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Kasteel Rouge - Brouwerij Van Honsebrouck N.V.

Not Rated.
Kasteel RougeKasteel Rouge

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

857 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 857
Reviews: 366
rAvg: 3.8
pDev: 16.32%
Wants: 23
Gots: 84 | 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:
Beer added by: KarlHungus on 09-25-2007

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.
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Ratings: 857 | Reviews: 366 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of drizzam
4.32/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a small funky shaped 11.2 oz. bottle with cryptic bottled on code of 070716.

Appearance - Clear ruby red with half finger light pink head that doesn't really stick around all that long.

Smell - Smells like ripe cherries straight out of the produce section of the supermarket. Not a lot else going on in the nose of this one.

Taste - Tastes like moms cherry pie, but with a bit of alcohol bite. This is reminiscent of Lindemanns Kriek, but not quite as tart.

Mouthfeel & drinkability - Medium bodied mouthfeel...almost creamy on the palate. Finishes fairly crisp with a strong cherry aftertaste. I can taste a small bit of alcohol but not what I expected with the 8% ABV. Overall, this is a very solid brew...one I will be recommending to all of my friends that enjoy this brewing style.

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

Purchased this one at Vintage Estates in Boardman. No particular reason, just one I had never tried.

Pours a very dark red, almost grape juice like. Red crown of head, decent lace saves this from just being average.

Smells of cherries, cherries, cherry juice, and can't really smell anything else. More of a sweet than sour scent.

Taste is similar with a bit of a dry bite. This isn't nearly as much of a sugar bomb as a Lindeman's kriek, but it is on the low end of that ball park. Good, a little bready aftertaste.

Mouth is a little syrupy which is kind of nice as I am used to these type of beers being very thin and bubbly.

Good stuff, especially considering a Lindemans is approximately the same price for a small bottle as this was for a 750ml.

Photo of armock
4.32/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to biggreen for sharing his bottle with me.

A - Poured a dark ruby color with a pinkish head that leaves lacing behind

S - A whole lot of dark cherries

T - The taste is sweet and sour like drinking a cherry pie a taste that I for one liked

M - This beer has a thinner body but not in a bad way with high carbonation to it

D - To me this was one delicious beer one that I could drink for dessert or drink with a slice of cheesecake one of the best fruit beers that I've had worth trying

Photo of lehkost
3.16/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

This marriage of a Belgian Strong Brown Ale and black cherries is counterintuitive at first, but when you try this beer, you realize why it's a good idea, and also why you hope another brewery gives it a go.

I feel that Brouwerij Van Honsebrouck is a hit-or-miss brewery. Some of their beers are amazingly implemented (Brigand, for example) and some, I just don't care for (I will not name these). In between are their abbey-style brown (donker) and tripel. I feel that both of these abbey-styles are too sweet to be as drinkable as their more established counterparts (especially the trappists), and adding cherries into the mix simply makes things sweeter, which is a turn-off for me.

Some people love this beer...it is rich and sweet and fruity and malty and run-on after run-on. I see the merit in their arguments, and I don't, by any means, intend to say that this is not a good beer. This is a good beer, but it could just be a lot better. I think that cutting the sweetness on this might make this beer an A+ for me.

On the nose, pronounced black cherries. The head is red-pink, and the color of the beer, when held to light, is a very deep and beautiful red. The flavor is complex, but not that complex. The cherries are so powerful that it is hard to get a handle on what else is going on with the beer. A nice goblet of this, with its ABV and sugar content serves as a substitute for dessert, not a companion.

Definitely not an opener, but can be a memorable closing beer for those with the taste for it.

Photo of Suds
4.12/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This brew pours a mostly brown color, with ruby red highlights (especially when held to the light). The head is an interesting pinkish color, without great staying-power. The smell is very good. Lots of cherry flavor in the aroma (dominating, actually), with also a little malt and alcohol underneath. Ripe, black cherry aromas are central, though. The taste is reminiscent of black cherry soda, although not artificial. It's mildly sweet, with a nice tang and slightly sour note. Not at all like a fruit lambic, yet just a bit sour. The sourness does a great job providing some balance to the beer, which could easily become too fruity without it. Malt is present in the flavor as well. No hop character at all. Although it was in the aroma, there is basically no alcohol in the flavor. Fairly full in body, especially for a fruit beer. Great, lingering finish with lots of cherry.

Photo of champ103
1.97/5  rDev -48.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A: Pours a dark reddish/brown color. At first a two finger pink head forms and gently recedes. Light lace.
S: Very sweet, cherry cough syrup. Not good.
T: Similar to the nose. Cherry cough syrup. Cloyingly sweet. Tastes very artificial.
M/D: Way over carbonated for my tastes. High carbonation and alcohol burn does not make a good beer to drink.

What is this? Nothing I will ever drink again. On occasion I like a good fruit beer, but this tastes like artificial cherries. I will probably end up poring the rest out.

Photo of tigg924
4.1/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: clear, burgundy, no head

Smell: cherries, sweet and sour, some currents

Taste: very cherry

Mouthfeel: a sour start, then it gets sweeter with a sour lingering finish. very crisp, medium body

Drinkability: For a fruit beer, this is awesome. While it tastes cherry, it still feels like beer. I will certainly seek this one out again.

Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.29/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black cherry with maraschino cherry highlights and a cherry blossom colored crown. Guess what fruit the brewers used in Rouge? The foam is fizzy and crackly to start, then settles down and looks decent in the end. It isn't the least bit sticky, though, and doesn't deposit more than a few sorry looking scraps of lace.

The nose is fruit lambic-like and is bursting with sweet and sour cherries. The sweetness must be due to malt sugars (and possibly candi sugar) because only sour cherries were used. Even though the aroma doesn't give any hints, the base beer is a brown ale.

Rouge tastes like one of those quality fruit lambics that favors sweet over tart and funky. Not that it isn't tart and funky, but sweet holds the upper hand throughout. This big fruity Belgian is surprisingly deep and is dangerously drinkable as well.

On the palate, it's easy to appreciate the brown maltiness of the brown ale. Those flavors stay in the shadows, however, allowing the bold and bright cherry fruit (and juice) to shine like a thousand suns. What they do is add an extra few layers of complexity that pale malt wouldn't have been able to accomplish. The taste score can be explained by the fact that I'm a sucker for well-brewed, sweet beer.

The body/mouthfeel is at least medium, with a slick stickiness due to all the sugars. It's also perfectly bubbled, which helps. There's a sparkly quality that adds energy without being obnoxious about it.

Brouwerij Van Honsebrouck hasn't failed me yet. Kasteel Rouge is a fantastic choice if you like sweet fruit beer that is also deep, rich and complex. This brew is a more than pleasant surprise and is a repeat purchase for sure.

Photo of radshoesbro
4.2/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a dark red with some head that disipates to nothing. no lace.

smells like cherries. real cherries, not sweatener.

tastes like a cherry soda that will get you drunk! this is desert, and great desert at that.

this is very sweet, and I could drink this all day...except there are better beers for me to waste my time with.

Photo of NJpadreFan
3.12/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Kasteel Rouge

A- Deep purply red with a small non lacing head.
S- Sweet sugary grapes with a sour raspberry cherry nose.
T- Huge sweet plum and berry (raspberry) with an even more, sour cherry and red wine grape body and finish.
M- Very sweet and fruity. Much like a red wine. Big dry tart grapes. Slight tart vinegary feel as well.

Overall- Too fruity, too much like red wine.

Photo of Tone
3.3/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy, dark maroon color. 1/4 inch head of a purple color. Decent retention and decent lacing. Smells strongly of cherries and the slightest sweet malt aroma. Fits the style of a Fruit/Vegetable Beer. Mouth feel is smooth and crisp. There's an average carbonation level and a strong tartness. Tastes of cherry first, then a strong cider flavor, and a very tart finish. My girlfriend swears by this brew, but it's nothing special by my standards. I'm not a huge fruit beer fan, but this was drinkable.

Photo of Nick3
4.17/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle on date reads April 14, 2008. Beer poured into a Piraat Tulip glass. Dark burgundy in color, the head on this beer resembles more of a cola head then a beer head . . .it dies quickly too. A bit of lace struggles to cling to the glass. Nose is bursting with cherries and then the malt comes through. Hints of toffee and chocolate present themselves along with the alcohol. Smells delicious! Taste lives up to the boquet . . cherry malt heaven. A good amount of carbonation coupled with a medium body keeps the libation tasting like a beer despite the heavy cherry flavors. Hops are present and are just strong enough to ward off an overly sweet finish. Well balanced.

Overall, I thought this was a great "fruit/vegetable" beer and it was quite refreshing. Looking forward to my next one!

Photo of Dripdry
3.05/5  rDev -19.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

After hearing that this is a friend's favorite beer I couldn't wait give it a try.

A- Nice. A ruby/brown color with a nice head of foam
S- Not bad. Cherries and tartness. I'm looking forward to this.
T- Mmmm-ugh! Cherries and tartness balanced nicely on the front, but suddenly a HUGE metallic flavor enters the picture and makes this beer nearly undrinkable.
Thinking that I might just be going crazy I asked my girlfriend to give it a try. What does she think? The exact same. It starts off nice but then this weird metallic flavor kicks in and it ruins the beer.
We choke down the rest after spending $12 on a bottle of this.

M- Nice. Not too thick for a sweeter beer (IMO)
D- The drinkability really saves this brew. It made it much easier to get down despite the taste.

Photo of whynot44
4.02/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear dark ruby color with a modest pink head that does manage a bit of lacing as it disappears.

The aroma is very cherry, hints of pale malt very subdued.

The taste is also very much cherry, starting tart, then going sweet in the middle with a tart dry finish that also has a bit of alcohol warmth. Reminds me more of some home made cherry wine some friend used to make than anything like beer. There is just a bit of pale malt but it is hard to spot through the cherry.

Medium bodied, somewhat syruppy, more of a dessert or after dinner brew. You could even pour this over ice cream or make a sorbet.

Photo of phantomwyse
3.19/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A: Dark ruby body, dark brown highlights, with a fizzy pink head that doesn't amount to much.

S: Over sweet cherry aroma, almost smells artificial. Once you get past the cherry smell, there's a musty sourness, dry red wine-like.

T: Starts off exceedingly tart, cherry lozenges, cherry NyQuil, cherry cola, any cherry variant you can think of is in this one. After the wash of cherries, it goes half sour with some earthy notes.

M: Soda from a machine that has the syrup set too high.

D: The best cough syrup I've had, but nothing all that inspiring.

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

Poured from an 11.2 oz. bottle (bottled 10/16/07) into a Duvel glass.

Appears a clear dark ruby red with a soapy looking one inch slightly pink head. It sinks to a skim and doesn't leave much in the way of lacing.

Aroma is basically straight cherry though it's a mixture of sweet and sour. Right when I stick my nose up to it it seems sour but it gets sweeter during a long inhale. Not much else is noticeable.

Taste is again straight up cherries, tart up front and right at the beginning of the swallow but it ends up tasting pretty sweet right at the end of the swallow but the tart ends up coming back in the finish and linger.

Mouthfeel is pretty light bodied, with a crisp carbonation that makes it pretty refreshing combined with the tartness.

I thought this one was pretty damn good. Of course there are better versions out there but this is a solid choice since it's cheaper than many of the others.

Photo of Cavalier92
3.92/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

It's an amazing brew. Lots of sweet cherry scent on the nose. Pink, frothy head that clings to the glass.

The it flees a little thick and edgy in your mouth and leaves you wanting a bit of water to cleanse your palate.

It's all cherry. Don't let the description fool you. There isn't much malt or hops or yeast to e found in this one. Still it's a cool switch from the everyday!

Photo of talkinghatrack
2.18/5  rDev -42.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

a - dark, opaque raspberry red with a pink head

s - like inhaling a cherry fruit rollup.

t - starts dry and a little bitter for a second before the cherries show up big time on the middle. Huge sour on the finish. It's nice that the dryness fights off an expected cloying sweetness but it's still too much for even half a glass. If they are selling it in a bomber I need to be able to drink a least a glass of the stuff.

m - medium body, medium to heavy carbonation

d - something to be shared. I have trouble finishing one glass and had to set the rest of the bomber aside. Good alcohol masking via the overwhelming sour.

I found the description a little disingenuous. Instead of Belgian Ale with cherry juice added I think it comes across as sour cherry juice with a splash of Belgian Ale. I've had several other Belgian+Cherry combos and none were this fruity. More like a lambic, really. I almost poured it out but I'm saving it to possibly use as a sauce, maybe for pork chops.

Photo of Tolnik
4.72/5  rDev +24.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured this deep, rich cherry colored beer into a pint glass. It gave off a pinkish foam as it first was poured and kept a lingerance of lacing. The smell of the beer was that of cherries and malts. The taste followed with the aroma yet with notes of spices. Overall an excellent beer that just has a nice palate of flavors to enjoy while sitting down and sipping a beer.

Photo of tr4nc3d
1.82/5  rDev -52.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

I have tried Kasteel-Donker and that was good so I decided to pick this one up when I saw it was brewed with cherries. Unfortunately it was a bad idea.

This poured a light cherry color with really small reddish-white head that disapeared quickly.

You could smell the cherries as you were pouring it. The cherries and cherrie juice is all I could smell.

The tase was like drinking cherry pop, cough drops, with some vicks cough medicine. This turned me off as it was way to much cherry flavored.

Really tartness and cherry flavor.

This beer was not for me, way to much cherry flavor and it needed to be toned down.

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.61/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a clear, deep, dark ruby-hued body capped by an inch of pink foam.

Smell: Candy-like nose of sweet-smelling concentrated cherry juice. Jolly Ranchers cooked down into a pot of Kool-Aid where somewhere didn't add nearly enough water.

Taste: Super sweet blend of melted lollipops, Luden's Wild Cherry cough drops, and grenadine. Very light cherry tartness. Some meager perceived hints at actual malts, but it's pretty much straight-up cherries through and through.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body. Medium-low carbonation.

Drinkability: A bit simple with it's delivery of just cherries and jolting sweetness. Me, I'd sooner reach for something a bit more graceful, like New Glarus Belgian Red. Still though, I found it reasonably enjoyable, but I could see many people considering this to be outright cloying.

Photo of htomsirveaux
4.2/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 mL bottle, gift from Phil.

Tried Jul 2008.

Small sparkly pink head. Well carbonated. Color is reminiscent of blood oranges. Strong aroma of sweet cherries and cinnamon. Starts sweet and tart, cherry is front and center. Medium body. Cherry flavor doninates throughout, ultimately more on the sweet than tart side. Finish is dry, alcohol is present but not too strong. Good sweet contrast to the tartness of the NG Belgian Red.

Photo of BeerZack
2.97/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1.5

Corked 750ml, dated 2007.

Deep ruby color, almost appearing brown, with a pink one finger head of foam that fades to a bubbly covering.

Smells fantastic. Sweet and juicy tart cherries. Bit of black cherry soda. Hint of alcohol. Nice. Smells a lot like NG Wisconsin Belgian Red.

Tastes a lot like I would have imagined from the nose. Tastes more like the black cherry soda than the tart juicy cherries. The alcohol is a lot more prevalent in the taste and really detracts from the overall impression. Some good acidity here, but still just too sweet and syrupy. This beer is so close to being really tasty, but just misses the mark.

Soft feel, but still bubbly and live. Highly carbonated, but not too stingy and helps to cut some of the sweetness.

Drinkable, but not overly pleasant.

Photo of glid02
3.03/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Had this on-tap at the Brick Store.

Pours a cloudy ruby color with a one-finger pink head. The head sticks around for a while then recedes into a thin pancake on top with decent lacing.

Smells like a Sweetart - tons of sweet and sour cherry overpower everything else.

Tastes similar to how it smells. The sweetness is too much for me - it reminds me of something Smirnoff or Mike's would put out to attract women.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got a good thickness and active carbonation and goes down smoothly.

Drinkability is not good - at least for me. It's just too sweet and stretches the definition of beer for me.

Overall I think people might enjoy this if they're a big fan of fruit beers, but again, I can't handle it. Caveat Emptor.

Photo of NCSUdo
3.92/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle

A: Red hued brown under a slight red, small head. Decent retention, not much lace.

S: A bit like a cherry pop tart. Cherry and some bready malt, maybe even a slight funky hint (hay maybe?).

T: A bit of the same, cherry dominates. Mostly sweet with a little tartness. Malt is there as well. Decent taste.

M/D: Full bodied, carbonation is a little too prickly. Drinkability is decent but cherry flavor could be a little over bearing after a while. Pretty good representation of a fruit beer.

Kasteel Rouge from Brouwerij Van Honsebrouck N.V.
86 out of 100 based on 857 ratings.