Transatlantique Kriek | New Belgium Brewing

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Transatlantique KriekTransatlantique Kriek
Very Good
92 Ratings
Transatlantique KriekTransatlantique Kriek

Brewed by:
New Belgium Brewing
Colorado, United States

Style: Lambic - Fruit

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.30%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAngel on 11-10-2003

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
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Ratings: 92 |  Reviews: 71
Photo of UnionMade
3.86/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a bright, glowing maroon, a short, ballet pink froth arising with a vigorous pour. The head settles into a filmy coating, collared by a ring of large bubbles, retaining throughout the glass. Excellent clarity, with the occassional bubble floating up. Broken lace sticks to the glass, a solid sheet of belgian lace on the opposite side I'm drinking on.
The aroma is dominated by sour cherry. A bit of farmy brettanomyces, adding a wild touch, although lighter than I expected. The cherry is actually fairly sweet, sort of like Lindemann's, when you take a second whiff. Some wood, not oak, but something lighter like pine. Faint earthiness, reminiscent to forest floor, as well as some lemongrass and white grape.
The flavor starts with an immediate cherry sweetness, quickly taking on a mildly farmy mousiness. The farmy flavors intensify, as the cherry sours in the middle. A bit of dirt and leaves, with a pine woodiness, as well as some oak notes. Slight lemon citrus in the finish, as well as sourish white grape, with the cherry adding a moderate tartness. The flavor seems to thin a bit in the finish, mostly a sour flavor with a bit of oak and mousiness. Some wheat appears in the end, adding to the already bone dry finish. A lingering cherry sourness, sticking to the tongue for ages. A lightish medium body, easily supported by hyperactive, yet small bubbled carbonation. Champagne-like. A well blended, and wonderfully dry mouthfeel.
Somewhat like Lindemann's, in the sweetness up front, but thankfully souring in the end. Not quite as complex as I was hoping, but it's a pleasant lambic. An admirable effort by the folks at New Belgium. I'd get it again, but it really doesn't compare to a blend like Hannsen's. Then again, that's a very high standard.
Thanks to Bditty for the bottle!

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Photo of ElGordo
3.64/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours a reddish-pinkish hue with a light, bubbly, white head. Poured mine into a wine glass due to lack of goblets at my parents' house. Sweet, candyish aroma of cherry soda and confectioner's sugar. Unfortunately, the beautiful aroma is the best thing about this beer. The palate yields a sourish, bitter lambic taste up front, muted by the sweetness of the cherries towards the finish. Sourness lingers on the tongue. Very thin mouthfeel, carbonation almost evaporates in the mouth. Nice, interesting, and a great concept, but ultimately you'll be better off drinking a true Belgian lambic.

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Photo of vurt
3.67/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

(Sampled from a 12 oz. bottle at the 12 Hour Belgian Beer Party at Pizza Port Carlsbad, on March 13, 2004.)

Deep red beer with a pink head, hazy from an overly enthusiastic pour. Yeast debris on the head and around the rim of the glass.

Institutional "wild cherry" flavor here, straight outta wild cherry LifeSavers with an alcohol note that veers towards the aftertaste of Halls cherry throat lozenges. Quite good, actually, though it doesn't really set you up for the tartness and maltiness of the flavor.

taste and mouthfeel:
Heavier than expected, given the sharp fruitiness of the aroma. Medium bodied and tart, but with a generous golden maltiness behind it. Very appealing. The combination of cherry tartness and sweetness mixing with a grainy, crackery blonde ale background is extremely more-ish. It is juicy, mouth-watering, and substantial all at once.

The "wild cherry" character of the aroma isn't quite realized by the cherry/malt character of the flavor, and that's a good thing. As it turns out, the cherries are a bit too much, and the malt is just slightly heavy. Pull them both back by about 10-percent and you'd have a near-godlike brew on your hands for this time of year (spring and early summer).

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Photo of francisweizen
3.83/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is a deep red brew with a nice off-white/pinkish head of foam that lasts quite a while. The aromas are of a nice malty pale ale and the lovely lambic goodness of boon's kriek. This tastes like a nice kriek that has its sweetness and tartness cut by the ale base that New Belgium brewed. This is quite an interesting "lambic blend". The mouthfeel is smooth and creamy and the drinkability is very good...i'd like to try this one again sometime!

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Photo of Rastacouere
3.18/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Thanks Raindog for the first of an awesome package Very red body with a light haze: "Rose Bonbon" as we say in french. Dirty red head with pink reflects. Aroma is totally on the sweet side, uni-dimensional sweet tiny field cherries which could be better expressed, but in the end feel like powder sugar. Taste is mostly about sweet cherries, so much that it gets almost medicinal and then just before swallowing, there seems to be an empty moment. Finish is more fruity sweetness and not too complex. Powdery thin body displaying low carbonation come and accentuate even more the little "bland besides the cherries" aspect and makes me wish for a touch of wood or more acidity. Inferior to the sum of its parts...

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Photo of Dubblebock
4.03/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

New Belgium's Transatlantique Kriek is a somewhat novel and very interesting blend of beers. Check out the Long Beach Bum's fine review or New Belgium's website for the full skinny. In short, New Belgium has combined a Belgian kriek ale with one of their domestic ales, producing a true "transatlantique" brewing experience. It's a unique way to introduce a lambic styled beer to folks who might not otherwise try one. I caught a single 12 oz. bottle of this on one of my beer runs for about $2.49.

The beer just looks absolutely fantastic. The color was a deep, rich cherry red. Minimal head on the pour, but it left a nice lacing down the glass and held a small sheet of foam all the way to the end. Good nose, full of cherries and crabapples.

The taste was definitely dominated by the cherries. There was a sweet 'n' sour feel, the sweetness mostly in the nose and the initial taste, followed by a sour cherry tang on the middle and back of the tongue. Just delicious. I kept getting hints of crabapple or cranberry in the taste as well as the cherries. Unusual to say the least. The malts and hops were covered by the heady fruit flavors. This beer profiled very much like a true lambic, dry and tart almost like a red wine, the fruits and alcohols snaking through the whole concotion and warming the senses.

Good mouthfeel and a tarty, saucy finish left me wanting more. Very drinkable an enjoyable.

I'd pick this one up again in a heartbeat. It's a truly different type of beer, and one worth exploring if one has a taste for lambics and fruit beers. I'd treat this as more of a dessert beer than one to be paired with foods, although I could see some nice cheeses being a good compliment.

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Photo of DrewBeechum
4.13/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Sampled at the 2004 Pizza Port 12 Hours of Belgian Beer Party in Carlsbad.

Sitting at a table, watching the girls go by. If the temperature were another few degrees, it'd be a perfect summer day and this would be a good beer for that day.

This beer pour a bright cherry candy apple type of read with a patchy pink white head.

The aroma is straight out of a box of Luden's Wild Cherry Cough drops. It's a sweet fruit with a hint of spice behind it.

The flavor is big with a citric acid bite, so much so that at first the beer appears to be fairly one dimensional. As time passes and your palate adjusts, a low earthiness and stony impression becomes apparent with the cherry stones making an appearance.

The finish is especially well balanced between the acid, the sweetness, the fruit and the carbonation.

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Photo of Imbiber
4.07/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From a bottle in The Blind Tiger, Manhattan. Best before 19 May 2004.

Deep red in colour, perfectly clear, little and disappearing head. Good aroma of intense marzipan and fruit intertwined, a bit like drinking beer in a fruit pie factory.

Flavour was initially quite dry and of cherries, the dryness was not quite what I was expecting as the aroma suggested a sweeter beer. A moment after the initial dryness, the cherries and a balancing sweetness came through, but the beer remained largely dry to the finish.

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Photo of Lupe
2.89/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Pours a cranberry-red color with a very small white head. Aroma of sour cherries jumps out while being poured. Hints of woodiness accompany the tantalizing cherry aroma. Flavor reminds me of cherry cough syrup. This is a problem since I despise cherry flavored cough syrup. Finishes dry and alcoholic. Light and spritzy on the tounge. I have enjoyed other kriek lambics, but I can not get past the cough syrup flavor in this one.

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Photo of alexgash
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a bright, clear ruby red with soda pop bubbles and a pink fizzy head. Smell was mainly sour cherry pie with some sugary maltiness. Taste starts off with the big cherry pie taste; sweet to overly sour as it courses through. Luckily this beer is not too cough syrupy and the NB ale that is in the blend may have something to do with this (?). Can pick up the ale maltiness which works nicely with the fruitiness. It's no Belgian Red, but it's pretty nice.

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Photo of Boto
4.15/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz. bottle: Very interesting. It pours an almost clear, ruby red color. There was a very small head from pouring that was gone by the time I was done with the pour. Absolutely no carbonation. A sweet, strong cherry nose. Nothing else makes it past the cherries. Somewhat tart cherry flavor. The taste doesn't seem to linger at all. A bit of a dry taste. Interesting.

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Photo of chaduvel
4.35/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Alexgash for this. Shared a bottle in Driggs, ID. Nice ruby red color lacy spiderwebby head. Nice sour cherry aroma with hints of malt and that New Belguim ale yeast. More malt than other lambics that I've had. Taste is great. Sweet and sour cherry, not artificial or medicinal. Proper level of carbonation. I can detect what I'll call that New Belguim ale flavor. A great combination of a traditional lambic with an american belgian ale, very drinkable and delicious. I wish I could buy and drink more of this!

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Photo of lou91
3.87/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

What a great concept in brewing! This beer poured very still and had a reddish pink color. The nose was outstanding. The taste is crisp, tart with the cherry flavors cleary evident. The biggest problem with this beer was that it is a bit thin with the flavors fleeting unlike the usual Boon lambics. For those who are interested in the style this is a good baby step for the true lambics. It was also kind of pricey at 10.00 per 4 pack at whole foods berkeley.

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Photo of BeerManDan
3.45/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

When poured, the color was a clear reddish purple with no foam to speak of. The smell of cherries fill the nose right off and a hint of cedar in the nose. The taste of cherries was evident along with a tart and sort of sour fininsh to this ale. Not overly impressed with this Kriek. I think it was lacking in intensity and flavor. The bitterness was mild enough, but, the tart/sour feel in the mouth was a bit to much for my palate!

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Photo of TheLongBeachBum
3.87/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: Along with the 1554 Brussels Style Black Ale, I picked up this other 12 ounce New Belgium whilst in Phoenix on a recent beer trip. This Kriek intrigued me; it’s a blend of Brouwerij Boon Kriek with an offering from New Belgium. The obverse label has a very 1930’s looking label with the picture of an Ocean Liner with the words ‘Transatlantique Kriek’ and ‘Ales from Two Continents’. Best Before 19th May 2004, with a listed strength of 6.3%.

Appearance: A fantastic looking presentation. A gorgeous cherry red body with a flamingo pink head that is effervescent at first, but which soon retreats to a thin pink halo-like head which is broken in the middle. Very light wispy lacing. A swirl easily induces a fizzing reformation of the pink head collar, but it is short lived. Nice levels of carbonation add to the many bubbles that cling to the Glass, lending a look of a Cherryade Soda at times once the head settles.

Nose: Sweet cherry nose with some mild sour hints that ebb and flow. The sweetness always remains but is not disconcerting.

Taste: Sweet start with some sugar laden fruit pie sour cherries that take over in the middle. A light acidity breaks into the proceedings in the back end with astringency that just battles the sweetness and gives a nice balance to the overall feel of this Kriek.

Mouthfeel: The sweetness is overpowering in the mouth at first but the dry acidic flashes in the latter third lend a nice Sweet ‘n’ Sour feel and balance to this Blend.

Drinkability: I found this to be much better chilled, which takes the sticky sweet edge off of this Belgo-US Kriek. It’s a decent drink though, but don’t let it warm, you’ll end up with something that resembles a sticky Cherry Syrup.

Overall: A nice refreshing “Cherry Kriek Ale” when served around 45°F, my marks in fact are for this serving temperature. Still a tad too sweet for me to drink too much of in the long term though. This is mainly because Boon Kriek does tend to be fruity-sweet in its raw version (as opposed to Oude Boon Kriek which is the more traditional version). Don’t let this warm though, its appeal falls off exponentially I found.

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Photo of kbub6f
3.83/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A small, pinkish head sits on a gorgeous, deep, clear, cherry red beer. Spotty lacing. Huge, sweet cherriness in the nose, with some underlying tangy tartness. Front is a bucket-o-cherries, sweet and tangy. The full middle gives way to a tart, dry, wine-like finish. Some nice grains through the tart cherries. I like this beer. It's very tasty, if a little one-dimensional. Still... high quality brew.

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Photo of BeerAngel
4.12/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear red with a hint of purple wearing a large hat of a head that leaves a lace down the glass. The smell of sweet cherries and a touch of tart make up the aroma and it is simply mouthwatering! The taste mimics the smell with more pronounced tartness and a light yeast and a very well balance of hops and alcohol to offset the sweetness! It is light bodied and finishes with a hint of dryness. On the bottle, it explains the journey of this concoction that reads at the end..."The result? One epic blend." I have to say, from a brewery that is consistently just a couple notches above average, this is one nice brew! Cheers!

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Photo of beerguy101
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Red color. Small, quickly diminishing head. Aroma is intense cherry (near cough syrup at first). A medium bodied kriek/lambic. Cheery flavor very evident and pronounced. Yet, its very clean and neither too sweet or too sour. There are also touches of wood and oak. I look at this beer as sort of a transitional kriek, it somewhere between a very fruity and sweet Lambic (like Lindamans) and a really tart Lambic Like Oud Beersel. Interesting beer. Worth a taste, Mouthfeel is full and round. Finish is clean and smooth. Aftertaste is slightly sweet

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.03/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Transatlantique Kriek: Ales From 2 Continents. There's a brief, yet interesting story on the label describing the beer's creation.

This is the reddest beer that I've ever seen. It looks like cherry soda, maybe a bit darker, and is crystal clear. The head is a frothy light pink, persists pretty well and leaves copious sheets of broken lace. The nose is overwhelmingly of cherries, with a little Chardonnay mixed in. It doesn't smell much like beer since I don't appreciate either malt or hops.

TK doesn't taste like beer either, but then this is my first lambic, so take that impression with a large grain of salt. It tastes like alcoholic, sour cherry soda that is dry and acidic rather than sweet. Minimal malt is evident. The finish is short and to the point.

The mouthfeel is somewhere between light and medium and is too carbonated for my liking. The soda analogy just will not die. At only 6.3%, one would think that the alcohol would be completely hidden... but it isn't.

I don't want to be too hard on Transatlantique Kriek because I'm sure that it's a decent representation of the style. Having said that, it just doesn't seem like beer.

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Photo of TPoling
3.71/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The kriek greets you with the scent of an IBC black cherry soda. The color is almost cranberry juice red. There is no doubt of its Belgian origins as soon as the taste of sour cherries hits the palate. It is a pleasant sourness that lingers on the back of the tongue even as the malt begins to balance it with some sweetness. There are some floral hops here, but they are almost undetectable.

This is a garden party beer and also could pair well with a repast of fish or chicken that features a sweet sauce or glaze.

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Photo of DESTRO
3.8/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

pours red baby. red red red. with a pinkish head/lace. aromas of sour cherries, but not overpowering. the flavor is most def. cherries. tart and tangy, puckering cherries. cherries surfin a wave of grassy barnyard flavor. a tad acidic. crisp and well carbonated, lively in the mouth. it is different and i grabbed it on a whim. a once in awhile treat that i dont long for, but is welcomed any time it rears its head. i dig it.

$8 for a 4 pack.

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Photo of WesWes
3.7/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a ruby red color with a thin pink lace head; very nice. The aroma is great. It is full of sour cherries; quite tart and refreshing. The taste is decent. It boasts of sour cherries and a super tart aftertaste. This is the most sour beer I've ever tried. The mouthfeel is good. It is a low bodied beer with good carbonation. This would be a great drinking beer if it wasn't for the tremendous sour taste. I love tart beers, but this is a little too much. Still, this is a fine beer.

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Photo of ngandhi
4.08/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Drew for the bottle.

I guess this would be beer's example of New World revisiting the Old. Though the nose is all ripe cherries with hints of musk, the palette is an off-dry melange of fruit and funk.

The taste is never really reconciled: up-front cherry shares the stage with the earthiness of spontaneous fermentation and an inexplicable, repugnant light grain lager finish (could this be the "original New Belgium brew" that's blended in?). This is the most dissapointing finish I have ever tasted.

Transatlantique Kriek is a fun, innovative, and passionate brew. But it just barely qualifies as lambic-style.

Relax, relax.

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Photo of Morris729
3.95/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a bright crimson color with a soft light pink head that coats the sides of the glass as you drink. Nose is a bit candy-like and medicinal at the same time—reminiscent of Luden’s Cherry-Flavored Cough Drops. The same candy notes are present up front in the taste but are very quickly replaced by a tart, sour cherry flavor along with some underlying notes of wet wood. Not the most complex of beers and I certainly wouldn’t call this an “epic blend” as the bottle claims, but it does serve well as a dessert brew.

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Photo of ZAP
3.85/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours an orangish crimson head...Nose has some musty leathery notes..woody notes too...also tart cherries....the flavor is sweeter than I expected...a sweet cherry flavor..not artificial sweet though...finishes with a pucker...

I like this....definitely drinkable and a bit different than the styles I usually drink..definitely sweeter than the other Belgian Lmbics I've tried (which are few)...

I'd drink another of these...

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Transatlantique Kriek from New Belgium Brewing
Beer rating: 3.8 out of 5 with 92 ratings
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