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Bacchus - Brouwerij Van Honsebrouck N.V.

Not Rated.
BacchusBacchus

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
83
good

415 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 415
Reviews: 183
rAvg: 3.69
pDev: 13.01%
Wants: 9
Gots: 23 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Van Honsebrouck N.V. visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Flanders Oud Bruin |  4.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Jason on 09-12-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 415 | Reviews: 183 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of colforbin73
3/5  rDev -18.7%
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

colforbin73, May 24, 2011
Photo of Pencible
3.73/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: This poured a clear dark crimson with quickly dissipating tan head.
S: It smelled like sweet prunes and sour cherries, with tobacco and caramel and candi sugar and oak. Kind of like a barrel aged cherry vanilla coke?
T: It tasted like juicy sour cherries and tart oak and sweet vanilla, with a little candi sugar and prunes. It had a very clean sweet and tart aftertaste.
M: It was thin and very bubbly, like champagne. Decent body for this style.
D: This was not nearly as sour or tart as expected, with nice sweet balance. Decent body and low alcohol made it easy to drink. I would consider this a gateway beer into the sour ales, but it's a bit bland if you're already used to lambics or more tart beers.

Pencible, May 19, 2011
Photo of ptykozoon
2.73/5  rDev -26%
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.

ptykozoon, May 15, 2011
Photo of Kshock
3.25/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

There was a lot of things i liked about this particular beer, but none of them took over and made the beer amazing. I feel its kind of stuck in the middle area between not bad, but not great, just ok. Nice sour notes on the palate, but not much nose to it. Its a well rounded beer, but nothing that makes me seek this out again, just another beer on the craft beer journey.

Kshock, May 08, 2011
Photo of musicforairports
3.1/5  rDev -16%
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.

musicforairports, Apr 29, 2011
Photo of jayhawk73
3.48/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours a dark red color w/ a one finger brown head, which quickly goes away. Lacing is average at best, probably a little below that. Good looking beer overall.

S- Smell is that of woody-ness, cherry, and a slight tartness. A little on the weak side from some others I've tried in this category. Seems a little one dimensional to me.

T- Very smooth for this category of beer, and not in a good way. It seems as all the flavors have been muted or watered down from what they should be. The taste also disappears faster than any beer I ever remember trying. It's literally gone in about 5 seconds. This might be a good introduction into this style of beer, but it misses the mark w/ me.

M- Lacking the tartness and feel of the best in this category. That's about it...

O- This is a good beer, it just seems as though it has been watered down in a lot of ways. Definitely check it out if you're new to the style, but there are better out there.

jayhawk73, Apr 07, 2011
Photo of SkeeterHawk
3.95/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I picked this beer up a couple days ago at Hop City in Atlanta. The guy who worked there said that they call this a "starter" Flanders, so I don't know how much I expect from this one. It is a "starter" Flanders for me too, but that is because this is the first one I am having before a Rodenbach. Here we go:

Appearance: Pours a pretty clear deep garnet color with a 1/2" of tan foam on top that was thick and creamy with some lace already being deposited on the glass just from the pour and a little swirling. After a couple minutes, the head was still a solid 1/2", and when you hold the beer to the light, you can see that there are numerous bubbles rising. There is some pretty solid lacing left after drinking.

Aroma: I am already getting some of the dark caramel and sweet/sour cherries that you expect with this style. As you get deeper into it, there is some subtle vinegar coming out. As the beer warms up some, the fruitiness is getting a bit stronger, but that is about the only other thing notable about the aroma.

Taste: The flavor is quite mild and light from the notes that you could pick up in the aroma. The body is medium to light with high carbonation, so it comes across the palate very drinkable...more so than most examples of this style, which I am not sure is a good thing. The malt is in charge of this beer from the beginning of the sip to what is to linger, but there are a whole bunch of other notes mixed in there to add subtle complexity. The finish is dry because of the carbonation and attenuation, but there isn't any harshness left on the back of the throat from roast, hops, or anything else.

Opinion: This really is a pretty good beer. I prefer my Flanders to be MUCH more bold, like Rodanbach, but this is still a good representation of the style and as they Hop City guy stated, it would be good for someone new to Flanders. It is actually easier to try than the Duchesse. All this said, I will stick to other examples, but I am glad that I tried this one and would definitely recommend it if you 9or your girlfriend) wanted to try something different and you aren't familiar with the Flanders styles. This would be a very good introduction to the style.

SkeeterHawk, Mar 21, 2011
Photo of gatornation
3.5/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12.7 oz bottle code 090414

A-pours a clear dark garnet color with a small head and very little lacing reveals a film of fresh collar

S- smell fruits like cherries mixed with vinegar and musty oak
with barnyard wet hay some currant fruit

T- is a sour cherry with vinegar and wood some tart fruits and grape

M- is medium with low carbonation its tart lots of dark fruit ,with a vinegar taste

D- its a sour flanders but pretty easy to drink a 12.7 oz was enough for me..i will drink this one again but wont be seeking it out

gatornation, Mar 06, 2011
Photo of Naugros
3.85/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Brown with a ruby tinge, the beer is clear enough to see the carbonation that sustains the foamy ring around the top, but you can't see through it. The smell is sour, of course, and sweet with stone fruit and grape The fruits and sourness carry over into the taste, but the sweetness is knocked back a bit and it's surprisingly drier than the nose led me to believe. There is a tingle from the carbonation and the sour notes play on the tongue adding to the tingling sensation. Light to medium-bodied this is a beer for you sour beer lovers out there, but if you're looking for major pucker this one won't supply it. It's a little fruity, not overly sweet and moderately sour.

Naugros, Mar 01, 2011
Photo of KarlHungus
4.55/5  rDev +23.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This beer pours a dark amber almost brown color. The head is one inch in height, and recedes slowly into a firm cap of lacing. The aroma is of sour cherries, raspberries, and a hint of caramel. The is full of sour cherries, with a nice tartness. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with lively carbonation. Overall, this is a very good beer. I think this would pair beautifully with brunch. I will certainly drink it again.

KarlHungus, Mar 01, 2011
Photo of ArrogantB
3.38/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

375ml bottle thanks to brewerdan, appreciate it! Dark red-brown like you would expect with minimal head. Smells a little bit like vinegar but not enough for my liking. Taste is mildly sour, mellow, almost too mellow. I honestly have a hard time finding Flanders reds that I like. Duchesse and Zoetzuur are probably the only ones I really, really like.

ArrogantB, Feb 25, 2011
Photo of UCLABrewN84
4/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark iced tea color with a 1 inch tan head that fades to a miniscule layer of foam. Lacing is minimal and patchy on the glass. Smell is of mild vinegar, sour cherries, and some woody notes. Taste is mildly sour cherry with a vinegar zing that is somewhat subdued. No bitterness to speak of. Beer has a very lively carbonation that is refreshing but it leaves a sticky coating in the mouth like soda will do. Drinkability is good but I have had better examples of this style, so I probably wouldn't get this beer again.

UCLABrewN84, Feb 22, 2011
Photo of womencantsail
3.78/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer pours a dark amber color with a thin cap of off-white head.

S: A slight vinegar note to the beer to go with what is a fairly sweet Flemish Red. Some nice sour cherry aroma in there and a bit of oak and lactic acid. Decently complex with some additional toffee and bread.

T: Fairly sweet on the palate with caramel, toffee, and sweet dark fruits. Sour cherries, a hint of vinegar, definite oak and tannins, and some vanilla from the oak.

M: Medium in body with a lively carbonation that fills the mouth.

D: Surprising that I've never really even heard this beer mentioned. It's a pretty decent Flanders Red and a good price.

womencantsail, Feb 13, 2011
Photo of albern
3.5/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The problem with this beer is that Rodenbach and Duchesse are the best of a small sampling of Flemish Red Ales and it's very hard to live up to these exemplars. Alas, Bacchus is clearly in a lower tier from these beers. I had a Rodenbach Grand Cru immediately after the Bacchus and let us say that I'm in absolutely no rush to grab another Bacchus.

The beer looks good and has the nose characteristic of the style with maybe a touch too much vinegar. That by the way is the story with this beer. There are too many wild yeast flavors, some moldy cheese notes, with too much vinegar that really detracts from the characteristic sours and sweets of the style. The beer is decent but why settle for second best. There isn't enough tart cherry, not enough complexity, not enough wood barrel notes, and just too much of the wild yeasty vinegars. It's okay, but I'll stick with Rodenbach and Duchesse any day.

albern, Feb 13, 2011
Photo of kbutler1
3.58/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle. Poured into a Duvel tulip a clear deep copper reddish orange color with a light tan 1 finger head. Lots of flavors in the nose; apple, cinnamon, and banana all with an underlying sour grape aroma. Light mouthfeel with a decent amount of carbonation. Starts with a dark fruit like sweetness with a tinge of sourness like lemon that slowly fades and ends rather cleanly. I don't pick up too much oak in this except maybe at the end but ever so slightly. Complex? No, not really but its pretty easy drinking and has a mild sourness that I find nice.

kbutler1, Feb 12, 2011
Photo of zeff80
3.58/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured out a clear, light burgundy color with a two-finger, caramel colored, bubbly head. It left minimal lacing.

S - It smelled of sour cherries and that's about it.

T - Good sour cherry flavor with some grape-like notes. No bitterness at all.

M - Crisp and puckeringly sharp. A light to medium bodied ale with a dry finish.

D - This is a very nice Flanders Red Ale but there are better out there.

zeff80, Feb 08, 2011
Photo of mmmbeer
3.93/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This Vlaams Oud Bruin comes in a 375 mL green champagne bottle with a crown cap and foil seal; bottled 090414, which could actually be the best-by date. Pours with filtered clarity the color of cherrywood, highly-carbonated, with a moussy head that climbs out of the glass and has great retention. The aroma is light, but it's enough to kick in the saliva glands. Nice sweet/sour balance, with stonefruits, toasted/caramel malts, and a light, but surprising green hop flavor on top of a light and dry, almost tannic body, with a nice carbonic tingle. Very easy to drink, and would make a painless introduction for those leery of sour reds, but I don't feel it is to style - it almost tastes like a red ale that has had lactic acid added to it or has been mildly soured and then pasteurized. Either way, it's not too shabby, but perhaps not worth going out of your way to find it.

mmmbeer, Jan 24, 2011
Photo of thepeter
3.43/5  rDev -7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A- Dark Brown with a reddish hue around the edges. Head lasts only secons and appears still in the glass.

S - light Vinegar, wood, grapes, cherries, sweetness, vanilla is there as well

T - Starts off with a puckering dryness of mild acidity, some cherry, wood and vinegar show themselves in the middle and has a dry finish with a hint of Vanilla. Not as complex as others in the style

MD - LIght and lively wiht abundant carbonation, quite a thin beer though, not much body to it at all. Easy drinking, refreshing and light.

My bottle says it's an Oude Brune but seems to be the same beer though. Nothing overly special about this one but certainly a nice drink.

thepeter, Jan 16, 2011
Photo of IntriqKen
4.28/5  rDev +16%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A soft tan head of tight bubbles tops a clear, very dark mahogany in the glass.
Nose is mild yet distinctive with a typical flanders sour cherry softened with very mild vanilla and woodiness.
Taste follows aroma. Sour cherries, mild vanilla adding a richness and very light oak.
Mouthfeel is comfortable for this style...not at all thin like many sour beers tend to be. Soft carbonation from tiny bubbles keeps it full and sparkling on the tongue.
Aftertaste is mostly sour cherry but a sweetness follows which really balances this brew.
Love it.

IntriqKen, Dec 26, 2010
Photo of PittBeerGirl
3.85/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Received this as an extra from a generous BA! Thanks!

A- Body is a beautiful glowing red/brown hue that is completely transparent. Pours with a 2-3 finger foamy off-white slightly rusty head. This fades to a thin collar and little to no lacing is left behind in the glass.

S- Nose is fairly mild. Dark cherry, oak, a slightly acidic tartness, these blend pretty well.

T- Taste is mild and pretty similar to the nose. Dark cherry, oak, a hint of vanilla, the barrel really comes through for the finish as well as a hint of tartness to balance everything out.

M- medium carbonation and slightly thin-but still full and smooth body.

D- This is a classy classic example of this style. Its not a vinegar mess like the most well known example of this style-and its not anywhere near as tart or extreme as the American examples. Its simply flanders red-with a lot of oak barrel flavor and some vanilla, some charry, and some tarness. My only complaint about this is that the body is slightly thin. If the flavor were a bit fuller this would be world class.

PittBeerGirl, Dec 15, 2010
Photo of Mitchster
3.7/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

$5.49 for a 12.7 oz green bottle. Bottled on 04-14-09. Pours out to a hazy dark amber, forming a modest light tan head with good retention and solid sheets of lace. The carbonation level is moderate. Aroma opens with nuts, vinegar, funky barnyard, chlorinated pool locker room, and musty basement. The mouthfeel is soft, surprisingly not overly carbonated, with a medium light body. The taste is a recap of the aroma, but the taste is quite light, matching the light body, and there is not much sweetness to offset the tartness. I wish it were a touch sweeter. The finish isn't as dry as I expected, but it's still pretty dry.

This is a good, but not great, Flanders Red. Not as tasty as Rodenbach Red or Duchesse, but still decent.

Mitchster, Dec 13, 2010
Photo of trevorjn06
4/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a slightly hazy walnut/brown color with slight red highlights. One finger of tight, white foam recedes quickly to a layer on the surface of the beer.

Aroma is fairly mild overall and has elements of caramel, strawberries, figs, oak, vanilla and tartness. Fairly straight forward for a Flanders but pleasant nonetheless

Taste is tart (moderately so) with hints of caramels and some fruits (plum and currant). The finish leaves a bit of sweet and sour on the tongue with raspberries and hints of oak.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with medium carbonation.

Overall this Flanders ale is a bit more mild and straight forward than others I have had, but it is refreshing and tasty as well. Very drinkable! I would have this again.

trevorjn06, Dec 09, 2010
Photo of drpimento
3.93/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

My bottle got froze. So. Pours with I think is a damaged by freezing weird looking head, but still not bad: foamy, frothy, fluffy, sudsy and clumpy, that lasts forever and lots of lace. Color is a cloudy medium brown. Aroma is a bit fruity, tart, malt, and actually fresh. Flavor is malty, tart, fruity. Body still has some ice in it, so there you go. Finish is like flavor and not bad. Kind of tasty actually.

drpimento, Dec 06, 2010
Photo of WesWes
3.28/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a cloudy dark brown color with a thick frothy tan head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is decent. It has a solid pale and crystal malt scent along with a mild sourness. It doesn't appear to be too complex, but it's refreshing nonetheless. The taste is decent as well. It has a very thin crystal malt flavor along with a crisp, refreshing sourness. It's incredibly simplistic with little malt complexity. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a low bodied beer with good carbonation. This is a forgettable Flanders ale. I'm not a fan of the malt profile. It's too light and devoid of complexity.

WesWes, Dec 02, 2010
Photo of cooch69
3.8/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours a light brown with some amber highlights. There is a small loose head on this one.
Nose consists of lactic overtones, a sweet maltiness, and a musty barrel notes.
This beer is really juicy and sweet. It has apples and a bit of raspberry and mango. Its hard to nail down exactly all of the esters in here, it's really got a nice bouqet. The woodiness in here is a bit chalky and musty upfront. It almost tastes as if the wood was practically rotting. But as far as I know most barrels used in this kind of procedure are up to 100 years old. The sore thumb that this shows actually winds up blending in quite nicely a ways into the bottle. It turns out to be quite a nice example of this style. The bottle was over a year a half old. I might try a fresh pressed one to see what kind of differences were made if any.

cooch69, Nov 20, 2010
Bacchus from Brouwerij Van Honsebrouck N.V.
83 out of 100 based on 415 ratings.