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Gouden Carolus Noël / Christmas - Brouwerij Het Anker

Not Rated.
Gouden Carolus Noël / ChristmasGouden Carolus Noël / Christmas

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
89
very good

676 Ratings
THE BROS
70
okay

(view ratings)
Ratings: 676
Reviews: 442
rAvg: 3.96
pDev: 14.9%
Wants: 20
Gots: 31 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Het Anker visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Gusler on 11-24-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Gouden Carolus Noël / Christmas Alström Bros
Ratings: 676 | Reviews: 442 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of KindaFondaGoozah
KindaFondaGoozah

Wisconsin

4/5  rDev +1%

12-29-2013 19:23:42 | More by KindaFondaGoozah
Photo of ianjsullivan
ianjsullivan

Maryland

4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Serving: 750 ml poured into a Duvel chalice

A: Reddish brown with a nice thick brownish white fluffy head. Nice lacing and retention. When held up to the light the color is red like Santa's suit, nice carbonation can be seen.

S: Malt and sweet spice, fruity, banana and kiwi.

T: Quite a complex amount of flavors, malt and bread yeast, fruity notes on a pleasing long finish. Alcohol is present at the end, but, over all, nicely blended.

M: The ample carbonation stops the beer from being cloying. It beings creamy and finishes with cream, only at the end turning to a crisp clean.

D: 10.5 does not make this beer one to be consumed in earnest.

Overall: I don't know if they have changed the recipe since the Bros reviewed it, but, it was a great beer for me. There is a lot going on, and it could be restrained a bit better, however, the flavors do work together, particularly in the finish. There is a bit of sweet and alcohol that is not blended completely out by the hit of spice at the end. Overall though, one of the better noels I've had this year.

Serving type: bottle

01-22-2010 02:42:34 | More by ianjsullivan
Photo of beerceller99
beerceller99

Louisiana

4.6/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

75 cl. bottle from 2003. Pours a garnet color with an off white three finger head. Smells of black pepper, vanilla, mint, and caramel with a whiff of alcohol. Has a creamy yet lively mouthfeel. Medium to heavy bodied. Has a complex fruit, spice flavor of plums, apples, cinnamon, and black pepper, among others. Finishes with a nice peppery alcohol tang.

Another excellent brew from Anker.

Serving type: bottle

09-30-2004 07:47:45 | More by beerceller99
Photo of dmk91
dmk91

Virginia

4.25/5  rDev +7.3%

01-22-2014 19:32:34 | More by dmk91
Photo of Sephiroth
Sephiroth

Indiana

4.35/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I think this is a 2005 bottle. Pours a nice rosewood, with a lasting head. Some lacing is noticed. I could not begin to discern the individual aromas. Spices abound.

Taste is really good. I usually steer clear of holiday spiced beers, but Brennan at Kahn's seemed pretty stoked to have this on the shelf, so I got two. This beer is heavily spiced, and I expect to buy more for cellaring until next year. Mouthfeel is heavy, and moderately carbonated. More drinkable than I expected, 750ml is no problem.

Serving type: bottle

12-13-2005 06:31:45 | More by Sephiroth
Photo of Brewer1980
Brewer1980

United Kingdom (Scotland)

4.25/5  rDev +7.3%

12-22-2013 19:51:40 | More by Brewer1980
Photo of Dreamer
Dreamer

Pennsylvania

4.25/5  rDev +7.3%

12-25-2012 01:28:40 | More by Dreamer
Photo of pzrhsau
pzrhsau

District of Columbia

4.2/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A nice little bottle i sat on for about 5 months and my will to let it sit any longer broke.
Appearance: Nice rich brown color with hints of orange and a superior head accenting the cloudy beer.
Smell: Very spicy and malty with scents like cinnamon and other christmas spices we expect from a beer during the holidays.
Taste: Good balance of flavor and alcohol. Very warm and filling with a good bready spiciness from the yeast.
Mouthfeel and Drinkability: Very drinkable for such a big beer. Smooth and full with a good carbonation.

Serving type: bottle

04-04-2010 21:23:28 | More by pzrhsau
Photo of Brianmerrilyn
Brianmerrilyn

New York

4.45/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I had this one when waiting for a Bear Republic tasting at David Copperfields.

A: Served in goblet to reveal a murky velvet dark crimson color with a khaki 3/4 finger of a head that settled into a tight cap with strong retention.

S: The nose was full of dark fruit and coco but not overpowering.

T: I knew the abv of this beer before I ordered and could not believe how undetectable it was. Gouden Carolus is the most lucsious Belgian Dark Strong Ale I've ever had. Enormeously rich cand Syrupy sweet. The malts do not have a spicy bite at all. Brown sugar, dates and figs mix together to deliver a smooth fruity package.

M: The smoothest delivery I can recall in some time. The rich texture of this beer slides through your lips around your mouth and down your throat with complete ease, all along tasting yeast, spice and lost of candy.

D: I could not think of a better beer to go with various occasions. A wallop of sweetness packed with power and a smooth delivery make this an exceptional beer.

Serving type: on-tap

12-20-2008 23:53:25 | More by Brianmerrilyn
Photo of bkilpatr
bkilpatr

Oregon

2.15/5  rDev -45.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Poured from a 330 ml bottle into a Chimay glass. 11/23/08.

Pours a deep brown color with hints of ruby around the edges. About a finger of light tan head that slowly dropped to a thin layer. Aroma is very yeasty and fruity with toffee, cherry, caramel, sweet malt, and a heavy dose of alcohol.

Taste starts with a bunch of sweet malt and darker fruits. Lots of cherry and toffee and a sweet biscuit taste. Plenty of peppery spice. There's a bit of fusel alcohol taste as well.

Feel is medium-full bodied with ample carbonation. There's a bunch of warming from the alcohol. Drinkability is not that great. Between the alcohol taste and the heat, it's not that easy to drink.

Overall, kind of a mess. Too much alcohol in the taste and feel makes for an unpleasant experience. A lower alcohol content could have made for a much better beer.

Serving type: bottle

11-24-2008 03:14:05 | More by bkilpatr
Photo of Travlr
Travlr

District of Columbia

3.5/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 1 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark reddish brown color with a thick white long lasting head. Chocolate and roasted coffee aroma. Very strong alcohol taste throughout. Some notes of semi-sweet chocolate and malt with used coffee grounds. Slightly bitter finish. Average all the way.

Serving type: bottle

10-19-2009 01:14:33 | More by Travlr
Photo of Darkale
Darkale

Virginia

4.43/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

The head is khaki and short-lived, with a spotty lacing, like Indonesian islands all around the inside of your glass. Aroma is sweet and musty, like warm candy in the cellar, with a backbone of something sharp that slides through the fuzzy sweetness. Mouthfeel is smooth, creamy, just shy of thick, with alcohol burning along the edge. Taste is very complicated. I am picking up cherry, chocolate, a hint of coffee, a drumline of hops. The tongue is coated, at first, with sweetness, and ends with a tingle of hops. A nice, complicated, sip-through-the-Sunday beer.

Serving type: bottle

11-19-2006 19:16:22 | More by Darkale
Photo of Pug
Pug

Minnesota

4.5/5  rDev +13.6%

01-06-2014 21:28:04 | More by Pug
Photo of Vixie
Vixie

Illinois

3.95/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours what at first looks black, but when held up to the light it is actually a deep ruby red. Forms a large tan head which lasts for a bit.

Hard for me to tell exactly what this smells like, but it's is nice. Reminds me of Christmas goodies being bakes, fruit and cinnamon and spiced cider.

Very spicy beer here. Starts out hot, a lot of spice and the alcohol is very much present, a surprise for this style of beer. Tastes a bit like cinnamon candy as well as raisin and a bit of pepper, all backed by alcohol.

Feel is smooth and full.

Very much an interesting beer, it's a bit spicier than I expect for the style. There is no doubt this is a holiday beer, the smell and taste fit in perfectly with that time of year. A bit too strong to drink a lot of, but a good one to have on a cold night, it will warm you right up.

Serving type: bottle

01-05-2012 02:08:41 | More by Vixie
Photo of CharlatanSin
CharlatanSin

Connecticut

2.98/5  rDev -24.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

A 2008 version served on tap into a tulip at Amsterdam Ale House. Pricey, but hey, it's the holiday season, so why not?

Appearance: A nice dark reddish brown, with a big honkin' tan head that leaves big time lacing.

Smell: Picking up a good dose of yeasty white bread, and then the sweetness pounds you. Brown sugar and plum mostly for me.

Taste: Well...not so good. The sweetness is overpowering. It tastes like purple Robitussin. If I start tripping balls, I'll think the bartender switched it up on me. The "tussin" taste is a mix of plum and strong alcohol. Now, generally I don't mind a boozy beer, but this one's all out of balance.To be fair, it gets better as it gets warmer, as some nutmeg and other festive spices start to show their head.

Mouthfeel: The booze dominates the mouthfeel as well. I don't mind that all that much. Other than that, it's got a medium body and good carbonation.

Drinkability: The tussin quality kills this one for me.

Serving type: on-tap

12-17-2009 05:55:09 | More by CharlatanSin
Photo of haz77
haz77

Australia

4.45/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a deep clear brown, with a couple of inches of thick light-tan head. Masses of carbonation keep this firmly in place, until is finally drops to a half inch.

S - Yeast, candy cane, dried Christmas fruits, sweet spice.

T - A sweet candy-like flavour initially, with a slight bubblegum edge. The dried fruit flavours push through, before the sweet spices finally emerge. A yeast note drifts in-between these flavours throughout. Slight alcohol warmth in the aftertaste. 10.5% ABV? It doesn't seem like it's anywhere close to that.

M - Silky smooth from start to finish. The aggressive looking carbonation is surprisingly delicate and gently caresses the tongue. Exceptionally good.

D - Absolutely superb. Has the seasonal feel without being overbearing in its flavours. Far too easy to drink for the potency it has.

Serving type: bottle

12-10-2006 15:38:21 | More by haz77
Photo of CMW
CMW

Missouri

3.85/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a very dark brown. Much darker than I expected, almost like a porter. The head is at least two inches and tan in color. Retention is massive as it is taking me at least five minutes to let it settle enough to drink.

S - Smell is dominated by candied dark fruits, yeast, and alcohol.

T - The sweeter is definitely noticeable up front. The taste reminds me of candied figs and raisins. After the sweetness fades, the malt is noticeable along with the yeast. There is some balance but the sweetness is definitely more powerful. Slight warming in the end.

M - Medium carbonation but this has more of a syrupy feel.

D - I like this beer quite a bit I will definitely buy one again next year.

Serving type: bottle

01-10-2010 05:13:14 | More by CMW
Photo of Daktyls
Daktyls

Massachusetts

4/5  rDev +1%

12-24-2011 19:56:05 | More by Daktyls
Photo of ryanonline
ryanonline

Florida

3.8/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

updated. my last review was two years ago. also my tastes have changed and i have had many different beers and even homebrewed my own.

pours a beautiful dark dark brown with some slight ruby highlights and a thin off white head that dissipates quickly leaving sheets of lacing.

the smell is very strong of spices, peppermint and spearmint sort of mingled together along with a touch of clove. the malt aroma is very strong as well. heavy on the bran and toffee. only a light flowery hop aroma in the nose.

The spices are all over on this one, along with a HUGE alcohol heat. Anise and peppermint with a light touch of spearmint or wintergreen. it has a slightly sweet and sour malt bill, the spice and alcohol just dominate any sense of anything else.

the mouthfeel is thick and syrupy with a touch of soft carbonation. the finish is dry and lasting.

drinkability is pretty low on this one, it is super complex and really filling.

there is just a bit too much heat on this one, and the minty spice is just overbearing, but damn is it something else.

Serving type: bottle

11-29-2011 20:25:38 | More by ryanonline
Photo of Cozzatoad
Cozzatoad

Italy

3.4/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

750ml bottle, a leftover from the christmas season at a local pub

A- Very dark brown. Light brown head that has a lot of small bubbles but disappears too quickly, leaving some lacing around the glass

S- Strong sweet malts with some caramel, liquorice and dark fruits undertones. That would be very nice if it wasn't for a strong metallic alcohol aroma that gets too dominant

T- The flavour range is wide and very interesting. At first you feel a porto-like taste, probably from the sweet malts, that is not uncommon with quads. Then you can also feel that the beer is creamy, with some stoutish undertones to it (toffee, liquorice). There are some more flavours that come along with the malt (caramel, dark fruits). Plus, there is also a strong and spicy alcoholic feel that gets very strong at times

M- A wide range of flavours as i mentioned, but really badly mixed up. This beer has a big and wonderful creamy body that is meant to feel smooth, but there are a lot of issues. First, flavours can be felt only at times and then they vanish in the following sips, this beer feels uncanny. Second, the alcohol is too strong, burns the palate and ruins the creamy feel. Third, a roasted feel that has nothing to do with what the beer is meant to be shows up at times and makes this beer even stranger

D- As just pointed out, this beer is badly mixed up. It is also a bit stomaching, so the drinkability really takes a big hit

This beer has what it takes to be a great beer (a big and yet smooth body, a great range of flavours) but it is badly balanced. That's a shame

Serving type: bottle

03-15-2011 11:27:34 | More by Cozzatoad
Photo of Shiredave
Shiredave

New York

4.13/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This one poured a dark red/amber color with a clotted tan head that slumped quickly leaving lacy spatters behind. Very clear with slow carbonation visible.

Aroma is classic Belgian holidaleish - rich toffee and deep fruit notes along side some dark grain and chocolate scents. Alcohol is evident but not quarrelsome with the softer aromas.

Flavors of the same ripe fruits and candy sugar sweetness flood the mouth up front. Rich, dark malt flavors mix in and then vanish to leave a strong smokey bitterness and lingering caramel and alcohol sweetness.

Body is medium to almost full tho something seems missing- this has all the components yet fails to impress. I think this may mellow in the bottle in 2 - 6 months into something a little more rounded and complex - complexity and meshing of flavors may develop with a few months age. Very easy and tasty to drink - went real well with roasted and salted pecans and brie on crusty bread.

Serving type: bottle

12-26-2008 00:22:19 | More by Shiredave
Photo of planbee
planbee

North Carolina

4/5  rDev +1%

12-15-2011 04:07:24 | More by planbee
Photo of DaveJanssen
DaveJanssen

Germany

4.5/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Slpit a 750mL two ways, poured into Russian River globes.

Ar: Super fruity an floral, plum, rich fruit dark heavy grape, *licorice, rummy spice, alcohol, raisin, caramel and toffee, spice, chocolate, overall a rich, sweet and full aroma

Ap: Low light tan head, hints of lace, good retention, clear brown with red highlights

T: Rummy, heavy toffee, plum and raisin, sweet and fruity, caramel, light whiskey spice/oak, dried fruit, light herbal hop in aftertaste, complex, chocolate, a rum and coke like sweet and spice quality, unique

M: Full wet and sweet, alc warmth but clean alcohol and appropriate, low/medium carbonation

O: great sipping beer, very rich and sweet, nice spiciness, complex, very quad-like

Serving type: bottle

01-15-2010 00:05:19 | More by DaveJanssen
Photo of SShelly
SShelly

Oregon

3.2/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

On tap at verdugo, labeled as christmas not noel,

I feel like this is a different beer from the "noel" ive had in the bottle...

aroma is a big shot of anise/black licorice with a little bit of sweet malt behind.

flavor is dominated by the same anise, some dark fruit, sweet malt and a light blend of other spices.

not the most enjoyable christmas beer ive had, way too much licorice not enough malt...have had this out of a bottle and dont remember it being like this...

Serving type: on-tap

12-08-2009 04:57:14 | More by SShelly
Photo of pinotboy007
pinotboy007

Virginia

4.45/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Purchased as a (chilled) single at Arrowine, Arlington, VA.

A - Held up to bright light it reveals a gorgeous, deep, very dark mahogany with garnet accents. The head is decent with moderate lacing.

S - Spice cake and leather.

T - Delicious and the best Christmas ale I've ever tasted. Has a splendid array of sweet fig, dates, a touch of toffee, and even some cola. It's not THAT sweet, but the flavor profile is amazing.

M - Liquid velvet.

D - Even with the high ABV this is more than drinkable and will be a total pleasure to enjoy during the coming holidays. Cheers! :)

Serving type: bottle

12-22-2008 22:54:14 | More by pinotboy007
Gouden Carolus Noël / Christmas from Brouwerij Het Anker
89 out of 100 based on 676 ratings.