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Rare Vos (Amber Ale) - Brewery Ommegang

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

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,654 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,654
Reviews: 1,078
rAvg: 4.07
pDev: 11.06%
Wants: 112
Gots: 203 | 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: 2,654 | Reviews: 1,078 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of BeefyMee


4.05/5  rDev -0.5%

12oz bottle

Appearance: Cloudy orange-brown. Nice head continually supported by a substantial amount of active yeast.

Smell: Fruity in a banana/apple sort of way.

Taste: Nothing jumps out as spectacular but nothing at all is bad about it. The flavor seems to hold back. A sweetness in the finish is the most noticeable aspect. There is also a little bit of alcohol in the taste.

Mouthfeel: Tingles happily on the tongue.

Drinkability: Excellent. The only points off for this are because I suspect it might get a little too sweet after a while.

Beef Notes: Another good one from Ommegang. I think it would make a great gateway beer to introduce people to Belgian styles, as it is very unoffensive. I would love to have it again, but if I was purchasing, I would probably buy one Ommegang's other fine beers instead.

02-09-2004 04:29:03 | More by BeefyMee
Photo of CRJMellor


4.33/5  rDev +6.4%

Pours a smoewhat hazy light amber, obivously very carbonated by all the "fizz." Big head layers down slowly leaving chunks of lace on teh chalice.
Aroma has real grain and bread note with some pale malt in the background. As it warms to drinking temp. a citrus fruit note begins to develop, with maybe even some grape or raisin thrown in.
Flavor is sweet malt with a spicy, yeasty tongue hit. Fruit falvors really begin to merge as the beer warms even more. Minor hop in the background but bitterness is minimal and hop seems to add a grassy, earthy touch of flavor.
Mouthfeel is good, very nice balance between sweet and spice. Drinakability is very high to excellent.

02-07-2004 03:36:06 | More by CRJMellor
Photo of ViveLaChouffe


4.13/5  rDev +1.5%

Pours a hazy golden brown with a thin light tan head. Not much lace, head dissipates quickly. Smell is sweet malt and alcohol. Spicy and fruity too.

Taste is sweet malt and spicy up front. Definitely taste some cloves in there. Some fruitiness, like spiced apples way back there in the flavor profile. After that it finishes with quite the strong alcohol finish. Mouth is kind of sticky with a bit of alcohol burn. Nice sipping beer. Probably could've left this one on the cellar for a few more months to let the flavors mellow a bit but stil pretty damn good.

01-28-2004 20:32:42 | More by ViveLaChouffe
Photo of nixhecks

Rhode Island

3.08/5  rDev -24.3%

Poured a bright tangerine-cranberry color with a large white head. Tons of bubbles, this almost looks like some sort of lambic from the color and high carbonation. Aroma is sweet and fruity, including concord grapes, buttery yeast, and a bit of malt. The mouthfeel of this is over carbonated and really thins out the full flavors of the brew. Very fruity tasting, a little bit of spiceness from the yeast and hops, but hardly any malt flavor. I was rather disappointed, this is my least favorite from Ommegang so far. Really left me wanting a bottle of Hennepin.

01-27-2004 01:19:42 | More by nixhecks
Photo of rdrummer

New Jersey

3.73/5  rDev -8.4%

I was slightly disappointed in this "Belgian-style" Ale. It was drinkable enough, but I had really set myself up to expect a true Belgian taste. It's not there. At least not in the bottle I tried. It poured a clear amber with a white head that was short lasting with little lacing. The aroma was of malt, yeast, and a little hops. The taste just didn't have the unique, Belgian kick to it that I was expecting. It was a little thin, actually quite thin in the mouth, but that may be due to the low alcohol content. Come to think of it, that may be what is missing in this beer. At 6.5%, it was just thin, compared to Belgians at 8, 9, or 10 percent. In its favor, it was half the price so I could drink a few of these, but not as a Belgian substitute.

01-26-2004 00:12:48 | More by rdrummer
Photo of Sixpack595


4.3/5  rDev +5.7%

Slightly hazy copper with huge off white head. Crisp carbonation keep the fine grained head till the end, lacing in sheets the whole way. Hops are present, but not overpowering. Green apples and pepper. Very dry finish. I think of this as a lighter, milder version of a hoppy Belgian strong pale such as Piraat. Less alcohol, mouthfeel, and hop bite. A very drinkable beer.

01-22-2004 09:45:46 | More by Sixpack595
Photo of dannyvee


4.45/5  rDev +9.3%

poured an orangish copper with a generous pillowy white head- beautiful. tiny bubbles cascaded up from the goblet's bottom. aroma was floral and citrusy with that sweet belgian malty essence. mouthfeel was crisp and medium to light. flavors of green apple, a little nutty, caramel and a dash of pepper in the finish. this is a highly quaffable session beer and my favorite from the cooperstown brewery. glad i bought a whole case!

01-22-2004 01:04:25 | More by dannyvee
Photo of Billolick

New York

4.43/5  rDev +8.8%

Pours a nice dark orangy color with a sizable head that dissolves to a fine bubbly sheen...citrus seems to dominate in early glass, as it warms it reveals a nice balance of malt/hops. Spice in the finish..pepper, hint of cloves....grapefruit....this beer is excellent with spicy food, thai, mexican etc...the brewer at Ommegang told me (at Half time's recent 3 phillophs event) that this is the staff's favorite at the Brewery

01-18-2004 11:45:18 | More by Billolick
Photo of merlin48


3.68/5  rDev -9.6%

12 oz bottle of this Brabant Ale poured into a goblet a slightly hazy dark burnt orange, with a huge head of tiny bubbles. Head eventually melts into ring and sheet lacing. Aroma is of dark fruits, florals, and peppery spices. Mouthfeel is bready and full bodied, with lots of carbonation. Taste is sweet caramel malts upfront, yeasty breadiness, peppery spices, and a touch of bittering hops. Finishes a bit dry without any overpowering aftertaste. A decent American version of a Belgian Pale Ale, but it doesn't seem very strong. Seems to me, it's missing something. Maybe in the yeast strains they're using. Very drinkable for this style.

01-14-2004 00:17:55 | More by merlin48
Photo of yankeeheel


4.25/5  rDev +4.4%

Pours a lovely honey tempered amber with a large light tan head. Foams way up the tulip glass. Great retention with some lacing down the glass. Lots and lots of minute carbonation streaming up from the bottom. I can see the origin of it through the bottom of the stem and that's pretty neat. Smells aggresively spicey with some clove and coriander.

The taste is spot on belgian strong ale. Lots of heavy malty spice up front with a small amount of bannana and fruit coming through the middle. The carbonation is well felt in the middle and the alcohol reveals itself towards the end without being unwelcome. Lots going on here.

01-12-2004 00:50:18 | More by yankeeheel
Photo of beerceller99


3.18/5  rDev -21.9%

Rare Vos, Sampled a 75cl bottle. Poured a pale caramel color with a nice persistent head. Had a slight musky,earthy smell to it.Very smooth and creamy mouthfeel. The taste wasn't very strong for this "Belgian Style" Ale; it has a malty/grainy/bitter taste and a dry, slight alcohol finish which didn't mesh very well.Maybe they should call this their english brown ale.Not Ommegangs best beer thankfully.

01-05-2004 08:32:35 | More by beerceller99
Photo of aracauna


3.25/5  rDev -20.1%

Dark, rich amber body has a nice glow. The head starts off big-bubbled and a bit fizzy, but settles into a nice cream-colored melted icecream layer that doesn't seem to get any thinner. Plentiful streaming carbonation gives the beer a sense of being alive. Very estery aroma, a bit herbal and some vague fruit. The flavor is surprisingly dry, when starts me off calling it thin, but is perhaps better labeled as subtle. The fruit and herbs of the end are quite pleasant, but there's a slight metallic bitterness detracts a bit.

01-03-2004 07:56:22 | More by aracauna
Photo of GeoffRizzo


3.8/5  rDev -6.6%

Somewhere between a copper and orange hue; a bit hazy and murky looking, as well as a decent amount of lacing to be noted. On the nose, fresh fruits, cherries, peaches, green apples, pears, simply amazing. A bit twangy and just on the border of being chewy, but not quite. Dry and a bit laid back; decent yeasty body with some reserved sugar, candy cane offerings. Sticky as it warms, sort of a bubble gum palate and a bit rustic. Reserved flavoring in the background, certainly drinkable; one that should be enjoyed by most BA's.

12-22-2003 02:45:06 | More by GeoffRizzo
Photo of Naerhu


2.58/5  rDev -36.6%

Appearance: opaque brown with 1 cm tan head.
Aroma: Slightly vinous aroma. Huge malty dark bread dough aroma. Aroma makes me remember the needing dough.
Taste: Funky dry varnishy mouthfeel, that jumps in the way before I can figure out the taste. dry toffee. Huge harsh citric acid. Nutty, biscuity. No back bone or finish. If I were to write anything more, I would repeate the words "acidic" and "biscuity" over and over and over again.
Drinkability: Why bother to finish the glass, I no not why.

12-17-2003 14:32:03 | More by Naerhu
Photo of moulefrite


3.85/5  rDev -5.4%

Honey colored with an ample creamy beige head-marginal lace. Softly fruity and malty on the nose. Crisp in the mouth and almost saison in style. Flavors are refreshingly fruity with light maltiness. Citric hop flavors clean things up nicely. A nice beer for the price. I paid 4.49 for the 750ml. And it does a decent job of trying to be what it would like to be-a Belgian! Good effort and a nice value.

11-30-2003 02:22:50 | More by moulefrite
Photo of daledeee


4.08/5  rDev +0.2%

I like Brewery Ommegang. This beer starts out with a fine pour. Nice rusty brown with a good bubbly head. Nice grainy and fruity nose. Tart and tangy. That is a good start. Hops are prominant in the finish. A little dry mouthfeel but not alot. Hops stay on the tongue after the drink.

This is a tough catagory with really strong competition. The thing I like about this one is the taste is truly distinctive. The price is right too. I will quaff again!!

11-26-2003 01:53:35 | More by daledeee
Photo of DESTRO


4.35/5  rDev +6.9%

alright, this puppy pours a hazy redish orange with a big fat frothy white head. beautiful. scents of grains, grass and malt rise up with the slightest whiff of alcohol finishing off the nose. the taste is a big thumbs up with grassy earth like flavors, yeasty and breadlike, yet mild and very pleasant. nice carbonation, bubbly but not overdone and it finishes dry and crisp. extremely drinkable and just an all out great beer. the perfect balance between big alcohol brews and easy drinking session brews. sweet.

paid $3.99 for a 750ml. $7.49 for a 4 pack of 12oz bottles.

11-24-2003 08:12:25 | More by DESTRO
Photo of brewdlyhooked13


4.55/5  rDev +11.8%

Appearance - poured into a Belgian glass, had to stop to keep the head from going over. Bubbly stuff! It settles down and leaves a think plug of foam in the center. I'll drink around it... leaves thick ropy lacing on the glass.

Aroma - spicy, peppery, some banana and clove aromas emanating from the yeast, somewhat hefe-like.

Taste - a fine taste experience. Medium malt based, a whole lotta bubbles, a fruity and yeasty flavor takes over, developing into some sourness. A restrained hop element just to wrap things up, though the sourness kind of lingers into the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel - very active and lively in the mouth. The high carbonation level gives it a very crisp feel and the well-pronounced flavors maintain themselves anyway for a superb balance.

Drinkability - delicious enough to drink everyday and about as affordable. Well done by Ommegang.

11-19-2003 19:37:43 | More by brewdlyhooked13
Photo of BierManVA


4.13/5  rDev +1.5%

This is my first Belgian Pale Ale. Dry and hoppy, not unpleasant. I am usually not a fan of Pale Ales, but this is a little different than what I am used to.

Heavily carbonated, amber in color. The bouquet begs to be explored..."drink me!" So I drink...smoothness follows and....another drink.


Thumbs Up!


10-30-2003 03:00:32 | More by BierManVA
Photo of ManekiNeko


4.25/5  rDev +4.4%

Served chilled in a Duvel tulip from a 750 mL corked and caged bottle.

Appearance: Clear orange liquid with reddish highlights topped by a huge pale yellow head of dense, tiny bubbles. Active carbonation quite visible and maintains a healthy head all throughout consumption. No bona fide lacing, but there were some good sized bits of foam left on the sides of the glass.

Smell: Gorgeously fruity aroma with hints of spices. Peach, orange, cherry, and melon fruit notes. Peppery and coriander spices. A great nose worth taking the time to savor.

Taste: Sweet caramel malt dominated by peppery spices. Slightly herby and medicinal with some banana esters and sourness on the finish. Malt is not quite strong enough to my liking, but it's still purty darn good.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and well carbonated. The cork took no effort to get out via hand. Flavors dance lightly on the tongue and mouth.

Drinkability: Oh god, yes. A solid beer with a bargain basement price. They could charge twice as much for it and I'd still consider this well worth it. I like Hennepin and Ommegang a little better, though.

10-28-2003 02:52:11 | More by ManekiNeko
Photo of HardTarget


2.9/5  rDev -28.7%

Aroma: Spicy, with a slight off smell I can’t place (sorry, musty?).
Appearance: Red/amber color with a monster head. Also noted the very active carbonation seemed to keep some very small (spices?) particles suspended in the brew. Also have to note, the entire pack I got were all gushers, quite a surprise from such a prestigious brewery. A solid coat of lace, which looked more like spray paint, dominated the glass.
Flavor: Spices are right up front, nutmeg, pepper, allspice? I’m taking wild guesses here. Spice fades into a malt sweet that takes about 5 seconds to transition to a hint of hops at the end. Balance is good and allows the spice and yeast to come through, but I have to say, this wasn’t the transcendental experience I had hoped for.
Mouthfeel: Medium, with a slight astringent pucker at the end that wasn’t unpleasant.
Overall Impression: Sigh. I really hope I got a bad batch somehow, which still counts against the brewer. Starting with a gush didn’t help my impressions, and the end result is that, while I’ll drink this, I’m already looking forward to my next beer. The flavor profile is well balanced and the spices are nice, but not great. Obviously some quality in the brew given the massive lacing, but overall, I feel like I didn’t get my money out of this.

10-21-2003 03:30:21 | More by HardTarget
Photo of SheepNutz


4.08/5  rDev +0.2%

750mL bottle poured into a tulip-style glass. It pours a hazy reddish-amber color with two fingers of head. There is minimal lacing left on the glass. The smell is very malty and sweet, with bits of lemon and caramel. The taste starts malty and sweet, with a bit of fruit and pepper. A hint of hops on the finish. The mouthfeel is fairly thick and smooth. The drinkability is also fairly nice. Another great brew from Ommegang.

10-20-2003 01:31:06 | More by SheepNutz
Photo of AtLagerHeads


4.03/5  rDev -1%

A very nice ale from Cooperstown. This good looking brew is a very murky deep red amber with an exquisite and creamy, tightly-formed tan head that retains beautifully and laces with remarkable gusto. Beer rarely looks much better than this one does.

The nose is very nice and provides hints of yeast, fruit and spice, along with a very strong alcohol sense that seems higher than its rating. A smooth, creamy feel crosses the lips and provides a bready and yeasty sense very quickly. Lighter notes of fruit and spice enter as each sip settles in and hints at a very nice complexity. The body is lighter and thinner than normally noted in this style. This is followed by a less than crisp, but notably clean finish. The drinkability seems quite good and I can imagine a setting with several of these consumed.

10-17-2003 01:42:57 | More by AtLagerHeads
Photo of JISurfer

South Carolina

3.88/5  rDev -4.7%

Not bad as far as American made Belgian brews. It's definately a lot more refreshing and crisp than most brews of it's kind, which tend to be heavy and thick. The taste is like most Belgians, but lighter and somewhat sharper. The appearance of the beer was a nice thing too. The color was "murky" brownish red, with a creamy colored foam. The head lasted a good bit and was very frothy to begin with.

10-04-2003 03:49:58 | More by JISurfer
Photo of Rumrunner


4.25/5  rDev +4.4%

750ml bottle.

I really enjoyed this ale. A new dimension in spice.

The appearance was a foggy brown amber. Dark gold hues on the sides of the glass with bubbles dancing their way to the top of the glass. The head was big and bubbly. It dissipated some but it did not disappear. The scents were unfortunately restrained. Good scents just not powerful. Mild yeast and pepper. Some grass and fruity sweet apples and green grapes.

The flavors are not restrained at all. Deep pepper and other spices. Nice and grainy. The spices tend to be on the bitter side. There are sweet apples and grapes in the flavors to try and balance out the spicey bite. The spice wins. It finishes with a clove and yeast flavor. The spices mellow slightly when the ale warms a bit. It becomes a bit more malty. A nice adventure for the taste buds.

This ale drinks rich and smooth. The spices leave your mouth with a dry crisp feeling. Very enjoyable.

I think the pepper spice would mellow a bit with some aging. What a great excuse to buy another bottle or two. Cheers.

10-01-2003 05:46:04 | More by Rumrunner
Rare Vos (Amber Ale) from Brewery Ommegang
91 out of 100 based on 2,654 ratings.