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St. Bernardus Abt 12 (60th Anniversary "Special Edition") | Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV

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St. Bernardus Abt 12 (60th Anniversary "Special Edition")St. Bernardus Abt 12 (60th Anniversary "Special Edition")
295 Ratings
St. Bernardus Abt 12 (60th Anniversary "Special Edition")St. Bernardus Abt 12 (60th Anniversary "Special Edition")

Brewed by:
Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV

Style: Quadrupel (Quad)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
From the brewer: The St.Bernardus Abt 12 is recognized as one of the best ales in the World. For the occassion of our 60th Anniversary our Brewmaster Bert Van Hecke created a unique and special variety of the St. Bernardus Abt 12. This 'Special Edition' contains hops from Poperinge: Challenger and Golding, and has been brewed with black, amber, Munich and pale ale malts. Alc. 11% Vol.

Added by Todd on 05-08-2006

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Ratings: 295 |  Reviews: 235
Photo of TheLongBeachBum
4.53/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Presentation: The special tin sleeve packaging hides a very nice screen printed 750ml brown glass bottle. A very familiar looking design from the smaller 11.2 fluid ounce version is transposed onto the bigger Brother, if you pardon the pun. A plain cork is restrained with a gold colored wire cage and steel cap. The words “Special Edition” are added to the standard Abt 12 design. The Best Before Date is inkjet printed on the bottles base as 03/05/11 16:52….wonder if it goes off after that exact time?!?! Recommended to be stored between 52-56°F.

Appearance: The cork was firm but the fleeting gray gun smoke soon dissolved into the evening air. The “pop” of the cork was definitive and seemed to sum up the confident nature of this brew. Deep brown body had a ruddy tan; some rusty blood penetrates the murky depths and looks fantastic underneath the firm soft tanned head. The lacing layers and runs down like melted wax towards the remaining lake of beer. A Belgium Goblet only accentuates the majestic presentation of the slow rising streamers set deep in this russet beauty and lends an ever bold presence.

Nose: It seems to belie the better qualities of the Abt 12 SE and never seems to get out of the starting gates. Slow acceleration builds into a firm mélange of dark fruits, currants with a rich sultana backdrop, rum and raisins with some dark berries. Room temperature allows a hint of toffee caramel to build with some dark chocolate for good measure. Nice cross section but a little disappointing overall strength wise.

Taste: Warming and Welcoming, like an old pair of Jeans it has a very satisfying feel but can tend to loose some marks on the technicalities of its old looks. The deep rich malts and dark fruits are the framework which hangs the branches of coffee, raisins, toffee and creamy candy sugar laden alcohol. The finish has a more pronounced bitterness than the normal Abt 12 from what I recall, and it lingers longer too. A marvelous brew.

Mouthfeel: The fine beads of conditioning that carbonate this brew are just like the ones from its little Brother. Soft and relaxing with a comfortable texture, this seems to completely eliminate the alcohol, which is relegated to an invisible danger, just like breathing Carbon Monoxide.

Drinkability: A usual, and as with the “regular” Abt 12, the Drinkability is deceptively dangerous and a regular health hazard. Off the scales it tips in with some serious questions regarding getting up in the morning, but hey it’s Saturday tomorrow. It should always be Saturday tomorrow when supping this monstrous nectar. Beware.

Overall: St. Bernardus Abt 12 has always been considered the affordable but clinically precise Porsche to the high end sought after engineered artwork from Ferrari that is the Westvleteren Abt 12. That said, the 60th Anniversary Special is another damned good brew from those bald headed white haired chaps in Watou. But with a deep breath, and despite it all its good point, and it has many; with a harsh critique it still lacks that defined deep complexity and thoroughbred characteristic that defines a true Belgium classic. Almost but not quite, but yes, considering the money, like a Porsche compared to a Ferrari, this is money well spent and great value. Stuttgart gets closer to Maranello but it still has a way to go.

Perhaps age may just add some more depth & complexity to this one. We’ll see.

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Photo of stevecee2003
4.28/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- Poured from a 1pt. 9.4 fl oz. bottle. The moment you pour it you can hear the smoothness. It's deep-sounding bouncing waves of flavor announcing the fullness to come. It started with a huge 2-inch head, but slowly settled into a nice lace-ridden soft top. Complex colors in the body. Hues of mahogany, merky reds. And it all looks very tasty.

S- Some fruit, with a maltiness in there. Some sweetness in the background.

T&M- Very full taste. Many flavors. Kind of airy and fluffy. But the "hit" from the alcohol arrives almost immediately. The maltiness hits first on the tongue. Followed by the fruits and a faint touch of hoppiness. This gives it a smooth beginning, before finishing with a slight medicinal taste. But it all goes together so well. This is a beer of the first degree.

D- I have heard that those in Belgium feel as if their beer is their own version of French wines, or the different cheeses with those wines. And so it is with this well-crafted beer. Sit for a while. Sip in the flavors. Taste all the tastes. It begs to be appreciated. With the size of the bottle, the alcohol content, and the smoothness of taste no doubt you can spend a great evening savoring this beer.

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Photo of Dukeofearl
4.6/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

When I first opened the first of two bottles I purchased, I didn't intend on reviewing it. Just wanted to enjoy it, and see if it was worth getting some more ($14.99 per 750 ml bottle at LaBodega in Riverside, CA.- 11/06-pricy but worth it?). And I had my portion of the bottle, shared with my wife. I really enjoyed it. But as the evening went on, I was moved to try a little more and say a few words.

I really like the regular Abt. This one, though, is just so smooth and refined and generally drinkable, that it screams out to be reviewed. And moreso to be drunk. I won't go into my normal bollocks about this flavor and that texture- this one is a high ABV where the alcohol is no where to be found in the mouth, where the rich full dessert-like flavor and incredible drinkability just say that this is one class beer.

Highly recommended.

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Photo of tavernjef
4.66/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Exceptionally dark and russeted in a ruby tinted dark umber. Super foamy top of lightly yellowed/tanned parchment paper hue sits firmly stacked with might at about a thick inch. Compactly dense and resides as so to an always present thickly smoothed over topping of creamy frosting. Lacing clings like old dusty cobwebs as some middle areas drop through leaving the patterns thickened in most areas touched.

Much like the regular Abt 12, the aroma is bit understated with a partial dark candy fluff of raisin, fig, and cookie dough that has bit more waft of ethonalic heat and waver.

Taste is dead on yummylishous. Wow! Immaculately forward with a doughy dark sugary center surrounded by all sorts of tiny spicings of dark fruity skins and cookie incredients. Perfect yeast additions to my favorable buds with a light drying of cocoa on top of some bread crust fluff. Deliscious candy notings are hinting and solid in firm notations towards cocoa and caramel with flintings of dark fruity things like dates, raisin skin, banana peel, and fig juices. The sugars are real nice with dark, deceptive soakings across the palate that leak caramel and chocolate drizzled raisiny goodness a plenty. Wow, what a treat!

Feel is firmly set within a medium to fulfilling body of both carbonation and texture. Eagar to please, and does just that. Lovely drying off the palate with cocoa powder and french twisted sugary bread and/or cookie bread dough. Elite and gratifing within the realm of wholesome candylishous goodness. Dark but seeming bright and kinda snappy. A deceptive brew and well worth the effort to seek out and let sit.

...but as you can see I could not wait. Not even over a months' time whilst sitting in my fridge of fridges to get this open. The perfect elixer to open the mind and realm in taste satisfation. However, the ABV of this will sink in and leave you stumbling for words of how this elixer of a brew makes you dance 'til bedtime.
A wonderful brew to behold by St. B.! Happy 60th! I'm done...

Serve at 52 degrees or warmer and you'll be gleamming from ear to ear with delight of tasty wonderment!

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Photo of nriech
4.57/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours with a very creamy light-tan head that is two fingers thick. There is moderate carbonation activity from within the beer visible at the outer edges of the glass.

Smell: Super rich toasted malt up front with some cinnamon & clove. Slightly sweet, brown sugar, caramel, very floral, and somewhat herbal hops on the nose as well. Actually a little more sweet than the regular on tap I had just the night before.

Taste: The taste is of sweet, complex maltiness. Hop bitterness is low, but enough to keep the sweetness from being cloying. Little bit of alcohol on the tip of the tounge. Very full bodied and herbal.

Drinkability: Very easy to drink, excellent lingering of flavors in the mouth. A pleasant warming develops on subsequent pours into the goblet. Insanely drinkable.

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Photo of Bitterbill
4.58/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from corked and caged 750ml bottle(room temp) a clear brownish gold with a large billowy head of foam that initially grew sitting in the glass. After a few minutes, it settles down to a solid layer with lots of lacing.

My first smell from this brew came straight from the bottle and it was filled with an abundance of sweet malt, candy sugar, and fresh baked bread. My first smell from the glass gave me a strong medicinal nose with some dark fruit.

The taste is a complex mix of flavours. I note fairly sweet maltiness along with some bready tones that give ground to ample hop bitterness and a touch of cloves and anise. A few more sips in and the dark fruit makes a play to be noticed. Plum, raisin, fig are all well represented and most welcome and they balance out the other flavours nicely. And man, I'm appreciating the warming from the 11%abv right now; we've got some cold temps and it's snowing outside. ;^)

I'm now on my second pour and the brew is still clear and the foam is still wonderful and the taste seems to have a stronger sweet malt/candy sugar presence than the first pour but it is not a tad less complex and tasty. Wow. This one's kind of reminding me of the Westvletern 12 I've had in the past(got 2 more bottles of that-yeah me!;^) and I've already made up my mind to try and find some more the next time I cross the border in to Colorado.

Ok...on to the third pour and I get the sediment in the glass and I'm finally getting the cloudy rusty hue from this Quad that I *knew* I was eventually going to get. The appearance factor *alway* shoots up when I get that from a Belgian or Belgian style ale. :^)

The taste from the third and final pour has some solid caramel sweetness to it and more of the dark fruit that I noted in the intial tasting. The bitterness is all but gone except in the finish. Dang...I *just* finished the last bit, and, oh look, my Chimay glass has oodles of lacing sticking to the side reminding me of the wonderful brew that just occupied it a short 30 minutes ago. Yum.

Bottom line: For me, this is a Belgian Ale that needs to be revisted and revisted often despite its rather hefty US$13.49 a bottle. I *realy* hope that I can find some more the next time I visit Colorado. Oh yeah, I already said that didn't I? lol. Great stuff!

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Photo of Gavage
4.66/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: hazy brown in color with a long lasting 2" head that remains a thick surface head for most of the session. Some spots of lace develop on the glass.

Smell: nice aromas filled with spices, yeast, fruit sweetness, and a bit of breadiness.

Taste: big bold flavored beer here. Strong malt level is surrounded by pepper, spicy yeast, ripe plums, raisins, caramel, and dark chocolate. Alcohol is mildly noticeable but enhances the complexity of this beer. Soft bitterness lingers behind to just take the edge off the sweetness.

Mouthfeel: medium-heavy in body. Crisp from start to finish. The aftertaste was surprisingly short but full flavored.

Drinkability: this is a killer beer. Period. Drinkability loses a half a point due to high alcohol levels. This is a slow sipper that brings out new flavors as it warms. Find this immediately and enjoy this great beer.

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Photo of AustinBeerLvr
4.48/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured into a wine glass from a bottle.

This beer pours a huge amount of head that literally lasts the whole time through consuming the beer. Of course, it also leaves a large amount of lacing as well. The color is a very dark brown, ruby cloudiness that is simply brilliant. I have never seen a beer that holds the head this long after being poured.

Before I took my first sip, I smelled a large amount of fruity malts in this brew that were delightful. A slight alcholol smell was also present all throughout.

The first couple sips of this beer are honestly a little overwhelming, as this beer has HUGE flavor and mouthfeel. It starts off with a wonderful malt sweetness that lasts throughout. I swear I can almost chew this beer! There are many different fruit flavors floating around throughout the sip as well. Additionally, a nice warming alcholol flavor is also present as it's not too strong. In the end, the beer does a really nice job of rounding everything out with a mild hint of hops and bitterness that balances everything out very well.

The mouthfeel is really where this brew shines. The best way to describe it is a cross between wine, a good solid ale, and just an all around perfect creamy mouthfeel that I simply can't describe.

I am normally not a huge extreme beer enthusiast as I'm normally more a of a session beer geek. However, I decided to try this tonight, and I'm damn glad I did. To sum up, this beer is like a cross between a good red wine and ale that is defenitely one of the most distinctive brews I have ever tasted. This defenitely a sipping brew, as the alcholol is very strong, but very warming and good. If you are wanting one of the strongest beers in terms of alcholol and good balanced taste, this is it! One of the best things about this brew is the fact that while it's very strong in terms of taste, it maintains its balance. For this session beer enthusiast, that's a very good trait.

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Photo of dblinkhorn
4.28/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a corked and caged 750ml bottle into a St. Bernardus glass.

Appearance - Pours with a very creamy light-tan head that is two fingers thick. It has insane retention (head didn't even start to go down until about 12 minutes after the first pour), and holds at a finger-thick cap of smooth head on top of the beer. Excellent and rocky chunks of head along with strong lacing cling to the glass as you drink. Its color is a dark slightly-brownish ruby color that is pretty clear with a slight haze. There is moderate carbonation activity from within the beer visible at the outer edges of the glass.

Smell - Super rich slightly toasted doughy malt up front with some cinnamon, clove, and peppery spiciness. Slightly sweet (brown sugar, caramel, and candied fruits), very floral, and somewhat herbal hops on the nose as well. I'm also smelling some slightly metallic properties to the aroma with a hint of distinctly raw grain (like wet hay). Slight alcohol burn on the nose, moderate overall and throughout the aroma of this beer.

Taste - Clove and peppery spiciness strong up front, with a very rich bready malt mixed in. There is some brown sugar and molasses sweetness (and again some candied fruit flavors). Lots of cherry, dates, and fig fruit flavors complement the slightly sweet floral and herbal hops. The finish has more malt, this time becoming a bit more buscuity/slightly toasted. Strong alcohol spiciness and hints of annis and corriander. Aftertaste has some watery/bready malts with very slight earthiness behind. Some lingering metallic flavors are present as well.

Mouthfeel - Super-smooth in the mouth with a heavy weight, although overall I feel it's medium-bodied. The carbonation has very slight bite at first, but dies off and complements the beer throughout. Slick and wet mouthfeel up into the aftertaste, where it dries up a touch.

Drinkability - Strong flavors but still pretty drinkable, especially considering the 11% ABV. The only place I really felt this was in the finish of the taste, and even then it didn't quite feel like 11%.

Another superb beer from St. Bernardus! I don't think it's as good as the original 12, but its still very good. The flavors are just a bit behind the original in most departments. Still a highly recommended brew, nonetheless. If you love Belgians or the original St. Bernardus 12 particularly, then this is a must have beer.

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Photo of BillyB
4.32/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice packaging. Comes in a 60th Anniversary tin and corked an caged 750 bottle. $11.99

Pours thick dark brown with a nice dark head and lots of bubbles rising to the top.

Very big aromas and tastes in this one.

Strong aromas of alcohol(rum,port) and dark fruits such as raisins, plums, figs. Very roasty, toasty aromas of toffee, chocolate. Sweet malt and strong candy sugar.

Mouthfeel is full and sticky. Mouth and throat coating with strong alcohol warmth. Tastes are huge sweet maltiness. Strong candy sugar and rum/port alcohol. Chocolate, toffee, figs. Nutty.

This is just an excellent beer overall.

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Photo of Billolick
4.58/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

"Best before end: see bottle." on the bottom of the bottle: 3/5/11"(!) Commemorative tubular tin to hold the bottle.$11.99 at New Beer in NYC, N.Y.
Typical belgian bomber, caged and corked. Pours the expected murky, ruddy dark brown, lots of bubbles can be seen risning to the top. Dark tan head, doing the world class retention thing, slowly dissolving to a very thick film and leaving more then ample amounts of sheeting and sticky lacing. Nose is of rum, figs, raisins, nutty yeasties. Full flavor, big and bold, heady brew. Lots of roasted dark, toasty malts, dark fruity notes (raisins and figs again) candi sugars, teeth coating Belgian strong/quadrupel goodness. Finish is long and smooth, notes of dark rum, toffee, semi sweet dark chocolate. World class sipper, after dinner with a chocolate dessert, night capper beer. I'd love to have the capability to put one or two of these babies away for a few years.

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Photo of neonbrown82
4.43/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer is very good, but I don't think I like it as much as the original. In the side by side tasting, the regular proved to be much smoother and creamier. I'll have to see how this fades after a year or two, when the alcohol burn will also round out a bit as well.

The beer pours to a nice nutty amber brown color. Has a thin off-white head. Light carbonation. Looks almost identical to the regular, though a slight bit more opaque.

The smell is more pronounced than the regular, but the spice profile and alcohol aroma are quite biting. Also smells sweeter and more candied. Also has more of a black anise aroma, which I am not so much a fan of. Smells more like a special Christmas release of the Abt 12.

The taste is very good. I'm assuming at this point that anybody who is interested in this review has at least tried the standard Abt 12. Has more of a Westvleteren-like quality to it than the regular. More sweet and flavorful, more spices. A little bit more of a black anise flavor to it. More banana and clove.

The mouthfeel doesn't quite hold up to the regular, however. It's much more sharp and biting with a stronger bitter hop finish. Not nearly as creamy.

Not quite as drinkable either. For one, it is a whole 1% stronger. For two, it is more biting on the palate.

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Photo of Dizzy
3.98/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours reddish brown with lots of tan head which it retains quite well. I'm noticing a fair amount of lacing. It seems pretty clear. Aroma is hops, malt, and the alcohol is quite obvious. Flavor is malty, earthy, hop bitterness is prominant and dominates the finish. Full bodied with noticeable bite from carbonation.

Pretty good beer overall, but the bitterness overwhelms the complexity. Maybe this one will improve with age?

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Photo of russpowell
4.24/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours an efferevescent chestnut with 1" of frothy tan head. Fantastic lacing & head retention is als really good, a peresitent film hugs the orval goblet all the way down

S: Slight hints of choclate, cherry & oak barrels

T: Choclate & oakyness up front. Dryness aserts as it warms along with a slight alcohol warmth. Fruittyness and fruitcake (cherry , vanilla& dates) like notes mingle on the tounge

MF: Medium bodied wth efferevescence that really helps brink out the flavors of this fine beer

Drinks too easy for the abv, but at $13 a bottle this if for special occasions. A pretty good quadrippel, not ready to annoint it a great one. Love the art work on the bottle

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Photo of jwc215
4.88/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Best before 02/05/11

Poured into a glass chalice.

Poured a dark caramel-color with a thick, foamy white head that left beautiful rings of lacing along the glass.

The smell is of dark fruitiness (raspberry?) and hints of cocoa. A wondefully complex aroma.

The taste is of sweet, complex maltiness. There's a plethora of tastes that mix well - dark fruits, caramel, chocolate. Hop bitterness is low, but enough to keep the sweetness from being cloying. The alcohol is very well hidden until the second pouring, and even then does not interfere.

The feel is creamy, full-bodied and incredibly smooth. Nothing about it makes it undrinkable...A great one for sipping, especially since it becomes even better as it warms.

And the beer gods rejoiced...

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Photo of Derek
4.03/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark reddish brown, tons of fluffy off-white head, great retention, good lace.

S: Floral hops with a little grass & earth (far more hops than the regular 12). Spicy, nut-bread in the background.

T: Dark spicy bread, raisin, sherry, brown sugar; light bitterness. Very warming & more hop flavour (compared to the regular 12 & westy).

M: Moderate to full body is well-attenuated (relatively dry), fairly highly carbonated.

D: Fairly good.

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Photo of MSchae1017
4.7/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer was tasted in a Chimay goblet from the 750mL bottle.

This beer pours a dark amber almost rusty color with a frothy just off white head that has great retention and nice lacing throughout the entire drinking of the beer. The smell is spice and cidery with some hints of plums and cherrys. The yeast is definetly working in this beer to give it quite the fruity aroma. The taste is very complex. There is the cidery and dark fruit flavor. But also caramel malts and a strong sense of the candi sugar. Additionally the alcohol carries a bite, but its not overwhelming. It will be interesting to age my other bottles of this. the mouthfeel has a full body and wonderful bottle conditioned carbonation. Overall a great beer, one to sip and enjoy.

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Photo of Jaynuze
4.29/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a beautiful deep amber/brown with a super thick/creamy head that follows the beer down the glass leaving behind one of the nicest laces I've seen. The head retention, as many have noted, is amazing and I don't believe I have ever tasted a creamier one ... it's thick as whipped cream ... DELICIOUS!
This beer does not have much of a nose at the beginning, guess this is because they don't use aroma hops in the brewing process, but its nose begins to appear with a smoky peat / chocolate aroma as you get further down the glass. You might even be able to sense a few fruity notes as well ... very odd for such a dark beer IMO.
It tastes as creamy and full as it looks. Though very dark, the anniversary tastes smooth with a nice alcohol finish. As you get further down the glass, the dry malty sweetness dulls and provides a very smooth finish.
The mouthfeel is very light .. again, I expected a much more full MF, but still tastes great!
I would highly recommend this beer to Quad fans and to others who've not had the opportunity to taste this style. One of the best Quads I've ever tasted!

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Photo of Jason
4.23/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

750 ml Belgian beer magnum.

A- Huge three fingers of tight bubbled froth adorns the top of the glass, retention is amazing as it leaves a curtain of lace. Deep brown color lets little light at all.

S- Yeasty, fruity, slightly boozy ... phenolic with a complex malty nose.

T&M- Oh so smooth in a fluffy full body. Luscious maltiness upfront with a touch of sweetness, then comes the phenolics ... herbal and medicinal. Faint hop bitterness and a warming alcohol middle to end. Tropical fruit is held to minimum but some fusel alcohol is also present. Finishes with a bready maltiness and the cornucopia of complexities that some with this beer.

D- No doubt that this is a sipping beer, but an easy one to sip it is. Some goat cheese and roasted red peppers on crustinis went perfect.

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Photo of barleywinebrewer
4.41/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Every now and then I splurge on a beer for the cellar. I saw this on a trip to Portland and cleaned the stock off the shelf. After celebrating an occaision with a bottle of this I am happy to have more in the cellar for future years.

A - Impressive show when brought out to the crew in a nicely done blue and gold tin 60th anniversary tin. Pourse a rich ruby brown color. Nice bilowy light tan head with a strong classic lace on the glass.

S - Ripe fruits, rich malty / breadiness and wonderful spice and belgian yeast character.

T - Similar to the smell with a richnous that is at once a surprise given the ABV and a wonderful treat. This is smooth and well put together!

M - Full bodied and a treat to have roll across the tongue.

D - Enjoy with friends or by yourself. It drinks so nicely you'll be glad you had it and wish you had more.

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Photo of carln26
3.95/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark brown with mild mahogany highlights. The beer is very cloudy with a thick fluffy head that settles quickly back into the glass. The aroma has dark caramel, with dark berries, and dates. There seems to be a little spice, and just a little black cherry in the finish. The flavor has dark caramel, dates, black cherry and spice. The spices are very light in the flavor, but linger after the remainder of the flavors fade. The mouth feel is full, and just a touch slick. There is just a mild alcohol feel at the very end of the experience. Nice drinkability. The Abt 12 is one of the few Belgian beers that enjoy as much or more on tap than bottle conditioned. I wish I could get a glass of this from the tap.

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Photo of assurbanipaul
3.88/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark mahogany, not entirely opaque, with a good deal of visible carbonation. Head is about a half-inch thick with large bubbles. Aroma is dry roasted malt with traces of yeast and candy sugar.

Taste is more roasted malt, a dryer-than-cola caramel flavor. Some yeast presence along with some shades of rum-soaked raisins. A hint of chocolate malt and a slight taste of bitter hops, not really enough to identify. No trace of alcoholic flavors.

Mouthfeel is rather light for what it is, making it extremely drinkable. It's been a while since I sampled the regular Abt 12 but I believe this is comparable. Without a side-by-side tasting, I couldn't really notice a difference.

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Photo of BEERchitect
4.45/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Considering that the regular St. 'B' is my favorite all-time beer, I expect greatness from their 60th anniversary brew. The beer predictibly leap from the bottle with a malty strong brown / ruby hue with more clarity than expected. The eggshell head retention was sprinkled with spices and yeastiness. The aromas and flavors contained every flavor that has ever been present in a beer, but with a strong emphasis on all of the dark, dried, ripened, and dehydrated fruits imaginable. Very fruitcake / rum cake-like. Very spicy and sweet to say the least. Only the intangible 'age and maturity' keep it from perfection. For now, the beer has not melded completely, but it should in a few years. Until then....Happy Birthday St. Bernardus!

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Photo of Crosling
3.68/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I compared this next to regular Abt 12. This had more dried cocoa and mocha flavors, more dark malt tones, while the abt 12 was more vinous and loaded with tons of juicy fruit. The regular abt 12 is better, more flavorful and also more aromatic as well. Both are great beers with tremendously well hidden alcohol. I guess I just don’t get this one. It’s still good, just not great.

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Photo of ggaughan
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Corked and caged 750 ml bottle sampled with my family on the Labor Day weekend. The beer poured a deep brown color and a nice tan head that hung around for awhile. The aroma was similar to the standard 12 version: malty and sweet with a touch of the high abv. The taste is also similar to the taste of the original 12 but this special edition has more of a hop kick to it up front that gives way to a nice malty backbone that makes for a very smooth beer. Although the body is a bit heavy, it is still a very drinkable beer. My next task will be to try to side by side with the standard 12.

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St. Bernardus Abt 12 (60th Anniversary "Special Edition") from Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV
Beer rating: 4.39 out of 5 with 295 ratings
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