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Bender - Oak Aged - Surly Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Bender - Oak Aged
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very good

51 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 51
Reviews: 24
rAvg: 3.93
pDev: 16.79%
Wants: 8
Gots: 0 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Surly Brewing Company visit their website
Minnesota, United States

Style | ABV
American Brown Ale |  5.10% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-24-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 51 | Reviews: 24 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by herman77:
Photo of herman77
4.18/5  rDev +6.4%

On cask at Cafe 28 for Surly's 5th Anniversary party.

A: Dark brown, nice light tan head with amazing retention. Good lacing.

S: Lightly roasted malt, some woody/oaky notes, a bit of coco and hints of coffee. I remember it having a better and stronger nose when I've had it in the past, but I guess this one could have been aged longer/shorter on the oak spirals.

T: Again, its a lot like normal bender with obviously a more oaky/woody taste and a hint of smoke.

M: Medium body, soft carbonation from the cask. Very smooth and velvety feeling.

D: Great drinkability. Brings out all the high points of normal bender.

herman77, Feb 01, 2011
More User Reviews:
Photo of blackearth
4.72/5  rDev +20.1%

I had this beer at Surly during the AHA rally. It poured a dark brown to black body with large amount of foam that ranged from large bubbles at the top of the head all the way down to micro-scopic white bubbles at the bottom of the head. Subdued aroma of chocolate and roasted malts. The mouthfeel was medium bodied and creamy. The taste was terrific - it was like chocolate milk or a chocolate malt. Just amazing.

blackearth, Oct 12, 2009
Photo of rudylaw
4/5  rDev +1.8%

@ Clark St. Ale House

Pours a tan, foamy head from the cask. Looks and smells like regular Bender but with some vanilla, oak and malt. We also have bits of coffee and chocolate, of course. Almost no carbonation as it glides down extremely easy. I'm glad I got to experience this.

rudylaw, Jun 13, 2008
Photo of pwoods
4.53/5  rDev +15.3%

Cask at D-Day. Notes from text.

How much better could Bender get? The body is so smooth and creamy. The oak adds so much dimension. Along with the toffee, coffee, and cocoa, the oak adds a great woody, earthy note and then rebalances with a hint of vanilla. The hops pop beautifully when the beer is this damn fresh.

pwoods, Nov 21, 2008
Photo of Oboogie
4.25/5  rDev +8.1%

Oboogie, Dec 24, 2012
Photo of tempest
4.13/5  rDev +5.1%

Poured from a firkin at Groveland Tap.

Delivered with zero head and a murky body from the firkin, served a touch too cold. As it warmed, a nice aroma of vanilla and oak came out with a little cocoa behind it. The flavor is a subtle mix of the oak and vanilla with smooth chocolate malts, a touch of coffee, and fruit punch hops. And it finishes with a long aftertaste of mocha coffee/dark roasted grains.

This is a must-try for Bender fans, the oak adds a nice extra level of flavor.

tempest, Dec 20, 2007
Photo of bengore
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%

bengore, Oct 29, 2012
Photo of Ctrauty
4/5  rDev +1.8%

Ctrauty, May 30, 2013
Photo of gatornation
1.45/5  rDev -63.1%

on cask 12 oz pour

A- a dark brown pour with a tan head and some nice lacing..looks good

S-whew..wet and used charcoal with burnt nicotine smells,smoke and malts

T- same as smell ,no chocolate,no hops,no vanilla,no malts, just a watery brown mess of a taste

M- watered down with no taste except for see above smells

O- the worst brew from surly i have ever had..it would have been a drainpour if at home

gatornation, Dec 04, 2011
Photo of mkvi
4/5  rDev +1.8%

mkvi, Feb 05, 2012
Photo of jarrgal
3.5/5  rDev -10.9%

jarrgal, Oct 28, 2013
Photo of Doyle
4/5  rDev +1.8%

Doyle, Dec 14, 2013
Photo of MPLS
4.1/5  rDev +4.3%

Stumbled upon this cask well after I thought it would be polished off.

A: Bad ass brown with the bottom of the pint glass looking almost red hue. The cask gives this beer no lacing and a saliva like layer of head, maybe.

S: Almost the same nose as regular Bender, perhaps a little less vivid.

T: Milky, malty goodness. The hop profile of regular bender is really tamed with this one and replaced with oak. Maybe think Bender plus vanilla tootsie rolls?

M: Smooth as silk, creamy, but no carbonation to speak of.

D: The silky smooth mouth feel made me spring for multiple pints, easy easy drinking because of its cask nature.

MPLS, Sep 24, 2009
Photo of MichaelM
4/5  rDev +1.8%

MichaelM, Aug 01, 2012
Photo of Jeffrey2310
4/5  rDev +1.8%

Jeffrey2310, Aug 19, 2013
Photo of objectivemonkey
4.8/5  rDev +22.1%

Finally getting this review down.... So Todd stops by Cafe 28 the evening before Thanksgiving, cask in hand. As funny as it seemed, we'd been drinking Darkness all night long, but that wasn't the beer we were excited for...

Into a pint glass, poured the same dark brown with ruby hues, a thick and creamy head of light tan that stuck around for a long time, leaving rings and blobs and tons of lacing. The aroma was unmatchable... the most oaky nose I've ever encountered, with all that lovely Bender chocolates and thick malt and bit of earthy hop. The taste follows suit, oak being the first though... it was just dripping with the woody goodness... it was just unreal. Add a smooth a tasty mouth and you have yourself one fantastic brew.

objectivemonkey, Dec 02, 2007
Photo of brandoman63
4.75/5  rDev +20.9%

brandoman63, Nov 19, 2011
Photo of Dotcubed
3.83/5  rDev -2.5%

Another on from last saturday.

I gravitated towards this one because I'm a Bender fan.

The plastic cup detracted from the awesomeness of this product. But I still could see it's intense dark color. Black tar molasses. Little coco colored lace around the edge of the cup.

Smelled much like regular Bender but with some hint of sweetness.
Spectacular vanilla note. Heavy on the oak chips or these guys got a good set of staves. Seemed to have a subtle rye element, but maybe that was just me.

Good weight, the body was a little heavy but that's just how those beers are.

Not an every day drinker, and not really a beer I'd want outside the fall or winter season.

Dotcubed, Oct 27, 2009
Photo of mychalg9
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%

mychalg9, Aug 14, 2013
4/5  rDev +1.8%

MITCHELLMPLS, Feb 05, 2012
Photo of MNPikey
3.25/5  rDev -17.3%

MNPikey, Jun 07, 2013
Photo of ToadiesForCody
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%

ToadiesForCody, Mar 21, 2014
Photo of Buebie
3.9/5  rDev -0.8%

Had this on cask at the brewery for Darkness day.

Poured into a 12oz plastic cup...wish it had been a snifter.
Poured a dark brown in color, glowing red at the edges when held to light.
tan 1 finger head, some retention. Bubbles apear much larger then they do when poured from the can.

vanilla aroma, some mild chocolate malt aromas, burnt toast, kinda fruity.

Taste is kinda smokey from the oak I presume. Smooth and creamy in mouthfeel. Roasted almonds, chocolate again, some mild coffee.

Very smooth and delicious brew

Buebie, Oct 27, 2008
Photo of homebrew311
3.78/5  rDev -3.8%

Logged from notes, served on cask at Darkness Day 2011. Appearance is transparent brown with 1 finger of head and decent lace. Nose has roasted malts, mellow oak, subtle vanilla notes and a touch of cocoa at the end. The taste is smooth and well balanced. A touch of caramel presents a bit of sweetness with some chocolate and roast to follow. Finish has a bit of vanilla. Mouthfeel is creamy and smooth. Overall, this is nice and drinkable but very tame in the way of flavor.

homebrew311, Aug 12, 2013
Photo of brdc
4.15/5  rDev +5.6%

Not sure if I can call the serving a cask, but that is how it has been rated by others.
Had it at Darkness day.

Slightly darker than the original, with a small tan head that fades quickly but has sticky lacing.
It still resembles more a porten than a brown ale: caramel, malts, burnt sugar, coffee and a tiny bit of hops, some fruitiness that resembles cherries, and a bit of vanilla too; the aging added more vanilla, it appears.
Taste is very similar, and it might have gotten lighter and even easier to drink, but the flavor profile did not later much from the can version.
Bitter coffee, followed by some sweet caramel, then bittersweet chocolate.
Medium-bodied, creamy, it is a great brew but not necessarily a lot better than the can.

brdc, Oct 26, 2008
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Bender - Oak Aged from Surly Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 51 ratings.