St-Ambroise Pale Ale | McAuslan Brewing

very good
224 Reviews
St-Ambroise Pale AleSt-Ambroise Pale Ale

Brewed by:
McAuslan Brewing
Quebec, Canada

Style: American Pale Ale (APA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Hops: Cascade, Willamette, Golding, Hallertau

IBU: 35

Added by Jason on 10-26-2000

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Reviews: 224 | Ratings: 411
Photo of Sammy
4.07/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Carbonation and hop works to make it quite drinkable and a champion Canadian beer. Excellent balance, above-average smell in head that dissipitates. Can drink this for a long time. Sweet start, excellent clean aftertaste.Had this again three years afterwards, and this in brief is a beer that I like and yet can till be popular.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.63/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

on tap at hotel nelligan in old montreal. the pour is perfectly clear amber to brick red, glowing a lighter honey shade, and boasting a gorgeous white lacey head pushing three inches in height and lasting the entire 20 minutes that it took me to drink this imperial pint. the nose is a little bland inmy opinion, with only the red malt offering anything up, its sort of antique smellign, in a good way, but it isnt too exciting. the flavor profile builds on that malty nose with slight hints of brown sugar and some sort of bittering hops, but this isnt a hoppy beer at all. it really lets the malt shine, and the result is a sort of freshness that i am not at all used to in beers that are this malt forward. its a nice surprise, a well made beer, more in the red beer than american pale category to me, but i suppose either classification can work here. relaxed carbonation provides just enough tickle to keep the beer light, the sweetness dies quickly in the finish, which makes it a rather crisp finish too, which i appreciate in this style. overall it doesnt touch their oatmeal stout, but its a fine glass of ale.

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Photo of metter98
3.95/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: The beer is slightly hazy amber in color and poured with a thin white head. A moderate amount of carbonation is visible from the rising bubbles.
S: There are aromas of apples and citrus hops in the nose.
T: Like the smell, there are some flavors of apples in the initial taste but these quickly transition over to bready malts with notes of caramel; there is a mild amount of bitterness from the hops.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation. There is a slight amount of dryness in the finish.
D: This beer goes down very easily and is quite sessionable.

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Photo of BEERchitect
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Found a new beer at The Village Vineyard in Lexington KY. Went home and decided to brew a Brown Ale and half way through, I popped open this beer. Not expecting much, I was very happy to have picked up the six-pack rather than a single.

The beer begins with a malty richness that dominates the nose upfront with a slowly increasing floral hop aroma that adds balance but never becomes overly agressive. Fruity and phenolic aromas are very low allowing the beer to come across cleanly and simplistic.

A well-attenuated malt character give a cracker, bready taste with low lying caramel, malty notes but low with residual sweetness or clutter. Again, floral hop flavor resides along side of the malts without dominating or waivering.

Crisp, clean and softly malty in the body with balancing bitterness, minty cool alcohols, and with a very mild grain texture late probably due to high attenuation rates.

The beer definately has an American Pale Ale malt profile with low fruitiness, high crispness, low sweetness and palatable dryness. But the hops are mainly floral and not citrusy like in American versions. The rate of hopping definately balance the beer but never proclaim attention, making it more akin to English Pale Ale versions in the hop character. Still, a good anytime beer that is sessionable, palatable, and characterful enough to stand alone.

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Photo of biboergosum
3.58/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

341ml bottle. Hmmmm, toasted wheat in a pale ale, interesting.

This beer pours a clear medium copper amber hue, with three fingers of puffy, densely foamy, and mildly bubbly off-white head, which leaves some chunky splattered lace around the glass as things slowly abate.

It smells of semi-sweet caramel malt, a sort of candied fruitiness, like white ice wine, and earthy, floral hops. The taste is bready pale malt, with a touch of sugary caramel, syrupy pear and apple, and rather perfumed and aromatic floral, grassy hops. I'm getting neither toast nor wheat in this one.

The carbonation is quite mild, just a slightly steely frothiness, the body medium-light in weight, yet quite sturdy in its smoothness. It finishes off-dry, the fruitiness of malt and hops alike persisting, and mostly clean.

An enjoyable enough pale ale for an early summer evening, though perhaps a bit too sweet all around to engender going back to the (beer) trough for it again. I guess I'm looking for something with more obvious hop attitude, whilst testing out a new fire pit by burning (I mean cooking) some juicy smokies.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.32/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bought from the combo pack with Griffon Rousse, Blonde and Apricot beer.

Nice dark golden brew with a nice head that stayed for a while. Medium hoppy for a pale ale but still not too complex. Nice brew for those hot summer days beside the pool. Better then most pale ale I’ve drank before...

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Photo of emerge077
3.73/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of leftmindedrighty...

Pours a tawny apple juice tone. Good sticky lacing, foam falls to a skim over the course of a few minutes.

Aroma is nondescript, not much to indicate what it tastes like, or it's ingredients. Similar smell to euro lagers i've had.

Taste has an alternately sweet and dry character, malty, fruity, and slightly sweet overall. Apple figures in, with dry herbal hop in the finish. It's good for what it is, just too sweet and dry for me.

Good level of carbonation, keeps it lively on the palate. Dryness invites another sip.

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Photo of zeff80
4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured out a semi-cloudy, amber color with a foamy, off-white, two-finger head. I tleft sticky rings of lace.

S - It smelled very floral with citrus notes.

T - It tasted of burnt toast maltiness, very smooth. It had a nice bitter hop kick.

M - It was crisp and smooth. A medium-bodied beer.

D - A very good APA. I'd like to try more from McAuslan.

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Photo of oberon
3.47/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured a clear light golden with a large sticky white head that let rings of lace behind as it settled,quite spritzy looking pretty well carbonated.Nic hop profile in the nose quite citrusy and slightly piney but lemon and grapefruit show thru more,a light sweet biscuit malt aroma shows thru as well.The flavors seemed a bit flat to me the hops seemed to peeter out a little I mean there is a citrusy presense but not very bold,a dryer malt base really keeps the beers sweetness in check.A somewhat lighter prickly mouthfeel doesnt help it much,I had higher expectations for this but seemed a bit of a dud after a good start.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Crystal clear deep amber robe topped by a short, creamy white head that dissipates shortly but holds a decent collar and leaves some thin lace. The aroma offers some light dried summer fruit, and a bready and mildly caramel malt that's entwined with grassy & floral hops (Goldings?). It's not overly special or unusual, but it is nicely done, clean, and inviting. The body is medium with a very fine, median carbonation that's lightly crisp at first but warms to become creamy. The flavor offers a decent amount of hop flavor and bold bitterness atop a soft, lightly caramel-tinged malt. Quite English! The finish is clean and dry with some lingering grassy, and even peppery, hops. Well done! It reveals more of it's character as it warms, but I don't think that serving it at cellar temperature would benefit it greatly. Worth trying.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.38/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Acquired via trade from biegaman, so a big “Thank you” goes out to him. Poured from a 341ml bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a bright reddish gold color with a short off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of caramel, fruit, light malts and a good amount of hops.

T: The taste starts out with a strong caramel, honey and brown sugar sweetness. Some hops bitterness comes in but is a bit mild doesn’t provide enough balance for my liking. The after-taste is sweet and slightly bready.

M: Smooth with a little crispness, medium body, light-to-medium carbonation, slightly sticky finish.

D: A little tasty, goes down ok, a slightly filling, the sweetness isn’t quite what I look for in the style, but it’s not a bad beer; it just doesn’t quite appeal to me enough to select it unless my choices were limited.

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Photo of mactrail
3.53/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

More of an amber color with a brief but enthusiastic foam in the Ciney snifter. Spritzy mouthfeel. A little woody with some plain malt flavor. A whiff of flowery hops and a shy bitter tang at the finish. One of the better McAuslan brews.

Really not a bad Blonde Ale. It's easy to drink, provides a little malt and some hops. Less flabby, more refreshing. From the 341 ml screw-cap bottle purchased at a BC Liquor Store in the mixed 12-pack.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.46/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a clear, orange-amber body with a thin, wispy, white head.

Smell: Butter-basted malt aroma with a scant hint of fruitiness.

Taste: Dry maltiness that's really not biscuity, more like biscuitesque. Flash of sweetness. One pat of salted butter. Juicy, tart fruit flavors of citurs and apricot. Just a bit of earthy bitterness for the finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-thin body. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: Fair enough for what amounts to an easy drinking, session-type beer.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.88/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pristine pumpkin with haystack colored edges. The darker than usual hue suggests that caramel malt will have a say on the palate. Several fingers of beige colored foam can be seen atop the beer, and aren't shy about laying down fine, speckled sheets of lace.

It's either the choice of hop(s) or the less than aggressive nature of the nose (maybe both), but Pale Ale smells as much English as American. I have no idea what a Canadian pale ale is supposed to smell like. A little butter caramel in the background keeps things interesting.

Like everything else that I've had from these guys, St. Ambroise Pale Ale is delicious beer (Oatmeal Stout is astouding, but I digress). This is an ale that pays as much attention to malt as hops... and it pays a lot of attention to hops. If it was designed to be an English-style pale, then it's more lupulinirific than most. And that's a very good thing.

There's a fair amount of malt present; more than in most 5.0% ales anyway. Although the flavor favors pale, caramel-toffee is present as well. Well done. The hops are both citrusy and floral, which might indicate several varieties from several different countries. What a suprisingly rich and complex brew.

The mouthfeel couldn't help but be good given all those malt sugars and the zestiness of the hops. In addition, the carbonation is on the energetic end of the spectrum, without crossing the line into buzziness. No drop-off here.

It's borderline crazy to make a statement like this with so little exposure to Canadian beer, but from where this BA sits, McAuslan Brewing is the best non-Belgian-style brewery in The Great White North.

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Photo of russpowell
4.04/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours an effervescent amber with 4+ fingers of creamy sand/tan head. Very good head retention & lacing

S: Biscuitty malt & some toffee & slight citric hops as this warms.

T: Biscuitty malt, lemony & herbal hops up front. More herbal hops & slight tangerine & biscuitty malt as this warms. Finishes with orange peel, Some pineapple, more herbal hops & some honey malt

MF: Medium bodied, soft carbonation, great balance

Drinks very easy, skews English to me style-wise. I am happy to try some beer from this brewery after a 10 year break, lucky I ran into this in Kansas!

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Photo of mikesgroove
3.68/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A great extra that i recieved from a great trader. Decided to crack this one open this afternoon. Served cold and poured into a pint glass, this one was consumed on 08/04/2010.

Pours a nice and clean amber color with a good sized head of about two inches that falls down quickly but leaves a ton of lacing down the sides of the glass.

aroma is light grains, hints of a small citric hop profile, touches of bready grains and a smooth biscuit like touch. Clean and very crisp taste, starts with a light touch of hops and follows through with nice bready malt character that comes through cleanly on the palate and offers a decent amount of balance. Nice and light, well carbonated body makes it a breeze to drink and seriously one of the most well rounded pales in terms of solid drinkability.

Overall a very nice representation of the style. Light, clean and easy to drink. Would have no issues with going after this one again.

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Photo of smcolw
4.27/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This pours very dark for a "blonde"--a nice neutral amber. Excellent foamy head with good lasting power and nice lace.

I really like the blend of malt and hop in the nose. The malt is neither dry nor sweet, but there is some caramel, much like Samuel Smith Pale Ale. The hop is subtle but flowery.

The taste is more hoppy than the smell suggests. The malt is also drier and more astringent. To me, this means the beer is more complex. Superior body (like skim milk) with an appropriate amount of carbonation. The aftertaste is a good blend of the dry malt and the spicy hop.

This is a wonderful surprise. I was not expecting quite the quality--I seem to remember having this beer a long time ago and didn't place it in my "superior" category of my memory. That switched with this tasting.

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Photo of Jason
4.47/5  rDev +14%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 11.5 oz brown twist, no description and no freshness date.

Appearance: Hazy orange amber with a wonderful web like white lace that clings everywhere and leaves thick rings all the way down the glass.

Smell: Fragrant fruity and hoppy floral make for a sweetish aroma. Slight sweet tea nose within, very appealing.

Taste: Smooth with a moderate body that boots a crisp malty palate. Rustic hop bitterness and a lightly pungent hop oil flavour linger on top with a fruity and sweet grain mix. Fruitiness fades from peaches to apples while the hop bitterness cleans up. Pale malt character holds strong though is certainly not dominant.

Notes: Not much else one could ask for in a pale ale, seriously one of the finest pale ales I have ever had the joy to drink.

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Photo of TMoney2591
3.08/5  rDev -21.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served in a Lagunitas mason jar.

Nothing screams French-Canadian Quebec like a brewery named McAuslan... Anyway, this stuff pours a clear bronze topped by a finger of glowing off-white foam. The nose comprises grapefruit-flavored solvent coating a healthy core of buttery biscuit. The taste holds notes of grapefruit peel, pine needles (dipped in a bit of sap), very light menthol, and light toffee. The body is a light medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a slick feel. Overall, an average pale ale, one that couldn't really positively stand out in any way.

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Photo of jwc215
3.53/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours light copper with a cireamy white, thin, head that leaves trailing lacing with some stickage.

The smell is of some caramel, a touch of wood, some fruit (citric) zest.

The taste is of caramel with pale malt. Some mild citric tone - zesty - orange/lemon finish.

Medium carbonation - light-to-medium bodied.

Mild, a bit "old-school" APA - malty with some citric notes - mild - leans towards the malt. Dirnkable, but nothing exciting.

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Photo of Tone
3.68/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear golden/amber. 1/2 inch head with good retention and decent lacing. Smells of hops, fruit, and a hint of malt. Fits the style. Smooth, crisp, and low carbonation. Hops is up front, but not very strong at all. Good blend of a sweet malt is also present. There might be a hint of fruitiness, but if it's present is only barely noticeable. Not near as much hops as I'm used to for an American Pale Ale, but still pretty good. Overall, a decent beer, but lacking in the hops for my taste.

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Photo of Gavage
3.91/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: pours an orange color with a one finger white head that slowly falls to a thin surface foam. Nice lacing paints the glass.

Smell: malt and fruit sweetness easily rises from the glass.

Taste: solid malt base with red apples, plums, caramel, and a nice balancing bitterness. There is a hint of breadiness here too.

Mouthfeel: lightly crisp from start to finish. Medium bodied beer. Aftertaste is brief as the flavors linger for a minute or so.

Drinkability: easy to quaff. Solid pale ale that can be a nice session ale. Pick some of this up.

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Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.53/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured in to Unibroue tulip

A - Transluscent light brown/amber colour with half a finger of white head that quickly disappeared.

S - Sweet caramel/toffee malts are noticeable up front with a slightly floral hop presence balancing out the nose.

T - Follows the nose. Bitter floral hops and sweet caramel malts. Balanced. The bitterness lingers in the finish.

M - Light body with a slight chew. Moderate carbonation.

D - A good pale ale but not my preferred hop profile.

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Photo of DoubleJ
3.96/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I was surprised to see this in the bottle at Town & County Liquor (Fullerton, CA). Is it what I remember, let us see...impressive tightly bubbled head on top this copper/orange colored beer. The aroma is light, mostly lemon peel, some dry grain. Not as fruity as I remember tastewise. Lemon rind upfront, in comes a blast of grapefruit and buttered bread, some diacteyl. Juicy flavors towards the finish. Good balance of flavors here. This is way different than I remember from my last sample of this pale ale.

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Photo of liamt07
3.92/5  rDev 0%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 341ml bottle into my Duvel tulip. Golden brown colour, with a few fingers of head (poured a bit aggressively on my part by accident) that settled down to a small layer head for the remainder of the beer; web-like lacing too. Smell of sweet hops, a bit of hops in there. Taste is good, pretty balanced with a nice bitterness and the sweet, kind of sugary malt flavour with it too. Good mouthfeel, medium/low carbonation and definitely sessionable in terms of drinkability! Solid pale ale.

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St-Ambroise Pale Ale from McAuslan Brewing
3.92 out of 5 based on 411 ratings.
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