1. American Craft Beer Fest returns to Boston on May 29 & 30, featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers. Tickets are on sale now.

Cantillon Iris - Brasserie Cantillon

Not Rated.
Cantillon IrisCantillon Iris

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
97
world-class

1,704 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,704
Reviews: 461
rAvg: 4.35
pDev: 9.43%
Wants: 689
Gots: 387 | FT: 24
Brewed by:
Brasserie Cantillon visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Lambic - Unblended |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: TheLongBeachBum on 12-05-2002

From the brewery's website: "Although it is a spontaneous fermentation beer, the Iris is very different from the Lambic. The amber colour and the bitter and slightly caramelized taste make it a complex beer."
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Cantillon Iris Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,704 | Reviews: 461 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Stevedore
4.14/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

75cl bottle, bottled 19 March 2013, poured into a Cantillon sherry glass today, 10/4/2013. Thanks for opening this one up, Shawn. Split 4 ways.

Review #276.

Pours a dark amber, almost an orange-brown body with a fairly solid white head with decent retention.

Smells hoppy.. hard to pinpoint a particular hop varietal, but it is definitely a fairly dank beer that suggests a bitterness.. Comes with the requisite Cantillon brewery bug population that gives off a nice earthy funk, with a small contingent of delicious vinegar acidity.

Very different palate than the nose. Barnyard funk and barrel wood is present throughout, and this is actually a fairly acidic beer compared to Mamouche, Classic Geuze/LPG. Its got a nice earthy bitterness to it; it's probably the most bitter Cantillon I've ever had. Sour quotient is above average Cantillon. It is quite complex and a somewhat intense lambic.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, good carbonation. Bitterness is actually a little off-putting in the sense that it doesn't make this one as drinkable as the other Cantillons we had tonight.

Interesting sour that is quite different from the others I've had. Tasty, sour with a nice complexity. Might be a little too bitter for me in comparison to the lambics I'm used to. Glad I tried this one though; don't know if I'll go after this one again as I would the more well-known Cantillon lambics.

Photo of emerge077
4.15/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Vintage 2005 750mL

Decanted into wine glasses from a lambic basket. There was quite a bit of sediment in the bottle, at least the last 1/2 inch left in the bottle. Color was darker amber, glowing orange in the light. Nice puffy head with a sticky collar, though it didn't stick around for the whole glass. First pour had bright clarity, the others had some haze.

Signature Cantillon citric aroma with lemon, wet wood, leather, and grassy hay (hops?). After cellaring so long, any clear indication of hops have vanished.

The pale malt unique to the Iris blend come through in the taste, slightly sweet with a mild staleness. Luckily the strong citric lemony sourness steamrolls it, leaving nothing but dry oakiness in the end. Some tannic astringency. It's slightly slippery with medium to low carbonation.

I have to say i've enjoyed this more when it was fresher (clear hop flavor and bitterness). Cellaring at length seems to deplete what makes Iris unique, the dry hopping and pale malt. Will try it again fresh and update this review.

Photo of rlee1390
4.15/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A-Cloudy orange/red, one finger head of the same color.

S-Oaky, cherries, grapes and mild funk.

T-Mild funk. Grapes, wheat, tad bit of hops and slight bitterness.

M-Medium bodied, nicely carbonated with a dry finish.

O-The dry hopping was an interesting addition to this beer, yummy but a tad different than the others.

Photo of KeefD
4.15/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Beer had soaked through the cork when I popped the cap off. Smells funky before I even pulled the cork out. Pours a very lovely amber orange color with a large white head that fell slowly leaving whispy rings of lacing. Aroma is nice and tart, semi-sweet, doses of lemon and light funk. Taste is acidic but not overly tart, and funkiness/cheese factors are kept to a minimum. Splashes of lemon rind, a bit of leather, and a gentle herbal hoppiness that's not bitter but certainly present. This really is a great beer. I was expecting this to be super sour and tart considering it's unblended and age 3 years, but the acid is very pleasing and complimentary to the bready, darker malts. Mouthfeel is somewhat thin and there's virtually no carbonation. I would almost believe this is close to flat if I didn't see small, wandering carbonation bubbles in the tulip glass. Good drinkability considering it's a sour beer. I will drink on this slowly over the course of the evening and it will actually go very well with the homemade pizza I'm whipping up later on.

Photo of brystmar
4.15/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Been a LONG time since my last Iris. Was a total sour (and Cantillon) newbie last time, glad to re-visit! 2011 cork date.

A gorgeous looking lambic: hazy caramel body with plenty of white head and tons of sticky lace. Floral, funky yeast aroma. Sour fruit too, smells acidic.

Tart and acidic, bitter earthyness with some hops at the end. Yeasty as hell, crazy complex. Wish I bought more of these when they were abundant on the shelf :(

Photo of NorCalYeti
4.15/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

taste- superb acid, bitter and carmelized taste

color- amber

clarity- clear

smell- citrusy hop character, spice, earth, bitter, complex aromas

body- very tart, astringent, mouthwatering, medium-body and length finish

appearance- nice orange-amber color with white, active carbonation and nice lace

glassware: tulip

Photo of tbeckett
4.15/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Had on tap at the Zwanze Day/DDC 15h anniversary party at DDC. I brought a bottle of this home the first time I went to Belgiu so this will be sort of an aggregate of those two tastings. From notes.

A - Poured a cloudy yellowish orange with one finger of white head. Minimal spotty lace with a film and ring of retention. The colour was quite striking. Sort of what you expect from lambic with better head.

S - Tons of grapes. Lot's of tart aromatics, lemon, acidic.

T - Lemon candy, quite sour, musty, nice lemon candy note. Not a sweet lemon candy note, but the puckering sourness is there. Definite acidity too.

M - Mild carbonation, medium body, dry in the finish but not overly so.

O/D - Wish I had a bigger pour and more time to contemplate this one. I remember it being very good the first time I tried it and it being quite an eye opening experience. A pleasure to revisit.

Photo of MrDave
4.15/5  rDev -4.6%

Photo of ldhughes3
4.15/5  rDev -4.6%

Photo of Reagan1984
4.15/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Vintage 2007

Pours with an erupting and loud head. (yep, loud fizzing) This slowly settles to a 1/8 thin cap of eggshell white head. The beer is a golden/amber colored beer with brass highlights. No lacing.

Aroma is initially sour/tart, but as it warms more malt tones come through. Some earthy notes and a little bit of roasted nuts..

Very nice flavor. While sour, not as much as the nose led you to believe. Lots of complexity below the surface here. There are some nutty flavors, tart green apple, lemon peel, slight woody flavors and a great deal of musty/earthy tones. Somewhat wine like. Some nice bitterness at the end that melds with the tart flavors.

Delicate mouth feel, light body, pin point carbonation.

Very drinkable and refreshing.

Excellent Beer.

Photo of hardy008
4.15/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2012 Vintage

Pours a hazy orange color with an almost one finger off white head which fades quickly, leaving no lacing. The aroma has tart green apples, grapes, lemon, Belgian yeast, and barnyard funk.

Tastes both tart and somewhat sweet with sour apples. grapes, lemon, oak, tannins, and light caramel. Acidic and dry.

Light to medium bodied with low carbonation. Has a tart green apple and lemon aftertaste. A very nice Lambic, worth trying if you get the chance.

Photo of SFLpunk
4.15/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

2007 Vintage. Green glass cork and capped 375mL bottle. Cork says bottled in 2009.

Pours clear amber with thick white head and champagne-style tiny bubbles. Hugely carbonated compared to other Cantillons I've had. Nose has that wonderful mixture of sour citrus notes, lime, lemon, and grapefruit that make me start to salivate on cue. Apricot notes are mingled with some freshly cut pine board aromas. Palate is aggressively sour, immediately stealing everything up. As the shock subsides I get flavors of sour peach, sour apricot, lime zest, dates, and brine. The long long finish is dominated by a Castelvetrano olive flavor (large, dense green olives). Carbonation is crisp but not intrusive.

Fantastic!

Photo of jeonseh
4.16/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Hazy dark brown golden beer with small head to it.

S - Floral with juniper and iris. Lots of Bretty presence to it that gives it blue cheese and farmhouse funk

T - Floral up front with juniper and flowers before a slight vinegar comes through. The finish has some slight oak and and sweettarts near the finish

M - Light and effervescent. Finish is slight dry

O - Good sour with a nice floral presence that is well as balanced with the tartness

Photo of Etan
4.16/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A 100% barley malt, heavily hopped sour beer from Cantillon? Should be interesting. 750ml bottle into a Cantillon tulip. 2011 vintage.

A: Pours an amber body with a large white head. Already different from the usual light gold color of lambic.

S: Malt profile comes through in the aroma - it's slightly sweeter than expected. Mild caramel, lactic acidity, fresh hay, dry wood.

T: Puckering dried peach tartness, drying tannins, palpable yet subtle floral hop bitterness melds well with the acidity. Plenty of woody and cheesy funk, too.

M: Light-bodied with moderate carbonation. Very dry.

O: This beer is a bit of an oddity, but I really liked the way it worked.

Photo of Knapp85
4.16/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This poured out as a deep golden color with a light haziness to it. There are plenty of bubbles rising to the top of the beer that forms a generous white head on top. The retention is pretty strong but the lacing is minimal. The smell of the beer is funky, it's slightly acidic and has a bit of oak on the nose too. The taste of the beer is tart at first, it settles down as you drink it and the sweetness comes through a little more. There is plenty of fruity acidic elements in the flavor with the malt balancing it out a little. The mouthfeel of the beer was much thicker than I expected, I was surprised by it's thickness. Good amount of carbonation as well making this beer come to life. Overall it's a pretty good brew, it had some surprising elements to it which made this really enjoyable.

Photo of Nolen12
4.16/5  rDev -4.4%

Photo of jkball01
4.16/5  rDev -4.4%

Photo of MatthijsAlberigs
4.16/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of largadeer
4.17/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a pretty pale blond color with nice clarity. The head rises to the height of two fingers, but dissipates pretty quickly.

Smell: Tons of barnyard funk and little else. Washed rind cheese, wet dog, dirty socks. Basically like taking a walk through a farm. Wonderfully funky stuff.

Taste & mouthfeel: Lemon rind and apple cidar vinegar. Very sour but not especially harsh. This is supposedly a hoppy Cantillon beer, but I'm not really getting any hop flavors. Very dry stuff through and through.

Notes: Excellent stuff, I'm going to have to revisit this soon.

Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.17/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Vintage 2005, poured from a 12.7oz bottle into a tulip glass.

A: The beer is a light amber color with a thin white head that fades quickly and leaves a very thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is very sour and vinegary with apples, grapes and a little spice, but it's pretty pleasant and exactly what you expect from this type of beer.

T: The taste is likewise very sour up front with flavors of tart apples and grapes. Then there's a little bit of sweetness that comes in to provide some balance. After the first sip, the sourness and complementary flavors come together quite well.

M: Smooth and very crisp, light-to-medium body, light-to-medium carbonation, finish is clean.

D: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, mild kick, good representation of style, this isn't the type of beer that I normally drink but this a very nice sour beer to drink for a long time.

Photo of SiphonKing
4.17/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2005 Cantillon Iris. One word: Delicious. Would love to compare to the '08 bet I would not be disappointed. Want to know about the beer? Buy one...and if you can't imagine this: Brett, pure un-adultered heavy Brett with no sour bite. Not your typical Belgian experience. Nirvana in a glass...no joke. Made with mostly barley and some fresh hops (according to Cantillon's description on their website). Worth seeking out.

Photo of womencantsail
4.17/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I've had this one a few different times, all different vintages and ages. This review is from a 2009 bottle.

A: The pour is a really nice looking amber-orange in color with a light and fizzy white head.

S: Plenty of acidity and green fruit notes. I pick up apples and grapes with some lemon. A strong oak aroma with a somewhat subdued funk.

T: A nice tartness up front with some fresh sour apples and lemons. The back end is actually a bit bitter with lots of oak and tannins. A bit of must and leather finish things off.

M: The body is medium with a fair amount of carbonation, especially for a lambic that is so "young" in the bottle. A nice acidity and dry finish.

D: Not my favorite of the Cantillon beers, but still really nice and better than many American sours. A really pleasant beer to sip on after watching the Sharks beat the Wings.

Photo of Ultimate
4.17/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of cps98
4.17/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is the one I was waiting to try. I received Iris brett isolates from a guy who harvested yeast from the dregs of a 2007 bottle. I’ve got them on a lambic at home right now that I brewed and never having had this beer it was a must try so I had something to go by. It was much darker burnt orange than any of the other Cantillon offerings I had had the day of the tasting. Lots of floral notes in the nose, my guess would be from the late hop additions this beer receives. Had a really nice sweet, green apple tartness to it. This beer also had a more pronounced maltiness. I also noticed this beer had a much heavier mouth feel than the other traditional lambics that were tried. Overall I like to taste the difference of this beer with the different grain bill and hop additions against the traditional lambics.

Photo of illidurit
4.17/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2004 Vintage.

A: Somewhere between orange and brown, this beer is hazy and forms a 2 finger off white head. No lacing, ok retention. Expected for a lambic.

S: Vinous grapiness, some apple, overtly tart.

T: Funkier than James Brown. Sour, lactic, acidic, but oh so good. Crabapple comes through strong. Kind of winey.

M: Though the head dissipates pretty fast, the carbonation is alive in well in the liquid, though maybe a little subdued from the 3 years it has been aged. As is the norm for gueuzes and lambics, the tart finish begs you to have another sip.

D: 750 mL bottle is easily finished, great refresher for summer.

Cantillon Iris from Brasserie Cantillon
97 out of 100 based on 1,704 ratings.