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St. Bernardus Abt 12 - Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV

Not Rated.
St. Bernardus Abt 12St. Bernardus Abt 12

Educational use only; do not reuse.

2,647 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 2,647
Hads: 8,748
Avg: 4.42
pDev: 17.42%
Wants: 672
Gots: 2,061 | FT: 49
Brewed by:
Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV visit their website

Style | ABV
Quadrupel (Quad) |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-14-2001

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (12) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of St. Bernardus Abt 12 Alström Bros
Reviews: 2,647 | Hads: 8,748
Photo of Retta123
4.05/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

serving: on tap

appearance: dark golden brown, no head

mouthfeel: low carbonation, smooth

taste: plum, prune, rasin, sweet, no bitterness

overall: very tasty beer. not overly sweet, and nice and smooth. Nice after dinner dessert beer. High alcohol content...

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Photo of ChadQuest
4.05/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a St Berardus goblet, rather appropiate. :)

Dark brownish and course looking, nearlry permanent cap over the top. Aroma is of peppered malt and spices, along with crispy toasted breads that carry over into the flavors. There is a plethora of dense spice character all over this, so good. there is a strong dark yeast note and toasted/burnt marshmallow. creamy and course at the same time the carbination levels are faint but tightly woven.

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Photo of Richardberg
4.05/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - pours a solid brown with thick foam & lace

S - sweet caramel malt, some pepper & spice, hint of citrus

T - everything you'd expect from the smell, wrapped in a rich body. Alcohol is present but doesn't come close to getting in the way. Aftertaste remains sweet but not cloying.

M - full, velvety smooth (especially for a beer only moderately dark), with a very fine tingle

D - really should be a sipping beer, but I find no need to be reserved about quaffing it. I don't think it's as interesting / complex as some here, so it's not about to become an everyday thing, but definitely a solid Belgian.

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Photo of williamjbauer
4.04/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottled served in a shaker pint glass

A - Murky tea colored brown hue with 2 finger very bubbly head with average retention and minimal lacing, with some yeast sediment to boot.

S - Cloves, tobacco, malt, biscuits, coriander, peppery spice, stagnant water, funky yeast.

T - Immediately the booze, clove, peppery spices, and a bit of bitter hits me. My palate is so warm my face feels like it is turning red. The bready yeast is very present in the background but there is too much going on to take real notice of it. The booze dominates for me with a quick dry bitter finish that is not entirely to my liking.

M - Medium body, effervescent high carbonation, very dry finish, moderate-high warming alcohol.

O - This is one of those beers that I appreciate and can see what others enjoy, but I don't particularly like much myself. This is a high quality quad, but it a little bitter and too spicy compared to others in this style I enjoy.

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Photo of brother_rebus
4.04/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

750ml. 12/12/13 Bottling date. Explosive uncorking, no gush. Crisp vanilla colored head. Opaque dark amber plum appearance. nose smells of fruited molasses. fig. belgian yeast. very foreword carbonation on the pallet. almost a tart fruit pinch right up front. like an unripened black cherry.
the hops are surprisingly somewhat distinct. despite it being so old. the prototypical belgian yeast taste coats the tastebuds after the tartness. as it warms, it starts to taste bready. as it gets even warmer, (and towards the bottom of the snifter) the collected sediments bring out way more tones of dark fruits; plum, fig, date, currant. as well as caramel, molass, and koff syrup in a good way. hitting some notes of clove, (nutmeg?) and other spices. washes a mellow smooth wash and a warm boozy after breath.

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Photo of KarlHungus
4.04/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This brew pours a dark brown color with a medium size white creamy head. The lacing is outstaning. The aroma is of spices and caramel, but is rather faint. The taste is nice and spicy with a solid malt backbone. The mouthfeel is meium-full bodied with nice carbonation. Overall, this is a good brew, worth havin again.

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Photo of boston2bburg
4.03/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Green apple aromas on the pour make me suspicious this bottle wasn't treated all that well, but here goes (Best before 4/21/14).

Cloudy medium brown with ruby traces, and a fizzy beige head that retains a trace creamy layer, decent retention for such a big beer.

The green apple disappears and is replaced with booze, caramel, some clove esters and oxidized alcohols, a bit of banana as well. Musty wooden crates.

Creamy smooth mouthfeel until the clove and alcohol spice sets in on the finish. Soft booze presence on the palate, but an ecstatically pleasant booze buzz after even the first swallow. Chewy, then spicy, fizzy and dry.

Fig, some prune, less plum, tobacco, clove, butterscotch and caramel; this beer runs the gamut. Very easy to quaff.

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Photo of badbeer
4.03/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750mL cork and caged bottle poured into a Westmalle chalice. No best by date printed.

Pours a very dark brown with an almost creamy off-white head leaving traces of lacing around the glass. At first the head dissipated leaving little islands on the beer and somehow gained strength and filled out the glass for a head all around. Pretty strong yeasty aroma, wow, plum, raison, cherries, and maybe even some grapes. Pretty strong, yet complex smell. Taste is full of the same dark fruit, just dancing on the tongue, be prepared. To dig deeper, it starts with a caramel and biscuit flavor then transforms seemlessly into a plum/raison flavor and finishes with a bit of dark cherry flavor. Slightly above average carbonation, with a medium to full body, pretty nicely paired together, maybe a little less carbonation would be better. Very wonderful to drink, but I can't imagine being able to stand after a few of these.

Side note: I definately feel this one is best when it warms. I opened it when it was still a little too cool and as it warmed in front of me it kept getting better.

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Photo of Kraken
4.03/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from Corked and Caged 750ml bottle.
Massive head, starts oozing from the bottle upon removing the cork. Pours a cherry brown. Smells of yeast and raisins, vine fruits, and alcohol. Head diminishes over time to thin minute bubbles, leaves nice lacing on glass. Taste of raisins, and yeast, very nice malty, slight sweetness. Thin mouthfeel, not clinging like some other quads. Sweet somewhat dry finish. Very drinkable, high alcohol content drinker beware.

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Photo of MrVonzipper
4.03/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy and slightly tawny brown with a nice fluffy tan head with great retention.

Smells of rich Belgian candy, plums and currants.

Flavor follows the nose pretty well. Belgian candy sweetness with some fruits noted in the nose. A touch a caramel. Nice flavor.

Mouth is medium bodied with a high amount of carbonation. A touch tacky.

Overall a solid Belgian quad. Is it #39 (when reviewed) best beer in the world? Absolutely not. Otherwise all around "Good."

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Photo of Maakun
4.03/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice dark brown with hints of red. Nice compact head that lasts for a very long time in the Orval glass.

Smell is slightly sweet and not very strong. Dades, malt, maybe even some chocolate.

Taste is sweet, some dark bready malts, almost rye, dried dark fruits. A slightly burned touch. Then a nice touch of hops, some dark sugars, light yeasty bitterness.

Mouth is medium with medium carbonation. Feels very light for a 10% beer, but not very remarkable.

Overall this is good stuff, but the balance between the sweet and more bitter flavours could be better. Still very enjoyable.

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Photo of minterro
4.03/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bought at Horrocks at around $13.99/25.4 oz

A: beer is the color of garnet. Head sustains sustains a moderately thin layer of masking tape white. Unfiltered characteristics.

S: A notable yet atypical smell coming of the beer is white wine, something reminiscent of a standard Chardonnay (e.g. creamy, nutty). As the beer warms in my hand it develops a significantly hotter more alcoholic tone.

T: Not as in your face as I expected it to be. Heavy on the alcohol, dark fruity plum tones, slight licorice, and bready/sweet cakey maltyness.

M: medium to full bodied, modest amount of carbonation.

Overall: it was good for being available pretty much anywhere. But for the price, the quality wasn't what I was expecting.

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Photo of byrd
4.03/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bubbly fizzy light tan head that lasts a while. Dark reddish copper color. Spicy malt aroma with vinous and cherry notes mixed in. This is a very peppery dubbel with considerable carbonation that gives a bit of a bite on the tongue. Clove and other spices I can’t place are also present. Malt notes are apparent at the start, but sweetness is minimal. Finishes with citrusy hops notes that linger in the aftertaste with the pepper notes. Mouthfeel is medium and somewhat fluffy from the carbonation. Quite a dry finish that is fairly tart. Somewhat warming on the way down.

This one improves immensely as it warms. Spice notes become more subdued, malts become more pronounced, fruitiness picks up, and all the flavors begin to meld together wonderfully. The mouthfeel becomes increasingly smooth. Malt sweetness reveals notes of bread, honey, and dark sugar. Spiciness is still present, but does not seem as excessive as it does when cold.

I typically keep my beers in the fridge and let them sit out for 5-10 minutes before opening the bottle. Evidently, I was a little over eager and opened this one while it was still a bit too cold. I was quite surprised by the changes (for the better) in flavor as Abt 12 warmed.

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Photo of carln26
4.03/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

As with all Abby Ales, this poured with a big thick head. There was a distinct lace after a brief period that stayed with the glass throughout the entire tasting. The color was a deep chocolate brown. The aroma is of spice and candy; quite surprising actually. The taste has a hint of the candy present in the nose with some roasted grain up front. On the back you get a subtle impression of the alcohol, and a mild lingering bitterness. The mouthfeel is medium, not too heavy. The drinkability is good, I could have a few more of these, and will. I have 3 more in the fridge.

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Photo of mjaskula
4.03/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a large wine glass. Pours a dark amber-brown with a thin tan head that sticks around an leaves some lacing on the glass.

The aroma is sweet with raisin and malt and some alcohol. The taste is sweet dark fruits with some alcohol warmth. The mouthfeel is medium bodied and carbonation was moderate and appropriate. Finnish was fairly dry and clean. A great representation of the style.

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Photo of alexmel7
4.03/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A: Dark brown/maroon w/ a dense but fine head that's off-white with a hint of brown.

S: Molasses, fermented sour cherries, a little leather (??)

T: Coffee, sweet and slightly fizzy on the front of the palate w/ a burst of bitterness mid palate and lingering on the finish.

M: full-bodied, mouthcoating

O: Extremely well-balanced

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Photo of jfrank85
4.03/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a goblet deep amber color. Thick lacy off white head that stuck around for a while. Good lacing around the glass and nice retention. Smell was of alcohol mixed with nice touches of toffee and nuts. The 10% is very apparent. Easy to drink even though its high alcohol content. Not too carbonated but not chewy. Great beer, worth the $8.99 spent on a 22oz.

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Photo of joshstevens87
4.03/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

served in a snifter
A-pours a blackish brown with an inch or so of a light tan head
S-really fruit nose a nice blend of light and dark fruit (apples, banana, pear, raisin, fig)a nice background scent of yeast with a bit of alcohol
T-a nice fruit with a lighter varieties mention above a bit more prevelant definately taste alot lighter colored than it appears theres also a good amount of yeast present with a nice warming alcohol finish which is not as well hidden as other quads
M-medium body and highly carbonated giving it a crisp and refrshing feel but just a bit overly carbonated
D-very drinkable a solid taste but with a high abv definately a beer you could have around three of but not really to enjoy all night unless total intoxication and dropping alot of change is your goal

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Photo of dmarch
4.03/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The poor mans westy. Pours a deep garnet color with a gorgeous white head. Very warming beer. The alcohol is apparent, but enjoyable. Mostly raisins in the taste, a little plum. Very fruity. Supposedly the same recipe as westy 12, but if I had a choice, I would go with the westy. But then again, I am a poor man.

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Photo of jonb5
4.03/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Review 200, 330ml bottle poured into Leffe chalice. Dark auburn colour, 90% opaque, one finger tanned head, decent retention, fair amount of lacing. Aroma was musty grape and booze. Tasted rasin, plum, fig, fudge, molasses, and brown sugar. Quite boozy compared to Rochefort 10. Finish was slightly biscuity and boozy. Well carbonated, light body, smooth but had a slightly coarse edge from the booze. Seemed to mellow as it warmed, got less boozy and the carbonation dropped off slightly. A very good beer rather than a great one, places below Rochefort 10.

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Photo of agomega
4.03/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle served in a goblet.

Appearance: Pours a rich brown color with a huge frothy white head that lingers.

Smell: The primary aroma is spicy European hops. There are also hints of bready malt and a hint of fruity ester aromas.

Taste: Very well balanced flavor with the bready malt and fruity yeast flavors are neutralized by the spicy (clove) hop flavors.

Mouthfeel: Very smooth and easy to drink.

Overall: An exceptional and complicated beer. I was surprised to find so much clove in the flavor and aroma, but it is pleasant and works well. An amazing beer.

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Photo of genog
4.03/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

got to try this one on tap at the map room over the weekend.

Poured into the proper goblet, very nice. Appearance was dark brown with plenty of white fluffy head. Aroma was very full with earthy notes and the dark, rich, sweet candied belgian sugars. Taste is very full with sweetness and dark fruit flavors. Mouth feel was very rich, velvety and warming alcohol presence.

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Photo of ThatWineGuy
4.03/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I got the second pour from a well-aged bottle, it appeared chestnut brown to me with suspended yeast particles. Mocha head was one finger in my Chimay goblet with low carbonation and a stagnant centre of large bubbles just hanging out. The diminishing head could be reproduced with a swirl that would just cover the surface area, carbonation on the low side.

The aroma was distinct but hard to describe: patent leather, brussel sprouts, mild tobacco.
The taste was semi-sweet, semi-bitter, pine, sour dark fruit, caramel malt. The finish was long and distinctive, a bit tart with sour fruit and dry. The problem with evaluating a beer like this is that we're so seldom able to fidn them in these parts, it's hard to know what to compare it to. Having enjoyed the St. Bernardus 8 the other night, I have to confess that I enjoyed that much more than this. The mouthfeel here was, for lack of kinder words, somewhat lacquer-like and cleansing and that took away from a more impressive rating overall. Mind you, I'm well aware of the reputation of this brew and I'd love to try it again ... but if I said it knocked my socks off, I'd be stretching the truth quite a bit - good plus some, but not outstanding on this night, at least not for me.

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Photo of smanders
4.03/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - Cocoa brown color with a pillow-like head. The lacing is as intricate as a spider web.

Smell - raisins, clove, and charred wood.

Taste - Sweet malt with the lingering warmness of alcohol. Savor the flavor because you shouldn't be chugging this one.

Mouthfeel - motor oil, but in a good way.

Drinkability - If you can't/don't enjoy a good Belgian brew every now and then there's something misfiring in your wiring. A wonderful example of a "Quad."

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Photo of tillmac62
4.03/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Medium heavy body with a nice mouthfeel. Little hop presence to balance the alcohol, but balance is achieved via a nice rich malty taste and mouthfeel. The finish is slightly alcoholic, but pleasant. Overall, an outstanding beer for the high 10.0% alcohol content.

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St. Bernardus Abt 12 from Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV
98 out of 100 based on 2,647 ratings.