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Amber Beers & Ales - Tips and Information

Jul 22, 2008
The name Amber Ale is often used by those living in North America and France, however in the UK we more often refer to it as Pale Ale. The color of this type of beer varies widely from being light copper to light brown. However, in Britain and Ireland small amounts of crystals or colored malt will be added to the mixture and a slightly darker color is produced.

This kind of beer is produced around the globe and each country where it is produced gives it a particular name. In France the French refer to this as Biere de Garde, whilst the Germans in Germany call it Altbier. But although the name differ they all use the same ingredients namely pale malts and ale yeast in its manufacture. Below we take a look at some of the various amber ales available around the world today.

1. Altbier - This is sometimes just known by Germans as "Alt" and will have been brewed and produced in the Dusseldorf and Rhineland Regions of the country. Compared to other beers available in Germany this one has a very crisp clean taste and the popular ones being drunk today are Uerige and Diebels.

2. Biere de Garde - This is a very traditional French pale ale that is brewed in the Pas de Calais region of the country. Originally the beer was brewed in the farmhouses during the winter and spring months as there could be many problems with the yeast during the summer ones. Its name comes from the way in which the beer was allowed to mature after it had been bottled.

Originally the beer was bottled and then a cork used to seal it before being placed in a cellar and left to mature in the same way that Saison is during the rest of the year before it is drunk. Popular brands of this type of ale include Brasserie de Saint Sylvestre, Trois Monts and Brasseurs Duyck, Jenlain.

3. Saison - Another amber ale which this time comes from the French speaking region of Belgium called Wallonia and is a farmhouse ale like the French Biere de Garde. As with the French variety this one was originally brewed by the farmers to provide to their workers during the harvest season as part of their employment they were entitled to 6 pints of ale throughout the working day at this time of year.

4. English Bitter - This is another name that is often used by the customers who drink amber ale and it is believed the term was coined as a way that those drinking it could differentiate it from other types of hopped beers, such as porter or mild. However, the alcohol content of this type of amber ale is far less than you find in the ones we have mentioned above.

5. American Amber Ales - Have a much bitter taste compared to their European counterparts, but how bitter it is will depend upon the varieties of hops used in its making. This can actually dramatically affect not just the flavor but the aroma of this amber ale quite strongly. The Association of Brewers in the USA classify an amber beer as one that ranges in golden in color through to copper.
About the Author
One of the most loved types of Amber Beer is the variety of Kwak Ales available to purchase online. They have a unique taste and are a great example of Belgian beer which itself is enjoyed by beer drinkers worldwide as well as Europeans.
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