Brewed by Unibroue (Sapporo)
Style: Smoked
Chambly, Canada


on tap

Local Distribution

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RATINGS: 836   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.28/5   IBU: 16   EST. CALORIES: 165   ABV: 5.5%
Gold medal winner in 1995 at the Chicago Beverage Testing Institute. It is brewed with whiskey malt in honour of the raftmen, rivermen and lumberjacks of Québec of the 19th century who finished their day with Ale and Whiskey.

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49degrees' rating

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
49degrees (49) - British Columbia, - JAN 17, 2003
(341ml capped bottle) One of the more obscure offerings from Quebec brewery Unibroue, Raftman, a smoked whiskey malt-based Belgian Pale Ale is amongst the lightest and lowest alcohol count ales offered from this brewing giant. Strangely enough, while Unibroue is a Canadian brewery I've yet to see the Raftman sold by single bottles (341ml or 750ml) in British Columbia, but regularly come across this one in several shops in Washington and Oregon. While Raftman lacks the hearty punch and deep bountiful character that most of the other Unibroue offerings provide, it does have, like all of their other beers, in unique character onto its own right. It pours similar to that of La Fin du Monde, a medium, slightly cloudy copper tone with decent size, thick foamy head. The glass gathers considerable lacing despite the head giving way to a thin flat foamy, but consistent surface texture with a good size collar. Aroma wise, it offers up an intriguing balance of hops and malts, a heavy reliance on yeast, with hints similar to that of some Hefeweizens, plus a special touch of pepper, fruit and the slightest hint of smoke. (I had some initial reservations on this beer from reading the label. When it said smoked, it brought back the fear I had when ikes Aecht Schlenkerla Marzen Rauchbier, which unlike most other reviewers, I highly disliked and poured 2 bottles down the drain.) Raftman however was a pleasant surprise and its slightest hints of smokiness in both aroma and taste were an interesting and enjoyable touch. While most of the Unibroue ales offer up incredibly strong taste, overwhelming characteristics and perfect blends of malt, hops and loving care, this one doesn't have quite the same body. It has a very enjoyable taste that tends to be a little more reliant on yeast, its offers a nice familiar fruity blend, slight bite of hops, and the relaxing malt effect. This is a fairly carbonated beer, but not nearly as fizzy as Unibroue's 1837. The smoked whiskey malt, which is the base of this beer, along with the carbonation does give this a little bit more edge compared to most other ales from Unibroue. All in all, a very enjoyable beer, that's certainly worth a closer look. And, unlike the heavy alcohol content of all of Unibroue's other offerings, this one at 5.5% is pretty calm, which makes it an enjoyable beer to have more than one of in any single sitting.

Singularity (6369) - Blattniksele, SWEDEN - JAN 2, 2018
341 ml bottle at home, thanks P & H! Golden with white head. Light smoked notes, fruit, light candy, slightly tart notes

thorongil2 (3571) - , Ontario, CANADA - DEC 28, 2017
(Bottle) clear, bright orange colour with a small cream head; aroma of candy, hint of smoked fruit; light, balanced flavour with a long, light tart finish, hard to find any smoked character

azzurro (509) - Ottawa, Ontario, CANADA - OCT 1, 2017
When I read smoked, I get excited from my great experience with the rauchbier, this one is far from a strong smoked. So much potential, under delivering.

beergearbox (151) - London, Ontario, CANADA - SEP 7, 2017
Bottle. Friendship, feeling, and fidelity. Friendship without interest, Feeling to our enemies, Fidelity to our friends

meccahh69lol (366) - New Haven, Connecticut, USA - SEP 4, 2017
On tap. This had a basic aroma of belgo yeasty and wheaty goodness. The appearance was a nice cloudy amber. The taste was a pleasant, drinkable typical Unibroue mix of belgo yeast and a smooth palate of magical smoothness. Overall, a very good beer to get a series of 3 dollar pints of during a trivia night. Good for a trivia night where one is reminded of their own mortality with the looming spectre of Walter Becker's death with a potential tattoo on a butt lurking in the wings.

sawyerpc15 (197) - Bowser, British Columbia, CANADA - AUG 15, 2017
Similiar to the others I had in the unbroken mixer pack. A little darker and could taste the hints of whiskey.

Tranquillity (2571) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - AUG 14, 2017
Bottled. Raisin colored, very lively beige head. The aroma isn’t too strong but has malts and yeast. The taste has a hint of smoke with vanilla and prunes.

shawnmurphy (673) - Plattsburgh, New York, USA - JUL 29, 2017
12-ounce bottle pours clear orange-copper with two-inch off-white, whipped-cream head and lacing; lots of south-to-north carbonation. Aroma: honey, lemon, smoke. Flavor: caramel, cream cheese frosting, peat, pepper, sweet pipe tobacco, yeast. Mouthfeel: medium-bodied, dry finish.

gripweed57 (2980) - Hamilton Square, New Jersey, USA - JUN 17, 2017
From old tasting notes. Hazy Amber gold color. Huge rocky white head. Interesting earthy malt nose reminiscent of fresh mushrooms. Tangy, smoky malt flavor is full bodied and complex.

MissAnthropic (68) - Edmonton, Alberta, CANADA - JUN 6, 2017
Mild nose, smoky and iron. The palate is slightly oily with malty nose and a slight smoky exhale. A very light beer without a strong smoke taste. Okay but not mind blowing.

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