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Cantillon Lambic - Brasserie Cantillon

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Cantillon Lambic
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BA SCORE
90
outstanding

50 Reviews
THE BROS
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no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 50
Hads: 217
rAvg: 4.06
pDev: 12.81%
Wants: 46
Gots: 11 | FT: 0
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 12-30-2002

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 50 | Hads: 217
Photo of Queenw19
3.82/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

smell is the best part- it smells fruity. a little bitter for my taste though.

appearance- rosy color. over time it turns into a darker amber color. dark at the bottom, light at the top.

smell- cherries, spices, peaches, grapes

taste- hops, cherry- sweet when it first hits your tongue, then it becomes sour as it goes down. It is tangy at the back of your throat.

mouthfeel- small bubbles

overall- a good beer. great if you like tart flavors. great if you like bitter flavors. not so great if you don't like the taste of hops. (533 characters)

Photo of MattSweatshirt
3.87/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

20 month old lambic tasted at the brewery.

Looks like apple juice. Golden yellow and orange. Small white bubbles formed from the pour dissipate quickly as there is no carbonation.

The aroma is mostly apple vinegar with some funk/must and light white grape.

The taste mirrors the aroma but with an added sour bite. Sort of mild sourness compared to some of the other 'Loon offerings.

Light bodied so no carb is not a problem.

Nice to try the regular unblended lambic. (473 characters)

Photo of SpeedwayJim
3.92/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Cantillon Single Barrel Lambic served at Armsby Abbey. Into a Cantillon flute. Reviewed from notes.

Beer is clear and golden with a .5 finger white head with little retention. No lace. Average for the style.

Nose is lemon rind, citrus tartness, mild hay, barnyard funk. Light, crisp, and aromatic. Nice.

Opens soft pineapple, peach, apricot, and lemon tartness. Woody towards the end with funky notes of cobwebs, hay and wet wood. Tart finish and aftertaste. Very soft. Super drinkable with good complexity.

Light bodied with high carbonation. Spritzy and lively in the mouth with a dry finish and puckering aftertaste. Incredible feel on this one.

A decent beer with nice complexity and an incredible mouthfeel. I can see where the Cantillon magic stems from. Definitely worth seeking out on tap. (805 characters)

Photo of claspada
3.92/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap @ Monks during Zwanze Day 2012.

Pours a mostly clear bright orange color with just a few bubbles of white foam on top; little to no lacing as I swirl.

Aromas begin with a great deal of musty oak, the most oak I have smelled in a lambic to date. As it warms I get a little cheesy funk and a touch of lemon peel.

The taste follow the nose with the drying oaking tannic flavors up front which transitions into sour lemon and some musty, earthy hay or dried grassy. The acidity and tartness is quite light at this point being so young; there is almost a sweet maltiness to it.

The mouthfeel is on the lighter side of medium with little to no carbonation; it's actually pretty much flat. Finish is drying and oaky with some lingering sweet and sour notes.

Overall this was an interesting experience to taste a lambic so fresh and unblended. It is really oaky but not overly so but the lack of carbonation hurts the drinkability. It is still quite tasty just kind of one dimentional considering the unblended nature and the youth. I would definitely have it again but I don't NEED to as with other Cantillon offerings. (1,126 characters)

Photo of oline73
3.93/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I had this on cask at moeder lambic fontainas. Served in a Cantillon tulip glass.

Appearance: Pours a mostly clear orangish amber with a layer of off white head that fades to a ring around the edge of the glass.

Smell: This is a mild smelling beer, slightly tart and sweet with a hint of funk.

Taste: More assertive than the smell. Tart with a very slight funk. Just enough malt to back up the funky tartness. The finish is quite sour.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with almost no carbonation and a dry finish.

Overall: The smell was nice but not strong enough. I enjoyed the balance and the fact that this one didn't try to kill you with tartness. I would have it again given the chance. (686 characters)

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.98/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is a rating for the 1 year old Lambic. This was served from the cask at the brewery. This one-year-old was quite mellow, the characteristic Cantillon acidity had yet to come into full force. Served completely flat. The beer released a musty sour aroma to my nose. The taste though not overly acidic tasted of citrus. Tasted slightly herbal as well, with a faint woodiness to it. Definitely interesting to taste along with the other more aged products, still has a ways to go in the complexity department. (509 characters)

Photo of cpetrone84
4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on tap at Moeder Lambic. Pour is a peachy yellow, mostly transparent with a thin off white head. The nose has a touch of lemon with a nice dusty funk to it, cob webbs and light leather, more lemon with some golden fruits faintly weaved in at the end. The taste is extremely dusty and funky, very old bookshelf. There is some tart lemon that comes in as peaches, golden fruits and some floral bitter hops present themselves behind in order. The body is light, very gentle, soft carbonation and rather dry in the finish. Funky is the focus, age may add some fruit as this is probably a newer oude lambic. (606 characters)

Photo of Stevedore
4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

6oz pour out of an unlabeled bottle at Brasserie Cantillon at the conclusion of the brewery tour. Poured into a Cantillon taster glass 7/3/2014.

App- Hazy dark orange body, minimal white head, no lacing. Looks very placid.

Smell- Funky, lemon zest, orange, more funk, horse blanket and hay. Strong nose and very interesting. It smells an awful lot like the brewery itself!

Flavour- Lemon zest, oak, horse blanket, hay, straw, earth. Good amount of vinegar acidity, perhaps 6/10. Just about what I expected after the brewery tour, smelling and nearly tasting the air.

Mouthfeel- Low carbonation, a bit flat. Makes sense why they blend young and old lambic to make geuezes. Dry, acidic yet refreshing.

Overall- Interesting. It seems to basically be Bruocsella Grand Cru, but more raw and with a bit more carbonation. (819 characters)

Photo of Seanniek91
4.05/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Notes from Cantilon Brewery. Served from a ceramic jug into a sherry glass. Room temp.

A-Cloufy golden/orange with no head or lacing.

S-Some lemon and orange with that Cantillon funk. Some hay and earthy aromas.

T-Lemon and grass. Earthy citrus with a bitter lemon peel finish.

M-Smooth, dry, flat. Room temp is perfect. I think I'd dislike it if it was cold.

O-Nice treat to be able to try it at the brewery. Good, but not the best of their offerings by any means. (470 characters)

Photo of cps98
4.05/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A – Cloudy, deep yellow light orange color. No head was seen but light lacing was present for the better part.

S – Really sweet aroma, lots of Brett funk present also some hints of citrus.

T – I got a lot of citrus notes like lemon, and grapefruit. Lots of lactic acid.

M – light bodied, really dry. Little to no carbonation.

O – This was a really nice 2 year lambic on tap. Clean crisp flavors, some layers of funk and acid. I really liked this since the Brett didn’t get too funky. (503 characters)

Photo of LeeryLeprechaun
4.06/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer is a murky pale yellow/golden color. No head on the beer and no carbonation, still.

The beer is sour in aroma like vinegar. Notes of lemon grass, a lot of funk, some goat, and you can smell the acidity.

The beer bites your tongue, very sour and acidic with some lactic acid.

Mouthfeel is medium and a little hard to make our with the sourness.

The beer is very sharp in the finish, not a rounded sourness.

Serving type: bottle (440 characters)

Photo of Slatetank
4.06/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this 1 yr old lambic side by side with the bottled Geuuze at Cantillion, served slightly chilled in a taster.

The color is golden with light haze and no head with some small bubbles -but it has a 'cask look' meaning lightly carbonation appearance and no lace.
The smell is great with sour aroma of wild yeast with light funk and wood with mild malt and lemon rind with tangy tropical scent. The feel is dry and tangy with light body and very sour effect with woody tannin and dry vinous and sour finish with practically no carbonation -(cellar temp/flat)

The flavor is good with a raw yet not extreme sour flavor of lambic with mild funk -still refined in its unblended young form fresh with lemony and woody elements yet the nice tropical tangy juicy flavor is not as intense with light acidity. Overall very good and was interesting to try side by side with a more finished tasting fresh bottle of Gueuze which lets you understand the progression of the flavor and feel better. (988 characters)

Photo of orangesol
4.07/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served on-tap at Churchkey on Zwanze day 2012.

A - Pours slightly hazy straw yellow with a small half finger tall bubbly white head, dissipating down to nothing at all, leaving no lace at all down the glass.

S - Smell is pretty muted until it fully warms up. Hints of funky cheese, damp oak, basement must, some lemon zest and a dash of vinegar.

T - Starts off with a big sour kick that fades as quickly as it hit you leaving behind hints of lemon zest, musty funk, dry oak and a dash of booze burn. Finish is funky with a moderate amount of dryness, doesn't stick around too long tho.

M - Light with very light carbonation. Its has a tart feel but it does't linger for very long, allowing it to be consumed quite easily.

O - I feel like this is exactly what an unblended two year old lambic should taste. Sure its a little rough around the edges, but thats why its perfect for blending and fruit additions. I am glad I got to try this, I look forward to having it again one day, hopefully a little closer to the source. (1,026 characters)

Photo of biegaman
4.08/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On cask at Moeder Lambic, in Brussels.

Cantillon Lambic has a honey hue and is topped with a pillow - no, strike that, a mattress - of white head. Its complexion is clear but the tone is significantly dulled by haze. There's nothing really in the appearance to indicate what an unusual and unique style of beer this is.

To modern mainstream drinkers, Lambic will smell as if quality control has not been invented yet. It is overtly sour and funky, with a vinegar-like tang and an earthy mustiness like that you'd find in a barnyard. Cantillon's personifies all these "unique" qualities unapologetically.

The tartness of the flavour, however, is somewhat dialed down on the palate by a crisp straw-like and lightly honeyed maltiness as well as minor hints of marmalade. It can be difficult to get a good grasp on the flavour, not only because it's so distinct from other beers but also because the mouth dries up almost instantly.

Despite the unyielding persistence of foam atop, the beer is entirely flat. This is no surprise since it's served from cask (and hence the only carbonation mustered comes from gravity). This sample is also rather on the warm side (again, no surprise given it's July). Combined, these factors allow the acidic tartness to invade and conquer the aftertaste unencumbered.

Unblended lambics have no smooth edges. They can typically be summed up in three words: funk, funk, and funk. Both literally and figuratively they lack the 'pop' of Gueuzes and instead really narrow in on those aspects of the style that most resemble, as Martyn Cornell has put it, "a rugby team changing-room after a tough match on a hot day". Sound appealing? Strangely, it is! (1,688 characters)

Photo of Beerenauslese
4.12/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Body is an orange gold with no head or carbonation.

Smells of wet hay, citrus, old wood, and leather.

Taste follows the nose. Light malt, wet hay, horse blanket, lemon rind and grapefruit rind. Characteristic Cantillon funkiness. Starts a little sweet, ends dry and bitter.

Mouthfeel is flat, as lambics typically are, so it is more about the taste sensation. This is delightfully sour with a dry finish.

Overall, a very refreshing beer and infinitely drinkable. This is the foundation of many Cantillon beers. (518 characters)

Photo of Arbitrator
4.12/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a glass poured out of a pitcher at the Cantillon brewery -- same story as MasterSki below, so I'm going with the "cask" designation. I was informed that this was an unblended January 2008 lambic.

A: No carbonation, but that's expected for something that was served out of the casks or whatever they're stored in. It generated some bubbles when swirled in the tulip, but that's about it. The body was a apricot/gold color with swirling sediment that gave it a glowing, murky appearance.

S: Very funky, with horse blanket and musty aromas. A lighter sourness was also present, with definite apple and white wine character to it. Tannins, as well.

T: Starts off tasting like orange and grapes, but it gets sour shortly, and extremely funky shortly after that. The final flavor is a lightly dry assortment of horse blanket and barnyard flavors, with the white wine and apple that I picked up in the nose.

M: Light-medium bodied, no carbonation except the mildest touch of bubbles, and a slightly dry finish with lingering funk.

D: I found this to be a relatively mild beer after having my palate conditioned by a taste of the Rose de Gambrinus. It was funky, but not in nearly as aggressive a manner as, say, DF Hommage. Nor was it sharply dry. Overall, it was very pleasant to drink. (1,300 characters)

Photo of Thorpe429
4.17/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On cask at the Cantillon Brewery and Museum during last week's Belgium trip. Reviewed from notes.

Served in a Cantillon big-bowl wine glass.

Pours a clear bright orange color with just a few bubbles on top. No head or lacing at all. Pretty color though.

The nose brings forward a light funky cheese along with a touch of lemon peel. The flavor goes more toward the cheese with a bit of a blue-cheese character and light acidity. A slight lingering bitterness is present as well.

Light body with no carbonation. Super thin. Light acidity. Very nice sipper.

This was our first beer after getting off the plane and it did not disappoint. Great way to start the trip. (671 characters)

Photo of stakem
4.17/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Draft offering of a 2 year year old unblended lambic. The brew appears a clear golden orange through body and more yellowish around the edges. A few larger sized bubbles hang around the perimeter of the glass.

The nose has notes of cheese, oak and vinegar with a slight edge of something fruity like pear and citrus zest. Very clean smelling with a nice complexity and overall enjoyable set of balanced aromatics.

The flavor is a bit like coder at first and surprisingly more focuse on alcohol esters than I would have guessed. Some notes of pear mix with a woody earth inclusion and an herbal bitterness brings in the finish.

This is a medium bodied brew with a lower level of carbonation. A kiss of alcohol keeps things interesting. This was tart but not puckeringly so. I found myself crushing my glass quicker than I wanted to was left wanting to drink more. I dont know how often a treat like this comes around but if you get a chance, you need to try this. (965 characters)

Photo of rowingbrewer
4.17/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is an excellent lambic by cantillon, enjoyed on tap at armsby abbey on zwanze day.

this beer pours a nice yellow straw color and completely transparent, with no head.

the smell is quite funky with some definite barkyard and musty cellar notes. there is a hint of tart green apple in the smell.

the taste is pretty similar to the nose, lightly tart very funky and extremely drinkable.

mouthfeel is almost completely still, maybe due to being force served from the keg a small amount of CO2 dissolved into the beer.

overall this beer is great, but i do prefer 1900 grand cru (583 characters)

Photo of WillCarrera
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Churchkey for Zwanze 2012, aged 2 years. Poured into a pint glass.

A- Pours a clear golden orange color with a thin white head that quickly fades.

S- Very funky, some barnyard character but also lots of musty cheese, lemony citrus and some wood.

T- Similar to the nose, lots of funk with hay and cheese, decent amount of lemony tartness and lactic acidity, the finish is super dry and astringent with some wood flavor.

M- Light-bodied, bone dry with light acidity.

O- A very interesting beer, not my favorite from Cantillon but it's still a great beer and cool to compare to Bruocsella. (602 characters)

Photo of tbeckett
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Moeder Lambic in Brussels. From notes.

A - Poured with a great fluffy white head at two fingers. Slight haze on a blonde body. Great retention but not lacing. Retention made up for it as it stayed solid.

S - Hay with a little cobweb. Very grapey as well.

T - Really sour. Horse blankety and pissy. Not sure how to describe alot of the characteristics, but I enjoyed it quite a bit.

M - Light body with medium carbonation. Like every Cantillon beer, this really attacks every corner of your mouth nicely.

O/D - I'm so jealous that people in Brussels can session this so easily. Quite a nice little sour beer. Lot's of flavour and an ABV considered low these days. It's worth marvelling at. (703 characters)

Photo of smakawhat
4.28/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured on tap into a tumbler at Churchkey as part of Zwanze day 2012. From notes, 2 year unblended.

Ok I am sure I am going to get some hatred on this one, but I have to be honest with myself here from all the Cantillon fanboys (and ladies). I know of course lambics can come out without any head, that's fine. That's not my issue with appearance on this. My issue is this looks in the glass like a urine sample. Golden urine yellow, the odd tiny bubble creeps up or sticks to the glass, and clear. I am sorry gang this doesn't look appetizing appearance wise, that's just me. Let's get to the more enjoyable parts of this now shall we.

Bouquet has a real nice brine salt character, and mixture of classic funk notes. Lemon tang punches in nicely also.

Palate hits with a real big almost thick vinegar body. Somewhere between white wine and rice vinegar acid, chewy and dense. Finish hits with a real hint of strangely faint sweetness slightly masking over the sourness. Heavily earthy and lots of soil dirt in the mid palate, also bringing much of the classic lemon sensing nose to taste.

Overall it's a solid lambic, even if it doesn't look like something I would want to drink. (1,184 characters)

Photo of lacqueredmouse
4.3/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had from cask at Moeder Lambic, not far from the Cantillon Brewery itself.

Pours with a frothy head, but definitely uncarbonated. A bright and hazed golden colour forms the body. It's misty, tantalising and very refined. Head froths itself out after a while; it's just a product of the disturbance from the pour. Looks good though.

Nose is sharp and brusque, with a green crisp acidity, and a hint of rubber. Green apple skin with a touch of moldy undergrowth. Not as pungent as the most rip-roaring gueuzes, for example. For some reason I expected an unblended lambic to be sharper and stronger.

Taste is good. So good. Crisp and biting, and almost bitter-sour. Complex green apple skin mixes with melon and grapefruit tartness with a raw green bite on the back that gives an almost tannic character. Smooth and fruity, but missing some complexity that the gueuze blending gives. Feel is slick, light and flat from cask.

Very drinkable, and very enjoyable. A really good experience. This is definitely worth trying when you get the chance. And the temptation is surely great enough that every beer geek will get the chance at some point. (1,142 characters)

Photo of dirtylou
4.32/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

on-cask at the brewery, consumed while waiting out some rain

reviewed from brief notes

appearance: served in cantillon wine glass, hazy straw body, light beige ring, low carbonation

smell: really raw, funky, oak, white wine

taste: one of the funkier cantillons on our visit - a completely raw unblended lambic on cask for 2 euros - give me a break. this lambic has a nice must to it with lots of barnyard funk, hay, sour lemon, and grassy characteristics.

mouthfeel: no carbonation as expected, nice tartness

drinkability: good (534 characters)

Photo of MasterSki
4.32/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Firstly, I'm not even sure what to call the serving type - Dave Schuster and I were at the Cantillon brewery and were getting our samples at the end of the tour. I politely asked if they had an Faro or unblended Lambic and was told that there wasn't any around. Then an older man put on an apron, grabbed a hammer, bucket, and pitcher, went off somewhere and came back with a pitcher full of the unblended Lambic. Much appreciated - lovely people at Cantillon. Served in a flute glass - this was 2 years old.

A - Well, as per the style it was totally uncarbonated - there was maybe a touch of wispy foam if one swished it around and the faintest ring around the edge of the glass. The brew was a hazed golden apricot color with some visible sediment. I'm not sure how to objectively review this - the color was nice, but as beer it was not what one generally seeks out. I guess it was good for what it was?

S - Super funk with some sourness, some white wine, oak, apple cider vinegar, horse blanket, and mustiness. The funkiness is quite potent and the other smells are mostly peripheral. Still it's not aggressive like some of the gueuze I've had, and it's quite nice.

T - The taste is much milder and more mellow - a lot of graham cracker and marmalade sweetness that ends with a sour and funky finish. It actually reminded me of Zwanze '08, which isn't surprising as the lambic portion is about the same age and is the "base beer" for Zwanze.

M - Very similar to white wine - soft, some residual dry sourness, light side of medium bodied. Not a ton to describe here, but it was nice.

D - I'd heard so much about unblended lambic being aggressive and harsh, but this wasn't any of those things. The cask-style texture, low ABV, and lovely taste make this extremely session-worthy. Indeed this used to be the most popular Cantillon product 100 years ago.

Highly recommended if you happen to be in Brussels. (1,913 characters)

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Cantillon Lambic from Brasserie Cantillon
90 out of 100 based on 50 ratings.