Belgian-style Amber Ale
91 Binchoise Reserve, Brasserie La Binchoise (Belgium). 9% ABV (5/06)
Hazy amber color. Very floral, dried peach and apricot aromas. A rich, frothy entry leads to a fruity, floral, medium-bodied caramelized malt palate with lavender, violet, honey and light caramel flavors. Finishes with a long, sweet stone fruit fade. Very lush and floral but could use a little more malt intensity.
91 Bon Secours Ambrée, Brasserie Caulier (Belgium). 8% ABV (5/07)
Hazy amber color. Fruity caramel, warm molasses and roasted nut aromas. A round entry leads to a dry-yet-fruity medium-full body of apple nut pie, treacle and savory nut flavors. Finishes with a long, warming, charred nut and black strap molasses fade.
90 Seigneuriale, Unibroue (Canada). 7.5% ABV (5/06)
Burnished hazy copper color. Deep aromas of wet grain, dark caramel, spice and warm fruit compote. A rich, froth entry leads to a dry-yet-fruity full-bodied palate with toasted nuts, burnt sugar, cocoa powder, peppery brown spices and tangy dried citrus peels. Finishes with a tart, fruit skin and seed, singed citrus peel and warm caramel fade.
90 Maudite, Unibroue (Canada). 8% ABV (5/08)
Brilliant copper color with a fine mousse. Rich peach marmalade, cashew butter, white clay and delicate spice aromas. A frothy entry leads to a tangy medium-full body of citrus compote, peach cider and white chocolate toffee flavors. Finishes with a long, caramelized nut and spice fade. Very tasty and a great match for braised meats.
85 Royal Grolsch Amber Ale, Grolsch Bierbrouwerij (Holland). 5.3% ABV (4/08)
Deep tan to light rust in color. Nice woody and sweet nose with hints of caramel, apple wood and marshmallow. Nice wisps of lace left on glass. Soft entry on the palate delivering an apple-like fruitiness with nice touches of caramel and burnt sugar. Lingering notes of raw sugar are replaced by striking hints of bitterness that are a tad cloying and a bit out of balance. Starts out as a session beer and ends a touch bitter—would work well with an aged gouda perhaps.