Brasserie Cantillon

Rate It
Beer Geek Stats | Print Shelf Talker
Lambic - Traditional
Ranked #4
Ranked #509
4.39 | pDev: 7.97%
Brasserie Cantillon
Notes: Aged in Cognac barrels.
Reviews: 114 | Ratings: 467 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of Jack_14
Jack_14 from Italy

4.1/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Deep golden, almost orange.
Foam present but soft and quite evanescent.
Already on the nose the warm smell of fruit in alcohol, wood and light mold.
Taste nuances that pass with harmonious balance from the typical reflection of Bretta mold, to the roundness of the wood, dried fruit, candied fruit and the alcoholic note of the distillate that emerges in the background.
Beer that evolves over time in the glass, always releasing new hints that are undoubtedly attributable to cognac, with the bretta always present during the soaking.

Sep 27, 2021
Photo of GreesyFizeek
GreesyFizeek from New York

4.31/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Blend of lambic brewed on 30 November 2016 and 6 December 2016, aged in Cognac barrels and bottled on 28 February March 2020. So, whatever batch that is.

This one pours a light and clear orange-ish color, with a very small head, and not much lacing.

This has a soft and funky aroma to it, with some cognac sweetness, cheese, wet oak, lemon, and white wine.

I'm not super big on lambic anymore, or at the very least I don't really chase it. But I can't really deny how tasty and unique this one tastes. The cognac gives a sweet little kiss to the funky and cheesy base gueuze. There's some nice wine-like character, a bit of lemon rind, and oak.

This is light bodied and very lightly carbonated, with a soft mouthfeel. It's a slow sipper.

This blend seems to very soft, subtle, and drinkable, without the huge intensity of some of lambics out there. I dig it.

Feb 15, 2021
Photo of PandaHatRodeo
PandaHatRodeo from Pennsylvania

4.36/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

2018 vintage, brandy barrel aged.

Classic Cantillon funk, woody/ earthy funk. Slightly sweet notes from brandy barrel. Little to no carb. However delicious.

Jan 06, 2021
Photo of Sabtos
Sabtos from Ohio

4.43/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Glimmering honey-amber with a short khaki head that slowly dissipates to an uneven film.

The aroma is mildly pungent of aged cheesy hops, nutty oak and funkily sticky, overripe yet bright stonefruit, soaring gloriously with apricot lambic vibes.

The cognac cask seems to actually tighten it up, and even sort of dilutes it--not quite in a watery way, but providing a sort of crisper and more focused expression than I'd expected. It's not the intensely woody, funky expression that you might find in Drie Fonteinen's Zenne y Frontera. It's actually the polar opposite.

The oak is very subtle here. It's cleanly dry, but has a sharp flavor to it that tingles the cheeks. Yet there's only a mild acidity. It's like mango-apricot with a bitter resinous funk. As it warms it becomes cedary, and also almost passion fruity, while remaining overall bitter and mild.

The medium-light body is slick yet prickly and as such very drinkable, going down effortlessly

2020 vintage, cognac.

Jan 03, 2021
Photo of ArrogantB
ArrogantB from Colorado

4.24/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This review is for batch 3 from 2015 - cognac barrel aged. Honestly, there is almost no discernible cognac in the aroma or the flavor. It is a good lambic with a bit of funk and sourness but if you are looking for cognac then move along and hit up the armagnac version, it was better.

Sep 22, 2019
Photo of REVZEB
REVZEB from Illinois

4.37/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

The cognac cuts into the bitterness of the lambic finish, and replaced it with a sweeter booze, really nice and elevated. Plenty of green apple, pear, hay, lemon, earth tones, oak and that cognac finish kissed with slight smoke. Smell is more boozy and rigid with plenty of farmhouse elements to balance. More sour than most cantillon lambics, otherwise feel is classic and smooth with lingering earthiness and funkiness. Sip slowly to truly take in, so much depth, but in my humble opinion it is not cantillon's best lambic

Sep 12, 2018
Photo of JamFuel
JamFuel from Sweden

4.33/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2012 vintage at Akkurat.

Pours a clear yellow with some wispy head.

Smel is very interesting , crisp and tart with hints of youghurt and a solid note of cognac and oak.

Taste is less sour than most Cantillons, but a bit more funky. The cognac and oak also adds a little bit of sweetness. Very complex and deep.

Mouthfeel is thin and sparkly.

Overall, a very interesting beer. Expensive, but very glad I splurged.

Aug 09, 2018
Photo of jvillefan
jvillefan from California

4.52/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Great beer, not the best of the day when we visited Cantillon but still an elite beer. The cognac is very subtle but adds a little sweet to the nose and palate. The lambic base shine through in this one. This base is a little more barnyard then the typical Canillon beer.

Mar 30, 2018
Photo of jrenihan
jrenihan from Canada (ON)

4.34/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Cognac is not strong, which is good. The main flavour and aroma remains the gueuze. The cognac comes in at the end subtly, a bIt of a bulwark to the funk. Finish is quite oaky, with the strongest cognac expression.

Aug 08, 2017
Photo of rudzud
rudzud from Massachusetts

4.38/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Received this in a trade quite a while back. 2012 vintage. Review number 3,000.

A - Poured into my Duvel tulip a nice crystal clear honey hue with a thin half finger white head that faded slowly to leave thin wisps.

S - Aromas of lemons, citrus, strong barnyard funk, little bit of oak. Hint of green apple and a bit of cognac sweetness. Big musty basement and even a bit of green grapes.

T - Taste is similar to the nose. The funky horse blanket / barnyard hits up front followed by that incredible musty basement type taste. There is some nice lemons and green apple that bring a little bit of tartness as well. The oak is on the lighter side. The cognac finishes the beer with it's own unique sweetness. Little bit of oak, tannins, and vanilla as well. The finish is an interesting balance between tartness and cognac. They both cancel one another out in a sense to leave a very pleasant lightly flemmy finish.

M - Mouthfeel is the only knock here. The bottle's cork did not really pop and while there was some initial head the carbonation here is light, at best. Not quite still but about as close as it could be. Incredibly fine bubbles. That translates to a much more heavier mouthfeel than I would think should be for this or any other Cantillon beer. Bad cork I presume.

O - Overall this was an incredibly enjoyable beer. The barrel really brings so much to the table and makes this beer completely transcend the classic Cantillon flavour profile. Incredibly well done and unique.

Serving Type: Bottle

Aug 02, 2017
Photo of eppie82
eppie82 from Illinois

4.47/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

2015 bottle at Cantillon Brewery.

Yellow-light amber appearance with good bit of light foam upon pour. Smell is more subtle than Cantillon 100% Lambic Bio gueueze but without much difference in the notes that I could detect. Maybe slightly 'sweeter' smell if anything. The taste on the other hand was more balanced. The Cognac barrel aging added that bit off sweetness needed to offset some of the sourness in the standard Cantillon Gueuze 100% Lambic Bio. Really smooth feel and subtle aftertaste. Could sip on this one for a while!

Jul 25, 2017
Photo of gcamparone
gcamparone from Rhode Island

4.43/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 3 705mL bottle. Served at Cafe Rose Red in Brugge, Belgium.

Hazy amber body. White head sticks around to leave later of foam.

Aromas - citrus tangerine , yeasty, spices, barrel, hay, lightly sweet.

Taste - sour citrus, drying rindyness, oranges, muted hops, the follow through is lightly sweet cognac, bright citrus, rye, grapes, sour apple. Finishes dry and crisp. Medium body.

Overall a delight - wish I got more cognac! This was a treat fresh.

Apr 06, 2017
Photo of Nicolaiw
Nicolaiw from Denmark

4.86/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Batch 3.
Pours dark yellow / amber with small white head.
Aroma has tart, green apples, funk, wet cellar.
Taste is green apples, hay, lemon, tart, grapefruit

Mar 28, 2017
Photo of Ciocanelu
Ciocanelu from Romania

4.5/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Slightly hazy golden color, a bit of off-white foam. Aroma is sweet with some rum and cognac notes, some vinegar acidity, quite complex. Taste starts with dark fruits, sweet spirits, slight burnt sugar, dusty cellar, slight bitterness on the finish. Medium to light bodied with light carbonation. Really complex lambic, one of the most interesting I ever had.

Oct 01, 2016
Photo of TychoNDC
TychoNDC from Colorado

4.42/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Golden hued and delicate, much like a typical gueuze. The barrels don't impart much color here. Smell is funky with a bit of additional molasses and a touch of smoke. Flavor is like a mellowed out gueuze, with a nice sweetness accompanying the classic grassy and green apple notes of a Cantillon. The funk is somewhat minimized here. Mouthfeel is nice but unremarkable. Definitely a treat to try, and quite different from other Cantillon's I've had, but probably doesn't justify seeking out a bottle on my own accord. A great experience to try once!

Sep 26, 2016
Photo of stakem
stakem from Pennsylvania

4.31/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottle generously shared by Huhzubendah, big thanks to you Matt. The brew appears an attractive clear pale yellow color with a white head that is quick to fade.

The aroma contains some pleasant white grape juiciness overtop herbal earthiness and citrus zest. The taste is a bit grassy with bitter earthiness and a dry neutral oak character. Into the aftertaste is a slight bitterness like citrus pulp/pith.

This is light in body with modest carbonation. A very pleasant experience and dare I say this brew is downright crushable. I need to get myself a bottle of this.

Mar 09, 2016
Photo of Kurmaraja
Kurmaraja from California

4.49/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A long time want that completely lived up to expectations. Hazed, burnished gold, a head that actually sticks around (not all that common for Cantillon). More oak than I get from Cantillon but married with that particular signature funk. Spirit imparts a slight leather note, some roasted apples and a hint of holiday spice. Fuller feel and a noticeable alcohol bite. Distinct and delicious.

Aug 20, 2015
Photo of Stevedore
Stevedore from Oregon

4.51/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle of Batch 2 (2012). Served in a wine glass.

Pours a beautiful hazy darker golden body, one finger white head with very nice retention time; dropping into a medium sized collar. Slight lacing, but not a ton. It's slightly darker than I expected it to be, but not in a bad way. It smells impressively oaky with a nice sweet grain quality to it, with the characteristic funk of the brewery. This one in particular, like Bio Gueuze, brings me back to the brewery as soon as I smell it. It's very similar to Classic Gueuze, but I think the nose has even more oak to it. I don't smell cognac, but it is noticeably sweeter than I'm used to from Bio Gueuze. Flavour is an intense combination of Senne valley funk, lemon, oak, moderate acidity, wheat, and a nice mildly warming bite on the backend which I am choosing to associate with the cognac barrel. That slight bite of heat and the mouthfeel is what I find to definitively differentiate this from other Gueuzes. The flavour really pops on this one and never really quite lets go; it's as assertive at the end as it is in the beginning. The mouthfeel is noticeably fuller, more of a medium-full body, good carbonation, very easy to sip on. This is the biggest differentiating factor from the other Gueuzes as the cognac barrel seems to impart a fuller body and a slight bite that isn't quite boozy, but it does pleasantly warm you up a little as it goes down. Overall, this was an absolute delight and seems to be drinking noticeably well at 3 years. It essentially has many of the same qualities as Bio Gueuze does that I have come to love, but with a nice cognac barrel twist to it that works quite well.

Aug 08, 2015
Photo of Rutager
Rutager from Canada (BC)

4.13/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Thank you Tom, been wanting this for so long. Some harsh cognac on the nose that fades as it warms, some phenols. Lambic and light woody cognac. Very nice.

May 31, 2015
Photo of aleigator
aleigator from Germany

4.69/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Pours a slightly cloudy, almost murky rich yellow color, with no head at all.

The aromas reveal lots of warm oak, accompanied by leather, a decent tartness and white lemon zest.

Tastes of tart funk, matured white grape skin, musty, old lime and a dry touch of oaken Cognac. While the beer has a distinct, slightly fruity wooden character, its typical sourness is a bit subdued. The wooden aspect contains a slight sweetness of fermented apples, leading to a medium body with low carbonation.

Rerate: batch 3, at the scource on 161119

Cantillon 50n

Pours a crystal clear golden color with a fluffy, big, white head.

Smells of skunky mushroom at first glance, but once you are able to cut through that initial impression, the barrel starts to show. There is an intriguing mix of mead honey, old grapes and a fermented fruitiness resulting from a high gravity liquour going on, topped off by a flowery whiff. Everything is coming together amazingly harmoniously, way sweeter than I remember the last batch, but in a very enjoyable, natural way, with just enough basement character to provide a well working depth on the nose. There is even a subtle booze bite in its faintest way possible to detect, which promises a warming dryness on the palate.

Has a lower, yet still recognizable carbonation, which helps to disguise the beer's heavier abv perfectly well. Drinks smooth, while its sweetness from the nose does not transfer directly to the palate, instead it provides a slight sweet peak to the oak.

Tastes of an awesome dustiness, old basement with a damp, wet stone quality, which gets enriched and overruled by a complex softness of Lambic complexity. This features stale caramel bonbons you found in your drawer by accident from a few years ago, together with young and crisp lemon peel, blue cream cheese, moldy earth and an astonishing brightness contrasting all this. That probably derives from the barrel, which does also produce a nice scented wood depth, adding to the overall impression, next to fermented grapes. Finishes extremely clean and enjoyable, getting a little sweeter, due to the barrel sweetness which lends a touch of fruit sugar, while maintaining its initial lemony crispness.

This drinks amazing, way better than the last batch to me. Round on the palate, well executed from the beginning till the end, a little fuller bodied than their average Lambic, this has been a pleasure to drink throughout.

Feb 17, 2015
Photo of kevanb
kevanb from Illinois

3.68/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle, batch 2, poured into a Cantillon script tumbler, generously shared by Erik, enjoyed on 12.6.14, reviewed from Tasting Journal.

The beer pours a very clear copper color, light gold hues, a few bubbles rising to the top of the glass with a thin white head, poor retention and lace. The aroma is quite sweet, very rich, decent funkiness, a bit of barnyard, strong oakiness and must, but just super powerful cognac, that really tones down any fruitiness and floral character to a moot point. The flavors showcase a bit more complexity, funkiness, more traditional gueuzy funk, a bit of fruit and floral character peeps out, but oak is quite strong and the cognac, rich and sweet with some strong caramel and almost a bit of pepperiness that really lingers on the palate, not quite cloying, but assertively sweet. The mouthfeel is quite nice, smooth and coating with just a hint of zippy carbonation that finishes super easily, really helps the flavors feel a bit more alive.

Verdict: I can't say I'm loving this one. Enjoyable for sure, unique and creative, but the cognac is really assertive and for my palate, too sweet and too rich for a gueuze or a lambic. A novel experiment that achieves minor success, but a bit lacking complexity and balance.

Dec 17, 2014
Photo of Jwale73
Jwale73 from Rhode Island

4/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Huge thanks to Thirtybird for sending this one over. 2012 vintage. Slightly hazy golden yellow with a consistent, bright white head. Nose is musty, citrusy and slightly grassy. Some wood, but surprisingly little Cognac. Taste is on par with nose. Mouthfeel is light with a bright carbonation and a pleasant acidity, light tartness and semi-dry finish. Solid beer, but not my favorite from this brewer.

Dec 13, 2014
Photo of MattSweatshirt
MattSweatshirt from Texas

4.37/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle at Cantillon

Clear golden body and a thin persistent white head.

Cognac barrel comes through nicely over top with spirit and wood. I think a little sweetness from the spirit is there. Slight musty funk and citrus.

Great cognac finish on the beer. Old musty wood and fruitiness.

Feels like most Cantillon...light, prickly, mild tartness throughout and dry.

Can't believe I got to try this. Amazing.

Nov 19, 2014
Photo of dar482
dar482 from New York

4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

A really interesting brew.

A low carbonation lambic with lemon and grass in the front. However, the beer changes with a European hop flavor and then heavy floral notes and sweet honey on the back end.

Sep 02, 2014
Photo of jegross2
jegross2 from Illinois

3.76/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Reviewing the 50°N - 4°E from Brasserie Cantillon out of Belgium.

Score: 85

2013 vintage bottle served in an Upland snifter and enjoyed on 05/18/13. Review is from iPhone notes

Appearance: Pours a murky golden color with a thin layer of head that quickly settles to a pencil-thin ring around the glass. Below average retention, but good lacing. 4/5

Smell: Resinousy citrus, the traditional Cantillon dustiness, oak, lemon zest and a hint of vinegar. Some "hop familiar" qualities too, but not "hoppy." 4.25/5

Taste: Not very tart at all, more saison-like than what I expected. Not in your face intense with flavor either, but complex with delicate funky qualities. There is a solid medley of lemon zest, ample cognac, oak, mineral water, and a little earthy funk and plastic in finish. Has some flavor similarities to Cantillon's Classic Gueuze sans the tartness, but reminds me more of the Bruocsella (1900) Grand Cru. As it warms up, it gets slightly tarter and gains a distinct vinousness and fermented grape flavor. 3.5/5

Mouthfeel: Medium-light bodied, minimal carbonation. Light tartness. Vinous. 3.5/5

Overall: A solid beer that did not live up to its reputation for me. I was expecting something much different -- something more flavorful, carbonated, tart and less earthy. This brew reminded me of a vinous Bruocsella (1900) Grand Cru by the time it warmed up. While the complex delicateness was nice, I found this brew lacking in comparison to most other Cantillons I have had. I was quite glad for the opportunity to tick this one, but 50°N - 4°E is not a beer I would seek out in hindsight.

Cost: $30 for a 750 ml bottle.

Jul 04, 2014
50°N-4°E from Brasserie Cantillon
Beer rating: 97 out of 100 with 467 ratings