U.S. Trappist monks say beer brewing enhances American monastic life

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May 19, 2015

Trappist Brother Jonah Pociadlo counts bottles of Spencer Trappist Ale April 29 at the new state-of-the-art brewery on the grounds of St. Joseph's Abbey in Spencer, Mass. The monks began operating the first American Trappist brewery about a year ago. (CNS photo/Chaz Muth) See TRAPPIST-BREWERY May, 19, 2015.

Trappist Brother Jonah Pociadlo counts bottles of Spencer Trappist Ale April 29 at the new state-of-the-art brewery on the grounds of St. Joseph’s Abbey in Spencer, Mass. The monks began operating the first American Trappist brewery about a year ago. (CNS photo/Chaz Muth)

SPENCER, Mass. (CNS) — The whoosh of the beer tap opening, the gentle glug of the golden brew pouring into the goblet and the sizzle of the foaming mousse are joyous sounds to Trappist Brother Jonah Pociadlo’s ears as he prepares to savor the signature ale created in his monastery’s brewery.

The monk — swathed in his trademark black and white habit — then holds the glass above his head, squints to examine the bubbling liquid inside, before drawing it to his nose to savor the aroma radiating from the tumbler, which is ornamented with the name of the brew, Spencer Trappist Ale.

“It’s got a wonderful smell to it,” said Brother Jonah, as his eyes gently close and his satisfied grin grows wider. “I hesitate to describe it, because it’s something I think is pretty subjective. But I can almost taste it without it even touching my lips.”

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