Cantillon 50 Degrees North-4 Degrees East | Brasserie Cantillon

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Cantillon 50 Degrees North-4 Degrees EastCantillon 50 Degrees North-4 Degrees East

Brewed by:
Brasserie Cantillon

Style: Gueuze

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Aged in cognac barrels

Added by moulefrite on 01-02-2008

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Reviews: 102 | Ratings: 397
Photo of JDV
2.15/5  rDev -49.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

bottle shared at tasting. Thanks for the chance to try this one!
No head on a yellowish gold pour. Smell is musty, band-aid like, and hoppy. Didn't get anything I would have identified as cognac though. Taste is tart, funky and nicely hoppy. Very light carbonation with a thin body. Sour but not intensely so, and a milder, thinner flavor than expected. Interesting, but not particularly wowing for the style. Just ok...

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Photo of Crosling
3.11/5  rDev -27.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Very light golden orange color with a small, white head. Aroma smells of traditional Cantillon lambic with a very, very light added hint of cognac. Flavor is aged, well blended lambic with just the slightest note of cognac. Lacking the softness I would prefer and mainly just harsh, oude gueuze. A bit off balance and with out cognac character.

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Photo of ccrida
3.43/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Chill hazed gold with a small white collar and skim.

Smell is somewhat, but not overly funky, a bit sweeter, with some vanilla and conac, the sweetness smells a bit like ass.

Taste initially has a nice mineral spritziness and moderate funk, but then is quickly taken over by the cognac, which is a bit to rich for my taste, and in spite of the dryness from the lambic, does't really mesh well for me at all. Not quite as bad a a lambic boilermaker, it's nevertheless not my style.

Mouthfeel is oily, medium body, but it comes off a bit thick.

Drinkability was ok, I didn't like the rich booziness of the cognac with the lambic, perhaps with more age it would smooth out and gain more sourness. I'm always happy to try a rare, expensive beer, but sometimes their rarity leads them to being over-hyped, which I would say is probably the case here.

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Photo of ffejherb
3.5/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle into goblet on 10/2/09. Thanks to FooFaa for bringing this to the SourFest.

A - Poured a slightly hazy golden/amber body with a bubbly white head that reduced to a patchy veil and left modest lacing on the glass.

S - Band-aid, musty funk, some lemony citrus notes and oaky characteristics, as well as a hint of pencil shavings all appear at some point. Overall, the aroma is surprisingly pretty tame, with only subtle hints of sourness poking through.

T - Slightly sour band-aid quality with quite a bit of oak and woody notes and citrus pucker. However, this is not as sharp or sour as I had anticipated. There is also a mild (for lack of a better term) "puke burp" character in the middle. Finishes with a hint of earthy, musty bitterness.

M - Light to medium bodied with moderate carbonation resulting in some bristle on the tongue. Mouthfeel is kind of watery, although very dry in the finish with only a mild crispness.

D - This was a bit of a let-down, especially given all of the hype. While I appreciate the rarity of this brew, I really enjoyed everything else that we broke out at the SourFest much more than this.

Brewslut's Quote of the Day:
"So I shouldn't say this smells like diaper pail?"

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Photo of Verecund
3.56/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

July 2011. Barreled in 2005, bottled in 2007.

Lightly coppered yellow-orange. One finger of head recedes to bubbles covering half of the glass. Some haze.

Bright citrus (orange), both tart and sweet, cutting through the damp hay funk. Tart green apple and sweet white grape - I'm guessing from the cognac - and just a peek of acetone (nail polish) that, once identified, I couldn't get past.

Lots going on on the palate. Hay, big boy funk, citric and acetic acidity, and a touch of peachy fruit. There's also some lactic acidity that's a bit too buttery in character. Probably the booziest Cantillon I've had, which is quite intriguing, with a tannic oak finish.

Lower medium carbonation, which makes this feel a bit full and sticky.

I don't like the word unique as a descriptor, but this is certainly different, and 50N-4E has depth to it. Having had this next to Crianza, I have to say I probably prefer that beer to this one, maybe because (contra most people's experiences) there's a bit too much cognac character here for me. And the acetone on the nose is hugely off-putting.

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Photo of scottfrie
3.62/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks Jeff. Snifter.

A: Pours a light straw golden, flat, no head, no lace.
S: Light funk and acid on the nose with a big barrel quality. Cognac and vinous white wine are light.
T: Sweet tasting with notes of oak, cognac, straw, and light acid. Very vinous, but overall the flavors aren’t very strong.
M: Twinge of acid, not tart or bitter, medium body, no carb. Smooth, drying but not crazy, and very drinkable. Wish it had a few bubbles though.
O: Not the greatest flavor profile and a little muted, but still a very delicious and drinkable beer.

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Photo of kevanb
3.68/5  rDev -14%
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.

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Photo of cfrances33
3.75/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

2013 bottle poured into a Drie Fonteinen stem from a lambic basket. Thanks for sharing Matt!

Pour: Poured a hazy mellow orange yellow with two fingers of frothy, creamy white head. Head dimishes to a ring rather quickly. Not much lacing.

Smell: Lots of bright lemon, hay funk, earth, and oak up front. Some vanilla and caramel. Not much cognac, with a exception of a lightly boozy twang.

Taste: I'm not really sure how best to describe this. Up front, a nice bite of sour lemons, doughy bread, hay funk, barnyard, and earth. Very base lambic forward. Midsip, everything changes and immediately becomes controlled by boozy oak, vanilla, caramel, and nail polish. Not the most pleasant experience due to how boozy it is. Finishes oaky, dry, and tart.

Mouthfeel: Really nice on the front have, but the cognac presence is just too much, with fusel alcohol overpowering the finish.

Overall: I have to say, I was really disappointed with this one. Exciting to try, but not what I hoped for. I am curious as to how this will age... I hope it retains the cognac flavors, yet the alcohol bite that compliments them dimishes. Looking forward to revisiting in a few years, because this is far too young right now.

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Photo of jegross2
3.76/5  rDev -12.1%
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.

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Photo of jethrodium
3.89/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle generously shared by ipa247. Thanks Jeff. Pours a clear golden amber with no head. There are a couple of bubbles around the edge of the glass and no lacing. The aroma is funky with the cognac presence obvious and a bit of oak. There is also a light mushroom note. A bit of alcohol is there as well. It's not a lot, but more than any other lambic I've had. The initial taste has a light sweetness with a decent tartness. There is some funky oak, a bit of brandy, and some mushroom. The finish has some brandy and a bit of alcohol. Medium body. Low carbonation. Not bad, but certainly not my favorite Cantillon beer. It could have used a little more carbonation.

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Photo of joel66
3.9/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

drank side by side with pikku, 4/25/2013, thanks dan

A- golden amber with a thin layer of white head

N- Barnyard funk, grass, sour grape, booze

T- Strong barrel flavor, wood, grapes, earth,lemon peel, sweetness from cognac, warming yet smooth on the back. malt comes across my palate when i swished it around.

M- smooth on the palate with a dry finish

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Photo of Arbitrator
3.92/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Chilled bottle into a glass, purchased and consumed at Delirium Cafe in Brussels.

A: Pours a lightly murky, pale honey / straw colored body that glows faintly gold when held to the light. The head is barely a finger of off-white foam, and it recedes pretty quickly into a collar around the brew -- expected for a lambic.

S: Sour, with notes of pear, grapefruit, berries, and light tannins. Restrained notes of barnyard funk (horse blanket, hay, and must). This reminded me pretty strongly of the gueuze I tried at the brewery. No hint of the cognac barrel aging in the nose.

T: The bouquet prepared me well for this. It was sour, but not overly vinegary; it was presented on a nicely tart backdrop of pear, grapefruit, berries, white wine grapes, and light green apple. Tannins made a short appearance near the finish, which then gave way to a balanced blend of barnyard funk and sourness. Again, none of the cognac manifests itself in the taste, and I'm scratching my head trying to figure out how this tastes any different from the gueuze I had at the brewery (yes, I realize the base beer is an unblended lambic). It's certainly good, but whatever they tried to achieve with the barrels seems to have faded out.

M: Dry in the finish, with light carbonation that gives it an airy body and pleasant feel.

D: The flavor is very well balanced, here. It is predominantly sour and dry, but not intensely acetic and unpleasant on the palate. Funk is a supporting flavor, and the impressive palette of fruity flavors gives this some real depth. But I still have no grasp what the cognac barrels added, here -- besides a substantial price premium.

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Photo of shbobdb
3.95/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

An interesting brew from Cantillon. Lambic brewers learned long ago to use aged barrels to prevent extracting tannins from the wood -- they don't agree with the sour normally present. But Cantillon throws those old guidelines to the wind, as the cognac still present in the barrels has a good deal of oaky tannins present in it.

At the start, this beer is fairly classic Cantillon, all the elements we've come to know and love: barnyard, apple, pineapple, horse-sweat, blackcurrant, nectarine, lemon, grapefruit -- the list goes on.

Then there is an odd lull in the beer. A space in-between. I'd like to say the cognac comes out at this point, but it is really more of a calvados flavor. A nice oak-and-apple flavor, almost like an apple-cider aged in oaken barrels, with just the slightest touch of apple-cider vinegar.

The beer then tries to return to gueuze-territory, but stumbles and gets lost along the way. There is a sudden rush of lactic sourness that you think is going to finish the beer off, but strong tannins from the barrel trips it up so the sourness is muted and a strong drying oakiness dominates the finish.

It is certainly a good beer, and I'd be very interested in seeing how this beer develops, but right now (July, 2008) I would say this beer is still a little young. It needs a few more years for the oakiness to subside and for the flavors to meld. That and the apple flavor is very pronounced and I think aging would help smooth that out. The whole beer gives the impression of a grapefruit-and-granny-smith medly.

Good, but if you've got 'em, give 'em some time.

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Photo of deltatauhobbit
3.96/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Had the first pour from the bottle at Novare's Christmas beer geek weekend. I think the problem is this beer followed Drie Fonteinen's Hommage and the flavor from that is so extreme compared to this Cantillon experience. While at Novare, I heard some interesting experiences from the staff concerning this beer, while I can't do the story justice nor would want to repeat it, it certain adds to the experience of such a great night.

Pours a clear golden with very fine bubbles, not much head but what there is of is very fizzy.

The nose isn't overly strong, but I'm picking up some acidity and more earth tones than I would expect, overall not very impressive or catching for a lambic.

The taste is lightly sour and funky, not overwhelming at all yet makes it actually very drinkable for the style, the barrel aging is more apparent and definitely picks up some of that cognac and vanilla, unfortunately also inherits a bit of the alcohol burn.

Definitely a subdued lambic, don't expect a sour kick to the mouth either. If this hadn't followed Hommage, I'm sure I would have liked it more, unfortunately it can't hold a candle to the wind yet is still very drinkable, probably more so in larger volumes.

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Photo of Treebs
3.96/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml capped and corked bottle served from a lambic basket into my WLV Zwanze day taster. Batch 2, 2013 release.

A: Pours a clear, golden yellow color with a bubbly white head forming on the pour. It recedes to a thin ring.

S: Lemony with a sweet cognac backing. Oak with a slight sourness to it. A little acetone as well. Slightly acidic as well.

T: Really oaky with a lemon grass bite. Slightly acidic citrus with the cognac sweetness. Vanilla oak sweetness with a sweet malt profile. Little sour bite as well.

M: Light bodied with a bubbly carbonation level. Oaky finish.

O: A little rough around the edges at this point. I think it needs some time to let the Cognac meld into the beer and some of the funk to come up. Still a really nice beer.

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Photo of Deuane
3.97/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to FooFaa for sharing this one.

A-Hazy golden yellow with a thin white head that quickly reduced to a thin ring and left spotty lace.

S-Musty, wet dog, cedar chest, oak, Granny Smith apple, pear. Very prevalent and intense at times and then rather mild and unassuming at others.

T-Becomes different from upon opening through warming. Varying from musty, wet fur to diapers to sweet fruit, sharp tannic acid and bright apple sourness. Bit of lemon zing brightness and drying oak in the finish. Without question interesting.

M-Light bodied, sharp and crisp with LONG lingering flavours.

D-certainly interesting but it is so chaotic I find it hard to actually enjoy for long. I appreciate the opportunity to try but found it no better than some of the other easier to find sours I have had.

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Photo of Jwale73
4/5  rDev -6.5%

Huge thanks to Thirtybird for send 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.

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Photo of jeonseh
4.03/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle of the fresh batch

A - Light golden yellow with tons of carbonation

S - Tart lemon, lactic acid, and a light boozy cognac presence

T - Lemon, really musty with oak and orange, tartness, light funk on the back end

M - medium body with not much carbonation to it. Dry musty finish

O - Solid Cantillon where the cognac shines thru and adds a light boozy mustiness to it

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Photo of ehammond1
4.04/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle (2013)

Thanks for opening this with me, JealousChalice!

Slightly hazed golden and orange with a thin white cap. This doesn't have quite as much visible carbonation as a more traditional gueuze. Dots of stick left down the glass.

The base gueuze does shine through, but I wish it was even more dominant. Some mild lemon tartness and a little bit of oak and some funk (wet grass and hay). The spirit is subdued but present. I actually think this doesn't shine nor is it as vibrant as the classic gueuze, which I actually might prefer here.

The flavor is similar to the aroma: mild tart sour character complements oak, dry grass funk, and just the slightest vinegar. Again, with the aroma, I think I prefer the classic gueuze more, as this one is less sour and strangely, less interesting.

Medium bodied with near-high carbonation.

Delicious, but I don't think the price/rarity/hunt for this one is worth it.

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Photo of spicelab
4.04/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Huge thanks to MrKennedy for this long-time want. Shared at tasting, reviewed from notes.

Dirty pear with a scant but persistent white head that subsides to a resilient collar.

Classic gueuze tart citrus, showing orange, grapefruit and apricot with lifted woody notes and subtle nuttiness from the Cognac.

Barrel comes through much more. Still a lively acidity with ample green apple and capsicum notes, but the buttery, oaky, vinous barrel influence gains ascendancy. By the end it's geting aggressively woody.

Medium bodies with nice texture from the barrel influence. Very restrained carbonation. Finishes dry, but again the barrel prevents it from being rippingly tart.

Cleverly done and deceptively complex. While the Coganc influence causes a diminution of the gueuze character, the subtle interplay between the two is quite intriguing.

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Photo of tewaris
4.05/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Review # 500.

Thanks a lot!

Pours murky and still for a lambic --- murky probably because the pour was from the later end of the bottle. Still because... I am not sure. Regardless, the carbonation was just fine on the palate. Smells funky, very hay like. My buddy commented that this beer alone is enough to justify the 'barnyard' adjective, or something along those lines. The acidity is moderate in taste. There's lemon and then some nuttiness which is odd... I guess; but I liked that aspect. While different from other Gueuze and quite tasty, having had many 'loons in small quantities, I can safely say that as far as my tastes go, 3F is where it's at!

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Photo of JAXSON
4.06/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2009 rate.

750ml bottle, thanks Brad! Cork slides off without any sound, which was odd. Pours a very slightly hazy honey orange with a fine soapy head. Awesome lacing. Aroma is really heavy on lemons, green apples, and hay, with a bit of metal or blood that isn’t really appealing. Really nice in the mouth - soft and puckering, the tart lemons and green apples shine, the finish is round and short. Strange. I don’t taste any cognac, but that round finish could be the effect of the cognac barrel. Not quite as harsh and bone-dry as some Cantillon. Really sour, but graceful and very tasty. Such a flavorful and well integrated sour component on this one.

Looking back at this rating, I need to have this beer again. Would be cool to drink next to Crianza Helena.

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Photo of jrallen34
4.07/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I had this from a 750ml bottle at dld. The beer looks like any lambic, cloudy hazy medium brown, nice light carbonation. The aroma is really nice, likes of sour funk horse blanket but nicely balanced with some sweetness, I think that's the cognac, very similar to the taste. Has a little acidity and vinegar to it, very nice overall.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
4.09/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

750 mL bottle poured into a wine glass. Batch 2.

Appearance - Slightly hazy yellow. No head. Not completely lifeless, but not a lot going on.

Smell - Fruity sweet aroma. Some oak and lactic lemony acids. Wheat and some grassiness.

Taste - Sour, but the oaky vanilla flavor moderates it. Very oaky, really. Some fruitiness I can't put my finger on. I guess that's the cognac barrel, but I'm no expert on cognac. Grainy in the finish.

Mouthfeel - Good sourness and well balanced by the liquor, oak, and vanilla.

Overall - The barrel adds complexity, even if I can't really distinguish it.

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Photo of julian
4.1/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Fairly clear with a slight haze. Color is a nice medium copper honey color. Minimal head that disappears quickly leaving only what looks like "champagne" like bubbles.

Smell: Aromas of light vinegar, sour apples but also a mild sweet smell perhaps from the cognac barrels in which this was aged.

Taste/Mouthfeel: Very easy to drink. A great Lambic, not overly sour or pungent. Crisp, easy drinking with a slight sour apple bite. Other tastes are funky, yeasty flavors.

Drinkability: Very drinkable. Easy on the palate, and good mouthfeel and taste. Exceptional Lambic!

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Cantillon 50 Degrees North-4 Degrees East from Brasserie Cantillon
4.28 out of 5 based on 397 ratings.
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