Rodenbach Grand Cru - Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V.

Not Rated.
Rodenbach Grand CruRodenbach Grand Cru

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

1,040 Reviews
THE BROS
100
world-class

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,040
Hads: 3,544
rAvg: 4.24
pDev: 10.38%
Wants: 280
Gots: 482 | FT: 26
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V. visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Flanders Red Ale |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-25-2000

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (7) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Rodenbach Grand Cru Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,040 | Hads: 3,544
Photo of KVNBGRY
4.7/5  rDev +10.8%
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. (505 characters)

Photo of Treyliff
4.21/5  rDev -0.7%
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. (494 characters)

Photo of BastardKing24
4.8/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

I really dig this beer. I mean DIG, its just loads of fun to pop one of these and smell it right away straight from the bottle and savor whats to come.

Pours a dark red with minimal head but retains decent lacing.

Smell is gorgeous under-ripe fruit, vinegar, tartness, nose searing sour smells, with dark fruits, and oak.

Taste is like the smell with a big sour punch, not as much as some stronger examples, but damn near perfect. Oak, cherries, nectarine, slight vinegar, and sour apple.

Feel is fantastic. Light but present malt character, and mild carbonation.

Great beer, Great brewery (594 characters)

Photo of Cylinsier
4.85/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

75 cl

Pours a cloudy deep brown with a reddish tinge. Yellowish lacing for a head.

Smells of lemon, apple, sour grapes, and vinegar.

Apple, cherry, and vinegar make up the flavor, balanced by a slight oak earthiness.

Medium, poppy body with a mild fizzy carbonation on the roof of the mouth.

Exceptional, the best sour ale I have had thus far. Truly fantastic balance of flavors and aromas and a delicate body. A must-try for fans of sours. (448 characters)

Photo of ADZA
4.18/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

How on this world have I not reviewed this I'm sure I've tasted this before but after seeing no rating from me my memory is asking the question have I ever tried it and after a 2litre growler purchase ill be sure and on popping it pours a cherry red hue with a creamy off white two finger head and clingy lacing everywhere a beautiful looking red,the smell is musty,funky,slight oak and red grapes and highly approachable,the mouthfeel is borderlining on perfection it's medium bodied with moderate carbonation and like most have said before the taste of this Flanders is one for the non believers of this crazy beautiful style and its red grapes,beautiful funk,cherries and the finish is sour tart and bloody refreshing and overall now I'm confident I've tried this and the 2lt purchase was a great choice by me as its not on your face like most of this style and a great step in Flanders territory for virgins of the style and even veterans like me cheers. (958 characters)

Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.01/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

On tap at Victoire in Rochester, NY.

Pours a reddish hazy brown, with a fizzy head, and no lacing.

Smells include cherry, vinegar, and some funk.

The taste is the same. The sourness is definitely there, but not overpowering at all. Some cherry, with some lactic acid, and mild musty funkiness. Some oaky vanilla type character is also noticeable.

Medium bodied, syrupy mouthfeel, pretty drinkable.

This is one of the beers that showed me I might end up liking some sours. It's quite tasty. (494 characters)

Photo of HochFliegen
4.75/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

What a treat to find this wonderful beer at Costco this evening.

The Grand Cru pours a very dark and murky red-brown with a think light tan head that slowly dissipates into a thin frothy top. The smell is sour and tart like sour cherries and rotting pears. There are also elements of yeasty maybe baking bread scents. The taste starts with a punch of tartness and flows into sweet cherry flavors with hints of vanilla and oak in the rich finish. The mouthfeel is on the low end of being medium bodied and very silky and smooth. I love this beer its very nice and as far as on style I think this is the benchmark that I judge all other Flanders Red Ales by. (658 characters)

Photo of Jimmys
4.32/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

750mL bottle into tulip. best before: 03-18-16.

A: a very deep red hue. very deep. head is a reddish white and is pretty bubbly. good retention, minimal lacing.

S: tart. sour cherries. oak. slightly acidic, but certainly doesn't scare me away.

T: sweet cherry flavor. vinous and tart. some soft edges on the tartness. vanilla notes.

M: fizzy carb. medium body.

D: really good stuff. dangerously drinkable. tart but refreshing. I could drink this all day. (462 characters)

Photo of Jonada
4.07/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle. Best before October 22nd 2016. Served in a snifter.

Appearance: Pours a dark red brown color with a finger of a light tan head which settles into a thin cap and thick collar and leaves some spotty lacing. Body is very murky (nearly opaque).

Smell: Acidic sour notes, stone fruit, sour cherry, balsamic vinegar, dark bread .

Taste: Green apple, red grape, light oakiness, slight breadiness and a faint red berry character. Sourness is on the lower end of medium.

Mouthfeel: Light/medium bodied with a slightly creamy mouthfeel. Medium carbonation.

Overall: Really well balanced and complex. This is a such a unique style and this is a great example of it. This one is a classic for a reason. (710 characters)

Photo of RandomExile
2.8/5  rDev -34%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

A: deep brown, tinged with red, quickly dissipating head. Fine, persistent, sheeting lacing.
S: sour, fruity, medicinal
T: dominantly sour, slightly bitter, malt/citrus
M: thin-medium body, sour bite
O: Not particularly enjoyable. Sour, on the watery side for a dark beer ... it feels like there's just something missing. I've heard it compared to champagne ... and I guess if you want a beer glass of middling champagne, this works. (433 characters)

Photo of ExaltedNecrosis
4.35/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750 mL bottle poured into flute glass.

A - Surprising lack of murkiness and cloudiness. Ruby brown with a finger of off white head that dissipates somewhat rapidly.

S - Cherry and vinegar. It definitely smells tart and sour.

T - A big pucker punch of tart cherry and a bit of sour apple. The sweet and sour combo really works well with the cherry and apple.

M - Light-to-moderate body with high carbonation. The carb really makes the sour cherry pop on your tongue.

O - An outstanding sour from Rodenbach. Great puckering pour in a good way, letting the sweet/sour/tart cherry dominate the palate. (602 characters)

Photo of wordemupg
4.33/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

330ml bottle poured into tulip 12/10/13

A clear dark cola that has a ruby glow when held to the light, just a thin tan foam that quickly falls leaving just a lone patch of lace, enough clarity to see the other side of the glass under the foam

A tart cherry, raspberries, strawberries, very jammy, faint oak, vanilla, loads of brown sugar, some sour candy, smells solid

T tastes even better, great mix of sweet and sour, lots of fizzy candy, lots of berries, just a little vinegar, lots of flavor in a 6%er I could drink this all day

M medium bodied, a little creamy from the bubbles, slick after the fact, just a little sour, slightly sticky on the lips, brown sugar and berries on the finish

O pretty much what I want from the style, well rounded and it tastes awesome, very drinkable brew going on here, my glass is already empty

I'm loving this one and considering its 4$ a bottle I might go stock up, another great addition to the shelves here in Alberta, an easy recommendation (992 characters)

Photo of williamjbauer
4.48/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Bottled, served in a triple karmilet tulip, 2012 vintage.

Opaque burgundy with a little ruby light on edge, thin cream head on edges with moderated retention and bubbly lacing.

Moderate potency aroma with oak, vanilla, and sour cherry notes.

Hint of vanillin touches my tongue first then overwhelmed with tart cheeries, fresh, creamy, finish with surprising strong oak character. This beer packs a punch considering how inexpensive and readily available it is...maybe I should shut up and just buy them all...

Mouthfeel is medium body, a bit wet, dry talc finish.

Amazing beer at price point of 8-9 clams. I will snag this anytime I see it. A benchmark for this style as others have mentioned. (699 characters)

Photo of cjgiant
4.15/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Re-reviewed bottle on 2/16/2015:
Pours a red, barely able to see through, with nice foamy tan head, thick at the sides, with some surface coverage, no lacing. The smell is tart - lemon/lime, a bit of soda; there are some hints of other sweet-tart fruits like kiwi or cranberry, as well as a little breadiness (ie cranberry bread).

Taste starts with a lightly tart fruit soda, thanks to a little tickling carbonation. Cranberry, pomegranate, or similarly tart fruits are what I get. There's the ever so light hints of limeade as well as woodiness (perhaps adding to the tart tastes).
Original:
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. (1,126 characters)

Photo of almightyme3
4.77/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Amazing representation of the style. Flemish red at its best. It's sour just enough but not overpowering. Smells and tastes like fresh juicy cherries. Ruby-red color and a perfect head. Some oak is present and woodiness is mixed with the fruit taste for sure. Grand cru is more refined than the regular rodenbach and for some reason I keep finding it cheaper. Cheers to that. (377 characters)

Photo of stephenjmoore
4.3/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A- Murky burgandy/brown body with no transparency. Bubbly cream colored head that stays around for a while.

S- Has notes of toasted malts, along with a lot of acidic, sour fruit aromas. Fruity, nutty, malty, not an over the top aroma, but pleasant.

T- A hint of malt gives way to big sour fruit notes. Mainly sour cherries, with lots of smooth oaky flavors coming in towards the middle through the finish. Very tart, with a dry and oaky finish.

M- High carbonation, very tart and acidic, slight tingle on the tongue with a lingering finish.

O- Very nice beer, very tart and sour, but complex and not overpowering. I am surprised at how much wood cuts through the tartness. (678 characters)

Photo of TruePerception
4.14/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

(Previous review, transferred from beer journal)

Rodenbach Grand Cru Ale: 6%; Appearance: hazy cola; Smell: raisin; Taste: Tartaric acid (sour candy powder), raisin; Mouthfeel: small bubbles, nicely effervescent; easy to drink, really good; head tastes of cantaloupe melon.

Poured into a pint glass. (301 characters)

Photo of joe1510
4.3/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

750ml
$7.99
Binny's Orland

Rodenbach Grand Cru pours a murky, somewhat hazed rust with lively carbonation rising to the surface. A minimal head of one finger showed up on the pour and left fingers of lace as it fell to a respectable cap. A good looking beer without a doubt and just what would be expected from the style.

Each swirl brings about a sticky head and great aromas. Cherry Sweet Tarts start things of and quickly lead into a tart cherry character. A great sweet and sour (vinegar) character punctuate this brew. Slight acidity tickles the nose and light waves of oak weave in and out of the sweet and sour. The smell of this beer makes my mouth water uncontrollably.

The flavor mimics the aroma. A sweetened candy-like cherry flashes through upfront before tart cherry and cider vinegar wash over the taste buds mid palate. Ghost-like oakiness pokes its head out occasionally but just as quickly disappears. The slight sweetness shows up again on the finish to combine with the sour and oak to create a blast of flavor. Grand Cru is an exceptional beer and a true benchmark of the style that I never tire of.

The body is on the lighter side of medium and shows off a great silkiness. Carbonation is lively and awakens the tongue a bit but is very soft and natural. Extremely thirst quenching but gives that slight pucker as well.

Rodenbach's Grand Cru is an incredibly easy drinking beer. All at once deep in flavor and complexity with a great ability to quench the thirst this beer leaves. This bottle is a pleasure to put away.

This, to me, is the benchmark of the style. A truly great beer for the ages and one I always try to keep on hand. I just can't get enough of the Grand Cru.

Reviewed: 5/26/08 (1,722 characters)

Photo of Axnjxn
4.16/5  rDev -1.9%
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. (305 characters)

Photo of aflamang
4.08/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Served in Schott Zwiesel bordeaux glasses from 750 mL bottle, which we got from the Craft Beer Cellar in Belmont, MA.

Appearance is deep brown. I found it to have almost no burgundy coloring. The head was lighter than tan, and had a lot of big bubbles.

Nose is sour berries and oak with a wonderful slight whiff of vinegar. Very complex nose even for a sour.

Taste is not overwhelmingly sour. The flavors really develop through each sip and between sips as the temperature rises. The major notes I picked up were cherry, grape, lemon, oak, and a surprising amount of yeasty flavor at the tail.

Mouthfeel is thinner than I expected, and more carbonated than other great sours. (680 characters)

Photo of retry4z
4.33/5  rDev +2.1%
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. (595 characters)

Photo of gcamparone
4.42/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750mL bottle into a snifter. Purchased at High Spirits in North Providence, RI.

Appearance- Pours a slightly hazy, auburn-cherry colored body with a thick, off-white 3" head that reduces at a medium rate and leaves very little lacing.

Smell- Call me crazy but I get a very distinct aroma of chili peppers upfront, combined with a vinegary character that this beer's high lactic acid content creates. Further evaluation reveal some fruit, raisin, cherry aromas. There's some vanilla-caramel aromas in the background. Very unique and inviting.

Taste- Amazingly complex, I don't even know where to start. Let's start with the initial taste - it's an interesting combination of sweet and sour, the sour coming first and the sweetness following. Tart grape and cherry skins combined with balsamic vinegar notes. The follow through reveals a fruity, estery, vanilla-molasses sweetness that really compliments the initial sourness. The finish is slightly roasty and the oak barrels come through.

M- Medium body, medium-light carbonation. Pretty easy to drink.

Such a unique style done to near perfection - you don't get this combination of flavors in any other style. The complexity is outstanding and the balance of sour to sweetness is amazing. Whether you're new to craft beer or a seasoned veteran, if you haven't tried this beer you need to seek it out. (1,372 characters)

Photo of recoveringmormon
4.15/5  rDev -2.1%
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. (480 characters)

Photo of StArnoldFan
4.7/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

#250 for me here on BA

750ml poured to a tulip

A - aggressively poured. Dark brown, amber color when to the light. Has a 2 finger tan head that sticks around for a few mins then dissipates. Good lacing as the glass goes down

S - tart, funk, and fruit. Smells really good

T - follows the scent. Fruit up front with a little funk then sour in the end. I love it

M - the mouth is beautiful on this, great carb. Good fizzle on the tongue

O - overall, I want to state I'm not huge into sours but this was great. Maybe the best I have had yet. Will buy this one again when I see it on the shelf (595 characters)

Photo of xGrapeApe
4.34/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A=
Head- Practically none, diminishes quickly
Lacing- none
Body- clear - slightly cloudy
Particles- none
Color- deep red - cola brown
S=
Malt- soft, sweet, dark fruit, touch of carmel
Hops- very minimal, leafy, earthly
Yeast- sour, tart, estery,
Other- cherry, plum, fig, vinegar, oak
T=
Duration- lasting
Sweet- moderate, dark fruits, oak
Acidic- heavy, sour cherry, lactic/acetic, vinegar, tart
Bitter- none
M=
Body- medium
Texture- medium
Carbonation- moderate
Finish- sweet, sour, tart, dry.
O= Quite easy drinking, not overpowering in any respect. Fine balance of sweet and sour, complex. (593 characters)

Rodenbach Grand Cru from Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V.
94 out of 100 based on 1,040 ratings.