Grog - Nodding Head Brewery

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Grog
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BA SCORE
83
good

69 Ratings
THE BROS
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(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 69
Reviews: 40
rAvg: 3.68
pDev: 15.49%
Wants: 0
Gots: 0 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Nodding Head Brewery visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
English Brown Ale |  5.25% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-24-2002

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 69 | Reviews: 40
Reviews by porter17:
Photo of porter17
3.89/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A very dark beer for a brown ale, almost opaque in appearance, but very appealing to the sense of sight. Inviting and intriguing from an optical standpoint, the rest of the journey through this beer adventure doesn't exaclty measure up to the auspicious start, though it doesn't fail to satisfy completely. The smell was good but there was a certain lack of strength in the olfactory area, though perhaps my sense of smell was adveresly affected by the cigarette smoke from the person next to me (yuck!). Anyway, it was fair, what little smell I was actually able to injest. The taste was very above average yet not even near exceptional. The dark malts predominate and there is little hop flavor, yet it is still not a typical brown ale. A pretty good mouthfeel and a good drinkability, I recommend this beer.

More User Reviews:
Photo of chOAKbarrell
4.28/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Oh my. Tasty, tasty, tasty.

Nodding Head's beer list refers to this beer as "Goblin Grog" and describes it as such: "A bigger, badder version of our immensely popular english style brown ale. Dark and malty and scarily drinkable."

I say: this has to be one of the best brown ales I've ever had. Browns dont usually seem to be noted for their depth, but this is outstanding. Smooth, rich, creamy. The taste was truly exceptional. Beautiful, guinness-style cream head on this one. Tons of lacing on the pint glass. Malty nose. Fills your mouth up and drives your taste buds wild. I wish I didnt have to drive that night, and I wish I wasnt so full from the great dinner, and I wish I didnt have a low tolerance, because I would have gotten a second one of these in a minute. Oh, and I wish they bottled and sold this beer for take-out.

Photo of boatshoes
3.71/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Had on cask at Nodding Head last week when out to dinner with some friends. Along with the berliner weiss, they were my two beers for the evening.

Appearance- Comes from the bar a nice shade of dark ruby brown that allows some light to come through. Creamy one finger tan head sits on top and retains very well. Small amounts of lacing left as I drink.

Smell- Unfortunately, not a whole lot going on in the smell department. Very mild, mostly of sweet roasted malt, perhaps the faintest whiff of coffee. Pleasant, but not terribly impressive.

Taste- Slightly more complex than the smell. Lots of roasted malt, followed by a mild burnt coffee aftertaste that lingers after the beer goes down. Not really much else going on here however for me. Not overly complex, but enough flavor to make this a decently sessionable beer while not being overpowering.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability- The high point of this beer is the mouthfeel. Coming off of cask, it is silkly smooth with just the right amount of mild carbonation. Feels great going down and helps the drinkability of the beer as well. Unfortunately, I've got to dock this one some on the drinkability, because as I've noticed with other Nodding Head brews on my past two visits, the beer seems to take on a bit of an offputting sour/lactic aftertaste as it warms to room temperature. Drink this one on the cooler side and it is much more pleasant.

Overall, pretty decent. Didn't love this beer, but I found it to be the most pleasing offerning I've had from Nodding Head in my last two visits. Mild and decent with my meal.

Photo of ggaughan
4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

My Grog was served in a standard pint glass with a robust dark brown body and a nice tan head and good lacing on the glass. The aroma is a bit toasted, chocolately and caramel. The taste is a bit more toasted, pleasing to the tongue. The body is rodust and chocolately. I find the medium body easy to drink and very enjoyable.

Photo of Sammy
3.93/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Very good, very drinkable session ale. I seem to have enjoyed it far better than people in 2003 and 2004. So perhaps they have tinkered with it. Rich malt with some bitterness. Dark brown and lace. I could stay with this all night if need be. Great followup 2nd after the bitter hop juice IPA.

Photo of tempest
3.23/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Grog is an appropriate name considering I'm pulling out the same herbal flavor I've gotten from the 60 Shilling and Doc. Roasted grains and coffee flavor come forward first with that funk in the background. Really though, there's so much roasted flavor, this reminds me more of a brown porter than a brown ale. There's no fruity sweetness like you'd get from an English brown. Overall, it's not bad, but it's not to style.

Photo of akorsak
3.88/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A pint served from the cask at General Sutter's Nodding Head night.

A: The ale is a dark brown color, coffee-like in appearance. A minimal head emerged from the pour but no more than 1/4 of a finger. It quickly dissapated.

S: The ale has caramel and toffee and a rather strong smoked aroma. Perhaps the smoke is a side effect of the cask but it works.

T: The brown ale qualities are accentuated from the cask. The reduction in carbonation again removes the cleansing factor, allowing the chocolate, caramel and toffee flavors to linger on the palate without being shooed away. There isn't a lot to say hop-wise but a smoky quality is evident throughout, adding some meat to the taste.

M: Solid mouthfeel that nicely splits between the toffee/caramel and smoked malt. This type of ale was made for casks.

D: A real sessioner, this is a good subtle brown ale.

Photo of Gratefullawyer
4.45/5  rDev +20.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Was in Philly this weekend found myself at fergies and got to try this beer.I enjoyed this beer. I really liked the coffee hints that arose as you drank this beer. I found very smooth and it went down very easily.
It even tasted better the second time as i was looking foward to that coffee taste.
a very drinkable beer

Photo of speedy3d
4.03/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer was on tap at a pub in downtown Philly.

This beer had a very dark color with a medium beige head and light carbonation. This beer was extremely smooth and had a slight caramel and chocolate taste with a light coffee-like finish as others have noted.

Overall I was very pleased with this beer and would certainly recommend it.

Photo of DarkerTheBetter
3.76/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer poured a dark brown that let through a faint burgundy. The head was thick, smooth and tan that left some nice lace. Smells of smooth caramel malt with a little bit of dirty corn and a metallic nip. Tastes like over-ripe fruit and slightly roasted caramel with a smoky dryness to it that brought about some chocolate-like flavors. The mouth feel is medium bodied with a smooth creamy carbonation. This beer’s a little too sweet for my liking, but its smoothness makes up for it and makes it enjoyable to drink.

Photo of aracauna
3.34/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A dark ruby color with a nice head makes for a good appearance. The aroma is light, but the flavor is almost smoky with a little coffee and a bit of light chocolate. A lightly bubbly mouthfeel makes this a nicely drinkable brown with a bit of flavor.

Photo of RBorsato
4.45/5  rDev +20.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Tasted On-Tap 03/08/06 & 03/09/06 at the Nodding Head brewpub.

Fairly dark brown in color with a low beige head and decent carbonation. Fairly robust in style for an English Brown Ale with lots of caramel and chocolate in both the nose and mouth. Very malty as expected. Medium bodied and easy drinking with a light bitter coffee-like finish.

A great beer to start with ... and even finish with but it leans very close to a Porter in my book.

Per NHB website:
2003 Silver - Chicago RAF
2002 Gold - GABF

Photo of woodychandler
4.45/5  rDev +20.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

OMFG, I had no idea that NH did cask! Come in, Paul Pendyck! It arrived with a finger's worth of deep-brown head with great retention. The nose had a chocolate/licorice quality. The color was a deep cola-brown with very little light able to penetrate its depths. The mouthfeel was full and creamy with a mildly chocolaty taste on the tongue. The finish was cocoa intermingled wih coffee. I was deeply impressed by this beer and its serving style.

Re-Review: Well, somebody was listening, apparently. Mr. Pendyck did, indeed, have a cask of this for a Cask Night at Lititz's General Sutter Inn. These are my thoughts from that evening.

Not much of a head to speak of, more like a thin film of light brown wisps. Nose was quite malty, with notes of chocolate and anise. I think that it is the anise that makes it attractive to me. It is usually available on cask at Fergie's Pub in Philadelphia, although generally not at on cask at Nodding Head, go figure. Color was a deep brown with cola color highlights. Mouthfeel was medium with a light additional mixture of coffee, chocolate, and anise taking place on the tongue. The finish was sort of a smoky chocolate flavor, not overpowering on either score, but definitely present. Proof positive that Gord-O has a handle on what he is doing.

Photo of Rifugium
2.03/5  rDev -44.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

First had: on tap at Nodding Head, Philly, PA

Poured a slightly hazy dark brown with a small off-white head that receded quickly. Sweet malts and toasted bread in the aroma. Mostly sweet malts in the taste, caramel, light bread, nuts. Leaves a stale aftertaste. Light-medium mouthfeel, and seemed watered down and too sweet. Not a very pleasant drink.

Photo of Gavage
3.71/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark brown in color and had a thin head. Some very light lacing developed through the drink. The aroma was bland, as only some malt was picked up by the nose. The flavor is of thin roasted maltiness, caramel, minor chocolate tones, and some mellow nuttiness.

The mouthfeel was a little thin for this medium bodied beer, and the carbonation was on the light side. Mild caramel tones seem to last well into the aftertaste. Nice drinkability.

Photo of ChappyCubsFan
3.49/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Grog! That sounds like something they would have brewed in the Middle Ages. I just had to try it in our beer sampler. It smelled pretty good. The malt had some interesting characteristics. But it just didn't pack the wallop I was looking for in a brown ale. Maybe that's intentional. It tasted a bit watered-down, and not much hops for my taste. It was OK and worth the sampling. I'm not sure I would order a pint. Tasted like something Ben Franklin may have served to his buddies.

Photo of WonderWoman
3.32/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Served in a pint glass, poured a dark crimson with a frothy head and nice lacing.
The only smell that surfaced was a metallic odor.
Tasted kind of boring with subtle cocoa notes and malt.
The mouthfeel was smooth medium bodied with minor carbonation.
Overall, there wasn’t much offered here for a brown ale, I think I’d pass it up.

Photo of jmdrpi
3.83/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

served in pint glass on-tap at the Brewpub.

appeared a very dark brown, with thin off-white colored head. aroma and taste had highlights of chocolate, toffee, nutty, slightly roasted flavors. More of a cross between a brown ale and a porter. a bit fuller body than most brown ales, but still drinks easy.

overall, a nice variant on the traditional English Brown Ale style.

Photo of Bouleboubier
3.32/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This looks and drinks much like what "grog" implies to me - a no-frills, serviceable alcoholic malt beverage. Not necessarily pleasing to eye, for sure - NO f'n trace of a head/carbonation, dense, dank and dark muddy brown. If you jump on board to the simplicity or primitiveness that, once again, its name implies, this is all good - but uninspiring as far as beer goes - its potential. That said, getting past the blah look, the smell is a small step up, yet still sooty-bland. Sleazy malty, if that makes sense - powder-blue-sweat-suity...maybe...some hops, perhops...Yeah, getting to the flavour - it's not bad! Don't express itself as a brown, no. I get an unabashedly rauch stance on it - light (tad more than 'light') smokiness on the malt - and it's good, yes. It's a rauch/(slick-slimy-muted) bkln brn blend - challenge me on that, kids! It drinks e-z, without dazzling. Grog is goud. If I have to swallow it, I don't mind. Nothing I would seek out, but it don't turn me off. 'T'would go a'ight with some proper right grubb.

Photo of mvanaskie13
3.8/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On cask at fergies, nice pour, a little colder than expected; color is dense brown, light thin head.

Smell is nice and malty, solid sweetness, notes of toffee.

Taste is malty dense sweetness, hint of bitterness , bready and toffee flavors.

Mouthfeel is just right, lingering sweetness is just enough.

Overall, great beer on cask, good flavors, good presentation.

Photo of WesWes
4.2/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a dark brown color with a creamy tan head. The aroma is good. It has a nice malty caramel scent with little hops. The taste is great. It has good malt complexity and caramel flavor; very nice. The mouthfeel is good. It is a med./full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This beer drinks well. It is a fine brown ale. It has great taste and mouthfeel.

Photo of mactrail
2.27/5  rDev -38.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Lovely to look at, with beige-tinged head on the dark brown ale, served in a standard US pint glass.

Odd aroma is the first sign of trouble. Smells like the smoldering remains of a burned house. Then one sip and the flavor hits me-- burnt newspaper. Surprisingly malty, but the taste is deeply disturbing. It reminds me of the charred blood sausage I spit out at the Argentine restaurant at lunch. Or the smell of nearby burning garbage in a damp country.

On tap at the brewpub in Philadelphia. From notes on June 2, 2012 visit.

Photo of cichief
3.8/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had on cask at Fergie's Pub in Philadelphia, PA.

A- Pours a dark mahogany, almost opaque, hazy, with a thin light brown head.

S- Slight scent of malt, not much else.

T- Some roasted malt, slight hop dryness in the finish.

M- Nice but watery, not enough body, little carbonation from the cask.

D- An acceptable brown beer, but there are much better out there.

Photo of EmoBeerGuy
3.98/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

When I had this on tap at Nodding Head this weekend, the blackboard at-top the bar said this was a brown ale (hope to clear up some confusion).

Poored with little head, but I was not exspecting much of one. Malty nose. Tasted like an embellished Newcastle, strong malts with a nutty, semi-sweet finish. Very smooth brew. A flavorful, yet easy drinking beer. Much better than the other Nodding Head fair that I sipped (my friends pints). Probably the beer to get if you can only try one down a Nodding Head. Solid brown ale.

Photo of pezoids
4.06/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A very good mild brown ale. Poured a murky and chocolatey brown color. The hop bitterness is low and the there is a semi-sweetness to this beer. Reminded me of some of the local brown ales that I tasted in England years ago. A very drinkable and down to earth ale.

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Grog from Nodding Head Brewery
83 out of 100 based on 69 ratings.