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Frambozen Raspberry Brown Ale - New Belgium Brewing

Not Rated.
Frambozen Raspberry Brown AleFrambozen Raspberry Brown Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

395 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 395
Hads: 865
Avg: 3.66
pDev: 20.22%
Wants: 41
Gots: 56 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
New Belgium Brewing visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
Fruit / Vegetable Beer |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: kbub6f on 11-03-2001

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 395 | Hads: 865
Photo of Dubblebock
4.33/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Well, I have to thank the jolly ol' elf himself for leaving this treat under our Christmas tree. I have been curious about this beer ever since I saw it in a few stores earlier in the season. It seems to be one of the more underappreciated holiday brews, overshadowed by the Mad OSA Celebration Elfs of the brewing world. But the taste tells the tale, and this is one fine addition to any holiday table. It's a raspberry flavored beer, and it comes in a decorative bottle with a festive looking wreath on the label.

Pours very well, leaving a nice half-inch thick head. The beer is a rich, dark ruby red color. It looks great when you hold it up to the Christmas tree lights, diffusing the color into a vibrant, liquid red.

It has a nice nose, raspberries wafting forth and taking over the aroma. The taste is special and unique. Tart raspberries dominate the flavor of this beer, but you do get a firm malt backbone before the hops make a token appearance. It would have been easy to let the fruit take over in this beer, but it was surprisingly balanced overall. The raspberries are there, but they don't feel cloying or sweet.

The flavors gel more as the beer warms. It finishes a little dry on the palate, slightly sour towards the end of the bottle, but not unpleasantly so. Good mouthfeel. Deceptively drinkable, it would be easy to quaff a few of these at the holiday table or party. It matches up GREAT with a big ol' turkey and dressing spread, or maybe afterwards with a nice dessert.

Give the other holiday offerings a rest and try this undiscovered gem of a beer. It certainly made MY holiday a little brighter.

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Photo of bditty187
4.32/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear ruby-brown hue, it is an absolutely gorgeous color, the off-white head never develops much height, maybe a fourth of a finger, sparse in the middle, fuller around the rim. Laces rather well, very webby. The nose is raspberries and malt, there is pretty good depth to the raspberries, a little sweet, a little tart, a little like pie, yet I can’t help but say this is a one trick pony. Yes, the malt is noticeable but what does it really do? It has an inviting aroma nevertheless. The palate is impressive, that is all I can say. The maltiness is very sturdy, typical of a Brown Ale, hence the name. The raspberry taste is very pie-like, a touch tart and a touch sweet, I detect more chocolate notes than I have typically. The finish is largely “brown ale” in nature, the hops are not noticeable, the bitterness is minimal; the aftertaste has a burst of raspberry and then maltiness. Drier than you’d expect, the taste is far from cloying. This beverage begs to be paired with cheesecake or a chocolate cake. This fruit beer is much different than 99% of its competition. I look forward to Frambozen every year; it is worth a six-pack for sure. I do like it better on-tap however. This is an impressive beverage. I would recommend this to anyone who thinks fruit beers are either “girly” or “too sweet.” This ale is damn tasty. Recommended.

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Photo of Morris729
4.32/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours deep ruby in color with a thin creamy light pink colored head that quickly fades into a trace amount of lace. Nose is fresh raspberry and sweet malts. Crisp with a good amount of carbonation to tickle the mouth. Taste is a nice blend of tart raspberries and sweet malts with a bit of fruity citrus. The raspberries in both the aroma and taste seem very natural with no artificial notes that tarnish so many brews of this type. A delightful brew that makes for an excellent after-dinner drink.

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Photo of RBorsato
4.31/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Brown (chocolate and chestnut) with a nice full light brown head at first that's gone quickly. Light carbonation .. not very lambic-like. Very strong raspberry truffle like aroma and flavor. Tates like a chocolate and raspberry Belgian truffle -- very rich and dessert-like. Medium bodied and smotth without the typical lambic airiness.

A definitely nice dessert beer !!

Per Label: "Ale Fermented With Real Raspberries"

Best Before: 03/28/04
Tasted: 06/01/06

(Z. Wood)

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Photo of Lupe
4.3/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Light brown color with ruby highlights and a frothy, off-white head that leaves sticky rings of lace. Juicy raspberry aroma upfront with soft toasted malt scents in the backround. Flavor is similar to the aroma, starts with juicy raspberry, sweet with a little tartness. Raspberry subsides as toasted grain flavors come into the profile. Hints of cocoa and caramel lie in the backround. Medium in body and very smooth. Not dry like a lambic, nice and juicy. The raspberries balance very well with the brown ale. Highly drinkable and delicious. Very nice.

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Photo of Pegasus
4.3/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Lovely claret color with a huge pale pink head head, minor lace, a quite visually striking beer. Very pronounced natural aroma of raspberries, sweet, but with a wine or cordial characteristic. Taste begins with raspberry flavors, stinging carbonation, and a distinct alcohol note, beneath which are substantial bittersweet chocolate malts and spicy hops. Raspberry flavors rise to a tart sharpness towards the midpoint of the taste. Near the finish the hops assert themselves more strongly to vanquish the lingering raspberry notes. This beer is notable for the fact that the raspberry aroma and flavor seem completely natural and free of odd chemical flavors usually present in raspberry-flavored beverages. An absolutely stunning accomplishment in brewing. Would be excellent as a dessert beer.

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Photo of JuicesFlowing
4.3/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a New Belgium globe.

The beer is a soft ruby brown. An off white head recedes to chunks of bubbles while sheets of lacing coat the glass.

The beer smells bubbly, like champagne with raspberry, faint malts and hops, and perhaps subdued nuttiness.

The beer tastes bright and fruity with raspberry and cranberry notes. A silky malt body brings lingering notes of nuts and cranberry bread.

Mouthfeel is smooth, but spritzy and dry.

Overall this is my favorite New Belgium beer. It's not overbearing, it's clean and refreshing and I can always have several without feeling like its a dessert.

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Photo of beertaster13
4.3/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

This is a fabulous beer, I've never had anything like it. Pours a deep dark brown with a tan head that has great head retention. The smell is of deep dark chocolate and raspberry. Smell like a nice truffle, hints of caramel and cream. The taste was fabulous, it is like drinking a chocolate covered raspberry, the chocolate upfront taste blends nicely with the raspberry sweetness. The milk/honey blends well with the chocolate. This is medium bodied and goes great with Raspberry Cheescake or chocolates, great dessert beer. The drinkability is down just because the beer is really sweet, more like a glass a night with dessert than a session beer.

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Photo of pentathlete
4.3/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Another New Belgium winner, this beer came in BIF18 from babydoc. Thank you again.

Pours a near opaque, barely translucent muddy brown. Not much head and the aroma was brown ale all the way. Some fruit was in the nose, but not too much. That semi-chocolatey brown ale smell was the first thing I tasted. Without the fruit, this would have been a pretty decent brown ale, but with the raspberry flavors it becomes a classic brown. Most browns have a finish that I find off-putting and dissatisfying (think Legend Brown if you've had it). This beer finishes smooth with just the right hit of that typical flavor. Loved it. Again, I wish that NBs were readily available here.

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Photo of Zach136
4.25/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On tap at Trappeze Pub. Served in an Allagash Flute.

12 oz. / $5
half pour / $3

A - Light Auburn with a three finger beige head. Excellent lacing.

S - Raspberry and a hint of peanut butter and jelly sandwhich.

T - Raspberry sweetness with a solid malt background. Virtually no hops to speak of.

M - Light and crisp, very refreshing for a brown ale base.

O - One of the better fruit beers i've ever had. Really reminded me of a liquid peanut butter and raspberry jelly sandwhich throughout the drink.

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Photo of woemad
4.25/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle bought at Huckleberry's in Spokane. Poured a reddish brown, with a decent head colored somewhere between off-white and pink. Scents of raspberries (duh), a pleasing sweet and sourness. A little maltiness, but way in the background. The taste. is fruity, with a little bit of tart lemony flavor in there along with the raspberries, but not at the same level. There's also a bit of maltiness hovering in the background, just enough to make you aware its there. This is a very pleasing beer, perhaps not traditional enough to please hard core fruit beer drinkers, but quite tasty nonetheless. I had to grade it down in the drinkability area, as this is just too fruity for repeated pints. This would probably be great with a rich chocolate dessert. Now I want one. Doh!

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Photo of tavernjef
4.23/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

What a wonderful little brew with an exceptionally nice looking color with its dark syrupy brown with deep raspberry red tints and glowing even deeper when up to the light. Small off-white that fades fast and there isn't any real lace being left, which is fine by me cuz the glowing reddish quality is superb to see. Like looking into the heart of a raspberry jelly jar. Speaking of which, thats the smell of this delightful treat, fresh raspberry jam, albiet a bit subdued, but its there and freshly so. Some alcoholic hints and malts find there way past the raspberry jam aroma making this smell like a raspberry popsicle dipped in a alcoholic punch. Taste is exactly like the smell, a good amount of raspberry jam, somewhat lightly flavored and easier then I was hoping. Its not the raspberry tart of the New Glarus variety, not by a long shot, but this about being more calm and subdued, or at least it comes across that way. One dimensional in its character with easy fruity tang of raspberry jam all over the place, a touch of the alcohol pokes through along with a pleasant little orange flavor and finishes lightly of banana and sweet malts. Feel has a creamy start with a little fizz in the midway point with light carbonation and finishes with a tingley little raspberry zip and slight fruity dryness. Super drinkable and a nice little treat, would make for a great after meal dessert drink. Finished it no time and wanting more.

Thanks to jeffboo for the bottle.

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Photo of mulder1010
4.22/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass

A-- Poured a raspberry brown color. Highly carbonated. Dirty pink colored head. Started at two fingers beofre receeding. Spotty lacing on the sides of the glass.

S-- Tart raspberry. Very juicy. Just a hint of carmel and a very sweet nose.

T-- Raspberry in the front and carmel in the back. Good amount of tartness to this.

M-- Medium high carbonation. Medium feel. Lots of raspberry to this and some carmel to balance it out. Long lasting tartness from the raspberries.

D-- Excellent. One of my favorite Christmas seasonals. ABV is up from previous years but still well hidden and easy to drink 2-3 in a sitting. Perfect for a sitting next to a fire. Good to have again.

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Photo of feloniousmonk
4.22/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: lovely dark garnet hued, with a fine, dun-colored head atop, settling swiftly down.
Aroma: wonderful! Sweet, yet tart, like chocolate-covered berries, beautiful, complex, and brilliant.
Taste: bright and tangy, full of gorgeous fruity flavor and lush texture. Tasrtness first, then sweet, and very, very mellow.
Frombozen here has the distinct advantage over raspberry lambics of having this brown ale base to it, making it sturdier, tastier. The raspberries blend well with the ale, doesn't stick out so terribly much, aiding drinkability. A remarkable notion, excellently executed!

Thanks to Mr. Jeffboo for sharing!

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Photo of GilGarp
4.2/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours from a 12oz. brown bottle into a pint glass. It has a striking deep red amber color, ample head and excellent lacing.

Aroma is mostly cranberries with some hints of brown bread.

Flavor is certainly rich in berry goodness with cranberries and raspberries. There's a nice tartness from the cran but also some sweetness to balance it out. It would be interesting to taste the base beer (without fruit) to see how it compares.

Mouthfeel is dominated by the tart flavor but it has a nice level of carbonation and medium body.

Drinkability is very good for a fruit beer but I really enjoy it as an end-of-the-evening sort of treat.

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Photo of Gagnonsux
4.2/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The color is a cloudy ruby brown. The creamy head is a bit on the small side, but the light brown color is interesting due to a slight pink tint. The aroma is of fresh raspberries, definently not an extract smell, with an underlying toasted malt body. The taste has plenty of fresh raspberry flavor upfront, with all the tart and sweet nuances that you'd get if you had just popped a berry in your mouth. The underlying malt is ever present, with a flavor similar to Fat Tire, and serves as an excellent balance to the unique raspberry flavor. This is the best fruit beer that I've had, for raspberry fans this is a must try brew.

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Photo of silver0rlead
4.18/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a ruby color with mahogany highlights and a pink tinged tan head that retains well and leaves beautiful lacing...really impressive looking. The aroma has fresh, tart raspberry notes in spades, along with dark chocolate and toffee, sour cherry juice and a bit of alcohol...not particularly complex but very inviting nonetheless. The flavor is reminiscent of a dark chocolate truffle with a raspberry filling, notes of sour cherries and raspberries, some chocolate and toffee, lactic sourness, NB's trademark yeast, biscuit and some alcohol. The mouthfeel is moderate and drinkability is good but just shy of great because of the acidity. The is a particularly tasty offering from New Belgium, not a training wheels fruit beer by any means...probably my favorite offering from this brewery so far.

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
4.18/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a New Belgium globe.
6.5% ABv, Serve at 50°F, Best Before 24FEB13

A - Steady carbonation rises from the glass' nucleation point through the vibrant dark ruby colored beer to keep the loose pile of light pastel pink foam afloat. As the suds slowly sink, they leave drifts of lace all over the glass.

S - Frambozen opens with a robust raspberry aroma that's reminiscent of the fruit-filled lambics of Belgium though not quite as sweet. In fact, more tartness than anything blankets the faintly roasted brown malts which provide a complimentary cocoa and chocolate quality, however dull. Exactly what I'd imagine a brown ale with raspberries added smells like.

T - Gently raspberry fruitiness nudges the base maltiness of this beer with a tartness which works very well with the mildly roasted malts which provide a touch of chocolate to the beer. Cocoa and hops linger on the finish with a dry earthiness.

M - Medium-bodied and well carbonated, this brown ale starts with a classic dryness which lingers and is aided by tart raspberries for a refreshing and soothing beer with a light, crisp bite.

O - New Belgium carefully manages to extract the core concept of a fruity framboise and applies it to a brown ale while maintaining the beer qualities keeping it level and fruity without being completely fruity. Frambozen is a nice winter seasonal that offers gentle festive cheer without being over the top fruity or strong; these could be kicked back by the 6-pack at family gatherings no problemo.

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Photo of rawfish
4.18/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours ruby tinged brown and clear with a small pink tinged head. Poor retention and messy lacing left behind. Glows when it's held up to the light.

Berries up front, thin and uplifting dried cranberries and raspberry. Hay and crusty rye bread, nice blend like jam on toast.

Raspberry juice immediately distinguishable but not syrupy or over the top, dry crusty bread, grassy hop, lemon zest, spearmint. The fruit is light on it's feet and adds a nice flash to what would be a sessionable amber. Dries well and doesn't leave much acidity on the palate.

Crisp and snappy carbonation pairs well with the berry. Hops dry very well and clean. Alcohol could be toned down a twinge but otherwise near perfect.

Terrific holiday beer that features the fruit without being over done, malt and drying hops balance well then cleanse the palate for the next sip. Crisp, uplifting and makes this beer feel like a celebration.

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Photo of LuckySevens82
4.17/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle courtesy of babydoc.

Pours a deep ruby, with brown tinges. A small pink and tan head forms on top of the beer.
Aroma is very strongly raspberries (well duh), sweet and toasty malt, yeasty characteristics, and a bit of hops. Alcohol is present in the nose, but it well balanced with the rest of the aromas.
Taste is tart raspberries, caramel and toasted malts, a slight alcohol warming while going down, and just a little bit of hop bitterness. A very distinctive belgian yeastiness also is present.
Overall, a very interesting beer and an excellent fruit beer.

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Photo of uwmgdman
4.16/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This ale pours a beautiful crystal-clear ruby color with an off-white head. The aroma is moderately malty--nutty and toasty with a pleasant fresh raspberry aroma. The flavor is a nice marriage of tart raspberry and nutty malts. The finish is crisp and clean with a bit of tart raspberry lingering. The carbonation is moderate and body medium. Overall this is a very flavorful and well crafted beer that can be drunk all night.

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Photo of TexIndy
4.15/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a NBB snifter. Best by 2/20/11 on back label. It was a rich ruby color with plenty of carb streams It had a large fluffy head that took a long time to settle into a constant small foam cap. Great lacing with lots sticking.

The aroma was dark chocolate covered raspberries and cocoa powder. Good but can be overpowering if not a fan of raspberries. The taste follows the aroma with choc covered raspberries blending well with a small but there brown ale base. Definitely a sipper due to the heavy fruit flavor. Mouthfeel was creamy with lots of carb and a slightly acidic, fruity aftertaste.

Overall, an excellent fruit beer. Highly recommend. Avail here in TX as seasonal release. Rotation - the raspberry flavor is strong so one at a time is enough. I enjoy the flavor so will get a couple each season. [O;O]

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Photo of BeerManDan
4.15/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

What a pleasant color this brown ale was. It was a red tawny port color with very little foam and no lace to speak of. The smell was of a tart raspberry nature with some hops in the background. The taste was of tart raspberrys with a hint of roasted malts and some hops. Not to thick and very pleasant on the after taste. A pleasant surprise for my palate and yours, if your looking for a tart fruity flavor in a brown ale.

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Photo of davexisxrabid
4.15/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a deep reddish-brown color with a half inch white head. There appeared to be almost no carbonation present, although there was excellent lacing all over my pint glass.

Aroma of cherries and honey. A little funky.

Good sour flavor, a lot like chocolate covered cherries. A sour cherry, malty flavor prevades with almost no hop bitterness detectable.

Medium-full mouthfeel although the flavor dies out quickly on the palate and doesn't linger much, I'm guessing due to the fact that it was a tad bit flat.

Good enough to have a few as they are not too sweet and have a good beer backbone but this beer would be great if it just had a little more carbonation in it.

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Photo of lstokes
4.15/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pour is very dark red-brown with a tiny off-white head. It smells mostly tart, and then the taste is also tart--not all that sweet, really, but definitely like a tart, fresh berry, combined with a weak brown ale. My boyfriend says it's like they isolated all of the parts of the berry without the natural sugar. It's a little bit chocolate and toasted biscuit in the malt underneath, but that's been dialed down, and there's honestly not much development throughout the glass. That raspberry bouquet is what stays after the swallow. It's a touch light in the mouthfeel, but it's possible that a thicker beer would drown out the raspberry complexity. We both quite liked it.

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Frambozen Raspberry Brown Ale from New Belgium Brewing
83 out of 100 based on 395 ratings.