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Gouden Carolus Noël / Christmas | Brouwerij Het Anker

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Gouden Carolus Noël / ChristmasGouden Carolus Noël / Christmas
BA SCORE
3.93/5
Very Good
912 Ratings
Gouden Carolus Noël / ChristmasGouden Carolus Noël / Christmas
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brouwerij Het Anker
Belgium
hetanker.be

Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.50%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
For more than 35 years we had to miss the Christmas beer but in 2002 the tradition was restored with Gouden Carolus Christmas. It’s a strong, dark ruby red beer with character and contains an alcohol percentage of 10.5 % alc.vol. Brewed in August, the beer rests a few months to reach an optimal balance. Three kinds of hops and 6 different kinds of herbs and spices define the rich taste of this Christmas beer. Top-class!

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#12,736
Reviews:
515
Ratings:
912
pDev:
15.27%
 
 
Wants:
41
Gots:
119
Trade:
0
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
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first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Ratings: 912 |  Reviews: 515
Photo of flyingpig
4.03/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

330ml bottle from Good Spritis Co Wine & Beer, Glasgow (£5.30):
Slightly darker than expected & bordering on black in colour, the beer formed quite a thick & foamy head that was a creamy white & managed to hold quite well given the strength of the beer. There was a pleasant sweetness to the nose with a lot of dark fruits showing, most notably some figs & plum alongside a aniseed aroma & some light spices. Towards the middle I got some caramel & a touch of malt with hints of cinnamon & raisins making an appearance too. The taste was quite a dark & sweet on too with a few more figs this time around & plenty of plum as well, it was also quite rich with a little alcohol showing as expected for the abv. of the beer but it was quickly followed up by some nice spices that were a little stronger than they were with the nose too, mainly some cloves & a few hints of cinnamon showed this time. Overall the beer was a very drinkable one with a full body that was quite rich & smooth with strong carbonation as well; excellent stuff.

 1,034 characters

Photo of dukeufo
3.44/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of 1971bernat
5/5  rDev +27.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Photo of The_Kriek_Freak
3.88/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of MoreBeer4me
5/5  rDev +27.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Ready for this? Might be the best beer I've ever had. Boom!

61 characters

Photo of Scottsbeer
4.15/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of steverx8
4.25/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of kemoarps
4.03/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2011 bottle. Poured into a NB tulip.

Dirty brown body like watery coffee. Not much head despite a relatively reckless pour. A lot of sediment at the bottom.

Nose is boozy like a cognac or other brandy, but with a decent amount of molasses almost getting into chocolate. Just a deep rich smootheness. I think this may have benefited from being taken out of the cellar a little bit earlier, but I actually really enjoy the richness to it.

The alcohol is significantly more restrained on the tongue than in the aroma. First steps of dry dark notes that you could look back in its lineage and see plum and tobacco and raisin, but it's evolved beyond those now to be a much more... muted isn't the right word because the flavours aren't weak, it's just much more mulled than acutely spiced. Everything has settled down and all the edges are worn awayenough that it's just kind of mounds that resemble the previous shapes. Some molasses and light spice. Still retains some sweetness, again like a brandy but darker, despite the initial dry impression. Alcohol is nestled away in the back end, kind of folded underneath the final third of the profile like an envelope lid.

I wish I had a fresh one to compare this to, but I've never had it otherwise. I'm definitely enjoying what I'm drinking now, though, and find it to be deep and rich as there are a lot of things that have fused together here. I do think 7 years may be a little longer than it's ideal, but I'm definitely enjoying the glass I've got in front of me.

 1,519 characters

Photo of VABA
4.1/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Pours a very dark amber color with a generous head and lacing
A-Generous complex fruity aromas
T-The taste follows the nose with abundant rich and complex fruity flavors
M-A medium bodied well carbonated beer
O-A very well done, very well balanced beer with a lot of character that hides the high alcohol content very well

 324 characters

Photo of jkblr
4.23/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

11.2oz bottled 7/25/16 (2.5 years old) poured into a teku glass at fridge temp 10.5% ABV. The beer pours slightly murky medium brown in color with big light brown head. The head recedes to a fat ring and leaves plenty of lacing. The aroma reveals slightly sweet bready malt, raisin, and date. The taste is warm, slightly sweet bread with a spicy, fruity, licorice middle and a drying spiced finish. Mouthfeel is medium bodied and adequately carbonated. This beer could be too sweet for some, but I would say the balance is perfect for a beer of this style. There is some alcohol in the taste, but it fits the style and isn't overbearing. Overall, very good to excellent. Recommended.

 692 characters

Photo of JamieDuncan
4.07/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Blank licorice, if you do not like black licorice then do not purchase this beer. If you are a fan then buy this beer in bunches. Overall I enjoyed the beer.

 159 characters

Photo of DioS
4.07/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Photo of gordavidson
3.93/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of RConrad
3.96/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Deep brown color with thick tan head. Smells Christmassy, taste is rich with a molasses note, there is spice and hints of licorice. Decent Christmas beer.

 157 characters

Photo of heddar33
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of BHapeman
4.23/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Cuervo_PCB
4.05/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of MonDak_Joe1953
4.16/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 750ml bottle into glass. Label is date stamped as '17093 08:28'.
Ruby brown colored body. Light tan head sticks around as full cap and ring. Sheets and spots of lacing all around the glass.
Aroma of candied fruit - date, raisin, prune, red and black licorice, and dark bread. Quite aromatic.
Taste is sweet, similar to a holiday fruit bread. Dark bread with candied prunes and dates. Dark licorice and toffee.
Mouth feel is thick and coating. Very long after taste.
Totally enjoyable holiday beer that is sweet and very remindful of the smells and tastes of holiday treats, including candy and dark fruits. Well suited for extended cellaring.

 655 characters

Photo of stevoj
4.01/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Prune juice on steroids. Lots of dried fruit in the aroma and taste of this seasonal. High ABV comes through in the small (burns the nose) and taste as acidity/tartness. A sipper for sure, good for the cold, wet months of winter...

 231 characters

Photo of RayCannata
4.43/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Psycho13
4.64/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Great dark color and malty aroma. Taste malty that's just a tiny bit on the sweet side. Typical great Belgian ale feel.
As I've purchased and consumed this on several occasions, 4.5 overall.
Bias note - I am particularly fond of Belgian ales.

 242 characters

Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
3.44/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Photo of sjrider
4.09/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy mahogany with thick tan head and plenty of lacing into a snifter. Nose is bready and sweet. Taste is sweet and malty with boozy dark fruit and candy sugar.More flavor as it warms.Well done Belgian holiday ale.

 224 characters

Photo of TheMerle75
4.18/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Nice deep color. Good contrast to the head. Bready aroma with strong malt. First taste is sweet malt with malt follow thru. Light to minimal hops. Medium finish.

 161 characters

Photo of WormGod
3.74/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

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Gouden Carolus Noël / Christmas from Brouwerij Het Anker
Beer rating: 3.93 out of 5 with 912 ratings