Frambozen Raspberry Brown Ale - New Belgium Brewing

Not Rated.
Frambozen Raspberry Brown AleFrambozen Raspberry Brown Ale

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792 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 792
Reviews: 381
rAvg: 3.63
pDev: 14.05%
Wants: 34
Gots: 42 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
New Belgium Brewing visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
Fruit / Vegetable Beer |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: kbub6f on 11-03-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 792 | Reviews: 381 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of RevDru
3.38/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours brownish-red with thin foam head which disappears quickly.

S - Strong berry smell with slight smokey-grain undertones.

T - Again, berries, with a note of cola and vanilla. Quite sweet.

M - Smooth and filling.

D - Quite easy to drink. Nothing too outstanding, but pretty much what one would expect from a raspberry ale. Reminds me of a raspberry and vanilla cola. I can see how this might be just a little too sweet for some people, as it was almost borderline for myself.

Photo of akorsak
4.1/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A 12 oz bottle from my Secret Santa 2006, nvsblman.

A: The ale is a deep, raspberry red color, dark almost to the point of murky brown. The head pours with a bit of raspberry red color as well and leaves a bit of lacing in the glass.

S: Even when the ale is cold, there is a strong raspberry aroma. It comes across as more natural and tart than syrupy.

T: The ale continues the strong raspberry presence that I found in the nose. The flavor has a light sweetness but is more remarkable for the strong natural tartness that it has. That fruit flavor is built on a nutty biscuit malt body that provide a bit of grainy sweetness to interact with the tartness.

M: The mouthfeel is a nice blend of sweet, nutty grains and a tart, sometimes sweet, raspberry.

D: Moderate abv and nice subtle fruit taste make this a good one. The tartness of the raspberry is what keeps me going back for a sip.

Photo of goochpunch
4.08/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours out a reddish brown with a somewhat thin yet frothy off-white pinkish head. Leaves some spotty lacing. When held up to direct light it resembles a deeper tawny port. Nose is faintly sweetish and of raspberries, but the strongest aromas that come out are of the roasted and toasted malts. A bit of cocoa is in there as well. Malt flavor is at first toasty and cocoa-like then moves into a raspberry sweetness and tartness. Finishes nice and dry. Only strike against this is that the malt body kind of thins out before the finish, but it tastes good overall. Mouthfeel is a bit thin, the carbonation is just fine. Not too prickly. Flavor has a bit of richness yet finishes lighter and refreshing/dry/tart, making this highly drinkable. Definately one of the better fruit beers to have.

Photo of Zorro
4.03/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled due to the kindness of gbontrag.

Clear deeply brown colored beer with a very tall and thick tan head. The head has a pink tint to it. Best head that I have seen for quite sometime.

Smell is sweet and malty with a clear scent of raspberry but not too strong. Hint of chocolate and coffee in there but not too strongly.

Taste is raspberry sweet tarts at the start. Good flavor of raspberry and a not too sweet this is actually about as tart as a real raspberry in your mouth. Tart and raspberry, that sums up the taste completely.

Mouthfeel is OK.

A definite must try for those who do not like sweet fruit beers. To me this OK but not really great. It is nice and all but I would expect more complexity.

Photo of BeerSox
4.35/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle into mug.

Dark brown, with a strong ruby red tint. The head is light tan with hints of red mixed in, and lasts forever. It eventually settles to a swirling frothy cap. Thick layered lacing from top to bottom.

The aroma is packed with raspberry and some milk chocolate, with some sweet grain. Smells almost like a dessert cookie.

Dark chocolate mixes beautifully with a syrupy raspberry flavor. There is some slight sticky bready grain. It's almost like a raspberry dessert cake. Medium bodied. The finish is smooth and creamy with lingering raspberry flavors.

I really enjoyed this one, it's a very unique beer. This is a great desser treat for anybody, and is probably a good beginner beer. Highly recommended.

Photo of MrHungryMonkey
3.9/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Ruby mahogany, clear, small head, low carbonation.

Mild raspberries and bitterness. Little nectar sweetness.

Strong raspberry blast. Tart and sweet.

Smooth with mild to moderate carbonation. Low foamation.

This is definitely a raspberry beverage. Fairly balanced. Modest and refreshing, a nice drink. It would have been great for thanksgiving.

Photo of beeragent
3.53/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12oz. bottle, with a freshness date of Jan.27, 2007. The beer poured a nice dark brown, finishing in a deep brownish-red, with a 1 inch head, leaving nice lacing down the glass. The aroma is almost of dirty raspberries, if you can imagine that. Not bad, but not exactly pleasant. The mouthfeel is medium, and the taste is almost like a raspberry soda. Raspberry, with a good amount of carbonation. Still, this is a very enjoyable beer, but not a beer that I would drink more than one of in a sitting.

Note, this review was made when I didnt know jack sh*t about beer.

Photo of Padron4KM
2.93/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

12 oz bottle. Best before Jan 2007. Well worn copper penny color.
Small tan head with a pink tint.

Decadent raspberry chocolate cake aroma.

Raspberry flavor starts out nice, a little sweet a little tart, but quickly becomes cloying.

Body is thin.

Decent beer, but it becomes a little to sweet to drink more than one.

Photo of warmstorage
2.7/5  rDev -25.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12 ounce bottle, BevMo Sacramento (Arden Way), $7.49 for a six pack.

Poured into pint glass, cellar temp (maybe a tiny bit at the warm end: 54*F ambient.) Bottles states Best Before date of 26 Jan 07, advises to serve at 50*F, states 6.5% ABV.

Pours with a huge, tight head that is pinkish tinted tan. This changes to a much rockier, larger bubbled head as it dissipates. Head ultimately goes away almost completely; leaves some light lacing.

Smell is fruit (raspberries, duh) and a slightly sour, vegetal note. Hmm. It also smells like some household cleaning or renovation product that I just can't place: I want to say like the underlayment for the laminate flooring I put down, but that's not it. This smell isn't a horrible one, but not appropriate for beer, either. On further smelling, I get a sense of stale oil.

Taste is sweet fruit essence that dominates most other flavors. It has a fairly bright, tingly mouth. I like the flavor, since I bought it to be a raspberry beer, but it's a little too much of the essence/extracted style of fruit beer. Minimal hops detected. There is a light caramel sweetness and malt flavor. The brown ale provides a nice backbone for their use of raspberries (which would probably overwhelm a blonde or wheat.)

With the exception of the somewhat rank smell, it's a very, very average beer, bordering on mediocre.

I like this beer reasonably well, and am not unhappy that I had to buy a six pack to get it, but I wouldn't buy it all the time. As with many of NB's offerings, I can't shake the sense that they are undercutting quality, malt bills, and hop bills to keep pumping out the product and maintain/build the market share.

Photo of mghotbi
2.7/5  rDev -25.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a beautiful dark reddish brown with thin off-white head and copious sticky lace.

Smells bready and yeasty with just a hint of caramel malt and faint chocolate. Surprisingly, little in the way of raspberry aroma.

Smooth and creamy mouthfeel with prominent late carbonation.

Taste is complex with typical brown ale caramel sweetness giving way quickly to overpowering tart raspberry and ending with a clean dry finish. Alcohol is well masked by the tartness, but sneaks up on you quick. Tartness is a bit out of balance and tarnishes other good flavors.

A fine winter seasonal, sure to please beer afficionados and family members who like fruity concoctions as well. One by the fire is great, but I don't think it would make a good session beer for me.

Photo of SkeeterHawk
3.83/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a pretty murky blood brown color with a 1/4" head of tan bubbles on top. It is hard to tell what is going in since it is so cloudy, but the head falls within a minute or so and is already leaving lacing on the glass. It leaves quite a bit of lace after drinking the beer.

Aroma: You can definitely smell the fruit in this fact it smells a bit like a fruit roll-up. You can definitely get the raspberry in here, but there is another fruit flavor that is pretty dominant that I can't put my "finger" on. It is some kind of dark berry.

Taste: The flavor is really fruity with a bold dry edge to it. You get lots of fruit and sweetness in the flavor of this one, and it seems like the attenuation from the fruit addition really dried this beer out to the point that it is a bit astringent. I am getting some hops in here, but they are mostly floral varieties. The dryness gives you a bitter impression in the finish that is accentuated by the hops. The fruit flavors are there on the palate to linger for some time in the finish with the bitterness

Opinion: This beer isn't too bad for what it is...a raspberry brown ale. The fruit is a bit much in that it dries the beer out to the point that it really accentuated the other characteristics of the beer. I am not a big fan of sweet fruit beers, but this one could use a bit more sweetness to keep the finish a little more balanced. It's not bad, but still not my favorite. I would try this beer again, because I imagine that when they do it again that it will go down a little smoother. A beer like this is hard to make.

Photo of weeare138
3.58/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Thanks to hopdog for this...
Best by 2/16/06
Appears a reddish, muddy brown with a 3 finger, fluffy tan head that slowly fades out. Scattered tight lacing is left around the glass.
Smell is of toffee, a dab of cocoa, caramel, and obvious tart raspberries.
Taste is of the same aromas with a the raspberries and candy like sweetness coming together up front before leading into a mild tartness that seems to be an interesting blend.
Mouthfeel is sweet up front, leading to tartness in a somewhat thin textured medium body.

Photo of RBorsato
4.33/5  rDev +19.3%
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)

3.98/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Clear reddish brown beer with a 1" off-white head that settles down and retains well at 1/4". Leaves some good lace.

S - Subtle raspberries and nice earthy chocolate malt. Great balance - nice aroma.

T - Bright berry flavor. Some sour tartness in there. Chocolate malt flavor compliments the fruit perfectly. Reminds me of a chocolate covered cherry!

M - Medium bodied, creamy mouthfeel. Good carbonation.

D - Very nice drinkability. This is one of my favorite winter beers.

Photo of brewcrew76
4/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Brownish tan with ruby highlights and a tan head.

S - Strong raspberry (juice like), a little sour, slightly lambic like.

T - Tart raspberry, slight biscuit malt, Very nicely balanced between sweetness and tartness.

M - Light and well carbonated.

D - A tasty fruit beer. Nicely balanced.

Photo of Crosling
3.3/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Draught. Brilliant red color, with a light hints of pink in the head. A nice vibrant and enticing fruitiness in the nose with the malt base barely noticable and the raspberries taking everything over. Light in body, faintly hopped with notes of raspberries, fruits and a touch of chocolate and caramel. A bit dull in the aroma and a bit sweet. An ok brew.

Photo of VoodooBrew
3.63/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The nose contains the obvious raspberry, along with white chocolate. On the palate, it's immediately fruity-- guess which kind of fruit? Gentle malt works a supporting role in the background but it's fruit and tartness that take center stage. This tartness continues into the finish, but keeps from becoming overpowering.

Unlike some other raspberry-oriented beers, Frambozen takes a more even-handed approach, striving for the proper dosage of raspberry and malt. Unfortunately, I think the result is at times muddled. It's okay but certainly short of amazing.

Photo of beertastegood
3.8/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a mahogany/bloodred color with a big frothy off-white head. Smells like (surprise) raspberries, with some slight chocolate/toffee notes as well. Not much else in the aroma.

Taste: Sharp tartness at first, followed by a sweet caramel-like malt flavor, and finishing with a very slight mention of spicy hop flavor (Perle or Tettnang, maybe.) Dry and tart raspberry finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-high carbonation, medium-full body.

Drinkability: Sweet, but goes down pretty easy.

Overall: It's like drinking a raspberry shortcake...Excellent dessert beer and one that has renewed my interest in fruit beers.

Photo of UnionMade
4.03/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beautifully clear garnet, capped with a giant, creamy puff of pinkish head. Excellent head retention, leaving rings of brussels lace clinging to the glass. Sweetish caramel malt aroma, with a well integrated, subtle raspberry flourish. Just a hint of berry tang. A dash of herbal hops. Very elegant. Soft flavors, with slightly roasty malt right up front, drizzled with raspberry syrup. Very much like a raspberry and chocolate cake, or a bar of dark chocolate with raspberry. Some figgy fruit notes, mostly a study of chocolate and raspberry. Very mildly hopped, trace amounts of herbal, floral hops. Much of the bitterness seems to derived from the bittersweet, roasty quality of the malt. Finishes soft, with a little bit of raspberry tartness. Light bodied, with tingling carbonation.
If you like the raspberry and chocolate combination, this is for you. Perhaps more of that taste than some beers actually labeled as raspberry chocolate ale. Not terrifically complex, but soft, delicate and refined. I loved it. Thanks to my girlfriend Kristi for bringing a few bottles of this back from San Francisco. Probably one of the best fruit-infused brews out there.

Photo of patrick16o
4.47/5  rDev +23.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep red hue with hints of light browns and oranges. Crown is good sized and a bit pillowy, disappates slowly clings to the sides of the glass. A steady stream of tiny bubbles rise to the top. Aroma is very nice, raspberry right up front, then a solid helping roasted malts and just a hint of hops. The taste is wonderful. A solid roasted malt flavor up front, quickly followed by delicious sweet and tart raspberry and hints of hops down the back of my tongue. A medium bodied beer with a nice complex flavor. Very nice mouthfeel for a beer I could definately see myself drinking many more of.

Photo of Jredner
3.38/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Aroma is mostly fresh real raspberries. Not puree. Very slight heartier malt notes beneath the sweetness. Ruby colored with a thin white film for a head. Probably shouldn’t have had this after the New Glarus Raspberry Tart it just ruins other raspberry beers for my palate. Very light raspberry notes with a solid pumpernickel-tinged malt base. I really can’t taste any alcohol so the 7% is completely masked. Palate gets very thin, but the finish is lasting and a nice raspberry/malt mix.

Photo of NClifestyle
3.63/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

looks pretty good in a pint glass, murky brown, a thick, fluffy head of red-tinged off white foam.
smell is pretty weak. a thin brown ale, with just a hint of fruit.
taste isn't bad. basically, solid brown ale with raspberry highlights.
mouthfeel is somewhat thin, not quite medium. nice carbonation, fizzy at times.
not an offensive beer, could be a session beer if you want something with a touch of sweetness.


Photo of bennetj17
3.6/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Brownish red in color, good clarity. The short head of foam dissipates quickly. Smell is bright with rapspberry and caramel malt. Almost smells like peanut butter and jelly. Taste is tart raspberry, bready, raisiny. Low hop flavor and no real bitterness. Alcohol doesn't seem that high. It doesn't coat the palate but its still not too thin. Carbonation is decent. Its a nice fruity, winter beer. A bit tart, but interesting as a brown ale with raspberries. Its nothing like a lambic which I had expected. Worth a try from one of my favorite breweries...

Photo of JudgeRoughneck
3.8/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Beer rests in the brewer's own goblet and radiates an opaque dark plum with soft glow. It starts with two fingers of purple-tinged tan head but that fades slowly, leaving a rich and delicate lacing.

Nose is of course, rasberries. It's very strong. I also smell some slight nut and hops hiding out back there somewhere but mostly its the berries. Nose signals hard sour- tart association in my brain and the back and sides of my tounge start salivating.

My tounge glimpes undead citrusy hops and the specters of earthy ones scurrying out of the path of the on-coming nutty malt truck, which is loaded down with huge rasberry taste that plays wonderfully off a big sour lactic character. The mouthfeel is thin but sticky. While I found this to be a tasty brew, it is so fulsome that one a night is enough.

I have tried this beer before and been underwhelmed, but if you can still get your hands on some of this year's you really should. Apparently the rasberry crop was special this year and it really shows. I'm on like my third six of this, we've been having fun baking with it. Do not pair it with rasberry chocolate by the way, they just cancel eachother out.

Photo of mattcrill
3.73/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks go out to HardTarget for this and his most gracious recent shipment of goodies.

Best before 2/16/06 on the bottle.

Appearance: An amber, ruby colored pour with a fluffy off white head.

Smell: A light raspberry puree aroma with some malty sweetness in the background.

Taste: Raspberries, a light carmel flavor, some maple, and a touch of nuttiness.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and crisp due to the nice carbonation.

Drinkability: By far the most interesting brown ale I've had. Nothing off but nothing outstanding. Highly sessionable and not a "raspberry punch in the face" like other fruit beers that are out there. Worth a try for sure.

Frambozen Raspberry Brown Ale from New Belgium Brewing
82 out of 100 based on 792 ratings.