les fioritures sucrées qui ornent et qui finissent par hanter toute la complexité fruitée emprisonnée dans cette petite bouteille qui, ma foi, est plutôt difficile à boire.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
Sureshpa (277) - Maastricht, NETHERLANDS - SEP 17, 2013
Aroma: Caramel, woodnotes, red fruits, malt Appearance: Amber, red, orange, cloudy, off white head, disappearing head, medium lace Taste: Slight boozy, red fruits, caramel, hint of citrus, malty

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 13/20
fkoolen (217) - Maastricht, NETHERLANDS - SEP 16, 2013
Pours a beautifully amber-brown colour with a creamy head. Nose has some spiciness, raisins, plums and just a hint of red wine/port. Taste gets sweet fruits, spices, wood, hoppy bitterness and alcohol giving it balanced complexity. Can’t really get the port in the taste. Wonderful mouth feel (seems to be a trademark from the Struise Brouwers): medium bodied with lively carbonation, really adding positively to the degustation. Interesting beer.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
BlackHaddock (3479) - Shropshire, ENGLAND - SEP 4, 2013
33cl Bottle: given to me by Ian Harrison, a big thank you! Best before Boxing day 2017: poured into a Westvleteren chalice at home on 4 Sep 2013. I managed to keep most of the sediment in the bottle, but a few bits joined the lovely reddy brown bodied beer. The head was thin and sparse from the start. Sweet nose of pure sugar, yeast, and Port notes too. The taste is equally sweet and Port infused. The alcohol, which is barely hidden, adds an extra dimension. I could pontificate about the flavours and depth of character but I’ll leave that to better pens than I. A truly wonderful beer.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
KyotoLefty (6141) - Kyoto, JAPAN - SEP 3, 2013
Bottle from ABS; drank at Grote Begijnhof with Sakiko. Deep amber-orange color with a thick, fine, low head. Malty, bready, cake-like nose, spices, caramel, chocolate, fruitcake. Very Christmas-y. Sweet and spicy, and hot. Raisins, candied cherries, cinnamon and nutmeg, hot booze. Peppery finish. Very powerful and complex. Some wine notes, though I don’t exactly get port. Still very hot, could use more time. Soft, oily body with lots of carbonation, though it is rather fine bubbles. Very tasty but still too young and rough.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
fonefan (34188) - VestJylland, DENMARK - AUG 25, 2013

Bottle 330ml. @ home.

Unclear medium amber orange colour with a average, frothy, good lacing, mostly diminishing, off-white head. Aroma is moderate malty, caramel, riped fruit, wood, light to moderate yeasty, alcohol, phenol. Flavour is moderate to heavy sweet and moderate bitter with a long duration, alcohol, sweet fruit, dry, grapes, yeasty. Body is medium, texture is oily, carbonation is soft and fizzy, finish feel is light to moderate alcoholic. [20130425]

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
mile (2853) - Helsinki, FINLAND - AUG 23, 2013
Bottle. Amber, cloudy, small to average and mostly diminishing head. Moderate to full, malty and sweetish aroma, some fruitiness - light citrus with light vinous notes - light dark fruits, light spiciness (coriander), faint alcohol. Body is medium to full, malt and sweetish flavor, some caramel, light dark fruits and light citrus, light spiciness, light alcohol. Finish is average, malty and sweetish, light caramel and faint fruitiness, light sharp spiciness and some alcohol. OK aroma, but flavor/finish lacks the barrel - too much alcohol in the finish considering the body. Not too spicy though.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
jerohen (1976) - Bussum, NETHERLANDS - AUG 22, 2013
Bottled from Biernavigatie.nl. Hazy orange/brown colored, lasting beige head. Very spicy nose, Belgian yeast, caramel malts, ethanol. Bittersweet flavor, caramel malts, quite some spices, dry yeasty notes, evolving flavor, quite complex. In finish the port clearly shines through, long and fruity. I usually don’t like these overspiced x-mas brews, but the port borrel aging makes it easier to drink and adds some complexity. Not sure i would drink it more often, but i’ve certainly enjoyed this one.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
zaf (233) - ITALY - JUL 28, 2013
è bellissima..ambrata/rossa con schiuma a grana medio fine molto persistente e di colore leggermente marroncino..aroma superfruttato,uno dei più forti che ho mai sentito..simile al fruttato val dieu ma oltre al normale probabilmente derivante da lieviti e zucchero c’è in dolciastro particolare che azzarderei derivi dall’invecchiamento in porto..anche l’alcool si sente abbastanza..nel gusto sicuramente domina molto il dolce (zucchero di canna,tripel,invecchiamento in porto..direi anche abbastanza normale come cosa) ,sentori fruttati come nell’aroma ed è molto piacevole al palato,riscaldante e con corpo pieno e carbonazione bassa..luppolo presente in piccolissime note e come al solito solo verso la fine,,la trovo molto simile alla stille nacht per certi versi,ma forse qui il dolce si sente in maniera troppo eccessiva e quindi la reputo leggermente inferiore..insomma: birra natalizia ottima,veramente ben fatta,invecchiata in botti di porto per un anno che le lasciano quel tocco in più,un dolciastro non completamente derivante da lieviti e zucchero che quindi la rende intrigante e pregiata..salute!

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
BeerGolem (658) - Quebec, CANADA - JUL 22, 2013
Bouteille 330 ml. Robe brune opaque, reflets dorés. Un peu de dentelle. Arôme et goût: pommes, caramel, houblon, sucre, malt et alcool (bien équilibrée). Le goût est à mon avis meilleurs que l’arôme. Bonne rondeur, mais extrêmement asséchante. Une bonne bière, mais ce n’est pas la Pannepot...

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