Corsendonk Christmas Ale - Brouwerij Corsendonk

Not Rated.
Corsendonk Christmas AleCorsendonk Christmas Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

1,068 Ratings
THE BROS
98
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,068
Reviews: 565
rAvg: 4.15
pDev: 10.6%
Wants: 73
Gots: 128 | FT: 0
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 (15) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,068 | Reviews: 565
Photo of VikeMan
5/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Belgian Dark Strong Ale meets Winter Warmer. Superb

Photo of Jacobob10
2.31/5  rDev -44.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

750 mL bottle. Best before end: 8/28/2017.

Pours dark ruby/brown in color with a one-finger beige head. Minimal lacing on the glass. No aroma whatsoever. Some light spice is present but this was not what I was expecting. The flavor was a disappointment as well. Lightly sweet and spicy. Mouthfeel was thin and over-carbonated.

I'm assuming I got a bad bottle. Based on the positive reviews by others, I'm pretty certain that was the case. It was drinkable, so it didn't go to waste, but clearly off.

I was excited to share this bottle with my family on Christmas but it turned out to be a total dud. Unfortunately, I have to review it as is. I don't know if I would drop $10 on a bottle again to retry it but I'm hoping I somehow have another opportunity to do so.

Photo of PacNWDad
3.84/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a tulip glass.

L: Pretty caramel-amber color. Reasonable amount cream colored head on pour, then lots of lace on the sides. A bit cloudy.

S: Caramel, yeast, roasted malt, earth and coriander.

T: Sweet lead with some hops bitterness and a bit of sour bringing up the rear.

F: Very smooth, moderately carbonated, extremely drinkable, surprisingly little alcohol notes given the strength.

O: A very enjoyable winter beer.

Photo of George
4.54/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Beautiful beer, before i knew it i finished my glass

Photo of MattyG85
4.47/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750 ml corked bottle into a Duvel tulip glass.

Appearance: Pours a hazy and dark brownish ruby with a moderate amount of rising bubbles. Big two finger light tan head which settles into a thin creamy layer. Leaves some good lacing.

Smell: A yeasty, spicy, and fruity Belgian aroma with hints of winter spice and dark fruit. Belgian yeast with hints of funk, pepper, clove, cinnamon, and cardamom. Toasted malt with bready hints of biscuit, straw, toast, and cracker. Big mix of fruit esters with hints of banana, apple, pear, lemon, grape, raisin, cherry, plum, fig, and prune. Also some sweet hints of candied Belgian sugar and subtle hops. A very good aroma.

Taste: Like it smells, a yeasty, spicy, and fruity classic Belgian taste with good notes of fruit and spices. Belgian yeast with spice notes of pepper, funk, clove, cinnamon, and cardamom. Toasted malt with notes of biscuit, grains, straw, toast, and cracker. Good mix of fruit with notes of banana, pear, green apple, lemon, grapes, cherry, raisin, fig, plum, and prune. Sweet taste of Belgian candied sugar. Background notes of floral hops. A very nice Belgian taste.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with a fairly high level of carbonation. Creamy, crisp, and fairly chewy. Alcohol heat is pretty light.

Overall: A very good Belgian Dark Ale. Good mix of yeast and spice notes with the fruity esters.

Photo of babaracas
4.23/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a clear slightly red tinted brown with a thick, very dense and creamy in consistency khaki colored head; settles slowly leaving a sheet of thick lace down the glass. Smell: panettone (lightly yeasty bread, raisins, candied orange peel note), brown sugar, notes of cola and black cherry, mild earthiness. Taste: sugary plum, toasted and buttered raisin bread, fig; cola, clove, and orange notes. Dark fruit, toast, and mild earth in the finish. This is a great christmas beer.

Photo of superspak
4.42/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle into signature globe glass, best before 8/20/2015. Pours lightly hazy/cloudy deep reddish brown color with a 1-2 finger dense khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lingers. Spotty soapy lacing clings around the glass, with a moderate amount of streaming carbonation retaining the head. Aromas of big raisin, plum, cherry, fig, orange peel, caramel, molasses, toffee, dark bread, nuttiness, light chocolate, coriander, light pepper/clove, and herbal/yeast earthiness. Incredible complexity and balance of fruity/earthy yeast, spices, and dark/bready malt notes; with good strength. Taste of big raisin, plum, cherry, fig, orange peel, caramel, molasses, toffee, dark bread, nuttiness, light chocolate, coriander, light pepper/clove, and herbal/yeast earthiness. Slight earthy yeast spiciness on the finish; with lingering notes of raisin, plum, cherry, fig, orange peel, molasses, toffee, dark bread, nuttiness, light chocolate, light coriander/pepper/clove, and herbal/yeast earthiness on the finish for a while. Incredible complexity and robustness of fruity/earthy yeast, spices, and dark/bready malt flavors; with an awesome malt/yeast balance and zero cloying sweetness after the finish. Medium-high carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a very smooth, moderately creamy, and lightly slick mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is very well hidden with minimal warming present after the finish. Overall this is an absolutely incredible Belgian strong Dark ale. All around amazing complexity and balance of fruity/earthy yeast, spices, and dark/bready malt sweetness; and very smooth to sip on for the ABV. An absolutely amazing offering. Love it every year.

Photo of Fatehunter
3.8/5  rDev -8.4%

Pours two fingers of head on a dark brown body.
The aroma is roasted malt, anise, smoke and pine.
The taste starts with a mild malty sweetness, toffee, burnt wood and mild lemon bitterness. Nicely complex profile.
The texture is crisp and a bit too fizzy.
A wonderful ale.

Photo of barczar
4.18/5  rDev +0.7%

Esters of pear and green apple contrast dark Belgian candi sugar in the aroma. Flavor is similar, with pronounced esters dominating and finishing fairly sweet and toasted.

Photo of ThaneMcC
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%

Presentation: purchased a 6 pack as part of a seasonal promotion, complete with commemorative glass
A: dark brown, significant off white frothy head, with almost soapy appearance
s: strong citrus, chocolate, allspice, cinnamon, herbal to include cardamom and anise
t: whoo! A dark explosion of malty and citrus and non specific fruit esters, spicy and acrid alcohol taste, chocolaty malts, very mild hop without sig bitterness
m: effervescent, good full mouthfeel, almost silky with the carbonated twing and palate cleaning acidity.
o: Toasty! An excellent winter beer, malty and warming, a sipper that best enjoyed with mild cheeses on a cold day by the fire. My new go to winter beer.

Photo of bubseymour
4.79/5  rDev +15.4%

Had a 2013 release on 11/3/14. Very tasty dart fruits and fig. Full bodied and warms the belly very nice. One of the best and most satisfying Belgian Strong Dark Ales I've had to date. Will be buying the 2014 release soon.

Photo of chuckbeaster
4.53/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Serving: 750ml bottle poured into my Gulden Draak chalice. best by 20/08/14 on the bottle. so i'm drinking this just in time.

Appearance: very dark burgundy (almost the color of a pakistani spassartite garnet). two fingers of off-white head. dissipated slowly, and left a thin film on top with nice lacing.

Smell: dark fruits, sherry, belgian yeast, spices (clove, cinnamon, and maybe coriander)

Taste: dark dried fruits (prune, fig), apple/pear, roasted malts, spice (but not as much as one would expect from a xmas belgian), some candy sugar, some bready notes, and a very very slight bitter note at the end. almost no alcohol taste at all.

Mouthfeel: medium body, crisp, great carbonation, with a slightly dry finish

Overall: probably my favorite christmas belgian ale. i highly recommend this beer for both the beginner and the seasoned expert. a very complex, but balanced beer. very easy drinking, be careful!

Photo of RonaldTheriot
4.5/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Corsendonk Christmas Ale has a thin, beige head, a brown, bubbly, opaque appearance, and pretty much no lacing left behind. The aroma is of rich, sweet, spicy malt and fruit. Taste is of dark, sweet bread, rich, moist, fruit cake, dark fruit, sugars, and a fairly pronounced, balancing bitterness. Mouthfeel is medium and prickly, and Corsendonk Christmas Ale finishes semi-wet and dessert like. Very little of an alcohol pick-up, here.

RJT

Photo of ryan1788a5
4.12/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

750ml bottle poured into a chalice. Cork shot out of the bottle like a rocket.

A: Pours a red-brown color that appears a brilliant ruby red color when held up to the light. Good clarity. A very healthy and creamy-looking khaki colored head displays excellent retention. Thin sheets of lacing remain.

S: Lightly burnt crust and cocoa. Molasses and dark rum. Moist fruit cake. Booze soaked fruits. Prunes, raisins, black cherries, and raisins. Subtle whiffs of ginger, clove, and pepper.

T: Brown bread and rich nutty and cocoa-esque flavors at the outset. Brown sugar. Fairly dry. Clove and nutmeg sort of spice tastes cut in. Hollow hop bitterness. Orange peel. Rummy alcohols. Fruitiness is more subdued than the nose indicated. Dry dates and figs. Tame bready and musty yeast. Dry finish of brown bread, cocoa, and some lingering spice notes.

M: Rich and decadently creamy and airy in the mouth. Sits very lightly despite its size. Gentle carbonation constantly scrubs. Warming alcohols.

O: Very lightly spiced, if it is at all. Tough to tell if the spicy flavors are the real deal or if they are just products of fermentation. Either way, they contribute favorably to a very complex and drinkable brew. Flavors are strong and even rummy at times, but the texture is so airy and silky that it goes down all too easily. A great pairing with almost any holiday dessert you can throw at it.

Photo of dank203
4.18/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

great Belgian dark. pours into tulip a brown to black color, lot of tan head. aromas are a bit musty and moldy with some dried fruit presence. flavors balance between sweetness of dried fruits like figs, dates, rasin, and spice notes, nut meg, brown sugar, cinnamon. medium/ full thickness

Photo of DmanGTR
4.34/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Quite possibly one of the best Christmas beers around. A deep mahogany with prominent beige head. Lots going on here: dark Belgian candi sugar, dark ripe fruits, hints of dates, brown sugar, and well balanced holiday spices. Very mild cocoa in the finish. Flavors are quite well pronounced, yet delicate and complements one another. Rich mouthfeel with ample carbonation. A beautifully crafted beer perfect for a cold winter night.

Photo of KTCamm
4.45/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Champagne bottle poured into a Duvel glass. 2/7

Pours medium dark brown, light on the bottom, darker on the top. Thick 1/2 inch white foam, fluffy. Sweet candy cherry nose. Fruity too. Smooth belgian yeast taste that expands. Strong carbonation. Cola background. Nutty. Touch of booze mixed in.

Photo of JamieDuncan
4.83/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Picked this beer up on clearance in February, guess they were clearing it out. Wonderful looking beer, thick and rich looking with great head, exactly what I would look for in a great beer. And then the smell, just as great. Then wow, tastes just as great. Could be a little more interesting but very smooth and tasty. Tastes maybe 5.5 max and is 8.5, wow. Excellent. Overall a great beer that is a must try and one I will looking to pick up again.

Photo of Flounder57
4.27/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

11.2 oz bottle was poured into a chalice.

Appearance: This beer poured a one finger off white head that reduced to a thin layer. It is a dark crimson color with a little vision of bubbles coming up through the glass. Nice lacing all the way down the glass.

Smell: Spicy yeast, clove, caramel, raisins, prunes, figs, sweetness, cherry, toffee, belgian candy, and a little orange.

Taste: This beer tastes as good as it smells. A little booze too folks.

Mouthfeel: Silky smooth, medium to full bodied, a little booze, medium carbonation, a little dry, a little chewy, and quite the sipper.

Overall: You can't go wrong. Corsendonk comes through as top notch once again.

Photo of msquared36
3.89/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 2.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Muddy/dirty water appearance. Only real negative with the beer. Retains foam with moderate lacing left on glass.

Weak scent. Noticeable scent is sweet and fruity.

Well balanced and refreshing. Plum and bread at first. Finishes with moderate sweetness. Just bitter enough to counter the sweetness.

Smooth and syrupy with champaign like carbonation.

Very good beer. Comforting christmas ale without overpowering spice.

Photo of Dope
4.32/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Dated 17.07.16 - a best by date I assume.

A: Pours dark brown with an extremely effervescent and tall light brown head. Head fades very slowly with a big island of foam sticking around. Light fluffy chunks of lacing everywhere.

S: Smells mostly like a typical fruity BSDA. Lots of dark fruits like raisin, prunes, and grapes. Quite a bit of brown sugar sweetening it up too. Might be just a hint of nutmeg but I think it's the power of suggestion. Light cloves.

T: Loads of sweet sweet belgian candi sugar with loads of dark fruit. Candied dark fruit everywhere. Brown sugar. Has almost a cola-like character. Really kinda tastes like coke with dark fruits in it. Some light spices in the middle, cinnamon and maybe even a little nutmeg? Light cloves follow. Lightly spicy aftertaste with more dried dark fruits lingering.

M: Medium heavy - smooth and sweet.

O: This is one hell of a nice brew. Perhaps the best belgian christmas ale ever. Spices aren't out of control like most, they just provide a nice layer of complexity. Loads of awesome belgian candi sugar everywhere. Great complexity and balance. Drinkability is great as well. My only nitpicking is sometimes I get a plasticky taste in the aftertaste. It's sorta random. Maybe I should stop eating bubblewrap.

Photo of mverity
4.09/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

'08 and '09 bottles thanks to Masterson for bringing these. Pour a barely hazy deep brown with a faint hint of red. Nice tan collar. Almost ne head. Aroma of caramel and some faint spice. Taste is sweet caramel, tough of dirty funk and that same slight spice. '09 is slightly sweeter. Really enjoyable aftertaste. Smooth sweet and a tough of grit in the mouthfeel. Low carbonation.

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.97/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Best before 8/1/16.

Pours an almost opaque super dark brown with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace slowly drip into the remaining beer on the drink down. Smell is of toasted malt, caramel, dark fruit, and slight spice aromas. Taste is much the same with malt and dark fruit flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of spice bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp and prickly mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer with a nice mix of malt and dark fruit qualities.

Photo of buschbeer
4.16/5  rDev +0.2%
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 brewskifan55
4.1/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Corsendonk Christmas Ale glass.

A: Dark brown with a huge three (or more) finger tan head that lingered. Very thick lacing. This one makes its presence known.

S: Belgian yeast, dark fruits (featuring dates, plums and raisins). Caramel, brown sugar, cloves.

T: Follows nose with a big gingerbread presence. Cherries, too. Tastes pop up as it warms. I recommend serving it warm instead of right out of the fridge.

M: Medium to heavy with uber frothy carbonation.

O: A fine Winter Warmer. Sip slowly and enjoy the season with friends.

Corsendonk Christmas Ale from Brouwerij Corsendonk
93 out of 100 based on 1,068 ratings.