Monk's Café Flemish Sour Ale - Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
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Ratings: 2,279 | Reviews: 1,038 | Display Reviews Only:
4.2/5 rDev +9.7%
A - Poured out a clear, dark burgundy color with a one-finger, light brown colored head of foam. Okay retention and it left soapy trails of lace.
S - It smelled of sour black cherries and was slightly phenolic.
T - It had great sour fruit flavors - like black cherry and grapes.
M - It was crisp with a slightly puckering bite. A light to medium bodied ale with a very dry finish.
D - This is a really nice sour ale. It makes a great brew for a lengthy solo session.
11-15-2010 02:07:40 | More by zeff80
3.05/5 rDev -20.4%
Appearance: 11.2 oz bottle poured into a pint glass, because I'm a fuckin' rebel. Clear but dark ruby red with great head retention, no sediment. Nice looking stuff.
Smell: Sweet and sour, with an emphasis on the sweet; balsamic vinegar, a bit of cherry cough syrup, slightly mineral/metallic. Pretty middle of the road for the style.
Taste & mouthfeel: Fruity sweetness followed by mild sourness, which leads way to a sweet/sour finish. I'd like a bit less sweetness, but this is pleasant enough. Mouthfeel is a touch syrupy. Decent, but far from great.
07-30-2008 01:48:13 | More by largadeer
4.43/5 rDev +15.7%
A slightly hazy (but surprisingly clear given the style) mahogany body appears reddish in the glass and reveals crimson, ruby and orange highlights when held to the light. The creamy off-white head holds quite well and leaves some nice streaks and splotches of sticky lace throughout the glass. The nose is vinous with tempting, delicate, tart cherries and what appears to be some oakiness. It's not as bold as many other examples of the style, and it's certainly cleaner; but it is quite nice. A gentle massage of soft, fine carbonation washes over the tongue as it warms to become slightly creamy. The body is light, and it's quite smooth. Again, it's more delicate than many examples but very nice in its own way. The flavor mimics the nose with mildly vinous cherry and raspberry. It's acidity is restrained in comparison to most, and it's quite refreshing without becoming puckering. There's a bit of an oak character to it and it finishes dry with a slight astringency; but the sticky-sweet residue of many other examples is not present. Overall, this is a quite refreshing and enjoyable beer that represents the style well, but is somewhat restrained in comparison to most others.
08-02-2003 14:35:11 | More by NeroFiddled
4/5 rDev +4.4%
Pours a clouded and very dark ruby that has a light tan head at first but falls fast to nothing. Nose is not overpowering by any means by carries a wood tone and a slight yeast edge. Seems to be a touch of cherries on there as well. Flavor starts off fairly mild but moved to a cherry sugary sweet ending tone with a pretty firm wood overall tone. I kind of wish the flavor profile would stick around longer. Feel is good. Nice liquid feel with a good level of carbonation and bubble hitting my tongue. Drinkable, yes. The more and more I have of this style, the more and more I like it. And this one has helped to further my appreciation.
12-31-2007 02:00:47 | More by RblWthACoz
3.9/5 rDev +1.8%
On-tap 1/25/09 at Julian's in Providence, RI, served in a snifter glass.
A: The beer is a deep reddish brown color, with a short off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.
S: The aroma is cherries, light malts and a vinegary sourness.
T: The taste is very nicely balanced for a sour ale, with flavors of tart cherries and other dark fruits. The sourness seems to creep in slowly rather than hitting intensely. The malt character is thin and there's very little hops presence as you would expect. The after-taste is slightly sour.
M: Smooth and very crisp, light-to-medium body, medium carbonation, finish is clean.
D: Tasty, goes down very easily, not too filling, decent kick, good representation of style, I'm not usually a sour ale fan but is one that I liked and is worth drinking for a while.
01-27-2009 15:54:29 | More by TheManiacalOne
4/5 rDev +4.4%
A - Nice reddish brown color. Creamy, slightly off white head that settles quickly, but leaves a film on top and nice laceing.
S - Sour, lactic aroma. Musty, horse blanket with notes of orange and cherries.
T - Sweet and bright, with refreshing acidity of course. Citric character, reminicent of grapefruit zest. Still detecting a cherry like note, black cherry. Lingering maltyness in the finish.
M - Puckering and dry from the acidity. Good level of carbonation keeps it light on the palate.
D - Very drinkable beer, as a flemish red should be. Less acidity than some examples of this style, which makes it less intense and easier to drink, but it is also not as complex as something like Rodenbach.
03-05-2007 04:40:20 | More by nickfl
4.05/5 rDev +5.7%
Can't remember if rphogan or jwc215 sent me this, cheers to all!
Pours brown with 1 finger of cream head. Above average lacing & very good head retention
S: Intense tartness & some oakyness
T: Strong woody taste, along with some vinaigrette & hints of apple vinegar up front. I get iron, oakyness & a touch of leather, plus dryness & tartness as this warms. Finishes oaky, tart & puckery with hints of leafy hops & figs fighting through
MF: Medium bodied with low carbonation
Drinks pretty good for the style, probably not sour enough for true Flemish red fans. I liked this one
09-05-2008 02:46:01 | More by russpowell
4.08/5 rDev +6.5%
Reddish brown color, utterly transparent at the foot of the glass, with a bountiful head, lush, toffee-toned, creamy...very likable look.
Aroma: sour, cherries, underlying yeasty notes..that covers it!Right on target for style, without going overboard.
Taste: ooo, puckering at first, 'course I'm a sour ale wuss, apparently, than it slips away and a bite of sweetness as it leaves the mouth. Like a bite of sour cherries, then ah. Refreshing, despite the puckeration, and 3 sips in, I'm acclimated. Each subsequent meeting of glass and lip is overarchingly happy. Sour, then fruity, and a little sweet, lingering woody brown ale character at the finish.
Medium bodied, long, solid finish, tangy texture.
Fans of Flemish Sours can't go wrong with this one. They're a rabid bunch, but I know this'll please 'em.
09-25-2006 06:13:09 | More by feloniousmonk
3.85/5 rDev +0.5%
Purchased at a local beer bar. I did not see a date on the label or the bottle but it was pretty dark. The menu described this beer as "The Dr. Pepper of the beer world" -- That bar needs to fire its writer. It was not that, not that at all and that is not what I expect from a Flanders.
Beer is served in a tulip, beer is clear with a white head. The beer is brown but at the brown / red interface of colors. Looks awesome. Head is weak and lacing is way down, carbonation is low. Not odd for the style.
Kind of an odd aroma with this one. Slight sour with a hint of sweet caramel, with an acetic aroma at the backend, maybe a little citric.
Beer first is pretty thin. Not watery, just no body. Its starts out sweet but the sweetness gives way to a strong and dominant balsamic vinegar taste. The finish is tart. There is also an odd, woodsey, aftertaste that degrades my pleasure. This is an OK beer but has not been my favorite Flanders.
02-17-2010 16:52:40 | More by drabmuh
4/5 rDev +4.4%
Another one I'm surprised I haven't reviewed.
Light fiizzy head, darker toasty brown color.
Nose of sweet malts, fruit, apple, pear, cider like, vinegar, light lactic acid and very light sour tartness.
Taste is sweeter, light toasty brown malts, fruits with apple pear and tart fruit flavors, light sour and tart.
Mouth is lighter bodied with good carbonation.
Overall not bad, basically what I call the introduction to sours and wilds, etc. It's a light sour tart beer but nice and malty at the same time. And very drinkable.
03-20-2011 23:06:04 | More by jlindros
3.65/5 rDev -4.7%
a not that sour and way overpriced bottle in my opinion. at nearly 5 bucks for a shortie, i expected a bit more. pours a molasses looking redish brown color with an active off white head thats nice and thick. smells like tart fruit, not brett or anything like that. notes of oak as well as mild spice on the nose. flavor is sour cherries, brown sugar, and funky yeast. things are balanced well, but this is a pretty tame version of a flemish sour ale. not puckery or tangy at all, just a hint of vinegar as it goes down. feel is nice, bright bubbles and a medium body made to feel quite airy by the carbonation. overall a well made beer, but i prefer my sours with a bit more punch, especially for the price.
04-30-2012 17:39:19 | More by StonedTrippin
4.33/5 rDev +13.1%
The beer pours a brown color with a thick frothy offwhite head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a sour/vinegar scent wrapped around a malt base of pale, crystal, and roasted malts. It has a buttery malt aroma; very nice. The taste is really good. It has a smooth and refreshing sourness along with a buttery malt flavor. The crystal and roasted malts give the beer excellent malt character. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a medium bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This was a real treat. I'm a fan of sour beers and this was a good one.
02-14-2008 22:59:36 | More by WesWes
4/5 rDev +4.4%
The beer pours a dark brown color with a beige head. The aroma is tart apple and tart grapes. The taste is caramel malt as well as tart apples and grapes. The apple is dominant. Low-medium carbonation and a thin mouthfeel. A pretty nice sour beer that is a not as sour as some, but has a nice fruity flavor.
03-17-2010 03:54:01 | More by Mora2000
3.95/5 rDev +3.1%
From 09/04/10 notes. Poured from a 750ML bottle into a pint glass.
a - Pours a dark amber color with one inch of white head and moderate carbonation evident.
s - Smells of sour cherries, dark fruit, raspberries, and a hint of funk.
t - Tastes of sour cherries and other dark fruits mostly. Some fruity malts and spice as well.
m - Light to medium body and high carbonation.
d - Thought this was a a pretty good flanders; my girlfriend loves this beer. I enjoyed the sour cherries in the smell and taste and wish it was a little less carbonated, but definitely a good beer. Will definitely be getting more of this for my girlfirend and will definitely have some as well.
09-05-2010 21:44:31 | More by mdfb79
4.13/5 rDev +7.8%
Poured into a tulip glass:
Pours mahogany with a one-finger+ off white head that descends to about half the size and stays. Lacing sticks to glass.
The smell is mildly sour, vinuous, candy in the back.
The taste is sour/grapefruity/vinuous. Candy sweetness mixes in to give it a sweettart, dry finish.
Appropriately light-bodied and rather mild (but tasty) for the style, this is an easy drinker. It isn't as sour as other classic examples, but has a nicely balanced sourness to it and could be a good intro to the style. A nicely done brew. Could pair well with grapes and creamy cheeses.
06-09-2007 17:38:37 | More by jwc215
3.58/5 rDev -6.5%
Pours a brilliantly clear amber-ruby color with a thin tan colored head. The aroma is tart with notes of sharp cherry, caramel, tannic wood, and a light mustiness. The aroma is pretty interesting, I am definitely looking forward to the taste. The beer is fairly dry up front with a thin body. The taste has an appealing tartness to it that is a mix of a sour cherry-like fruitiness and a bit of acetic acid. The taste is a pretty clean mix of fruitiness, sourness and toffee malt notes. The taste is just a bit too simplistic and thin, did not quite live up to the aroma. Certainly drinkable and even a bit enjoyable.
08-30-2005 04:18:09 | More by Gueuzedude
3.7/5 rDev -3.4%
330 mL bottle,
A: Pours burgundy with a full, billowy off-white head, gobs of lace, good head retention.
S: A lot more vinegar/acetic acid character than I'm used to in this style, initially thought the beer would be a lot more acidic than it turned out to be. Enjoyable complex smell.
T: Tasty brown ale. Pretty standard flavours - strawberry, wood, vanilla, lactic acid. Complexity is not huge, but it has some interesting notes.
M: Too much carbonation upon the pour, but a couple swirls of the flute takes care of that. Pretty smooth, moderate acidity for the style.
D: A real nice Flemish brown ale and one of the best bargain sours out there. Paired well with some goat cheese I was eating. Recommended as a good introduction the sour styles.
02-26-2009 17:49:24 | More by Halcyondays
3.88/5 rDev +1.3%
Appearance: pours a reddish brwon color with a 1/4" head that breaks apart immediately.
Smell: tart cherries, sourness, and a fruity sweetness is pleasant on the nose.
Taste: mild malt presence with loads of cherry flavor. Sourness is mild but very noticeable. Bitterness is mellow.
Mouthfeel: medium bodied beer. Crisp to start, less crisp and a bit dry at the finish. Aftertaste is short lived.
Drinkability: slow sipping beer. Bomber bottle is more than enough for a session.
03-26-2010 21:21:48 | More by Gavage
Monk's Café Flemish Sour Ale from Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
86 out of 100 based on 2,279 ratings.