Wisconsin Belgian Red - New Glarus Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Wisconsin Belgian RedWisconsin Belgian Red

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BA SCORE
96
world-class

937 Reviews
THE BROS
94
outstanding

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Reviews: 937
Hads: 3,088
rAvg: 4.35
pDev: 10.34%
Wants: 1,112
Gots: 648 | FT: 75
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
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Reviews: 937 | Hads: 3,088
Photo of TexIndy
4.67/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750ml bottle with no freshness date. The bottle has a wax seal on top and the label has a story about the beer and the cherries in it. The color is a cloudy ruby color (wife called it blood plasma). It had a small head and tons of initial carbonation that quickly dissipated. The aroma was heavy on cherries obviously and also had a noticeable wine smell. The mouthfeel was mild and went down smooth with just the right carbonation on the tongue. The taste was amazing. It had the expected cherry taste but was perfectly balanced to not be overpowering. Granted I wouldn't want to have more than one and not all the time but having this every couple months would be perfect. Highly recommend unless you don't like cherry. (4.5, HR, T, Y) (751 characters)

Photo of mnesporov
4.32/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: An 750ml Bottle with no freshness date to be found.

Appearance: Pours a Dark almost red wine red. Fizzy head that disappears almost instantly.

Smell: A very cherry smell to it with a hint of vanilla.

Taste: A rich sweet taste of cherries that take over on this beer. A little hopy taste that turns out to balance real well.

Mouth-Feel: a medium bodied brew with a lot of carbonation.

Drink-Ability: I really enjoyed this brew but I could not drink a lot of it. (491 characters)

Photo of fisherman34
4.15/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle sampled with rudge75 and my friend Reid. Dark red in colour with hints of brown. Low to medium carbonation. Huge sweet cherry aroma with additional notes of vanilla, and some pale barley malt. Very large in the mouth with the cherries obviously taking centre stage, along with a bit of other red berry fruit. As sweet as it is, there are more dimensions than sweet fruit to this beer, with notes of vanilla and earth. It’s smooth on the palate, yet there’s enough earthy bitterness to keep things in check. Not something you could knock back a lot of, but this is one heck of a dessert beer. (600 characters)

Photo of Erdinger2003
4.75/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours out with a white head that falls right away. The deep red color is cloudy and very inviting. The smell is slightly tart, but very fruity. The taste is a blast of cherries, just wonderful stuff. I have had at least 6 bottles of this beer and it never gets old. The aftertaste is of slight barly once it warms up, deep down it is a beer. The mouthfeel is smooth and nice. Overall this is a great beer and I will continue to enjoy a lot of it. (455 characters)

Photo of oakbluff
4.17/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served into a champagne flute. Poured a murky red color, slight head and lacing. Smell is hard to describle- kind of a musty sweet smell. I wasn't sure what to expect from this beer and it met my non expectations. Wow- what a different flavour! Huge cherries, with a really sour finish, but yet sweet at the same time. the sweetness seems to be like a honey flavour. Good mouthfeel and carbonation. I'm not a huge cherry, so the flavour of this beer is probably wasted on me. I due to have to give credit for an awesome effort and a very complex brew. I am very glad I had a chance to try this, but probably a one time try. (623 characters)

Photo of trevorwideman
3.8/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

22oz bomber supplied to me by demcorhip. Poured into a wine glass, shared with my Girlfriend.

Pors and opaque reddish-orange colour with tons of sediment (all those cherries I assume!), minimal head with just a smattering of lace. Smell is exactly like cherry pie, or cherry pie filling I guess. There's nothing fake or artificial about this aroma though, and it's not even too sweet. Very simple, but exactly what I'd want a cherry beer to smell like.

Taste is extremely mellow off the bat, with the lovely cherry sweetness throughout. Tart on the tongue with a slight sourness that you might expect. A light maltiness as an afterthought appears along with a bit of yeasty goodness. In the mouthfeel, the tartness dries the palate with a little carbonation sparkling the sweetness across the tongue. Body is quite hefty.

Final verdict on this one Is that although it's a delightful brew, and would be a great after-dinner beer, I had a hard time finishing my half of the bottle because as with most fruit beers they give me some nasty heartburn. That said, don't let it stop you from trying this one, just share the bottle with a few friends after dinner, you don't need more than one glass. (1,201 characters)

Photo of mghotbi
4.45/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Supplied by a buddy from Milwaukee via UPS - Thanks, Doug.

Pours a murky cherry red with copious off-white head and a bit of lace. Smells like a big bowl of cherries, I detect no hop or malt aroma at all.

Taste is perfectly fruity, with little in the way of notable malt or hop notes. More like a cider or even a sweet wine. Finish is pinpoint and clean with no cloying or candy sweetness lingering. Mouthfeel is thick and carbonation is pronounced.

This is a perfect after-dinner or dessert drink. I could also see serving this as a wine substitute during a traditional Thanksgiving dinner. This is the best fruit ale I've ever tasted, but it's certainly no session beer. (681 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 tjthresh
4.44/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in my Lindemans flute. Pours very murkey and muddy orangy-red with a tightly bubbled creamy pinkish head. You can smell the tartness and acidity of the cherries. Very nice. Some yeastiness. Absolutly spectacular flavor. Sweet up front. Tart at the end. Slight drying affect. Full luscious body. Lively carbonation. I bet I could get in a lot of knickers with this beer. (376 characters)

Photo of orfeu
4.72/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Many thanks to Faro for sending me this bottle in our trade earlier this fall. Murky scarlet, almost like watered-down blood with a thin dusky-pink foam cap. The aroma is almost an exact sensory replica of the scent one detects when opening a can of naturally sweetened (i.e. without high fructose corn syrup or any other goo) organic cherries; pure fruit, thick, pulpy, skins-and-all. There's a hint of tartness, too, so it's not all just a sickly-sweet mess of fruit. The flavor is more of what the aroma foretells: thick, chewy cherry pulp, intensely sweet but not syrupy with a tart, dry edge at the finish. There is little in the way of grain flavor; perhaps only a little funky tartness from the wheat malt. A small and indistinct spice note weaves in and out of the middle as well, sort of like faint cinnamon. Dry and tart on the palate; not too puckery, but the intense sweetness is all fruit and no residual sugar syrupy crap. I don't know that a cherry-flavored beer that isn't a lambic could be done any better than this. Very nicely done fruit beer, and very special beer generally speaking. This paired quite well with the vegan chocolate mousse I had for dessert tonight. My wife didn't like it too well, but she's a hophead. (1,240 characters)

Photo of nouseforotacon
4.47/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I've been sitting on this for a couple of months, couldn't wait any longer. Faro sent me this in my first trade, much love, as it's the first brew I actively sought out that I can't obtain in my area.

Pours out a murky/muddy-looking darkened raspberry/caramel bottom. Nice, creamy foam head with a light red tint that dissipates slowly. Leaves nice lacing.

Smell is subtle, and not overwhelming. Very fresh cherries, with a hint of raspberry like tart/sourness. Subtle blend of malts. Smooth aroma.

Tinge of tartness on the tip of my tongue, and then a wash of sweet, plump cherries. Fruity with a little carbonation. Light malts and cherries work together harmoniously. Very lightly hopped finish with a bit of mouth puckering. Creamy mouthfeel holds this incredible brew together and really is the highlight.

The thing I love most about this brew is that it is subtle and delicious, without being over-the-top or too pretentious. Yeah, it's brewed with a whole lot of real cherries, but the fruit is used to accentuate the beer rather than to overpower it. Perfect blend of beer and fruit, and by far the best fruit beer I've ever tried. (1,154 characters)

Photo of trep
4.72/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

750ml bottle thanks to JeffKrenner

Pours ruby red with a huge pink-tinted head that fades to leave a small ring around the glass. Delicious cherry aroma that I could smell for hours. So rich and sweet smelling, with a lil tartness and funk.

Sweet, like drinking Cherry Kool-aid, but much thicker and more delicious. Robust cherry flavors dominate throughout and leave you wanting more after every sip. So very smooth also.

Medium bodied, fairly thick for what I was expecting. Nice amount of carbonation to keep it bubbly. Incredibly easy drinking. Like I said earlier, like drinking cherry kool-aid. Truely an exceptional beer experience. (649 characters)

Photo of ryantupy
4.92/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A 750ml bottle I picked up during one of my many runs over to Wisconsin. This was a definatly great beer that I think my beer hating girlfriend actually enjoyed. It poured a ruby red juice like color into the glass. A very small developed but soon turned to film. The beer smells of cherries, naturally. But it is very sweet and tart even smells borderline oak. Tastes of huge cherry flavor with a nice balance of sweetness and tartness. There is nothing to complain about here. This is a very nice quality beer that should be enjoyed by all. (542 characters)

Photo of jdoherty
3.18/5  rDev -26.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I suppose fruit beers and lambics just aren't my thing, but I could not help but try this belgian red at the New Glarus Brewery.

Appearance: About as close to red as beer can get, you can see the carbonation bubbles flying towards the top

Smell: Cherries, a whole pound of cherries! You can smell it from a mile away

Taste: Incredibly sour, obviously I know this is a matter of palate, but I just could not handle it.

Mouthfeel: Champagne dry, almost needed a glass of water afterward.

Drinkability: You're not exactly going to drink this down fast, to be served in small doses. Definetely a beer for non-beer people, and the big fruit beer fan's holy grail, just not for me (689 characters)

Photo of bigbelcher
4.72/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

More like drinking a fruit juice or drinking a liquid cherry pie than like drinking any other fruit beer. Huge cherry flavor and aroma. Only very slightly sour. Nice deep rich red color. Very, very drinkable. The perfect beer to give to a girl who says that they don't like beer, but why bother wasting such a good beer on a girl that you shouldn't be going out with in the first place. (386 characters)

Photo of pweis909
4.74/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had been saving this one for months and opened it on my birthday, served with chocolate-almond cake for dessert. Given the fruit/vegetable beer category isn't that well defined, it is hard to review within any sort of style guidelines, but this is really enjoyable and really different. Sure, it is beer, but if you want something that tastes like beer, this isn't it, because this taste more like a cherry pop.

A: reddish brown, cloudy.
S: Yep. They really do use a pound of cherries per bottle.
T: A really good cherry pop, sweet, tart, not filling. Sparkling cherry wine? Cherry Cherry Cherry.
M: Lighter than beer (generally), not as dry as champagne.
D: Easy.

This is a good one to spring on someone who is not expecting to like it. My wife usually doesn't go for beer -- she was happy with this. Try it because it is different, because it is delicious. Pair it with dessert. Drink it one special ocassions. Like birthdays. Mmm. (946 characters)

Photo of neonbrown82
4.42/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer was provided courtesy of badbeer and reviewed from mental notes. Thanks for the opportunity. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

The wax was a pain in the ass to peel off, but it was well worth it; for under that sticky wax-covered cap was a cherry-flavored treasure. The beer poured to a nice ruby red color, practically sparkling under the light. Had a nice pinkish head as well.

The smell is like I just opened up a can of fresh marascino cherries. Incredibly strong, like an air-freshener. The flavor is just the same. The cherry flavor conceals anything else in the beer, but it is such a wonderful marriage of fruit and beer that I can't complain. Beautiful tartness, quite well balanced between sweet and sour.

I could drink an entire 750 of this, and that is saying quite a bit for its drinkability considering how much I usually dislike fruit beer. But when done well, they are great. (901 characters)

Photo of yemenmocha
4.25/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Hazy off-red color with frothy head. Nice.

Nose is over the top. Dessert-like in sweetness. You can enjoy the aroma from 4 feet away.

On the palate it is very similar to the usual Kriek counterpart but this one is more cherry-fresh tasting. The cherry component is just more ripe. Very good. (298 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 WeisGuy
4.59/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

a - hazy, ruby red with lots of bubbles, small head around the edges with a little retention, small lacing as well

s - tart cherries exploding from the glass, the description on the label doesn't lie, smells like there is a pound of fresh cherries in there

t - intense sweetness up front with the tart cherries then engulfing the mouth, finish is long and sweet with lingering cherry flavor, slight sourness as well

m - light bodied, lots of carbonation, feels more like a slightly flat champagne in the mouth than any beer I've had, finish is quite dry

d - although quite sweet, I think I could sip on this stuff all night, definitely a change of pace beer though, not an everyday drinker

I've had this bottle sitting around since my trip to Madison over a month ago. Finally decided to crack it open tonight, and it was well worth the wait. New Glarus has certainly produced a beer like no other beer I'm familiar with. Great beer for something different and I can't imagine a better example of the style. Well worth any trouble you have getting your hands on this one. (1,086 characters)

Photo of NoLiberty
4.4/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to GrassrootsVT for supplying me with the opportunity to try this beer. I'd been asking folks from WI if they had anything to say about New Glarus, most of my responses were about Spotted Cow and Totally Naked, not quite the beers I was thinking about.

The bottle label is great, an old school Belgian style label with classic cherry illustration and off white paper; simple but good. Bottle is head is draped in red wax. The beer pours a gorgeous, cloudy thick almost ox blood colored red. This beer is so impressively cherried it looks more like cherry puree than beer. This is likely a bottle conditioned beer even though the sediment is quite low in the bottom. The head is nice and big, foamy white and lingers for the entire drink.

The aroma is simple: Baking cherry pie. Such a delicious combination of sweet fresh cherries and earthy grain. Nice!

The taste? Wow! The taste is somehow bigger than the nose; cherry all the way through. Big round sweet, honey, wheat, cherry flavor. Baked cherry pie front with round sweet fruity middle, and tart almost lactic bite at the end. The lingering flavors of fruit last for a while.

The mouthfeel is nice big and well rounded. Smooth and well carbonated, thick but not syrupy. Dry finish.

Great nose, great taste, but so much so that it's hard to say more than one full glass is possible. I'll certainly look for this again for dessert. (1,407 characters)

Photo of beckje01
3.88/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

From a 1Pint 9oz bottle poured into short glass

A- Ruby red, small white head around the edges.

S- Light cherrys a touch of malt in the background.

T- Semi tart cherry very sweet. Alittle bit of a bitter end.

M- Good feel no activity.

D- A slow drinker, very sweet nice desert drink.

Notes: This is a great beer because my girlfriend also like it who at other times usally described beers as too beer tasting... not that I ever understood that. So its worth a try unless of course you hate cherry then don't bother. (533 characters)

Photo of maundythirsty
4.24/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I'm torn on this stuff, because it's unrecognizable as beer. Nonetheless, I enjoyed drinking it.

Pours to a thin head with just a wee bit of lacing. The beer is opaque and a very natural ripe red color that goes amber around the edges. Smells like cherry pie -- down to the crust.

Tastes like rich cherry pie filling, with nary a hint of any typical beer flavors. Incredibly sweet, but rounds out with nifty souring in the end.

Despite the lack of observable bubbling this feels like it has some zippy carbonation. Maybe a watery feel, but Belgian Red jumps on your tongue so hard it's hard to get a good feel for it.

Yowsa. So sweet that it is best enjoyed in moderation. I will keep a bottle of this stuff around to haul out after dinner now and then -- or as a trap to snag the "But I don't like beer" people. (824 characters)

Photo of TurdFurgison
4.32/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had at my parents house in Chicago, they brought it back from Wisconsin. This has been on my must-try list based on a personal recommendation from beer god Boyd, and also it's currently number 30.

I won't detail the appearance, smell, and taste as they are detailed in full by previous reviews. The main thing about it is I hoped it was a Flanders red (sour ale). But it turned out to have a secret ingredient: cherries. It's a cherry lambic... huh.

It's good for it's style but not really my cup of tea. (511 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)

Wisconsin Belgian Red from New Glarus Brewing Company
96 out of 100 based on 937 ratings.