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Three - Surly Brewing Company

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very good

40 Reviews
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Reviews: 40
Hads: 72
Avg: 4.01
pDev: 17.96%
Wants: 23
Gots: 0 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Surly Brewing Company visit their website
Minnesota, United States

Style | ABV
Braggot |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: ClockworkOrange on 01-19-2009

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Tap only.
View: Beers (53) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 40 | Hads: 72
Reviews by mnstorm99:
Photo of mnstorm99
3.3/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Dark brown pour with no head to speak of, which can be expected as this is true to style with very little carbonation. But it isn't the best looking brew in general. There is a lack of aroma, I get very small hints of honey and dark sweet malts, but they are hard to search for. Taste is extremely sweet, which is to style, but honestly a style I am not enamored with. Mouthfeel is nice and smooth, with a definate coating of sugars on the way down. The aftertaste is something I can't quite pick out, but the taste as someone next to me put it "tastes like flat coke" which is somewhat true, but I don't get the coke, I get flat sweet malts, mostly caramel. The best of their anniversary beers to me, but again, just not a beer I will seek out.

 745 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of ryancl
4.25/5  rDev +6%

Photo of MattyG85
4.42/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From a special keg sent from the brewery for Dennis Brother's 10th anniversary store event. Poured into a clear plastic cup.

Appearance: A very dark brownish black with a light hint of amber. About a couple fingers of off white head that fades into a thin patchy layer. Decent amount of lacing.

Smell: A pretty sweet and fruity aroma. Dark roasted malts with some hints of dark bread, chocolate, toffee, and burnt caramel. Huge presence of dark fruits with hints of raisin, dark cherry, plums, and fig. A good amount of molasses and brown sugar. Also some hints of honey, apple, and vanilla.

Taste: Like it smells, a pretty sweet taste that is very forward with the dark fruits and sugar, but not cloying. Some dark malts with fairly mild notes of chocolate, caramel, toffee, and dark biscuit. A good dose of molasses and brown sugar. Really big taste of dark and ripe fruits. Notes of raisin, cherries, plums, figs, apple, and pear. Honey is actually kind of tame compared to the fruits. A little bit of vanilla. Very good taste here.

Mouthfeel: Medium to full bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Very creamy and slick. Somewhat sticky. Alcohol is hidden very well considering how high it is.

Overall: A very good and interesting brew. My first experience with this style. With a couple years of age the dark fruits really shine. Nice to be able to try this.

 1,379 characters

Photo of joh04587
5/5  rDev +24.7%

Photo of Bunuelian
4.35/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Diomede
5/5  rDev +24.7%

Photo of jegross2
3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

Photo of FreshmanPour77
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of wedgie9
4.28/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

On draft at Sheffield's. Due to poor lighting, it is difficult to get a good grasp on what I am seeing, but I think that it looks like a cloudy dark brown almost black color. As I drink more, I can see that there is a red tint to the beer. The head is minimal and off white. The initial aroma is of light caramel malt. There is a fruitiness as well, let's call it prune juice-like. It also smells slightly sour. As far as flavor is concerned, I have never tasted anything like this before. It starts off like a very malty but friendly amber ale. On the middle palate, this beer really shows off how big it is, coating my whole mouth while chocolate notes come through. On the back of the palate the sour fruit flavors kick in and stick around for quite a while on the finish. As mentioned, this is a big oily coating beer with lighter carbonation. Overall, this is an extremely unique beer with great balance and drinkability. The complexity is not huge, but I still love it.

 975 characters

Photo of GbVDave
4.05/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served in a snifter at Small Bar 4/30/09. Thanks to HeatherAnn for the assist!

A: Served a deep, dark chestnut with a tiny head that quickly melted to a small ring and a small amount of lace.

S: Aromas of fresh honey, berries, homemade caramel, and toasted nuts.

T: See above with the addition of sweet caramel drenched berries and apples.

M: Sweet, sticky, and smooth. No trace of alcohol was detected! Sweet with a slightly dry tartness.

D: I didn't know what to expect and boy was I surprised. Excellent!

 512 characters

Photo of cofeeguru
5/5  rDev +24.7%

Photo of MPLS
3.7/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Waited patiently @ the Blue Nile to try this, lots of Surly sheep running around.

A: Dark syrup, with little head that was poured into a D Tremens tulip.

S: Smells like alcohol, what have I gotten myself into? There is also some good-natured sweetness and dark malts.

T: Unique and intense. A domineering sweetness makes me realize that this beer is not to my extreme liking. The uniqueness and bright molasses-like notes make it pleasant though.

M: This thing felt like Nyuil-lite, good coating of the mouth, yes um.

D: Domineering sweetness led me to drink another beer, of course it was a Surly still :p

 611 characters

Photo of natasharai
4.59/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Poured with almost no head and what was there dissipated in a minute or two. The beer is a clear beautiful dark brown color.

Smell: The honey is very prevalent in the smell there are fruity aromas and a little alcohol smell.

Taste: Very sweet honey flavor, dark fruit like cherries and plum, and then a sweet malt flavor. I can taste molasses, and as it warms up the honey becomes stronger.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied, a little syrupy, slight tingle on the tongue

Overall: Very strong bold flavors, predominantly sweet honey. Takes a little while to drink, but I enjoyed every last drop! A nice change for me, different and enjoyable beer!!

 655 characters

Photo of Thorpe429
4.12/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Bavarian Lodge in Lisle, IL.

A: Very dark with a deep tan head and plenty of lacing.

S: Lots of sweetness with both dark and ripe fruits; some dried raisins and a honey sweetness.

T: Over the top sweetness with honey, raisins, and other fruits coming to the fore.

M: Medium bodied and quite creamy; mild hints of alcohol throughout.

D: Not terribly drinkable, but this was my first of the style and I imagine most of them are this way.

 454 characters

Photo of RDAdams
1.96/5  rDev -51.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 4 | overall: 1

The appearance is very inviting. Dark with a beautiful head.

As for the aroma, the honey and the Munich malt are both there, but there is no blending. It's like tha old McDonald's as where "the hot side is hot and the cold side is cold."

The taste is sickening sweet. It reminded me German Double Chocolate Cake with too much sugar added to the recipe.

The mouthfeel is full and smoth.

Drinkability: I couldn't finish it

 424 characters

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

I didn't know what this was, but have had good experiences with Surly beers so ordered it. The bartender told me it was from a bottle they had in back, although looks like everyone else has had it on tap, so not sure.

A - Dark brown, red on the edges. Small head with a little lacing.

S - No idea what a braggot is, but it smells considerably different than most beers. Thing I really notice with this one is some sort of raisin/honey smell. Fruity.

T - Interesting taste, not sure how it is for the style but it is pretty good. Sharply sweet, with a deep honey/raisin taste and almost some darkly acidic berries. Lighter tasting than it looks. Alcohol does come through on this one which helps cut the sweetness.

M - Sticky and syrupy. Low carbonation.

D - Too sweet and sticky to drink a ton of, but I may just not be accustom to the style. Definately worth having.

 872 characters

Photo of Jeffrey2310
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of KeefD
4.52/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this on tap at Stub and Herb's. Pours a dark brown color with no head and no lacing. Some foam does pop as the tulip is given a swirl. Aroma is very strange, to say the least. Yes, there's honey, some chocolate, and a bit of spice, but for some reason I was smelling A1 Steak Sauce in the nose. Weird, right? Well, I passed it to my girlfriend and asked her what she thought, and she said the same thing. There was some funky stuff going in the nose, but I kind of liked it! Taste was marvelous! Light chocolate and honey mixed together nicely, with some tart cherry flavors in the background, citrus hops bitterness galore, lots of spiciness, very complex and well balanced. This was my first braggot and it was delicious to say the least. Medium body, decent carbonation, but it was lost pretty quickly as I had to keep swirling to get a head. Alcohol was pretty well hidden and I drank this bad boy down pretty fast. This was an excellent beer and I was glad I got to try it while I could.

 996 characters

Photo of hoeg0015
5/5  rDev +24.7%

Photo of robbyc1
4.02/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On draft at Hopleaf in Chicago.

Sampled a small glass, nice deep brown, clearish look with little head.

Sweetness hits the nose, you get the honey tone, then it opens up for vanilla and delicate spices. Very pleasant. Wow.

The deep malt hits on front, with chocolate tones, and then a massive honey sweetness finishes and coats and lasts on the pallet. I'm not sure they used enough hops to mellow the sweetness, my only real complaint.

Full bodied, with a heavy mouthfeel, stays around for sure. The drinkability suffers from the sweetness, you must be ready for this. It's a dessert sipper. Hard to think about finishing a full pint.

Forget the Strong Ale designation, it is strong but this is a true to style Braggot, with a great malt linked to the underlying Mead, I would love to try this mead on it's own. As a Braggot it is very well done, if a bit over the top on sweetness, Love ya Surly.

 903 characters

Photo of beerad666
3.73/5  rDev -7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had this on tap at the Small Bar in Chicago, IL.

It pours a very murky dark dark amber, it was really dark inside the bar so may have looked darker then it was. There was almost no head, just some white lacing on the glass. In the aroma honey and sugar comes through right away, also some cherry. I was worried this was going to be too sweet and undrinkable. It almost smells like a mead. But the taste is more tart with honey. Don't get me wrong, this is a sweet beverage. But it is well balanced with the malts and fruit. This one is a sipper and a sharer, I wasn't able to tackle a whole pint alone. The booze was getting to me and I was just starting to feel sticky. This is a different beer and worth trying if you see it on tap.

 735 characters

Photo of brandoman63
3.25/5  rDev -19%

Photo of dfillius
4.78/5  rDev +19.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Served in a stemless wine glass. Enjoyed with lunch at Common Roots Cafe just before the keg was kicked! Manager told me it was half honey, half black Munich malt - doesn't that make it Braggot (http://beeradvocate.com/beer/style/114)?

A: 1 finger of dense tan creamy foam with tremendous retention. Opaque black doesn't match the manager's description of it as a 'Bright ale'. Looks like Guinness.
S: Floral hops with a bright (there it is) alcohol smell behind the hops. Maybe honey.
T: Fruity, tangy, delicious. This is new territory for me, I haven't had anything like it before. I could not ask for any improvements on the flavor of this beer. Sweet, but not cloying. Sweetness is grounded by the roasted malt.
M: Impossibly creamy, like on Nitro-tap (but wasn't, I checked). Delightful. Tiny bit of bitterness. Smooth.
D: I would have many of these. Not a session beer though! (I was surprised to see it listed as 10.00%!)

 929 characters

Photo of JackieTH
4.23/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

On tap at the 2015 MN ABR

Rich dark mahogany pour with a khaki colored head into a 2-oz tasting glass. Heavy caramel and toffee, raisin and dark dried fruits in the nose. Taste follows suit but explodes with dark fruits..raisins, dark cherries, figs, wonderfully balanced on a the toffee-brown sugary character. Belgian fruitiness of the yeast is evident. There is a just noticeable warming that just works well here. Full, heavy body, velvety feel, coats the glass and the palate. Big brew, excellent.

 509 characters

Photo of doucmehu
5/5  rDev +24.7%

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Three from Surly Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 40 ratings.