Brewery: Brouwerij Van Honsebrouck N.V., (Castle Brewery), Ingelmunster, Belgium
Beer: Kasteel Rouge
Serving: 750 ml bottle, corked and caged
Glassware: The Bruery tulip
Information: 8% ABV, Goblet pictured, +/- 43°F/6°C, Bottled on 090708 printed on back label, “10/2009 Gebotteld” on the cork.
Style: Fruit Beer
Purchased at: Otto’s Brown Deer
“Belgian ale with cherries and cherry juice added.”
Grade: 68 / 100 (3.38) – Average
A – Pouring a clear tawny rust red like port, Kasteel Rouge shows very little of it’s natural color in the tulip. It’s more of a deep mahogany brown with ruby hints poking through. An off tan head springs up effervescently only to recede just as quickly, lace-less too.
S – Mild amber malt and toast notes with a very slight yeast funk underlines the bold cherry aroma. A mix between fresh, tart cherry skin and cough syrup. If you aren’t offended by artificial cherry, this one’s on the right track.
T – Heavy on the cough syrup cherry in flavor, the taste is a bit bold. A little more subtlety for the cherry allowing some of the nice toasted malt and toffee notes to pull forwards would be great. Phenolic alcohol finishes through the very end.
M – Spritzy carbonation is no surprise after the effervescent pour. This medium-bodied fruit beer is pretty dark through the finish and quite sweet. Faintly thin solvent alcohol is noticeable in the feel and a miniscule tartness from the cherries finishes.
O – It’s been said Belgian people like their beer, specifically lambics, sweet and heavier on the fruit. In that case, this one fits right in and I’m confident that it’s a hit over there. Unless you’re an avid fan of cherries (I know a few people…) and don’t mind a little (understatement) bit of syrupy sugar in the flavor, you’ll love Kasteel Rouge. If not, don’t bother with the $8.49 price tag on this beer. Instead, if you’re lucky enough to live in Wisconsin, pick yourself up a Belgian Red from New Glarus for $1 less. Of course, chances are that if you’re reading this, you already knew that.