Dismiss Notice
Hello, is it beer you're looking for?

Learn more about beer. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for as low as 68% off the single issue price.

Subscribe now →

Zoetzuur Flemish Ale - De Proefbrouwerij (bvba Andelot)

Not Rated.
Zoetzuur Flemish AleZoetzuur Flemish Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

193 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 193
Hads: 331
Avg: 3.94
pDev: 17.26%
Wants: 30
Gots: 29 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
De Proefbrouwerij (bvba Andelot) visit their website

Style | ABV
Flanders Red Ale |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: marburg on 11-15-2004

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (98) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 193 | Hads: 331
Photo of timtim
4.03/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

this one seemed to be on the mild side of flanders red, but balance seemed to be the name of the game. gorgeous dark red with a pink tan tint to the head. very good retention and lace. don't normally see that in flemish reds. nose and taste exhibit wood plank, earthy worm casting, dark fruit and a touch of cider. not extreme, but extremely pleasant. silky smooth and yummy. unique and traditional at the same time to me for this style.

 437 characters

Photo of twiggamortis420
4.79/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark copper color with a fine-bubbled, fluffy light tan head. Very good retention and lacing.

Smell is perfectly funky and wild with equal parts rotting wood and sour berry tartness. Raspberry puree with maybe a bit of blackberry and cherry notes. Not much malt or hops on the nose, but that is ok with me for this style. This beer smells delicious, a joy to sniff!

Mouth puckering sour tartness takes the lead by a slim margin over the brettomyces funk and cedar plank flavors. Some lighter berry notes come through with some strawberries and sour cherries. Earthy in it's own way with some of the caramely malt sweetness making an appearance as it warms a bit. Wonderful sour beer, one of my favorites.

 714 characters

Photo of TheNapkin
3.97/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Amber, almost a light soda color. Very thin head, visible effervescence, dark sedimentation that sifts to the bottom of the glass.

S: Sour raspberries, whiffs of cider, sniff of red grapes. Sort of like Lindemann Framboise's lighter brother (smell is not nearly as intensely jammy as Lindemann's Framboise). Slightly metallic, coppery smell if you're not careful and pour too big a head.

T: Same as the smell, but just a notch sweeter. It should be noted that even though the beer tastes sour, vaguely lambic-like, and has strong raspberry notes, it doesn't deliver the overwhelming sugar bomb that certain fruit-fortified lambics do. This beer serves as a nice substitute for those who find these lambics thick, cloying and hardly satisfying when you want a beer that tastes like a beer (it's also cheaper than a lot of lambics too; bargain, Win!). If you want a beer masquerading as a soda, reach for a Lindemann's; if you want a beer that tastes like a beer, has hints of fruit, and moderate sourness, get this De Proef. It has a nice dryness on the front of the tongue and the back and would pair nicely with foods you'd normally drink a dry white wine with.

M: Light and bubbly on the tongue. A real treat.

D: In terms of De Proef beers, the funk element here is hardly detectable, which makes the beer very drinkable. Good balance of sourness and the malts.

 1,370 characters

Photo of Bitterbill
4.28/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of joe1510. Thanks Joe!

A big pop when I removed the faux cork, it pours a clear ruby red with a one finger head of foam and shows a ton of nice lacing.

The smell is fruity sour with big notes of cherries and a very light note of something sweet. Maybe I'll figure that out when I taste it.

The taste starts off tart with the cherries and green apples but quickly is matched head to head with a nice honey like and maybe fruity sweetness. Man, this one is sweet & sour but neither wants to take center stage and for me, that works very damn well for my palate, not so much for what I'd expect for the style. It sure is easy to drink though so I can't complain all that much. Heck, now I'm tasting a bit of funk that I didn't notice when the beer was a bit colder. A plus in my book.

Medium bodied with medium carbonation, it finishes decidedly on the sweet side. Head rention seemed to get better with every pour and the lacing is just outstanding.

Drinkability? No problems with the abv, plenty of flavour, I'll have no problem finishing the last pour from the bottle which, btw, is decidely cloudy now. A very enjoyable brew and I again thank Joe for his generosity and spirit of adventure as I don't think that I'd have ever sought this beer out on my own. When I visit a beer store with a lot of Belgians, I get overwhelmed! ;^)

 1,353 characters

Photo of xmorgan
4.1/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

750ml Bottle form Bev-Mo.

Poured into chalice, 1 inch white head, that does not completly go away. Leaves some foamy lacing. Color is Brownish red, more brown then red. The head remains similar to a stout, in the sense that it's color and ability to hang around.

Has a lambic-like acidic fruit nose.

the taste is much more complex then the nose.

It is sour and fruity, with a not to dry after taste. If you aerate the beer in your mouth, it really releases the CO2.

It would do well as a beer to server with medium to strong cheese.

I would buy it again, to share. I polished the 750 myself and was not sorry.

 616 characters

Photo of SeattleAdam
2.7/5  rDev -31.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

A- Finger of off white head. Red at bottom of glass and gets lighter towards the top. The rocky head dissipates just a bit and clears way for bubbles.

S- Grape soda, rasberry jam, sour, fruity lambic.

T- Hoppy burn but sour. Hits back of tounge and washes/settles to the front. Kind of a backwards effect! Very fizzy and grape. This beer will hit your nose as much as your mouth. Tastes like acidic, citrus fruit juices after brushing your teeth. Very interesting but not too pleasant.

M- I think this is a little too carbonated...to the point of fizzy. This settles in the weirdest, backwards way. Thin mouth feel.

D- I don't think I will be purchasing this again. It's drinkable in the sense that you can't taste any booze at all but it's not drinkable in the sense that it's fizzy and too acidic.

 803 characters

Photo of nickfl
4.24/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - One finger of off-white head that settles quickly but leaves excellent lace. The body is dark reddish brown and very hazy.

S - Strongly acidic with notes of caramel and dark, sour cherries. Subtle vanilla oak note with noticeable, cheesy brett funk.

T - Dramatically sour with a brown, malty flavor to balance. Carmel and balsamic vinegar notes in the middle with very intense woodiness taking over in the finish. Quite a lot of wild funk in the finish along with a powerful tannic bite from the wood.

M - Medium-high carbonation, medium body, and a very dry, tannic finish.

D - Very nice overall with a great sweet and sour interplay, especially in the nose. The tannins are a bit excessive for my palate, and the funk might be overdone as well, but all in all, one of the best Flemmish Reds I have come across.

 820 characters

Photo of roblowther
3.77/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml rubber corked & caged. Poured into a chalice glass, its an opaque tan brown with no real head. Smells sugary, like black cherries. Sweet only while you hold it in the front of your mouth, then instant sour tartness. The cherry taste predominates. Not much complexity, it just has the same flavor characteristics throughout, with which it beats you. Mouthfeel has a nice slight carbonation & nice slickness, but is a bit thin in the end. Drinkability is not bad, the sourness leaves you with a shadow of its sweet counterpart. Good to try but I'd stick with the Duchess de Bourgone if I was to stick.

 605 characters

Photo of bowersdm
3.07/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

750mL faux-corked and caged bottle, a portion of which was poured into a 22oz brandy snifter.

A - pours the color of tea with some reddish hues. it's hard to describe it because I'm not big into art. i'll go with ruby/brown. a head that was just barely bigger than 0cm formed. not enough to determine the color effectively.

S - strawberry banana yogurt, lactic acid, sour cherries, strawberries, leather, musty attic

T - when i first tried this beer, I though it was sweet and sour at the same time, which would seem to go against the style. (I thought my palate was messing with me.) After looking through a few reviews I realized that it is indeed sweet and sour, so here goes: tart lactic acid (subtle) and fruit (cherries, strawberries, grapes, cranberries) that starts out sweet but then starts to go sour. the finish is of...hops? at least, it's a slightly citrus-zest like finish, so I'm going to guess hops. there was a musty attic/leather flavor throughout, but it became more prominent in the finish. I'm going to go out on a limb here, but this beer seems more like an oud Bruin than a Red Ale.

M - pretty thin body. adequately carbonated. it was like drinking flat seltzer water

D - definitely not worth the $10.99 per bottle considered that Duchesse de Bourgogne was the same price. I feel constantly let down by this style because Duchesse was the first one that I tried and I'm always expecting that level of acetic acid character. This isn't your typical Flanders Red because it's sweet, while also being sour. If you're interested in the style, try this, but otherwise, don't waste your money. Buy some Duchesse de Bourgogne instead.

 1,655 characters

Photo of SFLpunk
3.55/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Shawn Dunn for this one!

750mL brown glass fake-cork finished. No date.

Appearance: A medium reddish brown with thin bone-white head.

Nose: Cherry skins, raw beef, leafy veg, plum.

Palate: Low carbonation, moderately tart (not sour) up front, but swings to slightly sweet with flavors of dried berries and dates. There's a brightness that comes from that "redeeming" sweetness. Lots of sweet and sour cherry notes. Medium-length finish shows a little, tiny, inkling really of that "funky" texture.

Notes: A nice, very drinkable "sour" beer. The texture is smooth and round, not overly funky, not really sour, just tart. Nicely made, not great. Might drink again if the chance arises.

 698 characters

Photo of djeucalyptus
4.15/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a hazy yet glowing mahogany and cherry juice hue, with caramel and gold highlights. A beautiful fluffy three-finger head of a cherry-tinged off-white sticks around for a good while, eventually leaving some impressive lacing to the bottom of the glass.

Cherries, a bit of funky and spicy yeast, apples, a bit of golden raspberry and muscat grape. a bit more barnyard spice and a bit of fresh oak and earthiness, mixing with some caramelized cherries. smells intoxicating.

Taste follows aroma for the most part, with the brett funk and sour cherry notes showing strongly up front. A citric tartness and vanilla-oak woodiness smooth out the fruit. muscat grapes, a hint of white port, and more wet straw and earthiness. sour, almost unripe acidic raspberry sourness intermingles with more woody drying cherry notes.

mouthfeel is clean, especially given the accompanying funky flavors. a crisp, woody drying throughout with a nice dry tart finish. Silky and smooth, it's a hair lighter than I'd prefer... a bit thicker/fuller/slightly higher carbonation and this would be absolutely perfect.

the smoothness in the mouthfeel creates a pretty palatable brew with good drinkability for the style... but like any Flanders, this one's a sipper. A bit heavy on the funk, but the strength of the cherry notes really wins me over and the perfectly drying body with just a slight warming quality works beautifully. Definitely a must try.

 1,437 characters

Photo of champ103
3.5/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Pours an opaque ruby/brown color. A one finger tan head forms. Some sticky lace is left behind.
S: A sweet fruity aroma. Some cherries and apples with funky barnyard aromas. A light dry, wood aroma.
T: This is very sweet and tart. Cherries and apples that follow the nose. As this warms up, the tartness/sourness mellows out a bit.
M/D: A medium body, but over carbonated. A little thin. Dry. The sweetness, tartness and alcohol are a bit much. Its hard to finish the 750 ml bottle.

This is interesting, but just does not do it for me. Fairly simple for the style, and not very subtle. This is not my favorite De Proef offering.

 633 characters

Photo of paulthebeerguru
4.25/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: pours an opaque pale ruby color. light tan head. outstanding head retention. huge curtain lacing.

S: sour cherries, light citrus, major tartness. a little sugary. light berries as well.

T: very interesting palate. apples, cherries, a light amount of citrus. starts off very sweet, then turns to sours rapidly. light hint of spices. some caramel.

M: solid carbonation level, a little bubbly. wonderful opposite mouthfeels with the sweet and sour tartness. medium bodied.
very smooth and mellow for the style.

 513 characters

Photo of cjgator3
3.82/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle

A- Corked and caged bottle poured into a large tulip glass. Pours a dark brownish amber color with a light tan colored head that leaves a ring of lace around the glass.

S- The aroma is very sweet and fruity with a lot of sour cherries, grapes and some oak.

T- The taste is a nice mixture of sweet and sour with some cherries, oak and a dry finish. The taste can be a little on the sweet side for me.

M- The mouthfeel is light bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation.

D- The 750ml bottle of this beer may be a bit too much for me due to the sweetness. However, this is a pretty unique and interesting beer that is definitely worth a try.

 659 characters

Photo of illidurit
3.92/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pour: 750 mL bottle to La Chouffe tulip. Rusty brown color, sort of like raspberry preserves. One finger of beige head fizzes to a fluffy halo and leaves some nice lacing.

Nose: Brown sugar sweetness peeks through a shroud of tart cherries and fruitcake. There's a very slight earthiness too.

Mouth: If the aroma translated exactly over to the flavor this beer would be world class, but it doesn't quite. Seems a little thin and fizzy on the palate, leading to unsupported flavors. What I can taste is lightly tart with black cherries and a trademark bretty earthiness in the finish. What's missing is the malt/ester sweetness dueling with the vinegary sharpness that I get from Duchesse or La Folie when I consider the stylistic pinnacle. Not bad but definitely a tier below the best.

 787 characters

Photo of ballewblake
4.06/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From bottle into my Duvel tulip.

First pour resulted in a 2 finger white head on a dark purple body. Great lacing on the glass through out the drink. Some light grapes on the nose, but nothing in your face aroma wise. Tasty mild sour though. I'd say this is a good starter sour in the vain of Duchess de borgone. Very similar, with maybe less vinegar on the tongue. Easy to drink, light in alcohol, but pricey next to duchess at almost 14 bucks for a 750.

 456 characters

Photo of Halcyondays
4.19/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 mL bottle,

A: Pours burgundy red with a light off-white head, good retention, light lacing.

S: Smell is great and complex. Ripe strawberry, with cherry juice, light balsamic vinegar and funk.

T: Strong fruit character, as in the smell strawberry jam is dominant with a light cherry kick. Mild oak astringency and solid lactic acid character balance the sweetness.

M: Moderate acidity, though not as much as I like in this style, but solid. Light bodied, quite easy to drink, with the H+ character, still quite smooth.

D; A real nice Flemish Red here. Its got the solid acidity this style needs with a lot of complexity. Very enjoyable.

 644 characters

Photo of BARFLYB
3.65/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

750ml corked & caged bottle poured into a chimay goblet twice. picked this up at state line not to long ago.

A- Zoetzuur is a dark red color with rusty qualities bordering on brown. A 1/2 finger off white sticky head comes forth with some moderate lacing. A bit more head retention would be nice.

S- A mix of sweet and sour goodness. I'm getting a lot of sour cherry and apples and barnyard funk. Other fruits such as raspberries come to mind. some oak and vinegar as expected.

T- The huge apple taste in this flemish is in the forefront with sour cherries to follow. Oak and wood follow with a touch of plum. I'm picking up some sweet malt(very slight) with the more prevelent vinegar bland taste. Some spices emerge as the beer warms and the sourness develops further.

M- A tad thinner that i'm used to and could use some work. Over all this is pretty mellow with good carbonation. The flavors do not stick around forever making it an easy drinker even though it's not my favorite flanders red.

D- Pretty good drinkability on this even though i was not too impressed by it. The flavors were there but the over all vinegar blandness keeps me from loving it. A thicker mouthfeel would of helped smooth things out. I probably would have enjoyed this more in the spring. One bottle is plenty.

Overall a good job by De Proef but not mindblowing, a good choice to introduce a newbie to the style.

 1,399 characters

Photo of philipquarles
3.8/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy dark mahogany with red tinges. A large off-white head gives way to a half-finger of foam and a lot of lacing after a while. That signature Brett smell hits immediately, with all of its usual sour, musty character; the sour cherries only come through afterward, though they are quite strong. The funk dominates the taste as well, with citric sourness and leather both prominent. A hint of chocolaty roasted malt comes next, with the real cherry taste only evident after a few sips. A definite woodiness in the background. Another great beer from the Proefbrouwerij.

 577 characters

Photo of MrHungryMonkey
4.42/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nose is medicinal and plastic with spicy overtones. Somewhat malty - smells like it is going to be sweet. Notes of citrus (orange, and/or lemon peel). Smells really good.

Pours a muddled dark brown color, almost no clarity, nice head with mild retention. Looks pretty good.

Medicinal up front and then sweet and malty followed by a nice punchy tartness. It has my full attention. Lemon/grapefruit citric veins run deep giving a nice juxtaposition to the fairly assertive sweetness and maltiness. Yeast is dry and powdery with plastic (almost latex) and sterile medicinalness all over. Nice and juicy - a tart, probably dark fruit. Full bodied, moderate carbonation.

Very exciting. Very tasty. I love it. I will buy this one again, for sure.

 744 characters

Photo of LilBeerDoctor
3.38/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle sampled on 09/26/08 at Night of the Funk. Pours a clear orange/brown with a small white head. Aroma of light tartness and melon and other sweet fruits. Flavor is tart with a bitter finish and also some stale wheat malt. Just kinda meh. Not terribly bad but not something I'd seek out again.
7/4/7/3/14 (3.5/5)

 316 characters

Photo of allengarvin
4.33/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Duvel glass, this has a rusty brown color, with a persistent and thick inch-tall head. Fruity, very tart aroma, with a nice musty-cellar earthiness. Wow, a lot more brett-like character comes through in the flavor than I expected, or is usual for the style, and less sourness. There's a nice cheesy leather flavor up front, with a sour cherry fruitiness winding things up. There's even some drying bitterness in the middle that makes things rather interesting. Very curious, unique, and quite tasty!

 513 characters

Photo of magictrokini
3.62/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle. Pours reddish amber with a thick cream-colored head. Aroma of apples and cherries, with some stinky cheese. Taste vastly improves as the beer warms. Cherry, caramel, and malt up front that turns sour quickly when cold, but smoothly when warmer. A tart, sweet finish. Definitely a sipper.

 295 characters

Photo of koopa
4.13/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle purchased at Buyrite Liquors in South Plainfield NJ.

Appearance: When held up to the light the body is an attractive blood orange with pure orange corners. Nice 2.5 finger head of slightly off white head. Great retention and lacing everywhere.

Smell: Overripe tangerines and blood oranges meet bret yeast. Its bold and powerful but not my cup of tea.

Taste: This is NOT a good example of a Flanders Red by any stretch of the imagination. However, this FR meets Wild Ale cluster F@ck is mighty tasty. The Bret. yeast is really stealing the show. The initial taste is a touch sweet but the finish is pure dryness.

Mouthfeel: Quite creamy and well carbonated. Medium bodied.

Drinkablility: Good for being such a bret. driven brew.

 746 characters

Photo of pinotboy007
3.43/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - Root beer-like color with a decent antique white head that fades slowly with some modest lacing; very attractive Flemish ale.

S - Sour red fruit with barnyard-like aroma and a tinge of what I would call pewter, but not in a negative way. Unique.

T - Off sour cherry/wine as if this ale had been aged in a barrel that used to hold red wine. Has a nice malt backbone.

M - Light fizz mingles with the creaminess in a nice but refreshing way.

D - With food - absolutely. I'm thinking venison or some sort of meat that has a fruit-laden reduction sauce. Drinking it solo isn't really inspiring for me, but to each his own!

 625 characters

Zoetzuur Flemish Ale from De Proefbrouwerij (bvba Andelot)
88 out of 100 based on 193 ratings.