Rare Vos (Amber Ale) | Brewery Ommegang

1,155 Reviews
Rare Vos (Amber Ale)Rare Vos (Amber Ale)

Brewed by:
Brewery Ommegang
New York, United States

Style: Belgian Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 09-24-2000

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Reviews: 1,155 | Ratings: 3,321
Photo of microbrewlover
3.71/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Rare Vos, (Sly Fox), pours a perfect copper color. It is cloudy with tons of sediment swirling around in the glass. There is a four finger fluffy white head which lasts; it took me two pours to get all of the beer out of the bottle and into the glass. There is surprisingly little lacing left after that giant head but that does not matter with this style.

The smell is pretty plain, caramel and yeast with some spices. There is also a hint of fruit in there.

The taste really comes alive with what tastes like champagne yeast with tons of caramel and sweet malts. Very biscuty and fruity along with spices. I can detect lemon grass and orange peel for sure but there are other mixed fruits in there as well. The feel is bready, thick and biscuty.

Overall, another winner from Ommegang as well as a good representation of the style.

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Photo of DanfromVan
3.56/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

750 ml bottle
Drank from the glass shoe of a princess.
Nice lace,
Very little scent
The absolute best colour of any beer I think I have seen. It's like waking up in a beer ad.
Tight concentrated carbonation that improves about 15 min in to carpet your mouth with champagne-like ribbons of foam. Carbonation stays strong through the life of the bottle
Flavour is definitely muted, with hints of fruit and very subdued spice. Very slight sour/bitter finish on every drink
Flavour bumps up a few notches if you hand warm it and bring it close to the room temperature of a stone castle in May.
Not a style I seek out, but nice for what it was, US dollar makes this a pricy drink at apprx 12 Can so I will likely try something else next time.
If this was Flanders in 1918 and I just had my arm shot off I would have been good friends with this style. The ABV really makes it 2 bottles to oblivion.

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Photo of E-McFarden
4.25/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours a hazy light amber with resounding creamy white head. On the smell I get caramel and spiciness from the Belgian signature as well as some aroma hops barely trickling in the last second. The spiciness really shines through in the beginning of the taste, with a strong Belgian yeast strain profile making a statement. I also get just the right amount of bittering hops here, not overpowering the other aspects of the brew. This one feels nice on the palate, its carbonation level is perfect. Overall a great brew to me, it balances the flavors and incorporates the Belgian influence perfectly.

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Photo of chessiejackson
4.18/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I think this is the first ommegang I'm doing a review on. Reason being, ambers are not my first choice, but as always, ommegang comes through. This was really good. A+ guys

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Photo of T100Mark
4.55/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

A 12 ounce bottle poured into a shaker pint glass. Cool label.

Appearance - Burnt orange color. Hazy. A big, foamy, lumpy head with great retention. A handsome brew!

Smell - Sour. Fruity. Spicy. Wow!

Taste - Initially, I tasted sweet (melon) and sour. This is followed by a rich, smooth malt flavor. The finish is spicy (think peppercorns). Awesome!

Mouth - Smooth yet zesty.

Overall - Ommegang OH My God! Watch out Belgium. A wonderfully complex ale. I would elaborate but I have to go back to the store and buy some more.

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Photo of Wilshade
4.74/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Amber Ale
ABV: 6.5%
Glassware: Tulip

Appearance: opaque orange gold with a fluffy off white head. A beautiful beer.

Smell: very fruity with spicy notes

Taste: Well balanced with a slight tilt toward the sweet side. Strong orange notes.

Mouthfeel: Very smooth with almost no after taste. Light and tingly on the tongue.

Overall: A beautiful, almost stunning, beer with a taste to match. Pairs very well with grilled steaks. Another instant favorite of mine from Brewery Ommegang.

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Photo of hophead723
4.13/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Look: Hazy deep orange with a sexy billowing off-white head. I accidentally allowed some of the sediment to flow into the pour but it was my fault because of my technique, no problem. There is great lacing and the beer looks very appealing.

Smell: Rich malty aroma with a lot of subtle orange and spice going on in the background. There is also a nice amount of fruity ale yeast coming through.

Taste: A rich full taste of malt, honey, spices, and yeast. It is so complex and delicious.

Feel: Rich and smooth.

Overall: Yet another awesome beer from Ommegang proves these masters really know what they are doing. The quality is like the stark contrast of fine leather compared to vinyl. Enjoy.

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Photo of Weisenbeer
3.99/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Another great beer from what I have found to be one of the most consistently excellent makers of craft beers. Not one of their best, but even their "misses" are still very good.

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Photo of TheBeerMaster1
3.29/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Most beautiful beer I've seen to date, but the taste just isn't there for me. I'd drink again, but I wouldn't buy again. Taste like the older brother of dogfish head namaste

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Photo of Bone53
4.03/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Appearance: Clear rich orange color with a white head

Smell: Heavy on coriander and spices with some fruity esters and bready yeast

Taste: Cloves, pear, apples, slight caramel, yeast

Mouthfeel: Light medium body; Very easy drinking, crisp, and refreshing. Slight bitter finish

Overall: Not realizing that this brewery focuses on belgian style ales, i saw amber ale on the label and went for it. I dont know why this is classified as an amber ale? Its a straightforward belgian pale ale if you ask me. It has that classic Belgian spice and yeast with some fruit complexity. One of the better American Belgian style ales iv had actually. Overall a solid beer in a style i normally wouldnt seek out

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Photo of rand
4.15/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap, poured into a nonic pint glass

I love the debate on categories here. The brew most definitely straddles a number of styles. It LOOKS like a classic American amber, with a crisp copper-tan color and moderate opacity. The nose is Belgian Pale, with fruity esters and grassy malted grain, enclosed by suggestions of fresh pastries. Its flavors are a little more broad. Estery, crackery, as a Belgian Pale should taste, but it's got distinct caramelly malts in front of any hop snap.

Suggestions of apple, citrus zest, allspice, cinnamon, and floral, grassy notes can all be parsed. Alcohol is moderate, and the beer closes with a medium, balanced finish.

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Photo of dd43
3.82/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

It's a Belgian pale. Or an amber. But not exactly either. Has the yeast aroma you expect from Ommegang with a mix of clove and banana on the nose. Highly carbonated in appearance and texture, which is juxtaposed with a creaminess that I found rather appealing. This beers maintains a thin but dense head all the way to the bottom of the glass. Little to no hop punch, this is malt and yeast forward beer to be sure. Not a huge fan of ambers in general but this is one of the better ones I've had, perhaps because of its departure from the style.

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Photo of jopezu
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

deep cognac orange color with heavy head. slightly boozy and sweet banana nose (after warmed in a snifter). highly carbonated mouthfeel. taste is dominated by belgian yeast, accents of pepper and coriander, and a general slight fruit sweetness. it was hard to pinpoint any specific sweet flavors in this pour. aftertase is belgian yeast and slight fruit.

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Photo of classixIII
4.29/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Thick creamy head hangs around quite awhile on top of a hazy dark honey color.
Not much on the nose , grain, clove some yeast. Great carbonation, creamy feel. Taste is crisp, yeast, pepper, hops are there and alcohol at the end. Like pretty much everything from Brewery Ommegang, Great Brew!

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Photo of bmeehan
4.33/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Ommegang never ceases to amaze. Rare Vos pours a beautiful orange-gold and tastes like every other amber ale should taste. It's not a beer that you'll shed a tear over, but it stands as what should be the beer all other beers model themselves after.

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Photo of MattyG85
4.45/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a Duvel tulip glass.

Appearance: Pours a hazy dark amber with a moderate amount of bubbles. Huge gushing four finger white head which slowly settles into a thinner foam layer.

Smell: A yeasty, fruity, and fairly sweet Belgian style aroma with hints of spice, dark fruit, and caramel. Belgian yeast with big hints of clove, peppers, funk, cinnamon, and coriander. Toasted malt with hints of sweet caramel, straw, grains, and biscuit. Big mix of fruit esters with hints of banana, apple, pear, orange, and lemon zest. Sweet hints of candied sugar. Hops are pretty faint. A pretty good aroma.

Taste: Like it smells, a nice yeasty, fruity, and sweet Belgian style amber taste with good notes of spice, fruit, and caramel malt. Upfront Belgian yeast with notes of clove, funk, peppers, cinnamon, and coriander. Soft toasted malt with notes of caramel, grains, straw, and biscuit. Fruit notes of apple, banana, orange, pear, and lemon. Sweet taste of candied sugar. Light notes of flora hops. A very good taste.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a high level of carbonation. Spicy, juicy, and prickly. Finishes dry.

Overall: A great take on a Belgian style ale. Good mix of spices and fruit flavors with a nice touch of toasty malt.

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Photo of Matonika
3.94/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

This is a goto for me it is mellow easy drinking. Citrus notes very low bitterness. It has a touch more caramel then I would like . Like a Caramel orange which is different but it is really good with food it did a bang up job with Thai spicy noodle.

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Photo of babaracas
4.05/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a hazy orange with a lot of fine sediment in suspension, billowing off-white head, settles slowly to a thin ring, fair amount of lace trailed down the glass. Smell: mild nectarine, apple cinnamon muffin, notes of orange and pepper. Taste: nectarine, orange and brown sugar themed bread, mild grassiness, slight lemon with nectarine skin and spiciness in the finish. Creamy into fluffy feel. Everything is in moderation here, but quite tasty. Best by 9/2015.

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Photo of orcrist_cleaver
4.1/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Blood orange pushing light morning red amber. Slightly off white finger long lasting head.

S: Quite sweet and heavy spicing, phenols. Clove, sour cherry, pomegranate, coriander, orange. Grassy must and pollen nectar.

M: Good tangy bite. Moderately carbonated and very effervescenr. Med body, well attenuated.

T: Banana and cloves but with funk. Grape must, stone cling peaches and good citrus component--orange. Lots of perfumey coriander, perhaps too much for my liking. Really really good ovreall tho.

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Photo of Barnoloid
4.26/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Yeasty. This is a sweet amber colored ale with caramel notes on the eye. In tucking into this, the yeast and fruit notes come right to the forefront. Slight banana and clove feel whilst the yeast really takes over.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
3.48/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

On tap at Specialty Beer Cellar. Served in a Rare Vos straight sided glass.

Appearance - Hazy deep golden. Big white head. Medium collar.

Smell - Fruity. Kinda phenolic. Sweet fruity maltiness.

Taste - Sweet caramel. Immediately fruity. Belgian yeast flavors quickly dominate. Bitterness builds up too, particularly in the back end from high carbonation.

Mouthfeel - Medium body. High carbonation, though it retains a bit of fruitiness.

Overall - I drank a glass of this very quickly. Second glass, not so much. Lacked a bit of excitement.

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Photo of ClavisAurea
4.4/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Fresh 12oz bottle served in a tall Belgian glass. Bottle was dated 12/2014.

Appearance: bright orange with a full head that rode the glass to the end. Turbid from the bottle conditioning.

Nose: spicy, phenolic, classic Belgian yeast smell, pears, slightly herbal

Taste: very smooth, no alcohol notes, spicy, a bit thin and I'd expect a more round mouthfeel from the classic Belgian house yeast Ommegang uses. Slightly fruity and the hops notes are very low to non-existant.

Overall: This one needs some improvement in the mouthfeel as far as a more enjoyable beer. However, in terms of drinkability, it is top of the list. I find this beer very quaffable. Overall, great showing from one of the best craft breweries in the States and a damn good Belgian one at that.

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Photo of JackRWatkins
3.57/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

a beer like this is simply not an exceptional beer, at least not for me, that being said in the realm of amber ales this is about as good of an amber ale as you are likely to have, it retains the ease of consumption of the style while taking that proprietary house yeast in the belgian style and bringing something new to an amber ale, it removes what to me is an often unpleasant though not overwhelming hoppiness, this is at any rate an great beer for any occasion, though not an altogether special beer, use this instead of your boring amber ales for a party and enjoy

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Photo of Ozzylizard
4.07/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Best by 6/20/13 bottle at 45 degrees into tulip
Aroma of slightly sour fruit
Head large (5 cm, aggressive pour), off white, frothy, diminishing to 4 mm ring and layer
Lacing poor – few small islands of tiny bubbles
Body medium amber, clear
Flavor begins slightly sweet, fruity esters and some yeast phenolics; no hops, no alcohol, no diacetyl
Palate medium to full, syrupy, soft carbonation

Appearance 4, Aroma 3.75, Flavor 4.25, Palate 4.25, Overall 4

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Photo of fscottkey
2.52/5  rDev -37.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.5

A: [3.5] A slightly hazy orange color. Sports pretty big dense white head. No apparent dating on the bottle Beer is listed at 6.5% ABV.

S: [2.00] Wreaks of Beligian yeast. It is like being punched in the face with it. Very pungent. I get nothing else.

T: [2.50] Fortunately it doesn't exactly follow the nose. There is not such an overpowering whollop of Belgian yeast. It is still all I get in this beer - but it is less than the nose.

M: [3.25] The carbonation is decent the body is a bit thin.

O: [2.50] I really dislike Belgian yeast. It doesn't agree with me and this is a one note beer with just that single note. Unfortunately that means I didn't finish it.

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Rare Vos (Amber Ale) from Brewery Ommegang
4.04 out of 5 based on 3,321 ratings.
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