St-Ambroise Pale Ale | McAuslan Brewing

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St-Ambroise Pale AleSt-Ambroise Pale Ale
Very Good
419 Ratings
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:
Our flagship beer -the one that put McAuslan on the map. St-Ambroise Pale Ale is a golden, generously hopped brew, and a perennial favourite of the many pale ale drinkers who have enjoyed its rich, fruity flavour since 1989.

Hops: Cascade, Willamette, Golding, Hallertau

IBU: 35

Added by Jason on 10-26-2000

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 419 |  Reviews: 229
Photo of Sammy
4.07/5  rDev +5.4%
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 jaydoc
3.79/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of StonedTrippin
3.63/5  rDev -6%
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 in my opinion, with only the red malt offering anything up, its sort of antique smelling, 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 spycow
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%

Photo of djrn2
3.5/5  rDev -9.3%

Photo of metter98
3.95/5  rDev +2.3%
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 biboergosum
3.58/5  rDev -7.3%
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 BEERchitect
4/5  rDev +3.6%
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 emerge077
3.73/5  rDev -3.4%
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 +6.2%
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 superspak
3.5/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

11.5 ounce bottle into pint glass, E068 bottle code. Pours slightly hazy/cloudy deep orange/amber/light copper color with a thin off white head with decent retention, that reduces to a thin spotty lace cap that lingers. Minimal spotty lacing on the glass. Good appearance. Aromas of grapefruit, tangerine, peach, pineapple, lemon zest, orange peel, light pepper/pine, honey, caramel, brown sugar, toasted biscuit, herbal, and floral/grassy earthiness. Nice and pleasant aromas with good balance and complexity of citrus/earthy hops and dark/bready malt notes; with solid strength. Taste of grapefruit, tangerine, peach, pineapple, lemon zest, orange peel, light pepper/pine, honey, caramel, brown sugar, toasted biscuit, herbal, and floral/grassy earthiness. Light pine, citrus peel, herbal, grassy, spicy bitterness on the finish. Lingering notes of grapefruit, tangerine, peach, pineapple, lemon zest, orange peel, light pepper/pine, honey, caramel, brown sugar, toasted biscuit, and herbal/floral/grassy earthiness on the finish for a while. Nice complexity, robustness, and balance of citrus/earthy hops and dark/bready malt flavors; with a nice malt/bitterness balance; and zero cloying/astringent flavors after the finish. Lightly increasing dryness from bitterness. Mild carbonation and light-medium body; with a very smooth, moderately bready/grainy, and fairly sticky mouthfeel that is good. Zero warming alcohol as expected of 5%. Overall this is a solid pale ale. All around good complexity, robustness, and balance of citrus/earthy hops and dark/bready malt flavors; very smooth and easy to drink with the mildly bitter/drying finish. Balanced citrus/earthy hops and dark/bready English malt complexity. Probably very old judging by the flavor profile, but was still quite enjoyable and not too bad at all. Drank more like an English pale ale with the mild carbonation.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.32/5  rDev -14%
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 SocalKicks
3/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
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 zestar
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%

Photo of oberon
3.47/5  rDev -10.1%
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 TheManiacalOne
3.38/5  rDev -12.4%
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 nickfl
3.53/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of mactrail
3.53/5  rDev -8.5%
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 smcolw
4.27/5  rDev +10.6%
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 russpowell
4.04/5  rDev +4.7%
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 XmnwildX12
2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.46/5  rDev -10.4%
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 +0.5%
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 Jason
4.47/5  rDev +15.8%
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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St-Ambroise Pale Ale from McAuslan Brewing
Beer rating: 3.86 out of 5 with 419 ratings