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Christmas Ale - Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV

Not Rated.
Christmas AleChristmas Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

1,416 Ratings
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,416
Reviews: 576
rAvg: 4.23
pDev: 9.22%
Wants: 96
Gots: 142 | FT: 5
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)
View: Beers (12) |  Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,416 | Reviews: 576 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of TKEbeerman
TKEbeerman

Florida

4.22/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured into my St. Bernardus chalice, this BSDA pours a medium brown with a ruby hue. The head is 1 finger thick and very bubbly.

S: The aroma is very sweet and is heavy in notes of dark fruit, raisins and figs, coupled with slight notes of the typical Belgium yeasty spice/clove.

T: The flavor is great. Everything present in the nose shines on the pallet. Dark figs and raisins. Maybe some bruised apples. Belgium spice is kept at the minimum, but adds complexity on the back of the pallet.

MF: Mouthfeel is a little light for a Belgium, but not bad.

D: Drink is good too, but not outstanding.

Serving type: bottle

12-26-2010 00:06:30 | More by TKEbeerman
Photo of ThickNStout
ThickNStout

Georgia

4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750mL bottle from Minks (Marietta, GA). 10.99. Served in an oversized snifter.

Pours deep but opaque mahogany with a finger and a half off white head that fades quickly.

Smells of dark fruit, sugar, yeast and toffee.

Taste of is a rich and complex mixture of plums, cherries, toffee, molasses, yeasty funk, brown sugar, spice and a little booze.

Creamy medium full body with a crisp carbonated effervescence. Long sweet finish.

A well made strong dark ale for any season. Another great brew from good ol' St Bernardus.

Serving type: bottle

12-26-2012 00:34:00 | More by ThickNStout
Photo of Patrick999
Patrick999

Florida

4.28/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had a full bottle to myself this Christmas Eve...even though I pulled out all the stops with a St. Bernardus, I couldn't sway anyone from wine. Oh well....a bottle of this all to myself, things could be worse. Served it pretty warm, maybe slightly above cellar temp - wanted to let the full flavor of this baby pull through.

Appearance - While I may not have tasted the thousands of beers many of you have, I've still tasted and reviewed some excellent beers, and I swear I've never seen anything like this. The head was copious, and retention was unparalleled. Lacing? Forget that, more like DRAPES. No lacing, but drapes. I've not seen that before....the head clung to the glass as if glued there. I'd give this a 10 if I could.

Smell - pretty standard for a BSDA. Nothing really distinguished this as a "Christmas Ale" - sniffed blindly, I'd have a hard time distinguishing this from a regular St. Bernardus or a Chimay Blue. Raisins, prunes, currants, alcohol. Don't get me wrong, it smells great - I know I'm drinking a hell of a beer.

Taste, feel, drinkability - Congruent with its aroma, I couldn't really pick out anything "Christmas-y" about this beer. It tasted like a quad. A very good quad. Sweet, but I tasted a fairly muscular hop trying to push its way through the sweet dark fruits and vinous character. Alcohol is assertive, but you won't really view it as a detriment. 10%, yes, but it's manageable....just have it with some hearty food and it'll be great. Smooth and goes down easy - especially with a bold meal. I would expect nothing less from St. Bernardus, and this did not disappoint. Actually a bit more dry in the finish than I expected, suggesting a smoky Merlot.

Did I finish the whole 750 alone? You damn well better believe I did.

12/25 edit - This left me with probably my biggest hangover of the year. I don't know what the deal is....it's not as if I've never had a 750 of strong beer to myself. Be careful with this one.

Serving type: bottle

12-25-2007 02:57:47 | More by Patrick999
Photo of BigMike
BigMike

Pennsylvania

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

A: dark murky cranberry color. A huge pillowy off white head tops it off. A good looking beer.

S: Smells surprisingly on the lighter side. I get some sugary dark fruits and not much else.

T: This tastes really good. Lots of caramel. Lots of raisins and dates. Very nice.

M: Just under full bodied. Nice full mouthfeel. Lots of carbonation. Lots of sweetness and bitterness. Very dry in the mouth and on the finish as well.

Overall: I like this one better then I liked St. Bernardus Abt 12. The dryness really makes it enjoyable. It cuts through the sweetness to balance things out. This is the closest beer I've had to Westy 12. It really reminds me of it. I recommend this one highly.

Serving type: bottle

12-19-2010 01:40:56 | More by BigMike
Photo of nygannon
nygannon

California

4.5/5  rDev +6.4%

08-03-2013 18:56:39 | More by nygannon
Photo of drgonzo2k2
drgonzo2k2

California

4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

04-20-2013 14:28:19 | More by drgonzo2k2
Photo of GennyCreamAle
GennyCreamAle

New York

4.5/5  rDev +6.4%

11-29-2013 14:40:01 | More by GennyCreamAle
Photo of brandonld23
brandonld23

Massachusetts

4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

12-25-2013 03:11:03 | More by brandonld23
Photo of sparx1100
sparx1100

Minnesota

4/5  rDev -5.4%

01-09-2013 06:18:43 | More by sparx1100
Photo of ksimons
ksimons

New York

4.33/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A-a deep chestnut with ruby highlights and a good two fingers worth of cream colored head

S-caramel, toffee, chocolate, dark fruits of cherries, figs, raisins, and yeast

T-matches the smell nicely, lots of caramel and toffee, dark fruit, cocoa, light banana, Belgian yeast, and just a touch of hops to round things out

M-medium body, spicy carbonation

Overall a really delicious BSDA and Christmas beer. Really great tasting and nicely complex.

Serving type: bottle

12-21-2012 23:55:35 | More by ksimons
Photo of cindyjeffsmith
cindyjeffsmith

Georgia

4.43/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

appearance: Bark brown, cloudy with lots o bubbles. Big fat foamy tan head.
smell: Fruity and holiday spice. Distinctive banana. Very nice.
taste: Oh this is good. Banana with light holiday spice. Delish.
mouthfeel: A little on the light side.
drinkability: Delish goodness. The alcohol of a 10% is there but with kid gloves.

Serving type: bottle

11-17-2010 01:22:18 | More by cindyjeffsmith
Photo of HollyHops
HollyHops

Pennsylvania

4.5/5  rDev +6.4%

12-01-2013 05:52:49 | More by HollyHops
Photo of wonothesane42
wonothesane42

New Jersey

4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

03-31-2014 14:43:50 | More by wonothesane42
Photo of KeyWestGator
KeyWestGator

Florida

4/5  rDev -5.4%

11-30-2013 21:38:00 | More by KeyWestGator
Photo of scottwurst
scottwurst

Illinois

4/5  rDev -5.4%

10-08-2013 21:21:37 | More by scottwurst
Photo of fox227
fox227

California

4.5/5  rDev +6.4%

12-18-2013 19:06:36 | More by fox227
Photo of JamesStreet
JamesStreet

Louisiana

4/5  rDev -5.4%

12-25-2013 03:58:00 | More by JamesStreet
Photo of comfortablynirm
comfortablynirm

Pennsylvania

4.75/5  rDev +12.3%

02-19-2013 15:11:57 | More by comfortablynirm
Photo of Tom-Peters
Tom-Peters

California

4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

01-03-2014 16:05:18 | More by Tom-Peters
Photo of Docrock
Docrock

Illinois

4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

12-08-2013 16:46:23 | More by Docrock
Photo of aquazr1
aquazr1

California

4/5  rDev -5.4%

12-27-2013 03:07:02 | More by aquazr1
Photo of IronCitySteve
IronCitySteve

Pennsylvania

3.75/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a dark brown color with some amber hues. Provides a nice thick tan foam head. There is some spotty to moderate lacing.

S: Lots of raisin, brown sugar, prunes, yeast and some clove spice.

T: Is a rather sweet tasting beer. The dark fruit tastes like it was store in booze. There is a lot of sugar taste in there as well. In addition, the alcohol is prevalent.

M: Leaves a thick sweet taste on the palate with a twinge of alcohol.

D: I enjoy the beer, but this was a tad too sweet for me. I would certainly enjoy another, but it is a sipping beer for sure.

Serving type: bottle

11-28-2010 19:24:42 | More by IronCitySteve
Photo of wiltznucs
wiltznucs

Florida

4/5  rDev -5.4%

06-29-2013 23:55:01 | More by wiltznucs
Photo of Beeradelphia
Beeradelphia

Pennsylvania

4.5/5  rDev +6.4%

09-28-2012 18:49:00 | More by Beeradelphia
Photo of Smurf2055
Smurf2055

Washington

2.78/5  rDev -34.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured into tulip at Uber in Seattle.

Appears dark hazel with very little head. Nice lacing.

Aroma seemed a bit weak. Slightly malty, and a small fruit aroma. Very subtle.

Taste was a bit bitter with a small alcohol burn. Somewhat complex, but nothing really stood out.

Palate was a bit grainy with little carbonation.

Not sure what was going on with this, but I wasn’t all that impressed...

Serving type: on-tap

04-01-2013 21:21:59 | More by Smurf2055
Christmas Ale from Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV
94 out of 100 based on 1,416 ratings.