The third beer we are BrewViewing for BREWERY OF THE MONTH – October 2015, is for ST. BERNARDUS PATER 6. It is sometimes overlooked by beer enthusiasts due to it being overshadowed the Abt 12. However, you would be missing out on a wonderful, easy to drink, full-flavored, sessionable beer if you did.
BEER STYLE AND COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION FROM ST. BERNARDUS
Style category: Abbey Brune / Trappist-style Dubbel
St. Bernardus Pater 6 is a traditional abbey style dubbel, chestnut in color, very fruity with notes of melon and very fresh banana, finishing with slight bitterness.
Delightfully easy to drink. One of the original recipes from the days of license-brewing for the Trappist monks of Westvleteren.
OUR BREWVIEW OF BROUWERIJ ST. BERNARDUS PATER 6
APPEARANCE / THE POUR:
6.7% ABV. We poured it at 48°F (verified with a VacuVin snap thermometer on the bottle) in the signature St. Bernardus open-mouthed goblet. It poured a medium to deep brown color, with an SRM value around a 15-18. It easily poured a voluminous light tan colored, dense, creamy 3-finger head with tight bubbles. Rim color variation- slightly lighter than the beer body.
The meniscus is medium to slow rising- The Brussels lacework the beer leaves behind as the head collapses, is patchy, spider web-like density- (we ensured this was a “Beer Clean” glass). There is a very heavy cloudy haze to the beer, due to the bottle conditioning (second fermentation with yeast in the bottle). Like the Watou Tripel, this particular bottle had a good deal of yeast in suspension when poured into the glass. This was not a defect of the beer. This particular bottle had been sitting in the MIXED SELECTION box on the shelf for at least a year under good temperature conditions. After 8 minutes, there was still a 1/8″ head; we poured the rest of the yeast into the bottle, in which the beer became super cloudy.
AROMA / BOUQUET:
Classic Abbey / Trappist Dubbel aromas- fruity, chocolatey, rasiny. The melon aromas that St. Bernardus aromas describes are similar to that of a Honeydew melon. Indeed, it does have a distinct banana bouquet, but we got more of a riper banana. We also found that it has a very faint Tootsie Roll aroma- but that is in the background. As the beer warmed up a bit, more of the melon aromas expressed themselves, along with the banana aromas. Around 15 minutes into drinking time, faint cherry stone aromas start. Truly wonderful.
Your first sip will contain flavor components of dark chocolate (cacao). Great flavors of freshly baked raisin bread due to the fresh yeast characteristic. There are also flavors of Marzipan, and dark burnt caramel. There is a faint pepperiness to it, not intense.
MOUTHFEEL / PALATE:
Medium (bordering on heavy bodied due to the yeast suspension), there is a soft creaminess to the mouthfeel. The effervescence is soft, and there is a nice bitter dark chocolate / rasiny finish that lingers. Hits the sides of the mouth, and coats the back of the throat. The aftertaste is similar to that of eating a piece of dark chocolate. Very inviting.
FOOD PAIRING SUGGESTIONS:
APPETIZERS: Triple cream baked brie with carmelized onions. The fruitiness of the beer will pair nicely with the creaminess. Charcuterie platter with rich sausages. Of course, you can pair this beer with heavy, blue-veined cheeses, and washed rind cheeses.
ENTRÈES: Dishes from t’ Hommelhof: Veal tartare, anchovy mayonaise, blue cheese and a salad with ’t Kapittel Pater vinaigrette, Slow-cooked shoulder of lamb in Duvel with ratatouille and baked pasta, Steak (le petit nerf) with shallots in Cuvée ‘t Hommelhof.
DESSERTS: Anything that contains chocolate, raisins, or cherries. Chocolate cheesecake, chocolate cherry drops, chocolate swirl raisin bread, rum raisin ice cream with caramel sauce.
At 6.7% ABV, we consider St. Bernardus Pater 6 a very sessionable beer. It is of course, one that definitely improves in aroma and flavor as drinking time goes on.
Pater 6 is a very easy drinking beer, very underated, and we feel it deserves more attention- hopefully this BrewView will help! We obtained it as part of the St. Bernardus Mixed Selection 6-pack, purchased at our local Liquor Barn.
Drinking this beer again was a another great revisit; we consider it a great beer to enjoy everyday for those who like to have a nice dark beer on a daily basis.
An excellent example of the Abbey / Trappist Dubbel style, our hats off to Brouwerij St. Bernardus to this one! Highly recommended, seek this one out for sure! That’s it for now… we’ll see you on the next BrewView.
St. Bernardus Pater 6 is available in the United States from D&V INTERNATIONAL.