Dismiss Notice
Get 12 monthly issues of BeerAdvocate magazine and save $5 when you select "auto-renew."

Subscribe now →
Dismiss Notice
Join our email list →

And we'll send you the latest updates and offers from BeerAdvocate, because knowing is half the battle.

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

969 Reviews
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(Read More)
Reviews: 969
Hads: 3,301
Avg: 4.36
pDev: 10.32%
Wants: 1,152
Gots: 734 | FT: 82
Brewed by:
New Glarus Brewing Company
Wisconsin, United States | website

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: 969 | Hads: 3,301
Photo of billab914
4.57/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750ml bottle into a set of New Glarus flute glasses. poured a ruby red color with a significant amount of carbonation bubbles rising from the bottom of the glass. It poured with a small white head that quickly retreated to the sides of the glass.

The aroma is is all sweet cherries. Almost smells like a cherry syrup or cherry juice. The taste is pretty much again cherry dominated. It has some sweetness but is also offset by a little dry tartness in the finish. It still leans towards the sweeter side but the tartness helps it from being cloyingly sweet.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with high carbonation. Drinkability is very good for as fruity as a beer as this is. it would probably pair great with a lot of deserts.

Overall I really loved this beer, but I absolutely love cherries. Cherries are probably my favorite fruit and this beer really tastes like real cherries instead of the fake extract in a lot of cherry beers.

 946 characters

Photo of drabmuh
4.3/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Kind of a cute beer. I really enjoyed it, a lot. Beer poured from a bottle into a becher glass. Beer is red and clear. White head but really thin, carbonation moderate and of small bubbles. Lacing is really high. Looks good.

Aroma is sweet and tart, smells like cherries.

This is an easy drinking beer. Its sweet and has a good fruit flavor to it. Carbonation sours the beer a little but it just serves to bring out the fruit flavor more. Drinkability high mouthfeel good.

Resampled February 8, 2010:

Beer is poured into a snifter glass. Beer is dark red and hazy. Froms a thin white head that leaves lacing on the glass. Carbonation is moderate.

Aroma is much stronger than I remember, very cherry, almost like cherry candy jolly ranchers.

Lots of carbonation on the tongue, great sour / tartness. I seriously love this beer.

Its less like beer and more like cherry soda.

 882 characters

Photo of ShanePB
3.95/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

750 ml bottle shared with friends and family. Served into multiple snifters.

A: Hazy ruby red and mahogany colored body with an off-white, slightly pink/brown head. Amazing sticky lacing around the entire glass, and a decent retention ring with a center patch. For being aged in oak barrels with tons of cherries, this seems about right. Really nice looking beer.

S: Maraschino cherry juice and flesh, pureed cherry and blueberry skins, sweet and somewhat of a tart red fruit juice aroma. Very aromatic and fruity; it's hard to pick out much of anything past that. No hops, but some very pale grains towards the back end...

T: Sweet red cherries, certainly a bit more akin to a fake or preserved cherry flavor (again, Maraschino comes to mind). Somewhat of a fresh cherry flesh and pits mid-palate with a gritty, grainy backbone. Sugary cherry and red fruit candy flavor lasts well into the finish and linger.

M: Bubbly but very creamy and silky on the palate. Medium-bodied, sweet and dry in the finish. A nice feeling beer, very lively.

Even split a few different ways, more than 8 ounces of this was starting to really get to me. In terms of drinkability, this isn't very high - it's just very sweet and the flavor profile starts to wear you down. Personally, I'd split this with as many people as possible and when not forced to drink a lot to finish the bottle, this is good.

 1,385 characters

Photo of woodychandler
4.64/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Transcribed from undated notes, likely early-2010.

This bottle dated back to Summer 2004, I believe. The pour was lacking any sort of discernible head. Color was a deep red with a slight cloudiness. Nose was like standing in a cherry orchard in the summer and taking a deep breath. I was transported back to the days of my late grandmother's lattice-top cherry pies or making preserves in the early fall. I had some cherry preserves from Traverse City, MI while I was stationed on Diego Garcia that were intense, but this beer ... Holy Cherry, Batman! This left no room for survivors. To say dry would be an understatement. Arid! And cherry! Breathtaking! Mind blowing! Forget other mind-altering substances and put some of this in your peace pipe and smoke it.

 762 characters

Photo of GClarkage
4.23/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

11/18/07- Received as a gift from former BA member Irishsnake.

Presentation- 750ml bottle with a nice coating of red wax over the cap and neck of the bottle. Not sure what vintage it is, but I've had it in my possesion for at least 2 years. Assuming 2004 or 2005. Poured into my Alesmith tulip.

Appearance- Murky and sludgly looking dark blood red pour. Ultra light spritzy head upon pour, fades quickly. Leaves light spots of lace behind.

Smell- Sadly..not much of any. Was expecting a blast in the face of harvested cherries instead I just get a tiny whiff. If you dig in you get some fresh cherries and a bit of malt, but it really doesn't assert itself.

Taste- Very sweet and a touch of a sour note. Fresh orchard black and bing cherries flourish in the mouth. Cherries...that's it. Simple and straight forward. The only thing that would make it perfect taste is a lasting flavor after the swallow.

Mouthfeel- Creamy, thick, viscous, syrupy. Almost like cherry cough syrup. Aftertaste is not much. It's like fruit stripe gum...great flavor that lasts for a few chews and poof!! Gone like that.

Drinkability- Very drinkable, but limited a tad because of the sweetness factor. Still blows most cherry beers away.

 1,220 characters

Photo of smakawhat
4.57/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into a large snifter glass.

Out of the bottle the beer pours a little off red/orange, but hits with a great clear ruby body. Head forms a nice off pink and creamy texture and some spotted leopard like lacing while drinking. Looks real nice. Finishes with champagne bubble bath suds of red.

Bouquet is unique and distinct but mostly a surprise. Candy store cherry wrapper candy notes and spicy. A very big burst of cinnamon red hots sensations. Strong but not overpowering and completely tolerable. Incredibly impressive.

Taste follows the nose but brings some nice sensations. Very mild tartness with cherry candy store fruit. Finish with cinnamon red hot candy chews without the burning acid.

Texture is almost creamy from the head play with body, but it's still quite light in feel. Mouthwash like teeth coating effect as well.

Overall this is pretty easy drinking, an immense flavor profile, unique, and so refreshing. Well done.

 961 characters

Photo of WesWes
4.82/5  rDev +10.6%
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 Alieniloquium
4.03/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 mL bottle poured into a goblet. Thanks to MarcatGSB for this bottle!

Appearance - Dark, dull, red with a pinkish, but only slightly pinkish, head. Less brilliant looking than the Raspberry Tart. Great retention, great lacing. Aside from a dismal color, it looks quite nice.

Smell - Fresh cherry aroma. Nothing artificial about it. It smells like a box of cherries.

Taste - Slightly tart cherries, but nothing more than the cherries themselves. A hint of sweetness at the end, but it doesn't build the way the Raspberry Tart did.

Mouthfeel - Crisp and light. The sweetness is really under control with this one. I put this bottle away way too quickly.

Overall - A glass of cherries. If that's what you're looking for, great. It's still tough to rate these bizarre beers.

 778 characters

Photo of Mora2000
4.7/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to thirdeye11 for sharing this bottle.

Pours reddish-orange with a white head. Aroma is unmistakable, lots of sugar, cherries and something that reminds me of red wine. The flavor is more cherries, with a ton of sweetness. This tastes like cherry filling inside of a fried pie. Mouthfeel is syrupy and carbonation is medium-low. Easily the best fruit beer I have ever sampled.

 385 characters

Photo of johnnnniee
4.45/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Received this in trade from dirtylou and then a day later from initiative thanks guys.
Pours a ruby amber red color with a thin off white head that left quickly. Smell is overwhelmingly cherries yum! Dried fruit/prune in the background. Taste is tart cherries has almost a sticky syrupy feel to it. Leaves a tart cherry aftertaste. My mouth literally was watering with every sip. Not exactly a kriek as its not nearly that sour, but a damn fine brew nonetheless.

 462 characters

Photo of Mebuzzard
3.43/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A friend of mine brought this back from Wisconsin to drink while watching the GB game.
Pours a thick ruby color, hazey, some floaters. Off white/red head, minimal strength, some staying power.
Aroma hits at first as a cherry bomb-cough syrup, but it has a nice biscuit hint mixed in there. Semi sweet. Not as strong as the Lindeman's Kriek, a bit more complex.
Taste was cherry filled, sweet, sticky. Phenols make the cherries feel fake and syrupy. A thick feel to it with a small bite in the back to soften the syrup feel. A good brew, but not very drinkable to me.

 567 characters

Photo of Gavage
4.49/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: hazy reddish amber color with a 1/2" head that breaks apart quickly.

Smell: an abundant cherry aroma is extremely pleasant on the nose.

Taste: cherry flavor dominate here with some softer pear tones, a hint of spiciness, and a mild bitterness. There is a touch of tartness late.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied. Crisp from start to finish. Super long cherry aftertaste here.

Drinkability: this one goes down easily despite the sweetness. Great after dinner beer.

 471 characters

Photo of BARFLYB
4.57/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Bottle aquired through Thomashardy, split with Birradr14.

A- Wisconsin Belgian Red is ruby red with some brighter spots here and there. A very clean looking beer with some bubbles upon pouring but no head.

S- This fruit beer is a blessing with a ton of cherries in the nose literally. At times this has scents of a cherry jolly rancher.

T- I had this twice in one week and the 1st was way to sweet like sucking on a cherry jolly rancher. That was present in this bottle also but to a lesser degree. A nice sweet fruit beer with just a touch of sour twang, ever so slight. This is cherry juice.

M- A step up from the lighter side of brews with some carbonation felt on the mouth. Very sweet and a bit much at times so sippin is prefered. It's like i'm sippin on some szzurp.

D- This 5% beer would fill my fridge if I lived near NG. This is great on it's own or paired with some dessert or with other beer's. You really can't go wrong with it. Probably would be a great hit with the ladies as well.

 1,001 characters

Photo of DoubleJ
4.89/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Halcyondays raved about it. kbm told me it's crazy to not like it. That's a good enough record to justify a taste. On to the beer:

Spotty lacing is left around the glass from this orangish red colored beer. It kind of looks like punch. The aroma is beauty. Sometimes cherries in beer can be over the top and very acidic, but the cherries in this one are mellow yet very aromic. Sweet cherries and cherry skins, yeah.

Its taste is a beautiful and simple. Sweet succulent cherries crash into the palate wave after wave. It's never really tart, and never really acidic. In fact, it's almost like a cherry punch. With a flavor so rich and full of the fruit, the body seems medium full, which is amazing at 4% ABV. As a bonus, unlike the Raspberry Tart, the WBR is much too easy to drink.

Like the Raspberry Tart which I'm in love with, the Wisconsin Belgian Red is tops in its class. Any doubter of fruit beers should take a look at the offerings that New Glarus is producing, which are beautiful beverages to drink. The next mission will be securing a full bottle to myself.

 1,076 characters

Photo of tempest
3.34/5  rDev -23.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I don't think I got a bad bottle, the the beer store had this one in the fridge, I just think I'm not a fan. It did look gorgeous, I've never seen a pink cascading head before. The aroma, however, just reminded me of Juicy Juice, not a fine beer. The taste was a little more complex with a mild tartness and sweet cherry flavor. I really couldn't find much depth here. I'd go back to the Raspberry Tart before this one.

 419 characters

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.82/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy deep red color, there is no real head, though there is a bit of wispy pink bubbles. A sweet full cherry flavor dominates the nose, notes of vanilla and sour cherry. No surprise, this beer has a sweet full flavored cherry taste. This beer is by no means traditional, but it is at least cherry sweet and not sugary sweet. This does not approach the complexity of a Flemish sour or a Lambic, but it is a well made exploding celebration of the cherry. This is a perfect after dinner/ desert beer.

The beer itself is quite sweet and refreshing, though reasonably viscous with a medium body. As a beer I might not have to much respect for this one, but it is damn tasty and a perfect desert beer. Has a sour, tart, fruity, tannic-cherry stone thing going on. The aroma is so intensely cherry, it is quite wonderful. I am gonna have to say that this would be much better, more authentic, if they had used a beer such as La Folie as the base beer. I really can't get over how intense the cherry flavor and aroma are. This is certainly quite an experience. As a desert it is a 4.6, but unfortunately my biases and prejudices come into play.

 1,145 characters

Photo of AlexFields
4.39/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into a Bell's tulip glass. A centimeter of head formed at the top and disappeared quickly.

A: At first this didn't look that great--lots of bubbles on the side of the glass in inconsistent patterns that just made it look spotty. After the bubbles mostly disappeared, it was a nice red color, notable because it's an unusual color for a beer, but not remarkable aside from that.

S: The smell is just amazing. No complexity, just a straightforward explosion of sweet cherry smell, like a whiff of cherry cobbler or something. Never smelled another alcoholic beverage of any kind with such an awesomely straightforward fruit smell.

T: Like the nose, the taste is almost pure cherry, but a little different than I expected from the smell, as there's a slight tartness to the flavor that isn't present at all in the smell. The sweetness is still big though, bigger than the tartness, but it all comes together into an amazing balance. Enough tartness that it isn't cloying or sickeningly sweet, but enough sweetness that you could drink this stuff like soda and never realize it was alcoholic (my girlfriend and I finished this bottle in record speed). Oh, and if I didn't make this clear already, the cherry flavor is HUGE. And really, really good.

M: Really light and well carbonated. Almost more like a fruit soda than a beer, but I mean that in a mostly good way (it is slightly odd).

Overall: Basically, after drinking this you're left wondering if New Glarus used any ingredients besides cherries. If you like cherries, you will love this beer, even if you dislike other fruit beers.

9.1/10

 1,620 characters

Photo of Gobzilla
4.45/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: poured a vibrant crimson red in color with pale ruby highlights and a thin head that barely left any lacing sticking to the glass.

S: tons of cherry fruit oozes out of the aroma with slight citrus qualities, tons of noticeable sweetness, maybe a little booze but not much. the cherries are definitely overwhelming but not in a bad way.

T: the story here is cherries cherries cherries, almost like a cherry puree but with slight booze. In the middle of all that cherry character I did manage to get a little citrus and hunts of funk but barely.

M: the brew was medium in body with a moderate amount of carbonation which had very fruity, slight citrus, mild funky, and sweet finish.

O: This beer is a cherry bomb all the way. It surprised me that the cherry profile was still potent even after I sat on this bottle for 2 years; trip out.

 842 characters

Photo of Halcyondays
4.97/5  rDev +14%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

750 mL bottle, shared by kbm,

A: Pours a medium vermillion red, with a light fizzy off-white head, nice colour.

S: Baked cherry pie, that sums it up. A beautiful fragance.

T: A lot more cherry pie, cherries soaking in maple syrup is another way to describe it. Notes of graham cracker in the finish and sugar. A completely real cherry flavour. I'd describe the sugar level as off-sweet/demi sec for a wine term.

M: Soft carbonation, light-bodied. Very easy going on the palate and so drinkable.

D: This is the best fruit beer I've ever had. I could drink this forever if it wasn't so rare. New Glarus took the time and fermented real cherries and it shows in the taste, there's just no substitute for the real thing. With all the artificial flavour out there in the fruit beers today, you've got to look to New Glarus for the best. If I ever get to Wisconsin I'm buying a case of this stuff, and I've never bought a case of anything in my life. I've been wanting to try this forever, and it did not disappoint. Wow!

 1,020 characters

Photo of yourefragile
4.75/5  rDev +8.9%
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.

 631 characters

Photo of liamt07
4.65/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottle from mscarpen, 750ml into a tulip. Thanks a ton Scott!

Ruby red, with an offwhite head. Some retention and nice lacing. Nose holds loads of the beautiful Wisconsin cherries, dark fruit notes, spice and lots of jammy/pie filling characteristics. Taste of cherry pie filling, spice, pie crust and cherry jams. Dense feel, full and just an immense amount of flavour packed into this beer. Another brilliant NG fruit beer. Next to the Raspberry Tart as one of the best fruit beers (and any beer) I've ever had. Wisconsin cherries are fucking boss.

 551 characters

Photo of KAF
4.39/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I crossed over into Hudson, Wisconsin to get this beer. They had this beer at Casanova and at Chicone. It was priced at $7.99 and was worth every penny. My wife really likes fruit lambics but she did not enjoy this (more for me!).

About an inch of head. Strong deep smell of cherry. Reddish brown in color. Slightly tart. No hint of alcohol. Cherry pie filling flavor. Very good beer.

 385 characters

Photo of TheSevenDuffs
4.85/5  rDev +11.2%
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

Photo of Stinkypuss
5/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a cherry red color with an off white head. Aroma is full of fresh ripe cherries. Exactly. Amazing to just breathe this beer in. The flavor is big on the tart, delicious cherries. Doughy malts back the full on sweet cherries leaving you feeling like you just ingested the best cherry tart in liquid form. This is exceptional fruit beer. Medium bodied brew with soft to dry cherries. Overall, an American classic, made with care in small batches as long as the local cherry crops allow. Almost impossible to find outside of Wisconsin and surrounding areas.

 560 characters

Photo of Duff27
4.85/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A- Pours a clear, ruby red with a small white head. Good lacing and head retention.

S- Cherries, hints of vanilla?

T- More cherries...fresh and above all else, real. Tart. Dare I say orgasmic?

M- Dances on the tongue like its sister Raspberry Tart.

D/O- I've had many a beers in my day but this remains one of the best beers I've ever had. Light and fruity, its an easy drinker although I find myself taking small sips just to savor. The epitome of "world class".

 469 characters

Wisconsin Belgian Red from New Glarus Brewing Company
97 out of 100 based on 969 ratings.