Cantillon Bruocsella (1900) Grand Cru - Brasserie Cantillon
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Ratings: 624 | Reviews: 290 | Display Reviews Only:
United Kingdom (England)
4/5 rDev +2%
This is my second time to try this much-talked-about lambic, 5 years after my first encounter with this beer in Cantillon Brewery, May 2004; I didn't know much about lambic then but now with a little more experience, I guess a detailed review is in order! The label is different from the one printed on this page, so is the name "Grand Cru Bruocsella - Lambic Bio 2005". Bottled on 05/09/2007, BB 12/2020; served cool in Tripel Karmeliet's long-stemmed tulip glass.
NOTE: The front label bears "Lambic Bio 2005" that, I guess, corresponds to the back label's description that the beer base is aged in oak casks for 3 years(!) before bottling (hence bottled in 2007?); made with 65% malted barley and 35% wheat.
A: pours a dark tawny hue with very little sign of carbonation and certainly no beer head - elegant, truly like a "cereal-based wine" as described on the label!
S: upon the opening of the bottle, the cork comes with an utterly complex aroma, perhaps the best I've come across for this type of beer, that I spent one good minute sniffing it while letting imagination go wild. The beer aroma is interestingly settled - the old oak barrels' notes have mixed with the beer base seamlessly, in a distance giving out only a mild honey-ish and sour white grape like aroma alongside the delicately musty, leather-ish, and also oaky theme. A good swirl reveals restrained salty-bitterness like very old, very dried peels of unidentifiable citrus fruits, on top of well-aged dry cider and salted/preserved startfruits, while the musty lactic-sourness is kept at a rather moderate level. Delicate and lingeringly aromatic, but not as complex as desirable, alas.
T: non-carbonation on the palate, with a quiet foretaste of lightly sour citrusness and salty cider gradually developing with a semi-spicy touch hand in hand with only very mild barnyard mustiness, while, in the form of aroma rather than taste, the wheat-ish aftertaste comes clean and zesty-bitter in the very end. As the beer warms up a bit, the bitter citrus peels and old damp woodiness tune up a level, and so do the rustic mouthfeel and sourness that come along. In the aftertaste, the almost full-bodied-red-wine like, chewy fat tannins(?) linger on the tongue, not unlike undertones of a lactose drink or other types of wheat beer (hefeweizen or Belgian witbier), I say.
M&D: the texture is very smooth or slick even, as no carbonation is felt against a moderate body, making this beer truly like wine or liquor in the glass. My very last encounter with any old Lambic was Girardin's at last year's GBBF (BSF bar), and the memory is quite hazy that I can't make any responsible comparison here. But this revisit shows this beer as a truly unique offering, if not a truly great one due to the quiet performance overall.
05-06-2009 19:23:34 | More by wl0307
4.6/5 rDev +17.3%
Pours golden brown with no hint of a head or carbonation. Nose has sour funk, oak, tropical fruits and tart wine grapes. Taste is quite tart up front w/ a funky oak presence as well as a ripe citrus fruits. Medium body with no carbonation and a dry finish. Well balanced, very authentic ale. Should pair well with fine cheese, berries and smoked fish.
04-30-2009 00:41:23 | More by rye726
4/5 rDev +2%
Picked up a bottle of the 2005 while in Ghent. Cork says it was bottled in 2007. Overall a tasty and relatively drinkable (though not sweet) gueze that oddly enough had almost no carbonation, but I guess that's how it's supposed to be. The lemon-lime juice taste really dominates this beer, though musty barnyard notes creep in behind the fruit and come on stronger in the aroma. Worth a try, but really I haven't met a Cantillon beer I haven't liked yet.
04-25-2009 19:22:31 | More by tempest
3.63/5 rDev -7.4%
A: Dead flat, yellow-gold liquid. This is really one of those beer that has nothing to do with these categories. It's just odd. I enjoy drinking it, but it just doesn't fit into normal comparisons with other beers. In many ways, it's close to a white wine, a subject of which I know next to nothing.
S: Grapes, some green apples, vinegar.
T: Similar to the smell. There's a solid funkiness from whatever bacteria live in the Cantillon brewery. This was my first Cantillon and so I was girded for some mouth-puckering sourness. Unfortunately for me, this version is of a relatively mild sourness for a tart Belgian. I mean, it has a strong vinegar note and citric tartness, but it didn't quite knock my socks off, like I was hoping for. It has certain qualities comparable to an unflavored kombucha.
M: Bizarre. Flat.
D: Drinkable out of interest in the different and odd but a bit disappointing really. I could see it becoming an acquired taste if I had easier access.
04-25-2009 05:42:49 | More by popery
3.93/5 rDev +0.3%
2005 Vintage. The beer is a completely still, gold colored liquid. It's mostly clear, with just a slight amount of haze. Zero head, and zero carbonation. The aroma is really interesting here. The first sensation is of oak...like a white wine aged in oak barrels. That scent is followed by more expected citrusy, lemony, horsey, musty, funky wildness. Wonderful aroma. The taste is dry and mouthpuckeringly sour. It's not as intense a sourness as I expected, and seems to have been softened by the aging? This makes the beer a lot more drinkable than other Cantillon's. Light, easy to sip, and interesting. Not quite as complex or intense as it could be, but this is instead a refined, subtle, sophisticated, and very approachable lambic.
03-15-2009 14:11:07 | More by Suds
4.03/5 rDev +2.8%
2006 vintage, draught.
Pours clear gold with a slight orange tint, no head.
Nose is musty, leather, earthy, barnyard, sour apple, with an underlying sharp citric note.
Taste is soft, musty barnyard sourness, sour apple and leather, hint of citric bite.
Mouthfeel is still, almost no carbonation, medium bodied.
03-15-2009 12:44:41 | More by JohnQVegas
4.22/5 rDev +7.7%
750ml bottle of one surprising lambic that cost me $20. Bottled 09/05/2007. No head, and almost no bubbles. Still, orange, smells musty yet juicy. It tastes like so many different things, juice, apples, sour, must, basement, no wonder gueuze is so good. This lambic did not disappoint.
03-15-2009 05:13:07 | More by ArrogantB
2.9/5 rDev -26%
This beer is quite interesting. When poured, it does not give any sort of head, there is absolutely no visible carbonation, belive me, I looked. The color is, however, a quite clear and atractive shade of gold. The smell, well, its like a punch in the nose, you can smell it from across the room, sour sour sour. A bit of Funk. The taste is rather underwhelming, quite one diminsional. Its just sour with a touch of oak tannins on the side of my tounge. Its even more sour than the smell gave away. The mouthfeel was like wine, completely flat. I would not want to drink a whole 12oz pour of this beer, in fact, I was a bit tired of it after about 6 oz.
03-10-2009 23:04:50 | More by Orangevango
3.33/5 rDev -15.1%
One of the weirder beers I've tried in a while... let's see how a *flat* unblended lambic does.
A. 100%, totally and in all other ways flat. It does not even try. Oh well. At least it's not doing anything half way.
S. Hmm... very intense lemon-polish here... a bit cheesy, white grape, acidic, not very deep. Sour and bracing. Hint of minerals. Doesn't smell bad, but I hope you like tart/sour lambics...
T. ... 'cause that's all that is here. Very tart and sour, lemons and dry, fully attenuated, flat beer is what you get. Think lemonade before you add the sugar. It really is that tart. Nary a hint of sweetness, hops, malt character or anything else here but oaky, sour and tart liquid. Woody and leathery. Hints of sulfur and salt. Hard to think of it as beer after a few sips ... sort of like juice. Sour juice.
M. Well, it's flat. Dry. Sour lemon-acidic finish. A bit tough to drink...
D. Low. This is is a sipper... 2 ounces is fine. A good after dinner drink or something to throw out to mix things up during a tasting. I just can't imagine drinking this more than once a year / vintage.
Broucsella is interesting, a unique not quite "finished" beer and quite fun if you like lambics - I don't know of anything else like it. But it's not really a "good" beer - it lacks the complexity of its Cantillon brethren and the drinkability of... well, most anything else. A good beer to have at least once; after that I'd spend your money on one of Cantillon's superior offerings.
03-10-2009 05:44:22 | More by kkipple
3.85/5 rDev -1.8%
This beer pours and orangy amber with no carbonation so no head or lacing. The smell is of sour... almost like lemonade. The taste is nice and complex, some nice malt flavors in there with some sour/bitter lemon flavors as well. nearly no carbonation and a mild dry aftertaste didn't help the mouthfeel for this beer. Actually an easily drinking beer for all the things going on, just not the flavor wow in my opinion for the price tag.
03-07-2009 23:20:52 | More by Biggness
4.15/5 rDev +5.9%
On tap into snifter at Deep Ellum...
Honey color, slightly cloudy with electric tight bubbly translucent single-finger head.
Beautiful, yeasty sour-dough bread along with brett, horse blankey/hoof and feel of ripe, cramy fermented peaches...only complaint is that scent diffuses a little too quickly.
You get the expected citric acid with a nice note of Brett funk...the peaches and a little vanilla (oak?) are there...it's surprisingly clean after that, though. Quite nice
It's high and tight but you can brush the dust off, get back in the box and enjoy this one...Smooth as hell...a little oak expands a long finish.
This deal is obviously solid and then some...drinks very nicely, is enjoyable as hell but as mentioned is a little tight for more than one or two. Still, awesome.
03-05-2009 21:16:26 | More by IBUnit63
3.18/5 rDev -18.9%
Picked this one up when I was down in Florida last week, along with a bunch of other nice Cantillon beers. Served chilled and poured into an oversized wine glass, this one was consumed on 02/19/2009.
The pour was decent enough with a clear, dark grape juice looking liquid with only the slightest bit of carbonation sticking to the inside of the glass. The aroma is sour, tart notes, hints of a woody or oak like touch with a vanilla touch to it. Small notes of cherry or some light fruit notes. As I take a taste the feel really throuws me off. It is almost like oily water, no carbontion and slick feeling, really distracting. The bite of tart apples is lightly offset with a touch of vanilla and oak in the finish, nothing too bad at all, but nothing blowing me away. Just a touch one to put down, the tartness was not strong enough and the subtle hints of oak, too light to make a difference. My least favorite Cantillon beer to date.
02-20-2009 02:29:00 | More by mikesgroove
3.53/5 rDev -9.9%
On Cask @ Monk's, 2/13/09, poured 13oz, it appears a golden wheat, cloudy, almost visibly saturated with bacteria. Did I mention this has absolutely no head on it. Resembles a cup of urine, sampled from a dehydrated & infected patient. I use this analogy in the best light possible.
Smell -- Grenadine & Vinegar
Tastes like sucking on a piece of birch. No wait, watered down Koolaid. Or more like the liquid whey at the top of a plain, sour Eastern European style yoghurt. wait wait wait.. more like a glass of lemon water that has been sitting for 12hrs full of toothpicks and one pickled cherry. Yes, tart... I s'pose dominated by a hint of woody cherry in the finish. the mouthfeel, with the absence of carbonation, is extremely light, almost indistinguishable from a particulated water.
D-- dit is extreem
02-14-2009 01:32:49 | More by Philabeerphia
4.4/5 rDev +12.2%
2005 bottle, according to the cork.
Pure copper color, great clarity, with a large bubbled, erratic head.
Very funky scent, immediately sour. Wild yeast owns this beer. Bretty and mousy, leading me to believe in the dryness the brew will provide.
The flavor opens with a touch of malt sweetness, almost immediately overtaken by funk, sourness and more sourness. Very light and super attenuated, with minimal carbonation. Bright, green apple sourness, with cheesy, mousy flavors. Unripened peaches. A bit grassy, very puckering. The sour finish dominates. Lasts long in the aftertaste. Dry as a desert. Intense stuff.
02-01-2009 04:52:00 | More by UnionMade
4.1/5 rDev +4.6%
Bottle cap & corked.
Poured hazy orange color with an minimal frothy white head that mostly diminished with virtually no lacing. Moderate sour yeasty raw wet wood aroma. Light to medium body with a dry texture. Medium sour citrus flavor with a medium sour finish of moderated duration.
This is a standout for style beer.
01-30-2009 00:25:12 | More by tmoneyba
3.93/5 rDev +0.3%
Pours a transparent straw gold with no head or co2 bubbles.
Signature cantillon funk, but somewhat muted compared to their other offerings.
Dry funk and tart apples. Fairly big and biting but again, not as sharp as other cantillons. Perhaps more fruit and less barnyard flavors.
Low carbonation even for a lambic. Actually no carbonation. Very light bodied.
I love the funk. Cantillon does make the best lambics I have had.
01-19-2009 01:47:07 | More by IPAcraig
2.83/5 rDev -27.8%
Somewhat disappointed in this, actually.
Pours a murky clear golden yellow with a bit of amber in it. No head. Almost zero carbonation in this beer. I'm searching for even a hint of bubbles. Looking through the reviews, this was clearly intended by the brewer, and not the fault of a bad bottle. I found it offputting in appearance and mouthfeel. Just a bit of carbonation can really zest up a strongly flavored beer, and the lack of it really lessens the experience. We're not talking about minimal bubbling here: there was none. Period. I want a sour beer, not sour juice.
Smells like funk, vinegar, and unripe fruits. Taste was pretty good, though not as robust as other Cantillons/sours I've had. More sour than funky, with a real harsh vinegar/lemon acidic bite that I liked. I have to again come back to the mouthfeel -- it's a real problem with this beer.
Would not revisit, though it was nice to try something new.
12-31-2008 19:38:04 | More by Overlord
4.08/5 rDev +4.1%
2001 vintage shared via fisherman 34. Pours a cloudy light orange juice colour, minimal head. Nose- citrus tart, old socks, dusty leather. Taste- not as sour as expected, but brings the funk in a big way. Very dry with a strong cheesiness and barnyard character. Light in mouthfeel, minimal carbonation. A very easy lambic to quaff. First unblended lambic I've tried. Very nice
12-30-2008 02:53:21 | More by oakbluff
3.48/5 rDev -11.2%
750 ml. bottle corked and capped.Mirky golden,amber hues very thin speckled coating of a head.Very fine dark particles of yeast suspended.
Very sour fruity/acidic aromas,apples/pears slight citrus/lemony and funky yeast with bubble gum and very slight vinegar notes
Very thin,light mouthfeel,acidic,very tart fruitiness,green unripen apples,lemon rind,very earthy with wooden cask notes,very dry husky finish, vinious qualities start to finish with a slight touch of peppery vinegar aftertastes.
12-24-2008 03:08:56 | More by jcdiflorio
3.2/5 rDev -18.4%
Reviewed on 6/11/08. On cask at Spuyten Duyvil Brett Fest, organic version. Pours a light orange with no head. Aroma is fruity, but I can't tell which fruit. Flavor of sour funk, oak/wood, cheese. No carbonation. This beer had too much funk/sweat and I was not a fan. Seems that it's better in bottle.
12-20-2008 15:13:30 | More by LilBeerDoctor
4.38/5 rDev +11.7%
Part of NEPA BC split #19.
Pours a burnt orange sort of copper color, similar to a cider, with barely any head. Looks completely flat - virtually no carbonation. There is some yeast floating around as well.
Aroma overall is very subtle, owing I would guess to the very low carbonation and lack of head which doesn't fully allow the aroma to develop. Still, it's quite sour with acidic, tart fruity undertones. It also has a nice earthy/woodsy quality.
Taste begins with some tart apple and even a bit of citrus flavor. There is a peak of acidity after which it is only slightly acidic and funky, both of which mellow out almost completely as other flavors come to the fore through the finish. Those include earthy and woodsy flavors, and especially an oaky wood flavor that is very nice. Finish is very clean, as is the overall feel. It's light in body and the lack of carbonation makes it very soft and clean. It's quite dry, and the lack of carbonation and the woodsy oak give it a sort of cider like quality, with just a bit of tartness left in the mouth to pucker the cheeks a bit. I find myself licking the sides of my mouth to get the last drops of flavor that linger.
This is probably one of the most drinkable sour beers I've ever consumed. I'm really digging it. It's clean and smooth and very tasty. Outstanding.
12-02-2008 02:01:45 | More by number1bum
4.3/5 rDev +9.7%
3 year old straight Cantillon lambic...my curiosity got the best of me, and I shelled out the cash for this one. All in all, it was a worthwhile experience. I'd say the best aspect of it is it's accessibility, for the non-initiated Lambic drinker, this is a fine introduction into traditional Lambics. The bracing sourness is not there, the acidity isn't over the top, quite the contrary. It's subtle, smooth and very tasty.
Saturated orange, a few bubbles on top that fade to a thin ring. Signature Cantillon aroma, citrus with a funky edge of wood and horse blanket.
Citrusy lemon zest, tart with some sweaty farmhouse cheese character. The oak aftertaste has a woody cinnamon bark taste that is unique. A flat body of course (unblended lambic is without carbonation by design), but the tartness doesn't allow it to be lifeless. The tartness is approaching moderate without becoming aggressive. Easy to sip and savor an entire bottle to yourself, or preferably to introduce someone else to the world of Lambic.
11-22-2008 01:28:01 | More by emerge077
4/5 rDev +2%
this beer's a hazed yellow-y orange. it reminds me of turnips or something for some reason. zero head.
the aroma is an acidic, funky, vaguely locker room-esque combination of lemon, floral strawberry, plastic, and horse blanket. it's also got some perfume-y vaguely wheat-like and barrel aged aromas.
the taste is a puckering lemon juice, coupled with some lighter airier berry flavors as in the aroma. plastic at towards the finish and aftertaste. a little vinegar like. barnyard and wet wool pervades. some oaky vanilla smoothes it out a bit, not much, but a bit. this stuff doesn't pull any punches about what it is and i feel like there is a middle ground with this type of thing either you like it or you don't. just straight up sour beer with nothing else for your tongue to grab onto.
the mouthfeel is thinner side of medium bodied and only the faintest hint of carbonation. it suits this beer though obviously.
good drinkability, it's actually smoother than i anticipated, being a pretty easy drinking experience as these types go.
11-14-2008 01:36:05 | More by kmo1030
4.33/5 rDev +10.5%
2007 vintage bottle. Pours out with no pop when de-corking and no head at all. A vigorous pours sees some bubbles floating around. A cloudy deep yellow color. The aroma is a sour perfume-like and woody note. The initial taste is sour, but not anywhere near some of the others I've had, such as the Iris. Instead, a strong funky sourness is alongside a smooth and full sawdust flavor. As it warms a ton of flavor is released, mostly more wood infused sourness, some slight funky and citrus. Quite good. Something original and pure. Though it has no head, the body is somehow smooth and nice. It also goes down quite well.
11-13-2008 02:03:20 | More by Douglas88
3.68/5 rDev -6.1%
The corks says this was bottled in 2007 after at least 3 years in the cask.
a: This was a cloudy apple juice yellow. It pours 100% flat, no carbonation. I can't say it looks very appealing without a head, but I guess this is what it's supposed to look like. Moving on to what counts.
s: This has a smaller fruit profile than gueuzes I've tried. I got more barnyardy, acidic vinegar and some moldy wheat aromas. The, for lack of a better word, "urine" smells were fairly strong. But not in a bad way.
t: I think the best way to describe the difference between this and gueueze is to say that this is not as "bright". The increased acidity and mustiness make this feel heavier while the lack of catbonation makes it less refreshing. Still, the barnyard funk flavors of wet grains and flowers at least makes this interesting. Plenty of apple cider vinegar and lemon zest as well.
m: Surprisingly full body considering this is completely flat.
d: I'll treat this as a novelty I suppose. I wanted to taste where gueuze comes from and now I know. Trying this makes me appreciate gueuze all the more. My curiosity is satisfied, no more unblended lambic for me.
10-23-2008 10:45:05 | More by DIM
Cantillon Bruocsella (1900) Grand Cru from Brasserie Cantillon
88 out of 100 based on 624 ratings.