De Ranke XX Bitter - Brouwerij De Ranke

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De Ranke XX BitterDe Ranke XX Bitter

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848 Ratings

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Ratings: 848
Reviews: 485
rAvg: 4.07
pDev: 11.55%
Wants: 79
Gots: 61 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Brouwerij De Ranke visit their website

Style | ABV
Belgian IPA |  6.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 01-28-2002

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 848 | Reviews: 485
Photo of ark57
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It is a cloudy, golden color with plenty of creamy white head. It leaves some good lace behind as well. There is some brett in the aroma with some vanilla and a lot of floral hops. The body is resreved with some soft barnyard flavors and plenty of floral and herbal bitterness. It finshes quite dry. This is a great beer for hopheads and belgian lovers alike.

Photo of taez555
4.3/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a cloudy yellowish/tan body with a huge foamy white head.

The nose is a great mix of phenols, earthy hops, soft farmhouse notes, yeast, and malt.

Smooth with a light graininess. Light to medium body. Firm bitterness that slightly overpowers the malt, but is at no time distracting. Yeast, phenols, earthy hops, wheat, malt with just a beautiful farmhouse, manure sort of taste as well.

Really a very cool and unique beer. It’s like an old fashioned Belgian monk got together with an American hophead brewer and they only have German hops. Farmhouse meets hophouse. Simply a great beer.

Photo of drewbage
4.12/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled at the Maproom in Chicago on draft

Bolleke glass.. Hazy cloudy gold with a low white head.

Deep banana cream pie with a final finish of cinnamon in the nose. Dried coconut and a start of an herbal hop character finish the beer's aroma

Flavor starts with a viscous pineapple body, quickly defeated by a small touch of metal and a long intense spicey yeast phenol and spicy hop burn that holds on long on the tongue.

Easily one of the hoppiest beers I've ever tasted from Belgium. Not quite my favorite BPA (that belongs to Poperings Hommelbier)

Photo of zerk
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly hazy light copper with a 2 finger head that leaves sheets of lace. Aroma is a mixture of musty yeast, some toasted malt, and a boatload of spicy and earthy hops. Flavor begins with some biscuity malt that is then completely assaulted by spicy hop bitterness... a touch of grapefruit works it's way in as well. The flavor is heavily tilted to the bitter side, but it is a great beer if you're a hophead (which I am.) Mouthfeel is oily and acidic, with a light to medium body and low carbonation. All in all, a most unusual and enjoyable beer!

Photo of oberon
3.41/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Hoppiest beer in Belgium?Pours a nice hazy orage/golden color with a huge blooming head that globs up on the side of the glass,citruisy aroma with some deep honey estures pretty appetizing.Taste starts ut dry and leafy definent hop profile but not a big fan of the heavy medicinal flavor in the finish and aftertaste all good up till then.A well made Belgian Pale but a little to medicinal for me.

Photo of konabrewer
4.48/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in a tall wine-style glass at Anam Cara Publick House.

Simply stated my favorite beer right now.

Beautifully golden with a sharp floral hop aroma right away. The slightly sweet malt and yeast character balance perfectly as I quaff.

I will sit back with this one many times again and will update accordingly.

Photo of Boilermaker88
3.43/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance: had a slightly opaque straw color with a big ol' white head on top. Head stuck around quite a while and left lots of lace behind.
Nose: hayfield malts, lemon rinds, hints of honey and mild fruitiness all briefly surfaced before another aroma pushed through. Had a nice citrusy hops aroma.
Taste: crackery dry malt flavor up front. Big-time bitterness - grapefruit and lemon rinds and a sharp, sour crabapple-inspired bitterness that built to a nearly intolerable level by the finish.
Feel: medium leaning toward light, crisp, and dry.
Overall: I'm what I'd consider to be a fan of beers packing some bitterness. I like a good kick in the butt from a solid IPA. This brew, however, offered up bitterness on a entirely different level that was unappealing. The aroma and feel were good but the bitterness just was a turn-off for me.

Photo of Rumrunner
4.77/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Drank at Lucky Baldwin's 5th Belgian Beer Festival. Served in a Piraat glass.

Oh, those tricky Belgians. To show that they know bitter the way a hop head likes bitter but not stray from the Belgian qualities of this pale ale. I wish this one was more available in California. Lucky Baldwin's is the only place I have ever had it.

Pours a pale golden yellow. Some straw like colors highlight the sides of the glass when held up to the light. A big frothy crater filled head slowly disappears but leaves a bubbly trail of lace down the glass. Scents are hoppy and floral. Some spices but not much malt in the nose. The scents tickle the nose and give a bubbly high energy quality to the feel of the scents. Very nicely done.

Bitter is as bitter does. At first taste this ale lets you know it is bitter. Great hops and a real citris bite to it. The floral flavors and some spices help smooth the bitterness and keep the flavors from being harsh. The malt flavors provide some back up to keep the hops honest but this is a bitter offering. Some yeast and grain flavors appear from time to time and provide a simple hello. The flavors are a well thought out boquet for the palate. The complexities of this ale are put together so well that it comes across as a very simple pale ale. Excellent!

Mouthfeel is prickly at first but then it smooths upon the swallow. Medium bodied and refreshing. I could drink many of these. In fact I had two at LB's. A very easy drinking pale and a pale for all occasions. I would pair this ale with many styles of food or drink it as a session beer.

De Ranke send us some more.

Photo of GCBrewingCo
4.32/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer poured pale yellow with a slight haze. The head was white and lasted to lace the glass.

The aroma was spicy and citrusy hoppy. Also a slight Belgian yeast aroma was present.

The flavor was bitter and very hoppy. The malt is present enough to balance the flavor. Very resinous hop bitterness and hop flavor. Nice!

The finish was dry and bitter. The body was medium.

11.2 ounce bottle. Bottle says 6% ABV.

Photo of WVbeergeek
4.23/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Clouded golden orange hue with a rocky foam white head very gelatinous in texture with fine Belgian lacing. Aroma: Sharp citrus hop edge with flowery hops flowing in the mix this shit is hoppy surrounded by a sweet honey malt profile. Taste: Extremely hoppy belgian ale, this is the Stone Brewing of Belgium awesome stuff earty mix of pine cone flavor hops rough edge of citrusy hop bite, soft Belgian pale malts tie this one altogether. Mouthfeel: Effervescent carbonation bubbly medium body hop resins flowing along the palate. Drinkability: Good stuff happy to taste a belgian this hoppy adds a new posibility to the flavor profile of beers great bier easily consumed.

Photo of silenius
3.94/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had this at the Hopleaf in Chicago just a couple hours ago.

Appearance is a hazy honey gold color with a centimeter thick head in a tulip glass.

I didn't get much of an aroma out of this one. Not floral at all. Nothing overpowering or even apparent. I light standard "beerish" smell.

The taste was full on hops, though. Tooth sucking hoppy goodness that lasted and lasted in the back of my throat! That is what I am looking for in a hoppy beer! Bitter and pleasant!

The mouthfeel was a moderate consistency. Not light at all and not heavy. Nice carbonation and it went down smooth.

Drinkability was high. I kept sipping at this beer to keep the bitter taste going full on. I will have another!

Photo of nomad
4.45/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A dead clear autumnal gold color, this beer has a nice little head on top. Slick and clean in action and appearance, it still left plenty of hard-clinging stain looking like rings of mineral desposits on my tulip glass.

Smells of lemon zest, husky pine with peppery spice speckled all over, and a phenolic presence that haunts the glass. Tasted like grapefruit juice, as if straight and freshly squeezed, but different from a Casacde-based grapefruit-tasting American IPA. Sharp, almost mint-like, leafy hop flavor comes on near the finish, where you begin to grip the melange of yeast, bready malt, and the strangest and best flavor of hops turned vinuous in astringency, intwined complexity, and mouth tingling. An almost musty feel in the finish, like a lambic or oud bruin, this is a great beer and unique in its blending of varying parts. Woo... quite a trip in one bottle.

In one sentence, I'd call it an artful rendering of hoppy flavors on a malty base with the magic of yeast and handcrafting. Very Belgian in its peculiarity.

Photo of CRJMellor
3.41/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Tasted at the Map Room in Chicago.
Poured golden yellow with minimal head. Alcoholic esters hit right away along with powerful hop aroma. Flavor is very bitter at it sort of jumps at you but is somewhat offset by light chewy malt that also appears. Little but too bitter and dry on my palate. I imagine this would be a good session beer as your palate got adjusted to it.

Photo of GreatPondBrewer
3.98/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is by far one of the more enigmatic and esoteric beers I have ever tried. A hoppy belgian. Quite the interesting combonation. It poured a cloudy golden color with a white bubbly head that reduced to nothing much more than a ring around the outside. The smell was very fruity, with mellon, berry and soft fruits dominating with hints of lemon and other citrus hiding in the background. The taste was like two beers blended. It had much of the traditional spicy belgian pale ale characteristics with doughy yeasty notes mellowing it out.... then all of a sudden huge piny hop leaf would assert itself pummeling my taste buds. Very interesting beer. One to sit and ponder over.

Photo of FranklinPCombs
4.37/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Light yellow orange color, slightly cloudy. It looks alot like a light apple cider. There is a little head, but it stays around, leaving a touch of lace. The smell, surprisingly enough, has a lot of spiced apple cider to it, with sweet piny hops rounding it out. The flavor is immediately hoppy, deep and piny, beggining out mellow, and then growing to sharp finish, mellowing into a distincly hoppy aftertaste. Slight citrus flavors linger behind. This is a great beer in terms of mouthfeel. It is smooth yet crisp, with a sharp hit on the back of the tongue. It is very drinkable, although expensive.

Photo of longpondbeerman
4.47/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got the last of a keg, so I was not surprised that it poured a cloudy light cidery orange with very little carbonation. The hops are first evident in the smell, but there are numerous other aromas: tart apples, pineapples, some pine. The taste is far more understated than I expected, and beautifully balanced. The bitterness is always evident from start to finish, but the complex spiciness transforms as the taste moves from the initial apples to a finish on the back of my palate of grapefruit-like sourness. There is predictably little carbonation, and the mouthfeel is light, but not too watery.

Photo of GuinnessSmurf
4.48/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

As a special treat, my friend Stephen brought a bottle of this special beer over during the Thanksgiving holiday. I will admit that I was already giving this beer some bonus credit for packaging - albeit not the most critical form of beer analyzation, but the presentation was really nice. It poured a thick and gracious head which hung on to the glass through the entire drink (which to me, was amazing). The color was a hazy golden yellow. This is a bitter, and as far as bitters go, it has a lot to offer. It seemed to have several bitter agents that were time released to target different areas of the tongue and mouth. There were other spices that kept you guessing on ingredients (and kept you coming back for another sip). The sensation was wonderful, and left the mouth with an amazingly perky, fruitful (as in pear) aftertaste.

Photo of CharlesRiver
4.32/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2 Fl oz. bottle. Best before April 2008. Golden yellow in color with a small bright white head that seems to last. The smell is grassy, citrus and sweet. Very different in taste from any other Belgian beer that I have had. My initial reaction is, a triple with more hops and a bit lighter. Sweet in the beginning, then the bitterness takes over. Nothing is overpowering, just well balanced. I really like this beer and will have to try the 750ml bottle.

Photo of mydeadguy
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

had this at Anam Cara, in a bottle

Poured a hazy golden yellow with an inch of fluffy white head. The aroma is very distinct floral hops, sweet malt, yeast and herbal notes. The flavor is malt up front with the more heady yeasty and then hop bittering to round it out. Slightly chalky yeast. Smooth body with decent carbonation, this one went down easy. Quite a good brew, an interesting balance of flavors.

Photo of aracauna
3.13/5  rDev -23.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Good, wet head that fades to a fuzzy film on top of the cloudy orange body. The aroma strikes me first with something that I really don't like. My best way to describe it is orange-juice gone bad. Otherwise it's flowery and herbally. The flavor is even more herbally, which melds nicely with the hop bitterness. There's a bit of odd flavor here. It's like the difference between fresh orange juice and the orange juice stored in clear glass bottles. It's not rotten, but something light does to orange juice, make it have a similar bitter fruit flavor to what this beer has going on. Turpentine or creosote. Definite bandaids. It's got a lot going on, but there's too many things that I don't like about it.

Photo of moulefrite
4.2/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tasted this after warming up with a Wittekerke, and damned if this was not nearly the same color-hazy golden orange. The head was serious though, and puffed up nicely and showed a good solid stick. Aromatics hint of sweet malt and pungent herb. The mouthfeel is medium, with good crispness. Flavors are bold and assertive with lemon zest and pink grapefruit sandwiched between green bud-very bittter-in a damn fine way I might add! The bitter is finely balanced by just enough malt to keep you coming back for more. The taste is again quite herbal with an almost menthol quality-very green tasting. The bitter flavor hammers away at the palate yet in an elegant fashion. I'll take this over many a domestic "sticky" hedonistic IPA any day!

Photo of daledeee
4.15/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hoppy, bitter(not a misprint) Pours a nice yellow-orange. Nose is fruity and something else-probably yeast. Very distinctive taste.
Very hoppy and dry and yes bitter. Quite a malt presence also. Definitely not your run of the mill Belgian. I prefer a fine IPA to this, but this beer is loaded with quality

Photo of TheLongBeachBum
4.63/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Presentation: Sampled during the BA Social held at Lucky Baldwin’s in Pasadena on Saturday 12th October, 2003. Having tried this superb beer in Belgium several times, but never seen it Stateside, I spied this baby on the LB menu. Score! So I decided that as it was a 750ml, it was time to share this ‘hoppy’ Belgium Pale with a few friends who had yet to try it, & be surprised by it !

It arrives in unlabelled green glass bottle, the 750ml curved sided affair with the dimpled bottom, so typically used by Cantillon, Fantôme, etc. The whole bottle is wrapped in an inviting paper wrap. The De Ranke XX Bitter wrapper is white with a very large XX overwritten with the word Biter in dark green writing. Corked. Unfiltered & Unpasteurized.

Appearance: Clear golden with streamers when carefully poured at first. The sediment can lend a hazy fused golden color towards the end. Massive frothy head, cloud-like it sits atop the XX throughout the drink. Looks marvelous & ever so slightly ‘Duvelian’, when served in a Goblet.

Nose: Beautifully spicy hop character fused into a floral nose, fresh & inviting, yet spritzy. Citric hints at times but always massively hoppy.

Taste: Excellent. A very distinctive Belgium Pale Ale that is entirely focused around bitterness. It starts with a welcoming floral hoppiness that soon, helped by a citric sharpness, turns into a channeled hop bitterness, quite biting at times, but never harsh. The transformation from lemon-bitterness to hop-bitterness is quite amazing. The malts are always the support act here. The yeasty dregs of the bottle can help to take the edge off of this beer.

Mouthfeel: Solid and wholesome, it belies it 6.2% ABV I find, & can easily pass for an 8%’er. Sharp, lemon-bitterness lingers in your mouth with the spicy hops. Your Mouth will never forget this distinctive Belgium Beer!

Drinkability: Exceptional, the bitterness is quite something. I could have easily drunk this for the rest of the night; but just as we got to the bottom of this, the owner of Lucky Baldwin’s mentioned that he had 2 more offerings from De Ranke worth trying. It’s a tough life.

Overall: There aren’t many Belgium beers that can be comfortably labeled as ‘hoppy’, but this is one of them. In fact the only other example that immediately springs to mind is Poperings Hommelbier (Van Ecke). This is not an IPA though; it is an intensely bitter Pale Ale, which has a really nice astringent hop-kick at the end. Extremely Well Made.
A Firm Favorite (i.e. I'm biased).

Photo of mickeymac
4.2/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a paper-wrapped bottle at the October BA gathering, it's a nice gold with a fairly thick white head leaving lace. A hoppy Belgian beer? Well, the hops are there, but nobody's going to confuse it with a west coast IPA. Musty Belgian yeast and traces of that familiar barnyard smell mix nicely with the hops. It has a nice light refreshing feel and taste. This was a rare treat and one I hope to find again.

Photo of Jon
4.33/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Hazy golden color with a foamy, bone white head. Great lace remains on the glass. Nose features hints of earthy hops, citrus, pine and yeast. Zesty overall. The label touts this beer as "the hoppiest of Belgium," and it certainly is the most hop-laden brew I've sampled from the vast brewing nation. Though the hops are everpresent in this beer, they're balanced, with floral and citrus characteristics accompanied by a typical Belgian yeast character and some sweet malt. Mouthfeel is creamy, yet somewhat oily on the finish, which is decidedly dry. Almost West Coast US in nature, this a great beer in its own right. Highly drinkable and refreshing.

De Ranke XX Bitter from Brouwerij De Ranke
91 out of 100 based on 848 ratings.