Beer #40 Goose Island Christmas Ale

Goose Island Christmas Ale 2009

Name: Goose Island Christmas Ale

Style: Brown Ale

Brewery: Goose Island website

Country: USA

Region:  Chicago, Illinois

ABV: 5.7%

How served: 650ml capped bottle poured into a Postel chalice.    

My Overall Opinion: Very Good

I paired this beer with: Gnocchi and an Italian sausage based marinara sauce.  

Tasted on: Friday December 04, 2009

Note: This is their 2009 version.  The bottle says “develops in the bottle over 5 years”, well I didn’t want to wait 5 years, so I drank some today.  Glad I did, as I do have a few other bottles to see how it ages.  Bottle also say “Best enjoyed in a nonic pint”, well I chose my Postel chalice instead, don’t hink it effected the flavor in a negative way.  Grab a bottle and see.

Brewmasters Notes:

“Every year to celebrate the holiday season, we brew up our Christmas Ale, and with each year we change the recipe slightly so that you have something special to look forward to. Traditionally, our Christmas Ale is a complex brown ale that develops well in the bottle for up to five years.”

Tides and Tidings of Goodwill:

“It has been the tradition at Goose Island to change the recipe of our Christmas Ale so that each year we can share a newly brewed gift with our friends and community. Starting in 2009, we’ve decided to extend the tradition of giving with a gift to a Chicago charity that helps to spread holiday cheer. We are donating a portion of the profits from this year’s Christmas Ale to the Chicago Christmas Ship. Each year the ship sails from the shores of Michigan to Chicago with a hull of Christmas trees to be given to many disadvantaged families in Chicago. This year by raising a glass to toast the holidays with your friends and family, you can help us raise a tree – and the spirits – of another Chicago family.”

Learn more about the Chicago’s Christmas Ship at

Recipe Information:

Style: Brown Ale
Alcohol by Volume: 5.7
International Bitterness Units: Change year to year
Color: Chocolate
Hops: Change year to year
Malt: Pale, Extra Special Briess, Dark

Serving Suggestions:

Preferred Glass: Nonic
Preferred Serving Temperature: 40º
Food Pairings: Ham, Turkey, Lamb
Cheese Pairings: Aged Gouda, Dry Jack
Cellaring Notes: Develops in the bottle for up to 5 years

This is the 9th of my daily Christmas/Winter beers which I will be having until Christmas.  There are now only 20 more beers until Christmas!