Rodenbach Caractère Rouge
Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V.

Rodenbach Caractère RougeRodenbach Caractère Rouge
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Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V.
Flanders Red Ale
Ranked #1
Ranked #280
4.46 | pDev: 7.17%
Feb 18, 2023
Nov 02, 2011
Rodenbach Caractère RougeRodenbach Caractère Rouge
Notes: Flanders Red Ale- two-year ale matured in oak foeders, that is aged for an additional six months with cherries, raspberries and cranberries. Vinous and very complex with notes of wood and caramel.

The brewer allow the beer to macerate with fresh cherries, raspberries and cranberries. After this maceration in oak, the beer re-ferments in the bottle. The result is RODENBACH Caractère Rouge, an exceptional RODENBACH with fruit maceration and a 7% alcohol volume. The brew is more than unique and extremely exclusive, as only 900 75-cl bottles were produced (first batch). Geunes serves this wilful beer as part of his other unique range of beer varieties in his restaurant, ’t Zilte, at the Antwerp MAS museum.
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Rated: 4.33 by HarlotBronte from District of Columbia

Feb 18, 2023
Rated: 4.74 by Jslamas

Nov 28, 2022
Rated: 3.75 by iftcoach from Germany

Oct 08, 2022
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Reviewed by mvogt from Massachusetts

4.25/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25
375ml bottle, can't find a bottling year or best-by date.

Look: beautiful clear ruby red, but points subtracted for the visible sediment at the bottom of my half pour. Basically no head. No carbonation visible.

Smell: red wine, dark and fruity and tart.

Taste: Cherry changing to raspberry, with a sweetness that comes and goes. The cranberry appears most in the aftertaste. Not as dry as my nose was expecting; in fact, it's pretty sweet. I took this out of the fridge but I'm not getting the complexity I hoped for.

Feel: a little tingly even though I can't see any bubbles. Moderate mouthfeel, not particularly light or heavy.

Overall: tasty and fun, good balance between tart and sweet, but I have to admit I was hoping for more. I have no idea how old this bottle is or how it has been stored. I'm perfectly willing to believe that a well-stored bottle would have more to say for itself.
Aug 28, 2022
Rated: 4.34 by Tmappin from Canada (NS)

Aug 22, 2022
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Reviewed by MikeWard from Pennsylvania

4.34/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
750ml bottle into a tall glass. Bottled 2/19/2018 after 30 months on foeders, the last 6 resting on cherries, raspberries and cranberries.

Looks good in the glass. Dark reddish brown body. Small off white bubbly head fizzes away quite quickly, no lacing.

Splendid mixed berry fruit aroma.

On tasting, the cherry and raspberry tart sweetness comes through very cleanly before the drink effortlessly moves into a drying sour berry fruit taste.

Mouth between medium and full, finish sour tart and drying with a nice berry residue.

Overall, another suberb Flanders Red from Rodenbach. The care and time that goes Into producing this beer is worth every penny to this drinker.
May 31, 2022
Rated: 4.39 by not2quick from Missouri

May 24, 2022
Rated: 4.19 by wisegreensoul from Idaho

Mar 27, 2022
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Reviewed by mwilbur from Minnesota

4.68/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75
Poured from 750 mL bottle into tulip.
A: Pours a clear red amber hue with essentially no head.
S: Loads of fresh cherries, raspberries, and cranberries. Sour and sweet with a hint of earthy spice and soft oak. Lovely!
T: Closely follows aroma. Sour/sweet cherries, fresh raspberries, and cranberries. Earthy spice, soft oak, and subtle Belgian yeast.
M: Light-medium body. Nice balance of sweet and sour. Soft oak. Dry throughout. Lingers nicely on the palate.
D: A superb brew and example of style.
Feb 23, 2022
Rated: 4.04 by DruC4 from Michigan

Feb 14, 2022
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Reviewed by VABA from Virginia

4.75/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75
Pours a nice reddish color with a slight head and lacing
Aroma has generous cherry, raspberry and cranberry hints
The taste follows the nose with a wonderful complex cherry, raspberry and cranberry flavor
A light bodied well carbonated beer
A great Flanders red
Jan 16, 2022
Rated: 4.17 by wisrarebeer from Wisconsin

Jan 06, 2022
Rated: 4.12 by Oleg85 from Russian Federation

Jan 01, 2022
Rated: 4 by atlbravsrno1 from New Hampshire

Nov 23, 2021
Rated: 4.57 by arzt from Germany

Sep 24, 2021
Rated: 4.92 by santig0nzalez from Paraguay

Aug 12, 2021
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Reviewed by brentk56 from North Carolina

4.27/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25
Appearance: Pours a tawny amber color with a thin cap that quickly fades to a ringlet; dotty lacing

Smell: Oaky, with cranberry and cherry tones most prominent; hints of vanilla, graham cracker and caramel

Taste: Cranberry and tart cherry blend with caramel and graham cracker flavors, at the outset, with the vanilla and raspberry softening the intial impact; oaky and moderately sour through the finish

Mouthfeel: Medium body with very low carbonation

Overall: This is a older bottle and, while full of flavor, may have lost some carbonation in cellar; terrific flavors, however
Jun 21, 2021
Rated: 4.43 by paresis from Massachusetts

Jun 03, 2021
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Reviewed by Hop_2_It from Spain

4.74/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5
Poured from a 750ml bottle in to a tulip glass.

Look: Has a nice clear red color with a short lasting white head

Smell: Smells of berries and slightly sweet, also with an acidic touch

Taste: Tastes closely with how it smells, although with very little sweetness overall, which is a good thing to me for this type of beer.

Feel: Slightly fizzy, not a heavy beer

Overall: Usually with size of beer I'm a believer in sharing with someone else to then move on to another, but I am always tempted to hog this one. Will drink it whenever I find available.
May 02, 2021
Rated: 5 by Ziosa from Missouri

Apr 20, 2021
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Reviewed by BGDrock from Canada (ON)

4.32/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
Dull ruby body, hazy, head like himalyan salt forms well, but with low retention.
On the nose, loads of raspberry, sour cherry, red currant, cranberry - like fruit candy; hint of oak.
Taste is sweet & sour red fruit, a medley of those in the aroma, with raspberry and cranberry dominant; nicely complimented by oak and light yeast funk & umami; pleasant acidity; tart flavour lingers in the dry finish; medium body and fine, light carbonation; feel is puckering, light, easy drinking, with no residual sugars; has an earthiness to it.

Beautifully balanced, fantastic fruitiness without juiciness, it's sophisticated; superbly crafted, keeps you intrigued and discovering.
Apr 03, 2021
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Reviewed by Rug from Massachusetts

4.25/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25
Bottled 5/7/18

Here we are, beer #600!! I got this bottle a while back and figured it was best to practice some restraint and save it for a "special" occasion, assuming you wanna call 600 beers a special occasion. Fuck it, I'm gonna call it a special occasion. I'm really excited to try this, the highest rated Flanders red and #209 of all time here on BA. Let's dive in

Pours a cloudy ruby brown with a finger of white head that quickly fades to a thin ring and leaves no lacing

This is surprisingly sweet in the nose, but I suppose the additional fruits and 3 years since bottling has that effect. I'm picking up on aromas of tart black cherry, jammy raspberry, red wine vinegar, vanilla, smooth oak, strawberry, and caramel malt

While it offers a nice tart bite it in taste, this is still relatively sweet, but it only adds to the complexity. On the front end of the sip I'm tasting juicy raspberry, tart cherry, caramel malt, and red apple. The swallow brings notes of sharp oak, cranberry, black cherry, smooth vanilla, and a touch of lemon peel

A medium body pairs with moderate carbonation, resulting in a rich and smooth beer that is also lightly tart to keep it alive. Finishes mostly dry and tart

This beer is great, but nothing mindblowing. Still, I'm happy to have another style topper under my belt, and another 100 beers
Mar 28, 2021
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Reviewed by Sigmund from Norway

3.94/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
750 ml "champagne" bottle, Cardinal Pub & Bar, Stavanger. ABV is 7%. Red colour, large pink head. Strong sourish-fruity aroma of ripe red berries (= cherries, raspberries and cranberries), also notes of oak and farmhouse. Lovely clean sour & fruity flavour with a strong presence of said berries, some sweetness but not too much. Refined and interesting, but still refreshing and easy drinking for its strength and age.
Mar 22, 2021
Rated: 5 by BMBCLT from South Carolina

Feb 20, 2021
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Reviewed by Beginner2 from Illinois

4.51/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75
This style requires a lot of work for me to like. But Caractere Rouge, I like.
Note that only 2 of the 12 that I've had among the Top 100 Flanders Reds did I rate above each's BA average. As a malt-head, tart is OK. In the hands of a master, the style is better. In the hands of the masters of the masters that produce the style's finest, I have to agree with the high accolades awarded Caractere Rouge.

Weakening my resistances to tart, Caractere uses more than cherries for its 6 month sit in fruit. I detect raspberries. Thus, Caractere is more of a fruit cocktail that how other brewers merely use malt to impart fun and bacteria to impart nature's art and barrels to impart complex flavors.

If I were a sour-phile, I'd put Rodenbach on my BBBL list (Belgian Brewers Bucket List.) The tour of their brew-room and barrel-room seems to have few rivals in the world. But, I think I'd like to have a nearby restaurant also because Rodenbach seems to know what the kitchen needs. I've just had Caractere with a simple meal of soup and potatoes. My simple meal was vastly improved by Caractere, a masterpiece.
Jan 23, 2021
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Reviewed by ChefKev from Pennsylvania

4.79/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75
Poured from 750ml bottle into Ommegang tulip at 52 degrees f.
Color of deep red lollipop
Smell of red berries, vinegar, barrel, mild funk
Flavor is highly balanced fruit with mild vinegar. No single fruit stands above the other two for me. Not at all sweet or cloying as some fruited sours can be. I’m a huge fan of this style and Rodenbach does it better than most. This particular brew exercises subtle and experienced blending to deliver a balance above all others in its class. No beer can ever be perfect in my eyes but this comes close.
Dec 28, 2020
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Reviewed by Falcon91Wolvrn03 from California

4.81/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75
Wow! This is really good Flanders Ale.

Appearance – Pours a beautiful clear amber red with a nice head that doesn't last long..

Smell – A really wonderful smell, which smelled great before I even had a chance to think about what was in it. Cherry, raspberry, cranberry, oak, and Flanders' funk, that's not overly sour. Wow, this smells really good!

Taste – The taste is similar to the smell. I really like it because it's not too sour, it's got just the right sweetness and tartness to it for me. Very good.

Mouthfeel – A very nice carbonation. Super easy to drink because it tastes so good.

Drinkability – This beer really took me by surprise. I'm not a huge fan of the style because it's usually too sour for my taste, but this is perfect. It's SO easy to drink.
Dec 19, 2020
Rated: 3.96 by Phoodcritic from Michigan

Dec 01, 2020
Rated: 4.37 by BartS from California

Nov 09, 2020
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Reviewed by jheimbigner from Washington

4.37/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
Pours a reddish brown. Head dissipates. Nose of flowers, followed by strong candied cherry, raspberry. Taste of jammy cherry notes, do get minimal raspberry, cranberry in flavor leading the beer to be dry, oak on the end. Light to medium carb and body. Overall, another excellent flanders red from rodenbach
Nov 08, 2020
Rated: 4.6 by Insomniac from Canada (ON)

Nov 07, 2020
Rated: 4.44 by yuno from New York

Oct 18, 2020
Rated: 4.37 by Dazka from Italy

Sep 26, 2020
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Reviewed by DokiDokiLitFam from New Jersey

4.26/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Pours a nice translucent ruby red. A finger of rocky head appears and quickly fades.

Nose is strong flowery fragrances with tart raspberry and cherry underneath. Like a garden of flowers and fruit.

Taste is definitely more complex. Getting cranberry now, almost overshadowing both raspberry and cherry. The tart and funk strong initially but quickly fades to a savory note almost. Reminds me of the aftertaste of olives. Very interesting. Getting very mild notes of oak. The finish is smooth and graceful. No flavors lingering and overstaying their welcome.

Medium bodied with medium carbonation.

A really good sour. Don't think I've had a Flanders Red, so I'm a little out of my element with this one. This one would be great with a nice meal. Perhaps a steak dinner or chicken marsala or chicken cordon bleu. A nice treat.
Sep 03, 2020
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Reviewed by Brugesman from Oregon

4.92/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5
A collaboration review with my brother.

750 ml bottle. Date on the bottle is 5/7/18, which we assume is the bottling date.

Appearance: ruddy brown like apple cider, cloudy, initially effervescent but the bit of foam dissipated immediately.

Smell: Fruit dominant, sour cherries, raspberries. Earthy.

Taste: Whole lotta berry, tart, vinous/acetic notes. Lingering red berry aftertaste. The blending produces a profound complexity. Hints of sherry and caramel.

Mouthfeel: Thin to medium body, low carbonation, slightly astringent

Overall: A master class in Flemish Red Ale production with the added bonus of aging with sour cherries, raspberries, and cranberries. This style, famously called the "Burgundy of Belgium" by Michael Jackson, sets a high bar for beer blending and complexity. Bursting with flavor, a towering brewing achievement.
Jul 29, 2020
Rated: 4.5 by TallGuyCM from California

Jun 23, 2020
Rated: 4.23 by rightcoast7 from Maine

Jun 11, 2020
Rated: 4.48 by Hopelessly0 from California

Jun 08, 2020
Rated: 4.5 by moltch from Massachusetts

May 28, 2020
Rated: 4.21 by Dharms from Pennsylvania

May 18, 2020
Rodenbach Caractère Rouge from Brouwerij Rodenbach N.V.
Beer rating: 99 out of 100 with 1600 ratings