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Rodenbach Grand Cru - Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V.

Not Rated.
Rodenbach Grand CruRodenbach Grand Cru

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3,343 Ratings

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Ratings: 3,343
Reviews: 1,019
rAvg: 4.29
pDev: 11.42%
Wants: 243
Gots: 406 | FT: 22
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V. visit their website

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.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,343 | Reviews: 1,019 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of goldbot
4.17/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours deep, dark cherry to brown in color with thinnish tan head that dissipates fairly quickly, leaving nice lacing. Aroma is vinous and fruity with apple, raspberry, cherry and grape notes. A touch of nutty or biscuity malts lurks in the background. The flavor brings out some stale malt with plenty more fruit flavors. A tad sweet but not nearly as much as what the aroma hinted at. Definite sour, earthy overtones, with a kick of moldy barnyard funk almost reminiscent of some strong blue cheeses toward the end. Medium bodied, fairly mouth-puckering feel. Nice and refreshing with just enough complexity and funk to make a lively, interesting beer.

Photo of auroracrisis
4.27/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml into a Russian River tulip. No date on the bottle or cork.

Pours hazy burgundy with a creamy light beige head that sticks around for most of the session.

Fruity aromas of cranberries, grapes, and sour cherries are the most forward. Followed by aged balsamic and sweeter malt. A touch of tannin and more fruit.

Opens with cranberry and crab apple like flavors that quickly move into a biting balsamic vinegar. Again, tannin and more fruit. Grapes and sour cherries.

Mouthfeel is pretty much spot on. Smooth and some what creamy, with a thin-medium body and a tickle of carbonation. A touch of drying as well.

Grapes and cranberries intertwine with some earthy tannin and oak flavors, with a biting sourness. A great, widely available example of a great Flanders acid ale. Glad this one is popping up again in my area. For the price, it is the definition of a bargain. My only complaint is that it isn't bottle conditioned. I would love to see what some yeast in the bottle may do to this one with time.

Photo of inlimbo77
4.42/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle.
No date but had for 18 months
Victory snifter tulip

A: Pours a murky reddish brown. Finger of off white tannish head. Mild light lacing. Bottle popped with smoke. Tight tiny bubbles.

S: Smelled this upon opening. Dark cherries, oak and funk in this one. Other dark fruits like prunes and plum. Vinegar hints as well.

T: It's just the staple Flemish Red. You get the tart dark cherries on the tip of the tongue. It's delicious. Middle of the mouth you get that funkiness. Mild mouth pucker but not as much as a Kriek. And the a crisp refreshing finish. Dry and wine like. No alcohol presence.

M: Light to medium. Mouth coating from the pucker.

O: A for sure. It's definitely a world class beer. And I love that I can find it whenever I want another....

Photo of bobhits
4.18/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 5 | smell: 2 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured into a novelty glass, with a nice light at the bottom of the glass. this would work but this is a far darker than deeper colored beer than expected. Deep amber colored beer, amazing champagne carbonation with a tall creamy thick head, well retained. Call me impressed.

Tart and sour nose with am amber and almost toasted hint well in the back ground. Fruity without really being overt or bringing out any clear fruit flavors.

This is absolutely amazing. A mild sweetness hits the front of the tongue, amber malts. As it drags back the sour notes pick up more and more as they go back, finishing puckerlingly sour and tart. Then the sour fades leaving fruit flavors (apples?). The whole tongue is simply overwhelmed with flavors beyond anything i've ever had. This is the best sour I've had and at a fraction the cost of the cantillions.

Crisp, well carbonated, but the sour flavors bite and burn the back of the mouth. You can't do this beer without this bite, but it can be a bit off putting. Maybe the flaw of a sour?

I admit I've only had maybe 15 sours, but this one stands miles above the rest. This is just to die for and I'm going to buy another bottle after work tomorrow. I'm not sure how one can improve upon this other than finding a way to make sours smell better.

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

750 ml poured into flute. Best by December 2014, so I'm assuming this is a fairly young bottle.

A: Pours a clear but deep reddish-brown, heavy mahogany tones here. Nice layer of foamy tan head; I set my drink down for about half an hour and when I came back it was still around. The color itself brings to mind the flavor of oak, which is always appreciated.

S: I'm trying to nitpick here with the rating but I can't deny the great qualities of this beer's aroma. Full of oak, sour cherries, and a light funkiness– all in chorus with another. I do love the really yeasty, "horse blanket" beers, but this one really kills it in moderation.

T: Tart, but not overly sour at all, well balanced with sweetness. Picking up a heavy dose of green apple flavors, alongside the cherries so prominent in the aroma, and another really unique sour flavor that I'm having trouble placing– I suppose white grapes are the best comparison, even if I'm hesitant in saying that (diatribe: that brings to mind beers like Dogfish Head's Midas Touch, which this is nothing like... just a really unique manifestation of a flavor that can go in so many different ways, though it really gels with this beer). While all of these flavors have a sour side to them, their sweetnesses also get to shine, and nothing is ever too out of control. I'm nitpicking with the 4.0 rating, as it's so close to a 4.5, and I would easily rate it so if I hadn't had already a number of other sours, even if in different styles.

M: Thin-bodied with light-moderate carbonation and a dry, tart finish. I don't have that much more to describe about it, but it's well done.

O: Great beer, perhaps unfairly held back in the sub-ratings by others that I've had and enjoyed more. The balance and light mouthfeel mean that this is a beer you can spend the evening with, offering something new with every sip. Furthermore, $10 for a 750ml of a Belgian sour? I can't think of many other Belgians or sours that meet that price tag– I'll be certain to pick this up again, and highly recommend you grab it if you see it.

Photo of zaphodchak
4.32/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thinnish sudsy creme head, translucent orange-brown body.

Smell is cider vinegar, but with plenty of grape.

Taste is remarkably tart... but so well balanced. Vinegary, for sure, especially on the aftertaste. Especially mellow and rounded out in the middle, grapey tartness accompanies. Some sour raspberry (not ripe). Faintly appley as well, but that's tertiary.

Mouthfeel is nice- carbonation is appropriately lively, but not so bright as to over-tang the flavor.

This is one of the best Flemish reds I've ever had-- truly worthy of the hype and representative of the style. Mestreechs Ajt Red is another good example if you enjoy this one.

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

Bought a bottle dated 6/19/2012. I have a feeling its been sitting here for quite some time.

A: poured into pilsner flute. Clear dark red color with light dull orange head. highly fizzy carbonation.

S: vinegar, apples, black cherry, wet wood.

T: tart cherries and apples. Smoothed out by bits of sugary sweetness and woody notes. Finishes crisp and a little dry.

M: medium bodied, almost syrupy at times, but loaded with fizzy carbonation. Insanely drinkable.

O: still expanding my horizons on sours, but DAMN this is good! Just the right amount of tartness. Will buy this again and again.

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

Cellared almost a year to the date. Flute glass pour and I am met with a nice dark brown colored ale with accompanying brown/beige foaming head that lingers. The smell has nice oak and different dark fruits in the mix. Just a touch of the vinegar in the aroma. Very pleasant. Amazing taste. Sweet and sour are blended perfectly. You get the fruitiness up front followed by a slight acetic dose of sourness on the swallow. Very dry finish and the salivation keeps me coming back for another sip. Carbonation is there but that's to be expected. Overall I thoroughly enjoyed this beer. Not overly sour or harsh like some sours. Just a great blend as the Rodenbach crew knows exactly what they are doing. Great stuff!

Photo of notchucknorris
4.47/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Amber with a creamy tan head.

S: Huge aroma of red delicious apples, dark cherries, vanilla and wood. A good amount of sweetness, but not so much that it scared me off.

T: Incredible stuff. Juicy red delicious apples, plum, vanilla and some dark cherry tartness. Has a great smack of tartness without being overly sour.

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

Can’t believe I am just getting around to reviewing this one now; sometimes my notes go missing for months at a time. This is one tasty beer though. Reddish brown, dark cherry soda appearance. Not much head or lacing although the cork popped nicely on the review bottle. Aroma is tantalizingly tart and sweet, with the faintest hint of vinegar in the background. Cherry in there, too. The flavors are the same; the vinegar note, while noticed, is small and muted enough that non sour aficionados can enjoy this one too. Very fruity, mostly cherry but maybe plum/raisin/cranberry as well? Super tart, crisp, clean, refreshing. Excellent carbonation. I had this one at the end of a very very long day of teaching, followed by a memorial service in a sweltering church, then cleaning the house till midnight to prepare for guests. Hit the spot in a big way.

Photo of sfprint
4.42/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

exp 22.4.12
A: Dark reddish brown, wine like, except wtih a slightly frothy top. Too dense for visible rising carbonation.
S: Heavy fermented sour cherries, lemon. There's also a smooth, creaminess to it, but that's likely misleading. Very much like a cherry pie.
T: Sour indeed, but with fair sized body. Sour cherry, lemon. It's pretty sour, but only in a positive way. Not mouthpuckering or astrigent. Absolutely delicious. Very different, but perfect in it's own way.
M: Has a mild burn from the sourness, but nothing disagreeable. In fact it adds to the character of the beer. It's amazing that this is a beer.
O: Very very good. I could drink this all the time.

Photo of JimmyTango
4.32/5  rDev +0.7%
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.

Photo of adam42381
4.15/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from notes at World of Beer - Fort Myers on 9/17/11.

Poured on draft into a St. Bernardus goblet.

Appearance: Pours a very dark caramel brown with a 1-2 finger creamy light tan head. Excellent lacing.

Smell: Vinegar and wine grape hulls. Quite sour aroma.

Taste: Vinegar and sour grapes with light woody notes. Aftertaste is light and dry with sour notes.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied with a good amount of carbonation.

Drinkability: Pretty good drinkability. Despite the relatively low ABV%, it seems fairly heavy. I wouldn't drink more than a couple in one sitting.

Overall: Very good beer overall. If you're a fan of sour beers, this one is definitely worth trying.

Photo of socon67
3.97/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Reddish brown with a slight head and small bubbles of carbonation.

S - Strong scent of sour cherries. I also smell some dry sherry and vanilla. Really pleasant and the sour smell isn't too overbearing.

T - Tartness of sour cherries, with a bit of vanilla. Finish has a bit of diacetyl.

M - Surprised that the sourness doesn't detract from the drinkability. Makes this a great sour beer to have a couple of.

O - Glad to have tried. A good example of the style, and one that is easy to acquire.

Photo of KDawg
3.83/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

had this on tap. Poured a nice dark amber color with a good foamy head.

Excellent aromas of tart red cherries, sour apples, some malt tones and a touch of florals. Very good aromas

very good medium body with a real good feel, but the flavors seemed a slight bit muted and weren't as alive as the nose was

it's been a while since I've had a rodenbach and I was quickly reminded how good it was. A real quality sour that is just as enjoyable

Photo of Cavery
4.55/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle provided by GoGators, a long time tick that has been on the backburner. I finally convinced SundaySour that it was time to give this thing a proper treatment. Two tulips were splashed with red soon after.

A: Dark tree bark with a light decaf coffee top. The foams are a bit coffee like, but the body looks more like an iced tea that's been served too cold. A very dark, almost black, gradient that begins at the bottom of the glass. This really looks nice. This is one of those beers you'd toast with after a job promotion, or the birth of that kid you meant to have. An academic fiesta beer.

S: Smells like a red wine spill in woodshop. Dusty old woods with some tart sun dried cherries. Potent dark savory cherries. Tartness is soothed by an incredibly clean vanilla. The vanilla notes really tame the present vinegar for an amazingly in check acidity.

T: This tastes of refinement. A beautiful blend of All of the flavors benefit from the creamy vanilla, and it makes this thing like a coulis. Cherry coulis mixed with creme anglaise with the cherries winning the battle only slightly. A wee bit of plum appears midst the clash. Nut butters on fruit cake, a bit of cranberry bite between the cherry and vinegar. This is not a vinegar bomb though, this is a refined flavor bomb, maybe not bomb -- but some sort of lighter munition.

M: The true maestro of this beer: so full for the style, and oh so creamy. The bubbles are fantastic, slow mild release, but there's never any doubt that this is well carbonated. The mouth is the puppeteer behind the show. A symphony in the mouth. One of those beers that feels significantly better than others.

O: Really truly I could never have expected to pour such a gem from this bottle. I had kept it in the back of my cellar with the intent of opening it when SundaySour was willing to drink it. She had been on champagne for many months now, but she finally caved in on this night. It was divine intervention, as this bottle was in its absolute prime. This beer is truly a magical blend of flavors. The young beer is vibrant, the old beer is wise, and the barrel is the time in between. After drinking this beer, I felt like I had watched a fine film. My mouth applauds. Truly though, this was exceptional in its balance, with an in check vinegar.

Photo of SundaySour
3.89/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks, GoGators! I blame my future bathtub blackout on you!

A: Looks brownish red. Like if you tried to make raisin soda happen. (It's not going to happen!) There is a teeny rim of foam, and I could psychically sense that it was a sour before I knew it was one. (Cavery tried to "trick" me beforehand)

S: Smells like those containers of bite-sized prunes you shouldn't eat too many of. There is an undertone of fancy alcohol, like bourbon. Unlike most sours, cherry is not stomping me in the face.

T: Prune Warhead delight! Perfectly tart with that taste of sweet vinegar I love. I get raisins and figgy pudding and Christmas. This is the Wild West of sours; totally uncharted new flavors for me. Brown sugar, chest hair, and gunpowder are all present. I don't think I've tried anything like it. It finishes with a dry lip-smacking apple cider vinegar flavor.

M: Lip-puckeringly tart, not very fizzy. Dry and tasty.

O: I was surprised by this beer; the elegant bottling made me think this would be a half-hearted game of peekaboo for a sour. But it didn't hold back. I'm so glad that brewers worldwide finally make an acceptable drink for closet vinegar drinkers like myself. Very yummers, a must-try for horrible mean sour people like yours truly.

Photo of srandycarter
4.14/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Raspberry/brown color, not head nor lace. Clear through.

S - Sharp sour acidity and fruit.

T - Tart, with sweet fruit in middle. Clean tangy finish.

M - Medium body, good carbonation, nice balance.

D - A refreshing wonderful beer. Glad I got to try it on tap too.

Photo of DrewShal9
4.77/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: dark reddish brown with a creamy white head
S: cherries, vanilla, red wine, hint of sherry
T: straight cherry punch to the tongue that dries the tongue with tartness. The nose gives off the same flavors. Tastes almost like cherry vanilla coke.
M: like soda so that's maybe why I feel it tastes like cherry vanilla coke? Great carbonation
O: very good and definitely buying more as my girlfriend even enjoyed this! Very smooth and very refreshing.

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

25.4oz bottle, Boulevard tulip, "27/05/13" on bottom of bottle.

The pop of the cork was not so big, but the beer looks wonderful. The cork is definitely shorter than normal. A deep tawny head forms at a measured pace on a minimally chill-hazed brown-red, burgundy body that is just restricting light through its center. Minimal lacing occurs, but it's has a beautiful bit of foam.

My brother immediately channelled red wine upon smelling Grand Cru, and it's a valid point of reference. Woody, even oaky vanilla overtones show on mild acid. I'm reminded of sherry more than red wine and sherry vinegar at that.

Oak aging has had a large impact here; this is primarily a melange of oak's vanilla and tannic qualities and sour berries. Not much acid, a pleasant tartness suggesting some berry ciders and tart plums.

Carbonation is in a very comfortable sweet spot, distributing flavor, allowing the tannin's full impact. They're mouth coating but not overwhelming.

I haven't found this as sour as some sources make it sound. This is a good beer and seems perfect for a sort of warm up to the Russian River sours I've got in the fridge. I put put it around Duchesse's level, very good but possibly just below, as a possible introductory red sour ale.

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

Thanks to Huhzubendah for the bottle!

A: Head fizzes away leaving a slightly hazy dark brown liquid.

S: Oak, with some fruity sour notes

T: Sour, slight funkiness. Oak gives a mouth-puckering effect and dries the palate. Nice, pleasant tartness reminiscent of sour cherries and apples. Vinegar-ish in the throat with a cherry soda finish.

M: Very nice balance of sweet/tart. Good carbonation and overall a joy to drink.

Photo of xraided81
4.42/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750ml bottle into a tulip galss.

A: Pours a deep reddish brown, with ruby highlight. One finger off white presisitent head, carbonation is almost champagne like, long lasting head.

S: An assertive acetic aroma is present, but not dominating the aroma. Ripe red apples, cherries, plums, and woody notes intertwine with the acetic aroma of this beer.

T: Moderate in acetic character, does not dominate the taste, as in more aggresive sour beers. the fruit character is present in the background of the flavor. It is a very refreshing beer that dries out the palate wanting more of this delicious elixir.

O: I am not a big fan of sour beers but i do enjoy this beer, and is always a treat when i want to drink something other than IPA, roasty stouts, or strong ales. A great beer and a textbook example of the flanders red ale

Photo of AleWatcher
4.27/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This was one of those first beers that got me interested in sours... I was shocked to see I hadn't a review typed up, but was happy to come across one in my voice notes.

Trying to clean out the voice notes on my iphone...
Reviewed from those notes.

served in a tulip.

Murky reddish brown color. A dirty tan colored head leaves some spotty lacing.
Nose has huge sour cherry and vinegar... Oaky oaky oaky nose. Very nice and pleasant. The oaky tart sourness is big, but well-balanced and well-integrated into the actual beer.
The taste is sweet with dark fruit- black cherries, plums, sour cherries. Perhaps a little hint of some sweet malts here too? Hard to pinpoint it entirely. The tart vinegar and the sour cherries rock the finish in an amazingly tasty way.
The body is pretty full and respectably carbonated.
I like this beer a lot. It is exceptionally drinkable and readily available.

Is this the best beer I've had? No, of course not... But does it hit the spot? Absolutely. This is the beer I think of when I think of a Flanders red.

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

A: poured a reddish brown in color with brown highlights and a thin head leaving a little frothy lacing sticking to the glass.

S: upfront on the nose it was a mixture of plum and vinegar notes with a little aroma of acidity but had slight oaky character. I did however manage to sniff out some brown sugar and mild cherries.

T: the vinegar and acidic character was more prominent on the palate with the oak barrel giving it some complexity but had cherry accents and a touch of plum.

M: the brew was medium in body with a sweet, slight fruity, oaky, acidic, and tart finish.

D: definitely was drinking great and this brew has been one of my favorite flanders stlye brew for awhile. We'll see how this one holds up with a little time.

Photo of Beer4Baltimore
4.35/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

from my notes, from the bottle and from the tap
A - reddish mahogany colored ale with a nice fine bubbly head and lots of lacing.
S - fruity, sweet, and sour. The tarness tingles the nose.
T - fruity, sweet, and sour as the smell advertised. Smooth light malt backgorund.
M - a little bit dry while sweet and puckering tart at the same time. Medium bodied with nice carbonation.
D - easily drinkable.
I've had it in the bottle and on tap. It was equally enjoyable both times.

Rodenbach Grand Cru from Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V.
95 out of 100 based on 3,343 ratings.