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

1,446 Reviews
Samuel Smith's Nut Brown AleSamuel Smith's Nut Brown Ale

Brewed by:
Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)
United Kingdom (England) | website

Style: English Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 07-11-2001

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Reviews: 1,446 | Ratings: 3,778
Photo of CTbrew32
4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance- Dark amber in color with a one finger (slightly tan colored) head produced.

Aroma- Sweet caramel malts, nutty, and an almost roasted quality you'd expect from an imperial stout.

Taste- Once again sweet nutty caramel malts are big in the flavor at first. Towards the end a earthy/spice hop provides a quick bite of bitterness as well as some bitterness from the roasted malt.

Feel- Medium to full bodied, medium to high carbonation, and semi dry in the finish.

Overall- At only 5% alcohol there is a ton of flavor packed into this beer. Really nice complexities in the malt ranging from sweet caramel, nuttiness, and a little bit of bitterness from a roasted malt. The earthy hops add a nice balance, but almost add a bit too much spice in the finish. Also, relatively speaking this was surprisingly bitter, especially at first, but that fades a little with warmth. Overall, this is a great brown ale, and one that will a go to for the style when I want a brown ale.

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Photo of SitkaSteve
4.4/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This is probably my all time favorite English Brown Ale. This brewery does it right and this is why.
I've had it in mugs and pints and it always looks the same.
Today, its in a mug.
The appearance is a thick dark brown color with a one finger white foamy head that dissipated within about a minute. Light lacing clings and then slides nicely.
The smell has a thick rich nutty, toffee, light caramel and a bit of chocolate in it all combining wonderfully.
The taste was sweet and nutty allowing all of the previous ingredients to combine nicely. It has a nice rich nutty aftertaste that flows into a smooth wet finish.
The mouthfeel was thick and rich rolling chocolate nuttiness over my tongue with about a medium body on it. Subtleties of toffee lay in and around my tongue as well. Its fairly sessionable.
Overall, I love to have this beer in Winter and watching the end of this Winter Classic hockey game makes it perfect. Booyah!

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Photo of Foyle
5/5  rDev +22.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from 12 oz bottle into pint glass

Appearance: pours a thick, sudsy off white head that slowly recedes with moderate lacing. Color is a mostly clear light brown with plenty of streaming carbonation.

Aroma: rich roasted malts, caramel, nuts, earthy hops.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied, frothy, with a wet finish.

Flavor: terrific combination of roasted malts, sweet caramel, ripe fruit, and a definite nuttiness. There are some tangy and earthy hops in the backbone.

Overall: a world class beer for sure. Perhaps the standard by which all other English style Nut Brown's should be judged.

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Photo of barczar
3.85/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Nutty, toasty, slightly sweet malt with specialty malt fruitiness in both aroma and flavor. The finish is slightly bitter. A classic example of the style.

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Photo of Phigg1102
3.91/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Deep amber-brown clear color. Off white head that starts around one finger and settles into a thin rim. Nuttyness is prominant in the aroma, as well ad some toasted malt and caramel. Light fruity esters; raspberry and driead figs. Toasted malt is prominant in the taste, with toffee, earthy and floral hops, and medium amounts of bitterness. Medium light body, medium-low carbonation.

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Photo of twosheds
4.46/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 550 ml bottle into a pint glass. Transparent reddish brown in color.

Smells very sweet and nutty with some hints of toffee or caramel.

Taste is very similar to smell. Starts off pretty sweet with buttery toffee notes and has a fairly nutty almost tea-like aftertaste.

This comes pretty close to perfect as far as brown ales go. Well balanced, but very interesting flavor.

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Photo of Gajo74
4.52/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark brown with a creamy head that dissipates into a thin lace. Aroma is incredible! Very nutty, roasted malts, grainy and hints of coffee. Taste is nutty sweet with a smooth and slightly bitter finish. Creamy and smooth feel, great to drink on a cold day by the fireside. A tasty wintertime ale! I love it and will definitely continue to buy!

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Photo of ThaneMcC
4/5  rDev -1.7%

A well balanced beer with a hop forward offset by an equal amount of malt and adequate carbonation to keep it from being syrupy. Nutty, earthy flavors with a clean finish.
Easily quaffable with its low ABV - and solid representative of the style.

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Photo of predikit
3.5/5  rDev -14%

Pours a clear brown with an off-white head.

Smells of hazelnut, cream, a little butterscotch.

Taste is subtle, similar to the nose, is nutty, hazelnut I pick up the most, with notes of cream and toffee, fairly sweet to start. Bitterness takes on a very astringent tone for the aftertaste and overpowers the end. For 5% ABV the alcohol is poorly hidden, and shows up in full force as it goes down.

Medium body, smooth feel, leaves clean.

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Photo of Tilly
4.25/5  rDev +4.4%

Dark tan colour. Beautiful tan Lacey head. Sweet coffee, toffee nutty nose. Walnut, pecan, toffee flavours. Light body. Gets the back of the tounge. Nice beer!

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Photo of timontheroad
3.94/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Sam Adams Perfect Pint glass. Pours a very clear fairly dark brown, with a nice fluffy, tan two finger head. Little retention and lacing. Aroma was kinda slight, with a bit of toffee, caramel, and nutty notes. Just a faint hint of sweet malty aroma. Flavor was nutty, like hazelnut, almost like Nutella with half the the chocolate missing. Mouthfeel was pretty thin, but very smooth and silky, went down very nicely. Overall, quite a nice beer, what you'd expect from a great brewery like Samuel Smith's.

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Photo of magpieken
3.75/5  rDev -7.9%

550ml bottle. Aug 14. Pours a reddy, amber-brown colour with a dense light tan head which lasted well and left some nice lacing. Aroma of sweet butterscotch and nuttiness. Medium sweetness and an underlying medium bitterness. Creamy, smooth body with a surprisingly thin body. Bitter, almost dry finish. Plenty of interesting things going on here but not really my cup of tea (or glass of beer).

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Photo of UrbanCaveman
4.2/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from a pint bottle, into a giant Paulaner dimple stein at around 50 degrees F.

A: Poured a clear brown, not unlike watered-down cola, though holding it to sunlight reveals a beautiful bronze red-amber beer. A thick pale head formed with large bubbles, which dissipated somewhat quickly, leaving only a ring around the very edge of the glass. No lacing formed at all in the glass. Plenty of bubbles appear along the bottom of the beer, occasionally shooting upwards as single bubbles rather than streams.

S: Toasty caramel malt woven through with a heavy hazelnut / chestnut presence, the nose is primarily sweet and warm.

T: Opening with toasted caramel malt with the usual hints of toffee, the flavor opens nicely into a blend of nuttiness, featuring the aforementioned hazelnuts and chestnut. There is a hop presence that also appears, which stays in the background and takes the edge off the malt sweetness. The finish ends quickly, without much lingering aftereffect.

M: Sparkling and medium-bodied, this is a lively ale to drink.

O: A salute to Tadcaster on an all-around enjoyable brown!

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Photo of BeerWithMike
4.75/5  rDev +16.7%

Sampling right now on 10/14/14 after bowling. Seen this over the years BUT never tried it. This one comes in a single 550ml (18.7 ounce) bottle for $3.99, though I seen it in a smaller 11.2 ounce 4-pack for around $10.00. Bottle chilled down to 36 degrees F in my beer cooler and poured in to a tall weissber vass glass.

Pours a pretty reddish-mahogany in color with a thick foamy/creamy 2-finger beige head that finally settles down to a few millimeters near the end of the drink. Lots of sticky lacing is seen through out the drink. The aroma is of roasted malts with a hint of caramel malts also. More going on with the taste as there is a hint of nutty chocolate also in the mix. Very smooth and goes down easy. No bitter or harsh aftertaste at all. One of the best 'Nut Brown Ale's' on the market in my opinion. Medium-bodied with lighter carbonation. A tasty brew!

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Photo of gtermi
4.06/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beer pours a dark brown body with a white head. Smell is of sweet roasted malt and a bit of nuttiness. The flavor is nice with a sweet chocolate, nut and a bit of faint weak coffee. Mouth feel is really smooth, and gives a slight tingle on the tip of the tongue.

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Photo of mnredsoxfan69
3.57/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The lads from Tadcaster usually do great things for me, but this one didn't quite hit the mark. Perhaps the bottle spent too long on the shelf, but while I did get a bit of nutty flavor from it, I tasted very little malt otherwise, nor much hops.

Clear brown with a four finger head that gradually receded to a half a finger. Not much on the nose that I could notice, nor on the taste for that matter aside from a little nuttiness. Medium bodied with light carbonation, silky. Overall, good, but not as great as I've come to expect from this brewery.

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Photo of baldwinfamilyfarm
4.75/5  rDev +16.7%

Pours with a thicker, fluffy head with staying power. This is an exceptional nut brown with the perfect balance of sweet scotch caramel and smooth dark malt. Will always come back to this one as a standard. Amazing Nut Brown!

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Photo of ENogueira
4.25/5  rDev +4.4%

Large 550ml bottle poured in a Samuel Smith pint glass. Exceptionally long lasting head with a lace that grips the glass throughout. Brown colored ale, exactly like the label. The toffee notes are the focal point. A little hint of caramel, perhaps a little hazelnut like Nutella. Very easy to drink, no one flavor overwhelms the palette. Light bodied with a gentle hop kick; not thick at all, which is remarkable. Surprisingly refreshing with a pleasant aftertaste. I'll definitely revisit.

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Photo of Gear54
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%

Light amber in color with two fingers of thick head that last throughout the glass. Really amazing lace! Carmel and toffee smell with hints if malts.

Roasted malts with just enough hoppy bitterness to balance the beer. Carmel and toffee give it a touch of sweetness as well.

I would say I really agree with the overall ratings this one has gotten from this site. Another delicious beer from Sam smith.

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Photo of ClavisAurea
4.25/5  rDev +4.4%

Usual Samuel Smith bottle size served in a pint glass at room temp.

Appearance: Removed the crown cap and the bottle popped with the carbonation release. Poured thick and rich with a solid 2 inch head that was light brown and made of fine bubbles. The head shrank down to a 1/4 inch and rode the glass to the bottom. Nice lace formed all along the way. The color is a medium brown and reddish hues. No haze and very clear. You can read the bottle label through the glass.

Nose: Caramel and toffee, no hop bitterness in the nose, malty with brown sugar notes

Taste: Very mild hop bitterness, just enough to take care of the malt that is in this wonderful brown ale. Layers of malt, toffee, caramel, slight English hop (Fuggle maybe), bready. Slight alcohol hit; not hot but definitely warming (surprising for this 5% ale). Mildly resinous hop finish.

Finish: Hoppy at first with a lingering malty roastiness. Still coats the mouth after 5 minutes between sips. This is a contemplative beer meant for enjoyment with friends and exciting food with lots of flavor and spice.

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Photo of risendragon
4.18/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into my trusty kitchen glass, bought from Trader Joe's in Nashua, NH.

A- Deep caramel brown, nice off-brown head.

S- I get some toasted hazelnut, walnut, caramel, and earthy hops. The malts definitely come through and are on the toasty side. Smells very crisp and inviting.

T- Nice and rich caramel with hazelnut, toasted malts, and a slight hop flavor at the end to balance it out. Very good aftertaste of toast, light coffee, and earthy notes mingled with caramel. Very satisfying.

M- I was expecting something a little thicker, it's a little watery for my liking, but then again, this is my first time trying a Northern English brown.

O- I went in with a completely open mind on this one and am glad I did. This brew is more for research purposes anyways as I am planning on brewing a similar style of brown ale but with a hint of peat-smoked malt thrown in. I think the peat would go well with this one though! Very good brew!

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Photo of doktorhops
4.34/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Samuel Smith's Nut Brown Ale is THE traditional English Brown Ale, brewed with hard well water (which was laid down in 1758 - that's old school) and fermented in 'stone Yorkshire squares'... I could go on but I'll spare you from the harsh glare of my encyclopaedic beer knowledge [I was reading from the bottle label]. The only other traditional EBA I've tried is Newcastle Brown, which was average at best, so the bar has been set pretty low for Mr Smith.

Poured from a 550ml bottle into a nonic pint.

A: Deep hazy caramel body with a sizable 2cm tan head that slowly settles after the pour.

S: Nuts. As advertised. I like that. There is an earthy hop aroma and some caramel malt thrown in, but you know you came for the nuts, admit it [that's why you bought a "Nut Brown Ale" Dok].

T: Nuts, walnuts specifically, on the front palate, then we get a caramel middle (with an added pecan flavour) before it finishes with some dry earthy hops. These are subtle flavours but they do play nice together. The after taste has a touch of hazelnut biscotti and café latte to it. Earth and beauty in its purest simplicity.

M: Mid to light bodied with a light (almost English pub but a touch fizzier) carbonation.

D: Easily the best EBA I've tried, the nuttiness and the complexity of the palate, for what is essentially a lightweight beer style, has impressed me thoroughly... shame about the difficulty to obtain it and the price in general ($8.50 a bottle in Plonk) whilst Hook Norton Old Hooky is half the cost and not so bad. If however you are asking yourself what a nutty beer should taste like you need to seek out the fine Mr Samuel Smith and ply him for this Ale.

Food match: Stilton cheese, game such as roast grouse; pheasant; partridge; roast duck and guinea fowl... yeah I read from the label again.

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Photo of Greywulfken
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: clear ruddy brown body of ale, few fingers of tan head draped some lacing down the glass

S: toasty and nutty malts; dark herbal bread dough; something herbal and earthy

T: nut and biscuit flavors up front, highlighted by lighter points of wet toast and tea; drying malt tastes on finish

M: mellow and smooth, slight coating on the close; slim-bodied and easy drinking

O: a nice brown English pub-style from renowned English brewers. No wonder it's a classic.

My first English brown ale, I found it only vaguely comparable to various American brown ales I've had. While not partial to brown ales, I was very fond of Rogue's Hazelnut Brown and DFH's Indian Brown ales, and while you would never confuse this with them, I would consider it on par.

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Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.04/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle purchased at Magpie Irish Pub in Rochester, NY.

Pours a dark but clear brown, with a small half inch head, and a little bit of lacing.

Smells like toasted bready malt, caramel, and nuts.

This is the classic nut brown, and tastes like one. Some cocoa powder, nutty flavor, toasted bread- pumperknickel, sorta, with caramel, and slight Englishy hop bitterness- leafy and tea-like. It's basic, but it's goddamn tasty.

Medium bodied, crisp, very clean mouthfeel, and insanely drinkable.

This is the blueprint for brown ales, and I can see why.

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Photo of EvoRich
4.23/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Look: Pours a very light reddish brown color with a two finger white fully head which retains pretty well. Some lacing as it's drank.

Smell: Very nutty and roasty malts upfront with a hint of chocolate.

Taste: Almost a dead on math with the smell: Very nutty and roasty, with a hint of chocolate. A bit of a bitter, nutty malt up front, with chocolate in the middle, finished with a slight dry hoppy flavor

Feel: Medium to full bodied, medium carbonation and smooth.

Overall: I expected it to be darker and sweeter, but still a great brown ale.

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Samuel Smith's Nut Brown Ale from Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)
91 out of 100 based on 1,446 ratings.