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Cantillon Cuvée Des Champions | Brasserie Cantillon

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Cantillon Cuvée Des ChampionsCantillon Cuvée Des Champions
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brasserie Cantillon
Belgium
cantillon.be

Style: Gueuze

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Spring

Notes / Commercial Description:
Two year-old lambic, dry-hopped in the cask for three weeks.

Added by Dukeofearl on 01-23-2005

BEER STATS
Reviews:
274
Ratings:
1,230
Avg:
4.3
pDev:
16.98%
 
 
Wants:
546
Gots:
268
For Trade:
32
User Reviews
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Reviews: 274 | Ratings: 1,230
Photo of jakewatt135
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%

My first Cantillon. Bottled 2012.

Pours with a nice thick head and retains this throughout glass. Nice funk up front with a delicious tart slightly sour finish. Very enjoyable, glad I was able to pick this up at the beer mongers cellar sale.

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Photo of taylor714914
4.37/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Wow, a HUGE thanks to merc7186 for breaking this bad boy out.

a 2012 cork date on this bottle.

Pours a cloudy yellow with a finger of off white head.

Smells of old damp basement, stinky cheese, and a bit of sweat.

Taste is interesting, a tartness quickly washes over the tongue, followed by a peach and apricot flesh taste. Following this, a quite hit of tartness, and the it fades to almost nothingness. After a few seconds, a cold root cellar flavor emerges, almost like moist underground dirt.

As the beer warms up, the flavor profile opens up, allowing for more fruit, along with the tartness to expand a bit and a subtle hop sharpness as you swallow, which then once again fades to cold dirt basement floor. The mouthfeel also opens up, become soft and smooth.

Overall, a super enjoyable beer, one I would absolutely drink again.

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Photo of megahurts4
4.37/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Cantillon Cuvée Des Champions

Appearance: golden amber, large head, and good lacing.

Smell: acidic sourness, earthy, and a nice oak aroma.

Taste: sourness, oak, and yeast.

Mouthfeel: medium and smooth.

Overall:
This is a very nice lambic. It has a great deal of flavor and a nice sourness. There is a lot of carbonation.

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Photo of MarcWP
4.71/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Fresh 2014 bottle into Cantillon balloon.

Pours hazy, juicy light orange color, with a one finger active white head that settles to a ring around the edge of the glass with a little left over bubble mass in the center. Looks inviting.

Aroma is deep older lambic funk with wet horse hair, dusty basement, pungent tangy flowers, grapefruit pulp, subtle Bordeaux grape, and earthy/woodsy hops. Damn this is smelling good. Similar yet different than Iris. I prefer the stronger funk of this.

Taste is just the shiznit. Mellow, refined lambic unlike the maltier Iris. Nice bright citrus and grape flavors come out as the result of the smooth 2 year old lambic underneath. The funk is there but balanced. I'm getting peach notes, limeade, and sweet apple along with a lot of those nuances from the nose.

This sports a light body, creamy lower end carbonation, and dry, tart finish with a pleasing acetic bite coming through the lacticness.

This fresh Gilloise may be drinking better than the 3 year old Lou Pepe I had last week. And that Lou Pepe was amazing. And I certainly enjoy the 2 year old base lambic better than the all pale malt Iris base. The hops seem to shine through more on this as well without the sharper hop bite of Iris. Yes, yes, yes..

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Photo of Nickls
4.12/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(From notes)

A - Light marigold color; poured with a thinner white head

S - Hops jump out at first; bit of hay; tart; bit funky as well. Quite wonderful

T - Nice stuff; not as hoppy as suggested in the nose; tart; citric; not that puckering or funky, though

M - Thinner to medium body; a bit chalky and dry; subtler carbonation

D - Pretty darn good drinking as I enjoyed the dryness and lower abv

Overall, definitely worth a look!

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Photo of auroracrisis
4.15/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Continuously poured from a 750 into two Russian River tulips, then dumped the yeast into a taster glass. This is the 2010 Cuvee St. Gilloise labeled one.

Pours a murky golden yellow color with a quickly dissipating head. The color really pops in the light and once the beverage has been drank down, it begins to have some clarity. No lacing, no legging.

The smell begins with tart lemons and loose, dank hay with a lactic quality to it. As the beverage warms, the acidity really comes out and once the beer is at room temperature you can really feel a tingle in your nose from it.

Taste opens up the palate with a citric-like acidity, profiling lemon and lime like flavors that quickly flow into a cheesy bit of funk and hay flavors. Not overly funky at all, much more subtle than a gueuze by other blenders but enough funk for the seasoned lambic drinker to pick up on. After flavors of an unsweetened lemon candy. Almost like a made from scratch lemon bar, with emphasis on the lemons. Refreshing, to say the least.

Mouthfeel is outstanding. Medium body with moderate carbonation, some drying as well once the brew is swallowed.

Overall, a great gueuze from Cantillon. This one is dry hopped, but I did not pick up any of the dry hopping which is most likely due to the age of the beer, being bottled 10/4/2010. I'd definitely recommend this to anyone looking for an acidic gueuze that retains its drinkability. Not perfect, but definitely a solid example of the style.

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Photo of Goldorak
3.97/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: A darker shade of cider, no head worthy of mention.

Smell: That's odd, it has a sweeter aroma that I wasn't expecting, especially from an unblended lambic. A berry character that reminded me of Oudbeitje Lambic.

Taste: You can see he added both fresh hops and candi sugar to help out with carbonation. And I thought Jean Pierre didn't like sweetness in his Beers...The sweet and sour combo is quite nice, but this isn't my favorite.

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Photo of rhinos00
4.35/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750 mL bottle into a tulip glass. Bottle was dated May 19, 2009.

A- Poured a dark maize color. Three fingers width of white head, reduced to a ring over time. Very murky.

S- Very nice blend of various aromas. Getting lots of oak and a familiar barnyard mustiness in the nose. Also noticeable is distinct sour lemon/citrus fruit aroma.

T- Upfront there is a definite note of lemon tartness with oak underneath. This tartness eventually fades towards the middle, giving way to a earthy, grass-like flavor. There is some oak, wood flavors in there as well. The beer finishes with slightly bitter hops.

M- One of the better mouthfeels on a lambic. Light body, yet carries a feeling of fullness due to the carbonation. Finishes rather dry.

D- This one goes down very easily, given that this beer was not overly tart. Could be a great session beer.

Overall, definitely one of the more unique lambics I have had to date. The dry hops were definitely something I have never experienced in a beer of this style. That being said, I'm a huge sour head and this one lacked a lot of tartness that other Cantillons have. If you don't like your lambics really sour, drink this one now and just enjoy the unique hops flavors. If you like your them very sour, try aging this one.

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Photo of shbobdb
4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottled in 2008. I don't know why this beer is "retired" since it commemorates something that happened in 2003-2004, has 2 year old lambic in it according to the bottle, and was bottled in 2008 . . .

But I'm not one to question the ways of the beer gods. I'm just here to enjoy a fantastic beer from one of the world's greatest breweries.

My overall impression of the bottle I got is that the beer is a little young. There was plenty of sourness (I got a pinch of acid-reflux from the beer, which I do not normally experience even with their Grand Cru) as well as a hefty dose of bretty barnyard funk that married quite well with the earthy hops . . . but there seems to be something off about the beer. Perhaps I am just not sure about dry hopped lambics, since aging the lambic would clearly destroy the delicate hop. But at the same time, the flavors of the beer don't quite feel like they have blended into each other.

I mean, all the classic lambic flavors are there, don't get me wrong. But they hit me one-by-one on their own. Bam! Barnyard! Bam! Sour! The sort of interplay that I've come to expect from Cantillon seems to be missing.

But that doesn't mean it isn't an incredible beer. I am absolutely loving this bottle, my birthday beer. But if I had a few bottles, I would sit on them. That is all.

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Photo of Soonami
4.38/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I recently had a 2010 bottle of Cuvee des Champions with friends on thursday night--thanks Jeff for sharing this with us. This is a beer I've looking forward to try but it was difficult to find enough beer geeks to share it with. 7 people splitting a 750 ml bottle meant that each person got a 4 oz pour, which unfortunately is not as much as i want to drink but enough to get a good feel for the beer. This beer combines two of my favorite brewing techniques wild yeast fermentation and dry hopping.

The Lambic was golden orange in color with a good bit of haze and sediment. Not sure if it was hop bits flocced yeast or pieces of barrel, but the color was gorgeous and capped with a solid white cap of foam. The head really helped carry the aroma which was was definitely wild, musty straw, squeezed lemons, and a sawed pine wood aroma that is likely coming from the hops.

The beer tasted very smooth with great light carbonation and a du finish. The bugs are very expressive giving good lemony tartness and restrained classic Cantillon funk. The dryhops help to keep the beer grounded providing a woody and herbal character almost like oak aging would contribute.

Refreshing, spritzy, and delicious. I'm glad to have tried this and to share it with friends

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Photo of Sarlacc83
4.42/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

2011 cork date. Split two ways. Consumed on 1-11-13, reviewed from notes.

A: Clear copper with a foaming white head. Serene inside of the glass.

N: Delicious. Musty hops, lemon zest, and attic spaces. Oak holds down the fort with some black peppercorns and graininess. Hints of grapefruit and pineapple.

T: Lemons, straw filled barn stalls, pineapple, horse blanket, oats, and wood. There’s a very balanced sourness here and some excellent funk. Tart without being grotesquely sour.

M: Perfect. Like drinking a pilsner it goes down so smoothly.

O: Accomplished beer and one of my favorites in the Cantillon pantheon. The hops and the lambic work for me.

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Photo of BBP
4.45/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours hazy gold with not too much of a head, but a head that held for the duration of the drink. Some slight lacing came up as well.

The aroma was fragrant and crisp. Tart came through as well as citrus and some slight vinegar.

The flavor was very smooth and incredibly refined for a gueuze. While it was very sour, it never really led with that aspect. It represented itself with a ton of tart, as well as some grassy hops, bready malt, and citrus. While it sounds like a basic formula, the beauty was in the balance. Regretably, I can taste the complexities in the drink, but struggle to put them into words. It was a graceful, balanced drink, while still being a bith sharp and exciting.

The body was medium full and medium heavy. Carbonation was integrated so perfectly that I could have forgotten it was there. For a lighter beer of this style that's quite an accomplishment. The finish was moderately dry and slightly sticky.

Overall, this has to be the most refined gueuze I've had to date. It might not have been the most memorable, due to its lower alcohol and smoother taste, yet I think I would say that it was the finest crafted I've had yet. I sort of think of this as the gold standard for gueuzes now.

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Photo of pmlondrigan
4.26/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Wow, what a lucky score ran in for a 6er and spotted this gem! After reading reviews fresh not aged seemed to be the way to drink this. Poured into a rodenbach glass, opaque hazy straw gold rests under a head of white rocky foam. Initial blotting of lacing ceases, but the head never leaves this beer. The aroma is soft, mixture of hay and straw, horse blanket, grassy hops (surprising), and lemon. Acetic jowl puckering sour that transitions seemlessly into a soft Brett flavor with a nice balance of horse-y-ness. Citrusy sour lemon and grapefruit. Tanic barrel goodness on the back end, any indication of the initial hop aroma is gone in the flavor. Most unblendeds I've had have been Brett bombs, this is nuanced and delicate. My favorite Cantillon to date.

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Photo of flannelman808
4.32/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: A hazy yellow orange toasted hay like color with a very white head which fizzles away after having stood tall, leaving little lacing on the glass.

S: Granny smith, earthy funk, and Meyer lemon dominate the nose. Interesting to say the least.

T: Crabapple, Granny smith apple, and lemon follow through onto the palate. Amazing carbonation lights up the entire tongue. Tart nectarine/ white peach, anjou pear fruit flavors fill in as well. Very tart but completely acidic, Acetic acid whatsoever.

M: Amazingly carbonated, tiny bubbles.

O: Great beer albeit a bit heavy handed on the tart with not much on the funk.

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Photo of Auracom
3.82/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

2 oz. bottle pour into a wine taster at the Bruery Provisions on November 7th, 2011. #2 of a 5-bottle Cantillon flight.

A - Same golden hue as Classic Gueuze, but more transparency and quite a bit more frothy, white head. Lots and lots of carbonation and legs on the sides of this one.

S - The brett is more potent in this one. Horse blanket, wheat, hay-covered earth. Underneath lightly-astringent fruit. Lemongrass/lemon peel, subtle apple.

T - Certainly sour, but not huge. Citrus notes, lime tartness. Slight hop bitterness (that or I'm mistaking it for tannins). The drink doesn't offer quite as much depth as the nose. Semi-dry finish.

M - A tad thicker body than Classic. Otherwise very similar.

D - It's an interesting mix, but I don't find Cuvée des Champions quite as purposeful as Classic. Wouldn't say no to another tasting, but wouldn't really seek it out either.

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Photo of Bowdoinbeerboy
4.44/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Very opaque, no head.

Noise is strongly of vinegar, some sweetness underneath? Funjy.

Taste its bit nearly as acidic as i would have thought. Sourness is 6 of 10, and much more pronounced on aftertaste. Acidity really lingers.

No real hint of the dry hops, very funky.

This was delightful, not nearly as acidic as the regular gueuze, it seems as if the hops really moderated some of that. The hops are very subdued, I really couldn't detect them all that much, they may have muted some of the vinegar in the nose.

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Photo of spdyfire83
4.32/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

51st Review
Bottle to snifter

From notes. Thanks to bspringer for this wonderful birthday gift! Cracked at a BBQ tasting in late July.

A: Golden yellow. 2+ fingernail (pure white) head on medium pour.

S: Hay, (tart) green apple, hay, pear, hay, and more hay.

T: Tart, funky, and sour start to finish. Subtle hints of citrus and lemon. There is also a predominant presence of an unripened fruit, but I my taste buds can’t narrow it down.

M: Light bodied and lots of carbonation. Very dry.

O: A very enjoyable birthday gift that I was thankful to share with a wonderful group of BA’s. I would seek this out if you have not already. IMO, I think this is a great introductory beer to the style of gueuze.

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Photo of infi
4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at RnH.

Served in a wine glass.

Hazy and translucent yellow liquid with lots of effervescent activity. A white, thin film atop this lambic. Smell is full of unripened, sour, green apples and sour cherries with a thin, bready yeast quality underlying. Small amount of Brett barnyard funk as well. Nice vinous quality too with some sour grapes. Overall, very lemony and ascorbic in character on the nose.

Taste was fluently sour, but gladly not overly puckering on the palate, with the oak barrels giving it a nice complexity push. Good amount of lemon/orange sourness and citrus impact. The funk is evident, but remains in the background amongst the sourness of the lambic. Very desirable overall. Never thought I would be able to try this. Loved it.

Mouthfeel was nicely prickly on the tongue. Light-bodied and generously carbonated throughout. So glad to have been able to try this Cantillon offering. Well worth being sought after.

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Photo of Fugazme
4.39/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

from notes...

top of cork was wet and musty... not much sound from the open.

Hazy gold with a fizzy cap... smallish head dissipated very fast.

Aroma is full of fruit... apricot, peach... very musty and funky. Sour spice. Quite good.

Good bitter sour throughout leading to a subtle sweet finish. Granny apple notes and touches of apricot and pear. A bit dry and salty.

Great beer...

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Photo of Sephiroth
4.35/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours with small head. Body is a slightly hazy orange. Aroma is tart with hint of malt.

Taste is quite puckering at first, then it seems too smooth out some. Not as tart as the grand cru or Iris. The lack of sourness allows for the perception of malt driven flavors, although I am at a loss to describe them. Second pour is moderately ( for Cantillon ) dirty. Mouthfeel is great, the slight carbonation is spot on. If not for the acidity, I could drink another 750ml.

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Photo of hopsbreath
4.12/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Portland International Beer Festival. $3 for a 4oz pour is a winner in my book. Poured into an actual glass taster!

A: Unfiltered pale gold with a short lived white head dissipating to just a smidge of lacing. 4/5

S: I was quite surprised how hoppy this was as I didn't know about the dry-hopping ahead of time. Peaches and Florida citrus stood shoulder to shoulder with clean lactic and barnyard funk. Very interesting aroma. 4.5/5

T: Strong sourness up front, musky barnyard on the mid palate, and a long fruity finish that includes a little umame. I think I would have preferred less hop character. This is definitely one aspect where I think age would benefit. 4/5

M: Crisp, smacking, and dry. Just what I wanted. 4/5

O: I prefer the Cantillon Classic Gueuze to this but that could be because of the age. At around 1-2 years old I have a feeling this would be in my sweet spot. That isn't to say this is a bad beer. It's an excellent example of the quality one can expect from Cantillon, albeit a little young. 4/5

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Photo of levifunk
4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thank you Matt for graciously sharing this with us. Pours golden yellow with a ton of carbonation. head forms, but doesn't retain, just a lot of bubbles in there. Smell is a bit funky. Kind of smells like wet grass, but with some lemon notes. Taste was great. Sour/tart flavor. Main thing I identified was a grapefruit citrus flavor. Not sure if I'll ever be able to have this again, but I hope I am.

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Photo of hawks10
4.27/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2010 Vintage - 750ml green corked and capped bottle - Poured into my Cantillon stemware...

Pours a slightly hazy, pale golden orange with a bit of fine bubbled white head/haze that surprisingly sticks around for a while, somewhat resembling apple juice...

Interesting aromas on this one, you find all the wonderful typical Cantillon aromas yet something is noticeably different. The dry-hopping adds a completely different dimension to this Cantillon, slightly spicy, dry, but in more of a herbal/floral way. Tart and lemony aromas are pushed to the background. The funk shows up late, but does pack some punch when this beer warms a bit. Different, but very enjoyable nose.

Wow, drinking this beer "fresh" is COMPLETELY different than with two years on it. The dry hopping is at the forefront. Dry and just slightly bitter, floral with loads of funk and must in the middle. The finish is dry and musty, but not the oaky dryness most Cantillons have, instead, earthy. Slight lemon tartness is quickly washed away by the dry-hopping, but some residual fruit flavors can be found when you lick your lips! This is weird. Good, but weird. It kinda tastes like Cantillon made a Farmhouse/Saison...

Medium bodied with good carbonation. Not nearly as acidic or tart/sour as most Cantillons. Finish is very dry and there is a lingering funk/mustiness...

Very different, very good. Easier to drink than most other Cantillons as the acidity levels seem to be cut down significantly by the dry hopping...

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Photo of jethrodium
4.27/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On draft at Beer Revolution. Pours a hazy, light amber with a a two finger fluffly white head that has good retention and leaves a small amount of lacing on the glass. The aroma is a decent earthiness, funky brett, hay, and some lemon tartness. The taste has the same earthiness as the aroma. Medium tartness, some wheat, hay lemon. The finish has a strong brett funkiness as well as a lingering bitterness that is quite unique among the gueuzes I've had. Medium body. Medium carbonation. Awesome beer.

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Photo of SacoDeToro
4.35/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Vintage 2003

Opened a well settled bottle and got a bright and clear yellow pour with a rocky white head. One initial thought related to the name: If this is an unblended lambic, then why is "cuvee" in the title?

The aroma was full of brettanomyces barnyard funk, lactic acid, some acetic note, and mild cheesiness.

The flavor was pretty tart and acidic. The beer had a clean biscuity and wheaty malt backbone (very subtle, but nice). There was a nice grapefruit pith bitterness in the finish.

The carbonation was spritzy the mouthfeel was light and crisp.

Very refreshing and highly drinkable. It's nice to have unblended lambics to be reminded of what these beers can taste like in their "naked" state.

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Cantillon Cuvée Des Champions from Brasserie Cantillon
4.3 out of 5 based on 1,230 ratings.
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