Gouden Carolus Ambrio | Brouwerij Het Anker

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Gouden Carolus AmbrioGouden Carolus Ambrio

Brewed by:
Brouwerij Het Anker
Belgium | website

Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by TheLongBeachBum on 09-15-2003

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Reviews: 198 | Ratings: 340
Photo of Jamesthebrit
3.58/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Hazy pumpkin color with a massive white tan head.

S: Strong alcohol and musty notes.

T: Some nice spice notes, alcohol has a good kick to it which accentuates the spice. Finishes a little musty and wet.

M: Sits pretty nice with a light medium body. Some nice flavor developments.

Overall I was very impressed at first but then as it warmed the spice and alcohol really seemed to overpower the beer. Not the best showing but it's pretty good.

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Photo of VncentLIFE
3.48/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Smells more like a Dubbel than a BSDA, which is a great thing. The pour is brown, not pale. Friohy watery off white head. Kind of one sided, but not bad. More dry and grainy than anything, which I wanted more sweetness. Goes down insanely easy, and feels slightly slick late. Slightly metallic.

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3.59/5  rDev -6%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

330ml bottle. Delirium Tremens Snifter glass. Enjoyed on jun´12. Deep orangish amber color, chill haze appearance. Off-white froth shows creamy texture & nice retention. Copious lacing collars. Strawberry hues, yeast & sugar to the nose. Sweet malty & ripe fruity flavors. Medium body, moderate carbonation. Not the best of the sisters, eventhough it´s worth to try. Typical belgian warming ABV.

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

B/B 17/11/12. Poured in to Duvel tulip.

A - Medium amber with slight orange glow along the bottom. One finger of fluffy white head.

S - Sweetness up front with caramel, pepper, floral/herbal notes and yeast. Some honey and grainy/bready notes too.

T - Sweet caramel, raisins, toffee, candy up front. Some yeast flavours in the background along with some lighter grainy notes. A fairly big sweetness with some warming alcohol to balance it out.

M - Medium body. Moderate carbonation.

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Photo of BretSikkink
3.96/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Copper body, mostly clear but murky towards the top, where the super tight foam forms an initially nice cap that blooms after a minute. Aroma of fruit with a hint of spice, but so muffled by the cap it comes out rather clean.

Very nice flavor with notes of, shockingly, amber malts - spicy, nutty, pepper finish with a slight boozy heat. Sweet but not cloying, spiciness is under control, and attenuation is professional. Perfect sudsiness. Easy to drink but full enough in body.

I had this one a few years ago with no reviewing notes, so I'm glad I had a chance (in Mexico!) to enjoy another bottle. Not a pleasant import price here, but neither outrageous - and definitely worth it for the chance to drink the beer that every Mexican 'obscura' wishes it could be.

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Photo of prototypic
3.7/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Ambrio indeed pours an amber color. It’s a bit hazy, and it has quite a few yeasty particles swimming about. I was even careful with the pour. Backlighting gives it a really nice crimson look. The head is off-white and stands about a finger and a half tall. It’s quite slow to recede, holding at a surface covering for quite a while. Good looking stuff.

The nose is good. It features a nice mix of caramel malts, grains, and bread-like notes up front. It’s definitely an interesting mix, but smells good. It smells a little spicy. It’s a bit reminiscent of fruit cake honestly. There are some light fruit notes of apple, pear, and perhaps even peach. Belgian yeast is noted and smells nice. Grainy and earthy notes emerge on the tail. Alcohol is noticeable, but isn’t overwhelming. 8% seems about right.

The flavor is pretty good. Not great. The malt base does feature some sweet caramel. There’s also a very strong bready flavor. There’s definitely a spicy quality to it, but I can’t identify individual spices beyond pepper. It does have a fruit cake flavor that’s subtle. It’s earthy and grainy throughout. Fruit flavors are there, but are more subtle. Apple and pear are most notable. They seem a little at odds with the spicy notes though. Belgian yeast is probably responsible for the spiciness. Its presence is easily noted. It definitely adds something positive overall though. Alcohol isn’t too noticeable. Finishes yeasty, fruity, spicy, and grainy.

Ambrio has a medium body. Carbonation is active, but soft. It does have a nice, smooth feel and goes down rather easily. It’d be even easier if the flavor were just a little better. Not bad at all here though.

Gouden Carolus Ambrio is not the best beer I’ve experienced from Brouwerij Het Anker. Having said that, it’s far from bad. The interplay between the fruit and the spiciness not all that great. Definitely worth trying out though. It's pretty far from bad.

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Photo of Dope
3.14/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: A deep red pour with a ridiculously huge head. The head appears to be white with just a tinge of pink oddly enough. I'm not sure if my eyes are deceiving me. The head is big, fluffy and dense. Retention is incredible, it never goes away. Big wall of lacing too.

S: Smells faintly like raspberries and a little bit of caramel.

T: A little bit of caramel and belgian yeast. Some odd tart berries. What am I drinking?

M: Medium bodied, fairly high carbonation.

O: A strange beer, I can't tell if I got a bad bottle, an old bottle, or if it's just not very good. The carbonation is over the top and the flavors are odd. Doesn't taste oxidized or infected though. Strange is all I can say.

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Photo of tbeckett
2.47/5  rDev -35.3%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Bottle at a friend's house in Melbourne. From notes.

A - Poured cloudy dark copper with a film of white head. Good carbonation with no lace and no retention.

S - Alcohol, very mild, odd spoiled yeast and some egg. Woo hoo.

T - Alcohol, light dark fruit, very mild.

M - Medium carbonation, medium body and a sweet finish.

O/D - A boring Belgian ale. For the strength and reputation of the brewery, this is a giant letdown. Flavours were barely coming through and it was pretty uninteresting.

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Photo of keithmurray
3.58/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle poured into a chalice

Appearance - murky amber color with fluffy white head

smell - honey, coriander, ginger, apricot

taste - honey, yeast, muted apple, really bready flavor

mouthfeel - ample carbonation, medium bodied, sour, unbalanced finish

Overall - a decent beer that falls somewhere in the middle of the class for the style.

Price Point - $4.69/11.2oz single

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Photo of AZbelgian
2.34/5  rDev -38.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

A - Pours a cloudy brown with a huge off-white head. Decent lacing and retention.

S - Strong smell of alcohol, yeast and some floral notes.

T - Starts with a hint of candy sugar. Hops and malts combine to make the primary flavor something like brown bread. Flavor finishes with a dry tapering bitterness.

M - Lots of carbonation in the mouth.

O - Overall I was very disappointed, I really like a lot of the other Gouden Carolus'. This is not too complex and the flavors that are there don't work at all to make me want to try this one again.

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Photo of Nerudamann
3.7/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

Look – light red amber color, hazy, with about four fingers’ worth of frothy light-khaki colored foam that dissipates somewhat slowly.

Smell – fairly rich smell for such a light-looking body. Earthy and a bit herbal. It almost has a rye-like quality to it.

Taste – earthy and herbal indeed. The taste has a raw, unfiltered quality to it. The abv is hard to notice unless you focus on the concentration of the taste…meaning that it doesn’t have that obvious bite to it that some higher abv beers do. It finishes a but musky, but otherwise much how it began.

Mouthfeel – pretty well-balanced over all, not leaning more toward the watery or creamier sides.

Overall – not a bad brew at all, and fairly interesting to contemplate over while tasting.

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Photo of MoreThanWine
3.86/5  rDev +1%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a 2.5" beige head with decent retention. Color isn't really amber to me, it's more of a dar raw umber brown. The smell is divine, very rich with malt, caramel, fig, dried fruit. Taste is actually milder than the smell and the deep rich malt comes to the front. It has a medium to long finish. The higher alcohol is noticeable but not distracting or overdone.

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Photo of Rapax
4.11/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big head with small bubbles. Settles quickly but leaves plenty of lacing. Nice orange-amber color.

Starts malty in my nose. Candy sugar and a touch of metal. Floral and a little acidic, but not disturbingly so.

Malt does not come out as much in the taste. There is pear, orange peel, flowers and some almonds. Low bitterness, even for the type, but it gives a crisp finish.

Appropriate body, on the light side of medium. Low carbonation for the type, but that appeals to me.

Excellent beer. Nice and elegant.

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Photo of Pencible
4.05/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: This poured a clear dark gold with tons of white head.
S: It smelled like earthy lemon and grassy hops with metallic and some candi sugar.
T: It tasted like earthy lemon and grassy hops with light caramel and candi sugar and sour yeast. It has a mellow bitter aftertaste.
M: It was slightly thick with lots of smooth natural carbonation. Very nice and slick body.
D: This was a great delicate and balanced beer. The scent and taste were very nice, and the body was excellent. Probably best fresh. It didn't blow my mind, but it was really enjoyable.

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Photo of smakawhat
3.68/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into an official Gouden Carolus glass.

A really beautiful slightly cloudy body with a gorgeous orange and brown color. Head is once again a creamy whipped off white with a smooth blanket topping.

Bouquet is malty and some dry yeast with a sweet dark prune.

Taste is dubbel dry and carbonated. Big soda water texture, and quinine tastes in the palate. Some creaminess in the palate as well but even some tartness.

Overall I'd say true to style, but not probably something I would want to have again.

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Photo of jnn4v
3.87/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Slightly hazy amber / light brown color. Hints of red and orange in the shade, but overall is more brown than not. Very light tan / off-white colored head filled 1/5 of the glass. No sediment.

S: Caramel, copper, Belgian yeast, toffee, butterscotch. Very subtle hint of a floral element.

T: Belgian yeast, hops and the caramel malts all assault the palate in a rush to see who will be more dominant. In the end, they are all fairly balanced elements of the flavor, despite the malts victory in the scent. And I'm not sure that's a good thing - the taste left me wishing it matched up more to the scent.

M: Very carbonated with moderate size bubbles. I'd actually prefer it a bit more toned down - like some Dubbels are. Although the malty elements could do well with a barleywine texture as well. Too fizzy for my tastes.

O: Good beer that's not excellent but had no major complaints. My only minor quibble was texture. Although if the scent was true to the flavor and mouthfeel, it would have been phenomenal.

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Photo of gatornation
3.53/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

from an 11.2 oz bottle

A pours a murky dark copper color with a hugh fluffy khaki head and ton of sticky lacing

S- is of dark candied fruits and malts with some sour yeat

T- is sweet dark/light fruits..lots of pear plums and apples ,then a candied malt and bread middle has a slight musty earth finish

M- sweet and carbonated with a malt and dank taste..

O- worth a try but im not overly enjoying this brew its candied sweet and reminds me of a dubbel

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Photo of rvdoorn
3.26/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Look: the beer pours an amber color with a medium head.
Smell: Some malts, yeast, caramel and some fruits. All very faint.
Taste: Malts, caramel, hints of orange zest with a light spicy hoppy finish.
Mouthfeel: medium carbonation, medium bodied
Overall: very single dimensional

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Photo of ridelacruz
3.7/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Amber-red color, with a small head, retains a nice ribbon of foam, the bubble is of medium size, has little but plenty beads.

S: Caramel with some fruit, it feels a little alcohol in the aroma.

T: It's sweet at first with a touch of oak and fruit at the end feels a touch of alcohol and a little bitter, a nice touch to balance the sweet in the beginning.

M: Medium-bodied, with "discreet" carbonation

A nice beer, without being outstanding, I would recommend it without a problem.

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Photo of cdkrenz
4.08/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Poured into a snifter this classic Belgian has the beautiful look of a red amber body and the head off off white. It starts out an inch tall and fades slowly.

S - It has a cola and boozy aroma with a strong malty licorice.

T - The flavors of molasses and licorice on moderate quantities. The flavors also include a hint of alcohol.

M - Light and airy with a firm amount of carbonation providing an evaporation texture.

~ This is a strong Belgian beverage that I truely enjoyed. I would certainly try it again, especially if I were able to find it on tap. I recommend you give it a try.

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Photo of decimator
2.76/5  rDev -27.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

330ml bottle poured into a goblet.
ABV 8.0%

A - Poured a cloudy golden brown with a 1 cm head. After a few sips the head is still around as a thin cap.

S - Pears, peaches, apples, bananas, hint of spice, and some earth in the background.

T - Sweet malts, plenty of sour fruitiness, a bit of hops and booze in the finish.

M - Medium-low carbonation, creamy, sticky sweetness, wine like dry finish.

O - Comes off pretty sour at first but it mellows a bit as the beer warms up but the balance is a bit too sour for my liking.

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Photo of STKPICR0720
4/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I just had this brew very simple. Nice tangy with a touch of fig and pear taste. Pour was brown and lightly carbonated. Overall a great brew good hops full of yeast and sweet malts. A abv of 8% and this brew does not drink like and 8%. Nice bite and clean finish

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Photo of rarbring
3.78/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The brew is dark, slightly hazy, amber, has an off-white head that is rather small and leaves little lacing, some curtains however.

The smell is rather unobtrusive, ripe pears, some acidity and yeast.

The taste starts sweet, fermented honey, tropical fruits, peach but also canned pears, not much bitterness.

High carbonation, small intense bubbles, soft and oily texture.

This one has good properties, but I lack something ... age?

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Photo of bark
3.6/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The colour is red-brown, the liquid is almost clear. The offwhite head is finger thing and compact.

The smell is sweet with notes of raspberry jam with a minld sour notes. I recon a phenolic house taste from other Het Anker brews. It is a bit simple.

The taste is sweet; I notice distinct flavours of wine gums and raspberry jam. Mild hops in the background. Dry notes of marzipan, apple-peel and red berries in the aftertaste.

The carbonation is strong; the bubbles sharp. The liquid is a bit sticky.

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Photo of DaftCaskBC
4.05/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Massive 3" cream coloured head, very amber coloured beer.

S: Lemon and brown sugar.

T: Citrus and brown sugar, some malt, sour finish but quite nice.

M: Medium thickness and high carbonation.

O: A nice and refreshing beer. Would be quite enjoyable with a suitable meal pairing.

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Gouden Carolus Ambrio from Brouwerij Het Anker
86 out of 100 based on 198 ratings.
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