Don't worry, you aren't required to drink your way through The Bruery's first five holiday brews before you're allowed to sample a glass of 6 Geese-A-Laying — though kudos to you if you do! The Bruery has been a-brewing their way through the 12 Days of Christmas for the past several years with one special beer released every winter. This year marks the halfway point, and to celebrate, they've concocted a Belgian strong ale brewed with — wait for it — cape gooseberries. Brilliance!
Beer Details: 6 Geese-A-Laying from The Bruery, Placentia, CA (Belgian Dark Ale brewed with Cape Gooseberries, 11.5% ABV, limited seasonal release)
Appearance: Warm russet brown, hazy, and with a thin cap of tan foam
Aroma: Brown sugar, orange zest, and fruity candy (think: Starbursts and Jolly Ranchers)
Taste: This right here is a happy-making beer. It starts off tasting like a blend of candied orange peel and warm brown sugar and rides that delicious wave all the way through. I love the spicy notes of clove and cinnamon that perk things up mid-palate, and the way it quite literally warms me up (11.5% ABV!). There's a distinct tanginess that I'm guessing comes from the cape gooseberries — I'd have to taste a goosed and non-goosed version side-by-side to be sure, but mild citrusy tang is something I've always associated with gooseberries. I like it here. I think it helps to cut the sweetness of the beer, which would otherwise feel too heavy and syrupy.
As it is, you should know going in that this is still a pretty darn sweet beer. In fact, as I'm sitting here lingering over the last of it in my glass, I keep thinking about Terry's Chocolate Oranges, which is an exact match for the lingering flavors 6 Geese-A-Laying. I feel like this beer would be best paired with food. Contrast the sweetness by serving it with a holiday dinner of roast meat and vegetables, or play into it by pairing it with a lush dessert — you could go either way.
Snag a bottle or two of 6 Geese-A-Laying now while it's in stock. The Bruery says it will age well over the next several years and reach its peak along with the release of their 12th and final beer in this series, 12 Drummers Drumming.
→ Drink This Beer With: Christmas Dinner! Also try it with Individual Pot Roasts with Thyme-Glazed Carrots
Apartment Therapy Media makes every effort to test and review products fairly and transparently. The views expressed in this review are the personal views of the reviewer and this particular product review was not sponsored or paid for in any way by the manufacturer or an agent working on their behalf. However, the manufacturer did give us the product for testing and review purposes.