Dismiss Notice
Extreme Beer Fest:Los Angeles

Join us December 9th in Los Angeles for the ultimate throwdown of craft beer creativity!

Learn more...
Dismiss Notice
Introducing: Project Extreme Brewing (a Dogfish Head + BeerAdvocate project)

Rodenbach Grand Cru | Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V.

Your Rating: None

Want it   Got it 
Rodenbach Grand CruRodenbach Grand Cru
BA SCORE
4.29/5
Outstanding
4,066 Ratings
Rodenbach Grand CruRodenbach Grand Cru
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V.
Belgium
rodenbach.be

Style: Flanders Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Flanders Red Ale- a blend of 1/3 young beer and 2/3 aged beer matured for 2 years in oak foeders. The original sour ale.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 11-25-2000

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#563
Reviews:
1,159
Ratings:
4,066
pDev:
11.19%
Bros Score:
4.61
 
 
Wants:
336
Gots:
706
Trade:
21
HISTOGRAM
 
View: Beers | Events
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
firstprev| 4001-4025 | 4026-4050 | 4051-4075  | next → last
Ratings: 4,066 |  Reviews: 1,159
Photo of GreenCard
4.07/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle best by date: 5/16/05

Appearance: dark amber color, a thick rocky later of ever-present tannish head, great clarity, some lace

Aroma: lactic, almondy, oaky, minerally, strawberries, a hint of Brett horsiness, very interesting and hard to nail down

Flavor: a syrupy sweetness pervades but is slightly countered by a firm lactic tang and some lambic character (musty, horsey, earthy); a bit oaky and seemingly corky, vinous; finish is somewhat sweet but a pleasant sourness lingers in the aftertaste

Mouthfeel: medium-full body, zesty carbonation, slightly slimy residue feel

Overall Impression: Having finally acquired a taste for geuze (and the like), I can definitely see the appeal of this beer. And why it's a "hallmark" of its style. Would be great to cook with in place of wine, too.

 810 characters

Photo of beerguy101
4.78/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Reddish color, slightly cloudy, small head. Very vinous nose (wine-like esters). Vinous taste, normal for Belgian red ales. Despite the vinous taste, there is a malty sweetness to the beer. Rich, full flavor that gets better the more you sip it. Definitely an acquired taste, but it is the best of style. Finish is clean, vinous and sharp. Aftertaste has a hint of cherry.

 372 characters

Photo of marburg
5/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

One of my favorite beers of all time, and the beer that made the Flemish sour ales my favorite style of beer. This brew single-handedly changed my English ale-centric view of beer and started me down a path of Belgian love. In some ways, it's the reason I'm part of this website, so I'm pleased to have it again tonight to review.

Deep brown color, the shade of freshly carmelized sugar, still liquidy, with a faint red glow: Brilliant hints of garnet shine through in the light. Potent aromas of brown sugar, sweet cherry juice, and a sense of violent countertop fermentation. A flirtation with sweetness, fruity flavors, and a cherry essence is kicked aside by the perfect level of tartness -- simply brutally delightful in its sourness. Any real hop presence is muted by this sourness that seems to bring balance to the Force.

No beverage should be this damn good. It's a thing of divine inspiration and may very well be the best beer in the world -- well, certainly one of my two or three favorites.

I consumed the second half of my bottle with pickled herring in a white wine sauce with some sweet onion. They matched perfectly. The meal cost next to nothing, but I felt like I should have paid an arm for the joy I got to experience. It definitely never gets old.

 1,278 characters

Photo of ALEBOY
4.48/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Devine!! ....Exceptional!!...A true classic. This is an incredibly challenging and assertive beer. I sampled it at around 8 or 9 degrees C . The lovely reddish colour and woody aroma are very inviting. It has a very oily and tart taste and the use of oak casks is quite obvious. There are also hints of fruit ( sour plum/cherry) and some slight vanilla notes. You must try this beer! Forget the port, have a Grand Cru.

 418 characters

Photo of putnam
5/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Smell: Toasted maplewood. Dry. Meaty. Cured, caramelized, cocoa-scented beef. Clean. Pretty. Like a Persian or Romance-tongued beauty, folded over with exotic perfume.
Red fruit explodes on the palate. Cherries. Red currants. Marzipan. Bitter chocolate.
The texture is chewy and tart, yet transparent, with a paper-thin layer of concentrated, dried fruit that melts in the mouth, building easily in a steady crescendo...cocoa and allspice waft in cartwheels along the way. It is loud as thunder in the end but the flavors rinse beautifully across the palate like rain.
This is perfect, soulful, emotionally wrenching beer. It must be ranked above all other beers I know.

 673 characters

Photo of dmarch
4.32/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours with a garnet hue and a white head. Aroma is mostly sour cherries. The taste is quite winelike with a cherry flavored tartness. This has to be the most under-rated style in the world. With beers like this out there I wonder why we don't see more flemish sour ales.

 270 characters

Photo of RBorsato
4.28/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Reddish brown (bright red to light) with a full light brown head, good carbonation, and sheets of lace. Sour dark fruit and winey aroma. Malty and tart fruitiness with light sourness. Light-medium bodied and airy.

There are not many Flanders Red Ales out there but this one has been my favorite so far - well worth getting again.

Label states: "Mixed fermentation beer" & "Aged in Oak barrels for two years"

Best Before: 09/13/04
Tasted: 06/27/03

($3.59 / 33cl)

===

Label states: "Flemish Sour Ale Aged in Oak for 18 months"

Best Before: 09/21/07
Tasted: 01/24/07

(25.4 oz / 750 ml tall green champagne style bottle, corked, caged, and wrapped with gold foil)

 686 characters

Photo of marc77
4.64/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance: Deep garnet hue with a slight murk. Thin, but well retained light tan head leaves sparse lace.

Aroma: Pungent barrage of vinous sherry, tart, fermented plum along with heaty ethanol. Secondary notes of cheesy old hop, musty oak and chunky lactic tartness. Mellows and morphs as it breathes, with both licorish notes and bubblegum esters surfacing to provide a candyish contrast. Very enticing and uniquely intense aromawise.

Taste: Coating wash of thick, aged balsamic tartness bathes the palate initially, then widens into a melange of balsamic drizzled sour cherry, lightly tannic oak and yeast must. Sweetens somewhat mid palate, with notes of caramelized raisins and old fruitcake providing addition depth and additional contrast. Tartness reemerges late, this time of a clean, green apple nature. Finishes with a thirst inducing combination of tart, lightly salted lemon.

Mouthfeel: Deceivingly light and crisp on the palate, due to the high attenuation. Soft and smooth.

Drinkability / overall: A delicious, intensely flavored, beefed up Old Bruin. Concomitantly rich and satiating, yet teasingly whimsical, beckoning the palate for more to attempt comprehension. This deserves to be in a 750 ml bottle. Outstanding. "Best before 9/13/04"

 1,270 characters

Photo of Wildman
4.12/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured a very dark amber color and formed an off white foamy head that coated the glass with lace as it subsided. An aroma of chocolate, caramel and cherries. The flavor was of cherries and some malt and the sourness of it is definately there in the finish of the beer.

 279 characters

Photo of jcalabre
3.82/5  rDev -11%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Originally sampled 19 May 2003. Rodenbach Grand Cru is brown/reddish in color with a vinuous aroma. the sourness on the tongue is quite pleasant. This is a complex brew not for a beginner; however, it is certainly a beer that any serious beer drinker should try.

 262 characters

Photo of BeerResearcher
3.99/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

While this is undoubtedly a finely crafted beer, it smells and tastes similar to a finely crafted sparkling apple wine. It pours a red tinted Oxford. A long-lasting, complex earthy aroma of malt, hops, green apples and a hint of alcohol are unusual for a beer. The medium malt body is thinner than it appears. There's a trace caramel flavor and a light sweetness to meekly counter the strong lemony citrus and acidic bitterness. Tart green apples, pear and oaky wood round out the flavors. A lemony dry clean finish leaves a slightly puckered mouthfeel.

 553 characters

Photo of stcules
3.92/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Burgundy colour, compact head.
The smell is acetic, but fresh and with some notes of fruity.
The taste is sparkling, fruity (it seems "fragolino"). Cherry, sour black cherry, lime, apple.
Notes of tannin.
Good aftertaste acid and woody.
Well rounded body.
The result of ageing in wood barrel is manifest in the complexity of the smell and taste.

 351 characters

Photo of aracauna
4.52/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Mostly brown body with some reddish characteristics. Head is cream colored with fairly large bubbles. Aroma is very sharp and wine-like. Fruity, but I don't know if it's cherries I'm smelling or just something about the beer that makes me think cherries. Even with that, the fruitiness is much more subtle than in the Alexander. The beer has stinging carbonation that gradually numbs the palate. There's a crisp tartness and again the flavor is very wine-like with some sweetness. The alcohol is pretty assertive in both the nose and in the flavor. I found it hard to believe that this beer was only around 6%. I could easily learn to enjoy this beer.

 651 characters

Photo of rastaman
4.97/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Just an amazing beer, and really really complex. Well balanced sourness and hints of cherries, chocolate, and extremely smooth and refreshing, very yummy.

 154 characters

Photo of jreitman
4.68/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I first had this beer on the recommendation of the bartender at Monk's Cafe in Philadelphia and was immediately intrigued. The beer has a tart, sweer and sour character that comes across in the smell as soon as you start pouring the glass. One of the most unique and enjoyable beers I have had. Hopefully, it will be available in the states again soon.

 355 characters

Photo of Todd
4.94/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Presentation: 33cl European-style brown bottle. Foil neck and an illustrated label of their famous oak casks.

Appearance: Hazy dark red, almost deep brown in colour with a nice whisp of a white laced head.

Smell: Acidic, sharp fruity aroma. Hints of caramel notes and oak as the beer warms.

Taste: Crisp, dry and refreshingly tart. Has a very intense sourness and a raw cherry juice fruitiness about it. Body is perfectly balanced, full and gentle. A subtle background malt sweetness provides balance. Hops are masked by the instense flavours. Light malt grain and oak flavours as the beer warms. Finishes semi-tart, clean.

Notes: Grand Cru is probably the most famous of the West Flanders red ales. It's made with Vienna malt and 5 yeast strains. It's then aged in massive unvarnished oak casks for over 2 years. Then, it's blended with other 2 year old ales, no young ale addition. There's no fruit in this beer. All fruit flavours are imparted by its unique house blend of yeast strains.

Dear beergod, thank you. This is indeed one of the most refreshing beers on the planet. An absolute must try.

 1,115 characters

firstprev| 4001-4025 | 4026-4050 | 4051-4075  | next → last
Rodenbach Grand Cru from Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V.
Beer rating: 4.29 out of 5 with 4,066 ratings
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.