The Lost Abbey - Gnoel de Abbey (2019 vintage)
- ABV: 8.5%
- Bottle Size: 750-ml
- Serving Temperature: 45–55° F
- Suggested Glassware: Chalice, Tulip, or Goblet
The 2019 vintage of Gnoel de Abbey was available exclusively in California, Philadelphia, and Boston. The bottle’s charismatic gnomes have us thinking of Brasserie d’Achouffe, and this winter warmer certainly conjures some of the classic holiday beers of Belgium.
Gnoel de Abbey pours dark cola-brown, with a creamy, rocky tan foam that’s well retained. Upfront aromatics offer freshly brewed espresso, baker’s chocolate, and rich spice. There’s also prominent pepper and clove from the fermentation, providing some toasty bitterness.
The modest amount of age here adds a nice roundedness overall, with those well-integrated caramels working great against the backdrop of spice and cola and fruit. Deep expressions of core malts. Hints of cocoa, vanilla, and holiday spices, and a spirited impression of warmth from the 8.5% ABV. Still, surprisingly light on the palate thanks to carbonation and ferment. Finishes with crisp coffee bitterness, toasty honeyed malts, and some lingering vinous warmth.
This is drinking perfectly right now, but will continue to age smoothly. We could see pairing with ginger or shortbread cookies, although this can also stand on its own as a nightcap. The spice, caramel, and peppery notes also have it primed for fruit- or vanilla-focused pairings.
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