1. The BeerAdvocate Store is back! Pre-order your stuff now. Items begin shipping Dec 15. Christmas deadline = Dec 18 @ 5pm EST.
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Kasteel Rouge - Brouwerij Van Honsebrouck N.V.

Not Rated.
Kasteel RougeKasteel Rouge

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

828 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 828
Reviews: 358
rAvg: 3.8
pDev: 16.32%
Wants: 21
Gots: 65 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Van Honsebrouck N.V. visit their website

Style | ABV
Fruit / Vegetable Beer |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Kasteel Rouge is a blend of Kasteel Donker and cherry liquor. The mix of these two excellent products creates an exceptional soft beer with references to the dark mother beer.

(Beer added by: KarlHungus on 09-25-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 828 | Reviews: 358 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of EnojysAnyBeer
4.43/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Reddish purple color on the edges and brown in the middle. Transparent but dark. The head is weak but better than a macro

S- You asked for cherries and you got 'em. Tart cherries and clean booze with a hint of Continental hops. Some funky yeast scents develop as the drink warms.

T- Cherry pie anyone? Loads of sweet cherries on top of a gooey graham cracker crust. The alcohol is hard to notice

M- A bit sticky. Reminds me of juice but slightly thinner and slightly carbonated

D- I go through this stuff like water in the desert and it's great at dessert also. Hard to pair with an entree but great for before and after.

Photo of FreshHawk
3.98/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Deep crimson, cherry oak color. About average sized bubbly head that is a mix of off-white and red. Disappears pretty fast, but leaves a good lacing.

S - Lots of cherry smell, both sweet and tart. Sometimes it smells more like a cherry/cranberry juice and other times more like a cherry candy or Kool-Aid. I keep smelling to try to find more smells, and keep getting a very faint background that seems to have the brown ale smells, but this is quite faint and always gives way to the cherry.

T - Tart cherry kick to start off the sip. This then mellows out into a sweeter cherry taste that accompanies the brown ale malts. Along with that finish is an earthy kind of taste with a bit of wood taste and a whisper of vanilla (less than what usually will accompany a woody tasting beer). Throughout the sip, there is a faint, but steady, sourness as well as a vinous taste. Different levels of sweet, sour and tart at different times. Alcohol is very well hidden.

M - Medium body with slightly above carbonation. Good amount of sweet stickiness to the beer.

D - Depends on how much you like cherries, and how much you like some sweetness in the beer. The sweetness and stickiness hurt drinkability a bit, and I probably wouldn't want another in a night. However, I would want to drink it again if I was craving something cherry and slightly sweet.

Notes: Lots of cherry flavor. I think it would make a good dessert beer (like their Brune). Slightly sweet, but nothing like the overly sweet lambics, and it has enough tart and sour flavors to give it more of a balance and more than one dimension. Seems somewhere between a sweet lambic and a Flemish Red. Good for a sweet and sour/tart cherry kick.

Photo of gloriousglo2
3.53/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The wife, who hates beer, liked this stuff. It goes for around $80/case here in eastern PA. Basically reminds me of the Frank's Cherry Wishniak I used to drink as a kid growing up in Philly. Carbonation is there, not too bad. Deep maroon color. Very hard to detect any alcohol. Unusual in that unlike many beers that I prefer a little warmer, this seemed best right outta the fridge. Best in the summer I would think.

Photo of Beaver13
3.5/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle, bottled on 11/27/07 - cork dated 3/08. Pours a murky brownish red (almost plum) with a very small fizzy head that quickly goes to a thin collar that leaves little lacing.

The aroma is subdued - sweet cherries and musty wood.

The flavor is sweet sugary cherries with some tart sourness in the finish. There's some woody malt balance, but the sweetness is a bit cloying. The mouthfeel is medium to full with spritzy carbonation.

Overall, a nice fruit beer. Reminds me a lot of a poor man's New Glarus Belgian Red. It's overly sweet and cloying and needs more balance. I remember liking this a little more on tap.

Photo of khillje
3.88/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - Beautiful deep red colour. Hardly any retention and just a slight bit of lacing. Light pink colour to the head.

Nose - Smells of black cherries and apple cider. Sweet and possibly slightly sour.

Taste - Quite sweet. Tastes like a cherry champagne with malty after notes. Not very sour and doesn't taste much like a beer.

Mouth Feel - Very sharp carbonation that steals some maltiness. The taste lingers into a slightly cherry-like alkaline finish.

Overall - Very drinkable but unfortunately doesn't taste very beer-like. This isn't a negative, just different than anticipated. Tasted a little 'fake' but still enjoyable if you want to try something different. Would be a great champagne replacement if you want to keep some manly dignity at a celebration.

It's not going to drink itself! Try it!!


Photo of ShadesOfGray
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750ml bottle into my La Choufee tulip. Pours a very solid, dark, and murky ruby red. Very nice size cherry-white colored head. Reminds me already of Lindamens Frambois Lambic...which I'm not a fan of(style wise), but I take that into consideration when I review. Head dissapates pretty quick. Also appears to be a little fizzy at first, but quickly calms.

Aroma is huge of cherry juice, no surprise there. The aroma is also light at first, but as I drink, becomes very sweet and strong. Other than the cherries, it's hard to point at anything other than a fruity nose.

Ok, not bad at all. Still sweet...expected. But very decent. Good infact. Still a fruity beer that I wouldn't neccessarily buy...ever, but that's based on preference of style. But by itself, it doesn't need a Hoegarden to mask the sweetness like some other "Lambics". Again, lots of cherries, carbonation, and only slightly malty. Medium to light mouthfeel, yet sweet. Once again, not bad at all.

Photo of Stinkypuss
3.2/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Kasteel Rouge, poured from a bottle into a pint glass. A stunning red color with fine clarity.

Smells of ripe, picked fruit. Bing cherries.

Tastes like carbonated cherry juice. Fruit snacks. Almost as if someone had drank all the belgian ale in the bottle and then poured cherry soda in. Its tart, sweet and tasty, yet does not resemble a beer.

Mouthfeel has a good level of carbonation and medium bodied.

Drinkability is limited due to the sweetness and the strength. A noble fruit beer.

Photo of ETF5000
3.75/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4.5

Served at my local beer bar/pizza shop, Pizza Port in Carlsbad,CA. Served in a Belgian Chalice.

A- Pours a dark ruby, lets in very little light even when held against the Californian sun. There is about 1.5 fingers of head that is a light pink color, think pink cotton candy. Overall, a nice looking beer, but the head color appears to be a bit artificial looking.

S- Super sweet cherries attack the nose immediately. With some more investigation, I got some toasted as well as some carmelized malts. Overall, a rather tight nose, unfortunately. The sweet cherry smell is so forward that it makes it difficult to pinpoint other characters.

T- For the alcohol content, this guy could easily be a session beer. Nice cherry flavor, with a tinge of malty breadiness in the back to add more flavor profile to the beer. Not as "fake" tasting as Lindeman's, so I would certainly give this brew to someone who traditionally is not a beer person.

M- Very prickly carbonation throughout. The stinging carbonation took a bit away from the beer.

D- I could drink this guy all day. This is an easy drinker, not especially complex, but it sure does taste good.

Photo of jampics2
3.9/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Bottle drank at Adam's party.

I've had this a bunch. Good beer, 100% perfect gateway to sour or Belgian beers.

Ruby red with a small head. Really red color, almost looks artificial.

Cherry, yeast, and sugar smells. Kinda reminds me of cough drops.

Tastes like cherry sweethearts candy. Sugary residual flavor makes this unique.

Too carbonated, average m/f.

Overall a pleasant fruit beer. I'll drink it whenever it's around but I don't seek it out. Some friends and ladies I know love this though, and rightly so.

Photo of gibby
4.1/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at TJs in Paoli 12/26/09

Served in a casteel glass goblet style glass. Murky dark red/brown serving color with very little head. Big cherry smell right up front. Taste is mainly cherry, almost had a robitussin taste at times but I still found it very good. Mouthfeel is very nice with good overall carbonation. Drinkability was very high in my opinion. I had no idea it was an 8% abv until I just saw it on here. Feels like half that...maybe thats why I was so drunk having 2 of these after 2 dorado's. Nice offering and I am glad I ordered it.

Photo of brownbeer
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled in 2007

Pours deep red with a fizzy reddish-brown head. The overall color is a bit muddy though.

Aroma blasts forth with cherry. A little medicinal and laffy taffy-ish but good overall.

Flavor is like a cherry candy or bubblegum. Some alcohol comes through and there may be an off flavor due to the age, i'm not sure. Could be compared to cough syrup if one inclined but the mouthfeel isn't really syrupy.

Pretty tasty, probably better fresh.

Photo of darklordlager
3.5/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear dark ruby with a non-existent head.

Smell is of sweet/tart cherries battling with candi sugar, and light roasted malt. A vinegar mustiness makes itself known as well.

Taste is of a light soured brown ale, with sweet cherries quickly turning to a tart taste. The cherries are very much subdued, for which an old bottle may be to blame (not exactly sure).

Mouthfeel is thin, with ample carbonation.

Really, not what I was expecting.

Photo of SkeeterHawk
3.75/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I must preface this review with the note that the seasons are changing right now and Houston has gone from hot to cold to warm within a week or so and I have been quite congested because of it. My nose isn't as sharp as I would like it to be, but I should be able to give this beer justice in my review regardless.

Appearance: Pours a mostly clear dark garnet color with a slight brownish hue to it. The beer had a small head of pinkish bubbles that was about 1/4" right after the pour and was rather fizzy. It ended up disappearing almost completely within about 20 seconds.

Aroma: My first impression was of the obvious cherry both as a fresh cherry aromatic along with a dark cherry pancake syrup like aroma. The types of cherries are defined and separate inside the aroma. I don't get any alcohol in the nose of the cold beer and there is some toasty malts starting to come out as the beer settles a bit.

Taste: The flavor is definitely cherry with plenty of carbonation, so the beer comes across the palate as quite dry. The other malts are much more noticeable in the flavor than the aroma. I get lots of toasty malts along with a bit of a candy-like impression that I believe is an interplay of the crystal malts and the syrupy sweetness from the cherries. As I am about half-way through the glass, the alcohol is becoming a little more noticeable and unfortunately it is starting to come across to me a bit like a cherry medicine with the alcohol being present.

Opinion: Well, overall this is a pretty good beer. Cherry beers aren't really my favorite type of beer, but they are normally one of the better fruit beers. This one is more toward the "foo-foo" side of the spectrum and would probably be a decent one to convert some chick that "doesn't like beer", but the Lindemans hold true as "beer candy". This one is a bit more like actual beer, but still a very bold fruit beer nonetheless. I wouldn't mind drinking this beer again, but I would almost certainly pick something else if a place was going to have a beer of this caliper on tap...they would almost certainly have something that I would want more. Either way, I would recommend that you give it a shot...preferably with a couple friends.

Photo of aquatonex
2.5/5  rDev -34.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Pours dark ruby with a good bubbly head that quickly goes away leaving a thin film of bubbles. Good carbonation. Nose smells like yummy cherries, the kind of nose you get from a cherry infused cider. Taste is at first a nice fermented cherry but quickly turns into an almost diet soda sweetness. As it breathes the diet soda-ness but still maintains a strong sugary taste. Doesn't really have any beer-like qualities.

Photo of hoppough
3.08/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A- Poured into a Kasteel chalice, it has a very unique dark red/burgundy like coloring. No real head retention, just a thin lace around the edges.

S- smells of sweet, sour, and artificial cherries. The combination of the sweet and sour cherries gives it a smell similar to a kriek lambic but not quite as sour.

T- Starts off with sweet cherries with a slightly tart sour cherry background and ends with a dry cherry wine like finish.

M- mouthfeel is a little bellow average. It has a prickly, bubbly, over carbonated feel to it, but nothing to overwhelming.

D- It's not a bad beer. This is the first Belgian fruit beer that wasn't a lambic that i've tried. If you're new to this kind of beer and looking to explore then give it a shot, but there are probably better Belgian fruit beers out there.

Photo of boatshoes
3.48/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Had this at the BBF and remembered being impressed with it at the time of drinking. However, thought I better give it another shot out of the bottle given my slight inebriation during the first experience. Picked up a bottle at the New Beer Distributors in NYC.

Appearance- Pours a very dark cherry red with about a finger of fizzy pink head sitting on top. You can see the cherries in this one from the shade of the color if that makes any sense. Nice looking and would have scored even higher, except that the fizziness of the head almost makes it look like soda-pop.

Smell- Smells intensely of cherries. Not particularly an artificial smell like you might come across in St. Louis or Lindemans but not really the completely authentic cherry smell you get out of a New Glarus Wis. Belgian Red either. So, comes across pretty good on the whole. Apart from the cherries, there is also a very noticeable sweet malt background peeking through.

Taste- Tastes very heavy of a slightly artificial cherry with even more of the sweet malt backbone coming through as well. Almost tastes like a chocolate covered cherry as a result. Interesting, more so than many beers of this variety, but very very sweet after even half a glass.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability- Didn't like the mouthfeel too much on this one. Slick but at the same time prickly with carbonation. Made it kinda bite into the tongue. Drinkability not too great either given the mouthfeel and the aforementioned sweetness.

Overall, didn't like this one that much the second time though. Scores okay marks for being better than a Lindemans with a more interesting and complex flavor but very much too sweet in the end.

Photo of taigor
3.15/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A - Pours deep red color with big pink head and some lacing.

S - Cherry smell with some other fruits.

T - Starts off with sweet cherries and ends up a little tart.

M - Medium body with some carbonation.

D - Personally, I wouldnt drink it again because this is too fruity for guys. Definitely a ladies drink.

Photo of ccrida
4.5/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this on draught at a gueuze bar in Paris, by the Luxembourg gardens IIRC. I had it once at the Sharp Edge in Pittsburgh a few years ago and found it to be to rich, but then again, I had been walking around all day then...served in a large Duvel tulip, Rouge is burgendy with a magenta head leaving nice lace.

Smell is big cherry, wow is that pure.

Taste is similar, really nice fruit taste, some tartness, only the slightest hint of grain, really very clean.

Mouthfeel is medium light and quite dry, this is what makes this beer quaffable, and differentiates it from more commonly syrupy fruit beers.

Drinkability was pretty high, which surprised me. It could have been the occasion, as I was tired and thirsty from walking around all day on a nice fall day, no sun, t-shirt and jeans, light breeze, but this went down in a hurry, and if my wife afforded me the time, I would have enjoyed another no problem. Very smooth, dangerous ABV, perhaps the best pure fruit beer out there.

Photo of Kromes
3.98/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: A dark red with a fluffy pink colored head that dies down really quickly.

S: Smells like tart cherries with a little bit of alcohol. A nice aroma, but not very complex.

T: A good cherry flavor at first with some bitter/tart notes. The alcohol shows in the finish and it is a pretty dry finish. Again not too complex, but a nice flavor.

M: Mouthfeel is nice and dry....a quality that makes you go back for more.

D: A good after dinner drink, not as complex as say a cherry lambic, but the cleanness of the flavor is great and the alcohol level in this beer gives it a nice kick.

Photo of JimmyK77
4.08/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Even from the belgians, probably the least predictable brewers in the world, one expects an 8% alcohol dark belgian ale would have certain characteristics. Kasteel Rouge - dark belgian ale aged over cherries - is cherries staging a coup d'etat. Alcohol, malt, dark fruit, hops - all are annihilated by a dark cherry army. Its absurd! Open the bottle and cherries tingle your nose, pour it and they leap across the room. It is dark cherry brown in the glass, with more aromas of cherry, cherry, and hints of cherry underneath. Who could enjoy it? Even the freakin' head is colored a pale cherry. At your lips, the cherry army marches on your tastebuds. Its...

Gorgeous!! Without being heavy or cloying - fresh, dark cherries and gentle carbonation dance around my mouth in a feat that few other than the Belgians can accomplish and with a flavor that is both singular and complex. I love beer that redefines beer and this beer tosses your beliefs into a vat of cherries.

Photo of BeerForMuscle
3.98/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Nice ruby red body with a small pink head.

S - Huge cherry nose. Sweet and fruity.

T - Big cherry taste, more sweet than tart. This beer is pretty sweet. The taste was a mix of fresh and artificial cherry (cough syrup). High abv but you won't detect much of the alcohol in the taste. Dark sugar sweetness and tartness linger in the background.

M - Light, mildy carbonated and smooth.

D - To me this is easy to drink because it's not too heavy, and not too sweet or syrupy.

Notes - This is a fruit beer that is full of fruit smell and flavor. If you are looking for a real fruit beer experience and not just a beer with a subtle aroma of fruit then this one is a good choice.

Photo of dstc
2.55/5  rDev -32.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Pours a dark ruby red color. Has a light purple head. Average retention and thin lacing.

Strong, super sweet cherry aroma.

Well, tastes a bit like medicine with a metallic like aftertaste. Has an artificial cherry Popsicle flavor. Hides the alcohol well.

Medium to full bodied in the mouth with low carbonation.

Love Kasteel but do not like this particular one. Must admit this is not my style of beer but I just think it is too fake cherry tasting.

Photo of mhatters
4.05/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Served on-tap at Eulogy in an heavy chalice

Pours a deep maroon with a minimal head

The nose is cherry crazy, deep, oaky, sugary, with a hint of yeast.

Sweet and tart - not acidic, the cherry is well balanced with the oak to make a delightful mix. Nothing is too much.

Finished on the sweet side, bit again, not overly sweet

Insanely drinkable, no hint of alcohol, this is such an easy beer to drink

Photo of nickd717
3.53/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the Cheeky Monk in Denver.

A - Awesome deep red color with a small pink head.

S - Aroma is loads of sweet cherries and sugar, good but almost a bit medicinal.

T - Flavor is, once again, lots of sweet cherries and sugar, with just a tiny bit of alcohol. Also a bit medicinal. It's good, but reminds me a bit too much of Cherry Nyquil.

M - Body is medium with low carbonation. Just a tiny bit syrupy.

D - Average-plus. Would be better if not for the cough syrup aspect.

Photo of Spiderhouse
3.08/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A--Dark eggplant color. No head, minimal bubbles.

S--Candied cherries...maybe lifesavers? A few few sour notes. Not much else here.

T--A bit like cough drops or throat lozenges. Synthetic cherry flavor that is not altogether unpleasant, but not desirable either.

M--Good. Nice weight, well carbonated.

D--Enh. I don't care for the flavor really, and even if I did, Lindeman's is a much better alternative. High ABV for this style.

Procured @ Red Carpet Wine & Liquor

Kasteel Rouge from Brouwerij Van Honsebrouck N.V.
86 out of 100 based on 828 ratings.