Rare Vos (Amber Ale) | Brewery Ommegang

BA SCORE
90
outstanding
1,157 Reviews
Rare Vos (Amber Ale)Rare Vos (Amber Ale)
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brewery Ommegang
New York, United States
ommegang.com

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

BEER STATS
Reviews:
1,157
Ratings:
3,330
Avg:
4.04
pDev:
10.89%
 
 
Wants:
200
Gots:
674
For Trade:
3
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,157 | Ratings: 3,330
Photo of blitheringidiot
4.36/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Label Lore: Flemish for "sly fox" and proper pour instructions. 6.5% ABV 750 mL. 1 pint 9.4 fl oz. Brabant Ale.

Perfect pour into a Hennepin tulip with golden orange slightly hazy hues and about a foot of antique white head that sticks to the glass like it was glued there. Head cap was Jupiter sized and went nowhere for about half an hour. Champagne bubbles rise up endlessly.

As with all OMMEGANG offerings, yeasty scents and sweet malts, but this one is a twinge narrower than other OMMs. It's good tho' dont get me wrong.

First swigs: Foamy vanilla cake. Candied fruits of plums, cherries, and peaches with a citrous blend of lemons and spiciness of cloves and coriander. Yeatiness abounds. Aftertaste is of dry malty finish.

Foamy carbonation "embiggens" the medium body. The second pour is begging to be spent. Well drinkable and lasting.

Last swigs: Liquid vanilla cake like Grandma makes followed by citrousy aftertaste. Almost a Witbeer. That cork was stuck in this puppy, requiring a wine cork opener! The airiness is what qualifies this to be a Belgian Ale. Like drinking air. No awl-kee-hawl detection. First Belg Pale Ale reviewed.

Beer is good. Happy Belgian style American beering.

 1,219 characters

Photo of daythree16
4.37/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear, light amber color with nice frothy head.

Smell is very fruity and spicy. Nice Belgian esters. Taste is definitely vinous, with lots of fruitiness, primarily grape coming through. Good mix of spice and fruit flavors.

Mouthfeel is medium and drinkability is good, as I'm having no problem putting the 750 ml bottle away.

 335 characters

Photo of UDbeernut
4.37/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

What a treat, VOS on tap poured into a rare Vos glass

A: deep amber, slight haed with nice retention, does reduce to a lacing cap

S:spices slight yeast aroma... Clean

T: spice on the front, finishes clean with very slight bitterness

M&d: medium mouthfeel, good carbonation, still not a session beer, but a great example of the style for a reasonable price

 359 characters

Photo of BrewMakeMeFeel
4.37/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Deep amber hue with creamy white head that clings to the glass.

Smell: Distinct orange scent with hints of toasted malts and coriander.

Taste: Orange taste evident immediately, giving way to malts and ending with spice from the coriander.

Feel: Thin but not watery, very smooth.

 294 characters

Photo of Chsyhkr
4.37/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Belgian Pale Ale or Flander Red??

This is one interesting beer. I got it from a local Brew Festival along with some other goodies.

Pours a nice carbonated lacy, long lasting head.

Aroma is dried fruit, yeast, fruit, a hint of clove and a nice sourness.

Flavor is a melange of Munich malt, dark breads and dried fruits. Quite complex with a nice tinge our sourness.

A great beer with food or have just one. Great effort, how do they sour this thing?? Funny the other reviews don't mention sour? Bottle conditioned? Did something get growing in here??

 566 characters

Photo of mmmbeer
4.37/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Big cork-n-cage bottle with no freshness date. Very loud "POP!" when opening, and the pour reveals a hazed copper body with a frothy, two finger tan head that becomes creamier as the many beads of carbonation replace the larger bubbles with very small ones, and leave a nice trail of lacing as I drink. The aroma is very phenolic right off the bat, with spicy yeast and a lemony zest combined with nutty malts, green/leafy/spicy hops, and notes of pear, apple, and melon. The taste is the same but adds cloves, medicine, banana, and a phenolic bitterness that eventually gives way to a hoppy bitterness, all on top of a body that starts prickly, but evens out to reveal a medium body that is quite smooth. A great deal at $5 a bottle.

 734 characters

Photo of supercolter
4.38/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer really impressed me.
I haven't had a great belgian dark since I began experimenting with Unibroue about a year back.
Appearance is great medium to dark brown, almost purpleish with a nice billowing head.
Smell is a bit lighter than expected plums, malt, and spices come thru the nose.
The resembles the smell, but as it warms up it is nice and potent.
Mouthfeel is medium in body.
Drinkablity is wonderful.

 424 characters

Photo of avalon07
4.38/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Ommegang is rapidly becoming one of my favorite American breweries. I tried the Hennepin not long ago and was blown away. The Rare Vos was impressive as well.

This beer has a cloudy, almost orange appearance when poured into a tulip glass. There was maybe a quarter inch of head.

The smell was fruity, as Belgian or Belgian-style beers tend to be. It was a nice, low key bouquet.

The taste was very sneaky. You get a bit of apples and some sugar without it taking over the beer. This was excellent.

The mouthfeel was highly carbonated, giving a pop to the proceedings.

This is a highly drinkable beer. Not too heavy or light. Very tangy and has a lot of personality.

 676 characters

Photo of DefenCorps
4.38/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle picked up a while back. Poured into my St. Bernardus chalice

A: Gorgeous amber with a beautiful off-white head. Great retention, gorgeous carbonation.

S: Fruity sweetness with a hint of peaches and plums.Doughy and yeasty. Hint of sugary sweetness. Mild spice with white pepper. Delicious

T: Starts off with a complex spice bouquet with cinnamon, white pepper, and a strong clove note before a hint of sweetness comes through with some mild fruit. Finishes dry and mildly spicy

M: Light without being watery, enough carbonation to feel soft and not fizzy, drying and spicy on the finish in a very nuanced way - perfect

D: Can't believe I've waited so long to try this beer. I'm definitely grabbing more and soon

 729 characters

Photo of Lambstrong
4.38/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appear: Beautiful amber color with a thick golden head. Good head retention and good lacing.

Aroma: Caramel notes with pleantiful spices (all spice).

Taste: A lot of upfront spices. I detected cloves and all spice. I really enjoyed the balance of sweetness and spices. Although the spices are upfront, they are not overbearing.

Mouth: Very carbonated, but not over carbonated for this style of beer. Definately enough to get your tongue tingly. Good amount for a spicy beer.

 478 characters

Photo of mjohn27603
4.38/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Copper in appearance, nice carbonation. Has very fruity taste and a dry finish. Tried some with cheddar cheese and enjoyed it very much. Very comparable to Belgian made ales. I did have one bottle, perhaps served a bit warm, which did taste a little solventlike. However this seems to have been an exception.

 314 characters

Photo of xgrigorix
4.38/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Deep rust in color, hazy from the yeast. Gigantic, pillowy white head. Explosive carbonation. Head settles a bit to show sticky lace on the glass.
Nose is a bit fruity.
Mildly sweet, with biscuit and raw grain flavors. Oranges, slightly spicy, and transitions into a dry piney finish. Full bodied a somewhat rustic (in a good way). Creamy, smooth, & balanced. This beer is complex, sublte, & highly quaffable. Drinking this is as easy as breathing air.

 454 characters

Photo of beerogre
4.38/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This has been on the shopping list for a few weeks now and as I had been anticipating, it turns out to be another winner from Ommegang, one of my favourite breweries.

As the name suggests, it's Amber coloured, but the things I like about this beer are the head, which does decrease in size with time but yet remains throughout, and the luxurious, creamy mouthfeel, both of which remind me of many an English pint I have sank in a former existance.

This is a beer I could imagine going out and drinking several pints of on a Thursday night, even though there's work on Friday. "It's okay, it's almost the weekend: Only Friday to get through."

I bought a four pack yesterday consumed two last night and was planning to just have one tonight and then something else, but bollocks to that idea, I've enjoyed this bottle so much I'm going to sup the last one as well, and then have something else, if I'm still thirsty....which I probably will be...

A "feel good factor" beer, for sure.

 994 characters

Photo of JoEBoBpr
4.38/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into an oversized wine glass. From a 750ml bottle.

A - Absolute perfect pour on my part. Hehe. The beer is a lacy dark amber color with some nice golden hues and some nice haze that blocks out the light. A solid 1 inch head is present, very dense and tight, receding and leaving a bit of lace. Some yeast sediment cam through, there is plenty of it.

S - Mild clove and some nice peppery spices. Some sweet pear juice as well. Honey and other fruits are in there as well along with the grains. Alcoholic esters pop up as it warms and as I swirl it in the glass.

T - Some sweet and grainy malt pops up first, followed by some sweet clove and then some spices that start curbing the sweet. Flavors are well put together and work well. Very balanced and complex. Some yeast flavor as well with slight phenolic hints in there. Dry finish from the hops.

M - full bodied, nice complexity and very nice balance of flavors with good CO2

D - Refreshing and delicious

 968 characters

Photo of Scooter77
4.38/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Another great brew from the folks at Ommegang. Pours an orange/copper in color with a thick creamy off-white, persistent head. After the froth dies down, a sticky web-like lace is left on the glass. Aromas are quite yeasty with moderately fruity undertones. Initial taste is somewhat malty, mixed with yeast and citrus fruit. A nice crisp zing of spiciness, possibly coriander, is left on the tongue. This is one exceptionally complex, yet balanced brew.

 454 characters

Photo of CrellMoset
4.38/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a chalice - reviewed waaay back on March 16th, but I'm just now gettin' it up.

Appearance: Honey amber, lively carbonation, a thick, rocky head with good retention. Thick lacing, but somewhat runny. Haze present in one glass from yeast. Gorgeous.

Smell: Fruits - plum and grapes - earthy must, and a sweet, grassy grain dominate. Peppery cloves and other mild, earthy spices from the hops are present in the background.

Taste: Cloves again, with other peppery spices are very noticeable, a strong grainy, layered maltiness and fruit notes - pear, plum, and a very strong banana ester in the aftertaste - round out the flavor profile.

Mouthfeel: Foamy, the sweetness isn't cloying, but it's crisp and full. Great.

Drinkability: Outstanding, low in alcohol (6.5% abv), great subtle flavor interactions, and ridiculously inexpensive for its quality.

I live for this kinda stuff - domestic interpretations of great Belgian styles. It's very complex, very well-balanced, and very drinkable. Sly fox indeed.

 1,019 characters

Photo of hyuga
4.39/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Hazy dried apricot color with a large foam that settles quickly. I was a bit disappointed by the lack of head retention, since Belgians usually have no problem with this. Complex aroma of grape (making it a bit wine-like), plum, a bit of citrus, a touch of malt, and a hint of Belgian spicy yeast. Flavor profile differs a good deal from the aroma, but is also very complex, and definitely tasty. Bread-like malt, smoothed fruity bitterness, and yeast character up front, with an underlying yet rich spiciness. Dark fruits appear at the back, the aforementioned plum mostly. Grape-like acidity is present throughout. Finishes with a more apparent hop bitterness and a touch more yeast. Medium to full-bodied. With another pour from the 750 ml bottle and an immediate taste before the head settles, the mouthfeel is much better and the spiciness created by that wonderful yeast is more apparent. This would definitely benefit from better head retention. However, this is quite a tasty, complex, unique, and extremely drinkable ale. Definitely worth a try. I'd love to pair it with some food next time.

 1,100 characters

Photo of DMXLOX22
4.39/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a single of this bottle after a quick visit to a grocery store. Been hearing a lot of great things about this one. Let's see how it is.

Appearance: Pours a golden, amber hum with a look of butterscotch. Provides and shows off a beautiful frothy, white, foamy head. So professionally done, it could've been a postcard inviting you to just dive in and enjoy the pure Belgian style. The lacing left behind is something that I've been looking for and this beer nailed it.

Smell: Can definitely notice a aroma of strong peach-like, fruity scent. Clove is also noticeable and what else pulls through is an undertone of Belgian yeast.

Taste: Has a great flavor of sweet malt and some nice touches of earth-based fruits and citrus zest. Also quite noticeable is a hint of peppery malt which actually helps support a bitterness of yeast that really actually ties this together and creates a well-balance of flavors. An underestimated hint of floral hops also comes into play. Enjoyed this beyond my early expectations. Its a combo of creamy and rich flavors

Mouthfeel: Medium body with medium carbonation. Sort of soft on the palate and semi dry on the finish.

Overall: Upon coming into this beer, I was told great things by beer lovers alike. I did come into this with an open mind and tried to stay as unbiased as possible. It far exceeded my expectations. The overall balance of sweet and bitter came together just right and provided me with a texture of just pure, Belgian style beer. I will be getting this beer again as a great session brew and would totally recommend this to anyone looking to expand into the Belgian beer market. Cheers!

 1,651 characters

Photo of emsroth
4.4/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 ml into duvel tulip

App: Dark gold, almost amber, with hues of orange. Frothy off-white head.

Smell: Wonderfully fruity apple and lemon with an herbal hop finish. Noticeable yeasty funk

Taste: Starts strongly fruity with some lemon, fades into the yeasty funk I love about this beer. As it warms, flavors of almond and maraschino cherries develop. Strong herbal hop presence in the end. Finishes a bit husky with a hint of raw, yeasty dough. Yum!

Medium to full body from the substantial carbonation.

A wonderful treat that is surprisingly even better on tap.

 568 characters

Photo of jwc215
4.4/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours cloudy orangish/brownish with a creamy head this is very well-retained. It leaves trailing lace.

The smell is of fruitcake with sugary spices. A touch of alcohol. Wonderfullly rich smell.

The taste is of sweet fruity malt with spiced earthy breadiness. Warming alcohol notes emerge but never overwhelm. It has a creamy body with a spicy tang. A tartness balances out the sweetness. Just a touch of hops emerge as it warms and nears the finish. It's very well-balanced, with the sweet spiciness coming out ahead. It has a long, crisp, dry finish.

It has a nice texture with a lingering fruity spiciness.

This is a very nice "sipping" brew. A very nice interpretation of a Belgian. Serves well as an apperitif or as a complement to a creamy Belgian or French cheese plate.

 788 characters

Photo of TheDeuce
4.4/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy orange with a huge head and active carbonation, banana undertones and a crisp fruity prescence punctuated with controlled alcohol scents and some grain pulls through as well. Full taste, carbonation sits in as you drink it all the way down, fully flavored but not too heavy. A fantastic beer, stunning in quality for the price.

 340 characters

Photo of feelmefoam
4.4/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12-oz bottle into a pint glass.

Rare Vos pours a cloudy, muted peach color; basically a mixture of nice red, yellow, and oranges that shows some really interesting highlights when held up to the light. Puts up two fingers of thick, foamy, cream-colored head that hangs around a long time and leaves some thick and sticky lacing on the glass.

Has a nice, rich aroma of fruits (particularly apples, bananas, and plums) and some sweet spices. Very aromatic, you can smell the beer as soon as you pour it.

The taste mirrors the nose: fruitiness up front, followed by a nice malty sweetness and a little bit of hoppy spiciness that brings about a sweet, lingering flavor as the beer finishes.

Nice smooth and creamy mouthfeel, but not overly heavy. A nice mouthfeel for a Belgian style dark, the slight amounts of carbonation work together with the alcohol to leave a nice tingle in the mouth as you drink.

Overall a very nicely done Belgian Dark from Brewery Ommegang. Pretty damn drinkable, too, especially if you like sweet Belgian beers. I wouldn't have more than two in a night just because of the sweetness, but this is good stuff. I'll get it again.

 1,174 characters

Photo of heidelbeerg
4.4/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Greatbrew ! 750ml bottle. Poured a cloudy orange/copper color with a solid white three finger head. The smell is fruity, sweet malts and yeasty. The taste is wonderful. Slight citrous flavor with a bready malt goodness and hint of spice that is hard to beat. Nicely balanced with a hop bite that just noticable enough to be almost perfect. The carbonation and mouthfeel were right on. The drinkability is very good.

 415 characters

Photo of gordavidson
4.4/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- A slightly hazy orange liquid with a creamy white head that has good retention and leaves nice lacing. The color of this is fantastic.

S- Very aromatic with some lighter fruit notes, orange rind, white bread, and a bit floral. Everything comes together nicely.

T- Sweet and slightly sour. The fruit and bread components compliment each other nicely.

M- Smooth and creamy with a bit of a clean, dry finish.

D- A very well made beer. Drinks nicely, but is a bit of a sipper for the ABV. Definitely worth having.

 517 characters

Photo of Eeroomnhoj
4.4/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Came home from the local wine store and had three bottles of beer. This was recommended as being a great beer and I am enjoying it. Seems a bit fizzy (or is it yeasty?). Enjoyable nonetheless. With that being said I am not sure I would want to drink several of these, might be wrong though. This is definitely a beer worth having again.

 336 characters

Rare Vos (Amber Ale) from Brewery Ommegang
4.04 out of 5 based on 3,330 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.

    Subscribe