St. Bernardus Christmas Ale

Reviewed by on December 2, 2013 in Holiday Guide

The Details

  • Brewery: Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV

  • Origin: Belgium

  • Rated On: December 7, 2012

  • Best Before: N/A

  • ABV: 10.0%

  • Ideal Temperature: between cold and cellar temperature

  • Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

  • Rating: GREAT !!

The Review

This appears to be along the lines of this brewery’s ABT 12 offering, but gussied up even further with some nice seasonal spices. An imposing, yet lovingly festive 750ml bottle.

The beer itself pours a muddy, sediment-strewn orangish brown hue, with one finger of thickly foamy, soapy beige head, which leaves some sparse specks of islet lace around the glass in its slow, meandering wake. It smells of stewed raisins, caramel, toffee, and everything ever baked by anybody’s mom for Christmas. The taste is more caramel and raisin, plum, nutmeg, cinnamon, brown sugar, and soft warming alcohol.

The carbonation is quite sedate, the body weighty, well-textured, smooth, and a tad creamy. It finishes with that same essence of chanced upon Christmas baking, softly steeped in rum.

Like many other holiday season libations, this is an intense, indulgent sipper, ideally suited for satisfying that sweet tooth, and keeping out the chill at the same time.

Brady White

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