Brian Eichhorn's picture

Judge's Review: 90 Rating - Monk's Cafe Grand Cru by Brouwerij van Steenberge

November, 2019
Judges Rating: 
23 / 24
5 / 6
37 / 40
8 / 10
Overall Impression: 
17 / 20

Monk's Cafe Grand Cru by Brouwerij van Steenberge is being judged as a 23B Flanders Red Ale.

The beer pours a hazy deep brown-red. The nose on this is fantastic. Strong cherry notes with a faint acetic background note that stops short of vinegar. Bright acid pops out as well, along with some toasted malt and caramel. Really smells great and offers some pleasant oak notes to go along with some raisin and prune. At the taste, it is a lot sweeter than expected and feels driven by specialty malts. The acidity works hard to balance but falls a bit short. There is a deep complexity, ranging from a high level of cherry to go along with raisins, dried apricots and prunes. The sweetness really impacts the drinkability, however. Cleanly fermented and complex, just on the sweet side. Medium bodied with carbonation on the lower end. Nice and complex but could use a bit less sweetness/more acidity to really strike a balance.