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St-Ambroise Raspberry Ale is a wonderful seasonal ale that comes out around June every summer in Montreal. I found out about the beer two years ago at their terrace and it has been a yearly staple on draft and in the fridge. It’s the perfect blend of fruit and beer.
Made with fresh raspberries and choice sun-ripened hops, it gently engages your taste buds in a delicious explosion of flavours. Its delicate fruit aromas marry perfectly with the pleasant hop character typical of all St-Ambroise ales. Brewed in Quebec – just once a year – it’s a unique summertime treat!
The Raspberry Ale pours a deep dark red with a fluffy pink cloud-like two finger head that slowly dissipates. The beer itself is a bit hazy with a very deep ruby red colour. The darker colour comes from using darker malts, which is a smart decision to give it that red colour. (I’ve always thought the blonde raspberry ales at other brewpubs looked wrong for the flavour). When put up to the sunlight it just glows red. Very good lacing around the glass. This beer looks absolutely gorgeous.
This beer smells like raspberries. Lots and lots of raspberries. The aroma is very pleasantly natural without any kind of sweet synthetic aromas. Like a fresh field of raspberries. There isn’t anything else on the nose and that’s OK. The raspberries are very inviting and you begin to salivate at the prospect of drinking this beer.
Again, we’re talking all raspberry here. A tart raspberry taste. Some malt flavours and a nice medium body. Not overwhelmingly sweet but enough to cut the tart bitterness of the raspberry flavour. Little bit of carbonation. It ends with a traditional McAuslan hop finish that is recognizable from their other beers. A little bitter at the end with a sour aftertaste. Very refreshing and surprisingly a well balanced beer between the raspberry flavours and beer flavours.
This is a great summer beer. I want to emphasize that this is indeed a beer. If judging by the colour and aroma alone, you would think this is some kind of blended beer with synthetic sweetness. But this is not the case. While it has a very powerful and inviting raspberry aroma it still blends the malt and hop flavours perfectly. Like I mentioned earlier it’s a staple in my fridge during the summer months. Perfect for sipping or session drinking, depending on your mood.
You see what we did there? A lamb recipe using a lambic. This recipe uses Lindemans Framboise in our sauce. A Raspberry lambic that has a delicate raspberry palate with fruity acidity. A very nice desert beer to sip on. This is the perfect meal for your Valentine and incorporates a very lovely red sparkling raspberry lambic that she will also enjoy. Top if off with a nice chocolate stout (I would recommend Dieu du Ciel’s Aphrodisiaque.
Preheat oven to 375. Chop potatoes and arrange on a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil. Season generously with salt and garlic powder. Add plenty of fresh thyme (you can just pull gently down the stem against the grain and the leaves will come right off). Bake until golden brown, about 40 minutes. Sprinkle with some more thyme after baking.
Melt some butter along with olive oil in a pan over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic to the pan. Simmer for about a minute. Turn the heat to high. Add the lamb chops, cooking for a few minutes per side, until nice and browned on the outside. Turn off heat and remove the lamb from the pan (you can cover them with aluminum foil so they stay warm). Splash in some of the framboise to deglaze the pan (oooh it looks so pretty at this point). Add in the raspberries, a little more minced garlic, a dash of salt, and a good amount of butter. Turn the heat to low and smash up the raspberries as you combine in the pan. You can also add in a little sugar if you want to balance out some of the acidity.