St-Ambroise Pale Ale - McAuslan Brewing

Not Rated.
St-Ambroise Pale AleSt-Ambroise Pale Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

380 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 380
Reviews: 217
rAvg: 3.87
pDev: 11.89%
Wants: 19
Gots: 23 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
McAuslan Brewing visit their website
Quebec, Canada

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Jason on 10-26-2000

Hops: Cascade, Willamette, Golding, Hallertau

IBU: 35
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 380 | Reviews: 217
Reviews by the Alström Bros:
Photo of Jason
4.47/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 11.5 oz brown twist, no description and no freshness date.

Appearance: Hazy orange amber with a wonderful web like white lace that clings everywhere and leaves thick rings all the way down the glass.

Smell: Fragrant fruity and hoppy floral make for a sweetish aroma. Slight sweet tea nose within, very appealing.

Taste: Smooth with a moderate body that boots a crisp malty palate. Rustic hop bitterness and a lightly pungent hop oil flavour linger on top with a fruity and sweet grain mix. Fruitiness fades from peaches to apples while the hop bitterness cleans up. Pale malt character holds strong though is certainly not dominant.

Notes: Not much else one could ask for in a pale ale, seriously one of the finest pale ales I have ever had the joy to drink.

More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
3.47/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured a clear light golden with a large sticky white head that let rings of lace behind as it settled,quite spritzy looking pretty well carbonated.Nic hop profile in the nose quite citrusy and slightly piney but lemon and grapefruit show thru more,a light sweet biscuit malt aroma shows thru as well.The flavors seemed a bit flat to me the hops seemed to peeter out a little I mean there is a citrusy presense but not very bold,a dryer malt base really keeps the beers sweetness in check.A somewhat lighter prickly mouthfeel doesnt help it much,I had higher expectations for this but seemed a bit of a dud after a good start.

Photo of Popsinc
3.88/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: 341ml bottle. Best before 11/03. Dark amber pour with a generous foamy, white head.

Smell: Nice hoppy nose with a malty kick. Some sweetness and floral hints.

Taste: Nicely hoppy off the top with an adequate malt backbone. The body bends towards the sweet side with hints of caramel and light fruit such as apricot and mango. Lovely full body.

Mouthfeel: Lively and full. A carbonated finish that starts to dry out towards the end but leaves and sweet tingle on the tongue.

Drinkability: A well rounded brew. Perfect to accompany a steak or pork. I would consider this an everyday beer of good quality.

Photo of JohnnyBarman
4.13/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I've had this brew on tap a few times before, but this is my first chance to really sit down with it. From a four pack picked up at the LCBO.

Poured into a nonic glass. A stunning colour - really fantastic - copper golden, clear, and with a few bubbles rising from the depths. Terrific sticky lacing up and down the glass, good retention on the 1/2 inch head. Looks brilliant.

Nose is malty, with soft notes of peach, apple, caramel and grassy hops.

This is one tasty little pale ale - sweet at first, with a crisp cracker malt flavor, fruit and caramel, followed by a palate cleansing bitter hop finish with a touch of tart apple. Woodsy. The sweetness is a bit off pace, but generally speaking St. Ambroise is a pleasure to drink.

Crisp carbonation, slightly creamy, medium-thin bodied.

Would make for a fine session beer over the course of an evening. Pricy, but certainly worth a pickup. Another great brew from a great Quebec brewery!

Photo of Swedes21
3.8/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

341 ml served in a chilled glass..

Appearance - beer pours with a great amount of head that quickly disappears. Beer is a amber colour and not much carbonation is present. Some nice lacing is occuring.

Smell - I can smell some hops as well as citrus hints. This is a nicely put together beer.

Taste - good tasting beer, I would say a slight bitterness upfront and smooth on the backend. Minimal taste of hops, all around a smooth tasting beer.

Mouthfeel - little carbonation added and you can taste the hops come fwd. The beer is a little less bitter actually and has a smooth finish.

Drinkability - I'd stock this beer and drink it again. Very nice beer with lots of taste and nice ending.

Photo of chickenm
4.25/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear copper color with a thin white head. Aroma is fairly sweet, with caramel malts and little bit of floral hops. Malty flavor with some mild bitterness. Medium bodied with a really nice smooth mouthfeel, and very easy to drink. This is more like an English Pale Ale than an APA, but I like this beer a lot!

Photo of BGDrock
4.35/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: hazy, and not only due to the chill; good sticky head; copper colour

Aroma: sweet and fruity; strawberry, raspberry; wheat or oats; recognize toffee after the tasting

Taste & Mouthfeel: on the sweet side when first touches the tongue, but finishes with a complex bitter tang; some fatty yeast character; big toffee; dry; perfect carbonation; want to keep coming back for more to figure out those flavours!

Overall: sweet and bitter flavours really weave together and finish as one, making it a lot of fun to drink

Photo of IntriqKen
3.81/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear golden orange with a bit of rust color in the glass.
An impressive full finger and a half head of tight white bubbles tops the glass and leaves sticky lace behind it as you drink.

Aromas are subdued sweet pale malt and fruity hops.

Taste is light and clean. Lightly toasted sweet malt blends nicely with slighly citrus peel subtle hops.

Aftertaste is a little bready (ringwood yeast again?) and then clean citrus hop leaving the mouth pleasantly dry.

Photo of biboergosum
3.58/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

341ml bottle. Hmmmm, toasted wheat in a pale ale, interesting.

This beer pours a clear medium copper amber hue, with three fingers of puffy, densely foamy, and mildly bubbly off-white head, which leaves some chunky splattered lace around the glass as things slowly abate.

It smells of semi-sweet caramel malt, a sort of candied fruitiness, like white ice wine, and earthy, floral hops. The taste is bready pale malt, with a touch of sugary caramel, syrupy pear and apple, and rather perfumed and aromatic floral, grassy hops. I'm getting neither toast nor wheat in this one.

The carbonation is quite mild, just a slightly steely frothiness, the body medium-light in weight, yet quite sturdy in its smoothness. It finishes off-dry, the fruitiness of malt and hops alike persisting, and mostly clean.

An enjoyable enough pale ale for an early summer evening, though perhaps a bit too sweet all around to engender going back to the (beer) trough for it again. I guess I'm looking for something with more obvious hop attitude, whilst testing out a new fire pit by burning (I mean cooking) some juicy smokies.

Photo of NJpadreFan
2.94/5  rDev -24%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

St. Ambroise- Pale Ale

A- Nice deep golden orange with a big fluffy heavy lacing head. Clear with good small bubbly carbonation.
S- I don't detect much here. Light buttery caramel malt, toasted grains, and grassy hops. Very light on the nose.
T- Very watery. Light caramelized toasted malt. Sugary sweet pine hop touch in the end.
M- Very watery, very light. Light and sweet in the body with a mildly bitter floral hop finish.

Overall- This was too subdued for me. Watery and lacking. I'll stick with their Oatmeal Stout!

Photo of Sammy
4.07/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Carbonation and hop works to make it quite drinkable and a champion Canadian beer. Excellent balance, above-average smell in head that dissipitates. Can drink this for a long time. Sweet start, excellent clean aftertaste.Had this again three years afterwards, and this in brief is a beer that I like and yet can till be popular.

Photo of CanuckRover
4.33/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

It's been awhile since the last time I had a pale ale, stupid considering this simple style is a favourite.

Had on top. Poured into a gold-rimmed McAuslan pint glass in a fairly dim pub this beer looked pretty great. Not particularly "pale" the beer is a fairly deep amber with lively orange highlights. A lovely thick head that lasts till the last sip and leaves excellent markings.

Lively southern fruit on the nose with a hint of very light caramel. Floral hops possibly.

Nice sweet malt. Apricot and peaches, hints of caramel honey (I bought a jar from a farmer once, good stuff). Malt also has its grainy side. Hops are somewhat astringent and sharp in the finish, but pleasant overall.

No issues with the mouthfeel. It was an easy-drinking, perfectly carbonated pale.

Really enjoyed these (all 7 of them). A great session ale.

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.1/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Crystal clear deep amber robe topped by a short, creamy white head that dissipates shortly but holds a decent collar and leaves some thin lace. The aroma offers some light dried summer fruit, and a bready and mildly caramel malt that's entwined with grassy & floral hops (Goldings?). It's not overly special or unusual, but it is nicely done, clean, and inviting. The body is medium with a very fine, median carbonation that's lightly crisp at first but warms to become creamy. The flavor offers a decent amount of hop flavor and bold bitterness atop a soft, lightly caramel-tinged malt. Quite English! The finish is clean and dry with some lingering grassy, and even peppery, hops. Well done! It reveals more of it's character as it warms, but I don't think that serving it at cellar temperature would benefit it greatly. Worth trying.

Photo of jbowers56
3.93/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Clear bronze appearance with a fairly large head. Very nice head retention, remained throughout the glass.

Very fruity hop nose. Get notes of citrus, pineapple, lots of lovely fruits! Didn't get quite as much of the malty sweetness as others seem to describe, but I think I served it a little cold.

Really nice taste. Very good fruity hop flavours, mostly citruss with some slight grassyness. Malt acted to sort of sweeten it out and balance the flavours. If I lived in Canada (or didnt have to pay quite so much for the bottle in australia), this would be the beer I'd go to whenever I needed something refreshing but still very interesting.

Fairly light mouthfeel, but nothing wrong with that for a pale ale.

Drinkability was very good, I had to stop myself guzzling this down quickly (only bought one bottle).

Photo of beerluvr
3.56/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

473ml can purchased at the local LCBO and poured into a Smithwicks Draught mug. Produces a tight and long lived white colored head atop light reddish liquid, clear and bright. The nose is kinda unassuming, just some light sweetness and a touch of fruit with little hop presence. The ale is easy drinking, the carbonation not over the top which makes it easy to quaff, flavors of light biscuity malt, yeast fruitiness and a very balanced hop bitterness add up to make this a great session ale...which is just what I'm doing as I have 2 more cans lined up after this. Finishes light and refreshing, light without sacrificing taste. Recommended!

Photo of russpowell
4.04/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours an effervescent amber with 4+ fingers of creamy sand/tan head. Very good head retention & lacing

S: Biscuitty malt & some toffee & slight citric hops as this warms.

T: Biscuitty malt, lemony & herbal hops up front. More herbal hops & slight tangerine & biscuitty malt as this warms. Finishes with orange peel, Some pineapple, more herbal hops & some honey malt

MF: Medium bodied, soft carbonation, great balance

Drinks very easy, skews English to me style-wise. I am happy to try some beer from this brewery after a 10 year break, lucky I ran into this in Kansas!

Photo of Yoonisaykul
4.43/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Since I was a kid I've always found this was a really good looking label for a beer.

A- Wow. In my many years of drinking this straight from the bottle I never notice how nice of a head you can get. Beautiful. True lacing. Just clings to the glass everywhere trying to stay alive. Slight yellow hue to the head. Liquid is a true copper (I think).

S- Honey. Lightly roasted malt. Zesty lime hops. Pear.

T-Follows the smell. Bitterness seems perfectly placed.

M- Medium to full bodied. Carbonation also medium to high.

D- High. I don't think I'd mind being stuck with cases of this. You can drink this all the time and not get sick of it. If I had to choose a lifetime supply of a beer (that I had to drink and couldn't sell of course) this would be it. You can drink this all the time and not get sick of it.
A part from mouthfeel which could be a bit crisper, this might very well be a perfect beer.
I've had so many of these growing up as my dad often kept some the fridge. I felt it was good but I was missing so much.

Photo of joemcgrath27
4.3/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

from a St. Ambroise variety pack
A - very clear copper, with a tower of off white head that had very nice retention and lacing up the glass
S - grainy and caramelly malts, light leafy and fruity hops, with a light buttery corn hint
T - nice crispy bready malt, a mix of grassy, floral, and fruity hops with a slightly oily flavour, and buttery sweet grain taste
M - medium body that starts crisp and smooth, moving to a light hop bitter mixed with a somewhat oily feel, complex
D - a great mix of malt and hop flavours, complex feels from start to finish, and very easy drinking, this beer alone is worth the variety pack purchase

Photo of Orrshow
3.92/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance – This one pours a nice deep gold/amber color. The head is fairly generous, frothy, and a near white color. It leaves some nice sticky lacing.

Smell – I like what I smell as soon as I put my nose to this beer. There is a lot of bread to begin with followed by some nice floral and citrus hop aromas. I also detect a touch of apricot in there.

Taste – Off the bat I find it to be a bit sweeter than expected. There is that breadiness I detected but it’s not very prevalent. Then the nice hoppiness kicks in which I was expecting. The hop character is more on the citrus side. I do also detect a very slight metallic flavor…I’m not sure from what though.

Mouthfeel – The mouth feel is about right. Not too thick and not too thin. The carbonation is quite noticeable but that is expected from this style.

Drinkability – Great. A nice warm weather beer which can be enjoyed by almost anyone.

Photo of Mandrake
4.22/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a fairly deep, slightly hazy brownish-copper with a fairly large, slightly off-white head that is frothy and large-bubbled, and lasts very well, leaving substantial lacing. Smell is citrusy hops, spicy and floral, with a light, fruity note that is quite pleasant, and often found in McAuslan's beers. Taste is sharp and hoppy, very clean but not particularly complex. Much of the fruitiness is missing, but there's a slight bready note that fills the profile out and prevents it from becoming entirely one-dimensional. Mouthfeel is is crisp, but a touch under-carbonated, and drinkability is very good. Quite a nice APA, with plenty of hop character and excellent drinkability.

Photo of vanrassel
4.06/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I've been drinking this beer and enjoying it for awhile, so I thought it was a good one to review shortly after joining this site. It's a rich, almost copper colour and pours with a nice thick head. The beer is nicely carbonated with lots of body: you feel it in your mouth when you drink it, and you can see it in the glass — plenty of lacing.

My untrained nose didn't pick up a lot of malt, but the beer has a really hoppy aroma and taste. I may get ridiculed for saying this, but here goes: before I started drinking microbrews and imports, I used to favour Molson Ex. To me, this is what Molson Ex would taste like if it was craft-brewed. It's fitting, I suppose, that it's brewed in Montreal.

Photo of eat
4.13/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Delicious looking beer. Clear golden-amber in colour (seems dark for a pale ale), great big head settles down to a lumpy layer of froth with bubbly lacing up the sides of the glass. Head disappeared completely about half way through. Clean and refreshing look.

A pungent bacterial, metalic nose with a good amount of hops and roasted malt.

Fairly hopped, medium roasted malt, wheat. Great bitterness in the finish just makes you want to take another sip.

Mouthfeel is good, not great. There's nothing wrong with it, it just doesn't amaze me. While the flavour is full bodied, the consistency is maybe a little more watery than it could be. Though this isn't a big deal at all.

So drinkable. I've finished off a sixer of these on my own on many occasions. This is one of my go-to beers in Montreal; a flavorful, widely available, attractively priced beer you can session regularly. I know for a fact that it is better on tap, this review is for a bottle. On tap I'm sure I would easily give it an A. If I have a six pack of these in the fridge, I'm happy.

Photo of elricorico
3.86/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear copper with a bubbly cream head. The head is sticky and leaves a fair amount of lacing. The beer presents a grassy, hoppy aroma, with a faint toffee base.

The taste has a sweetness throughout, like the smell it is faintly toffee like. Mild citrus flavour carrying the middle. There is a move towards a hop bitterness at the finish, yet the underlying flavour remains, making it a bitter-sweet finish. This pale is a bit friendlier than many of the american pales, it doesn't have that big hit in the hop department, however the flavour is there. Well balanced is how I'd best describe it, and to me that is never a bad thing.

This beer has a bit of body to it, and doesn't have too heavy of carbonation, putting it high on the drinkability scale. Pair a well balanced taste with a pleasant mouthfeel and you have a session beer, of which this is a nice example.

Good beer, try it if you haven't.

Photo of Goldorak
3.9/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Copper, with a creamy, clingy white head.

Smell: Grainy, with a sweet touch of hops.

Taste: In a word, balance. Just the perfect equilibrium of malt sweetness at first and hop bitterness in the end. Goes down creamy and smooth, and fits well in any occasion. In my dictionary, next to "Session Beer", there's a picture of a St-Ambroise Pale Ale.

Photo of dhannes
3.7/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a Sam Adams Lager glass and allowed to warm a bit.

A=Nice amber tinted gold color, a bit cloudy; foam was about two fingers for about four minutes or so.

S=Sweet smell with hint of hops.

T=First 3-4 sips were overly sweet and had a strong honey like presence; the honey flavor and sweetness diminished a bit, but overpowered any flavor from hops.

M=Good, overall, but with a slight coating remaining after a sip.

D=The sweetness makes this difficult to consume quickly, and I can't see my self drinking this one after another. It looks like it should be a great beer, and maybe I had high expectations based on other reviews, but the flavor is a bit lacking and a bit too sweet for me.

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St-Ambroise Pale Ale from McAuslan Brewing
87 out of 100 based on 380 ratings.