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Raftman - Unibroue

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

694 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 694
Reviews: 402
rAvg: 3.86
pDev: 11.66%
Wants: 49
Gots: 51 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Unibroue visit their website
Quebec, Canada

Style | ABV
Belgian Pale Ale |  5.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: kbub6f on 03-06-2001

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 694 | Reviews: 402 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of farrago
3.18/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Fast moving foam in the head, big on the pour, then recedes across the surface like waves on the shore, more yellow-brown in color than orange, just about the level of murkiness you'd expect from the beer style. Unpretentious nose of caramel/chocolate swirls, cinnamon buns and apricot, peach fruit and suggestion of banana, the lemon citrus semi-confectionary, gains steam with clove and allspice scents. Medium-bodied, while predictably smooth and creamy there's not much verve nor intensity to it. The clove, cinnamon spice is there, the banana, apricot, apple fruit same, there's even more thrust to the lemon, orange citrus. But it doesn't come together into a meaningful whole. The carbonation dulls it as well. Light white pepper and tea leaf flavors help. Unfortunately average.

Photo of BARFLYB
3.8/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into a Lancaster pint glass. Not sure of the date as it has no best by date.

A- Raftman pours out a semi thick looking dark brown to mahogany color. A decent creamy frothy head came up before saying goodbye leaving minimal lace. One of the darker Belgian pales that i've had.

S- The first thing that comes to my senses is the whiskey malt used in this, it is very strong smelling. Under that is a good amount of caramel malt with some smokiness apparent. Some dark fruit in the distance. Some yeast and hops round this one out nicely.

T- The whiskey malt takes charge and is trailed by the roasted malts. Raftman has a somewhat smokey flavor which was unexpected with some grassy hops to balance it out. Some fruity smells and some yeast come out with warming but barely. Some tartness on the finish which was nice.

M- A very drinkable pale ale at only 5.5%. I would drink a few of these and not get bored with it. This is quite crisp with a nice amount of carbonation present. The flavors do not linger around at all and no trace of alcohol which is pretty low to begin with.

D- I actually found this on a whim and picked it up without ever seeing this brand in all my years of drinking good beer. I'm glad i picked it up and will again in the future. A great take on the Belgian Pale Ale style. Good job Unibroue.

Photo of TurdFurgison
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this on tap at C'est What in Toronto, served in a pint glass. The beer was dark orange and murky with a thick white frothy head. The smell was easy to peg as Unibroue with the characteristic yeasty esters, but a grassy or musky peatiness was there as well, unique to the other Unibroue beers. I got these flavors in the taste as well, a little mysterious but very tasty. The body is thick and full, very filling. I looked for a long time before finding this, and while the hunt was more fun than the kill this is still a worthwhile beer.

Photo of hughesm4
4.38/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Drank from a bottled beer poured into a glass. The only negative came as I was pouring the beer out of the bottle and the head errupted to the top of the glass. The color was a very good amber while the smell wasn't really distinct. The beer was very drinkable with a slight but pleasant spiced and smoky taste. One of the best BPA I've had in a while and would definately drink again.

Photo of illidurit
3.65/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pour: 12 oz bottle to pint glass. Hazy bronze color with a big white head that unfortunately fizzles to nothing leaves no lace.

Nose: Belgian pale ale esters, banana and apple, maybe just a hint of the whiskey malt. Fairly standard so far.

Mouth: Tastes like a regular BPA with a subtle smokiness. Same esters as in the aroma, with some coriander and a wisp of smoke. Mouthfeel is overly carbonated. Needs to breathe and effervesce for a while before it achieves any sort of drinkability. Decently dry.

Photo of dsa7783
4.3/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Twelve-ounce bottle copped as part of an Unibroue gift-pack...
Dark-amber hue, with a creamy, fluffy head...
"Brewed with whiskey malts" on the front logo sticker...
Smokey, malty aroma rendolent of biscuits...
Taste: Belgian Pale Ale flavor with hints of smoked whiskey malts, bread, butter, and biscuits...
Great, medium-bodied mouthfeel...
Very easily drinkable...
Another winner from Unibroue...

Photo of djeucalyptus
3.95/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

poured into a tulip, a voluptuous bright cream colored head erupts atop a hazy burnt orange murky sea. The head slowly fades away to a collar fueled by constant effervescence that deposits amoeba-like lacing sporadically down the glass.

aroma is spicy, with a good amount of belgian yeastiness and a healthy dosing of citrus. Orange and lemon zest intermingle with a subtle yet ever present smoky whiskey-like aroma.

The taste is exceptional. Belgian all the way, with some orange, some oak, and definite hints of smoke. An dried herbal nutty flavor is in there as well. A citrusy finish with just a hint of pine nicely rounds the brew out.

Mouthfeel is light with some ample carbonation, enough to lightly sting the tongue with the citrus finish. Pleasant and the lightness makes this one a bit more session worthy than some of the other Unibroue offerings.

All in all, a pleasant drink. I would have welcomed a bit more of the smokey character, but it's definitely well executed and deliciously interesting. I could drink a few more, had I any more left. Definitely worth a try. Maybe underrated among the Unibroue brews, but this one ranks pretty high on my list.

Photo of tigg924
3.92/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: big head, murky, a dark orange/yellow with medium carbonation

Smell: I get orange peels and some bourbony smoke

Taste: It tastes almost Belgiany--some bourbon, some earth, some wood

Mouthfeel: light, crisp, with a slightly bitter aftertaste

Drinkability: This is a beer that the more I drink it, the more I like it...It is complex and I could easily drink a six of it

Photo of HalfFull
3.65/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer seemed to morph from an orange/red into more of a golden/orange after sitting for a few minutes. Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a large wine glass a rich head was hard to avoid. Retention was relatively short but a surface cap maintained and yielded some attractive lacing.

Yeasty on the nose, slightly sour through a thick head, yet less so later, and with a bit of citrus and spice. Tastes of yeast and orange, a good tingle of carbonation and a citrus oil close. Feel is a bit high on carbonation yet I sense this helps give the beer more body. And as the carbonation lessens I confirm this to be true. Drink is OK but a bit thin overall.

Nice to see a lighter version of the more robust ales from Unibroue, yet I think I'd rather have a single La Fin Du Monde than two of these.

Photo of wescj
4.13/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle poured into a chalice.

Color is dark, hazy orange with a lot of white head initialy, and a thin but dense layer remaining after a few minuets. Nice lace.

Aroma is light and fruity, with some sweet and spicy notes in there as well.

Nice malt presence in the taste, with a crisp, almost tart citrus aftertaste. Still smooth despite the heavy carbonation, and an ever so faint presence of hops.

Great mouthfeel, adds to the drinkability.

Photo of Rainintheface
4.27/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Number two from the sampler

A: slight haze to this dirty amber beer. small off white head gives way to a decent ring that surrounds carbonation bubbling to the surface in little pods.

S: oak, apple, a whiff of smoke and an underlying fruity aroma. there's also a little ginger if i'm not mistaken

T: earthy, wood, spicy with a touch of caramel and fruit

M: well carbonated and a little dry

D: drinkable- one after another

Photo of cleeze
3.88/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Now I've been on a big Unibroue kick ever since I tried Maudite a few weeks ago(since I never tried them simply due to the fact they were canadian:). With that being said they some killer brews. I got this gem inside the taster pack (10$ plus a killer glass!)

Poured a beautiful mahogany/amber hue with a nice cream colored and frothy head that disappeared to show some rather killer lacing!

Smells rather smoky. You can deffinatly pick up on the whisky malt aromas. Earthy aromas stand out as well followed by a faint sweetness.

Big Beer taste without the high abv! I love the belgain spices used in this brew. THIS SUCKER is MALTY AS HELL TOO! Great balance for a complex beer. Again, it has a faint sweet and yeasty taste to it, with a pleasant hoppy, bitter but crisp kick! Told you it's complex!

This is a great session beer for those who love your big belgian beers. It's got that big flavorful taste but a low abv so you can drink these all night

Photo of Halcyondays
3.6/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle,

A: Pours a murky red with a solid cap of white foam with good retention, no lacing.

S: Thought there would be a lot more smoky character - but there was just a hint, mostly the Unibroue house yeast character an a bit of apple.

T: Definite smoke character, light wood almost an herbal cedar taste. Undercurrent of green apple peel and iron. Yeast character is mild, just a hint of ester and phenol, lightly medicinal aftertatse. All around a good flavoured ale.

M: Similar to what I experienced with Ephemere last night - too much initial carbonation. Rather thin, light bodied, not as smooth as I'd like it to be.

D: Aside from some mouthfeel problems, this is a pretty good ale. I liked the addition of the smoked whiskey malt, the flavour really enhanced what could have a been a pedestrian effort. Nice hybrid.

Photo of popery
3.88/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Raftman is a refreshing, spicy and light Unibroue offering. The beer still carries the trademark Unibroue yeast flavor to some extent, but this beer manages that flavor in a light, drinkable package, which is not something I expected from Unibroue. I dearly love La Fin du Monde but have had hit or miss experiences with other Unibroue beers. The beer are all a bit close together for me and often are a bit of letdown from La Fin, which I think expresses the flavor best. I particularly haven't liked Unibroue's lighter offerings, Chambly Noire, Ephemere, Blanche de Chambly, etc. I bought the gift pack to try a wide range of Unibroue again for review purposes. So far, Raftman has impressed me the most. I'm surprised that it also seems to be the least popular of the four beers in Unibroue's light pack.

Raftman pours a fizzy, clear amber with a diminishing off-white head that leaves fair lacing. The smell is fruity with apples and spicy with nutmeg, cloves and pepper. The flavor is earthy and sweetly doughy, while remaining light and very lively on the palate. There are some subtle smoky notes lingering throughout the beer that I can't really pin down. There is a light metallic note on the finish, but it's unobtrusive and overshadowed by a slight pucker of well-crafted bitterness. Raftman is my favorite light Unibroue beer, at the moment, and probably my third favorite of their normal rotation.

Photo of schoolboy
4.29/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

You know the drill, Bob loves all this stuff. But this one does have a funky aroma. I'm not sure what that is in there. It's kinda "locker room" and kinda outdoorsy.

But as usual, I like it. And I think I could drink more than one (if it hadn't of come as a onesy in a sampler). I guess I won't avoid the sampler because of this one.

I am not just being kind when I say it is unique. It's a one of a kind, and typical of a Belgian, it will put hair on your chest. Actually, I think this one (and lots of other Belgians) will actually cultivate hair all over. But drink it, don't rub it in.

Photo of bunnyhustle
3.42/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

One of my first Unibroue beers I didnt love...Pours a murky tannish-orange with thick fluffy head. Good retention and lacing but kinda has this swamp water look to it. Just weird. Smell is stong of yeast and bread with a hint of smokiness which I was very glad to have in there, a bit of sweet fruit (apple) as well. Taset wa a little bland if you ask me. Perhaps I'm comparing it to their other offerings but nothing really jumps out. Dry malt and biscuit, yeast, some fruits, and some grass are all present. Mouthfeel was very creamy I though but due to extremely low carbonation it just seems a little flat. Overall not bad, but one of my least favorite Unibroue offerings.

Photo of oriolesfan4
4.09/5  rDev +6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A very good tasting beer.. Very heavily carbonated and an interesting/sweet aftertaste, but the taste is what makes it great. A nice woodsy type of taste, I kind of want to say it is almost "manly" tasting. Hardy in a way and it's all well balanced and goes down smooth. Not the best Unibroue I've had but an above average beer for sure.

Photo of LunaChick
4.3/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Glad I got a chance to try this.
Pours a very hazy deep blonde. Huge and foamy head pops up like a turnover and quickly settles into a sticky ring that remains to the bottem.
Aromas of spice, yeast, and pepper. Some woody notes and a hint of vanilla. Complex. Take a few sniffs before you drink.
Flavor is wonderful. Starts with rich spice and bleeds into some almost smoked and woody tones, slightly yeasty with hints of white pepper. Whiskey malts are obvious and and great dimensions. A rich balance with hints of soft vanilla and whisps of toffee. Super-carbonated--its fun to watch in the glass. In the mouth, light bodied but rich flavors mingle and end with a crisp dryness that says "yes, I'll have another" And yes, I'll have another. At 5.5% abv this is easily a beer to have several of.

Photo of corby112
2.77/5  rDev -28.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3


Pours a dark cloudy golden brown color with a huge foamy head. Aroma consists of light fruit such as apple, pear and banana as well as a slight maltiness. This beer has an interesting mix of crisp light fruit and whiskey malts. Carbonated with crisp center and dry whiskey-like finish.

Photo of jeffmonarch
4.3/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle in a snifter glass.

A - Dark orange brown color with a thin white head.

S - Fruit and spices. Strong malt and hops also.

T - Not as fruity as the other offers from Unibroue. A little milder. From my research there is a whiskey malt and it definetely changes the flavor. While more mild than their other beers it is still great.

M - Light bodied with good carbonation.

D - I love Unibroue and this is another of their great beers.

Photo of koolk
3.53/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dark amber in colour, with a small white head that persists.

Fruity nose - orange peel, peach and other white fruits. Fresh malt note as well. Perhaps a little yeast. A touch subdued.

Palate has similar sweet white fruit flavours and a touch of woody malt. Some citrus bite on the finish.

Creamy texture, typical of Unibroue that is well balanced by the crisp finish. Somewhat dry as well on the finish. Just feels like it is lacking something.

Strange brew this. After checking out scores from others on here I reckon this is either a dud batch or it has been mistreated on the trip over - the tang on the finish just aint right. Good beer, but lacking serious omph! Prob the usual case of "send the sh*t to the Aussie, keep the good gear at home!" ;)

Photo of Gmann
3.81/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

500th Review!!! Out of a 750ml corked and caged bottle. Pours a clear dark golden almost amber color with a soapy white head that quickly settled into a thick ring around the glass, not much lacing. The aroma is faint, there is some apple skin, canned pineapple juice, light Belgian yeast funk and candi sugar. The taste is of pale malt, with appropriate candi sugar sweetness, the yeast flavors are subdued but I get a mild tropical fruitiness (pineapple), touch of coriander and pepper. There a stale hop presence to round out the brew. The feel is light and fizzy, and finishes dry. A Unibroue brew that is unique from their other offerings. This beer knows its place and is a good compliment to the Unibroue lineup. Great beer for somebody that wants a nice light Belgian style beer without a lot of alcohol.

Photo of Lukie
3/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured out pale amber with a white head and minimal lacing. I don't know how fresh this is.

Dry smell. Caramels and smokiness. There was also some sour orange (curucao).

Smokey malt flavours and sour orange round off the beer. I might have to give this another go to be honest.

Overall, I am a bit mixed. There seems to be subtle flavours that I wasn't able to pick out. I might have to pick up another for tasting.

Photo of GbVDave
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a Unibroue tulip at Map Room 4/27/08.

A: Served a cloudy light brown with a creamy, dense, off-white, three-finger head. Excellent head retention. Very still.

S: Belgian pale ale yeastiness, smoked malt, restrained fruitiness, and some fresh green hops make up the aroma here.

T: Nice flavors of Belgian yeast, toasted/smoked malt, slight soapiness, and some grassy hops.

M: Spicy and peppery. Becomes a bit smoother as it comes up to temp.

D: Very, very good. Quite enjoyable/sessionable!

Photo of DaPeculierDane
4.05/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I've been wanting to try this one for a long time so I was thrilled to find it on tap during my most recent visit to the Map Room.

Pours kind of a glowing pale orange color with a healthy white head.

The aroma begins with that wonderful fruity yeastiness found in most Unibroue beers. Then I notice a hint of smoky whisky followed by zesty hops.

The body is light and dry with a variety of light fruit, yeast based flavors. Toasty with some pepper and smoke. Touches of metallic graininess but not much. Peachy esters and lemony finish. Well balanced and quite drinkable.

Raftman from Unibroue
87 out of 100 based on 694 ratings.