Wisconsin Belgian Red | New Glarus Brewing Company

BA SCORE
97
world-class
3,567 Ratings
Wisconsin Belgian RedWisconsin Belgian Red
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
New Glarus Brewing Company
Wisconsin, United States
newglarusbrewing.com

Style: Fruit / Vegetable Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 09-22-2001

BEER STATS
Ratings:
3,567
Reviews:
1,003
Avg:
4.36
pDev:
10.32%
 
 
Wants:
1,167
Gots:
816
For Trade:
91
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 3,567 |  Reviews: 1,003
Photo of kjkinsey
4/5  rDev -8.3%

Photo of t0rin0
4.25/5  rDev -2.5%

Photo of Knapp85
4.45/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Wow! Big thanks to TATURBO for this beautiful beer. The beer was perfect for the holiday weekend! This brew pours out as a nice looking brownish red color. The smell was of fresh cherry juice and a little bit of malt. The taste was wonderful, the cherries were sweet and just a little tart on the back end. Really well done flavor. The mouthfeel was nice, smooth and dry not a lot of carbonation. Overall the I found this beer to be damn near perfect, it's leaves a great impression on me and I'm very excited to try more from this brewery.

 540 characters

Photo of nmann08
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of oriolesfan4
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of BEERchitect
4.23/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

It's basically a desert. Every bit as full, thick, and rich as a Framboise. And must be sipped like one. The tart aromas become mouthpuckering immediately. Sweet cherry scents come across as vigorously as a Yankee Candle. Flavors are intese cherries. That's it. It's basically cherry puree. Maybe with a little belgian beer to thin it down to a drinkable level. All the flavors are worthy of a 5 rating. I just wish there were bigger 'beer' flavors in there to ease the drinkability. Very full and rich on the palate. Another savoury brew. Finishes very sweet and tart. Great taste, just less beer-like than I wanted.

 617 characters

Photo of SocalKicks
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of kojevergas
3.52/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

BOTTLE: 1 pint 9 fl oz. Green glass. Red wax-ed over iconic branded pry-off cap. Good label design. Courtesy of the very generous Duff27.

Served cold into a Cantillon flute at high altitude in Castle Rock, CO. Reviewed live as a Belgian red ale per the label, though its obvious fruit component is a big factor.

Allowed to come to temperature as it warms.

No bubble show forms as it's poured.

HEAD: ~1.5 inches wide. Pinkish white colour. Nice complexion. Not real thick or full. Retention is nice - round 4 minutes. Leaves no lacing as it recedes.

BODY: Clear vibrant deep red. Clean, with no visible yeast particulate or hop sediment.

Appears well-carbonated.

Overall, it's a nice looking red ale, but it's not stunning or unique. I recall the other New Glarus fruit beers looking brilliant; this pales in comparison.

AROMA: The dominant cherry is nice, but some North American drinkers will definitely note medicinal cough syrup character. Powdered white sugar. Very tart, to its benefit. The tartness plays well with the cherries - as least here in the aroma.

Aromatic intensity is average.

I find no oak character, roasted barley, wine, or hop notes (as mentioned on the label).

It's appealing overall, but I worry it will be medicinal.

TASTE & TEXTURE: Cherry rightly dominates, and is complemented beautifully by the soft powdery mouthfeel. The tartness plays off the cherry, delivering a gorgeous one-two punch of synergistic flavours, but I can't help but wonder if some souring bacteria additions would really set this off in a direction I'd love. It's beautifully balanced, though it does flirt with what some North American drinkers will associate with a medicinal or cough syrupy taste.

Balanced as it is, it's not the most intricate brew, and doesn't boast the level of nuance and subtlety that the other beers in this series do. Still, it's a lovely build for a fruit ale, and I'd definitely call it gestalt. That said, the ostensible Belgian character is lacking; nothing about this screams Belgian yeast.

I also find no oak - which is a missed opportunity - and no roasted barley (Belgian or otherwise) or overt hop character.

The mouthfeel is wonderful, boasting perfect carbonation, an ideal light to medium body, and perfect heft and weight on the palate for this kind of beer. It's sticky, sure, but not syrupy - which helps it avoid the pitfall of a medicinal cherry taste to me. Acidity is well above average.

Well put-together and enjoyable to drink.

The mouthfeel exceeds the taste in quality, and its excellent execution helps make the beer more expressive. Nice pairing of texture to taste.

OVERALL: It's a lovely albeit simple fruit ale from New Glarus that is devilishy easy to drink and pretty high in quality. That said, it's not the world-class offering the other New Glarus fruit beers are, and there are missed opportunities for increased intricacy and subtlety. I'll love putting this bottle down, but I don't think I'd buy it again if I had access to other better New Glarus beers. It's disappointing if only because I expected greatness given the brewery, but it's still a hell of a fruit ale, and always tastes like a beer - never a candy or fruit soda. Easily one of the better genuine fruit ales brewed in the U.S.A.

Enormous thanks to Duff27 for this long-time want.

Low B (3.52)

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Photo of brentk56
4.29/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a murky blood and russet color with a head that fizzes out quickly but does leave a few dots of lace

Smell: Maraschino cherries - extraordinarily powerful

Taste: After an initial touch of sweetness there arrives a blast of sour cherry that is very different than the maraschino aroma; after the swallow, the tartness is abated somewhat as the sweet and sour flavors blend into a lengthy finish

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with lively carbonation; puckering mouthfeel well into the finish

Drinkability: A fine after dinner sipper, although I am not crazy about the sweet elements in the flavor profile and would prefer a cherry taste more akin to the purple ones that arrive in the summer

Thanks, jrdegriselles, for the opportunity and to Schmittymack, for the chance to re-visit

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Photo of oline73
4.55/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured from a bottle into a goblet.

Appearance: Very red with a finger of off white head that leaves a ring around the edge of the glass.

Smell: Sweet and fruity, natural somewhat tart cherry.

Taste: Sweet and natural cherry, like carbonated cherry juice. Mildly sweet finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with mild carbonation and a slick finish.

Overall: A very nice fruit beer, like this slightly more than the raspberry. Surprisingly, not too sweet.

 452 characters

Photo of emerge077
3.91/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Gorgeous crimson red, pinkish pastel foam. Slightly murky and unfiltered, a little bit of spotty lacing sticks to the glass.

Smell is nice initially, pie cherry dominates, but then it starts smelling like a musty dishrag. Flinty minerals and attic must.

Sweet and vaguely tart, it's like a Chinotto spritzer but with pie cherry, definitely Door county in origin. Straight up cherry pie, crust and all, sweet cherry hard candy, with a soda spritzer level of carbonation. At the old brewery, this used to be aged in large oak foeders, not sure if that's still the case as it doesn't have much oak character at all. Mainly an apertif with cheese, or paired with a dense chocolate dessert. Not something to put down solo really, more of a crossover for wine cooler drinkers. Blends well with imperial stouts in small amounts.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
4.79/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle: Poured a clear light pink/red color ale with a huge bubbly head with average retention. Aroma of delicate sweet cherries is enchanting; I could spend hours smelling this beer. Taste is perfect with nice balance mix between naturally sweet cherries and malt. Subtle sourness at the end brings everything together for a perfect close. Carbonation is perfect for a fruit beer as well as carbonation and level of sweetness. Truly the best fruit beer I ever tasted.

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Photo of largadeer
3.93/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Ruby red, clear but hazy. The off-white head has a slight pinkish hue to it. Very good retention for a fruit beer.

Smell: Cherries abound, sweet and ripe. A hint of brown sugar and spice.

Taste & mouthfeel: Sweet and juicy, the cherries really take over this beer; it's like liquid cherry pie. Low acidity and very mild sourness. The malt backbone is soft, barely noticeable to my palate. Full-bodied yet spritzy. A clean finish without much residual sweetness makes this a lot more drinkable than most sweet beers, but the sweetness does still become taxing after a while. One glass is plenty, but it's one highly enjoyable glass.

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Photo of zeff80
4.2/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Shared this with fellow BA dertbert.

A - Poured into a champagne glass, a reddish orange hue with a small, white, soapy head. Really didn't leave any lace.

S - It smelled of cherry and malt. Somewhat sour aroma.

T - The cherry taste was very balanced. It could've been overdone but it was very smooth.

M - Mouthfeel was champagne-like, bubbly and crisp. It was light to medium-bodied.

D - This was really good. I generally have not enjoyed many cherry brews, but this was quite good. It even reminded me of a sparkling cider.

 541 characters

Photo of zestar
3.25/5  rDev -25.5%

Photo of LXIXME
3.79/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Thorpe429
4.08/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

G: Half poured into a brandy snifter and half poured into a flute, per the bottle's suggested glassware.

A: Beautifully bright dark cherry color with an off-white, red-tinted head that recedes rather quickly. Pretty decent lacing.

S: Sweet and tart cherries. Not that anyone outside of Chicago would recognize this reference, but it reminds me of the smell of a Jewel cherry lattice coffee cake, which in my book is a very good thing. Don't want to harp on this too much, but it's unbelievable how much cherry smell there is without at all smelling like cherry cough drops or medicine.

T: Quite tart at the outset, fading into an incredible cherry sweetness. Cherry perfection.

M: Light-bodied with moderate carbonation and a constant tartness. Beautiful.

D: Absolutely sublime. If I were able to get this at all times, I would never have a mimosa ever again. The perfect fruit-flavored concoction and a wonderful almost-summer treat. So long lawnmower ales, hello Wisconsin Belgian Red.

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Photo of mothman
4.6/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured into Bruery Snifter

Poirus 1/2 finger of pink hued creamy white head. Fades t a ring and has good retention. Leaves some nice lace walls. Color is a hazed raspberry hued brown. Very nice looking.

Aroma: The cherries are amazing. Some yeast, but mainly fruity. It is mainly tart and filled with fruits. Very fresh. It is pretty solid. Wow. The cherries are so amazing.

Taste: Fresh cherries (along with some other fruit flavors). I get some yeast here, but not a lot. A nice malt backbone. This beer is fresh and the fruit is amazing. It doesn't have a lot of flavors, but this beer is drinking great.

Mouthfeel: Smooth and refreshing. Medium bodied with a nice amount of carbonation. Ends a little dry and fruity, somewhat clean.

Overall, this beer is fantastic. I have had it multiple times and it always delivers. It is just so amazing. This is a beer I love to have access to. Very drinkable and it packs a huge fresh flavor.

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Photo of jlindros
4.42/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I'm really excited for this one. Probably should have drunken it earlier, but was saving it. Had a terrible day today, so figured it was a good time to crack it. THanks a bunch to kkipple for this beauty.

The bottle pops off with a loud ppppfffftttt... but no head rush. It pours with a reddish light fizzy head that barely covers the spread of the beer, with many big bubbles that pop their way down to almost nothing. THe beer itself consists of a rosy almost neon bright red, a whitened cranberry color, with a decent clarity.

The nose smells just like a candi cherry lollipop! Wow! It has some light tart sour cherry aroma, a bit of Bolotin cherry, and very slight Maraschino cherry, a light sour dry tart funk way in the background. I'm starting to feel dizzy and sugar high just from the aroma, but a bit of cherry cough syrup aroma also wafting out helps cure my sickness. A slight anise and peppermint are barley detectable, but there. A slight bit of vanilla and oak balance it a bit, but I can't really get any malts out of it.

Taste starts pretty much as I was expecting, bringing a sweet slap in the face, or kick to the glands at least. Tons more cherry of course, bringing more Bolotin cherry, but less Maraschino this time. Again more candy cherry lollipop, but a tart flavored one. A slight spicy acidic bite gives it some edge, a little lactic acid taste, followed by a creamy smooth malt, with a hint of vanilla and oak. A bit of a cherry cough syrup warms the mouth, and leaves it almost anesthetized, but also tingles and soothes the throat. A bit of a sticky sweet taste turns to a slightly dry and tingly acidic finish, with more lactic acid, and a really long cherry candy taste, and surprisingly not really flemmy. A slight bit more creamy oak feel very late on the finish, like a couple minutes later as the tartness and sweet candy cherry die down.

The mouth is medium bodied, good carbonation, with a bit of a tingly acidic bite. The carbonation helps air out the mouth between the tart, sweet, and acidic hits.

Drink is surprisingly well for all the craziness of this beer. Lots of bite from the tingly feel and acidic bits, but the carbonation and sweetness balance that, and the tart plus sweet candy flavors really give your mouth a rollercoaster ride it keeps wanting to board. It's like that kid who gets beat up on teh rollercoaster, but as soon as the ride ends he wants back on. I can barely put the glass down to type a sentence before I need to take the next sip. Sessionable.

 2,519 characters

Photo of ygtbsm94
4/5  rDev -8.3%

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.72/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Not much more needs to be said about New Glarus' Wisconsin Belgian Red. It's easily and without a doubt one of the best cherry beers in the world. It reeks of cherries, it tastes like cherries.... it is cherries! A pound per bottle, in fact. And it's completely authentic, there are no extract flavors here! It's rich and sweet and somewhat tart. And unlike some other examples (ie. Gluhkriek) it's not cloyingly sweet or too full-bodied to be enjoyed as anything more than a dessert beer. Excellent!

 500 characters

Photo of chinchill
4.58/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Large shared bottle.
Given that this is a fruit beer, it really couldn't taste any better.
The feel too is about perfect.
Aroma: cherry dominated. Appealing but a bit too much cherry candy in the nose.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.75/5  rDev -14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Acquired from brewcrew76, so a big Thank You goes out to him. Poured from a 25oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep ruby red color, with a short off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a decent lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of cherries, light malts, some Belgian yeast and a touch of hops.

T: The taste is sour with the strong tart flavor of cherries. There are light flavors in the background of Belgian yeast and a mild hops presence. There's a thin malt character but some sweetness does see its way through all of the sourness. The after-taste is tart and slightly sweet.

M: Smooth and crisp, light-to-medium body, medium carbonation, finish is clean and dry.

D: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, mild kick, the label tells me "You hold the marriage of wine and beer." I'll certain give it that. Although these kind of beers typically don't appeal to me, it's one of the better fruit-infused beers that I've had and I can definitely see where, if you're into this type of thing, you'd probably really like this beer.

 1,067 characters

Photo of Kurmaraja
4.19/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Wisconsin Belgian Red from New Glarus Brewing Company
4.36 out of 5 based on 3,567 ratings.
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