Written by Norman Miller for GateHouse News Service and Wickedlocal.com
European brewers really like Christmas.
Breweries in Belgium brew some of their best beers for this jolly time of year, while England dedicated an entire beer style – the winter warmer – to the coldest of seasons.
Last week, I gave you my top 10 American winter seasonal beers. Here’s a look at my top 10 European winter seasonals, which change every year.
1. Christmas Ale, St. Bernardus, Belgium, 10 percent alcohol by volume (ABV)
St. Bernardus’ Christmas Ale is always one of the first winter beers I buy. This Belgian strong dark ale is full of flavors of dark fruit and spices.
Despite the high alcohol, this is so easy to drink. It’s actually relatively smooth. It’s sweet, but it’s what you’d expect from such a high-alcohol beer.
If you buy one Belgian Christmas ale a year, this is the one to buy.
2. Christmas Ale, Corsendonk, Belgium, 8.5 percent ABV