Monk's Café Flemish Sour Ale - Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
Ratings: 2,296 | Reviews: 1,039 | Display Reviews Only:
3.8/5 rDev -1%
Pours a really clear deep copper color with a huge head that slowly dissipates to a cap but leaves fluffy sticky lace down the sides of the glass. Smell of lactic acid, sweet malts, a bit of lemon, and sour cherries. Taste is sweeter than I expected but has that sour twang about it. More lemons and sour cherries and sweet malts in the taste. Leaves a sweet and sour taste in my mouth, pass the Chinese food. Mouthfeel is syrupy and a bit sticky. Carbonation is on the high side prickling the tongue with every sip. Body is medium. Decent sour ale, but I thought it a bit on the sweet side for the style. Maybe more like a beginners sour ale, but still tasty.
04-05-2009 18:28:50 | More by johnnnniee
4/5 rDev +4.2%
Reviewed from notes: Had on draft at Monk's Cafe thanks to Maggie for DIPA Trivia Question. : )
appearance: dark red / brown with a 1 finger minimal head
smell: sour, tart, cherries, apples,
taste: sour, tart, refreshing, cherries,
mouthfeel: mild carbonation, medium body,
overall: really impressed how refreshing this beer was. So glad I got to try it and had a great time at Monk's.
08-01-2011 01:33:24 | More by THECPJ
3.63/5 rDev -5.5%
Presentation: Drank on tap at Naja's in Redondo Beach, served in a Fin Du Monde chalice.
Appearance: Dark reddish brown, with wispy head lingering for a few minutes.
Smell: Sour lambic kind of aroma, with some cherries.
Taste: Very sour and bitter, nice cherry flavor.
Notes: Tart, sour, sweet, and good. This was my first Flanders Red, so I really have no right to judge it. I just know I enjoyed it. Maybe I'll revisit this beer review after I get more experience.
09-05-2005 23:11:49 | More by TurdFurgison
3.48/5 rDev -9.4%
A reddish brown beer with a decently foamy head. Aroma is strongly redolent of vinegar and cherries. Very tart taste, typical sour, vinegar is in there, lots of cherry flavor as well, moderately sweet. All depends on how much you like sours and can deal with the vinegary aspect of the flavor. Found it ok, kind of a low-end entry level sour, not very complex, pretty refreshing. Brisk carbonation makes it taste like a sour cherry soda...with a vinegar backbone. Clean finish doesn't linger, nicely quenching.
I actually kinda like this beer, at least when I'm in the mood..have it had a few times and always have a different reaction. Not as good as something like Rodenbach, but similar I suppose. As I said, it's an entry level beer for the style and the low price reflects that. Usually under 3 bucks when I see it.
09-30-2011 18:05:57 | More by tobelerone
4.28/5 rDev +11.5%
Served on-tap at Craft Ale House, poured into a 12 oz Monk's Cafe glass.
A: Beautifully clear reddish/brown colored body with a small, fizzy and soda-like off white head. The retention is pretty nice but not as full and thick as I'd like it to be. Some lacing is left behind, but to style it's really nice looking.
S: Caramel malts, sweet syrupy cherry, pink grapefruit coated with table sugar, strawberry and oak. Towards the back there's a very acidic and vinegar type of bite, certainly this will have some tartness and sweetness to it.
T: Whoa, this is so well balanced. First is a lactic sour bite with again an almost vinegar quality. This is quickly balanced and washed with the sweet cherry notes, strawberry and raspberry. There's some citrus elements that come into play, and then the oak makes an appearance in the finish. Some tannins and dryness but just another layer in this delicious beer.
M: Bubbly, well-carbonated but still has a medium body with a very easy drinking nature to it. Somewhat dry from the oak perhaps on the finish but nothing detracting.
Whenever this beer is on draft, I always have to order a glass. This was so easy drinking for the style, and lower in ABV at 5.5% that I had to order another. A very approachable, reasonably priced and delicious Flanders Oud Bruin.
01-12-2012 14:05:47 | More by ShanePB
3.95/5 rDev +2.9%
330ml bottle poured into tulip 14/3/13 bottle from IanSpindler IP trade
A looks dark brown until I hold it to the light where it has a dark amber glow, a finger of foam falls quickly ending up as a thin film that stays there leaving no lace
S burnt sugar and cider notes mix well with purple candy like grape aromas and earthy notes, has a nice sweet and sour thing going on, subtle green apple and sweet cherries
T not as much going in the mouth much to my surprise, just seems to be toned down a little compared to the nose, the sweet and sour is still working well for it though and I do like it but was expecting a little more after smelling it
M enters silky and gets creamy quickly, feels good, light but the bubbles give it lots of life and has some brown sugar and fruit on the finish
O I didn't know what to expect but I rather liked this one and it went down so easy, I could drink a few without getting board
Fairly random style but as far as I know they did a pretty good job, something I'd drink again for sure
03-16-2013 02:36:12 | More by wordemupg
4.22/5 rDev +9.9%
on tap at Monk's - review done from notes.
A - Nice clear reddish color which leaves sticky lacing all along the rim of the glass.
S - Dashes of fruit and coriander populate the nose, along with hints of sourness.
T - The beer almost instantly refreshes the drinker despite the sweet and tart flavors which swirl around the palate. Dark fruit and sour flavors glance the tongue without becoming overwhelming. Lactic sourness rounds everything out with a dry, bitter finish.
M/D - Bubbly and smooth, you can't help but desire another one, especially with its surprisingly smooth and refreshing qualities.
This was one of the first sours I ever tried years ago, and the delicious qualities are still ringing true to this day.
08-28-2010 07:34:32 | More by xnicknj
3.43/5 rDev -10.7%
330 mL bottle poured into a goblet. Served one to my brother-in-law (Raul) to try to get him into some sour styles. It didn't work.
Appearance - Deep amber body with a huge head. More than half the glass is foam. Sticks to the sides of the glass and leaves a nice layer of foam throughout the drink.
Smell - Not much sour, mostly funk. Some cherry and light vinegar aromas. A bit of sweet malt behind what Raul described as "the smell of vomit from a tequila hangover."
Taste - Not very sour at all. Just a hint of tartness followed by a cherry sweetness. There is some malt sweetness, but it isn't cloying. It's too much sweetness, really, but it isn't sickly. Tough to describe. I get a lot of oak, as well. I look over to see Raul drinking it as fast as possible to avoid a gag reflex. What a waste.
Mouthfeel - A bit too sweet in the finish and that makes it feel heavier. It isn't heavy, it just feels that way. Not as easy to drink as a crisper acidity would have allowed.
Overall - Not bad bu nothing spectacular. Good flavor, but just not sour enough.
06-10-2011 13:28:08 | More by Alieniloquium
4/5 rDev +4.2%
Poured in my Belgique tulip, Monk's Café is a clear ruby with a very tight light tan head, leaving pretty nice lace.
Smell is very vinous, sweet malt and vanilla notes.
Taste is pretty heavy on the acetic acid vinegar, I think maybe an increase over having it a year ago, but maybe not, there's still a nice balance from the richness of the sweet malt. Strong oak and grape mid-palate before a pretty clean finish. Very intense, like the smell.
Mouthfeel has very creamy carbonation, which helps keep the body light and cut the viscosity of the malt, oiliness of the acids and tannic bite.
Drinkability is pretty good, this has held up well, maybe improved a bit after a year in the cellar. I think the acidity has increased, and while it's still to sweet and cider vinegary for my taste in the style, I think the age has helped it, as I don't recall being to pleased with the first bottle when I bought it (and ultimately busted out a little later in that night then I should have, so who knows).
01-12-2010 02:50:16 | More by ccrida
4.33/5 rDev +12.8%
12 oz tap pour into a stemmed glass at bnieman's Dad's house before watching some Brew Masters on Discovery.
A - Beautiful mahogany amber in color with a light tan head. Good retention with some thick lace clinging to the glass.
S - Crisp amber malts with a sweet caramel aroma. A hint of vinegar sourness that is very nice. Good, but a little cold in aroma.
T - A touch of metallic flavor to the amber toasted malts. Nice mild sourness with a little hint of the awesome vinegar I love in this style.
M - Crisp and light-bodied with a smooth follow-through and light sour finish.
D - This will be dangerous on tap in the basement. I could drink this all night if I didn't have to drive (aka didn't feel guilty of emptying the keg).
12-04-2010 22:37:04 | More by BeerFMAndy
3.78/5 rDev -1.6%
I drank this from the bottle into a chalice.
It pours a medium red brown with a light beighe head, not much retention or lacing.
The aroma is light vinegar and a little tart.
The taste is night and light and smooth. Well balanced with lots of different character. Not too overpowering and has a nice sweet finish and aftertaste. Mouthfeel is light, but highly drinkable.
10-31-2009 03:58:31 | More by jrallen34
4.22/5 rDev +9.9%
Poured from 11.2oz bottle into a tulip.
Appearance: rich brown color with a ruby tinge; one finger of foamy tan head. Nice.
Smell: big aromas of caramel, nuts and toasted malts. There is also an acidic brightness permeating the big malt. I've never had a Flanders Oud Bruin before, but this smells quite good.
Taste: bright, sweet and tart. There are big fruity flavors here; sour apple and cherry are the most prominent among them. The more traditional malty flavors are more apparent in the aftertaste. Overall, these two components complement each other quite well. I very much like this beer.
Mouthfeel: medium body and relatively high carbonation give this beer a nice creamy texture; though it's more fizzy than smooth. Still quite good.
Drinkability: I think this beer is just a hair too sweet to be exceptionally drinkable. Still, the tartness is just enough to keep me interested and I feel like I would gladly include one of these in my daily diet.
02-06-2010 02:59:27 | More by flagmantho
3.6/5 rDev -6.3%
Poured from 11.2oz bottle (room temp) a murky medium brown with a medium sized head of foam with little lacing.
The smell does indeed have strong sour fruity notes with some sensing of yeast as well.
The taste is of a nice sour peach and apricot at first but then it moves beyond that and becomes peppery...leaving some "heat" in my mouth and on my lips after I finish each sip. Not exactly what I was looking for in a Sour ale.
Bottom line: an interesting brew that I'm glad I got a chance to try but I don't know if I'd visit with this one again.
04-09-2006 21:00:42 | More by Bitterbill
4/5 rDev +4.2%
A: Poured from a bottle to a tulip glass. Had a reddish-brown color and a cloudy texture. There was an inch of foamy, fairly long-lasting head. Excellent lacing.
S: A big shot of cherries in the nose, along with the standard sourness of the style.
T: Tasted of cherries, first and foremost, along with some malt, and a decent amount of yeast. Definitely sour, but not as much as other Flanders Oud Bruins. A smooth, focused flavor.
M: A well-carbonated beer with a crisp, vibrant finish. Medium-bodied.
O: A solidly made, drinkable beer.
01-29-2012 13:04:51 | More by avalon07
4/5 rDev +4.2%
Served from tap into a Trappe Door tulip. Poured a deep ruby red with a two finger very light tan head that subsided to a half finger quickly. Maintained decent lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, fruit, tart, cherry, vinegar, and strawberry. The flavor was of sweet malt, tart cherry, vinegar, cream, subtle wood, and strawberry. It had a light feel on the palate with high carbonation. Overall this was a good brew. I have had this one more times than I can remember out of the bottle so it was really nice to see this one on-tap for the first time. I was definitely not disappointed. All of the right flavors and aromas going on in this one in all the right places. A very refreshing brew that is great for both the beginner and the professional alike. A definite must try if you have not done so already.
07-06-2012 10:39:28 | More by thagr81us
4/5 rDev +4.2%
11.2 ounce bottle. Served in a snifter, the beer pours a brown/ruby red color with a small off-white head. Head retention is OK, lacing is pretty good. It smells like tart cherries, vinegar, green apples, and a bit of funk and earth. The beer tastes like green apples, tart and sweet cherries, yeast, and a bit of brown sugar and funk. Great mix of both sweet and sour in this brew. Mouthfeel/body is light/medium, it's a bit creamy and slick with decent carbonation. Drinkability is good, it's very smooth and quite enjoyable. I wish I had another one to drink right now. I would definitely buy this again, I think it's a good overall Oud Bruin.
05-23-2009 00:03:58 | More by bluejacket74
3.74/5 rDev -2.6%
Poured from a brown 11.2 oz. bottle. Has a very dark brown color with a 1 inch head. Smell is of raisins, dark fruits, some malts, a bit of sweetness. Taste is good, but less complex than the smell. Very wine like, unique, grapes, refreshing and tasty. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall is an enjoyable beer.
10-20-2013 20:45:08 | More by tone77
4.03/5 rDev +4.9%
Pours a clear reddish brown color with a big-bubbled cream colored head. Decent retention and some nice sheets of lace on the glass.
I get some red wine vinegar smacking me in the face, damn near to the point of a nostril burning sensation. Other than that maybe some dark cherry and woody raisin aromas.
Ranks fairly high on the tart-sourness scale. Deep fruitiness reminds me of the time I was drugged to sleep by small green gnomes with red pointy hats and sealed up in a kriek barrel for two days and when I woke up, my wallet was missing. Ok, maybe not quite like that, but the fruitiness is very complex and unique. Still has a slight vinegary feel to it, but not nearly as much as the nose-twitching aroma. I like the fact that I can still detect some maltiness under all the other flavors. I dont think I have ever had a beer that has tasted this much better than it smells. Very good brew that can satisfy a sour craving quite nicely.
06-13-2009 13:36:49 | More by twiggamortis420
Monk's Café Flemish Sour Ale from Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
86 out of 100 based on 2,296 ratings.