RateBeer
overall
99
97
style
Brewed by Cantillon
Style: Lambic Style - Unblended
Brussels, Belgium

bottled
common

on tap
common

Broad Distribution

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RATINGS: 1120   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.83   EST. CALORIES: 150   ABV: 5%
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COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
The Cantillon brewery is closely linked to Brussels, a city which has the iris as its symbol. As the name indicates, the "marsh iris" is a plant growing in humid areas. The historical center of Brussels is built on swamps where this flower used to grow abundantly.
In 1998, the Brussels Museum of the Gueuze celebrated its 20th anniversary. The Cantillon brewery decided to make a new spontaneous fermentation beer for this occasion, named after this symbolic flower.
It is a completely original beer which, contrary to the other products of the Brewery, is not brewed with 35% of wheat. The Iris, which is only made with malt of the pale ale type (giving a more amber colour to the beer) conserves the typical flavour of the spontaneous fermentation, the complex aromas and the vinous taste.
The hopping is different too. Lambic is made with 100% dried hops, for the Iris we use 50% of dried hops and 50% of fresh hops. The latter cause a superb acidity, the former, due to their tannins, enable to conserve the beer while preserving all its qualities.
After two years in the barrel, the Iris undergoes a second fresh hopping two weeks before the bottling. A linen bag, filled with hops, is soaked in the beer for two weeks. This technique, called "cold hopping", gives the beer a more intense savour and makes the smell and the taste more bitter.


3.8
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
GermanBrews76 (678) - Richmond, Virginia, USA - DEC 10, 2003
1998 slightly hazedvibrant golden brown body. quickly dissolving foamy white head. Tart, intense, slightly fruity and real tanmgy. Some dyr barley character. Citrucy and sour flavor. some saltiness. Full, lively and tart. Bitter, flower petal nose emerges very strongly. Champagne and cider. Most mild and smooth lambic I've ever had

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Hopistotle420 (1178) - Amherst, Massachusetts, USA - DEC 1, 2003
Golden onion skin amber. Off white sticky head. Usual Cantillon barnyard, vinous funk in the nose...with a weird minty/herbal resinous (pine or spruce) note. Sour, funky, acidic, sour, WILD! Very big flavors here. Salty, vinous, vinegar, cheddar. Medium bodied. Finishes with a luscious "green" hop flavor, one a bit different then any I have encountered previous. A very interesting brew from one of my all time favorite brewers. Thanks Jean Pierre!

3.7
   AROMA 4/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 16/20
corpse (7) - Greensboro, North Carolina, USA - NOV 24, 2003 does not count
Musty, yeasty, hoppy, very very odd. I love it. Overwhelming when switching from a different beer, but once I got into it, I really enjoyed it.

4.2
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
heykevin (1274) - Decorah, Iowa, USA - NOV 21, 2003
Aroma is lemony, spicy and peppery. Ruddy copper color. It has a smooth and elegant sourness. (Much closer in personality to the lou pepe gueuze, say then the regular gueuze--more smooth sourness than assertive sourness) Some minty hop in the finish, which I agree is a nice departure from some of the other house products. Another gem from Cantillon.

4.1
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
DavidP (1747) - Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA - NOV 19, 2003
UPDATED: DEC 10, 2005 <h3>’00 bottle/h3> Pours with a foamy white head over clear copper body. Lightly sweet aroma with a citric acid tang. The initial sour flavor is so intense that it’s hard to pick out what’s going on. Once that subsides, the hops the description speaks of come out. The beer finishes out with a pleasant sweetness (relatively speaking, the tartness is still around) as your tongue recovers from the sour assault. I initially was going to mark this beer down for those intense flavors (too harsh), but after some reflection (and temperature increase) the big flavors grew on me. It’s nice to drink something very very far from the norm. <h3>’05 bottle sampled 12/10/05</h3> Tart orange juice and hop leaf aroma. The leafy, stemmy dry-hopping is evident in the flavor but at the same time its fresh grassiness blends well with the traditional lambic tart/funky flavors. Dry finish with a fresh hop twang.

4.2
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
Indra (2595) - Overland Park, Kansas, USA - NOV 2, 2003
UPDATED: NOV 23, 2003 Bottled 2002. Fresh, flowery, citrusy aroma, a touch of honeysuckle sweetness and lemon, faintly woody and malty as well. Golden with a slight amber cast, the effervescence and head are both present and accounted for. Classic lambic tartness up front, quickly becoming resinous and full of spicy, citric, very green hop flavors, and carrying through to the finish, which is otherwise dry and infused with lemon juice, faint malty grain and barnyard attributes (musk, wood, straw, cobweb, etc.). Light-medium bodied and some acidity on the palate, but not an overwhelming amount by any means. The increased hop presence is quite appreciable. An original and very enjoyable creation.

3.8
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
DrGonzo (625) - Somerville, Massachusetts, USA - OCT 18, 2003
On tap at the Moan and Dove. Apple aroma with hint of hops. Lively carbonation, more hop bite (and wine flavor) than other guezes, very tart. (Not sure how this is classified as a fruit lambic, does it have anything to do with the hops?)

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
igneous1 (1492) - Davenport, Iowa, USA - OCT 1, 2003
light amber/deep golden color, with a lasting white head (mostly fine bubbles). great vinegary tartness to the nose and very floral/perfumey, hair of lemon in the flavor with the oak really showing up in the finish. damn good, but not as good as the others in this line.

4.1
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
Zach Diesel (906) - Sisters, Oregon, USA - SEP 30, 2003
intense sour aroma, cloudy light orange, growing sourness turns into a woody/winey finish, some creamy yeastiness and lots of grassy notes, a liquid flower

3.9
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Nuffield (3666) - Roseville, Minnesota, USA - SEP 3, 2003
The bartender said they stopped serving this because they had a batch with a lot of exploding/gusher bottles, but this one opened without problems (though she took the precaution of stepping outside to open it). What a mouth trip! Peachy, hazy, with a lively white head. Up front there are interesting flavors of watermelon, grapefruit, lime, and a general citric-sour thing going on, most noticeably in the finish at the back of the mouth. Smooth, integrated carbonation, and a long grapefruit finish, although those words are far too simplistic to capture what was going on here. I'm a total sucker for Cantillon, though this isn't my favorite. (bottle at Monk's, Philadelphia)


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