Corsendonk Christmas Ale | Brouwerij Corsendonk

BA SCORE
92
outstanding
1,209 Ratings
Corsendonk Christmas AleCorsendonk Christmas Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brouwerij Corsendonk
Belgium
corsendonk.com

Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.50%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by stirgy on 11-22-2001

BEER STATS
Ratings:
1,209
Reviews:
606
Avg:
4.13
pDev:
10.41%
 
 
Wants:
90
Gots:
190
For Trade:
1
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,209 |  Reviews: 606
Photo of desint
3.8/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Photo of nick_perry
3.17/5  rDev -23.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Cloudy brown color with a tan head. Smells strongly like ginger ale. Taste matches somewhat, along with notes of yeast, coriander, and dark fruits. A bit different than an American winter seasonal, but I like it nonetheless, and certainly find it interesting.

 259 characters

Photo of HopsAreDaMan
3.76/5  rDev -9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

11.2 oz; sale Total Wine.

It has a beautiful appearance, very nice lacing, head that remains, and a nice caramel color.

Reasonably nice aroma: Yeasty and fruity.

There is nothing about the taste that stands out, and too spicy for my tastes.

Mouth-feel: not bad, nice carbonation, medium body, on the dry side.

Overall, this is not what I am looking for in a Belgian dark strong. It was a bit disappointing.

 412 characters

Photo of KevCan
4.64/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Bought a gift pack, including 6 8.5-oz bottles and a glass, from Total Wine in Arlington, VA. Poured into the gift glass!

Look: Dark brown, massive head, and phenomenal lacing.

Smell: Classic Belgian dark ale: heavy malt, fruitcake, dark fruit, yeast. Smells like a Belgian quadruple.

Taste: Very flavorful, yet refreshing. Raisin, dark bread, yeast. Extremely drinkable.

Feel: Medium-minus body, high carbonation.

Overall: Outstanding all around.

 452 characters

Photo of captaincoffee
4.1/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy brown with big billowing khaki head that leaves spidery lace all over. Nose is malty and musty with dark fruits and a touch of orange peel. Taste is rich without being cloying. Syrupy fruits, malt, some raisin. Spice is subdued for the style, which is a good thing. However, it isn't as complex as some Belgians in the same range. Overall, a very enjoyable beer that didn't go too weird.

 405 characters

Photo of Maillard
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of m_hall
4.54/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a corked Magnum bottle (cork is stamped "Lot 153") into a tulip glass. Pours a clear, dark garnet red, topped by a three-finger tall khaki head that falls to a thin film. Lacing is spotty.

Aromas are dominated by fruits- plum, black cherries, raspberry, vinous grape, some citrus peel, along with molasses. There's also a bright spiciness (coriander) and alcohol tang present too that lend a bit of contrast.

Flavors are contrasting but balanced: sweetness from the malts, molasses, raisin, apricot, along with notes of dried cherry and orange peel bringing a nicely offsetting tartness at the same time. Both the fruits and the citric tones open up nicely as the beer warms. These flavors meld very well and seem to go back and forth as they progress into a long, somewhat drying finish that adds subtle Christmas spices and an herbal hop bitterness.

Mouth-feel is moderately heavy, and very smooth. Alcohol is present but well controlled, subtly warming. Carbonation is fairly low, just enough to add some tingle.

Of the Christmas Ales I've tried, this one is the least overbearing with it's use of seasonal spices, using them as a supporting element to an already fine Belgian Dark Ale rather than as a gimmick. Really, even though this is a "seasonal" ale, this is an all-around outstanding Dark Ale that would be very enjoyable anytime. In addition, the fairly high alcohol and wonderfully complex flavors make this one a great candidate for cellaring (the bottle lists the Best Before date on my bottle at 07/09/19), so I may look to see if I can pick up another bottle for a vertical tasting down the road. All around, an excellent beer and a must-try if you're a fan of Christmas beers or dark ales in general.

 1,745 characters

Photo of Dinglehacker
4.27/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into snifter. Surprisingly low head for a Belgian. Thin ring, stray lace. Deep dark brown.

Nose of sour fruit, toffee, molasses, and nuts. Underlying sweetness.

Similar taste, sour fruit becomes raisin, which dominates an otherwise varied palette.

Pretty smooth feel, carbonation is there, but balanced out.

A remarkably complex Christmas dark. A joy to drink and even just to smell. Fans of brown ale, dubbels and winter warmers would prob like this, too.

 470 characters

Photo of Alphakitty
4.2/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Deltoro
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Vixie
4.17/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A nice looking ruby red beer with a decent sized tan head. The head does dissipate fairly quickly for a Belgian beer, leaving some lacing on the glass.

Smell is fruity, with citrus and spice notes.

Nice and fruity up front, cherries, orange, and raisin come to mind. There is a bit of a warming spice to this, mainly cloves and pepper. Also can taste hints of Belgian candy sugar, and leaves a bit of heat at the finish.

The feel is a bit sharp, making itself felt, then smooths out going down.

Definitely a nice beer here. There's a lot of flavor, and it all mixes well. The warming makes it great for a cold day, and the spices seem to fit the holiday season. This is one I would like to have more of.

 707 characters

Photo of Bruno74200
3.98/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Clear brown colour with a good white head. Rye bread and spices (nutmeg, cinnamon), clove, light tartness. Not overly sweet. This beer is very balanced. 8.5% ABV? Don't seem to be, not boozy at all. Very smooth and chewy.
A good beer but not the best Christmas ale.

 265 characters

Photo of zp6167a
4.02/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of madelf66
4.01/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of puck1225
4.24/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Had this on draft poured into a snifter while celebrating Christmas in Erie, PA. A beautiful mahogany brown with a thin head but great lacing. Warm spice smell that give the impression of sweet candy. Well carbonated with licorice, sweet spice, cloves, and candied orange. Very nice beer.

 288 characters

Photo of kdivers
3.8/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of drmeto
3.64/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

L:
-pours a hazy ruby red with a medium,foamy,beige head
-low carbonation visible
S:
-Earthy,Plums,Rose Hip,Sweet,cooked Potatoes,Cherries
T:
-fruit Syrup.Earthy,Raisins,cooked Potatoes,Figs,Plums
F:
-medium to high carbonation
-light to medium body
-faint Alcohol noticeable
O:
A solid Winter Ale.

 298 characters

Photo of Cavanaghty
4.24/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: Reddish brown with a thick beige head.

Smell: Citrus and cloves, hint of fruity notes.

Mouthfeel/ Taste: Smooth medium bodied. Taste of citrus, cloves, with Malts.

Overall: Excellent beer! I can see why they call it a Christmas Ale, perfect for this time of year.

 320 characters

Photo of Eamonn-Cummings3
4.41/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 750ml bottle into a snifter glass.

Look is a dark brownish red with a thin white head.

Smell is like a spiced imperial brown.

Taste is a dry roasty brown spiced beer.

Absolutely delicious. Merry Christmas.

 225 characters

Photo of Curt3
4.57/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of MacStinson
4.69/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of ntanner83
4.33/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of mothmanscott
4.23/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a murky but hazy cola brown with sediment. The pour produces a tall, 3 finger, long lasting, tan head that leaves a frosty, webby coating of lace as it recedes. Aroma is fresh cut pumpernickel, spice, yeast, fig/raisin, anise/licorice, Bakers cocoa, toffee, a little banana & faint cherry. Alcohol is well hidden for a 10% ABV. Even so the smell becomes slightly vinous as the brew warms. Taste is dark bread, molasses & faint caramel malt, earthy Belgian yeast, prune/raisin, spice, anise/licorice, cocoa, a little banana & thin hints of white fruit & cherry. Finishes dry & spicy with a shortlived, drawing bitterness. Afrertaste is a rapidly diminishing dark bread, molasses, dark fruit, alcohol & light bitterness. Alcohol is much more assertive in the mouth than the nose but remains subdued for an 8.5 ABV. Mouthfeel is heavy bodied with high carbonation, alive in the mouth, grainy & prickly, lightly chewy, dry & complex. Very good but somewhat lacking when compared to St. Bernardus Christmas Ale.

 1,012 characters

Photo of BeenTired
4.21/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of KMillard
4.05/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Chimay goblet glass. Nice tight head, lacing, dark, but Amber in the light. Smell very close to the taste. Comparing to the similar Chimay darkest beer, this beer has strong fruit smell and taste, but sophisticated fruit. Raisins, figs, dates. A Nestle Chunky bar minus the chocolate. The high alcohol content is not apparent. This is however a very thick and complex ale. If you enjoy dark, complex beers, this is most worthy. Merry Christmas!

 458 characters

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Corsendonk Christmas Ale from Brouwerij Corsendonk
4.13 out of 5 based on 1,209 ratings.
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