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
94
outstanding

1,434 Ratings
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,434
Reviews: 576
rAvg: 4.23
pDev: 9.22%
Wants: 104
Gots: 147 | FT: 6
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:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Christmas Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,434 | Reviews: 576 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of DBoone
DBoone

Maryland

4/5  rDev -5.4%

11-30-2011 14:48:58 | More by DBoone
Photo of kayrex
kayrex

Pennsylvania

5/5  rDev +18.2%

11-29-2011 22:49:17 | More by kayrex
Photo of jfstilling
jfstilling

South Carolina

5/5  rDev +18.2%

11-29-2011 00:11:17 | More by jfstilling
Photo of MADhombrewer
MADhombrewer

Oregon

5/5  rDev +18.2%

11-28-2011 03:26:40 | More by MADhombrewer
Photo of Kbogac
Kbogac

Illinois

4.65/5  rDev +9.9%

Poured into a chalice from a bomber. Huge foam! Maybe two inches of thick creamy head that slowly dissipated to a nice 1/4 inch layer that lasted to the end. Great lacing too. Scent is dark fruit, molasses, a little orange and clove. Taste is similiar, dark fruits and molasses. Good carbonation with a medium mouthfeel. Overall a great beer. I was defiantly wanting more when it finished. Highly recommended.

11-28-2011 00:45:47 | More by Kbogac
Photo of jnice1984
jnice1984

North Carolina

5/5  rDev +18.2%

11-27-2011 04:05:12 | More by jnice1984
Photo of CopeTech
CopeTech

California

4/5  rDev -5.4%

11-27-2011 03:54:12 | More by CopeTech
Photo of DCon
DCon

Missouri

4.45/5  rDev +5.2%

Enjoyed on-tap @ the International Tap House in Chesterfield, MO during the Black Friday "iTap Style" Event for $7. Tapped from the Black Tap Handle that has St Bernardus w/ a Santa Claus hat on into a 12oz Chimay Chalice Glass.

Aroma- A very sweet and complexed aroma comes from this one! Has a ton of malt, caramel, and fruit that hits the nose strongly. The fruit is a mixture of plums and light cherries (often found in Michigan brews), and then follows with a light noble hop aroma! Everything in the spectrum of the aroma!

Appearance- Received with a 1 finger head that is very frothy and lasts for good time. Has a dark, caramel looking body but much darker and is hazed beyond reason. Leaves THICK lacing behind.

Flavor- Has an extremely sweet and wild flavor here! Strong malts and cherries come out and give a puckering flavor. A medium-high bitterness level is present and can't put my finger on the "true" style this should be! I would say everything is blended harmoniously here and I enjoyed every last drop!

Mouthfeel- Medium-Full Bodied, Medium Carbonation, Smooth, Bit of Booze, and then has a nice alcohol warming finish. Wish there was more hops and that cherry flavor on the palate... Guess you can't get too much of a good thing sometimes!

Overall Impression- Rich, Complexed, and a very WILD Christmas Ale! I'm definitely stopping by Lukas Liquor to pick up a bottle of this and review/enjoy again! I suggest you do the same (but of course, your local bottle shop). See if you can spot the cherries in this one! There were a huge attribute in this brew for me that made it so enjoyable. Thanks Brouwerij St. Bernardus! Fantastic.

11-26-2011 18:51:10 | More by DCon
Photo of mdillon86
mdillon86

Pennsylvania

4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

11-25-2011 16:44:12 | More by mdillon86
Photo of Rochefort10nh
Rochefort10nh

New Hampshire

4/5  rDev -5.4%

11-25-2011 15:01:41 | More by Rochefort10nh
Photo of imasloth
imasloth

Texas

4.22/5  rDev -0.2%

A- Poured from a large bottle into a snifter, the carbonation described by other reviewers was no myth. The cork is raring to come out of the bottle once the cage is removed. It pours a dark liquid giving a huge almond-coloured head that remains thick for some time. Nice looking lacing up to the top of the glass.

S- Nice, sour malt and light bitter smell.

T- Sweet upfront, followed by delicious rich malt. Prune and maybe a light orange.

M- Medium to medium-heavy body with some feel from the 10% alcohol and a warmness after swallowing.

O- Delightful beer that I look forward to getting next year as well. Pairs nicely with the summer sausage and cheese spread I've got going.

11-24-2011 18:30:51 | More by imasloth
Photo of jayhawk73
jayhawk73

Maryland

4.3/5  rDev +1.7%

Pours a dark brown w/ a nice once finger cocoa head. Excellent lacing left on my snifter glass. Nose is mainly figs, raisin, dark fruit, clove, and other spices. Not quite as strong as I'd like, but still very balanced and pleasant. Taste steps it up a notch- this is one of the better Belgian Christmas brews I've had. Just super balanced and really well put together. Feel is full, smooth, and incredibly balanced... Pretty amazing! Overall, this is probably the #2 Belgian Christmas beer I've had- it's definitely worth a buy. Cheers!

11-24-2011 13:31:54 | More by jayhawk73
Photo of EinWeizenbitte
EinWeizenbitte

California

5/5  rDev +18.2%

11-23-2011 20:26:06 | More by EinWeizenbitte
Photo of mrunseen
mrunseen

Washington

4/5  rDev -5.4%

11-23-2011 05:01:19 | More by mrunseen
Photo of brandoman63
brandoman63

Illinois

4/5  rDev -5.4%

11-22-2011 22:05:34 | More by brandoman63
Photo of Mar02x
Mar02x

Netherlands

3.48/5  rDev -17.7%

A - A dark brown beer with a fluffy head. There are some carbonation bubbles visible that a racing to the top.

S - Fruity and fresh nose, spices, caramel and vanilla scents.

T - Caramel, candy sugar, nutty flavors, spices, vanilla , oranges - very complex but not so nice.

M - A lot of carbonation that quickly disappears.

O - A good Christmas ale but not so special. It is over the top. A not so good attempt to make something good even better.

11-21-2011 20:36:46 | More by Mar02x
Photo of WillyMac
WillyMac

South Carolina

5/5  rDev +18.2%

11-21-2011 15:35:07 | More by WillyMac
Photo of DoctorB2B
DoctorB2B

Massachusetts

5/5  rDev +18.2%

11-20-2011 18:24:58 | More by DoctorB2B
Photo of seand
seand

California

4.03/5  rDev -4.7%

A: Pours a translucent dark reddish brown, with a huge amount of tan head. The cork was pushing itself out once I got it started, and came out with a pop, but no overflowing. Most of the head disappears pretty quickly, but some clumps retain and leave pretty good sheets of lacing.

S: Rich and deep, with a somewhat subtle rendition of the normal belgian spices. There's also a touch of something almost smoky. Very nicely put together.

T: Complex with very deep flavors, but also manages to feel simple subdued. The finish is there, but the aftertaste doesn't last too long, except for a touch of a smoky scotch note, which is the only indication of the booze content I notice.

M: Medium body, actually surprisingly light towards the finish. Medium but prickly carbonation.

Overall this is quite nice, but you do have to pay attention to it; it's complex, but not a flavor bomb. I can't quite place why, but it does feel like a christmas beer to me, despite not really having any christmas-y spices as far as I can tell.

11-20-2011 07:16:23 | More by seand
Photo of mikereaser
mikereaser

Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev -5.4%

11-19-2011 06:50:27 | More by mikereaser
Photo of bigdaddypolite
bigdaddypolite

Minnesota

5/5  rDev +18.2%

11-19-2011 02:47:51 | More by bigdaddypolite
Photo of drpimento
drpimento

Wisconsin

4.45/5  rDev +5.2%

Served with a smallish, cream colored head and lots of lace. Color is a cloudy brown amber. Aroma is super malty, vineous, yeast, caramel, toffee, fruit. Flavor's very similar to nose with toffee, caramel, malt, yeast, carbonic tang all in the fore! Body and carbonation are faultless. Finish is malt, carmel, toffee and a touch of fruit while of average length. Luscious beer!

11-18-2011 05:44:51 | More by drpimento
Photo of wvsabbath
wvsabbath

West Virginia

4.5/5  rDev +6.4%

Serving Type - Caged and corked 22oz bottle

Appearance - Golden tan/brown, huge monster 5+ inch foamy, creamy head, tons of lacing.

Smell - Bready, yeasty aroma, spices, dark fruits, some sugars, Some floral fruits also. Totally what you want from a belgian strong ale.

Taste - A spiced up fruitier version of 12 basically is how i would describe this. Lots of fruits, espically cherry, and added spices start this beer off. The grassy/floral hops add some dry bitterness. Yeast also adds a grassy, easrthy feel along with some dry bready quality. The alcohol is present in each drink, warms slighty and actually works well with the sweetness.

MOuthfeel - Its a big beer, and lots of flavor. Medium thickness, coats tounge with spices, fruits, malts, yeast and a little booze. Pallete gets remaining fruits and yeast, and alcohol. Aftertaste is a little dry and yeasty.

Overall - Fantastic, love this! A boat load of flavor, easy to drink, but this 22oz is plenty. A great once a year beer that i seek out annually and use to start my holidays with. Christmas has started offically for me. Great beer, espically for St. Bernardus 10 and 12 fans.

11-18-2011 00:56:15 | More by wvsabbath
Photo of JoEBoBpr
JoEBoBpr

Missouri

4.33/5  rDev +2.4%

2011 Version
Poured into a Chimay goblet from a 750ml bottle.

A - A nice strong pop is heard after the cork is pulled. Pours a nice slight caramel color with some brown notes and a huge 2 inch slightly off white head. The head is dense and creamy almost like a cappuccino.

S - Traditional and delicious BSDA spice. SOme nice yeasty phenols. There is also a ton of bready malt with some slight clove and some nice cinnamon notes. The aroma is delicious and silky smooth. There is some slight caramel sweetness and mild alcoholic notes.

T & M - Wow. Soo creamy. Traditional Dark Ale spice is present. There is some slight peppercorn and of course some clove. There is also a nice bready taste that has some slight sweet hints. Cinnamon is perceived as well. There is some alcoholic notes that are present yet welcome and warming. The beer is smooth and well crafted. It is quite complex as well. There are some dark fruit undertones throughout the middle portion of the beer that can be perceived better as it warms. This is not only a delicious winter beer it is actually a delicious beer period.

O - Very good beer by St. Bernardus. Complex yet approachable and high on the ABV but not too intense. Very good beer and great for the cooler weather.

11-17-2011 20:25:50 | More by JoEBoBpr
Photo of Acoke
Acoke

Texas

4/5  rDev -5.4%

11-17-2011 18:08:49 | More by Acoke
Christmas Ale from Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV
94 out of 100 based on 1,434 ratings.