Dismiss Notice
Subscribe to BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99! (Limited time offer, US delivery only)

St-Ambroise Pale Ale | McAuslan Brewing

Your Rating: None

Want it   Got it 
St-Ambroise Pale AleSt-Ambroise Pale Ale
Very Good
417 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
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 417 |  Reviews: 228
Photo of jcubz
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of TheDeuce
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

St. Ambroise Pale Ale.... in a bottle

Appearance-amber color with a foamy head two fingers high, settles down nicely in my glass.

Smell-wafts of malt and hops, not too aromatic but what is there is balanced. Appealing.

Taste/Mouthfeel-both hop and malt appear, doesn't lean too heavily in favor of hops or malt, just remains balanced. Light to medium mouthfeel, light smoothness. Goes down easy. Very drinkable. The balance works.

Overall- a fine pale ale, worked well on this hot day in Montreal. Recommend you give it a try.

 530 characters

Photo of ludachris
4.42/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got this from my latest trade with TheHammer. Thanks Markasaurus rex. Had this before and thoroughly enjoyed it.

Pours a clear copper hue with golden highlights and a two finger chunky, off-white head that leaves some suddy, watery lace.

Excellent mash of toasted malts, biscuit, juicy citrus and herbal hops in the nose.

Quick dash of biscuit and toasted malts before a burst of herbal hops and citrus hit the tongue, but both manage not to over assert themselves in the midst of the malt.

Medium bodied, lightly creamy with a dry hoppy finish and kick of carbonation. Very well balanced and very, very easy to drink. Only complaint would be the somewhat watery finish.

Overall, the best beer I've had from this brewery thus far. Loved their oatmeal stout but for me, this brew tops it. Tasty, great hop presence, excellently balanced and an easy quaffer. One of my favorite APA's I've had to date.

 904 characters

Photo of Franck
2.5/5  rDev -35.4%

Photo of erlenmeyer
3.5/5  rDev -9.6%

Photo of MeisterBurger
3.83/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a really nice clear, light caramel orange with a bright white frothy head. Laces respectably.

The aroma reveals nuances of toastiness, caramel and citrus zest and grapefruit notes. Some fruitiness comes out as it warms.

The taste is a wonderfully satisfying caramel malt at first parried by a good hit of bitterness in the finish--mild hints of orange and grapefruit rind linger in the aftertaste. As does a good dose of chalky, minerally dryness. Sort of an English-American pale ale hybrid maybe.

Medium mouthfeel, bright, with a nice slow fade in the finish.

It's a good beer but if I didn't know I wouldn't have pegged it as being in the top 25 beers in Canada as it's rated here. It's number 17 as of right now and I kind of feel like I've had way more than 16 Canadian beers I liked better than this. But still, great malt backbone for a pale ale. Very nicely done.

 881 characters

Photo of KrisDLSmith
4.25/5  rDev +9.8%

Photo of jcalabre
3.6/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This poured a clear amber color with a white, fluffy head into a pint glass. The aroma is hoppy, fruity with a slight touch of leather in the background. The flavors are slightly citric, hoppy with a definite bite on the tongue. This pale ale would pair well with oily food or shellfish, IMO. Overall, this is an enjoyable Pale ale.

 332 characters

Photo of berley31
4.45/5  rDev +15%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured with an average-sized, white head that diminished to a 1/2-sized finger. Great lacing on the glass, all the way to the end of the beer. Body is quite clear, and a nice, dark-yellow color. A very handsome-looking APA.

S: Terrific aroma of hops, herbs, and orange.

T: A very refreshing, yet slightly-intense flavor of hops that ends fairly bitter, but not overpowering, and with citrus undertones. Taste stays with you for awhile.

M: Medium-bodied and slightly creamy, it's quite soft and pleasant on the palate. Lively carbonation.

D: An excellent APA with a lot of character, yet easy to drink at the same time. Another winning entry from a Quebec brewery. McAuslan Brewing and Unibroue are doing VERY well for themselves.

 737 characters

Photo of nullbort
3.93/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of WillAndSarah
4.25/5  rDev +9.8%

Photo of MJ63
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%

Photo of seand
4.2/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured into a pint glass.

A: Pours a clear medium to dark amber, with one or two fingers of puffy white head. The head dissipates for the most part, but a few millimeters stick around on the surface. Lacing is decent.

S: Mainly sweet, light fruit and malt scents. A bit of hops in the background.

T: Starts lightly sweet, moving into a nice hop bitterness on the finish. Fairly full flavored and balanced.

M: Mouthfeel is good. Medium carbonation, fairly smooth, finishes dry.

D: Very very easy to drink. A very nice session beer.

There's nothing necessarily incredible about this beer, but it's well executed overall, and definitely a nice one to keep around.

 666 characters

Photo of VbolieuV
4.09/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Not much head but good carbonation. It's more on the amber side color-wise. A good caramel smell but hops are not really present in the smell. The caramel is still there in the mouth with a good bitter finish. Easy to drink, not bad at all.

 240 characters

Photo of scoobybrew
3.47/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This was poured into a pint glass from the bottle. I reviewed this beer as a Belgian Pale Ale, as I think it fits the style a bit better. If reviewed as an APA, the scores would be much lower in most categories.

A- clear light amber with a small head that settles somewhat quickly

S - fruity yeast aroma with noticeable malt sweetness and a trace of hops

T - up front it's very malty but subdued hop character is evident as it washed across the tongue; yeast fruitiness is very present giving pear and slight apple like notes

M - medium to light body, moderate carbonation

D - This is a decent enough, but very mild, pale ale. As stated earlier, I don't think it fits the APA style well, but is a decent enough Belgian version of the same. While it's tasty enough, I don't think I'll be searching it out anytime soon.

 822 characters

Photo of eat
4.13/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Delicious looking beer. Clear golden-amber in colour (seems dark for a pale ale), great big head settles down to a lumpy layer of froth with bubbly lacing up the sides of the glass. Head disappeared completely about half way through. Clean and refreshing look.

A pungent bacterial, metalic nose with a good amount of hops and roasted malt.

Fairly hopped, medium roasted malt, wheat. Great bitterness in the finish just makes you want to take another sip.

Mouthfeel is good, not great. There's nothing wrong with it, it just doesn't amaze me. While the flavour is full bodied, the consistency is maybe a little more watery than it could be. Though this isn't a big deal at all.

So drinkable. I've finished off a sixer of these on my own on many occasions. This is one of my go-to beers in Montreal; a flavorful, widely available, attractively priced beer you can session regularly. I know for a fact that it is better on tap, this review is for a bottle. On tap I'm sure I would easily give it an A. If I have a six pack of these in the fridge, I'm happy.

 1,062 characters

Photo of DutchcdnTEXAN
4.17/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of JonnyBeers
2.5/5  rDev -35.4%

Photo of paulthebeerguru
3.55/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz. brown bottle

A: poured into a snifter. nice rich, dark copper color with an off-white head. fair to low retention. fair lacing if any. not sure why it says blonde on the bottle.

S: nice crystal malt aroma, decent hop characteristics as well. I am picking up some fruity aromas as well. mostly peach and apricot.

T: definitely crystal malts up front. some metallic tones. a decent hop flavor. this tastes like an APA.

M: very crisp mouthfeel. clean and smooth palate. good carbonation level.

D: very nice for the style. nice solid pale ale but not outstanding. worthy of a try if you like APAs.

 605 characters

Photo of Nickls
3.92/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Hazy golden orange, with a thin white head that had just OK retention

S - Fruity, yeasty maltiness. Smells like they used Ringwood as the yeast. Fresh fruit dominates

T - Maltiness is the first bit, but with that Ringwood earthy yeat taste. Some hop bitterness

M - Thinnish to medium MF, with decent carbonation

D - Pretty drinkable, and not overly complex. No trouble with the sample.

Overall, this is a decent representation of the style and much more interesting than others in the range that I've sampled. Have a try, but don't knock yourself to get it.

 567 characters

Photo of slitherySOB
4.67/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The Beer Store didn't have any St. Ambroise oatmeal stout, so I settled for this. Damn, am I not dissapointed. This is a delicious beer. For a pale ale, it's very yellow. Sort of a copper yellow, or dark blonde. Blonde ale would be a better description for this, I think. Head settles too one finger after poured into the mug. White, fluffy and strong all the way down. Beautiful. Strong hop smell. Strong enough to give your nasal a kick, but not so strong as too be a turn off. Very hoppy taste. I love it. No malt on the tongue, which was a surprisingly good thing. Mouthfeel was bitter and clean. Highly drinkable. I love this beer. When I pick up their oatmeal stout, I'll be sure to get this again. It's delicious. I honestly believe the taste cannot be improved any more.

 778 characters

Photo of Goldorak
3.9/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Copper, with a creamy, clingy white head.

Smell: Grainy, with a sweet touch of hops.

Taste: In a word, balance. Just the perfect equilibrium of malt sweetness at first and hop bitterness in the end. Goes down creamy and smooth, and fits well in any occasion. In my dictionary, next to "Session Beer", there's a picture of a St-Ambroise Pale Ale.

 363 characters

Photo of Noxious26
3.64/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

341ml brown bottle with twist off cap poured in a pint glass. Purchased in a 4x3 Taster 12-pack.

Clear, copper-orange colour. Light beige head is 1/4 inch on the pour but recedes to a thin cap. Big gobs of sticky lace are solid down the sides of the glass.

Aroma is sweet. Malty, caramel, citrus, sweet grass. Fairly faint and mild.

Caramel malt off the start is joined quickly by a metallic twang which is scrubbed by the carbonation rush and leaves a grassy/herbal hop overtone with nutty, caramel malt undertones. Finish is herbal/grassy hop and mildly bitter. Long lasting aftertaste.

Medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. A little more carbonation than I'd usually expect from a pale ale, but it doesn't really detract from the overall mouthfeel.

A pretty good pale ale. It won't knock your socks off but it is solid.

 841 characters

Photo of wizo
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of CanuckRover
4.33/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

It's been awhile since the last time I had a pale ale, stupid considering this simple style is a favourite.

Had on top. Poured into a gold-rimmed McAuslan pint glass in a fairly dim pub this beer looked pretty great. Not particularly "pale" the beer is a fairly deep amber with lively orange highlights. A lovely thick head that lasts till the last sip and leaves excellent markings.

Lively southern fruit on the nose with a hint of very light caramel. Floral hops possibly.

Nice sweet malt. Apricot and peaches, hints of caramel honey (I bought a jar from a farmer once, good stuff). Malt also has its grainy side. Hops are somewhat astringent and sharp in the finish, but pleasant overall.

No issues with the mouthfeel. It was an easy-drinking, perfectly carbonated pale.

Really enjoyed these (all 7 of them). A great session ale.

 839 characters

St-Ambroise Pale Ale from McAuslan Brewing
Beer rating: 3.87 out of 5 with 417 ratings
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.