Vichtenaar - Brouwerij Verhaeghe

Not Rated.

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

364 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 364
Reviews: 215
rAvg: 3.9
pDev: 12.56%
Wants: 31
Gots: 19 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Verhaeghe visit their website

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
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 364 | Reviews: 215 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of eheff
4.22/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours an opaque, dark brown in the glass, but is almost a caramel brownish-reddish when held up to the light--with about a half-pinky sized head on it that has not dissipated. It smells half sour/half sweet and the taste matches perfectly--it starts out sour with a sweet and somewhat fruity (cherries? apples?) aftertaste (without being too sweet). I would say that the sweet and sour flavors are very well balanced--which also increases the drinkability.

Photo of cypressbob
4.25/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

250ml bottle, poured into a t I'j brewery tulip glass

Pours with a dark amber rich toffee coloured body. Off white bubbly tight head with good retention forming about half and inch thick or so. A fair bit of sticky white lacing up and down the glass

Smell, a dry oaky mustiness initially, sour maderia soaked cherries and a few hints of other fresh ripe fruit. A few slight fruity esters coerced up by a whiff of syrupy sugary alcohol. Some sweet caramel on the nose along with a slight nose warming acidity, along with a slight dose of cough medicine

Taste, tart cherries soaking in red wine vinegar, some slight phenolic medicinal character too. Estery sugary sweetness around the middle of the flavour backed up by oak and tart fruit once again. The finish is dominated by tonnes of sweet honey flavours topped off by a tart acidic winey twang again. Some lasting oak on the finish also along with more cherry and a hint of marzipan

From the same people who brought you Duchesse de Bougogne, this flanders shares some of the same traits that you either loved or loathed over its more popular sibling. I personally love both, tart yet very drinkable and overall very tasty indeed. I would still push for something a bit less sweet like Rodenbach Grand Cru in the long run but this makes a welcome change and is definatly something worth trying.

Photo of KarlHungus
3.45/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This brew pours a dark ruby red, almost brown color. The head is two inches in height, and red in color. The aroma is sour with hints of cherry and a touch of sweetness. The taste is quite sweet for a flemish red; there really isn't much sourness at all. The mouthfeel is medium-full bodied with nice carbonation. Overall, this beer isn't nearly as sour as I expect a flemish red to be. However, it is still a drinkable beer if you aren't looking for something extremely sour.

Photo of Lnedrive14
4.85/5  rDev +24.4%
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.

Photo of alexgash
4.43/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Rusty amber with caramel brown highlights. Spritzy, rocky, light dirty sand head. Nose explodes with malt vinegar, dates, leather, rotten fruit, and molasses. Is it weird that I like the vinegar and the rotten fruit? Light caramelly sweetness on the periphery; fruity sweet, sorbet-like palate soon turns sour and acidic. Finish is fruity again, with accents of oak and vanilla. The vinegary, sour tang stays a long time though. Light-bodied, highly carbonated/spritzy feel. Very good beer. Thanks to my Boston pals for recommending this one to me!

Photo of nortmand
4.93/5  rDev +26.4%
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.

Photo of dgallina
3.85/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

330ml slim brown bottle dated best-before 1/18/2007.

Pours into the Duchesse ee Bourgogne glass transparent dark red & brown with small film of head, thin lace. Fragrant nose full of oak, sweet and sour balsamic vinegar. Flavor follows the smell. Sour-edged tannic balsamic vinegar coats the mouth. Thick and chewy body with decent balancing carbonation.. Quenching dry toasted malts at the finish. Enjoyable but somewhat overly sweet and straightforward.

Photo of Malted
4.43/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served from a 11.2 oz bottle into a tulip glass.

I recently acquired a small treasure chest of Belgian beers and have become somewhat tired of them after being overexposed to sours and Belgians the last couple of weeks. I opened this one up expecting more of the same… I was happily surprised with this beer.

Appearance- Dark brown with cherry red/brown hi-lights. Thin head that dissipates quickly and leaves little trace it existed down the sides of the glass.

Aroma- Rich with a pungent sour overtone. Smell of fruit and a bit of farm like qualities.

Taste- Surprisingly complex and tasty. The sourness dominates, but it is a mellowed longer acting sourness than some. It hits you over the head lightly with its sourness and you love every second of it. There are also complex finishing notes of oak, spices, and fruit (cherries?).

Mouth feel- Creamy and full.

Drinkability/Overall- A very happy surprise. I could drink a couple of these easy. Overall a very well crafted and balanced beer. The way everything comes together in this beer to give your taste buds a roller coaster of an experience is a work of art. I am hoping I find another Flemish ale in my treasure chest. To keep with the treasure analogy: this was a gem.

Photo of cbl2
4.38/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

10/29/2006 $3.99 11.2 oz. 5.10% Best by 07-07-07 marked on back.


Pours into my Orval goblet, a clear, dark (bordering on black) brown with hints of orange that is topped by a quarter inch of tightly packed dense tan foam with excellent retention.


Sharp and bitingly tart with hints of ripe cherries and plums.


A perfect blend of sweet and tart, this beer is nicely smooth with flavorful bursts of cherry. This beer finds itself somewhere between Rodenbach and Redbach. This is fantastic, easy to drink with low enough alcohol to make this a session beer, though the price puts it out of that range. Seek this one out, it is worth it!

Photo of Iguana
4.13/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Lately I have been loving flander's reds, so its no surprise I picked this one up. It poured a beautiful deep ruby color with a medium sized dense head that never really went away. Smell is malty with hints of tart cherries and a faint hint of oak, kinda lacking overall, but not a bad smell by any means. Taste is oaky, peppery, with hints of cherries. Nice tart/sweet balance. Really well made example of the style I think. The pepperyness really plays well off the tartness. Mouthfeel is a bit bitter, and sticky sweet. Drinkability on this is pretty darn good, this is my 2nd time having the beer, the first time I must admit I couldnt finish it, but that was before my tastes had adapted to like belgian style ales. If you like belgians, and particularly flanders red ales dont miss this one, its pretty tasty.

Photo of Budlum
3.58/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours with two inches of foamy, off-white head slowly diminishing to a thin, frothy layer. Deep ruby red body with loads of purple. A very clear body when compared to other Flanders Red beers.

Tart and sour on the nose. Sour cherries, cranberries and tart raspberries providue a fruity sensation. Strong funk from the yeast likening to the aroma of sherry vinegar. A little more sour smelling than the typical tartness of the style.

Immediate sherry vinegar flavors with a tannin and oak twang. Fruity and sweet midway through with the flavors of very sweet plums. Some tartness but not quite as much as expected. Long, sweet finish with a caramelized sugar sweetness and vanilla.

Slightly carbonated and very creamy. Leaves a slick coating on the tongue for a few seconds after each sip.

Drinkability is good for a Flanders Red. This would be a great candidate for someone new to the style. However, the flavors are little bland for a fan of Flemish beers.

Photo of Erdinger2003
4.45/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The head isn't thick, but it doesn't go away completely. The lacing is beautiful and sticks really well. The color is dark to reddish brown. Smell is fruity and sour, very enjoyable. Taste is slightly sweet and less sour. It's almost like sour fruit juice. Mouthfeel is soft and well carbonated. Overall this was very drinkable and nice to have. I will enjoy more of these.

Photo of Prufrock
3.68/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

11.2 oz. bottle into a pilsner.

nice amber tone that shows some red and orange against the light. half an inch of tan head that leaves little lace.

quite a variety of aromas: sweet malts, dark sweet cherries and prunes, and a vinegary sour character.

same complexity in the flavor, but with an additional metallic character. clean, sweet flavors with dark fruits, white grapes and a touch of ruby red grapefruit.

refreshing, clean feel with a fruity sweetness. sweet malts, cherries, and grapes with a faint hint of grapefruity sour. fairly sweet but not excessive or cloying. very flavorful and exceedingly drinkable.

Photo of shroompod
3.68/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

bottle , poured cold , minimal head. Dark brown color.

Smell , is woodsy , slightly fruity .

Taste is tart& sweet with some soy sauce coming through

Mouthfeel is light considering the sweetness. Good carbonation.

Drinkabitly is alright , a little sweet for my taste. I suspect its style isn't my type but I'll try a few more.

Photo of Jredner
4.1/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Very vinegar and oak dominated aroma that both play off each other to effect a sharp spiciness. Body is a mild brown and holds a diminishing pinky thin tan head. Fore is suprinsgly malty sweet with just a hint of sourness. Has a hearty maltiness to it I did not expect. Sorta like a standard English brown Ale with some funk added. even has a very mild nuttiness to it...though sweeter than a normal brown. The finish is almost bread puddingesque being sweet yet hearty and midly toasty. Big suprise and I rather enjoy this one. Faint hints of vanilla in the far aftertaste.

Photo of asabreed
4.08/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a Duvel tulip. My last bottle of the 4-pack and I realized a bit ago that I hadn't reviewed it, so here goes.

Appearance: An off white and foamy head that quickly dissipates but stays at about 1/2" due to the crazy amount of bubbles floating up toward the top. The body is an extremely dark and attractive amber, and there are certain concentrated spots of huge and clunky lacing residing on the glass.

Smell: Sour apples, apple skin, cherries, and of course yes there's a lot of sourness. And I love the fact that the aroma's almost over overripe or rotting fruit, something powerful and sweet without being to the point of sickly sweet. There's a healthy dose of sweet malt in their too, also some woodiness.

Taste: What this is lacking is the puckering sweet and sour long finish. There is indeed a finish, but it comes and goes unfortunately. All the flavor, and it's up there, comes in the middle, and then it kind of fades. But it's powerful enough that with sipping and holding out a while until you finish the brew, it's lip smacking for sure. The malt and sweetness isn't too much, and it's pretty balanced with the sourness and ripe fruit factors. A long finish would boost this rating up for sure.

Mouthfeel: Lots of carbonation and effervescence to make it, by the finish, feel fairly full without it being too crazy or harsh on the palate with the carbonation. One of the things I love about a good version of the style indeed.

Drinkability: I love this style for probably too many reasons I can't explain. This is a more than solid version of it I'd say, even though I certainly need to have more in the future without a doubt.

Photo of VoodooBrew
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

33 cl bottle. Best Before date of 04/23/06. Looks like I just missed it!

Dark chestnut in color, with ruby highlights and some opacity. When kept away from direct light this beer looks almost black. Bubbles form a column in the center of the glass. Aroma profile offers the familiar spice, muted funkiness, and tart fruit. On the palate, flavors of partly sour fruit combine with hints of cherry cola and a fleeting chalky note, reminiscent of Alka Seltzer. The body is fairly light, the carbonation lively but not abrasive, and the tartness well in check. Pretty easy drinking actually.

I'd like some more SOUR in this beer, because without it Vichtenaar takes a hit on dimensionality. Still, this is certainly solid and well-made.

Photo of Crosling
3.08/5  rDev -21%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Very pretty ruby/violet colored with a small, wispy and quickly diminishing head of white foam. Vibrant aroma, strange smelling, with hints of barbeque sauce, ranch, balsamic vinegar and grapes. Body is very thin and one dimensional and it can’t decide if it wants to be sweet or sour. A totally dull red, lacking complexity.

Photo of kaimcm
4.1/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

amber/garnet/brown body, great color. rich aromas, smells of BBQ sauce, tart acidity. creamy and soft palate in the mouth. BBQ'ed meat comes through, lite acidity, nice balanced malt profile. tame wild yeast flavors/aromas. very approachable, very drinkable for a flanders red. great food beer.

Photo of babydoc
4.33/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured at 50 degrees from a bottle labeled best before 23-04-06. Pours dark, almost opaque ruby brown, with a buff-colored foamy head that doesn't stick around long. Only a bit of lace.
Nose is rhubarb tartness and acetic acid sourness, and sme cherry fruit sweetness, with a caramel touch that melds in as the brew warms. There is also a musty, oaky edge as the beer is swirled.
Finally the chance to taste: Moderate mouthfeel with a bit of velvety carbonation, tannins and some drying on the finish.
Taste is sweet, almost wine-like red grape off set by sour cherry, oak, and tannins, a bit of caramel rounding things out, all swirling about in a delightful balance.
Not as sour as others in the style, this one drinks like a table wine-

Photo of Billolick
4.15/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Another "volunteer's booty" bottle from ASN's big Belgian fest, 11.2 ouncer, with best before dating. Pours w/ next to no head and minimal lacing. Noisy pour, pretty clear, slightly reddish amber liquid, nose of light cola, cherries and other tart fruits. Tasty, tart Flemish ale. Crisp and tasty, fine example of the style. Woody sour cherry notes. Fruity and quite drinkable. Sophisticated, civilized and complex achievement in brewing. Well worth seeking out and enjoying with some stinky cheese, nuts and fruits.

Photo of ggaughan
4.22/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer was part of the Michael Jackson Flemish Sour beer dinner at Monk's Cafe this past Sunday. I believe this one was served on tap. This beer came in a wine glass with nice deep ruby body and good lacing down the glass. The nose of this beer is a very vital cherry smell with some other fruit notes. The taste is sour cheeries and good carbonation, crisp. I really enjoy this beer and with a medium body is a very drinkable red ale. I went back for seconds.

Photo of dogfooddog
3.85/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours 20% head, nose immediately has overwhelming sourness and woodiness. very tempting odor

taste is a little weaker than the aroma but still nice sourness. surprising because i had two of these last night that was much sourer (drank in bar), oh well. maybe batch variation? pleasant aftertaste doesn't last too long. Hard to imagine my palate varies that much on something as distinct as this style. anyway the beer is not too sweet, and this bottle has no pucker-power. Further into the bottle some more taste opens up, but the sour oaky nose simply isn't translating into my taste buds.

this beer promises a lot in the nose and delivers some of it. A pleasant and far too drinkable flemish red ale. worth finding to try.

Photo of Sammy
4.15/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Lovely aroma, dark colour, lots of lace. Great tartness well-balanced, with lots of fruit, yummy cherry and dark fruit. For this level of alcohol, so much complex flavour. Sampled with the Atlanta B.A. crew at Brick Store Pub. Possibly my most enjoyed beer in the Atlanta two-day pubcrawl.

Photo of jdhilt
4.08/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours with a one-finger light tan head that fades slowly and leaves a ton of lace. Clear deep red color. Good carbonation and medium bodied. Nose is fruity. Starts sweet with a citrusy sour flavor in the background, finish is clean. $3.99 for a 330ml bottle from Julio's Liquors Westborough, Ma.

Vichtenaar from Brouwerij Verhaeghe
87 out of 100 based on 364 ratings.