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Coffee Bender - Surly Brewing Company

Coffee BenderCoffee Bender

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

1,651 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1651
Reviews: 748
rAvg: 4.17
pDev: 11.27%


Brewed by:
Surly Brewing Company visit their website
Minnesota, United States

Style | ABV
American Brown Ale |  5.10% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Bender steeped cold for 24 hours in coarsely ground coffee beans from the Vinca Vista Hermosa plantation in Guatemala.

(Beer added by: feloniousmonk on 05-28-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,651 | Reviews: 748 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of KarlHungus
KarlHungus

Minnesota

4.9/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This beer pours nearly opaque deep brown color. The head is one inch in height, and recedes into nice rings of lacing. The aroma is of coffee beans, with nutty caramel malt beneath. The taste is a little maltier than the aroma, but there is still a ton of coffee. There is all the malty depth of regular Bender, but it seems more accentuated by the coffee. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a velvety texture, and moderate carbonation. Overall, this is a great beer. I have a feeling that I will be drinking this beer a lot.

Serving type: can

02-05-2009 23:28:55 | More by KarlHungus
Photo of umustdrink
umustdrink

Minnesota

4.08/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A - Very deep chocolate brown color. Light brown head settles at a thick ring, nothing in the middle. Lots of little lacing dots.

S - Medium roast coffee is the dominant aroma here, the original bender's caramely malty sweetness lurks the background.

T - An oily and bitter toasty coffee flavor start us out, then vanilla cream highlights and a more intense coffee flavor. Not much else in there, the coffee flavor dominates. Finish is a very long lasting rich and bitter coffee flavor.

M - Medium to light consistency, oily at times. Medium carbonation. Perfect for the brown ale style.

D - I really enjoy the flavor of coffee so I really enjoy this beer. Being that its a coffee flavored brown ale with an average alcohol content, this is more drinkable than some coffee stouts that taste very similar.

This falls under the novelty COFFEE (uppercase) beer (lowercase) category. Not that I don't like this a lot, but I'd like to have a coffee beer that is more beer and less coffee.

Serving type: can

02-05-2009 03:52:35 | More by umustdrink
Photo of KeefD
KeefD

Minnesota

4.43/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark red/brown color with ruby highlights, a nice fluffy tan head, and good lacing down the Surly coffee mug. Nice, bitter coffee aroma, some good hop smells coming in at the end all mixed with some light chocolate. Very nice coffee flavor here, silky smooth roasty malts, and a light bitterness on the finish. This is a very tasty brown ale as it is, but the coffee brings it to another level. I've had it on tap before (Darkness Day) and I think I prefered the tap version. It's seemed a little creamier and more silky than from the can, but it's still delicious nonetheless. Very nice Surly. You've done it again.

Serving type: can

02-04-2009 00:33:37 | More by KeefD
Photo of tavernjef
tavernjef

Minnesota

4.13/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Deepest, darkest of brown can get without going completely black and a low ember of light at the bottom like a dieing fire. Densely packed frothy foam of a solid sandy brown tan hue grows up to about a finger high and keeps a bubbly muffin top of skim always present. Lots of lacing in spotted sheeting grazes the glass.

Aroma of dry cocoa, dry oats, and a feathery roast of creamed cold-pressed coffee. A bit different from when I've pleasurely drank this on the tap as it has a stronger coffee presense on the tap. Here, from the can, its dryness is fairly enjoyable and complex.

Taste is a solid quick tang of roast and backed there after with a semi dry and oaty sweetness in the middle. Coffee bitterness and burnt grains ascent it well as it finishes dry and even. Again, its slightly different then what I can recall from the tap. This has a uniquely bittered drying finish with a fairly complex end of roasty things a happening and lasting late until just a titch of chocolate sweetness appears way in the back.

The body is about medium with an overall dryish smoothness of roasted and blackened malts balanced in with a softer yield of oaty sweetness and light chocolate. The coffee becomes much more evident in taste and character as it warms. Gaining a favorable dry roastyness throughout.

A well balanced porter with an interesting display between the dry and darker sweetness.
Out of the numberous times on-tap I've had this stuff, the canned Coffee Bender creates a slightly more dry and complexing experience within said dryness.
The tap has a bit more creamyness and smoothness to it, from what I remember. Time to experiment and find out where I might find any real differences...

Serving type: can

02-03-2009 01:03:53 | More by tavernjef
Photo of sholland119
sholland119

Pennsylvania

4.2/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got this one from maximum12. Thanks, Corey!

A-Deep, murky chestnut brown, with a thin, creamy tan head. Nicely sticky with little lacing.

S-Strong aroma of freshly ground coffee. I have tried a lot of coffee beers but this is the first time I have gotten this rich roastiness.

T-Roasted coffee follows a slightly sweet malt start, then ending with a mild hop to complement the roastiness.

M-Medium bodied, maybe a little heavy for a brown ale but that's not a complaint.

D-I would not usually jump up and down at the prospect of drinking a brown ale but this is a damn good one.

Love those Surly beers.

HV

Serving type: can

02-01-2009 02:40:30 | More by sholland119
Photo of masterchiefMD
masterchiefMD

Maryland

4.35/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Been trying alot of beers but have yet to rate one...so here it goes
Got in trade with tytoanderso big thanks!

poured very dark brown with minimal head. Strong smell of coffee!!! Taste is wonderful, strong coffee taste with roasted malts. Perfect carbonation is very light from look expected a little more thickness to it. I could sit down and drink a couple of these, very smooth!

Serving type: can

02-01-2009 01:41:18 | More by masterchiefMD
Photo of morimech
morimech

Minnesota

3.83/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Wonderful coffee flavor but it seems unbalanced in this relatively light body. Other coffee beers have more substance to them. Does not look as nice as regular Bender as a head never really forms and there is minimal lacing left on the glass. Coffee dominants the aroma and flavor. I do not get anything to even come close to balance or compliment the coffee. I just feel coffee compliments bigger beers than a brown ale.

Serving type: can

01-29-2009 23:05:43 | More by morimech
Photo of beerkittycat
beerkittycat

Minnesota

3.15/5  rDev -24.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

From a can poured into a smaller tasting glass and shared with others. Appearance is a murky amber brown with a tan head. Decent lacing. Aroma smells awesome of freshly ground high-quality coffee and some citrus hops in the background. Taste was....a little disappointing compared to the aroma. First off was the thin mouthfeel which surprised me considering the line-up of big beers that Surly makes. The flavors were rather thin, too, and was dominated by the coffee with little malt or hop flavor to balance things out. Too much carbonation in this beer probably allowed the mouthfeel to seem a little thin. I'll try it again, but I've had much better coffee beers than this.

Serving type: can

01-29-2009 20:17:13 | More by beerkittycat
Photo of SuperWhite92
SuperWhite92

Colorado

4.08/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Dark black, head fades rather quick. Aroma is very pleasant- like a good black coffee with a noticable back. I'm pretty impressed with that aspect. Taste is good. The original bender is still apparent, but it's accented with the wonderful coffee flavors, and either more chocolate, or the chocolate flavor is also created with the addition of the coffee. I'm getting a kick out of these Surly brews. Worth a taste for sure.

Serving type: can

01-29-2009 03:15:12 | More by SuperWhite92
Photo of NuBrewm
NuBrewm

Minnesota

4.68/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I had this one on tap at darkness day and now recently in a can. Figured I would rate this beer now that I had it canned since on darkness day I had a ton of different beers.

A: Nice Medium-Dark brown body, with a subtle tan head. Could have just poured it into a coffee mug and thought nothing of it.

S: Prominent coffee smell, roasted, but not of old roasted coffee. This smells fresh and not like some of the coffee ground beers I have tasted. The aroma is amazing!

T: The coffee flavor is at the tip of your tongue and then the bender smooth flavor takes over. Very balanced.

M: Medium bodied, enough to swish the palate with every sip.

D: Pretty damn drinkable considering how much coffee I drink. Low ABV and plenty of coffee smoothness to keep enjoying. yeah this beer is very refreshing and I wish it came in 6 paks.

Serving type: can

01-27-2009 14:15:01 | More by NuBrewm
Photo of Fatduck
Fatduck

Minnesota

4.65/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I waited for this one to come out in cans to review. Every time I have it on tap I proceed to drink a lot more afterward.

Pours a few shades darker than a normal Bender, it looks like coffee in my mug, with a deep tan head. The coffee smells jumps right out of the can as soon as you open it, and blows up all over the room when you finally poor this bad boy into your mug/glass. This is made with some of the finest coffee available in the Twin cities, from Coffee and Tea LTD. It maintains that creamy rich mouthfeel that makes Bender so enjoyable, and gives the kick of a nice strong cup of coffee.

This is a MUST TRY for anyone who likes coffee and likes beer. Costs about 12$ for a 4 pack, $3 a beer aint so bad, if you consider that last week the only place to find this was at the bar.

Serving type: can

01-25-2009 15:44:46 | More by Fatduck
Photo of Mdog
Mdog

Minnesota

4.13/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Appearance: Dark brown, red highlights when held to light. Nice head retention. Good lacing.

Smell: Mainly coffee, a little citrus.

Taste: With different cans I've had different amounts of coffee. The Bender base is still there, with nice roasted malt and chocolate, sometimes the coffee takes over and other times it stays in the background. From can to can it is different.

Drinkability: Bender is extremely drinkable whether it is coffee-infused or not.

It's awesome to have another Surly brew in cans. I have never had this beer on tap so it was new to me. I was a little surprised that it wasn't more coffee-like. Good stuff though I think I may like regular Bender a little more, as the original seems to be a little sweeter than this one.

Serving type: can

01-25-2009 03:14:23 | More by Mdog
Photo of leif86
leif86

California

4.38/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed in my Duvel.

A: Near black with a tan head that leaves a bit of lacing.

S: Freshly brewed coffee and loads of cereal grain. Very earthy.

T: Just like it smells: sweetened coffee and cereal. A little toasty too.

M: Good level of carbonation - I let mine sit a bit and it became nice and creamy.

D: Usually I don't find coffee beers that drinkable, but this one is very easy drinking. This is surprising giving how much coffee is actually present.

Serving type: can

01-25-2009 01:41:03 | More by leif86
Photo of mikesgroove
mikesgroove

South Carolina

4.72/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A big thanks to my man up in MN for sending these cans down to me right after the release. I have been hunting this one for a while as I truly appreciate a coffee beer above all others. Served chilled and poured into a pint glass, this one was consumed on 01/23/2009.

The pour was damn wonderful I have to say. Deep dark brown with some light shining through on the edges and bottom, but mostly opaque. Huge tan head maybe three inches high coming up and over the top and falling down into a full, sticky ring of lace around the sides of the glass.

The aroma was steeped with coffee. Rich brewed, medium coffee with a nice bitterness to it. Some light sweet notes bouncing around in there as well and a very nice roasted quality to it. Smooth, rich flavor, Bitter coffee notes dominated with an amlost tea like flavor in there as well if that makes any sense. Huge vcoffee flavor from beginning to end and the smoothness of it was wonderful. Mellow finish and light abv made it very sessionable and this one went down in no time, offering little challange to me.

This was a great coffee beer. One of my favorites. Lighter then others in feel, but the freshness of the brewed coffee flavor was soo spot on. I am very happy to have a good supply of this one.

Serving type: can

01-24-2009 05:46:35 | More by mikesgroove
Photo of jjanega08
jjanega08

Minnesota

4.63/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A= dark and delicious looking with a small head but decent lacing
S= really smells like a frappachino or something like that. Then once the coffee smell is subdued the beer comes through,
T=tastes much different than the bender actually. This is a whole new beast. Just plain good too. The coffee flavor is delicious.
M= smooth and creamy. Pretty light body
D= very high. Screams session!

Serving type: can

01-24-2009 01:16:22 | More by jjanega08
Photo of ihaf2p
ihaf2p

Minnesota

4.88/5  rDev +17%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I was leery of trying this beer because I am a huge Surly fan and because of the hype did not want a let down....no worries, it was a great experience. The smell of coffee is much more prominent that I expected. The chocolate flavors really come thru as well. Very good drinkability...not sure it would be a good session beer, but I would maybe alternate between a Coffee Bender and Furious. Cheers!!

Serving type: can

01-22-2009 15:43:28 | More by ihaf2p
Photo of MPLS
MPLS

Minnesota

4.43/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Have had this on Tap, from a growler, and now recently in a can. Decided to choose the can, which was my most recent tasting of this beer.

A: Nice Medium-Dark brown body, with a subtle fizzy head. Psychologically it makes me want to think it's the exact color of a dark cup of coffee.

S: Prominent coffee smell, roasted, but not of old roasted coffee. This smells fresh and not like some of the coffee ground beers I have tasted.

T: Awesome coffee up front with the typical bender in back, smooth and mellow. Props to Surly for not having the coffee flavor be too acidic.

M: Medium bodied, enough to swish the palate with every sip.

D: Pretty damn drinkable considering how much coffee I drink. Low ABV and plenty of coffee smoothness to keep enjoying.

Serving type: can

01-22-2009 09:52:24 | More by MPLS
Photo of br3wmeister
br3wmeister

Colorado

4.45/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A- One inch light brown head with tiny bubbles that clump together as the head diminishes. The beer is a deep red brown in color that lets little light through. Great lacing and good head retention.

S- Huge delicious dark roasted coffee aroma that almost covers up all other smells. Hints of caramel and dark chocolate, and some light hoppyness. If I close my eyes and smell this beer I can easily imagine myself in a coffee shop, I can almost here the espresso being ground.

T- The flavors in this beer are amazing, it starts out very sweet but layers of coffee and hops build up until all you can taste is a moderately hopped espresso. The initial sweetness is of caramel and milk chocolate that changes into dark chocolate and coffee. Then the hops come in with some piny bitterness but are overtaken by huge espresso flavors leaving your mouth tasting like coffee.

M- The mouth feel on this beer is phenomenal. Silky smooth yet complex, great carbonation with some bite from the hops. It is really an interesting beer to drink.

Overall: This is one of my favorite brown ales and a great release from Surly. I am very happy this is now in cans and I will do my part to make sure it pays off for Omar and every one else at Surly.

Serving type: can

01-21-2009 20:25:15 | More by br3wmeister
Photo of Buebie
Buebie

Minnesota

4.33/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Yippie! Bender in cans!!

Had this once before on tap, its nice that I can have it from home. Just picked it up, as it was released yesterday.

Poured from my 16 oz can into an oversized snifter. 2 fingers of fluffy off white head sits there for a few minutes. Settling to a thin layer of retention and nice even drapes of lace.
Color is almost black with a redish glow while held up against light.

The aroma still has a bit of cereal grains and malts. Now with deliciously creamy coffee aroma and bits of peanut butter nuttiness. Just a bit of roasty burnt caramel with somthing like a sweet hazelnut, or candy coated walmuts.
Mmmmm, this thing smells so good.

Good amount of carbonation kick all through.
Starts out with a semi sweet dark roasty nutty coffee flavor. Its not watered down or thin, its big in your face coffee. Still balanced with the grainy malt flavors still coming through.
That nutty rich coffee really peaks at the swallow.
Finishing quite dry and carbonated with a hay like hoppyness.
Bitter delicious black coffee lingers.

Very nice pick me up after a very long day at work. Maybe I'll have on for breakfast?

Serving type: can

01-21-2009 02:46:10 | More by Buebie
Photo of optiontwo
optiontwo

Minnesota

4.88/5  rDev +17%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Even though I've had this brew many times on-tap before I can't tell you how excited I am to be holding this beautiful can in my hands. Easily one of my most anticipated beers in a while.

First one to review coffee bender in a can! Woo-hoo! Ok, I'm done. Time for the review.

16oz. can poured into nonic

Appearance: Dark brown, not completely opaque but close, with half inch frothy tan head and very nice lacing.

Smell: So obviously, this being a coffee beer, you'd expect some major coffee aroma which there is, but there's a lot more going on. Coffee, roasted biscuit malts, caramel, chocolate, vanilla, and even some hop aroma are all in there.

Taste: Bitter coffee and chocolate followed by sweet caramel, toffee, and hazelnut and finished off with a perfect amount of hop flavor and bite. Simply delicious. This is the most balanced coffee beer I've ever had.

Mouthfeel: Perfect. Not too heavy, not too light. Carbonation is just right.

Drinkability: Also perfect. This is one of the tastiest 5.1%ABV brews there is. It goes down easy and if you were so inclined you could enjoy all four from your four-pack and not turn into frank the tank.

Overall: This, in my humble opinion, is a world-class coffee beer. And that's what you can expect from Surly, world-class beers. When I first had this beer it seemed a bit more coffee forward but now, out of the can, it seems a lot more balanced. I used to tell my pals that enjoy good beer to try this brew even if they didn't like coffee; well now that rings more true than ever. This is the perfect balance between beer and coffee and I am practically giddy that I have three more cans in my fridge. Obtain this, however you can.

Serving type: can

01-19-2009 21:49:33 | More by optiontwo
Photo of mnstorm99
mnstorm99

Minnesota

4.8/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Beautiful brown pour, almost porter looking, but we knew that about Bender already, great light tan head that stays until the glass is empty.
Aroma is of coffee, and more coffee, then a nice touch of caramel and biscuit malts. There is even a slight aroma of spicy hops to round things out.
Taste is as good as it gets, there isn't even a need to let this one warm too much. Great smooth coffee flavors round out a mix of biscuit and caramel malts, possible even a small touch of chocolate, with a nice small background of floral hops.
Mouthfeel is great for a brown ale, but this isn't a brown ale, it is a little thin for a porter, but this isn't a porter, oh, I am confused. This is way too easy to drink and I can see the caffeine and alchohol fighting out which should win.

Serving type: on-tap

01-16-2009 14:24:09 | More by mnstorm99
Photo of Greggy
Greggy

Minnesota

4.58/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Had copious amounts on tap many times in the cities.

A- Pours a 1 finger white head, creamy in consistency. The body is brown with ruby red highlights. As the glass empties, thin lacing covers the glass.

S- Very nice pressed coffee aromatics coupled with vanilla, cream, bits chocolate, and some nuttiness. The hops are subdued on this vs. the regular bender, but still has some great balance.

T- Starts off with some nice roasted coffee, although lighter than what i was expecting. The coffee melds perfectly with vanilla, cream, light chocolate, some nuttiness, and a creamy finish with great residual notes of fresh coffee.

M- Very smooth with light carbonation. The coffee finish is great.

D- Extremely drinkable. Will definitely have this gem again.

Serving type: on-tap

01-12-2009 19:21:30 | More by Greggy
Photo of HopHobo
HopHobo

Michigan

4.53/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Enjoy several pints of this brew on tap at the Hopleaf in Chitown over the weekend.

A-It was dark so the beer appeared to pour very dark for a brown ale. Decent one finger head that diminishes very quickly to leave lacing on the sides of the glass and a thin layer of froth on top of the beer.

S-The immediate smell that dominates this brew is roasted coffee. Some underlying sweet smells along with smells of nuttiness that can be detected in the base bender beer as well. Overall, one of the best smelling coffee beers that has ever graced my nose.

T-Oh mama, thank god someone bought me a different beer because I could have drank this one all night long. Great coffee flavor without being too abrasive. The sweetness of the brown ale really blends together well with the roasted coffee flavor to make this a very tastey brew.

M-Mouthfeel was medium with good carbonation, very distinguishable as a brown ale and not a stout or porter.

D-My only regret with this beer is that I had it after having several other beers, I would love to try this beer as my first of the night...oh and get a growler(hint, hint). Very good beer and as always...I'm impressed with Surly.

Serving type: on-tap

01-08-2009 20:35:52 | More by HopHobo
Photo of hellbilly
hellbilly

Arizona

3.98/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

growler from psprings... wtf! who just pulls out a growler and hands it to you?

this poured a chestnut-y brown... i'm gonna go with a shade darker than the regular bender and a creamy tannish head.

if i smelled this blind i would've told you it was stale coffee. crazy... aromas of whole medium dark roasted beans beans, brown sugar, toasted nuts and vanilla. i'm amazed by the sheer volume of real coffee stink coming off of this thing!

awww, the flavor is a bit of a let down. not bad, just not very... esoteric... a cold cup of mildly sour coffee with notes of brown sugar, faint chocolate and some nuttiness with a very bitter dry finish. there's just not a whole lot happening. it's damn good just a bit too simple and straight forward. it is medium bodied with a nice creamy mouth feel.

i have this fairy tale dream in my head of surly finding a way to get some bacon in this stuff... my personal heaven of my three loves in one glass!
9/4/7/4/17/4.1

Serving type: growler

01-08-2009 05:10:44 | More by hellbilly
Photo of Packforever1976
Packforever1976

Minnesota

4.65/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in my british pint.

A: Pours a medium redish brown, with a smallish light tan head. Head recedes quickly leaving a small layer on top. Decent lacing.

S: I haven't had this in quite awhile, and I forgot how good it smells. Good quality dark roasted coffee dominates the nose. Some hints of hazelnut and vanilla as well. Amazing.

T: A nice bitter dark roasted coffee flavor up front. That bitterness is quite nice, as alot of coffee beers are way too sweet. Some nice hazelnut and vanilla flavors follow, and in the finish I get some good quality dark chocolate. Man, this beer is tasty.

M: Mouthfeel is great. Carbonation is spot on. Nice level of thickness for the style.

D: Coffee Bender is crazy drinkable. I probably wouldn't be able to put down more than a couple pints at a time, but those pints would go down very smooth. Another winner from Todd and Surly.

Serving type: growler

01-07-2009 01:30:04 | More by Packforever1976
Coffee Bender from Surly Brewing Company
93 out of 100 based on 1,651 ratings.