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Rare Vos (Amber Ale) - Brewery Ommegang

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

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2,770 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,770
Reviews: 1,080
rAvg: 4.07
pDev: 11.06%
Wants: 120
Gots: 244 | 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: 2,770 | Reviews: 1,080 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of BeardedSquash
4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The beer fell cleanly into my glass with a good thick head of white suds that remained until I was finished. Active bubbles are visible through the clear cedar colored body. Smells of sweets and spices give way to a more subtle flavor of toasted grains and bready yeast. A lingering raisin flavor stays int eh mouth after the swallow. The scratchy, almost velcro mouthfeel perfectly accompanies this brew. Definitely worth the buy.

BeardedSquash, Dec 02, 2007
Photo of Jmamay22
3.78/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The Ale pours a dark amber orange. Full fluffy pumpkin pie crust colored head supported by plenty of tiny bubbles of carbonation racing to the top. Impressive looking brew in my Grottenbier glass.

The nose is full of oranges and citrus fruit mixed with some Belgian spice. Some bits of cinnamon and yeast peek out through the caramel malts. The brew begs to be sipped.

This amazingly smooth brew tastes of caramel malts and spice. The fruity yeast seems to have departed that was amazing in the nose, which is a let down. Comes off as being a little too spicy. Finishes semi-dry with a light sourness.

Mouthfeel as noted above is smooth, but not what I would describe as creamy. The tight bubbles of carbonation seem to bring the spices to the forefront, which came off a little overbearing in my opinion. Looks great and smells great, but doesn't come off as such overall. Nonetheless worth a go.

Jmamay22, Dec 02, 2007
Photo of wheelinshirt
4.3/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 mL shared with a friend after some late night pizza. Poured a fairly clear and beautiful amber color with nice size head that recedes to a thin cap and leaves no lacing. I was a little disappointed in that department. I was hoping for some orval-esque head and it simply didn't measure up.

Smell is fruity yeast esters (clove, banana) as well as biscuity malt. Nothing to complain about in the smell. Not overpowering and no off smells.

Taste is very good. Standard fruity belgian yest flavors with balanced malt and some hop bitterness. As it warms it seems to get a little funky. Maybe that is jsut wishful thinking, it is hard to tell. Very nice.

Mouthfeel is medium light, much better than expected as this is characterized here as a belgian dark which tend to get too thick and sweet for me. Very enjoyable and very drinkable. An absolute delight.

wheelinshirt, Dec 01, 2007
Photo of BWH3
3.93/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Rare Vos Brewery Ommegang
Large Corked 750mL Bottle from a Goblet at 50 F

Appearance: Amber orange with cloudy clarity. Head is a a very light tan that pours creamy and thick but fades quickly to a firm ring and stable island. Looks like a cloudy American style amber. (4.0)

Smell: Aroma almost solely from the grain bill. The scent is rich and hardy dominated by a toasty, biscuit aroma combined with sweet raisin. This raisin scent gives a moderate fruity character to the beer which is enhanced by a mild caramel sweetneess. A slight sour note is also detectable. No floral or spicy notes from either the yeast or hops. Again, imagine an American amber that is on the sweet side but without the typical floral/citrus hops scent (4.0)

Taste: Scent traslates perfectly to the palavte. Big, smooth biscuit malt sweetness like raisin bread with very light hops bitterness. The palate is cleansed by a mild sourness rather than hops bitterness. The finish is mildly sweet. The taste is full but pretty one dimensional. (3.5)

Mouthfeel: Medium to medium-light body. Descent carbonation. Feels sessionable as it should be. (4.5)

Drinkability: High quality, extremely enjoyable Belgian amber ale perfect for quaffing. (4.5)

BWH3, Nov 26, 2007
Photo of Lupe
4.55/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a hazy amber with active carbonation. Wonderful off-white head - fluffy, creamy, clingy and lasts. Leaves behind some lace. Very appealing to look at.

Fruity aroma along with some toasted grain, sweet malt, and spice - clove and pepper. Slight mustiness, and a dose of yeast.

Sweet malt, fruit, and biscuit flavors upfront. Green apple and banana mingle with zesty spice and notes of funky yeast. A bit peppery with subtle grassy hops. Finishes slightly dry with lingering yeast flavors.

Medium bodied and well carbonated. Smooth and slick on the tongue.

So easy to drink, and excellent paired with food. Very versatile - good with a hot ham sandwich or Thanksgiving dinner. Definitely a beer to always have on hand - drinkable and flavorful.

Lupe, Nov 25, 2007
Photo of Kendo
4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Poured from the 750 ml bottle into an Augustijn chalice. Body is murky orange with lots of bubbles rising to a slightly off-white head. No lacing left behind.

S: Initial impression is cloves and fruit -- banana and apple comes to mind -- with a slightly earthy mustiness in there too.

T: Fruity -- green apple skins and maybe pear -- and malty -- a dry, biscuity kind of malt taste. Also a good deal of zesty spiciness as well.

M: Slightly lighter than medium in heft. Good dry, spritzy feel offsets the sweet, fruity flavors and leaves a clean, dry feel in the mouth after the sip. Nice.

D: Pretty good.

Kendo, Nov 21, 2007
Photo of kguyty
3.53/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Had this beer in Cooperstown, NY. It was pretty darn good, especially on-tap. The beer came to me with a nice, thich head. The coloring was a nice light-brown/reddish color. The smell was nice, but I do not remember much regarding that. The taste was a nice, nutty flavor with a hint of sweetness. Mouthfeel was good, not too thick, not too thin. A well-balanced beer worth trying again.

kguyty, Nov 21, 2007
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
Rare Vos (Amber Ale) from Brewery Ommegang
91 out of 100 based on 2,770 ratings.