On the eighth day of Christmas my true love gave to me, eight monks a brewing…
Our mom is all about Trappist beer (beer brewed by monks within the walls of a monastery in order to cover their living expenses). This weekend, she picked up the St. Bernardus Christmas Ale at a cool little beer shop in Charlotte called Salud. When I had a sip of hers on Sunday night, I knew we had to write about it.
The Christmas Ale is a Quadrupel, a strong, full-bodied, Belgian-style ale that typically features dark fruit flavors and a malty sweetness. Quads can be a bit heavy, but the St. Bernardus is remarkably drinkable. Yeastiness and carbonation keep it light despite the slight booziness and strong dark fruit and molasses flavors.
We decided to incorporate the Christmas Ale in the beer dinner that we made to celebrate our brother’s arrival. For the first course we served Fig & Olive crisps topped with onion jam and a sliver of aged cheddar. The dark fruit flavors in the St. Bernardus brought out the subtle fig notes in the crackers, and the funky cheese and strong onion jam helped to balance the beer’s sweetness. You could call it a perfect pairing…if I do say so myself. 😉
Welcome home, Ed! We can’t wait to spend a whole week celebrating the season with you. And drinking LOTS of beer, of course.