Saturday, April 7, 2012

Brown's Brown Ale

3.9
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 15/20
Chad9976 (642) - Albany, New York, USA - APR 4, 2012
Brown ale is often the style of beer that gets people into craft beer because it’s sweet (but not cloying) and very smooth. And that’s a perfect description of Brown’s Brown Ale.

I poured a 22oz bomber into an official Brown’s tumbler glass.

Appearance: Dark, but clear mahogany color with little carbonation visible. Forms an average-sized, beige, foamy head which mostly dissipates and leaves trace lacing on the glass.

Smell: Stronger nose than the average brown ale. Very prominent sweet aroma of honey roasted peanuts with hints of toffee and smoke.

Taste: Brown ales, when brewed properly, can have some of the most subtle and delectable palates in all of beer. I’ve had Brown’s Brown Ale on cask, draught, and bottle and the cask version is definitely the best presentation. As soon as it hits the tongue there’s an immediate sensation of sweetness. It’s mild, but strong enough to wake up your mouth. A tasty combination of syrup-like flavors of caramel and toffee, combined with a smoky finish. There’s mild bitterness through the middle, but it’s washed away by the ending - which has more of a nutty/earthy taste than at the beginning.

In a funny way, it’s similar to a cola made with real sugar, as there is no drying or sticky sensation in the aftertaste. The draught version is a little too fizzy and tends to act as a self-cleansing palate, where as the bottle and ESPECIALLY the cask presentations are calmer to allow the sweetness to linger. Not that this is an absolute mind-blower, but definitely a beer to enjoy for its subtlety.

Drinkability: If there’s anything brown ales are known for, it’s their drinkability. While not exactly thirst-quenching, they definitely are friendly on the palate and the system. Brown’s Brown Ale is a little thicker and softer than most, but goes down very smoothly and easily. I paired this with pulled pork at the brewpub and it was a delicious combination. At only 5% ABV you can definitely drink several of these on end without worrying about it going to your head (or your waistline).

Grade: 8/10