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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 gcamparone
4.49/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2014 cork date. Poured from a 750mL bottle into a Cantillon taster glass. Acquired in a trade.

Pours a somewhat hazy golden straw body with a two finger slightly fizzy white head that reduces fairly quickly but leaves a layer of retention and no lacing.

Aromas are of typical Cantillon character - upon opening it a funky cheesiness, grassy, musty hay, peppery, tart aromas, citrus, white wine, and a slight hoppiness in the background.

One the tongue is an immediate dry tartness, and borderline sour citrus notes which fades to open up distinct oak / barrel notes, funky yeast, and is followed by pepper, grass, and a muted hoppy bite on the finish. The dry tartness sticks on the tongue for a minute or so. Mouthfeel is medium light, carbonation is medium.

Overall world class, which is not surprising at all coming from Cantillon. Really enjoyed this one, lots of flavor and balance.

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Photo of zhanson88
4.5/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a pale, extremely clear straw color, with 2.5" of eggshell white head. Retention is excellent, lacing is okay.

Smell: Smells of white grapes, green apples and pears, with horseblanket, grassiness, and brett funk following. Mostly tart, but maybe a touch sour. Lots of complexity and layers.

Taste: Ditto smell. Nice white grape and pear flavors initially. Funk, hay and tartness follow. Perhaps a bit more sourness on the palate than on the nose, but still not overly sour.

Appearance: Light bodied, high carbonation, very sprizty on the palate. Finish is drying and very refreshing. Overall, a very solid gueuze. Complex, not overly sour (not necessarily a good or a bad thing for me), and nice hop character.

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Photo of beerpirates
4.19/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 750 mL bottle ( st gilloise ) into a tulip glass.

A- Poured a dark maize color. Three fingers width of white head, reduced to a ring over time. Very murky.

S- Very nice blend of various aromas. Getting lots of oak and a familiar barnyard mustiness in the nose. Also noticeable is distinct sour lemon/citrus fruit aroma.

T- Upfront there is a definite note of lemon tartness with oak underneath. This tartness eventually fades towards the middle, giving way to a earthy, grass-like flavor. There is some oak, wood flavors in there as well. The beer finishes with slightly bitter hops.

M- One of the better mouthfeels on a lambic. Light body, yet carries a feeling of fullness due to the carbonation. Finishes rather dry.

D- This one goes down very easily, given that this beer was not overly tart. Could be a great session beer.

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

Certainly wish I'd picked up more than one bottle of this while it was available locally...

Pours a hazy glowing pale copper with a frothy white head that leaves little lacing and holds nicely around the edges.

The aroma is really what makes this beer for me (well, it's gorgeous in the glass, too)... layers of fruity funk, peaches and maybe a hint of grapefruit, grassy, herbal barnyard notes and a lemony sharpness.

It's actually just ever so slightly disappointing on the palate... there's a specific flaw... it's a little too bitter. Combined with the incredible dryness (expected), the hop additions are deepening the aroma pleasantly but they provide a bitter edge that when combined with the sourness lends a metallic tinge to the front half of the taste, and leaves it feeling a bit thin on the back end. This mellows a bit as it warms, and the beer really shines as an eminently sessionable, warm weather beer. Sourness is biting but it's not stomach assaulting and over-the-top (which, for the record, I love).

Perfectly carbonated, lightly spritzy without feeling fizzy. Just a knock of a hit as it is initially perceived as a tad thin (when nearer room temperature this fades).

Despite not completely falling in love with how this sits on the tongue, its beauty, its jaw-dropping aroma, and the simple drinkability of it make it an instant favorite that I'd like to buy in quantity for those times when the mood for a sour hits but I'm not looking for something over-the-top.

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

750ml bottle 5,0% Abv.
Served chilled in an over sized wine glass.
2010 Vintage.

Appearance: Cuvee St. Gilloise pours a moderately hazed golden-orange colour, while a rough pour yields a large white head. The head lasts fairly well, but leaves very little lace.

Smell: The nose is not quite as powerful as I expected, but it still smells quite interesting. Standard geuze notes of tart fruits (citrus, green apple and white grapes), earthy dust, old sacks, musty basement, dry hay, a little vinegar and a touch of cheese are well noted, alongside interesting additions of sweet grass, fresh foliage and a hint of a floral character (could this be the hops?).

Taste: As with the nose, the flavour is not as strong as I would like, but I guess the bar is set pretty high when it comes to Cantillon. Notes include: Tart citrus (lemon and orange), tart white grapes, a hint of apricot, white wine vinegar, old wood, musty notes, old hay, dust and a little sweet grass. The finish is quite dry and displays just a touch of bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Light-medium bodied, with a very high level of soft carbonation.

Overall: Cuvee St. Gilloise is a solid sour, but it seems to lack the power and complexity of other beers from Cantillon.

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

On tap at Cantillon. Poured into a small tulip.  White head, medium retention atop a light gold body. Aroma of peach, green apple and some balsamic. Taste of citric like green apple, tart apricot and grapefruit. Quite mouth/tongue puckering and tasty. 

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Photo of jpro
4.13/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Bottle picked up at Ølbutikken in Copenhagen (Cuvee Saint-Gilloise label)... Poured into a Cantillon glass.

A: hazy orange; thin, white, spritzy head; no lace.

S: earthy; citrus peel; some vinegar notes and funk.

T: follows the aroma; as it warms it gets even tastier; peach.

M: light feel; high carbonation; refreshing.

O: very good; quite drinkable, too.

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Photo of BierJager89
4.52/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Cracked this open to celebrate the overturning of Prop 8, to the tune of We Are the Champions with some friends.

A: Yellow/orange with a white ring of head.

S: Nose has a lot of Belgian funk, tropical fruit and lemon, maybe a touch of orange.

T: Lemon, funk, orange, tropical fruit and raspberry.

M: Medium bodied and smooth.

O: One of the better sours I've had. I payed something like $45 for a 2011 in 2013.

Note: 2011 vintage, consumed in mid 2013.

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

This one came out of my cellar for the Philly Epic Tasting of The Ages. Enjoyed with randawakes, treyrab, CoolJosh, Dyan, and Melissa and Ashley. I had been looking forward to the tasting for a chance to finally enjoy this beer with good friends. Bottled in 2008, still with the old label displayed.

The pour produces a typical geuze-like color of translucent golden straw. Some of the yeast definitely got off the bottom and into the pour. A thin layer of head remains after the coarse 1-finger head produced by the pour subsides.

The aroma is very interesting. Definite evidence of dry-hopping with noble hops, especially Hallertauer, adds a nice twist to a classic style. The wild yeasty and bacterial funk so characteristic to Cantillon sours lingers in the background, as if it is hesitant to show itself. But show itself it does once you take a sip. The funkiness of that spontaneous fermentation really come through here. The pilsener malts and the dry noble hops contribute a dry earthiness to the flavor. The finish is pretty acidic and leaves me looking for a water glass. The flavor left on the tongue is that of citric acid and lemon zest.

The beer displays tangy citric acidity, light body, and sticky texture. This lambic is extremely well-balanced, and the hops just serve to enhance the dryness and the flavors already in the beer. I will certainly seek this out again.

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Photo of beachbum1975
3.95/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Many thanks go out to FTownthrowdown for sharing - thanks, man! I'm a fan of any Cantillon brew, so let's see how this goes...

Pours a thin, dull yellow with brownish highlights. An average 1/6th inch head rest above with the occasional spotty lacing spots. No active carbonation can be seen after the pour.

Smells like funked out socks and stilton cheese. Richly pungent and nasty. Wow...

Mouth carbonation is surprisingly high... The flavor is similar to the nose... I get skunk, bitter cheese and a fresh, green hops feel in the end.

Very interesting, unique and enjoyable.

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Photo of philipquarles
4.57/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle from 2009. Pours cloudy orange-gold with a surprisingly large head. Smells of wonderful lactic tartness and lots of Brett character. Very musty and oaky. Some citrus and other fruit, as well as a bit of grassiness. Sharply sour taste with strongy earthy, musty notes from the Brett. Very fruity--almost vinous. A bit of mineral character. Incredible dry. Light-ish body with low carbonation. This is a hell of a beer.

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Photo of Neffbeer
4.64/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Cantillon cuvee de champions:
On tap at Rattle n hum
Served on a white wine glass

A: It pours a straw-like golden colors with a milky clarity.  There was a strong one finger white head that the bartender dumped to give me a full pour.  There is little to no lacing. 

S: The nose is quite floral with large elements of apples, white grapes, and peaches.  There is a lovely sour funk billowing from the glass like a barnyard gone awry.  It is incredibly well rounded and appetizing. 

T: I am greeted by the dry hops on the first sip. It is quite floral and herbal. White grapes and apple peel are not lost amidst the other flavors  The oak barrels also come through wrapped in a lovely sour bouquet. The sour notes predominate with the funky leather notes hanging in the background. The more it warms the more layers reveal themselves.

M: Moderate body with champagne-like carbonation. 

O: I feel like a lucky man today.  I would rank this as an exceptional gueuze. The hops really pushed it up a notch.

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Photo of mikey711
4.52/5  rDev +5.1%
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

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Photo of jakewatt135
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%

My first Cantillon. Bottled 2012.

Pours with a nice thick head and retains this throughout glass. Nice funk up front with a delicious tart slightly sour finish. Very enjoyable, glad I was able to pick this up at the beer mongers cellar sale.

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Photo of taylor714914
4.37/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Wow, a HUGE thanks to merc7186 for breaking this bad boy out.

a 2012 cork date on this bottle.

Pours a cloudy yellow with a finger of off white head.

Smells of old damp basement, stinky cheese, and a bit of sweat.

Taste is interesting, a tartness quickly washes over the tongue, followed by a peach and apricot flesh taste. Following this, a quite hit of tartness, and the it fades to almost nothingness. After a few seconds, a cold root cellar flavor emerges, almost like moist underground dirt.

As the beer warms up, the flavor profile opens up, allowing for more fruit, along with the tartness to expand a bit and a subtle hop sharpness as you swallow, which then once again fades to cold dirt basement floor. The mouthfeel also opens up, become soft and smooth.

Overall, a super enjoyable beer, one I would absolutely drink again.

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Photo of megahurts4
4.37/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Cantillon Cuvée Des Champions

Appearance: golden amber, large head, and good lacing.

Smell: acidic sourness, earthy, and a nice oak aroma.

Taste: sourness, oak, and yeast.

Mouthfeel: medium and smooth.

This is a very nice lambic. It has a great deal of flavor and a nice sourness. There is a lot of carbonation.

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Photo of MarcWP
4.71/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Fresh 2014 bottle into Cantillon balloon.

Pours hazy, juicy light orange color, with a one finger active white head that settles to a ring around the edge of the glass with a little left over bubble mass in the center. Looks inviting.

Aroma is deep older lambic funk with wet horse hair, dusty basement, pungent tangy flowers, grapefruit pulp, subtle Bordeaux grape, and earthy/woodsy hops. Damn this is smelling good. Similar yet different than Iris. I prefer the stronger funk of this.

Taste is just the shiznit. Mellow, refined lambic unlike the maltier Iris. Nice bright citrus and grape flavors come out as the result of the smooth 2 year old lambic underneath. The funk is there but balanced. I'm getting peach notes, limeade, and sweet apple along with a lot of those nuances from the nose.

This sports a light body, creamy lower end carbonation, and dry, tart finish with a pleasing acetic bite coming through the lacticness.

This fresh Gilloise may be drinking better than the 3 year old Lou Pepe I had last week. And that Lou Pepe was amazing. And I certainly enjoy the 2 year old base lambic better than the all pale malt Iris base. The hops seem to shine through more on this as well without the sharper hop bite of Iris. Yes, yes, yes..

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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 Goldorak
3.97/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: A darker shade of cider, no head worthy of mention.

Smell: That's odd, it has a sweeter aroma that I wasn't expecting, especially from an unblended lambic. A berry character that reminded me of Oudbeitje Lambic.

Taste: You can see he added both fresh hops and candi sugar to help out with carbonation. And I thought Jean Pierre didn't like sweetness in his Beers...The sweet and sour combo is quite nice, but this isn't my favorite.

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Photo of aleigator
5/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Cuvee des champions '14 vintage

Yields a cloudy, vibrant orange color, with a huge, froth head.

Offers a huge amount of grassy, american hops, giving the beer a unique note, which provides more depth, due to herbal, matured hops. There is a layer of subtle tartness underneath the hops, quite funky, together with leather, yogurt and a whiff of glue. The nose comes perfectly together, between sourness, grass, bitterness and even a fruity indication, leading to a fantastic aroma.

Has an incredible soft mouthfeel to it, with a fitting carbonation.

Tastes of leavy, grassy hops with a decent amount of citrus peel, bread and an enjoyable tartness. Blends perfectly into the slightly metallic, lively carbonation, unfolding matured hops among grass and acrid herbs. Finishes with a lively dryness and old hops, while a lot of the grass is still there, evoking an almost fruity impression as the malts tend to get a little sweeter.

As there is a belgian IPA, this in my opinion comes closest to an IPAed lambic . Dont get me wrong, this is unmistakely a lambic, but the hop integration is pretty much character defining. The beer has a highly unusual taste for a lambic, coming incredible well together, with hops doing a huge part of the work, among your typical cantillon lambic foundation. Very rich in flavor, the beer emphasizes a lot subtle flavors, cutting through the matured hops. Reveals a perfect interplay between sour and bitter.

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Photo of rhinos00
4.35/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750 mL bottle into a tulip glass. Bottle was dated May 19, 2009.

A- Poured a dark maize color. Three fingers width of white head, reduced to a ring over time. Very murky.

S- Very nice blend of various aromas. Getting lots of oak and a familiar barnyard mustiness in the nose. Also noticeable is distinct sour lemon/citrus fruit aroma.

T- Upfront there is a definite note of lemon tartness with oak underneath. This tartness eventually fades towards the middle, giving way to a earthy, grass-like flavor. There is some oak, wood flavors in there as well. The beer finishes with slightly bitter hops.

M- One of the better mouthfeels on a lambic. Light body, yet carries a feeling of fullness due to the carbonation. Finishes rather dry.

D- This one goes down very easily, given that this beer was not overly tart. Could be a great session beer.

Overall, definitely one of the more unique lambics I have had to date. The dry hops were definitely something I have never experienced in a beer of this style. That being said, I'm a huge sour head and this one lacked a lot of tartness that other Cantillons have. If you don't like your lambics really sour, drink this one now and just enjoy the unique hops flavors. If you like your them very sour, try aging this one.

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Photo of auroracrisis
4.15/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Continuously poured from a 750 into two Russian River tulips, then dumped the yeast into a taster glass. This is the 2010 Cuvee St. Gilloise labeled one.

Pours a murky golden yellow color with a quickly dissipating head. The color really pops in the light and once the beverage has been drank down, it begins to have some clarity. No lacing, no legging.

The smell begins with tart lemons and loose, dank hay with a lactic quality to it. As the beverage warms, the acidity really comes out and once the beer is at room temperature you can really feel a tingle in your nose from it.

Taste opens up the palate with a citric-like acidity, profiling lemon and lime like flavors that quickly flow into a cheesy bit of funk and hay flavors. Not overly funky at all, much more subtle than a gueuze by other blenders but enough funk for the seasoned lambic drinker to pick up on. After flavors of an unsweetened lemon candy. Almost like a made from scratch lemon bar, with emphasis on the lemons. Refreshing, to say the least.

Mouthfeel is outstanding. Medium body with moderate carbonation, some drying as well once the brew is swallowed.

Overall, a great gueuze from Cantillon. This one is dry hopped, but I did not pick up any of the dry hopping which is most likely due to the age of the beer, being bottled 10/4/2010. I'd definitely recommend this to anyone looking for an acidic gueuze that retains its drinkability. Not perfect, but definitely a solid example of the style.

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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 Soonami
4.38/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I recently had a 2010 bottle of Cuvee des Champions with friends on thursday night--thanks Jeff for sharing this with us. This is a beer I've looking forward to try but it was difficult to find enough beer geeks to share it with. 7 people splitting a 750 ml bottle meant that each person got a 4 oz pour, which unfortunately is not as much as i want to drink but enough to get a good feel for the beer. This beer combines two of my favorite brewing techniques wild yeast fermentation and dry hopping.

The Lambic was golden orange in color with a good bit of haze and sediment. Not sure if it was hop bits flocced yeast or pieces of barrel, but the color was gorgeous and capped with a solid white cap of foam. The head really helped carry the aroma which was was definitely wild, musty straw, squeezed lemons, and a sawed pine wood aroma that is likely coming from the hops.

The beer tasted very smooth with great light carbonation and a du finish. The bugs are very expressive giving good lemony tartness and restrained classic Cantillon funk. The dryhops help to keep the beer grounded providing a woody and herbal character almost like oak aging would contribute.

Refreshing, spritzy, and delicious. I'm glad to have tried this and to share it with friends

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Photo of Sarlacc83
4.42/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

2011 cork date. Split two ways. Consumed on 1-11-13, reviewed from notes.

A: Clear copper with a foaming white head. Serene inside of the glass.

N: Delicious. Musty hops, lemon zest, and attic spaces. Oak holds down the fort with some black peppercorns and graininess. Hints of grapefruit and pineapple.

T: Lemons, straw filled barn stalls, pineapple, horse blanket, oats, and wood. There’s a very balanced sourness here and some excellent funk. Tart without being grotesquely sour.

M: Perfect. Like drinking a pilsner it goes down so smoothly.

O: Accomplished beer and one of my favorites in the Cantillon pantheon. The hops and the lambic work for me.

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