Rare Vos (Amber Ale) - Brewery Ommegang

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

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3,072 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,072
Reviews: 1,124
rAvg: 4.07
pDev: 10.81%
Wants: 165
Gots: 451 | FT: 1
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: 3,072 | Reviews: 1,124
Photo of tmm313
4.28/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Poured a hazy light amber color with a soapy 2 finger head. Nice streaming carbonation.

S- Belgian yeast, banana, apple, pear, bready malts, and a little caramel.

T- There was the typical Belgian yeast, banana, apple/pear, and pepper there, but what impressed me most was the strong malt presence and rich caramel/clove/earthy hop finish. Flavors had a lot of substance, nice balance and complexity.

M- Thicker side of medium body. Nice crisp carbonation and slightly lingering fruit, spice, and hop.

O- I was pretty impressed with this beer. The more you drank, the more you knew how beautifully crafted it was. The caramel malt presence in the flavor added a rich dimension to this Belgian Pale I can't remember experiencing elsewhere. Very nice.

Photo of barnzy78
4.09/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750mL bottle, purchased as a 3-pack at Costco (with Hennepin and Three Philosophers)
L - hazy amber with a huge ivory head that holds excellent retention and sticks to the glass on its way down
S - fruity, spicy, caramel, orange, yeast
T - orange, Juicy Fruit, yeast, spicy coriander, caramel, bread
F - medium body, moderate carbonation, semi-dry finish with ample bitterness
O - second time around with this one, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I'd buy this again if the price was right.

Photo of KHarz
4.58/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I really enjoyed this beer overall. As I'm not a huge fan of belgian beers in general, I enjoyed the fact that Rare Vos was extremely well balanced in terms of keeping the sugary Belgian flavors to a pleasant minimum. I didn't feel overwhelmed by these sugars and felt that they were kept in check by a pleasant level of carbonation.

Photo of WheelsPSU
4.09/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on tap at Dinosaur BBQ (with a bbq brisket melt).

A - Copper in color with a rather small head. Lacing was average.

S - malt, caramel, bread, bananas and a touch of clove.

T - The Belgian yeast strain is quite good in this. More bananas and clove from the nose with a healthy dose of spiciness and bread.

M - Medium carbonation, medium body, but a touch chewy. Also the initial blast of carbonation was soda like but it quickly calmed down.

Photo of LI_PO12
4.22/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle into Tulip

Appearance- copper/burnt orange. hazy, big white head with lots of lacing

Aroma- Belgian yeast, spicey, pepper, banana, fruity, apple and pear esters, funk, bready malts, very nice

Flavor- A little more spicy/funk here and less fruity than the aroma, well balanced, with a dry lingering finish

Mouthfeel- Medium, good carbonation

Overall- Very tasty, and one I've returned to many times. recommend trying.

Photo of AwYeh
3.93/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A: Foggy golden-amber color with two fingers of very frothy head and decent lacing.

S: Belgian yeast is at the forefront, with lots of banana, clove, bubblegum, and some tropical fruit. While it sounds pretty standard for a Belgian brew, it's well done here.

T: Some bread and citrus flavors come out to complement those in the aroma (yeast, banana, and clove).

M: Medium-bodied with lively carbonation, very smooth and creamy with a nice dry finish.

O: Solid offering from Ommegang; it evaded me for a long time, but I'm glad I finally picked a bottle up. For the price tag, this is definitely something I'll be buying again.

Photo of CochonKing
4.81/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Appearance - Pours a caramel mixed with amber in color. Light frothy head that lasts for a couple of minutes. Excellent lacing - 4.5

Smell - Malt with notes of lemon and bubble gum with light caramel notes underneath. Leading into a nice spice note that ommegang is so amazing at. Cloves and ginger among many other spices are faint and almost undetectable in the back ground. - 5

Taste - Excellent malt forward flavor with clove and spices backing it that leave a long finish and a crisp and refreshing flavor. - 4.75

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied with light crisp bubbles. This beer is excellent on the palate . 4.75

I would recommend trying this beer with some braised pork belly. It pulls fat off the palate excellently.

Photo of NeedBeerHere
4.4/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours out a dark amber/orange in color with a NICE three finger head with good retention. Smell is of nice Belgian yeast -- bananas and cloves. A little fruity in the nose but the yeast takes the forefront here. Taste is more of the nice Belgian yeast and what was in the nose. There is a little fruity hops with a great aftertaste that includes a slight bitterness but not overwhelming. I really love the Belgian yeast so this is all win for me. Mouthfeel is really quite thick for the style which is hard to do and keep all these variables together in such a nice beer. Really a nice beer that I haven't had for years and really glad I tried it again.

Photo of JamieDuncan
4.2/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bought a few of the Ommegang christmas packs so am regular with Rare Vos. Good looking beer that smells very good. Very tasty, one of the better Ambers. Like the beer but would not buy on its own but would certainly buy as a value along with some of the other Ommegang beers. Excellent beer but not a great buy alone.

Photo of ThaneMcC
4.19/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A- amber, with thin off white foam and mild effervescence

S- floral and fruit esters, very nice without being perfumey

F- sweet up front with transition to hoppy bitter balance with clean finish

M- good mouthfeel, good carbonation and astringent enough to cleanse the palate

O- overall very good beer, excellent belgian style beer at a reasonable price! Would definitely purchase again and share with friends

Photo of MaximalC
4.26/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Pours a rich, murky amber color with a bountiful cap of eggshell foam; the presentation is pretty much exactly what you expect from a Belgian ale. The aroma is fresh and vibrant, smelling of coriander, orange, shades of wheat, and some Saaz.

The taste is similar to the aroma, featuring each of the elements described above. There is also an accent of something resembling tropical fruit--not sure if that's the grains of paradise or something else. Just enough bitterness lingers long enough to finally peak through on the back end. The yeast lends a perky, chalky character that complements the other flavors nicely. The balance really is excellent, as no single facet ever overpowers another, and this remains true to the finish. The carbonation is predictably lively as well. The body, however, is noticeably thin and possessed of an unusual slickness for the style. It's not heinous, though it did strike me immediately upon tasting. A heavier body just would have supported the bountiful flavors more ably.

Overall, this is yet another zesty, vibrant, drinkable Belgian-style ale from Ommegang. This would be dynamite in the summer or spring.

Photo of Dodo2step
4.41/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

P- Wegman's in mechanicsburg

My 500th review

A- light amber color with a 3 finger head that is foamy and leaves a frothy laving on my cru. A nice mountainous head as well. great look and inviting.

S- fruity esters but almost floral like. there but not there a perfect combination almost. Citrus and yeasty maltiness.

F- the fruity esters follow a bready yeast. Very smooth transition. this is nice. not much else to say. damn good

M- light bodied yet creamy but smooth. goes down with ease. The grain warms my throat but it isn't strong.

O- a great beer for my 500th. I would love a case of it. This goes in to my top 10!!!

Photo of delta490
3.37/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- pours out a lighter cloudy amber. The creamy white head has great retention and leaves nice lacing

S- the aroma is almost non-existent having only a very slight citrus

T- the taste is also pretty subtle, with hints of citrus and caramel and spice bouncing around

M- full but not heavy

O- It's a well made beer which makes me wish it was more flavorful than it was. It is a dialed back version of a Belgian Dubbel and seemed muted.

Photo of TappaKeggaBrew
4.33/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Amber with a touch of redness, hazy to cloudy, with a thick, dense head the color of vanilla cream; lacing was scant in comparison to the head.

S: A mix of grain and fruity esters, then orange oil, then a mix of citrus & evergreen notes from the hops, and finally some spices (white pepper & coriander).

T: Flavors evolve quickly in the mouth, so it took a few sips to really take it all in. There's a moment of bready flavors that quickly drowns under a wave of tart, fruity flavors. Malt sweetness is there for a moment, then gone as tart fruit takes over again. The finish has two waves of bitterness: a short, spicy wave where I definitely appreciate the flavoring a they threw into the kettle to boil; and a second, lingering wave of tangy-bitter hops.

M: Crisp and well-carbonated. Thin, and more dry than moist, although not quite astringent.

O: A superb Belgian ale with spices. Mine paired nicely with Asian crackers and spicy ahi poke. Probably better suited to warmer weather, but good anytime.

Photo of Beer-A-Lot
3.73/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

This beer has a great look and feel but is lacking in taste in my mind. Needs more citrus or more maltiness to keep it from tasting flat. I love Ommegang and I think they do Belgians right, but this is a bit lacking for me. Wish I liked it more. I'll try it in bottle to see if its the keg but maybe I'm just not a fan.

Photo of Edward19
4.46/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I have had this beer multiple times and that should speak to how good this beer is but I will review my first encounter with it.

Beer was purchashed on tap at the Eagle Tavern in Liverpool, NY (they no longer have it on tap). Outstanding beer. I would recommend this to all of the beer lovers.

Photo of ckollias
4.25/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Enjoyed this 12oz bottle out of a large snifter glass.

A: Pours an amber hue with a thick white head that slowly dissipates leaving a great trail and solid persistent lace.

S: Sweet bread and Belgian yeast aroma with hints of Belgian candy.

T: Sweet Belgian brew with a slightly fruity tart middle that finishes dry.

M: Medium body and medium carbonation.

O: Solid beer – great flavors and aromas.

Photo of karengarys
3.82/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75


Take this review with a grain of salt. I'm not a big Belgian guru, so I'll just head into this from a standard beer junkie point of view. You've been warned.


this pours a very nice hazy amber, leaving a nice off-white head, but it is a little pop-like.


This smells - Any guesses? RIGHT! CLOVES! Spicy. Like, food spices, not beer spices. I guess beers like this are supposed to be this way. Some day I'll understand. In the mean time I'm getting cloves, flowers, sugar...


Taste has a lot of.... Any guesses? Cloves! Cloves, and pepper, some nutmeg, some cinnamon... more... Fennel? no. But something with an edge. But there is a lot going on, and it is very interesting.


Mouthfeel is very clean. It is nice and fizzy, and as you drink it (mine didn't sit very long), it just carbonates all over. Yummy!

Overall, this is pretty good, but brace yourself for an overwhelming spice thing.

Photo of Fatehunter
4.11/5  rDev +1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured a foamy two fingers of head on a cloudy medium straw colored body. Great retention.
The aroma has lots of bright fruit: apricot, banana and orange.
The taste is full of flavor but still easy drinking. Mild sweet fruit notes with some lemon bitterness.
The texture is a fun fizzy with moderate carbonation.

Photo of Immortale25
4.46/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a tall glass at Cure New Orleans. No freshness date.

A- Pours a light amber color with a 1/2 inch off-white head that retains decently before becoming a thick ring around the edge of the glass and a sheer sheet of surface foam. Semi-resilient lacing leaves a thick ring around the edge of the glass.

S- Heavy bubble gum aroma with some herbal quality.

T- The bubble gum continues along with some wheat and spice. Big Belgian yeast presence with possibly some candi sugar.

M- Slightly sharp from the medium-high carbonation and a body leaning toward the lighter side.

O- Love this beer for its somewhat intense bubble gum flavor that has a generous dose of malt and yeastiness (is that a word?).

Photo of Ryan_Graham
4.66/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Dark amber color with one finger head that lasts throughout the drinking process. Solid lacing. This is a beautiful looking beer. A bit yeasty to the nose with a hint of fruit. Tastes great. I mean outstanding. The balance is almost perfect. It goes down smooth and ends with a fruity, hoppy finish. The aftertaste leaves something to be desired but the initial flavor is exceptional. Overall, this is an awesome beer. I would recommend this to a friend in a heartbeat.

Photo of MikeWard
3.87/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

poured from a 12oz bottle into a goblet. Best by 1/23/14.

Beautiful looking beer, golden slightly hazy body with 2 finger creamy head, eventually dissipating to 1/2 finger. Good lacing. Nice carbonation, a slow steady stream of bubbles.

A sort of sweetness on the nose, with a little fruit.

Nice tasting beer. Nice and lively due to the carbonation. I confess to not having much undrstanding of the nuances of tastes in Belgians, but this is very enjoyable.

As mentioned, tingling on the mouth.

Overall, a pretty good beer. Can see having this again on occasion.

Photo of CSFerrier
4.8/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75


A beautiful hazy amber that's darker at the top.

Smells like many of the other Ommegang beers, which is a wonderful thing.

Tastes amazing.

It lingers in the mouth and tingles in the throat and nose. Stays in your mouth for quite a while after the drink.

Overall, it's goddamned amazing.

Photo of dwren89
4.24/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: amber with gold highlights, fluffy cream colored head, some cloudiness

Aroma: fruity and spicy, showcasing belgian yeast character and fruity Maris otter like malt character

Taste: smooth and easy drinking with belgian spicy yeast character and earthy notes mellowing the fruitiness of the malt. Great balance of flavor

Mouthfeel: crisp, tingling and highly carbonated. Very palate cleansing, medium body

Overall: A great belgian style amber that showcases fruity malt character tempered by belgian yeast spicy and earthiness.

Photo of watermelon
3.56/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Had on draft at Galileos in Boone.

A: Golden-orange with a white head that stayed for the duration of the beer. There was a fair amount of lacing on the glass.

S: Orange is the dominant aroma with a fair amount of pepper and coriander, possibly a few other spices as well as other less prominent citrus notes.

T: Again orange taste along with the spices mentioned above. There was a slight medicinal taste also, although not unpleasant.The alcohol is hidden very well.

F: This beer was very easy to drink. It had the perfect amount of carbonation which complimented both the citrus and the spice notes in the taste and smell. There was a nice zing on the tongue after drinking

O: I really enjoyed this beer It was only a dollar to upgrade from a budlight and worth every penny($4 a pint $14 a pitcher on non special days). This is a perfect end of summer beginning of fall brew, fruity enough to be enjoyed on a hot day but enough spice to remind one that the leaves are changing and the weather is becoming cooler. I wouldn't hesitate to order this again and highly recommend it to others. Plus at 6.5 abv theres enough to give a solid buzz but not so much that it would be unsafe to drive after ordering another.

Rare Vos (Amber Ale) from Brewery Ommegang
91 out of 100 based on 3,072 ratings.