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Bacchus - Brouwerij Van Honsebrouck N.V.

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.

198 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 198
Hads: 495
Avg: 3.66
pDev: 20.49%
Wants: 9
Gots: 49 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Van Honsebrouck N.V. visit their website

Style | ABV
Flanders Oud Bruin |  4.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Jason on 09-12-2002

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (35) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 198 | Hads: 495
Photo of goschool
2.39/5  rDev -34.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Served on-tap from Blue Palm in Hollywood, CA.

Appearance: The pour looks promising. It's dark, dark red in color with a finger of foamy tan head.

Smell: The beer has a very tight nose. A faint cherry cough drop aroma is about all I picked up.

Taste: This tastes almost exactly like the drippings coming out of a cherry snow cone. Barely any carbonation, no sourness, just watery cherry syrup. I feel like I should be drinking it out of the small opening of a wet paper cone.

Mouthfeel: It's watery with minimal carbonation.

Drinkability: I haven't purchased a snow cone in maybe 17 years, but I can't imagine they cost more than $2 today and that's certainly cheaper than a $6 beer, plus, with the snow cone, you get to enjoy the icy flavorful part first.

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Photo of eric5bellies
2.53/5  rDev -30.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Drank from my Ciney sniffer

A - Pours a dark clear mahogany colour with a two fingered head that dies quick

S - Oak and vinegar

T - Very watery flavours that is acidic with little fruit but more vinegar

M - Light body with medium carbonation. More carbonation and body required.

O - disappointing, because it lacks flavours and body

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Photo of phisig137
2.62/5  rDev -28.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

A- Pours a fairly dark mahogany brown, slightly murky, with a one finger head. Good retention drops into a dense layer of soft lace on top of the glass.

S- Not quite a sour as others of the style. Smells very woody, with nice malt and herbal overtones. Restrained, but quite nice.

T- Unfortunately, a bit thin on flavor. I get very little malt or yeast flavor at all. just a thin malt vinegar acidity on the finish. Very watery and quite boring.

M- Thin, but lively carbonated.

D- Decent I guess. Nothing to stop it from being quaffable.

Overall, quite a disappointment. There are far better examples of the style for a similar price, notably "Duchesse" and Rodenbach. Extraordinarily boring in most every way.

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Photo of andrewinski1
2.62/5  rDev -28.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a tulip. The color is gray-brown with a hint of red. The color isn't really appealing, but the head is relatively large and has a slight rose tint to it. There isn't much lacing.

The aroma is mostly slightly sweet cherry. The malt isn't detected much past the fruit.

The taste starts out with a bit of sweet cherry but quickly turns into mild tartness with some cola in the finish. There is a bit tinny flavor in the finish as well.

The body is light and the carbonation slightly aggressive; emphasizing the cola qualities included in the taste.

This falls a bit short for me. I don't really care for the cola flavor, and the tartness seems like an afterthought. The most appealing part is the aroma, though it is one dimensional.

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Photo of sweemzander
2.63/5  rDev -28.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12.7oz. bottle poured into a stemmed glass. Bottled on 09-04-14.

(A)- Pours a deep/dark muddy brown color with reddish highlights. Produced a nice frothy tan head that dissipated to bubbles.

(S)- Not much coming through on this. Some subtle dry oaky vinegar funk.

(T)- A mild vinegar/vinous quality. Very subtle oaky acidity. A very shallow/clean finish.

(M)- A clean/smooth carbonation level. Very shallow and an empty mid-palate and finish.

(D)- Too straightforward and mild. Not a whole lot going on here to mention much at all.

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Photo of TheEclecticGent
2.7/5  rDev -26.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I had this beer on tap in its signature glass at the Brasserie Beck in Washington, DC. It poured a medium/dark ruby color with an off white medium head (abt. ¼ inch). The smell is light, tangy, and ever-so-slightly musty. The taste is a bit watery. It has all the ear marks of a Flemish Sour but they all seem too light to my palette. It has a mild lactic bite, but not enough, it aftertaste is also weak. Mouthfeel is medium with light carbonation.
I like it OK but not super impressed. I would have it again but I can think of several that I would prefer over this one.

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Photo of ptykozoon
2.76/5  rDev -24.6%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Ugly dirty brown.

Oak, sour grape, unripe apple.

Raisin, cherry, too sweet.

Syrupy sweetness gets in the way of body, taste and complexity. Flavors aren't particulary outstanding either.

Below average flanders red for me. Should have been less sweet, the sweetness should have been tastier and a tad more sour wouldn't hurt.

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Photo of abuliarose
2.78/5  rDev -24%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a tulip, revealing burnt ruby red body and a sizeable, fast-fading head. Good and bubbly, not so much lacing. Smells like a dessert wine/ale mixture. Lots of vinous notes in the bouquet, slight limey-citrusy floral hop aroma.

Tastes like watered down Welches' sparkling red grape juice gone sour, or like one of those organic cirtus grape fruit juice spritzers. I honestly wasn't sure what to expect, but I guess it could be worse. What kills me is the lime concentrate citrus overtones to the taste. Not sure where that comes from, but perhaps it's a byproduct of the acidic carbonation and the hop. More sour than bitter. Some malts in there somewhere at the end. Carbonation is ok and mouthfeel is almost medium-bodied thickness. Because of the taste/aroma combo more than anything, it's not too drinkable to me.

Worth a try, though. Maybe it's someone else's thing.

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Photo of mrasskicktastic
2.78/5  rDev -24%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 1 | overall: 2

A - A ton of carbonation. The head came and went like this is soda. The beer itself is a reddish brown.

S - A nice belgian nose, that yeasty, sweaty. A touch of nutmeg, cinnamon and cherries.

T - A hint of tart cherries, but very little sweetness overall. Mostly it is dusty, sweaty and sour. The aftertaste is slightly metallic. The flavor is muted and not well rounded.

M - Ugh!!! By far its worst point. It is thin, watery and leaves the roof of my mouth feeling half slimy and half like I sucked on a grape skin or ate a huge bowl of just sauteed spinach. On top of the carbonation is so high that it numbs the tongue - reducing the ability to taste it well. Very unpleasant.

D - Worst mouthfeel (aside from curdy, perhaps) I can imagine.

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Photo of ebin6
2.81/5  rDev -23.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A - Dark ruby red pour; moderately high amount of head with decent retention. A good looking beer

S - Sharp, sweet currant smell with some malty notes if you dig for them

T - Again, fairly sweet; not much sourness to it. Almost a touch of saltiness on the back end which was not welcomed

M - Not very tantalizing in terms of a Flander's Red Ale. Does not measure up in my opinion

D - Although it is smooth, I feel I have to deduct based on style. What makes a Flander's Red so drinkable for me is that more acidic, sour taste which this does not deliver. It doesn't capture my palate's attention for that long

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Photo of MLoxxer
2.83/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

I poured this beer from a 12.7 oz bottle dated May 22 2014 into a 14.75 oz porter/stout glass. The head dissipated very quickly, almost like that of a soda pop. It did however leave a remnant of foam around the periphery. The color is a rich, dark brown, through which light does not pass easily. The beer's aroma is very unpronounced, it does have a very slight nose which pleasantly reminds me of a lambic. Flavorwise this beer is pretty mild with a pleasing sourness but not at all fruity. The mouthfeel is very good, there is a nice tannic presence. Not having tried any other Flemish Oud Bruins I have nothing to judge it against. I do like it, it's just a little too mild and understated for what I expect from a $6.00 per bottle Belgian though.

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Photo of roblowther
2.84/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Dark reddish brown with a thin tan head with tiny Don Ho-like bubbles. Smells like oak, cherries, and leather. Sounds like an ad for 70's aftershave, somehow. The taste is very mild, with prominent sour cherries and some of that leather. Did I mention that its mild? I think my 70's aftershave model has mellowed in his old age. The mouthfeel is very slightly carbonated, not much to write about. Overall its lighter than I expected. Its not nearly as intense as some in the style, maybe this is the beginner version.

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Photo of VincentFrey
2.94/5  rDev -19.7%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pour / Appearance: Muddy brown, with heavy carbonation. Almost overflowed the bottle, but poured better. No real head or lacing to speak of once the initial bubbles fade. Not a pretty beer at all, and much more fitting to the oud bruin style than I was expecting from the red mug being held by the fellow on the bottle. Worth noting is that this is aged from 9/30/11.

Aroma: Vinegar, cherries, and lactic. All there at once and intermingled. It's complex to pick out some of the individual notes, but nothing entirely great. As muddled as the coloration. The time in the bottle doesn't seem to have done it a ton of good anywhere but carb from wild yeasts.

Taste: Cherry and cranberry. Almost sickeningly sweet, actually, until a big lactic punch on the tongue. Still, so softened by fruit, it's not much to speak of. Is this secretly a kriek or any kind of fruited red? Apparently, after a little research, they also make a Bacchus Frambozen but no labeling here indicates I got the wrong bottle. Hrm. Basically, this is not at all what I expect from an oud bruin and worse for it.

Overall: I don't really care for it, but it's not bad. It's probably quite good for someone just getting into oud bruin or sours in general, and it's got less vinegar than a lot of the style (that said, the lack of acidity predicates this).

Bottom Line: I won't be buying again, but you might like it if you enjoy krieks, frambois, any sort of fruited lambic or oud bruin. I'm not entirely sure what I paid, but I'm sure it'd covered the cost of a 750ml of Rodenbach Grand Cru or a 4pk of Festina Peche. Rather have either of those.

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Photo of colforbin73
3/5  rDev -18%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

i thought the rondenbach grand cru was dreadful... so, you might say i am not a big fan of the style. but i will try and give a fair review here.

pours a murky red brown with a thin rim of tan foam. the smell alerts you: Warning! this is not a beer -- sweet and sour, slightly spicey.

the taste is, again, not very beer/ale like. it's carbonated but it's juicy -- kind of like a sour juice -- more like a strawberry soda, than a beer. it's not bad -- but i don't get a lot of malt, and basically 0 hops -- qualities i appreciate in my ale and beer.

i am still drinking this only out of curiosity -- trying to imagine when i might want it -- maybe on a sail boat. i could see drinking it on a super windy day with a red-onion-on-rye sandwhich.

otherwise -- note to self: avoid Flanders Red Ale

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Photo of DaveHS
3.03/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a coppery red with a half inch of khaki head that recedes quickly. Very little tartness in the nose. Mild sweetness,a grainy something or other. Honestly, there is so little going on in the nose it's almost not worth mentioning. Thin, soft mouthfeel. Not nearly enough sharpness or acidity for the style. A delicately tart cherry sweetness with a grainy finish that fades almost instantly. This beer was a tease. It did not satisfy my craving for a Flemish sour.

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Photo of htomsirveaux
3.03/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Tried on tap at Beer Geeks, 14 Jun 2012. Served in a 13 oz tulip.

Small beige head. Somewhat cloudy reddish brown in color. Aroma is sour cherry-vinegary, maybe some woodiness. Some slight cherry sourness to start. This fades in the middle, becoming slightly watery and fizzy. Finish and aftertaste is slightly sour fruity. Light body, moderate alcohol.

Not bad but lacks the depth and complexity I expect from a Flanders red.

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Photo of Thorpe429
3.06/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

From the bottle at BRABO in Alexandria. Served in a Bacchus tumbler.

Pours a moderate reddish-brown with a thin off-white head. Some spotted lacing on the way down. The nose carries some light malt and a bit of sweetness and a very faint presence of cherries and light sourness. The flavor has mostly light malt with a touch of sweetness. Very, very light cherry and acidity. Not much of a Flanders. Medium body and slightly creamy. Decent enough, but not a good example of the style.

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Photo of srandycarter
3.06/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Ruby redish brown, fairly clear, Big head leads to small quick, then to ring. No lace.

S - Tart cherries. Cannot discern much else.

T - Thinner than hoped, tart cherries, artificial cherry flavor as well.

M - Light body, light carbonation, balance a little on the cloy side on finish.

D - Not my favorite, but glad to try.

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Photo of glid02
3.08/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Had this on-tap at Brasserie Beck in Washington DC - according to the menu this beer is exclusive to them in the U.S. but it appears as though that's not the case.

Pours a clear ruby-brown color with a thin off-white head. The head dissipates quickly into a wispy layer of bubbles on top that leaves almost no lacing.

Smells of sweet cherries and berries that contain trace amounts of tartness. Also present is a bit of oak.

Tastes similar to how it smells. There's tartness present in the fruit cocktail up front and right before the dry ending, but the sweetness remains throughout, with an oak-y backbone. I could definitely use some more tartness here.

Mouthfeel is alright. It's a bit on the thin side with active carbonation.

Drinkability is alright. I finished mine, but definitely did not want to order another - the sweetness is not balanced with any other flavors.

Overall this is a drinkable beer but it about ends there.

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Photo of ZeroSignal
3.08/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at The Tap and Mallet

A - Pours a dark ruby red color with a thin, tight head that dissipates quickly. No lacing to speak of.

S - Nose is fruity with a hint of a sharp tartness, nose feels a little light

T&M - Fruity esters with notes of cherry and a twang of sourness. Some sweetness from the malts. No real notes from the yeast.

D - Well, it was decent, but probably nothing worth seeking out. I enjoyed the glass I had and ordered something else.

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Photo of Arthuros
3.1/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Vieille brune. Old dark beer, ciderey like as you'd expect.

If that's what you're into, its delicious. Otherwise, it's surprising, a bit aggressive, bit pleasant after a few sips. Still unusual though.

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Photo of musicforairports
3.11/5  rDev -15%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours brown, with a nice head that goes fast and doesn't leave much lacing, as these beers tend to go.

Smell is muted and of overripe, tart cherries.

Taste is the wateriest I've had of the Flanders styles. The flavor that is here is mildly tart black cherries, but it's lacking much of a lactic sour component and isn't even very sweet, like some of the less sour ones tend to be. Quite watery.

Carbonated on the mouth and goes down easily.

The taste isn't bad, but it's not much. I'd go for lots of other Flanders beers over this, and they don't cost any more.

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Photo of Globetrotter
3.12/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Found in a Moscow grocery store, this brew comes in a tiny 25cl brown tapered bottle with a fairly plain label. Unfiltered and bottle conditioned, the ingredients fit the purity law. Best before April 2004, I opened it on 9/9/03.

Interestingly, the Russian translation of the label declares this a "pale" beer. Not likely. Deep mahogany red that is remarkably clear for an unfiltered beer. The head was very fizzy and so short lived I didn't even get a chance to notice the color. My guess, based on the collar that still sits above the liquid, would be reddish tan. The nose is full of cherry. The mouth is very carbonated and heavy with fruit sweetness. The cherry attacks the tastebuds immediately, hitting with both sweet and sour. Malt lurks somewhere in the background, but never overcomes the fruit. The aftertaste is clearly sour cherry. Not bad, if this is what you like. I don't, particularly.

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Photo of PhillyStyle
3.13/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Brasserie Beck, Washington, DC:

Menu states that it is exclusively brewed for the restaurant:

Appeared a nice dark, but clear ruby red with a slightly off white head that was not retained well, except for a slight sliver.

Aroma was light with a hint of cherries. Nothing all that special.

Taste was light, sour cherries with a tart aftertaste.

Light body, smooth and easy to drink. Overall, an average beer, but I have had better and I expected a lot more from this beer. I would probably give it a shot if I found in a bottle.

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Photo of Knapp85
3.13/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This brew pours out as a bubbly reddish brown color with a fizzy light brown head. The head vanishes very quickly and doesn't leave any lacing. The smell of the beer has a fermented cherry aroma with some oaky aromas too. The taste is slightly tart with some soft cherry flavors in the aftertaste. There is a bitter vinegar flavor in there too. The mouthfeel has a generous amount of carbonation. Overall it's a decent Flanders Red. Not overly thrilled with some of the flavors.

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Bacchus from Brouwerij Van Honsebrouck N.V.
83 out of 100 based on 198 ratings.