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Cantillon Lambic - Brasserie Cantillon

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Cantillon Lambic
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51 Reviews
no score

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Reviews: 51
Hads: 226
Avg: 4.13
pDev: 17.43%
Wants: 46
Gots: 13 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brasserie Cantillon visit their website

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: 51 | Hads: 226
Photo of dirtylou
4.32/5  rDev +4.6%
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

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Photo of alfrantzell
3.08/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

On handpump at Moeder Lambic Fonteinas. Not sure of how old it was, but Jean Van Roy was kind enough to draw me a glass from the barrel earlier that day, which he said was 18 months old and which was very similar to the one at Moeder Lambic.

Gold in color with no head but good air retention. Smells like minerals. Tastes like minerals and white wine. In the barrel version, the vinous quality tastes almost like plastic. Thin mouthfeel in both cases, little of the trademark funk or sourness. Moderate oak, though.

Very interesting to try, but ultimately I prefer Cantillon's lambic older (Bruoscella Grand Cru) or blended.

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Photo of Arbitrator
4.12/5  rDev -0.2%
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.

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Photo of MasterSki
4.32/5  rDev +4.6%
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.

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Photo of ebin6
4.45/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A - Cloudy/opaque. Very interesting pour.

S - A whole lot going on. Nice herbaceous smell that draws you in

T - Absolutely amazing. As soon as it touches your tongue there is a whole lot going on. I really dig the sourness, but understand how some cannot

M - Quite possibly the best mouth-feel I've experienced. Swished it around in my mouth for quite a while and it kept getting better and better. Almost too good to swallow!

D - My enjoyment tapered off a little as I drank more, but that is of course relative to the impeccable initial taste

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Photo of francisweizen
4.5/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

King of funk at spiders head
what can I say that has not been said
Turibd, flat, lifeless glass
Light brown honey is the draught

No more head whe presented to me
funky cob webs, spider-y
Had on draught at spiders head
for lambic lovers it goes straight to the head

Aromas of funk, and brett and yeast
this is wilder than a korean on a beach
Taste is funky sour citrus
when in Belgium, you can't miss this

Mouthfeel is light and flat and sour
So refreshing, can drink this all hours
of the day or of the night
drinkability stays just right

Oh pure lambic such a treat
Regular availability would be sweet !

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Photo of ggaughan
4.37/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Monk's in the back bar. The beer poured a hazy golden color with no carbonation into a tall flute glass.The aroma gives you citrus and a bit of farmy funk that you would expect from Cantillon beers. The taste is a very citrusy, barnyard mix that is enjoyable to the mouth and tastebuds. This is enjoyable for a sour beer as I found myself looking for another and another as it is drinkable.

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Photo of ark57
4.67/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I was quite happy to find this at Monk's not too long ago. I'm npot sure how many more chances I'll have to sample this, so I made sure I savored a few.

It was a hazy golden color with no head and no carbonation. The aroma is musty with some floral and citrus notes.

The body was light, but it has more mouthfeel than expected. It tastes of fresh lemon peal, honey, and of course barnyard. It finishes very clean for a sour beer and it leaves you with just enough to always want more. I don't feel it is as agressive as other Cantillon beers, but it is still fantastic. A wonderfully complex beer that I would enjoy any time, but I think it goes especially well at the begining of a meal.

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Photo of 99bottles
4.55/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This was a keg from November 2002, put on-tap at Monk's Cafe.

The beer is a cloudy golden peach color with nothing in the way of a head. Only the slightest trace of carbonation can be found, and only that when the beer is drank. Smells of tart apple, wheat and tangy pear greet the nose. I realize this is straight lambic with no fruit added, but a non descript frutiness comes about from the funky Brett. The taste is quite clean on the pallete and starts with a muted sweetness and grassy flavor which quickly spins on it's head to a citric acidity and back again. Amazingly sour and amazingly refreshing. I could have drank this all night, and any ulcers would be worth the risk. The body is light and the beer drinks incredibly easy. Seeing as this is nearly 3 years old, I tend to think some of the sharp funkiness and biting acidity has been smoothed out. Although this probably won't be embraced by drinkers new to the style, the straight lambic Cantillon puts out is fantastic and is worth getting whenever it can be found. Many thanks to Monk's for bringing this treat to Philly.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
3.98/5  rDev -3.6%
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.

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Photo of TheLongBeachBum
4.52/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cantillon lambic is probably the hardest of all Cantillon beers to find, as it is only available in draft format, so you have to travel to Belgium to try it. (Saint Lamvinus is rare, but at least it is bottled and exported!!). Indeed, you will have to travel to Brussels itself to sample this beer. Because, I believe that it is only regularly available in only a small handful of places, the best of which is the In t' Spinnekopke (see BeerFly) which is located not that far from the Brasserie Cantillon, and is the highpoint of the walk back into Brussels Central from the Brewery itself.
This where I tried the beer on November 27th 2002. I believe that it is sold at about 1 years of age in the Spinnekopke.
The lambic arrived with quite a bit of life, but this does eventually settle to a usual fresh draft lambic looking fluid - almost flat and lifeless. The beautiful color of lambic is hard to describe other than to say that it looks like a draft lambic, this was a light brown color, though aged lambics may be darker and do change year to year. The odors are typical, mainly a mustiness, though not as extreme as say an Oud Beersel or Girardin lambic. The usual hints of the damp horse urine soaked straw, cow-shit and other musty marvellous fresh farmyard aromas are feint as they are somewhat masked by a lovely citric hint in the smell. Early on it is spritzy (a word often used to describe lambics/gueuzes and highly appropriate here). After time, it is less so. Tastes are of lemon drops mixed with some wood, oak perhaps, but this has a mild citric bite. All washed away in the end with the feint mustiness of freshly picked earth encrusted damp mushrooms. A dry beer, a totally astringent experience start to finish, and with no bitterness whatsoever, well maybe the very merest of hints.
You are drinking a beer that is still alive, and it shows.
Love It, or Hate It - this is a true experience everytime.

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Cantillon Lambic from Brasserie Cantillon
91 out of 100 based on 51 ratings.