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Samuel Smith's Nut Brown Ale - Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)

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Samuel Smith's Nut Brown AleSamuel Smith's Nut Brown Ale

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3,488 Ratings

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Ratings: 3,488
Reviews: 1,412
rAvg: 4.09
pDev: 12.22%
Wants: 201
Gots: 387 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster) visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
English Brown Ale |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-11-2001

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,488 | Reviews: 1,412
Photo of DoctorDog
2.22/5  rDev -45.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Presentation: Victorian pint bottle into a large mug.

A- Medium auburn color. Tan head ~2 inches high off harsh pour; fades slowly with some lacing. Virtually no head retained after it has receded.

S- A bitter, "skunky", coppery/metallic smell. Perhaps a product of my nasal sufferings, but this is fairly unpleasant, and borderline awful.

T- Just like the smell; "skunky," bitter, and coppery/metallic. I have had this beer in the past and enjoyed it, so I give it a few more minutes to warm, then return. Same fetid results. I'm starting to think that I was sold an extremely out-dated bottle, or one taken from a highly unfortunate batch.

M- Somewhat thin and slick.

D- In this incarnation, very low. At this point, I'm fairly well convinced that I was sold a very outdated and/or tainted bottle. This one will have to be revisited and re-reviewed at a later date to ensure that I've given it a fair shake.

Photo of sethmeister
4.38/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

550ml brown glass bottle with gold foil wrapped cap. No freshness date.

Beer is crystal clear reddish caramel-brown with a great fluffy cream colored cloud of foam rising easily two fingers. I admire the clarity and color while I wait for the head to settle enough to finish the pour into my Sam Smith nonic.

Scent is caramel and lightly toasty.

Taste is a vivid sweet caramel, toffee. Sweet nutty malt flavors. A very mild soft bitterness at the finish. Minimal hops.

Mouth is creamy medium - on the thinner side.

Drinkability is outstanding.

This has long been my favorite English brown ale. Soft and understated, mildly sweet and eminently quaffable. Always a pleasure.

Photo of hreb
3.98/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

550mL bottle poured into UK pint glass. Beer pours brown amber with a tall, tan head. Faint caramel sweet aroma.

First sip is moderately carbonated and pleasing, sweet, with a long finish and just a hint of nuttiness. Not much body to the beer, but a complex set of flavors.

Only after drinking the beer for a while does the bitterness make itself apparent. The balance is so fine that you hardly notice the hops initially, but they're there. Starting with a totally clean palate, I'm so used to highly-hopped beers that I'm not sensitized to something so delicate. It simply doesn't have the highly-hopped bitterness you'd find in the American equivalent. The flavors are more natural (gentle?) and earthy.

Overall, I can't really say this is a great beer. It's good, I like it, I'll order it now and then, but I think it's overrated. It is a good beer, and it hasn't really reached premium pricing despite it's relatively high quality. But Rogue's Hazelnut brown it is not.

Photo of biegaman
3.98/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Potter's clay with a blend of cioccolato and redwood. The beer certainly isn't entirely brown, there are lots of warming red highlights. Not that it is all that dark, although there is considerable clarity for a beer with shades of this depth. A thin sheet of off-white is netted across the top and splashed against the sides.

I can't claim to be sniffing out any particular kind of nut but the aroma is indeed 'nutty' in a very unspecific sort of way. Most of this smell, I think, can be attributed to the malts which have been toasted just right to bring out notes nutty and caramelized without introducing any element of roast.

The taste is less ambiguous and the distinction between 'nuts' and 'nutty' becomes clear thanks to a big, hefty malt bill. The flavour is a straightforward shot of toffee-rich, borderline sweet malts that again have been toasted just to the point of caramelization.

The beer itself is lightly bitter but a harsh, mineral rich water will amplify that. Despite this chalkiness, however, the beer maintains a very mild profile and lacks any chewiness that its colour and flavour might have implied. A little more texture might actually help push along the notes of hazelnut, pecan, and butterscotch that seem to linger in the finish.

Samuel Smith beers are classic, conventional examples of the great styles in England's rich brewing tradition. To some of today's beer drinkers they may seem a tad bland or unexciting, especially in comparison to 'new world' renditions. It is true that America's, and now other nation's, craft breweries have reinvented traditional styles, like the nut brown, with more attitude and extravagance. But much can still be said for traditional offerings...

I, for one, will always have a place in the fridge for beers like these - solid, simple beers whose strength lie in its very function: to be enjoyably drinkable. They may not have all the frills but they are nevertheless quality, reliable beers that can evoke epiphany on the palates of many new beer drinkers. They certainly did for me.

Photo of EatsTacos
4.54/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Great Beer

Pours a beautiful dark brown with amber with a beige head. Great lacing with the head

Aroma is molasses, honey, very sweet, cream

Taste completely lives up the smell, good balance of the dry nuttiness with a sweet honey, chocolate. Not a lot of hop flavour in this beer. Notes of fruit, spices. Great complex flavour, and finished with a dry, very slightly bitter end.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a low carbonation that is pretty soft

Photo of Murchmac
3.53/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours a beautiful brown with ring around the collar.

Smells of nuttiness goodness, malts, and a little spice, alcohol.

Roasty toasty, nutty warmth,

full bodied, clean crisp aftertaste.

I thought I was reviewing an aftershave, but it turns out it's just a really good nut brown ale.

Photo of Onenote81
3.18/5  rDev -22.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

Poured a brownish orange. Clear all the way through, no cloudiness at all. Good 2-finger head with a moderate pour. Great retention with a fair amount of lacing as I drink.

Smelled sweet like brown sugar and bread, almost like coffee cake. Some nut scent maybe pulling through.

Taste was smooth and creamy, with a slight caramel taste. A little too watery and flat for my liking. I was expecting a bit of a more robust brew. Low carbonation. All of these factors made this a highly quaffable brew, but I'd rather not. I like a bit more bite to my ales. I'm gonna pass.

Photo of sgoodship
4.45/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Lovely translucent walnut brown with dark amber showing against the light. A nice clean, light head that fairly quickly dissipated to a thin ring which left a nice spotty lacing as it is consumed. Carbonation is light but visible.

S: Nutty (obviously) but aromatic - reminds me of their Oatmeal Stout

T: Light and clean. Tasty and well balanced. Nutty with a hoppy aftertaste that is very satisfying. Great tasting quality beer. Although it is thinner than a stout, even the taste seems to have a stout meatiness to it - real substantial.

M: Clean, smooth. Carbonation was perfect for me. Really like the strong finish - just keeps giving.

D: Once I get into the nut brown zone, I could put a few of these away. Very drinkable and enjoyable. Again, Samuel Smith has not disappointed me.

Photo of brewmudgeon
3.63/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12/08 slightly aggressive pour leads to a huge, dense head. (still a 4.5 appearance) smell is lovely: sweet, nutty, and fruity. kinda like a fruitcake. (still a 4, easy) now that i know what to expect from the taste and texture, it doesn't put me off like it did the first time. still would probably prefer more body and flavor, as i find myself gulping this stuff. at least the diacetyl isn't bugging me too much, and the friendly, easy character is starting to grow on me. taste upped from 3 to 3.5. mouthfeel from 2.5 to 3. drinkability from 3 to 3.5.

clear mahogany brown, persistent head and lace.
plums, red wine, lightly toasted malt, and copper to the nose.
take a swig and diacetyl surprises, coating the roof. the sweetness is quite reserved for a brown ale. some toasted malt and weak breakfast tea.
light to medium bodied--not nearly as full as expected or hoped.
slick, filmy mouthfeel. plenty of carbonation.
slicker, dryer, and thinner than imagined. the diacetyl is the biggest negative surprise, as imo it's both an unpleasant sensation and masks taste.
definitely expected a lot more of this highly hyped brew.

Photo of dnichols
4.18/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: It poured a brown body with a reddish hue and a tall robust head.

S: It had a sweet malty aroma with floral hops and hints of caramel.

T: It had a well balanced presence on the tounge with just about the right amount of malts and hints of oak, nuts and light spices.

M: It was medium bodied and moderately carbonated. It finished dry with a bit of sweet oaky aftertaste.

D: It has a moderate body, balanced flavor and low ABV making it a decent session brew. Its not my style but I'd never turn one away and could easily spend a long evening enjoying this brew.

Photo of JRed
4.47/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Light brown in color with thin head of mist that clings and sticks around for a while. Aroma of sweet, roasted nuts with a hint of vanilla. Subtle carbonation allows for the flavorful roasted nuts to engulf the palate. Immerse yourself in the smooth, light creamy taste of this beer. Equally sweet and malty, a wonderful balance.

Photo of nem2006
4.29/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a clear, amber/brown with a good head that did not last as long as I expected. There was some visible carbonation.

The smell was nutty and bready with plenty of sweetness from the malts.

The overall taste is nutty. It starts with some sweetness and a mild bitterness and finishes with a little stronger, but still fitting, bitterness. The beer is medium-bodied.

Photo of tronester
4.15/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark brown with a huge tan head. Smells of ripe fruit and earthy hops. Taste is malty sweet, with a hint of toasted nuts. There is a pleasant tea like flavor as well. Bitterness is low, but there is a nice earthy aroma in the finish. Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy; low, pleasant carbonation levels. Very drinkable, refreshing, and tasty. One of my favorite Samuel Smith beers.

Photo of odietrying
3.15/5  rDev -23%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Bottle poured into 16oz. tumbler.

A: Dark reddish-brown, auburn color. No head or lacing.

S: Molasses, maybe maple. Earthy aromas.

T: Soy taste overpowers most other flavors. Sweet malt, not too bitter with hop.

M: Too carbonated for my taste.

D: It's ok to have one, I wouldn't reach for a second. Too strong on the soy flavor; kind of kills it.

Photo of dananabanana
3.56/5  rDev -13%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A-- auburn, reddish-brown. No head.

S-- not very strong, I couldn't really detect anything.

T-- The first sip is maple and teriyaki/soy. The malt flavor is light and sweet. It develops into a richer molasses taste.

M-- It feels sort of creamy, but still light.

D-- This beer is what a good session beer is all about-- the richer flavors develop after a few.

Photo of SimplySinister
4.32/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - A dark, semi-transparent, chestnut brown. Upon initial pour head was immense, but soon transformed to a creamy froth. Some lacing.

S - Nut Brown smells great- full bodied and complex. Hits of malt, chocolate, caramel, and of course- nuts.

T - Chestnuts roasting on an open fire? Not quite, but still very good. Nut brown is composed mainly of walnut complimented by grain and malt. It is rather mellow and carbonated nicely. While it is not overly complex, it is certainly complex enough to keep my taste buds happy.

M - For the amount of carbonation, Nut brown is surprisingly smooth. That is not to say the carbonation is over the top, but it is what it is. Its consistency is substantial, but not chewy.

D - Nut brown is a little too drinkable. In fact, the only factor that keeps a 4 pack partially intact in one sitting is the price. A true session beer that is, indeed, worthy of praise.

All in all, this beer comes highly recommended as far as Brown ales are concerned. Its superior to many of its competitors, such as Newcastle, in every respect I can think of.

Photo of glid02
4.28/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Got this at Whole Foods on Ponce in Atlanta.

Pours a completely clear dark brown with a one-finger tan head. The head sticks around for quite a while before dissipating into a medium-sized layer of bubbles on top and a thick ring around the glass. Lacing has good coverage but doesn't stick around that long.

Smells of bready malt and nuts while cold. As it warms there's more of a sweet malt smell accompanied by some dark fruits - mainly raisins.

Tastes similar to it's smell. There's a solid malt taste and some nut flavor while it's cold, then as it warms up it gets sweeter and fruitier. There's a medium bitter ending in the beginning that softens as it warms.

Mouthfeel is very good. It's got a very nice thickness and the carbonation is just right. Goes down very smoothly.

This is very drinkable. I slightly prefer it on the colder side as I like the bready malts more, but it's good throughout.

Overall a great value. A pint and a half for just under 4 bucks is on the cheap side for a beer this good. I'm excited about the cold months coming up and delving into more of Samuel Smith's brews.

Photo of bbeerman
3.76/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a rich mahogany brown that I really liked, with a touch of redness. Looked beautiful in the glass.

I found the scent to be average. Smelled good, certainly, but nothing amazing really stands out.

A good taste. Not too strong by any means -- a good middle of the road brown ale in terms of flavor intensity. Had a slight taste of nut (I guess that's to be expected) with an almost wood flavor as well (perhaps that was just me).

A nice medium hop level, so I thought this beer went down smooth and found it quite drinkable. I could have a couple of these for a session and be rather happy (and warm inside).

Overall, a good offering by Samuel Smith.

Photo of Zadok
3.53/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a deep brown oak amber with a 1 finger slightly off-white head and no lacing.

Malts, caramel, and toffee are the initial aromas.

Roasted malts with mild caramel and toffee. Kind of under whelmed by the taste, was expecting a little more from this and it's just a little too mild a flavor.

Very smooth and creamy, little to no carbonation.

Once again just a little disappointed with the overall taste. Wish it was a little more of a pronounced flavor, not saying it was bad just expecting more.

Photo of changeup45
3.79/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The color is dark brown with a nice thick tan head and lots of foamy lacing on the glass. Aroma is sweet and malty although rather faint. Very well balanced flavors: malty, slightly sweet, spicy, and a kick of bitter hops. Not overly sweet either. One of the best Brown Ale's I've had. Way better than Newcastle...

Photo of Herrbrokt
4.38/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

poured from bottle into pint glass

copper clear brown. Creamy Head. nice.

Smells of caramel, hops, and well... nuts

Malt sweetness up top then moves to a hoppy nut. Walnut. tart.
Nice creamy yeast makes this a good one.

medium carbonation and feel. Smooth

Real real nice. Not upset over buying four

Photo of armock
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured a good brown color with a tan head that leaves some lacing

S - Is of sweet nutty malt smells very good

T - Just about the perfect brown ale taste well balance flavors between the malt and hops

M - This beer has a medium light body its a little thin with light carbonation to it

D - I think this is a perfect session beer to have with friends easy to drink with a very good taste worth trying

Photo of matty
2.68/5  rDev -34.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Dark brown colored ale with a quickly fading head that stays at a quarter of an inch.Aroma reminded me of sour milk or baby vomit.Taste has nuts and butter but again that sour milk taste.I was looking forward to this from what my buddies told me but I am highly dissapointed.I will be staying away from this.

Photo of Dusty278
4.52/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I'll start by saying that I do not seek out brown ales. I haven't found many that I particularly like and so went into trying this with a bit of a chip on my shoulder....but as you can see by my review, that all changed after this superb beer hit my lips.

A: Nice lasting (til the last sip) head and deep red/brown body.

S: Strong malty/nutty aroma, very pleasant.

T: Sweet with a nutty finish. Balanced hops, malt and just...just wonderful.

M: Smooth/Creamy Texture. Very pleasing, keeps you drinking.

D: I would drink this beer again and I plan to.

Photo of sstackho
3.44/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

550mL bottle purchased from LCBO in Toronto. I'm generally bored silly with nut brown ales, and am hoping this one can break the trend. Pours a clear medium brown with little head. Weak aroma of nothing much. Flavour starts out with a medium maltiness that quickly gives way to a quite nice tang that lingers throughout the aftertaste. Medium bodied. That tangy finish keeps me coming back. A nut brown ale I like!

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Samuel Smith's Nut Brown Ale from Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)
91 out of 100 based on 3,488 ratings.