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Cantillon Cuvée Des Champions - Brasserie Cantillon

Not Rated.
Cantillon Cuvée Des ChampionsCantillon Cuvée Des Champions

Educational use only; do not reuse.

264 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 264
Hads: 1,154
Avg: 4.3
pDev: 16.98%
Wants: 552
Gots: 255 | FT: 28
Brewed by:
Brasserie Cantillon visit their website

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
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 264 | Hads: 1,154
Photo of wisrarebeer
4.62/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled in 2008.
A: straw colored with a slight haze
S: musty, earthy, acidic
T: phenomenal!, one of the great beers of the world, tart but so much so that it takes the enamel off of your teeth, earthy
M: great, lively
D: truly a summer beer, temps right now in low 80s and perfect for quaffing, just wish the price wasn't so high

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Photo of Nickls
4.12/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(From notes)

A - Light marigold color; poured with a thinner white head

S - Hops jump out at first; bit of hay; tart; bit funky as well. Quite wonderful

T - Nice stuff; not as hoppy as suggested in the nose; tart; citric; not that puckering or funky, though

M - Thinner to medium body; a bit chalky and dry; subtler carbonation

D - Pretty darn good drinking as I enjoyed the dryness and lower abv

Overall, definitely worth a look!

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Photo of akorsak
4/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 750 mL corked and capped bottle with '2008' stamped on the cork.

A: The ale is an apple juice yellow, hazed up by both temperature and sediment from the bottle. The current mugginess is making the glass very sweaty with condensation. A small white head arose on pour only to quickly dissapate.

S: The aroma is sharp, tart with citric lemon and grass flavors. A mild hoppiness and cereal grain profile stands out on the back end.

T: The first impression is citrusy tartness, sour but fleeting. On second and third sips, the sourness lasts much longer, well into the last quarter of the sip. Lemon and green apples are dominant behind the tartness. The cereal malts and a stronger than normal hop flavor linger near the end. Sweet fruits fill the void near the end, but the lasting memory is more citric tartness. A nice beer for a warm day.

M: The lemony mouthfeel is tart but not astringent. A grassy mint and lemon aftertaste doesn't overpower.

D: At 5% or so, this is a very easy sipper, which explains why this first glass took all of 20 minutes to get through.

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Photo of Suds
3.98/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I picked this brew up from a small beer store on one of my last days in Europe. It pours a clear golden color with lots of effervescense. The beer sports a very nice white head...thicker than expected, and long-lasting. The smell is not as intense as it could be, but there's a very pleasant grain and horse-blanket smell. Modest funk, with a little wood scent. The flavor is very well balanced. Not as sour as most Cantillon's, this one is incredibly drinkable. The flavor is still strong, despite the medium-sourness. Medium to medium-light in body. Very nice beer!

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Photo of hopdog
4.72/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Shared bottle courtesy of egajdzis (and I've had this one multiple times to boot!).

Poured a medium and cloudy orange color with a smaller sized white head. Aromas of horseblanket, leather and musty. Tastes of green apples and light lemons. Nice lighter sour and tart finish. Very good.

Notes from: 4/24/05

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Photo of LilBeerDoctor
3.26/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Reviewed on 6/11/08. On tap at Spuyten Duyvil Brett Fest. Pours orange with no real head. Aroma is not very strong, mostly of sour funk. Flavor of lemon, slight sourness, and slight hop bitterness. The hops add an interesting dimension to this lambic, but I'm not sure they blended well with it. The palate also seemed weak and unlike other Cantillons I've had. Tasted like an American sour ale/lambic-esque beer and didn't quite impress.
6/4/7/3/15 (3.5/5)

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Photo of illidurit
4.11/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Brewed in 2005, bottled in January 2008. Poured into a Duvel tulip. Gorgeous translucent gold with a touch of amber. One finger of dense, compact, snow-white head that fades into a partial cap and halo. Thin but solid sheets of lacing. Aroma consists of lemon juice, crabapple, and grapefruit rind. Sour but not really funky. Flavor is similar. Citric acid, big sourness, vinous/chardonnay notes, and an earthy finish that must be from the dry hopping. This beer is medium on the palate with great carbonation. A little sticky but still a pretty good mouthfeel overall.

 569 characters

Photo of ArrogantB
4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

01/10/2006 vintage, almost three years in the bottle. Nice golden color, sports a white head but quickly becomes semi-still, smells like a hint of cobweb, tastes wheaty and sour lambic, citrus, especially sour lemons. Funky a bit but very drinkable, some cheese, I like it.

2010 vintage tastes in April of 2011

This is the freshest sample I've had yet and it is a completely different beer. The dry hopping is powerful and reminds me a bit of Le Terroir. Very nice and I won't bother to cellar this in the future. Wish it was easier to get fresh.

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Photo of GClarkage
3.18/5  rDev -26%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

10/14/08- Purchased at Whole Foods in Redwood City, CA. Paid $19.99.

Presentation- 750ml bottle, capped and corked. Cork says bottled in 2008. Poured into my miniature Cantillon wine-like glass. Think it's a 6oz glass as it took me 4 full pours to empty the bottle.

Appearance- Unfiltered peach or brighter pear juice in color. About a 1/2 inch head upon pour which disappears in a blink of an eye. Leaves ultra light spotty lace, which is all common for such a style.

Smell- Light farmy aspects, mostly a mid range sourness and a whaft of tart citrus fruits. A fair amount of oak as well.

Taste- Well, my bottle must have been from a different batch or something...not even up to the standards of those previous reviewers. From the first sip it was very watery. It became a tad less as I consumed the rest of the bottle, but for the most part, it was quite watery. It was sour, but not even to the standards to an unblended lambic. More tart than sour with some pera, lemon and maybe a touch of melon. Oak flavor is nice, which saved the overall flavor.

Mouthfeel- Thin, watery, but a nice carbonation level. Considerably dry.

Drinkability- I have to admit, it was refreshing and easy to drink, but the watery part made it a bit borning and dull to drink. I've had much much better from Cantillon. Maybe just a bad bottle. But, I don't think I am willing to shell out another $20 to find out.

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Photo of stumac
4.51/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I was already a little bit drunk at this bar when some crazy cowboy walked up to me and said with a thick southern accent, "You drink from the fountain of youth?" "From time to time," I replied. He looked at me and grinned and muttered, "Boy, you have a lot to learn," as he filled my empty glass with this golden elixer....

pours a light gold color with a big white head. the nose is sour with aromas of wood in there. the taste is very earthy, oaky, mellow sourness, some lemons. medium body, dry dry beer.

I've never been the same since...

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Photo of Georgiabeer
4/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Had this on tap at Novare Res earlier in the summer, and I've seen bottles around recently as well. Poured a hazy golden with a light head and lacing, which is fine for the style. Smells sour and funky with a noticeable band-aid aroma. The taste is similar. The band-aids are just restrained enough to make this enjoyable. Any more flavor from that department would just make this too challenging. Sour, but more horse-blanket funk than sourness, but some lemon does start everything off. The mouthfeel is smooth and very tannic. The extreme funkiness, band-aid flavor, and sharp tannins make this a bit challenging. You really better like gueuze to enjoy this brew. I do, but even so, this was pushing the edge of the envelope between great and undrinkable.

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Photo of shbobdb
4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottled in 2008. I don't know why this beer is "retired" since it commemorates something that happened in 2003-2004, has 2 year old lambic in it according to the bottle, and was bottled in 2008 . . .

But I'm not one to question the ways of the beer gods. I'm just here to enjoy a fantastic beer from one of the world's greatest breweries.

My overall impression of the bottle I got is that the beer is a little young. There was plenty of sourness (I got a pinch of acid-reflux from the beer, which I do not normally experience even with their Grand Cru) as well as a hefty dose of bretty barnyard funk that married quite well with the earthy hops . . . but there seems to be something off about the beer. Perhaps I am just not sure about dry hopped lambics, since aging the lambic would clearly destroy the delicate hop. But at the same time, the flavors of the beer don't quite feel like they have blended into each other.

I mean, all the classic lambic flavors are there, don't get me wrong. But they hit me one-by-one on their own. Bam! Barnyard! Bam! Sour! The sort of interplay that I've come to expect from Cantillon seems to be missing.

But that doesn't mean it isn't an incredible beer. I am absolutely loving this bottle, my birthday beer. But if I had a few bottles, I would sit on them. That is all.

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Photo of largadeer
4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Clear (for the first glass at least) and straw colored with a fast-fading one finger head that leaves a few wisps of lace.

Smell: Strong funk and earthy/herbal hops - unusually hoppy for a Cantillon beer, in fact. Refreshingly different and enjoyable.

Taste & mouthfeel: Pretty mild sourness for Cantillon. Fruity notes of green apple and lemon peel are met with an interesting herbal hop flavor. Carbonation is fairly low here, but it's ample enough to make it dance a bit on the tongue. Really a remarkably subtle and balanced beer.

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Photo of Floydster
3.73/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This brew is what my buddy recently brought back for me from Brussels, 750 ml bottle that was around twenty dollars supposedly, poured into my Duvel tulip glass

A-Hazy but bright golden color, thin 1/2 inch white bubbly head, disappeared quickly, not much retention but did leave some rings of lace

S-Sourness, lemon juice, citric acid, some horse blanket, almost some vinegar, cherries, and funkiness

T-Sour and dry right from the beginning, some herbal and floral accents mix with the lemon juice in the middle, finish is acidic with a strong citrus tart, mellowed out after the first sips and the sourness turned to a more sweet fruit flavor, got some funk in the aftertaste that was leaning towards the barnyard aroma I noticed later on, the dry flavor of this beer was super strong and I could not seem to get over it even by the end, needed more sweet accents in my opinion, I love sour beers but this took it to another level

M-Medium body, tart, dry, and chalky mouthfeel, tons of carbonation, taste lingered a long time mainly because of the dryness

D-Tasted better as it warmed and the tart settled down a little bit, low ABV allows for fairly easy drinking, sourness can be a little much though, did not finish the whole bottle

I did not know anything about this brew but I am glad I got to try it, also saw in on tap the day before down at Churchill's in San Marcos left over from CBC week, probably will not get to drink this again because I have never seen it in bottle form in the US, recommended

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Photo of soupyman10
4.32/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Opaque golden color with a finger of basically white head. Looks good. A bit of lacing that shows up as you drink.

Nose is crazy sour, with a nice spicy malt sweetness that comes over the top. All kinds of swirling fruit flavors. Incredibly strong - sort of a sour wheat, coriander nose.

Straight up sourness in the taste. Starts to break down; increasing, rough, roasted sour apples. Very biting sourness on the back. Strong biting hop backbone that shows. Light caramel, watermelons, and some strong citrus. Distinct oakiness.

Body is medium, with carbonation the works right into the sourness.

A fairly amazing beer. Almost a wine, in terms of the oakiness and vinous sourness. A real treat.

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Photo of Wildman
4.42/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From notes:

This beer poured a cloudy amber color and formed a bubbly white head that left circular lace as it subsided. An aroma of sour lambic with some nice fruit aromas with a small hint of barnyard aspects.
A flavor of lambic sourness that I still am getting used to, but very good for this style. The body is medium with a sour finish that is also astringent. A very good beer.

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Photo of SacoDeToro
4.35/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Vintage 2003

Opened a well settled bottle and got a bright and clear yellow pour with a rocky white head. One initial thought related to the name: If this is an unblended lambic, then why is "cuvee" in the title?

The aroma was full of brettanomyces barnyard funk, lactic acid, some acetic note, and mild cheesiness.

The flavor was pretty tart and acidic. The beer had a clean biscuity and wheaty malt backbone (very subtle, but nice). There was a nice grapefruit pith bitterness in the finish.

The carbonation was spritzy the mouthfeel was light and crisp.

Very refreshing and highly drinkable. It's nice to have unblended lambics to be reminded of what these beers can taste like in their "naked" state.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sampled 7-19-2007. I believe this is my first unblended lambic. Pours a brown hued orange. Nose is slightly like a certain flavor of Ricola throat drops. I can't remember exactly what kind, but I think it was lemon and herbs or something like that. Antiseptic tone to it. Fair amount of wood is on there too. Flavor is sour indeed. Definite wood character to it. Just a pure mix of tart and wood. This is what a lambic is. Feel is as expected on the liquid and ripe with carbonation. Overall very drinkable. If you haven't had a real lambic and don't appreciate that sour funk, you won't dig this one. This is a purists dream. Very much worth taking the bus to Philly for a day to get a hold of.

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Photo of Fugazme
4.39/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

from notes...

top of cork was wet and musty... not much sound from the open.

Hazy gold with a fizzy cap... smallish head dissipated very fast.

Aroma is full of fruit... apricot, peach... very musty and funky. Sour spice. Quite good.

Good bitter sour throughout leading to a subtle sweet finish. Granny apple notes and touches of apricot and pear. A bit dry and salty.

Great beer...

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Photo of brewcrew76
4.47/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Label reads: Bottled 10 Jan 06

A - Slightly hazy golden with a thin white head that falls quickly to a ring of lace.

S - Sour and acidic with lemon in the background. Every few sniffs would produce a dirty barnyard/horse blanket aroma.

T - Sour and sharply acidic. A bit of sweetness after the sourness takes away some of the acidic sting. Herbal and floral with some lemon thrown in.

M - Medium mouthfeel with a sharpness from the acidity and a dry finish.

D - This one got better with each sip.

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Photo of emerge077
4.18/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Label reads: Bottled 10 Jan 06

Pours a hazy deep golden tone, with a good half-inch of dense foam. Coloration is fairly saturated and bright. Aroma is of wet grass and sharp citrus, orange at first, becoming sharper lemon once it sits for a bit. Melon is also apparent.

Carbonation races, it's fairly spritzy and prickly in the mouth at first. Cidery with subdued acidity, with a dry residual aftertaste that hints at hops. Character is mellow only in it's lower acidic sharpness than other Cantillon Lambics. Not as funky or "farmhouse" either, it's bright and straightforwardly citrusy.

Paired best with a Morbier cheese and pears. Shared this with some euro soccer fans, but it would be a treat to have a bottle to myself...

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Photo of Gavage
4.1/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had at Max's Belgian Fest.

Appearance: hazy orange yellow color with a short one finger head that falls immediately. No lacing develops.

Smell: muskiness is up front and dominates the nose.

Taste: strong initial sourness that mellowed after the tastebuds got accustomed to the flavors. Sour and tart grapes, tart green apples, fruity sweetness, and some mild bitterness wrapped in a musky barnyard blanket. Extremely dry beer.

Mouthfeel: smooth and very dry throughout. Long sour aftertaste. Medium bodied.

Drinkability: decent despite the strong sour flavors. This beer grew on me during the session, and the taste score rose as it warmed. Very interesting on tap.

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Photo of mrasskicktastic
3.55/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pale hazy yellow, small head, no lacing.

S - Very faint - lemon and grapefruit with tart white grapes. Way too faint.

T - Sour, slightly funky. Strongly tart lemon citrus with a touch of grapefruit. A touch of barnyard funk with a faint earthy yeasty fruitiness. Alright.

M - Slightly smooth, thin a little refreshing, carbonation is noticeable.

D - It is mild and not to sour. PLeasant overall. I wouldn't mind having this one again. Not fantastic, but definitely worth trying.

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Photo of
3.95/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Max's 72 Hours of Belgium

Warning - my first review of this style of beer!!!

Poured a hazy, pale yellow with some brown in it, color. Small, off white head.

Aroma mainly citrus and apple. Bit of Belgian funk.

Taste was fairly tart, but not astringent. Mainly citrus in character. Bit of sweetness (honey, sugar?) in middle. Floral/herbal taste at finish.

Light in body. Medium + carbonation. Drying.

Overall, nice introduction to style. Very drinkable, in my opinion. Seems an easy transition for a hop-head.

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Photo of kmpitz2
4.47/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From notes. 750 ml bottle, 12 oz sample. Poured a very clear, lightly coppered orange color with a sparse whisp of head over top. After the pour, this one was pretty still, with no bubbles working out of solution. There was no mistaking what this beer was going to be about when smelling it. Tons of sourness hit hard, with a big acidic sharpness. There was mild donkey urined soaked hay acridness, and I'm not sure if this should follow the last statement, but I thought it was very enticing. Flavor really assulted me with sourness on the first sip, that moved to a more vinegar-like sharpness and acidity. There was an odd sharp sweetness in there as well that I could not correlate to anything I was familiar with. Mouthfeel was moderate with a very light carbonation. It left a good bit of stickey spit in my mouth and was moderately dry on the finish. Overall, this was another winner from Cantillon. Very good taste, with a lot of intense flavors like sour and acidity. Not a lot of complexity there, but it really worked for my taste. Good brew.

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Cantillon Cuvée Des Champions from Brasserie Cantillon
95 out of 100 based on 264 ratings.