Rodenbach Foederbier
Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V.

Rate It
Beer Geek Stats | Print Shelf Talker
Sour - Flanders Red Ale
Ranked #51
Ranked #9,259
4.02 | pDev: 9.95%
Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V.
Very Good
View: Beers
Reviews: 29 | Ratings: 117 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of BEERchitect
BEERchitect from Kentucky

4.38/5  rDev +9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

If the British has their "cask" culture, then this is the Belgian equivalent. Unfiltered and unblended, the most rustic, raw and regal taste of the Flemish region is on vivid display in this undisturbed state.

Light burgundy, mauve and bronze in its oaken bleached hues, a scant rise of bubble speaks to the beer's refined cask character. A strikingly sour scent is laced with cherry, green apple, red wine, nutty oak, leather, balsamic and a general attic-like dusty aroma. As the flavors embark upon the tongue, its low lying sweetness is of hard candy, fruit juice and and pie crust.

An explosion of fruit acidity swiftly dominates the middle palate while the sweetness retreats and the more wine-like tendencies of the beer begin to appear. The boldness of bordeaux wine meets rosé along with those strikingly dry, emboldened balsamic nuances reinforce the cherry additions, the acetic sourness and the vinous bite. Cider, light toast and cashew can all be found lurking in the recesses of taste before a light and oaken bitterness introduces a fine peppery woodsiness to close out the taste.

Light in body, the beer finishes powder-fine with a light tannic presence. Its shy carbonation allows for the sourness to seep into the tastebuds without hinderance. Spicy, warming and smooth, the beer's medium quick aftertaste is highlighted by cherry skin and a hint of amaretto.

Jul 06, 2020
Photo of npolachek
npolachek from New York

4.25/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Great Flemish red beer with a solid aftertaste. The aging in oak barrels defiantly adds character to this brew. This beer has more sourness compared so some of the other the other Rodenbach offerings.

Aug 31, 2018
Photo of metter98
metter98 from New York

3.94/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

On-tap at The Answer Brewpub, Richmond, VA

A: The beer is hazy reddish brown in color. It poured with just a minuscule ring of white bubbles around the edge of the glass.
S: Moderate aromas of sour cherries are present in the nose along with hints of vinegar.
T: The taste is very sour and has strong notes of vinegar along with hints of cherries.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied and very tart on the palate with a low to moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is very sour and tart and is not something for the faint of heart—particularly if you are not accustomed to very sour beers. However, it is one that is interesting to try because you can really see what a Flanders Red Ale tastes like before it taken out of the foeder and aged in oak barrels and/or blended with other batches.

Serving type: on-tap

Aug 12, 2018
Photo of ccrida
ccrida from Oregon

4.4/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

On draught at Beer Temple (Amsterdam), appearance is clear ruddy brown with a loose off-white head.

Smell is sweet and spicy and funky, classic.

Taste is sour grape and iodine, mildly sweet, much less so than regular Rodenbach, more sour as well. Delicious.

Mouthfeel is light, slippery.

Drinakability is high, delicious and a world classic for a reason!

Sep 23, 2017
Photo of SomethingClever
SomethingClever from Ohio

3.93/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

4 oz pour on tap

A: Murky brownish red bidy with very little head.

S: Vinegar, sour apple, wine like.

T: Slightly sour nice vinegar, sour grape, apple

M: Thick lower carbonation makes it drink a tad harsher.

O: Not a bad flanders red but I can't tell the difference between this and the Grand Cru.

Nov 28, 2016
Photo of Ciocanelu
Ciocanelu from Romania

4.4/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Really dark brown color, almost black, tan head. Aroma has bitter cherries, chocolate and some caramel. Taste starts sour upfront, slightly acidic, continues with toffee and caramel, very balanced on the finish. Medium body and carbonation. This is very interesting flanders style ale, quite different from the other Rodenbach beers. Much more chocolate and toffee.

Oct 30, 2016
Photo of mynie
mynie from Maryland

4.54/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Thick pour, the color of a fruit leather.

Very nice, smooth, vibrant aroma. Tart cherries and raspberries against light hints of caramel.

Tastes like it smells, remarkbly both very tart and very smooth. Big cherries are tart to start, moving into smother fruit near the middle, finishing with malt and a little lingering sour. The flavor isn't as complex as their heavenly Grand Cru, but still fantastic.

Aug 19, 2016
Photo of Rnodea
Rnodea from Tennessee

4.27/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Draft poured into snifter and pint glasses. Appearance: red/brown off white head about two fingers.

Nose:spicy, acidic.

Taste: Acidic and spicy. Fermented vegetal. Dijon mustard. I want this beer with sausage.

Jun 30, 2016
Photo of Stevedore
Stevedore from Oregon

4.09/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

25cl pour, on tap at Cafe Hollander in Madison, Wisconsin. Served in a Rodenbach tulip glass.

Body is a darker reddish brown body, lighter reddish-orange hue, one finger white head. The head is moderately effervescent, with somewhat short retention. Lacing is wispy and overall short-lived. Smells of crisp red apple, mild caramel malt sweetness, moderate vinegar acidity, oak, touch of funk. Flavour follows the nose, but with a better balance of tart and sweet; apple tartness, vinegar, caramel, a bit of musty funk, mild tannic oak. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, good carbonation, crisp and tartly dry, nice on a warm day sitting out on the balcony.

Jun 14, 2016
Photo of LAp
LAp from Ohio

4.24/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Served in a tulip on tap (had 3 days ago). Overall, not strikingly different from the baseline Rodenbach red. Same lactic acid sour notes, similar light red fruit (raspberries), if a little less refined than its aged/blended cousins.

May 11, 2016
Photo of neenerzig
neenerzig from Ohio

4.34/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Got the last glass of this that killed the keg when I had this on-tap at Lizardville in Bedford. Served in a tulip glass, this beer draws a somewhat cloudy/hazy medium red/amber color with a bit of a copper hue. Has a white head that's initially an inch thick when first served to me that settles to a thick foam ring lining the inside of the glass along with some little swirls of foam on the beer's surface and just a little bit of lacing. Aromas of some yeasty, musty funk along with a sharp tartness. Has a nice sharp sour, tart flavor upfront that gives way to a nice barnyard musty funk that is provides a nice balance to the sour tartness. Also has just a slight red wine vinegar like flavor with just a touch of saltiness to round it out. Quite an enjoyable flavor profile all around. Has a fairly crisp, slightly prickly, yet smooth, medium bodied mouthfeel with moderate carbonation. Has a clean finish with a fairly dry aftertaste along with the sour vinegar salt hints that sit on the palate and hang out long after each sip. Quite an enjoyable beer all around.

May 10, 2016
Photo of MadScientist
MadScientist from New York

4.21/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

S: A lot of red currents and cherry-like aromas with a touch of chocolate malt.

L: A dark copper ale with some chill haze initially that clears up in a minute. The tan head is made of fine bubbles and quick to fade.

T: A medium tartness balanced against a medium sweetness dominate along with red current and cherry-like fruit notes. Some caramel notes to the malt. A sweet finish with a long fruity aftertaste.

M: A medium bodied beer with a medium strong level of carbonation.

O: A good sweet-tart balance with a good amount of fruit on the somewhat sweeter side of the scale for this style.

Mar 14, 2016
Photo of TheManiacalOne
TheManiacalOne from Rhode Island

3.75/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

On-tap 1/3/2016 at Doherty’s East Ave Irish Pub in Pawtucket, RI, served in a snifter glass.

A: The beer is a deep purplish red color, with a thin off-white head that fades quickly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains tart dark fruit, some minty spice, light caramelized malts and light Belgian yeast.

T: The taste starts out very tart with quite wine-like flavors of grapes and berries. There’s some mild spice in the background. The malt character is thin but prevails itself somewhat in the finish. The after-taste is sour as early on what little sweetness the beer has fades out.

M: Crisp and a little smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is very dry.

O: A little tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, decent kick, decent representation of style, it’s a decent beer but there are better options within the style.

Jan 04, 2016
Photo of JerzDevl2000
JerzDevl2000 from New Jersey

4.12/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Been on a big Flanders Red Ale kick lately, thanks to my good friends at the Cloverleaf Tavern since they've had quite a few of them on tap lately. This was one leftover from the takeover last week and even though it tasted like the others that I've had as of late, it was quite enjoyable as I later found on here that it had a two-year aging period. That would explain the level of funk that I was able to detect in this!

Good pour to this as the cloudy purple-peach hue was beautifully radiant when I held this up to the light. Not a lot of visible carbonation or head either but this was light enough to the taste once I start to take my sips.

Nov 23, 2015
Photo of Sludgeman
Sludgeman from District of Columbia

4.11/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

On tap at Church Key at Night of the Living Ales. Served in a small snifter. $7 for a 4oz pour.

I like my sours/lflanders reds when they are not mouth puckering. This fits the bill - sour but not puckering. 4

A 4.25

S 3.75

T - A slightly bit fruity , with a bit of sweet in the background. 4.25

MF - 4

Oct 29, 2015
Photo of Smakawhat
Smakawhat from Maryland

3.84/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured on tap at Churchkey 10 oz. into a full tulip glass.

Rusted brown body, slightly red but with some orange highlights and some degree of carbonation but fairly opaque. Head is light tan, kind of fluffy at one finger and disappearing to a creamy collar shortly.

Classic Rodenbach nose, mild tart like cherry and raspberry notes, small caramel that gets into a little bit of a toasty angle, but also quite small for a two year aged foeder. Light hints of tannic wood but also very small and subtle, seems to smell more like regular Rodenbach.

Palate is pretty much no surprises but gets better as it warms. Slightly wet feel for an aged brew, a bit watery slightly but flavors still transpire. Light oak and some good classic soft tannins moving to red fruit skin to wood. Light caramel sweetness washes over, and more fruit really opens up and becomes evident as the beer warms.

A decent brew and tastes great, but doesn't really taste that much different from the regular offerings. Glad to have tried it.

Oct 29, 2015
Photo of Dirtyhands
Dirtyhands from Maryland

4.34/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Unblended, young and full of bite. Tannins are heavy throughout, though not in a overpowering way. Notes of sour cherry and grape. You can taste how young the beer is, all of your traditional lambic/geurze flavors are more predominant and not blended like an aged example.

Oct 14, 2015
Photo of Phil-Fresh
Phil-Fresh from California

4.23/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: sweet malt, cherries, a trace of vinegar and oak

A: amber-brown, opaque and still

F: Malt sweetness, followed by cherries and vinous flavors with an oaky finish

M: Medium-light bodied with no carbonation

O: Very interesting to see how the 2-yr Foederbier provides much of the backbone for Rodenbach's Grand Cru (especially when drinking side-by-side)

Mar 27, 2015
Photo of emerge077
emerge077 from Illinois

4.24/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This is 2 years old and directly from a single foeder according to the brewmaster. It has more in common with Oud Bruin, but employs the mixed fermentation of a Flanders Red (inoculated with bugs), and does not use ale yeast exclusively as an Oud Bruin does.

Draft at the Binnys LP tasting room, special event with Rudi Ghequire.
Unblended and still, the color is a murky brownish orange with few bubbles and no foam.

Aroma of musty wet wood and tangy dried fruit.
Similar taste with a fruity dried berry sweet tartness, and firm lingering tannins that last into the aftertaste. The wood has a damp musty quality. Sweetness is minimal, though some exists to contrast the tannin and tartness.

Little to no carbonation, still like wine or an unblended lambic. It's compelling and not especially acetic which was surprising. It's used primarily for blending, 2/3 for Grand Cru and 1/3 in Rodenbach.

Interesting opportunity to try this in the states, with the brewmaster no less. Thanks Adam for putting the event together.

Mar 24, 2015
Photo of MattSweatshirt
MattSweatshirt from Texas

3.49/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Clear amber bodied with a thin covering of off-white head. 3.5

Aroma is sort of sweet with vanilla graham crackery wood and some cherry fruitiness and vinegar.

Flavor is kind of lackluster and thin which the flat thin body doesn't help. It's like the aroma which seems great but doesn't fully translate for me.

Interesting to try. The beer comes together so well in the bottled versions. This was eh.

Dec 18, 2014
Photo of Axnjxn
Axnjxn from North Carolina

4.04/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

draft at raleigh rare 2014. into a tulip

Pours a lightish red with a nice head. smell is quite tart and sweet....taste is very tart as well, cherry flavor dominate. more tart than regular rodenbach but not as tart as grand cru. good balance and flavor. slightly buttery feel. lighter in body, light in carbonation.

for such a rare beer, it is quite good but not out of this world amazing. recommended if you can find it though.

Jan 26, 2014
Photo of jdense
jdense from Oregon

4.21/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

On tap at De Heeren van Liederkercke, expertly poured by Joost into Rodenbach tumbler, 11/2/2013, first beer of an epic night of beer tasting.

One finger thin off-white head, quick dissipation leading to a thin broken head over dark ruby red body, minimal carbonation ala cask. The nose is fairly sweet, cherries balanced by a slight vinegar aroma and pronounced oak tannins present. Taste is on the sweet side, an attack on the senses, not what I've come to expect from Rodenbach, big oak notes, even more than Grand Cru, really not that sour, more on the tart side. Mouthfeel fairly light, no effervescence to speak of, just as this cask beer should be. Wow, what a special treat this was, right up there with Alexander and Vin de Cereale, rarer than hell, and absolutely worth the effort to try and find. Not as acetic as many other examples of the style. Divine.

Nov 07, 2013
Photo of Filosoof
Filosoof from Netherlands

4.65/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Rodenbach Foeder beer stays something special. First of all, because you cannot find it in many bars. Second, because of the special quality the bar tenders seems to must have, to get this beer right in the glass. It took the specialist of 't Antwaerps Bierhuiske more than a minute to fix it!

A: bit cloudy, old red couloured, tiny top;
S: I love it; bit sourness, very malty;
T: quite sour ofcourse, but so well balanced, malty;
M: great drinkability, alcohol could be a bit higher to make everything complete;
O: top of the bill.

Aug 18, 2013
Photo of KickbacksSteve
KickbacksSteve from Florida

3.97/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On draft at cafe de zalm. Amber in color, cloudy, poured in tall rocks type Rodenbach glass. Aroma, musty, damp, intense funk, rotted green apple. Very acidic in taste, almost a burning sensation upon swallow... vinegay, easy finish actually.  Rare, unique, intense experience. 

Feb 29, 2012
Photo of Thorpe429
Thorpe429 from Illinois

3.62/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the De Heeren 20th Anniversary party during last week's trip to Belgium. Reviewed from notes.

Served in a mini snifter.

Pours a light caramel color with a very small head that receded quickly. No lacing.

The nose immediately brought quite a bit of vinegar. Some light cherry and oak, but mostly vinegar. Super strong and along the lines of Vin de Cereal but without the cookie dough-type sweetness. Flavor was straight sourness, though not completely overpowering like some of the more out there American wilds that I've had.

Light body and thin carbonation with a heavy sourness.

Not fantastic but certainly not bad either. An interesting experience.

Sep 15, 2011
Rodenbach Foederbier from Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V.
Beer rating: 89 out of 100 with 117 ratings