Rare beer brewed by Monks makes American debut, sells out locally


by Claudia Coffey


Posted on December 12, 2012 at 7:20 PM

Updated Thursday, Dec 13 at 12:02 PM

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) -- The "Holy Grail of Ales" has arrived in Kentuckiana. Rare beer made by Trappist Monks in Belgium was sold for the first time in the United States on Wednesday.

The evasive and highly coveted Westvleteren 12 or Westy 12 as it is also known, was sold for the first time in 24 states and select stores.

The small shipments sold out in minutes in three local shops. Outside the Louisville Beer Store on Market, more than 50 people had lined up at 9 a.m. Many wanted to be the first in line when it opened at noon hoping to be one of the lucky few to get their hands on what is considered to be the best beer in the world.

At the Louisville Beer Store tickets went within 15 minutes. At Keg Liquors in Clarksville the beers were spoken for before they even arrived. Keg Liquors only received 80 six packs of the beer. So they decided to hold a lotto on their facebook page because of the popularity of it . Owner Todd Antz said he did it that way because he did not want it to turn into a Black Friday of beer shopping.

So what is the big deal? The beer has exclusively been brewed by monks in Belgium and only purchased there since the 1940's,  until Wednesday. The reclusive monks got a sign from above, literally, and needed a new roof for the Abbey.

The beer it costs $85 a six pack, a price beer lovers are more than willing to pay.

"It's been consistently ranked as number one in the world and this will probably be the only time I ever get to drink it, " Peter Fingerson of Louisville said.

One single beer has an alcohol content of 10.2 percent. The standard beer alcohol content ranges  between four and six percent.

Westy 12's are already being sold online for close to $200.

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