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Rodenbach Grand Cru - Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V.

Rodenbach Grand CruRodenbach Grand Cru

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,526 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2526
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: 2,526 | Reviews: 960 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of mkobes

New Jersey

4.1/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle. Light brown and clear in color with a nice fluffy tan head. Candi sugar aroma. Sour tasting. Very tart cherry like . Tart cherries in the nose. Flavor is malty and sweet. Well balanced beer. Some oak in the finish. Finish is refreshing and tart. Drinkable and enjoyable.

Serving type: bottle

05-25-2005 17:25:37 | More by mkobes
Photo of aleyeast

South Carolina

4.13/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Let me preface by saying, I think this could have used a little more time in the cellar, not a usual problem with me as I have quite a backed up cellar.

poured into a rodenbach tulip from 75cl corked bottle

color is auburn-amber, head is orangy with mixed bubble size
aroma is slight sour, earth
taste is sour, fruity, very effervescent
mouthfeel probably could us 6 months to mellow and have the flavors blend, almost unripe, still easy drinking for a sour ale.

Serving type: bottle

02-01-2006 18:48:24 | More by aleyeast
Photo of goatherder


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

Deep red in colour, a crystal clear apart from a few floaties from my heavy handed pour. The head is small and retreats back to a persistent collar thought the carbonation is lively. Smells of tart cherries, sherry with a funky brett edge. Solid sourness in the mouth, not just on the tongue but all around. Complex tart fruit and malt flavours. The balance is exceptional with the sourness a counterpoint to the rich malty sweetness. The beer feels full bodied and sweet yet finishes bone dry. A wonderful experience of contradictions with a touch of funk. Truly a world class beer.

Serving type: bottle

09-05-2008 09:25:56 | More by goatherder
Photo of roscoehnj

New Jersey

4.03/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep red with little head. Very interesting looking.

More interesting to taste and smell however. One whiff tells you this is going to be sour and one taste blows you away. I was not sure that this was how it was supposed to taste until I read some of the reviews here but this is by multiples the most sour beer I have ever had. The cherry like sour taste grabs hold of your tounge and does not let go. Right amount of carbonation for this type of beer makes it easier to drink than one might think. I'm not sure I could drink this on a regular basis but it is one hell of an interesting beer.

Serving type: bottle

06-01-2009 19:06:32 | More by roscoehnj
Photo of IrieJackalope


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

Poured from a 750ml bottle into a Belgian-style goblet. The color is dark red, almost brown, slightly opaque with a fair amount of head. Good amount of lacing left behind. Aroma is almost solely sour apple, or lively tart yeast funk that one comes to associate with Flanders Red Ales. Taste is very balances; the sour notes are there but don't overwhelm other elements of the beer. Mouthfeel is very lively, but just enough to make the beer extremely drinkable. Very good overall, a good representation of what has quickly become my favorite style.

Serving type: bottle

03-21-2010 07:49:32 | More by IrieJackalope
Photo of Dusty278


4.63/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Nice head, healthy lace, deep red/brown

Smell: Sour fruit, I can't pick out which. Hints of malt.

Taste & Mouthfeel: Tart, fruity (cherry, plum, grapes?), sharp sourness, extremely complex. I won't for a minute oretend to be able to pick out everything. My palate will need a bit more time, time I'm willing to take.

Drinkablity: Wonderful, absulutely wonderful. I've never had anything like it.

Serving type: on-tap

09-17-2008 05:57:36 | More by Dusty278
Photo of BellsFan


4.5/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance. Poured from the 750 mL bottle into a Samuel Adams pint glass. Less than one finger head off white. Burgundy brown in the glass.
Smell. Tart cherries, vinigar, crab apple.
Taste. Same as the smell but with tannins.
Mouthfeel. Mouth puckering, drying, tart astringency.
Overall this an intresting beer because its a sipping thirst quencher. How can that be?

Serving type: bottle

07-19-2012 01:02:02 | More by BellsFan
Photo of BSK_ONE

New Jersey

4.25/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Ruby red, purplish color, and with no carbonation.
S: Sour Dark fruits, cherries and plums
T: Sour cherries, lemons, limes, with hints of oak.
M: tartness, but overall enjoyable.
O: This is only my second tart beer. (1st Cuvée Freddy). Sour beers are such a shock to my taste buds and mind that I can't even say with conviction that I like the taste. It's unique. And I don't hate it.

Serving type: bottle

01-25-2014 02:57:59 | More by BSK_ONE
Photo of kiya


4.3/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a dark reddish brown with a head that quickly dissipates and leaves no noticeable lacing.
Smells of overripe Granny Smith apples with a hidden note of oak seeping through, scents aren't overpowering, almost hidden.
Strong front end with a heavy fresh cider flavor giving way to a lime tanginess combined with a bitter (almost Gueuze-like) flavor that lingers for a few moments. The tart bitterness in this brew works very well, and for me they've hit the balance perfectly between subtle ripe fruit and the sour stone fruit ending.
The feel is great, with great balance from beginning to end.
I can drink an entire bottle of this, and might even want seconds, which is rare for a 750ml serving of any beer, regardless of how much i enjoyed it.

Serving type: bottle

04-24-2008 02:46:52 | More by kiya
Photo of ThoreauLikeAGirl


3.8/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured deep brown in color with hints of ruby
small amount of lacing around the glass. any bit of head recedes quickly.
Nose: balsamic vinegar and sour cherries. some oak.
medium amount of carbonation
Very refreshing. Taste of sour cherries and sweet dark fruit. Not overly sour. Vinegar not as pronounced as nose suggests. Dry finish with some bready malts. Taste improves through the bottle. Very drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

05-11-2011 02:01:23 | More by ThoreauLikeAGirl
Photo of sitbooboosit

British Columbia (Canada)

4.58/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a mud red/brown
head is tight and dense, vanilla ice cream colour, nice lacing, doesn't stick for too long
aroma is of strong concord grape juice, welch's. strongly sour and wine-like. almost a grapelike bubblegum fragrance
sour grape, winey start, oak aging really comes through, rounds out with a sweet malt middle, either hoppy or sour bite to finish.

really enjoyed it. didn't expect it to be as sour as it was, but loved it. couldn't drink em all night, but fantastic with food or after dinner.

Serving type: bottle

04-27-2005 19:49:29 | More by sitbooboosit
Photo of KAF


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

I love this beer! I have had it bottled before and can still get bottles of it a few blocks from my apt. I just had it on tap two weeks ago at Town Hall Brewery in Minneapolis, MN. I also just had a bottle of it that had been aged in a friends cellar for an extra year. If you like sour, aging it an extra year made my mouth almost cringe! The pour is a ruby or deep rich red in color with a very slight hazyness to it. Aromas of cherry and plum as well as a tartness on the nose. Taste is complex. You get the dark fruits of cherry and plum as well as vinegar and mustard seed. A nice champagne feel in the mouth. Great beer!

Serving type: on-tap

02-26-2008 19:40:25 | More by KAF
Photo of Paisan


4.97/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Di-vine (lame pun intended). And coming from an atheist, that is no small compliment.
This is a truly exceptional beer.

Dark reddish brown, pours with a fast receding head. The second you open the bottle - or the glass is placed before you -, you get a noseful of berries, cherry, oak, vanilla, caramel, some vinegar. You would expect this of wine, not beer.
The taste is exactly what the smell promised: lots of sour fruit, a malty sweetness, tannins, something resembling balsamico vinegar, woody aftertaste.
Very refreshing, very drinkable, very desirable.

Take a regular Rodenbach (which is already great), and double its aroma, complexity, finesse... and that's the Grand Cru.
World class, without a doubt.

Serving type: bottle

10-07-2009 09:48:18 | More by Paisan
Photo of JulieRFoster


3.08/5  rDev -28.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Burnished cherry color, fairly translucent, with a good 2 cm of vanilla colored head resting atop.
The smell is tart, with red fruit, merteuille (I forget the english name of this red berry) and dark vanilla extract.
It rolls into your mouth with a sweet, full-bodied taste. There is a very distinct taste in the back of the palate – like a pleasant vomit. It's very acidic, dark and fruity (like black cherries).
An interesting taste, but it's just too damn sweet. It's dark, syrupy, acidic and very sweet. Too heavy to be really drinkable, and a flat, or possibly 2-diamensional taste.

Serving type: bottle

03-20-2006 14:52:36 | More by JulieRFoster
Photo of surfnebr


4.88/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - Redish-copper tint, effervescent off white/subtle red head

S - Gritty, barnyard, cherry-red fruit sourness

T - Funky sourness as expected, oak, refeshing at the finish, not as acidic as expected

M - Effervescent, medium body, smooth

Extremely enjoyable, perfect session beer for a warm summer day

Serving type: bottle

09-23-2008 18:39:00 | More by surfnebr
Photo of Stoutfan23DJ


4.5/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ML Bottle, 6% abv, Best before date of 12/09/2014 on the bottom of the bottle.
Poured into a Duvel Tulip glass at 50 degrees.

Appearance: Poured it right down the center of the glass and received a 2 finger off white head that resided down to a nice lacing on the top. Dark, dank brown & red body with a medium carbonation and a nice looking lacing on the sides after each swirl.

Aroma: An assortment of dried fruit like sweet apple, grape, plum, prune, and some cherry. I’m getting some other interesting characteristics like vinegar, candied sugar, tart fruit, and aged oak. This is complex and I’m in for a real treat.

Taste: The flavors that hit you first are the dry, sweet and sour fruits. Apple and apple cider, grape, cherry, prune, plum, pear, raisin and citrus in the background. Much sweeter than I expected, and is the sweetest Flanders Red that I’ve had so far. There is a nice sourness here but it is very mild compared most other red sours. The other characteristics like the breaded malts, sweet sugar candy, old leather, tobacco, old wood, vanilla, and a slight astringent funkiness come through just as prominent as the fruit characteristics. The sweet and dry fruit and all of the other interesting characteristics really come together at the same wavelength. This is a very well-crafted and well-blended beer that simply has everything you want in a Flanders Red Ale. Very complex, robust yet very smooth, very well balanced, and very well-crafted!

Mouth feel: Medium carbonation that is right where I wanted it and really helped move the flavors along through each sip. The drink ability on this is moderate. As it warms up, all of the characteristics really unfold and it really makes you want to take your time and sip on it little by little.

Overall: I am really impressed with this and I definitely will be buying this again when it’s available around me and when I’m feeling a top shelf Flanders Red again. This sits on top of the list of Belgian Red Ales so far for me. I definitely recommend this to anybody who hasn’t had this and already enjoys this style of beer and to anybody that wants to start somewhere in the range of Flanders Red Style Ales.

Serving type: bottle

11-08-2012 23:55:32 | More by Stoutfan23DJ
Photo of SanDNigel


4.59/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Cork top bottle
A- Barely cloudy burgundy with a light tan head.
S- Sweet dark grape, fig, raisin with plenty of alcohol. Fruity without too much pucker
T- Tangy, grape, apple, delicious. Tart palate wrecking sensation. Really awesome and easy to drink.
M- 5/10 bubble size with an almost metallic after taste
This is a great beer. A perfect introduction to sours for most anyone.

Serving type: bottle

07-06-2013 18:45:10 | More by SanDNigel
Photo of HellsBELLS24


4.55/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice flemish sour ale. Especially like the flavor from the oak aging process. Hard to get around here. Has a much better finish than the regular rodenbach.

ABV not very high in this ale at (6%) its a little low. I would have expected a higher ABV. Still an excellent brew though.

Serving type: bottle

06-01-2006 02:12:46 | More by HellsBELLS24
Photo of MaggieReed


4.25/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I am a huge fan of this style, but this is not AS amazing as Ommegang Rouge- still amazing though. The flavors are extremely layered and rich, but they don't quite blend as seamlessly at the front as they could. But if left to linger, what you have is utter deliciousness- a party in your mouth...and a very good beer overall.

Serving type: bottle

01-14-2009 17:26:49 | More by MaggieReed
Photo of JimmyTango


4.28/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Rusty brown with a very rosy hue. Crystal clear with a creamy head that starts big and falls to a thin layer that just won't dissipate. The reddish color is so pretty when held up to light...

S: My favorite part of this beer is the smell. Sour, wet, pungent and TASTY. I smell dried cranberries, a touch of dew sweetness, and some bread dough. It hits in the back of the throat when you sniff it too hard. As it warms I'm getting some wood and balsamic.

T: Juicy and puckering with some bitterness thrown in with the sour. Almost a hint of fruity pears, like in a BPA but they are quickly wiped away by the sourness and a hint of cranberry juice. As it warms I'm noticing much more bittering hops than when I started the bottle, and I'm not stoked. It may be a reaction to the cheese I'm eating with it, but I think I could do without.

M: Light and viscous like apple juice with fine carbonation. Finishes dry as a bone.

O: Was on its way to a rave review until the bittering hops started to bug me. Excellent in every way otherwise though, and like I said it may have been a food thing and not really the beer's problem at all.

Serving type: bottle

09-26-2011 21:36:40 | More by JimmyTango
Photo of Lars3


4.95/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

750mL bottle, first into a Lindemans flute, then into an oversized snifter.

Poured into the flute this beer had a beautiful billowing brownish head. The body was garnet with only small amounts of light able to pass through. When I switched to the snifter the beer looked black with only a modest head quickly falling to a mere lacing.

In the flute I smelled nothing, but the snifter exploded with delicous sweet sour aroma. It reminds me of red wine, but less sharp.

Super cold out of the fridge this beer was gross and candy-like. As it warmed over less than 5 minutes it transformed into something otherworldly. It reminds me if green apples with the tiniest hint of caramel in the background.

Perfect carbonation. Small sharp bubbles that carres the tongue instead of attacking it. Not too tannic. I expect a beer this sour to be drier, not a bad thing.

Incredibly drinkable. Only $8.99 for a 750mL of an imported beer this tasty is dangerous. The 6% alcohol makes it far too easy to put back a whole bottle in under an hour. Perfect on a hot muggy day... like today.

EDIT: For about 2 hours after finishing this beer I craved nothing but cilantro.

Serving type: bottle

06-01-2010 23:05:07 | More by Lars3
Photo of leschkie


4.63/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

On-tap at Toronado and poured into a tulip.

Appearance: Pours a variety of foliage colors that you typically see when driving through the Atlantic Northeast during autumn. At first glance, a conglomeration between pumpkin orange and chestnut brown. But placing this one in fron of the setting sun reveals its true beauty: blazing fire red resembling the setting sun of the deserts of the American Southwest. Incredible! The frothy ecru head is spritzy with its fair share of carbination that eventually settles into a thin ring with pieces of broken delicate lace.

Smell: Sweet and sour cherries, dry tartness with some acidity and vinegar, and generous quantities of oak from the barrels. Each contribution is just so spot on that I can't even fathom it. This is the prototypical scent that every sour should have, period.

Taste: Holy crap! My taste buds are swimming in this stuff. The sweet and sour notes just play off of each other perfectly. When I want sour, I get sour. Just when the sour and tart get to the point of being borderline overwhelming, the sweet makes itself known to assuage the situation. Finishes clean and refreshingly dry with a nice acidic bite.

Mouthfeel: Light- to medium-bodied with the perfect amount of carbination. Sticky, but only just. This will probably be one of the few beers I review that will receive a perfect score for mouthfeel. I can't find anything wrong with it. Nothing more I can say than that.

Overall: I will never understand why people continue to seek out the rarer, younger "sexy" sours out there when they have utter perfection at their fingertips with the Rodenbach Grand Cru. Trust me, once you've had this on-tap, you will never go back. For me, this one will always be that first crush that you never really truly get over. Absolutely delectable.

Serving type: on-tap

06-30-2011 00:53:14 | More by leschkie
Photo of deskim


4.38/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

poured into a snifter

appearance - brown with red that shows through in the light

smell - smells slightly sour with hints of fruit

taste - not as sour as it smells. fairly sweet with cherry flavors. oak is present in the finish

mouthfeel - high carbonation level

drinkability - very drinkable, almost like a juice. especially for the price. will buy again

Serving type: bottle

12-23-2010 05:23:29 | More by deskim
Photo of dennarb


5/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The first thing you notice is the huge head. The bartender at Monk's had to top up twice to get about an 80% liquid to head ratio. The color is a beautiful translucent reddish brown. The first taste has crisp Granny Smith apple tartness, but nice roundness in the mouth and just a little malty sweetness going down. This is a really fine beer. It doesn't really taste like sherry but if you can imagine the depth of a good dry sherry reborn as a Belgian ale you'll come close to the Rodenbach Grand Cru.

Serving type: on-tap

04-19-2008 05:07:31 | More by dennarb
Photo of sirdillon


4.58/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance-Clear brownish red with beautiful ruby highlights on the edges, slightly off white head that doesn't stick around too much but leaves a ring of foam around the glass. Great looking beer.

Smell- A lot of tartness, cherry, fruitcake, and cinnamon. Maybe a bit of funkiness, but generally a very well-behaved smell.

Taste- Really excellent, taste begins with a lot of sour cherry and strawberry flavors, and ends with that very familiar juicy sweet/honey taste. This is great.

Mouthfeel- Not much to say here. It's acidic and medium bodied. not a ton of carbonation, but it's just fine.

Overall- This is not my favorite style of beer, but I found this to be exceptional. Not too sour, but also not god awfully sweet and juicy like a lot of these flemish reds. Real easy and pleasant drinking, highly recommended.

Serving type: bottle

06-26-2011 06:19:11 | More by sirdillon
Rodenbach Grand Cru from Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V.
95 out of 100 based on 2,526 ratings.