Dismiss Notice
Hello, is it beer you're looking for?

Learn more about beer. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for as low as 68% off the single issue price.

Subscribe now →

Verboden Vrucht / Fruit Defendu (Forbidden Fruit) - Brouwerij van Hoegaarden

Not Rated.
Verboden Vrucht  / Fruit Defendu (Forbidden Fruit)Verboden Vrucht  / Fruit Defendu (Forbidden Fruit)

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

145 Reviews
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 145
Hads: 236
Avg: 3.88
pDev: 13.66%
Wants: 15
Gots: 32 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brouwerij van Hoegaarden visit their website

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-22-2002

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (11) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Verboden Vrucht  / Fruit Defendu (Forbidden Fruit) Alström Bros
Reviews: 145 | Hads: 236
Photo of Arno
4.42/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

A: amber / brown & foggy. Tan head, nice lacing.
S: Sweet, Toffee, dark fruits, dough, belgian yeast and spices.
T: Very smooth and surprisingly fresh followed by the flavors the nose suggests.
M: Creamy, smooth with a medium dry and slightly spicy finish. Medium carbonation.

O: A very well balanced beer. Lovely and complex flavors without making it heavy at all, quite an accomplishment. Great beer!

 405 characters

Photo of BEERchitect
4.4/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Again, one of those most elusive beers that I thought I'd never get to try. Nevertheless, here I am -- here it is... I'm going to drink it!

Pours a surprisingly dark beer (always thought is was blonde -- who knew?), that has a medium brown opaque-ness along with a muddy, murky dull-ness that picks up highlights of orange, rust, and copper. Medium head formation that reduced to a dainty sheet of froath and held firm. Aromas are very spicy and fruity (more of what I originally expected) but with a toasty, amber maltiness that was a surprise. Flavors of orange zest, peaches, pears, appricots, and lemons leaped out in front of any toasty German Dunkel-like maltiness. The dichademy of it all never resonated with me, leaving me wanting better balance and more medled-ness. The texture was as silky-smooth as the Witbier, but with a bit more abrasive carbonation (which remained quite high from the on-set). Finishes with a slightly-dirty, toasty, citrus flavor that cleaned up in a hurry and ultimately became quite crisp and refreshing. Certainly a good beer, it was just all over the place. Again, thanks to Clvand0.

 1,123 characters

Photo of imrichbeeeatch
4.37/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Brought to the states by a friend of mine. 33cl bottle poured into Belgian style chalis. Huge malty Belgian aroma wafting from glass. Beautiful dark amber color, slight haze. Poured nice head, big bubbles, like egg whites when you whip them to stiff peaks. Wonderful flavor, malt, dark fruit, sweet caramel, no hops (as expected). Very nice beer. What a treat! Wish I could get it here.

 386 characters

Photo of koolk
4.35/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Deep deep red going on cloudy brown. Fat head that just keeps on keeping on.

Wow! Complex nose. Mint, cloves, dark fruit, peel and even a hint of chocolate.

On this most complex of palates; Toffee, burnt caramel, slight butter, dried fruit (elderberries, currants), pepper, tart peel, anise and what appears to be some slight oakiness (bizarre!). Long aftertaste of strong tasty coffee. Hard alcohol hit at the end reminds you exactly what you are drinking. After about a minute, the after taste feels just like that of a smooth deep red wine. This stuff is really out there.

Complex is an understatement. Enjoy!

 623 characters

Photo of btmo
4.3/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is one of my favourite beers.

Appearance is a delightful amber brown, and there is some *texture* to it. It fairly sparkles in the daylight!

Smell is good. You can notice the fruit esters and aromatics wafting from the beer - but they are balanced. Not overpowering or overdone. The scent has character. It smells like beer, but good beer.

Taste is what beer is all about, and this one doesn't disappoint. A complex mix of yeasts, malt, fruits, caramels and a solid jolt of ethanol. I think the alcohol is a solid contributor to this beers taste - as it provides a nice base for all of the other flavours to perfuse through. You can spend a lot of time getting lost in these flavours. And a lot of time working your way through them all.

There is a bit too much bitterness in the aftertaste - but the main event compensates for this.

Mouthfeel is good, silky and satisfying.

Finally, the serving of this beer is always a bit of an event. The bottle has naked people on it. The special glass it is regularly served in has naked people on it. The coaster has naked people on it.

I can take a hint. Drink this with someone you love. Or want to...


Buy this beer.

 1,201 characters

Photo of russwbeck
4.3/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Very hazy red-brown color with a few fingers of light brown head. Great lacing and retention. The label gives this beer a bonus in my book!

S: The aroma is distinctively Belgian, like a dubbel, but with some notes of sweet, light fruit--apples I would assume. Spicy and sweet. The alcohol is masked well.

T: The taste doesn't bring about any surprises, but it is quite nice. Much more apple I would say, but with a rich, dark fruit underbelly. The spices are toned down, but the fruits are very refreshing.

MF: A nice twinge of carbonation rests on the palate. The body is light. This is really drinkable, nicely balanced, and without a note of alcohol. Crisp and refreshing.

O: This was exactly what I wanted it to be. Fruity, Belgian, and a perfect compliment to m dinner. I would get it again.

 803 characters

Photo of GCBrewingCo
4.28/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The beer arrived on the table very lightly hazy and deep amber with an off-white frothy head which lasted long and laced the glass.

The aroma was fruity with a storng dark caramel character and a very light bit of DMS. The fruity presence contained a light banana.

The flavor was that of dark fruits with deep caramelization. The flavor was fruity and estery with a spicy presence. The dark fruits were raisins and prunes and were coupled to a light spice that stayed long in the flavor.

The finish was dry with a dark fruity character lasting long with a bit of spice into the aftertaste. The body was medium with a moderate carbonation and a creamy mouthfeel. A very nicely done Belgian Strong Dark.

Bottle served in proper glassware at Cafe Vlissinghe in Brugge on 9/13/06.

 788 characters

Photo of roblowther
4.26/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

The label alone bumps up the appearance rating on this one. I'm not sure that is the rule but beer should be fun, so :p. Opaque caramel color with a dense white head and tiny Don Ho-like bubbles running up the sides. It smells like raspberries, wood and leather. Sort of a rural barn smell without the manure. The taste is dry and has that leather thing going on. Really nice. There is something vaguely biscuit as well. The mouthfeel is soft and tingly. Like a fresh stripper. Overall a really nice beer. It is dominated by its dryness and is subtle but refreshing.

 566 characters

Photo of StephenRich
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Brought to you by the makers of Hoegaarden,a Benlgian beer with more life and character than I have ever experienced in a Hoegaarden. De Verboden Vrucht translates to the forbidden fruit, as it is well depicted on the beers label. I ran into this beer accidentally yesterday when out for lunch with friend. The beer menu listed many delicious brews, but this was shown to be one of the last few bottles that they had, and I also hadn't heard of the beer before.

Its description in the menu as a Spicy Belgian Brown ale at 8.5% abv was enough to coerce me into trying it, plus I thought it would go well with my braised beef shank lunch.

The bottle also has a best before date listed on the back as March 2008; as a bottle conditioned beer, I expect this was a bottle at least older than 2007, perhaps even back to 2005. Just my luck!

You should have seen the sediment dancing in this beer. Wow. It was poured for me appropriately in a wide chalice, and before it was even handed to me I could see the specks of sediment plastered throughout the entire beer! I know some may think its gross, but to me it just shows more rich and deep flavor complexity.

The beer itself was a deep hazy brown. It had shades of burnt amber touching the edges, but it most closely resembled and old brown brick. There was nothing modern about this beer; it was muddy and completely opaque - it was old world, just the way I wanted it. A nice frothy one inch head build atop the beer an a medium dense tan to cream colored foam with streaks of dust (sediment) lined everywhere throughout it.

The nose was quite delectable - mellow sweet touches of caramel malt, hints of earth, yeast and soft dark fruit. It showed traces of mulled spices, dried fruit, lightly roasted malt, and a warm funk which I can only describe as age. There really was a lot of character pouring out from this beer. It did not tell me that it was brewed in a state of the art facility and pasteurized to remain clean. It shouted "I was crafted by some old man's hands and remain in this bottle the way I came out of the fermenter". Awesome.

Thankfully it was served to me at the proper temperature at cellar around 12C (54F). Cold would have muted to many flavors. This beer was ready to be enjoyed! I opened my palate to it, and it poured over me gently and wrapped its grip around my entire mouth. Soft earthy malts, caramel and biscuit, faint traces of yeast an funk, mashed bananas, and mulled spices gently - and I mean very gently - washed over my tongue and caressed my cheeks. It was so elegant right away completely taking me by surprise. I was expecting something sharper, but this beer has minimal carbonation by now, is soft and delicate, and glides so effortlessly on the palate.

As I focused, cherries and figs begin to arise, so does notes of red grapes without the peel, more earth, hay field, soft malts, creamy toffee and almost vanilla. It was soft and soothing with sweet and savory characteristics. The mouthfeel was perfect for this beer. It felt authentic. I really did feel like an old man who had been brewing since the '60s made this in a field in his back yard.

The finish was softly dry, a touch quenching and very appetizing. Hope were only lightly noticeable with a soft and delicate herbal and slightly floral waft hidden under the malt. A touch of bitter came in towards the end, but was very mild. It was an excellent match for the umami sweet and savory flavors of the beef. Really overall a fantastic example of old world brewing at its best. Fully complex with no regard for modern tastes, just pure and unadulterated flavor boating from real malts, real hops, and real yeast. I will be hunting for more of these bottles.

 3,717 characters

Photo of ccrida
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

33cl bottle served in the matching stemware at Herberg Vlissinghe, the oldest bar in Bruges. Verboden Vrucht is a murky chestnut with a small, off-white head leaving nice lace.

Smell is nice, strong dark candi syrup, raisins and brown sugar.

Taste is malty bruin, a bit of astringent roastiness, clean and smooth, with a nice lingering sweetness as it opens up. Nothing monumental, but a very nice strong bruin.

Mouthfeel is dry and crisp, but very creamy when swished, with a medium-light body.

Drinkability is good, a tasty, digestible beer. Nothing really special, but I'm glad I got to try it. I liked the logo on the glass, my wife prodded me to buy one at Bier Temple the next day, but for some reason I passed...

Drinkability is

 744 characters

Photo of eduardolinhalis
4.23/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

330ml bottle served in a snifter glass.

A: Pours a deep amber to brown color with many brown particles floating around. Forms a big bubble tan head when poured. Good retention and many lacings formed and left. A thin layer lasts for long on the top

S: Great nose. Sweet, bready and quite spicy. Notes of toffee, caramel malts, dark fruits like plums and raisins. Brown bread, Belgian yeasts, cloves, wheat

T: Follows the nose. Sweet caramel malts upfront followed by a quite fruity and spicy taste. Notes of plums and raisins. Earthy and bready yeasts. Notes of wheat and cloves. Extremely Belgian Ale. Final is slightly bitter

M: Heavy creamy and a bit molasses body. Medium carbonation. Sweet, bready and slightly bitter aftertaste

O: Excellent Dark Ale. I've had it many times in the past and I hope that I will have it many time in the future too :)

 858 characters

Photo of WHROO
4.2/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter...burgundy red, with a fair dose of sediment. Nice 2 finger head, with good head retention.
This was an overall enjoyable ale...aroma was inviting - fruity, some plum & a little spice.
The taste lived up to the aroma, sweet malts, nice spices (cloves, coriander) & a little peppery. Not much bitterness detected.
Creamy, & easy, but I did get an warm alcohol kick from it...could definately detect the 9%ABV.
Mouthfeel for such a heavy drop was very good, not too sweet, not too spicey (but very alcoholy)...I definately wanted more...bewdiful drop.

 572 characters

Photo of atis
4.2/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours murky dark brown with large almost white head and sticky and generous lacing. Aroma is sweet caramel malt with dried fruit, spice and a touch of alcohol.

Taste is rich and complex - gentle malt, caramel, mild spices, fruity alcohol and yeast - quite subtle and nothing in excess. Mouthfeel is soft creamy with pleasant warming feeling, slightly prickly carbonation.

The perfect brew for snowy, cold and dark winter evening to be sitting inside and enjoying nice flavours of Verboden Vrucht.

 498 characters

Photo of Georgiabeer
4.2/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle shared at a BA tasting at the Brick Store Pub. Perhaps supplied by OskarBamaBlues? In any case, I was happy to try it and had been interested in this beer for a long while, so I took my sample off tto a corrner and contemplated it. Poured a dark amber with a very lively head that stuck around. The aroma conisited chiefly of a light, brigght, fruitiness- perhaps passion fruit? The taste had a hay-like flavor like the smell of good clean straw might taste and more of that tantalizing bright fruit. Very floral and delicate and not laser-like like one of the New Glarus fruit brews, noree sour like a real lambic, nor sweet and popsicle-like like one of the pretend lambics. Very smooth in the mouth, and quitee intteresting. Thanks so much for the opportunity!

 784 characters

Photo of donnebaby
4.2/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Deep cherry-wood hue and faded tan head. Cloudy and and full of somewhat scary particles. Curly, boisterous bubbles, which create dirty, swampy lacing. Fades as slow as molassas!! Bubbles are soft and creamy on the lips.

The smell is apple cider and wet pears.

The beer is heavy and full of flavor. Initial tastes of belgian wit are followed by a wide, spicy, orange syrup flavor. Mouthfeel is excellent: Aggressive in the mouth, with a creamy, soft finish. Clean finish--taste is bubbled away into nothingness.

This beer has a wallop to it - alcohol is utterly hidden, unlike the Hoe Grand Cru. Produces a warm feeling in the stomach and a gentle swelling of the temples.

 681 characters

Photo of rvdoorn
4.2/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Look: The beer pours a dark brown color with a nice head
Smell: Malts, barley, caramel, fruits (orange peel and fresh apple), vanila and spicy coriander
Taste: Sweet malts, earthy, vanila, caramel, some hints of chocolate, apricots and alomds. Nice spicy aftertaste.
Mouthfeel: Medium carbonation, Medium bodied
Overall: Nice beer.

 331 characters

Photo of lamarr04
4.18/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

330 ml bottle poured into a snifter.

A: Pours a dark brown with big fluffy off-white head. Leaves big patches of lacing down the glass.

S: Nose is lots of big ripe fruit. Followed by some yeast sourness.

T: Wow. Very complex brew. Lots of sweetness from the malt yeast sourness towards the back. Some earthy notes underneath as well as some coriander.

M: Smooth full mouthfeel. Medium body with light carbonation and a slick finish.

D: I dunno. You would think a strong complex beer like this would be a sipper, but this one is not. I bought four for a pretty good price. May go back to get some more.

 608 characters

Photo of tomthumbsblues
4.18/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On our first day in Brussels everyfeste and I sat down at Le Roi D'Espagne and sampled this gem.

The beer produced a big head which went down slowly over the opaque brownish orange beer. Aromas of fruit and spice were noted. The taste was refreshing and again was reflective of the fruit and spice character detected in the aroma. A smooth, tingly beer in the mouth. Definitely a wonderful beer, but one I'd not forbid myself to have again.

 443 characters

Photo of RockyTopHeel
4.15/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A gift from Joj upon the moveout. I think this was purchased during his trip to Belgium, December 2003 (so aged since then).

Dark, rosy-brown in color with a large, pillowy white head and suspended sediment throughout (and a large, large amount of yeast fluff on the bottom).

Nose of dark fruit esters and alcohol, with big, bready yeast. Smooth flavor across the tongue, with more dark fruits and biscuits. Very, very drinkable--even dangerously so--with a nice finishing warmth.

Excellent, even after all this time.

 526 characters

Photo of cypressbob
4.15/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

330ml bottle

Pours with a cloudy burgandy body with some hints of brown. Off white head, almost verging on mauve, slightly creamy with fair retention

Smell, sweet malt and alcohol, raisins steeped in brandy, the scent from a glass of rochefort 10 thats been sitting for a few hours after being consumed leaving a slight residue

Taste, big alcoholic warmth. Tasty yeasty almost wheaty body, raisins coming through again, along with other dried fruit, some slight bitterness

A slightly different take on a dark ale, almost like someone combined their grand cru and abbaye des rocs or similar and came up with this

Different, but very tasty, i'll probably buy this again

 682 characters

Photo of JohnnyBarman
4.12/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Single bottle from the Bier Markt in downtown Toronto.

Poured into a Unibroue snifter, which I found very appropriate, considering the bottle label reminds me of something Unibroue or Dieu du Ciel would do themselves (or perhaps its the other way round?) A dark, ruddy amber brew, the colour of which reminded me a great deal of black cherries. A fluffy, off-white head sat on top like a generous dollop of ice cream. Good retention on this, lovely lacing as well.

The nose is absolutely invigorating. Plum brandy, black currant, raisins, grape, sugar, only a mild yeastiness. While hardly wallowing in complexity, it certainly is mouthwatering.

The tastes are quite similar as are found in the nose. In addition to black currant and raisin, I'm also picking up sherry, a bit of chocolate and malt. Very tasty indeed. Except for the sweet wine/sherry flavors, the alcohol is marvelously difficult to detect.

Forbidden Fruit is undoubtedly sweet, almost cloyingly so, but it works tremendously well as a dessert beer. More than a bottle at a time would be far too much, but a nice snifter enjoyed with cheese or cake would be excellent. In my case, since it possessed so many similarities to a sweet port or a sherry, some Stilton cheese and crackers cut through the sweetness brilliantly, making for a great food pairing.

 1,325 characters

Photo of goblet
4.12/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured this into a goblet from a bottle.

A, an amber orange brown it looks cloudy with yeast bits and low carbonation ,lite foam ,leaves little to no lacing.

S, fruity apple and pears,yeast and malt maybe some fresh plums .

T,mild and fruity with yeast smooth hops and malt it seems true to it`s name truly fabulous forbidden fruits .

M,smooth rich yeast , nothing over whelming on the sweet side although the fruityness is evident and covered alcohol.

D,this is very drinkable like a fruity malty juice and yeast . i like this i can have this regularly.

 559 characters

Photo of TurdFurgison
4.12/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I picked up a 330ml bottle at a department store in Utsunomiya, Japan. It's unbelievable what you can find in the most unlikely locations in Japan, especially as this beer is difficult to find in my part of the USA.

Overall this beer was exceptionally good. Maybe one of the best beers from a "macro" producer I've had so far. But then Hoegaarden Grand Cru is pretty good too, both beers are a credit to the brewery.

The beer is copper colored, thin frothy tan wet foam, lots of yeasties floating around. The aroma surprised me in that the malt overpowered the smell, kind of similar to a maibock or doppelbock but with a more fruity ester thing going on. The taste was really complex, there were a lot of flavors with sweet malt being dominant (but you could taste the Belgian style yeast quality). The aftertaste is a little cough-mediciny which knocks the rating a little for me (only 0.5 point).

If you haven't tried this, I recommend you do. I'll grab it without hesitation again.

 995 characters

Photo of madvoice
4.12/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a rich reddy brown in colour with a thick foamy head that lasted quite a while and left lacing down the glass. Smelled of ripe pears.

Tasted subtly sweet with malty notes and a gentle bite.

Full bodied mouthfeel which finishes smooth.

Very very drinkable.

 265 characters

Photo of eric5bellies
4.11/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Drank from my Gulden Draak Tulip. Always nice to revisit old favorites.

A - Pours a red/ruby Brown colour with a two fingered off White head that retains well and laces.

S - Spicy dark fruits and cherries

T - Nice dark fruit notes, with some spice. A little sour mid palate. The end has plenty of fig raisins etc with a decent helping of yeast. A touch boozy on the finish.

M - Medium body and fullish carbonation.

O - I used to drink a lot of this stuff but hadn't had one for around 6 years. I wasn't disappointed. This is a rich brew that offers plenty.

 562 characters

Verboden Vrucht / Fruit Defendu (Forbidden Fruit) from Brouwerij van Hoegaarden
87 out of 100 based on 145 ratings.