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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
97
world-class

2,809 Ratings
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,809
Reviews: 921
rAvg: 4.38
pDev: 10.5%
Wants: 1,060
Gots: 534 | FT: 54
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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,809 | Reviews: 921 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of newk340
4.97/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A: BR has an opaque ruby red color upon pouring with a hint of brown hue to it when held to the light. Little to no head when poured into a champagne flute (poured during a celebration immediately following Dom Perignon... hopefully that doesnt mess with my review... haha)

S: one word: CHERRIES. the strong smell of cherries blasts the olfactory senses, invoking thoughts of a Wisconsin summer on a lake.

T: an explosion of cherries tingles the tongue while emitting undertones of beer and wine with a champagne finish.

MF/D: an intensely fruity beer with the smoothest carbonation possible (considering how much it has). not a fruit beer kind of guy, but i could practically be content with a case of this for the night.

Photo of SpdKilz
4.35/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A big thanks to mattolesh for hooking me up with this beer. Cheers!

Appearance - Pours a crimson red into my Russian River tulip. About a finger of light burgundy head is achieved that quickly dissipates leaving spotty lacing.

Smell - Holy cow. The smell is captivating...I'm just sitting here smelling how wonderful this beer is. Mounds of cherries, sweet up front with sour cherries right behind. Slight raspberry is noticeable in the nose also. An overwhelming sweet fruit aroma continues to pour from this great smelling beer.

Taste - Cherries! Despite the nose leading one to believe one would experience sour then sweet cherries, the taste is the opposite. The initla burst of flavor is slight sour cherries followed by a deep, dark, ripe sweet cherry flavor. There is an ever so slight tartness to the beer, and through the cherries I can taste other darker fruits such as plums, along with some earthy/wood taste and slight spices.

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied, syrupy thick, decent carbonation, finishes a bit tart.

Drinkability - For fruit beers, quite so; for normal drinking not so much. Granted, I would not drink this just for the hell of it. This is a very tasty desert beer, or just a beer to enjoy around the holidays. I have another one of these coming via a trade and look forward to pairing it with some dark chocolate and/or brownies. A very good beer.

Photo of hu5om
4.58/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Yummy. One of the perks of living in Wisconsin. It's at most grocery stores, local bar has is on tap, and super delic.

Looks like a cherry soda and tastes like straight, sweet cherries. The closest thing to eating actual cherries in flavor that I have ever encountered. Probably because there is a pound of Door County cherries per bottle.

The Raspberry Tart is very good, too. But I just like cherries more so I give this one the edge.

It would be interesting to do a side by side with the unplugged cherry stout, if I can still find some.

If you haven't had this, get on it! New Glarus is my life...

Photo of ChadQuest
3.88/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This and the Raspberry Tart have been two very unique beers. Two very excellent unique beers. That Dan Carry knows how to make some amazing beers. Seek out all the NG stuff you can, it's always a treat.

This is a dark redish-purple color, about the color of pomegranite juice. with a cap that is white but tinted more toward a pink color. crazy.

Cherries. Just smells like cherries really. almost has a sugary powdery kool-aid presence that remind me of making it when i was a kid. Not a bad aroma, but not such a standout that the taste and mouthfeel are.

Oh yes. tart cherry juice, your hired, all others need not apply. The tartness matching with the sweetness is what makes this beer as amazing as it is, that and the dry and fine tight carbination playing around. I wish i could say more about something other then cherries...but i can't, and really there is no need to have anything else in this beer.

Photo of kels
4.65/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

NorthsideFred is the best.

Pours a bright cherry red with pretty good clarity and good visible carbonation running throughout. The initial 1 finger fizzy head fades quickly but retains at a nice, soft white skim.

Aromas of cherry and raspberry syrups kick into an overall profile that reminds me of cranberry juice cocktail.

This beer is incredibly refreshing and delicious. It is crisp and bright and juicy with just a little bit of syrupyness in the overall very sweet taste. The cherry is actually pretty authentic, and raspberry juice comes through in a tart accompaniment. It is sweet-tart and well carbonated, keeping things light. Drinks more like a sparkling wine than a beer, and leaves behind tasty sweetness in a stickiness that coats the palate well.

Love this beer. Can't wait until we meet again!

Photo of yeahnatenelson
3.82/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance -- Pours a deep ruby red with a thin mauve head.

Smell -- Sweet cherries, muscatel.

Taste -- Cherry every which way: sweet, tart. Yup.

Mouthfeel -- Medium to light in body, abundance of prickly carbonation.

Drinkability -- The flavor is one-dimensional, but so perfectly captures the flavor of ripe cherries that it is easily overlooked. Drinks easy, but I probably couldn't do a whole bottle. This is a worthy beer for one who loves cherries.

Photo of EddieTheTrooper
3.07/5  rDev -29.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 1.5

I was quite surprised at this beer, surprised and disappointed. Normally I am a fan of all things new glarus but this beer was just too damn fruity. It smells like cherries, it tastes like cherries, it's cherry red. I mean, I like cherries and all but this stuff is like cough syrup. I wanted some beer with my fruit salad. One glass was enough, one bottle was far too much. For a brewery that ordinarily makes such well-balanced beers, this cherry thing has gotten a little out of hand. If I wanted juice, I wouldn't be drinking beer.

Photo of beertunes
4.2/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured into tulip. Poured a pretty red color with an inch of pinkish-tan head that had very good retention and lacing.

The aroma is strongly cherry and not much else. On the tongue the cherry flavor is backed up by a bit of a grain taste.The body was very effervescent and crisp, sweet without being sticky. Drinkability will depend on how you like sweet and fruity brews, I loved it and would lots more if it were available to me.

Photo of nectar14
4.8/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This beer makes me long for my home state... Wisconsin.

A: Ruby amber in color, with a fluffy 2-finger off white head. Not much lacing. Looks fruity.

S: Scent of crunchy, tart cherries, with just a whiff of malt/wheat.

T: All about the cherries. Tart, delicious, beautiful cherries. Some sweetness balances it well, and it is never cloying. Finishes with a lingering cherry taste.

M: Medium bodied. Carbonation is perfect. Mildly effervescent.

D: ALL DAY. Light in alcohol, big in delicious flavor.

I don't know if it's possible to improve upon a beer like this... absolutely delicious. I wish I'd brought another back from WI after my last trip. Kudos to New Glarus.

Photo of KickInTheChalice
4.28/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served from a 750 mL bottle into a wine glass.

Appearance: Slightly opaque bright ruby red color with a 2 cm off-white head. It fades somewhat quickly but still leaves a bit of sticky lace on the glass. Very full color.

Smell: Tart cherries dominate. A little bit sweet as well.

Taste: Strong tart cherry all the way through. Some sweetness sneaks in more and more as it warms, but cherry is in control the entire time. Nothing about this is incredibly complex, but it represents cherries very well without anything synthetic tasting or out of place.

Mouthfeel: Smooth and light on the tongue. Bubbly carbonation. Sweetness leaves the lips a bit sticky.

Drinkability: This is not the kind of beer I would normally think about sessioning, but it has such a great balance of sweet and (mostly) tart cherry flavor that this could be a surprise addition to my regular stash.

Photo of jampics2
4.55/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A bottle split with new friends and neighbors at our first neighborhood block party. The lady and myself were new to the neighborhood and wanted to make a nice impression. This did the trick. Everyone loved this and wanted to know where to buy one. Looks like I'll need to stock up for the next get-together.

Red and fizzy, this looks more like a cherry soda than a beer. Great head, looks like a pillows atop a red sheet of lush beer.

Smell is wonderful cherry juice. Wow, this is incredible. No beer qualities at all, just natural (no Ludens here) cherries. Just a touch too sweet, otherwise it would be a 5.

Taste is wonderful Cherry is of course the leader on this journey. Some non-lacto tartness from the natural cherries. Just perfect fruit flavor, such depth, all of it natural layers - a deep dive into this lovely fruit. Never fake or cloying. How did they do this? I know, if they told me they'd have to kill me. Well, if there are 72 cases of this in heaven, I'm in.

Mouthfeel is perfect and IMO is easily the best feature of this wonderful beer. Wow, just enough body to be substantial and a perfect lively carbonation. Nectar of the gods I tell ye! And drinkability is close to perfect too. Just a bit too much cherry overload to do a bottle by myself. A perfect party beer to share with good friends and new friends.

Funny story, I wandered away from the group to do a quick audio rating and it turns out I ran into a neighbor who was having a smoke. We discussed the beer and, in the course of the conversation with the recorder running, I made my observations that are captured here over the course of a 5 minute conversation.

This will be a staple of our future tastings with the neighbors!

Photo of mdfb79
4.75/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

From 5/29/10 notes.

a - Pours a ruby red color, with a little bit of reddish, off white head.

s - Smell is wonderful. Lots of cherries, both sweet and sour. Also some other citrus and dark fruits.

t - Taste is great as well. Tastes of sour cherries, sweet cherry, raspberries, and citrus.

m - Light to medium body and moderate carbonation.

d - I thought this was an amazing beer; one of the best fruit beers I've ever had. Very easy to drink, and would love to have again.
___
EDIT on 11/09/12: Have had this many times over the years, most recently last weekend on 11/02/12. Possibly my favorite fruit beer ever; this beer is amazing.

Photo of Shumista
3.04/5  rDev -30.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Split a bomber 3 ways; from notes.

Pours deep red, head has a slight pink hue. A very strange yet enticing look that really begs you to find out more.Smells like cherry syrup, kind of a "cherry burnetts (vodka) smell" as someone else around the table said. Unfortunately the cherries in the nose are a little bit too candy-like to smell fresh. Tastes like black cherry soda pop, fresh cherries, citrus rind, and bubble gum. Honestly it tastes closer to cherry soda then it does beer. Lively carbonation, medium bodied but a touch syrupy. Drinkability suffered for me, it was just too sweet and too cherry-y. A few people at the table were getting frustrated because they wanted to move to the next beer in our tasting and I was taking too long to finish my pour. I think that says something about its drinkability.

I fear this one doesn't live up to the hype for me. I was especially let down because I had just had New Glarus's Unplugged Cranbic the night before which really impressed me so I had especially high expectations.

Photo of herman77
4.22/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Blood red with a slightly pinkish/white read. Good clarity. A little bit of lacing is left behind.

S: Sweet and sour cherries. Mainly a tart red cherry. Kind of reminds me of the smell of a cherry filled pastry.

T: Cherry, what a surprise! The first few sips are very odd, but it gets better after you get to know it. Great combination of sweet and tart cherries. Its sweet, its a fruit beer, but its not overly sweet since the tartness balances it out. There also is a hint of another odd earthy/woody taste, can't quite figure what it is exactly. Doesn't taste artificial, just not used to having fruit beers I guess.

M/D: Medium to fuller body. Lots of zippy, small carbonation. A very rich fruit beer. Drinkability is hard to rate for this one. Its easy to drink, more like a pop than a beer, but I couldn't do much of this. Split a 750 and that is plenty. Good overall.

Photo of barleywinefiend
4.59/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured a nice ruby red color with good carbonation and a nice white head

S: Cherry, some sweet, some tart but mainly tart cherry

T: As we talked about while drinking this cherry Luden cought drops, light tart and sweet cherry exchanging blows

M: Smooth feel, well carbonated and little booze

D: Great beer and representation of the style.

Photo of squaremile
3.21/5  rDev -26.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured at a recent BA tasting event. Someone said that these NG beers are what you give to people who say they don't like beer as a way to convert them and I can easily see that. This pours a hazy auburn and smells overwhelmingly like maraschino cherries. The taste is like drinking a cherry dum-dum pop. Very sweet. Light on the tongue but the sweetness for me was overwhelming and I didn't want any more than about 2oz of it. Warrant would love this beer.

Photo of bonkers
4.22/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I poured from a 750 ml bottle into 2 snifters. It pours a fizzy, quava color, with lots of white head and lacing. The smell is pure cherries. At first the cherry flavor is a bit much, and overly sweet. But by the second sip the cherry flavor really comes through making it very refreshing. The beer is highly carbonated, light in body and very wine like. For me this is more of a sipper. The best fruit beer I have ever had, IMO a must try for any BA.

Photo of PittBeerGirl
2.24/5  rDev -48.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

750 ml bottle poured into my lambic glass.

A- Body is beautiful. Its a nearly transparent, rich, dark, gem-like, cherry hue. Pours with a 1-2 finger foamy pink head. Head retains well at about 1/2 finger and leaves plenty of lacing down the glass.

S- Ripe cherry. Like when you open a jar of cherries soaked in cherry juice. Very rich. Cherry pits, cherry tartness, cherry sweetness. Not artificial whatsoever.

T- Taste is similar to the smell. Its very cherry all the way through. A hint more tart than sweet but there is a slight cherry pit woodiness to it as well. Taste is pretty consistent the whole way through and the flavor lingers for a while.

M- Low to medium carbonation with a rich, thick, and sticky mouthfeel.

D- In short I didn't really like this beer at all. I drank one lambic glass full and gave the rest away-which is easy because this is a very popular beer. To me it gave the impression of cough syrup without the medicinal aspect (which would have been an improvement...IMO). I really respect that this beer is all cherry without being artificial...which is why I am trying not to slam it too much...but this brew is just not for me.

Photo of mtstatebeer
4.22/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle. Pours a hazy, reddish-cranberry color with a small frothy off-white/pink head, good lacing. Aroma is cherries mostly with a hint of caramel malt. Flavor is sour cherries, a hint of oak, and some wine/grape flavors. Mouthfeel is medium, sour and a fairly active carbonation. Very drinkable beer.

Photo of copyguyadam
4.22/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Is this pop? I swear I used to drink this cherry soda when I was a kid. This smelled so sweet and looked so much like a wine cooler, I thought I was going to be disappointed. Disappointed? Not with this one!

Bomber into New Glarus glass. The bottle recommended a tulip or flute, but I thought the branded glass would do just fine.

A - Red wine color with a light head... for soda.
S - Big blast of montmorency cherries. Really strong with this one. I made my wife smell it (the beer) and she said "Wow, that's stong!"
T - Really great tasting sweet/tart fruit beer.
M - I hope all the sugar in this soda doesn't rot my teeth :) Felt like a fizzy wine in the mouth... but in a good way.
D - Could drink another bottle or three of this.

Overall thoughts are I can't believe I passed this bottle up so many times. I will be in WI again this week and will definitely be on the lookout for another bottle. This may be a good gateway beer for the right person. Great alternative to someone who likes wine coolers.

Photo of hawks10
4.48/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

750ml bottle poured into my Ithaca Beer Co. tulip glass...

Pours a nice ruby red with two fingers of fluffy pink head, some lacing is left behind...

Cherry, very sweet and fruity. A bit, and I stress "bit" of sourness and oaky dryness, but it is very subdued...pretty much just a cherry bomb, ha...

Cherry Ludens cough drops with a bit of a drying oak flavor. Slightly bitter in the finish but mostly this is just a sweet blend of alcoholic cherry juice with a bit of a drying, woody character and slight tart flavors at the end...kind of feel guilty liking this beer so much...

Medium bodied and very well carbonated. Tingly and crisp on the palette...

I really doubt there is any alcohol in this beer, but New Glarus insists there is. I feel kinda stupid enjoying this juice box so much, but it is great, a nice after meal treat...

Photo of DavoleBomb
4.94/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured into a tulip. Thanks to alcstradamus for this one.

4.0 A: Murky amber red color sort of how dried blood looks. Two fingers of frothy white head with average retention and some lacing.

5.0 S: Holy shit, the cherries. I just had the Raspberry Tart and this is pretty much the same aroma, but with cherries. Cherries, cherries, cherries! Nothing but cherries. The cherries block out everything else. I didn't give the Tart a 5 on the nose, because I appreciate complexity, but i can't not give this a 5 because it's so damn enticing.

5.0 T: Again, the cherries dominate the hell out of this beer, but it doesn't matter. It's so damn tasty. Cherries are mainly sweet, like maraschino cherries, but not in a fake way. There's a subtle tartness that balances the sweetness well. Like the Tart, there isn't any malt or hops to talk about, but I'm sure they do their part in the background.

5.0 M: Medium body. Good moderate carbonation is spritzy and dances on the tongue. Super smooth.

5.0 D: I need more of these fruit twins. This is the PERFECT dessert beer for both beer aficianados and BMC guzzlers alike. I'm both sad and disgusted that I only have one bottle left.

Photo of yourefragile
4.75/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

750 mL bottle, dipped in dark red wax. Poured into a flute. Thanks Brian23456 (I think)!

A near perfect fruit beer for my tastes in most every regard. Aroma and flavor are dominated by rich, complex and completely natural fresh cherries. Thick, syrupy body with fine carbonation and a long lasting sour and tart cherry finish. Appearance is murky, thick rust and blood color with a large cream colored head with a light rosy tint. Long lasting retention and thick rings of web like lacing. Only thing keeping this from being all 5s for me is that I would prefer a little more tart to sweet cherry flavor, but it's a minor concern.

Photo of DmanGTR
4.1/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Review from notes at DLD 4/24/10

This beer poured a lovely, hazy, deep ruby red with a white cap that had the slightest pink in it. The body is a shade darker than the Cranbic. Lots of cherries (Bing and Maraschino type) and a hint of apples. The flavor is so similar to the aroma that the only difference is that I discern a touch more tartness in it. Overall very sweet. Smooth texture, light and bubbly. A great drinker all around.

Photo of ktrillionaire
4.23/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Bottle shared by Bobby8405 at our micro-epic NFL Draft tasting.

A - It pours a grenadine-red, with giant pink foam that is quite short-lived, but it is just a intriguing and beautiful looking brew.

S - The smell is super cherry. It is tremendously fragrant. There is a palpable tartness apparent, too.

T - The taste is saturated entirely with tart red cherries. It is not without dynamic, it is just that every bit of the dynamic is cherry-centric. Sweet like grenadine, tart like cherry pie, earthy like fresh cherries, etc. Awesome. When compared to its sister brew, NG Raspberry Tart, this brew stands far above it; it has complexity in its flavor, highlights and celebrates all flavors cherry, and is much more tart than the Raspberry Tart.

M - Medium-bodied and tart-sweet with a clean and slightly dry finish.

D - Great stuff; it was enjoyed by all.

Wisconsin Belgian Red from New Glarus Brewing Company
97 out of 100 based on 2,809 ratings.