Today’s beer pick is a Belgian Christmas classic: Scaldis Noël, also known as Bush de Noël in its native country, from Brasserie Dubuisson in western Belgium. Admittedly, “classic” might be a bit of a misnomer, as even though Dubuisson was founded in 1769, Scaldis Noël was introduced only two decades ago, in 1991—marking this year as the 20th anniversary of this Christmas beer.
This is also one of the strongest of the Christmas beers on this year’s Advent Calendar, second only to Samichlaus: Scaldis weighs in at 12% alcohol by volume. For all its strength, this is an incredibly smooth, rich beer to drink, made with generous amounts of caramel malts and candi sugar, and is pleasantly warming without the alcohol burn one would expect from such a volume.
This is also the perfect stocking-stuffer-sized bottle: 25 centiliters, or approximately 8.5 fluid ounces (one third less than the American standard bottle size of 12 ounces). With its festive packaging it would fit right in on Christmas morning!