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

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Monk's Café Flemish Sour AleMonk's Café Flemish Sour Ale
BA SCORE
3.86/5
Very Good
3,000 Ratings
Monk's Café Flemish Sour AleMonk's Café Flemish Sour Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
Belgium
vansteenberge.com

Style: Flanders Oud Bruin

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
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.

Added by nomad on 06-19-2003

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#10,849
Reviews:
1,159
Ratings:
3,000
pDev:
13.21%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
97
Gots:
472
Trade:
5
HISTOGRAM
 
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,000 |  Reviews: 1,159
Photo of flip387
4.07/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: 4.25

Has a nice deep red color with a slight fizzy head.

Smell: 4.0

Crisp and slightly sour. Pleasant smell with mild hop and barley notes.

Taste: 4.0

Crisp and tart, noticed some earthy flavors which I believe is from the barley.

Mouthfeel: 4.0

Carbonated and fizzles on the tongue. Semi tar and sour, yet crisp and pleasant.

Overall: 4.25

My third sour beer, and my third from Brouwerij Bavik, defiantly my favorite from the Sour Power pack. This one is quite nice, has a tart crisp flavor along with some sweetness. A mild bodied red ale

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Photo of KickInTheChalice
4.07/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served on tap at Three Floyd's in a Monk glass.

Appearance: This pours a cherry color with a tint of brown and a thin foamy tan cap. It mostly fades to a ring but leaves a bit of lacing on the glass.

Smell: Tart cherries, some vinegar, and surprising raisin aroma, which is pleasant and really some character.

Taste: A dash of light malt starts out the sip. Sweet cherries turn tart, then acidic and vinegary. A dash of raisin is in here, and the finish is more tart cherry and vinegar.

Mouthfeel: Crisply carbonated and a little bit creamy at the end. The tartness leaves my lips puckering and my mouth salivating. Medium bodied.

Drinkability: I found this to be easy drinking, not too tart, but with a pleasant, moderately complex flavor. I would definitely order this again.

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Photo of Hophead101
4.07/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

drank on 5.2.09.

pours a wonderful clear dark reddish copper. very nice looking beer with a thick foamy head that lasted a good bit. leaves a nice thin ring of foam around the edge of the glass. smell is amazing. wild, funky, sour, cherries - the funk is really powerful in a good way. earthy mossy and yeasty. there is a lot of stuff going on in here.

taste is crisp and carbonated to start. you get the cherries the most, very sour. not as much funk in the taste as in the smell. it is kind of light in body - you get a lot of cherry flavor right away but seems to disappear quickly. there is also a muted malt taste underneath the cherries. maybe the lighter mouthfeel makes you want to drink a little more because it doesn't give you a blanket of phlegm and sour taste in your mouth, but could be better balanced.

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Photo of samtrillo
4.06/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Vibrant amber with a bubbly off white head.

Nose is lactic sour.

Taste is very pleasant cherry sour with a slight sweetness. Red wine grape off notes. Mouthfeel is prickly and entertaining. A very nice approachable sour.

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Photo of Ben1313
4.06/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of Beejay
4.06/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: That is a truly beautiful beer. A deep brownish red color, like cherry or mahogany. A Decent bit of slight tan head.

S: Slight vinegar smell, as well as ripe berries, raspberries in particular. Almost a little bit of sake smell as well.

T: Tart, at first then, very sweet. Lots of berries in this. Delicious.

M: Very dry. Nicely carbonated.

D: A good beer all around, but I don't think it is my cup a tea. I think this would be a great desert beer to split with a few friends, and it would pair very well with something like cheesecake.

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Photo of RonaldTheriot
4.06/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Monk’s Cafe Flemish Sour Ale has an extremely thick, spongy, beige head, a mostly clear, dark, reddish-brown appearance, no visible bubble streams, and heavy lacing left behind. The aroma is of very bready, sour dough, slightly rancid fruit, and oldness or mustiness. Taste is of sweet bread, very sour fruit, old beer, sweet-tart hard candy, and maybe red apple. Mouthfeel is medium, and Monk’s Cafe Flemish Sour Ale finishes mostly dry, strangely delicious, and highly interesting.

RJT

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Photo of patre_tim
4.06/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark brown with a rusty reddish tinge, cloudy and opaque so I can’t see any carbonation, 2 fingers of cappuccino beige head with a shiny look of sugar bubbling and caramelizing in a pan, nice ring of lacing.

S: Sour in a slight malt vinegar way, fruity, complex fruit of apples and pears, nectarines and plums, prunes as well. A coke like quality.

T: Prunes and plums, light sweetness, light sourness, malt as in a dark malt rye bread sort of way. An acidic and lightly bitter finish. Some toffee notes. Fruity and floral notes.

M: Medium light body with a juice like weight, medium high slightly foamy carbonation. Relatively dry.

O: Makes me feel like I’m in some middle age village in in Belgium, drinking from a mug of fresh local brew as some dim lit pub. Delicious, fresh and complex. Bought and drank in Asheville, NC June 17, 2014. Great brew, in a style that is fast becoming my favourite. Gets more sour with sipping.

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Photo of levifunk
4.06/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

bottle poured into my new KBS snifter. not sure if its appropriate glassware, but i don't care.

a - dark brownish read. good size head when poured, which drops but never dies.

s - sour apple. champagne yeast like smell. not a big nose.

t - a lot more sour than the nose leads on. made me pucker a bit. full flavored. sweet cherry/apple flavor.

m - medium light body, carbonation is perfect. lots and lots of little bubbles. leaves my tongue tingling.

overall - very impressed by this. Its not terribly expensive, but is a fantastic drink and has a good amount of sour punch while still being delightfully sweet.

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Photo of Estria
4.06/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of nick35712
4.06/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

9.22.15 bottle @ world of beer Syracuse NY

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Photo of BrewsandBlues
4.06/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of ClavisAurea
4.06/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Bottle served in a tasting glass.

Very dark red with a nice brown head. Clear and beautiful. Sour cherries and a little sour funk in the nose. Thin mouthfeel, sour cherries, tart but not too much. Heavy medicinal flavor but not in a bad way. No oak character, I guess that vanished generations ago. Wonderful Flemish Red.

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Photo of MrBoz21
4.06/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep red, clear and effervescent. What cap that settles into persistent skiff.

Aroma is horsey sour. Crisp.

Taste: cherry tart with nice lactic sweetness.

Mouth: Dry with tart tingle on back of tongue.

Overall: delicious sour ale that is very refreshing and balanced.

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Photo of BenBreeg
4.06/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Bubbawilly88
4.06/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of BlackBeerPirate
4.06/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Taste: complex, tangy dark fruit, some sour, tart, berries, bread, drinkable. Same with the nose. Deep reddish mahogany hue, semi clear, delicate head. Medium body.

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Photo of deuschbag
4.06/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

330 ml. bottle pored into a wine glass. pores a beautiful ruby red color with a perfect light tan head that stays threwout the whole session and leaves great lacing. everything about the appearance is perfect.
i smell some sour cherries, vinegar and some chocolate malts.

i taste lots of cherries. lots of sourness in the background with vinegar. chocolaty malt aftertaste. a nice and very surprising taste over-all.

mouthfeel is medium bodied but a little intimidating from its sourness at first but after the first couple sips it's pretty easy to comsume and over-all very smooth.

this is my first time drinking a sour tasting beer and i am extrememly surprised. truly an easy beer to drink and a great experience for me. this was a good introduction to the style for me.

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Photo of bditty187
4.05/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Cloudy, brown in hue with red, dull bronze influences; the liquid is classic Flanders Red. Bubbly, off-white head, at the apex the foam was only a half finger tall. Sadly, the bubbles quickly faded to a soapy collar with a small island in the middle. No subsequent lacing. The collar did last the entire consumption. Overall, this is a lovely looking beer and it fits the bill for the style.

Classic Flanders Red aroma! I smell sour, lactic acid notes with sour, tart cherry/berry notes, oaky, citrus zest in the distance, with some dull maltiness. The nose is a nice little package of complex aromas, nothing strays from what should be there and noting is missing either. Moderately high potency, chatty but direct. I am interested. I love the aroma. I love this style. I can’t wait to take a sip.

The first sip was tame. I was pissed! I was about to throw the beer across the room and curl up into to the fetal position and cry. Then I thought, “Hey, take another sip.” I did. I was rewarded. Maybe I needed a sip to ready my palate. I still find this beer second rate to La Folie but what can hang with that? Nothing. Sharp, lactic acid and sour notes upfront, this is followed quickly by oak. In the middle a sour berry/cherry vibe starts and this is mixed with some dull malt. Sour at the finish, lambic-like, I didn’t find it overwhelming. Maybe I am too use to the style. Even if that is the case, this is a damn lovely beer! Slightly sweet aftertaste with a lingering sourness and oak notes; I like it, I found it very appetite stimulating. God, do I want some blue cheese…

Medium/medium-light in body, low but natural carbonation, the mouthfeel is slightly creamy and plenty relaxing. My only complaint is the watery sensation at the swallow with a metallic kiss.

I really like this beer; I think it is a good representation of the style. I like it even more because I purchased it in Council Bluffs, IA for only $2.50 a bottle. I can’t knock that! What a find. It is plenty drinkable. I will buy more… and you should too!

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Photo of zachrotc
4.05/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of PSUBeerman
4.05/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

11.2 oz bottle in tulip glass
*First sour I recall tasting

Deep mahogany/garnet color. Head is off white, slightly tan color. Head pours frothy, but dissipated quickly. Definite lacing and retention around glass.

Vinegar aroma hits immediately. Characteristics of red wine in the aroma as well.

Nice carbonation. I thought it was refreshing and very drinkable as far as the mouthfeel.

I thought the taste was well balanced between the sour / tartness and the sweetness. I am a vinegar lover, so I may be biased to say that it was not overpowering with tartness. I picked up some fruitiness, possibly cherry. It reminds me of a local winemaker who bottled a sour cherry wine.

I enjoyed this. Was not what i expected with my first try at a sour ale.

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Photo of minterro
4.05/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bought a few weeks back at Morgan's Liquor store in Denver, poured into a snifter.

A&S: Beer is a translucent deep garnet color with no lively carbonation coming up. Pours about a finger of off white head and dissipates moderately quickly to a thin ring and some island, gobs of lacing are left once in a while. Aroma is a good mixture of tart and sour. Primarily tart cherries, sangria, along with some yeasty funk.

T&M: The taste is a little less sour than the aroma would lead you to believe. More cherries in the taste. Higher side of carbonation and lower side of body. Very drinkable.

Overall: The is a very solid beer. For sure worth a try. I will probably buy again but not very frequently due to the 5 buck pre bottle price tag.

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Photo of Kromes
4.05/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: A clear dark reddish brown with ruby highlights and a thin soapy head.

S: An acidic and sour cherry aroma

T: Sour cherry with a bit of cork and a nice funk to it with a dry acidic feel that finishes sweet.

M: Light body with peppery carbonation. The sour and acid feel hits up front and dries and puckers the mouth, however, that fades and the beer finishes somewhat clean with a bit of sweetness. Very unique feel.

O: I enjoyed this. One of the better sour beers out there. Very refreshing and drinkable.

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Photo of MaxOhle
4.05/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Photo of medic25
4.05/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Chestnut brown color with a frothy white head. Sour vinegar aroma, but not in an unpleasant way. Taste is as I'd expect from the aroma; quite tart and sour, a little bit fruity. Very sharp, but enjoyable; tough to drink more than one, but a nice change from the norm. A good example of the style.

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Monk's Café Flemish Sour Ale from Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
Beer rating: 3.86 out of 5 with 3,000 ratings