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Gouden Carolus Noël / Christmas | Brouwerij Het Anker

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Gouden Carolus Noël / ChristmasGouden Carolus Noël / Christmas
BA SCORE
3.92/5
Very Good
875 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:
No notes at this time.

Added by Gusler on 11-24-2002

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#6,344
Reviews:
499
Ratings:
875
pDev:
15.82%
Bros Score:
2.88
 
 
Wants:
38
Gots:
111
Trade:
0
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 875 |  Reviews: 499
Photo of Brianito
4.25/5  rDev +8.4%

Photo of Ricelikesbeer
4.49/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I made sure to buy one of these (750 ml bottle) around Christmas time this year to see what I thought of it at a later date. Today is 4-14-2012. The date on the bottle reads 9-8-2011.

A:

Hazy pour, heavily carbonated, The bottle gave off plenty of smoky-looking fumes from all of the co2 escaping. the beer is a murky dark brown, almost a purple-ish color with red highlites held up to light.

S:

A heavy whiff produces plenty of spice character, mostly licorice or anise. There is a sweetness there behind that smell, but it is pretty overpowering. I can pick up a slight hint of bready malt as well.

T:

A deep gulp gives me a huge burst of flavor on the tongue, mostly sweetness up front, then spice and more anise, then booziness and a good balanced dryness. This is a big beer all around, and the dryness really helps drink this beer. I get a lot of the typical gouden carolus candy sweetness. I am reminded of gummy bears or jolly ranchers. The maltiness is really juicy and complex. A bit more layers even produce the typical stone fruit flavors. This one is really quite sweet though, which I typically enjoy. There is no hop presence here anywhere in the experience.

M:

Medium-heavy body, but the carbonation/dryness of this lends to a velvet-like smoothness. Their is a lot of alcohol and warming sensation, but the alcohol isn't super solvent.

O:

This is a big/sweet monster. The anise flavor is almost overwhelming, but the overall complexity of the yeast and other sugars dials this one in for me. It is very sweet and more of a nightcap or dessert beer, but I really enjoy it. I'll buy this one each Christmas time, and I even was inspired to brew something quite similar.

 1,699 characters

Photo of DefenCorps
3.66/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle, best by 3rd August 2010. I bought this at Chevy Chase back in 2008 IIRC.

Pouring a very dark brown, black almost, with reddish brown highlights, this beer is capped with a dense, light brown head with excellent retention and very nice lacing. The nose is a spice bomb. A blend of mace, nutmeg and anise, with some eucalyptus, cola, mildly burnt sugar, this is a little too spiced for my liking. The cola notes here bring to mind discount sodas. Alcohol is reasonably well hidden. In addition, there's quite a bit of dark fruit present, with prunes and figs.

The palate opens with the mildly burnt sugar and cola being most noticeable, with the spices following. Again, the dominant notes are mace and nutmeg, with a little bit of clove and cinnamon thrown in. The burnt sugar does pair well with the fruity notes, making this rather dessert-like.The mid-palate is moderately sweet, with buckwheat honey, more cola and a mildly minty alcohol note. A little sweet yet drying on the finish with lingering burnt sugar, cola and mace, this beer is medium bodied and has a nice, creamy carbonation. One thing I haven't mentioned yet is the yeast, which adds a mildly bubblegum-like flavor. The flavors here are nice, but really, not quite for my palate. Recommended, this is one of those beers where the whole is better than the sum of the parts (and hence, my overall score of 4 despite the S/T/M being 3.5s)

 1,413 characters

Photo of MassiveBeerReviews
4.75/5  rDev +21.2%

Photo of aztraz
2.75/5  rDev -29.8%

Photo of Lee_Hancock
3.75/5  rDev -4.3%

Photo of bigred89
2.25/5  rDev -42.6%

Photo of Archemedies
4.25/5  rDev +8.4%

Photo of JHB-510
2/5  rDev -49%

Photo of SoundsLikeJoe
4.5/5  rDev +14.8%

Photo of dalecooper
4/5  rDev +2%

Photo of Julien
2.5/5  rDev -36.2%

Photo of chasesitten
4/5  rDev +2%

Photo of SLeffler27
4.17/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours black walnut and cloudy with a modest, creamy almond head that lasts a while. Creamy lace follows each sip.

The Dogfish Head snifter nicely showcases aromas of plum pudding, clove, cherry cordial, and fresh, ripe fruits. Sweet malt is exquisite. With warmth one can perceive cantaloupe.

Flavors include fresh figs, plums, and some funky yeast. Light sweetness continuously unfolds with new layers and a background hint of bitterness just before the finish. The finish is long, subtle, and spicy. As anticipated, this beer warms well.

The alcohol is well controlled in this full-bodied beer with a velvety texture and modest carbonation.

A nice beer with conversation or reading. Late peppery notes lend themselves to compliment a sirloin in this excellent holiday beer.

 779 characters

Photo of RickS95
3.53/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep creamy brown, slightly purple hues mixed in. Very thick. The head is slow forming with small brown bubbles and good retention.

Lots of spices fill the nose, along with a healthy dose of malt and plenty of dark, ripe fruits. The high ABV also comes through giving it a port-like scent.

It's malty, very wine-like and even tastes 'thick.' Lacing is really good. Alcohol in the finish.

It's a bit on the sweet side. Can't say it enough, it's thick. It really coats your tongue. A bit of heat from the alcohol in the finish. Despite the sweetness and stickiness, it's slightly dry with an earthy finish.

It's not a bad beer and it's something I could drink a couple of an not be disappointed, but there are some rough edges to prevent it from being a really good beer.

 782 characters

Photo of Nihilistkid
2/5  rDev -49%

Photo of 6string
4.82/5  rDev +23%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Hands down, the best Christmas brew I've had so far in my quest for good beer. My wife first picked one up for me in France, so when we made a 2nd trip, I picked up two more bottles (and continue to regret not buying more!).

Poured in my Delirium glass, mild head, poured a dark but clean (no sediment) appearance. Hints of chocolate, cinnamon, nutmeg, a real Christmas aroma, if you will. The taste was very smooth rich, leaving hints of caramel, coffee and chocolate. No bitter aftertaste, and you can feel the 10% but there's no aggressive attack. My first bottle cooled in the fridge just over two hours and was nice and frosty when it came out. I let it warm a few minutes before I really dove in!

I know 5's are supposed to be rare, but I truly believe, personally, that for me this beer could not be improved. It's an awesome beer, I'd easily buy a case to keep on hand for friend and family occasions.

 912 characters

Photo of LJWalker
4/5  rDev +2%

Photo of arizcards
4.05/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Picked up a bottle in late October from Total Wine for $8.99. The gabby guy from Diamondback Distributing mentioned this is the 2010 edition.

Beer poured brown with a decent off white head on the initial pour.

Nose is dark fruits.

Taste is dark fruits and some pepper. Balance is nice. A nice backbone and a decent hoping keep this from being overly sweet.

Mouthfeel is classic belgian smoothness, definitely medium to full bodied. Very satisfying to sip on.

Overall a very tasty brew, definitely fits the mode of the style. Glad i had a chance to try it!

 561 characters

Photo of cptneutrino
3.5/5  rDev -10.7%

Photo of LiquidAmber
4.62/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Two year old cellared bottle. Poured into an Ommegang flute. Pours a very dark red brown. Half finger fine light tan head with good retention and nice lacing. Looks good. Aroma of dark fruits, sweet dark malt, cherry and brown sugar with the dark sugar dominant. Delicious dark and light fruit, malt with the typical aged malt component. The sour fruit flavor has attenuated and blended in the the dark fruits and dark malts. Nicely integrated now. Full bodied and creamy, complex and a delight to drink. This two year old aged bottle is still an excellent strong dark. I'm not sure if it has improved, but it doesn't matter much.

 630 characters

Photo of rfgetz
4.02/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark rusty copper/brown color with minimal cap of khaki bubbles, little lacing. Strong notes of anise with notes of prune and fig lead with notes of brown sugar and light molasses. Taste leads with initial bite of spice from the anise, sweetness expected from the nose isn't as pronounced and gives a light pastry like quality - pizzelle cookies come to mind and peg the season perfectly. Rum soaked prune and fig on the back end and settles into a pleasant, lightly sweet brown sugar note. Medium bodied, could use a touch more heft to stand up to the bold flavors. Overall, pegs the season perfectly and quite unique with its flavor profile - only a few minor concerns with body and ability to drink more than 10oz or so.

 731 characters

Photo of metter98
4.15/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: The beer is very dark reddish brown in color. It poured with a finger high dense beige head that has good retention properties and consistently left a thin head covering the surface.
S: There are moderate to strong aromas of dark fruits in the nose.
T: Similar to the smell, flavors of dark fruits—particularly plums and prunes—stand out in particular. It has a light to moderate amount of malty sweetness. Hints of licorice are noticeable in the aftertaste, particularly as the beer warms up.
M: It feels medium-bodied and smooth on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation. There are some hints of warming from the alcohol.
O: This beer is a good representation of the style and has good drinkability because it’s neither too fruity nor too sweet and has a nice malty backbone. It is a good selection so sip next to a fireplace on a cold winter night.

 870 characters

Photo of fullthrottle77
4.5/5  rDev +14.8%

Gouden Carolus Noël / Christmas from Brouwerij Het Anker
Beer rating: 3.92 out of 5 with 875 ratings
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