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Wisconsin Belgian Red - New Glarus Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Wisconsin Belgian RedWisconsin Belgian Red

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
96
world-class

944 Reviews
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(Read More)
Reviews: 944
Hads: 3,137
rAvg: 4.35
pDev: 5.52%
Wants: 1,126
Gots: 684 | FT: 79
Brewed by:
New Glarus Brewing Company visit their website
Wisconsin, United States

Style | ABV
Fruit / Vegetable Beer |  4.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-22-2001

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Wisconsin Belgian Red Alström Bros
Reviews: 944 | Hads: 3,137
Photo of thehand
4.82/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

One pound of cherries per bottle? I'm there!

Poured from wax sealed bottle into New Belgium goblet. Pours a clear medium ruby red with about 1/2" foamy pinkish head that settles to a bubble film with some sticky lacing. Aroma is very strong sugary sweet but very tart cherries. Cherry is the only thing I can smell in this beer, but that's ok because I love cherries. The aroma literally makes my mouth water. Taste is intensely rich, sweet and tart cherries. I love it. It's like liquid cherry pie. Medium bodied, high carbonation, feels a little sticky sweet. The sweetness limits the drinkablility just a tad, it's a little cloying, but this beer is so delicious, I can't put the glass down. Couldn't drink this beer very often, but it makes a great treat once and a while. (777 characters)

Photo of blackie
4.82/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

looks like I gave this beer - one of my all-time favorites - a 4.0 back in 2005, what a joke...delete and re-review

a: st. louis flute glass, the beer is a deep cherry red garnet, almost bloodlike though transparent, and capped with a tight pink head that eventually goes absent

s: no better way to describe this than cherry pie filling, not that canned shit but pure and fresh pureed cherries baked in their own liquid, a variety of overripe cherries, the barley lurks as a supporting unit and adds only a complimentary grainy depth, a pleasure to take in

m: delicate carbonation and a full, luscious body that borders becoming slick or syrupy but doesn't quite reach that point

t: this one wows me every time, it's absolutely flawless and the taste is easily the best feature of the beer, stewed cherries and fresh cherry pie, cherry fruit leather, sweetness delicately balanced with a touch of vitamin c acidity on the back of the tongue, barley sits in the back but adds a sweet toasty depth - the crust to this pie

d: had this many times over the years, both bottled and on-tap, and it's always a treat, hard to conceive how this ever gets a rating below 4

750 from the last Wisco voyage (1,198 characters)

Photo of MadTown1000
4.82/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

New Glarus Belgian Red, my all-purpose bribe when I need an out-of-state friend to let me sleep on their couch. Reviews on here regularly start with "I usually don't like fruit beers, but...", and I'll add to that chorus, along with numerous people I've made try it. Pours a beautiful ruby red, with more of a fizz than a foam and a tremendous cherry aroma that foreshadows exactly what you're about to get yourself into. The bottle calls it "the marriage of wine and beer", although I'm not sure there's too much wine to it outside of the fact that it's partially fruit-derived. Instead, it's more like soda pop for grownups, emphasis on the for grownups part. It could easily have been too sweet like a Smirnoff Ice or the like, but instead, it lands in a very rare place - the sweet spot of sweet, if you will. There is practically no place I can think of where it wouldn't be drinkable - on its own, with dinner, even with dessert. The only complaint I have is that it has a way of disappearing far too soon.

I was greatly surprised to find that this offering by the folks at tiny New Glarus Brewery had the kind of national following that it does. It deserves it. Try it at least once. (1,191 characters)

Photo of barleywinebrewer
4.82/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I've had a few store bought cherry beers and always been disappointed. Invariably they taste artificial and worst case artificial and cloying. I got this via trade and was uncertain how it would taste. Would it be a worst case? Would it be sour beyond belief?

Surprise! This beer rocks! From pour to taste it is an unadulterated, incredibly balanced beer which screams real cherries used! I felt as though I might actually be snacking on a ripe, fresh from the tree bowl of cherries! Best of all, this is done in a very complimentary beer and yeast combination. No worst case, no fruit cooler here. Just a wonderful blend of malt, yeast and cherries. Enjoy if you can get it! (678 characters)

Photo of jaxon53
4.82/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to nflmvp for the two bottles of this. Served this chilled from a waxed 750ml bottle, into a tulip. Poured a murky, thisk, ruby color that had a brownish tint to it. Beer was capped off by a half inch of thin, tannish white head. Head faded almost immediately, and left virtually no lace behind. Smell was made up of mostly tart cherries. Black cherries, red cherries, dried cherries, they are all present in the nose. The taste was very one sided as well, but in a good way. All strong tart cherries. Definitely cherry pie in a bottle. Excellent tasting beer in my opinion. Had a nice thick, full, syrupy, tongue coating mouthfeel. Carbonation was right on as well. Awesome drinkability. Glad I have another bottle on hand. Another great New Glarus offering. (766 characters)

Photo of nlmartin
4.82/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer came to me by trade with dhchatfield. Thanks again for the great beers!

Appearance: The beer had a somewhat murky red coloration. The head was a thin white coloration. The head resolved fairly quickly.

Smell: The beer has a great smell. The beer has a fantastic cherry smell both sweetness and tartness alternate. Man this beer is a cherry bomb. The beer has a good spicy combination. The beer smells of spicey cloves, cinammon with a wiff of vanilla.

Taste: The beer lives up to the smell. Gods of beer thank you for this gift! This beer is a perfect balance of sweetness and tartness. The beer has good co-flavors. The beer has some spicey vanilla, cloves and I swear there is a apple flair in here.

Mouthfell/ Drinkability: The beer is light bodied. The beer is well carbonated. The beer has a bit of acidity that aides in drinkability. This was a very easy beer to drink. I couldnt see sessioning this beer. If you find your self in Wisconsin make sure to find some of this beer. (1,007 characters)

Photo of WesWes
4.82/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The beer pours a rosy red color with a thick frothy off-white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is outstanding! It has a killer cherry scent that's so tart and refreshing. I love sour cherries in beer. This is very much like the aroma of Lindeman's Kriek. The taste is perfect! It captures the essence of what a fruit beer can and should be. It's bold and refreshing with tons of tart fruit character. The mouthfeel is perfect as well. It's medium bodied with good carbonation. This and their Raspberry tart are by leaps and bounds the best fruit beers on the planet. I only wish it wasn't so hard to get my hands on them. Thanks to Tim and Mary Anderson for the opportunity to try these. (698 characters)

Photo of sideshowrob
4.82/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Being in Maryland, this beer is much like Romulan Ale; I have a few people who sneak me some bottles now and then. Wish they distributed more widely, but I'm also glad to have some meaningful regional variability left.

The beer pours a reddish/amber hue, almost like thin blood. Little head, but strong carbonation. First hint of what you're about to get comes with the smell, a tart cherry aroma not unlike Dr. Browns dark cherry soda.

The taste, mouthfeel and drinkability are all harmoniously welded. The balance between sour and sweet is incredible. Each receptor in your tounge is overwhelmed with flavor. Once you start to quaff this elixer, it's hard to stop. The body just demands more and more. If Belgian Red was sold by the gallon that'd be fine with me. (769 characters)

Photo of laintringulis
4.82/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a cloudy rusty cranberry color with significant sedimentation. Small, light cream colored head turns to film quickly.

Smell. Smells like cherries on crack! Sweet and tart cherry smell somewhat alternating. General vague spiciness and oakiness. Perhaps cloves, vanilla, and apple also present. It smells so good I can't wait to get my lips on it. As it got warmer, it developed more of a musty-venous quality.

Taste. Tastes as cherry as it smells. Excellent transitions from tart to sweet and back. Great balance between malt and hops, although, the hops are down played by the fruity spicy goodness.

Medium bodied. Nice dry, refreshing finish. Not syrupy or watery; just right. This ain't no kool-aid! Very drinkable, provided you wanted a cherry bomb. I thought I would get sick of the cherry taste, but I wanted more. Maybe a little too easy to drink. (869 characters)

Photo of kylehayworth
4.82/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thank you Mark for this beer. We don't get New Glarus in IN, so this was a real treat.

A: Reminds me of the inside of a chocolate covered cherry. The amber hue when the chocolate and the cherry mix together.

S: I knew I was in for a good beer when I could taste it before the first sip. An overwhelmingly balanced yet intense smell of tart cherries, with a backdrop of some mild sweetness.

T: Strong but amazingly well balanced cherry taste. It is definitely real cherry here, no extract. Tart and sweet all at the same time.

M/D: Normally, I would say you couldn't drink more then one or two of these throughout the course of a night, not this one. It has a nice rich body with perfect carbonation. I really want to drive the four hours to Wisconsin to buy this again right now. For my first beer from New Glarus I would have to start the slow clap and build up to a thunderous roar... (892 characters)

Photo of deereless
4.82/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Murky amber to dark copper, something akin to a reddish cider, half of a finger of foam which quickly dropped, after the initial burst there are no signs of lingering carbonation - 4.50, S: Intensely aromatic of cherries, smells like a cherry pie filling, ever so slightly sour - 5.00, T: Like the nose this beer is overpoweringly cherry, a hint of champagne sparks/bubbly, beyond the cherry is a touch of what I perceive as prune juice, intensely sweet - 5.00 M: The sweetness seems to hang on the tongue like a syrup, otherwise medium bodied - 4.50, D: This is one special treat of a beer, one of the best dessert beers out there, a standout if you are a fan of the fruit beers - 4.50 (689 characters)

Photo of feloniousmonk
4.82/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The first time I sampled this brew was a blind taste test vs. Cantillion at a local bowling alley/restaurant/theater/music venue/beer and wine bar. NG came out on top!
Color is a rich, ripe, bright cherry red, with a short and soon departed head. Aroma is in a class of it's own: absolutely gorgeous! Rich, delicious, vinous, sweet, and sour, the perfect picture of cherries! It's utterly wonderful, and a joy to drink in deep with the nose!
On the palate, other tranformations occur: WOW! Dazzling, uplifting, and lovely! By tranformative, I mean that something new occurs in me, I am 100% happier by drinking this elixir, my mood is elevated, every atom has an energized attitude!
Several waves of sensation occur throughout the consumption of this ale, it jumps and jiggers in the mouth, surges in and sallies out. The taste continues, and the feeling wells up in and rides over every square inch of the body that is apt to perceive sensation! Finish is a bit tartish, but what do you want, it's cherries, man!
Wow...this was perfect, and I felt that the 750 ml wax finshed bottle was a bit stingy! Hook me up to a keg of this stuff! (1,141 characters)

Photo of Jon
4.83/5  rDev +11%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Another brew that lives up to its hype, this kriek-style ale pours a deep red/amber color with a frothy, sparkling wine-like pinkish head. Very impressive looking in a flute glass, this one leaves trails of lace. Smell is tart and almost acidic at first, with some true fruity sweetness coming through thereafter. Taste is similar, but totally unlike any Belgian kriek I've had. Big, monstrous cherry notes hit the palate at first, with a dry, tart and acidic finish. The best way for me to describe it is like cherry pie filling. Cherry pie as in that which your mother would make, not Hostess. Wow. Very complex and if nothing else, divine. Mouthfeel is prickly and effervescent at first when chilled, then somewhat syrupy when it reaches room temperature. Moderate in alcohol, somewhat sweet, somewhat tart, but overly satisfying, this Belgian-style ale drinks incredibly well. Would pair incredibly with the aforementioned cherry pie as an appropriate dessert brew. Better yet, enjoy it by itself. An awesome creation from New Glarus. (1,038 characters)

Photo of cnbrown313
4.83/5  rDev +11%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

To me, this is the epitome of what a fruit beer should be. I have had it many times, but I finally decided to actually write a review after drinking a whole bottle to myself on the 4th of July! Purchased just over the IL / WI border, for $9.49 a bottle.

A - It pours a pure, cherry red with a good amount of carbonation and an off white head that recedes quickly.

S - The smell is of strawberry jam / cherry pie. With a little bit of earthiness to it. It smells like it is going to be overly sweet, unless you have tasted one before.

T - The taste is perfect. The only way I can describe it is that it literally tastes like the filling from the freshest cherry pie you've ever had. Or like fresh strawberry jam. Surprisingly though, this beer is not all that sweet and it is pretty easy to drink. No boozy taste at all, but it is only 4%. Usually sweet beers or drinks will give me a headache after the first glass, but I gladly poured myself a 2nd, and 3rd from the bottle. I should also note that if you like sour beers, you should try the Raspberry Tart instead of this, as the Belgian Red isn't really sour at all. The RT is also quite good, but in my opinion, this is much better.

M - The carbonation is almost perfect and the bubbles float nicely across the palate.

O - If you have access to this, pick a bottle up. My favorite fruit beer, period. (1,358 characters)

Photo of faernt
4.83/5  rDev +11%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

What a beer! Big bottle with wax opening into a champagne flute with the aroma of Door County. A pie crust colored head appears and grows to colossal size on top of a slightly brownish red body that looks like cherry jelly. The taste is sweet and then tart bringing me back to chopped cherry preserves on toast. It's like breakfast. The mouthfeel is lighter than expected but if it were heavier the jelly thing would take over the experience. This is a very drinkable beer. I don't like fruit beer much but this is always on hand. (530 characters)

Photo of Duffman
4.83/5  rDev +11%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

An absolute cracker...

The appearance of the beer is simply gorgeous. A shade of brownish red, perhaps a mahogany red. Whatever color you would call it, it is beautiful and not far short of perfect. Wonderful smell, with cherries and oakiness, a touch of hoppiness and malt coming through in harmony. The taste is even better. Cherries dancing on the tongue with the smooth oakiness balancing perfectly. A touch of sourness adds some contrast as well with the traditional beer-like tastes of hoppiness and malt delicately coming through towards the end. A long and smooth finish that is about as delicious and drinkable as beer gets. Exquisite. (645 characters)

Photo of MuenchenerKindl
4.84/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a very big wax sealed mag, to a pint glass, the liquid is dark red like a burgundy wine with nice carbonation. The head is small with tiny bubbles, no lace either.

The smell is awesome best cherry beer ever.

The taste is enormous, wow what a great tasting brew, lots of semi sweet tart cherries, I'll just close my eyes and I'm back in Door County.

The mouthfeel is realy big and meaty, the carbonaton might not be most beer like but this is a special brew to be sure.

The drinkability very good really a great brew.

Prosit, und Zum Wohl. MK (558 characters)

Photo of Socalbeerlover
4.84/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I thought my first review should be the best fruit beer I have had to date.
A. Ruby red with tiny bubbles well carbonated.
S. Like McDonalds Cherry pie. I want to smell this beer as much as drink it.
T.Like Sara Lee Cherry Pie in a Glass def taste the "over a pound of Door Cherries per bottle".
M.Carbonated ,like champagne, sweet.
O.Fantastic,light ,fruity, cherries really come thru,crisp a great early morning riser due to the low alc% gladly pay 20$ to get a bottle shipped now and then. (492 characters)

Photo of KickbacksSteve
4.84/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

750 ml bottle poured into Efes tulip. Thanks Cheesemoose! Leathery brown in color, small head, low retention. Clear, sticky lacing. Aroma dominated by cherry (of course). I suppose that it would be easy to screw this flavor up but its done perfectly. Not medicinal, not cough syrup. Splendid. Taste is fascinating, unique and certainly delicious. Cherry sweetness and tartness is front stage and center and just awesome. Amazing and unique beer. (445 characters)

Photo of DarkerTheBetter
4.84/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This beer poured a dark glowing red with a few light purple highlights. It was very clear with little bubbles clinging to the inside of my glass. The head was thin, off white and pink that left a thin and delicate lace. Smells initially of sweet cherry pie filling that, for an instant, is rather disappointing. Fortunately, the smell is then backed up with a musky sourness that adds a terrific amount of life and wholesomeness. Along with this fantastic cherry, there seems to be a musky lambic-like yeast. Tastes of powerfully tangy wild cherries. This is not just cherry sweetness, but the flavor clearly reflects actual cherry skin! This, combined with (what I’m guessing to be ) the musky wild yeast creates a smooth and tangy cherry experience that is absolutely amazing. This is quite an accomplishment for the people at New Glarus. (thank you!) The mouth feel had a light soft body with a medium tingly carbonation that’s a wonderful compliment to the tangy aspects of the flavor. I think that the mouth feel plays a crucial role in the delivery of the flavor, earning a high rating form me.

Delicious! Absolutely delicious! This is so easy to drink and just dripping with quality and care. There’s a quality here that makes me wish there was a NA version of this available to have with breakfast every morning. I think I’ll never be able to tolerate fake cherry flavors ever again. This is hands down a fantastic beer! The only shortcoming on its drinkability is the sweetness. It’s necessary for the flavor, but I wouldn’t want to split more than one bottle at any one sitting. (1,598 characters)

Photo of MaltyGoodness
4.84/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle thanks to nflmvp

Pours a hazy red color with a small white head that fades. Mild lacing on the glass.

Big, tart, fresh cherry aroma. Mild hints of sweetness peek through now and then.

Immediate slightly sweet fresh cherry taste that rushes into a puckering tartness. The tartness lingers and creates a mouth watering effect, which makes me eager for the next sip.

Full body, mild carbonation.

Wow, this is a fantastic fruit beer. Once I got started on the bottle, I couldn't stop until it was finished. Truly a pleasure. Not a daily drinker, but certainly one to enjoy on a regular basis. I've never tried anything that I could even remotely suggest as a substitute. (695 characters)

Photo of clarkm04
4.84/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A- Pours a great ruby. A nice light pink/whitish head forms, but recedes quickly. A little lacing but not as much as I would aspect.

S- Very strong on the cherries. That's the overwhelming profile is slightly tart cherries. I get a slight malt flavor but this beer is designed to showcase the cherries and it does a great job.

T- I love the taste of this beer. No matter how many times I drink it, I always want more. The cherries shine through but in a balanced why so the sweetness is tempered and it's just a perfect complex cherry taste. Every time I drink it, I get new notes out of it. Very fresh with a nice tartness. Absolutely my favorite dessert beer.

M- Medium bodied with a good carbonation. Very delicate on the palate with a little stickiness but very full bodied.

O- Very outstanding! Easily one of my favorite beers. The beer is so unique and so well done that I sometimes am stunned that a cherry beer could be this delicate, fresh, and such a fun drinking experience. (990 characters)

Photo of DSWeller
4.84/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

This is the best fruit "beer" I have tasted thus far.

This beer looks fantastic! Pours a deep red with white head. Some lacing left behind.

The smell is enticing (if you enjoy cherries or fruit forward beers).

I truly enjoy this. It is amazingly refreshing and makes you want to continue drinking more of it. It's a touch on the sweet and tart side. I will gladly purchase again and prefer this over their raspberry offering.

I wish New Glarus distributed outside of Wisconsin so more people could enjoy this and their other offerings. (540 characters)

Photo of aerozeppl
4.84/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Thanks to drseamus for bringing this.

A: Cloudy bright red. Minimal white head.

S: Cherries big up front with some sweetness. Tartness in the back.

T: Cherries and tart. The raspberry tart has me dreading this but the tartness was not nearly as strong. Amazing the amount of flavor for such a low ABV ber.

M: Light body making this even more drinkable.

D: Tons of flavor for such a small beer. As a brewer this is one of those beers that toally blows my mind. How did they do this? (486 characters)

Photo of TheSevenDuffs
4.85/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Bottle to Founders tulip.

A - Poured cherry red with a slight glow around the edges. One finger of light brown/cream coloured head formed and receded to a thin layer full of big bubbles.

S - Dark cherries dominate the nose but the aroma is very fresh and not artificial. Lighter notes of spice and sweet bready malts in the background. Almost smells like fresh baked apple pie.

T - Huge fresh baked cherry pie flavour full of dark cherries and sweet flaky pie crust. A touch of spice is present as well. An amazing flavour profile.

M - Almost full bodied. Creamy and thick. Light carbonation.

O - This was by far the best fruit or vegetable beer have had. (664 characters)

Wisconsin Belgian Red from New Glarus Brewing Company
96 out of 100 based on 944 ratings.