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Rare Vos (Amber Ale) - Brewery Ommegang

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Rare Vos (Amber Ale)Rare Vos (Amber Ale)

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2,984 Ratings

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Ratings: 2,984
Reviews: 1,110
rAvg: 4.07
pDev: 10.81%
Wants: 148
Gots: 380 | 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:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-24-2000

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,984 | Reviews: 1,110
Photo of rattech
3.93/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: An opaque red, a small head forms but subsided fairly fast. Small bubbles are moving quite fast up the side of the tulip, quite appealing.

Smell: Yeasty, sweet smell emanates. I do not smell anything overpowering, it smells like a quality beer but nothing stands out.

Taste: The first hint of the beer is bitter, after that there really seems to be a lack of depth. It has a mild taste and is not particularly heavy. It certainly is palatable, but I wish there was a little more detail in the taste, perhaps a touch more sweetness would be nice.

Mouthfeel: Carbonation is good, texture is nice. Solid.

Drinkability: Very smooth, and a fairly competitive price. I think I would buy the other flavors over this one. The alcohol is hidden quite nicely.

Photo of theozag
4.85/5  rDev +19.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

this weekend i am in canandaigua, new york, visiting relatives. their beer selection is not only tragically poor but also far (far FAR!) out of date. so in the interest of the public good, i decided to dispose of nearly all their beer. as a consolation i went down to the local wegman's and took a shot-in-the-dark on a replacement for the wasted suds.

i hit a grand slam; this is one of the very best beers i have ever tasted. to wit...

Follow the directions on the bottle and pour out very slowly. You will be pleasantly surprised at the thick, everlasting white head that forms on the top of the brew. Once you've sampled the rich, crisp, hoppy smell however you may kick yourself if you pour too quick. The head won't go anywhere on this slightly ruddy, amber brew. So pour with care and you can enjoy it right away. Start is malty smooth with a slightly sweet note. Settles full-bodied with a variety of flavors. Caramel, wheat, and a near-hidden fruitiness are the most distinct flavors i can detect. Finishes with a hop bitter edge and a long-lasting but not altogether unpleasant aftertaste. In fact, I dare say for those who like amber beers this is an ideal bottle. Especially when it's as fresh as the ones I picked up today. It has superlative character, flavor, and blend. Rare Vos is without a doubt the "sly fox" of full-bodied ales. In fact, I think I may have found a new favorite beer. Well, that's a tough call, but I am certain it is my favorite when it comes to non-vintage micro- or macrobrews. I only wish I could get a four-pack of this stuff in Texas instead of making the trek into the far north! Give it a try and I know you won't be disappointed.

Photo of woodychandler
4.42/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Once more, Bridgewaters Pub in 30th Street Station continued to impress me with their selection. This was on-tap on my way back to LNC from PHL on 20 January 2006, following the Rich Wagner lecture at Yards.

Danny brought this to me witha thick, tawny head with decent retention. The color was a slightly hazy medium-amber. The nose had a distinctive yeast-driven mustiness. The mouthfeel was thick, full, and very effervescent. The taste was fruity (like Juicyfruit gum), musty, and with a tang of spiciness. The finish was very dry with the mustiness leaving a dusty feeling on the back of my throat. Yow!

Photo of meadhead
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Acidic malt spice fruit-

Pours nice red-orange
clear-opaque too

{depending how much yeast sediment you pour in
from bottom}

just a slight touch of sour
-nothing unpleasent of course-
stays on the front of the palatte
goes down easy
not forced
certainly nothing overwhelming
by "Belgian Amber" standards

very good anyway
if not a bit mild mannered

Photo of barondebourgogne
3.32/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Medium orange color with an active, coarse head.

Funky, fun Belgian yeastiness dominates the aroma. Hints of piney hops, white grapes, dried apricots and green apples. Very complex!

Metallic tastes initiate the palate. Softens to fruity complexities. Dried orange peel and light caramely malts. Not as complex on the palate as it was on the nose.

Highly carbonated mouthfeel. Almost champagne- like. Finishes dry.

A respectable Belgian Amber. I think I will stick with the Ommegang Abbey Ale if given the choice.

Photo of 1fastz28
3.47/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

got this in a 25.4 oz cork bottle for around 4 bucks. the smell is the best part, very fruit with a slight hop scent and a strong yeast scent, taste fruity as well almost like a hard cider, not something I'm a big fan of, but something thats interesting and an occasional pick up at the beer store

Photo of Gmann
3.95/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a hazy copper color with a nice tan head, that settled fairly quick for a Belgian, not much in the lacing department. The smell is of light malt, light Belgian yeast. The beer is pretty well balanced, you can taste the malt and Belgian yeast/spice up front, little sweet, and it ends with a touch of hops. This beer is well carbonated but not too much where it limits its drinkability. This is a very nice beer. If I am ever up visiting the baseball hall of fame, I am definitely checking out this brewery.

Photo of hunteraw
3.56/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served at Stubbie in Gainesville from a 12 oz bottle.

Appearance: Much lighter in color than I expected, this doesn't seem to be a "dark ale" at all. Perhaps a bit darker than your typical Belgian Pale Ale, but not by much. Now I don't know what to expect... Amber in color, good head. Some lacing.

Smell: Again, much lighter than I'd expect. I though I might be mistaken, so I had a friend smell as well. Very light in the aroma department, with some mild belgian yeast character and perhaps a hint of spice.

Taste: I'm starting to wonder if I got a bad or mislabeled bottle, somehow. Again, the flavor profile is much ligher than I'd expect from a Belgian Dark Ale. Reminds me much more of a Belgian Pale, not the dark fruit and candi sugar of a Dark...

Mouthfeel: Nice and crisp, good. Good carbonation.

Drinkability: Odd, drinkability is good but the beer is not what I was expecting, at all.

Photo of sinstaineddemon
3.6/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - this belgian pours initially with a five inch, but after sitting for a minute and a second pour, it calms down to an iced tea brown color witha a full finger of cream white head sitting atop it, plenty of busy carbonation keeps it afloat

S - a tart wheatiness with slight roasted characteristics and a definite alcohol aroma with some cloying fruity esthers, maybe apple. an up front bouquet, but not overpowering

T - nice bold flavor, wheaty and thick, like the aroma, quite tart slightly nutty, with faint appley hints, not afraid to show some flavor this beer, but not to the point of poignancy

M&D - thick and slightly chewy, but not syrupy, wheaty and yeasty, smooth, but quite tart yet still easy down

Ommegang brews a damn good Ameri-Belgian!

Photo of jettjon
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From the 750ml bottle with no freshness date evident. Decants with a nice “pop,” poured my beerheads.com pint glass. Pale amber-brown clear color with a plethora of Champaign-like bubbles. Thick light-tan head fades slowly leaving a thin cap and generous lacing. Nose of cloves, light malt, a touch of dark fruit, and the faintest hint of alcohol. Taste follows suit, making me think more of a Belgian Strong Pale than a Strong Dark. A small dark fruit presence is followed by a light clove/coriander spice presence. Finishes rather blandly with very little bitterness. Good flavor overall. Mouth is on the strong side of carbonated, watery edging toward thin, and smooth and easy on the palate. Drinkability is very good overall, but like all highly-carbonated beers tends to attack the old esophagus giving a heart-burn like feeling if drunk in anything less than moderation. The entire 750ml bottle should be sipped over time, but at a “mere” 6.5%, it’s definitely do-able.

Overall: Ommegang continues to prove a reliable “domestic Belgian” brewery. Not what I’d call a “Strong Dark” but a sold Belgian Ale nonetheless. I strongly recommend any of their offerings. One final point: I picked this one up for 5.99, which is a heck of a lot of bang for the buck.

Photo of gmfessen
4.57/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Nice looking bottle, packaged like a champagne bottle. Poured from the bottle into a pint glass, beer is a hazy yellow-amber color with a frothy foamy head. Smell is mostly of amber malt, a slight hop profile and very slight tinge of alcohol; perhaps some small amount of spice. Taste is initially sweet of the amber malt, a slight metallic taste, followed by a hoppy, sort of dry finish. Mouthfeel is thick with carbonation, but the beer is rather light and goes down very smooth. Overall, this is definitely a drinkable beer and worth trying.

Photo of mpyle
3.18/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Big, long lasting, whitish head. Fairly good clarity, rich copper color.

Malty nose, a bit citrusty. No hop and not much (if any) spice. A small amount of alcohol, but otherwise clean and subdued.

Malty up front balanced by a big hit of hop bitterness. Finishes a bit malty and not overly dry.

Medium body, with some snappy carbonation. Despite the carbonation is generally creamy with a bit of alcohol warming.

Overall a bit too big and strong of a Belgian Pale for regular drinking, but a nice beer.

Photo of ekempey
4.35/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle, poured into a snifter. The beer has a gorgeous amber color with a frothy white head. This has a great taste of fruits, and is especially vibrant with a hint of orange. This went down smooth, and is very drinkable. I wish I had eaten something with this as it would go well with some of my meat dishes.

Photo of bigone4
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I received this beer from an in person trade with Silks636 back in October. I have just gotten around to give it a try. I have since found this brew locally in W. Springfield, MA at Town and Country Liquors. After popping the cork this beer poured a nice amber orange hue. Tons of yeast sediment in the bottom of the bottle which I left there since the label suggested doing when poured. Very nice fluffy off-white head with good solid head retention from start to finish. There was a mild clinging lace down the whole pint glass. Smells light and dough like. There are tones of malt sweetness with a touch of citrus hop florals. There was a certain fruitiness almost grape or plum essence hidden in the background. Smooth tasting flavor with a mix of different light malt flavor and slight caramel hints on the pallet. Definitely a mild yeast presence in the aftertaste. Sweet malt flavors up front followed by a nice well balanced mix of hop bitterness toward the finish. There was an almost sharp dry hopped taste to the finish.

Extremely smooth and drinkable. Very nice offering that I will certainly will have again. I recommend giving this one a try. It is certainly worth it. I may have to cellar a few bottles for a while and taste the difference. Overall a great brew with a lot of taste and provides to be quite an enjoyable Belgium style beer.

Photo of BuckSpin
4.47/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this with my Easter dinner (ham). Blame my 2 year old for taking my notepad and scribbling all over it, then hiding it. Oh well...

It poured a nice dark amber, a warm unfiltered haze of brassy, burnt orange. Head was over a finger of thick, sticky, off-white foam that stuck around a while & laced nicely.

Nose is rich, sweetness, dark brown sugar, malts, maybe molasses, earthy, some citrus poking through, the classic spice qualities Ommegang is known for peek over the alcohol esters...very nice.

Its crisp on the pallete. Malted, spiced nicely (some light clove, maybe a hint of pepper), traces of bread/yeast. Its surprisingly creamy as well as crisp...nice. The tastes meld & dance on the tongue as the spices mix with the sweet malts. Its crisp & dry on the finish, a nice bittersweet echo & aftertaste (with a trace of citrus) linger as it fades away. Very nice.

It paired, as many Belgian Ales do, very well with Easter dinner. Of particular interest was the way it danced with the glazed, spiced smoked ham - awesome. I could easily see it doing very well with some sharp, drier cheeses.

A great interpretation, and a great bang for the buck as well. Would drink it again (meal or no meal) again in an instant. Highly recommended.

Photo of jpkoch1962
4.77/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Frothy, long lasting head tops a deep amber, slightly yeasty appearance. The aromas was full of soft esters; cloves, citrus, and sweet malts was quite inviting. This ale is a smooth, complex, well balanced assortment of cloves, ginger, and lemons which compliment a soft maltiness. A nice peppery earthiness was detected through out. For such a complex brew, the finish is surprisingly dry and spritzy, with just some phenols lingering in the aftertaste. This has got to be one of the finest ales I've drank. Tonight is St Nicholas Eve. A very nice ale to compliment my wife's spicey German christmas cookies. A real steal for 3.99 for a 25 oz bottle.

Photo of SetarconeX
3.66/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Actually a rather nice looking beer. Beer goes from red to yellow, depending on how I hold the class and the light going through it. Scent has a nice lemony tinge, though a bit of alcohol slips though (which really is surprising as the ABV isn't too terribly high).

Taste is rather nicely balanced. Citrus flavors up front, and a not too overwhelming oily hop flavor on the finish. A decent beer, though I really wish there were some specific aspect of it that stood out a bit more.

Well worth a try though.

Photo of brdc
3.91/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter, an amber, hazy beer with some golden overtones. It has a creamy/fluffy/bubbly white head that dissipates after five-six minutes leaving a nice lacing behind.
Delicate smell of earth, alcohol and oranges.
Very nice taste of caramel, with a hint of citric fruits, earth and yeast with a dry hop finish, but subdued when compared to the hoppiness of some american pale ales. Very well balanced.
Medium to high-medium body, easy to drink.
A very good ale, another excellent job from Ommegang.

Photo of jwc215
4.4/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours cloudy orangish/brownish with a creamy head this is very well-retained. It leaves trailing lace.

The smell is of fruitcake with sugary spices. A touch of alcohol. Wonderfullly rich smell.

The taste is of sweet fruity malt with spiced earthy breadiness. Warming alcohol notes emerge but never overwhelm. It has a creamy body with a spicy tang. A tartness balances out the sweetness. Just a touch of hops emerge as it warms and nears the finish. It's very well-balanced, with the sweet spiciness coming out ahead. It has a long, crisp, dry finish.

It has a nice texture with a lingering fruity spiciness.

This is a very nice "sipping" brew. A very nice interpretation of a Belgian. Serves well as an apperitif or as a complement to a creamy Belgian or French cheese plate.

Photo of Pegasus
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Hazy medium brown color, with a small white head which retains well.

Aroma: Intense candy-like aroma, with light fruit notes, restrained notes of sweet alcohol, and a vague mustiness.

Taste: Opens with a slightly spicy, malty flavor, with apple and pear notes and a mild hop bitterness. The finish is quite sweet and dry, with a lingering spiciness.

Mouth feel: Smooth, soft, quite full, pleasant.

Drinkability/notes: A quite drinkable example of the style, seems quite authentic when compared to Belgian-brewed examples.

Photo of Freshie
4.21/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Much darker than I expected. Cloudy amber colour with gread head retention. Fantastic lacing.

The smell is yeasty with pungent hops lingering.

The taste is both bitter and sweet. Spicy hops starts and sweet malt finishes. Very active carbonation adds to the bite.

The aftertaste is a bit too bitter and heavy for myself, though the ale is still very drinkable.

Photo of wavz
4.13/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Great head very much like its brother Duvel, but doesnt stick around as long. Also a great yellow amber in color when you pour this one out.

S- Sugary yeasty like a good belgium beer should be but the malt also stands out at the end of this great beer.

T- Again sugar stands out as the most dominate feature, but as that fades away you get the finshing sweet malts and light spiciness.

M- above average lacing with plenty of carbination. Dry and smooth on the finish.

D- If you like belgium beers like I do, this could easily become a bottle a day habit.


Photo of GooberMcNutly
3.72/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

750ml. Poured with a cream white head with large bubbles. Non-clear golden yellow with lots of suspended yeast. Yeast totally non-flocculating, so even a careful pour would have left 1/2 the bottle behind if I didn’t take some yeast. Aroma was typical Ommegang, sour and spicy with vapors of peach and cherry. Palate was less sour than aroma and about 1/2 way between Duvel and Ommegang Ommegang. The "fine dose of yeast" did cause massive rumbling in my plumbing later that night though.

Photo of BurnsTau
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours deep amber, nice amount of white head.

Smells and tastes of mostly malts. Seeing Belgian on the label I was expecting an overly sweet brew, nice but a bit heavy. This brew was anything but. Nice malty flavors obviously shine through but this beer is not out of balance at all. Refreshing and drinkable are what I would describe it as.

This is a full flavored beer which I enjoyed very much, I would recommend it to all.

Photo of Byeast
4.33/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: deep , hazy , amber/orange , with a thick , creamy layer of off-white foam.

Smell: malty, yeasty , light citrus , a bit fruity and floral , and a hint of clove.

Taste: very fresh malt that has a nice biscuity and fruity flavor , slight citrus on the light lemon/acidic side , pleasant dry yeast , a noticeable hop bitterness, some spice in the end. Refreshing. Just a hint of metalic flavor.

Mouthfeel: creamy , active carbonation.

Drinkability: A very drinkable Belgian Ale. Nice and fresh , not to heavy or strong. Exellent taste! Tried this with mussels recently ...Nice!

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Rare Vos (Amber Ale) from Brewery Ommegang
91 out of 100 based on 2,984 ratings.