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Aardmonnik - Earthmonk - De Struise Brouwers

Not Rated.
Aardmonnik - EarthmonkAardmonnik - Earthmonk

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
89
very good

266 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 266
Reviews: 175
rAvg: 3.95
pDev: 17.72%
Wants: 176
Gots: 84 | FT: 12
Brewed by:
De Struise Brouwers visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Flanders Oud Bruin |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
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 added by: TheLongBeachBum on 12-14-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 266 | Reviews: 175 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Georgiabeer
4.72/5  rDev +19.5%
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.

Georgiabeer, Feb 20, 2009
Photo of Sixpoint
2.3/5  rDev -41.8%
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.

HANDS DOWN.

good night ;-)

Sixpoint, Feb 14, 2009
Photo of brdc
3.7/5  rDev -6.3%
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.

brdc, Feb 10, 2009
Photo of tendermorsel
4.65/5  rDev +17.7%
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.

tendermorsel, Feb 08, 2009
Photo of paco1029384756
3.93/5  rDev -0.5%
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.

paco1029384756, Feb 02, 2009
Photo of seaoflament
3.15/5  rDev -20.3%
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-

seaoflament, Jan 26, 2009
Photo of bkilpatr
4.45/5  rDev +12.7%
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.

bkilpatr, Jan 11, 2009
Photo of largadeer
4/5  rDev +1.3%
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.

largadeer, Jan 01, 2009
Photo of Wasatch
4.33/5  rDev +9.6%
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.

Wasatch, Dec 24, 2008
Photo of HopHead84
4.38/5  rDev +10.9%
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.

HopHead84, Dec 08, 2008
Photo of tpd975
4.28/5  rDev +8.4%
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.

tpd975, Nov 30, 2008
Photo of emerge077
4.65/5  rDev +17.7%
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!

emerge077, Nov 23, 2008
Photo of ChrisPr
4.83/5  rDev +22.3%
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.

ChrisPr, Nov 22, 2008
Photo of drseamus
4.47/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I've been cellaring this beer for a while waiting for the right time to try it.

A: Dark brown with no head. Somewhat expected for a cellared bottle.

S: Sour fruitiness. Slight vinegar aroma. Some cherry notes.

T: It's good. I could use a touch more tartness, but that's pretty much always true. The brett is slightly pronounced with a dustiness. The taste starts off with a nice tart cherry, then evolves into a earthy flavor and finishes with a slight vinegar aftertaste.

M: Pretty thin but right on style.

D: All day in the summer. When pouring, make sure to include the yeast in the glass to add GREAT flavor.

drseamus, Nov 17, 2008
Photo of mhewes
2.35/5  rDev -40.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

A : Pours a very dark brown with absolutely no head

S : There was a good dark fruit aroma along with some sourness

T : Vinegar sour throughout the bottle. For me, it overwhelmed any other flavors in the beer so much that they were almost impossible to pick out. Really disappointing.

M : Extremely syrupy, no carbonation

D : I was extremely disappointed with this one. I've got no plans to seek this one out again.

mhewes, Nov 17, 2008
Photo of aerozeppl
4.43/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Thanks to drseamus for bringing this. 750ml bottle.

A: Deep brown color with hints of red. Minimal white head.

S: Sour and fruity in aroma. The big flanders aroma is there. A little big of vinegar.

T: Super sour.Nice and earthy. Tons of the barrel are right there to go along with this. The finish has that vinegar taste those who are fond of flanders love.

M: Medium body. This style has such a weird mouthfeel. It is refreshing and punishing at the same time.

D: Amazing drinkability. This is super rare but damn good. The best example of the style I have ever had but the rarity cuts it down a bit. Grab of rodenbach until then.

aerozeppl, Nov 16, 2008
Photo of rye726
4.97/5  rDev +25.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a dark mahogany color with a thin tan head. The nose has a good amount of cherries along with oak, tart fruit and some musky funk. The taste is a very nice balance between the sweet and tart flavors. There is a very subtle manure presence. Clean, crisp body suits the style well. Dry, acidic finish. Another delicious brew from Struise. Near perfect.

rye726, Nov 14, 2008
Photo of JoeMayo
4.5/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Pours a very dark brown, approaching black in the center with no head at all.

S- Very dark and fruity. Notes of plums, blackberries, and raspberries. A sour brett-presence is there as well with notes of yeasty spice. A faint smell of alcohol can be detected as well.

T- Very strong plum presence. Dark fruit, blackberries, black cherries and sour brett are all mingling in the foreground of this beer. The alcohol and low carbonation cause this beer to resemble a plum wine. Dark malt comes through just before the sweet plum aftertaste with a strange funky hint of white pepper.

M- Somewhat thin and very low carbonation.

D- This one goes down smooth, although it should be sipped like a fine wine.

JoeMayo, Nov 12, 2008
Photo of tprokop7
4.83/5  rDev +22.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours dark reddish brown, with no head. Smells sour, alcoholic, and of dark fruits. Lots of yeast in the bottom. Taste is not as sour as the smell. It's sweet, with lots of plum and dark berry, maybe a little cherry. Alcohol is only barely prevalent, but still more than I'd have expected. The more I drink it the more I taste plum, maybe even plum wine. I can't pinpoint what, but this beer really does make me love it with every sip.

tprokop7, Nov 08, 2008
Photo of mikesgroove
4.33/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Finally was able to pick up a couple of these recently. I had been dying to try this brew and immediately chilled one down for consumption. 330ml bottle was served chilled and decanted into a large snifter. Consumed on 10/18/2008.

The pour was rather non eventful for me. Rich, deep, mahogany in color with an impenetrable from light consistency to it. No head at all though, which kind of shocked me to be honest, but still good color for the style.

The aroma was deeply sour, with tons of apple vinegar like aroma to it. Richly funky this one was one crazy ass smelling beer. As it warmed I started to pick up some nice notes of caramel, some nice dark fruit notes and a slight hint of some earthy malts, but all layered underneath and incredible layer of deep funk. The flavor started out the same way, almost lip puckering strong notes of vinegar, followed by some nice tart fruits that just layered and stay upon the tongue. Some nice, dark earthy flavor then upon that. Really rich and complex. The finish was just as tart, drying out the palate and really just letting the rich flavor peak through your tongue and last long with an almost sour cherry like finish. The feel was a little disappointing for me to be honest, as it felt thin, with no carbonation at all. This was really the only downer for me in this though and was still full enough to pull off a good rating. The alcohol was no where to be found, but the flavor was so rich and thick that there was just no way at all you were going to get by this one.

Overall not bad, seriously not the best of the style that I have ever had, but none the less it was still very solid. I would have no issue with trying this one again any day, and I am glad I have a few left.

mikesgroove, Oct 21, 2008
Photo of TurdFurgison
3.9/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

I had a bottle of this at the Kulminator in Antwerp, served in a de Struise goblet. The beer was murky brown-red color with a thin wet head. The smell was very good for a Flanders wild ale, lots of vinegary sourness but complemented by sweet cherry and wood. The taste was sour to the point of lip pucker, but you could imagine quite a bit of fruit flavors, maybe apple cider as well. I liked this a lot, but the drinkability score has to be average at best as the acidity keeps you from drinking too fast. Very recommended.

TurdFurgison, Oct 19, 2008
Photo of MtGoat
4.88/5  rDev +23.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Serving Type: Bottle (330 ml, best before 2011)

Glassware: De Struise Tulip

Appearance: Poured vigorously from 6-8 inches above the glass as previously seen at Kulminator and by the De Struise Brouwers. Dark brown with an airy bubbly head.

Smell: Tart, dried fruit, cherries, floral, malt, slight cocoa/leathery scents, oak.

Taste: Fruits, OAK (and old oak at that), slight cocoa/caramel, amazing complexity! A finish that lingers with a growing tartness. The taste is very similar to the smell. A very well crafted brew...as usual from these guys.

Mouthfeel: A fairly heavy mouthfeel. Full, smooth, satisfying.

Drinkability: Oh so drinkable. I was thinking about cracking bottle after bottle...

MtGoat, Oct 02, 2008
Photo of ggaughan
4.88/5  rDev +23.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This beer is actually not retired and is still being made evidenced by the sight of a huge container of cherries floating on top of the fermenting beer I saw at the Struise farm a few weeks back.

This beer was sampled at the Kulminator in Antwerp, in a Struise tulip. Beer poured a deep brown, iced tea like color with a decent head that receeded quickly. Nose had some definite sour cherry notes and a tart character. Taste was wonderful. Cherry taste was fresh but yet there was a wood character from the aging. Nice sour tone all through the beer made this one hard to put down.

ggaughan, Sep 20, 2008
Photo of GbVDave
4.47/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from an 11.2oz bottle into a DeStruise tulip.

Best before 08/11

A: Pours an impossibly murky, dark, chocolate-y brown. No head to speak of, just a bunch of tan colored bubbles that eventually formed a ring and left no lace behind.

S: Very interesting aromas of cherries. Both sweet and sour. Also noted are hints of spiced plums, raisins, vinegar, tart apple, and wood. The aroma gradually becomes spicier as it warms.

T: Immediately my tongue was awash in flavors of tart, sour cherry with a helping hand from some toasted caramel malt, spicy dark fruit, buttery oak, vinegar, green apple, and tangy citrus.

M: Quite tart but not at all thin or watery. Surprisingly full, creamy, and thick. Robust.

D: I have limited experience with this style and I wasn't expecting much beside something very sour and tart. The complexities of this blew me away. Very refreshing.

GbVDave, Sep 19, 2008
Photo of edmedina
4.1/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Ok first let me say this...Flemish Sours I am not really a fan. However, I can appreciate these complexity a lot of these have thus I do give them a try.
This pours a nice brown with a red hue to it. There is no head what so ever. The smell to me is of sour cherries but with a sweet smell mixed in there. The taste is surprisingly sour and yet creamy. The sourness isn't over powering at all. I've certainly had more tart/sour beers than what this offers. I also get hints of citrus, grapefruit taste in there. It's really crisp and doesn't much of an after taste. In terms of a Flemish sour beer this is definitely a drinkable beer.

edmedina, Sep 18, 2008
Aardmonnik - Earthmonk from De Struise Brouwers
89 out of 100 based on 266 ratings.