The 2011 version of the Rodenbach Vintage just landed on the west coast, just in time for a last minute Christmas gift option for the beer lover in your life! Rodenbach is the famed Flemish Red Sour Ale producer. Their Vintage is near the top of their line of products. While the two main beers they brew are blends of various ages, the Vintage is a straight 2 year-old beer from a single Foeder!
While the goal of the blends is to create a consistent product with a “house” flavor, the Vintage line allows the brewer/blender to select a beer of unique and singular character. Most of the time, the beer from the various Foeders will need various aspects of other foeders mixed together to create a great tasting product, but everyone once in a while a single foeder will produce beer that can truly stand on its own to create an amazing beer. This is the case with Rodenbach’s Vintage program. Vintage 2011’s foeder is no. 95.
Appearance: Hazy red-brown, tan head, ok retention.
Aroma: Cider vinegar, soy, cherries, sherry vinegar, Balsamic, lemon, brown sugar, “savory” notes.
Taste: Cider vinegar, balsamic, sour cherries, currants, Brett undertones, faint chocolate notes, rice vinegar, cinnamon, cloves.
Overall Impression: Nicely sour with a long finish, Rodenbach Vintage 2011 is even deeper and more complex than the Vintage 2010. It has a good acidic kick and a super spicy finish. At around $20 retail, this beer is still a bargain when you consider many comparable American sours are around $30 and probably lack a lot of the depth this beer has. Truly an outstanding example of the art of sour beer making!
Availability: Highly limited at better beer stores, imported by Latis Imports.