Bracia - Thornbridge Brewery

Not Rated.
BraciaBracia

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BA SCORE
93
outstanding

130 Ratings
THE BROS
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Ratings: 130
Reviews: 38
rAvg: 4.22
pDev: 11.14%
Wants: 41
Gots: 23 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Thornbridge Brewery visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
English Strong Ale |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: tempest on 04-16-2009

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 130 | Reviews: 38
Photo of heygeebee
3.87/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

True to style English Strong Ale... A la amped up Old Peculiar. All treacle, burnt toffee, and in this instance you can taste the added honey. Quite warmly alcoholic. All very dry tho on the finish, which lessens drinkability.
One of those beers you can appreciate the complexity without necessarily enjoying the taste,

Photo of Bitterbill
4.43/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Looks pretty stoutish..black with a small tan head, poured slowly. The lacing is pretty impressive.

The smell is big time, umm, roasty, nutty, chocolaty, smell some licorice, coffee..yummy.

As bold as the aromas permeating my nosebuds are, the taste takes it up a notch. Hazelnuts and coffee abound, licorice is there but plays a minor role. This is really quite bitter and right at the end, I get a bit of a smoky character.

It's not overly heavy in the body. More like what I've seen mentioned...velvety smooth. Spot on carbonation.

This just plain blows me away with how good it is and how drinkable it is. At 9% abv, there's no alcohol in the taste at all. Just a wee bit of warming on a morning, here in Casper, where it's BLOODY SNOWING and there was no warning. Cheers!

Photo of brother_rebus
3.58/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.5

DARK. Smells maple-y. Taste honey up front and nut as F on the after. Which is surprising for a dark beer this dark. Bit of a boozy afterbreath. Trails off with a clovy/spicelike taste. Leaves chocolate taste in mouth. Overall pleased. Probably wouldnt buy again. Not because its not good. Just not my cup of meat.

Photo of Child_Pugh
3.79/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

L - gorgeous, black, silky
S - Get a strange maple scent, very sickly sweet
T - much more bitter than the scent would indicate, hints of coffee and some maple after taste.
F - incredibly smooth, easy on the palate

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.94/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

9% ABV per the label.

Pours an opaque black with a foamy super dark khaki head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Foamy swaths of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa powder, char, earth, molasses, smoke, and slight citrus zest aromas. Taste is much the same with cocoa powder, char, peat, smoke, and citrus zest flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of roast and smoke bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a low level of carbonation with an almost flat and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer with a nice mix of ingredients in the smell and taste, but the carbonation level on this one is a bit too low to me.

Serving type: bottle.

Photo of ElviraS
5/5  rDev +18.5%

Gorgeous!
Koht ( Tallinn, Estonia)

Photo of eric5bellies
4.7/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Drank from my Mane Liquor Tulip

A - Pours a thick Ebony colour with no light visible. The head is two fingered and tanned. It retains very well and laces.

S - Plenty going on with caramel, vanilla coffee etc

T - Wow so smooth. The vanilla and caramel are very prominent the finish is nice toffee notes and biscuit. Absolutely no sign of the 10% abv.

M - Full body and low carbonation. So very smooth indeed.

O - Well this is an awesome brew. I'm so very pleased its my 800th review. The balance in this beer is brilliant and the mouthfeel is perfection.

Photo of eduardolinhalis
4.55/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

500ml bottle served in an English pint glass.

A: Pours a creamy liquid with an oily black color. Forms a big, creamy and quite bubbled tan head. Good retention and lots of thin but quite molasses lacings in the glass

S: Very reach nose. Strong notes of roasted malts, honey, chestnut, chocolate, coffee and plums. Some citrus notes. Grassy hops and a bit booze

T: Perfect taste. Great bittersweet balance. Very complex. Sweet upfront with strong notes of roasted malts, honey, chestnut, dark chocolate, coffee, plums, raisins and orange peel. The end is quite bitter, a mix of roastiness and grassy hops

M: Creamy, molasses, smooth heavy body. Medium carbonation. Bittersweet aftertaste, followed by some citrus and grassy notes

O: Masterpiece

Photo of BeerDrinker01
4.81/5  rDev +14%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

500 ml bottle served in a brandy goblet poured very dark nearly black with 2 finger thick mocha colored head. Aromas of Caramel, Dark Chocolate, Cappuccino, Chestnuts, Roasted Malts, Licorice, Vanilla, Peat, Taste is delicious chestnuts & honey with black licorice, Roasted malts, Rich bitter dark Chocolate & Cappuccino with a nice peat smoke flavor at the back. Mouthfeel is full bodied with moderate carbonation, Rich & smooth!

Photo of dcmchew
4.73/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Pitch black in color, one finger dark beige head, big retention.
Smells beautiful. Lots of dark chocolate and caramel, roasted malts, nuts, smoked wood, sweet coffee, honey, some faint licorice and citric notes. It's a rollercoaster, this should be great.
Dark ashy roasted malts, with lots of strong espresso coffee notes. Dark chocolate with a low lactose feel, sweet caramel, but mostly lots of licorice and honey, going down gently. Chestnuts are obvious and enrich the maltiness. Fruitiness is also present, with some nice dried plum and raisin, and a lick of orange peel in the back. Spices vary from vanilla to cinnamon to minty anise. A light peat also towards the end. The finish is A+, with a great complexity of hops, bringing lots of grassy leafy notes, but dry tobacco also, a certain dry green-citrusy finish from the Sorachi Ace, faint exotic fruits and overall a great bitterness (blends beautifully with the roast).
Low carbonation, and the mouthfeel is oily and chewy, perfect for a sipper, wouldn't have it any other way. Aftertaste perfectly sums up the brew, with the lingering sweet honey, the green hops, the roasted malts and a slight booziness.
This was really something else, one to remember.

Photo of FLima
4.06/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Deep black color that completely shields light with a one finger thick caramel head with good retention.
Bold aroma of chestnuts, licorice, wood and roasted malts. Hints of earth and pine-urinal deodorizer.
Strong flavor of honey with lots of sorachi ace hops and chestnuts with notes of licorice, pine, whiskey and burnt wood. Hints of pepper, flowers and plums with peel. Dry and bitter aftertaste with a lingering hoppy, cappuccino and ash note.
Full body with low carbonation, smooth but also sticky. 10% ABV hides in its flavors.
Very complex beer with a unique flavor, all notes are potent, they come and go giving space to the next one. Thornbridge is one of my favorite’s breweries and this is an interesting brew to wake up your senses.

Photo of Immortale25
3.68/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Had on-tap at Avenue Pub New Orleans. Served in a wine-style glass.

A- Pours a fully opaque black color with a 1/4 inch light brown head that doesn't retain long before becoming a thick ring around the edge of the glass and

S- Some faint dark roasted malt and a lot of wet cardboard...uh-oh. Glassy with a bit of booze.

T- The flavor is sort of the same. A good amount of dark roast with some wet cardboard in the middle and a lingering bitter aftertaste. Drinks more like a porter or light stout than anything. I will say the alcohol is quite well masked but there's still that glassy flavor that was detected in the aroma. As the drink progresses, the roasty bitterness starts to dominate and this beer shows its true colors. Strong and assertive with notes of pumpernickel, coffee and a bit of bourbon.

M- Certainly the best part of this beer. Creamy, soft and smooth. Medium carbonation and a full body.

O- There are things I like about this beer but there are almost just as many things that I don't like. Kind of all over the place.

Photo of ngeunit1
4.16/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Dark brown-black with a finger of frothy chocolate colored head. Fades fairly slowly.

S - Sweet dark caramel and toffee malts, dark fruits, honey, smoke, nuttiness, vanilla, oak, bit of booze.

T - Sweet dark caramel and toffee malts, dark fruits, honey, vanilla, oak, smoke, nuttiness, black licorice, and a bit of booze.

M - Medium-full bodied with moderate carbonation. Smooth with a sweet, warming finish.

D - Nice complex and balanced English Strong Ale.

Photo of Ale-ienation
4.36/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Black as midnight with a thick and creamy toasted-beige head that retains well.

S: Toasted chestnuts, roasted malt, dark chocolate.

T: Sweet malts and honey up front balanced by a pleasant roasty bitterness. A rich nuttiness abounds in the middle; chestnuts, walnuts, almonds. The slightest floral note of sage also comes through with the clean and bitter finish. Profoundly blended and delicious.

M: Full bodied, creamy and silky smooth.

O: Beautifully complex dark ale that benefited from the firkin treatment.

Photo of seand
3.9/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours an opaque dark brown with a small amount of dark tan head. Just a ring around the edge of the glass retains, which leaves small sheets of lacing.

S: Sweet and malty; somewhat scotch-like, smoky and peaty.

T: Quite sweet and somewhat whiskey-like. Thick malt, with roasted smokey notes and a thick aftertaste.

M: Full body, medium carbonation.

Overall, thick, nice, and whiskey-like. It's quite strong, but a good flavor combination.

Photo of Tone
3.58/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours a black color. 1/4 inch head of a tan color. Great retention and good lacing. Smells of anise/licorice, sweet malt, dry hop, hint of pale malt, hint of floral hops, alcohol, honey, and tea. Fits the style of an English Strong Ale. Mouth feel is sharp and clean, with an average carbonation level. Tastes of dry hops, sweet malt, hint of roasted malt, alcohol, honey, hint of hops, and tea. Overall, good appearance, decent aroma, blend, and body.

Photo of woosterbill
3.19/5  rDev -24.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

On tap at Prime 16, served in a B. United goblet.

A: Black body, one finger of dense light brown head. Great retention and lacing. Darker than I expected, but lovely.

S: Intensely malty and roasty, with dark chocolate, licorice, and smoky char being the biggest components. Some dark fruit and spicy booze, too. Bold, but too astringent.

T: Follows the nose, with the addition of some floral bitterness and additional emphasis on the fig-like dark fruit notes. Astringent roastiness still dominates up front, with alcohol brining up the back end. Not pleasant, sad to say.

M: Creamy medium-full body with lots of soft carbonation. Great.

O: I was really looking forward to this one, being a big fan of the brewery, but this was a disappointment. More sweetness would have gone a long way toward allowing the complexity to shine without the more...assertive...flavors absolutely taking over. Perhaps a bottle with some age on it would make a better impression? I'd love to revisit it, but probably won't considering how expensive bottles are.

Cheers!

Photo of Bouleboubier
4.5/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

(poured into a tulip)

A: wow! pretty damn impenetrably jet black - throws up a caulk-y, coffee-colored head with not much stick, if any on the glass, however, it keeps a thick collar going

S: leather (oxidation?), chocolate, roasted nuts, bubblegum cigar, urinal cake (and I suppose licorice...the wildcard...) - very interesting, unlike any other beer I've smelt - alcohol, straight clean booze, of course, emerges as it warms - amazing depth and misfit character - might just make me rethink how critically I judge the aromas of other beers, past and future...

T: much of the same flavors as the aromas (thank you!) - old notebook paper - perhaps a tad licorice in the finish - super malt complexity paired against lovely yeast-derived phenolics - I suppose the honey is in the background, supporting all else - later in the finish, I do get some dark, black fruit (grape, but not quite raisin) and a silken roasted barley - espresso crawls back up on the tongue long after (compounded residual)

F: warmth very slowly rises like slowly turning up the volume; Doppler effect, as it fades into the gut - little bit of a bitter tingle up front followed by a sloth wash of sooty body - soft, delicate, and smooooth and, oh!, does it drop off stupid-clean dry

O: unique, as far as my scant experience - what a dynamic, expertly-rendered ale - wow! - the alcohol is so beautifully woven in - do break the bank on this one, please!

Photo of Manoftyr
4.94/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance- Pours a rich, dark, nearly black chestnut brown with a finger or two of mocha colored head. No real lacing to speak of, and the head dies down to a thin ring rather fast but the color and pour were both beautiful.

Aroma-Honey and deeply roasted nuts are at the forefront of the aroma, hints of peat around the edges. Cocoa is prominent as well, some black licorice as well, caramel and some dark fruity plumlike notes round it out. Smells utterly fantastic.

Taste-Follows the aroma closely, the deep nuttiness and honey are right there upfront and lasts all the way to the very end. Hoppiness is fairly aggressive without being dominating, very well balanced, cocoa and caramelized malts come in towards the middle again with peat on the outside. Finish is floral-sweet and honeylike.

Mouthfeel-Lush, thick and rich, not quite as full as an Imperial stout but on the fuller side of medium; perfect for the beer.

Overall/Drinkability-Really, really fantastic stuff here, a unique drinking experience; addictively drinkable and keeps you coming back.

Photo of Greywulfken
4.38/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Great bottle design, hefty price tag.

A: pours a thick black and coughs up a finger or two of creamy head that clings to the sides of my tulip as it recedes. I immediately went into stout mode.

S: great malt aromas from the Maris Otter, brown, Munich, Dark Crystal and chocolate, among others - rich espresso and cocoa.

T: chocolate and honey - reminded me of a silky alcoholic dark chocolate Toblerone bar; wonderful mix of malts (cited above) and hops, including Hallertau and Sorachi Ace - a very rich taste of distinction.

M: silky, full, slick, sweet honey and bittersweet chocolate aftertaste

O: I thought this a fantatstic beer - truly unique flavors and a lucious body. Gotta grab one if you spot it. I would shell out the dough to pick up another one if its still on the shelf when I go back.

Photo of Sammy
3.93/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle from Lakeview Liquors. A stout and a mead. Black with a bubbly head. New Zealand honey is a noticeably premium honey and here. Lacey. Wickedly Smooth mouthfeel. Chestnuts, a bit intense flavour in the finish. Good drinkability, something unique and special.

Photo of zaphodchak
4.05/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Light brown head, dark brown body. Trace of lace.

Nose is deep with malt and some peat.

Thick taste-- caramel a bit of nuttiness, a bit of licorice. Quite nice and rich, but still pretty dry. Bold flavor with some wood and peat on the finish. Trace of coffee.

Thickish, with a bit of foam.

Outstanding and rich without being cloying. Bold flavor and in a different way than other English beers.

Photo of Thehuntmaster
4.62/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

500ml bottle 10,0% ABV
Served lightly chilled in an over sized wine glass.
Best before: 27/02/2017

Appearance: This is by far the darkest non imperial stout that I have seen. The body is a very dark brown, verging on black and almost totally opaque. A rough pour generates a massive, creamy, dark tan coloured head that displays great retention and leaves patches of lace clinging to the glass.

Smell: I could smell this from the second the cap was cracked. The initial nose is that of honey drizzled hazelnuts, almost like a hazelnut liqueur. After a few seconds an array of other notes become apparent, these include: Milk chocolate, sweet cappuccino, a touch of cocoa, dark caramel, molasses, roasted chestnuts, liquorice, vanilla, peach blossoms and dark fruit (dark cherries, raisins and plums). The hazelnuts and honey are present throughout. As the beer warms, the dark fruit notes become more apparent and a touch of the 10% is noted.

Taste: Delicious - simply delicious! As in the nose, hazelnuts and honey are well noted, along side chocolate, a little roasted malt, molasses, dark fruit (black cherries and raisins) and a distinct earthy quality. Warming brings more of the dark fruits, molasses and a touch of peat, but the 10% stays totally hidden.

Mouthfeel: The body is just under full and lightly sticky. The carbonation is of a medium level, but not quite smooth enough to make this a world class mouthfeel.

Overall: Bracia is a fantastic beer and easily the most interesting one I have had recently. I would love to see a barrel-aged version (maybe a peated whisky barrel?) in the future. I will be buying a few more of these for the cellar.

Photo of rarbring
3.99/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A dark dark brown beer, a light brown head, slowly settling leaving good lacing, good curtains.

Smelling a bit metallic, sherry, nuts, coffee.

Starting sweet brown sugar and burned bread crust, chocolate and liqueur, soy sauce, some bitter orange peel.

Little carbonation, smooth, thick and sticky, a dry finish.

Some misses in the smell is well compensated in the taste.

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.28/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured a dark brown color ale with a large foamy head with good retention and some good lacing. Aroma consists of dry fruits with dry toffee notes are quite unique and quite strong. Taste is a strange mix between some dry toffee notes with caramel malt with some molasses notes with some light fruity ester and some chestnut. Body is quite full with good carbonation and no apparent alcohol. Very complex beer with maybe a tad too much going on.

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Bracia from Thornbridge Brewery
93 out of 100 based on 130 ratings.