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Moe's Bender - Surly Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Moe's Bender
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BA SCORE
94
outstanding

35 Reviews
THE BROS
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no score

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Reviews: 35
Hads: 146
Avg: 4.37
pDev: 10.53%
Wants: 124
Gots: 2 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Surly Brewing Company
Minnesota, United States | website

Style | ABV
American Brown Ale | 5.52% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 05-08-2010

Coffee chocolate vanilla brown ale aged on cherry and birch woods.
View: Beers (60) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 35 | Hads: 146
Photo of younger35
4.52/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Stopped by Mackenzie's on my way home to try a glass of this version of one of my favorite beers. I'm a big fan of vanilla in beer if done right. Drank from a Surly Coffee Bender coffee mug.

Appearance- Pours a dark brownish amber with a nice ½ finger fluffy light tan head. Nice cap and collar remains the entire beer while leaving a bit of spotty lacing down the glass.
Smell- Loads of vanilla right from the start that literally seems to jump out of the glass. Lots of coffee still makes its way through along with some raw cocoa nib like chocolate. I'm not sure I'd ever guess this was Coffee Bender by just smelling the beer since the vanilla is so dominate.
Taste- Tootsie Roll through and through. Loads of vanilla and cocoa with none of that coffee goodness I live so much in perhaps my favorite all-time beer. The vanilla makes the beer seem a bit sweeter than it is (or maybe it's the chocolate but the vanilla is what's more noticeable) but at least the vanilla tastes real. The chocolate plays second fiddle in this combo and perhaps even accentuates the vanilla. A bit of toast sneaks through as does just a snippet of citrus on the end. A long lasting vanilla richness lingers.
Mouthfeel- Very crisp and clean body with a medium feel that somehow manages to also be silky smooth and creamy.
Drinkability- Doesn't have the drinkability of the regular version but is most definitely unique and enjoyable. This is a desert beer to the fullest and fully showcases the power of the vanilla bean. No way I could drink more than one of these but hopefully we'll see this around town on more of a regular basis.

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Photo of deebo
4.58/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had multiple pints of this at Surly's Power of the Pint event a couple weeks back.

Rather than write up the normal review, I'll simply focus on this beer relative to the other Benders from Surly. As much as I think coffee bender is better than the already solid bender due to the great balance between the roasted malts and the coffee notes. Moe's Bender takes it to yet another level. The balance of roasted malts, with chocolate espresso notes, and a hint of vanilla give this a wonderful smooth taste. This has a nice rich taste yet goes down way too easy.

I would love to see Surly keep making this one, simply a terrific beer.

If you get an opportunity to drink this beer, do it. And if you are lucky enough to get it for $4/pint, don't feel bad about drinking the tap dry.

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Photo of camp0474
4.59/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Cafe 28 on 1/31/11 for Surly 5th Anniversary Party

A: Dark brown to black with a nice tall tan head. Good lacing and retention.

S: Great notes of bitter chocolate and fresh vanilla bean. Toasted malts and faint coffee still shine through. Smells amazing.

T: Bitter baking chocolate and vanilla bean present. Great flavor of regular Coffee Bender as a backbone. The coffee is slightly hidden and mellowed by the oak aging. Well balanced flavors and a great modification to an already great beer.

M: Medium body with medium carbonation. Slight hop bitterness. A bit silkier than regular Bender.

D: Well balanced with great flavors. Welcome addition to an already great Coffee Brown Ale.

The chocolate and vanilla flavors make this beer exceptional. Really glad I was able to try this beer. I really enjoy Bender and Coffee Bender, so this was a great treat.

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Photo of Flipadelphia84
4.67/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A- Very dark not quite black but a little amber around the edges. Poured with a two finger creamy head.

S- Very chocolaty. A lot of vanilla, smells pretty sweet. It reminds me of smelling hot chocolate or even tootsie rolls. Yum!

T- Smooth, Vanilla comes out first, then the chocolate, and a very slight woody dryness from the oak. Really Really good.

M- Very light bodied and lower in carbonation. Based on everything else I expected more.

D- Extremely Drinkable.

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Photo of zeledonia
4.75/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at the Surly 5th anniversary event at the Blue Nile. Reviewed from notes.

This was the beer I really wanted to try at this Surly event, and I wasn't disappointed. Pours a nice dark brown with a heavy head that gradually relaxes. Smell is heavy on the coffee, with a nice mix of cocoa and vanilla backing it up. Flavor is so complex it's hard to believe. Take normal Bender, which is already a fantastic beer, then add some coffee, then some chocolate, then a bit of vanilla. These flavors come in waves, making for an incredibly sophisticated beer. Just wow. I really wish this were more widely available - I'd drink it all the time.

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Photo of feloniousmonk
4.77/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

At last in my grasp, Moe's Bender…

dark brown with transparent, crimson footing, slim cocoa-tinged head.

If I remember correctly, the cocoa is coming from Guatemala, and the vanilla from Zimbabwe…? Or, maybe another African nation? The coffee is the same

Aroma: soft and spicy, warm and inviting, a complex and beguiling mix of chocolate and coffee with vanilla underneath, but slowly rising.

Taste: espresso tones come first, just the smallest bit bitter, but not an iota harsh or astringent. Very mellowed by the cocoa, charmed by the vanilla. Medium-bodied, with a strong flavor, and a long finish. Becomes languid and creamy.
Settles sweetly on the palate. You'd think it would be a tug of war, a cacophony of flavors, but it's nothing but harmony, melody, and deliciousness.

Every sip begs another, the flavor finds a lovely place in the mouth and it beckons out, "don't let me leave."

Halfway into the pint, it only makes my mouth happier. This joy spreads out through the senses, and touches the soul. Deep down contentedness.

In other words: "ahhhh…"
Furthermore: "Mmmm…"

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Photo of stealth
4.87/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I wish Surly would decide to produce this one for the masses to enjoy. Enjoyed at Darkness Day 2011. Coffee bender with additional vanilla and cocoa. It's Coffee Bender, but more chocolately and sweeter. Mother of god this is good. I drank more of this than anything else at DD, and will do the same next year.

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Photo of pdeme
4.89/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I was able to go to one of Surly's 5th anniversary parties and was able to try this one.

A: Very dark, small head and good lacing.
S: Vanila, chocolate, espresso. Great smelling beer.
T: one of the smoothest beers I have had. From start to finish the taste changes.
M: Very smooth.
O: Wasn't too excited to try this one, but after having it I was not disapointed. If i'm ever at an event that has it I would not hesitate to pay the premium price for a glass.

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Photo of deadbody
5/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I have tasted heaven and its name is Moe.

Pours a nice rich brown with a caramel head, smells of malt and vanilla and chocolate. Taste is outstanding, vanilla and chocolate notes mix in to make this delicious brew. Drink this with a rich chocolaty dessert and you will be willing to trade your first born for the ability to do so again (does anyone need a generally well behaved 12 year old? I have one I'll trade for a keg of this).

Mouthfeel is rich without being too thick.

Overall? Outstanding. Quite possibly the best beer I have ever tasted.

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Photo of evanlarkin
5/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance:
Brown with a reasonable head. Dark and hazy, but not much light gets through.

Smell:
Chocolate and vanilla, with coffee in the background. Malty sweetness is apparent throughout.

Taste: Vanilla and coffee, with chocolate gaining headway in the middle. A slightly toasty malt finish coming back to chocolate flavor.

Mouthfeel:
Creamy and smooth with lowish carbonation.

Drinkability:
The highest. This is the one. It tastes so smooth and rich, without being overpowering. This is one that you could drink all night, regardless of the strong flavors.

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Moe's Bender from Surly Brewing Company
94 out of 100 based on 35 ratings.