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Rare Vos (Amber Ale) - Brewery Ommegang

Not Rated.
Rare Vos (Amber Ale)Rare Vos (Amber Ale)

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2,713 Ratings

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Ratings: 2,713
Reviews: 1,078
rAvg: 4.07
pDev: 11.06%
Wants: 120
Gots: 225 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brewery Ommegang visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Pale Ale |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-24-2000)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,713 | Reviews: 1,078 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of animal69
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

another from the Ommegang gang ; pours a hazy light copper-brown w/ a huge head that took it's time going down, good lacing as well ; a bready fruit aroma w/ an orange-like citrusy undertone, a faint alcohol prescence as well ; a tart, slighlty vinous flavor, w/ an interesting hop flavor as well, some fruity flavor comes through in the end ; a dry, light-med bodied brew, very bubbly, can't help but burp after each sip ; a nice beer, not to high of an ABV makes this one quite quaffable...

animal69, Nov 17, 2007
Photo of Gehrig
4.83/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I first tried this outstanding beer last winter on New Year's Eve, purchasing it as part of a Holiday pack that included other excellent Ommegang products Three Philosophers and Hennepin. As an additional perk, these came with a 12 oz. Ommegang glass. Deep and cloudy red in color, Rare Vos poured a rich frothy head into my large mug. It has an interesting melange of flavors, on the whole sweet but with a peppery tinge to it that complements the fruitiness quite well.

Like so many Ommegang products, Rare Vos is a treat, great to enjoy on a cold Winter evening, great to share (especially since it comes in 750ml bottles), and it goes great with cheeses. Smooth and tasty, it is one of my absolute favorites. Try it and enjoy.

Gehrig, Nov 08, 2007
Photo of rshwayder
3.45/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This has a nice cloudy pour with a taste to fit. This is a smooth amber beer with a bit of spice and mild sweet to it. Smells like a yeasty beer, and it is. Good head and bubbles coupled with a lack of overt bitterness make this a quite drinkable beverage.

rshwayder, Nov 06, 2007
Photo of Rainintheface
3.9/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle into my favorite big ass mug. I've had many of these over the years, it's about time I review.

A: cloudy amber color with impressive off white head that stays around awhile. active carbonation

S: fruity, cloves and sweet malt. a touch of yeast is noticeable.

T: spices up front, a bit peppery. fruity/green apple but still has some sweetness

M: full body, a bit creamy with a dryish finish

D: I like it, always have but one of these big bottles will suffice at a sitting.

Rainintheface, Oct 14, 2007
Photo of Jwale73
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a red wine glass. Presented with a smell of malt and yeast. Nice caramel/amber color with a fluffy white head. Lacing clung to the side of the glass throughout the tasting. Well carbonated, but not overly so. Pleasant mouthfeel with a tingle across the tongue. Mild, hoppy taste, reminiscent of a pale ale, with a subtle taste of coriander to boot. Clean finish with a slight taste of alcohol at the end. Another enjoyable brew from Ommegang, although not what I would consider characteristic of a Belgian.

Jwale73, Oct 12, 2007
Photo of TenSpoons
3.63/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Amber (not so shocking), clear, huge head, nice lace

Smell - Belgian yeast, coriander

Taste - Carmel malts, malty, slight alcohol, moderately bitter

Mouthfeel - High carbonation but still a little creamy

Drinkability – I would have another, but wouldn't seek this beer out.

TenSpoons, Oct 10, 2007
Photo of KarlHungus
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a cloudy reddish-brown color. The heas id large, fluffy, and white. It recedes slowly into thick lacing. The aroma is of yeast, cloves, pears, and squash. The taste is like the aroma, but with a nice mustiness. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with nice, lively carbonation. Overall, this is a nice beer that I would dink again.

KarlHungus, Oct 02, 2007
Photo of Brianmerrilyn
3.8/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served from 750ml bottle into Stella Artois glass.

A: Name does not lie, tis an amber. Very thick head in style of Beglians, disapates into white carbonation but remains till the last quaf.

S: Tad of malts and perhaps nutmeg. Closer to an America amber ale than i would prefer.

T: Not sure why this was called a Dark B.A. but the yeast is prolly what gives it the style name. Spice comes up as you fo through your glass but not much bitterness.

M: Creamy, crispy and smooth.

D: This is Ommegangs weak sister.

Brianmerrilyn, Oct 02, 2007
Photo of PittBeerGirl
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Translucent rusty amber colored body that pours with a thin white head. Head quickly fades to a collar and little lacing is left behind in the glass. Few bubbles can be seen rising to the top of the glass. Yeasty cloudiness is thick and elusive.

S- Great nose. Big smell of spicy Belgian yeast upfront with a hint of sweet sugariness. Some cinnamon, fruit and other spices also detectable in the nose.

T- Subtle tart fruitiness upfront with a good yeast backbone. Finish has a nice amount of hop flavor along with a presence of spicy yeast. Sweet bready yeast lingers along with a citrus tartness.

M- High carbonation and very light body. Yeasty and creamy.

D- Rare Vos is a nice Belgian Ale. I will probably have this one again. I have enjoyed other offerings from Ommegang a lot more than this one so far but this is still a solid beer.

PittBeerGirl, Sep 26, 2007
Photo of OWSLEY069
3.58/5  rDev -12%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a cloudy orange-ish color with a white head. Aromas of candied sugar and a Belgian yeast. In the taste, Belgiany sweet malt and a hint of corriander. A small bitter mouthfeeland a dry Belgian yeast aftertaste. Smooth and mellow, with a nice hop presence.

OWSLEY069, Sep 24, 2007
Photo of Amalak
4.2/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

App: The bottle I had came corked and opened like champagne. Nearly opaque, dark orange. Thick, bubbly head.

Smell: strong, but nice, fruityish smell.

Taste: Bubbly, yet goes down nicely. There is a great blend of flavors that makes this one of my more favorite Belgian beers.

Mouthfeel: Bubbly on the tongue. Leaves a distinct flavor in the mouth.

Drinkability: Very easy to drink. Not heavy in stomach at all.

Really a very, very good beer overall.

Amalak, Sep 22, 2007
Photo of tweeder263
3.35/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours out a cloudy orange amber with huge head and massive carbonation.Smells very estery,my sense of smell sucks but the esters show through.Taste is a very neutral beer slight esters,but very light in malt and hops.Mouthfeel is normal,,drinkablility is actually very well,,go down really smooth.

tweeder263, Sep 21, 2007
Photo of number1bum
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into my Rare Vos glass it's a hazy amber color with a pillowy off-white head that billows and fills the glass, a good 2+ inches. Leaves a nice lace as it goes down and lots of stick down the sides.

Smell is of orange rind, yeast, grain and ample spice.

Taste is of grain, some fruitiness and citrus flavor, and lots of spice. Spice is a bit peppery, and through the finish it's a bit grassy and finishes dry. Mouthfeel is light to medium-bodied and quite light on the palate, and crisply carbonated.

This brew is easy to drink and very refreshing. Solid beer, recommended.

number1bum, Sep 18, 2007
Photo of rhoadsrage
4.1/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

(Served in a tulip glass)

A- This beer has a hazy glowing golden-amber body with a strong carbonation of tiny bubbles. On top is a thick mousy head that last and last leaving rings of lace after each sip.

S- This beer has a light sweet perfumed malt smell with notes of pears.

T- The soft sweet note of spun sugar is followed by a soft spice note with a faint hint of bubble gum. The finish has a light fresh dry spice note with hints of carbonic acid and soft green leaves. As this beer warms the notes of faint bubblegum and light brown sugar and notes of dried apples come through.

M- This beer has a light mouthfeel with a nice crisp but slightly sweet finish.

D- This beer is light in sweetness but has a nice subtle complex flavor. The soft bitterness and the nice sweet flavor have some good depth.

rhoadsrage, Sep 15, 2007
Photo of Slatetank
3.98/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Phatz for this 750ml corked and caged brown bottle that I shared w/ octopus87 and friends.

Poured cold into a tumbler.
A - A hazed amber w/ a thin white head. The head produces a moderate amount of lace. The yeast from bottle conditioning was included in the pour.

S - Malty, belgian yeast aroma, bready.

M - A lively fizziness gives the malt some levity. A gentle spice and hop woodiness in the texture adds to the overall feel.

T - A mild flavor of toasted grain mixes w/ spice and yeastiness. A bready and gentle pine tasting hop and phenolic after taste. Very pleasant flavor, yet a bit mild.

D - A pleasant malty belgian. Worth a try for sure. A very tasty ale one I would probably pair w/ poultry.

Slatetank, Aug 29, 2007
Photo of Durge
3.58/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A luscious amber, somehat cloudy brew. A modest but healthy fuzzy head that fades pretty quickly with nice lacing. The smell is mildly malt and wheat, a bit like a hefe but a mellower quality. Then the first taste says more hefe to me. I didn't expect that. I don't get the hops so much, more like a mild brown bread but decidedly like a hefe with delicate wheat and lots of citrus going on. Strong tingling carbonation at the front but it maintains a subtle blended flavor and feel, medium drinkability but more to be savored for those who admire the style. Not my favorite style though.

Durge, Aug 22, 2007
Photo of skineg
3.03/5  rDev -25.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearence: Cloudy amber color that looks very inviting. Good looking beer that has a sexy, but not too sexy look. Solid head (1/2 inch) but that fades fast.

Smell: Can smell the alcohol and smells surprisingly like an IPA. Can definalty pick up a perfume and floral fragrance from the hops.

Taste: Reminds me of a weak IPA. I realize that this is a Belgium Amber, but, while balanced, the taste has took much of a pure hop and alcohol taste for me.

Mouthfeel: Fairly smooth, fizzy.

Drinkability: It's the stlye for sure, but it's not that drinkable to me.

Comment: This is my first Belgium Style Amber and maybe it just took me by surprise, but I wasn't impressed. Maybe it's just a style that I need to get more accustomed too.

skineg, Aug 20, 2007
Photo of ghostmech007
4.6/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A 750ml bottle poured into snifter. Notes of review dated April 2007.

Pours a beautiful amber color with a nice carbonation. The head is a perfect off-white that sticks everywhere. Lots of yeast on the bottle.

Nose is full of alcohol, malts, fruits, with a nice clove note.

Nice full body, with malts that balance with the spicy mouth. Hops are there but very subdued, and a perfect with the malts. Finishes with a dryness with an odd feeling on the tongue. Very nice.

Awesome brew. Very cheap to get and very amazing.

ghostmech007, Aug 18, 2007
Photo of supercolter
4.4/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer really impressed me.
I haven't had a great belgian dark since I began experimenting with Unibroue about a year back.
Appearance is great medium to dark brown, almost purpleish with a nice billowing head.
Smell is a bit lighter than expected plums, malt, and spices come thru the nose.
The resembles the smell, but as it warms up it is nice and potent.
Mouthfeel is medium in body.
Drinkablity is wonderful.

supercolter, Aug 11, 2007
Photo of tpd975
4.43/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I have seen this one on the shelves of my local beer store since the beginning of time... I hope it’s not the same bottle. Well my BA homeboy Sudsdog.... I'm gangster check the Avatar reviewed it recently and inspired me to finally pick it up.

A: I poured into a Maudite Tulip and the head was very lively. It died down to a nice ring though. There was lacing left behind and the color is a beautiful hue of orange / red.

S: Lots of spice in the nose here. Clove, Nutmeg and All Spice are all noted. There is a very nice malty sweet aroma as well. This is a great smelling brew.

T: Love the taste of this brew. It has a very complex character about it. It starts of kind of sweet and spicy. Kind of reminds me of my grandmother’s baked apples. It has fruitiness about it with the power of those spices coming thru.... defiantly cinnamon and nutmeg. There is also a mildly hoppy quality about this one. I love when Belgian Beers add hops and they did a great job introducing them here, they are way in the background but they are here.

M: Medium bodied yet light. Goes down rather smoothly.

D: I drank the entire bottle and could easily drink more. This would be a great beer to enjoy slowly one after another over the course of an evening. It’s to be enjoyed not pounded.

Overall: Ommegang makes very solid brews from right here in the good Ol USA. It has a wonderfully complex flavor that keeps you yearning for the next sip. The spicy character of this beer is unmatched by most. No doubt about it Ommegang has gone to great lengths to make another fine brew. I took Sudsdog's advice and drank it on the cool side and it was spectacular.

Suds Thanks for turning me onto this one. When we finally get together I promise to buy the first of many rounds to follow. If it happens to be Rare Vos we must be careful though because this "Sly Fox" will sneak up on you.

Yeaaah Boooy.... Sorry that's the gangster in me coming out... once again refer to the avatar... Its proof I'm gangster... <insert laughing from the masses>

tpd975, Aug 05, 2007
Photo of NolateM
4.15/5  rDev +2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle about a year old poured into a Maudite tulip. Translucent dark orange, with a thick, lace-tastic, off-white head.

Smells like sweet orange-blossom honey (kinda looks like it too).

So wonderfully malty, yet not cloying in any way. Tastes like creamy molasses, honey, and dried apricots, yet somehow not very sweet at all (which I generally prefer anyway). Kind of peppery too. Just a very small hint of doughy yeast flavor, as I tend to decant. Complex enough, yet it doesn't bombard the palate, so it's perfectly refreshing to drink on this ridiculously hot summer night.

Well-carbonated, smooth, and easy to drink.

Mellow enough for people just getting into Belgian-style ales, and deliciously rich enough for the connoisseurs. I'd say it's my favorite offering from Ommegang. Always a pleasure to drink.

About $10 per four-pack

NolateM, Aug 03, 2007
Photo of saintwarrick
3.63/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Having tried some of Ommegang's other brews, I am hopeful this one live up to the high standards of the other brews. This brew pours a murky orange (not quite amber), very carbonated with champagne-like bubble streams rising to the top. Aroma is light grapes, a tad citrusy and some other fruits; not overwhelming like some other Belgian ales, reminds me of Chimay red. Taste is light and fruity, but a bit thin for my taste and this style; nothing really stands out on the palate. Drinkable and light, but again, thin.

I was a little disappointed in this brew as compared with some of Ommegang's other offerings. Not a bad brew, but I would rate 3 Philosophers and Hennepin well above this brew.

saintwarrick, Aug 01, 2007
Photo of barefootbrewer
3.53/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured a cloudy brown color with a thick off-white head. The bubbles were tight and the lacing was pretty. The aroma is initially sour with malt showing through after a few minutes rest. The taste is spicy and sour with some sweetness. The mouthfeel is thin to medium but shows a carbonation bite. Overall, this is a delight.

barefootbrewer, Aug 01, 2007
Photo of PCmofo
4.28/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

I tried the Rare Vos after trying 2 other Ommegang beers and I am impressed with each one I try. So much so that I plan to visit their brewery this summer. The amber ale is right between a hearty full bodied amber ale and your typical amber ale. This enhances it's drinkability as well as it's flavor as it is not your typical amber ale. I bought it in the 750ml bottle but it is also available in a 4 pack.

I am currently brewing an amber ale and can only hope that my beer turns out close to this. I really love the color of the beer. Its a light amber with just a bit of cloudiness. The foam on any of these beers in the 750ml bottle can get a bit much if you dont pour it slow. overall a great beer that I will be buying again.

PCmofo, Jul 26, 2007
Photo of ccrida
3.3/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

The cork explodes from my 750ml bottle with a triumphant pop, and I quickly pour the Rave Vos into my St. Feuillien chalice - nothing sly about this fox so far! The brew is a hazy, light brownish amber with a creamy, 1 finger light khaki head that leaves thick foamy lace.

The aroma is very spicy, nicely phenolic, and a little sour cherry/dark fruit.
The taste is heavy on the phenols and spice, with less of the fruit, although as it warms, it gets a little bit sweeter, with more phenols as well. There is a heavy mineral water like dryness to it that I appreciate, particularly on the finish, which leaves lots of phenols on the tongue, with a nice astringency to this one, some bitterness on the finish that is almost corky. There's also a slight hint of alcohol. Overall it's good, a pretty average belgian amber. I'm not sure off-hand if that's a category on BA, but thats what this is, a la De Koninck (which I see they list as a BSPA!).

The mouthfeel is light and exceptionally creamy.

This is moderately drinkable. It's light, but lots of carbonation, and while the taste is inoffensive and pretty good, it's not so great you can't get enough.

ccrida, Jul 22, 2007
Rare Vos (Amber Ale) from Brewery Ommegang
91 out of 100 based on 2,713 ratings.