Cantillon Iris | Brasserie Cantillon

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95
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Cantillon IrisCantillon Iris
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brasserie Cantillon
Belgium
cantillon.be

Style: Lambic - Unblended

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
From the brewery's website: "Although it is a spontaneous fermentation beer, the Iris is very different from the Lambic. The amber colour and the bitter and slightly caramelized taste make it a complex beer."

Added by TheLongBeachBum on 12-05-2002

BEER STATS
Ratings:
2,055
Reviews:
496
Avg:
4.26
pDev:
9.39%
 
 
Wants:
710
Gots:
470
For Trade:
46
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,055 |  Reviews: 496
Photo of lupercmda
3.75/5  rDev -12%

Photo of newbeeraday
3.75/5  rDev -12%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of weaksauce
3.75/5  rDev -12%

Photo of Kelp
3.75/5  rDev -12%

Photo of dwagner003
3.75/5  rDev -12%

Photo of mrn1ceguy
3.75/5  rDev -12%

Photo of Quackus
3.75/5  rDev -12%

Photo of kdb150
3.75/5  rDev -12%

Photo of stephenjmoore
3.75/5  rDev -12%

Photo of cwelsh55
3.75/5  rDev -12%

Photo of phichifiji00
3.75/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a taster glass at Beachwood BBQ Sourfest:

Appearance: cloudy yellow/orange, white head which quickly fades.

Smell: Citrus, acidic, tart, sour, a little funky, sour apple, apricot aromas.

Taste: Citrus, Sour, honey flavors towards the middle, funky. Something seemed off towards the end.

Mouthfeel: light-medium bodied.

Overall: Not my favorite from Cantillon, but still well worth the experience.

 413 characters

Photo of LSUPT
3.75/5  rDev -12%

Photo of jjheinrichs
3.75/5  rDev -12%

Photo of nicole309
3.75/5  rDev -12%

Photo of backpackeraaron
3.76/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Went on a weekend trip to Belgium and this was one of the beers I bought.

Poured from bottle to fluted glass

A- Pours a nice golden color with no noticable head. (poured into 2 glasses) 1st was very clear and second contained some yeast and was a bit hazy which is not a bad thing.

S- Barnyard Funk, Citrus almost like I can tell what taste is coming, fruity herbal, not lemon, but hard to explain.

T- On the front end I taste some sweetness, in the middle perhaps some old wet grass and at the backend I taste loads of SOURNESS.

M- Carbonation level about what I expect. Probably around 2.5-3 volumes. The beer flows across the palate fairly easily till the sourness comes..

D- Not my favorite style of beer, but great for what it is. I can drink about 1 bottle, but thats about all. Not someting I would tell my friends they have to try, unless I just want to see the look on their faces.

 898 characters

Photo of Alieniloquium
3.77/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

750 mL bottle poured into a snifter. Bottled March 19, 2013.

Appearance - Deep orange. The head builds as I pour it. Ends up with a pretty decent creamy colored head. Murky body. Dark for a "lambic."

Smell - Quite hoppy. Hoppy with a citrus acidity. Equal quantities of maltiness and acidity.

Taste - Lemony sourness, but nothing like other Cantillons. Malt replaces grain and hay. Hoppy flavor throughout blends nicely with the sourness. Slightly bitter in the finish.

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied, but less spritzy than other lambics. Medium carbonation.

Overall - Interesting experiment, but I prefer regular lambics over this. A lot of complexity is lost.

 663 characters

Photo of shbobdb
3.77/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Hmmm . . . I've had this beer before, but where? Ahh, yes, the De Proef Flemish Primitive Series!

What, blasphemy, you say? Not in the slightest. What a difference wheat makes, coupled with some hops, eh? This beer has the distinctive 'dead grandmother' taste found in the De Proef beers, with a nice earthy hop presence and just a hint of a lactic twang at the end. But this beer is much less sour than standard Cantillon fair.

A very interesting beer, to say the very least.

But let's get down to the specifics -- it pours a hazy bronze/orange with less bubbly than I'm used to in a gueuze (which isn't surprising, since it isn't a gueuze) and shockingly poor head-retention.

It smells strongly of rotting corpses and sour apples.

The taste continues the theme of the smell, with the corpse predominating followed by apricots and granny smith apples. There is a surprisingly hoppy finish -- tastes like an earthy continental hop to me, but I can't be sure which one, mingled with a very slight lactic edge.

The mouthfeel is quite thin, probably due to the lack of bubbly. Not unpleasant, mind you, but I think some added acidity from the carbonation would have helped the finish on this beer, as well as flesh it out a little. And this is with the 1900 Grand Cru being one of my favourite beers! So it isn't just a general aversion to lack of carbonation.

The drinkability on this beer is good. A strange experiment to be sure, and I guess the dead grandmother taste doesn't just come from brett, but rather brett's interaction with either the hops or the absence of wheat . . . or some other variable I'm not considering.

An interesting brew, but I'd rather have either gotten their gueuze (which I think tastes better) or a Flemish Primitive (which I think tastes similar, but at half the cost). But no regrets on purchasing it! And at $20 a bottle, that is saying something!

Bottled in: 2005
Drank: Early 2007

 1,945 characters

Photo of biga7346
3.77/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into oversized wine glass, 2006.

A: Hazy, turbid, flat, little carbonation and no head retention, a pretty amberish-rose color. Very little lacing.

S: Big wine notes maybe burgundy, tartness was surprisingly mild, spritzy, resiny and an under-current of mustiness which I like very much and would like to have had more of it.

T: Mineral water, resin, burgundy, maybe dry sherry up front with soft horse blanket in the finish with some acidity. Very refreshing.

 471 characters

Photo of IrishColonial
3.77/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of CrellMoset
3.77/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cantillon Iris, Vintage 2005, courtesy of proteus93 - thanks! Split three ways w/ proteus and dkachur, w/ my portion poured into a brandy snifter.

Appearance: Pours an incredibly hazy, turgid golden yellow, dirty and gross, with no head of which to speak and only a very thin, fine-bubbled collar of off-white bubbles. Not unreasonable for the style, but I can't say it's pleasant to look at.

Aroma: Fruity and funky as hell, though only slightly sour. Cherry notes and apple skins, tossed around in a barn. The earthy funky horseblanket is intense in this one, and the sourness - though delicate and well-blended - has a slight acidic, vinegary quality. Pretty good, nonetheless.

Taste: Sour funk. 'Nuff said. There are very few notes here other than that. Acidic, only slightly-fruity tartness, all-encompassing, though not really overpowering. That is, it's not as flavorful as I'd like, either up front or any other way. Slightly disappointing.

Mouthfeel: Crisp, due to the sourness, but in a thick blanket. Overall, it's a little less lively than I'd expected or would like, though not bad, as it is incredibly soft and delicate.

Drinkability: If you like the aforementioned sour funk, it's quite possible that you'll enjoy this brew immensely - I just didn't find it too terribly complex, unfortunately. I can appreciate what it was and what it was trying to be however, and that, coupled with the low alcohol, makes me think that it must be pretty drinkable.

 1,470 characters

Photo of magictrokini
3.78/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

2005 vintage. This is the first unblended lambic I've tried. Pours hazy orange-gold with a bubbly white head that quickly disappears. Musty aroma of yeast, lemon, apple, spice, and old wood. Taste is fruity, citrus sweet up front, but instantly turns into a dank acidic sourness with an apple wine/vinegar bite. As it warmed the sourness lightened up just a bit. Dry, sweet finish akin to a Flemish.

 399 characters

Photo of stakem
3.78/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

750ml bottle, '07 vintage bottled in '09 shared with some friends and poured into a matching Cantillon long stemmed tulip. The brew appears amber in color with an off-white to tan cap that maintains pretty solid retention for the style from a constant stream of carbonation rising to the surface. A light swirl revives the tan cap once it fades.

The smell of this brew is bold with damp woody character upfront. More smells reveal a bit of herbal hop character that blends into a fruity aspect. A tangy lactic component is throughout with a very pronounced earthy, damp mildew-like character somewhat similar to moist cork. It smells quite enjoyable but individually the scents of this brew are a bit contrasting and unexpected when mixed together.

The taste is tangy initially with an equally bold flavor of damp old wood and must just like the aroma indicates. It is both herbal with hoppy bitterness and earthy with a bit of dark fruited aspect. It is quite tangy and drying on the palate yet brings forth some salivation factor. As the brew warms up, there is a toasty flavor that seems to be like a toffee sort of grain indication or perhaps more reasonably a toasty depth of character imparted by the barrel aging. If possible, I would give this a 4.25 for taste, so I'll round up to a 4.5.

This is a medium bodied brew with a lively level of modest to high carbonation. There is not much abv impact but the combination of sourness and herbal bitterness is very trying on the palate. I enjoyed this but the combination of bitterness and sourness overall degraded this brews drinkability for me. Even though this brew was split equally between 4 people, I had a hard time finishing my ~5-6 oz. To this brews credit it was very unique with bold enjoyable barrel character. I wouldn't mind having a fresh one of these for comparison.

 1,839 characters

Photo of dasenebler
3.78/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

375ml, 2007 edition, bottled January 2010.

For a three-year old beer, this stuff still looks great. A hard pour produces a thick, off-white head atop a hazy, light amber body. Great retention and lacing, which might have something to do with this being an atypical, all-barley Lambic.

Aroma is funky and acidic, bordering on vinegary. A touch floral, with a mineral character as well.

Man, this particular Cantillon is a double-wallop: not only is there that signature dry sourness, but also a high bitterness from the use of fresh hops. Funky barnyard flavors are apparent, enhanced by the earthy hop flavor. Touch of citrusy hops on the finish-- very different for a Cantillon. Acidity is citric, but also with that same ripe apple and strawberry thing I tend to get from most Lambics. Mouthfeel is fuller do to the exclusive use of malted barley. The carbonation was perfect and effervescent at first, but faded fast.

All of the Cantillon beers are intense, but this one is especially potent due to the bitterness. It borders on overpowering, but still remains drinkable, just not as refreshing as some of this brewery's other Lambics.

 1,142 characters

Photo of Liberatiscioli
3.79/5  rDev -11%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of M_chav
3.79/5  rDev -11%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Cantillon Iris from Brasserie Cantillon
4.26 out of 5 based on 2,055 ratings.
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