It’s almost Christmas time, and I was finally done with work for the calendar year, so I stopped off for a beer (or 4) on my way home, and that included the Corsendonk Christmas. This dark Belgian, at 8.5%, definitely makes for some happy holidays.
It pours very dark and opaque, with a slight ruby colouring around the edge. A small head deteriorated pretty quickly. It gave off notes of honey, berry fruit, malt, and something for the life of me I can’t put my finger on.
This beer has a delicious mouthful. It starts very sweet, with a sweet, sweet pull of honey that quickly intermingles with some berry or plum fruit taste, and supplemented by a good nutty, roasted malt undertone. There is also some spice that ties this all together, but for the life of me I cannot put my finger on it. While there may be slight traces of cinnamon or nutmeg, it certainly isn’t that. For a while I thought it might be ginger, like the GL Christmas, but dismissed that by the second half of the glass. I asked Shintern for his opinion, and neither of us could pinpoint the taste, though it gives the berry a great spicy compliment to all the fruit and honey sweetness.
This is a great Christmas Ale that isn’t too complex or heavy, and has a great amount of flavour without being too sweet or too spicy. I didn’t tire of it for one sip through the entire glass. A 750 of this would make a great holiday treat for that special beer drinker on your Christmas list.
I’ve been having a total love affair with this beer. There is no other way to put it. While it’s been on draft, I’ve had it every time I’ve gone to the bar (probably too often) and even several times in one night. It’s that good.
Presents with a dark, opaque brown colour and a thick tan head. It just screams beer at you. On the nose there are good yeasty smells, some very, very mild fruit (apples) and a hint of some brown sugar.
For a 7.5% ABV beer, this is unbelievably smooth, and contains virtually no taste of alcohol. It’s sweet, and with some hidden fruit flavours – apples, cherries – up front, that fade into a brown sugar sweet taste and maybe just a very, very slight smoky hint on a crisp finish. It almost tastes like the wort for a Marzen before the yeast.
This beer is like candy, or a cool mountain stream after a long hike. It goes down so sweet and smooth that you don’t realize you are drinking. It could be dangerous, but it’s worth it.