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Abbaye De Saint Bon-Chien - BFM (Brasserie des Franches-Montagnes)

Not Rated.
Abbaye De Saint Bon-ChienAbbaye De Saint Bon-Chien

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
96
world-class

831 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 831
Reviews: 252
rAvg: 4.32
pDev: 10.65%
Wants: 98
Gots: 166 | FT: 10
Brewed by:
BFM (Brasserie des Franches-Montagnes) visit their website
Switzerland

Style | ABV
Bière de Garde |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: ggaughan on 06-07-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 831 | Reviews: 252 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of jlindros
4.33/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

had a firkin of this, 2010 vintage, at Nerax at Novare Res.

Pours a hazy amber orange-red colored beer with a light fizzy head as usual for cask.

Nose has a nice tart sour fruit aroma, great tart fruits that just dance around the nostrils, berry, lots of grape skin, bit of Brett funk and lactobacillis like acidic fruit, nice funk overall.

Taste brings a great funk and sour/tart fruit, berry, light sour fruit and sour malts, bit of Brett funk as well, lactobacillis again bringing some acidic tastes, bit grainy and bready, and some interesting berry fruit with a bit of grape skin and seed. Finishes with a bready malt, tart flemmy fruit, sour but not puckering, a bit more grape skin and dark red wine, and even a hint of oak and vanilla, hint of booze.

Mouth is med bodied, bit of warming booze and acidic feel, good carb esp for cask.

Overall awesome, so tasty, great tart sour fruits, sour malts, a bit bready, not mouth puckering or over the top, very tasty and nice funk to it at the same time.

Photo of Daniellobo
4.33/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Rich, complex, sour and vinegary, take on a saison... Extraordinary if one is into that range...

Presentation: 10 oz draft serving. The menu offers a brief and fair description. pointing to the main character of the brew and notes Alc. by Vol. (11%) Served in a snifter.

A - Deep amber serving with a nice creamy 1/3" head, moderate retention with a nice creamy surface ring and touches of lacing.

S - Things start to pick up with a nice vinegary nose... Funky, complex, tart, sour apples...

T - With an spectacular range that continues in the taste. Very complex vinegar edge, the rich sourness has fruity touches, green apples... woody complexity. Vinous touches over the tart range... Hint of spices...

M - Medium body and medium/low carbonation, very nicely balanced, long lingering dry finish...

O - Not for all palates, maybe a tad provocative and complex out of the blue, but if one is into this funky/sour range this is really a true delight.

Notes: Not the first time I have it. Always on tap... But I'd love to get hold of a couple of bottles. And I see myself revisiting it, so it is a bit of an overdue review for a brew, that maybe is not for regular consumption but definitely leaves a nice dent in the memory.

Photo of heysuz
2.5/5  rDev -42.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Intro: Spilt a 750ml in a tulip glass with a friend.

Appearance: Ample head that recedes to cap but stays, deep rosewood coloring.

Smell: Strong aromas of fruit and spices with a touch of vanilla.

Taste: Tastes like spoiled cider with vinegar in it, may have been a bad bottle. Very sour like sweet tarts.

Mouthfeel: Can feel the alcohol in the chest other than that it does not have a bad feel in the mouth.

Overall: Had to drain pour it in the end, the sour and vinegar was too strong. Doubts about the beer started with the green bottle.

Photo of mclaughlindw4
4.45/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2009 Vintage

Light brown, slightly reddish color. No head, no lacing.

Initial aroma is of acetic acid. Further sniffs reveals some spicy and fruity aromas. This is a hard beer to describe. The acidic/sour/tartness kind of greets you up front, and builds towards the middle. Towards the end is some spicy and almost bitter flavors.

Now as I drink it I start to smell and taste the oak. The flavors are complex and each taste is an adventure. Never had a BFM I didn't like. Wish they weren't so expensive.

I was worried by the giant wiff of vinegar I got when I opened it. But that smell seems to have dissipated and I am left with a very pleasant smelling beer. I will be drinking an entire bottle to my head tonight. Looking forward to trying one of the douzes I bought as well.

Photo of zaphodchak
4.08/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On draft at Churchkey in DC; the 2010 blend, aged in several different kinds of barrels.

No head, garnet body.

Vinous nose, woody and mellowed.

Taste follows nose in that it is vinous and woody, but less tart. Aftertaste is decadent.

Mouthfeel isn't carby, but not thin either.

Awesome overall-- ordinarily I'd be suspect of something like this.

Photo of oline73
4.35/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had this again and it was much better. I'm not going to update appearance or Mouthfeel.

Smell: Sweet and malty with strong notes of vinegar and raspberries.

Taste: Quite sour but still very smooth. Reminds me a bit of raspberry vinegar. Along with the vinegar sourness, there is a tartness. The finish is acidic, but the alcohol is nowhere to be found.

Overall: I'm really glad I got to have this again, thanks to Max's for getting rare beers over and over again. Quite smooth and very good and now that I know what it should taste like I would have another.

Old Review
I had this on-tap at Max's, poured into a goblet.

Appearance: Pours a clear, dark amber with a half finger of thick off white head that left a layer on top throughout the pour.

Smell: Mild vinegar sourness with sweet malt. There is a mild off smell.

Taste: Really disappointed. There is an initial taste that reminds me of overly ripe/rotten fruit. Kind of taste like fruit that was left outside in 100 degree heat. That went away and even more so as the beer warmed. After that was a pleasant barrel aged strong sour ale. Vinegar and mild bourbon flavors.

Mouthfeel: Medium to thick body with mild carbonation and a finish that is a bit dry.

Overall: I just couldn't get past that initial taste. I was bummed out by this.

Photo of smakawhat
4.68/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured on tap at ChurchKey DC into a tumbler. I could not get enough of this beer. Listed as a Wild Ale not sure about the Biere de Garde angle here. Vintage 2010. Perhaps this review should go somewhere else?

A flat next to nothing carbonation body of glowing ruby red orange and clear. No head given whatsoever, this belongs in a wine glass as far as I am concerned. Love this color.

Nose is a cinnamon tartness, mixed with cherry. Not particularly dry funky but sense of wine viniousness, some tart, and a "meaty" backbone and smell. WOW!

Taste is a vinous almost out of the cask like texture. Soft bodied and supple bringing mild tart fruit punch sensations with cinnamon and tart sour cherries. Finish gives a slight novocaine texture.

11% abv? Could have fooled me. It feels like you could drink this till the cows come home. Just one heck of a tasty brew! I just devoured this like crazy drank it all night.

Photo of BdubleEdubleRUN
4.43/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2010 on-tap at Beachwood BBQ.
Pours a very murky brown with a rust red tint. Has virtually no head, just a bubble or two on the sides. The nose is tart and sour with a very earthy funk behind it. That taste follows suite with the nose and is full of tart fruits and earthy notes as well as a funky unique taste. For the lack of head I expected a much flatter beer but in the mouth there was some decent carbonation with a bit of heat from the alcohol. Really liked this beer.

Photo of Kshock
4.33/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Couldnt figure out or find the burgundy cask on here, but the photo of this was the closest so i went with it.

Blended August 7th, 2006

A- Dark Ruby red color, with some haze to it. Not much retention, quickly resides to a white ring around the glass, no lacing.

S- Smells of caramel sweetness up front, but immediately goes into a lactic sourness. In between a sour beer and a wine. Nice nose.

T- slight lactic sourness up front but finishes really nicely. Very clean on the back end, a nice balanced beer.

M- Nice light to med mouthfeel, very pleasant on the palate.

O- Very nice surprise, didnt know much so i didnt expect much, but it was very legit.

Photo of brouwer
4.25/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bought at Charleston Beer Exchange by recommendation.

2009 brew; Blended in 2010
Aged in Oak Barrels

On uncapping the bottle there is little carbonation, and it pours a red caramel color with a small head of 1/2 to one inch. Little lacing.

The smell is fruity with a champagne like effervescence.

The taste is tart and sweet with fruity aftertaste.

The mouthfeel is brisk with again, almost champagne like sensation.

This is a pleasant departure for beer. Not your every day beer.

Photo of AleWatcher
3.28/5  rDev -24.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

This was a 2007 vintage courtesy of JohnQVegas. I shared this one at a recent tasting and it really didn't impress anyone a whole lot...

Reviewed from notes dictated into voice notes on my iphone.

Rusty murky color with a minimal head and very low carbonation.
Smells a bit like a Flander's red. An acetone note is pretty prominent. Cherries, oak, vinous winey quality, some malts, little sweetness, and some generic non-desripct spices.
The flavor runs the same course-- starts off with some malt notes, followed by a spicy and tart note with a relatively dry finish.
Not exactly sour, but not unpleasant. The body is very wine-like... Low carbonation, almost to the point of being flat.

Overall-- this isn't my top choice. It just doesn't work for me. There's too much going on. It's as though they brewed a really complex and interesting base beer and said, "Hey, let's sour this thing and age it in some barrels!" when they didn't really need to do that.
Sometimes less is more.

Photo of ColdPoncho
4.33/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From notes 8-13-2011
Thanks to Brad and/or Norm (Rob)
Had 2006 and 2009 vintage, review is based on 2006.

A - CLouded amber/red body, white foam ring

S - some nice and complex funkiness

T - Some sweet malts, tartness, wood, a lot of stuff going on here, very complex. Something reminiscent of apple.

M - medium body, drying

O - GOod beer, very complex and weird. I like it

Photo of Urbancaver
4.28/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks Brad for oulling this from his cellar.2006 vintage. Pours a hazy reddish orange. Smells tart and fairly sour. the aroma is pretty nice. Tastes smooth and tart. Fairly sour but not overwhelming. Is tart and enjoyable. The mouthfeel is thick but lowly carbonated. It's enjoyable but not really my cup of tea

Edit: 2009 vintage i liked considerably better... Bumped up the taste

Photo of Mavajo
3.9/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy brown with minimal head. A brisk pour yielded a moderate, big-bubble foam, but this was more a product of a very aggressive pour, rather than any genuine head.

Aroma is interesting -- funk, barnyard, fruit, malt, caramel and as it warms, booze. The flavor brings a lot of these same notes. Sour, tart, fruit, caramel, vinegar, malt and a fairly healthy booze presence. The sourness on this beer doesn't ride the sides of the tongue like a typical sour -- rather, it's a sort of tart bitterness that rest on the center rear of the tongue. Mouthfeel is fine.

Interesting beer. I felt the booze was a bit more prominent than I would like. Perhaps it's because my bottle was relatively young? I think this is one that could be aged for years -- I may buy another and throw it in the cellar for a few years. Really interesting, dynamic brew. Something about it made me think of Consecration -- but this has a lot more going on, with a thicker syrupy mouthfeel. I felt like it was a bit unnecessarily abrasive however. I'm really interested to see if that changes some with age.

Photo of billshmeinke
4.03/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Amber body/hazy.

Smells of lactic sourness barnyard funk, hay, caramel, toffee and a touch of bourbon, oak and vanilla.

Taste follows smell. Lactic sourness, hay, toffee/bourbon, grapes, nice balancing bitterness.

Medium to full bodied, nice balance between tart/sweet/bitter.

Photo of bootlegger1929
4.43/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From a bottle bought at vintage estates.
Looks a dark reddish light brown with a slow burning thin filmed head that lingers throughout the glass.

Oak and light lemony vinegar in the smell. Enticing for sure.

Flavor is much of the same with a pretty heavy almost syrupy body.

Very good beer. I'm very much enjoying it

Photo of KickbacksSteve
4.43/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle poured into mini snifter. 2006 vintage. Murky, old brown leather color. Medium, beige head, low retention and lacing. Aroma dominated by sour apples, horse blanket and a bit of syrup and nutmeg. Taste is puckering and includes spicy vinegar, sour green apple, and an earthy funk. Refreshing in a sour kind of way. Delicious, maybe not to the average beer drinker, but certainly a gem to anyone in the mood for a world class sour beer.

Photo of kojevergas
3.45/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

**11/24/13: I intend to re-review this beer as this review isn't up to par.

75cl green glass (ugh!) bottle with standard pressure cap served into a Westvleteren goblet in Belfort, France. Served at a cold temperature straight from the refrigerator. Reviewed live. My expectations are high for this one.

A: There's no head whatsoever. This is a disappointment. Nontransparent solid amber-copper colour. Generally appealing.

Sm: Wine-esque. Grape, dark fruit, and caramelized malt. Some alcohol. Mild strength aroma.

T: Sourness aplenty, grape, caramelized malt, and fringe esters. It's nicely complex, though the sourness may turn many away. Well balanced in spite of the sourness dominating. Well built for the style (a style which seems to have a very loose definition anyway - I've had five in a row here in France and none are even remotely the same).

Mf: Smooth and wet. Suits the flavours on the body pretty generally. It's certainly not tailored to them.

Dr: High ABV is incredibly well concealed. It's well built for the style, but suffers from an unfairly high price. Very drinkable, especially considering the ABV. The sourness may be off-putting to some, but fans of the style will be pleased.

Photo of rootbeerman
4.65/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2006 brewed, 07 blended according to the bottle. Chilled on an A/C vent to close to what the bottles states for serving, 61-64°

A: pours with a very short lasting head, no lacing just a quick showing then gone. Body is brown a touch cloudy, with a light red hue when held to the light.

S: a little funk, a touch of fruit and dry malt sweetness. Also oaky wine.

T: doesn't taste anything like 11% abv. Sweet a touch of oak and wine, a little red wine dryness. Light funk but not the main flavor. A little bit of yeast spice. Some dark fruit. Amazing.

M: a little coating upfront but drying on the back end, similar to red wine. A bit fizzy at first but I've been sipping on it for over an hour and carbonation is nearly gone.

O: very good, not a starter into craft, I could drink this daily if only my wallet could handle it.

Photo of rvdoorn
4.65/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Shared this bottle with PapaEugene. 2010 vintage
Look: The beer pours a orange-copper cognac-like color, with a short lasting small head.
Smell: Intensively sour, wood, floral, citrus, grapes, green apples and funk.
Taste: Leather, funky, vinegar, sour apples, red wine, grapes, citrus, earthy, and oak. Alcohol is perfectly hidden.
Mouthfeel: Medium body, low carbonation
Overall: Very complex and tasty brew. Very puckering sourness, great!

Photo of Knapp85
3.7/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

2007 Bottle: This beer poured out as an interesting looking reddish color. The head came and went fairly fast. The aromas of oak, funk, sour cherries and some wine-like fumes come off of this beer. The taste of the beer gets better as it warms up. I found this beer to be very tart and sour in the beginning. As it got warmer, the funk and oak flavors came out more and took over in place of the sourness. The mouthfeel had a pretty good carbonation to it but was a little thin I thought. Overall it's a good sour for sure. I'm not a fan of the style but I feel it would please most beer drinkers.

Photo of MbpBugeye
4.03/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Shared at Jackie O's by Johnny, one of the Bodega/Jackie O's bartenders.

Appearance
Not much of a looker. My glass had no head and it was very rusty, murky looking golden orange.

Aroma
Funky and tart, not what I expected but very nice. Lots of apple cider and cherry notes come out along with a good deal of dusty yeast. Time worn oak, plum skins, cherry pits and crab apples.

Taste
Tart, but not bracingly sour. Lots of funk takes the place of the rest of the sourness. Lots of dry, hay dust style of funk. Things get really cheesy, like goat cheese, by the end. There is a nice, juicy spike of cherry sourness that comes along with it and helps it move along.

Mouthfeel
Dry and dusty. The tartness keeps the gritty dustiness from weighing you down. There is a considerable warming effect from the alcohol, not many beers like this are 11%, but this one hides the abv well.

Overall
This was really nice. It does to show you that there are plenty of unknown, obscure beers that you might gloss over that turn out to be real winners.

Photo of blackie
4.83/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

a: served in a small thistle style glass, the beer is a deep amber in color, opaque, with a well retained layer of carbonation and some lace

s: gorgeous aroma, listed on the menu as a sour and that side really shows here - lots of tart/sour both bacterial and fruity, some dark vinous tannins and boozy spirits, woody oak, a sweet grainy malt side, rich and powerful but artfully balanced

m: carbonation low, light-medium body, smooth

t: loads of sweet-sour fruits, vinous tannic flavors, fruity/sweet malts well offset by a rich funk, solidly oaky, bacterial tart and sour cherry edges, benign aged hops, lightly sweet booze, complex and delicious

d: love this - loads of rich barrel and fruit character with a solid sour/funk throughout, drinks incredibly well for an 11 percent beer

consumed at Thirsty Monk, Asheville

Photo of stakem
3.93/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to BA Smoked for just randomly showing up at my house on Monday and saying: "let's drink this!"

I'm not 100% certain this is the right listing but it seems accurate enough. No clear markings indicate this offering is aged in any special type of barrel. This is vintage 2005 clearly marked as 15.5% alcohol. Bottle# 276

Poured from a 750ml bottle into a snifter, this brew appears a hazed ruby color with a thin finger of tan head that quickly recedes only holding around the rim of the glass. A swirl releases a few bubbles from solution that end up sticking to the glass as the only indication of lacing effect. Some browness and lighter orange to yellow coloration is seen around the edges when held to the light. Some minuscule particulate is seen throughout the body.

The smell of this brew is woody with oak mingled with cherry notes and a light musty character. The alcohol comes across quite fruity in nature but not nearly as solvent or fusel as you would expect for 15.5% alcohol. It has a medicinal touch with the way the cherry fruitiness seemingly dissolves in the nose. Some tangy scents and a wild touch of vinegar are throughout the back.

The taste is lightly oxidized with faint carboard and musty grain flavors. There is a cherry fruit quality that mixes with a taste of oak that creates a deep and earthy touch of funk to this brew. Some light herbal hops are present even after some ~7 years of aging. There is a very bold warming effect from the alcohol which provides the first notion that this beast really is over 15%. The alcohol flavoring evolves into a strong solvent character but remains pleasing. Focusing back to the fair hop inclusion, it seems a bit herbal and grassy. The aftertaste is cherry pits bordering rotten with a touch of tangy wild character somewhat like vinegar. There is a flavor left inside the mouth that tastes of a mixture of soap and perfume.

This is a medium to full bodied brew. The fullness is a bit exaggerated due to the nature of the low carbonation. It is not flat but just slightly bubbly enough to lighten up the feel a bit. The huge alcohol presence provides solid warmth all the way down the throat. A big depth of flavor and barrel aging effect mixed with medicinal qualities. There is a pleasant funkiness that dominates the sour aspect yet it is tangy like cherry. Overall an enjoyable offering that is worth checking out. I think the 15+ % abv is a bit excessive. Toning that down would greatly increase the drinkability of this brew. Even at almost 7 years old, this brew could easily last a few more.

Photo of jwinship83
4.33/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml capped bottle. 2008 vintage, bottled 2009. drank from my duvel tulip.

A- the beer pours out a murky/hazy copper meets red colored body with a few light beige colored bubbles for a head. the head quickly fizzles away to nothing and leaves behind a very thin single line of lacing on the side of my glass.

S- as soon as i get my nose near my glass i become alerted that this is a wild beer. a decent amount of barnyard like funk meets vinegar/lactic notes. tart cherries and grapes come in after that. earthy hops at the end. very complex. im getting excited.

T- the taste starts out with some fruity malts and quickly brings forth the wet hay/barnyard funk that reminds me that this is a wild ale. tart cherries spring forth after that, along with a lesser amount of grapes. mild vinegar and acetone notes. earthy hops move in at the end.

M- lightly puckering. the carbonation is on the lighter side which really works in this beer's favor. the body is a solid medium.

O- this is one of the most unknown/under-appreciated beers on the market. it lurks in the shadows of beer stores in the know just to get picked up by people like me. if you havnt tried it and have the option, pick it up. i think its only $20 for the bottle. if you dont know where to get it, ask your local beer store's beer guy to order it. you wont be disappointed.

Abbaye De Saint Bon-Chien from BFM (Brasserie des Franches-Montagnes)
96 out of 100 based on 831 ratings.