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3 Monts Amber Ale On Lees - Brasserie De Saint-Sylvestre

Not Rated.
3 Monts Amber Ale On Lees3 Monts Amber Ale On Lees

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

132 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 132
Reviews: 76
rAvg: 4.03
pDev: 13.4%
Wants: 20
Gots: 8 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brasserie De Saint-Sylvestre visit their website

Style | ABV
Bière de Garde |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: frank4sail on 08-22-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 132 | Reviews: 76 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Ralphs66
5/5  rDev +24.1%

Ralphs66, Dec 15, 2011
Photo of BDF2000
5/5  rDev +24.1%

BDF2000, Jun 03, 2013
Photo of Kloug
5/5  rDev +24.1%

Kloug, Feb 07, 2013
Photo of Geiseman
5/5  rDev +24.1%

Geiseman, Oct 06, 2012
Photo of Apathetiq
5/5  rDev +24.1%

Apathetiq, Sep 10, 2012
Photo of inebrius
5/5  rDev +24.1%

It is compulsory that you appreciate a beer whose cork is held in place by a staple. Aroma of earth: clods of sod, hay, apple trees, vines of jessamine and burlap. Malt start is sweet, but not at all saccharine. Bitterness is mellow and perfect. It finishes savory and warming and right. Layers of lace coat the glass. Monolithic head reduces into a campfire marshmallow that you have to gather with a spoon when the crystalline amber liquid is gone. Frothy, but in no way harsh. The perfect beer? I sit besides myself and wonder how I lived for thirty years without ever tasting this awe-inspiring brew. Words can do no justice, find it and buy it.

inebrius, Nov 15, 2002
Photo of feloniousmonk
4.88/5  rDev +21.1%

I've been holding onto this bottle for months, perhaps for a special occasion? And why not review #800 on BA? For this, I genuflect to the generosity of jcalbi...

The first thing you know about this ale, once freeing the cork and letting the beer flow free, is the enormous, volcanic, titanic, utterly brobdignagian head of foam that gushes forth and overwhelms the glass, spills unto the floor, and before you know it, you're licking the linoleum!
Aroma: Sweetness supreme! I'm sorry, if you're not an angel in human form, you probably have no right to know this sublimity...oh, wait, it's YOU! Okay, go ahead...sparkly, yeasty, fruity, heady, ..oooh, I'm on cloud 10! It's one more, you understand...
Appearance: a murky, cloudy, amber hue, closer to a pale orange, actually...
Taste: lightness, sweetness, fruit, divinity, transendence, uplifting goodness, unparalleled happiness resulting from, goodness, this is that rare kind of beer that makes me swoon, do you hear, swooon!
Each further sip cause me to reel back again, and further settle into this luscious enveloping of beauty...yes, every once in a while, you find beauty in a beer, and this is then...oh, Lordy..
Body, if we MUST get technical, is rather light, but don't tell that to FLAVOR, oh, no, for the finish don't know the meaning of that word, brother! Rings and chimes in the caverns of the senses for what seems like forever! And long may it, indeed! I can see no further pleasure to be found of a beer of this caliber, if there is any other...I'm going to have a fine time emptying this bottle, oh, yes, sir!
I take back my previous comments about France and beer ...if there's more like this, France, I'll forgive you for Fischer, but, PLEASE, more of THIS!!!!

Again, thanks to jcalbi, long may he reign...

feloniousmonk, Nov 07, 2003
Photo of Dantes
4.83/5  rDev +19.9%

Package: 750ml (1 pint, 9.4 oz) “stapled” & corked, heavy brown bottle. No date or ABV information. Classy, wine-bottle-like front and back labels. Key label information: bottle-conditioned, sur lie, and artisanal. Cork stamped, “11/11.” This particular bottle was bought about 18 months ago and properly cellared.

Cost: $5.99

Presentation: tulip glass at ~50º. The heavy staple is easily removed with the blade of a waiter’s corkscrew (or a screwdriver), but the small edge of cork above the bottle’s mouth makes using a corkscrew (or pliers) recommended.

Appearance: Lovely lees dust the bottom of the bottle. The cork pops firmly out of the neck of the bottle, along with substantial tendrils of gunsmoke. The color is extraordinary. The nubilous yellow-apricot body has an inner glow I only seem to see in the best beers. Generates a very fluffy, dry, sticky, barely off-white head that laces down the entire glass. Numerous streams of small bubbles race to the replenish the head.

Smell: Stunningly complex. Meadow-fresh cut grass, floral, and earthy at the same time. This beer expresses it all: sweet malty alcohol, piquant hoppiness, and gentle herbal notes. Smells almost as substantial as most beers taste.

Taste: Like the aroma, the taste continually evolves; maturing from a crisp, herbal hoppiness to a fuller, heavier, sweeter, maltier beer. The more one looks, the more there is in this beer. The initially dry, herbal, and floral notes deepen into a malty, biscuity stage and then a more honeyed fruitiness that includes crisp apple and a tropical mango, pineapple, and durian flavors. The second glass can be entirely different from the first. The balance is on the “soft” side (fruitiness dominating over astringency) but still structured. The alcohol is detectable but unobtrusive, helping this to a deep, long warm finish.

Mouthfeel: A tiny bit of alcohol warmth on the palate, buoyed by the extremely fine, “petillant” carbonation. Manages to be soft and crisp at the same time. Good body, especially as it warms.

Drinkability: Top marks here. Although relatively high in ABV, this is very smooth and easily drinkable. You’ll go through a bottle in no time.

Backwash: One of the finest beers in the world (definitely top 20 for me), and vastly underrated (or under-known). I drank this particular example back-to-back with a “regular” 3 Monts. Frankly, I don’t find the differences that substantial. I’d compare the relationship between the Grand Réserve and the standard offering as the difference between an “extra brut” and a “brut” Champagne (although both are less dry than typical Champagnes). Stock up, this is one of the best cellaring candidates and one of the greatest bargains out there. Sublime.

Dantes, Jun 22, 2004
Photo of putnam
4.83/5  rDev +19.9%

This bottle has been stored upright at 65 deg. F since I got it 7 months ago. At that time I was a bit disappointed, believing it to be a mistaken, caramelized version of the Golden Ale : good, but not great (say, “4.0”). The consensus then was that maybe, “maybe”, it would mature into something noteworthy – and it appears this may be indeed be happening.

Notes of sunflower seed and cookie dough now join aromas of burned sugar and weathered barn wood. The hops profile is worth noting too : very subtle, yet oddly emerging from a state of infant fattiness to display a sophisticated combination of pine, basil, tarragon and leafy, sun-scorched grasses (it reminds me a little of Orval or various Belgians which use Poperings hops). Steamy, doughy, bready alcohol spiciness underwrites the flavor. This beer is drier now, and certainly more complex. The gas is raunchy as ever, powering a massive, brownish-colored, hissing fizz while sharply delineating the texture. The finish is stony and tannic.

Palates weaned on Belgian Tripel may find this too sharp and quick on the tongue. My only doubt is about the bottle’s closure. I’m certain (after tasting a batch of Golden Ale that had been laid on its side for a month) that this composite cork only does bad things to liquid, imparting an unattractive mustiness that can blur with, well, an “attractive” mustiness that is essential to the style.

putnam, Sep 22, 2004
Photo of Damian
4.75/5  rDev +17.9%

Drank from a clamped and corked, 1 pint 9.4 fl. oz. bottle
Purchased at CT Beverage Mart, New Britain, CT
Served in a tulip

The beer poured a crystal clear amber color with a frothy, two-finger, bright white head which slowly faded to a thin film. Spotty drops of lacing trickled down the sides of the glass.

The aroma was amazingly smooth and fragrant. Malty rich and rather spicy with a pungent yeasty quality. Caramel notes were apparent. There was an intriguing fruity and flowery component to the nose that can be found in some of the better abbey ales. Estery. Crisp and fresh.

Rich, caramel malts came through strong in the flavor profile. Smooth, spicy and nutty. Somewhat woody. A touch steely. Fruity. Notes of apples and pears were noticeable. The finish was crisp, dry and refreshing with just a touch of bitterness.

The mouthfeel was outstanding. Soft and pillowy. Ultra smooth and frothy with a rich, velvety effervescence.

At 8% ABV, I found this beer to be amazingly drinkable. If there is such a thing as a farmhouse session beer, this would be it.

3 Monts Grande Réserve Spécial Ale defines style and grace in a beer. This simply blew me away. Definitely keep an eye out for this release.

Damian, Nov 11, 2010
4.75/5  rDev +17.9%

WOLFGANG, Jul 14, 2013
Photo of HiroProtagonist
4.7/5  rDev +16.6%

3 Monts Grande Reserve Speciale Ale was served from a difficult 750ml corked and clamped bottle. In a Duvel tulip, the beer was a hazy orange-caramel hue, and was topped by a rich, thick, stiff, and resiliant light tan head that left sheets and smatterings of sticky lacing. Decadent currents of musty dried apricots, cloves, piney resinous hops, and luxurious scotch wafted from the glass, serving to invigorate my senses. On the palate, I experienced a world of intruiging and wonderful flavors that were related to the nose ... dried turkish apricots soaked in oakey red wine, grass, rosiness, and licorice. These flavors swirled and bounced with joy on the taste buds while the fantastic sweeping tannic dry lime bitter finish rolled through, leaving lingering vinous apricot notes. I was very impressed by the balance and composition of all of this. The full smooth body and the semi-fluffy carbonation were matched well with the flavors and personality of this beer. The deliciousness, balance, and dryness of this brew made it very easy to drink...for the style. Full-flavored, charismatic, and captivating... a highly recommend acquistion.

HiroProtagonist, Apr 07, 2004
Photo of RoyalT
4.6/5  rDev +14.1%

Appearance - This is a deep, rich, mystic orange in color with a massive, tight-bubbled white head that rises to greatness on an easy pour and shows terrific retention. This is a picture to be had for sure.

Smell - The balance of the nose is extraordinary. The horse blanket is of the purest kind and the yeasty sourness is just enough to jazz up the bouquet. The malts are luscious and give a light structure to the beer and lastly there's a nice hop overcast just for balance.

Taste - The flavor is equally balanced. The horse blanket is impeccable. It has just the right balance of must and funk. The light yeasty sourness is just enough to give the flavor a little lively zap. The hops surround the flavor profile perfectly and the light malt base adds the fifth dimension.

Mouthfeel - This is medium-bodied with terrific carbonation and a tingling sensation that is both exciting and entertaining. There's just enough dryness to keep you gulping and the malt adds a wonderful smoothness.

Drinkability - Southampton is the only other brewer I've found that could match up with the quality of this offering and that effort is very non-traditional. The subtlety and balance of this French version makes this a classic. Highly, highly recommended for anyone seeking out the style and especially for a first-timer.

RoyalT, Jul 31, 2010
Photo of wagenvolks
4.6/5  rDev +14.1%

Poured from a 1 pint, 9.4 oz bottle into a chalice...
Apperance is a blonde, champagne colored bubbly ale with an off-white colored head that is retained well but leaves no lacing. Very appealing to the eyes. The nose is also pleased, as fruity notes prevail (oranges, plums, raisins, peach, and alcohol). Hot damn this thing smells good, very well balanced.

The taste is intricate yet mild, which is not a knock against the beer. Some organic, earthy notes are immediately present, something along the lines of wood or grass. It is balanced by a sweet butterscotchy/vanilla note. The carbonation makes for a light feel on the palate which is a definite aid to the taste. Great drinkability, great beer. Well done France, well done...

wagenvolks, Jan 05, 2007
Photo of Shovelbum
4.55/5  rDev +12.9%

Pours a creamy 1” white head over a golden-copper colored body. Sheets of lace rise and subside with each slip, head retention was decent. Aromas of earth and hay with underlying light berry-like fruit, floral hops and alcohol. Sweet caramel malt, mild cheddar-cheese flavor, and a corky earthiness in the flavor profile. Mild hop bitterness in the background. Medium bodied. Medium to high carbonation. Smooth light feel in the mouth with a clean finish.

A tasty Biere de Garde. It has a wide array of flavors and aromas, with an emphasis on earthiness. Well-balanced, complex and very drinkable.

Shovelbum, Dec 20, 2005
Photo of Nesued
4.55/5  rDev +12.9%

Serving type: 750ml bottle, corked and clamped. I used a rabbit wine cork-puller to open the bottle.

Appearance - Nice amber/orange color, with a hazy view and a good bit of "wispy sediment". The pour was amazing with the formation of the largest head I've seen in many a pour!! After waiting for at least 10 min, I was at last able to comment on the lace that was left after the dissipation of the head (at least down to one-finger in depth). The carbonation, previously invisible in the bottle, was at last able to be seen. I nice lively amount with an ample supply to the retained head.

Smell - I would describe this as a fruity base of citrus/apple. A nice clean quality with not much beyond the basic esters to draw you into a "guessing game" of what else is there.

Taste - A very understated taste. A warm caramel taste that was even more pronounced when the beer warmed to close to room temp. I cannot for the life of me pin down a broader taste than the caramel, with a hint of citrus.

Mouthfeel - Wow, what a smooth feel. Very silky with the carbonation just adding a slight depth to the feel.

Drinkability - This beer will knock you over if you don't respect it. The 8% ABV will remind you however. This is one smooth brew that is exceedingly well balanced and would have you quickly reaching for another, and another. Well done on this one!!

Nesued, Aug 12, 2006
Photo of robbyc1
4.55/5  rDev +12.9%

Fantastic white head, fluffy and unique, clear slight orange look, really nice. Had it in my Duvel glass.

Nose of belgian malt, yeast, and the deep nose of peach and some must, but no horse blanket I expected.

It's taste is more like a Belgain golden ale, except the finish is really nicely dry, very nice. I'm savoring it, great deep taste.

Really nice easy drinker, nice heavy mouthfeel, dryness is great, wow, keep it coming. Just doesn't have a funk, but that's OK, otherwise I'd put a 5 up. Easy drinker by itself, with some lunch food, with cookies, with anything, it's a great treat. Wow.

robbyc1, Jan 18, 2009
Photo of NeroFiddled
4.5/5  rDev +11.7%

Corked 750 ml bottle. Pours a hazy orange body topped by a cream colored rocky/creamy head that's formed of average sized bubbles but holds extremely well as it's buoyed by a strong effervescence. Leaves excellent lace throughout the glass. The aroma is gently earthy, but not musty, with a honey-ish bready malt and perfumy & earthy hops. There are some subtle straw and light wood characteristics. The body is light/medium with an effervescent carbonation that's prickly on the tongue and gives the impression of a fuller mouthfeel. The flavor is a softly fruity and lightly sweet (orange & honey), but still dryish, combination of malt & earthy hop. The alcohol is somewhat apparent, but not distracting. A solid bitterness, emphasised by the brisk carbonation, eventually receeds as the beer warms to reveal more sweetness. Finishes dry with a lingering herbal & mineral character. A very enjoyable, refreshing, and drinkable beer with lots of character. I was surprised at the amount of hop bitterness and flavor. Well worth seeking out.

NeroFiddled, Oct 16, 2002
Photo of Sspeer1
4.5/5  rDev +11.7%

Sspeer1, Oct 19, 2013
Photo of LGF
4.5/5  rDev +11.7%

LGF, Jan 17, 2012
Photo of MQ3867
4.5/5  rDev +11.7%

MQ3867, Jun 17, 2014
Photo of TylerSC
4.5/5  rDev +11.7%

This is my first review, so it is apropos that this is the first beer that began to open my mind to craft beers.

This beer is one of the selections at a local indian restaurant (which, incidentally, does not have a liquor license). I remember thinking "wow, this is a $12 beer" (it is only $9 at the store for a 22oz).

I love this beer - it is very drinkable and has a lot of flavor.

TylerSC, May 03, 2009
Photo of joe1510
4.5/5  rDev +11.7%

Sam's Marcey

3 Monts Grande Reserve pours a surprisingly clear deep golden with stream after stream of moderate sized carbonation bubble rising to the surface. A standard pour brought about a hefty, three fingers worth of microbubbled bright white head. The head eventually settled at a finger and left incredible puffy drink lines on its way down the glass. This beer looks appetizing to say the least.

Although the aroma is light it has an incredible depth. A hint of freshly husked grains is the first thing to greet my nose, this combines with a pale malty sweetness that's very candy like. The yeast brings about an incredible complexity laden with peaches, green apple, chardonnay and a slight earthy mustiness. The aroma of this beer just draws me right in, making me want a drink immediately.

The flavor follows the aroma closely. Very vinous with the mustiness coming through faintly throughout the entire drink. Mild fresh graininess mixes it up with the sweet pale maltiness. The grape character leads the way in the fruit department but the green apple and peach make solid appearances. This is a very well put together beer with a great depth of flavor.

The mouthfeel on this beer is excellent! The carbonation makes the body light and airy all the while being refreshing. There's a nice crispness and slight drying on the finish.

The light, airy body makes this beer incredibly easy to put away. I could see myself drinking this until the alcohol caught up with me. An incredible drinkability when the abv is taken into consideration.

I loved 3 Monts when I had it and couldn't find 3 Monts Grande Reserve for a long time now. Luckily I came across a few bottles and it's just as good as the original which is really saying something. The two beers I've had from this brewery leave me wanting more.

Reviewed: 6/22/08

joe1510, Aug 19, 2013
Photo of francisweizen
4.5/5  rDev +11.7%

Dark orange with a nice head of off-white foam that leaves decent lacing. Fresh raw, floral, leafy, green, oily, acidic hops are the main aroma note. I also get white pepper and some funky yeast notes as well. Taste is spicy with yeasty pepper notes and hops. Caramel and doughy bready malts take hold in the middle before the dry spicy hoppy finish blows away your buds. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, a little brash, but spot-on. Drinkability remains intelligently beautiful. Another marvelous creation from these French farm house masters!

francisweizen, Jul 23, 2005
Photo of Westsidethreat
4.5/5  rDev +11.7%

Thanks to jpm30 for this beer.

A: Dull, antiqued copper with some chill haze to it. Head is powerful and frothy, leaving lots of lacing and sporadic piles of foam after ever sip.

S: Thyme, rose pedals, orange blossom, dark honey with the foundation of the smell being cider.

T: Starts out stark and mineralstic with a shimmer of old yeast. Cardoman, vanilla and perhaps some clove move in and begin to fill the mouth with flavor. Nice beer, very herbal…tastes almost homeopathic. Quality spices flicker at the tip of the tongue, offering only a hint of cinnamon, nutmeg and coriander with attractive low level vanilla continuing through the entire beer. Finishes a bit boozy but still attractive.

M: Medium body with a quality viscosity

D: I really liked this beer. Had an ultrafine balance that only comes from superb craftsmanship. You don’t make a beer this delicate on dumb luck. Highly recommended.

Westsidethreat, Jul 02, 2007
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3 Monts Amber Ale On Lees from Brasserie De Saint-Sylvestre
90 out of 100 based on 132 ratings.