Monk's Café Flemish Sour Ale
Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.

Monk's Café Flemish Sour AleMonk's Café Flemish Sour Ale
Rate It
Beer Geek Stats | Print Shelf Talker
From:
Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
 
Belgium
Style:
Flanders Oud Bruin
Ranked #50
ABV:
5.5%
Score:
87
Ranked #18,314
Avg:
3.86 | pDev: 13.21%
Reviews:
1,188
Ratings:
1,894
Status:
Active
Rated:
Dec 29, 2022
Added:
Jun 19, 2003
Wants:
  98
Gots:
  485
SCORE
87
Very Good
Monk's Café Flemish Sour AleMonk's Café Flemish Sour Ale
Notes: Brewed for Monk's Café in Philadelphia, but also available for retail purchase elsewhere. Oud Bruin in style; a traditional blend of young and old beers.
View: More Beers
Recent ratings and reviews. | Log in to view more ratings + sorting options.
 
Rated: 4.06 by HarlotBronte from District of Columbia

Dec 29, 2022
Photo of rclangk
Rated by rclangk from West Virginia

3.87/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75
9/2023 BOM
Dec 22, 2022
Photo of flyingpig
Reviewed by flyingpig from Scotland

3.27/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75
330ml bottle from Gulden Draak Bierhaus, Porto (€5.30):
Dark cherry fed with a thin, soapy surface lacing that has a little build up stuck to the sides too & looks quite still. The nose is surprisingly light with some background malts but very little sourness other than a tiny hint of tart at the end. The taste is thankfully stronger, some nice cherry & dark berries with a little tart following on behind then a faint sweetness to close. The body is about medium & it's a very balanced, easy going beer with soft carbonation; not what I'd expected but a nice surprise bar the non-existent nose.
Dec 01, 2022
 
Rated: 2.91 by elminy from Ohio

Oct 23, 2022
Photo of jkblr
Reviewed by jkblr from Indiana

3.84/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
11.2oz can stamped L8155 10:13 (over 4 years old?) poured into a tulip glass at fridge temp 5.5% ABV. The beer pours medium brown in color with ruby highlights and light brown head. The head recedes to a pencil thin ring and scattered tiny bubbles. The aroma is tart red wine and nondescript malt. The taste is tart & sweet malt with notes of brown sugar, red berries, red wine and rustic, grainy bread. Negligible bitterness. The mouthfeel is thin to medium bodied with average carbonation and a dry finish. Overall, good for what it is, just not my style.
Aug 28, 2022
Photo of Rug
Reviewed by Rug from Massachusetts

3.84/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75
Oh man, I haven't had an Oud Bruin in a minute. It's a very uncommon style. Actually, I believe the last one I had was this at Monk's itself when I visited Philly back in March, but did not review it at the time. Let's revisit the beer specifically brewed for this famous taproom

Pours a mostly opaque reddish brown with a finger of tan head that fades to a ring and leaves minimal lacing

The nose is pretty vinous, but leans on a significant malt backbone. I'm picking up on aromas of red wine vinegar, tart red grape, black cherry, caramel malt, raisin, and light brown sugar

It loses a bit of its punch in taste, but it's certainly still enjoyable. On the front end of the sip I'm tasting black cherry, red wine vinegar, brown sugar, brown bread, light balsamic, and plum. The swallow brings notes of black cherry, apple cider, brown bread, caramel malt, red grape, and light plum

A light medium body pairs with gentle carbonation, resulting in a tangy beer. Finishes slightly sticky but the tartness dries it out over time

This isn't great, but it's perfectly serviceable for what it is. It definitely drinks easy
Aug 14, 2022
 
Rated: 3.75 by LAM01833 from Massachusetts

Aug 01, 2022
Photo of Weisenbeer
Rated by Weisenbeer from Ohio

4.22/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
Had this on draft..... Non-existent nose but it's a delicious punch when consumed... How very interesting, glad I tried!
May 25, 2022
Photo of puck1225
Reviewed by puck1225 from Texas

4.21/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
I had this beer from tap at our local World of Beer.

Poured into a tall tumbler with Monk’s Cafe logo. This is a beautiful beer. Deep reddish mahogany with excellent beige head and wonderful curtain lacing. Smell and taste of sweet hard apple cider. Dark cherries and strawberries, also spicy red wine like merlot. Taste becomes more fruity with warming, with a bit of background funk becoming evident. The feel is clean and refreshing. Very nice beer that I would happily have again.
May 21, 2022
Photo of maddogruss
Reviewed by maddogruss from New Jersey

3.35/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25
Poured this from a bottle.
A: pours ruby red body with small head with minimal retention and lacing.
S: very sour smell; some sweetness, but not much
T: slightly sour; some grapefruit notes; nothing too crazy, a little watered down sour taste
M: a little thin and medium-bodied and fairly decent
D: nice feel and taste combo; not that sour for a Flemish
May 09, 2022
Photo of KT3418
Rated by KT3418 from Colorado

4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
I found this pretty enjoyable, tasted like a sour prune. Definitely a more unique experience to me. Would recommend to belgain drinkers
Apr 26, 2022
 
Rated: 3 by prisdefer from New York

Apr 24, 2022
Photo of UrbanCaveman
Reviewed by UrbanCaveman from Ohio

4.24/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
12 oz bottle, poured into a tulip t ~40 degrees F.

L: Pours a clear deep mahogany-cherrywood red-brown, and forms a finger or so of short-lived fizzy tan head.

S: Acetic and balsamic, with some rich stone fruit notes beneath. Plums, cherries, some notes of caramel.

T: Interestingly sweet and tart at the same time, with a caramel, plum, and cherry sweetness mingling with balsamic vinegar sour notes. Some notes like a jammy red wine, and a soft woody character.

F: Medium and smooth.

O: A tasty oud bruin.
Feb 02, 2022
 
Rated: 4.69 by Tenebris

Dec 09, 2021
 
Rated: 3.54 by dansmcd from Australia

Dec 03, 2021
 
Rated: 4.03 by igl from Russian Federation

Nov 16, 2021
Photo of Reef
Reviewed by Reef from South Carolina

4.14/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
Poured from a 33 cl. can into a Belgian chalice.
Clear dark reddish brown with small tan head. Spotty lacing, clumps of surface bubbles.
Rich fruity prune, red wine, cherry, vinegar aromas.
Slightly sweet cherry, plum,grapes, oak barrel, date, slight citrus flavors that deepen as the glass warms.
Full bodied, light acid aftertaste, consistent carbonation.
Very enjoyable.







reddish brown
Nov 06, 2021
Photo of BerkeleyBeerSleuth
Reviewed by BerkeleyBeerSleuth from California

3.89/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4
Deep reddish brown color with a tan creamy head with good retention. There is lots of aroma here; dark fruits, cherries, dried fruits, brown nut, lactic acid yogurt smell. The taste is pretty good, almost soda like with a strong puckering sweetness and a moderate sourness. Wine grape and cherry Taste leans to the malty side and I can pick up a good brown ale in the background. Easy to drink and equally refreshing.
Oct 15, 2021
Photo of MikeWard
Reviewed by MikeWard from Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
330ml can into a teku. Coding no help in determining age.

Looks very good in the glass. Dark red body, clear when held up to the light. Small off white head shrinks to a thick ring and covering, scattered lacing.

Sour aroma a pleasing blend of vinegar and dark fruits.

On tasting, comes through exactly as promised by the nose. Quite sour, but with enough of a sweet note to hold back the vinegar.

Mouth closer to full than medium, finish a sweet/sour duel, with the sour aspect winning out

Overall, an easy to find FOB, and a good one. I especially enjoy it during the warmer months, but on a fall evening it's still a solid across the board beer.
Oct 07, 2021
Photo of scootny
Reviewed by scootny from New York

4.17/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
A deep brownish ruby red. Large white head with bits of khaki in the makeup, lots of lacing. Very clear and lovely.

Nose is vinous and tart. Light malty sweetness that includes apples and pears.

Taste is a big version of the nose. Surprisingly sweet front that flows into cherries and oak. Lots of dry red wine like richness. Mild berries and light fruits. Good acidic bite. The sourness comes next. It covers the mouth with juicy notes and light lemon. More oak a hint of leather.

Medium weight with soft and mild carbonation. Crisp swallow.

A solid accessible take that gives all right tastes and sensations. You can quaff this all day and all night.
Sep 16, 2021
Photo of JohnniEMc
Reviewed by JohnniEMc from Pennsylvania

4.21/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5
It's a dark brownish red, the liquid poured from a bottle holding approximately twelve ounces. To ensure accuracy, the pour into a clear pint glass was repeated and the results are in. It's a little more opaque than semi-opaque and brings a small, but enduring off-white head. There's not a great aroma, but it's vaguely both sweet and sour. Now, when it comes to drinking, there just might be no other sour richer. This has a great body and although that may contribute to a sweetness unappreciated by some who love sours that are just sour, many beer drinkers will like the sweet-sour contrast within one brew. There's plenty of carbonation, but it doesn't interfere with the taste, nor mouthfeel. The change of tastes as the beer is savored is remarkable. It starts definitely sweet and finishes definitely sour, all this during a velvety smooth medium. The glass lacing is among the best of any sour beers. Nicely complex and with a true world class body, this should be a must try for everyone with diverse tastes and a go to for those that like red sours.
Jul 16, 2021
 
Rated: 4.44 by Nyarko-San from Pennsylvania

Jul 15, 2021
Photo of faraday326
Reviewed by faraday326 from California

4.46/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5
It pours (11.2 oz bottle into glass) a deep reddish brown with a thick head.

The nose to me is amazing. Just incredibly rich w/ dark fruits and sweetness.. plums and raisins and typical things for this style. It's just very pleasant on the nose.

The flavor follows the nose with lots of plum and raisin and then a tartness you expect from a flemish sour ale. It's not like the bright sour of a wild ale/etc but it's the sweet/sour of a purple, plum, raisin flavor with the follow of tartness. Such a lovely mix.

A great, great, great example of the style.
Apr 09, 2021
Photo of Peach63
Reviewed by Peach63 from New York

4.6/5  rDev +19.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
Pours red with a 3/4 inch cream-colored head. Heavy lacing to the end.

Aroma is sour raisins, plums, grapes Belgian yeast.

Taste is sour, slightly sweet, prunes, raisins, grapes, lactic acid.

Medium bodied, moderate carbonation. Sweetish, tart finish.

This is a very good sour ale.
Nov 25, 2020
Photo of Greywulfken
Reviewed by Greywulfken from New York

4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Dark ruby brown with a tan foam top... Makes me think of a farmhouse version of a Flanders red - has some berry and currant notes, but with a lactic tang and even a hint of red wine vinegar... Fairly smooth but lively enough up front, light-feeling, with a little wood at the end, but otherwise a surprisingly clean finish...
Nov 06, 2020
 
Rated: 4.12 by chad6058 from Virginia

Oct 26, 2020
 
Rated: 3.69 by ronniebruner from Arizona

Oct 13, 2020
 
Rated: 4.11 by smithj4 from New York

Oct 05, 2020
 
Rated: 4.23 by JuanPn from Louisiana

Sep 30, 2020
Photo of Captain68
Rated by Captain68 from Russian Federation

4.18/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
91,5
Sep 29, 2020
 
Rated: 3.75 by RiceOwls27 from Texas

Jul 20, 2020
Photo of CAMRAhardliner
Reviewed by CAMRAhardliner from Canada (ON)

4.12/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Pours deep mahogany with copper glints at the edges of the glass. The fizzy tan head starts big and crackles to a persistent foam cap quickly. Caramel malts and light tartness in the nose. The taste is of cherries, raisin bread, lemon acidity and some soft oak. Fuller body that expect for the style with medium carbonation. Light sweet and sour notes in the finish.

A complex Oud Bruin that does a good job of straddling sweet and sour. Worth a try.
Jul 07, 2020
 
Rated: 3.92 by Jaasoares from Virginia

Jun 28, 2020
 
Rated: 3.71 by beerrat from Virginia

Jun 05, 2020
Photo of Texanoblues
Reviewed by Texanoblues

4.5/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
Same experience as other tasters. Dark brown in the glass with small cream colored head. Tart root beer and cherry. Also some nice caramel and date notes. Sort of a rich and well balanced wild ale. Very nice.
Apr 08, 2020
Photo of ovaltine
Reviewed by ovaltine from Indiana

4.17/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
Mahogany brown with reddish hues on the edges and a tan head, the nose is filled with cherry aromas and a significant oak component.

The tart cherries are featured on taste as well, with the oak flavor to smooth out the tart. This is really well executed, IMHO.
Mar 06, 2020
 
Rated: 3.97 by jstern from California

Feb 23, 2020
 
Rated: 3.66 by insouciantx from New York

Jan 18, 2020
 
Rated: 3.8 by Miyeoni from Korea (South)

Jan 18, 2020
 
Rated: 4.65 by Hyptochrons from Massachusetts

Jan 05, 2020
Monk's Café Flemish Sour Ale from Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
Beer rating: 87 out of 100 with 3082 ratings