Rodenbach Classic (Red) - Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V.

Not Rated.
Rodenbach Classic (Red)Rodenbach Classic (Red)

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

644 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 644
Hads: 1,612
rAvg: 4.02
pDev: 6.72%
Wants: 71
Gots: 156 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V. visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Flanders Red Ale |  5.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-04-2002

ABV varies 5.0-5.2% ABV
View: Beers (7) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 644 | Hads: 1,612
Photo of cjoc83
4.05/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark ruby color, bordering on brown, with a fingers worth of soapy off-white head that dissipates quickly to a ring. Leaves a patch of lace here and there.

Smell is sweet malt, tart cherries, apple, a touch of vinegar.

Initial taste is sour cherries, apple, mixing with some sweet, sugary malts. Tartness is just right; not overpowering and not underwhelming. I also get some molasses, touches of brown sugar, and some subtle oak and vinegar, especially in the finish. Really enjoyable.

Decent amount of carbonation, on the lighter side of medium-bodied. Crisp and leaves me wanting more with each sip. Finishes clean and slightly dry.

I don't have much experience with this style of beer, but from what I'm getting from this, I certainly will seek out more in the future. Really enjoyed this. (807 characters)

Photo of JMD71
4.3/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This had a nice winey aroma with a good solid head when poured. It had a wonderful sour flavor in the Flemish style with hints of black cherries. I also taste some metallic hints, but did not detract from the flavor at all. This was very crisp & clean in the finish. Good carbonation led this to be very drinkable & quenching. I would definitely get this again, but the price makes it slightly prohibitive. (406 characters)

Photo of HogHill
4.68/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I purchased a 750 of the Rodenbach classic while in Buffalo, NY (at Premier Gourmet) over Thanksgiving. Poured this sour beauty into a Rapscallion snifter, the body was a lovely burgundy brown combination. A one finger light tan head topped it off.

While doing my best Paul Giamatti impersonation, I detect a distinct sour cherry aroma along with a spiciness. Some phenols too, just like most belgians. No doubt it's a sour ale!

To drink this Rodenbach is a great experience in beer drinking, an absolute genuine craft brew. Here is a brilliant combination of soured fruits (mostly cherry) backed by a mildy sweet maltiness with a spicy phenolic finish along for the ride. Feels medium bodied with a reduced carbonation.

I would have no problem polishing off mutliple 750s. I can taste why this brew has been around for centuries. Looking forward to see how the Rodenbach Grand Cru stacks up to the Classic. (919 characters)

Photo of goblet
4.42/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

poured from a 250 ml bottle into a glass . i`ve had this beer a few times now so it`s time for a review.

appearance:it`s dark not transparent at all, a deep reddish brown hue with a thin tan foam head that reduces leave a coating. i can`t see any carbonation ,or lace.

smell: dry sour fruits like grapes and cherries,the aroma is alluring i get some malt but not much else.

taste:this is more on the sour grape side with a hint of cherries.the sour flavor is not as strong as the scent,it`s smooth like grape juice.

mouthfeel:of course besides the sour grape feel on the palate its got a slight bitterness and sweet cherry,sugar after taste .

drinkability:i like this beer ,its tasty and smooth the smell is bigger then the bite but don`t be turn of from this brew try it for yourself . (791 characters)

Photo of wogreen
4.14/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - poured much darker than i expected. a deep reddish brown
S - floral, not an overly vinegar smell that you get with many sour ales
T - a calmer albeit still sour version of the flandish red ale
O - very drinkable sour, though not my favorite. however it may be good for those who dont like an overly sour beer (312 characters)

Photo of RedSpecial1
4.7/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a clear brown with a small bit of frothy white head with pearlescent quality.

S: I first notice an acetic note with a very vinous quality. Underneath that is a malty sweetness with a raisin-like quality.

T: Starts with a raisin or date-like character with the acetic and vinous tastes coming through in the finish, but much softer than in the aroma.

M: Almost a softness or roundness to the feeling of this beer with a slight sting from the acetic notes.

O: A very rich and flavorful beer with a complex flavor profile. The flavors seem much more integrated than many other examples of this style, probably due to the strong blending experience at the brewery. (673 characters)

Photo of SiepJones
4.03/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served from a bottle into a Snifter

A: Pours a deep dark chestnut color with not visibility from one side of the glass through to the other. A slightly brownish white head sits on top of the beer, but dissipates to some swirling cloudy bubbles on top.
S: Flavors of acidity and vinegar touch the nose on the first sniff. Deeper whiffs yield some cherry and oak flavors with some more funk.
T: A fruity tang of funk rolls across your tongue on each sip, with a slight lactic finish once the last drop reaches your throat. After a few sips the cherries and oak become very prevalent while my mouth puckers less and less.
M: The mouth on this beer starts out very thin but with a nice sharp carbonation. Otherwise the body on this beer is very thin, but in no way does that detract from the overall experience of the beer.
D: This is a very drinkable beer for someone who is interested in trying out a "sour". The experience was not overwhelming for a novice to the category such as myself. I could see drinking two or three of these, but definitely taking my time, sipping and enjoying the flavors. If you like a really sour beer, this one maybe a little too tame for you. (1,173 characters)

Photo of Nutleybeer
3.65/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Unique tasting beer...for those who want to broaden their beer tasting horizons.

Can't say I loved it...but clearly this is a quality beer. It is like drinking a cherry sour ball candy beer. The taste was interesting...sour, but not too sour...just a bit, but with a rich fruity flavor...yet, not too sweet.

I would have been satisfied with a single glass, but I polished off the entire 22 oz bottle anyway. A reddish/mahogony like color, with a mild head. A nice smell. Not hoppy at all. As I said, a slightly sour cherry taste, but not sour enough to make your lips pucker...

Try if you want to experiment. Not for all tastes. Drinkable, don't get me wrong, but in limited quantities. (697 characters)

Photo of kaimcm
3.78/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

An interesting and unique brew. However to me, one youve got to be in the mood for and/or have an appropriate pairing. Clean, bright nose with hints of cherry. Taste is strong cherry, noticeable lime, a hint of sugar, and a nice tart dry finish. A nice balance of the tart/sweet that really makes the brew refreshing. Mouthfeel is weak. Too light, too craft soda like for me. Very reminiscent of a Stewarts Black Cherry soda. If in the mood, warm day, etc...a very nice beer, but not for all occasions by any means. That being said, well crafted no doubt. (555 characters)

Photo of WOTO97
4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hazy copper body with a thin off-white head and very nominal lacing. Aroma is some nominal tartness with big earthy qualities and faint berry notes. Wood comes through faintly on the finish, earth on the forefront with a pleasant immediate vinegar and lingering tartness on the finish. Very drinkable thin mouthfeel with very clean finish. (339 characters)

Photo of Goldfish19
4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

~ Purchased this 750 ml bottle from Big Z Beverage in Huntington NY. This beer is dark amber in color with a decent head. Smell is complex, funky, and sour. Taste is the same. Absolutely refreshing! I could drink this all day long. Rodenbach is an intriguing brew and one that is definitely worth a try. ~ (305 characters)

Photo of davedahl
4.33/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Fantastic stuff.

My sample was a 250ml bottle dated 24/04/08 (April 24, 2008).

Appearance - A medium pour down the middle of the glass produced a fluffy 3-finger head that was a very light peach color. The beer itself has a very clean/clear appearance which is only noticeable when you hold it up to the light. Since the deep mahogany color makes it difficult to notice the clarity. Beautiful.

The initial smell, even before it got close to my snoot, was a big sour red. Sour, fruity, and a slight musty note.

Mouthfeel was very clean and fresh.

Tasting was complex and amazing. Lots of cherry up front and plenty of tartness too. Sourness comes through middle-to-back. Finishes semi-clean with a bit of residual citrus.

I had two bottles in my stash and it took every ounce of my being to resist quaffing down the second bottle as soon as the first was finished. (869 characters)

Photo of TimZebGir
3.9/5  rDev -3%

A: (3/3) Caramel brown with very slight haze and medium carbonation--thin bubbly head but well-retained
S: (9/12) Earthy sour with light raisin tones
T: (16/20) Light flavor with cidery sour and very clean finish
M: (4/5) Light-bodied, light bubbliness, light dry finish
O: (7/10) Basically a light cidery beer. Far more sessionable than most sours I’ve had, but that simplicity has its obvious drawbacks.
39/50 (414 characters)

Photo of jed
3.85/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: Slim brown bottle with a picture of casks, "Mixed Fermented Beer" written in German and in French. 25 cl, best if consumed by 1/12/05. Though there's some kind of bottling code, no bottled on date.

Appearance: Pours a bright mahogany with a very weak head, almost no retention. Small trail of lacing laps at the side of the glass. Tons of bubbles from the carbonation, bubbles continue until near the end of the beer.

Smell: Warm, smoky aroma of roasted malt mixed with sour, tart fruits — cherrys, prunes. Tobacco/smoky aroma reminiscent of peat.

Taste: Rodenbach is different from any other beer I've tried. Initial flavors of tart cherry mixed with almost syrupy roasted malts. More difficult to describe the fruits, but in addition to cherry some sour apple, raspberries. Hops? Nope. The smokiness in the smell manifests itself in the taste as some kind of hard to describe charcoal/meat flavor. Influence of the casks is also apparent, similar to some French red wines. The effect of the initial malt flavor followed by the sour (almost vinegar) fruit is initially off-putting, but soon becomes an enjoyable contrast. The tart fruit also contributes to the try finish, leaving behind an aftertaste of sweeter apples and a dry, sour flavor.

Mouthfeel: Not much to say here, slightly above average mouthfeel improved by a little bit of creaminess.

Drinkability: While I think Rodenbach is an interesting, complex beer, the vinegar component combined with the sour, tart flavors really hurts the drinkability.

This one changed my idea of the normal "beer" flavors. Rodenbach packs a very complex flavor different from other sweet fruit beers or Belgian ales, and I'm glad I tried it. While I respect the flavor, it's definitely not something I'd come back to — not really my thing — and the high cost in the U.S. means I'll have to stick with other Belgians I like better. (1,911 characters)

Photo of strangefate
4.07/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle.

Pours a dark red-brown with a nice head that dissipates quickly. The smell is very fruity. Taste is similar - very fruity with a sweet taste up front and then a nice sour bite that's not overwhelming. The sourness and carbonation provides a great mouthfeel and feeling on your tongue. The fruitiness of this beer makes it almost like a sour carbonated wine. (374 characters)

Photo of k3n
4.08/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle, corked/caged.

Pours a ruddy brown with an impressive 3-finger head of lightly tan-colored bubbles. The head dies down pretty quickly, leaving spotty lacing. Reddish highlights on the edges when held to the light.

The nose isn't that much. Even into the 2nd glass, it's fairly one-dimensional, just tartness (fruity and vinegar).

Taste is tart, sour cherries and light vinegar, with a background of raisin-y sweetness to balance. Carbonation is good, and keeps the beer feeling very light in the mouth. VERY drinkable, you could just keep tossing this one back. The finish has good length, with faint wine-like viscosity. (637 characters)

Photo of scottyg354
4.79/5  rDev +19.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a brownish red color. Cloudiness is lightly preveilant. Head that lingers with nice lacing.

S: Slight Vineger and sour berries. Farmhouse funkiness.

T: Sour Cherries and grapefrui, slight brett notes. Sweet and Sour. Very Nice.

M: Crisp with a medium carbonation. Goes down very smoothly.

O:Great beer. One of my favorite styles. (342 characters)

Photo of kleffman
4.03/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Some of this finally made its way to SD and I was fortunate enough to get a pour of it at O'Briens. Poured a very reddish brown with very little head and a light carbonation. Only a slight lacing. The aroma immediately hit me with cherries, both sour and fresh. There is a definite vinegar presence but not overpowering like some examples of the style. Possible hints of oak as well. The taste is incredible. Dominated by tart cherries, some vanilla and minimal vinegar that only helps the balance. Also some ripe apple. The mouthfeel is nice and coating, allowing even the smallest sip to linger. It's actually a very refreshing example of this style and the more I get to know it the Flanders Red is becoming more of a friend than an acquaintance. Really want to try the Grand Cru now as I heard it's much better. (815 characters)

Photo of WilliamD
4.12/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a murky brownish red with no head. Very still in my snifter.
Smell is sour fruits and a definite oak presence. Earthy tones as well.
Taste is quite nice- this is my first flemish sour ale, and I didn't know what to expect. Definitely sour but slightly sweet as well. Again the earthy oak is present. Nice dry finish.
Mouthfeel is pleasant- despite its stillness, some carbonation can be detected. Crisp and refreshing.
Quite drinkable as well. I will be finishing this bottle.
Tasty beer- makes me want to check out more of this style. (541 characters)

Photo of norwichboy
4.12/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance more brown but with a red tinge. Good head and lacing. Utterly amazing aromas with sour cherries and chocolate (Cherry Ripe), some marzipan in there as well. To taste, very tart and sour. Mouthfeel is somewhat watery, but perfect tingly fine carbonation. (265 characters)

Photo of Greenfloyd
4.97/5  rDev +23.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Finding Flanders Reds to be one of my favorite styles, if not THE favorite style of beer, I might be a little biased towards this offering. That being said, this one is the best of the bunch for me. In fact I'm requesting my casket to be a replica of one of Rodenbach's giant oak aging barrels. No rush though...

When I poured this into a medium sized tulip glass, it gave the appearance of an Amontillado sherry, with a wonderful auburn tint. The nose was of fresh cut, slightly un ripened green apple, and hints of oak. When I put this Flanders offering into a large snifter, I got much stronger woody tones from the nose, including traces of vanilla.

The taste emulated the nose, with tart green apple showing itself right away. The hop presence, as is traditional with this style, is obsolete, yet the beer maintains a remarkable balance with its subtle malty background. Trailing off with faint oaky echoes, this beer has a quick, yet complex finish.

The mouth feel of this beer is lighter bodied, but you don't feel like you are getting cheated out of substance. Fairly decent carbonation rounded out the experience. This beer has incredible drinkability. It is unbelievably refreshing, and a 750 of this could go alarmingly quick.

Truly an outstanding Belgian treat, this beer could be just as much "session" worthy as it is gourmet. If you pair a Rodenbach Classic with some Alaskan king crab, clarified butter, and a loaf of fresh bread, Bill Gates would not be able to top that (yes of course he probably could, but surely by now you get the point). I love everything about this beer. Enjoy (1,604 characters)

Photo of vladtheimpaler
4.31/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Tap at Andy's. Three glasses full with Slander and Mkobes (and Tony Forder for that matter). Seductive looking tulip glass. Burnt orange hugh, nice head on top. Not really clear. Rich soured apple and cherry aromas. Flavors are tart and malty. You can pick out apples and cherries in that sweet and sour combination of fruit and malt. Decent mouth feel. Tart finish. Drinkable to the max. A session beer with all the trimmings. (427 characters)

Photo of Beelzebeer
4.17/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

bottle, served in tulip. Best before Aug 22/12, so kind of old

A - Muddy brown with 1 inch head, very little retention. Maybe some sediment got jostled up in the fridge? Hasn't been in there long

S - Light sour on the nose, a little plum/apricot

T - Medium-light carbonation off the top, giving way to a nice sour note, not too pungent, and the plum/apricot with some medium malt. Some barnyard funk. Quite pleasant.

M - A little thin, but not totally out of sorts given the style.

O - I think the ageing had something to do with it. I had an older bottle of Duchesse last week, and lost almost all the malt, and was more of a cider. The malt stayed quite nicely in this aged brew. (687 characters)

Photo of SiphonKing
4.35/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

An excellent example of the Flanders Red style. often imitated but never duplicated. The beer has a red almost burgandy color to it. A generous tannish head sits atop that body. The flavors hits you with a genorous helping of sour/sweet while ending in a balanced malt profile. A classic example of the style. (309 characters)

Photo of johnnybgood1999
4.23/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I had been looking at this beer on the shelf at Kroger for a while and stayed away, due to the $15 a 6-pack price. The beer was on closeout in Pigeon Forge while I was on vacation for $11 and I picked it up.

A: Not quite clear, a little bit cloudy. I can't see the color in my hotel room, but it looks like a dark amber ale in this light.

S: Very sour, with vinegar coming right at you.

T: Very light blandness hits the tongue first, followed very quickly by a light sour flavor that is very pleasing. The sourness is not overwhelming and gives way to tart fruitiness. The tartness eliminates the more vinegary sourness and the beer finishes nicely.

M: This one is light, though not extremely so. The ale finishes dry.

O: This is the first sour I have enjoyed, probably, as others have said, because this is a gateway sour for me. I had Lips of Faith and found the sourness too much. This Flanders Red is much more palatable for those wanting some sour, but not seeking a sour bomb. Nicely done, I will buy again. (1,018 characters)

Rodenbach Classic (Red) from Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V.
90 out of 100 based on 644 ratings.