Raftman | Unibroue

very good
776 Ratings

Brewed by:
Quebec, Canada

Style: Belgian Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by kbub6f on 03-06-2001

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 776 |  Reviews: 412
Photo of Newport_beerguy
3.72/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of mademers
4.14/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of Beginner2
3.96/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

It takes years of practice to understand the Belgians and Unibroue does this well and adds its own to this flavorful, smoky, malty ale. For me, I'd appreciate less carbonation... but I'm getting used to it in this style.

This beer is listed in one of my three books comprising my classical beer education.
Michael Jackson's 1999 edition gave this 2.5 of 4 stars and called it "woody, smoky."

 393 characters

Photo of hotsudge
3.31/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Photo of xuannamnguyen
3.83/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of LiquidSwords1201
4.19/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of stevoj
3.53/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours initially with towering fluffy head. Dark golden, slightly cloudy, lots of fine, lively carbonation. Aroma of wood smoke and cooked grains, taste is more smoked malt, lightly toasted, light bacon. Some caramel and toffee. Very nicely done.

 245 characters

Photo of GSS
4.08/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of papposilenus
3.99/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

From a corked-and-caged 750ml, undated bottle - or, at least, if there's a date code, I can't understand it.
L: Pours a deep, hazy burnt-orange with a vast mound of puffy, dingy-white foam that looks and smells like over-risen bread dough.
S: Belgian yeast, green apples and lemongrass.
T: Sweet, bready malt, spicy, musty, smoky earth, unripe fruit, grass and green tea. A very mild squeezed lemon tang lingers briefly
F: Assertively carbonated and astringent, malty, sticky tongue-coating.
O: Well, first off, if I was supposed to taste any whiskey malt, I totally failed. Unless that was the musty, smoky thing. But it drank like a beer twice it's weight, smooth and satisfying. There will be no leftovers.

 710 characters

Photo of vickersspitfire
3.87/5  rDev 0%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: The body is a bright golden color with mild copper hues towards the center, its very mildly hazy, in fact its barely noticeable unless you stare and focus for a bit. The head is thick rock and very white and lasts for several minutes without showing signs of thinning out. There’s an extremely dense head that just marks every sip.
Smell: Floral notes, fig, apple and mild lemony aromas do come through.
Taste: Floral and rather musky at first, it then opens up with mild bitter bite towards the corners of your mouth, then the apple and raisin flavors come out. Sweet overall with just a slight taste of alcohol. Lemon zest come out as it warms. The aftertaste is smooth and only slightly bitter and leave you wanting another sip. Spices start to come out after about five minutes.
Mouthfeel: Smooth, rather dull but it envelopes your mouth with that nice alcohol warming feeling and it medium to full bodied.
Overall: This is another great example of a Belgian Ale from Unibroue; Raftman is easy to drink, tastes great.

 1,035 characters

Photo of harryhops
3.99/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Taybeh
3.97/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of RickS95
3.95/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

It's very dark for any type of pale ale, even one based on the Belgian style. It's a brown beer that resembles dirty river water. Opaque due to the sheer brown color, it's still fairly clear. The head is very bright white and just over a finger thick. Only moderate retention, after sitting for a couple minutes only a thin creamy look sits up top.

This thing smells brilliant. Not a hint of citrus like Americans, this is all malt and spices. He whiskey malt lays a foundation of earthy sweetness. Not sure of the hop varietals, but it seems to be old school hops.

I like the taste but I don't know exactly how to describe it. That earthiness is present but the spicing is very subdued compared to the nose. No hop presence so all you taste is malt.

It's surprisingly light bodied, with an almost watery feel. The complete opposite of dry or crisp, my mouth feels like it's dripping in between sips. The bottle mentions a lasting aftertaste and there is a little spicy feel to remind you of what you just had.

I wish this had more alcohol and a more aggressive taste profile. It's a good beer but I'm not sure it's any sort of pale ale.

 1,155 characters

Photo of CanadianBacon
4.21/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Bonsall_Phil
4.06/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of mchegash
3.71/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance 4/5 - Darker orange brown. Two fingers of light tan head. A lot of carbonation visible rising up the beer.

Smell 3.5/5 - Apples, malts, perhaps hints of roasty/smokiness and spice

Taste 3.75/5 - Belgian yeasty / breadiness. Faint hints of smoke and booze and spices. Overall an okay taste. Nothing special.

Mouthfeel 3.75/5 - Moderate level of carbonation. Moderate level of crispness.

Overall 3.75/5 - Not bad, but nothing special.

 447 characters

Photo of papat444
3.5/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Flashback #318

14 characters

Photo of mcrawford
4.02/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of mklisz
4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of jdrankin
4.03/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of AlpacaAlpaca
4.12/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Radome
4.26/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Tasted from a 750 ml bottle in a snifter.

L - Medium brown color lightened by golden highlights. Very slight haze. Off-white head initially thick and creamy, but soon disappears. Very light lacing on the glass.

S - Aroma of faint smoke, and earthy hops. Some low bready malt. Finish has spicy, phenolic yeast notes. There is a medicinal quality that may be from the yeast or the whisky malt.

T - Flavors start off like a Belgian pale ale, with bready malt and low grassy hops. Later in the palate things get more interesting, with a sharp, medicinal and phenolic kick. Smoke in the aftertaste.

F - Medium to full body. Strong, sharp carbonation. Medium hops bitterness. Off-dry finish.

O - This is a unique beer with complex flavors and aromas.

 760 characters

Photo of tdm168
3.9/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of StonedTrippin
3.71/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Weird I have to go to Kansas City to find a beer from Quebec. I've never heard of of seen this before, so pretty cool. On tap at Anton's, a place known for epic steaks. Very dark for a Belgian pale, deer ruby to brick red, not pale at all. Not much head either on it, and some haze. Smells like a Belgian, and tastes like one too. Their classic yeast strain tempered only by the heft of the sweet red malt. Not much hops to speak of, and a disappointing under carbonated mouthfeel. I really like the flavor of the beer very much, but the rest if it seems so much less well put together than the rest if their stuff, maybe the line was dirty or the keg was old or something, I see the potential, but on the whole the beer did not live up to my expectations. A fine companion to a dry aged burger though, cooked medium rare with blue cheese and caramelized onions, in that context it's much better than it is in isolation...

 922 characters

Photo of archero
4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Raftman from Unibroue
3.87 out of 5 based on 776 ratings.
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