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Goudenband - Brouwerij Liefmans

Not Rated.

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1,220 Ratings

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Ratings: 1,220
Reviews: 554
rAvg: 4.19
pDev: 10.5%
Wants: 131
Gots: 148 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Liefmans visit their website

Style | ABV
Flanders Oud Bruin |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Mitchster on 02-24-2001

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (13) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,220 | Reviews: 554
Photo of Mudpuppet
3.97/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Poured on tap at the Publick House. Poured into a Liefmans' glass. Was a murky brown with no head to speak of.

S- Sweet and sour. Notes of apricots, raisins and dark malts. You also get a lot of sour notes.

T- As the nose suggested this is a sweet and sour mix. I really liked the balance in this beer. If I had to be picky it was maybe a bit on the sweet side. Nice notes of cirtus, raisins and melon. This is a nice Oud Bruin.

M- A bit syrupy but that is common w/ Flanders style beers in my mind. It isn't really a bad thing but it covers up some of the more subtle nuances of the beer.

D- I could definitely have a couple of these. As stated above it is a bit syrupy but I can get over that for a beer that is this tasty.

Photo of ballewblake
4.42/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from bottle into a Westmalle chalice.

Dark opaque pour with a minimal head that reduced quick to a collar, light lacing. Aroma is hit or miss on this beauty, this time I got what I was expecting. Sweet and sour. Taste is tricky, with a subtle sour note that with plums and melons. Light carbonation on the tongue, nicely balanced mouth fill. An excellent Flemish brown ale.

Photo of Hophead101
4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Let stand after taking it out of the fridge to warm up a bit. poured into wide mouth chalice glass. nice dark brown almost black color. small head - it was stoudt in color but without the foamy stout head. very strong malty smell. strong taste to go along with this. a very nice sweet back of the tongue taste. this is a darn good beer.

Photo of dreadnatty08
4.32/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly hazy dark ruby, burnt caramel color with a decent quarter inch off-white head that soon meanders to a trickle. Aromas are classic Flanders, plenty of acetic acid comes through, dark caramel malts, plums and raisins. The aroma doesn't lean as far in the sour direction as other lambics I've had and does have a noticeable sweet smell. It also has a slight medicinal, band-aid like note. An incredibly mouth filling beer, the rich dark malts blend well with the bacteria with an overall pretty sweet feel. An overall syrupy feel with the moderate carbonation compounding that. Flavors of light citrus fruits but leaning towards dark fruits with a small amount of chocolate, really quite diverse. Overall, a trully excellent beer and I appreciate the rich character from darker malts, however, I have to say the lighter colored Flander's Reds are more my cup of tea.

Photo of RedHaze
4.67/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Update 21Jun2009, 750ml bottled 2006 from the "cellar".
Rating has been adjusted accordingly.

Still very cloudy and murky in appearance, as expected.

The sourness is very evident still, but a nice fruity (cherries, plums and green apples) sweetness has begun to come through a little more than before. The vinegar notes have become a little more muted, and the the finish has smoothed out quite a bit with a little less acidity. This has turned into one hell of a fine sour beer, and I hope the remaining bottles that I have get only better.

750ml bottle, 2006. 4.25 rating.

Pours a dark and cloudy ruby tinged brown with a one finger head that fades quickly to a thin soapy cap. The lacing is minimal, but it does stick to the glass nicely.

Smell; sour green apples and cherries with a hint of vinegar come floating out of the glass before I even finish pouring. A little brown sugar with a touch of oak are present as well as a hint of citrus.

Taste; very sour and acidic, with cherries and sour apples with that touch of citrus in the background. A little bit of brown sugar helps to keep the sourness in check a bit. The oak helps to smooth out the finish and gives it a bit of a drying effect on the palate.

Moutheel is medium bodied with an almost "spitzy" carbonation, and for me the drinkability is just great, but then I really love sour beers.

Photo of Beerzebub
4.35/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

375 ml, dated 2006 on the cork, best by date 11-2016, served in a Riedel Vinum Extreme flute at 57 F/ 14 C.

Rusty orangish brown, basically no head, a few fine tendrils and blots of lace. Lots of yeast in the second glass, but it's not a problem.

Smells like tart kiwi fruit, golden raisins, cooked strawberry, prune, and yeasty dough. Deep wood and soy sauce notes, and a bit of barnyard. Mild smell, but very nice.

Tastes like kiwi, golden raisins, fig jam, strawberry sauce, wood. Juicy, moderately sweet. Some underlying leafy, strawlike, woody bitterness, and some soy sauce in the background. Some acidity, but not much. After several seconds, rich nutty oxidization comes in, and the sweetness fades for a long dry finish of oxidization and golden raisins with some bitterness. Complex and very tasty.

Smooth creamy superfine carbonation, and not too much of it. Very very drinkable.

Great characterful beer.

I paired the second glass with a Parmigiano-Reggiano and an aged cana de cabra goat cheese. The P-R paired fairly well. The cana de cabra was outstanding, providing tart funk while highlighting the fruit of the beer.

Photo of shroompod
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Paper covered bottle reveals corked 12.7 bottle . 2007 vintage.
Pours a murky brown , no head or lacing.

I smell a sharp funkiness , with a slight bit of alcohol.

Very fruity, ripe apples , brett & slight alcohol notes on tasting.

Mouthfeel is medium , some sweetness, decent carbonation.

A very nice beer , probably the first time I've had this style. I picked up two to try aging.

Photo of daledeee
4.29/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This came recommended by the local beer store. I was impressed by the Michael Jackson review on the paper cover on the bottle. This bottle was not capped by had a cork wired shut. The cork came out with a loud "pop" Here we go!!

This poured nicely with a beautiful nose as I poured it and could smell the raisons, figs or prunes from several inches away. The head was not real strong but the brown is cloudy with some floaties in it. Once again by the smell of this I know I am going to like this.

The taste is a little surprising. It is a little tart or sour. Not as heavy bodied a I thought it would be. The taste is definitely different than the nose. It is more like sour cherries or apples. Very unique and appealing. There is also good tang and carbonation with a nice aftertaste.

Photo of NoLiberty
4.88/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This incredible 20 YEAR OLD BOTTLE (1987) was enjoyed at the Beertje in Brugge with GrassrootsVT.

App: Beautiful clear, chestnut color with a full white frothy head. This beer is obviously still very active, alive and happening.
Aroma: Active, cherry, oak, apples, age, tart and bold, smooth and crisp.
Taste: Also very smooth and balanced. Tart with bold fruit up front and nice crisp middle and a completely balanced finish.
Mouth: Still fully carbonated with clean clean light to medium body. Crisp and dry.
Drink: Yes, yes, yes, please more. This is my beer of choice for a long session.

Photo of dsigmon
3.82/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: nice dark brown with small head which faded quite quickly

S: hints of citrus, apple, and cherries. malty backbone

T: tart apple, cherry, raisons, cleaned up by some light hoppiness

M: a little thin but leaves a nice tart taste on your dry pallet

D: one was plenty, alcohol is well hidden however.

Photo of goRideYourBike
4.31/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Max's Taphouse

tap into a heavy chalice

a= murky, cloudy, apple cider brown. no lacing at all. thin ring of foam follows every sip on the outter edges.

s= tart, granny smith apple, cider.

t= tart, granny smith apple, vanilla, bourbon?, slight cocoa powder finish. caramel and applesauce.

m= silky smooth, tangy pucker, pleasant dark berry tart numbness on tongue.

d= accept this invitation to the mouth party. keeps changing with every sip and sniff. i found myself taking lots of quick little sips. Its so good, once it hits the lips. want to try from bottle to compare.

Photo of rye726
4.8/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

'06 bottle poured at 45F. Some signs of leaking from the cork.

Glowing mahogany color with a tan head that settles to a nice cover. Very good lacing.

Lots of sweet malts with tart cherries and berries. Good oaky aromas and possibly some floral hops.

The flavor has candy malts, dates, figs and tart cherries all surrounded by oak. A sherry quality emerges as it warms.

Good thick and full body with good carbonation. Becomes quite dry towards the finish. Delicate, crisp, velvety and refreshing.

Superb example of the style. It starts almost too malty until the tart funk kicks in and everything comes together. Pair well with most any mal or snack.

Photo of Wildman
4.33/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer poured a cloudy dark red color and formed a huge foamy light pink head that coated the sides with lace and acted like a float. An aroma of malt, cherries and plums. The flavor was of malt, chocolate and cherries. It has a medium body and tart finish. A very nice beer and I hope that brewery is able to stay around.

Photo of Georgiabeer
3.58/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a slightly hazy brown with an okay head that quickly fades but leaves some moderate lacing. Aromas of sweet malt and a hint of sour predominate in the nose. No funkiness, just some slight acetic qualities. The taste is similar. Its quite sweet without enough sour imo to balance the sugar. Sort of an Oud Bruin with training wheels. There are caramel and dark sugar (muscavado) notes and some light sourness that deepens just a bit at the very finish. The mouthfeel is smooth and easy drinking. I really think its a bit sweet for the style.

Photo of YonderWanderer
4.48/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A: Pours a dirty brownish-red with a thin layer of foam that quickly dissipates.

S: Sour, vinegar, tartness. And that's about it. A hint of wood perhaps, but dominated by a sour smell.

T: Rich soury sweetness, with a great bite overall. This is amazingly tasty. The sour taste hangs around the edge the entire time, but the middle is a huge sweet malt. What makes it great? The incredible balance between the two. Amazing.

M: Well carbonated, with a slick mouthfeel.

D: This is an outstanding beer, and one that will gladly take a standard place on my shelf. It's damn good.

Photo of BeerBelcher
4.01/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I was told at the time of ordering that this was a lambic, but the description on this site of it as an oud bruin makes a lot more sense. This beer had sourness in spades, and I do love sourness.

It poured a red brown opaqueness with very little head. Aroma was a significant malt character with some fruitiness; I saw another user mention plum and I think that's appropriate. Flavor was more complex fruitiness with a malt presence and significant amount of sourness. Most sour beers with a fruit character (there are some, like Berliner Weisse that have sour without much fruit) have a cherry character, and this one didn't, which I thought was unique and tasted good. Mouthfeel was about what I expected for a beer of this style.

I thought this was very good, and I'd recommend it. I had it on-tap at the Ginger Man.

Photo of garbercury
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

First off, thanks Vintage for the hookup. Cork says 2006.

Second, any beer that the late, great Michael Jackson considers to be one of the best beers in the world is obviously worth trying and to take seriously.

Third, if the rumors of Liefmans demise are indeed true I am deeply saddened. This place MUST be saved!

A--Brownish with some amber tones. Not a lot of head after a careful pour but plenty of pieces of yeast in it. Some french vanilla lacing.

S--Fruity aroma, has the aroma of a sweet wine?

T--I am not somebody who likes to delve out fives liberally, but this gets one. This beer is frickin delicious. Oh boy, I cant believe how good this tastes. So complex, so much going on I really dont even know where to begin. Fruity,tart, fine.

M--Tangy on the tongue.

D--If the brewery is indeed going bankrupt, I would like to invest. So much love and care clearly went into this brew. It is the anti-Bud. Belgium has a gem in Liefmans. This is a must try is you enjoy complex, delicious, REAL beer.

Photo of JDV
1.87/5  rDev -55.4%
look: 1.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Smells sweetish, metallic, and almost wine-like. Pours a chocolately brown with LOTS of suspended yeast/proteins all throughout and a short lived off white head. Incredibly unappealing look from the excessive yeast/protein particles hanging out like stationary gel capsules. Taste is smooth, overly sweet, a touch alcoholic, and some nice sourness. Honestly tastes like a mix of brown ale and a cheap reisling wine. The sourness is interesting but the sweetness level is not something I want in my beer, and although I’m sure tons of people appreciate this style, I found at least this one cloying and left the last half for the sink.

Photo of MrHungryMonkey
3.65/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Extremely sweet (port-like) malty aromas mixed with tart fruit and a dry powderiness.

Honey, not very clear, and a mild head.

Almost port sweetness with a lighter tartness and a juicy fruitiness. The sweetness grows on me.

Medium body and carbonation.

This brew was hard to drink in the beginning but it grew on me. In small sips I can explore this alien flavor on my palate and appreciate its awkward goodness.

Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.75/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

2005 Vintage. Good until September 2015, according to the gold cap atop the cork and beneath the cage. I was going to hang onto this one a while longer, but the rumors of Brouwerij Liefmans's impending bankruptcy spurred me to review it while I'm still able.

Autumn leaves russet with bright tangerine accents and a barely visible yeasty haze. The crown (equal parts pale orange, gold and ecru) filled half the glass on the pour. The foam is heavily creamy and lace is being laid down in a beautiful array.

The nose is absolutely classic for the style. Each deep inhale delivers an intriguing blend of sour cherries, fruit vinegar and loads of oak. If the aroma translates in intact form to the palate... watch out!

Goudenband is everything that I'd hoped for and more. It's been too long since I've had a good Flanders oud bruin or Flanders red ale (Iowa isn't exactly bursting at the seams with them). I'd forgotten how the best ones are such a sublime balancing act between sweet and sour.

There's so much deliciousness going on that it's hard to know where to start. Specifics include both sweet and tart cherries, fig jam, bruised apples, leather, an oaky woodiness, and a splash of cider vinegar. Maybe a little brown sugar as well. The sweetness won't be for everyone (and it's keeping my samples to sips), but it's a great take on the style.

My taste buds are so busy processing the amazing complexity they have no time to register the alcohol. The out-of-this-world mouthfeel is lightly silky, impressively expansive and is effervescent in a good way. No dropoff here. None at all.

Liefmans Goudenband is the single best Flanders oud bruin that I've ever had. No less an expert than the late, great Michael Jackson considered it to be a 'world classic'. I humbly agree. It would be a shame if beer lovers the world over were no longer able to drink this divine libation. Here's hoping the brewery finds a way to survive.

Photo of brewcrew76
4.6/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

355 ml
Cork reads 2006 - caged cap on the cork reads 11-2016

A - Cloudy brown with auburn highlights and thin white head that leaves a ring of white foam.

S - Slightly acidic, cherry, oak and apple cider. Somewhat basic but very nice.

T - Tart with a hint of caramel in the beginning, some earthy yeast in the middle followed by sweet cherry and grape juice.

M - Smooth with a dry finish.

D - Very tasty.

Photo of TexIndy
4.59/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 375ml bottle into my DT snifter. The cork showed a 2006 bottling year. Bottle comes wrapped in a paper sleeve - nice touch. It was a deep ruby color with a bunch of thick yeast floaters. I did a slow pour to limit the yeast so the head was barely there. The aroma was awesome. It was fruity (cherry mainly) with a musty undertone along with oak. Really loved the aroma on this one. The taste was awesome as well. It starts out with a great bitter cherry taste and then the tartness hits full force. It stops just shy of puckering and then sets you up for the next drink. Very tasty. Overall this is a an outstanding beer that I highly, highly recommend. This one is already in my regular rotation. (Regular to heavy rotation)

Photo of RblWthACoz
4.47/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Cork reads 2005. Sampled 3-17-07

Now if I read this cap right, this beer is good until February 2015. I am glad I am getting to this while I can. The next eight years are a little booked for me.

Pours a clouded ruby brown that is very dark. No head. Nose is musty, woody, with a floral sweetness. Flavor is outstanding. Nice slighty fruity touch with a sugar sweetness. Definite wood on the edge. Feel is good. Nice level of bubble attacking your mouth in a fairly aggressive way. Highly drinkable. Damn good. Worth trying.

1992! Pours a clear brown with a ruby hue. Nose is antiseptic funk with a grape tone. Flavor is wide. I said it seemed like a darker honey and the bartender I shared it with said it reminded him of buckwheat honey. I might have to go find some to taste now. Vanilla is on there is well I think? Wood is noticed too. Smooth liquid feel and a low carbonation. This is amazing. A once in a lifetime opportunity that I was able to take advantage. (scores are exactly duplicate)

3.47/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Cork says this is a 1999 vintage. The pour tells the same story. A strong pour yeilds no head at all. Body is a murky shade of deep brown. Nose has a solid fruit base with tones of rubarb, sour cherries, rasberries and orange peel. Sharply sour as it hits the tongue and imediatly wakes up the buds. It does mellow quickly and lead to variety of flavors including sour cherries, over ripe mellon, oak, ashey malt and silky molases. Although sour mouthfeel is dominate, it is not overpowering. Mellows as it warms. This is about as drinkable as I would consider a beer this sour could be.

Photo of letsgopens
4.17/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This Flanders Oud Bruin pours a woody, cloudy amber brown with lighter amber highlights. The very frothy beige head holds decently well especially once its receded to a thinner cap. Some decent walls of uniform lace are left behind.

The aroma is sour with a great deal of vinous character. Some booze and earthy dark fruit are very evident as well. Tart green apple and some yeastiness. Some juicy raspberry and blackberry add to the fruity sweet/tartness. Just a hint of spice is floating around as well.

Initially very bright with crisp, juicy fruit: citrus, apple, berry, and red tart cherries. The buttery, bread-like, cereal character comes out in the finish with some additional citric twang. Not super sour but plenty tangy. Two very distinct phases of flavor. Really distinct and unique.

Extremely bright and citric sweet/sour. Acidic and crisp initially. Becomes more mellow, warm, and buttery in texture toward the finish. Very drinkable and not a terribly high abv either. A very nice selection for sure.

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Goudenband from Brouwerij Liefmans
93 out of 100 based on 1,220 ratings.