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Vichtenaar - Brouwerij Verhaeghe

Not Rated.
VichtenaarVichtenaar

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BA SCORE
88
very good

354 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 354
Reviews: 213
rAvg: 3.91
pDev: 12.28%
Wants: 28
Gots: 14 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Verhaeghe visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Flanders Red Ale |  5.10% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Andreji on 06-25-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 354 | Reviews: 213 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of SourBuzz
5/5  rDev +27.9%

SourBuzz, Apr 23, 2012
Photo of IMSPEAKNOENGLISH
5/5  rDev +27.9%

IMSPEAKNOENGLISH, Jul 02, 2012
Photo of nortmand
4.93/5  rDev +26.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours solid brown and clear with a lace forming white head.

Dominant smell is acetic vinegar. Also very vinuous. Chianti dark berry smells. Red wine smells.

Red wine vinegar flavors up front. Turns into a very pleasant tart berry flavor midtongue. Sweet young beer flavors on top of everything. Leaves a sharp pickle sour aftertaste. Funky!

Medium body is accented by the slippery acidity on the tongue. Very lightly tart and very refreshing, worth seeking out.

nortmand, Nov 25, 2006
Photo of Lnedrive14
4.85/5  rDev +24%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Thank the beer gods (and Bauer Wines) for this one.

It's color is chameleonic. It goes from red, to brown, to darker brown, depending on the light. Whatever it is, it is opaque - relatively thick looking for the style. 1/10" head that remains throughout.

I don't know that this the most complext Flanders out there, but in my opinion, I can't imagine one tasting better than this. Huge vanilla cherry sweetness up front with a strong malt character that keeps the sweetness in check. The oak and vanilla mix amazingly well. The back of the palate is the usual vinegar and wine astringence/tartness that you expect from the style. In that sense, it is no different than others, but it is that up front taste that really impressed me.

Thick, chewy, fluffly. Tough to nail it down, but it seems like a bigger beer than others of the style. Alcohol content is of course low, but this beer quickly penetrates every corner of your mouth and resonates there. The sensation remains for a while as you progress through the various tastes proferred by this sensational brew.

As much as I loved this beer, I don't think I would want more than 2 of them. It is that astringence that would just make it too difficult to drink too much of it.

Only the 3rd beer I have given a 5 in taste to. This one is near perfect once if hits your mouth and I can't imagine finding one i liked better. Sometimes, taste is everything.

Lnedrive14, Dec 01, 2006
Photo of techdiver
4.83/5  rDev +23.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a clear deep reddish brown with modest head that dissipates quickly.

Nose of sour cherries and malt.

Taste of sweet malt and sour cherries is well balanced and refreshing.

Medium bodied and good carbonation, this style is great on warm days.

Great drinkability for the low ABV and qualities the better brews of this style have as noted.

techdiver, Jul 03, 2007
Photo of Phatz
4.8/5  rDev +22.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Thanks to beerbeing for recommending that I should try Vichtenaar from the tremendous makers of the Duchesse De Bourgogne, Brouwerij Verhaeghe. This may be even better than the Duchesse since it is all the sour with out the extra sweet sugars. It falls right in the middle of the sour style with plenty of sweetness but not nearly as much as it's sister beer. I must admit it does strikes a chord with me.

Appearance: Pours a burgundy color with a small white head and some lacing.

Smell: Cherries and oak with a caramel bread malt attribute and yeasty sour funk gets my glands salivating.

Taste: It has a pleasant but not intense berry sour with green grapes and brown sugar and nip of acidity in the finish. The long lingering aftertaste the cincher for me. Terrific.

Mouthfeel: A light and lively body apropos for a sour brown.

Drinkability: Down right DANGEROUS! I have to drive a long way to find it for $76 a case but it is worth it. Mmm, gotta love it.

Hope this is helpful.
Cheers!

Phatz, May 12, 2007
Photo of pweis909
4.75/5  rDev +21.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appears brown, translucent enough to see my fingers grasped around my glass. Thin foam disappears rapidly.

Aroma is initially acetic, vinegar, giving way to malic, apple cider.

Taste is sour up front, sweet in the middle, and sour gain in the finish. The sour notes are definitely reminiscent of cider, only a bit sharper, especially in the finish. The fleeting nature of the sweetness makes it difficult to nail down. It is caramel, almost seems very rich, except for that sour finish.

Mouthfeel seems perfect for this beer, and seems to change in the mouth, thin initially, than begins to feel like it coats the mouth, only to be cleansed by the sour finish, that creates a lingering burn on the tongue.

pweis909, Sep 05, 2010
Photo of Neorebel
4.75/5  rDev +21.5%

Neorebel, Sep 23, 2013
Photo of TheEclecticGent
4.68/5  rDev +19.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I’ve had this beer many times in bottle at the Brick Store in Decatur, GA. This is my second favorite beer in the world, followed only by Duchesse de Bourgogne. It pours from the bottle into a tulip glass a dark medium brown with a quickly fading head that leaves a fairy ring and a bit of pattering on the top. It has moderate lacing for the first half of the session. The smell is a very sharp vinegar and musk. The smell, however, is much more sour than the flavor. The flavor is a very complex cascade of sweet, sour, carbonation, with brown sugar and dried fruit overtones. The mouthfeel is light to moderate with serious carbonation pricking. It isn’t as drinkable as Duchesse de Bourgogne but it’s a very close second. If Green’s package store would carry this beer I would stock it at my place.

TheEclecticGent, Feb 11, 2006
Photo of mtrentm
4.68/5  rDev +19.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a snifter.

A: This flanders red pours a nice coffee brown with hints of red tones to it when held to the light. The head disipates leaving a nice tannish white thin layer of foam with great lacing.

S: The aroma on this beer is amazing! I get a hint of burnt sugar, tones of sour cherries, a little hint of vinegar, & a bit of musky woodiness in the background.

T: This is probably the most flavorful beer I've had in awhile. A very complex beer with flavors of granny smith apples, raspberries, sour cherries, with a nice spicy, woody finish.

M: The mouthfeel on this beer is almost like a champagne...nicely carbonated leaving your palate dry and clean.

D: This is a very drinkable flanders red, if you're into these styles of beer. I like the fact that there isn't a whle lot of vinegar flavors, just a hint in the nose.

mtrentm, May 17, 2009
Photo of brdc
4.6/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Small capped bottle.

Poured into my Rodenbach Grand Cru tulip, it is clear, dark red, shiny when held against the light, with a nice tan creamy head with great lacing.
Aroma is fruity, yeasty, sugary malts and caramel, and suggests a lot more sourness than you will find.
Perhaps the best balance in all Flanders reds, this one is neither sour and puckering as La Folie, nor sweet as the Duchesse.
Starts fruity and sweet, evolving into caramel, and then some tartness and acidity, as mentioned balancing it quite well but not puckering.
Goes incredibly easy, pleasant and quiet along with the sun coming down; picture perfect!

brdc, Oct 14, 2007
Photo of SkeeterHawk
4.58/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I just picked up a 4-pack of this beer at Knightly Spirits in Orlando. I'll review this one and hoard the rest...woo hoo!

Appearance: Pours a clear caramel brown with a off white head of small bubbles that was rather dense in the beginning and was about half the size of its initial height about 30 seconds after the pour. Minutes after the pour, the head was still there and never completely faded into the beer. After drinking the beer, there is a significant amount of lace left on the glass.

Aroma: I initially get a whole lot of complexity from even the cold beer. There is a defined sweet caramel aroma in here as well as noticeable sour notes coming out a clean "sour black cherry" (if there was such a thing). The aromatics are really inviting in this. I get lots of dark fruit like figs and such and in fact there is so much going in in here, I am just going to skip the rest of the aroma for now and come back to it once the beer warms up a bit.

Taste: The flavor follows the aroma pretty closely in that it has lots of toffee-like flavors in here contributing substantial sweetness to the flavor to round out the sourness and make the whole thing support each other. The sourness is there, but with the bold malt-bill, it only enhances the whole experience rather than being the predominant flavor. The finish is slightly balanced toward the sweet in the finish and the flavor left on your palate is almost like you just had a bite of some exotic dessert. The carbonation is definitely spot-on for this beer and makes the beer skate across your palate with enough resonance to let you taste it, but not come across as heavy in any way.

Opinion: This is an outstanding beer! I really like the Duchesse from this brewery and this beer is no slouch by comparison. This one is a bit sweeter than the Duchesse, but the Duchesse is really about the only other beer that I could compare this to. If you like Flanders and sour ales like I do, you will respect the raw intensity of like a Rodenbach, but this beer is significantly more subtle. It is a very well blended beer and I would drink this beer all the time if it was available in my area. We have the Duchesse in Texas now, so I can't complain. Give this one a shot if you like sours or not...you won't be disappointed.

SkeeterHawk, Mar 02, 2010
Photo of dreadnatty08
4.55/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Best by 1/19/09, jeez this thing can age!
Pours a dark ruby red color, borderline mahogany with a nice quarter inch of tan head. Aromas start out richly acetic, lots of vinegar, candy sweetness, vanilla, chocolate, oak, cherries, it's gorgeous. On the palate, things continue to develop. The sourness starts out rich and oaky, fruity, spicy phenols, finishing dry and mellow without being overly tart. Enough sweetness there that the tannic astringency in the end is buffered. Overall its an excellent beer, but I think it still falls short of my other favorites in this style.

dreadnatty08, Mar 13, 2008
Photo of azorie
4.53/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

ahh its sour day at the old homestead:

Poured into a tulip/triple glass at 45f Nice dark ruddy brown, and about 1/4 head that did not last very long , its oak aged and that is what its supposed to do.

Tart and wine like sour blackberry's. Sharp malt and yeast bite. as it warms i get a sour apple note

taste like a oaked aged red wine but more sour. Love the apple/cheery/currents like blend very nice and complex, with the yeast and malt it balances out perfectly in the STYLE. its like a duchesse but more sour.Buttery blend.

low carb, as its Oak aged, medium to thin body

easy to drink paired, with some cheese, we choose a triple cheese brie, its just heaven in a bottle.

One has to have the taste buds for the style of beer. NOT a beer for the non belgain yeast and oak aged, red wine lover.

azorie, Aug 11, 2010
Photo of corby112
4.53/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Serving type: bottle.

Pours a dark brown with burgundy edges and a thin head. Aroma is a bit funky/ sour with lots of oak, wood and vanilla. This is an extremely well balanced beer that is very smooth. The againg in oak gives the roasted malts a perfect balance of sour and sweet. Flavor also consists of oak, vanilla, cherry and berries. Slightly dry refreshing finish.

corby112, Nov 28, 2008
Photo of Guden
4.5/5  rDev +15.1%

Guden, Jan 23, 2012
Photo of NeroFiddled
4.5/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Verhaeghe's Vichtenaar nestles nicely between some of the more sour and overly-sweet examples of the Flander's red style. It pours a clear, dark chestnut robe with orange-ruby highlights and a thin head of creamy tan foam. The head drops readily yet somehow manages to maintain a wide collar and whispy surface covering. A few splashes of sticky lace about the goblet add to its appearance. In the nose, a combination of delicate but somewhat sharp, vinous fruit and sweetish malt greets you. It's delicately effervescent on the tongue with a very fine bubbled, slightly elevated carbonation, and it becomes somewhat airy as it crosses the palate. Muted caramel and soft, subtly tart dark skinned fruit (figs, plums, raisins/dark grapes) combine in the flavor, leaving it quite sherry-like. It's fairly intense upfront before fading slowly and seamlessly away into a long-lasting aftertaste that is again, not unlike that of a glass of sherry or port. And that's the beauty of the Flander's red style, the push and pull between the tart and the sweet.. the way the sourness lingers on your lips but the sticky, dull malt lays on your teeth and at the back of the throat. It's quite nicely done and certainly worth trying, although it doesn't have quite the breadth of character that some other examples do.

NeroFiddled, Feb 15, 2005
Photo of th0m
4.5/5  rDev +15.1%

th0m, Mar 16, 2014
Photo of WynnO
4.5/5  rDev +15.1%

WynnO, Sep 07, 2012
Photo of ajzy
4.5/5  rDev +15.1%

ajzy, Jun 08, 2013
Photo of andysk
4.5/5  rDev +15.1%

andysk, Oct 09, 2013
Photo of tharper178
4.5/5  rDev +15.1%

tharper178, Jul 27, 2014
Photo of macrosmatic
4.5/5  rDev +15.1%

macrosmatic, Apr 10, 2012
Photo of Soterios
4.5/5  rDev +15.1%

Soterios, Jul 04, 2014
Photo of Gitspe
4.5/5  rDev +15.1%

Gitspe, Jan 18, 2012
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Vichtenaar from Brouwerij Verhaeghe
88 out of 100 based on 354 ratings.