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

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

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,323 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,323
Reviews: 614
rAvg: 4
pDev: 11.75%
Wants: 58
Gots: 75 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V. visit their website

Style | ABV
Flanders Red Ale |  5.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
ABV varies 5.0-5.2% ABV

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-04-2002)
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Ratings: 1,323 | Reviews: 614 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of superspak


3.9/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle into oversized wine glass, best by 11-28-07. Pours crystal clear red color with a small off white head with decent retention that reduces to a thin lacing cap that lasts. Small bits of lacing cling to the glass as well. Aromas of cherry, vinegar, oak, and some spiciness. Decent aromas here, a tad bit more muted than I was expecting. Taste of big cherry, oak, vinegar, and apples. Nice sweet taste with a slight bit of apple and cherry tartness on the finish. The finish is surprisingly dry, with only some light sweetness and tartness on the finish. Medium carbonation and body. Very smooth drinking with no alcohol in the taste or finish. This is quite a refreshing and easy going beer due to the light amount of sourness present in this. Overall, a very nice Flanders red, I would like to try a younger bottle of this sometime.

Serving type: bottle

08-02-2011 03:51:01 | More by superspak
Photo of twiggamortis420


4.88/5  rDev +22%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This one has been aging for a while, as it has a best by date of 04/04/07. Pours a pretty clear reddish-brown color with very little light tan foam. What is there fades fast to just a thin collar.

Nose is quite complex...vinegar, raisins, red apples, oak and rotting peaches. You certainly can tell this beast will be sour.

Tastes delicious! Freshly picked wild berries with some acidic sourness reminiscent of granny smith apples and its also tartly crisp. Malts are light in the mouth but still offer a nice background. It's an approachable sour beer, as the sourness is not overly intense. I would not mind if it was a bit sourer, but that would take away from the extreme drinkability of this beer. It goes down so damn easy, I could drink a 750 by myself with ease. Excellent brew.

Serving type: bottle

07-29-2011 02:31:06 | More by twiggamortis420
Photo of jwhancher


4.47/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Starting to get into sours now so I picked up a bottle of this.

Pours a murky brownish red with tan head that fades yet reappears with some swirling of the glass. Smells of balsamic vinegar with some brown sugar notes. Maybe a little fig or slight raisin notes. Tastes sour yet has a sweet brown sugar like quality. I also get flashes of cocoa and maybe some vanilla notes likely from the barrel aging. A fine beer. A great beginner sour For those just getting in to 'em. This one has a light to medium mouthfeel wiith bitter and lighter sour notes. Glad I picked this one up!

Serving type: bottle

07-28-2011 00:44:30 | More by jwhancher
Photo of mdaschaf


4.25/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had on tap at the Pickled Pig Pub in Rehoboth Beach, DE.

A: The beer was a deep red/brown with a one finger tan head on top. Not much head retention and some spotty lacing that forms and is gone rather quickly.

S: Slightly tart dark fruit, some cherries, raspberries, and bruised apples. There is a bit of oak as well. Slightly acetic.

T: Nice sour cherry flavor, very nice level of acidity, with just a touch of vinegar. There is some sweet malt to balance things out. There is a bit of a nutty component as well.

M: Medium bodied with low to medium carbonation. Very smooth and incredibly easy drinking.

O: A great beer, very nice flavor profile with a perfect level of tartness. Would have certainly ordered another if not for the price. Something I will probably grab some bottles of.

Serving type: on-tap

07-24-2011 21:20:56 | More by mdaschaf
Photo of rvdoorn


4.13/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Look: the beer pours a reddish-brown color with a nice light-brown head.
Smell: Barley, vinegar, red fruits, and oak.
Taste: Barley, vinegar, red fruits, passion fruit, oak and a puckering tartness in the aftertaste. Bit metallic as well.
Mouthfeel: Medium-thick body, medium carbonation.
Overall: Excellent brew, I prefer the grand cru though

Serving type: bottle

07-23-2011 21:27:45 | More by rvdoorn
Photo of Slatetank


3.98/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I enjoyed this with a dinner of firecracker shrimp and diver scallops enjoyed from a goblet chilled.

The color is ruddy caramel brown, slightly murky appearance with a head that comes and goes, the lace sticks ok and bead is fine. The smell is like a cross between cherry and vanilla with the wood providing a nice vanilla scent and yeast giving a nice tart cherry odor. There is some sourness, really more like tart tanginess from the yeast in the feel but the wood adds a nice level of dimension here too. The moderate carbonation is alright with a slight fruit tinged finish.

Rodenbach is tasty in many ways, it is tart which makes it almost refreshing based on the relatively low abv-5.2% and the slight yeasty smoothness in the flavor combined with vanilla oakiness which is fantastic alongside the subtle cherry tastes in the malt and yeast combination. The fruit elements are so dominant which says a lot for a beer that doesn't contain fruit. This was probably too much for the meal I paired it with -succotash and scallops with a chili rub, but I enjoyed how the fruit sour elements combined with my wife'c coconut curry basmati rice and firecracker shrimp. I could enjoy this red about any time it doesn't stand up to the high level of drinkability and flavor quotient of the Grand Cru, but hey for what it is Rodenbach is a decent all around beer.

Serving type: bottle

07-16-2011 20:34:29 | More by Slatetank
Photo of cjoc83


4.1/5  rDev +2.5%
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.

Serving type: bottle

07-09-2011 01:02:57 | More by cjoc83
Photo of jdense


4.1/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle purloined from gout-ridden buddy's cellar, 2008 vintage, shared with neighborhood beer homey, poured into wine glasses, 7.6.11.

Dark purplish red clear body, several small trails of rising carbonation, minimal head with quick dissipation resulted in thin broken layer on top of body. Nose is pretty funky, musty horseblanket balanced by fruit esters, cherry, plums, lemon, minimal hop presence, a bit flowery. Taste is more sour than tart though in nice balance, rich oakiness from the tuns. Mouthfeel is medium-light, lip smacking tart, dry finish. Relatively good drinkability for the style. Superlative, wonder how this improved in the bottle with several years of aging. Hope I have the patience to repeat this experiment.

Serving type: bottle

07-07-2011 17:26:13 | More by jdense
Photo of avalon07

South Carolina

4.18/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Poured from a bottle to a goblet. Had a dark brown color with ruby tints and a slightly cloudy consistency. There was an inch and a half of creamy, off white, long-lasting head. Good lacing.

S: A big fruity aroma of cherries, apples and other fruits. Also some malt and yeast.

T: Tasted like it smelled: Lots of fruit, apples, cherries, a bit of malt and yeast. Not quite as robust as I would have guessed, but still a very vibrant flavor.

M: A well-carbonated beer with a smooth finish. Medium-bodied.

O: On the whole, this is an extremely drinkable, flavorful, likable beer.

Serving type: bottle

07-04-2011 12:25:40 | More by avalon07
Photo of wo87810


3.83/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Looks great! Great color, small head. Not extremely carbonated. Aroma is decent, I am a sucker for the chocolate/caramel tones of a good malty ale- this is not like that. Tastes slightly sour, very fruity, and not too sweet. A thin feel in the mouth. Finishes dry and with good aftertaste.

Overall: my first ale of this kind, I will pursue the genre further. I liked it, but it doesn't stack up to the maltier ales for me.

Serving type: bottle

07-02-2011 01:34:22 | More by wo87810
Photo of wesbrownyeah


4.08/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Rodenbach Flanders Red Ale 75% young ale, 25% ale matured for 2 years aged in oak vats. 5.2% alcohol. Corked and caged bottle poured into a Ommegagang snifter.

A- Pours a brilliant dark brown fluid that shows firey red on the edges where light pass though it. Light off white head falls to a quarter inch froth on the top of the beer, random patchy lacing is noted.

S- Freshly tarted grapes, apples, and cherries upfront followed by rich sweet malts that come off as almost soapy and leathery in scents.

T-M- Taste is similar the smell in the aspect of the tarted fruit is now met with a sweeter light candied sugar mix up. Most notible is the Granny Smith apple flavors upfront with a quick bite of tartness followed by a sweet dry note of cherry. Mouthfeel is highly carbonated but I wouldn't have it any other way as it allows the beer to dance over the taste buts with ease.

Overall this is a winner as it is exceptionally drinkable and not overpowering but allows the avid beer drinker the enjoyment of a Flanders style at a session feel... CHEERS!!

Serving type: bottle

06-30-2011 03:22:51 | More by wesbrownyeah
Photo of THECPJ


4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes:

appearance: dark murky reddish brown with minimal head

smell: sour cherries, tart, malts,

taste: sour, tart, dark fruits

mouthfeel: mild carbonation, medium body,

overall: this beer is great. glad I was able to sample a few bottles of this stuff over the weekend.


Serving type: bottle

06-26-2011 13:32:16 | More by THECPJ
Photo of harrymel


3.13/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

From notes at bier baron in dc.

A: dark red, excellent clarity. Rim of beige foam spotty lacing.

S: wood, grapes, tartness, cherries. Not very strong or complex.

T: it's a standard Flanders red. A bit too sweet for my preferences. Wood. Cherry. Slightly tart.

M: medium bodied with low carb. A really nice creamy feel to this which matches the beer, not the style IMO. Nice though.

O: not a great Flanders red at all for me. Pretty standard and a little too sweet.

Serving type: on-tap

06-23-2011 08:05:45 | More by harrymel
Photo of Knapp85


3.23/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured out like a dark red wine. Not much carbonation here. The beer didn't leave much in way of lacing either. The smell of the beer was pungent on the nose giving it the sour aroma. The taste of the beer was tart and had a light sour cherry flavor to it. The mouthfeel was on the flatter side and not overly exciting. Overall it's a decent beer in my opinion. I'd like to give the Grand Cru a try sometime.

Serving type: bottle

06-20-2011 14:03:48 | More by Knapp85
Photo of donkeyrunner


3.15/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Dull, rusty brown color. Ruby red when held to light. Tan-ish, eggshell colored head. Few splashes of lace left by a swirly skim retention that looks to be in the shape of a Fibonaccie series nautilus shell. 75% new ale and 25% old ale. A combination of something old and something new - like folk metal.

Tart aroma with a metallic twang. Autumn leaf earthiness.

Taste is again metallic tartness but with a slightly sweet maraschino cherry balance. Dark, German wheat bread.

Rodenbach Grand Cru it ain't.

Serving type: bottle

06-16-2011 00:46:22 | More by donkeyrunner
Photo of Homebrew35


4.15/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a one finger worth of egg shell colored, fairly creamy head.
Body is a muddy maroon/brown color.

Smells like apple vinegar, vanilla, Carmel and toffee. Quite malty and sticky grape sweet smelling.

Tastes initially sweet and Carmely. Mid palate is apple, vanilla, grapes and brown sugar molasses. Apple vinegar and some balsamic vinegar rounds out the flavors. I'd like a but more pop in the flavors, nothing was offensive tho.

Mouthfeel is medium body, medium carbonation, fairly dry on the finish. Quite drinkable and keeps me wanting more.

Overall this is good. I enjoyed this to the end of the pour, as did the friends that I shared it with. I think I'll try the vintage editions of this to hopefully find a bit more complexity.
$9 a 750ml

Serving type: bottle

06-12-2011 02:03:50 | More by Homebrew35
Photo of ANNO1074


4.7/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Wonderful mix of sour and malt. Slight sweetness with floral notes that contrast with sour and acid. Relatively flat, consistent with sour, though with enough head to release lovely aromas and contribute to mouth feel. Lots of body and flavor for 5.2% beer. A 750ml that you can open without considering how early you need to get up the next day.

Serving type: bottle

05-24-2011 04:06:28 | More by ANNO1074
Photo of cichief


4.1/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pouredinto a nice tulip glass from a 750ml bottle.

A- Pours a deep reddish-brown, with an ample brown head of foam.

S- Strong scent of ripe fruits, fig and apple, hints of spiciness.

T- Starts a bit sour but mellows to a subtle sweetness on the end, very faint oak woodiness.

M- Smooth, well carbonated, without too much foaminess, a great bottle conditioned beer.

O- Very refreshing, a good beer, but Iwould like a little more sourness.

Serving type: bottle

05-22-2011 22:32:14 | More by cichief
Photo of nickfl


4.38/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - The beer pours with one finger of light brown head, resting on top of a dark, reddish brown body with clear amber highlights. The foam dissipates fairly quickly and leaves moderate lace.

S - A tart aroma of acetic acid, cherries, caramel, and toasted malt.

T - Tart pie cherries and caramel up front. Some fruity, citric tartness comes out in the middle, where it develops a nice interplay with the darker malt notes. A complex and slightly funky sourness settles over the palate in the finish with a sweet/sour tug of war between the lingering caramel flavors and the moderate acidity.

M - Medium body, high carbonation, and a somewhat dry finish.

D - This is, of course, a classic example of the style where the acidity is assertive, but not as intense as in the Grand Cru. There is a lot of rich, dark and fruity malt that creates both balance and interest by contrasting the sharp acidity. Carbonation is another important point that is hit upon with great accuracy and it pushes the intense flavors aside in the finish, leaving only a light, dry and acidic fruitiness lingering on the palate. A beer that everyone interested in good beer must try and a perfect introduction to sour beer.

Serving type: bottle

05-22-2011 05:48:44 | More by nickfl
Photo of PeprSprYoFace


3.98/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into my lost abbey tulip. Head dissipated to nothing. No lacing. Nice garnet red color though.

Aroma is slightly funky and sour with slight tart cherry. Smells good.

Taste is good. Never been a big fan of Flanders Reds but this one isn't as intrusive. Slight malty sweetness with a touch of sourness and funk.

Mouthfeel is slightly malty and lower carb.

Overall an ok beer. Don't think I would try it again. I need to try the grand Cru still

Serving type: bottle

05-12-2011 06:41:47 | More by PeprSprYoFace
Photo of psuKinger


4.05/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle at 6-and-Save, poured into a classic gold-rimmed tulip.

A: pours a cloudy shade of ruby red with a thin white head that dissipated quickly. 4.0

S: immediate "funk" of a Belgian, with sweet tones behind it. 4.0

T: dry, astringent, sour flavors are moderately strong. I pick up flavors of cherry sweetness in the background. Pleasant and easy-drinkin'. 4.0

M: thick and astringent, this thing leaves your mouth dry and finishes semi-sweet. 4.5

D: high. Easy drinkin'. Very repeatable. 4.0

Serving type: bottle

04-29-2011 16:58:32 | More by psuKinger
Photo of BeerFMAndy


3.88/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle split and poured into a Bruery tulip.
5.2% ABV, Serve at 6°-8°C, Best Befire 18/05/11

Thanks to the TickWolf for this one!

A - A tall dense tan head floats on top of the beer with good retention and nice lace clinging to the glass. The beer itself is a gross, hazed-over, muddy pond-water brown color.

S - Mellow, smooth brown malt and wet oak with a great little vinegar sourness to the finish. Notes of yeast esters and dark cherry lingers through the finish. Refreshing and inviting!

T - Malty caramel and wheat toast notes with underlying dark fruit complexity, oak, and vinegar sourness.

M - Smooth and highly carbonated with a mildly sour vinegar, lightly acidic finish. Refreshing mouthfeel!

O - Good overall, the flavor is lacking just a bit but the beer is quality across the board. It could be due to the fact it's on the cusp of the best by date but it's hung in there regardless. Methinks I may have to nab a fresh bottle!

Serving type: bottle

04-29-2011 12:15:18 | More by BeerFMAndy
Photo of LaCoursiere


4.1/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured into a snifter. Poured a murky brown raisin color with a one finger khaki head. Lots of thin lacing.

S - Great nose here; smells of rose hips, tart cherries, sour grape and slight brett funk.

T - A punch of sour and faint brett up front that fades to granny smith apple with subtle sweetness. It has a nice dry finish with tart cherry and apple lingering until the next sip

M - Medium bodied with very active moutfeel. The beer has a very flat appearance but comes alive on the tongue. Very nice.

D - This one was great for taking a break from the IPAs, DIPAs and stouts I have been drinking lately. The flavor is unique with a good balance of sweet and sour. I thoroughly enjoyed it and will drink again.

Serving type: bottle

04-22-2011 03:50:01 | More by LaCoursiere
Photo of smakawhat


4.38/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured on tap into a snifter at ChurchKey DC.

A nice light brown head, gives way to a nice simple collar. Body is a reddish brown slightly opaque body. Real sticky pock marked lacing on the glass.

Smell is an apple cider crisp and malt chew, with tart orange and marmalade. Bretty sour and mild sort of... wine crushed grapes dregs or something, it smells almost like a winery.

Taste has a great apple chewyness and faint cider quality. Very light bodied it seems with dank must on the finish with just a hint of baked apple and bread.

Supper drinkable and a great feeling tasting beer. I am not a cider fan but this is almost a cider persons beer for someone who prefers beer more than cider, bringing in all the good qualities of cider into a beer right here, with just a touch of Saison brett and goodness.

Serving type: on-tap

04-21-2011 23:28:26 | More by smakawhat
Photo of Metalmonk

North Carolina

3.85/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Gorgeous beer here, this impresses right from the start: deep woody/burgundy red-brown in color, murky and opaque, with a slight but healthy off-/dirty white head clinging on top.

If you've ever drunk beer in Belgium, the smell of Rodenbach will take you right back there. Even if you never drank a Flanders red. It's just got that fruity, earthy, yeast-driven character, a special and unique smell, and this particular beer tucks the smell of antique barrel and sour cherry deep inside. Damn.

The taste doesn't quite reach the heights of the nose, however. In this department, a beer like Duchesse de Bourgogne comes out on top. (ooh, the Duchesse on top, hot!) Elements of wood and sour cherry dominate, while a lightly sweet maltiness reminds of graham cracker and earthy/funky yeast sits further back, more generically earthy than funky, but there's just a trace of barnyard way back there. Grape bubble gum, for sure. Tart/young berry fruit flavor in the finish,some citrus rind pucker as well, although it's a pretty dry beer so any lingering flavor doesn't last long.

"Spritzy" said my lovely Flanders Red Ale-loving wife last night, and I agreed then and agree now. The carbonation is prominent and aggressive, which works pretty well for the overall flavor of the beer. Would I like it a little calmer, texturally? Sure.

This is really nice, and reels it in a little bit toward the traditional side of the sour ale shore, if you've been O.D.ing on the more powerful, sourer American versions. Not exactly as exquisite as I'd remembered and hoped, but an excellent springtime quaff nonetheless.

Serving type: bottle

04-20-2011 22:23:13 | More by Metalmonk
Rodenbach Classic (Red) from Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V.
90 out of 100 based on 1,323 ratings.