Thursday, December 15, 2011
Rodenbach Grand Cru Roeselare Ale
Rodenbach Grand Cru, a sour-style Roeselare ale from Rodenbach Brewery, poured a deep, dark brown with mild carbonation floating to a foamy sand-colored head. The nose carried sweet and sour peaches, strawberry, and just a hint of sour funk.
Rodenbach Grand Cru hit the palette like liquid strawberry-rhubarb pie filling. More sweet than sour, tart berries and a bit of peach came through as the ale warmed in the mouth, and the funky notes in the nose were only present enough to cut a bit of the sweetness. The ale ended on a lingering strawberry fade.
Rodenbach Grand Cru is every bit worthy its reputation and asking price. Grand Cru is one of the most approachable (and least tart) of the sour ales I have tried, but manages to miss the overly sugary, two-dimensional aspect of many lambics with the soft tartness and a bit more yeast complexity. I will be buying more of this soon!
I had the Rodenbach 2007 Vintage Oak Aged Ale earlier this summer, and while it was nice, it fell a little short of the standard Grand Cru offering... it was getting a bit soft and most of the fruit flavors had faded, but I'm not sure one could expect any different from a four year old ale. Both were great, but Grand Cru is king.