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Pilaarbijter (Tripel Ale) Bruin (Red Cap) - De Brabandere

Not Rated.
Pilaarbijter (Tripel Ale) Bruin (Red Cap)Pilaarbijter (Tripel Ale) Bruin (Red Cap)

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BA SCORE
82
good

61 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 61
Reviews: 47
rAvg: 3.6
pDev: 11.11%
Wants: 3
Gots: 1 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
De Brabandere visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Flanders Oud Bruin |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-18-2004)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 61 | Reviews: 47 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of drpimento
3.73/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured with a big, big frothy, foamy tan head. Didn't decant and it had lots of yeastoids. Color is a dark hazy brown. Aroma was light, malty, yeasty, and a bit fruity. Flavor was similar but with lots of caramel and toffee. Champagnesque carbonation. Yeasty, taffy, bittersweet finish. Not bad. Could easily drink more.

drpimento, Dec 11, 2008
Photo of JBogan
2.95/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured a cloudy dark amber with a large tan head. Lots of carbonation here.

Smell of raisin, perhaps a little coffee as well. Alcohol was present but mild.

Tasted the alcohol more than I was expecting, along with dark fruits and a bit of what seemed like tobacco.

Mouthfeel was somewhat thick, maybe overly so for my taste.

Not the most drinkable beer. I was a little disappointed with this, hoping for maybe a bit more balanced flavor.

JBogan, Apr 14, 2008
Photo of Graham5161986
3.78/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: pours a cloudy, very dark reddish brown with a 3 finger, rocky off-white head that has great staying power. Leaves a patchy lace.

S: tart fruitiness, ripe cherries and a touch of brown sugar malt. A bit of cotton candy as well.

T: nice ripened, tart fruit flavour with a warming alcohol sensation, slight floral hoppiness with a sweet touch of yeast on the finish.

M:light and very crisp, well-carbonated and a smooth, dry, tart finish.

D: This is a nice and interesting beer. The colour is fantastic and tartness of the fruit really makes it an enjoyable beer to sip. The alcohol is well hidden and provides for the slightest of warming sensations as the beer slides down your throat. I would buy this beer again - I would also like to try their blonde.

Graham5161986, Mar 06, 2008
Photo of kimcgolf
3.55/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours to a hazy reddish brown color that with a light tan head that explodes out of the glass, but then quickly settles down to a skim through mid-glass.

Aroma is a tad muted, but is mostly a mix of hoppy citrus fruits and malty sour dark fruits. Mouthfeel is tangy-sweet, alomost like a dumbed down Flemish Sour. Flavor follows the fuit theme, and the finish is a fairloy confusing mix of smooth dark ale and the wackiness of a Flemish Sour.

An interesting beer.

kimcgolf, Dec 21, 2007
Photo of thierrynantes
3.03/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Sorry but this following comment is in french :

Appearance : bière brune de fermentation haute, robe brun-rouge, la mousse s'éfface vite, effervescence moyenne
Smell : arômes de café et de caramel
Taste and mouthfeel : mince en bouche, légérement piquante
Drinkability : une bière d'abbaye correcte dans le style Belgian dubbel

thierrynantes, Nov 24, 2007
Photo of canucklehead
3.5/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Opaque brown with a big head this beer smells a bit like a dunkel. The taste is moderate with a semi sweet mid changing to a drier finish. A nice brown that is easy drinking but really very complex. I like it but it is not beer to stick in the memory.

canucklehead, Jun 28, 2007
Photo of Derek
3.2/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Served in the brewery glass at Smokeless Joe's.

A: Deep amber-brown; off-white head, no retention or lace.

S: Dark fruit and spice, with slight hints of funk from the yeast.

T: Raisins, spice, brown sugar, caramel, cider, hints of phenols; modest bitterness. The slight sourness makes it seem like its more 'off' than an actual Flanders oud bruin.

M: Moderate body has some residual sugar, but the finish is still slightly dry.

D: Approachable, but not engaging.

Derek, May 25, 2007
Photo of emerge077
4.2/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled @ Palm Tavern in Milwaukee.

Two bottles were tasted, and both had excessive carbonation. The first bottle cascaded foam from the bottle for a good minute or two. The second was opened very slowly, and was poured immediately over the glass.

The color was a deep crimson brown, creamy foam formed an irregular surface. Smell was dark malt, slightly musty/sweet.

Taste was creamy, malty and balanced. Some pepper, caramel, dark fruit and earthy flavors. Not especially sour or even tart. Very smooth going down, quite drinkable.

This was a nice overall Belgian Brune, with more Dubbel characterisics than Oud Bruin.

emerge077, Apr 08, 2007
Photo of Sammy
3.8/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Lot of lace, with a big soapy head on cloudy brown. Served in the matching glass by the brewery, at Smokeless Joe's. A sharp aroma, something in the sour Flemish that stings the nose bit it's not very high ABV. chocolate malts, it's malty with a carmel and citrus Coco-Cola aftertaste, but with added spice, and then..a flemish sour finish. Or, like a Belgian yeasty dunkel.

Sammy, Mar 06, 2007
Photo of rallison
3.6/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served in a mini Chimay goblet at Lucky Baldwin's.

Smell has some of the funky sourness - nice little hint as to what you're in for. Taste definitely has tartness, but is more subtle than a Duchesse, for example. Has certain oakey quality. Earthy flavors, with some caramel malts to balance it. Mouthfeel is pretty well carbonated, although not entirely satisfying - could use a little more body or something. Drinkability is good.

This is a nice, but not exceptional, example of the style. I'd take another glass of it if offered, but might not buy it again. Still, I can recommend this.

rallison, Feb 12, 2007
Photo of jdhilt
4.35/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Explodes out of bottle, took 5 minutes to pour, fades slowly to a thin layer leaving some lace. Murky amber color, ton of yeast in bottom of bottle. Strong carbonation and medium-heavy bodied. Raisin nose. Flavor is sweet and sour raisins, smooth easy to drink, this small bottle is not enough. $3.19 for a 330ml bottle from John's Market Place Tigard, Or.

jdhilt, Feb 11, 2007
Photo of BlackHaddock
3.3/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

33cl brown bottle with red cap, best before 06/2009, drank 12/2006.

Maybe I should have left this for a year or two, because it wasn't as good as I was expecting.

Poured into my 'Straffe Hendrik' bowl glass, its Redwood brown colour sparkled in the light, the half inch thick off white head slowly fell away even though the bubbles kept on coming.

Sour, vinagerous, acidic aroma, not the normal beer smell what-so-ever. As the beer warmed a little, a sweeter scent came forth, cooking apples.

The taste brings you back to what you wanted, a good Belgian Brown. Tart and strong, with a bite to the throat, made me burp, which makes me think I should have drank it at a later date (like 2008).

Even though I enjoyed this beer, I think an older one would be a whole lot better.

BlackHaddock, Dec 27, 2006
Photo of Jredner
3.28/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The aroma holds sweet candy sugar and fruit notes with a rich sweet maltiness and mild dirt/dust notes. The body is a cloudy and ruddy brown and holds a massive three finger thick tan head that is both bubbly and diminishing. Low intensity flavor on the initial sip. There are some muted apple notes and mild fruit peel tinged sweetness. It feels spent like it once had flavor and couldn’t hold onto it. The carbonation is tongue tingling, but not out of control and the lacing is non existent with foam left from sips quickly sliding down the inside of the glass. Ho-hum.

Jredner, Oct 16, 2006
Photo of orbitalr0x
4.03/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Red cap 11.2oz bottle of Pilaarbijter with a picture of a crazy guy biting a pole on the label, to which I'm not even going to comment. Pours into my tulip glass a murky dark brown with some red streaks. A big arid bubbly light tan head shoots up and then leaves as quickly as it came. Aromas begin with dark, sour fruits right off the bat along with a brown sugar, caramel sweetness. A bit of mustiness is there with a hint of oxidation. Big yeast tones and a touch of dark cherry. Quite a nice aroma.

First sip brings a sweet caramel covered bready maltiness with warm brown sugar and some raisins. Dark fruits weave into the brew with a hit of sourness midway through. Musty, earthy yeast with a touch of woody oak in there as well. Finishes with a nice lingering sweetness on the end. Pretty tasty brew overall.

Mouthfeel is a touch on the lighter side with explosive carbonation that rushes all over the palate with each sip. Overall drinkability is pretty good...I would mind putting back another and the abv is low enough to where that wouldn't be a problem. Bought this on a whim awhile back in Kentucky and I'm glad I did...hopefully I'll run across this one or the gold cap again sometime.

orbitalr0x, Sep 22, 2006
Photo of Umbra
3.78/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Didn't have the pouring issues with this one that I've seen in other reviews. This was the other half of a free four pack of the pilar biters. Cloudy light brown with thick tan head. Great retention and lacing. Acidic caramel aroma that comes back in the flavor. Sweet sour mix was nice, though I would've liked it to swing one way or the other a bit more. Nice caramel apple feeling afterwards, so I think that I'll save the other bottle for later in the fall. Tart and hearty, it came off as medium bodied and finished clean. Drinkability was up there a bit.

Umbra, Sep 19, 2006
Photo of dgallina
3.03/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

11.2 fluid ounce brown bottle without freshness dating. Labeled as a tripel, but that's doubtful given the color and flavor. Clearly a Flemish brown ale.

Pours hazy dark copper / brown with prodigious tan cream head, very good lace. Doesn't smell of much of anything. Some fleeting sweet malts and perhaps a touch of sour oak. Tastes quite muted. Chewy toasted malt in the center with a lightly tannic wood and iron finish. Medium body, very big carbonation.

A really uneven beer. Looks great but the smell and taste are forgettable. Bavik know how to make decent beer (see the Petrus line for some good examples). They should drop this redundant brand IMHO.

dgallina, Aug 22, 2006
Photo of scottoale
3.58/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Found this for $1.79 at a local liquor store, no freshness date except the 5 digit code on the back label. From the 330ml. brown bottle pours a mahogany-brown with a three-finger tan head. I trickled ( rather than pour) into a tulip glass and the carbonation was off the chart. There was a thick yeast sediment glued to the bottle bottom.

The nose is malty with a spicy, musty, sourness throughout. As it warmed some alcohol comes through with an orange-peel citrus aroma of sweetness.

Sweet, spicy malt followed by a tangy tartness and a yeasty finish. This stuff is mouth puckering with some sizzle on the tongue that comes to a creamy ending.

The body is full, the carbonation is out of control and the flavor is sour (tart) overall. An interesting Belgian that's worth tasting.

scottoale, Jul 06, 2006
Photo of clvand0
3.85/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This brew spewed beer all over my counter when I opened it. Pours a light brown color with foam all over the place and decent retention and lacing. The aroma is backed by a caramel character with some acidic sourness along with some sour apples. The flavor follows suit very well. Quite tart at first, but also complex once my palate gets used to the sourness. There's a strong backing of toasted malts in this one as well. The body is ok, but it seems to be way overcarbonated and the drinkability is pretty good.

clvand0, Mar 22, 2006
Photo of BEERchitect
3.93/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Aaaarg! Beer all over the countertop! ...anytime you open a bottle and the beer errupts from the bottle in a wall of foam, and you waste 3/4 of your beer to over gushing, it doesn't leave a good impression. Ok, now that things have settled down, The beer smells quite wonderful. Solid belgian matured malts, spicy, and sweet; only with a woodsy, musky aroma that sets it apart. Looks ... well flat now. But it has a nice murky brown / rust color with a fine lacing. Tastes sweet with malts and fruitiness, but rounded by spiciness, bold and robust woody, nutty characters. Fruits remind me of over-ripe peaches, pears, kiwis, and dates. The beer is smooth, but flat on the palate. It weakens into the finish. Finishes sweet, spicy, and lightly sugary. A good beer, but I'd like to try one without the volcano impression.

BEERchitect, Jan 26, 2006
Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.58/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This bottle of Pilaarbijter has been standing quiet and still in my beer fridge for several months now, but that didn't stop the instantaneous creation of a foam fountain all over my desktop despite my best efforts to control it. Even now, a growing thumb of brown foam is oozing out of the top of the bottle, even though the bottle is less than half full.

Warm, glowing red-orange-bronze topped by a now barely evident, unsticky cap of golden tan foam. Carefully pouring a few more fingers of beer into the glass results in three times as much froth as beer. The liquid from the bottom half of the bottle murks things up nicely so that it's now close to opaque. Despite the mess, this is a pretty good looking ale.

Pilaarbijter smells like what it is. Allow me to clarify: it smells like a Flanders Oud Bruin. Why the label says Tripel Ale is beyond me. Sour fruit is the obvious olfactory focal point. Spiced, tart apples and pears comes closest if specifics are needed. There's also a certain musty, phenolic, could-only-be-Belgian quality that gives it authenticity.

The beer isn't so wonderful on the palate, although it's still a decent example of the style. At least there's plenty of brown/bruin flavor, for whatever that's worth. It's heavily toasted malty with a pleasing earthiness and unsubtle tea-like notes. While there isn't as much sour fruitiness as anticipated, clove-spiced apples still come to mind. The yeasty spiciness becomes more noticeable with warming, and sweet and bitter fight to a virtual draw.

The biggest problem is the mouthfeel. It's too insubstantial and way too fizzy (like I couldn't have predicted that). What those qualities lead to is an instant tongue annoyance as soon as beer enters mouth. Once the bubbles exhaust themselves, a few seconds at most, the flavor structure collapses and the finish is at hand. That isn't exactly a recipe for enjoyment of what seems like a respectably deep flavor profile.

Pilaarbijter looks like it translates to 'pillar biter'. That can't be right, I thought, until I spotted the obviously anguished character munching on a pillar right there on the label. Those wacky Belgians. This is an okay version a Flanders Oud Bruin (and not an entirely accurate one in the end), but that's where it begins and ends. Here's hoping the brass-capped version is more to my liking. And less explosive.

BuckeyeNation, Nov 21, 2005
Photo of DogFood11
3.7/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I had no idea what to expect from this brew as this is the first Oud Bruin style that I've had that I know of. Pours a dark brown with a nice cloud like head that settles down to a solid finger and partial lacing. If you just touch your lips to the brew it comes across sour but with a full gulp it becomes balanced. Sour up front then builds into a medium to full bodied caramel/fruity middle. Fascinating on the palate. bubbly carbonation but without the sting. rolling soft texture on the tongue. The sourness lingers in the aftertaste.

I enjoyed this beer although it takes some getting used to.

DogFood11, Oct 31, 2005
Photo of GClarkage
4.18/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

07/24/05- Purchased at Plumpjack's in San Francisco, CA

Presentation- 11.2oz bottle with a code on the back label (dating?)
Attempted to pour in my Delirium Tremens tulip, but ended up in my Duvel tulip.

Appearance- Kind of between a dark red and light brown pour. A murky looking color. How about the color of very polluted water. At first pour into my Delirium glass I knew I was going to have to switch. About 2oz came out of the bottle to form about 10 oz of head. So, I poured that into my Duvel glass and continued on. Took me a good few minutes to pour the entire brew into my Duvel.
The lacing was very nice as well.

Smell- Smells kind of like a tripel, smells kinda like a oud bruin. Has the sweetness and dark fruit scent, but then has a roasted and tart scent as well.

Taste- Hmmm, tastes like a tripel, tastes like and oud bruin. Odd little beer. Starts with a moderate sweetness and light raisin flavor, then gets a wee bit tart and the roasted malt comes into play. Tastes just like it smells.

Mouthfeel- Medium carbonation, a bit crisp on swallow.

Drinkaibilty- Wow, I dig both beers from this brewery. This one is very refeshing. You can't even notice the abv as well. It's over 80 degrees outside and this one hit the spot. Very drinkable brew even though it really doesn't fall into an Oud Bruin or Tripel category. Not sweet enough or strong enough for a tripel and doesn't have that tart puckering kick for an oud bruin. Still a very good brew.

GClarkage, Jul 25, 2005
Photo of Paddez
3.28/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Very foamy stuff this, and quite hard to pour properly.
The beer - once poured into a goblet - is cloudy and maple brown topped by a huge off-white head.

Smell: The smell is malty and mildly tart with some aromas of dark fruits, raisins and spices.

Taste:The taste is a bit weak. Malty with some roastiness and some raisins. Some faint spices in the back. Finishes slightly tart, leaving some roasty raisin notes to linger in your mouth.

Mouthfeel & Drinkabillity: Medium bodied and appropriately carbonated, but somewhat flat and without any warming effect of the alcohol.

Conclusion: A fair beer in a style that's not my favourite.

Paddez, Jul 09, 2005
Photo of RoyalT
3.28/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Appearance – This one had what I call a “kitchen head”, because as soon as I popped the cap it blew all over my kitchen. It eventually settled into a nice, pond brown color in the glass.

Smell – The malts here stand out from the other competitors. They are toasty dark with some mild cherry sweetness and a bit of modest sourness.

Taste – The toasty malts hold their own here at the taste. They are dark and yeasty and hide what little fruit there is. The sourness is very understated and defers to the heavy malt base.

Mouthfeel – This medium-bodied ale is overcarbonated even for this traditionally effervescent style. Not only did the head blow all over my kitchen floor but even in the mouth it is overdone and cheap.

Drinkability – This wasn’t all that bad. It completely missed the essence of the style though and felt clumsy on the palate.

RoyalT, Jun 29, 2005
Photo of GCBrewingCo
3.53/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer poured into the chalice crystal clear but very dark brown. The head was tan and well lasting to lace the glass.

The aroma was malty with dark fruits, namely raisins. Some slight Belgian yeast spiciness emerged as the head fell and the beer warmed.

The flavor was malty but grainy. The hop flavor and bittering were decidedly earthy and the Belgian yeast spiciness was present but only at a very low and muted level. No appreciable alcohol presence was noted in the flavor.

The finish was dry with lasting caramel and fruitiness and the grainy character carried through to the aftertaste. Also the earthy bittering carried through and lasted. The body was medium to medium light and worked well. This beer was not complex at all, lots of muted flavors, but none working especially well together. No alcohol presence either, even warming after consumption was limited at best.

11.2 ounce bottle. Dark with a red cap. Purchased at Green's in Atlanta for $3.50. I doubt this is an Oud Bruin, more of a one off style closer to a Belgian Dark or a Dubbel. Nothing bad at all, but nothing I would seek out again.

GCBrewingCo, May 06, 2005
Pilaarbijter (Tripel Ale) Bruin (Red Cap) from De Brabandere
82 out of 100 based on 61 ratings.