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Monk's Café Flemish Sour Ale - Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.

Not Rated.
Monk's Café Flemish Sour AleMonk's Café Flemish Sour Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

2,380 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 2,380
Reviews: 1,047
rAvg: 3.84
pDev: 13.8%
Wants: 55
Gots: 175 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V. visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Flanders Oud Bruin |  5.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Brewed for Monk's Café in Philadelphia, but also available for retail purchase elsewhere. Oud Bruin in style; a traditional blend of young and old beers.

(Beer added by: nomad on 06-19-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,380 | Reviews: 1,047 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of JBogan
2.68/5  rDev -30.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A nice looking ruby color body topped by a very thick off white head fills the tulip glass. The head remains thick but leaves only minimal lacing. Still, an attractive brew.

An aroma of cherries and musty vinegar. It actually smells better than the description.

Now comes the taste, and it is quite a letdown after what the aroma suggested. Very little sour character about this beer, in fact it seemed much sweeter than it did sour. There was still a hint of cherry, but it was muted by the sweetness. I really can't put a finger on any other flavors, it just had sort of a blandness to it.

Mouthfeel was thin and very slippery. It was also somewhat lifeless and uninteresting.

While I usually enjoy beers of this style, this is one I'll be passing on in the future. Other than the appearance and to a lesser degree the aroma, this beer had nothing about it which beckoned me back for more.

JBogan, Sep 25, 2009
Photo of mooseo
2.7/5  rDev -29.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

11.2oz bottle poured into tulip. This was my first sour, so I was not sure what to expect.

A - Deep red brown with a decent head that fades quickly.

S - Vinegar and malt, with a hint of sourness and some cherry. Funky and not very pleasant.

T - Sweet dark fruit (mostly cherry) at first mixed with some vinegar and yeast. Just a bit sour, much less than I was expecting.

M - Light bodied with average carbonation.

D - This is my first sour beer and I'm not sure what to think. It wasn't very enjoyable but not horrible either. The vinegar aroma really turned me off, but the taste wasn't as bad. This style seems like an acquired taste, and I'll have to experiment with some more examples.

mooseo, Oct 14, 2011
Photo of rinhaak
2.7/5  rDev -29.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Judging from others' reviews of this beer, it is entirely possible my beer was poured terribly wrong. However, I can only judge my own experience.

That said, Monk's Café poured with absolutely no head. It had a dark reddish hue, similar to a Dr. Pepper. In fact, not only did the color resemble Dr. Pepper, so did the visible carbonation bubbles, the mouthfeel, and – to a large extent – the taste.

This beer was very sweet with a sour twinge running parallel. This balance reminded me of Panda Express' sweet n' sour sauce: really sweet, with a hint of vinegar. There was a distinct cherry flavor, which added to its soda pop character.

Overall, I was tremendously disappointed with the brew. It was imbalanced towards the sweet side of the spectrum, and didn't have much, if any, depth of flavor. It go down easily enough, and if you are looking for a sweet, easily drinkable beer, this might be for you.

rinhaak, Mar 31, 2012
Photo of lhaqq
2.73/5  rDev -28.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Clear brown body with a semi fluffy tan head.
S: A little bit syrupy, lots of sweet light fruits, sourness comes out pretty strong in the smell. The initial smell reminds me, not unpleasantly, of watered down vinegar or mop solution.
T: Not as big of a flavor as was expecting from the smell. Starts off with some strong sweet and bitter apple and red grape. Peaks a little sour but not very strong, and finishes with little flavor, maybe some apple core bitterness.
M: A bit too light and watery.
D: Not a very high abv; drinkable I guess for a sour ale. At $2.99, was worth giving a try but won't get again. At least it puts a sour ale within the price range of most other beers.

lhaqq, Jul 29, 2009
Photo of MoreThanWine
2.73/5  rDev -28.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours a modest 1/2" head, and it's more of a stout brown than a red ale as the label says. Kind of like a lambic it's sour, although at least it's a cleaner sour than the raw hamburger taste I got in the last lambic. In fact the best descriptor for the Monk's I'd say would be pickle juice.

Hey, this is probably a excellent example of this type of beer. Honestly it's just not my thing.

MoreThanWine, Sep 27, 2010
Photo of Enochase04
2.75/5  rDev -28.4%

Enochase04, Jul 07, 2014
Photo of Shafaegalo
2.75/5  rDev -28.4%

Shafaegalo, Mar 26, 2014
Photo of IronTom
2.75/5  rDev -28.4%

IronTom, Aug 18, 2013
Photo of DC_Brah
2.75/5  rDev -28.4%

DC_Brah, Jun 10, 2014
Photo of ThePaleRider
2.75/5  rDev -28.4%

ThePaleRider, Mar 14, 2014
Photo of Antnyd82
2.75/5  rDev -28.4%

Antnyd82, Jun 17, 2012
Photo of ellswrth
2.75/5  rDev -28.4%

ellswrth, Jul 20, 2012
Photo of Dicers
2.75/5  rDev -28.4%

Dicers, Sep 29, 2013
Photo of cletusdog
2.75/5  rDev -28.4%

cletusdog, Apr 18, 2014
Photo of mtnberne
2.75/5  rDev -28.4%

mtnberne, Sep 13, 2012
Photo of OBeerMeGreatOne
2.75/5  rDev -28.4%

OBeerMeGreatOne, Mar 02, 2014
Photo of jayluf
2.75/5  rDev -28.4%

jayluf, Apr 03, 2014
Photo of logicerror
2.75/5  rDev -28.4%

logicerror, Jul 04, 2013
Photo of kmk1503
2.75/5  rDev -28.4%

kmk1503, Aug 07, 2013
Photo of charrel
2.75/5  rDev -28.4%

charrel, Jun 20, 2014
Photo of captainbearcat
2.75/5  rDev -28.4%

captainbearcat, Feb 16, 2014
Photo of lmundane
2.75/5  rDev -28.4%

lmundane, Jul 09, 2013
Photo of JLeege
2.78/5  rDev -27.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance- ruby red in color, big foamy off white head, good lacing

Smell- cherry, other dark fruit, a bit of vinegar

Taste- Follows the aroma, a bit tart, very sweet, lots of vinegar, vinegar overload

Mouthefeel- light body with medium carbonation

Overall- To much vinegar, not to much else going on

JLeege, Aug 23, 2010
Photo of kbuzz
2.8/5  rDev -27.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Poured from a 750mL into my trusty snifter and a tulip - splitting this review with my brother. Only legible stamp was "15GJ 14:44"...whatever that means...

A: Pours a light brown, cranberry, ruby mahogany...with a massive three finger egg-shell colored head that faded instantly.

S: Sweet and tart...vinegar and cherries...mostly just vinegar sourness.

T/M: Very thin...highly carbonated...gives more of a champagne quality than a sour yeast...lacks body. Apple cider...not very complex. Just fizzy.

O: More fizzy apple juice than sour beer. Lacks body. More sweet than tart...a bit dissapointing.

kbuzz, Dec 24, 2011
Photo of beeragent
2.8/5  rDev -27.1%
look: 1 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Poured into a glass from a bottle.

A - Pours a medium brown with redish hues. Sode pop like carbonation creates a 1 inch head which faded immediately. No lacing on the glass.

S - Strong sour aroma with a noticeable vinegar presence throughout.

T - The sour fruit is the forefront of the flavor, with the vinegar taste coming through in the finish. Light malt body mixed throughout, but the sourness/vinegar hides all other flavors.

M - Medium bodied with quick soda carboination which leaves the beer flat quick. Aside from the lack of carbonation, the body is smooth and clean.

D - Unique flavor and aroma. I'm not sure if the body is the way it should be. A good doorway into sours, and one I will continue to explore.

beeragent, Sep 07, 2010
Monk's Café Flemish Sour Ale from Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
86 out of 100 based on 2,380 ratings.