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Aardmonnik - Earthmonk - De Struise Brouwers

Not Rated.
Aardmonnik - EarthmonkAardmonnik - Earthmonk

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

178 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 178
Hads: 281
Avg: 3.92
pDev: 17.6%
Wants: 177
Gots: 82 | FT: 11
Brewed by:
De Struise Brouwers visit their website

Style | ABV
Flanders Oud Bruin |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: TheLongBeachBum on 12-14-2006

Brewed and bottled on the Deca Brewery in Woesten-Vleteren.

Oud Vlaams Bruin - Blend 30% Old & 70% New

EBC:52, IBU:15, OG:1078, FG:1018, ABV:??
Hops: Bramling Cross, Hallertau MF
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 178 | Hads: 281
Photo of craytonic
3.92/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours nearly flat, dark, brown, mahogany, murky

Smell: Odd, I get beef jerky, Teryaki, soy sauce, brown sugar, molasses, cherry, oak, vinegar, balsamic vinegar. Quite tart.

Taste: Teryaki sauce, soy sauce, smoke, beef jerky, brown sugar, molasses, oak, figs, cherry, balsamic vinegar. Bit of funk and very tart.

Mouthfeel: It has a very hefty mouthfeel but is completely flat. This beer would be much better with at least a little carbonation.

Drinkability: Low due to carbonation, thickness, and strong flavors.

A bit disappointed in this one, perhaps my expectations were too high.

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Photo of philipquarles
3.75/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

11.2oz bottle from batch 7. Pours a surprisingly dark, opaque brown/black with little to no head. Quite a bit of sediment. Smells quite acidic, with plenty of lactic and acetic character. Slight mineral and sulfur. Sour cherries and a bit of brown sugar. Taste is again acidic with strong mineral notes. Sour, though not strongly so. Ferric. Cherry flavors come through before a dry finish. Medium-full body with medium carbonation. Had higher expectations for this one, though this bottle was slightly oxidized.

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Photo of brokenleadedcask
3.99/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle received in the Brew n' Books BIF from Nkersten, thanks for the haul! Not sure of the age, says best before Jan 2011. Reviewed from notes

I was perplexed when I poured this super dark brown beer into a tulip because it produced no head and no lacing, huh weird? My nose was met with Brett up front, with some background aromas of stale coffee, sweet dark fruit, and horse blanket. There was a pleasant amount of pucker with a dark roasty background. Thick and a tad chewy with a clean finish, tart doesn't linger. I would like to have this again but the price tag is a little shocking at close to $20 for a small bottle.

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Photo of ClockworkOrange
4.27/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750ml bottle into a basic snifter glass. The ale appears a cloudy copper color with red hues and barely a finger of light tan foam. Aromas and flavors are of fruity vinegar, tart apples, sour cherries, figs, raisins, oak tannins akin to those present in red wines, medium funk. Nice balance of sweet, sour, and funk. Right around medium bodied with light carbonation, which works well here. Very decent drinkability. The sweet/sour flavors leave me craving more after each sip.

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Photo of DrDogbeer
4.02/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle to a Eb's Belgian Fest tulip at cellar temp. Kinda ironic...
Pours a murky dark brown with no head whatsoever. Smells of heavy red wine or red wine vinegar to be more precise. Tastes like a mixture of a full bodied red wine with some vinegar and some more over-ripe dark fruit. Leaves a slightly bitter, sour aftertaste. Very warming in the mouth, it has a full,rich body with a creamy mouthfeel. Definitely not my fave from this great brewery, but a good beer and something great to try, nonetheless.

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Photo of Biggness
4.31/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a dark brown with no head or lacing. The smell is very nice of sour cherries and oranges. The flavor has a nice balance between the sour and the malt flavors, big in both, not too big with the sour. The mouthfeel is nice, but the carb level is way low. Very drinkable brew for 8%

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Photo of armock
4.42/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured a dark brown color with an off white head

S - Is of tart cherries for the most part

T - Lots of things going on in this beer but the sour cherries stand out the most

M - This beer has a medium body with light carbonation to it

D - I enjoyed this beer a lot I wish it was more readily available and easier to get my hands on an excellent sour beer that very enjoyable worth the effort to get to try

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Photo of youbrewidrink
4.58/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Odd pour from bottle, it was difficult to get a head of any kind. Pour in a tulip glass.

Initial strong acetone smell quickly dissipated to a funky cherry aroma.

Deep cloudy mahogany color.

The person I was sharing with described the first taste as blood, a thick rich coppery taste.
As the drinking progressed a full spectrum of fruit and funky shown greatly.

The mouth feel was great and contributed to the overall presentation of this beer.

Excellent overall experience.

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Photo of radshoesbro
4.82/5  rDev +23%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

this is maybe the most complex beer i've ever had!

pours a murky brown with some caramel/cherry tones around the edges. good head that dissipates very quickly and leaves no lace.

smells acidic with hints at cherries and alcohol.

the taste...what can i say? it seems like every sip i tasted something totally different. wood, cherries, mild funk, yeast, etc. it just keeps going and going.

this is a very drinkable beer based on how ridiculously delicious it is! it's ABV gives this is ability to make it a session beer, but the cost and availability hinder it greatly.

get this is you can, it's worth it.

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Photo of GClarkage
4.47/5  rDev +14%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

03/10/09- Received as an extra in a trade with BA member ygtbsm94.

Presentation- 11.2oz bottle with a notched best by date strip on the side of the label. Poured into my Russian River tulip.

Appearance- A combo of a dark cherry and grape juice color. On a very hard pour I got a lightly creamy large bubbled quickly receeding 1/4 inch head. Looks pretty flat from the pour. Does leave behind some light patches and spotty lace though.

Smell- A pretty strong nose of several things. A hefty amount of cherry notes, vinegar, earth and type of wood.

Taste- A ton of stuff going on here. Dark fruit-plums, rasins, dates and prunes. Wood-seems like some kind of oak wine barrel flavor. Vinous flavors, honey and definite a reduced balsamic vinegar flavor. Almost too much flavor for one beer. Nice and sour, but also quite sweet.

Mouthfeel- Almost completely flat, but quite thick and viscous. Even a little syrupy on the swallow. Just the smallest amount of prickly carbonation.

Drinkability- One of the deepest and most complex beers I have had the fortune of trying. A slight bit too much vinegar flavor for me, but otherwise an outstanding beer.

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Photo of koopa
3.9/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance: Garnet brown, no head, no lacing, no retention.

Smell: lots of vinegar and malt with a touch of fig, plum, and raisin.

Taste: kinda like cheap red wine....kidding! It's not that bad but a major disappointment. sweet up front, then it bridges into a cider vinegar wave with a dark fruit backbone. The finish has a decent tang to it that lingers a while.

Mouthfeel: Terribly flat and a major disappointment. This is what kills the whole beer for me. Dramatically undercarbonated. If this bottle had been aged for 5 years and tasted this way, I'd call it a cellaring success. But this is a letdown fresh.

Drinkability: Flat beer ain't very drinkabile for me unless the base flavors are excellent. in the case of earthmonk, they are.

Wow I feel ripped off. The flavors are great, but the lack of carbonation undermines everything. I wouldn't be happy with this purchase if it cost $6.00 per bottle, let alone $15.00

I have one more bottle that I have been aging for 6 months now and will continue to age for at least another year.

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Photo of DefenCorps
3.97/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Grabbed a couple of these from Liquid Solutions.

A: In my 22oz snifter, Earthmonk sits a rather deep shade of ruby red with reddish highlights. Pretty much flat with no carbonation whatsoever, there's mild protest of a head, some bubbles atop a rather patchy, oil-like film

S: Vinegary, rather intensely so. There's plenty of depth, though, with figs, plums and dark fruit. There's almost some chocolate, so think of this as raisins soaked in balsalmic vinegar and coated in chocolate. Oaky tannins are present in the back, lending an interesting balance.

T: Interesting. Rather intense balsalmic vinegar flavor, very vinous. Acetic character isn't over the top but the red wine character provides a rather unique twist to this beer, it really tastes like it was brewed with grapes! All told, both sourness and acidity are restrained but this beer is lacking a little something that could elevate it to the next level, especially the finish, which is tart but doesn't carry through the body of the beer. Some oak character comes through

M: The stillness works (for me) with the acidity pleasant and a tart finish that's a tad disappointing.

D: Glad I got to try this, I'll give my other bottle another year and see what comes of it

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Photo of Georgiabeer
4.71/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a murky brownish red with no head. Complex nose. Acetic and oaky with dark macerated cherries, sherry vinegar, and brown sugar. The cherries smell deep and dark with wonderful nuances. The taste is also complex with more of that wonderful cherry flavor. Winey and sour but with a rich but light cherry liquor sweetness lurking in the background, and some very complex funky earthiness with a bit of horseblanket, but not so far as barnyard. Wondefully sweet/tart but with great depth. Very smooth and even a bit creamy, though tart. A very nice version and definitely a bit less acetic than most. Highly recommended.

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Photo of Sixpoint
2.35/5  rDev -40.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2.5

I understand the avant garde shit, but this one was way off the mark.

Tasted like malt vinegar syrup over-aged in fresh oak. For real. Decent and promising burgundy tone in the glass, but a faint whiff of sourness in the nose that leaves me slightly unnerved...

Pretty damn weak. Too sour; too vinegar, not enough "funk" in those guitars to make these that coool 70s sound. Really just rather amateurish, imho.

Biggest flaw actually is the complete lack of carbonation. If you make cask-style ale, you best be cuttin back on the residual sugars. Otherwise, you're basically drinking a 12 oz. bottle of malt schnapps.

Overhyped beer, mostly due to its lack of availability (which is typical, imho). I'll take a ubiquitous Sierra Nevada Pale Ale over this ANYDAY.


good night ;-)

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Photo of brdc
3.64/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Small capped bottle, poured into a tulip.

The appearance is a major disappointment, as the dark ruby beer with some golden accents has absolutely zero head despite a vigorous pour. I was quite concerned about my sample, but browsing through other notes it appears that the lack of carbonation is an issue of this beer and not my sample.
Aroma is quite tart with notes of vinegar, fruits and even some malty notes. Not complex but nice.
Mouthfeel, despite this one showing some firmness, is another major disappointment as it is completely flat. The bottle announces it drinks as elegantly as wine, but I originally interpreted that as implying complexity and subtlety, not lack of carbonation.
The taste, which is suprisingly nice considering all the deficiencies, is mostly dry, but evolves in layers from sour, tart and acidic, to a malty sweetness followed by fruitiness, and this fruitiness is sometimes sweet, sometimes sour, astringent, and finishes again dry.
Taste is actually quite nice, saving this beer. Carbonation would make it a stellar beer, but its absolute lack of it makes it barely above the average. Lots of highs and lows here.

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Photo of tendermorsel
4.62/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a tulip glass.

I was very excited about this beer. I have heard really good thinks about it and never got around to drinking the one bottle I traded for.

Very little carbonation initially and any carbonation the beer had dissipated within 2 minutes of the pour. Nearly completely flat.

This is a real intense beer. Strong raisin plum and dark fruit smells from this beer. Sour dirty and funky tasting. Oily and quite viscus. Smooth and very easy to sip. Wonderfully sour and almost like vinegar in nature.

This is not for everyone but I loved it. Another great beer by DeStruise. I have a feeling that I'm gonna try to score a few more of this one.

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Photo of paco1029384756
3.92/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Gueuzedude for the bottle.

Pours a dark ruby color with an uneven layer of bubbles, no real head with this beer.

Scent of tart cherries, raspberries, vinegar, earth, grapefruit, honeydew, butterscotch, and a hint of alcohol. There is quite a bit to this one, but everything falls into place pretty nicely.

Taste of vinegar, tart cherries, earth, bread, tobacco, peat, oak and caramel. Finishes dry with oak flavors lingering. Certainly a complex beer, but surprisingly complex.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, very consistent and slightly thickened, but I am not particularly liking the lack of carbonation.

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Photo of seaoflament
3.2/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Huge thanks to hoppymeal for the opportunity to try this beer. Small 33cl bottle released in 2008; best before date of 07/10

The color of the beer is quite dark looking in the glass, dark with some wet oak highlights around the edges. A few bubbles gathered at the surface for a few moments but never really collected as a head. A swirl of the glass does produce a more decent ring.

As soon as I cracked the top I got a vinous aroma with hints of grape and vinegar. More vinegar as I poured but also sweet malt, cherries, strawberries, vanilla, oak, and grape jam. Very fruity aroma with various berries and sweet plums. Caramel, chocolate, and hints of coffee hide behind the fruity background. Smells a bit like toast and jam. Complex and delicate. After leaving the beer breathe for about 5 minutes it begins to reveal some apple notes, sugary candy, and a little lemon twist.

Argh! The first sip is rather intense, huge vinegar and apple flavor, oak, toast, a bit of tartness followed by the malt sweetness and some bitterness which I don't know where it came from. The finish does seem to be a little calmer with notes of chocolate, fruits, and berries. I'm a little more prepared for the second sip but it's still quite acetic and thin. Oak and vanilla flavors mid-palate, apples and toasted malts in the finish. Even as it warms up, the vinous, oak, and vinegar flavors don't tone down and with the lack of carbonation it makes it a little difficult to drink. The last few sips have a taste of iron (blood).

The beer enters a little thick and syrupy but by mid palate it turns thin, watery, and lacks carbonation in the finish.

****update May 2009***

Second time trying this beer was at Lost Abbey's 3rd Anniversary Party on 5-9-09. From a 750ml bottle, and probably an 06/07 vintage.

Better than the fresh bottle I reviewed. Still a good amount of vinegar and metallic/iron flavors but balanced with an increase sourness and puckering effect. Much more drinkable and enjoyable. More dryness in the finish as well. Very complex, there just seemed to be layer on top of layer in aroma and flavor.

If I were to score the 750ml bottle it would be something like:
4/4.5/4/4/4 A-

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Photo of bkilpatr
4.39/5  rDev +12%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 330 ml bottle into an Ommegang chalice. 01/10/09. Batch 7. Cool label artwork.

Pours a very dark mahogany brown with no head at all except for a ring around the edge of the glass. Aroma is very earthy, tart, and sour with wood, darker fruits, and cherry.

Taste is tart and sour with lots of dark fruit (prune, fig) and cherry. Very earthy taste with wood/oak barrel. A bit of vinegar in the finish. Pretty dry and has a red wine-like taste.

Feel is very smooth with a medium body. Very little carbonation, which works well for this beer. Definitely a sipper. Drinkability is very good. It's not too heavy or too sour.

Overall, a very good sour ale. Very tasty and a pleasure to drink. Very expensive though (~$15 for 330ml). If you like sour ales give it a shot.

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Photo of largadeer
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Dark brown in the pour, sits an opaque nearly black color in the glass. Very little head, just a few bubbles and a fine ring.

Smell: Vinous red wine-like notes, unsweetened chocolate and balsamic vinegar stand out at first. As it warms, I get spice and earthy fruit.

Taste & mouthfeel: Fruity with fig and date flavors most prevalent, undertones of chocolate and grape skin. Medium-full mouthfeel with low carbonation. Semi-dry finish, very acetic. Sourness is moderate and acidity is restrained. Very drinkable stuff, good example of the style.

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Photo of Wasatch
4.3/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice cloudy brown color, nice carbonation, nice little fizzy head, with some sticky lacing left behind. The nose is malty, soury, with some plums/cherries. The taste is malty, with some sour plums/cherries. Medium body. Very drinkable, this is a pretty tasty brew.

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Photo of HopHead84
4.37/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured vigorously into my La Chouffe tulip. Head is beige, very bubbly, and small with little retention, which is to be expected Color is dark brown with a red tint.

The aroma is very complex. I perceive some caramel malt, along with figs, raisins, and plums. Some tart cherry is evident but is in the background. Some oak is also evident.

Initial flavor is tart cherries, oak, and vinegar. Ripe plum skin and a very low bitterness compliment the pleasant sweetness. Faint sourness and lactic acid is noticeable in the finish and lingers toward the back of the tongue and throat for a short while.

The body is vinuous an carbonation is very low.

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Photo of tpd975
4.26/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This one was acquired in a trade with PHawk. Thanks Parker.

A: Pours a dark brown hue with tones of amber showing thru. No head to speak of and not lace.

S: Very earthy aroma with a bold sourness. There are vineous notes with a red wine like quality. Hints of vinegar, and cherry skins.

T: Low in carbonation, though I have the feeling this wasy by design. Sour and winey up front. Big oaky notes with a vinegar sourness in the finish. To call this one earty is an understatement.

M: Low in carbonation, full bodied with touch of sharp and sourness. Very nice.

D: Not one you would pound, but a nice drink to sit back and enjoy with some fine cheese, which myself, Tony, and Sea Bass did.

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Photo of emerge077
4.67/5  rDev +19.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured as the brewers advise, at a height of six or more inches, it actually produces a lasting head of larger, honeycombed bubbles. Here's the visual: http://belgianbeerboard.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=102

Ten minutes later, and the head is still there, along with a little spotty lace. Served at 50º cellar temperature into a stemmed Oerbier glass.

Aged balsamic vinegar in the nose, sweet and spicy, a touch lactic. Black with a lighter auburn glow at the edge when backlit. The feel is very rich, probably the most full bodied Oud Bruin i've had. The low carbonation and and vinous body gives it a slight heft, and even more of a balsamic character to match the taste. Very tasty, there are also hints of anise, black cherry, leather, tobacco, yogurt, and other spices. Tartness is fairly mild, though it still gives a good bite. Very savory, definitely one to sip and contemplate.

Pete Wentz: "Ashlee Simpson's breast milk tastes "soury" and "weird". Soury... that's a word? Or just how Canadians apologize?

Huge thanks to ygtbsm94 for sending me this, and to tyee for sharing it awhile back. This is really exceptional stuff!

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Photo of ChrisPr
4.8/5  rDev +22.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours dark brown, almost like a dark eisbock, with no head and garnet hints at the edges. I almost want to give a 5.0 for appearance. Smells of malt, prune and wood with slight vinegar. The mouthfeel is light-to-medium though this beer has some viscosity though it finishes quite dry. This is a very tasty beer with white grapefruit and spiciness reminiscent of Muller-Thurgau up front and a mild prune and wood finish. The acetic qualities are well-balanced, with the tartness between an old, viscous barrel-aged beer and a Flemish red. An exceptional sipper!

Not like any other beer I've ever had, but it shows some characteristics shared with l'Abbaye de Saint Bon-Chien 2005. This beer is very drinkable but unfortunately quite rare. Well, well worth seeking out if this sounds like something you'd enjoy. I now consider it one of the great soured ales in the world.

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Aardmonnik - Earthmonk from De Struise Brouwers
88 out of 100 based on 178 ratings.