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Rodenbach Grand Cru - Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V.

Rodenbach Grand CruRodenbach Grand Cru

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,515 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2515
Reviews: 960
rAvg: 4.29
pDev: 11.89%

Brewed by:
Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V. visit their website

Style | ABV
Flanders Red Ale |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-25-2000)
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Ratings: 2,515 | Reviews: 960 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of clayrock81


4.14/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Finally got to try this classic and it did not disappoint. Poured a reddish brown body with one finger a head on top of an aroma of a lot sour and funky fruits, mainly a tart cherry aroma, a touch of wood and/or wine-like qualities and a a touch of sweetness. Beer is light bodied and smooth and not as sour/funky as it smells. The sour/tart cherry aspect is aplenty but there is a great balance of sweetness (whether it be candi sugar or fruit derived) and the funk aspect is minimal so it's not a overpowering, puckering sourness or tartness but just hits the right spot. Great carbonation so beer is lively and finishes real crisp. Just a great beer to sip with after dinner.

Serving type: on-tap

02-18-2014 14:45:58 | More by clayrock81
Photo of LambicLion


4.46/5  rDev +4%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Dark, even very rich appearance, little or no head, pleasantly sour as described on the establishment's beer list minus the term "pleasantly". To my disappointment, it was the only sour on tap. From which I can gather that my taste buds have rare company or/and it's just not a popular taste. I'm fine with that...

Serving type: on-tap

01-11-2014 05:37:43 | More by LambicLion
Photo of KVNBGRY


4.71/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Ap - Deep, brilliant amber; thin, off-white head that dissipates to a thin ring. Spotty lacing throughout.

Ar - Sweet vinegar, ripe red fruits.

T - Tart berries, vinegar is more subdued than nose suggests. Lingering candy sweetness, almost like a fruit roll-up.

M - Perfect. Slick, light to medium bodied with great carbonation. I wouldn't want this any different.

O - A near perfect Flanders Red. Having it on tap is a surprise for me. I have never seen it anywhere else than my local bottle shop.

Serving type: on-tap

01-10-2014 20:33:10 | More by KVNBGRY
Photo of Treyliff

West Virginia

4.24/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

On tap at Thirsty Monk, Asheville NC

A- pours murky brown with a small white head that reduces to a ring of lace

S- balsamic vinegar, tart cherry, grape, with a hint of oaky vanilla

T- puckering up front with grape skin and apple peel, fruity and tart cherry with a bone dry finish

M- Medium body with a fizzy carbonation, spritzy mouthfeel with a fizzy and dry finish

O- The fruity flavors that come from this beer are amazing, considering there is no fruit used to make it, a fine beer.

Serving type: on-tap

01-10-2014 01:06:40 | More by Treyliff
Photo of cjgiant

District of Columbia

3.9/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a red, barely able to see through, minimal head, no lacing. The smell is tart, sour, hints of breadiness.

The taste is less tart than the smell. It's actually a quite mellow sour (note: I had just tried a Westbrook Gose, which was more sour than this beer). I would think someone looking into sours could start with this, and if they enjoyed it, could take the next step.

So overall, as a beer, this is very solid as its a bridge, I feel, between an acquired style (not one that I necessarily have) and a standard beer. As I said above, a mildly adventurous beer drinker should try this to see where they might want to experiment next.

Serving type: on-tap

09-11-2013 20:42:53 | More by cjgiant
Photo of Axnjxn

North Carolina

4.18/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

on tap at ridgewood in raleigh. into a tulip.

pours a dark reddish brown with no head. good cherry aroma on the nose, not too tart or overwhelming. taste is quite drinkable and refreshing with a perfect amount of tart cherries . medium bodied with low carbonation.

overall just an excellent flemish red.

Serving type: on-tap

08-13-2013 16:52:48 | More by Axnjxn
Photo of retry4z


4.35/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Served cold in a snifter at Torrey Pints Wholefoods bar. $9 for a 33dl pour.

A: dark red with thin lacing and creamy head.

S: strong sour cherry aroma, some mealtiness.

T: Very intense volcanic deep sour cherry flavor, very surprising how much it is cherry flavored considering all the flavor comes from the yeast. After the initial bombardment of sour cherry comes a mild fruity sweetness. That it was aged is very apparent.

M: crisp, medium bodied, fine carbonation.

O: Highly refreshing when drunk cooled. The sourness is pronounced. An excellent beer - a testament to what beer can be.

Serving type: on-tap

08-02-2013 00:41:42 | More by retry4z
Photo of recoveringmormon


4.16/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: Brown, minimal redness when held to the light, in a wide round goblet

S: Fruity and crisp, with vinegar undertones

T: Sweet nose, with balanced and complex sour/funky/earthy finish.

M: Thin and astringent, as most sours, with maybe a little more carbonation.

Overall: my second-favorite sour (after Cuvee des Jacobins), but a little easier to find. Admittedly less tart and better balanced, this is usually the one I'll order for friends when introducing them to the style.

Serving type: on-tap

07-16-2013 01:31:22 | More by recoveringmormon
Photo of Alieniloquium


3.86/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Coffee District. Served in a Rodenbach flute.

Appearance - Deep murky red. No real head, but a thick white collar.

Smell - Malty. Lots of caramel. Oak and vanilla. Acetic acid, but not a lot.

Taste - More sour, but still not the centerpiece. Lots of oak and vanilla. Malt is strong, like the nose. Acetic sourness builds into an oaky finish.

Mouthfeel - Medium body. Slick. Well carbonated.

Overall - Quality all around. Nothing that stands out but a great all around Flanders Red.

Serving type: on-tap

05-27-2013 23:49:29 | More by Alieniloquium
Photo of Knapp85


4.24/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This poured out as a nice deep red color with a fizzy white head on top. Hardly any lacing and retention on this beer. The smell of the beer is slightly sour, with notes of oak and cherry. The taste is really nice, it's got a subtle tart cherry flavor with a slight sweet malt backbone. The flavors are very well balanced. The mouthfeel is light bodied, with a solid carbonation and very drinkable. Overall this beer is very good. Would drink it again anytime.

Serving type: on-tap

04-21-2013 04:34:48 | More by Knapp85
Photo of DrinkSlurm


4.36/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from tap into globe style glass at flying saucer Nashville.
Pours a deep red brown...nice thin lacing hugs the glass. Awesome woody sour red aromas...lots of funk and wood. Taste is amazing...woody funky sour tart amber malt. Wow.
Its just so drinkable and tasty...get it now. If you like the style you will love this. Its damn near perfect and a guaranteed palate pleaser.

Serving type: on-tap

02-26-2013 01:01:19 | More by DrinkSlurm
Photo of tdm168

North Carolina

4.29/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

On tap at Bottlemixx.

A - dark reddish amber with a large, dense, off white head that has great retention

S - tart, cherries

T - tart cherries, sour, lactic, oaky, winey, mild malt presence

M - medium bodied, well carbonated

This was delicious. I was excited to have found it on tap. It has a tremendous flavor that is complex yet drinkable. The tartness isn't overpowering either which helps the drinkability. This is not a style I typically go for, but when I saw the chance to try this one I jumped at it. I would definitely have this again. It was very enjoyable.

Serving type: on-tap

02-10-2013 02:20:14 | More by tdm168
Photo of Michael_D

New York

4.16/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Dark pour with a khaki head. Smells very tart with some hay and earthiness. Tastes impressively smooth with heavy notes of cherries, sour, cherry, with some bitterness to balance. Very nice. Would definitely drink this again, and regularly if possible!

Serving type: on-tap

01-31-2013 02:45:38 | More by Michael_D
Photo of constantine_272


4.7/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

A: In a tulip, little to no head with few speckled white foam dots. Dark brown with no cloud.

S: Rich sweet raspberry. Sweet fermented tobacco. Very rich and very sweet.

T: Amazing. Sweet, full bodied raspberry. Tangy and zesty with hints of orange and lemon zest. Mouthwatering.

M: Not too thin, not too heavy. Tingles nicely on the tongue with the sour taste.

O: One of the best beers I've ever had. I've never been huge on sour ales but this is a desert island beer. The tanginess leaves you feeling more thirsty wanting more with each sip.

Serving type: on-tap

01-26-2013 06:31:21 | More by constantine_272
Photo of Lakemonster


4.51/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this beer on tap at a wonderful new little bar / bistro in Stowe, VT called Crop. I am exploring the world of sours and when I saw this on tap I knew I had to get it, that and they just ran out of the Hill Farmstead Double Galaxy IPA, that was my first choice. The beer is light and refreshing with hints of cherries and a medium sourness. The flavor that is left in your mouth as you put your glass down is the part where this beer really shines. Nice to pair with a bland smooth cheese to reset your palate. I will most def. order this again.

Serving type: on-tap

01-13-2013 16:08:32 | More by Lakemonster
Photo of Bouleboubier


4.4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

So much to love about this beer. It stands alone in my eyes. With further sippings, I may hope to one day fully realize its greatness.

EYES: Big, foamy suds - lasts okay, but no lace. Cranberry-red color and brilliantly clear.

NOSTRILS: Smells slightly funky - almost, but not quite vinegar. Mostly fruity aromas - mostly that of a cranberry juice cocktail wine, though no alcohol present. Not as vibrant as I would like.

MOUTH: Tartness (exponentially so with larger sips) - potent, but not puckering. Quite fruity in the aforementioned cranberry, et al fashion. Now this is vibrant, but it lacks the sugary sweetness of a fruit juice. Also, I could swear I tasted a touch of chocolate in the back/finish.

It's thirst-quenchingly dry and lightly crisp, however, I almost yearn for just a bit more (malty) body/sweetness - of course not quite in the arena of Duchesse. Mellow, pleasing sour tang/film seems to coat the entire mouth after each sip, fading real slow. And as I mentioned above, a large, quick sip will just about shock the palate.

VERDICT: A magnificently-crafted beer (that I wouldn't doubt was better before Rodenbach was bought by Palm). One of the more effervescent, thinner examples of this style - seems like a bit of a joke grouping this with Duchesse, but I get it.

Serving type: on-tap

12-11-2012 18:24:56 | More by Bouleboubier
Photo of ToddT


4.7/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

L- Deep brown with ruby highlights almost no head when served but little bits of lace above the top of the beer to indicate that it once had a head. There is no lacing left on the glass while drinking this.

S- Dark candied fruits hidden under a funky, tart, and slightly sour aroma of vinegar, complex and balanced.

T- Candied cherries with a subtle tartness right away, the middle is a mix of tart green apple, grape, and wood notes, then the finish has a slightly puckering sour final note of cherries to close things out. Very complex lots of subtle flavors continue to come forward as this warms and the palate adjusts to the sourness in this. I could drink a lot of this.

M- Medium in body and carbonation, right on the mark to go with the complex flavors and the sourness in this one.

O- This is one fantastic beer, highly recommended, and an easy drinker at 6.0% ABV. This has a character that is all it's own, it is somewhat like other sours I have had, but in a league of it's own.

Serving type: on-tap

10-22-2012 05:53:43 | More by ToddT
Photo of TheRealBigC


4.53/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Flanders Red might be my favorite Belgian style, and Rodenbach Grand Cru is one of the best I've tried. Tart cherry & grape flavor causes the most pleasant of puckers. Nice, mild carbonation is enough to tingle your tongue and it has a synergistic effect with the tartness. What a fantastic beer.

Serving type: on-tap

10-07-2012 19:18:27 | More by TheRealBigC
Photo of thagr81us

South Carolina

3.95/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served from tap into a Rodenbach Grand Cru tulip. Poured a deep dark ruby red with a one finger off-white head that subsided to half a finger slowly. Maintained excellent lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, fruit, wood, vinegar, and sour. The flavor was of sweet malt, vinegar, fruit, wood, and tart. It had a light feel on the palate with medium carbonation. Overall this was a fairly good brew. I have had this one before out of the bottle and I have to say that It carries over quite well on-tap as well. The vinegar touch on this brew is what keeps me coming back to it over and over. This also includes the various Vintage versions that I have had in the past as well. Really enjoyable and definitely brings the pucker along for the ride to keep you on your toes. An absolute must try as Rodenbach is doing good things with this one.

Serving type: on-tap

09-27-2012 10:45:00 | More by thagr81us
Photo of Titans77


4.7/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Roasthouse Pub in Frederick MD.

A - Dark brown/red with a half finger of light brown head. Solid looking beer.

S - Sour cherry and dark fruits. Very strong and enticing.

T - Dark sour fruits. Cherry up front and fig in the back. Some lemon as well. Very good taste.

M - Smooth and medium bodied with a sour feel to it. Almost perfect for the style.

O - currently my favorite sour as of this review. Very solid brew.

Serving type: on-tap

08-22-2012 20:32:25 | More by Titans77
Photo of BucannonXC5


4/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Draft into a champagne glass at San Diego Brewing Co. on Aug. 17, 2012 (for $6.50), in San Diego. Poured a caramel honey with two fingers (when I got it) of white head. Good retention on the top and the sides on the way down.

Smelled sweet, tart, candy and sugar. Reminded me of Smarties or Sweet Tarts at first. Some spices as well. Surprisingly seemed like a good amount of citrus hops.

Tasted those citrus hops first. Then sweet, slightly sour, tart, grape and cherry. Slight white wine (champagne?).

Light-to-medium body. Thin, acidic texture. Average carbonation. Long, bitter finish.

A pretty good sour beer. Not anywhere as good as Russian River’s Supplication that I had recently, but good overall. My slight cold may have hurt or helped this rating as well.

Serving type: on-tap

08-21-2012 07:11:02 | More by BucannonXC5
Photo of Darkmagus82


4/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served on tap in a snifter glass

Appearance – Served a deep ruby color with a small off white head. The head faded relatively fast to leave only a very light level of lacing.

Smell – The aroma was of a heavy sour grape and cherry aroma with some green apple and vinegar smells.

Taste – The taste begins of a fruity sourness. A puckering cherry and grape are most noticeable in the beginning. As the taste advances however a apple cider vinegar taste comes to the tongue and blasts the taste buds with a sour flavor. These take the taste to the end where a light yeasty flavor comes to the tongue along with a lighter dark fruit sweetness which ever so lightly mellow out the very vinegary taste.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is light and a little prickly with the carbonation level being above average. Both do a wonderful job with the very sour nature of the beer and make it quite drinkable.

Overall – While not really my favorite beer style, this is a nice and sour Flemish with a good flavor profile. It is classic for a reason.

Serving type: on-tap

08-16-2012 18:56:51 | More by Darkmagus82
Photo of MicroBeerMan1980


4.45/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Dark amber brown. Tan/white head with light retention. Ring of head retention remains around edge of beer.

S: Tart and sweet, candy and lemon meringue.

T: Wild and flavorful. Tart, Sharp and full bodied. The presence of earthy loam, funk and tannins are heavy. It's like drinking a good Chateauneuf du Pape combined with a dry Champagne.

M: Round, tart, acidic and lingering.

O: A wonderful beer! Wild yet tame. Drinkable and enjoyable.

Serving type: on-tap

08-16-2012 01:10:50 | More by MicroBeerMan1980
Photo of Reaper16


4.7/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

served on-tap @ Alcove, Tuscaloosa, AL, into a tulip glass

Pours a gorgeous dark ruby color. The body is pretty clear and contains within it many spectrum of red, but they skew darker. It looks vinous in this way, but the 1.5 fingers of head reveal this to be a beer. I can't imagine a Flanders Red looking any better, so I'm scoring this a 5.0.

The aroma is not all that different from regular Rodenbach. I find that beer's nose to be full of sour cherry, full of balsamic vinegar, full of red wine notes. I find the same with the Grand Cru. The only real difference for me is the elevated amount of astringent oak barrel aroma in the Grand Cru.

The taste, however, is significantly different than normal Rodenbach. Where that beer is lightly tart and quaffable, the Grand Cru does not shy away from being tart. This is a truly sour beer, in all of the good ways. Balsamic vinegar, sour cherries, blackcurrants, and woody, dry oak flavor (but not the vanillin you'd get in oak-aged stouts) -- Rodenbach Grand Cru has a lot going on for it. There's just enough sweet malty flavors and red fruit flavors to balance the sour character (the beer becomes more balanced as it warms, too). It's really delicious.

The mouthfeel is nice and dry. The aggressive tartness makes for a beer that isn't as easy to drink as it could be, but everything is just fine. Overall, this is about as great as you could ever expect a Flanders Red to be. In this day and age of scarce fruit lambics and overhyped American Wild Ales, this beer still exists as an affordable option for that sour fix.

Serving type: on-tap

07-22-2012 02:02:03 | More by Reaper16
Photo of VncentLIFE

North Carolina

4.43/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

at Sams. Pour is deep red. Thin tight white head. The smell is really sweet, but sour as hell. Lots of vinegar, sweet cherries as well. The taste is tart and sour as hell. Almost puckering. Loads of tart sour cherries dominate through the drinkable finish.

This is how to do a Flanders. Loads of tartness, sourness, yet subtly sweet and drinkable.

Serving type: on-tap

07-17-2012 22:32:26 | More by VncentLIFE
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Rodenbach Grand Cru from Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V.
95 out of 100 based on 2,515 ratings.