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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

474 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 474
Reviews: 236
rAvg: 3.77
pDev: 12.2%
Wants: 20
Gots: 30 | FT: 1
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: 474 | Reviews: 236 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of NeroFiddled
4.5/5  rDev +19.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Ichtegem's Grand Cru
11.2 fl.oz. bottle; cap dated 18 JAN 2016
The label reads "ingr: water, malt, caramalt, rice, hops, yeast"

Carefully poured to leave the lees behind it's a clear, ruby accented brown color beneath a pillowy head of tan. The head retention is good. It eventually falls to a wide collar that leaves short walls of lace with each sip.

The aroma suggests tart, dark, sugary fruit: cherries, raisins, figs. There's a bit of yeast to it, some malt, and a touch of mineral character as well.

The flavor follows the aroma, and it delivers a pleasant balance between gentle sweetness and light tartness. Along with the tartness and fruit there's some caramel maltiness, but it's not overly done, and it doesn't stick in the mouth. It's actually quite refreshing with the mild sharpness upfront, the light sweetness across the middle, and a bit of grassiness and mineral character in the oaky-dry finish.

In the mouth it's light bodied but with a dextinous edge; and a creamy-smooth fine-bubbled median carbonation - not much is needed as the tartness gives it character.

Overall it's basically flawless, and a pretty good example of the style.

Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.98/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a tulip glass.

A: The beer is a deep dark reddish brown color, with a short off-white head that fades quickly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains tart fruit, Belgian yeast, brown sugar and caramelized malts.

T: The taste starts out with a mild burst of tart fruits like cherries & grapes. The sourness is not as intense as some other beers in the style. Then a hearty but not too heavy malt character comes in along with some mild caramel and brown sugar sweetness. There’s Belgian yeast in the background as well a faint but complementary hops presence. The after-taste is slightly sour.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is clean.

O: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, decent kick, good representation of style, it’s a solid beer to drink for a while if you’re in the mood for a sour beer that isn’t too sour.

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.

Photo of jlindros
3.79/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Another one of those bottles that's been sitting in my queue for a long time, and finally just decided to grab it. Best by April 05, 2016.

Pours a fizzy bubbly 1/2 finger tan colored head that fades at a med pace, little lacing, very dark molasses colored brown beer with hints of ruby light sneaking through the edges.

Nose brings that nice malt vinegar, tart cherry and acetic acid, soured malts, soured mash, quite sour and acidic, touch of caramel like malt and candi, and hint of barrel wood.

Taste is more of expected flavors, malt vinegar to boot, soured malts and mash flavors, acetic acid but not as much as I thought actually, little molasses and candi lead to a BBQ sauce like flavor, tangy and tart, with a little tart cherry and generic sour fruit, with a decent sweetness and little sticky feel. It has a little dusty oak flavor too. Finish is sticky and a little flemmy, with more acetic acid mild burn, plenty of malt vinegar, and a little bitterness somehow, bit more sweet molasses candy too.

Mouth is med bod, flemmy and little sticky, mild acid burn, decent carb.

Overall pretty good, there are better Flemish beers out there, but this is a pretty good representation of the beer in general, and cheap compared to some others.

Photo of feloniousmonk
3.95/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Ichtegems Grand Cru, Flemish Red Ale, matured in oak barrels, "oud bruin gerijpt in eiken vaten", 6.5% a.b.v., Brouwerij Strubbe, Ichtegem, Belgium.

I know next to nothing about this beer, except maybe that I've heard of it, and that now I'm going to drink one. So, here goes.

Perfectly plummy appearance, opaque, slightly clear at the bottom. Slim beige head rests atop.

Aroma: sour, fruity, & soft. Cherries abound, with a touch of raspberry, blackberry.
Sweetness is here, matched by tart. Caramel tones, vanilla notes, a pleasant complexity.

Taste: sweetness and sour, cherry and plum, caramel malt and oak edges all come together in the mouth, the promise of the nose fulfilled. Fresh and invigorating flavor, though mild and mellow in the whole. Beautifully textured, full bodied, many-layered marriage of sweet and sour.

One thing is for certain is that it's not a tongue slayer, nor a palate ripper, I's not going to punish with puckering. Perhaps "Flemish Red" on the front and "our bruin" on the back is a trifle misleading. If anyone's expecting Rodenbach or Jacobins, they'll be very disappointed. I've met some already who are…but not this guy.

Photo of beernads
3/5  rDev -20.4%

Photo of DrunkinYogi
3.75/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of WesWes
4.1/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a dark brown color with a thick frothy tan head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is great. It has a subtle sourness that yields to the oak barrel aroma. It's well rounded with crystal and roasted malts; very nice. The taste is good. It has a subdued sour flavor that really works well with the oak aging. It's mellowed out and thus increases the drinkability. The malt content consists of some pale and roasted malts. It's doesn't appear to be too sweet. On the contrary, it's dry and quite light in the mouthfeel. It's a medium bodied beer with adequate/good carbonation. This is a very enjoyable beer. I love the oak contribution. It tames the sourness to a level that most would enjoy.

Photo of jwc215
4.08/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Freshness date of 03-2013 on top of cap.

Pours hazed reddish brown with a thin tan bubbly head. Spots of lacing stick.

The smell is tart with some acidity, brown sugar, and vinuous notes - Oak is mild.

The taste is sour notes (grapey) with caramelish brown sugar sweetness. Not as sour as some other examples. The oak is mild, but there. It has a soft sweet and sour finish.

It is light-bodied with some effervescence. Very smooth.

A very drinkable example of the style. A malty complexity balances out the tart, though doesn't overwhelm it. Alcohol is very well hidden. It's not as strong as some others, but it has a nice uniqueness and is very drinkable.

Photo of drewone
3.75/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of Rochefort10nh
5/5  rDev +32.6%

Photo of oriolesfan4
4.25/5  rDev +12.7%

Photo of InspectorBob
3.75/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.3/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sampled February 2010
A solid pour into my large Tripel Karmeliet tulip produces an almost three-finger thick, lightly amber tinged, light tan colored head. The beer is a dark, almost burnt, amber color that shows a fairly clear, deep red hue when held up to the light. The aroma smells lightly tart, faintly of balsamic vinegar, has a touch of fermented plum sauce, a solid but subtle cherry like fruitiness, some rhubarb aromas and maybe even a hint of nail polish.

Quite a bit sweeter than I was expecting, though not as sweet as the Duchesse, and there is only a touch of tartness to the flavor. The sweetness definitely begs for more balancing sourness, at least for this particular sour beer lover. This tastes quite a bit like cherries up front, but finishes with a rich maltiness that is laden with rich oxidized malt notes, toasted-brown-sugar crusted whole-grain bread and light sherry or even port like notes. Actually come to think of it, this really tastes like Concord grape juice, which I must say I am not the biggest fan of. There is perhaps a hint of spiciness towards the finish that suggests oak, but there is a certain roundness to the texture that suggests oak-derived tannins. The mix of tart and sweet, combines with the medium'ish body to make this fairly drinkable.

I shouldn't have expected too much for this beer, but somehow I feel a bit disappointed and cheated. This is certainly not horrible, but to my preferences it is not sour or tart enough and it could use a bit more malt richness too, hell even some rustic funkiness would be welcome.

Photo of Halcyondays
3.18/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

33 cl bottle,

A: Pours a beautiful dark crimson into a flute glass with a colour that thins out to the bottom into more of mahogany. Long lasting off-white head with good lacing.

S: Definite wood character, cheesy funk, sugar syrup.

T: Quite sugary, it has good oak notes and barrel character. Funk is interesting, but too much at times, definitely has a ton of Brett in it. Very low in acidity for the style, more like a Belgian dark.

M: I miss the sourness of a more traditional Flanders Red, sweet finish, quite sugary. Relatively light-bodied.

D: Certainly a different take on the style than the more lactic character in something like Rodenbach. An interesting experience, I think any sour fan should try it out.

Photo of BlackHaddock
3.98/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

6.5% On my 33cl bottle label, along with a health warning from the US. So what? I hear you say. Well I drank this bottle only a few miles from the brewery in Ostend.

Really red hue to this beer, as you would expect from an Flanders Red Ale, although the label claimed it was an Old Brown.

The sweet and sour aroma carried on into the taste, the Oak Barrels used to age this beer adds a cherry and almonds hint to everything. Easy to drink and pleasing in every way. This is an interesting beer and well worth finding.

Photo of dbrauneis
3.9/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Best by November 2016

A: Pours a semi-opaque dark reddish brown in color with some very significant garnet red highlights when held up to the light. The beer has a finger tall creamy looking light tan head that reduces to a patch of very thin film with a much thicker ring at the edges of the glass. Significant lacing is observed.

S: There are light vinous notes as well as just a touch of sourness in the aroma.

T: This beer is both complex and well balanced, as well as delicious. There are flavors of sour black cherries, oak barrels, as well as some vinous notes. The flavors start out subtly sweet which then turns to light sourness.

M: Light bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. The tartness makes this feel a little prickly on the tongue.

O: Very enjoyable and extremely easy to drink, this beer is not as tart/sour than some of the others in the style. This beer is very approachable and definitely one that I would like to enjoy again.

Photo of stakem
3.4/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Review from notes taken 12/30/10. Shared with some friends.

Bottle had a best by date of 9/29/14. Poured into a sniffer, it appears ruby red in color with decent clarity. A finger of dark tan to brown head forms and holds around the glass. Swirls revive the cap and sticks with leggy lace about the glass.

The aroma of this brew is strikingly similar to apple cider vinegar. Tangy vinous quality with some oakiness that smells sweet and mildly vanilla. Quite fruity almost like currents to the back of the nose with a slight sulfur hint.

The taste is fruity with tangy caramel malt, apple skins, and a mild vanilla smoothness. A tangy amount of alcohol brings back the apple cider vinegar hints that are lightly sour. It finishes with fruity alcohol that is almost candy-like.

This is a medium bodied brew with a light amount of carbonation. A tingle of alcohol warmth is felt in the back of the throat. Easy drinking but a little bit of a mess. The cider verse sweetness didn't really do it for me.

Photo of duceswild
3.75/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of corby112
3.73/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very dark brown color, almost black with deep mahogany edges when held to a light source. Creamy .5 off-white head that quickly fades into the thinnest of rings leaving very small specks of lacing.

Tart funky aroma with a nice oak vanilla presence from the barrel aging. Also a bit of a vinegar and dark fruit notes.

Lighter end of medium bodied and a bit watered down. I was expecting a fuller mouthfeel. Tart and puckering but much more of a vinegary sourness than expected. Lots of oak and vanilla character with a pleasant dark fruit flavor. Dark cherries, plum and raisin notes with a dry finish.

Photo of weeare138
2.1/5  rDev -44.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Thanks to Phatz for deciding to share this one. I've never seen this one before, so I was anxious to give it a shot...
Appears a reddish brown with a small tan head that slowly fades into a mild cap. Scattered bits of lacing are left around the glass.
Smell is of turkey gravy, vinegar, oxidized and well past it's prime, notes of butter, rotten weeds, brown sugar, and raw meat.
Taste...I would elaborate but I don't have much to add. It was strange, and past it's prime.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied, grossly of rotten cherries and oxidized sugar water.
It was worth a shot. Perhaps a younger bottle would've faired differently.

Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.45/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours, yep, a deep red colour with decent clarity. Head is a very fine bubbled number, white with a very slight pinkish or orange tinge to it. The head is lovely and fine, almost creamy. I've had fewer better heads out of a bottle, although it does dissipate to a film reasonably quickly, which is a shame.

Nose is pleasantly oaky, with a good acidic vinous character coming through, but balanced with a light vanilla sweetness, also possibly from the oak. Cherry kirsch and a pronounced woody note. Overall, damn, it's spot on for the style, and I love how tempered the potential acidity is.

Taste is a little thinner than the best examples, and not only does it not have the body, it lacks the potent acidity which goes along with that to cut through it. But overall, that just weakens the entire beer. Some lightly sweet almost candi sugar character throughout, with a very slight cherry note, and a whiff of oak that may well just be remaining from the nose. Vanilla character comes forward on the back, but it's more unpleasant on the palate without the acidity to balance it.

Feel is thin, and it matches with the lack of character on the palate.

It's a shame, because this beer promised a lot. But it eventually revealed itself as a pale imitation of the greats. It's not bad, and it's a tasty Belgian ale, but the style is so much better than this example would have you believe.

Photo of Georgiabeer
3.3/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured a murky reddish brown with a thin head. Sweet fruity aromas followed by a dose of lightly acetic sourness. More sweeet than sour, but only slightly. There is also a slight vegetal aroma and some dusty smelling fruit. The taste is a little light, and once again more on the sweet than the sour side. Still, none of the unpleasant vegetal odors manifest in th taste at all. Mouthfeel is very fizzy, a little too much so. Overall, this beer is a little too sweet for the style for my taste and a bit out of balance. Not bad, but there are a number of better options.

Photo of tempest
4.13/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

To the uninitiated, this can be a pretty funky beer. Having tried many Flanders Reds, however, I can say this is a nice, mellower than usual version of the style. In that sense it allows you to enjoy the flavors of crisp tang, mild oak, and light caramel barley instead of being overwhelmed by the sour funk.

Maybe it's just a sour ale for beginners, but I liked it.

Photo of Gonzoillini
3.75/5  rDev -0.5%

Ichtegem's Grand Cru from Brouwerij Strubbe
85 out of 100 based on 474 ratings.