Westvleteren XII - a Rare Beer Hailed as 'World's Best' now Available in US
Westvleteren XII has been made available in limited quantities across the U.S. for the first time but Pennsylvania aficionados will have to travel to Delaware, New Jersey or Ohio for a taste.
It has been called the "world's best beer" and until recently it could only be bought in the abbey of Saint Sixtus in Belgium.
Brewed by Trappist monks, Westvleteren XII, will be available stateside this one time only in order to help the monks pay for renovations.
Pennsylvania beer lovers will have to make a trek for the elusive beer because it didn't make the list of retail locations throughout the U.S. that will carry the specially packaged "bricks" of beer, which include six bottles of 12º beer and two glasses from the monastery for $84.99. The closest states are New York and Delaware.
A little trip across state lines, however, is a lot easier than scoring a reservation to purchase the beer at the abbey - they are very hard to get.
The decision to make the beer commercially available was made reluctantly, according the their website. And according to an article in ABCNews.com the Westvleteren Brewery spokesman Mark Bode told NPR, "I think it will be the last [time].
"They say, 'We are monks, we don't want to be too commercial. We needed some money to help us buy the new abbey and that's it,' Back to normal again," Bode said.
ABCnews reports a manager at a New York store that got 24 cases beer said phones have been ringing off the hook.
A snipet of information from the monks' website about the one-time commercial venture follows: We didn’t know what to expect when we received a message to our general email account purporting to be from the Abdij Sint-Sixtus, offering a chance to help distribute their famous beer for a special, one-time project, but we were curious. It turned out that the Abbey needed to build a new wing, which would mostly consist of the monks’ cells. They decided that a special gift pack of their most famous beer, the 12°, would be sold outside the monastery walls for the first time (at least the first time with their explicit authorization). They selected over a dozen countries to participate in this special one-time project. Despite the fairly ubiquitous availability of some Trappist beers (many of which are brewed and marketed by other companies hired by the monasteries), Trappist monks themselves are decidedly non-commercial.