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Ichtegem's Grand Cru - Brouwerij Strubbe

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

Educational use only; do not reuse.

245 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 245
Hads: 531
Avg: 3.73
pDev: 17.96%
Wants: 27
Gots: 44 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Strubbe visit their website

Style | ABV
Flanders Oud Bruin |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: audiojon on 05-07-2006

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (31) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 245 | Hads: 531
Photo of dbrauneis
3.88/5  rDev +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.

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Photo of stakem
3.47/5  rDev -7%
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.

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Photo of WesWes
4.12/5  rDev +10.5%
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.

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Photo of BARFLYB
3.18/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A bottle split with oglmcdgl. I've had this a few times.

The liquid comes out looking dark reddish in hue with some brown strokes set within. A nice fuzzy coca cola like head skims up with some tightness and a off tan color to it. No stick on the glass. Smell is pretty much deep vinegar with some faint cherry scent and some grain. Trace amounts of caramel notes, but this one is all about the vinegar. Taste is sweet over sour and it's very apparent. Vinegar, cherry, cola, sweet malt, you get the picture. Very reminiscent of Duchesses. Feel is less than medium, a nice crisp carb and not acidic, not a pucker inducing beer, but pleasant, I just cant stand the vinegar. I could only drink 6oz of this before passing on it.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
3.34/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

330 mL bottle poured into an RR -tion glass. Best by 2015, I think, but it's smudged.

Appearance - Dark ruby brown body with an ample two-finger head of off-white foam. Excellent lacing. Really nice lacing.

Smell - Sweet malts and oak are most predominant. Hardly any tart aromas. Cherry, I suppose, but it's not a sour cherry.

Taste - Much more acidic than the aroma implies. Harsh acidic red wine vinegar. Oak all over, too. Finishes just a touch sweet.

Mouthfeel - Harsh on the palate. The flavors aren't bad, but the mouthfeel is unpleasant. Very acidic and vinegary. Highly carbonated.

Overall - It's harsh and too oaky. The flavors aren't inherently bad, but the feel just cancels out all benefits.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
3.33/5  rDev -10.7%
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.

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Photo of DoubleJ
3.65/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Let's sweet and sour it up. 330 ml bottle, on to the beer:

A surprising amount of good lacing is left on the glass of this orange brown colored beer. It's even smelling good too with the sweet carmel candies and tartness, plus a little vinigrette.

I'd call the flavor pretty good. The difference though is that the flavor seems to dissapear at times. Between the usual sweet and sour flavor is the addtion of pickle juice, which gives the beer a more bitter taste. Somewhat acidic. The body is a little smaller for the style, with just a little buzz from the carbonation.

Ichtegem's Grand Cru is a solid representation of the Flemish Red. Worth trying if you're into the style.

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Photo of tempest
4.12/5  rDev +10.5%
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.

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Photo of Halcyondays
3.21/5  rDev -13.9%
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.

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Photo of BlackHaddock
3.97/5  rDev +6.4%
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.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
3.94/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown color free of sediment. Aroma of red wine vinegar, oak and malts.
Mild tartness greets the palate along with brown sugar, port and vinegar. Sherry notes from oxidation, along with a nice cherry flavor. Medium bodied, well carbonated, tart mineral finish. Musty oak, faint herb and grass, but moreso a pretty solid oud bruin ale. Cocoa like malt underneath a light tartness. Overall, pretty good beer here, Id reach for this again.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
3.28/5  rDev -12.1%
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.

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Photo of weeare138
2.12/5  rDev -43.2%
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.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.52/5  rDev -5.6%
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.

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Photo of John_M
4.3/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Ah yes, another beer that has been retired that is anything but...

Hmmmm.... just now realized that this yet another red flanders beer.

The beer pours a chocolate brown color with hints of red. There is fair head retention and lacing. Yep, jeeze louizze, this definitely smells like a red flanders. I get the typical sweet and sour nose, with a notable ginger ale component. The beer actually smells pretty good. On the palate I'm surprised. This beer is quite delicious, with complex flavors of red wine, vanilla, chocolate and sour funk. The funk blends well with the moderate sweetness and the oak barrel aging has really toned down the sour component IMO. Hence, I'm liking this beer quite a bit. The beer is medium bodied and not the least bit heavy. The beer is remarkably drinkable for a red flanders with the 6.5% well disguised.

A very nice beer. Didn't recognize it on the beer list here at Max's and thought I'd give it a shot. Glad I did.

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Photo of JohnGalt1
3.98/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

330 ml bottle picked up at the Coop today for about $4.50.. poured into my New Belgium snifter... I was very stoked to have Matt show me this one... big thanks.

2 finger lite tan head drops leaving nice sticky lacing.. the brew is a hazy dark brown with nice ruby highlites.

aroma is sweet and mildy vinous .. subtle acetic notes but they are understated when compared to many in this style... wood is there.. smells tannic.. sorta like a wine and vinegar soaked fresh oak sawdust.

Flavor is surprising.. not nearly as sweet as the nose... also no where near as sour as the aroma would lead. Palate is very understated, which actually adds years to the immediate drinkablity.. for the most part it is mainly pale malts with a little bit of toastiness that moves quickly into the sour portion that finishes with an oaky dryness... a tying cherry fruitiness binds everything together from front to back... no oxidation that I can detect.. lite/medium body makes me really want another sip.

This is a perfect Flanders Red for the person who has never tried one and still wants to expand their horizons.

I applaud the COOP and Matt and Ashton for honestly getting in some truly unique beers into the market recently and especially in the last year.. Cheers to expanding Boise's palate.

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Photo of BeerForMuscle
4/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Maple syrup brown, very foamy, choppy head and super sticky head/lacing. Rings left on the inside of the glass.

S - A tart, acidic, red vinegar nose with notes of the juice of dried cherries in oak casks.

T - Dry cherry, woody oak. Dried fruit skin and some tangy fruit acidity. Bitter hops add another component, with a nice dry champagne-like yeast.

M - Drying the mouth with a clean effervescent Flemish body. Fizzy, tingly carbonation.

O - Great sour/dry Flemish ale with a nice background of natural cherry.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
3.98/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Older refrigerated bottle,2009, poured into a Nostradamus flute glass. Pours a dark mahogany amber with red tints. Half finger light tan head with good retention and lacing, looks nice. Aroma of cherry, light fruit, wood, lightly vinegar and sour. Flavor is sour and acidic, but balanced by a cherry flavored sweetness. Medium bodied with some creaminess. Nice interaction of the sour and sweet. I do not favor sour beers but this one works quite nicely for me. Worth a periodic revisit. Older refrigerated bottle, probably from 2009.

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Photo of aasher
3.08/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This beer pours a red heavy amber in color, between light and medium in body with a white lacing around the glass. It smells of lightly sour milk and of a stale amber ale. It's really, really subtle for the style and doesn't offer very much. It tastes of a sweet and soured malt. There isn't much complexity, isn't any vinegar, but it does have a light Miracle Whip component. It drinks light and is equally between sweet and an actual sour. It's mediocre all around. I expected more from a Grand Cru, despite the ratings.

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Photo of flagmantho
4.15/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 330mL bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: deep amber-brown hue with a little haze and two fingers of nice tan head. Looks promising.

Smell: sour, woody aroma atop a slightly sweet, caramel malt. A very nice aroma, if not otherwise complex.

Taste: right in line with the aroma; it's tasty and well-crafted. A nice medium sourness fills out a caramel malt flavor that has hints of the wood in which it has been aged. Straightforward and tasty.

Mouthfeel: there's a little astringency due to the acidity, but the creaminess of well-integrated carbonation comes through very well in the medium body. Fantastic.

Drinkability: I love the refreshing characteristics of sour ales. Ichtegem's Grand Cru is a solid, refreshing, tasty Flanders red that I could probably drink all day.

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Photo of Axnjxn
4.15/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

330 ml bottle into a pint glass. best by 12/17/17.

pours a dark brown/red with no head. moderate amount of bubbles. the smell is of sour cherries, quite pronounced and strong. taste is about the same, with an added flavor of grapes as well. enjoyable and true to style. medium bodied with medium carbonation.

overall a solid example of a flemish red. very tasty and enjoyable.

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Photo of corby112
3.77/5  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.

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Photo of Evil_Pidde
4.18/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer (2007-edition) comes in a 75 cl green long-necked "champagne-bottel" with steel cage and natural cork. The label is beige and red. Looks kind of dull.

A: The color is hazy redbrown. The head is massive, light brown and creamy. The lacings are quite impressive.

S: Sour, yeasty with sweet caramell malt. Fruity; green apples, grapefruit and cherries. Refreshing.

T: Dry and sour, yeasty and fruity; grapefruit, cherries and green apples. Wine-like, in the best possible way. Sweet caramell malt. Woody.

M: Longlasting dry and bitter full aftertaste. The body is medium and the carbonation holds lots of small smooth bubbles.

D: Nice and refreshing. A beer even for wine-snobs.

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Photo of beerthulhu
3.8/5  rDev +1.9%
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.

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Photo of tone77
3.59/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a brown 11.2 oz. bottle. Has a dark brown/amber color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is of dark fruits, grapes. Taste is a bit wine like, tart, some malts, vinegar. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall, a style I know little about, but a decent beer.

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Ichtegem's Grand Cru from Brouwerij Strubbe
84 out of 100 based on 245 ratings.