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Jenlain Ambrée - Brasserie Duyck

Not Rated.
Jenlain AmbréeJenlain Ambrée

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very good

287 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 287
Reviews: 204
rAvg: 3.76
pDev: 13.56%
Wants: 13
Gots: 8 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brasserie Duyck visit their website

Style | ABV
Bière de Garde |  7.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: jermar on 03-09-2002

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (12) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 287 | Reviews: 204
Photo of merlin48
3.83/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is a new style for me, and it took a couple of bottles to get a handle on its character.
The pour is a clear, actively carbonated, copperish gold body with a two finger, bone ivory head that is tightly knit, retains well, and leaves some small chains of lace.
Aroma is restrained, with a perfume hop character and mild, swwetish caramel malt.
Mouthfeel is nicely carbonated, with a soft, medium body.
The floral and herbal hops produce a mildly bitter and perfumey taste, akin to sipping a carbonated, lilac tea that is carbonated. Alcohol is a minor player.
I like the style. It's refreshingly different. Light and mild, overall, and the floral hopping combines with the malt presence very well.

Photo of Knuckles
3.73/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I honestly don't know where to start with this beer. This is my introduction to the style, and I'm neither over- nor under-whelmed by it. Can I simply be whelmed? I'd be down with that. Of course, I've had this bad boy in a can, in my fridge for going on four years now, and it's held up astonishingly well. Let me repeat: It's in a FREAKIN' CAN!!!, and all the flavors seem to be on. I'm no biere de garde expert, but I'm pretty damn certain I could tell a funky beer from a fresh beer (not to be confused with funky fresh beers which, like the elusive 5 rating, are hard to come by).

The color is outstanding, and if my wife could see it she'd say "Goddammit, THAT'S the color I want you to paint the kitchen!" and then I wouldn't be able to drink the rest of it until we got ourselves some swatches. However, she's not here so she'll just have to suck it up. It's this gorgeous, chill-hazed pumpkin color that has got me singing "Witches in the Pumpkinpatch" (doo doo doo, doo doo doo).

The head wasn't overpowering, but that was more due to my incredibly skillful pour (ok, I actually used both hands this time - what a world of difference) than the beer itself. The carbonation is slight, but persistent (meaning I've had it open and warming for going on fifteen minutes now, and the bubbles show no sign of resting).

The nose is very sweet, but not in an overpoweringly malty way. I still remember the first time I poured myself an EKU 28 and almost went into insulin shock. Yow. This is merely sweet, no hint of hop aroma, and this slightly spicy clove finish. Getting back to my whole 'Witches in the Pumpkinpatch" thing, I want to have this beer with pumpkin pie. I am soooo Charles Finkel.

The taste is somewhat hard to describe, as it isn't in my usual flavor palate. It's malty, but that aforementioned spicy clove finish helps balance that out. It's a finishing beer I would say, and not one you would normally choose to start the night off with. (Unless, apparently, you are a cheesemaker in the north of France. I am not said cheesemaker.) One thing that bothers me about overly malty beers is their tendency to linger on your tongue, and screw up all the flavors of anything else that may come along after (in this case, meatloaf. Not that the gentle flavors of meatloaf need any protecting from the "evils" of overly malty beer, but that's a different story altogether). This beer doesn't do that. The malts land on your tongue, introduce themselves, allow you to either welcome them in or kick them the hell out, and then they quietly fade to the background. It's an aggressively polite beer, that's what it is.

Mouthfeel is nice and robust. One of my biggest gripes in beer drinking is thin beer that can't decide if it wants to be noticed, or would really rather be ignored. This beer wants to be noticed, wants to meet and make nice, but doesn't want to overthrow the kingdom. Again, aggressively polite.

Drinkability is a bit harder for me to quantify. It's a fine beer, but I've only had half of it and feel like I've been hit by a tractor driven by Jose Bove on his way to tear down another McDonalds. Sacre bleu!

Photo of smcolw
3.87/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

The head starts off well but dissapates quickly. This is a amber-orange colored brew. It's also crystal clear. The lace is sparce but sticky.

Brown sugar and light molasses aromas featured here, almost like old fashioned candy. I suspect a sweet, crystal malt ladened flavor--not much balance here, no discernable hop.

Carmelized sugar is the featured aroma. If you've ever tried melted sugar from a sauce pan (cooled into a dark brown patty) then you'll get a sense of this flavor. I'm torn: I love unusual brews, but I don't like overly sweet ones. This is a treat, so I've given it a high taste rating, but I'm pulling back on the drinkability to reflect the coyingly sweet flavors that last throughout the aftertaste.

Obviously, this is a very rich beer. I would highly recommend this as an alternative to dessert. This could be featured as an apertif.

Photo of drewbage
3.55/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Sampled at the August BJ's Saison/Biere de Garde tasting in a straight side Silly Saison glass.

Dark burnt orange with good clarityand low white head

Nose is deeply mushroom and low spiced earthy caramel malt

Flavor follows with a little bit of a cork to the mushrooms coated in caramel. Finish has spiced, sour apple finish.

Photo of soper2000
4.22/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Cork popped rather easily off of this 750 but thankfully there was nol rush of beer. Poured a nice coppper color with a quickly dissapating white head. Smell was delicate and floral. Taste is full of subtlities, slightly sweet and mayber pepper?? I don't know if my mind is playing tricks on me. A lot of malt is present though which grows stronger as it warms. Pretty drinkable in my book. A nice treat every once and awhile.

Photo of cokes
4.62/5  rDev +22.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Smoky orange trimmed with a bountiful and long-lasting sandy froth.
Perfumed of lilacs and rose petals, touched with a cork spiciness and dashing malt sweetness.
Begins doughy and sweet, full of sugar cookies and toast smeared with apricot preserves. Corkboard and cedar, along with a dash of thyme appear midway as this gallops towards dryness. Ends with a fully expressed, but minorly bittered, floral notation, with those same lilac and rose promises from the aroma.
Mouthfeel is divine in its nible heft. A fully creamed, effervescent skim milk.
As easy to gulp as it is to savor.
It's perhaps not the most intricate biere de garde, but it's fully realized, cohesive and delicious. Just a joy.

Photo of tjd25
3.28/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

The head was thin but dense and creamy on an orange mahogany color body. The smell was mostly malty but overall kind of weak. The taste was more interesting, although not exceptional. Some fruity notes of citrus and of red fruits are combined with a deep malty character.The mouthfeel is quite round but not overly complex or thick. Not sure I want to drink that again. I just had a cookie and I liked the cookie better.

Photo of GCBrewingCo
4.23/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

The beer poured light golden amber into the chalice. The head was white with a yellow hue and lasted to lace the glass.

The aroma was malty with caramel and dark fruit notes.

The flavor was malty with dark caramel and dark fruit. The beer started out on the palate sweet and became dryer with some bittering. The bittering and flavor hops stood out in the flavor.

The finish was dry with a slight bitterness lasting into the aftertaste. The body was medium to medium light.

750 ml bottle corked and bailed. Very refreshing and easy drinking beer.

Photo of SeanChouffe
3.7/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: Brown euro size bottle - 330ml. Freshness date 7/04 (just under the wire).
Appearance: A red/amber color with light carbonation and an off-white head (poor retention). Nice sticky lacing.
Aroma: Malt, caramel and a grassy presence of hops.
Taste/Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and slightly sweet. Mouthfeel is creamy at the start with a light hop bite and effervescent finish.

IMHO: A fair brew with a nice mouthfeel, but not a lot of memorable qualities.

Photo of oberon
4.03/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a rich copper with a nice two finger head that settles nicely,aroma is definently spicey all malt and sweet caramel with a touch of bread.Very firm malt taste to this beer lightly sweet with a vegetable flavor that lingers in the mouth,I get a light burnt note as I drink more along with some over ripe melon.a rich and tasty brew that Iam sure goes well with hearty fare.

Photo of Crosling
4.11/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled at the Taverne Saint Germain in Paris, France.


Nose of caramel, toasted malts, ripe fruit, lemon and a hint of apple.

This was a very pleasant, very mellow, dry and a very flavorful and traditional Biere de Garde. Farmhouse characteristics. Burnt caramel, toasted malts, ripe fruits, perhaps a hint of ginger and a lingering suggestion of pit fruit on the finish. Lovely.

Photo of Wildman
3.88/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer poured a reddish amber color and formed a samll foamy off white head that left circular lace as it subsided. A small amount of carbonation is present. An aroma of light citrus and grass. A flavor of malt, slight bit of cherry, almost a medicinal quality to it. The finish was sweet and also had a slight medincinal aspect to it. Pretty good beer for the price.

Photo of Boto
3.68/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

500ml can: This one is an amber color. The beer is a bit fizzy with a slightly off white head, but it dies down quickly. The aroma is mild, but somewhat caramel malty sweet. The taste is better than the aroma. There is a medium bodied caramel sweetness to the taste, but also a fairl amount of complexity. Some nuttiness, fruitiness, with a hint of spices and hops. Flavor could be a bit stronger. Really excellent for a can beer!

Photo of Bighuge
4.57/5  rDev +21.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Murky looking brown with an orangish tint to it. Thin but bubbly off-white head. Retetion is adequate. The bubbly collar leaves some sporadic lace. Aroma is spicy, herbal, hoppy and earthy. Awesome. Nice earthy and herbal characteristics. Great farmhouse brew. There's a nice sweetness, but also a nice dry, hoppiness on the finish. Fruit nuances of pear and apple check in to add depth. Nice medium-full body. Perfect amount of prickly carbonation. Very refreshing. A 750 for $4?? Yeah, I'd be buying a hell of a lot more of this if it was available in this area.

Photo of ark57
3.87/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This is not something that I could drink all the time, but it does go well with some stinky French cheeses and a nice crusty baguette. It is a cloudy amber and a decent sized head. The aroma has some orange and prune notes. The oily body finishes slight spicy with notes of anise.

Photo of jed
4.15/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Presentation: 750 ml bottle. À consommer de préférence avant 12/2004.

Appearance: Pours a warm, caramel amber color. Nice amount of carbonation, big one finger head with a moderate amount of lacing.

Smell: Nicely complex. Apple, honey, and hay (?).

Taste: In a word, excellent. Lemon and apple play off each other, with a hint of cinnamon or allspice. Lots of malt, mild hop bitterness. Nice dry, astringent finish, with growing alcohol and another hint of Breton cider.

Mouthfeel: A little bit heavy on the carbonation, which detracts.

Drinkability: Obviously not a session beer, but one or two of these with friends would make for a nice lunch. Full taste but not too heavy, and not overpowering at 6.5%.

The best beer I've had in France so far, and I was beginning to give up hope. Looking forward to trying Brasserie Duyck's Blonde also. A fine introduction to the Bière de Garde style.

Photo of xgrigorix
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Green bottle, corked & caged, 750 ml size.

Medium amber, glowing & clear. Racy carbonation. A thin white head quickly recedes to a halo, leaving some spotty lace behind.

Nose is shart & somewhat spicy. Notes of orange, apple, & rustic herbs.

Simple biscuit & caramel flavours give way to oranges, apple peel, and an earthy herbal character. The earthiness last long into the finish.

Big, soft, round & juicy on the tongue. Prickly carbonation.

Photo of Winter
3.58/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

My beer of choice this year at Thanksgiving dinner. 750 ml bottle. Poured an unfiltered medium-to-dark amber with a large head that remained throughout most of comsumption. Musty, malty aroma. I almost wonder how long this bottle has been sitting around on the store shelf as it was the dusty sole remaining one. Very musty flavor. Reminds me of a cellar or basement. Some sweet, stale fruitiness. Malt is hard to detect. Hops are mininal at best. Spicy or peppery alcohol near the back of the throat. Not a beer I was opposed to (it went pretty well with dinner) but I think it's an acquired taste. I'd like to seek out another bottle (hopefully fresher if this one was decrepit) and give it another shot.

Photo of ALEBOY
4.22/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Lovely rich amber colour with a small off-white head. Very fruity aroma with hints of cinnamon. Absolutely incredible tasting beer, very fruity with hints of peaches and other stone fruit. Very soft in the mouth( a party for the palate! ). A beatifull beer to reserve for special occasions, But i could probably only drink one or two at a time. Would go great with fruit or strong cheese.

Photo of canucklehead
4.12/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer appeared years ago in B.C. in 750ml bottles with corks and was
never seen again until now when it reappeared in small capped bottles and
I for one am glad to see it back.

This beer is both fruity and malty with a nice autumn colour and smart
head. What impresses me is the drinkability with meat and poultry. The
balance is never lost even with rich sauces. Biere de Garde is a style
that should more often be attempted by North American brewers as it
very food friendly.

Photo of marcobrau
4.37/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

An amber colored ale that pours with a flourish of a foam that settles to thin veneer of bubbles. The aroma of toffee, nuts, fruit and sugar combined with a faint mustiness bursts from the glass and then fades, but is still noticeable after a few minutes. This beer is soft, malty, then fruity, with sugary notes. Finishes slightly dry, yet a bit slippery, with a tartness that tickles the side of the mouth. A medium bodied ale with a soft mouthfeel but slighty rough carbonation. There's some unsual fruity flavors towards the finish that are very interesting. I like this beer, especially at $2.99 a 750ml bottle. A very enjoyable, peculiar beer. Based on what I know about the style, this a very good Biere de Garde.

Photo of Andreji
3.03/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Ooooh if it were not for my cheapness I wouldnt have bought this bottle of 75cls of a medium beer. nor in terms of taste, nor looks nor actual overall desirability is this beer going on anyones top list. just because a thing has an uncommon name doesnt necessarily put it within the interest. this is a one timer. boo.

Photo of jdhilt
4/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours with a medium head, leaving some lace. Nice amber color. Malty, citrus orange nose. Starts sweet and fruity and finishes with some tartness and underlying hops. Medium bodied. Very different for a French beer. Served at Passports in Glouster, MA ($4.75).

Photo of CharlesRiver
3.83/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I have no idea now long this bottle sat on the shelf at the liquor store, but for $4 it was worth the chance.

Poured a cloudy light brown with a small head that was gone before I knew it. The smell is grassy and earthy but not overpowering. Taste is similar but more malty. I also pick up some straw and hay notes coming through. Some citrus in the form of apples? Nutty. Aftertaste is a bit warming, not sure why I am getting that? Very different, but good.

As a side note, the cork appears to have some mold on it. Stored upright and I don't think it affected the taste.

Photo of UnionMade
1.78/5  rDev -52.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

I don't know what this stuff tastes like normally, but my bottle was mega old and way past it's prime. The beer poured a greasy looking amber, with tons of particles floating in suspension. Aroma is winey stale, and the beer was just sour and old. I always have to take a sip, just to be sure it's not totally unpalatable. I imagine this stuff is pretty good when fresh, and I plan on buying it and rerating it. Just beware, because it certainly doesn't age well. I hate liquor stores that don't rotate stock.

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Jenlain Ambrée from Brasserie Duyck
85 out of 100 based on 287 ratings.