1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Gouden Carolus Ambrio - Brouwerij Het Anker

Not Rated.
Gouden Carolus AmbrioGouden Carolus Ambrio

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

287 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 287
Reviews: 191
rAvg: 3.8
pDev: 13.68%
Wants: 4
Gots: 10 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Het Anker visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: TheLongBeachBum on 09-15-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 287 | Reviews: 191 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of PhillyStyle
PhillyStyle

Georgia

4.33/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap, at Pizzeria Paradiso (Washington DC, Dupont Circle):

The beer was served in a tulip glass, a cloudy amber/dark amber maybe a shade of orange, served with a nice white head that was well retained with decent lacing. Noticeable carbonation.

The aroma was good and what you would expect from this style.

Taste was excellent. Nice Belgian flavors that would be expected and it also had a spicy kick to it, which I didn't expect.

The beer had a medium body, very good carbonation and was extremely easy to drink but the elevated ABV will get you in the end, yet I could have drank them all not long and paid for it later. Overall, very tasty and well done beer.

Serving type: on-tap

04-15-2010 15:45:59 | More by PhillyStyle
Photo of allergictomacros
allergictomacros

Ontario (Canada)

3.95/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a cloudy amber with a thick, solid head.

S - Nose is spicy, grassy, earthy, with hints of light fruit and alcohol. Slightly medicinal.

T - Apple, pear, alcohol and yeastiness. Quite sweet as well. A little bit of funk but not too much.

M - Light body with a medium carbonation.

D - Pretty good drinker but a bit strong to session. Smooth and tasty.

Serving type: bottle

04-12-2010 02:22:45 | More by allergictomacros
Photo of cratez
cratez

Ontario (Canada)

3.45/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

330ml bottle from the LCBO. Part of the 2010 Spring Beer Release. Pours a cloudy copper orange with golden hues, a thick cap of eggshell white head, and sheets of lacing on the goblet. Great looking beer. Aromas are floral, ripe fruit, candy sugar, yeast, and metallic notes, very subtle. Taste is spicy yeast, semi-sweet pale malts, more metal, vague astringency, cantaloupe, melon, and a lemony hop bitterness (sort of sour) to finish. Smooth and medium mouthfeel, moderate carbonation, tart and biting textures on the palate, vague citrus dryness in the aftertaste. Everything about Ambrio is very toned-down. It's not bad, it just doesn't excite me either. And there's much better BPAs in terms of complexity, flavour, smell. Worth a go if you like the style, but I expected a lot more from this brew.

Serving type: bottle

04-07-2010 04:10:33 | More by cratez
Photo of biboergosum
biboergosum

Alberta (Canada)

3.98/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another souvenir from LCBO-land...

This beer pours a murky orange-tinged brown colour, with more foamy white head than I know what to do with (brava, refermentation en bouteille), which leaves a thin painting of lace as it slowly, slowly recedes. It smells of banana esters, booze, and a bit of funky yeast. The taste is barley malt, mild candy sugar, soft banana, tropical fruit, and a soft metallic alcohol edge. The carbonation is on the low side, the body well weighted, smooth, and a bit sticky, and it finishes sweet and sugary.

A very approachable, and drinkable strong Belgian ale, once you get past the onslaught of blocking foam from even the gentlest of pours...

Serving type: bottle

04-03-2010 02:47:22 | More by biboergosum
Photo of ludachris
ludachris

Ontario (Canada)

3.85/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a murky amber tea hue with one and a half fingers of creamy and lushious cloud white head that displays some of the best head retention I've ever seen on a beer, with no sign of receeding after about four minutes, leaving thick and gooey patches of lace.

Ripe tropical fruits like pineapple and mango, banana, belgian yeast, and a bit of pepper all greet the nose.

A mere glimpse of the sweet and juicy tropical fruits promised in the nose is what's left in the taste turning more into a backbone for the ripe banana that quickly follows. Belgian yeast, pepper, and a bit of a funky mineral-like component that I'm not sure what to think of make up the finish.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, rich, and creamy, with a high level of carbonation that I think might have taken away from the taste a bit. The finish is crisp and quite dry.

Overall, a solid BSPA that's still in need of some tweeking. Take out the strange mineral-esque finish and substitute it for more tropical fruit, and cut down on the carbonation, I could see this one being at the top of its class. But it is what it is, and I'd say it's still worth a try. Its faults are clear, but the good outweighs the bad.

Serving type: bottle

03-19-2010 23:36:35 | More by ludachris
Photo of drpimento
drpimento

Wisconsin

4.2/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Very nice, drinkable beer. Poured with a nice off white/ cream color head and some lace. Color is a very slightly hazy medium amber. Aroma is malty, yeasty, a little caramel and taffy. Flavor's the same with more pronounced bittersweetness. Well balanced. Body is full and smooth with great carbonation to match. A little alcohol in the finsih. Tasty. Almost a slow easy drinking session.

Serving type: bottle

03-19-2010 03:35:28 | More by drpimento
Photo of Viggo
Viggo

Ontario (Canada)

3.6/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

330 ml bottle, from the LCBO.

Pours a hazy copper with some dark orange, very fluffy off white head forms, very voluminous, slowly settles down to a thick and chunky layer and ring, lots of lace sticks to the glass.

Smell is great, very fruity and spicy, mangoes and tropical fruit, orange peel, wheat, lightly yeasty, some alcohol and banana, a bit of peppery spice and some sugar, cherries, like a fruit salad.

Taste is similar, very fruity, lots of mango and raisin, some oranges, cranberry juice tartness, wheat, yeasty, lightly spicy, some booze in the finish, a bit sugary, a weird oxidized/iron sort of flavour going on though.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with very high carbonation, a little too much for me. Really neat aroma and a nice beer, but the flavour and carbonation are a let down.

Serving type: bottle

03-18-2010 22:30:16 | More by Viggo
Photo of kwjd
kwjd

Ontario (Canada)

3.65/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy amber-copper colour with a thick white head and nice lacing. Smells like sweet caramel with Belgian yeast and a little spicy. Spices are hitting me as the beer warms up a bit, but also with some candy sweetness. The body is quite bubbly with carbonation and I can notice the alcohol taste a bit. A little bit of bitterness as well. I enjoy this, but I don't think I'd want to drink more than one in a row.

Serving type: bottle

03-18-2010 01:29:34 | More by kwjd
Photo of jbonapar
jbonapar

Ontario (Canada)

3.7/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

New to the LCBO in Ottawa....

Pours a nice slightly hazy golden with a wonderfully thick head. Smells of bready yeast, alcohol , fruit.

Taste: bready, fruity with a sharp bitter finish. The alcohol is hidden but certainly adds to the shaprness of the bite at the end. Dry, slightly sweet but dry at the finish.

Certainly a nice beer, medium body although the Belgian Sugar adds the nice alcohol bite.

REally enjoy this, and I certainly want another. My favorite Carolus thus far.

Serving type: bottle

03-17-2010 22:53:37 | More by jbonapar
Photo of JohnnyBarman
JohnnyBarman

Ontario (Canada)

3.98/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a Duvel tulip glass. Opaque amber-brown, with some reddishness to it. Poured slowly, it still produced an immense, pillowy head (inch and a half). Receded gradually, leaving generous patchy lacing. Looks great.

Sweet pear, tropical fruit, yeast and granny smith apple are the predominant nose notes that I detect.

A nice, dry BPA. Very crisp and smooth. Notes of pear, apricot, yeast, with hops, pepper and spices to the finish, but overall these flavours are a bit hard to detect.

A little over-carbonated for my taste; very stingy up front. Moderate body.

A very enjoyable strong ale, especially if you like them dry and hoppy.

Serving type: bottle

03-17-2010 03:34:58 | More by JohnnyBarman
Photo of MeisterBurger
MeisterBurger

Ontario (Canada)

3.15/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a golden brownish amber with an astonishing amount of carbonation, topped by a big, frothy, sticky billowy head.

The aroma is soft pears and yeast, mild but inviting with lots of toffee and dark fruit coming out as it slowly creeps towards room temperature.

The taste is a little tart and waxy, with an apricot character throughout and lots of toffee with just a hint of spice and iron in the finish. Finishes dry.

Medium mouthfeel, a little creamy yet slightly overly carbonated.

It's nice. But frankly I don't really feel strongly enough about it one way or the other to put any real effort in to this review.

Serving type: bottle

03-11-2010 01:38:08 | More by MeisterBurger
Photo of thekanna
thekanna

Maryland

4.22/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 750 ml bottle into stein (I realize this is not the proper glass).

A: Nice luminescent amber with very visible yeast solids suspended into the brew; off-white, cappuccino cream-colored head is gigantic, rock solid, and clumps on the side of the glass.

S: Beautiful sweet smell of apricots and peaches with a general fruity, slight citrusy sweetness.

T: Nice and sweet; apricot and peach flavors really stick out, like a peach cobbler. A little bit of citrus and a good amount of phenols round out the aftertaste.

M: Juicy, with a bite of carbonation at the finish.

D: Another excellent brew from Browerij Het Anker. I have yet to find a beer produced by them that I don't like.

Serving type: bottle

02-02-2010 06:20:07 | More by thekanna
Photo of adamette
adamette

Ohio

2.3/5  rDev -39.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Live review. Poured from the 750ML bottle that I purchased yesterday for $7.89 at Save-On Tobacco & Beverage in Mentor. "Belgian Amber Ale" printed on top of right side of label but no observed "best by" date. Poured into my silver rimmed Westvleteren goblet.

A Light creamy brown head that was not thick but stayed around for several minutes. Body is a rather boring light amber, translucent body. I really like the head on this beer which the Carolus D'Or lacked. 4.0

S Medium roast malt with a significant dark fruit/anise smell. I do not particularly like the dark fruit/anise aspect of the smell. 2.5

T Yeah, that dark fruit and anise smell carries right over into the taste in a kind of a tart funk that I find not pleasing. That funky tartness stayed really consistently from the first taste all the way into the aftertaste, another aspect of the taste of this beer that did not impress me (it was pretty simple really). 2.0

M By looking at it I would have thought/hoped that it would have a nice, creamy feel but instead the harsh tartness of the anise/dark fruit really made it anything but smooth to the feel. I realize, though, that an amber usually has a bit of that harshness. 3.0

D Not very good. I finished a whole goblet of it over a period of 15 minutes to see if it changed with warmth but it really did not. I did not finish the whole 750ML bottle.

Notes: Dissapointed in this one from Gouden Carolus/Het Anker.

Serving type: bottle

01-27-2010 13:15:03 | More by adamette
Photo of biggred1
biggred1

Indiana

4.22/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cloudy light brown with a massive light tan meringue like head that slowly melts like ice cream. Dark fruit, coriander and clove with a touch of musky hops in the nose. Brandy and chocolatey malt are well balanced with Euro hop bitterness. Warm alcoholis finish. Medium bodied with a huge amount of carbonation. A really nice change of pace for the style, hoppier than most and easy drinking.

Serving type: bottle

01-14-2010 02:16:58 | More by biggred1
Photo of drabmuh
drabmuh

Maryland

4.35/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Beer poured from a bottle into a wine glass. Beer is brown and hazy with an aggressive and gigantic off-white head made up of tiny bubbles. Head falls away leaving a lot of lacing. Carbonation is moderate but cannot hold up the monstrous head.

Beer smells yeasty / bready, and has some characteristic ethers and some alcohol in the nose. Smells good, like a Belgian ale.

Beer is slightly bitter in flavor. Sweetness comes up later. Finishes cleanly, very drinkable. Carbonation plays a big role in translating flavors to surprising parts of the palate. The mouthfeel is great, medium bodied. One of the greats here.

Serving type: bottle

12-18-2009 04:03:57 | More by drabmuh
Photo of TLove
TLove

District of Columbia

4.38/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

First brew of the night, poured into a Stella Artois tulip glass. I may first note that this beer is COMPLETELY different between the first and last sip. The beer comes alive out of the bottle and I think it is imperative that you let the intense carbonation settle before digging in. Served really cold and left set at room temperature for 10 minutes after pour.

Great, yeasty brown color with great carbonation, a full, creamy head and light retention. Scents of some light dark fruits of cranberry and fig, as well as apples, brown sugar, and toffee. Taste rolls into abovementioned, subtle tastes with exceptional balance and crisp/creamy feel on the tongue.

Fantastically sugary and yeasty, with a really full mouthfeel all the way through to the finish. A fantastic beer from front to back, first sip to last. One of the best ambers I've had in a long time.

Serving type: bottle

11-18-2009 02:12:33 | More by TLove
Photo of benclimbs
benclimbs

California

4.05/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

no, this is not a mistake - had on CASK at weatherspoons in Bristol.

What a surprise @ .99P for a half pint! looks fairly flat as its in a cask but a bit of head and lacing is still present in this light amber beer.

smell is honey, some floral notes, and a bit of ripe fruit - as well as just a hint of alcohol

taste is nice belgian yeasts with some more ripe cherries and apricots - a fairly prominent alcohol finish as well.

mouthfeel was diminished in my opinion as a cask ale (belgians should be champangney!)

it was a very drinkable, nice beer, a good example of a belgian amber ale.

Serving type: cask

11-16-2009 14:05:28 | More by benclimbs
Photo of Tilley4
Tilley4

Tennessee

4.2/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours an expected amber appearance with a huge Duvel-like frothy head... Rather murky with a bit of yeast...

Loads of apples, spices, leather, a little funk... Smelling really awesome and complex...

While this is a very tasty brew, its not as tasty as the aromas would lead one to believe... Rather straightforward malty sweetness with a touch of alcohol on the finish...

Overall, a nice brew... But not my favorite Belgian Strong Pale...

Serving type: bottle

11-14-2009 03:01:56 | More by Tilley4
Photo of Jwale73
Jwale73

Rhode Island

3.83/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

11.2oz. bottle served at 51 degrees in my Duvel tulip. Presented the color of plum with a half inch, frothy, off-white head. Lots of yeast particles present in solution (looks kind of dark to be a Belgian Strong Pale). Some thick strands of lacing with decent legs. Nose is dark fruit, caramel/toffee, the merest suggestion of spice and a bit of booze. Taste consistent with nose; however caramel/toffee character masks the dark fruit present in the nose; I also detect a bit of candi sugar in the mix. Overall flavors come off as dry rather than cloying. Mouthfeel is medium-bodied with a slightly prickly carbonation level and little bit of residual heat on the tongue and back of the throat. Enjoyable, but not at all what I expected. Not my favorite offering from this brewer, but well worth a try.

Serving type: bottle

09-23-2009 01:30:21 | More by Jwale73
Photo of Zorro
Zorro

California

3.65/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Chill hazed red colored beer with a tall off white colored head.

Strong apples and spice aroma. Toffee, fig, prune, brown sugar, and allspice are the main scents I pickup.

Starts out drier than the smell would suggest. Brown sugar and apple are the two strongest flavors. Tastes of wood and fruit but the taste isn't nearly as good as the smell.

Good full mouthfeel.

An OK beer that smells like heaven. It is too bad that the flavor is sort of flat compared to the smell.

Serving type: bottle

09-22-2009 02:31:03 | More by Zorro
Photo of brendan13
brendan13

Australia

4.1/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured into a tulip glass a copper colour with a inch or so of off white head which falls away gradually. Touch of lacing.
S - Caramel, dark fruit touches, honey hint and an abundance of belgian yeastiness.
T - Much like the smell; light caramel and honey sweetness with dark fruit and spicey yeast character.
M - Medium bodied, pretty high carbonation, a bit of a bitter and dry finish.
D - A very nice beer indeed. Wouuld recommend and drink again without a doubt.

Serving type: bottle

08-25-2009 09:34:38 | More by brendan13
Photo of PapaEugene
PapaEugene

Netherlands

3.78/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Opened this one as part of a small beer menu to celebrate my birthday. Poured it in my Urthel glass.

A: Amber like the name ambrio suggested. DEcent head that slowly went down while drinking.

S: Malts, something fruity but not a very strong smell, but that might be the state I was in...

T: Roasted malts, red berries, some citrus,hops and some alcohols. Bitter aftertaste, a bit sour as well.

M: Medium carbonation, medium body and a dry fininsh.

D: A nice GC beer, but I expected something more. Easily drinkable however.

Serving type: bottle

08-14-2009 08:12:28 | More by PapaEugene
Photo of mrmanning
mrmanning

Ontario (Canada)

3.5/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle- Deep hazy copper liquid is generously capped with a frothy beige foam. Nose is of dark fruit, spices, floral hops, Belgian candy sugar and bread crust. This Belgian strong ale shows caramel sweetness alongside dark fruit and candy sugar, and leads to a spicy, floral, bread crusty finish. Hoppy, but balanced chalky finished. Good.

Serving type: bottle

08-05-2009 11:43:29 | More by mrmanning
Photo of jrallen34
jrallen34

Illinois

2.93/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

I drank this in Brussels at Delirium Cafe from a chalice.

The aroma is alcohol and malt.

It has a whiteish brown head and is amber in color with a great amount of lacing.

The taste is malty and slightly caramely, with a hint of hops in the bitter aftertaste.

Serving type: bottle

07-22-2009 19:13:08 | More by jrallen34
Photo of janubio
janubio

Spain

3.78/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

330 ml. bottle, tasted in a Carolus glass. Opaque hazy copper colour, with an enormous head that takes it time to fade, living a great lace. Smell of dried fruits and caramel, wiht earthy notes. Lighter body than expected, Sweet flavor with a bit of acidity. Taste of caramel, dark fruits, orange liquor. Like the Carolus Classic, I think it needs some more sharpness, just push a little further over the edges and it would be great.

Serving type: bottle

06-23-2009 19:51:21 | More by janubio
Gouden Carolus Ambrio from Brouwerij Het Anker
86 out of 100 based on 287 ratings.