1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Christmas Ale - Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV

Not Rated.
Christmas AleChristmas Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
95
world-class

1,660 Ratings
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,660
Reviews: 599
rAvg: 4.23
pDev: 9.46%
Wants: 132
Gots: 247 | FT: 7
Brewed by:
Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Quadrupel (Quad) |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: seaoflament on 10-23-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Christmas Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,660 | Reviews: 599 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ASTASOLLILJA
4.75/5  rDev +12.3%

Photo of ReeseMax3
4/5  rDev -5.4%

Photo of wattoclone
5/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is the perfect Belgian Ale. The 10% ABV creeps up slowly. It is so perfectly balanced with intense caramel and spiced sweet apple, dark fruits, vanilla and notes of banana esters with a lingering tartness similar to a freshly baked apple pie. My concept of perfection, sweet fruitiness, caramelized burnt sugar, and cinnamon spice with no hoppy bitterness to spoil the experience. On my death bed I want a bottle of St. Bernardus Christmas Ale. Then at my wake I want everyone to drink St Bernardus Christmas Ale until they pass out to remember me by. Beer Advocate is a great place to learn about beer, but they should allow pictures of beer poured into a glass which is way more important than the appearance of the bottle.

Photo of HopHeadInOhio
4/5  rDev -5.4%

Photo of t0rin0
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of DioS
4/5  rDev -5.4%

Photo of beerpadawan
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of mountdew1
4.08/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a tulip glass. Color was a nice dark reddish color with a frothy dirty white head, small traces of carbonation rising from the bottom in a few places.. Head clung to the sides nicely, and then lasted a bit. Aroma was sweet, slightly fruity. Had hints of a mid range wine as well with just tad of alcohol. Flavor was fruity sweet, but not overly so. A small bit of spice hiding in there, but reminded me very much of a barleywine. Coated the mouth extremely well, felt nice and rich and creamy, with just a hit of carbonation in the mouth. Overall, a solid beer. Hid the ABV well, but was definitely a sipper, and most likely suitable for cold weather, not late August.

Photo of kendellmarie
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of truesolution
4/5  rDev -5.4%

Photo of jhhollier
4/5  rDev -5.4%

Photo of LiquidAmber
4.2/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Review from 1/2010 notes. Poured into a Gulden Draak tulip. Pours a dark, ruddy brown amber with a nice one finger light tan head with good retention and lacing. Aroma of sweet malt, dark and dried fruit and Belgian spicing. Flavor follows with strong dark fruits, brown sugar and spicing; somewhat astringent aftertaste. Medium bodied with some creaminess. A very nice Belgian winter warmer from a great brewery.

Photo of julian89
4.53/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had this beer a long time ago, found a paper record of my review and figured I'd transfer it to BA.
Poured from bottle to snifter.

Appearance: Light opaque brown with a creamy 2 inch head and good retention. Minimal lacing.

Smell: Glorious dark fruit and sweet malt smell. Dominated by all spice, plum, pear, and apricot. Very Christmas like.

Taste: Right off the bat it has that strong Belgian sweetness. Fruit taste is prominent just like the Bernardus Triple. The spices make it a very festive beer.

Mouthfeel: Medium to thick bodied with excellent carbonation.

Drinkability: Great beer and easily drinkable. You can drink this beer pretty much year round. May be a little heavy for summer though.

Photo of HoistinBrews
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of ajs4bd
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of ms11781
4/5  rDev -5.4%

Photo of tbeckett
4.26/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottle from Harvest Wines. From notes.

A - Poured a dark reddy brown colour with good carbonation and a lovely, thick one finger of light brown head. Great thick lace and one finger of retention. Looked lovely the whole way.

S - Vinous, dark fruit, yeast, sweet dark fruit.

T - Yeast, dark fruit, sweet. Pretty nice. The vinous element is subtle but nice and clearly there but tucked away behind that fruity sweetness. Little to no spice.

M - Medium carbonation and a full body with good feeling for the carbonation.

O/D - Lovely stuff. Rich and malty. I can imagine loving this with snow coming down. Good stuff. Tad sweet perhaps.

Photo of BostonHops
4.08/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle served in a snifter.

pours a murky chestnut tone while yielding a generous 2"+ beige/tan head. strong retention and patches of lacing evident. nose offers a strong spice presence with other notes of dark fruit, caramel, brown sugar, and belgian yeast.

flavor follows the aroma with strong opening salvo of spices, followed by the malt and caramel / brown sugar elements, then the dark fruits. tasty, relatively complex. medium-plus bodied mouthfeel with some prickly carbonation.

overall, it's a bit reminiscent of (at the risk of being simplistic) a spiced version of the abt 12 - which i would prefer. a very good christmas ale, just nothing overly spectacular.

(originally reviewed: 12-07-2011)

Photo of OriolesFan1008
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of WynnO
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of Chucker
5/5  rDev +18.2%

Photo of Wamba
4.75/5  rDev +12.3%

Photo of gbrill
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of theminutemen
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of TimH
3/5  rDev -29.1%

Christmas Ale from Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV
95 out of 100 based on 1,660 ratings.