Jenlain Ambrée | Brasserie Duyck

very good
209 Reviews
Jenlain AmbréeJenlain Ambrée

Brewed by:
Brasserie Duyck

Style: Bière de Garde

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by jermar on 03-09-2002

For Trade:
View: Beers | Events
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 209 | Ratings: 306
Photo of UnionMade
1.78/5  rDev -52.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

I don't know what this stuff tastes like normally, but my bottle was mega old and way past it's prime. The beer poured a greasy looking amber, with tons of particles floating in suspension. Aroma is winey stale, and the beer was just sour and old. I always have to take a sip, just to be sure it's not totally unpalatable. I imagine this stuff is pretty good when fresh, and I plan on buying it and rerating it. Just beware, because it certainly doesn't age well. I hate liquor stores that don't rotate stock.

 509 characters

Photo of BeerBelcher
2.26/5  rDev -39.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I was not tremendously moved by this beer. It was very mild mannered in aroma, but had an unpleasant overly malty sweet flavor I did not care for. I can't say I'd recommend this for that reason.

Its appearance was pretty good, with an amber color with a macro-looking head composed of tiny uniformly sized bubbles. It didn't smell like anything. Flavor was very malty sweet, and a bit unpleasant.

 399 characters

Photo of kojevergas
2.48/5  rDev -33.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

25cl bottle into Weihenstephaner weissbier glass in Brussels, Belgium. 7.5%

A: Four finger head of slight cream, decent thickness, and good retention, especially for the high ABV. Semitransparent gold colour.

Sm: Amber hops, caramelized malt, and fermented sugar. The barley doesn't pull through. Pretty standard fare for the style.

T: Amber hops and caramelized malt. The alcohol warms the stomach and is present in the taste, an undesirable feature. Pretty simple for the style. Built is alright. Balance is off, with a gap between the midpoint and climax.

Mf: Smooth and wet, with some slight coarseness on the open, a strange feature. Doesn't really do anything special to complement the flavours of the body.

Dr: The high ABV is pretty well concealed, and she drinks easy enough. The price is good by French standards, but the quality just isn't there. A good beer for a night in with the lads, but not a good beer for a proper tasting.

 950 characters

Photo of brentk56
2.5/5  rDev -33.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Pours a crystal clear burnt orange color with a modest head that fades like soda; in the end, it looks more like a cognac that a beer

Smell: Smells a bit like a sugar water solution with just a hint of sweet apple juice

Taste: Very malty, up front, with a toffee malt character that is bolstered by a bit of apple flavor; some complexity shows itself by mid-palate, with a slight herbal element but the overall profile is sweet and rather one-dimensional

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied but rather flat, with just a hint of carbonation despite the significant "pop" when the cork was pulled

Overall: Way too sweet without any significant complexity; can't recommend this one

 683 characters

Photo of impending
2.59/5  rDev -30.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

33cl into a tulip. Pours a dirty dishwater butterscotch, minor head vanished quickly, minor lacing.

Aroma is extremely sweet, honey and caramel. Broad range of esters.

Sweetness carries through the flavor, not quite kept in check by an opposing minor bitter. Most of my tongue is bored by this brew, indifferent. Medium to full bodied, lowly carbonated. Warmth helps a little.

Underneath the sugars is a dirt floor wanting to rise. A higher attenuation and a fine Bière de Garde might be revealed, as is the sugars are too far forward.

 550 characters

Photo of Shiloh
2.63/5  rDev -29.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Not impressed....colour is nice, deep golden honey with very limited head...taste tho, is lacking as it quickly departs and leaves no kinda like a full bodied water.....maybe an aquired taste.

 207 characters

Photo of DawnL
2.68/5  rDev -28.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Red/amber with lacing - not much head.

Definitely smells sour.

Very light oaty/grain-like flavor with slight urea characteristic. not completely off-putting, but not a sought after characteristic. Very cold. Very crisp. One-noted character, though I think it is capable of complexity. Closed. Tried warming the glass to get more flavor profile - it's still very light, almost elusive. Hard to find a fruit nuance at the mid-palate. Metallic flavor.

I wouldn't drink too much of this. It isn't worth revisiting.

 513 characters

Photo of MoohMooh
2.73/5  rDev -27.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

The best thing about this beer is how it looks : it pours a nice amber color with little head, and some pretty lacing. When you dive in however, there's not much to like. It smells malty and somewhat bready, but alcohol tends to mask everything; the result is pretty flat and not really mouth-watering. Taste isn't much better, with malts dominating again, and just a touch of banana. It's somewhat sweet, but with a disagreeable sour aftertaste. Carbonation is medium to light, with a relatively rich body, but there's not much complexity to be found there either.

I didn't read reviews beforehand, so I can't say I'm disappointed, but it's not the first time I find mediocre a beer everyone is gushing over (at least here on BA)... Though once again, it's a style I'm not familiar with. I might try this again down the line, but I'll try some other bières de garde first.

 875 characters

Photo of DerBayer
2.74/5  rDev -26.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer is deceptively pretty pouring a deep Cognac coloured amber with minimal white lacing.

The smell is faintly floral and medicinal - not unpleasant but not exactly artisinal. The taste likewise is very medicinal and floral hops dominate. The promised malt character is not very noticeable.

The beer is slightly prickly on the tongue and quite refreshing but overall fails to impress.

 392 characters

Photo of mactrail
2.82/5  rDev -24.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Amber color in the small snifter at Root Down in north Denver.

Not much carbonation. Very sweet, unpleasantly sweet without any balance. More like a flat soft drink or fruity juice than beer. Only touch of bitterness is a tannic taste, just like sweetened ice tea, only without the crispness. I'd say it's exactly like watered down sweet vermouth.

Doesn't seem to have any off flavors or hint of spoilage, so I totally don't get this beverage.

 446 characters

Photo of Hophead101
2.85/5  rDev -24%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

drank in Volo Bar in Toronto 8.28.08

good looking beer - light copper in color - good head that dissipated pretty quickly with good lacing.

smell is very alcoholic and ginger smelling. it really sneaks up on you - very strong, almost medicinal.

the taste is much less subtle than the smell. soft on the pallate, almost has a dampered taste. medicinal in the taste as well, along with a soft but potent ginger flavor.

mouthfeel ok - but the flavor is tough to drink too many of these.

 488 characters

Photo of BlackHaddock
2.87/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Unimpressed, was expecting great things from this green 0.75 litre Cork and Caged bottle. Best before 17 Nov 2011 it was drank and reviewed during one of my 'mixed tasting evenings' during March 2011.

The straw coloured beer looked a bit sad in the glasses, no sediment? I am already wearly, no head at all, what have I got here?

The smell wasn't helping the situation, an off malty, injected roguish, sweet aroma seemed to come from my glass.

Taste wise it was semi-sweet, yet with a sour, bitter aftertatste arriving too late to save it. The sweetness seeming to kill anything else that might have wanted to get involved.

Watery and weak for the style. I'll not be getting this again.

 690 characters

Photo of ForWhatAlesYou
2.88/5  rDev -23.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

1 pint 9.4 fl oz bottle with cork served in a flute/tulip. No indication of freshness date.

A: Perfectly clear with a ton of carbonation evident. Little to no head with out a vigorous pour, and even then it fades really quickly. Peachy-amber in color.

S: Grainy malt. Coppery.

T: Highly metallic at first. Deep fruit, tawny port, and malt. Honey finish. Sour. Very metallic. Like drinking mead out of a galvanized bucket filled with pennies. After breathing a little it picks up some clovey banana.

M: Highly carbonated but holds a decent viscosity. Very dry.

D: Way too much iron-copper metal flavor. Maybe a bad bottle.

 627 characters

Photo of sinstaineddemon
2.88/5  rDev -23.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - honey light brown ale, with a thin laced light tan head, moderate carbonation

S - alcohol up front, with a sweetness and wheatiness amalgamation, with some roasted malts and slight grass

T - surprisingly sweet, slight hop kick behind the sweet, and at the end a slight, faint spiciness

M&D - thinner body than i expected, but not bad mouthfeel, nice blend and balance, a nice french ale, not amazing but good

 421 characters

Photo of stevoj
2.92/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Initial musty aroma of malt and hay. Dark clear amber with thick airy head. From there it starts to go downhill. Taste is weak and bland. Mouth feel is thin and watery with no lingering tastes on the palate. Expected better from this brew.

 239 characters

Photo of BuckeyeNation
2.93/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

My bottle reads 'French Farmhouse Ale' beneath the brewery name rather than 'Biere de garde' and is an 11.2 ouncer rather than a 750, but I'm fairly certain that I'm reviewing this in the correct place.

What sort of biere de garde has no visible yeast? I'm suspect already and I've only just poured it into the glass. Bold coppery orange with brighter orange trim. Atop the beer is a good looking head of golden ecru foam that displays a bubbly surface and leaves plenty of generously pocked lace in its wake. Forgetting the lack of yeasties for a moment, it's a good look.

The nose could be more forthcoming. It's toasted malty and mildly spicy, but lacks any sort of depth or any hint of farmhouse character. I can't believe that Brasserie Duyck did anything so stupid as to filter the yeast--the very thing that defines the style--right out of the beer. I would question whether or not it's meant to be a true farmhouse ale, but it says so right on the label.

There's something about beer from this brewery that doesn't appeal to me. It's nothing consistent, nothing that applies to each one of their offerings, just a general sense of 'eh'. Like the nose, the flavor is toasted malty with very little complexity. The hops taste earthy to me, as if they were British born. Where the hell is the spiciness and the yeasty breadiness? Biere de garde? Hardly.

The body/mouthfeel would have benefitted mightily from actually having been carbonated. While it isn't dead, it is on life support and is fading fast. The lack of bubbles give the beer a lethargic feel that makes it even harder to enjoy.

I don't have a whole lot else to say about Jenlain French Farmhouse Ale. It isn't true to the stated style and isn't even that good regardless of style. I know that the French are capable of brewing great saisons and bieres de garde because I've tasted them. This one isn't anywhere close to proving that statement correct.

 1,935 characters

Photo of Doomcifer
2.95/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a hazy copper orange with a small head that goes away pretty quickly.

Smell is of slight caramel malts, phenolic, and some spiciness.

Taste is more pronounced than the aroma. Very sweet malts hit you right up front, very bready, slight toffee flavors, sweet sugary, ending with alcohol and hop spiciness.

Mouthfeel is medium mouthfeel, feels creamy in the mouth, pretty carbonated.

Overall, this beer is decent. Not something I would go out of my way for.

 475 characters

Photo of Globetrotter
2.98/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I found a bottle of this in Moscow's premiere foreign supermarket, which does produce some odd beer products occasionally. Interesting 33cl aluminum bottle with grey and silver color and a big red J above the name. Ingredients include absinthe, a fact emphasized on the front label. Otherwise, the beer is purity law compliant. Best before January 2006, I opened it on 5/22/05.

Pours a clear but quite bubbly gold under a one finger snow white head that lingers for a bit before settling to film and collar. Only a couple drops of lace cling to the glass. Sweet fruity nose, very strong of spice and raspberry. The mouth is very light, with subdued carbonation. Very sweet taste, with light fruit dominating. The spice is also sweet, adding to the natural sweetness of the wheat. No noticeable hops. The finish is sugary, while the aftertaste reminds a bit of a raspberry frozen popsicle. Not for me, thanks.

 911 characters

Photo of stcules
3.01/5  rDev -19.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Amber reddish color, clean. Decent head, cream color, quite compact. Pretty.
The smell is caramel malt, dry flowers, hay. Lightly fruity. The hay are very strong, and fresh.
The taste too, with malt and caramel in the beginning, and the a good dry cut, with hay. A light fruitiness behind. Pleasant. Then some bitterness. Pretty balanced.
The alcohol is very well hidden. Dangerously drinkable, thank to the dryness.
Average to light body.
In the aftertaste again frsh hay, with a good dry finish.

 502 characters

Photo of TheSarge
3.03/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The appearance of this brew is pretty decent. The head is in ample amounts, and is a light tan color. The body is very clear and is a brownish copper color.

The aroma is very faint and malt dominant.

The taste is a little masked from the coarse presence of the carbonation. It has a hint of sweetness up front, but finishes up with an odd vegetable like characteristic.

With the moderately hight ABV, there is a slight warming effect that comes through. There is also a lot of carbonation that masks some of the taste characteristics.

Overall this is okay, but not the ultimate Belgian beer I've been searching for.

 619 characters

Photo of Andreji
3.03/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Ooooh if it were not for my cheapness I wouldnt have bought this bottle of 75cls of a medium beer. nor in terms of taste, nor looks nor actual overall desirability is this beer going on anyones top list. just because a thing has an uncommon name doesnt necessarily put it within the interest. this is a one timer. boo.

 318 characters

Photo of FLima
3.07/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Pretty amber copper color, but with a thin head with short retention.
Surprisingly malty and hay aroma with earthy notes and caramels.
Sweet caramel malty flavor with herbal notes, tutti fruit, though mostly plums and oxidized apples, and candied sugar. No aftertaste.
Light to medium body with medium carbonation. Alcohol of 7.5% is well hidden.
Overly sweet beer with low complexity, not really pleasant after warming up. I kept lowering its grade. Definitely overrated.

 472 characters

Photo of Bonhoeffer
3.08/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Meh. What an odd little beer. If someone were to hand me a glass of this without any hints regarding style or origin, i swear i'd think they'd given me an English barleywine. That's right: WTF?

A bit cloying. Some nice floral notes. But it has no yeasty character. No mustiness. No earthy or cellar flavor. No funk. No spice. Nothing that might characterize a "farmhouse" ale. More or less run of the mill English barleywine character, including a slight alcoholic hotness. More than i'd expect at 6.5%.

No idea how old this one is. It came from Wine World in Penascola several months ago.

 591 characters

Photo of SaCkErZ9
3.1/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

The jerk at the beer store put this botte in the box upside down and next to another bottle, so when I removed this one, the top was pryed open. So, it is served in a frozen pint glass to get the temp down. This review may not be quite as accurate as I would have hoped.

Poured from a 12oz or whatever bottle. Pours hazy amber color with a stiff white head of pretty decent size. Aroma is yeasty, musty, earthy, slightly funky. A large amount of bubblegum seems to be present as well. Taste is of bubblegum, banana, yeast, alcohol, and a bit of chocolate and caramel malts. Pretty sweet but not quite syrupy or cloying. Mouthfeel was thin and not quite carbonated enough. I guess this one was okay, but the asshole at the beer store may have ruined this reveiw. I will try to obtain another bottle soon.

Edit: after reading some other reveiws, it seems as though my opinions were not that far off from the lower end of the spectrum. Perhaps the beer is just an overall failure. The guy at the store is still a jerk, though.

 1,026 characters

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.1/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours a clear, pale amber body with a thin, finely bubbled off-white head.

Smell: Light aroma of toasted grains with vaguely fruity notes and a bit of cinnamon in the nose.

Taste: Toasted grains with a light sweetness. Fruitiness comes across as a white wine flavor. Again, there's that very light cinnamon spice undertone. The finish is a bit watery, which allows some of that alcohol to creep in.

Mouthfeel: Light-bodied. Mild carbonation. Somewhat watery.

Drinkability: I could be blunt and caustic here, but hey, it's Friday!

 545 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Jenlain Ambrée from Brasserie Duyck
3.75 out of 5 based on 306 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    No fake news here. Get real beer content delivered to your doorstep every month.