(2009) 12 Beers of Christmas, beer 11: Tustin Brewing Company’s Conception Belgian Golden Ale

For the lighter (colored) beer fans out there, we give you momentary reprieve from all the dark Belgians, stouts, and strong ales we’ve been showcasing in our countdown… thus, we bring you Conception Belgian Golden Ale from Tustin Brewing Company. This tasty brew pours a dark golden sunshine color, and as its name suggests, Conception is a formation of unique tastes, bursting with banana, wheat, bubblegum, and Belgian yeast flavors. Although it is not formally a Christmas beer, we pegged it for our lineup because it reminded us of an Orange County Christmas… complete with bright, warming sunshine.

Conception pairs well with many items on Tustin Brewing Company’s menu, especially the spicy Carne Asada Pizza, which helps to balance out the sweetness of the brew. We also discovered that, like most Belgians, it pairs surprisingly well with salty and sour foods (like salt and vinegar chips), so you may want to try it with Tustin’s Chopped Salad or even Fish n’ Chips. Conception’s 8.5% ABV helps it to stand up to any appetizer or entrée you pair it with, and it leaves you feeling warm, cheery, and satisfied.

The only downside to this beer is that you could easily drink several pints, and with the aforementioned alcohol content, things could get a little crazy. So, once you’ve sampled a few pints of Conception and you’re ready to round out your session with something lighter, a great recommendation would be the Golden Spike Light Ale, which won Tustin Brewing Company a Gold Medal at the 2009 Great American Beer Festival.

Conception is available on tap now at Tustin, and will surely brighten up your Christmas season. For more info on the brewery, their beers, or their food menu, please visit their website.

Merry Christmas!


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