Frambozen Raspberry Brown Ale | New Belgium Brewing

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Frambozen Raspberry Brown AleFrambozen Raspberry Brown Ale

Brewed by:
New Belgium Brewing
Colorado, United States

Style: Fruit / Vegetable Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by kbub6f on 11-03-2001

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Reviews: 395 | Ratings: 869
Photo of SickGnar
4.13/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Dark brown with red edges - sort of a reddish burnt umber. Bright, clear ganet when backlit. Off-white head has a slight pink hue, decent retention, and nice lacing. Quite pretty.

S: Some berryness, but not as much as many fram-beers. Toasted malts are at least as strong. A present though restrained sweetness, a wee bit of yeast character, and a very slight funk/sour hint round things out. No hops detected.

T: Not the fruity fizz I was expecting. Raspberries are more tart than sweet. However, what sweetness there is, does seem more fruit than grain based. The fruit rests on a solid backbone of toasted malts - biscuity with a light nuttiness and notes of caramel sweetness. Everything is wrapped together by a faint underlying sourness.

M: Medium body with ample, lush (but not fizzy) carbonation. A bit of a bite and slightly more than the edge of a pucker and a fairly drying finish.

D: Very well done. There is a fair bit going on but nothing overly dominates and it all works well together. Not even a hint cloying. Complex and interesting while remaining quite drinkable. As others have said, a good balance between beer and fruit on the fruit-beer scale.

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Photo of hyuga
4.13/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2003 batch

Apparently this year it was brewed with the yeast strain normally used for their Abbey, or am I remembering what I heard wrong? Anyway, I think I do like this year's better. More malty and Belgian yeasty goodness along with what seems like a bit more hoppiness to offset the fruit, which in this beer's case is not at all a bad addition. Probably the best fruit beer I've had.

2002 batch

Dark red, almost opaque brew topped with a huge reddish off-white (raspberry colored!) head. Kind of fizzy, goes down to a thin lace. I must say, it's a great looking beer. And the aroma, wow, HUGE aroma. Powerful natural raspberry aroma that almost knocks you back, in a good way. Underneath are subtle hints of spicy hops and a bit of grainy malt. Again in the palate, raspberry dominates. The tangy raspberry goes quite well with the spicy hops, which are second in the medium body. Grainy malt hangs in the background in a subtle way, yet is the big supporter for this brew at the same time. Tingly mouthfeel from the overall spiciness. It even warms, with what I expect is not so high an ABV. Great choice for a winter brew. I wonder how many pounds of raspberries are used per batch for this beer? It must be a generous amount, because it's hard to find this much fruitiness in a beer brewed with fruit, with the exception of a fruit lambic. Would be great for pairing with chocolate, raspberry desserts, or just plain raspberries. Good holiday brew.

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Photo of elniko
4.13/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from bottle into pint glass.

A: Rich deep ruby amber coloring, one finger head and nice lacing. Really good looking brew.

S: Raspberry tones are in the nose but do not overwhelm. Slight tinge of alcohol apparent as well. Solid nose.

T & M: Wonderfully balanced. The raspberry as with the nose does not overwhelm the taste but provides a wonderful tartness. Mouthfeel is tart as well, this is a beer that lingers after a sip.

D: Very drinkable, one of the best fruit beers that I've had.

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Photo of Halcyondays
4.13/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle,

A: Pours brown with a finger of white head. Nice retention, spotty lace.

S: Sweet and tart raspberries, some malt.

T: Great true raspberry flavour that lasts throughout the whole experience in the mouth. Light brown sugar character, like a raspberry cookie.

M: Medium-bodied, frothy carbonation, creamy, thinner finish than I'd expect. Very mild acidity, slight tart at the end.

O: I finally got to try this legendary effort. While it's been around the Mountain States for a while it's never made it to CA until this year and it has in a big way. If it continues to come each year, I have another beer to add to my winter seasonal must buy list.

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Photo of homebrewhawk
4.13/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle served in a Duvel tulip. Poured a pretty reddish brown with a thin, almost pink head. Nice sour berry aroma. Medium bodied, slightly spritzy mouthfeel. Lots of raspberry in the flavor with some chocolate malt. Slightly sour in a good way. Not overly sweet. No discernible hops. Very drinkable.

I hadn't had this in a while, and I found it much better than I remembered.

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Photo of hoppyweasel311
4.12/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a reddish brown color with a quick disappearing head.

Aroma- Tart raspberries, slight alcohol

Taste- Creamy mouthfeel, light carbonation, tart raspberry... and thats about it for me... the tartness is overpowering any other flavors. It kind of reminds me of champagne.. all in all this a really good holiday beer.

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Photo of Reidrover
4.12/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Ok I tried this beer a year ago and didnt like it much..but thought I would give it a second look.
I poured this into my Chimay Chalice..very nice looking ruby/port colour..small light brown head..goes fast leaves some lace.
The aroma of this beer is fresh raspberries..not artificial at all.
Mm quite complex flavour..yes the raspberry is there but theres more sour plums and even lemon and a certain spiciness.
Very nice mouthfeel little sour at the end..but a great aftertaste.
Very nice beer I am happy I tried it again..this time in a glass.

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Photo of pokesbeerdude
4.12/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: pours a nice red/deep brown with an off white head that has a few purple/red hints to it as well.

S: raspberries are really the forefront, there are a few chocolate hints in there as well, all in all very sweet smelling, chocolate covered berries, the chocolate is definitely towards the milk chocolate.

T: raspberries everywhere, lots of chocolate, sort of a selzer water taste as well, nice sour flavor from the raspberries, almost no hop flavor, which is to be expected, tastes a lot like a raspberry tootsie pop.

M: thin, nicely carbonated, and tart, puckers the mouth a little bit, almost too much on the thin side, but not bad.

D: fairly nice, this is probably my favorite dessert beer. hands down my favorite seasonal from NB. I wish it were distributed a little more outside of Colorado. A fine beer, and definitely a reminder that Christmas is upon us.

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Photo of thegodfather1076
4.12/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer was served out of a 12oz. bottle dispensed into a glass....

Presentation - Simple yet elegant lableing. Classy.

Appearance - Pours a slightly cloudy reddish deep amber color with a 1 1/2 finger tan head that dissipates slowly into a frothy coating that leaves a very nice lacing.

Smell - Smells of brown sugar and roasted malts overlayed with a raspberry tartness.

Taste - Starts out with the sweet tart raspberry flavor followed up by a toasty chocolaty malt flavor. The flavors blend together very nicely with a slight bitterness in the finish.

Mouthfeel - A fair amount of carbonation help give this a medium bodied feel which was crisper than expected.

Drinkability - Smooth and tasty making it a very very drinkable offering.

I really enjoyed this offering as it was different than anything I had ever had. Highly recommend!!

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Photo of TheKingofWichita
4.12/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a pretty reddish brown with a little tan head and good lacing. Smells of tart raspberries, sweet chocolate, and a fair amount of sweet malts. Tastes very balanced. Full on assault of raspberries rounded out by a little chocolate, some hops, and some sweet malts. Mouthfeel is medium and carbonation is nice. Drinkability is high.

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Photo of beer2day
4.12/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep reddish brown color with 1-finger light coral head. Decent retention and thick globs of lace.

Nose makes the raspberries quite apparent. Chocolate malt underneath that makes for a nice aperitif quality.

Tart raspberries really dominate. Fairly sweet hit transitions almost immediately into a tart, mildly dry finish. Surprisingly refreshing.

I was expecting a much thicker feel, but this beer is actually quite light.

Definitely worth a shot and easy to drink more than one on a cold evening.

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Photo of harlanhu28
4.1/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a deep red with an inch or so of head and reduces quickly down to a nice lacing..

No much of a hoppy nose more of a malty raspberry preserves..

Mouth feel quite light with a tinge of pucker..

I would have to say there is a very clean bittering hop flavor masked in the fruitiness.

The sour finish is quite good very malty.. For a beer of a complexity like this one i think New Belgium has hit a home run this year.. There are many ways to mess up a fruit beer.. New Belgium Frambozen has been a constant for me year after year..

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Photo of akorsak
4.1/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A 12 oz bottle from my Secret Santa 2006, nvsblman.

A: The ale is a deep, raspberry red color, dark almost to the point of murky brown. The head pours with a bit of raspberry red color as well and leaves a bit of lacing in the glass.

S: Even when the ale is cold, there is a strong raspberry aroma. It comes across as more natural and tart than syrupy.

T: The ale continues the strong raspberry presence that I found in the nose. The flavor has a light sweetness but is more remarkable for the strong natural tartness that it has. That fruit flavor is built on a nutty biscuit malt body that provide a bit of grainy sweetness to interact with the tartness.

M: The mouthfeel is a nice blend of sweet, nutty grains and a tart, sometimes sweet, raspberry.

D: Moderate abv and nice subtle fruit taste make this a good one. The tartness of the raspberry is what keeps me going back for a sip.

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Photo of wnh
4.1/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle poured into a pint glass.

Pours a brilliant, bright ruby red, tinted copper at the edges, with a large, frothy tan head tinted ever-so-slightly pink. Quite unique, but not at all unexpected in a beer brewed with raspberries. Large sheets of lacing left behind once the beer is gone.

Smells largely like a brown ale with a mild fruity twist. Toasted bready malt takes center stage, with a light nuttiness underneath and tart, ripe raspberries just poking through.

The roles are reversed, happily, on the palate. Tart, juicy raspberries on the entry, clean and quenching, turning earthy and nutty in the middle before fading into well-toasted bready malt. The fruity raspberry flavor lasts for the entirety, and thankfully plays a much larger role than the nose indicates.

Unlike many fruit beers I've had, the flavors here are well integrated. The brown ale provides a nice canvas for the raspberry without fading too far into the background, pushing too far into the foreground, or being at odds with the fruity notes.

Medium bodied and soft, with just a touch of fruity acidic bite. A well-made, enjoyable beer. Seems like it'd be a good match for a traditional Thanksgiving feast.

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Photo of angelmonster
4.1/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a 2 finger white head with pinkish highlights. Body is brown and red when held up to light. Head retention and lacing are above average but unusual color of beer pushes the appearance score higher

Smell is of cranberry juice and pale malt. No hops are detected. Fruit is the dominant aroma here

Taste is of tart, sweet cranberry juice. Even though it's labeled a raspberry brown ale, I'm not getting any characteristics of a brown ale. Reminds me of a slightly less sweet Framboise

Mouth feel is good. Carbonation is lively but not too much. Body is pretty light and head stayed around for awhile adding a cappuccino like froth

Drink ability is pretty good. Cant believe this beer is 6.5% abv, very session able. Was hoping that the beer would have more flavors of a brown ale to go with the fruitiness but unfortunately it doesnt.

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Photo of ArrogantB
4.1/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Well this beer lives up to its label completely. The color is brown with red tints and I swear the off-white head had a tinge of pink to it, hallucination maybe? It smells like a brown ale should with slight hints of the raspberries. The first taste is good and makes me think of raspberry flavored chocolate. This beer teases you with only the slightest tart flavor hiding, must have sour! I have heard others say this has too much raspberry but I disagree. This is a fine beer from New Belgium.

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Photo of irish53b
4.1/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Ale Fermented with Real Raspberries with a best before
15 Feb 08 printed on the bottle

Poured from bottle into weizen glass
deep cranberry color, nice head with lacing throughout

Floral aromas and note of chocolate comes through

Taste is of semisweet or dark chocolate. The tartness of the raspberries is balanced well by the malt. The first taste of this ale brought to my mind imported Swiss chocolate, a perfect treat for the holidays.

Mouthfeel is dry primarily due to the 6.5% ABV and the tart taste.
It is medium in body and has enough guts to pair well with a roast
or turkey dinner.

Overall this ale is a real treat, it is perfect for a holiday meal
or all by itself. I think one or two is enough as the high ABV doesn't
make it an ideal session brew.

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Photo of goochpunch
4.08/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours out a reddish brown with a somewhat thin yet frothy off-white pinkish head. Leaves some spotty lacing. When held up to direct light it resembles a deeper tawny port. Nose is faintly sweetish and of raspberries, but the strongest aromas that come out are of the roasted and toasted malts. A bit of cocoa is in there as well. Malt flavor is at first toasty and cocoa-like then moves into a raspberry sweetness and tartness. Finishes nice and dry. Only strike against this is that the malt body kind of thins out before the finish, but it tastes good overall. Mouthfeel is a bit thin, the carbonation is just fine. Not too prickly. Flavor has a bit of richness yet finishes lighter and refreshing/dry/tart, making this highly drinkable. Definately one of the better fruit beers to have.

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Photo of Redneckwine
4.08/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

12 oz bottle into tulip

Appearance - A really delightful, bright ruby/brown color. One finger off-white head leaves a wispy cap and a touch of lacing.

Smell - Sweet and sour fruity berries backed up with malty toastiness and raw cocoa. Some floral/perfumey notes jump out too.

Taste - Up-front fruitiness definitely presents itself with signature sweet/tart, juicy raspberry, then wastes no time leaning on a lightly toasted malt body complete with nuances of earthy cocoa and coffee. Ghost notes of spicy, well integrated alcohol. Finish dries up very impressively; suggestions of berry and toasted bread remain.

Feel - Medium/light bodied feel and fairly well carbonated, but strangely feels a touch watery on the end. I sense they were trying to make this beer feel lighter than it probably should given the ABV, somehow; still, drinkability is really high.

Overall - A surprisingly tasty beer, which may seem like a gimmick at first, but make no mistake, this beer is extremely refined, well-crafted, and dangerously drinkable at its ABV. An outstanding offering that just feels right on a cold winters night.

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Photo of Zraly
4.08/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beautiful dark cherry-brown color. A thin "nutty pink" head floats atop. Smells of raspberry, cherry, and a slight presence of alcohol. Rather pleasing.

This tastes as warm as it smells. Initial flavors are sweet, rich choco-malts followed by a tartness of raspberries. Has a nice tingle and snap...and rather smooth for something that has such pronounced tartness. Citrusy nuances. Finishes dry and clean. Decent carbonation helps keep things from feeling too "syrupy" in the mouth. I'm thinking of Cherry Coca Cola for some subtle reasons.

I think this would be a charming beer to introduce to folks during the holiday season. It would make a great dessert compliment to a dark chocolate cake or mousse. Or all by itself.

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Photo of DESTRO
4.07/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

pours out a red tinted brown with a small head. scents of raspberries dominate with an iron fist with a light toasted malt hiding in the backdrop. big raspberry presence in the flavor, tart and puckering, not sweet, paired with a healthy biscuit like malt (see fat tire). very tangy and truly unique. crisp and smooth, nothing amazing but nothing sub-par. overall a very interesting beer, being a fan of lambics and a good brown ale this does me just wonderfully. i had no idea this was 6.5% abv until i had drank all of them, be careful, she is a deceptive one. it complimented a night of mario kart double dash perfectly.

paid $5.99 for a 6 pack.

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Photo of MattyG85
4.05/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a New Belgium Globe glass.

Appearance: Pours a deep brownish ruby red with a lot of bubbles. About one finger of off white head that fades away fairly quick.

Smell: A very fruity and sweet aroma with hints of raspberries and roast malt. Very fruity and juicy upfront with a big jammy scent of raspberries and other berries. Sweet hints of sugar. Toasted malt with hints of biscuit, toast, chocolate, nuts, and yeast. Hops are very light. A pretty decent aroma.

Taste: Like it smells, a fruity and pretty sweet taste with big notes of raspberries with some roasted malt. Big upfront taste of sweet raspberry jam with some other berry fruit notes. Sweet notes of sugar. Roasted barley malt with notes of biscuit, toast, chocolate, nuts, caramel, and yeast. Very subtle earthy hops. Fruit flavor is pretty sweet but not overly syrupy. The chocolate comes in more towards the finish. A nice taste.

Mouthfeel: Body is on the lighter side of medium. Carbonation is fairly high.

Overall: A pretty decent take on a fruit beer. Sweet and jammy but not sickly sweet. Nice chocolate malt flavor comes through after the fruit.

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Photo of SaltyLime
4.05/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - nice reddish brown brew with a tan head...head looks a little pink, couldn't tell if it was authentically like that or a reflection from the glass bouncing up through the head foam...interesting.
Smell - Pleasant whiffs of fresh raspberry and mild levels of malt. Nice. Not overwhelming in any ingredient.
Taste - very nice taste, great fruition of the smell. I didn't get much of the tartness as reported, I tasted a nice balance with no single ingredient seeming to dominate or weaken the flavor.
Mouthfeel - very smooth finish, medium body, little carbonation.
Drinkability - Usually not a big fan of the fruity beers, but this one seemed to stand out. I also did not feel the slightly higher ABV.
Genuine thanks to friend Linda for bringing us our first sixer, we've bought more since.
Edited review after drinking the brew with a fresh palate. Smelled and tasted a bit of lactose-like sourness. Still a good brew, just lowered the whoop-whoop a little.

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Photo of Pintofbrown
4.05/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I served this in a glass stein.

Appearance- The cap is an off-white, pink tinged color. It stuck at about a half-finger width. It is really filmy and soapy.

The beer has a very cool, dark ruby and brown body. There are decent amounts of random bubbles climbing lazily up the glass.

Smell- A milk chocolatey and raspberry aroma drifts out of the stein. That is pretty impressive! The raspberry is more sweet than tart, but it does not smell "fake" or like an extract.

Taste- The front of the drink is all slight toasted malt, wheat bread in nature. The raspberry starts to tart the drink halfway through. It is near the finish that it gets to be a little more sweet than tart.

The chocolate is not really here. I keep trying to imagine that I taste it, but I cannot truthfully say it is here. I think it would have been a nice addition.

I also could have used more raspberry on the palate. Maybe to make it sweeter, or even more tart. Because the base bready malt is great and could use that compliment.

Mouth feel- This beer is very creamy and has a good amount of coating. Not watery, and certainly not too fizzy. Wonderful.

Overall- As this beer stands, it is pretty great. More raspberry would have pushed the taste score up easily. However they added raspberry to this drink was a good start, but not quite where it needs to be.

I really like the malt base on this one, and would like to try a brown from New Belgium because of it. This is a holiday beer I would gladly return to.

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Photo of JEdmund
4.05/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Small ¼” head sitting on a really pretty pinkish/purple body. Good stream of carbonation bubbles.

Definite berry aroma; it’s a little tart and sweet smelling. Some doughy malt. Very inviting.

Light flavor for 6.5%, but I see that as a plus in its drinkability. The raspberry flavor isn’t over the top like it is in Lindemann’s, and there’s a fairly neutral, even level malt flavor complementing them. Finish really comes alive and the fruit really pops with a tart zing—very nice and refreshing! Mouthfeel is excellent: velvety rich, though not heavy or syrupy.

Frambozen didn’t quite live up to the hype, and I wouldn’t say it lives up to its price tag either ($10.99). However, I full enjoyed drinking them and would absolutely order this if it were on tap somewhere. I’d probably even buy a single bottle next year. Recommended.

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Frambozen Raspberry Brown Ale from New Belgium Brewing
3.67 out of 5 based on 869 ratings.
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