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Rodenbach Grand Cru | Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V.

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
95
world-class
1,097 Reviews
BEER STATS
Reviews:
1,097
Ratings:
3,823
Avg:
4.25
pDev:
20.94%
 
 
Wants:
307
Gots:
614
For Trade:
26
Rodenbach Grand CruRodenbach Grand Cru
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V.
Belgium | website

Style: Flanders Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 11-25-2000

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User Reviews
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Reviews: 1,097 | Ratings: 3,823
Photo of tboom29
4.15/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer is a deep red brown when poured. A lot of head at first, but it quickly subsides.

Lots of cherry and red fruits in the nose. Smells great.

Very crisp and has a dry, almost tanniny finish, which is probably from the oak. Tart cherry comes through, as well as other dark fruits and some of the oak as well. Medium mouthfeel, with a nice sharp bite throughout. Despite the bite, surpisingly smooth. Although I didn't do this, I would recommend eating with some cheese, as it can get a bit sweet. I'm not a huge fan of sour beers, but this was really great and would be great to sip in the summer.

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Photo of emerge077
4.52/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Into a Liefman's tulip, the Grand Cru pours a deep scarlet tone, capped with several fingers of off-white foam. There's a good level of clarity in this one, without pouring the yeast sediment the first time around.

Smell is perfect, and one of my favorite aspects of Belgian farmhouse styles. The yeast has a distinct funky wildness about it. The aroma first conjures up a wet field in the late morning, as the sun starts to warm up the soil. Damp earth, overripe berries, and a ripened cheese note. A citric sharpness cuts through all the romantic notions, alluding to it's potency.

Taste is citrusy tart at first, spritzy on the palate. Midway through, it has a rounder mouthfeel, with oak and sour berry lasting on the tongue. There is a Balsamic sweetness, but toned down and not vinegary. Aftertaste is a little dry, but balanced by the mouth-watering sweet/sour element.

I can finish a 750 in a sitting, but it's definitely one to pair with food (and share). The label recommends pairing with seafood or dishes with lemon garnish.

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Photo of xav33
4.62/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Rodenbach Grand Cru
12 oz bottle
Medium pour in a tulip glass
Best before 04/08, crucified 01/07

Poured a ruddy brown with an average light brown somewhat lasting head that settles into a thin consistent layer due to good carbonation.

Smelt of strong sweet vinaigrette, and white grape juice, with moderate oak, pipe tobacco, cobwebs.

Taste was upfront strong sourness and moderate sweetness, like some concentrated white grape juice or biting into a fresh tart plum, followed by more strong sourness and moderate sweetness and a tinge of oak, roasted or smoky malt bitterness, and a comfortable brandy like alcoholic warmth on a long sour finish. Palate was light to medium bodied, watery, strongly puckering, lively but softly carbonated, and very slightly alcoholic.

Overall, this is a pretty amazing beer. I have seldom been a fan of sour beers, but the balance of sweetness and subtle bitterness all mesh perfectly. The smell was strong, teasing and enchanting; I spent the first 15 minutes basking in its redolence.

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Photo of urokosaki
4.45/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Appearance is the most romantic red color I have ever seen. Not alot of head like the pictures depict on the website.

Smells like vitamin C tablets and under ripe fruit, but in a good way. The oak is perceivable, like a tinge of red wine was spilled into a lambic. Vinegar-like.

Lots of alcohol for only 6.0%. Perhaps it comes off this way because i've let it warm and it is a very dry beer. Flavor is similar to the aroma; vitamin C and lingering oak. There is a nice sour bitter kick in the back of my mouth that I can't place, it lets the beer finish out really nicely and refreshingly/quenching. Definately a sipper yet I can't get my hand off the glass.

Mouthfeel is light and dry.

The drinkability of this beer requires the mood for it. Maybe a good beer for those who haven't crossed over from wine to beer yet. There is no need for more than one of these, but it is an excellent sipper and a real treat.

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Photo of kenito799
4.22/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Monk's back bar, Philly, $8 in a tulip glass. I am not worthy, what an offering.

Dark thick inky brew with maroon highlights. A bit of head formed and lace stuck along the walls of the glass.

Fruity and sweet malty aromas predominate, with some funky brett 'n' Belgian yeast scents in the mix. My first taste of Flanders red ale, an interesting and complex style. Quite a treat.

The taste is predominantly malty with plummy and grapey fruitiness in the middle, but a sour/tangy backbone, lingering finish. Intense stuff, for sipping and contemplating.

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Photo of Higravity
2.75/5  rDev -35.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Dark brown tint with a amber hue with a slight head of white foam. Sour vinegar sweet with a weird alcohol punch and large citrus bloom. The taste while complex is way too acidic in the finish. The favor of oak is present but the citris owns this beer and the heartburn is already starting. The malt comes through and the sourness would be pleasent but the vinegar note is sending this sideways. Maybe it might have been better colder but I thought cellar temps would be best. I finally polished off the 750 solo as the wife ran for the door at the first sip even though she usually like the sour beers.

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Photo of jwc215
4.25/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip glass. Best before 27/06/07 (indicated on bottom).

Pours mahogany with a tall, bubbly head that quickly f,izzled to a one finger head, than slowly descended to a thin cover.

The smell is of sourness - almost vinegary. Subtle hints of vanilla and oak give it a nice aroma.

The taste is sour with a tart fruitiness. Hints of oak and vanilla mix in. Finishes with a clean, sharp, acidity
Spritzy but smooth, full-body. Flavors linger. Drying, but not puckering.

This would be a wonderful accompaniment to a vinegary, acidic dish.

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Photo of SilentSabre
3.74/5  rDev -12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This was very powerful in the way of smell and taste. In fact, its assertive nature hurt it a bit in my scoring. The appearance was very nice and stuck to the style well, pouring a medium brick red colour with a considerable level of cloudiness. Smell was very musty and "soured" and reminded me of muscadines. Taste was sweet and sour up front, and then at the end, a colossal tanic surge strips your mouth. Very assertive. Good, but I'll be hard pressed to drink this entire 750mL myself tonight.
I have had Flanders Reds before, but never anything this aggressive.

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Photo of rarevos
4.35/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 22 oz bottle into an Ommegang standard-ale glass.

A: Pours a translucent reddish-brown with a half finger of tan head. Carbonation is pretty abundant. Head sticks around for a few minutes before becoming a bubbly blanket.

S: Crisp apple, cherry, and vinous red-wine grape. Hint of raw wine vinegar and an oaky aroma.

T/M: Crisp, sour apple up front with some ripe fruit peeking in afterward: juicy plum, tart cherry. Finish is sour, dry, and long, with a hint of an alcohol bite at the very end--odd since it's not a high abv beer. There's no real bitterness to speak of (thank God). Mouthfeel is nicely bubbly and well balanced.

D: Without doing a side-by-side tasting of this and the regular Rodenbach, I cannot for the life of me explain what the difference is (I know what the brewing/aging differences are, but the *tastes* aren't appreciably different to me). I enjoy both. Regardless, the Grand Cru is a complex, fruity, crisp, refreshing, comforting and tasty beer.

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Photo of nkurz129
3.86/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I tried this on-tap at the Speckled Hen Pub in Reading, PA. When I ordered it, I was warned by the bar keep that it was a real "love-it-or-hate-it" beer. It had a powerful, sour aroma more fitting to a dry cider than a beer. The mouthfeel was dry as well. In the glass, it looked like a kind of murky brew, as reddish-brown colored as the mahogany decor of the bar. It was much lighter on the tongue than its appearance and aroma would have suggested but had a very full complex taste full of fruity tastes and a pleasant, lingering aftertaste.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
4.3/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a cloudy dark reddish brown. Moderate head.

Very acetic smell with a touch of sweetness at the end. The whole is supported by earthy, yeasty undernotes.

The taste is like no other- spicy, sour and sweet. Starts with a slight candy sugar sweetness, then stingingly sour, and then a cinnamon spiciness and more sweetness at the very end. A really complex beer that may be an acquired taste, but once you've acquired it, nothing refreshes quite the same. The only down note is that the current incarnation doesn't seem quite as complex or integrated as the earlier incarnation. Still very good, though.

Mouthfeel is quite carbonated and crisp.

Very drinkable, extremely refreshing and different.

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Photo of HossMcGraw
3.45/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This is really tough to review since I haven't really aquired a taste for this yet. I can tell that it's well crafted, but not sure if it's for me.

The appearance is not that exciting. Reddish brown with a slight head that reduces to a ring, and a little lacing. Aroma is very complex, tart and funky. Blue cheese is prominent. I can also pick up some unripened fruit (strawberry) and some creaminess along with some wood.

Very tart once again on the palate with strong acidity, some strawberry and more funky blue cheese. Alcohol is noticeable. There is a burning sensation as it goes down my throat (not necessarily due tio alcohol), and the finish is more sour strawberries and blue cheese.

The mouthfeel is prickly with carbonation which is nice, but I couldn't see myself drinking a whole lot of this.

Overall an interesting beer. Personally I don't like blue cheese, and there is a lot of that characteristic here. I would definitely reccomend this to someone who does enjoy it however. Glad I tried it. May need to drink more of the style in the future.

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Photo of norwichboy
3.4/5  rDev -20%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Dark brown with a red tinge when held to the light. It produced a good sized lasting head. The smell is an unusual mixture of chocolate and cherries against a vinegary sourness. The taste is very tart, pretty challenging, with some funky characteristics emerging as well on the mid palate that remind me of blue cheese. Mouthfeel is watery with little carbonation. Finishes very sour as well, with a lasting drying of the throat! I found this a struggle personally, much more so than other sour styles: definitely an acquired taste. I can see it benefiting from pairing with food.

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Photo of BenZ
4.82/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Recent vintage 750 poured into flutes.

A: Clear, red-amber, fast-dissapating head. No lacing.

S: Vinegar, pinappley citrus, followed by cheesy funk. Funk is directly proportional to temperature.

T: Hits you right in the throat!! So sour! If you let it linger on your tongue there is a metallic aftertaste (an oozing from the side of your tongue which hits your cheek). There are so many flavors behind the obvious sour blast: cheesy, barny, exotic fruits, woody, etc.

M: Nice and fizzy, perhaps Panil has a better mouthfeel.

D: This is one of the best beers ever and we've bought it many times. But how can a beer that scrapes the skin off of the back of your throat score a 5?

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Photo of Callenak
4.29/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up the smaller bottle of this at Stuffed Sandwich. Poured into a tulip.

Pours a murky reddish brown with a nice and fizzy head. Head dissipates quickly. Smell is sweet with a hint of cherries to it. Carbonation really helps bring it out. The Brett barnyard smell is there but not as powerful as other wild styles.

Taste begins with the tartness, followed by cherries and oak. Sourness lingers after the other flavors disappear. Just a great balance of sweet and sour. I've been on a real sour kick lately and this was a real pleasure. A honor to try such a tasty and well respected beer. Worth the hype.

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Photo of stephendr
4.86/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

11.2oz bottle - color of rust brown– small whitish head short in duration - nose of sour dark cherries , malt , cinnamon , molasses , milk chocolate , and plum – taste of sour dark cherries , plum , and earthy / woody notes perfect balance of tart and sweet – body is light acidic / sweet – aftertaste plum sweetness and sour / tart of cherries

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Photo of edchicma
3.43/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a light cherry with a great carbonated, creamy white head. Smell is mainly cherries with a "barnyard" musky undertone. Taste is sour, sour, sour! Overpowereing in a way..very little hops and malts noted.Mouthfeel was light, but with a definite astringent quality. On a drinkability scale, this takes some getting used to...the sourness is there throughout. Perhaps when paired with the proper cheese, I might rate it higher.

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Photo of rayjay
4/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

210907 1017; not quite sure what to make of the dating system, but I've had this bottle for about 3 months. Very interesting beer, almost no detectable sweetness. Intense sour ale characteristics, such as sourness, vinegar, pepper, metal, oak. It reminds me very much of Jamaican roots drinks. Spicy carbonation. Medium dryness. Very enjoyable overall, but not for the faint of heart or the uninitiated. Pair with a musty cheese. Cheers!

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Photo of NJpadreFan
3.88/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Rodenbach- Grand Cru

Appearance- dark ruby brown with a thick head.
Smell- Strong cherries with a slight molassess hint.
Taste- Strong bitter cherries with a sour whiskey sour mix.
Mouthfeel- Sour but sweet and tasty. Each sip needed to be backed by another.

Overall- A sour/tart beer that was hard to NOT sip. Very tart but very tasty! Try it, you'll like it!

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Photo of vancurly
4/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a deep dark red into a Leffe chalice. Fading tan head.

Aromas of wood, cherry/blackcurrent, winey. Some cool herbaciousness, touch of cider.

Flavour reminds me of sparkling burgundy, but sour... Leathery woody aftertaste, cherry, touch of acetone.

Better balanced than the Classic. The sourness is a little less angular.

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Photo of tkarsies
4.32/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served from 750 mL bottle slightly chilled in wine goblet. Best by 9/21/07. Pours brown with reddish undertones. Tan head and some visible carbonation. Head
lasts throughout the glass. As soon as the bottle is opened, you can smell the sourness. There is a lactic/acetic acid smell as well as a fruity smell.
T-Wow. This is sour—but in a good way. I can taste fruit-apples, cherries, grapes. (All this comes from the yeast?! Amazing.) There is also slight barnyard funk. No significant malt presence or bitterness, yet the sweet and sour balance out nicely.Fairly light mouthfeel with just the right amount of carbonation.
The sweetness and sourness will keep me from drinking a whole bottle in an evening. The alcohol is not noticeable at all. It went well with the grilled steak that I had for dinner. It also amazed a wine snob who was at my house. This is my first Flanders Red and I was very impressed and definitely will visit this brew again.

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Photo of klewis
4.2/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle

A: Pours a red color with a head that takes up nearly all of the tulip. This head isn't going away soon.

S: A vague cherry smell is accompanied by lots of Belgian farmhouse funk.

T: Very tart and funky with a taste that reminds me of sour fizzy candy that I had as a kid.

M: Medium-bodied and syrupy with high carbonation.

D: It take some getting used to, but this is quite enjoyable. Not a beer that I'll drink a lot of, but definitely one I'd drink again.

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Photo of soulgrowl
4.34/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Deeply translucent burgundy root beer body with a small, parchment-colored head. Retention is lacking, but overall an attractive beer.

Smell: Ah... it's been a while since I smelled something so interesting, so refreshing. Sour concord grape juice, light farmy funk, an undercurrent of yogurty lactic tang, nutty sherry, and oaky port. Really, a great nose.

Taste: Sour through-and-through, with a spicy, envigorating tartness that swells in intensity as you hold it on your palate, then dissipates slightly before a clean, bracingly tart finish. Flavors are that of grape juice, glutamic acid, lactic acid, port, cherry juice, and underripe nectarines. Very good, very bright, and very refreshing, but I do wish there were a bit more depth in the malt profile.

Mouthfeel: Soft carbonation with bubbles that you can almost feel rolling around in your mouth individually. Clean and dry, but the acidity can be harsh at times.

Drinkability: Yum. This is exceptionally flavorful, interesting, and drinkable, especially at only 6% ABV. A great match for goat cheese and fairly good with medium cheddar.

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Photo of beersabound
4.05/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

When we first opened this one it had a strong vinegar aroma and flavor. This was beyond sour and unpleasant. However, after it warmed up, the vinegar subisided substantially allowng the fruity tones and sourness to come through. This beer has a hazy amber hue with a fizzy head that forms nicely and then snap, crackle, pops away. The aroma is predominantly sour with cherry and other fruits. The mouthfeel is puckering, quite lively and dries the mouth. the carbonation is high and it has a little body. Good Sour! Let it warm before you dive in.

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Photo of Lnedrive14
4.13/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Totally biased because of my love of the style...

Pours a light brown with a red delicious apple hue. Big white head and nice lacing. strong sour smell immediately overwhelms the room. Wonderful sour tartness is the dominant taste, but it is well rounded with cherry/apple sweetness. Lingering flavors. Perfect amount of carbonation to mesh with the tartness. Strong wood/barrel aged sensation. Highly drinkable.

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Rodenbach Grand Cru from Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V.
95 out of 100 based on 1,097 ratings.