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Rodenbach Grand Cru - Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V.

Not Rated.
Rodenbach Grand CruRodenbach Grand Cru

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

1,053 Reviews
THE BROS
100
world-class

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,053
Hads: 3,602
rAvg: 4.24
pDev: 5.66%
Wants: 287
Gots: 497 | FT: 27
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: 1,053 | Hads: 3,602
Photo of pmarlowe
4.1/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Tulip glass.

A: Pours a dark ruby/brown, excellent clarity, with a generous tan head. Very good retention and

S: Appealing red fruit (cherry, strawberry, dried cranberry), light earth and grassy notes.

T: Red fruit, light barrel, sour is light to the point of absent, red apple, and light sweetness.

M: Medium-light carbonation and body.

O: A lighter, flavorful sour. A good everyday option. (402 characters)

Photo of ONovoMexicano
4.39/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Chewy and foamy oatmeal-colored head, two fingers thick and persists well. Body is like a ruby, deep red but good clarity against light. 5

Vinous quality to the nose and tart cherry aroma. Seems to have a touch of lacto but everything is clean and vinegar-free. 4

Excellent taste here, especially for the cleanness. Tart cherry, a hint of cranberry, sweet vanilla and a citric, faintly lemony finish. 4.5

Exceptionally smooth and creamy and still tart and a tad acidic. It's refreshing, vinous and dry. 4.25

Great brew and for the price a steal almost. (557 characters)

Photo of Mikus
4.56/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

I really fell for this beer... even read some notes on the style prior to trying it. Looked awesome in the glass, with the deep reddish, brown hue... little to no head going on here. Amazing nose, including the vinegar note (which I loved for some reason), and some crazy dark fruit medley as well. The taste was unique, and amazing with all of the aroma notes joining the party. Pucker up! The mouthfeel was very dry, and left me wanting more. Super clean and original. Damn, just damn. (488 characters)

Photo of doktorhops
4.47/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

“Rodenbach, Rodenbach, Rodenbach” - A colleague at the bottleshop I work at raves on about Rodenbach all the time. Naturally I had to get some Rodenbach and review the absolute shit out of it [as I do]. My colleague recommended starting with the Grand Cru, “You like Flemish Reds? This is the best.” I nodded back adding “Of course, who doesn’t love Flemish Reds!?” secretly knowing that I’ve never had a Flemish Red before, damn my incessant beer-snobberyism! Turns out they’re similar to a Gueuze... great! I love a good Gueuze *cork pops*.

Poured from a 330ml bottle into a Duvel tulip.

A: The style should be called “Flanders Brown Ale” if this is representative of their general appearance: Hazy deep caramel body with a thin off-white lace ring around the glass... I’m giving it a good score because I don’t know any better. 8/10.

S: Holy funk Batman, this is one funky aroma. Starts out with a pungent (but delightful, I love the smell of) Hubba Bubba™ grape note, add some yeast funk, follow this with sharply acidic white wine characters and sour cherry and you’ve got yourself Rodenbach Grand Cru. 9/10.

T: That Hubba Bubba™ grape note morphs quickly into a “Meady” character (i.e. that fruity vinous taste in Mead, the alcoholic beverage of much renown). Following this is some yeast funk, sour cherry and a red wine tannin in the finish, in fact if a beer wanted to grow up and become a wine it would become a Rodenbach Grand Cru first. No doubt there were some large oak barrels involved somehow in this nefariously good process. The finish is astringent/tart/dry and leaves you wanting another sip... then another... and you get the idea. 9/10.

M: Mouthfeel is definitely the weakest aspect, but don’t take that as a criticism Rodenbach as the rest of your beer is pretty awesome, with a mid to light body, hmm, slightly watery, with a nicely dense carbonation. 7/10.

D: My work mate was right: Rodenbach rock(enbach)*s! This whole Flanders Red Ale style is a new and wonderful experience for me after falling for Gueuzes and I’m definitely keen for another now. Rodenbach might even become one of my FDR’s (Fridge Door Regular’s). Top marks Grand Cru! 10/10.

Food match: You’d better bring a sharp cheese platter to this bad boy.

*You knew I wouldn’t be able to resist such a terrible and obvious pun, shut up. (2,382 characters)

Photo of interzen
5/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

330ml bottle poured into a Troubadour tulip glass - BBE September 2016

Look: Deep, ruby red - couple of fingers of head, small amount of lacing.

Smell: Sour, almost vinegary. Smells a bit like a gueuze with hints of apples, citrus and a barnyard floor. Agitate it enough and you might get hints of cherries and red fruit. Very much in-yer-face tartness.

Taste: The taste follows the smell, almost - incredibly sour up front, although without the acetic aspects, with a lingering sweetness towards the end. The tartness would cut diamonds - utterly wonderful.

Feel: Again, tart but without being sweet or heavy - some mild carbonation but hardly what you'd call excessively fizzy. Surprisingly smooth for something that's teeth-dissolvingly sour.

Overall: I love sour beers and it's really difficult to find fault with this one- perfect in pretty much every respect, although some might find the slightly vinegary smell a bit offputting. Probably not the ideal starting point for sour ales, but if you don't try it you'll never know. (1,037 characters)

Photo of JackRWatkins
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%

750 ml bottle in tulip glass (duvel glass)

I've been wanting to try this beer ever since I heard michael jackson talk about it in one of the beer hunter episodes and and additional interview, it does not disappoint, to me, this is beers answer to wine, it's very vinous and tart, tastes of dark fruits and cherry (only a bit) it is delicious and it is definitely worth your time, hint (as with most beer, have it colder rather than warmer) (440 characters)

Photo of stephens101
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%

Found this on tap at Mcnellies in OKC and excited to try this much talked about sour gateway.

Dark brown with streaks of red, a tan froth and some fizz. Smells of ripe, dark fruits and faint vinegar. Tastes of more dark fruits, malt, sweets tarts, vinegar and a pinch of salt. Crisp and dry all the way through.

Enough tart to let you know you've entered sour territory, but balanced and flavorful enough to be thoroughly enjoyed by the acolyte and veteran alike. (472 characters)

Photo of RyanSoFla
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%

Rodenbach Grand Cru is my go-to Flander's red. It is sour, funky deliciousness in a bottle. The beer is also an unbelievable bargain and can be found for $10-12. (162 characters)

Photo of aleigator
3.8/5  rDev -10.4%

Cherry-red color, small head, which vanishes fast.

Funky, sour-cherry, with hints of malt.

Malt, bread, a lot of cherries, very ripe, full of flavor. Perfect chewy, tart sourness, with a fruity cherry sweetness. Decent complexity, still easy drinkable. Malt underlines the cherries till the end, holding the sourness at bay. Great balance, fruit stays in the foreground the whole time, resulting in a chewy, sour aftertaste. (428 characters)

Photo of mr-jj
4.65/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a snifter from a 750 ml bottle.

Color is a deep mahogany with a two-finger off-white head. Good retention and lacing. A very good looking beer.
Smell is sour cherries, malt vinegar, with a hint of oak and and earthy mustiness.
Flavor is tart cherry on the palate that is almost puckering, followed by cherry fruit, raisins, and red wine. Finish is dry and lingering with notes of raisins and cherry.
Body is light with lots of fine carbonation. (460 characters)

Photo of jeranbrews
4/5  rDev -5.7%

A - murky soda brown lots of carbonation clings to glass. Low heads with lacing that glides down fast. 4

S - sweet dates figs and a pinch of green tomato also cloves 3.75

T - sour almost wine-like. Not unpleasant. Notes of yeasty esters and citrus salads. 3.75

M - more watery and sleek that I'd prefer but acceptable for the style. 4

D - an interesting unique tomato-y wine-y beer. 4 (390 characters)

Photo of infinitebruner
4.31/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

October 5, 2014

25.4 oz bottle, snifter

A – Dark brown, bubbly, with red highlights when the light passes through at certain angles. Mild, pinkish-white head, a couple centimeters, with low retention. Thin film of lacy bubbles remains on top.

S – Dark fruit and high lactic, acidic bite, with sweet maltiness shining through. Cherry pits, toffee-covered raisins Some wine-like notes, perhaps of sherry and tawny port.

T – Initial lactic, funky bite, but sugary-malty sweetness follows quickly behind. Black cherries, some plums. Tartness is very much present, but not at all puckering or overwhelming. Sweetness and sour acidity are in incredible harmony. The mellow, aged beer accentuates the green beer and allows all of the flavors to meld and shine.

M – Light to medium body, carbonation is more millions of tiny bubbles than big sudsy CO2. Acidity and light tannins, if any, are very balanced with the malty body and sugars. Aftertaste is acidic sweetness. Not puckery, very refreshing.

O – This is an example of sour ale at its best. Tight but complex, light yet satisfying, and again very, very refreshing. Fantastic blend, well-balanced. Would drink this any time, anywhere. (1,203 characters)

Photo of Redneckwine
4.42/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle into tulip

Appearance - Dark and hazed over completely, but edges are showing some clarity, small little offwhite chunkies are swirling about, 2 finger tan-ish head has awesome retention and leaves great lacing. Looks like a glass of muddy water with a nice head on it.

Smell - Over-ripe, barrel fermented apple/cherry fruitiness is prevalent above all, toasty but clean malts with some bready yeast

Taste - So complex, but generally follows the nose: juicy tart cherry and sour apple are front and center, and earthy wooden barrel is integrated perfectly with it. You'd almost think you were drinking a barrel aged cider (gone a bit south) until the toasty, yeasty, bready malts roll in mid-late palate to smooth things out with mild sweetness. Has a bit of a complex vinous character too, like soured red-wine. Vague spiciness? Finish comes back to a clean, dry, sour snap.

Feel - Carb is scrubbing and lively yet not at all harsh, makes for a light feeling, crisp medium body that finishes perfectly mixed with the beers tartness. Reminds me of good champagne in a way.

Overall - This beer is a masterpiece. I'm a bit new to sour beers in general, so I was taken aback initially by the sour/spoiled fruit character, but after the first few sips or so, it just got more complex, more interesting, and more delicious until the entire 750ml bottle was gone... What a kickass beer - these Belgians really know what they're doing. (1,447 characters)

Photo of abeeronthebeach
4.39/5  rDev +3.5%

750ml bottle poured into a tulip. Drink before 16/09/16.

A - Deep ruddy brown with hints of garnet. The creamy foam on top is so fine that it looks like a nitro pour. Fluffiness of beaten egg whites. Gorgeous. The contrast between head and body gives this beer such an elegant aspect. The head has phenomenal retention.

S - Huge nose of sour red grapes, musty cherry, damson plum. Sweet berry crumble. Scent of red wine vinegar spilled on oak planks. Sour red fruits predominate with the musty and oaky flavours playing a supporting role.

T - The first sip provides a mild mouth-puckering before washing the palate with a richer and fruitier parallel to the nose. I got more sourness on the nose while the palate is treated to a symphony of dark red fruits, musty earth, soured malt and a sweetly vinegary, oaky flavour, finishing dry. Rodenbach Grand Cru is such a juicy and flavourful beer, it's hard to say enough good things about it. The more I drink the more I get the sourness and hint of sweetness as of fresh-picked wild raspberries. I say this every time, but it amazes me this does not contain any actual fruit influence.

M - Effervescence abounds on the pour, rendering the sumptuously creamy mouthfeel that is in store all the more surprising. The prickliness from the carbonation peppers the tongue on first sip before the the tongue is enveloped by a blanket of plush russet decoction. Lovely balance.

O - I have not had this beer in about 9 months so I was a little anxious to see if it would be as impressive as I remember it being after drinking many new beers. It is. It's hard to say if I'd change anything about it. I'd perhaps opt for a darker vanilla head, accompanied by a little more funk and sweetness on the nose. Tastewise perhaps a little more funkiness and weirdness. I'd love to try this beer at 10-12% just to see what the additional viscosity could do for the mouthfeel, although it's already superb. A must try. (1,950 characters)

Photo of baumaxx1
4.8/5  rDev +13.2%

Bottled beer served in a glass.

Appearance - Transparent red-brown, tan 1cm head which dissipates quickly, a bit of lacing, mildly carbonated.

Smell - Red wine, cocoa, caramel, malt, oak, cherries, orange peel.

Taste - Cherry, pear, cider sourness, mandarin, blackforest cake, a hint of oak and tart, blackberry and raspberry.

Mouthfeel - Mild carbonation, a bit of fizz which is refreshing, smooth, creamy and clean. Slightly tarty.

Overall - Very refreshing - not too heavy, not too sour, not too fizzy and big on flavour. A bit of a cherry brandy/port influence going on. (579 characters)

Photo of mtomlins
4.76/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Poured from a 750ml caged and corked bomber into a stemmed MoB teku glass and shared with friends.

Pours a cloudy mahogany red color with a bubbly reddish tan head with decent retention and nice lacing. The nose…ahhh, the nose is just wonderful! Lots of toasted malt, ripe fruit sweetness, cherries, hints of oak, some subtle acidity, leather and whispers of some tart barniness. The taste is equally complex and yet so drinkable. Really pronounced red fruit (cherries), but some deeper ripeness in the form of raisins; some toasted malt and caramel, white pepper, leather, oak, balsamic. The body is full and round, yet light on the tongue with lots of carbonation, but in no way over-carbed. Wow, this is just a fantastic complex, subtle yet highly drinkable beer. Truly delicious! (791 characters)

Photo of SmashPants
4.32/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

Bottle: a standard 330mL brown bottle with a decent macro label. (3.5)

Appearance: poured into a tulip glass. A dark amber-red in colour with visible carbonation across the profile. A thin off-white head lingers for a time before dropping to a thin ring. (3.5)

Aroma: plenty of sour notes up front - currants, cherries, dark fruits, and an almost vinegar note. Not unpleasant though - quite the contrary. (4.0)

Taste: again that lovely sourness comes through nice and strong - almost mouth puckering, but it is softened slightly by a light fruit sweetness. A great sour beer. (4.5)

Aftertaste: still a strong sourness lingers on the palate, with some spice, heavy fruits and a touch of base malts. (4.5)

Mouth feel: absolutely bang-on. I don't know how they manage to make it viscous, smooth and sharp all at the time, but it is very impressive. (5.0)

Overall: definitely the best sour beer I have had to date. Lots of complexity and an fantastic, smooth-yet-sharp mouth feel make this one a must have, even at a price of AU$130+ for 24 x 330mL. Maybe one every now and then as a treat. (1,093 characters)

Photo of Hollywould
5/5  rDev +17.9%

Draught pour into mini tulip glass.

Appearance: Clarity is Hazy, color is Brownish/Mahogany
Aroma: Intensely sour, with some sweetness. Notes of green apple lemon-lime and herbal, slight orange citrus and tart & overripe cherry.
Taste: Sweet on entry, green apple skin, lemon-lime, then a burst of cohesive flavors and a sour pucker towards the end. Finish is tart with green apple and cinnamon.
Mouthfeel: Fizzy, foam, dry feel that leaves you salivating and anxious for the next sip.
Overall: A wonderful, drinkable, exciting beer that makes you crave each sip. It is sour but a slight sweetness balances the palette. (625 characters)

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

14oz pour on-tap at bier markt mississauga

a: a very gorgeous clear ruby red with about a finger of off-white frothy head

s: really sour vinegar up front, but underneath that is a blend of woody notes and tart fruits, mainly cherries

t: follows the nose. tart to begin with, but leads quickly into fruity notes -- cherries, slight tart apples, berries, even some vinous qualities. the oak flavours add a dimension of complexity, working really well with the fruit tastes. no alcohol whatsoever. dry finish

m: medium-bodied with medium-to-high prickly carbonation, but it's kind of creamy. i love this mouthfeel

o: what an absolute delight of a beer. it's sour, fruity, tasty, and refreshing. i'm glad to have had the opportunity to taste this, and i'll definitely have this again in the future if i ever see it (815 characters)

Photo of Wobbly
4.95/5  rDev +16.7%

A- Deep, amber-like in appearance with a lovely, frothy head that lingers for a bit.

S-At first, an aroma of vanilla develops into a more complex bouquet of oak-like fruitiness, perhaps of grapefruit or passion-fruit.

T- Complex notes of oak, vanilla, and passion fruit combine with perfectly balanced acidity. A clean, deeply refreshing beer with an intense serious of flavors.

M- Delightful, complete texture. Medium-bodied and very refreshing. Indeed, it is easy to guzzle this beer if one is not careful.

O- Probably my favorite beer in the world; certainly my favorite of this style. I have been fortunate to try some of the vintage examples from Rodenbach, which are worth the effort to obtain. (705 characters)

Photo of barczar
4.33/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4

Pours a brilliant amber with red highlights and a lingering, frothy khaki head. Aroma is laden with balsamic vinegar and oak. Tart cherry surfaces late. Flavor is slightly sweet, but the balsamic vinegar acetic notes counter to balance. Cherry notes mingle with oak, and somehow, there's an almost creamy mouthfeel. Not as tart as some, but very characterful. It's sweeter than I recall. (387 characters)

Photo of Trifecta1
4.43/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Took me a lot longer to get to this than it should have.

A - Blood red, darker than regular Rodenbach, but just as heady. Crystalline.

S - Sharp tart vinegar leads, a twinge of alcohol and oak, and cherries.

T - Wow. Thank jeebus this was created. Sharp tartness makes your tongue stand on end at the beginning, but quickly changes to sweet tastes of cherry juice, oaky vanilla and earth. Slight bitterness and very slight alcohol flavor, but to me, this helps accentuate the other qualities and puts a nice little "bow" on top. Incredible.

M - Very bubbly, light and clean. Super, super refreshing and cleansing.

O - I understand why people call this the best shelf sour you can buy. Would buy cases of this stuff next time I see it. An absolute gem, and a must-drink for any beer connoisseur. (799 characters)

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

A classic beer, and one I've yet to try. Tasted 11 July 2014.

Pours deep cherry-wood rust brown, clear but dark. Two fingers of yellowish-tan head tinged with red.

Smell is delightfully tart. Cherries, wood, and acidity. Lovely, if a bit on the simplistic side.

Taste is outstanding. Starts out tart, bends fruity, then brings back the sour pinch. All the while little variations are playing on the edges, adding complexity. Definitely on the acidic side of balanced, but with enough fruit presence and balancing sweetness that it's not a straight paint-stripper. Yum.

Feel is, likewise, outstanding. Full-bodied and robust, but airy and flowing as well, with medium-high carbonation that fizzes up and stirs the pot of tastiness. An excellent fit with the taste.

No question why this beer is renowned. It's great across the board, nothing bad, and a whole lot good. Deliciously tart with just the right amount of fruit to complement it. I'll be drinking more of this. (973 characters)

Photo of Apellonious
4.02/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

1 pt 9.6 fl oz bottle from FMcDs poured into a tulip.

A - Dark brown with faint amber highlights. Two finger head that moves quickly to a thin lace. Great lace retention through the drink.

S - Cider, vinegar, plums and cherries.

T - Follows the nose, with the addition of some pear and cola. Sour level is moderate.

M - Carbonation is on the moderate/low side, with some mid swig to the finish sharpness to finish semi dry.

O - A pleasant sour. Highly drinkable and recommended. Well made. (497 characters)

Photo of patre_tim
4.1/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark brown, slight reddish tinge. Little to no head, black chunky floaties near the bottom

S: Smells of rotting sour fruits, cider vinegar, balsamic vinegar, dark fruits, cherries.

T: Tastes of balsamic vinegar, raspberry, and cider. Bananas also present, some floral tone which comes and goes once. Slight twinge of bitterness which hits high on the tongue, but lingers only a short time before fading. Predominately a cider/balsamic vinegar flavour to this one.

M: Thick, acidic, little carbonation.

O: Expensive and rated high. Certainly unique, my first of this type. Not sure what to pair it with- some lighter cheeses, perhaps even blue cheese would go well, sharp cheeses like cheddar, sour fruits like cherries or raspberries, medium to light body with medium to light carbonation. Actually good at room temperature. It’s a VERY aquired taste and needs to be considered when to drink this beer. Black chunky floaties near the bottom. (953 characters)

Rodenbach Grand Cru from Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V.
94 out of 100 based on 1,053 ratings.