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Corsendonk Christmas Ale - Brouwerij Corsendonk

Not Rated.
Corsendonk Christmas AleCorsendonk Christmas Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

1,050 Ratings
THE BROS
98
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,050
Reviews: 559
rAvg: 4.14
pDev: 10.63%
Wants: 72
Gots: 121 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Corsendonk visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: pezoids on 11-22-2001

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (12) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,050 | Reviews: 559
Photo of scottg
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

8.5 oz bottle poured into Corsendonk Christmas Ale glass that came with the beer. It is a tall snifter glass. The freshness date is 12/09/09.

Pours a medium amber maple syrup color with a one finger, tan, creamy head. Good head retention with medium lacing. Sweet aromas of dark fruit, malt, with spices-> cinnamon, nutmeg, anise, ginger, all together it smells like gingerbread. The spices dominate the up front flavor leading to a sweet maltiness and a dry, hoppy, yeasty finish where the alcohol can be tasted. Medium bodied, lightly carbonated leaving a dry mouthfeel.
Most of the Christmas or holiday ales I've had in the past, including ones I've enjoyed, don't leave me wanting another due to the spices. This isn't the case with this beer because the spices are very well controlled and balanced. I would recommend this beer to anyone who hasn't enjoyed this type of beer in the past.

Photo of marc77
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Clear deep garnet in hue, topped by a beige, creamy, thick head that settles painfully slowly. Citrus rind, hints of spicy ginger, and slightly tart pear like fruity esters upfront in aroma are layered on top of a raisiny Special B malt undertone with notes of sweet milk chocolate. Light must and clove are present as well. Dark, date - like fruity sweetness hits the palate at first, then is ceded by a combination of curacao and hop bitterness. Spices are dominated by citrus, but a pleasant heat is provided by the mellow, seemingly freshly grated ginger root. Mild chocolate malt surfaces as the palate adjusts to the spices, adding to the overall complexity. Sweetness is derived from both dark caramel malt, slightly cidery dark candi sugar and residual unfermented sugar due to the low hop bitterness. Pleasantly sweet and spicy overall. A bit light in body and a touch too thin in mouthfeel to support the malt profile. Finishes with dryish notes of burnt toast and ginger. Corsendonk Xmas Ale is a delicious brew that exhibits a nice balance of caramel sweetness and spices. With a fuller body, this would be outstanding. Corsendonk Xmas ale is very tasty nonetheless, highly drinkable and a bit dangerous. Reminsecent of Anchor Our Special Ale kicked up a notch and fermented with a Belgian yeast.

Photo of Long813
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark brown body with three fingers of mocha head. Retention is great and lacing is good.

S: Very sweet aromas of cinnamon, brown sugar, some gingerbread. Small scent of spice and some dark fruits.

T: Following the aroma, the taste is full of bread and sweet sugars. Not a lot of spices or fruits comes through.

M: Medium bodied with medium-low carbonation. Pleasing malty aftertaste and not to much alcohol come through.

D: Good beer and I'm glad I had the chance to try it. It's not to sweet, but I'd of liked to taste some more spice.

Photo of BevMoAndrew
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a standard pint glass at about 45 degrees.

Pours a clear mahogany with a thick a thick, off-white froth. The nose is sweet with cinnamon, brown sugar, pie crust, baked red apples, caramel, cherry pie filling, cranberries, subtle raspberries. There is a little alcohol sweetness on the finish, but a long finish a great carbonation/mouthfeel. Overall a fantastic brew that really helps put me in the mood for cold days, warm fires, Christmas lights! One of my favorite Christmas beers to date.

Photo of crookedhalo
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Lovely treat. Had this one out of a 3 liter with an expiration date dated March 2003 (2000 vintage). Poured a hazy plum color with tinges of red if held to the light. Nice tan head that lasted and left a good lace. So yeasty in the 3 liter that it was almost opaque. Smelled of orange peel, corainder, cardimum, and dark berries (blackberry). Touch of dulled pine somewhere in the mix. Tasted malty, slightly spicy and sweet. 3 liters tend to be a bit yeasty, and this one was no exception. There was a faint tartness in the finish. Highly effervescent in wickedly drinkable for a Christmas seasonal. Thanx to a co-worker for sharing.

Photo of NEhophead
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dense, pillowy foam; slightly off-white head. Condensed, spotted, and thin lacing with good strength. Muddy brown in color with hues of burgundy and mahogany.

Fresh, ripe vinous fruit aromatics: cherry, plum; fig, bourbon-tinged sour apple. Semi-sweet candied sugar; a touch of toffee. A great mix of fruit sweetness/tartness with a whaff of creamy chocolate.

Slightly tart, aged fruit: apple, plum, orange, pear; most predominantly fig. Creamy touch of powdered chocolate and coffee; moderately sweet, Belgian candied sugar. A hint of spice at mid sip leads to a creamy finish. Chocolate and plum with hints of alcohol in the aftertaste.

Medium bodied; Smooth and creamy on the palate.

A very nice flavored Belgian Brown Ale. The alcohol presence is well masked with the sweet and tart fruit qualities. Worth a taste; very warming for the winter months.

Photo of RblWthACoz
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear but fairly dark brown with a sizeable creme head. The nose is a lot of spices with dough and yeast and just a good overall funk. Hoooh! Hello spices! I'm getting figs and lots of fruit. This is almost like drinking a fruit cake. Nice and spicy and fruity. Feel has a lot of carbonation, but it doesn't really interfere with anything here. Very nice to drink. A good winter treat.

Photo of ArsMoriendiOU818
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of msubulldog25
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Split a 33cl bottle with my wife (guldengirl) on Saturday...our second and probably final one of these beers til next winter.

A: Deep amber with warm shades of ruby hugging the edges. A small fluffy ivory-colored head that fades to a wispy film.

S: A shot of licorice straight up the nose, sugary and spicy. Generally sweet and malty - with molasses, cloves, cinnamon and yeast. Smells like Christmas, winter and all things good in the world on a frosty evening in January.

T: Big licorice/anise flavor with ripe cherries and holiday spices. While the flavors are mostly malty sweet and spicy, the finish is a little dry and peppery.

M: Medium body/mouthfeel with a moderate amount of carbonation. Spices dance aggressively across the tongue and there's a slight but pleasant alcohol warming in the finish.

D: Certainly one we'll have again. Good smells & flavors, a well-crafted ale evocative of the Christmas season and our time spent in Belgium.

Photo of BeerImmediately
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Found this review buried in a pile from Christmas time ... about time to enter it!

Poured an amber brown, with a short cream colored head.

Smell was of rich, dark, ripe fruits - most especially - marachino (sp?) cherries.

Taste of dark chocolate, cherries, and maybe a hint of nutmeg.

Mouthfeel was crisp and dry.

So very drinkable - extremely enjoyable!

Photo of kmpitz2
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Just had this off tap earlier last week. We'll see how this compares. The beer pours a nice deep ruby color with a 3 finger head that finally falls to coat the beer. There is more spiceyness than I recall from the tap version. The orange peel is still there, but more subdued. The flavor is nice. Some banana sweetness with nice spiceyness overlayed ontop of this. I like it. The feel is thick and creamy. Drinkability is fairly good on this as well. Just a well assembled beer all around.

Photo of HombreWing
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle...no best by date stamped ? hmmm glass- oversized Duvel

Eyes: Pours bright ...mahogany/brown head dosn't amount to much

Nose: Cola syrup, clove ...subtle cinnamon and grated orange

Tongue: Spice...spice/clove flavored soda ..subtle orange ...full flavored

Texture: Delicious full bodied ..carbo fills mouth too

Overall experience: A Christmas beer to pick up annually !

Photo of Rayek
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Tulip.

A: Deep walnut brown with some cloudiness due to a less than calm transport. Very active carbonation. A generous cream head is rocky and firm. Leaves a very generous lace behind.

S: Coriander and cloves dominate. There's a hint of alcohol behind that spice, plus some dark fruits.

T: Spices rule the day here. The spice theme from the nose follows into the flavor. Coriander, pepper and clove flavors give this beer quite the bite. The sweetness of grapes and black cherries holds things together into the dry and spicy finish. Finishes with a nice alcohol warmth.

M: Medium-heavy body feels somewhat slick on the tongue. Carbonation level is right where it should be.

D: An excellent beer that's best consumed in small doses. Definitely worth a revisit next year.

Photo of HogHill
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured the contents of this 33cl bottle into a La Chouffe tulip glass. Huge pillowy off-white head, with a deep brown body that has good clarity.

Aroma is malt and dark fruits, some molasses and cherry cordial in the nose too. Evident that it's a Belgian dark with one whiff, rich.

Tastes similar to the nose, the malt hits first and then the molasses and rum-raisin kick in. Very little hop bitterness here. Little alcholol warming on the finish. Nice, this one is a sipper. Feels medium bodied, a bit velvety in the mouth, and has an average amount of carbonation.

Overall, a nice Christmas offering from Corsendonk, very affordable too, good bang for your buck.

Photo of dtivp
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a medium dark brown with a large two finger brownish white head that slowly dissipated into nice collar with moderate lacing.

Aroma of yeast, sweet fruits and a hint of spice.

Taste followed the nose with a sugary sweet fruits, butterscotch, yeast and a touch of spice.

Mouthfeel was medium body with lots of carbonation, very smooth and syrupy. Nice warming, however, the alcohol is well masked.

This is a very nice Belgian Ale, look forward to enjoying again.

Photo of MrSeth
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a reddish-brown color with a 2 1/2" tan head. The suds last in a minimal layer on the surface for the duration of the drink.

Spiced bread and green leafy vegetables are mingled in with a yeasty nose. Good thick bodied mouthfeel.. The taste is a nice big malty caramel, spice, anise and red apples.. it bitters quickly at the end.. the finish is on abrupt side. this ale would be perfectly matched with winter holiday meals.

Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Corsendonk Christmas Ale sports a beautiful, festive label showing a Christmas tree and a giant gold star against the backdrop of a snow-filled blue sky. Best before date of 9-22-05. This is my first Belgian beer and the first time that I've used my new chalice.

Although there was a big blast of carbonation when I popped the crown, the beer itself doesn't seem to be overly carbonated. Up top is a voluminous, rocky, tan cap that fades to a thin film and leaves a small amount of lace. The color is dark ruby with bright cherry accents and is simply beautiful. The beer smells like holiday spiced fruitcake and is incredibly complex.

The flavor profile is dominated by dark, dried fruits. Christmas spices abound. There's an underlying sourness that fades to a pleasing bitterness on the finish. Alcohol is extremely well hidden. The mouthfeel, although borderline creamy, isn't mouthfilling. Drinkability is pretty good, but is limited somewhat by the ABV.

All in all, Corsendonk Christmas Ale is a very nice winter warmer of a BSDA and is one that I'll look for every year.

Photo of OlRasputin989
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into Duvel tulip...

A: pours a hazy dark brown with a thick tan head. leaves globs of lacing here and there as it slowly settles

S: aromas of dark fruits(raisins, plums), orange peel, brown sugar, clove, cinnamon, and black pepper

T: semi-sweet with flavors of brown sugar and raisin bread. the spice really dominates the pallate here with loads of the aforementioned spices. boozy raisins and spice finish it off.

M: medium full body with a lush carbonation and an off-dry, warming finish.

Overall, a beer worthy not only as a christmas ale but would be great as a christmas gift. This is a brew to share with someone you love during the holidays.

Photo of cjgator3
4.16/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle poured into a tulip glass. Pours a dark plum brown that produces large creamy light tan head. The aroma is light and bready with a slight amount of tartness. It is also a tad floral with some spice and citrus (mainly oranges). The taste is also bready with a good amount of malt flavor followed by a slightly spicy and tart middle that is finished by a pleasant bitterness and slight warming from the alcohol. This beer is very drinkable despite it's hight ABV. Overall, this is a very good Christmas beer from Belgium that is recommended. I will have to revisit this again next year.

Photo of buschbeer
4.16/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ML bottle
Served in a tulip glass
Batch 8116
Best before end: 20/08/15
My bottle says 8.1% abv

A - It is dark amber with ruby highlights. It is capped by several inches of beige head.

S - It has a red berry, fruity smell to it. It also has a candied, sweet aroma.

T - The taste is very pleasing. It is fruity and spicy. I taste some ripe red fruit, fig, and the spiciness from the Belgian yeast.

M - It has a medium feel to it. The carbonation makes my tongue tingle.

O - I bought this last Christmas. It tastes very nice. I enjoy the fruitiness and spiciness of this beer. I really didn't expect much, and it was a wonderful surprise. I may get this again for next Christmas.

Photo of webmanspidey
4.16/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a chalice, this is a dark brown color with around half an inch of fluffy head. The smell is very sweet with some hints of plums, brown sugar, and cherry. The taste is a smooth mix of grapes and dark fruit with interesting twists like orange peel and lemon. Alcohol is hidden very well.

Photo of Fakexican
4.16/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of alucard
4.16/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Popsinc
4.17/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Christmas day, 2003. That's when i cracked open my first bottle of this Christmas Ale. Very dark amber in colour. I disolved the yeast sediment at the bottom of the bottle before emptying into my glass. If the rich appearance wasn't enough, the wonderful spiced nose and hints of dark chocolate certainly made me warm without even taking a sip. Very smooth and rich i found. Hints of plum and unsweetened dark chocolate. Although this beer was 8.5% alc, i found that there wasn't a noticeable alcohol finish, which was nice. Good beer. Nice winter warmer.

Photo of epyon396
4.17/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

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Corsendonk Christmas Ale from Brouwerij Corsendonk
92 out of 100 based on 1,050 ratings.