St. Bernardus Abt 12 - Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV
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Ratings: 7,026 | Reviews: 2,470 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by THANAT0PSIS:
4.68/5 rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75
St. Bernardus Abt 12
Appearance: This legendary Abbey-brewed quad pours a deep, opaque mahogany, bordering on the color of pipe tobacco. It is crowned with a massive, fluffy, khaki-colored head that overflows out of the glass on even a gentle pour; it is out of the range of measuring with fingers. The retention is astounding, and the lacing is equally as impressive. There is very obviously (and predictably) sediment floating throughout the syrupy liquid, and this makes it an ugly-yet-pretty beer not unlike Heady Topper. This beer has been made this way at St. Bernardus since 1946, and the recipe is presumably older than that, so it is difficult to dock the beer too much for being somewhat unappealing.
Aroma: As expected for a quad, dark fruits (plums, figs, cherries) and candi sugar dominate. Belgian yeast, of course, is also a big presence, which imparts the classic bubblegum, slightly medicinal notes. Alcohol is reasonably prominent, which hits beside with a curious wood character. Lastly, spiciness and indiscriminate fruity esters linger on the nose, along with a sugary sweetness. This smells like a classic and delicious quad.
Taste: Like most beers, this follows the nose pretty well. There are lots of the dark fruits described above, in addition to a nice malty nuttiness that was not detected in the aroma. The cherry notes even have a nice twinge of sourness. The middle of the mouth is sweet and sticky but not overly so, and it is swept aside by a slight hop bitterness and yeasty spiciness, as well as the warmth from the alcohol. The spices and fruit esters, just as predicted by the nose, linger on the tongue. This is a very tasty, and surprisingly drinkable example of a quad. To put the taste in a word: ripe.
Mouthfeel: Smooth, medium bodied, slick, chalky/yeasty, creamy, and perfectly carbonated are all words that could describe this beer. The alcohol is there, but in a pleasantly warming capacity. The sour cherries and mild hops impart the barest hint of dryness, but they really do not stand a chance to the huge malt bill and complexity of this beer.
Overall: While it does not quite match the complexity and overall drinkability of Rochefort 10, this is still a delicious and widely available example of a Belgian quad. The plus is that this beer is available in larger, more sharable quantities, whereas Rochefort is only found in 11.2 oz bottles. There is really nothing more to say other than this does the quad style damn near to perfection. Nothing more, nothing less. 18.5/20
Serving type: bottle
04-06-2013 06:09:30 | More by THANAT0PSIS
More User Reviews:
4.5/5 rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25
Poured from a glass into a Belgian Ale stemmed glass.
A: Dark, cloudy brown with tinges of deep red and orange. Thick head, some sediment (in bottle) can sneak out in an aggressive pour.
S: Big roasted malt body with strong notes of caramel, honey, molasses and peat. Some spicy and hoppy finish.
T: Primarily dark roasted malt body with spice and sweet on top. Big caramel notes and hints of clove and candy. Some cherry nose and a somewhat hoppy finish. Fairly boozy but very balanced considering its ABV and OG.
M: Smooth and silky, somewhat carbonated, not overly sweet or bitter. No unfortunate aftertastes. Very balanced and enjoyable to drink.
O: Another fine Belgian. Not quite as good as the Trappistes beers, specifically the Rochefort 10, but nonetheless an excellent beer. I enjoyed the malty body and tinges of cherry candy in the finish. Nice color, a bit more sediment than I was expecting (got a little in my glass, oops!).
Serving type: bottle
07-29-2014 22:58:57 | More by jsausley
St. Bernardus Abt 12 from Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV
99 out of 100 based on 7,026 ratings.