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Wynona's Big Brown Ale - Voodoo Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Wynona's Big Brown AleWynona's Big Brown Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

223 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 223
Reviews: 102
rAvg: 3.84
pDev: 11.72%
Wants: 14
Gots: 18 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Voodoo Brewing Company visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
American Brown Ale |  7.30% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
his is named after a song that sparked the idea to make this ale. Brown ales seem to be there, but not really there, do you know what I mean? Well that won't be the mistake with Wynona! Voodooed out this style and add more that's what we say. Hoppy and smooth hints of chocolate and tons of brown malt to let you know it's there. Try the brown, You'll be Happy You Did!!

(Beer added by: WVbeergeek on 07-05-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 223 | Reviews: 102 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Knapp85


2.7/5  rDev -29.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

This beer has a lot of coffee going on in it. The beer is a deep brown color, as it should be. The beer didn't have much of a nut flavor to it because the coffee strongly over powers it. The sweetness that a Brown Ale has is also muted for the same reason. This beer is now on the bitter side like cold black coffee.

Serving type: bottle

03-27-2011 22:44:00 | More by Knapp85
Photo of ZeroSignal


3.98/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bottle, no date, poured into DFH Snifter

A - Super dark, opaque pour with just a hint of brown at the bottom of the snifter. Half a finger or so of toasted marshmallow colored head. Retention settles to a thin layer across the top of the brew; loose lacing.

S - Big, earthy nose with a heavy hit of chocolate malt; more reminiscent of a stout then most browns I'm used to. But hey, it smells darn good so I'm into it.

T&M - Ton's of malt on the palate, with big roasted malt and chocolate flavors. There's also a lot of bitterness after the malt subsides a bit, with a grapefruit and piney flavor. Alcohol is well hidden behind the big flavors.

O - Certainly the maltiest, and also most bitter, brown that I've ever had. Lot's of characteristics that remind me of stouts and strong dark ales. A very tasty brew.

Serving type: bottle

03-21-2011 01:48:22 | More by ZeroSignal
Photo of pgaveau

New York

3.83/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle without any bottling date.

Pours an amber brown with yeast floating around. Very little head or carbonation. Muted aroma of coffee and cola. The taste is of caramel and malt. There is almost no bitterness or after taste. I enjoyed this beer and would have it again. I look forward to tasting other offerings from Voodoo.

Serving type: bottle

03-01-2011 01:19:35 | More by pgaveau
Photo of wyattshotmaker


3.6/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

hmmm...this beer. strange.

poured into a snifter, deep brown. great lacing.

aroma is nutty, caramel, catty hops.

sweet caramel, catty hop flavor,nutty, roasted coffee flavor in the finish. kinda bitter, kinda sweet. i'm not quite sure how to take this beer.

medium bodied. this beer is weird. i feel like i could drink a decent amount of it. it's just really different.

Serving type: bottle

01-24-2011 03:13:09 | More by wyattshotmaker
Photo of biegaman

Ontario (Canada)

4.1/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Cole's, in Buffalo.

The beer has a dark brown base colour, highlights that glint like tinsel and a head that fits like the ugly, oversize sweater your relative got your for Christmas. It's a promising looking brown ale and the fact that it is so dark, the odd ornamental bursts of light brown and dark red notwithstanding, suggests this is a particularly hefty brown ale as well.

If you're at all familiar with the music of Primus, Wynona's Big Brown Beav.. err, Ale, is a lot like Les Claypool: technically and fundamentally very sound whilst at the same time unconventional and even a little eccentric. The toasted and nutty malts of a classic brown ale are thorough but squawking over them is a distortion of hops and heavy-roast coffee.

So who said anyway that this had to be a mild style? Holy crap this has a lot of flavour! Maybe not in content, but in form this resembles very much higher gravity stouts and porters in having a tremendously rich and heavy maltiness with a prominent hairline roastiness and flavours suggestive of chocolate, hazelnut and (lots of) coffee.

All the nutty and malty sweetness meets a rather premature end at the hands of a fairly tyrannous bitterness. That hoppiness, despite its obvious presence, might be overlooked because of accompanying notes of dark berries and chocolate, both of which leave a resoundingly flavourful taste in the mouth. There is never any mention of the alcohol.

Voodoo has crafted a historic ale at a weight for contemporary palates; it lumps all the habitual hoppiness and monster maltiness now so in vogue and rallies it into the framework of an old timey classic. And, in doing so without compromising the style's traditionally agreeable, quaffable nature, it serves as a resounding example of the craftsmanship and intuition of this brewery and the American craft scene in general.

Serving type: on-tap

01-13-2011 13:24:45 | More by biegaman
Photo of IronCitySteve


1.95/5  rDev -49.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

A: Pours a hazy brown color with a thick tan foam head with plenty of lacing.

S: Lots of roasted nuts, milk chocolate, bread and caramel. Very sweet smelling, quite inviting.

T: A highly bitter taste and metallic tasting. A bad bottle or how the beer normally is? There is some nutty malt character but the metallic taste is too much.

M: Metallic and bitter.

D: I am not sure if this is a bad bottle or not as I have not seen anything posted anywhere. Voodoo makes very tasty brews, this one is a miss for me.

Serving type: bottle

01-06-2011 23:32:00 | More by IronCitySteve
Photo of stakem


2.65/5  rDev -31%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

From a bottle with no indication of freshness poured into a shaped pint glass. This brew appears dark brown in color with lighter brown and ruby clarity when held to the light. I only got about 8 ounces down the side of the glass before I have to wait for the head to reside. Slightly more than 3 fingers of darkly tanned head forms atop this brew and slowly recedes leaving thick patches of lacing on the glass. The retention of the head is fairly solid and laces in a complete wall around the glassware.

The aroma of this brew is chocolate malt as soon as the cap is popped. As it sits in the glass and more whiffs are taken, the chocolate aspect drops off and it smells a bit musty with herbal hops and a touch of mineral character. There is a slight bit of "greenness" to the nose with a scent of alcohol and citrus.

The taste is a dry touch of dark malt upfront tasting lightly roasty and smoky with a bit of coffee-like bitterness and a faint amount of residual sweetness. The roast of the chocolate malt provides it's own level of bitterness before the hops come into play with an herbal flavor and bitterness. The taste of this brew is a bit perplexing in a not-so-good way. Some sips are roasty malt which is enjoyable, other sips are more mineral filled, green and tasting a bit off.

This is a medium to light bodied brew with a higher than expected amount of carbonation that is a bit prickly on the tongue. I could not finish the glass and don't think I would risk trying another one if I had to pay for it. This just doesn't taste much at all like the Wynona's Big Brown I had before that inspired me to recently pick up this bottle to review. The sample I had before had much more residual sweetness and a much brighter hop character to it. Perhaps this is just an old bottle? Who knows, there is no way to tell how fresh it is since there is no date code. However, the excess carbonation and off character to this brew makes me suspect something might be off with this bottle. I don't know if it provides any benefit since there is no bottle/date code, but this particular bottle had a gold cap.

Serving type: bottle

01-06-2011 01:28:03 | More by stakem
Photo of mvanaskie13


4.08/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a standard pint glass, nice creamy, tan thick head appeared and filled the top of the glass. Great lacing as the head dies and the beer is enjoyed. Color is a nice translucent brown with amber highlights.

Smell is on the milder side, but very nice chocolately and roasted scents.

Taste is smooooth, nice and creamy, with nothing overdone, good roasted, chocalate and caramel malt flavors throughout. Hop bitterness is well balanced, tough to decipher the particulars but it complements the malt flavors well.

Mouthfeel and drinkability set this beer apart. The flavors are very well presented but come clean in the mouth, nothing off balance, good carbontation. An exceptionally drinkable beer, tough to tell it clocks in at >7% abv.

Serving type: bottle

12-19-2010 00:30:49 | More by mvanaskie13
Photo of cooch69


3.9/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours more than just a brown ale. It's very brown. Dark Chocolate brown with a small head and a lot of lacing.

It smells pretty light. Milk Chocolate and a bit of hops are in the aroma.

The tatse is full of semi dark chocolate(60%).
There is a good amount of hops in there but it is only enough to balance it. Not that strong. It is pretty dry with a medium body however the alcohol is'nt that detectable. It will hit you quick.

I have only had two Voodoo beers so far and they were both pretty solid. Hopefully I will get my hands on a Big Black Voodoo Daddy that is if the bar still has it on the menu.

Serving type: bottle

12-12-2010 06:18:18 | More by cooch69
Photo of claspada

New Jersey

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

Aromas are initially nutty with a solid maltiness. There was a wide range of roasted nuttiness; really enjoy when brown ales use old school brown malts. Hiding behind all the roasted nuts was a splash of sweet caramel, a drop of milk chocolate and a subtle hint of roasted coffee beans.

The taste was also nutty and roasted brilliance. You can find all the same type of nuts that were in the aroma here in the taste. Following the roasted nuts was some dark roasted malts, a nice amount of bitter chocolate and a very subtle touch of sweet caramel.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a full flavored dry roasted aftertaste of roasted nuts, a hint of dark roasted malts and a touch of dark chocolate.

Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed this beer. It really is a superb example of a Brown ale for an extremely reasonable price. Packed with numerous flavors and tastes it is one to be enjoyed during a nice chilly day or even a warmer one because it is so dynamic. Because it is so delicious I could pound this but it shouldn't be, just because it so amazing. Voodoo is a great brewery that I have yet to have a bad offering from.

Serving type: bottle

12-04-2010 01:45:50 | More by claspada
Photo of bushbeer75


3.88/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz brown bottle not dated

Voodoo Brewing Wynona's Big Brown Ale poured a dark brown color with a 1-finger tan head that dissipated rather quickly to form fine bubbly lacing - almost like a film circling my mug. The aroma is of warm caramel, chocolate and roasted malt. The taste is dominated by British Brown malt giving this ale its nice sweet nut character. Present also is the flavors of chocolate, caramel, with a light grapefruit citrus towards the finish accompanied with a touch of warming alcohol. Mouth feel is a medium body with a medium almost fizzy carbonation.

Wynona's Big Brown Ale is a bold Brown Ale that is rich and full flavored - thumbs-up Voodoo.

Serving type: bottle

11-24-2010 17:55:33 | More by bushbeer75
Photo of jampics2


4.08/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle into a snifter.

This beer poured a brown color with a bit of red around the edges. Opaque after it settles, which took a bit of time. A nice fluffy white head crowns the brown ale in style. Some good retention and lace are also noted.

Wynona's Big Brown Ale is a brown ale that almost crosses the line towards being a nutty porter IMO. There's some really nice roasted malt that gives a decadent and smooth chocolate smell, much like hot cocoa. Some well-integrated nuttiness is also noted. This has a nice, full nose but could stand to be a touch more expressive.

Luckily, the beer does bring the flavor. This tastes great! Sweet caramel and roasted malt come across like chocolate flavored sweetened coffee. Dark toffee and dark fruit are present in the climax of the taste. Then, a touch of bitterness subsides and this finishes with some great nuttiness. The Shorts PB&J beer had ruined nuttiness for me for a while now because of the way the peanuts and infection jelled into one taste, but this has such good flavor it's got me back on-board.

The beer is medium bodied with more than adequate carbonation. Too much carbonation. Sparkles like champagne. That's the big bummer here. If the carb was dialed down and the sparkle subsided, we'd be looking at one of my favorite new Brown Ales. As is, I'd give another vintage a shot the next time I'm out in PA. Another pretty impressive tasting beer from Voodoo!

Serving type: bottle

11-19-2010 21:58:18 | More by jampics2
Photo of JamnesCameron


3.65/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a New Holland Pint glass.

Pours a deep mahogany with a thin fizzy head that doesn't last.

Aromas of caramel malt, no hops really to speak of, though. As it warms, a little citrus comes through, from the hops used, leaning more toward orange. Some cocoa notes after it warms, way in the back of the aromas.

First sip is like the aroma, caramelly, on the sweeter side. Any hops are there for balance, but not tasting anything. Could this be an old bottle? No, too cold. As it warms, the hops start to make their presence known. Some orange citrus flavors come through to balance out the caramelly malt. Nice contrast between the caramel and the citrus. Also, a little chocolate comes through at the end of the sip after it warms up.

Mouthfeel is very spritzy, a little overcarbonated for my taste, with too much carbonic bite. Even after it warms, it still has a bit of a bite to it. Should be a little softer in the mouthfeel.

This is a good, drinkable beer. However, due to carbonation level, may lead to a full gassy feeling, that would not lend itself to being sessionable. If not for that, this would be a very drinkable beer.

Serving type: bottle

11-05-2010 03:45:59 | More by JamnesCameron
Photo of Stinkypuss


4.33/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Murky brown with a short livid khaki head. Some particles are floating but not excessively so, an unfiltered brown ale by the looks of it.

Smell: Malty, some piney hops. Caramel, light espresso.

Taste: A robust beer with a strong roasted presence. Caramel, coffee, toffee and chocolate nibs are all there for the taking. Hops are there lending an earthy bitterness to round everything out. Intensely flavorful and satisfying, the best tasting brown ale I've had.

Mouthfeel: Fuller bodied, smooth and somewhat crisp with a small hop bite.

Drinkability: A nice big brown ale that could be a staple for me. Excellent beer.

Serving type: bottle

10-27-2010 21:49:44 | More by Stinkypuss
Photo of mothman

United Kingdom (Wales)

3.33/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into pint glass.

Pours 1 finger of light brown head. Color is a dark brown.

Aroma: Chocolate and roasted malts. The chocolate is fairly rich, but sweet. It has some creamy flavors and cocoa. Chocolate milk comes to mind.

Taste: Cocoa powder and milk chocolate. Again, it tastes like chocolate milk. Some roasted malts. However, I do get some grassy hops providing some bitterness. A touch of caramel as well.

Mouthfeel: Creamy and bitter. Medium bodied with a medium amount of carbonation. Ends very dry.

Overall, it is a decent brown. A bit roasted, but I like the chocolate and cocoa. Decent drinkability. Fairly solid brown in general.

Serving type: bottle

10-06-2010 01:56:53 | More by mothman
Photo of SamuelJackson45


4.45/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Very dark chocolate brown look.

S- Smell of bittersweet chocolate with a slit hint of coffee from the malt.

T-Taste of mild hops and bittersweet chocolate.

M- Very moist creamy and smooth. The bittersweet malt linger through out the sip.

D- I must say this is a tasty beer. A worth another bottle.


Serving type: bottle

09-14-2010 04:02:37 | More by SamuelJackson45
Photo of bonkers

New Jersey

4.2/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I poured from a 22 ounce bottle into a standard pint glass. It has a deep brown pour with way,way too much head. The head does sticks around for a while. The nose is full of sweet roasted malt. The taste follows the nose. The roasted malt really shines. The beer is medium/light in body and is very drinkable. A very good brown ale, IMO it drinks more like an Irish stout.

Serving type: bottle

08-24-2010 00:19:51 | More by bonkers
Photo of gator0877


4.08/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle. Poured dark brown with a one inch head. I had a ton of flakes floating in the beer but didn't stop me from drinking . Smelled just like brown ale should, roast malts with chocolate and toffee hints. It was not overly carbonated and did not feel too thin like some brown ales I have had in the past. I could have a few of these in one night. A good beer, one that will be on my drink when possible list.

Serving type: bottle

08-10-2010 03:46:44 | More by gator0877
Photo of DrDemento456


4.35/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this about a month ago in a 12 oz bottle.

A - Poured a mahogany deep brown with an inch of head. Pretty nice.

S - I can smell caramel, toffee, and cinnamon

T - Not a bad Brown ale. More bitter than expected. Taste is great with the caramel and toffee flavors with bitter finish. Pretty nice.

M - Pretty medium bodied and full of flavor.

D - Well not the best brown ale I ever had but still highly drinkable. Pretty nice brown ale.

Serving type: bottle

07-09-2010 06:05:53 | More by DrDemento456
Photo of mikeyv35

New York

3.23/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Date: 06/16/2010
Type: 22oz. Bottle
Vintage: 2008
Glassware: Portsmouth Tulip

Brew poured a dark brown mahoghany in color w/ a massive, more than 4 finger light brown bubbly head. Lacing all over the glass. It literally took 15 minutes for the foam to calm down before I could smell or drink this, even w/ a very slow pour. After 15 minutes, the nose was of toffee, caramel, spices, and bradiness. The taste was of caramel, toffee, slight coffee, w/ a finish of spice and a good hop backbone. However, the nose and flavors were all diminished from what they could have been by this brew being so overly carbonated. Medium bodied but tough to tell due to extreme carbonation. Drinkability was poor unless you enjoy drinking foam.

Overall, this brew was very disappointing due to what I obviously already pointed out. I will have to revisit a fresh 2010 bottle of this brew, but for now I am very underwhelmed.

Serving type: bottle

06-17-2010 05:33:11 | More by mikeyv35
Photo of Viggo

Ontario (Canada)

3.9/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle picked up at Champagnes in Detroit.

Pours a hazy very dark ruby red, some dark brown away from the light, very thick and chuinky light tan head forms and settles down to a thick ring around the glass, big sheets of lace stick around, looks pretty good.

Smell is real nice, very malty, toffee, light chocolate, a bit buttery, some orange and grapefruit citrus, toasty, very biscuity, wood, earthy, lightly roasty, some fruitiness, pretty neat.

Taste is nice, very malty again, big chocolate malt, heavy toffee, really nice nuttiness, malt balls, biscuity, some toast, a bit of alcohol, lightly sour, a bit of fruit, raisin, some citrus, orange peel, smooth malty finish.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with low to medium carbonation, a bit of warmth going down, but pretty drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

05-22-2010 00:44:21 | More by Viggo
Photo of grub

Ontario (Canada)

3.93/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Viggo brought this one over. thanks eric!

22oz bottle. sampled may 21/2010.

pours clear dark brown with a small dark tan head. the head drops fairly fast and leaves spotty lace.

aroma is good. big sweet caramel and toffee. dark and milk chocolate. touch of alcohol. white bread. bit of biscuit. bit of peanut butter. vanilla. earthy and woody.

taste is nice. dark and milk chocolate. touch of bittersweet chocolate. whole wheat bread and biscuit. touch of alcohol. earthy. lightly woody. hint of vanilla. bit of peanut, but not quite as much as in the aroma. in fact, the balance has shifted from caramel and peanut butter to dark chocolate. touch of espresso. medium-low bitterness level, mostly chocolaty.

mouthfeel is great. nice big body. medium carbonation level.

drinkability is great. nice balance. big and tasty. a nice brown ale.

Serving type: bottle

05-22-2010 00:39:41 | More by grub
Photo of Seanibus


4.35/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep rich brown with a gigantic fluffy head - a very welcoming looking beer. The head drops fairly quickly to thick lacing. The aroma is powerful - rich and roasted, woody and almost a little coffee-like. This draws you into the warm, rich, woody flavor - it tastes like being in front of a roaring fire at a ski lodge. There is relatively little caramel, as one might expect from a beer this dark. Instead it really is more roasted and smokey - in fact, this tastes as if there might be a bit of smokes malt sneaked there for effect. If not, it is a wonderful application of roasted dark malts. There are hits of dark chocolate, coffee, and smoked barbecue. The mouthfeel is creaky on the tongue, but extremely dry on the finish, highlighting the smoky effect of the beer.

Very tasty beer.

Serving type: bottle

03-01-2010 22:00:31 | More by Seanibus
Photo of CrazyMacHarris99


3.3/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This one pours a very dark brown that looks black until held up to the light. There is a thin mocha head that is gone in a flash. The smell is mostly roasted malts with chocolate and a little bitterness from something, maybe some hops. The taste is more roasted malts with chocolate and coffee. A little sweet with little to know hops present. This tastes like an American Stout but the mouthfeel and body are a little thin which bring it back within the Brown Ale style. Drinkability is low for a brown ale but still rather tasty.

Serving type: bottle

01-29-2010 05:34:23 | More by CrazyMacHarris99
Photo of BigPapiBrewingCo


3.8/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pour into victory pint glass. Dark brown almost black color. American hops burnt choclate nose. Followed by thin body. You can really taste the american hops and burnt chochlate slight etoh. overall solid brown ale would drink again. Proably my second favorite hoppy brown but prefer Brooklyn Brown

Serving type: bottle

01-03-2010 22:37:27 | More by BigPapiBrewingCo
Wynona's Big Brown Ale from Voodoo Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 223 ratings.