Hanssens Experimental Cassis | Hanssens Artisanaal bvba

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Hanssens Experimental CassisHanssens Experimental Cassis

Brewed by:
Hanssens Artisanaal bvba

Style: Lambic - Fruit

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Ale brewed with black currants and matured in oak barrels.

Added by JohnQVegas on 03-01-2009

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Reviews: 112 | Ratings: 249
Photo of brewandbbq
3.78/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

375ml bottle.

No pop from the cork and a stretch-pour kicked up only a few large bubbles on the surface. Ugh, a $14 flat beer. Dark purple, murky body with a placid surface and zero lacework for the duration.

Aromatics lead off with soured dark fruits and heavy barnyard. Currants, goats breath, horse blanket, fecal matter, and diaper.

Light bodied with a flat mouthfeel and a bit watery. Thinnish and dull.

Tart currants with lemon-spritzed hay start the palate. A moderate amount of bright acid pulls through along with hints of raspberries and grapeskins.

Finishes with lingering sour fruit, oaky tannins, and a crisp tartness.

Very tasty beer. The currants are more subdued than I had hoped but I'm sure the lack of any carbonation doesn't help.

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Photo of mlazzaro
4.32/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

375 ml cork and cage "lotnr a" labeled as being 6%ABV. raspberry colored trim on label.

no carbonation. pours a murky plum color. No head. Actually my first still lambic - which is historically accurate for the style. I'm under the impression that the Geuze was the only traditionally carbonated Belgian sour.

smells sour, seriously complex Brettanomyces character. A dark musky Brett which is not what I am used to. -Actually smells acidic. Slight dark fruit finish. Really interesting. I'm surprised it has so much of an aroma even though it isn't carbonated.

Taste is similar to smell. Tastes very well aged. Can't perceive any malt flavor. Initial flavor goes straight into sour funk - wild yeast. (Fruit->Sour->Oak->Brett). Black Currant is tannic and sharp enough of a flavor to compete against intense wild yeast character. Tannins leave a coating mouthfeel (which I think is a good thing). Moderate fruit aftertaste.

Thin body as expected. Highly acidic, really packs a punch. Sourness lingers a bit. Better as I sip on and my palate adjusts bit.

I was really worried after reading some of the reviews. But this is awesome lambic. It might have been a good bottle, or properly aged and stored. I noticed many of the more positive reviews were from my immediate area.

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Photo of metal850
3.06/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 3

A: No head even with a strong pour, color is deep red with pink highlights.

S: It reeks in a good way, horse sweat and damp basement a bit of acetic sourness, along with a great wine barrel smell from the combination of oak and grapes.

T: Taste like a sweeter fruitier version of what it smells, although not as strong.

M: No carb and a little thin, disappointing.

O: Would be a good lambic if it had any carb.

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Photo of zaphodchak
2.14/5  rDev -42%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Lot number A

Garnet body, no head, no lacing, no nothing.

Smells... bad. Bretty and sour, sure... but uriney. For a lambic, offensive smells dominate the currant.

Taste is not much better. After several sips, I can reconcile that it has a red currant base, but it's waterier (which is just as well because they're so sour to begin with). There's some dull, musty taste on it as well that I can't quite place, sort of bitter.

Mouthfeel is flat, thin, doesn't help it at all.

This is kinda like red currant juice that someone left out (or in this case, in bretty oak barrels) for too long. One of the most expensive beers I've bought recently by volume, but probably the worst. If this was an experiment, I would tentatively call it a failure. I can't help but wonder if I got a skunked one somehow. Did the currant juice kill the yeast, maybe?

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Photo of rhoadsrage
4.3/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

(Served in a tulip)
Lotar: A
A- This beer pours a slightly hazy dense glowing deep cranberry body with a few little bubbles turning into a wisp of microscopic bubbles attempting a head.

S- The tart musty note has a bright wet wood note to it and a very clean currant hint.

T- The sharp bright tartness has a rhubarb vegital tartness and a wet wood with some black currant notes that grow as the beer warms. There is a tartness in the finish that sticks to the tongue as it lingers. Some white cheese rind and brett character comes through in the finish aswell.

M- This beer has a medium-light mouthfeel with a soft astringent pucker that coats the mouth and a slippery texture.

O- The tart character and musty fruit notes blend with a really old barrel quality. There is a full bright tartness but lots of other character comes through in layers underneath it.

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Photo of perrymarcus
2.45/5  rDev -33.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

12.7 corked and caged bottle served in an oversized wineglass.
no freshness info. (ABV 6%)

pours a murky dark purple shade wth the complete absence of a head. lackluster pop from the cork hinted at that.

nose is decent. very tart smelling with strong notes of funk and yeast. my mouth is puckering just from the aroma.

flavor is a letdown. the funky and yeast are there with the currants, but just over the top tart/sour; very dry. not enjoying this one.

medium bodied mouthfeel with virtually zero carbonation.

overall this was $14 down the drain, pretty literally. will not buy again.

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Photo of tempest
3.53/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Grabbed a $14 bottle to share with friends. After popping the cork, the ale poured a flat purple-ish red with a few bubbles but no head. I suppose a true lambic isn't carbonated, so this is right on.

I was hoping for more flavors to jump out, but relatively speaking it was a bit dull for a fruit sour, especially compare to a fruit gueuze. There was a very earthy, bread crust undertone with a grape (or really cassis) jam character and then a citric sour bite. I can't say it wasn't interesting, but I wouldn't buy it again.

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Photo of DosBeerigos
2.96/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

C: Cloudy
H: Pink/Purple

Well again big thanks to The Cerveza Chica for snagging this bottle for me on her last trip to Chicago.

This is a hard beer to drink, not because it is sour, but because it smells like straight up dirty diaper shit. Nasty, Funky, Just Down Right GROSS. Get past the smell, let it breathe a bit, and this is a damn fine Lambic. I prefer more acidic qualities, but this was a nice blend of sweet and sour.

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Photo of mwa423
2.77/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A - Pours a dark and slightly hazy ruby red with little head.

S - Yeasty and funky with a strong fruity aroma there is a sour bite even in the aroma.

T - The taste is far more understated than the aroma would suggest. There is lots of fruity flavors but also some band aide with a bit of tart and sour notes.

M/D - Mouthfeel was dead flat, had the same mouthfeel as water, so quite unpleasant. This again an experiment...that probably shouldn't be repeated.

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Photo of Urbancaver
2.31/5  rDev -37.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours a very Pretty pinkish red. No head to speak of. Cmpletely flat. Smells like ass. Total garbage. Smells so so bad. Tastes funky and fruity. Really unimpressive. Other than having no carbonation it has a decent mouthfeel. Okay drinkability but overall really unimpressive

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Photo of beachbum1975
3.59/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a midly cloudy blood red with grapefruit mixed. Head retention doesn't last long.

Smells like dog shit. Sorry, I wish I had finer words to describe this beer, but I really don't. Nasty like a basement with mustiness and mold and old growth. Astringency.

Flat mouthfeel. Taste reflects the nose.

Hated the body on this one, but I'd have again.

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Photo of brew3crew
1.29/5  rDev -65%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

A- looks like cherry koolaid. No head whatsoever
S-wow. I have to say this is one of the worse/funkiest smells I have ever had. I don't even want to drink this. And yet, I solider on...
T-wow. This is like rotten cherries only sour. How the f is this rated so high. This HAS to be a bad bottle
M-medium bodied and undrinkable.
D- zero. Poured taste out.

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Photo of Patrick999
4/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This lambic pours still, and looks as mysteriously purple as acai juice. Opaque purple. A sinister-looking "beer" that could hold its own appearance-wise with some wines.

Holy crap, that *smells* sour. I know Experimental Raspberry was incredibly sour and funky, so this isn't that surprising to me. This seems to smell less funky than the framboise, though - it just has that nose-curling sour aroma and a lot of currant. Almost a little aroma I can only describe as flowery, as it warms.

Yup, the level of sour is high here, but not as much so as the Raspberry. The sour currant flavors and wood are still very puckering. Some vinegar, but mostly sour currants. Unlike some fruit lambics, the fruit actually does come through loud and clear here. It's not so austere dry/sour/funky that you can't really distinguish the fruit, this is certainly cassis you're tasting.

Limp, smooth mouthfeel, what you'd expect from a still lambic.

Less complicated than the Experimental Raspberry, but still one that requires some contemplation and patience. If anything, I'm slightly disappointed that this doesn't seem to have as much of the crazy signature Hanssens funk. Still, this brewery is known for its uncompromising balls-to-the-wall lambics, and this isn't an exception. I am enjoying it, though I am doing so slowly.

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Photo of olympuszymurgus
1.34/5  rDev -63.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

Cork slid out easily with no noise, no carbonation. Not low carbonation, bit completely still.

Smell is of rotting fruit(good) and acetone(bad). It really is dominated by the acetone, nothing enjoyable about it.

The taste is a little tart fruit, a sweetness and amazing amounts of, you guessed it, acetone.

I let the glass sit for about an hour, tried it again. I'm having a hard time powering though this, and end up dumping the last bit out. I will have a hard time drinking, let alone buying, another one of these again.

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Photo of JBIII
1.79/5  rDev -51.5%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

This was one of the worst lambic beers I have ever had. It's tastes of composting fruit, rotting wood and sandalwood. It's very tart and acidic.

Definitely exhibits qualities of wild yeast. Which although, common for this type of beer, yields too many inferior flavor and aroma profiles.

Maturing in oak barrels seems to have only added notes of inferior wood and seems inappropriate for this beer style.

At 13+ dollars for a 12.7 fl oz bottle, you'd be wasting your money. Unless you are looking for a cheap way to punish yourself without showing signs of bruising.

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Photo of Beerenauslese
3.87/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Body is a hazy dark red. No pop when the cork was removed, carbonation is very low, producing just a ring of bubbles and no lacing.

Has a good lambic aroma, with malt with a little wild yeat funkiness and concentrated fresh cassis fruit flavor.

Taste is lightly malty, tart, with a nice fresh cassis berry flavor. There is a little wild yeast funkiness, but not extreme. Very dry and a little spiciness in the long finish.

Body is light and with no carbonation, the mouthfeel is flat. Since many lambics are that way--but generally not the fruit lambics--I'll just rate this as average.

This has a good taste and the ABV is low, both of which make it more drinkable. While tart, that is a welcome change from the many cloyingly sweet fruit beers that have been produced in Belgium in recent years. However, I find the lack of carbonation a disappointment that reduces its appearance and drinkability. Nevertheless, it is a beer that might start a session or be pared with food.

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Photo of muttyd
4.12/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep ruby red with a bubbly pinkish white head. Little to no lacing and appears rather still. Funky (barnyard, yeast, and wet wood), fruity (blueberries, raspberries), and oaky. The aroma is absolutely amazing. Never having a black currant before, this beer has a strong blueberry flavor. Flavor is also full of funk, wood, and some earthy notes. I rarely like to compare beers to other beers in my reviews, but this beer was very reminiscent of Blabaer from Cantillon. Very sour throughout with a mouthwatering astringent finish. Leaves a slightly metallic feeling on the palate as well. Very enjoyable beer.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.97/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a deep red color lambic with a tiny bubbly head with no retention and no lacing. Aroma of barnyard and funky notes is quite powerful. Taste is also dominated by loads of barnyard and wet leather notes with nice tart cassis and some sour and light acid notes. Body is about average with no carbonation. Very complex beer with no sugar notes and loads of lambic really coming through even though cassis are still discernable.

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Photo of craytonic
3.42/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Near-still pour, a bit darker than I expected, like a date or dried fig.

Smell: Nice fruits and must, light vinegar and french oak

Taste: Dates, currants and figs, barnyard funk, rich leather and oak. There is a cheap red wine element to it as well, almost sangria. Not that sour either.

Mouthfeel: Near flat and very dry, I wish it had a bit of carbonation. A big negative here, I like certain still beers but not this one.

Drinkability: I finished it rather quickly, but honestly it was because I wanted to move onto something else.

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Photo of nniicckkww
3.15/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Poured from 375 ml bottle with cork. No carbonation whatsoever. Murky purple grapejuice color with no head. The beer is still as can be. Smell is of barnyard, dirty diaper and some rotten grape. Very sour up front. Fruity character that quickly dissipates as the sourness takes over. Very funky. Tart and mouth puckering. I understand the beer is intentionally still, but i cant help but think that some lively carbonation would make this outstanding.

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Photo of Onibubba
2.96/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Little to no pop of the cork. Pours a grape juice still body with the faintest of lacing. OK...I have never noticed the "diaper" aroma before on a lambic or wild beer, but this has it going in spades. This smells like pure feces, quite literally. Yeah, there is some rotten fruit, but the prevailing aroma is pure undadulterated shit. Dare I take a sip? For fifteen bucks, the answer is yes. Musty and sour, with an almost crisp fruit follow up - blueberry pancakes and syrup. Nice, but that smell. Honestly, this is borderline putrid. Body is painfully thin and still, with absoutely no carbonation. Drinkabilty is passible...If you hold your nose. Consider this purchase carefully...

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Photo of ccrida
3.58/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle (lot A) pure into a flute, Experimental Cassis is near still, with only a few big bubbles when I poured the second half aggressively, with only a hint of an off-white collar. Beer is murky purple.

Smell is super funky, maybe the dirtiest lambic I've ever smelled, this one is massive dirty diaper, sour, a hint of lemon zest, but really just strait feces. Whoa. I'm, uh, impressed? After some air, I get a hint of berry.

Taste is also super funky, dirty ass brett, moderate tartness, little to no fruit flavor, super bracing mineraliity. This one is so acidic that it's giving me acid reflux. I'd never thought I'd had beer that was too funky, but this one...wow!

Mouthfeel is bone dry, acidic, light bodied.

Drinkability is not to high. This is a really funky beer, and while it has a characteristic that begets another sip for quenching, and is incredibly expressive, I'm not sure I can have more then one at a time, and due to rarity and price, wouldn't anyways.

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Photo of Neffbeer
4/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

poured from 375ml bottle into a tulip:

A: No head and no carbonation. For the style that is not necessarily out of the ordinary. Dark purple that reveals a light ruby hue when held up to the light. Gorgeous.

S: Funky and sour right out front. There are berries, oak, musty funk and dirty hay. Smells like a sour barnyard in a good way.

T: Pucker up, this is a really sour and delicious beer. The sourness gives way to the currants and berries with a touch of oak in the finish. Bone dry and tart at the end.

M: The mouthfeel is a little thin due to the lack of carbonation.

D: I have really enjoyed getting a chance to taste this wonder. A great take on the style that I would recommend highly.

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Photo of timtim
4.5/5  rDev +22%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

mesmerizing purplish red with no head, which is pretty much like all hanssens beers i've had, so i won't give it a 5, but i think rating it low since it doesn't have a pretty head and lots of lace is absurd. anyways... i get wet rock and funk (wet wool, manure, barn) first in the nose. sort of surprising because i expected a super tart and fruity nose. the fruit and acid are there, but they are pleasantly subdued, divinely juicy and wrapped up in a nice oaky package. taste is just joyously balanced with signature hanssens funk and juicy, fruity flavor wound up and amped up by an awesome woody acid tartness. clean flavor with an acidic finish and fruity (almost grape-like) aftertaste. pure. defined flavors. soft and silky medium body with no tingle to it. underrated for sure. amazing. a must for lambic/wild ale fans imho. thank you hanssens for keeping this wonderful tradition alive.

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Photo of berkey
3.99/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

375ml bottle reviewed from a tulip glass 12/03/10. Cork is released with exactly zero 'pop'.

Pours a muddy dark reddish purple color reminiscent of sangria. Forms absolutely no head and good share of sediment found it's way into the glass even with a careful pour. Appears flat at first but some active fine carbonation can be seen upon close inspection.

Aroma consists mostly oak and wine but altogether less fruity than I expected. Actually this is not far off the aroma I remember from the Oude Gueuze bottled by the same blender.

Based on my experience with the Kriek and the previously mentioned Oude Gueuze from Hanssen's the flavor isn't as intense as I was expecting. Dry, woody, sour, funky and acid on the entry but relatively mellow after that. Fruity currant flavors are buried in the aftertaste but linger well after each sip and become more obvious toward the end of the tasting. Surprisingly balanced and easy to drink.

Very nice lambic but not personally it's probably not worth a second bottle; especially with the high price tag. Next time I go Hanssen's I'll likely stick with the Oude Gueueze.

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Hanssens Experimental Cassis from Hanssens Artisanaal bvba
3.69 out of 5 based on 249 ratings.
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