St-Ambroise Framboise | McAuslan Brewing

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St-Ambroise FramboiseSt-Ambroise Framboise

Brewed by:
McAuslan Brewing
Quebec, Canada

Style: Fruit / Vegetable Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Summer

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Beersignal on 06-13-2006

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Reviews: 41 | Ratings: 92
Photo of VbolieuV
3.59/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dark red in color with a nice pinkish head. Smells of raspberries with some pale malt and a little bit of hops. A nice raspberry taste with a nice carbonation but nothing incredible.

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Photo of SebD
3.67/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: It has a nice brownish/ruby red color to it. It has a nice light pink head that dies down moderately and leaves nice lacing.

Smell: The aromas definitely give out hints of raspberries, slight floral hops and bready malts.

Taste: Like the aromas, it has some definite raspberries, faint floral hops, bready malts and a slight grassiness.

Mouthfeel: It has a med/high carbonation with a nice overall balance and feel.

Drinkability: It's a very smooth drinkable beer accompanied with good flavors and aromas.

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Photo of Haydn-Juby
3.61/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Served from a 341ml bottle to a tall pilsener glass

A: A very hazy red topped with a very creamy looking pinkish white head. Lacing and head retention was fantastic.

S: Raspberries and a bit of floral hops in the background. Nothing is too powerful

T: The raspberries are perhaps not as bold as I would have thought even though it definitely is there are you can taste it. A touch of sourness is available. Some floral hops are in the mix as well making a strange contrast with the raspberries. The finish leaves a metallicy/grainy flavor that is really not that appealing.

M: Very easy drinking and nice bodied. Very smooth going down.

O: A pretty decent beer but not worth the price for me. I can get a 6 of their apricot ale for the price of 4 of these and it's way better imo. Wasn't too astounding besides looks and mouth feel honestly.

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Photo of IdeaSpeeder
3.68/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Serving Type - 341ml bottle poured into a small pint glass.

Appearance - Pours a cloudy pink/red colour with a finger and a half of off/white pink-hued, creamy looking head. Pretty unique looking beer to say the least.

Smell - Some wheat notes, and a faint bit of raspberry. A lingering yeast smell.

Taste - Shockingly, it tastes like raspberries. If you like subtle fruit beers (I certainly don't) then avoid this one, because the raspberry comes on strong and stays with you right until the finish. This is seriously sweet. If you can get over the punch-in-the-face raspberry, you might notice some light wheat/grain notes as well.

Mouthfeel - Pretty light, maybe even medium bodied. Carbonation is pretty low.

Overall - 3.75/5 Considering I don't like raspberry anything, this is actually a pretty good fruit beer. Another solid effort from a great brewery.

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Photo of Converge
3.46/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

341ml bottle poured into a 16oz pint glass.

A - Pours a murky, hazy reddish color with a pinkish tinged head of bubbly foam. Surprisingly thick head retention with excellent lacing. A pretty nice lookin' beer.

S - Musty malt with some light raspberry notes lingering. Bready and slightly fruity, but a little off-putting in the end.

T - Juicy raspberry flavor, a little sweet and a little tart. Bready malt base for balance. Finishes with a subtle touch of floral hops. Overall a light, and relatively unoffensive

M - Thin, watery body. Smooth, but overdone carbonation, although nothing crazy for the style.

D - A simple and unremarkable summer patio brew. At the end of the day this is nothing too unenjoyable, but really nothing special. I'll pass next time.

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Photo of thehyperduck
3.81/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

341 mL bottle from the LCBO (via the brewery's summer sampler); best before Jan 31 2013. Raspberry fruit beers tend to sit well with me compared to most other fruit-infused offerings, so this is one I've been looking forward to since I picked up the pack.

Pours an opaque, muddy, reddish-brown colour, with bright crimson highlights under the light. The pour generates nearly two fingers of billowing, puffy off-white head at the surface, which retains itself impressively well for a fruit beer. It takes over five minutes to fully die down to a smooth, creamy cap, coating the glass with a layer of sticky lacing. Intense, tart aroma with plenty of floral, juicy raspberry character. Some leafy hop notes are buried beneath this, but picking anything else out of the avalanche of raspberry jam character is a challenge. As a fan of the fruit I am not inclined to complain, but objectively it just seems a bit... one-dimensional.

Fortunately that theme does not completely carry through into the character - there's a lot of raspberry obviously, but it'd be hard to mistake this for a cooler because it does have a few beer-like traits. Primarily the bready malts that keep the sweet/tartness of the berries in check. A slightly earthy hop presence creeps forward toward the finish, mingling with raspberry tartness. Fairly light-bodied, although the fruit juice thickens it up a bit and gives it a slick mouthfeel. The relatively mild carbonation contributes to the smoothness of this brew.

I like this stuff, but I must keep my personal biases in check here. As much as I love the raspberry flavour (which is not at all artificial or cloying), this just isn't an especially well-balanced fruit beer. The malt backbone is weak and the hop presence isn't much better, so if you aren't gung-ho about raspberry beer to begin with, this probably isn't something I'd be in a hurry to recommend. That being said, I'd certainly drink it again.

Final Grade: 3.81, a B+. St-Ambroise Framboise isn't mind-blowing, but if you're looking for a highly drinkable raspberry-flavoured beer for the summer months, I can't think of any other domestic examples I would prefer over this. I would rank it ahead of Amsterdam's KLB Raspberry for sure. From an objective standpoint, their Apricot Wheat Ale (also in this sampler) is a better beer - but as a raspberry guy, I'd probably choose this first anyway. Flawed, but still superior to a lot of Ontario-made fruit beers. Unless you have an irrational hatred of the fruit, I'd say give this one a whirl.

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Photo of JohnnyBarman
3.65/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Single bottle from a St. Ambroise summer mixed pack. I'm a sucker for raspberry brews, so keep that in mind with my review.

Poured into a short nonic. Deep burgundy-pink in colour, with an off-white/pink head that has some stellar retention. Sheets of icicle lacing along the sides.

Nose is raspberry jam, citrus, candied fruit, a touch of ale malt. Again, I love me some raspberry, so this is working for me.

Flavourful brew. The raspberry is a little artificial, but it is still tasty and a strong presence in this brew. The sweetness of the raspberry is kept in check with fruit tartness and a touch of hop bitterness. Lighter bodied, thin but assertive carbonation. Tart on the tongue.

Nice raspberry brew, certainly doesn't hold back in the raspberry front, but has some balance. Not an everyday thing, but certainly worth a go.

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Photo of korguy123
3.55/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Not normally distributed in Ontario this came as part of the St. Ambroise Summer pack (2x Pale Ale, 2x Apricot Wheat and 2x Framboise)

Best Before Jan 31st 2013

A- Muddy brown with red hues in there. Foamy two finger head that is tinted pink. Lacing is very good.

S- Raspberry juice, some sweet malts and some floral hops. Slightly one dimensional but smells nice and juicy.

T- Raspberry juice, sweet malts, a touch of fresh cut grass and some earthy hops.

M- Light bodied, low carbonation makes this seem a little on the creamy side.

O- This is something to refresh. It's not full of depth or character it's something for someone who wants a change. I like it, I can see a lot of people liking it too. The fruit isn't syrupy, or too sweet, or too tart, it's just right. I wish this was available normally in Ontario.

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Photo of peensteen
3.4/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Deep hazy blood red, pinkish-white head and a bit of lace on the glass. Smell is all out raspberry, bit of jammy fruit with a bit of biscuity malt in the background. Taste is like the nose huge raspberry flavours, a light bitterness, raspberry is well balanced not quite tart but not sweet either, some malts there as well. Medium carbonation, medium body, jammy feel as well. Very one sided stuff, if you really like raspberry this might be for you but it doesn't offer much more than that.

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Photo of mick303
3.53/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On the pour this looks like a strawberry float, with a rather large head of slightly pink foam, and the beer is a deep ruby pinkish amber.

Nose is immediately of raspberries, slightly candied. Smells a bit like artificial 'cherry' syrup that can be found at your local snow cone merchant. Hard to get much beyond this aroma.

On the palate this jumps around a bit. Immediately sweet and big on raspberry, a flavour which is constant, then more malt comes through with some carbonation and bitterness. Toward the end it gets dry, and a bit more bitterness comes in.

Mouthfeel is quite carbonated, harsh at the start, medium bodied, with raspberry highlights, this beer has a resemblance to cherry cola which is very hard to shake.

The main problem with this is it seems like a tug-of-war, between the ale and the raspberry 'cola'. The raspberry aspect definitely has the upper hand it seems, but it remain a pretty drinkable ale. I initially suspected it would be far too sweet, but there is a good bit of hops and bitterness to make the mouthfeel more balanced. If you're looking for something different and 'out there' might be worth a try, but not sure if I'll rush to get more.

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Photo of Antikythera
4.33/5  rDev +19.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had this stuff in London, ON last summer, and was told it was a seasonal. I've never seen it in the LCBO or Beer Store until today. It comes in a summer six-pack with two Framboise, two Apricot, and two Blonde.

A: dark amber, very cloudy. Persistent, pale-pink frothy head doesn't want to go away.

S: straight-up raspberry without being candyish. Real fruit.

T: tart, with even a tiny bit of bitterness. Both set off the raspberry very well. More beery-tasting than a lambic.

M: a little bit astringent, but ultimately refreshing. The head sticks to my lips and sits there bubbling away.

O: This is going to be one of my summer favourites. As a fruit beer, it's less heavy and winey than lambics or Amsterdam's raspberry, but is more fruity and colourful than KLB's raspberry wheat. I've been looking for something like this for a long time.

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Photo of Macca
3/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

This pours a cloudy dark red with a pink tinge that extends to the generous fluffy head.

All I get on the nose is raspberry jam, which isn't a bad thing. Actually maybe there is a little malt in behind it.

Darker fruit flavours than I was expecting and a really unpleasant metallic taste. Very disappointing.

High carbonation

Not sure what that metallic taste is from but it really spoiled what I thought might be a nice beer.

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Photo of ADZA
3.53/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I love raspberries and definately a fan of the odd raspberry influenced beer or Framboise and this one pours a very cloudy deep cherry hue which leaves a fluffy pink two finger head and clingy lacing,the smell just reminds me of those raspberry lollies you buy at the deli down the road its basically just raspberries mixed with a feint hop character,the mouthfeel is light,spritzy and refreshing with tastes of obviously raspberries and alot of them mixed up with a touch by a pale maltiness and some hops to let you know you are still drinking a beer and overall i like it and its another summer brew im drinking on a wet day that i find quite nice but for a fan of raspberries maybe im a little biased cos if you dont like your beers sweet you wouldnt like this but me ill revisit on a hot summers day next time cheers.

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Photo of dgilks
3.33/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Cloudy bright pink colour with a fluffy, light pink head. Good head retention.

Slightly jammy, big raspberry aroma with a slightly herbal edge. Good.

Sweet, slightly sticky raspberry flavour with jam like qualities with some mild tartness in the background. For me the raspberry flavour here is too "sticky" and pronounced without anything to really cut through it.

Medium body with moderate carbonation. Fine.

This is a decent beer but doesn't entirely suit my tastes. I feel like the raspberry flavour is a little bit too jammy.

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Photo of CrazyDavros
3.44/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

Pours dark red with a large, pink-tinged moussey head.
Lots of raspberry presents itself in the aroma, somewhat artificial smelling like raspberry lollies. Which is pretty nice really. Also some caramel and cookie dough-like malt.
Flavours are also quite sweet, raspberry at the forefront of course, with some metallic notes showing later. Not much else is noticeable, the high carbonation seems to hide any other aspects.

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Photo of biboergosum
3.43/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

341ml bottle. Just uttering this offering's name is akin to a barrel of monkeys' worth of fun.

This beer pours a more than hazy, dark red brick colour, with three rising fingers of thickly foamy, chunky, and billowy pale pink head, which renders some fairly consistent hanging mothballed curtain lace around the glass in its well-paced retreat.

It smells of sweet cooked raspberry slurry, pastry-esque pale and caramel malt, and lightly bitter earthy hops. The taste kicks off with a slightly sour raspberry fruitiness, to go with some generically bitter musty hops, all over a lightly bready, cereal and caramelized malt.

The carbonation is soft, but still noticeable in its sedate frothiness, the body light, any weight seemingly derived from a fruity origin, as the blandly bitter character detracts from any perceivable smoothness. It finishes off-dry, the tart, herbal raspberry edginess still heady enough to challenge the duly lingering pastry malt sweetness.

After the initial (relatively) expected raspberry goodness, this just went slowly downhill, to a point. An unbalanced fruit ale, that much is evident, as the raspberry fruitiness seems otherwise affected by a less than agreeable supporting cast. A somewhat disappointing splurge of my summer beer dollars.

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Photo of wordemupg
3.65/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

341ml bottle poured into pint glass 26/7/11

A hazy deep maroon with just enough clarity to see a heap of bubbles that float up to a thumbs width of light pink head that leaves a few partial rings of lace

S honey, sweet cream and raspberry, if there's any Aussies reading this it smells like a Wiesse bar

T some dried raspberry and cereal on top of everything I smell

M fairly light and refreshing with plenty of carbonation and a tart aftertaste

O not bad for a summer swiller more beer then raspberry and that's an improvement over lots of fruit beers I've had

perhaps it was the Liquor Depot I bought it at but 14$ a 4pack is BS, good but for bar prices I doubt I'll bother again

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Photo of flipper2gv
2.56/5  rDev -29.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A: Quite darker than expected. Has a weird reddish amber color with a TON of light pink head. Very fluffy head with awesome retention.

S: Doesn't seem like a witbier base for this beer. Quite a good amount of biscuit malts seem to come off this beer.. Lightly hopped with some piny and herbal notes. And, of course, quite a good amount of raspberry juice. It does smell like concentrated juice like said on the back of the bottle.

T: Really is a pale ale base and not a witbier. That makes for quite a weird mix of flavors of toasted and biscuit like malts with grassy and piny hops mixed with raspberry juice. Tastes just as weird as it sounds.

M: Medium body with medium carbonation. A bit heavier in feel than expected and it prevents the beer to be as refreshing as it could be. Not bad per se though.

O: This is not up to par with the rest of the Saint-Ambroise lineup. It's an ok beer at best, but still is refreshing for summer days as hot as we have in Montreal.

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Photo of Rutager
3.67/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance. Deep amber-brown with a hint of blue, a little hazy and a finger of light pinkish-beige head.

Smell. Rasberry juice from a box, light toasty grains, a little alcohol and grassy hops.

Taste. Tangy rasberry juice, some dry toasty grains and just a little bitter hops.

Mouthfeel. Medium body with medium carbonation.

Overall. Not a really fresh rasberry taste, but still pleasant and tangy. Decent fruit beer.

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Photo of joemcgrath27
3.43/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - murky raspberry red purple, fluffy pink head dissipated slowly with respectable lacing
S - strong grainy aroma, very subtle hint of candied fruit, light leafy greens
T - tangy sweet raspberry, buttery bread malt, grassy and slightly metallic hop note
M - solid carbonation kick that smooths out to a creamy sweet finish
O - it is not over the top fruity like many fruit beers often do which is a plus, while the raspberry flavour comes through nicely the other beer flavours are just a little light, but overall a good effort worth a purchase

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Photo of andrenaline
3.52/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Another new McAuslan offering for the Alberta market...

A - Pours a bright red colour with a pinkish hue, finger of pink head that quickly dissipates and leaves little lacing.

S - Raspberries with sweet caramel malt undertones.

T - Overwhelming on the berries, but in a good way. An amber ale type flavour makes up the backbone of the ale, reminding you that it's still beer and not a cooler. Didn't come across synthetic though, which was nice.

M - Lighter bodied ale that came across a tad thin.

O - Overall a tasty summer drink and certainly worth a try. It's certainly stronger on the berry flavours, so be forewarned if you're offended by such flavours. I would take down 6 of these on a summer afternoon.

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Photo of papat444
2.99/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a 341ml. bottle, best before Jan. 31, 2011.

Appearance: Thick, creamy head with a body the color of dark raspberries. The body is slightly clear and the color is reflected in the head. Very nice looking.

Smell: Fermented or overripe raspberries. Certainly smells strong though it's not how i like my raspberries.

Taste: Strong fruit taste. Again with the overripe raspberries. Very malt-like but lacks the sweetness i expect.

Mouthfeel: Robust body but not enough balance. Hardly any raspberry sweetness to speak of.

Drinkability: Not bad and it quenches the thirst though i don't think i'll seek it again.

Overall: I did a test and picked some raspberries from my bush that were in various stages of ripeness. Doesn't come close IMO. This beer certainly tastes like fruit but i find it misses the mark when compared to the real thing.

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Photo of spinrsx
3.35/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

341ml bottle poured into a pint glass

Appearance - pours a slightly cloudy dark red/brown colour with a massive foamy/fizzy off white head. I can't see much carbonation, and there seems to be some great lacing. The head was gone quickly.

Smell - Raspberries! And some slight hops, malts, and lots of sweetness.

Taste & Mouth - Of course, a very sweet raspberry taste. The sweetness turns to bitterness and there is a nice bitter sweet dry finish. The beer comes across as slightly watery, but this might be a good thing given the sweetness of the beer.

Drink - Well, this is not my sort of thing.. but I had to try it at least once. I can see how this beer might be appealing to some and might pair well with desserts

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Photo of eat
3.83/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark ruby-copper in colour and translucent with a thin cover of off-white, slightly pink-tinged head. Some lacing.

The nose is of iron, yeast, dark malt, bitter raspberry. To me it smells something like a sweet brown ale with a hint of raspberry. I was expecting a lot more raspberry presence than this.

There's a ton more raspberry in the flavour. Much like their Apricot brew, the fruit here isn't overdone and the beer is pretty well-balanced. Raspberry comes out first (real raspberry flavour, not artificial-tasting at all), followed with lightly roasted malt and bitter hops which blend into the raspberry bitterness. A fairly simple beer, featuring it's chosen fruit well.

Lightly-carbonated medium body. Alright but not a standout.

After trying the majority of McCauslan's St. Ambroise brews, this is actually pretty much what I was expecting this one to taste like. A solid amount of real raspberry flavour as part of a drinkable well-balanced beer. I'm not a fan of fruit beers but wouldn't turn down any such offering from McCauslan. They know their stuff.

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Photo of Derek
3.69/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Best before the end of January '08 (a couple weeks ago, but its been in the fridge).

A: Murky reddish-brown with a slightly pink head, very little retention, no lacing.

S: Raspberry cotton-candy, with some underlying maltyness.

T: Raspberry cotton-candy is the predominant flavour. It seems more like a beer with raspberries than a true Framboise. Slightly bready with a light spicing. The sweetness & tartness are both very light & well balanced.

M: Light to moderate body with a dry finish. A little over-carbonated.

D: Quite drinkable.

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St-Ambroise Framboise from McAuslan Brewing
3.61 out of 5 based on 92 ratings.
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