Cantillon Cuvée Des Champions - Brasserie Cantillon

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Cantillon Cuvée Des ChampionsCantillon Cuvée Des Champions

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BA SCORE
95
world-class

259 Reviews
THE BROS
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Reviews: 259
Hads: 1,091
rAvg: 4.27
pDev: 7.03%
Wants: 551
Gots: 232 | FT: 24
Brewed by:
Brasserie Cantillon visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Gueuze |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Spring

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Dukeofearl on 01-23-2005

Two year-old lambic, dry-hopped in the cask for three weeks.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 259 | Hads: 1,091
Photo of Sammy
3.76/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle at Beerbistro, a bargain at $30. A geuze for intermediates, this is a smooth drinker. Aroma still floor cleaner and funk, sweat and arseic. Light orange body, medium mouthfeel. Not too hard on the palate initially, a key for beginners. however it is there hours after.Fruit and ginger and apple.Bottle with Todd B (320 characters)

Photo of oline73
4.15/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this bottle at Max's Belgian Beer Fest.

Appearance: Pours straw golden and is very slightly cloudy. There is a two finger very fluffy white head of which a good size layer remains throughout.

Smell: I pick up a bit of barnyard/straw, and some sour citrus. There is also an herbal quality as well as some spice from the Belgian yeast.

Taste: Again there is a bit of a barnyard/straw type taste. I'm picking up a lot of sour vinegar and citrus notes. There is some spice from the yeast and a quite bitter finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium body and super dry. There is a medium amount of carbonation which is quite light.

Drinkability: I enjoyed this one a lot and it was worth the price. I would love to have more if I ever get the chance. (740 characters)

Photo of pmlondrigan
4.26/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Wow, what a lucky score ran in for a 6er and spotted this gem! After reading reviews fresh not aged seemed to be the way to drink this. Poured into a rodenbach glass, opaque hazy straw gold rests under a head of white rocky foam. Initial blotting of lacing ceases, but the head never leaves this beer. The aroma is soft, mixture of hay and straw, horse blanket, grassy hops (surprising), and lemon. Acetic jowl puckering sour that transitions seemlessly into a soft Brett flavor with a nice balance of horse-y-ness. Citrusy sour lemon and grapefruit. Tanic barrel goodness on the back end, any indication of the initial hop aroma is gone in the flavor. Most unblendeds I've had have been Brett bombs, this is nuanced and delicate. My favorite Cantillon to date. (761 characters)

Photo of mikey711
4.52/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

2010 bottling

A: bright orange and gold color with a fluffy champagne like head that has a layer which lingers at the top that is about a quarter inch thick. It is cloudy and looks quite a bit like a DIPA

S: Very nice tart lemon smell along with hints of melon and apricot. the hoppiness is floral and earthy. notes of vanilla and wood

T: A bit of a cheesy flavor back by some tart lemon and melon flavors. oak and funky become more prominent in the background a bit more acidity comes through as it warms.

M: Crisp refreshing feel. not to heavily acidic and no harsh vinegar notes

D: very quaffable and the fruity aspects make it very easy to casually sip throughout the day (680 characters)

Photo of grub
4.57/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

another from my trades with freud. thanks again fred!

375ml corked and capped bottle. bottled 2010. sampled feb 4/2011.

pours slightly hazy golden yellow with a big cap of fine white head. the head drops fairly fast but never completely disappears. spotty lace.

aroma is great. lemon. cider and malt vinegar. bright and floral. light herbal component. lots of horse blanket and leather. bit of tobacco. white bread. grain. cracker. hint of alcohol. light citrus and fruit.

taste is great. much like the aroma. lemon and light malt vinegar. cider vinegar. bit of mineral character. hint of sweetness to the light citrus character. white bread and cracker. hint of grain. leather and horse blanket. low bitterness level. fairly low acidity. balanced sourness.

mouthfeel is great. light body with a nice dry finish. very fine medium-light carbonation level. nice brett mouthfeel.

drinkability is great. this may be one of the most balanced cantillons i've had. not overpowering in any one direction. great sour depth and complexity. good stuff! (1,047 characters)

Photo of ElGallo
4.2/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From my tasting notes. On tap at The Lion's Pride. A hazy golden yellow color with some lacing. Nose is of citrus fruits, most notably lemon, with some barnyard funk and light hop notes as well.

Very refreshing taste, with the lemon and funk intertwining beautifully to make this a very drinkable and unique unblended lambic. Not as harsh on the palate as other lambics, so I could see myself drinking more than a few glasses of this and still having some taste buds left.

Very rare to see this on tap anywhere. I'm very glad I got to try it. Keep the Cantillon coming! (571 characters)

Photo of FeDUBBELFIST
2.67/5  rDev -37.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

***EDIT: I didn't realize Cantillon Cuvée Des Champions was an unblended lambic when reviewed. I will re-review when possible***

Draft pour into an 8 oz tall and narrow flute. $8.

A: Two fingers of dense foamy pristinely white head. Excellent retention being aided by lazily paced bubbles. Very hazy and opaque except when held to light. Pale straw golden yellow body. Looks divine in the glass.

S & T: Nose foreshadows sour and tart flavors, yet they are very restrained by Cantillon standards. Sweet, fruity and citrusy. Orange and lemons, some peel and spices. Bit of barnyard funk but again restrained. There is an off-putting sulfuric note, very recognizable. This follows through on the palate but only on the backend. Phenolics come through much less on the palate and make for better flavor than aroma.

M: Tame and on the disappointing side. Light body, inadequate carbonation.

D: Low. And the high price adds insult to injury. (945 characters)

Photo of mothman
4.2/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Color is pale straw yellow. Has a white head.

Aroma: More funky than sour. Some lemons, dry cloves, spice, and a bit of sourness. A bit of oak. A lot of barnyard funk shows with this beer.

Taste: A bit nicer than the nose. This cantillon is much more acidic than others I have had. Very acidic and tart. A big lemon citrus. Oak notes as well. Again, it has a big barnyard funk to it.

Mouthfeel: Sour and tart. Lighter bodied. Lower amount of carbonation. Some brett shows here. It ends a little bit dry.

Overall, a decent cantillion. Much more acidic than others which is why I would have to limit myself to this one no matter how much I liked it. I definitely enjoyed this one. (682 characters)

Photo of klikger
4.27/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 pour served in a tulip - thanks madvike!

A - Light gold-colored and a little hazy. Not much head, decent lacing.

S - Raspberries, Belgian yeast, and champagne

T - Bitter and vaguely fruity up front, with vinegar appearing next. Funky yeast and lemon juice bitterness compose the back half, with a sour apple flavor finishing it off. Relatively complex. Delicious.

M - Light amount of carbonation, yet feels alive in the mouth.

D - High (444 characters)

Photo of woosterbill
4.47/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

750ml bottle ('05 vintage) poured into a Weyerbacher tulip; shared at a tasting.

A: Rich, lightly hazy orange body with a finger of very fine head; light lacing. Great looking lambic.

S: Wow, this smells as intense as any beer I've ever experienced. Hugely spicy, hugely funky, and hugely sour. Great.

T: Cantillon goodness. Need I say more? I guess I should. It's super sour, and packed to the brim with complex and totally distinctive funk - mustiness, barnyardiness, mustardseed, lemon, and spice. Fantastic.

M: Light to medium body with ample carbonation. Pleasant.

D: I think I could drink Cantillon forever (cue clip from The Sandlot): for....ev....er.

Notes: Outstanding gratitude has to go out to Matt for generously sharing this treasure. There's just nothing like a well-aged Cantillon to delight the taste buds. I'm so glad I got the chance to try this wonderful lambic - a far better example of the unblended style than the totally flat (albeit tasty) Bruocsella.

Cheers! (990 characters)

Photo of drabmuh
4.25/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer is Cuvee de Champions, in case anyone was wondering. Popped this open at a recent tasting to share, since its dry hopped I realized I shouldn't let it age, plus there have been a few recent beer reviews of aged Champions that were less than encouraging.

Beer is yellow with a slight haze and thin head of white small bubbles that doesn't leave any lacing on the glass. Carbonation is moderate to low.

Aroma is a little grassy with some mild hop presences and mild acetic notes. There is also some lactic in there and some nice strong funk. Smells like I expected, Cantillon gueuze plus hops. Nice.

Beer is medium to light in body. In the palate, the hops are lost among the carbonic and acetic notes with a strong lactic background and a slightly funky finish. There is no aftertaste, just another great palate cleansing sour beer. Not as complex as some of the other lambics but this beer is quite good overall. Nice drinkability.

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Transferred from my Cantillon Cuvée St-Gilloise review (that has now been deleted)

Best beer day ever. Amazing draft at Churchkey. Cantillon anything please.

Beer is straw yellow with moderate to high haze. Forms a big thick white head of medium bubbles, two fingers. Head falls away leaving some lacing on the glass. Carbonation is steady and moderate. Looks awesome. I think I got the first pint of this beer out of the keg.

Aroma is overall kind of mild. There are those classic Cantillon sour notes in there, citrusy, a little lemony, lactic and mild acetic. There is also a hoppy aroma in there, very interesting.

Beer is thin, as expected, and not as sour as I thought it would be. Interesting earthy bitterness to this beer, citrusy in a way, just like the aroma indicated. Finishes nicely with a slight dryness at the backend. Not bad, not bad at all. Overall sourness is lower than other Cantillons but this is a young unblended lambik, so what should we expect. A great beer none-the-less.

Serving type: on-tap (1,977 characters)

Photo of Phyl21ca
4/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a hazy golden color lambic with a medium foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of funk and barnyard with some dry hoppy notes. Taste is also a funky mix with medium barnyard notes with well balanced tart and acidic notes and a dry European hops finish. Body is quite full with average carbonation. Very well brewed with hoppy notes mixing quite well with the tartness and acidity. (411 characters)

Photo of BTPete
4.33/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Cuvee Des Champions 2008 bottle had at Novare Res. Poured to Cantillon stemware.

A: hazy golden, thin head that wistfully creates bubbles as swirled.

S: musty nose, smells of green grape, vinous in a way. Lemon rind and light hops.

T: tart and funky. A definite grape/lemon presence over a dry barnyard finish.

M: carbonation seems low in glass until swirl, livens right up as it goes across your tongue. I guess less carb due to unblended status?

D: pretty darn good, would drink a second if I could afford it! (517 characters)

Photo of hooliganlife
4.43/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

pour was dirty hazy light yellow with a massive fizzy head that made way in good time.

lots of lemon zest with a crisp hop scent. light malty biscuit notes.

light lemon really flows through out this. other light bitter citrus with some slight hop bitterness. a very strong barnyard funky biscuit combination.

very light and easy. nice moderate to strong carbonation. hint of dryness.

insanely drinkable. i could kill a 750ml bottle at ease, or a growler if i was allowed one. never boring, very flavorful for being lighter overall. (536 characters)

Photo of SFLpunk
4.25/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to freud for this one! I'm not convinced that this is the same beer as Cuvee des Champions. On RB the Commercial Description says it's hopped with Styrian Goldings, but the back label on this bottle says Hallertau...

375mL green glass corked & capped bottle. Cork dated 2010.

Pours a beautiful golden yellow with thin white head. Nose is full of apricot and freshly cut white oak, hay follows and lovely lovely funk.

Taste is nicely crisp and tart. Lemon zest, tangerine and lime oil. A little residual sweetness in the middle helps balance things out and makes for a really pleasant un-fruited gueuze blend. Nice faint hop bitterness.

Excellent beer. Like it better than Iris which I consider to be a fair comparison. (729 characters)

Photo of portia99
4.23/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Armsby Abbey, served in a Cantillon branded "wine glass".

A - pours a hazy and almost iridescent glowing pale orange with a thin finger of white foam that dies over a minute or two and leaves behind some loose lace spiderwebs.

S - full of bretty funk in the nose with some light lemony smells. Lots of horse blankets and barnyard going on with a trivial amount of malt underneath...pretty light in aroma overall.

T - taste matches the aroma pretty well. Light citrus with a brisk, but under control sourness. Lots of funk-brett pretty much dominates the flavor profile. An interesting change of pace is the very noticeable hop bitterness-basically of the old, cheesy variety but still have a sharp enough bitterness to go along with the bite from the brett...an interesting and welcome addition.

M - characteristically thin with a midlevel carbonation...a bit prickly and very lively.

D - surprisingly moderate for a Cantillon beer. Sourness is not extreme and remains at an easy to enjoy level. Nice hop bitterness is a bit unique in this genre of beer and is quite enjoyable...price is a bit steep at $12/glass so probably will be my only one...but it is well worth the price. (1,193 characters)

Photo of augustgarage
4.36/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2009 vintage courtesy of ShogoKawada (many thanks!) since I didn't buy one of the 6 bottles I saw in time when they were briefly in SoCal last year...I'm not the biggest football (read: soccer) fan, but Cantillion hasn't steered me wrong yet.

Poured from a capped-and-corked 750mL green-glass bottle into my Drie Fonteinen tumbler. The cork crumbled but I managed to keep it from falling into the beer...

Cloudy orange peel liquid with a half-finger of lingering beige suds. Delicate amoeba-like lacing slowly slides down a runway of tears.

Lightly oaky aroma suggest almonds and fresh wood. Hay and citrus contribute a delicate barnyard/acidity note.

Rustic pure earthy goaty goodness in the glass. Hints of tangerine peel, vanilla, clove, and mineral-rich waters add complexity. Tart with hints of kambucha, cave-aged blue cheese and fresh raw goat milk. Grassy and incredibly evocative finish takes you right to the cellar, the attic, the barn...a touch restrained but still quite superior...

Creamy, light-bodied, with decent carbonation.

Very smooth and drinkable without sacrificing purity - probably the best place to start with the style if you are unaccustomed to traditional lambic. (1,200 characters)

Photo of Huhzubendah
4/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On draft at Churchkey in D.C. Served side by side with Fou' Fonne. Review from notes.

So this is the same brew as Cuvée des Champions. Apparently, I enjoyed this beer in the bottle much more than on draft.

This beer appears a hazy orange, with a little head that fades rather quickly. The beer smells spicy, funky, and noticeably more subtly sour than I expected from a Cantillon. Of course, I did drink this side by side with Fou' Fonne, which was incredibly tart. I found this to be an enjoyable beer, but it lacked the depth and/or complexity that Cantillon beers usually have in spades. This was a plain, decent offering from a brewery that I hold in the highest esteem. (677 characters)

Photo of levifunk
4.3/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thank you Matt for graciously sharing this with us. Pours golden yellow with a ton of carbonation. head forms, but doesn't retain, just a lot of bubbles in there. Smell is a bit funky. Kind of smells like wet grass, but with some lemon notes. Taste was great. Sour/tart flavor. Main thing I identified was a grapefruit citrus flavor. Not sure if I'll ever be able to have this again, but I hope I am. (400 characters)

Photo of yourefragile
4.34/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2008 bottle at Tap and Table in Emmaus, PA.

Pours a hazed golden orange color with a large whitish head that settles into a persistent film with clumps of scattered lace. Aroma is a my favorite part of the beer, a complex and potent blend of funk, lemon zest, yeast, must, oak, and mild hoppiness. Flavor is a little bit of a letdown from the nose and just general expectations of Cantillon. Flavor is a clean, dry punch of zesty lemon, mild funk, apple and earthy dry hops. Body is medium thick with sparkling fine carbonation, nothing too remarkable. Very drinkable, and refreshing. Another excellent offering, but not the best Cantillon. (641 characters)

Photo of BARFLYB
4.15/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Glad to find this On-Tap at Teresa's Next Door, I've had this out the bottle before the name change.

Champions came in a flute serving looking muddled/pale yellow almost like straw. A nice amount of white fluff on top. Small legs for stickage, there was not much.

Smells a bit funky, with light wood, some small earthy hop scents in the middle giving off grass. A small amount of barnyard and the Cantillon scent, which is basically goodness.

A nice amount of sour with a heaping of barnyard hay and grass. Earthy scents, earthy hops. This is dry hopped and it does make a difference from other offerings from Cantillon. After the initial sour barnyard, slight hopping, a bit of earth and wood and funk.

It's lively, especially off the tap, very refreshing. A little bit of everything. Light bodied and dry finishing. Very easy to drink but at nine bucks A flute I cant drink a bunch, I wish i could of had more, and I will. (929 characters)

Photo of ccrida
4.62/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2008 bottling, the last bottle at the Bier Stien, sweet! Poured into my large St. Feuillien goblet (in honor of the Tour de France, as I'm not a football fan), Cuvée Des Champions is hazy dull gold with a pleasant amount of carbonation (note this is not a true lambic, or gueze, but a blend of 1 and 2 year old lambics, dry-hopped) that forms a white head that settles to a persistent skim, leaving very light, scattered lace.

Smell is fantastic, big pithy tropical citrus notes, lemon at first, but then some amazing orange creamsicle blossomed. A little wildflower, I'm not sure much is still there from the dry-hopping, but this brew is best drunk on the fresh side IMHO.

Taste is good, a nice lambic tartness but not overly sour, but very mineral laden, chalky, with a bitter finish.

Mouthfeel is acidic, dry, with a light body.

Drinkability is high, a very nice, refreshing beer, basically a gueze. Would love to try this fresh to enjoy the dry hopping more fully, but after only having the pleasure of enjoying this once before (thx Frank!!!!), I'm just happy to have gotten my hands on a bottle for myself. (1,122 characters)

Photo of oglmcdgl
4.45/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On tap at teresas next door. Served in a flute.

A- comes to me with no head. Hazy yellow orange in color.

S- musty funky wood and cheesey feet. Wet hay and grass.

T- tart and lactic up front with some sour apple and lemons. Lots of funky oak and cheese. Vegetative and grassy hints.

M- medium to light in body with a nice crisp effrevesant carb that tingles. Nice pucker.

D- this stuff is the cats pajamas a very refreshing offering from cantillon. (458 characters)

Photo of dennarb
4.58/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The South Philadelphia Taproom followed by a Phillies game at Citizens Park is bound to bring a smile. This fine lambic came to the table with a little head and a whole lot of attitude. Just a bit cloudy pale yellow with fine carbonation and an earthy bread-like aroma gave way to a lemony scent and a definitely bold lemon crisp first taste. The flavor is exciting with every sip - to me a really distinctive quality. There is a beautiful balance between the hops and the rest of the broad gamut of flavors in this complex aged lambic. The Cantillon St.. Gilloise is the definition of fresh despite its years in a cask. (620 characters)

Photo of biboergosum
4.1/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml capped and corked affair, the January 29, 2010 bottling. Apparently this is the same beer as the Cuvée des Champions, but ze label sez what ze label sez. So, a hoppy Cantillon, eh?

This beer pours a slightly foggy, medium burnt golden amber colour, with two fingers of puffy, tightly foamy, and somewhat soapy eggshell white head, which disappears slowly, leaving very little beyond a few instances of ocean swell lace around the glass.

It smells of wet, spicy bread, earthy, funky yeast, musty tropical fruit and more pedestrian citrus pith, and leafy, dry grassy, and floral hops - evoking images of a very rustic, simmering summer meadow. The taste is much more sour upfront - acidic citrus, green apple, aged lemon, and free agent vinegar, alongside some mild barnyard funk, a decent barley grain backbone struggling to keep its head above the tartness line, and a hefty, but well moderated dose of spicy grassy and herbal hops - that dry hopping sure did the trick.

The carbonation is fresh and sprightly in its understated frothiness, the body more or less medium weight, and quite crisp, which detracts a bit from any (snicker) smoothness that might have been. It finishes just a touch off-dry, the funk, base grainy malt, and fading floral hops riding us out into the sunset across the aforementioned meadow.

Definitely a tart one, but in a much more manageable way then a number of other offerings from this brewery. The two years spent in oak isn't overtly noticeable, but must contribute to a certain degree to the softer, smoother nature. Nice and drinkable, with the usual caveats, and now with a hoppiness quotient to boot! A sassy flavour contrast to some nice homemade cupcakes - thanks, babe! (1,721 characters)

Cantillon Cuvée Des Champions from Brasserie Cantillon
95 out of 100 based on 259 ratings.