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Rodenbach Caractère Rouge | Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V.

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
97
world-class
180 Reviews
BEER STATS
Reviews:
180
Ratings:
1,251
Avg:
4.43
pDev:
18.74%
 
 
Wants:
298
Gots:
343
For Trade:
46
Rodenbach Caractère RougeRodenbach Caractère Rouge
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V.
Belgium | website

Style: Flanders Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
The brewer allow the beer to macerate with fresh cherries, raspberries and cranberries. After this maceration in oak, the beer re-ferments in the bottle. The result is RODENBACH Caractère Rouge, an exceptional RODENBACH with fruit maceration and a 7% alcohol volume. The brew is more than unique and extremely exclusive, as only 900 75-cl bottles were produced (first batch). Geunes serves this wilful beer as part of his other unique range of beer varieties in his restaurant, ’t Zilte, at the Antwerp MAS museum.

Added by Jason on 11-02-2011

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Reviews: 180 | Ratings: 1,251
Photo of Jason
4.59/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Beertender at 't Brugs Beertje recommended it, 40 Euro for the bottle? Only around 900 bottles for sale from the batch.

Beautiful lacing, dark amber glow.

Perfume like fruit, some raspberry & cherry but the tartness of the cranberries and the house character come out more in the nose.

Tart pucker, soft malt, hint of caramel, bread, wood, bubble gum, cranberry tartness, faint raspberry & cherry, mint, pull of wood which leads to dryness.

Worth the try and the extremely higher price tag, by far one of the most interesting beers I have tasted this year. From the use of different fruits and the wood aging ... epic.

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Photo of PerHops
4.59/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

A- This beer pours a beautiful red orange with a a quarter inch head and whispy lacing into a wine glass.

S- Some vinegar, some funk, some sour cherries and raspberries.

T- A near perfect balance of sweetness from the fruit accompanying the vinegar and funk from the base beer and oak barrels.

M-Great carbonation. Medium high, to high, which works perfect for style! Really makes this beer brighter!

O- So much better than I anticipated. Well worth the 22 bucks. I would buy again, for sure!

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Photo of samshaw
4.59/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

A: Mostly opaque, dark amber with thick head of light pink and tan that dissipates quickly.

S: Moderate tart cherry, with light notes of cranberry and raspberry.

T: Medium sour cherry more pronounced on the tongue, complemented with the moderate flavor of other berries. Slightly more sour than tart with just a hint of sweetness.

M: Moderate carbonation and thickness, the sensations of which amount to a significant component of this ale.

O: Dark, brooding and sexy. Tartness of the cranberry and raspberry lend a vivid bite to the primary note of wild cherry, making this a drink to savor slowly. Enjoying it as such maintains an extremely pleasant aroma of red consistently in the mouth.

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Photo of BEERchitect
4.57/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

With the personal feeling that Rodenbach's beers have always been undermined as a Sour Ale, they've put themselves back on the sour map with Caractere Rouge!

Starting with the same ruby-mauve hue that sparkles in the glass; its dark red hue is largely clear until the yeast cake in the bottle rises in suspension. As a dainty semi-fizzy creme swirls from the calderon beneath, its head character is soon compromised by the beer's acidity and dry body. A quick swirl brings the head back to life to share its high aromatics and then folds back into the glass with minimal lacing power.

Sweetness, tartness, and ooh-so savory aromas align in the nose with a sense of brightness and vibrancy. The fruity threads that pull the beer together are plump and just verbose enough to distinguish its cherry, raspberry and cranberry notes from each other. An overcast of malt is candied with mild confectioner's sweetness and then tempered with balsamic-type acidity. Toasted grain brings out a taste of toast and meek chocolate in order to reinforce its beery-scent.

Crisp, refreshing and savory at the onset, the beer's sweetness and sourness align on the early palate much like "Sweetheart" candy. Its fruit-forward flavor further reinforce that attitude until the middle of vinous red wine, slim balsamic and drier fruit notes bring about the natural earthiness in the beer. Light brine, musty wine soaked wood, dried limes and crab-apples hark to Lambic- but the fruit and light sweetness that accompanies it really bring out those Roeselare characteristics.

Though light bodied but not abhorrently dry, there's ample sweetness and and carbonation to give the early palate sensations a creamy fruit texture. But that's all short-lived as the carbonation bounces off the tongue and carries away with it the fruit and malt sweetness. What's left is vinous acidity that pangs sharply on the mouth in order to refresh it and finish pleasantly dry and warm.

Caractere Rouge is a less vinegary example of Flanders Red Ales but is slightly more fruit forward. I love it that the fruits are sweet enough to discern them from another and not so dry that they all begin to taste alike. That sweet-sour-savory medley shows a balance that's rarely found in Sour Ales.

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Photo of MasterSki
4.57/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle shared by me at MvM's pre-Toronado showdown. Served in a taster glass.

A - White foam settles to a thin collar, leaving a few stray splotches of lace. Transparent red body.

S - The aroma is a ridiculously intense blast of cherries and other red fruits - perhaps some cranberry in the periphery? There's also some wet oak with a slightly leafy flavor to it, overripe fruit funk, and a sweet malt backdrop. Still, this is all about the fruit.

T - The taste isn't quite on par with the aroma, but it's still quite enjoyable. Lots of jammy fruits and cherry pie, complete with graham cracker crust and a dollop of vanilla. Some mild oak character and acidity in the finish.

M - Super dry and surprisingly light body. Very easy to drink, with refreshing, pleasant carbonation. Didn't realize this was 7% and would have guessed closer to 5%.

D - Awesome stuff - I probably should have ordered more. I crushed my glass and filled it up again before sharing the rest with the SF/Chicago hags. Nice to see Rodenbach stepping up and not merely resting on their laurels.

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Photo of Immortale25
4.56/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Due South Brewing Co. snifter. No freshness date.

A- Pours a hazy reddish light brown color with a 1/4 inch light tan head that retains a bit before becoming a thin ring around the edge of the glass and a small center patch of sheer surface foam. Not-so-resilient lacing leaves small clots behind.

S- Has that classic funky kriek aroma of bright sweet cherry with a moderate medicinal quality. Also lots of dark fruit like plum, fig and black raspberry. There's also a slight Brett presence lending a note of green olive.

T- Lots of sweet golden raisin upfront, then the cranberry, sour cherries and lactic acid come in to tarten (did I just invent a word?) things up. The raisin lasts through to the aftertaste resulting in a port-like quality.

M- Moderately tart and sticky with medium carbonation and a body leaning toward the lighter side.

O- I would definitely liken this more to a Kriek than a Flanders Red but, either way, it's very tasty. Definitely on the sweeter side and could use a tad more tartness but the complexity is there.

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Photo of Trevor11
4.55/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Purchased from the Beer Temple in Chicago, and openned the day before Easter in 2016. This beer has a deep, burnt red hue with decent head that slowly fades out. In some aspects it reminds me of New Glarus's Raspberry Tart or Belgian Red with the sweetness dialed back significantly and paired with a counterbalance of sourness. Definitely a lot going on in the flavor profile levels with incoming waves of smooth sweet, then sour, followed by bitter. I don't know if I would go searching for another bottle but it was very interesting and worth a try if you have not before.

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Photo of larryi86
4.54/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750 mL bottle poured into a flute

A- A clear ruby red with a two finger pink head.

S- Sweet and sour, a lot of cranberries, cherries, some raspberries, oak.

T- Great balance between sweet and sour, cranberries have a nice sweetness up front and the cherries bring a great sour punch, some vinager, touch of lactic acid, some oak. Very well balance, wish I got more of the raspberry flavors.

M- Smooth, crisp, medium body, dry.

O- A very well done sour worth try and the $25 price tag. Definitely will pick this up again!

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Photo of MrDell
4.54/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

26.01.2016
Rodenbach Caractère Rouge
Flanders Red Ale – 7% - 750ml bottle – Best Before 09.09.17


Appearance: Red, oak colored, white head covering top of beer. Served in stemmed Rodenbach grand cru glass. Small, champagne style bubbles.


Aroma: Strawberry bon-bons, sherbert, just a hint of balsamic vinegar - faint compared to the grand cru. Also slightly acidic smell but mostly the red berries coming through in the aroma.


Taste: Sweets, red fruit and sherbert up front, funky in the middle and slightly sour - not as much as I would have thought, with a very long, dry finish. Absolutely wonderful. The three stages I describe above are very distinct and individual.


Mouth feel: The label says about the triangle of sweet, sour and dry, and that is exactly what you get here. Very interesting to feel it evolve from one phase to the next on the palate.


Overall: I love this! Not a beer that I could drink all the time but one that when you do fancy one, nothing else would do. Love the sherberty fruit mixed with sour funk and dry finish. A very unique example of a unique style. Looks very nice in the stemmed Rodenbach glass. 9.5 / 10.

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Photo of MaltLickyWithTheCandy
4.52/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Huge sour berry fruits aroma blended perfectly with this flanders red. This is definitely rodenbach's best. Easily one of the best sour beers out there.

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Photo of superspak
4.52/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle into tulip glass, best before 2/19/2018. Pours clear ruby red/copper color with a 2 finger fairly dense off white head with solid retention, that reduces to a ring of lacing. Light spotty lacing clings on the glass with a moderate amount of streaming carbonation. Aromas of big tart cherry, cranberry, raspberry, strawberry, green apple, lemon, red grape, light cider vinegar, caramel, toast, hay, straw, grass, oak, light pepper, light musty funk, and yeast/oak earthiness. Fantastic aromas with awesome complexity and balance of fruity/earthy yeast, berries, dark malt, and oak barrel notes; with great strength. Taste of big tart cherry, cranberry, raspberry, strawberry, green apple, lemon, red grape, light cider vinegar, caramel, toast, hay, straw, grass, oak, light pepper, light musty funk, and yeast/oak earthiness. Fair amount of fruit tartness and light yeast spice on the finish; with lingering notes of cherry, cranberry, raspberry, strawberry, apple, red grape, caramel, toast, oak, light pepper, and yeast/oak earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Fantastic complexity, robustness, and balance of fruity/earthy yeast, berries, dark malt, and oak barrel flavors; with an awesome sweetness/tartness balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a very smooth, fairly crisp, and lightly creamy/acidic mouthfeel that is amazing. Alcohol is very well hidden with minimal warmth lingering after the finish. Overall this is a world class fruited Flanders red ale. All around amazing complexity, robustness, and balance of fruity/earthy yeast, berries, dark malt, and oak barrel flavors; and very smooth to drink with the low amount of acidity. An insanely amazing offering.

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Photo of corby112
4.52/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours a cloudy dark ruby red color with copper/mahogany edges and a one finger pinkish, off-white head that quickly settles into a lasting ring. Spotty lacing left behind. Beautiful color in this beer.

Sweet vinous aroma with luscious fruit, acetic acid and a strong barrel presence. Decent amount of oak but not overpowering with delicate char. No toothpick character which is surprising given it aged in oak for two years. Strong acetic acid but more of a vinaigrette sweetness, not harsh or solvent-like. Lots of luscious fruit juice. The cranberry and sour cherries really stand out countering the acid and barrel with a really pleasant juicy fruit presence. Smells incredible.

Tart and puckering with the perfect balance of sour acidity, earthy oak and vinous fruit sweetness. Subtle funk and acetic acid but again, it not solvent-like, providing mostly vinegary sweetness. Some dark malt flavors in there along with prominent vinous dark fruit. Tart cranberry and sour cherry really stand out along with other dark berries. Well balanced and surprisingly drinkable considering the complexity and sour acidity. Subtle mineral flavor and somewhat kriek like with dry fruit skins, jammy seeds and sweet fruit juice.

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Photo of Justin_Cyr
4.52/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Ordered it not knowing what to expect and was pleasantly surprised. Excellent fragrance, current and raisin with a balsamic notes near the end . Sour and oak sweetness, great balance! The appearance is unbelievable, would love to enjoy it again on a patio.

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Photo of snaotheus
4.52/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

750ml corked/caged bottle split between two big goblets. If there's a best by, bottled on, or batch number on the bottle, I can't find it. The bottle doesn't look like the photo in this listing. The bottle has clear, plasticky, printed sticker labels.

Pours coppery golden, surprisingly clear, lots of carbonation which clings to the side of the glass but doesn't build into much of a head. Smell is delicious and rich and power, easily detectable at arm's length while pouring the glasses. Sour, sweet-tarty, fruit, just a hint of smokiness.

Taste is sour but not quite jaw clenching, has exactly the sweet-tarty character that I love in a Flanders Red (see Rodenbach Grand Cru). Without doing a side by side, I couldn't compare this with Grand Cru, but it seems like a beer of comparable quality. I think this beer is very fruity. I don't get much from the oak vats mentioned on the label, though. I think primarily I get sour cherry flavor, and lots of fruity sweetness.

Mouthfeel is light and smooth, slightly oily. Overall, this beer is excellent.

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Photo of aquazr1
4.51/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Wow! The fruit really shines in this beer. The nose invites you in and the taste does not disappoint. All the flavors come through in perfect harmony. The color is a brownish red and the mouthfeel is medium.

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Photo of SPLITGRIN
4.51/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Body looks like raspberry purée. Head is almost non exentent. Nose is that same raspberry puree feel. With first taste it hits me like a ton of bricks "this is what Fraboise could be with a lot of refinment. This is a berry bomb, in all the right ways. Really dynamic and delicious.

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Photo of TrappistJohnMD
4.51/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Celebrated my 10th wedding anniversary with this one. I was very excited to give it a try.

Served ruby-brown color with cream or off-white head in a Rodenbach glass.

Smell is tart and fruity. Lot of cherries anf cranberry.

Taste is mildly tart with cherries and cranberries. Nice green apple freshness lingers in the finish. No obvious bitterness.

Mouthfeel is prickly and nicely carbonated for the style.

Overall this was fantastic! The best example of the style that I have had. Very refreshing.

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Photo of larryarms847
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a gorgeous crystal clear ruby red with a lively body and little lacing.

Cherry, raspberry, and cranberry nose with subtle hint of oak and vanilla.

Tart raspberry and cranberry explode at first sip, followed by a sweeter vanilla, cherry, and oak palate cleanser.

Light-bodied, high carbonation, mildly tart, extremely refreshing.

Overall, while the $25 price point is hard to swallow, this brew does not disappoint.

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Photo of KYGunner
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is full of of delicious raspberry, dark cherry, vanilla cream, cranberries and touches of oak wood. Only lightly tangy and sour this is so full and amazing.

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Photo of minterro
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Bought this beer at Argonuts in Denver, CO. I really enjoy this company's stuff so I figured I would give this one a try. The price was about 20$ for 750 ml bottle.

A&S: very pungent raspberry aroma upfront, really quite overpowering. The next strongest aroma is cranberries, however I'm not getting much if any cherries. Smells pretty sour as well, but more tart than puckering.

T&M: Cherries in the end of the taste. A little malty in the finish as well (something you don't pick up in the aroma), but similar of their other beer's finishes. Very smooth almost velvety even with a bite of carbonation. Medium-low body, medium-high carbonation.

Overall: really fantastic beer. Probably will not buy again, but just because of the price tag. I would say it is much better than their classic, and better than Grand Cru, but just not by enough to make me shell out 9 more dollars. Still a phenomenal beer and worth a try if only once.

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Photo of StoutHunter
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I picked up a bottle of Rodenbach's Cartactere Rouge a few days ago for $22.99 at The Lager Mill. I was looking for something a little special for my birthday and I thought I would take a chance on this one, I think the Rodenbach Classic is a pretty nice beer and i'm interested to see how this one turns out, so lets see how it goes. 2013 Vintage. Poured from a brown corked and caged 750ml Bottle into a Belgian tulip.

A- The label is pretty simple and not too eye catching, but I think it has a nice classy look to it. It poured a nice and hazy darker red color that took on a great ruby red color when held to the light with a finger and a half worth of off white head that died down to a thin ring that eventually disappears and it left a little bit of spotty lacing behind. This was a very good looking beer, I really liked the color and I have no complaints at all.

S- The aroma starts off with a higher amount of medium sweetness that's followed by a huge berry aroma, the raspberrys, cranberrys, and tart cherrys all come through and I think the cranberrys add a unique aspect to the berry aroma that sets it apart and it has a nice tart/sour aroma to it. Up next comes a light funky farmhouse like aroma with a lighter musty aroma mixed in and there's also some light oaky aromas that show up just enough to notice them. Towards the end there's a pretty light vinegar aroma that works well with this beer. I thought this beer had very good aroma, it was very fruity with the berrys and cherrys being highlighted with just enough funky and oaky aromas.

T- The taste seems to be pretty similar to the aroma and it starts off with a higher amount of medium sweetness followed by all those berry and cherry aspects that I got in the aroma with the cranberrys still adding an extra unique aspect that makes for an aroma that isn't the typical berry aroma. Up next comes some of that funky yeast and it imparts a lighter funky flavors with a slight musty flavor in the background that shows up just enough. On the finish comes the oak with a slight bit of vanilla and there's higher amount of medium tartness that is at just the right level and it had a tart berry like aftertaste. This is a very good tasting beer, I loved the balance between the tart berrys and the funky yeast.

M- Pretty smooth, refreshing, clean, fairly dry on the finish, medium bodied with a good amount of higher medium carbonation that was at just the right level. This beer had a very good mouthfeel, it really worked well with this beer and I have no complaints.

Overall I thought this was a very good beer and I don't have any experience with this style, but I'm pretty sure this is a very good example of a Flanders Red Ale and it reminded me of some of the better funky fruit beers I have had. This beer had nice drinkability, it wasn't overly sour, a little acidic, pretty smooth, clean, refreshing and the taste did a good job at holding my attention, I think a full bottle would be a little too acidic for me so I think splitting the bottle with someone is the perfect amount and I could see how this would be a great beer to enjoy in the summer. What I liked the most about this beer was everything, this beer didn't have any weak points in my opinion and there's nothing I can think that would improve this beer. What I liked the least about this beer was how expensive it is, I know it's not cheap to import these Belgian beers, but if the price was lower it wouldn't be just a special occasion beer. I would get this beer again if it saw it, it's very expensive, but I think it's worth it and it makes for a great special occasion beer and I would love to see how it changes over time. I would recommend this to anyone who loves those Funky fruit beers. All in all I was pretty impressed with this beer, I was hoping this was going to be good for how much I paid for it, but it ended up exceeding my expectations and it made for a very enjoyable beer. Good job guys, this was a great and special beer, thanks for sending some to the USA, keep up the awesome work.

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Photo of jlindros
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Been sitting on this for a while, dug out of the back of the fridge.

Pours a mild fizzy pinkish smaller head that fades at a med to quicker pace, crystal clear ruby dark cherry red color.

Nose is nice, starting with lots of fruit, berry , various berries like black berry raspberry boisenberry thing, plenty of sour cherry as well and a bit of cherry cough syrup, nice sour funk little lacto pedio blend thing going on, some vanilla barrel notes, faint cranberry as well., a bit sweet and jammy.

taste comes on with tons more fruit again, fairly tart, and pretty sour, some lacto flemmy creamy sour, pedio funk sourness as well, fair acidity with acetic maybe also lactic acid. Plenty of fruit, sour cherry all over, mixed with more of that hodge podge berry but more of a dominant blackberry/raspberry combo, and even a touch of tart cranberry on the back end, a fleshy dry cranberry and not juice I mean like really chewing on the berry itself. Touch of vanilla oak barrel notes, with a sticky sweet candy malt character, jammy fruit and candy syrup like a nice tart fruit preserve. Finish is sticky and flemmy, a bit drier and a big cranberry flavor and dryness washing over, with a little sour cherry, and mild acidity.

Mouth is med bod, nice effervescent carbonation, little sticky, flemmy and sour.

Overall quite nice, great souring aspects, nice base sweet candy malt, tons of great jammy tart fruit, good acidity levels, very tasty and enjoyable.

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Photo of cherche
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

L: ruby red, minor head but solid retention around the edges, some lacing
S: tart cherries and cranberries
T: on par with the smell, taste is a bit more sour and a bit lighter than the smell might imply, very cranberry finish
M: on point for a sour beer, strong carbonation
O: amazing beer. Definitely one of the best Flemish red sour beers I have had if not the best.

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Photo of Jack_Malts
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%

Beautiful hazy auburn pour. Smells like sour cherry syrup. Big juicy fruit flavors, tart cherry, slight acetic presence, bright cranberry and freshly picked raspberries. A bit expensive, but a must try for any fans of Flanders reds, or anybody who likes mouth-wateringly delicious beer.

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Photo of alexanderplatz
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

If you're put off at the idea of a "sour" beer, consider it more tart than truly sour. Thoughts: "Vinous" for sure. Just the right amount of vinegary taste intermixed with fruity flavors. An easy beer to drink, quaffable. A very accessible beverage, no more challenging flavor-wise than a good dry apple cider. (In fact I think in a blind tasting you could pass this off as a cider.) The main argument against buying this beer again is that it is so much more expensive than the garden variety Rochefort Classic (Red), yet not a substantially different drinking experience.

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Rodenbach Caractère Rouge from Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V.
97 out of 100 based on 180 ratings.