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: 109 | Ratings: 243
Photo of rtepiak
3.84/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

a rather big dent in the wallet but always something i wanted to try. when pop it was as if i was removing the cork on wine... the second time. no pressure either in or out of the bottle. the only bottle i've ever popped without a hiss what so ever. pour is the color of black currant juice... a dark dark reddish blue. although it was quite translucent. nose was wood the wonderful blending of currant. an herbal note of something meaty in the nose. funk like that of brie cheese skin and a bloody fruit. i can't believe i'm saying this but black forest ham or sorts. the taste of asparagus but in the small... if that even makes sense. palate falls short. it was very much so just an intense amount of tart and black currant flavor. there was some mineral wood interaction with the fruit that gives it a food palatable quality, but it was quite subtle. overall i would only have this if you're eating some sort of exquisitely cooked fish. seems like it would go well with a lemon butter sauce and aspargus.

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Photo of callmemickey
3.95/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4


A: Beautiful, deep reddish-purple body. Only the slightest ring of bubbles which appears to have been more from the turbulence of the pour rather than from its actual carbonation. No lacing. Has the appearance of a nice shiraz.

S: Delicious sweet and tart currants. Nice vinous qualities as well as some oak. Nice musty funk.

T: Like the nose this one definitely has a nice funkiness to it. The currants are a little more subdued and the vinous qualities are a little more expressive here. Nice tartness.

M: Basically still. Has the feel of a nice bold wine, which while pleasant, isn't quite what I'd like here. Nice tartness in the finish.

D: A very nice, and different lambic with the use of the currants. Not something I'd revisit regularly, but certainly worth a taste every few months or so.

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Photo of womencantsail
3.83/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle from the new release of this fine lambic product.

A: The pour is a really fantastic looking dark purple color with a small ring of bubbles from a somewhat aggressive pour. The beer is quite flat, however.

S: The nose is of wood and dark fruit. The currants aren't overly expressive and somewhat sweet, despite the way Hanssens lambics usually are. A nice funk to this one of hay and barnyard.

T: A lightly acetic sourness accompanied by a decent lactic sourness, too. Overall, though, not overly sour. Quite woody and dry with some very nice currant flavor and some hints of blackberries.

M: The beer is slightly slick on the tongue, with a medium body and complete lack of carbonation.

D: This is certainly not overly tart or aggressive in any manor, and it's quite easy to drink because of that.

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Photo of Docer
3.32/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Small bottle snagged by a buddy of mine at the beermongers... cork removed without much of a sound...

- Cloudy currants... like a pinot... light fizz... bit of a ring... low carbonation....

- Funky horse blanket.. sour tart currants... oak, earthy... meaty....

- Slight earthy funk... horse blanket, leather... rawhide.. little dirt and farm manure... slight currants... oaky woody notes for sure.. but way funky. A little more funky than I like.

- Thin, and dry like gin....

- Overall not a big fan... a little more funk than sour... certainly interesting.

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Photo of BARFLYB
3.99/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A bottle from TJ's Everyday split with Oglmcdgl and Scott.

A- Plum red with some dark berries in between. Out of the bottle and into the tulip, it was pretty apparent that this was flat or dead if you will. Just some large bubbles from the journey that faded into a dead calm. No lacing.

S- A very sour and berry forward beer. Oak in the back of a sour bomb basically. Not picking up any vanilla from the oak which is nice.

T- These guys really know how to work their barrels. My god this is sour, in a good way, I likes em like that. Curants and berry juice with a sour twang with oak in the middle finishing tart, not very malty, not really sweet.

M- Dead on the mouth and sour on the tounge.

D- I could use a few bubbles but most of what I had from this brewery has been like that so I guess that's what they are going for. For me though it kind of kills the need to drink more.

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Photo of oglmcdgl
3.77/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A bottle split with oni1agr, and scott for tj's. Thanks scott for the hook up.

A- pour still water flat and deep red purple in color.

S- tart and funky with a lead on the funk. Sour fruits and a mild sweetness.

T- super sour and funky. Loads of tart fruit, currants and lemon zest. Lots oak old wet wood and hay.

M- flat as marla the first girl I ever made out with. Less then medium in body with a huge pucker.

D- this is an interesting brew and I do mean it. Not a beer for everyone but if you like em sour you might get down on this funky jive.

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Photo of cpetrone84
3.03/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A-pours a dark purple colro with barely no head, of what comes up it is a light pink color.

S-the nose hits with a lot of funk, cheesy barnyard funk, notes of acetic acid, sweet fruits, currants, vinous oak, winey oak aromas.

T-the taste has much less funk but the cheese is there, light barnyard notes, quite acidic with notes of metal, sweet currants.

M-light body, not thin, soft smooth feel, barely any carbonation and a little dry in the finish.

D-this is funky but not great, a little metallic, lots of acetic acid and quite cheesy.

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Photo of hooliganlife
4.02/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

released and bought in 2009

pours a deep ruby purple with tons of depth. basically no head minus a few bubbles.

nice light sour berries with subtle vinegar and oak. lots of grape and lemon.

black currants it is. this has massive black currant flavor, just tons. black currants in the raw are quite sour so this fairs quite well. the currant flavor has a nice depth to it. light grapes and lemons linger from the back.

this makes lost abbey look carbonated. its flat, a bit thin but works well. there is a hint of bite in the back of the throat through the finish. quite dry, very wine like.

overall, this is great, lots of flavor with a rather balanced sourness. i would buy this again as i would love to see what 10 years can do.

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Photo of SFLpunk
4.58/5  rDev +23.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

375mL green glass cork and cage bottle. "Lotnr A."

Appearance: Beautiful red burgundy. No carbonation to speak of. Looks like a Zweigelt.

Nose: Earthy, meaty, oaky, rocks and gravel, black currant (of course). Aromas are more closely associated with a fine Bourgogne rouge than any other beer I've ever had. Golden raisins (props). Some funk, but not overwhelming.

Palate: Crisp and tart. Medium-light bodied and juicy. Flavors are centered around black raspberry and cassis, some meaty-earthiness, gravel or granite, tanned leather and something dense and green (like snow peas or green beans or sugar snap peas or fiddleheads). Finish is long and round and evolving. Not the most sour lambic, tart really.

Notes: If your are a fan of fine French bourgogne rouge, this is your beer. I draw more comparisons to pinot noir from a rocky vineyard than anything else.

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Photo of organicbrewer
4.09/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Ruby, bordering on purple. No head whatsoever (ok for a lambic). and slightly murky.

S-wet oak. Barnyard, some stomach acid. light currant aroma. No hops.

T-TART! Between the brett, bacteria, and fruit this is heartburn in a glass. Nice fruit flavor. Slight oak astringency. Some fruit pit nuttiness.

M-Bone dry. No carbonation. Tart! No alcohol burn. Slight astringency from the oak

D-Great for the super hot, muggy day that it is. It is on the tart/sour side of lamibics but that's ok. Just know that going in.

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Photo of JohnGalt1
4.02/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Ditmier cracked this gem at his house over the weekend... Thanks again Buddy!! I doubted I would ever have a chance to try this one.

Pours deep red with a definite orange hue.. No real head at all...

Tons of fruit and funk... smells pretty tannic.. currants run pretty deep and thick and a hefty blast of oak is there too... an acetic string runs through the nose throughout.

Flavor is a very tannic blast of bitter fruit skins and oak .... currants and hints of good balsamic add an illusion of sweetness, but really this is dry all the way through and then lactic notes suck the saliva from your cheeks on the finish .. dark cherries show on later pours... with warmth a perceived sweetness does really deliver and helps tie some of the stripping astringency together... also some bretty dank barnyard hay also shows.

Bubbles are few and far between... but they are there... more carbonation may have helped me wrap my palate around this one. A real thinker and a definite sipper... I had more than my fair share just out of the 375.

Man... I would love to score one of these to lay down for a year or two... Damn... on to the wants list you go.

Very interesting brew... you're a cool cat amigo... appreciated.


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Photo of gford217
4.12/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

375mL bottle.

Pours completely flat out of the bottle with nary a bubble to be found. The body is as a fairly murky ruby red.

The aroma is seriously funky with tons of barnyard aromas in addition to some vinegar. There is more than just the funk though as the sweetness of the fruit successfully fights through the funk.

The taste has a completely lip-puckering vinegar sourness up front with the earthy funk holding off until the finish. Honestly, there's more fruit than I was expecting from the aroma and the brown sugar and currants form a solid backbone under the brett.

The mouthfeel is extremely wine-like with a very dry and refreshing finish and almost no carbonation.

A very good lambic with a serious funk and acidic punch on tongue but with enough fruit to pull it off. Good stuff and extremely refreshing.

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Photo of Halcyondays
4.27/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12.7 oz. bottle at Beachwood, 6% ABV, great Old World label,

A: Pours burgundy, wine like colour, red-purple with a smattering of bubbles, beautiful fruit shades.

S: Great Brett/horse blanket funk hits immediately, with notes of black currant and dark fruit.

T: A funky yeasty beer upfront with heavy fruit, but not sweet. Left Bank Bordeaux type cassis flavours mid-palate, ending with a heavy apple cider/dark vinegar flavour which is quite enjoyable. Classic Brett undertone.

M: Flat pretty much in the carbonation department, but that's the deal with a lot of lambics. The acidity is strong and the beer has a real tart/tannic finish which I really liked. Some carbonation would have improved this aspect, but it's not all bad. Very mild residual sweetness, off-dry I'd say.

D: I've never seen this available in stores, and frankly I don't know how old it is. But this a true treat for the lambic fan, I certainly enjoyed delving into this beauty on a so far uneventful Valentine's Day.

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Photo of Sammy
4.05/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Lateral cassis tasting, with Kuhnenn to smooth the tongue. This one is vinegary and woody, the cassis is there, its a sipper but very good for what it is. Pours dark berry colour, with no head whatsoever. Nice winter night beer.Above average mouthfeel.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.23/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours a light burgundy-hued body with, despite a heavy, hearty pour no real head formation.

Smell: Fairly funky. Rotted, molded, decayed oak wood barrels filled with skins-on black currents and pickling salt. A tad phenolic and sweaty.

Taste: A true, albeit mild taste of black currants, skins and all. Tiny pinch of sea salt. A small handful of compost soaked in vinegar. A rattling jolt of lactic sourness that instantly puckers the mouth, followed by an uppercut of astringent oaken tannins. Flat, acidic finish.

Mouthfeel: Light-bodied. Sans carbonation. The typical puckering mouthfeel one would expect.

Drinkability: Well, it could've certainly benefited from some carbonation. My second Hanssens lambic and, again, I just didn't really dig it. Such is the way with beers and experiments, I suppose.

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Photo of aerozeppl
4.04/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Glorious deep red color with no head. Looks like cranberry juice. That sounds bad but this beer looked great.

S:Lots of oak. Little bit of currant. Kind of a tight nose.

T: Get the grapes with a little bit of lacto as well with a touch of vinegar. Finishes a little bit tart.

M: Very light body. Almost no carbonation.

D: Very light and refreshing. They really do know how to make a good lambic. Thanks to dmeadows for sharing.

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Photo of hoppymcgee
3.58/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled at Brett Fest at Spuyten Duyvil in Brooklyn, NY in August 2009.

Approx. a 6 oz. pour from a 375ml bottle.

A: A dark and cloudy burgundy color.

S: Toasted tuna fish sandwich. Weird, I know.

T: Roasted chestnuts at the front, blueberries and raspberries in the middle and a "Warhead" type finish that explodes with Brett.

M: Smooth, just like you would expect a lambic to be.

D: A little too tart to drink a lot of, but some people enjoy that.

Overall, an "experimental" beer for sure. There was a lot going on, but I think needs a little more age to get that complexity you'd find in a Cuvee de Tomme.

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Photo of ffejherb
3.79/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12.7oz. bottle on 11/23/09. Thanks to FooFaa for sharing this rarity with a small group of us!

A - Appeared from the bottle as a hazy, unfiltered red raspberry-colored liquid with literally no head or carbonation. Very nice color, but that's about it.

S - Woosh! Like a bowl of sour fruit... think intensely tart cherries wrapped in week-old band-aids. Surprisingly, I didn't find the aroma to be as off-putting as I had anticipated, especially given my fair-weathered fandom of this particular style. The aroma is rounded out by plenty of dry, oaky tannins and astringent notes.

T - The aroma sets you up for an extremely sour, tart affair, but what rolls across the tastebuds isn't nearly as extreme as I was expecting. Sure, this is indeed a sour beer, but not overly so, and blends tart black cherries, berries and dark fruit quite eloquently.

M - Medium bodied with a dry, acidic finish. While not very carbonated, the sourness just envelopes the palate resulting in a mondo pucker fest.

D - Fruity and sour with lots of woody oak dryness, this is quite a complex sour beer that is surprisingly more drinkable than I would have thought.

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Photo of akorsak
3.19/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to FooFaa for sharing this 375 mL corked and caged bottle.

A: The bottle opened without a pop - clearly an ominous sign. In my glass, the lambic had a dark red/purple hue that could go down either of the cherry or currant avenues. A wispy band of foam indicated more carbonation than initial opening let on.

S: The nose is disgusting. A rank combination of old sneakers, smegma and fromunda cheese, and other such nastiness. Seriously, this is ranker than many bleu cheeses that I've encountered. Stink! I like a bit of funk but this is just too damned much.

T: Luckily the body of the lambic is nothing like the nose. The gross funk is gone, replaced by a bone dry body that has been sucked dry of nearly all residual sugars. A mild fruit flavor is evident but it lacks oomph. The lack of carbonation is very apparent, allowing the tart funk to sit around and gather dust in my mouth. Barnyard and horseblanket accurately describe the flavor, which would benefit from just a little more in the cassis department. Surprisingly, the finish isn't that bad (not much funk lingers).

M: The mouthfeel is decent but you have to get past the aromas, which are much tougher and bolder than anything I've ever encountered. That's some serious funk.

D: Interesting and very authentic. I don't see myself having more than one glass though.

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Photo of seaoflament
3.87/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had the opportunity to try this beer on Oct. 31st. Thanks to my buddy Kyle for sharing this one.

Poured a violet with shades of dark red, almost like the color of coagulated blood. The beer sits pretty flat but has a very attractive color.

A burst of cassis on the nose, berries, and a great funk profile. Horse blanket, sweat, hints of pineapple, oak tannins, vinous notes, and grapes.

Unfortunately, the taste didn't measure up to the aroma for me. High vinegar flavor upfront, followed by berries, very fruity with some sweetness in the end. The funk is a bit more reserved than the aroma. I would have preferred if it was a bit more balanced and not so acetic. A tad syrupy and thick on the palate, no carbonation and it feels heavy on the tongue and stomach. A bit filling as well. Not a bad beer at all, wouldn't mind having again, maybe some age will balance it out as it dries out over time.

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Photo of DefenCorps
4.05/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle shared with the usual chumps this past weekend

Brilliantly clear cassis-colored crimson pour, almost blood like. No head, but the very metal color gets it some points. The nose has plenty of currant character with some cherry and strawberry character. Funk is low, probably washed out by the strong fruit character, as well as the prominent acetic character.
The palate opens sour and acetic with a beautiful fruit character, a ton of cassis, strawberry and black berries. Mid palate is dominated by acetic acid, but the fruit character is excellent. Drying on the finish, there's a lot of vinegar and fruit present. Medium in body, and low in carbonation, this beer is great on the palate. I've always loved the Hanssens beers, and I'm looking forward to trying this again.

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Photo of BarrelO
4/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2oz bottle poured into a stange.

Purple body without much of a head. Smell is incredibly tart with just a bit of dark berries. Taste is of vinegar and funk with tart dark berries lingering in the background to balance everything out. Leathery aftertate which seems to be a Hanssens trademark. I don't really know if making a lambic with blackcurrants is enough to warrant the title of "experimental." It's a fine sour, though.

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Photo of HopHead84
4.27/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle shared by floydster on 10/31/2009. Thanks Kyle. The beer pours near still and burgundy. The few bubbles that materialize are from the result of a hard pour.

The nose is a Brett assault with musty and musky barnyard, goaty, wet leather, and horse blanket. This is unbridled funk. Currant and dark berry notes are strong, and I get a moderate amount of acetic acid. The nose is outstanding.

The flavor opens funky and stays funky throughout. Lactic notes are present in the flavor, though I didn't detect them in the nose. The flavor is every bit as funky as the aroma, with notes of musty barnyard and horse blanket. The cassis is ripe and ready for picking. Though, it's sour, so maybe it's not quite ripe. It could probably use a few more weeks, but it's damn good in this beer. The beer has a moderate acidity and a low level of vinegar with wood notes. The beer could use a little more carbonation, but that's my only complaint. This is delicious stuff.

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Photo of Travlr
4.25/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Very dark purple with only six bubbles, all of which lasted less than a second. Aroma of fresh fruit and a bit of must, faint barnyard. Taste starts with blackcurrant, very dry, moderately sour. Hints of vanilla. Finishes with more fruit and some mustiness. Complex. Would love to see it age.

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Photo of mikey711
4.12/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a bottle of this last week.

A: nearly purple without any light getting through and NO carbonation at all. I like the color but other aspects of this should be better

S: Earthy and very berry fruitiness with plenty of sourness and barnyard funk.

T: Lots of tart berries with funk and wood notes that are very easy to sip. A bit of vineagar is present at well.

M: It is much milder than most sours and it leaves a nice coasting in my mouth. The sourness is very pleasant and fruity.

D: Maybe this was exactly what I was in the mood for, but it really hit the spot. I was able to sip on the bottle for a long time and the fruity flavors were great!

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Hanssens Experimental Cassis from Hanssens Artisanaal bvba
3.71 out of 5 based on 243 ratings.
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