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Bacchus - Brouwerij Van Honsebrouck N.V.

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440 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 440
Reviews: 188
rAvg: 3.7
pDev: 12.7%
Wants: 9
Gots: 30 | FT: 0
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.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 440 | Reviews: 188 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of 100floods
3.9/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a vinegar brown with no head. This beer smells pleasantly of vinegar/ketchup. There have been a few other's in this style, namely the Duchess, that have a similar smell, but this has more a vinegar aroma. Medium carbination, the sweet flavors kick through the bubbles the most. If this beer was ketchup it would be the best ketchup ever. I'm not well versed on Flanders Red Ales, but i'm a huge fan nonetheless. This combines a hint of sour with a nice sweet flavor found in bruins. The bottle tells you nothing of the beer's style and I was pleasantly surprised to pour this beer to find out its style. To be honest, there's nothing super special about his beer other than it's very tasty. It's less intense than the Duchess which is good for people interested in the style. CHECK THIS SHIT OUT!

Photo of popery
3.78/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A decent sour, though a bit mild. This one is mostly acidic, but the beer is rather light in flavor and feel, at least relatively fresh, so it's still fairly easy to drink. Bacchus pours a deep red with a shade or two of brown, small ecru head. Aroma is too mild but there are some nice sweet and sour cherry notes and hints of grain. Flavor is a bit better with more acidity, a light funk and mild malt. Feel is a bit thin, which isn't really a big surprise, but it's still a fairly easy beer to drink.

Photo of tpd975
3.75/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

on tap at hopcat

A: Pours a slightly hazy murky shade of reddish brown with a small tan head. No retention or lace.

S: Aromas of sour berries, mild spice, and a hints of sweet cherry juice.

T: Flavors of red berries, both sweet and tart. Mild wood, vanilla, and spice.

M: Medium in body, pretty smooth.

D: Easy to drink. Not the best, but solid as a whole.

Photo of Billolick
3.95/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12.7 ounce green bottle, black foil over the cap, no bargain at $5.99 @ DeCicco market in Ardsley, NY. Bottled on 4-14-09. Dark brown with a burnt red hue. Thick light mocha head, that stays and stays, then goes to a thick film, collar, and respectable if not amazing strands of lace. I get a healthy load of must and tart fruit in the nose. Ah Flanders Red, what a wonderful style and this one was not bad, moderatly tart, no real sour bite, some tart cherry notes. A bit more musty character midway and in the finish. Not bad, I think some stinky cheese and crusty bread would compliment this selection well. Worth a try. Good gateway sour/Belgian red.

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.48/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Sampled 1702, Tucson AZ; September 2009
This beer arrives from the tap served in a tulip glass. It is topped by a frothy, almost two-finger thick, amber tanned head. The beer is a darkish, brown-amber color that shows a deep, clear red color when held up to the light. The aroma smells quite fruity with rich cherry notes taking the lead role here. Tartness seems to be missing from the aroma, at least it isn't overly noticeable by me, though it is likely an acetic note that is bringing out the cherry notes. Cherry skin note add some complexity here and the nose smells somewhat sweet, other notes of children's aspiring and some berry notes add a hint of complexity to what is otherwise a somewhat weak aroma.

Despite the sweetness in the nose the beer tastes quite dry as it first hits my tongue. The beer is most definitely tart, thank goodness, despite not smelling tart at all. The flavor really comes off as washed out though, even watery somehow. There is a soft acetic presence along with a lactic sourness; this is more tart tasting than sour and there is a sweetness that kicks in towards the middle of each sip and continues through to the sweetness; this light sweetness tempers the tartness even more. The beer tastes fruity as well, though perhaps not as pronounced as it was in the flavor; cherry notes are most noticed, but perhaps there is a hint of raspberry as well. A hint of tannins adds some structure towards the finish and there is a very soft malt presence (a hint of toasted malt and a touch of caramel are just perceptible). Really the flavors are just too light here, I really feel like someone took the volume on a normal sour beer and muted the hell out of it. Fairly light bodied, though not overly thin, this beer seems made for quaffing by the pint.

There is quite a nice mix of flavors to this beer, but it really has just been watered down too much. A more concentrated version would likely be phenomenal & for this reason I find this beer quite disappointing.

Photo of MikeBuff
3.68/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12.7 oz green bottle, born on date 090414, served in a pint glass.

A- Nice burnt red color with no head. When poured the head subsided quicky leaving nothing.

S- You do get a sour nose on it but does no scare you away. This is a great sour for those getting into the style. I smell a little bit of oak or malt that is rounding out the nose.

T- A refreshing flemish with mild sourness. The finish is clean and dry.

M- The higher mouth feel is balanced out by the dryness of the finish.

I think this is a great little beer. I would recommend this to any one getting into sours.

Photo of phisig137
2.55/5  rDev -31.1%
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.

Photo of bret27
3.5/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

thick green glass bottle to tulip glass.

A::: Dark Brown w/ruby hint through the light. minimal off-white head w/some sporadic lacing.

Smel:::Cherries, sour, little funk, medicine

Taste::: Fruity, cherries, tart but not too sour/astringent, woodiness

M/D:::Medium thin mouth. Very drinkable w/the dry sweet finish. but not too sweet or sour.

Overall: A not bad, refreshing oud bruin. I found it in a Michael Jackson's beers of the world book. Would be a good intro to the style.

Photo of sisuspeed
3.53/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured this into a small tulip glass. The color is a clear raisin maroon with a thin white head on top.

Lots of fermented grape and wine notes on the nose. A little bit of stinging vinegar as well. I get the image of something sweet and syrupy.

This is my first Flanders Oud Bruin so I really have no idea what to expect. Quite the deviation from what I normally drink, but after the first sip I can say that I'm liking it. The flavor has a fruity, vinous character with some nice sourness. The aftertaste is dry and vinegar like with some sweeter malts mixed in. Slightly bitter at times and a little peppery.

The mouthfeel is good, well carbonated. Drinkability is also better than I expected. I didn't think I'd really get into the sour thing much, but I find my hand keeps reaching back for the glass to get another taste.

Overall, I thought this was a pretty good beer. My first introduction to sours and I can say that I'd like to try a few more. Would probably even pick this up again if it were a little cheaper around here.

Photo of abuliarose
2.7/5  rDev -27%
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.

Photo of jgasparine
3.35/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A- Poured from the tap with a nice 1/2" high tan colored head, which was well-retained throughout the drink, and slowly gave way to some little bits of edge lacing. The body was a beautiful clear garnet color. No carbonation was observed from the sides of the glass.

S- Smells of sweet cherries and burnt candy sugar... also smells anticipatedly lactic. Beautifully pungent!

T- A surprisingly mild flavor... this is actually quite a let-down. The nose hinted towards big taste, but alas, all the fruitiness and candy sugar notes are subdued... and the lactic sourness, while still prominent, is lesser than anticipated as well, emerging only in the finish. I wouldn't call this an unpleasant taste... just weak.

M- Thin body... much thinner than I would like from the style. It is highly attenuated, and the carbonation is a little coarse.

D- Despite its downfalls, this beer is very drinkable... sessionable even. I might even go so far as to call it a thirst quencher.

Photo of Heferwiezer
4.22/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Bought this and had no idea what style it was, a definite hit though.

Poured into a white wine bottle, 1/3 inch head recedes quickly to just a ring of foam that sticks to the inner side of the glass. no lacing. Deep earthy red mahogany color. Very translucent- no bits and pieces floating around.

Smell is funky, a lot of vinegar upfront with wiffs of oakiness and sweet cherries. Maybe a tad of lightly toasted caramel.

Wow have never tasted anything like this before! Upfront you get citric cherry fruitiness, in the mids the vinegary oakiness hits. The finish is dry and causes the back of your tongue to tingle. Very exceptional experience.

Mouthfeel is astringent, creamy and mouth coating all at the same time.

I could drink these all day any season of the year!

Photo of adamette
3.75/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at HopCat in Grand Rapids, MI two days ago. Review from notes taken at the bar. Poured into a clean, clear glass.

A Medium brown translucent body with red hues. Minimal light brown head dissipated within a few minutes to a ring around the top of the beer. 4.0

S Red "sour" smell of a typical Flemish Red. 3.5

T Nice tart Flemish Red Ale taste, kind of classic, not complicated in its taste to me. 4.0

M Tartness raised the mouthfeel bar for me a bit. 3.5

D Fair to good. 3.5

Notes: This is a classic Belgian brewery's Flemish Red Ale which was solid. It was great to find it on tap at HopCat, a world class Beer Advocate place.

Photo of BarrelO
4.15/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Brasserie Beck. Served in a Bacchus tumbler.

A: Deep red body. Head is rather eh.

S: Cherry overload. Like sniffing cherry cough syrup. But in a good way.

T: Again with the cherries. A nice balance of bitter and sweet. Kind of like a Jolly Rancher.

M: Light and fairly effervescent.

D: It's not jaw-droppingly complex, but it is incredibly refreshing. I wish I had tried this in the summer. Recommended for fans of sour ales.

Photo of nickd717
3.28/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the Cheeky Monk in Denver. Clear dark red color with a small off-white head. Aroma is both sweet and sour with cherry, apple, oak, and mild funk. Flavor is a tiny bit tart but mostly just sweet, with cherry, apple, sweet malt, and a metallic, acidic finish. The description calls this "wine-like?" Not very accurate. Body is medium-light with moderately high carbonation. Drinkability average-plus, but the metallic flavor hurts it here. Not a huge fan overall.

Photo of Traquairlover
4.3/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A = Dark copper red, good clarity, light bone white foam covering on surface.

S = Dried cherries, sharp balsamic vinegar, light sea salt.

T = Good sourness level with a fair fruity counterbalance. Lots of cherry, raspberry, little bit of sherry vinegar.

M = Foams on entry into mouth, but very lightly and dissipates quickly. Almost nouvelle cuisine foam food.

D = This is a very good drinkable beer, sour, but not so much as to be astringent, with good fruitiness of character.

Photo of alleykatking
3.48/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Had on tap at FFF

A- Pours a clear darker brown with ruby highlights when held up to the light. 1 finger off white head that died down pretty quickly leaving next to no lacing.

S- Lots of fruit in the nose with this beer. Berries and cherries is what I pick up with a malty undertone. Has a slight vinegar smell that is faint in the whole aroma.

T- Nice tart upfront with the cherries really coming through the forefront. The middle of this beer highlights the sweeter maltiness. The ending is a tart berry with a hint of vinegar sourness to it. Nothing really too good but nothing too bad as well.

M- Medium mouthfeel. Carbonation is very weak in this beer. Could use a little more...reminds me of a flat juice. Sour notes linger on the palate after this beer flows across the palate.

D- This would be more drinkable if it had a little more carbonation to it. Overall not the worst beer in this style but far from the best.

Photo of jrallen34
3.65/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Drank from the bottle into a chalice in Brussels.

This was a surprising beer considering it came wrapped in a paper bag, didn't know quite what to expect.

The beer pours as brownish red with a huge white head.

It smells cherry tart but sweet.

This is great tasting beer with a start of sweet cherry and a great sour finish..

Re-reviewed this, and not nearly as impressed this time.

Photo of beertooth
3.35/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Thre Floyds brew pub served in an Ommegang goblet.

This beer brown ruby color with a thin layer of egg white/cake batter color head.

The smell is of faint sour cherries and sweet tarts.

The first sip gives me some slight sour fruit and and sweet candies. There isn't much going on here.

It's quite drinkable with the lower abv%, but I'm not sure if I'd want a ton of this.

Photo of PhillyStyle
3.13/5  rDev -15.4%
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.

Photo of DoubleJ
3.68/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Verdugo Bar, on to the beer:

This is a less intense version of a sour red. It has a brownish amber color to it, a sweet berry maltiness, and carmelized malts. Like drinking caramel strawberries. The intensity of the sourness is low on this one, but it's there. A good beer of its style for the beginner, but still solid for the veteran to appreciate.

Photo of glid02
3.08/5  rDev -16.8%
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.

Photo of goschool
2.35/5  rDev -36.5%
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.

Photo of illidurit
3.58/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Hamilton's Tavern in San Diego during the RBSG 08 pubcrawl. Dark orange bronze with a tan head. Aroma is acidic with tart cherries and a slight metallic character. Flavor is berries with an acetic sharpness. Fairly tart but a little too sweet. Poor man's Duchesse du Bourgogne. Still not bad.

Photo of Hojaminbag
3.7/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A dark reddish body with hints of brown in it. Tiny white head that doesn't leave any lacing behind.

Big fruit aroma here. Mixture of berries, cherries and maybe even some grapes. Smells a little bit like vinegar too.

A little bit of tartness up front and in the finish, but nowhere else. Neither instances provide any true sourness, which is a negative trait to me. The middle carries a little of wine or vinegar flavor. Both of these characteristics are overshadowed by the constant, huge, sweet fruit flavors. Cherry and mixed berries, just like the aroma. Taste like these flavors might be artificially added, but I could be wrong. Not a bad tasting beer, but definitely relies on sweetness instead of sourness.

Light mouthfeel, medium carbonation, nothing major to report in this department.

This goes down pretty easily. Although the the sweetness dominates the brew it is not sickening or off-putting. I could see this as a nice brew on a hot day.

Bacchus from Brouwerij Van Honsebrouck N.V.
84 out of 100 based on 440 ratings.