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Ichtegem's Grand Cru - Brouwerij Strubbe

Not Rated.
Ichtegem's Grand CruIchtegem's Grand Cru

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
85
very good

451 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 451
Reviews: 234
rAvg: 3.77
pDev: 12.47%
Wants: 16
Gots: 24 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Strubbe visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Flanders Oud Bruin |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: audiojon on 05-07-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 451 | Reviews: 234 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of TheBrewo
3.9/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

We pop the top and foam exploded from bottle in waves. Infected?! We’ll see. We pour a brew the color of an old penny. It holds a two and a half finger head of foamy, spidery bubbles, leaving thickly patterned lacing down the sides of the glass. Retention is nice. Carbonation appears quite high, and a thick haze is noted, with flecks of large white sediment suspended throughout. The nose is funky, with tart, but softly floral, Brettiness. The malts are rich, toasty, and sweet of caramels and toffees, with accentuation by warm oakiness, big musk, balsamic vinegar acidity, booze, and freshly cooked soap. With warmth comes lightening sweetness of juicy bubblegum esters, green grassiness, and more of that typical pefumy funk. Our first impression is that the flavoring is very sharp and tart at first, but this quickly falls away by the end. As we sip, the taste opens with fusel chemical bite, booze, synthetic lavender perfume, light grapefruit zestiness, big funk of yeast, tart berry fruit juiciness, and green banana meatiness. Coming to the peak is spoiled fruit bitterness, German lager malts and lighter pales, cane sugar, vinegar, and more of that juicy bite of puckering, yeasty funkiness.
The finish comes with wax, chapstick, mild diacetyls, faint oak, that big aromatic muskiness, lemony twang, and more of that continued yeast and puckered fruitiness. The aftertaste breathes of vegetal fermentation, mineral, mud, musk, lemon peel bitterness, cranberry tartness, black cherry sugars, major funk, and distant barreling. The body is medium, and the carbonation is lighter. There is great slurp, smack, cream, froth, and pop. The mouth is softly coated and cooled, with eventual warmth of the oak, and only mild dryness or pucker. The abv is appropriate, and the beer drinks nicely.

Overall, what we enjoyed most about this brew was the aroma and the mouthfeel. There is big perfume, funk, and sweetness from the aroma, hitting most of the necessary notes quite nicely. The taste, however, was a bit curious as none of the tartness (or substantial oak) lingers through the sip. It hits hard at the front of your teeth, but is all but indiscernible through the end and aftertaste, where basic cooked brown maltiness predominates. This is partially rectified by the soft, creamy slurp of the feel. In conclusions we did not feel that our bottle was infected. This beer marks a good representation of the style, but lacked enough jazz or cohesion to pull it to the next level.

TheBrewo, May 01, 2013
Photo of Stimack
3.9/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Was able to give this brew a try last evening. It is a style I really like but very infrequently have so this was a treat. The brew was poured to a dark reddish color with a creamy head that was medium in size and left nice sheets of lacing down the side of the glass. Nice berry aroma, mostly cherry I believe along with a slight vinegar sourness that is subtle but noticeable. The taste is very smooth with a tart berry flavor, to me the berries come out more clearly here with raspberries, cherries, and maybe plum? Has a sourness to it but does not seem to be a pronounced as in some other Flanders red offerings. Over all I think that this is a nice offering, very tame beer based on the style which has its good points. I would get this brew again in the future.

Stimack, Mar 10, 2007
Photo of jeranbrews
3.9/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - light fluffy beige head with pretty rainfall lacing. Deep slightly cloudy ruby body with fine bubbles half the size of champagne bubbles

S - sweet tarts and strawberry raspberry. Light crepes with fresh jam.

T - cranberry and grape with a mild infusion of hop and some wheaty malt with evervesance aftertaste is crystal malt and rose wine

M - effervescent and silky. A silk sheet rippling in the wind.

D - a very interesting mix of fruit and beer. Is it the best mix I don't know.

jeranbrews, Feb 28, 2011
Photo of RblWthACoz
3.9/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark, clear brown with a ruby hue and a thin creme head. Nose is mildly funky, fruity, and sour. Flavor is smooth but almost mild in a way. There's some cherry to it and some wood, but overall it doesn't really go crazy with anything. Feel is smooth on liquid and the carbonation is a bit lower. Overall an easier drinking Flanders.

RblWthACoz, Sep 06, 2008
Photo of birchstick
3.9/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served on-tap at the 33 Wine Bar in St Louis

A - pours a dark ruby red / reddish brown without much of a head

S - smells very winey with some malts and a touch of sweet vinegar

T / M - the taste is a mix of some faint caramel malts with a lot of vinous fruits - it is very wine-like in its taste. It has some nice carbonation and a good body; it leaves the palate with a tannin-eqsue dryness.

D - For this style, this is a very approachable and drinkable beer. If you have a wino friend that is looking for a beer, this is the one to give them.

birchstick, Aug 21, 2010
Photo of i4ourgot
3.9/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer had a tart wine like aroma. Very little head on the pour/ almost none. Dark red in color. The beer starts with a fruity (plum maybe) tartness and ends with a hint of the oak. There is a malt backbone from start to finish. The tartness is really carried by the carbonation the bubbles have a very fine feel in the mouth.

i4ourgot, Mar 07, 2014
Photo of cooch69
3.9/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a very deep mahogany that is semi transparent when held to the light.
It doesnt pour with much of a head.
The nose brings fourth sour vinigar but not to strong.
It's a pretty crisp and vibrant beer that has a subdued vinegar tone along with fruity flavours of apples and pears. It is not that strong compared to some Flemish's I've had, but it is still medium in body. It has a great clean maltiness that grabs hold after the sour fades.
All in all a good beer that I'm glad I picked up.

cooch69, Sep 11, 2010
Photo of PerzentRizen
3.9/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I think that people who drink Flemish Reds for the first time often are very hard on them. I happen to love them when I can get ahold of them. They are extremely flavorful and sour in a good way.

I poured mine into a sierra nevadad celebration ale glass circa 2001. The look of this one is dark with light head and no retention. You can tell this is extremely carbonated - as many are.

The aroma is of yeast, light funk, round malt, and no hop smell. The yeast is really prevailent.

The taste is tart, light but rich, and sweet. There is a slight oakiness - this one is aged in oak barrels. The finish is of raisins, bitter tartness, and of prunes with a sharp cheese end. This is a really long flemish red that gets bigger as it warms.

The mouthfeel is ligth, airy, and refreshing. Almost perfect for the style. Again, many people are looking for hop resin mouthfeel and since this beer style does not dictate that need it suffers in the average review (or so it seems).

This might be the most drinkable beer I've ever had. It is light, refreshing, and keeps begging for partners to follow. Great brew!

PerzentRizen, Jan 21, 2009
Photo of RollBounce
3.88/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

My first tap review. Nice one inch foam, serverd in a tulip glass, dark brown in color, some sour on the nose, lite on the sour with some cherry notes, cola as well.

Overall; great beginers sour. Could be a sour you can have more than one of. Which might be what I do.

RollBounce, Mar 18, 2012
Photo of Seanniek91
3.88/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 11.2oz bottle into an Affligem Goblet

Appearance- Beautiful amber/brown with very short lasting bubbly white head. Head left some nice lacing.

Smell- Apple cider vinegar. Brett. Some cherry, vanilla, and oaky notes, but all very mild.

Taste- Funky earthy taste (the exact flavors I'm getting are baffling me. I can't figure them out.) Some cherry and vinegar. Minimal oak (vanilla) notes. Tart, but not face changing.

Mouthfeel- Very very carbonated. Tartness makes me salivate.

Overall- This has been a confusing beer to me. Not the best Oude Bruin, but a decent one.

Seanniek91, Dec 15, 2012
Photo of johncampbell
3.88/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First of all, I've never had a Flemish Red that I didn't like, just some that I like better than others. This isn't my favorite, but taking into account that it's an Oud Bruin and not as tart or ripe as I prefer, it's still pretty good.

It poured a dark, murky brown with a faint hint of red when held to the light, more brown than anything. It maintained a thin, creamy-white head with a small amount of lacing.

It has a sweet, browned butter smell and not nearly enough funk, but a hint of oak and age and fruitiness.

It has a nice tart fruity flavor, but lacks the bite behind the ears that I like so much from a sour. Perhaps the age knocks out the bite? It has a nice tart cherry flavor with a hint of woody/roastiness, but more pucker would be perfect.

It has a creamy mouthfeel, but thin, medium-bodied at best, with subtle, but adequate carbonation. Not bad.

I will drink another.

and another.

johncampbell, Oct 26, 2010
Photo of thierrynantes
3.88/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Beer bottle (33 cl.) purchased from Bières & Chopes and tasted in 2014.

Appearance : dark brown color with tan foamy head.
Smell : sour woody and oak aromas.
Taste & mouthfeel : dry roasted malt flavors, with a slight acidity in finish.
Drinkability : a good beer in the Belgian style Flemish Red Ale, matured in oak barrels.

thierrynantes, Apr 28, 2014
Photo of rangerred
3.88/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

11.2oz bottle poured into a tulip. 03-2013 is stamped on the cap.

Pours a dark very dark brownish-red with a lot of chunkies floating in the glass. Very small head but there is some lacing present.

Smell is of cherries along with maybe a touch of oak.

The taste is very much like the smell. Tart cherries dominate the palate with a sourness also present. The oak is pretty reserved but is noticeable. The finish is fairly dry with a moderate bitterness.

This is my first experience with this style and it has left we wanting to explore more Flanders red ales. A quality beer.

rangerred, Dec 11, 2011
Photo of baakabak
3.88/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice transparent brown with a sliver of fast settling, white head.

Scent i get is a little leathery, with good ripe cherry. Little vinegar, caramel.

Taste follows suit. Nice sour/vinegar cherry bite up front that's followed up with some caramel and toffee. A touch metallic.

Tight and effervescent in the mouth. Very nicely carbonated.

All in all a nice drinking, lighter alternative to some of the heavy hitting sours. Won't blow your mind but shouldn't disappoint either.

baakabak, Jul 02, 2011
Photo of jampics2
3.88/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap @ the Winking Lizard. This came out in a nice Strubbe tulip. Nice touch!

Cola brown with a small white crown. Looks amazing, nice lace and retention.

Smell is interesting. I expected more vinegar and sour smells, instead I get more of a sweet grape scent. The combination of the malt and Flanders funk have created a plum and grape jelly thing. Nice, different, and something unexpected.

Taste is really quite vineous. There's a sweetness then a flash of alcohol. Caramel malt. Mild sourness and Belgian presence from yeasty esters. Not your Dutchess' Grand Cru by any means. Cherry wine fades out as a touch of vinegar settles in. Finishes clean.

Mouthfeel is actually a touch flat for my tastes. Medium body. Nice but nothing ground breaking based on feel.

So, overall I enjoyed this. You have to be in the mood for something sweet, probably more so than with beers like the Dutchess or Rodenbach as there's less of the tart vinegar to balance things out. This was unique and I like beers that have distinctive qualities. I would buy this again in a heartbeat!

jampics2, Jul 30, 2010
Photo of soupyman10
3.85/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Solid pour, brown color with amber highlights along the glass's edges. Off-white creamy head, one finger that slowly dissolves down to a quarter inch film and then holds. Nose only starts to come through once the beer warms up. Mildly sour, with salty malt. Light toffee sweetness, and lightly vinous. Not bad, but certainly not overpowering nor overly complex. Flavor is nice. Dry swarthy spiced sour malt up front. That sourness heats up as the beer goes on. Dirty, lightly roasted feel shows up as well. Light toffee sweetness. Mostly sour overall. Body is solid, appropriate to the style, and the carbonation works well with the sourness. Overall, I was in the mood for a sour brew, and this one hit the spot. It's not really blowing my mind- and I could do with some more complexity - but its a solid beer, if it fits what you're looking for.

soupyman10, Apr 25, 2008
Photo of beachbum1975
3.85/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had this at the Comet for Hopnosis 2010.

Poured a cloudy red with fine bubbles that stuck around for a bit.

Vinous and sour nose with hints of light funk and oakiness.

Taste reflected the noise. Definitely sour, but not overwhelmingly so. Rather one dimensional, but enjoyable nonetheless.

beachbum1975, Dec 12, 2010
Photo of beerthulhu
3.83/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Flemish red ale matured in oak barrels.

A: Poured a dark cola color with a thin dirty beige head.

S: On the nose was sour fruit (plums, apples) and a funky sour yeastiness.

T: The initial flavor was sour cherries, plums, grapes, with a big sour vinous palate and acidic bite. There was a noticeable alcohol presence with a sour grape juice notes and a slight underlying presence of maltiness as well. The beer finishes with a sour grape juice bite. The oakiness is hard to detect due to the sourness of this beer. Overall a good beer by style, the aroma is pungent with sour fruit (plums) but drinks much better then it smells

M: thin and light with a juice like texture and very soft carbonation.

D: Drinks much bigger then its advertised 6.5%. A good desert beer that would make for an ample substitution of red wine at any meal.

beerthulhu, Jul 10, 2008
Photo of Absumaster
3.83/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A dark brown beer with a red teint and a head with the finest of bubbles.

Smell is tart, like lactic acid layered with dark malt which give the beer a light roasted impression. There is oak and wood in general. A light spiciness which probably comes from the yeast.

Taste is tart, but in a mild way. It does dominate the whole beer, but is not toothaching sour. The wood aging is oaky and dark. Again a nice spiciness coming from the yeast which reminds me of coriander and lemongrass. Body is medium. Although I am not a fan of sour beers, this beer is very well drinkable and once you get through the initial sourness of the first sip, it is a great thirstquencher.

Absumaster, Jul 20, 2008
Photo of Naugros
3.83/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The color is a deep garnet with a hint of purple...but let's go with red...dark red. Not really much head to this one. I'm used to fighting throw a sea of foam to get at a Belgian beer. This one is a little more obliging.

Ah! I love that sour smell. This is sour and musty, like a kriek without the obvious cherry. Still, there is an impression of dark fruit...perhaps even dark cherries.

The taste does have sour, but it's not as puckeringly sour as a lambic. Yes, I made up a word. Rather than sour I might consider using the word tangy. Plums or prunes dominate the fruit component of the taste and there's some candy sweetness on the tongue. The tang gets you at the back of the palate.

If you want a good entrance into the world of sour beers, this could be a good intermediate step. It doesn't overwhelm you with sour. The fruit sweetness might be a bit much, but it's not really cloying. The body is nice, but there are times when the tang reads as metallic on the tip of the tongue and the lips. Maybe it's something that was on my lips prior to my first sip.

Naugros, Jul 24, 2010
Photo of jdense
3.83/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Belmont Station during Puckerfest, 7.15.2010, poured into Delirium Tremens taster snifter.

Deep red almost purple body, some carbonation rising from bottom of glass, very little lacing. Nose is dark fruit forward, dark cherries, no hops, a pretty dry nose despite the fruit character. Taste is cherries up front, tart and sweet, some hints of blackberries and concord grapes deep fruit flavor, minimal hops, and a wee bit of funk, some horseblanket funkiness on back end, a pretty complex tasting beer. Mouthfeel is fairly full for the style, a bit sticky, not a lot of effervescence. Pretty drinkable. More fruity than Rodenbach, IMO, wondering how the bottle version compares to this relatively rare keg.

jdense, Jul 31, 2010
Photo of audiojon
3.8/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I'm a big fan of Flemish Reds, so when I saw that O'Brien's had a new one on tap this week, I had to try it. This was labeled as "Grand Cru," oddly enough. The bartender cleared that up for me and described as being similar to the Duchesse de Bourgogne but not as in your face. Unfortunately, I wish this were a bit more in your face; as it is it's a bit boring, but very enjoyable. In other words, I've had better Flemish Reds, but this is still a good beer. Def worth a try, and would make a very good introductory beer for those wanting to cross over to the dark (sour) side.

As for an actual review:

Smell is pretty non existant, not as much funk as I like. Taste is very good, only a light sourness unfortunately (I like to pucker), but it tastes great regardless of the sourness (or lack thereof). I could probably drink this all afternoon, and in fact may do just that. :)

audiojon, May 08, 2006
Photo of M_C_Hampton
3.8/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

A: poured from a 330 ml bottle into a pint glass, the beer literally exploded out of the bottle upon opening covering my lap with brown stains, dark red brown with an enormous loose tan head that dissipates leaving little lacing, cloudy

S: steak marinade, red wine vinegar, soy sauce, balsamic vinegar

T: tart, earthy, slightly salty, sour fruits, sour cherry, unripe raspberry

M: light with very high carbonation

O: apart from the surprise explosion the beer is good, slightly less depth than others in the style, explosive carbonation is a drawback

M_C_Hampton, Feb 25, 2014
Photo of Suds
3.8/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Murky brown color with reddish highlights, this beer has a thick, tan, small bubbled head. Lots of carbonation. The smell is of candy apple and earth. Musty, mixed with a tangy sweet scent. Lots of yeast scent as well. The taste is both sweet and sour, with a little slant to the tangy side. Not quite mouth puckering, but rather cleansing. Fuller in body than I expected. This is a nice beer, on style, and very approachable.

Suds, Feb 18, 2013
Photo of YankChef
3.8/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2 oz bottle poured into la fin du monde glass

Apearance: very dark for a flemish sour, really dark dark blood red and lets very little if any light pass through. Cloudy dark and ominous looking. Initally fluffy thick head that reduces to a wisp that just covers the top, nice lacing as well for a FRA.

Aroma: First smell was all funk super sour and yeastiness, but bacteria yeast not bready yeast. More aromas come through a little further in like big time artificial cherry, sour patch kid and some black/rasp berry.

Taste: Wow, tastes nothing like it smells. This sour ale is... well not very sour. Upfront is sort of a slightly juicy fruity sweetness but with an overwhelming flavor of caramelized sugar, molasses and toffee. That flavor really lingers. Very very wine like, akin to a red burgundy almost tastes like pinot

Overall: this one is deceptive, looks like a flemish sour and smells kinda like one, but does not taste like what I have associated with the style to taste like. Still very unique and approachable and would be incredibly food friendly.

YankChef, Nov 08, 2008
Ichtegem's Grand Cru from Brouwerij Strubbe
85 out of 100 based on 451 ratings.