Brewed by Brouwerij Rodenbach (Palm)
Style: Sour Red/Brown
Roeselare, Belgium
Serve in Snifter, Tulip, Tumbler


on tap

Broad Distribution

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RATINGS: 2723   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.81/5   EST. CALORIES: 180   ABV: 6%
Bottle: Filtered.
A blend of 1/3 young beer and 2/3 of beer aged 2 years in large oak vats. The more important proportion of oak matured beer contributes to its fruity taste, complexity and intensity. The finish is worthy of a great wine.

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EnSiFeRuM (501) - Quebec, CANADA - MAY 3, 2009
Bouteille de 330ml. Nos yeux observent une bière de couleur rouge vin ainsi qu’un col de mousse modeste. Au nez on respire des arômes de raisin bleu, de chêne et d’acidité. En bouche le corps est moyen avec une effervescence moyenne. On goûte des saveurs de raisin acide, de vanille et de chêne. Bien fait mais pas mon style.

noompa (130) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - MAY 2, 2009
750 ml. bottle (2008) in a white wine glass. Ruby, brown at the top fading to a clear pale ochre at the edges, negligible head true to style. Vinous aroma, candied apples, elusive nutty Brie and Camembert that kept running away. Vinegar-y taste, yet not too much, sour and tart, perfectly understated sweetness w/ tart raspberries, oaky vanilla notes. Pine needles in aroma too. Effervescence barely noticeable in mouth, medium bodied ending dry. Exquisite and timeless.

dmschefke (583) - Macomb, Michigan, USA - APR 27, 2009
Pours a dark red with hues of brown and an off-white head. Aroma is earthy, cider vinegar, citrus, and dried fruits (maybe over-ripe fruits also). Flavor is very interesting and I think beats the pants off of regular Rodenbach. Flavors are strong of grapes, apple cider, and some tart berries. I tried Rodenbach and was not happy with it, I am very happy I decided to try this.

bendybenbeer (39) - AUSTRALIA - APR 26, 2009
Wow...no matter how many times I have this brew, it always reminds me of summer in Belgium! I just love it! Beat ruby red colour & lovely lacing head. Smells like apples, citrus, vinegar, musty, vanilla maybe a little toffee/caramel notes. Flavour is great. tart, sweet, yeasty, wow! Then, a beatifully sharp clean finish.

elihapa (1554) - Honolulu, Hawaii, USA - APR 26, 2009
Bomber, shared with Alex. Pours brown with red undertones and heavy lacing. Aroma of apple cider vinegar, red wine vinegar, tart citrus and green apple. Flavor is incredibly bold, and transitions throughout the palate. Starts of tart apple, red grape skin, then moves to sweet candied apple and lemon. Finishes is spicy and prickly – an unusual sensation – and some cactus fruit. Overall, I loved this beer and craved its complexity, but a disclaimer: my buddy Alex let this beer warm up longer than I did, and a certain harshness in both the nose and finish (spicy/alcohol) can through too noticeably.)

fidelis83 (2509) - Clinton, Iowa, USA - APR 24, 2009
Pours a dark ruby-brown with a 1 finger muddy tan head that has o.k. retention. Aroma is red apple skin, balsamic vinegar, sweet grapes, wet forest, nice dry wood notes, hints of cherries, vanilla, light caramel and pear. Some interesting, banana/banana oil notes come up as it warms. Flavor is red grapes, underripe raspberries, musty grain, sweet apple cider, plenty of sweet earthy and sour balsamic notes, strawberry, just a touch of cane sugar and maple sap. Finish is tart, slightly bready, fading fruit notes and some nice earth. Palate is medium-thin, highly carbonated, maybe too highly, very dry and clean throughout. Good stuff, though a little more vinegar than I would like.

Case (304) - GERMANY - APR 23, 2009
A mix of 1/3 fresh Rodenbach and 2/3 two-year old Rodenbach aged in oak casks. This is the benchmark oak-aged Sour Ale of Belgium. The ratebeer description above is rather misleading since there is nothing gentle about this beer, it is all about the achieving the perfectly balanced sharp sourness.
Pours a dark-red body (thus the name of this style - Flanders Red Ale) with a small off-white head that fades away, leaving a bit of fine lacing behind. Tart aroma of oak wood and cherries. The taste is strong bold sour, sour cherries, vinegar, tannins, acidic and just a very light subtle sweetness to balance the extremes. For 6.5% alcohol this is a very powerful beer full of complex flavours. For the longest time after first tasting Rodenbach I just could not believe there were no cherries used in making the beer - that’s how potent the taste is. Unlike the funky sourness of a Geuze, the sourness of a Flemish Red is vinegary and oaky from the aging in oak casks. For me it is a more refined, elegant kind of sourness whereas Geuze is more fresh and direct.
It is all a matter of taste though; some people might find this to be like drinking pure vinegar. For a beginner I therefore strongly recommend acclimatizing yourself to the sourness with a few of the milder Rodenbach Classics first before trying the Grand Cru. Also, as has often been said, this is a great beer to convince a wine connoisseur that there is some merit to beer as well.
A most refreshing, strong and complex beer. Be careful - once you develop a taste for sour ales you are very likely to become addicted!

Rciesla (5607) - Exit 15W, New Jersey, USA - APR 22, 2009
Bottle and drought. Pours a red brune body with an off white head. Sour cherries and lightly woody with a nice tart character in the aroma but is more subdued in the flavor. Balsamic notes and a hint of woody berries. Delicious.

ako (167) - Turku, FINLAND - APR 21, 2009
Deep brown. Fermented berries, vinegar in aroma. Sour as hell, like drinking vinegar with berries. Soft maltiness when the sourness fades away.

DrDavid (957) - Johnson, Vermont, USA - APR 20, 2009
Bottle. Fruity tart aroma. Deep brownish red body, big off-white head. Flavor is fruity and very tart, with cherry and a complex blend of berries. Finishes with a delightful cushion of soft sweetness that kisses the palate. Delicious.

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