La Choulette Ambrée - Brasserie La Choulette

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La Choulette Ambrée
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very good

68 Reviews
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Reviews: 68
Hads: 88
Avg: 3.98
pDev: 10.8%
Wants: 10
Gots: 3 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brasserie La Choulette visit their website

Style | ABV
Bière de Garde |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: brewdlyhooked13 on 08-03-2002

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Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 68 | Hads: 88
Photo of Hornet2003
3.63/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Nice amber, clear with a half finger head on the pour. No lacing as I drink.

Smell: Musty, with a hint of cherries. Yeasty like sourdough bread

Taste: Sour and tart with a slight hint if cherries.

Mouthfeel: Pretty bubbly, but the flavours linger over all parts of the tongue for a long time.

Drinkability: A little too much alcohol to be really drinkable. 8% is strong in anyone's book and unfortunately, precludes this from drinking smooth past one bottle.

Overall: My first bière de garde. I like it, but I wish it didn't have so much ABV.

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Photo of Sammy
3.65/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Satisfying smooth but unexceptional biere de garde, well carbonated even harsh. Attractive light brown rum color. Moderately fruity yeast, grape like, lemon, sugar, nuts, pepper . Musty initial aroma, mild barnyard. Medium mouthfeel, probably good with fish.

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Photo of Frozensoul327
3.65/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The label says Biere de Garde, but it's here as a Saison. Whatever. Poured out to a pumpkin orange color with a well formed 1/2 inch head and good lacing around the interior of the glass. Aromas of caramel, sweet spice, pumpkins and some earthy notes. Taste was medium bodied and slightly complex; flavors of fruits, spices, sugar, and ginger were present, as was some hints of herbs. Not bad. Mouthfeel was fair, not too weak yet filling enough to make the beer quaffable. Fair drinkability, this brew wasn't bad overall. I'll likely try some of the brewers other offerings.

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Photo of biegaman
3.65/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sampled from both can and bottle. Among any of the better amber ales or biere de gardes, seems the most popular of this brewery. Pours with fairly weak retention, a crystal amber in colour. Strong aroma, good mouthfeel and agreeable flavour. Light roast caramel malt, some chewy presence, though mouthfeel a little light, tad watery. Alcohol becomes more noticeable as it warms. Overall good malt, nice subtle blending, among the best of French beers I've had.

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Photo of kimcgolf
3.66/5  rDev -8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured to a flat reddish-orange with very little head and virtually no lacing or effervescence. Appearance was more of a cherry-apple cider than a beer, and the aroma was a pleasant mix of spices and fruit (mostly apples and grapes).

This beer was interesting in that the mouthfeel, flavor and finish were all what I would imagine the result to be if you mixed a Lambic and a Flemish Sour together. At various sips and times, I detected fruity, sweet, sour, spicy and a hint of the 8% alcohol. Different, but not bad at all.

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Photo of oberon
3.68/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beers highest marks come in the nice pour a big pillowey head that settles nicely and sticky a nice medium amber color to enjoy.Aroma is like powdered sugar almost with some slight spicey notes and pizza dough aromas.Taste is definently malty with a little irony taste I didnt think it was overly sweet.Supposed to be good with food will have my other with dinner.

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Photo of fartingdog
3.7/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750 bottle.

Poured a nice amber color- good head.

Smells of caramel, sweet, floral. Tastes slightly sweet, mild hop or floral characteritics. Good body, an easy drinker.

This was one of the sweeter Biere de Garde's I've had. Not much in the way of earthy flavors, unfortunately, it seems less of a 'rustic' beer than other BdG's (i.e Jenlain.) A good beer overall.

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Photo of nathi
3.82/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Light orangish amber color, nice thick head, lots of lace.

Very floral aroma with slight strawberry and pear complexity Very woody/musky. A lot going on in the aroma for this style. Good caramel malt aroma

Flavor has nice malt at start, very sweet, but finishes very dry with a like acidicness that keeps it from being cloying. More body then other bier de gardes samples, also more alcohol in the finish. A nice spicy hop finish. Malt is still very simple, but great complexity with nice muskyness working well with floral and estery character. Well balanced. This was the best of 5 bier de gardes sampled in one night. Still though, I dont really care for the style.

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Photo of allengarvin
3.82/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750 ml, poured into a nonik glass. At first, no head was developing, so I gave it a fairly vigorous pour and a small amount of foam appeared, but dissipated quickly. Otherwise, a pleasant-looking dark gold, quite clear. Light fruitiness in the nose (apple, grape), with some cork mustiness. Lots of fruitiness (plums, grape) in the taste as well a distinct nutty malt flavor that is quite pleasant--perhaps even a little roasted-potato-like. Hops are restrained. A bit watery, though reasonably full-bodied.

An OK beer is the best I can say. Not any obvious faults except the low carbonation, but not that drinkable.

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Photo of yinzer
3.82/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750 ML Bottle. Has some age, I'll guess a year in my cellar.

appearance: eay pour w/a one finger head that left me quickly. Some lacing with bubbles in suspension. Orange/yellow.

smell: Fruity esters and malt tones.

taste: Surprising rich and malty. Figs and honey.

mouthfeel: I'd say thick for the style, hope that it had more carbonation when younger.

drinkability: Goes down smooth but no cravings for another sip.

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Photo of Graham5161986
3.84/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a dark red with fizzy head that reduces quickly to a bubbly film that leaves very little lace. Clear with tons of carbonation bubbles

S: smells of ripe cherries and sugar plumbs dominate. Very sweet, sugary scent

T: very sweet with an incredibly caramely finish and sour alcohol bite

M: creamy, chewy texture with tingly carbonation and a strong but smooth finish

D: This one is a bit too sweet for my liking, but I think it does a pretty good job of fitting in with the style. Despite its high ABV, it was highly drinkable. I certainly recommend it as it is an interesting taste experience from France.

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Photo of pinotboy007
3.85/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Purchased at Arrowine, Arlington, VA; had never seen it before.

A - Burnt copper/amber/dark iced tea color with a khaki-colored head that settles to a shoulder with modest lacing.

S - Malt, dates, cinnamon.

T/M - Complex malt, dates, peat, cinnamon, tea and caramel. Beautifully silky and creamy without being too dense.

D - A food friendly ale worth grabbing if you see it. Very nice stuff.

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Photo of gonzo138
3.85/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- pours a dark reddish brown, with a thin white head that did not really retain at all, and left a thin white lace around the edge of the glass that stayed around for a while

S- at first a sweet malt aroma, a little bit a raisin fruit smell is present as well, alcohol presence is noticable too

T- malt sweet taste coats mouth, raisin and alcohol flavors are also present in taste, slight hoppy bite at the finsh

M- nice carbonation good tingley feeling on tounge, medium body, sticky mouthfeel

D- goes down fairly easy for a beer with an ABV of 8%, a very interesting style, I look forward to trying more vareties

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Photo of spoony
3.87/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

From a 750 ml bottle (best by November 26, 2015) into a tulip.

A-A slightly aggressive pour produces nearly three fingers of khaki head. The retention is so-so, maybe a minute, but there is a decent bit of lacing on the glass. The brew is an attractive, dark, honey-amber color with red highlights.

S-The smell is pretty tame, with musty apple cider, pear, and maybe a hint of other light-flesh fruits. There is also a bit of caramel and toasted bread. A little boring...I cannot classify this as inviting or intriguing.

T-Forutnately, the taste surpasses the smell. There is still a bit of light fruit and cider flavor (probably from the alcohol), but the malt profile of toasted bread, sweet caramel, and toffee is way more substantial on the tongue than on the nose. The brew is pretty sweet with very minimal hops and suggestions of Belgian yeast every now and again.

M-The feel is medium to light body with an assertive, slightly rough carbonation that gives a crisp feel.

O-This is a good, but not memorable beer. The flavor profile is pretty solid for the style with nice toasted malts, and the alcohol is very well-integrated into the beer. It is also pretty good-looking and true to style in that regard. The smell and feel are a bit lacking, and I could have used a bit more hops or sharpness to balance the sweet malt profile, but these are not major criticisms.

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Photo of BlackHaddock
3.88/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

75cl Green cork and caged bottle, poured into two Corsendonk stemmed tulip shaped glasses.

The pour was in one almost smooth action, but the second glass ended up with a few pieces of sediment. Otherwise the beer was a lovely amber, a little lighter than a typical Belgian Amber beer but with the same good biege foaming head. The beer was opened 4 months after the Best Before Date.

The aroma was like a fairly sweet malty biscuit straight out of the oven.

Good flavours throughout, this is a well balanced beer and I really enjoyed it. The 8% doesn't knock your socks off, but you know it's there.

The French beer scene is a lot better than most poeple realise, this is a good example of what they are missing.

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Photo of bonbright7
3.88/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I found this at Shoreline in Huntington, NY and served with it with surf 'n' turf
wraps as we were settling in for a comfortable Friday night. I poured the amber ale into my 50cl glass and was quietly amazed by the oatmeal head that formed as I backed off on pouring more.

The reddish amber flavor was just right with elements of sweetness and floral impressions to make it known I had found something extra special.
I continued without much hestitation until the bottle was empty.

Maybe my choice of shrimp and beef wraps were not the best with this great ale, but I loved the ale anyway.

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Photo of Umbra
3.89/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Sampled in Paris, bottle was all in French, not sure of dating.

Only downside was the weak head and lacing. Brown, slightly clear.
Bready, clove nose
Full of bready flavors, mingled with clove and brown sugar. Peppery finish with hidden ETOH. Smooth and drinkable.

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Photo of eberkman
3.9/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a corked wine-style bottle.

Poured a reddish-orange with a big ecru-colored head. Somewhat cloudy with flecks of yeast floating throughout.

Smelled primarily fruity with apples and cherries. Taste was tart and dry -- tangy, sour fruits with a somewhat bitter finish. Carbonated, crisp somewhat thin mouthfeel. Enjoyable as something to sip with a light meal on a warm evening. A little fruity and sour for my general tastes, but a decent choice overall. Definitely interesting and complex.

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Photo of Arthuros
3.93/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Tasted at La Capsule in Lille.
Very sweet amber, with an almost metallic taste. Also quite sweet, and not very hoppy.
Almost cider-like by some respects.
Good as a dessert beer, don't drink with anything too strong though.

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Photo of Braudog
3.94/5  rDev -1%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Caged and corked 75cl bottle; poured with an immense head of tight foam and a beautiful tornadic swirl of yeast-inspired carbonation. When an aroma can finally escape, it is slightly spicy and tart, not unlike a freshly peeled blood orange. The flavor, however, is much more full-bodied. This is very earthy with a brown-sugary base, and a viscuous flowery aspect. I enjoyed it quite much. (#2798, 4/15/2007)

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Photo of WVbeergeek
4/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Amber tone great amount of off white cream colored head very nice lacing belgian style fine webs. Aroma: Vinous grape tone, sweet barley wine like malts are lingering with a touch of honey infused there wild tones farmhouse bready yeast and bites of peppery qualities. Taste: Awesome wine like tone to it, amber malts send a caramel spot of flavor tart apple in the finish with the spices and slight farmhouse funk playing a factor in the overall flavor, good stuff. Mouthfeel: Soft in the Belgian sense, soft water brings about a lighter to medium bodied ale with a creamy texture to it. Drinkability, definitely good stuff effortless to consume I may have to try this one again. A bit expensive but well worth it especially if you in to the biere de garde.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
4/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a hazy brown color ale with a large frothy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of bready yeast with fruity ester is quite nice. Taste is also dominated by a huge semidry caramel malt base with nice yeast ester of fresh bread and light fruit. Body is quite full with limited filtration and good bottle conditioning with great carbonation and no apparent alcohol. Much better then expected and a nice example of how good the French bière de garde can be.

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Photo of metter98
4/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A: The beer is hazy amber in color and has large chunks of yeast visible near the bottom of the glass (simply from the initial pour). It has a two finger high dense beige head that gradually died down but consistently left a short head covering the surface and lots of lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: Light to moderate aromas of caramel malts and earthy yeast are present in the nose.
T: The taste is very similar to the smell, except that the malts contribute some sweetness that ever so slightly overshadows the earthiness from the yeast. Slight hints of dark fruits are also apparent and no bitterness is perceptible.
M: It feels medium-bodied and slightly chewy on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is a lot maltier and heaver in body compared to other beers in the style (sort of like a comparison between a bock and a doppelbock), but it's light enough to be rather drinkable, especially since any traces of alcohol are very well hidden.

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Photo of jwc215
4/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into tulip glass:

Pours deep ruby mahogany with a thin tan head that descends to a thin, patchy covering.

The smell is of sweet caramel candy. Musty with grassy/grainy notes. Subtle fruity spiciness lies underneath.

The taste is sweet - candyish - caramel/toffee. Husky grain in the back. Spicy, berry-like fruitiness emerges in the soft, sweet finish.

Medium-bodied and smooth, this is a nice sweet treat. Despite the alcohol level (which is hardly noticeable) this makes a nice summer night sipping brew choice. Also would pair well with lamb. A classic for the style!

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Photo of Jwale73
4/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle courtesy of RomanW70 (thanks Dan) served in my ST tulip. 25.04.07 indicated on the label. Poured a hazy, plum color with a three inch off-white head that sizzled and popped as it receded into a frothy quarter inch cap; sheets of watery lacing, but no legs. Nose was dark fruit, vinous and somewhat acidic with a hint of chocolate towards the back. Taste follows nose, with a bit of sourness/astringency at the finish. Mouthfeel is light and sparklingly effervescent with a little bit of prickliness across the tongue. I've had the opportunity to try a few Bière de Gardes, and I tend to not really enjoy the style. That being said, this brew seems a little closer to a belgian strong dark in style, and I was pleasantly surprised. As such, my rating reflects the beer itself and not its attributes relative to the style.

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La Choulette Ambrée from Brasserie La Choulette
88 out of 100 based on 68 ratings.