Rodenbach Grand Cru - Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V.

Not Rated.
Rodenbach Grand CruRodenbach Grand Cru

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BA SCORE
94
outstanding

1,041 Reviews
THE BROS
100
world-class

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,041
Hads: 3,548
rAvg: 4.24
pDev: 10.38%
Wants: 281
Gots: 483 | 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
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Reviews: 1,041 | Hads: 3,548
Photo of ptykozoon
3.03/5  rDev -28.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Dark red, wannabe brown. Spotty Lacing. Pretty color.

Band aid, dark fruit, cherry, cherry and more cherry. Cough syrup cherry. Very dense and sweet. Bits of raisin and raspberry.

Very yeasty/sedimenty/grainy - which I dislike in sours. Lots of cherry, vanilla undertones.

Aforementioned grainy mouthfeel, cloyingly sweet. So much fruit in this.

I have come to the realization that there is a particular brand of sours that I don't care for. It is these dense, super fruity, acidic and sediment ridden ones. I'll keep revisiting the style though as I know Rodenbach is a staple. (584 characters)

Photo of Nbr1Geech
3.04/5  rDev -28.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 1 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

Rusty bike chain, leaky D batteries, fermented cider, and deep inside, a robust Belgian beer. I shall drink it 'til I get it right! It is part of a bounty I captured at my new favorite place on earth. It is the 7th Belgian I've tried and is very distinct in character. At first taste I believed it to be bad. I quickly inspected the bottle cap looking for signs of rust. There were none. I proceeded to google. To my fiscal satisfaction, it's supposed to taste that way. I will inspect every drop. (497 characters)

Photo of JulieRFoster
3.11/5  rDev -26.7%
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. (594 characters)

Photo of corby112
3.13/5  rDev -26.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Serving type: on tap at Monk's Cafe, Philadelphia, PA.

Pours a very dark amber color with a foamy off-white head. Very sour fruity aroma with hints of oak and vanilla. Intensely tart and acidic with a nice amount of sour cherry as well as oak and vanilla. Very sour with a puckering dry finish. (295 characters)

Photo of jamie2dope
3.14/5  rDev -25.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a cool dark red color with a small tannish white head. Smell was extremely sour, very jolly rancherish. Also some cherries and a noticeable vinnegar smell towards the back. Taste was a bit better, with the sour flavors and fruit melding together. Mouthfeel was light to medium bodied. This beer was simply too sour for me, and way too acidic for me to handle. Maybe it is just the style. Im not sure...this was my first example of the style. cheers (454 characters)

Photo of scooter231
3.18/5  rDev -25%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Very pretty scarlet red, absolutely clear, with an off white head. Smell was both sweet and sour- vinegar and soy sauce, mostly. Sour fruits, perhaps. Taste left me conflicted, I'm still not sure if I liked it or not. Balsamic and regular vinegar with some berries added. Salad dressing came to mind. After much thought, I think this reminds me of a vinegary arbor mist. I'm still unsure if that's good or bad though. Mouthfeel was fizzy, like a champagne, perhaps. Weird beer, probably spot on for the style, but I don't know, I'm not sold on it. (547 characters)

Photo of M_chav
3.22/5  rDev -24.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

Pours a deep and desk red/brown... Similar to a red-over malted IPA.
Nose rotten plums/cherries
Tastes like tart cherries, quite pleasant actually, deep flavors
Mouthfeel is full bodied, a complete brew for sure.
Overall I can really appreciate this beer even though it's outside realm (288 characters)

Photo of triptens
3.23/5  rDev -23.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

750ml tasted side by side with the classic red
08 Vintage

Appearance: Dark mahogany color with a tan bubbly head that dissipates quickly.

Smell: Sweet cherry, touch of vanilla and vinegar.

Taste: Like a cherry sweet tart. Was expecting more sour. This tastes like a sugary tart candy.

Mouthfeel: The tartness kinda just hits you up front then goes away. Medium bodied.

Drinkability: Right now, Im not a fan of this beer. It is reminiscent of the 07 Panil Barrique, which I did not enjoy, but LOVED the 05. Hopefully I can get my hands on a few of these to age and maybe I'll think differently about it. (607 characters)

Photo of Manoftyr
3.24/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Poured from 24oz growler into snifter

Appearance-Pours a deep brown/ruby red, some small head rose up from the growler pour but didn't retain into the snifty upon pouring.

Smell-Tart, sour fruit aromas assail the sesnes, I can make out what smells to me like sour cherries, grapes and a whisp of what smells to me like a mix between a lemon and a pear.

Mouthfeel-Soft and plushy, but rather surprisingly full.

Taste-A sour and refreshing tartness washes over with an immediate intensity followed shortly by fruity notes which taste reminiscent of the aroma; sour cherries, grapes and a third distinct flavor which I cannot put my finger on that is like a lemon/pear mix. Some very slight malty characters come through on the finish that sort of graze the back of the tongue with an instant of semi-sweetness.

Drinkability-Although it's refreshing, the overpowering sourness makes it so that I wouldn't want more than a single glass.

Notes-The Flanders Red is a unique style that everyone should try at least once, I did with this beer and I can say I'm glad I did. Now I can't say I liked it so much I'd go out and seek it again, but the experience of trying it at least once was worth the price. (1,202 characters)

Photo of jjanega08
3.27/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A= Pours a deep brown almost black color more of a deep brown than a black color. The head is an impressive one finger head that falls to a thin skin on top and sits there bubbling like a fermenting wort. Nice lacing on the side of the glass.

S= Super sour pushing vinegar in the smell. It has an odd medicinal smell to it. A little lemon in it as well. I feel like I'm getting a headache from smelling it. I almost get a feeling in my nose like I'm smelling paint thinner. Quite powerful and sour smelling.

T= Not nearly as bad as the smell. A nice sour cherry tartness. Not nearly as sour as the smell led it on to be either. It is sour but it's a nice mix of sweet and sour. Sweet cherries and sour lemons. There is still a small medicinal taste to it but not much. There is a nice wooden funky taste to it as well.

M= Dry with some tannins detectable. Interesting mouthfeel but not bad.

D= Pretty good. The smell was a bid turn off at first but the taste mad it better. Nice beer but I dunno if I'm gonna get it again. (1,028 characters)

Photo of chunkylover53
3.3/5  rDev -22.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Reddish brown with a small head.

Smell: This smells like candy and good scotch. Very peaty.

Taste: Very sour. A little too much so for my liking. Not like a lambic, but still quite sour. Like Sour Chews candy with a hint of blackberry.

Mouth: A bit thin.

Overall, it's OK. I guess. Fans of lambics might like it, but I won't be rushing out to get more. (376 characters)

Photo of BrewMaster
3.35/5  rDev -21%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I was looking forward to tasting this beer so when my friend got a hold of a bottle I was quite excited. The beer poured a cloudy brown with light read hues and no head on it. The aroma had a dry grape smell along with some sweetness. The flavor was just sour, sour, sour like a mean old woman. Also some flavors of cherry (kriek) and a bit of a yeasty flavor. But the cherry and the yeast flavors were getting the shit beaten out of them by the sourness, just like my palate. The beer was puckering in the mouth with a bit of a ferric character to it. Overall I was very disappointed in this beer. I had such high hopes but htey were dashed in a blaze of sourness. This beer was just too sour for my tastes. Thanks, but no thanks. Not my style. (745 characters)

Photo of Snamnoum
3.35/5  rDev -21%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - ruddy dark brown with red hues throughout. Murky like old pond water with two fingers of beige head.

Smell - Incredibly funky. Like oxidized red wine that has been left opened on a kitchen counter for a week. Red wine vinegar, cinnamon or cloves, and old oak. Not much malt presence and no hops to speak of.

Taste - super super funky. We're talking red wine vinegar, blue cheese with some fruit (over ripe grapes, raspberries, cherries, green apple, and cranberry) Both sweet and sour at the same time with the sweetness coming at the beginning and lingering into the middle and then being replaced by a dry tart sourness which lingers on your palette. It is a very complex beer and everything it says it is on the bottle but I'm sorry I just can't handle the off, burn wine flavor.

Mouthfeel - the feel is actually very nice rather soft like a cream soda. The beer itself is medium bodied.

Overall - This is a robust, complex and authentic Flemish sour. I can appreciate that it is true too the style and beloved by many. I have tried to keep an open mind when reviewing this beer but have come to the conclusion as some others have said that this is just one you either love or hate. MY GOD IS THIS A FUNKY BEER!!! (1,233 characters)

Photo of CrazyDavros
3.38/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

3.9
AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Davros (1442) - Melbourne, - MAR 6, 2009
UPDATED: APR 27, 2013 First sour ale. Been putting this one off for ages, but realised it’s 4 months past it’s use by, so time to face my fears! Head lasts for all of two seconds before dissapearing without a trace. Dark, fiery, ruby red, perfectly clear. Aroma is sweet red wine (lambrusco?), vinegar, stale sweat, more vinergar, sweet plums, vinegar, raisins, brandy, and more vinergar. Taste is (surprise!) vinegar, unripe plums, astringent lemon peel. I can feel my stomach shuddering in protest. No where near as crazy as the aroma though. Rather pleasant actually, after a few sips. Phwoar! This is once crazy mofo style right here! Cherry and other dark fruits are apparent after being desensitised to the vinegar. Slightly watery, with active carbonation giving it extra tang (as if it needed it). No way I’d be drinking more than one of these in a week, let alone a night. However, this is my first sour ale... Crazy crazy crazy. UPDATE: Now that I’ve tried my fair share of sours, I’m really digging this.... bloody awesome. (1,152 characters)

Photo of bark
3.38/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The colour is pale wine red; the finger thick head is beige. No lacing. The liquid is clear.

The smell is powerful. Sour-sweet notes of red wine vinegar and lightly roasted nuts.

The taste is complex with notes of sweet red berries, fruit syrup and vinegar. The aftertaste is a bit dry with lots of long lasting sour notes, some hints of sweet almonds.

The carbonation is strong; the liquid is smooth.

Although the flavours are strong, the beer is very drinkable. (470 characters)

Photo of surfadelic23
3.4/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Holy guacamole is this sour! It's the equivalent of biting a lemon or sticking yout tongue on a nine volt battery! WOW! Don't get me wrong, these aren't negatives for the style and I went into this 750 ml. bottle knowing what to expect! I can't imagine what somebody who bought this thinking "Oh it's just another Belgian" would think after sip one!
This pourred a bright ruby brown with a nice head in my chalice.
There's a nice sourish fruity smell that's pleasant. Off the bat, the taste is sweet but then KABAM a wall of sourness hits! Boy does it hang around for a bit too.
The mouthfeel is right for the style but boy is it overpowering. Drinkability for me is on par or average. Because of the sourness I just can't see this as one that I'd make a session beer out of. I'm glad I tried it though as it's a very interesting style that I had trepidations about even drinking... Alas, nothing ventured nothing gained. I will definitely try others of the style (967 characters)

Photo of norwichboy
3.4/5  rDev -19.8%
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. (580 characters)

Photo of andrewinski1
3.4/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a tulip. This is dark brown with amber hues. There is a light tan bubbly head.

The aroma is slightly sweet malt vinegar, lots of acidic character here.

The taste starts out with a nice vinegary tartness and finishes with just a bit of sweetness in the finish. This is one of the better balanced Flanders Red Ales, which for the most part I consider a garbage style. This isn't too bad though. I would probably say it's kind of tangy.

The body is medium, with nice sharp carbonation.

Good, but I'll pass for other sours most of the time. (552 characters)

Photo of kojevergas
3.42/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle served in a Rodenbach Grand Cru goblet in a bar in Ghent, Belgium. Reviewed from notes.

A: 2.5 finger head of nice cream and thickness. Black colour. Good retention.

Sm: Dark fruit, hops, a bit of caramel. Complex, and featuring some wonderful esters that me broken nose can't quite identify.

T: Dark fruit body with a sourish finish. Very hoppy, particularly in terms of esters. Fairly simple for the style. The souring notes are nicely balanced against the fruit body, but still strange in the beer, even considering the style.

Mf: Relatively coarse and wet. Matches the style but not the beer per se.

Dr: Too sour to drink repeatedly, but overall a good beer, and an affordable one in Belgium. (712 characters)

Photo of phisig137
3.42/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a goblet a very dark brown with many ruby red highlights. Very little head, dissapated immediately, and left no lacing at all.
The smell I found to be a little muted, but the sourness did shine through. Hints of vinegar and vanilla were present, but not much else. It did smell quite good, but just muted.
The flavor I found to be quite enjoyable. The sourness is definitely present, and makes itself know, but it seems to be well balanced with a hint of acidic sweetness. You can also taste a bit of vanilla and chocolate in there too. Mouthfeel was average, and I rate the drinkability low because it IS rather tough to drink, a sipper no doubt. But as far as the style goes, this is relatively easy to drink.

I think this is one of the best examples of a Flanders Red I've had to date. I love "the duchesse", but I could drink more than one of these. (871 characters)

Photo of SpeedwayJim
3.43/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from 750ml bottle into a Brooklyn Brewery snifter.

A: Gentle pour creates a 3 finger fine, fluffy, whitish-brown head that dissipates quickly into a thin film. Brew is clear deep amber/red. Lacing is light but clumpy.

S: Woody skunk, cherries, raspberry, alcoholic nose.

T: Tart alcohol and hops in the beginning fade into red fruit. Middle is just straight sour. Finish is woody, earthy, a hint of malt.

M: Light bodied and coarse. Filmy mouth that is also very dry. Finish is dry, messy.

D: Unbalanced compared to other Flander's Reds that I've had. A bit too tart and alcoholic as it warms. Mouthfeel takes away from the blending of the different flavors. (675 characters)

Photo of edchicma
3.43/5  rDev -19.1%
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. (430 characters)

Photo of keithmurray
3.43/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

My first attempt at a Flanders Red Ale. Opened a Rodenbach Grand Cru 750ml that I bought about a month ago.

Wow, as soon as I popped the cork I was immediately punched in the nose by the aroma, which is of tart cherries mixed with vinegar, apple juice and apple cider.

The taste isn't as intense as the smell, but this is FUNKY, but somewhat similar profile to the smell, cherries, vinegar and carbonated apple juice. Wow, this is really tart, almost like I am drinking a carbonated apple cider beverage, but in a good way.

this is really tart and sour, I couldn't see having more than one glass in one sitting (I have to put the rest of the 750ML for later drinking, I dont think I can drink anymore of this tonite), maybe because this is my first approach to this style of beer. This is good, but would take a little bit more of getting used to. This is certainly a unique style, to me its less a beer and more of a malt beverage. (936 characters)

Photo of Prufrock
3.43/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

750mL bottle, corked and caged, into a thin Lindemans pilsner.

clear amber orange with tons of rising bubbles and a creamy layer of off-white head that retains well and leaves plenty of lace.

what an odd combination of aromas. sharp sweetness with cherries, apples, raisins and honey; sharp sourness with sour grapes and cherries; vinegar, resiny woodiness.

initial apple and raisin sweetness, then an overpowering lemon, cherry and grape sourness with a strong note of balsamic vinegar in the finish. fairly light feel and carbonation. unsparingly strong in its flavors, but the combination and finish are slightly off-putting. (637 characters)

Photo of Matt1516
3.44/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Opens with a pop, and pours dark-reddish brown with lots of carbonation and three-finger head that rapidly dissipates.

Smells funky--I did a double-take because there was a lot of malt vinegar and rotten fruit on the nose.

Tastes mild-vinegar with sour cherry and other field berries. Dry cider finish.

I'm conflicted on this one--I respect the crafting of this beer--the two year process, the blending and the funky yeasts...but the taste is a little out there for me. That said, I feel like a phillistine for underrating a legend. (535 characters)

Rodenbach Grand Cru from Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V.
94 out of 100 based on 1,041 ratings.