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:
#10,851
Reviews:
1,159
Ratings:
3,000
pDev:
13.21%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
96
Gots:
472
Trade:
5
HISTOGRAM
 
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,000 |  Reviews: 1,159
Photo of Pahn
2.29/5  rDev -40.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

11.2oz bottle into a wine glass. Illegible code on it might tell someone when it was bottled, but it doesn't tell me anything.

Appearance: Free pour yields a 3/4 inch fluffy white head that dissipates steadily leaving swatches of lacing along the side of the glass (as does the beer itself). Pours a semi-translucent brownish red.

Smell: Very sweet. Sort of a candy, Belgian yeast smell, along with clove, fig, and off-putting funk and phenolic notes.

Taste: Sweet and funky but very unpleasantly chalky and bitter (also unpleasant is the fact that it isn't at all sour). Some disgusting notes lurking around, similar to nutrasweet. There's some clove and raisin, but mainly it tastes like sickly sweet medicine, or a thin Belgian dubbel that's gone bad. Some cologne-like notes and cinnamon. At its best, a sip is "not good, not terrible," while at its worst I want to pour the beer into a toilet.

Mouthfeel: On the thinner side of medium bodied, low carbonation, semi-dry finish.

Drinkability: The best I can say for this beer's drinkability is that I was able to finish this 11.2oz bottle.

The label mentions a mildly lactic sourness and a sweet and sour finish. In fact, the word 'sour' is used 5 times in the 3 sentence description. For some strange reason I expected the beer actually to be sour... instead it's sort of like a chalky, oily, Belgian dubbel soda (gone mostly flat) with a bunch of aspartame and cough medicine poured into it. Bad.

Since I generally don't like slamming a beer, I'll point out as a postscript that this brewery does make good beer, for example Augustijn Ale, which I gave a solid A (including a 4.5 score for taste) in my review of it. I hated Monk's Cafe however.

 1,709 characters

Photo of mcallister
2.31/5  rDev -40.2%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

Murky burnt opaque raspberry lavender. Small white quick to fade head leave some faint lacing. Not too appetizing.

Violet, sour cherry, yeasty, burnt dried berry varieties, hints of wheat germ, other tart fruits and a odd sweetness follow up the aromas.

Very weak flavors and laid back. Balance is non existent, and just a wretched lack of depth. Hints of strawberry and raspberry, bitterness is mild and really hurt this beer. Mouthfeel is thin and weak and there is virtually no length to the finish.

 508 characters

Photo of Doomcifer
2.37/5  rDev -38.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

Appearance - pours an extremely murky/ruddy brown color with slight mahogany hues when held to light. Slight head that fades away quickly.

Smell - Smells like balsamic vinegarette, sweet, tart,

Taste - Extremely sour, taste is there in the background, kinda bland, and is overshadowed by the extreme sourness.

Mouthfeel - light bodied, champagne-like carbonation.

Drinkability - I couldn't take more than one of these. One is more than enough.

 448 characters

Photo of macpfb03
2.4/5  rDev -37.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Photo of joshkouri
2.42/5  rDev -37.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Photo of AgentMunky
2.45/5  rDev -36.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a 33cL bottle into a brandy snifter. Stamped 08KK 17:46.

A: A finger and a half of rich head bubbles and collapses on itself fairly quickly. The beer is barely translucent mahogany brown.

S: Poop, metal, dead skunk, and spoiled wine. This is utterly abysmal. The worst smelling beer of all time? It has not a single redeeming feature.

T: I don't like it...I wonder if something is the matter. The first 2/3 of the flavor is metallic, thin, sour, and poor. However, the last third of the taste really opens up. Fruit (grape soda), wine, tasty sourness, and candy sweetness. The aftertaste is lingeringly (sour) yeasty and perhaps the best aspect of the beer.

M: Smooth (like juice) with a tinge of carbonation. Decent. Grape juice is a recurring theme.

O: I am a pretty generous reviewer, but this is just...unacceptable. Maybe it's better on tap? At any rate, definitely NOT recommended. I will never drink this beer again.

 940 characters

Photo of 2ellas
2.46/5  rDev -36.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Photo of bulldogg915
2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

Photo of SmellsofMahagony
2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

Photo of campfirebrew
2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

Photo of ravot
2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

Photo of josephwa
2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

Photo of MasterEzra
2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

Photo of TubaDan
2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

Photo of denver10
2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

Photo of attometer00
2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

Photo of JimKal
2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

Photo of jophish17
2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

Photo of Johnny69
2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

Photo of tatums1984
2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

Photo of jimmygord
2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

Photo of gcotts
2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

Photo of Mavajo
2.51/5  rDev -35%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

Pours a deep mahogany, reddish color with a mild eggshell head. Aroma of vinegar and cherries. Not bad, but something just seems "off" about it. The taste is tart with a vinegar sourness, backed up by big cherry notes and hints of apple. Sweet. Big, big carbonation that tingles all across your mouth. Clean after-taste and cleanses the palate pretty well. I'm sure the huge carbonation has a had in that. I'm perplexed by some of the reviews that mention "mild carbonation" -- this is one of the most overcarbonated beers that I've ever experienced. If you try to swish it around, you end up with a mouth full of fizzy foam.

There's something just cheap about the aroma/taste on this one, and the over-the-top carbonation just really kills it. Reminds me of a Lindemans/Cheerwine blend, pumped full of carbonation. Seems more like a sparkly wine cooler than a beer.

 867 characters

Photo of BMMillsy
2.54/5  rDev -34.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours dark red with a fizzy head that recedes quickly. Smell is faint and not what I wad expecting. Smells like a weak dubbel or belgian strong dark. Not much sour on the nose. Flavor tastes like carbonated artificial cherry drink. No real sour flavor to be found. Not what I wanted, and rather disappointing. Finishes as clean as a Bud Light. Doesn't taste terrible, but misses the bar as a beer. Maybe okay as an energy drink or coming out of a Capri Sun package. Wtf is this?

 478 characters

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