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!

La Choulette Ambrée - Brasserie La Choulette

Not Rated.
La Choulette AmbréeLa Choulette Ambrée

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
89
very good

83 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 83
Reviews: 64
rAvg: 3.98
pDev: 9.55%
Wants: 5
Gots: 0 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brasserie La Choulette visit their website
France

Style | ABV
Bière de Garde |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: brewdlyhooked13 on 08-03-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 83 | Reviews: 64 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of allengarvin
3.83/5  rDev -3.8%
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.

allengarvin, Mar 22, 2006
Photo of mdagnew
4.35/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle bought from The Vineyard, Belfast...

Poured a golden copper / rusty orange colour... Slightly off white head poured quite big and fades to a nice layer...

Aroma - Biscuity malt, toffee, nutty, grassy, banana hints, burnt orange notes, slight pepperiness...

Taste – Spicy maltiness, slight sweetness, caramel, nice light bitterness, some aniseed hints underneath...

Feel - Pretty smooth, slightly oily. Medium body. Very drinkable...

Overall - An excellent beer, very drinkable. Recommended !!

mdagnew, Jan 23, 2006
Photo of nomad
4.3/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A true amber ale, it is solid red with a thin, soft, and velvety head leaving fingers of lace in the glass. Smells of caramel, earthy hops, and musty cork. Opens to a plush pils backdrop with faint apple/pear esters floating around.

Taste asserts first a caramel and roast tandem that is complex and rough without overbearing on the pallette. Slides dry and tickling toward a hoppy finish of earthy herbal flavor. Quite rustic with burly toast, caramel, and hop scruff intertwining, though a a fascinating apple-like ester presents itself to lend just a note of sweetness. The medium-low mouthfeel is lager smooth with a perfect amount of carbonation for support and palette cleansing.

Always a strong choice for an amber biere de garde that I oft skip over in favor of Jenlain. Very earthy beer in many respects.

nomad, Nov 26, 2005
Photo of NClifestyle
4.08/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

This was a great beer to have with the turkey today.
Poured from a wine sized bottle, slightly hazy ruby orange color, with thick bubbly head on top. Nice layer stays around, no lace, at least not in the wine glass I was drinking from today.
Smells of gentle peach/orange with hints of wheat, mostly light malt aroma.
Taste is a touch sweet and slightly spicy. Similar to a wheat beer, some caramel sweetness at first, then a spicy rush that yields a quick hot bite in the back of the mouth.
A light to medium mouth feel, some carbonation and tingle, somewhat dry mouthfeel.
This beer goes great with Thanksgiving food, and probably with other varied meals as well. I wouldn't choose this beer at the bar, but would find it again for drinking at home and with dinner.

cheers...

NClifestyle, Nov 24, 2005
Photo of BDTyre
4.18/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Mmmm....my first saison (although some call it a biere du garde). This beer pours a beautiful slightly cloudy caramel colour. The head is dense, thick and white, almost like whip cream.

I can detect the scent of malts, spice and caramel. A very soft, pleasant scent that doesn't overwhelm: everything is well balanced, and no one flavour dominates.

Taste wise, the malts are a bit stronger, but there is the flavour of caramel, raisins and spice. Though this is a "summer" beer, the flavour is suited to winter as well.

I feel this is a little thick and syrupy going done, and the high ABV does limit drinkability. Nonetheless, this is an excellent beer and I will be buying it again.

BDTyre, Nov 22, 2005
Photo of Shovelbum
4.83/5  rDev +21.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A beautiful thick and creamy off-white head over a glowing red-amber body. Spectacular. Cascading sheets of lace and a thin head holds on as the volume is lowered. Caramel malt aromas with cork, hay and floral notes. Nice malt profile upfront in the mouth. Deep Caramel malts lead the charge, some touches of chocolate and nuts round out a wonderfully balanced sweetness. A bit of oak, spices, fruit and hops in the background. A touch of crispness, but otherwise very smooth mouthfeel.

I’m currently reading Markowski’s Farmhouse Ales, which is a wonderful study of the biere de garde and saison styles (like the bottle label, he lists this as a biere de garde). While his descriptions are great, tasting is believing. This particular example combines a healthy dose of malts with complex aromas and flavors, and does it all without being overbearing. Zen-like subtly and balance.

Shovelbum, Nov 17, 2005
Photo of Frozensoul327
3.63/5  rDev -8.8%
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.

Frozensoul327, Nov 13, 2005
Photo of cokes
4.58/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Hazy twilight amber gold adorned with a plump column of bleached tan.
Pear butter nose, with flares of cedar and sandalwood, with a backing florality of rosewater and lilac.
Grain off the blocks, light toasted and lugging notions of nut skins. It expands into mashed pears, cinnamon apple sauce, fried plantains, and white grapes. The middle see this trek towards wood and earth. Horse haired strewn sandstone wavers amongst suede, aniseed, dried maples and dowel rods. The hops drive hop blossoms of clover and lavender, and while the bitterness is minor, it is well-stated and erudite.
Medium full in the mouth, with a liquid fleece build that is both fuzzy and soft.
For something that is 8%, it is downright dirty.
This particular Choulette might keep its pants on, but it's in no way less alluring.

cokes, Oct 06, 2005
Photo of canucklehead
4.13/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nice, this beer looks great sitting in a chalice.Tawny reddish brown with white lacing. malt on the nose with hints of hops. This is a very rounded amber farmhouse ale. Autumn flavours make this almost like a French Fall beer. A slight Belgian type finish lets you know the region. Very drinkable and quite straightforward in its approach.

canucklehead, Oct 03, 2005
Photo of inebrius
4.75/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A snort is earth, either a particular traumatic adolescent shove into the dirt or an exploration of vegetable garden biology the initial contact is of soil. Soil and natural syrup, nut oil and bark, charged floating honey, the sweat of voluntary labor and expectation haunt this brew.

inebrius, Aug 28, 2005
Photo of Sammy
3.68/5  rDev -7.5%
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.

Sammy, Aug 24, 2005
Photo of GCBrewingCo
4.35/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer poured into the chalice crystal clear medium amber brown with an off-white head which rose tall and fell slowly to coat the chalice.

The aroma was nicely malty with dark caramel aromas coupled with dark fruits, raisins and prunes. The aroma contained a spicy phenolic most likely from the higher alcohol that was peppery with cinnamon. Also present was a nice Belgian yeast component.

The flavor was malty with caramel tempting the palate on the first sip. The flavor immediately releases some Belgian yeast spice and farmhouse character. The flavors were light and interesting with malty caramel, spicy yeast - pepper and slight cinnamon, and earthy/grassy bittering to complement. Also present was a low citrus component. The dark fruits rounded out the flavors at lower levels with more raisins and prunes.

The finish was dry with light malt and dark fruit flavors, slight pepper, and very light citrus into the aftertaste. The body was medium. A nice Biere de Garde, listed as a Saison. The malt presence was not over the top and the hop bitteirng and flavor kept the malt from becoming cloying. No real alcohol presence except for a slight warming after consumption and a light phenolic in the aroma.

750 ml bottle, corked and bailed. Best before end 05 on label.

GCBrewingCo, Jul 17, 2005
Photo of TastyTaste
4.33/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

75 cL bottle with undistinguishable freshness date. Clear copper color, fluffy off-white head, fading as i type. Smell is sweet and funky, you can definitely smell that belgian yeast, with some subtle licorice scents. Taste is full and fruity, with pepper and licorice, slightly sweet, yet butt and large with hops and alcohol finishers. A very nice beer, I like it, although it is only my second saison. I would recommend this one.

TastyTaste, Jun 13, 2005
Photo of amicar
4.75/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours from a corked 750mL green bottle opened with a satisfying "pop"
This smell hits me before my nose gets near the glass- nice. It's a true amber color with sticky off- white foam that I swear is climbing up the glass. A more intense whiff gives me a biscuity bread smell with some nice sharp undertones. A little ester under there; slight spice as well. First taste is dramatically full of bread and fresh grain- and then in a sip or two something wonderful happens and the solvent- esque fruit esters kick in. A hint of toated malt, but no acridity here. This feels wonderful in the mouth, with a smooth slickness that gives way to a tingling sensation followed by the perfect amount of warmth. The rough edges on this bad boy have been really nicely smoothed out. I'll have no problems finishing this one off by myself.

This is more sophisticated than I would have expected. Really a subtle, beautiful, well- balanced beer. Just tops.

amicar, Jun 01, 2005
Photo of rajendra82
4.05/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The packaging consisted of a green 750 ml bottle, with a champagne style cork, and a wire cage. When the cork was pulled, a satisfying pop revealed that the yeast had been nicely active in the bottle. Poured into a 16 oz wine goblet, the body was clear amber red with moderate carbonation, and could be easily mistaken for a wine. The aroma was also somewhat wine like, with notes of cherry and oak and very little if any hops. The taste was smooth and refreshing. The body was very dry and woody with an astringent tartness, but almost no sourness. Fruits like cherries, red grapes, and pears were also abundant. Floral hops showed up in the middle of the peppery finish. Mouthfeel was surprisingly full. This Bière de Garde tasted much maltier than my previous experiences with beers from the related style Saison, and exhibited fewer funky flavors. Overall this was quite an enjoyable beer, which will most definitely turn me into trying more of its brethren.

rajendra82, Apr 17, 2005
Photo of bditty187
4.1/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Beautiful amber-gold in hue with significant coppery highlights. The liquid shows a slight influence of sediment. When backlit this beer shines! The head was slightly off-white in color; at the apex the head was a healthy two fingers in height. The bubbles were rocky and dense, head retention was very good, and it slowly faded to a clumpy cap. It started creating lace before I started removing the beer! Overall the subsequent lacing was spotty and unimpressive. Still this beer looks good. I’m keen on the nose, there is a lovely balancing act between vinous notes and caramel malt. The fruitiness is heavy on grapes with kisses of pears and figs. There is a seamless transition to a charming caramel aroma and even some doughy qualities. Candied sweetness. Interwoven throughout are hints of spiciness that are largely nondescript. And then comes some mildly funky (barnyard and horsy and mold) notes with hints of pepper. Finally there are kisses of alcohol heat at the back, towards the end. The potency of the nose is moderate, the complexities are softly spoken but I do hear what this beer is saying. Inviting. The palate is dry with loads of caramel flavor and little sweetness. I am not sure how this is accomplished... but I like it. The malt offers doughy qualities. Caramel too. Like I said the sweetness is minimal. Flavor is big. In the middle is some raw apple cider that is lightly spiked with ginger and cinnamon. At this point the beer turns slightly dry and vinous notes emerge, grapes and hints of licorice. At the finish there is a firm mix of hop bitterness with a raw earthy undertone and some peppery notes. This is quite contrasting from the malt “sweetness” (it really isn’t that sweet, I am beating a dead horse here). The aftertaste is just a little warm at the back of the throat with a caramel, fruity residue that sits on the tongue. This beer is very diverse with its food prospects. I think it would be good with many things, from elegantly prepared steaks to pasta (with a light red sauce) or even hearty fried fish (like walleye). Honestly, this beer would be perfect for gourmet pizza. Hell yeah, ignore all the other food babble I dished out, this beer would be a KILLER with good pizza. Anyway. This beer is very solid. I like it a lot. It is not a world class Bière de Garde, so what. I it is a damn good beer. Medium in body, the carbonation is moderate but very airy, this makes the mouthfeel fluffy and relaxing with just enough bulk to support the flavors. This beer isn’t overly complex. At no point was I blown away but at no point was I bored. This is a very good beverage. It is very drinkable and (like I said above) it has endless future possibilities. I bought this 750ml bottle in Ames, IA last spring; it has been in my cellar since then. Find it. Drink it. You’ll like it.

PS: The label says 8.0% abv.

bditty187, Feb 18, 2005
Photo of putnam
4.5/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Fans exclusively of tootsie roll-flavored malt-bombs and continuously hopped beer extractions should avoid the beers of La Choulette.

Caramel amber colored with a large, liquid and airy mass of cream-colored foam. The aromas are complicated. Sour butterfat, stones, flowers, fenugreek and mustard can be discerned atop a mass of mashed, boiled grain aromas. On the palate it is thin enough to be refreshing. The flavors are willowy and include an array of lavender, sage, white grapes, apples, tangy ginger cakes and carob. The finish is quite grainy. Altogether, this is the most stand-alone of this producer's beers, though with food it would undoubtedly be a champion.

... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... A beer for travelers.

$6 for a 750ml in MI (that's cheep!).

putnam, Jan 25, 2005
Photo of beergeek279
4.53/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in the 750 mL bottle into a chalice. The color was amber, with a wispy head. The smell was a very strong apple sweetness that wafted out from the bottle. The taste was apple sweet with a strong yeastiness and a slight warming alcohol. Mouthfeel was nicely carbonated. As for drinkability, could have quite a few of these!

Thank you to Hart at the Sharp Edge for the recommendation. A really nice biere de garde, with a good apple sweetness that fits quite nicely. Quite good, and despite the cost, this is one that I'd have again.

beergeek279, Mar 08, 2004
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.

WVbeergeek, Feb 18, 2004
Photo of crookedhalo
4.1/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

My buddy calls this beer the "French Defender". Pours a orangy amber color with a thick, soft beige head. Big malty aroma with hints of fruit and mustiness. A bit fruity (concord grape) in the taste, with an ambery, biscuity and nutty malt profile. Yeasty with a honeyed sweetness as well. Finishes a bit dry and smooth. Recommended if you like the biere de garde style. Alcohol is noticable, but surely not overwhelming.

crookedhalo, Jan 14, 2004
Photo of oberon
3.65/5  rDev -8.3%
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.

oberon, Sep 18, 2003
Photo of nathi
3.78/5  rDev -5%
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.

nathi, Nov 09, 2002
Photo of rastaman
3.53/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Very nice biere de garde, deep amber colour, lots of caramel malt flavours, slightly sticky sweet start, but quite dry, bitter slaty finish, i quite liked it, but a bit sticky for me.

rastaman, Aug 03, 2002
La Choulette Ambrée from Brasserie La Choulette
89 out of 100 based on 83 ratings.