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Smuttynose Old Brown Dog Ale - Smuttynose Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Smuttynose Old Brown Dog AleSmuttynose Old Brown Dog Ale

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

2,114 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,114
Reviews: 904
rAvg: 3.93
pDev: 11.2%
Wants: 77
Gots: 142 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Smuttynose Brewing Company visit their website
New Hampshire, United States

Style | ABV
American Brown Ale |  6.70% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Old Brown Dog has been cited as a classic example of the “American Brown Ale” style of beer. Compared to a typical English Brown Ale, Old Brown Dog is fuller-bodied and more strongly hopped.

18 IBU

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 05-07-1998)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,114 | Reviews: 904 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of stewart124
4.05/5  rDev +3.1%

Medium brown in color with some ruby red hues. Pillowy tan head. Pleasing toasted notes in the nose.

LIght caramel and very dry. Some alcohol notes off the bat. Chewy mouthfeel with raisin and more toasted characters. Light milk chocolate notes with more raisin and prune esters.

This comes off bigger and with more mouthfeel than the 6.5% makes you believe.

Very tasty.

stewart124, Nov 10, 2011
Photo of Justin23060
4.05/5  rDev +3.1%

Pours a murky dark brown with an off white head that didn't stick around. Smells malty with some Englishy hops. Tastes of semi- sweet malt and ends a bit dryer than I prefer. Pretty solid but not my #1 as it used to be. I'd recommend it pretty highly.

Justin23060, Nov 06, 2011
Photo of osusullins
4.22/5  rDev +7.4%

Poured out of a bottle into a pint glass.

This is one of my favorite brown ales. Very nice.

Pours a nice caramel brown with thick tan head.

Aroma is pretty much all malt. Caramel sweetness is most dominant, some dark fruit notes. Pretty nice nose overall.

Taste is damn good. Sweet malts dominate the flavor. Caramel, some chocolate, maybe fig. Subtle hop on back end. Light bodied and very easy to drink.

I highly recommend this beer.

osusullins, Nov 03, 2011
Photo of falloutsnow
3.98/5  rDev +1.3%

Bottle purchased from Piccadilly in CHampaign, IL.
Best before November 2011.
Poured into a standard US pint glass.

Pours a 1.5cm head of medium-sized, burnt tan bubbles. Head fades fairly quickly into a thin ring around the glass. Little retention and equally little lacing. Body is a dark brown color with reddish highlights. Transparent, with visible carbonation.

Aromas of very sweet, dark bread; caramel; roasted malt.

Opens with big flavors of caramel malt, milk chocolate, and brown sugar. Slight hop bitterness felt midway through. Somewhat intense sweetness on the sides of the tongue, lessens as beer opens up and warms. Aftertaste is of slight roasted malt, caramel, and mild milk chocolate.

Beer is medium to medium-light in body, with slightly punchy carbonation. Finish is slightly dry.

Overall, this was a solid, if not a little light, brown ale. It's not meant to be overpowering, and comes across as a very drinkable, but darker and sweeter, session ale.

falloutsnow, Nov 02, 2011
Photo of rudolphjacksonm
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%

A - Rich, dark amber/brown color. Almost opaque with a small one-finger head that quickly dissolves. Moderate amount of lacing.

S - Smells faintly of caramel, malt, figs, and/or prunes.

T - Tastes strongly of molasses, caramel, and toffee at first, which then turns into a malty-chocolate flavor with a hint of bitterness.

M - Not too much carbonation, which makes the initial mouthfeel quite nice and smooth. Tingles only slightly, which is what I look for in a brown ale. Once the Old Brown Dog Ale hits the back of the tongue it can become a bit sharp and bitter.

rudolphjacksonm, Oct 29, 2011
Photo of eclipse54
2.85/5  rDev -27.5%

A 12 ounce bottle from FluffyMcTingle; thank you very much! A best before date of February 2012. Poured into a tulip glass...

Pours a deep translucent brown that, in the glass, appears nearly black. About two-finger’s breadth of bubbly, cream-colored head develops and lingers for some time. Even after settling, a frothy ring and generous swirls of bubbles remain on the surface. Scattered patches of wet bubbles comprise the lacing.

It smells of vanilla, toffee, oak, brown sugar, toasted malt, and dark fruits. Vague hints of impending hops are also present.

The flavor is astonishingly different from the aroma. Heavy on dark fruits and cranberries, the majority of the aromas are completely absent on the tongue. Muddled fruit, faint grasses, and scattered piney hops are all that really come out. It is reminiscent of a juice box in perhaps the most disappointing way.

Mouthfeel is thinner than anticipated, and finishes a touch sticky and tart; not the most enjoyable.

Overall, a great looking and smelling brew, but it falls short of fulfilling ones initial expectations. Given the high reviews, it is entirely plausible this was a randomly bad bottle and an isolated occurrence. I would be happy to give this one another try.

eclipse54, Oct 29, 2011
Photo of dbmata
4.33/5  rDev +10.2%

Simply an oustanding brown ale. Completely sessionable, and pairs well with food that has a lot of character where it can help reset your palate between each bite.

Slight bitter hp bite and brown bread flavor, not sweet, not sour, well balanced. This is a beer you could drink by the half gallon.

dbmata, Oct 25, 2011
Photo of AlCzerik
4.73/5  rDev +20.4%

This is the best Brown Ale that I have tried so far. Just an easy drinking ale, that is just perfect for the fall. A brown color when poured, and a hint of both caramel and chocolate. Going to be a staple for me from here on out. Look forward to trying it on draft.

AlCzerik, Oct 24, 2011
Photo of bdelanghe
3.28/5  rDev -16.5%

I tried this beer at a local family/pub pizza restaurant. It was from tap however, I think the carbonation level was a little low. The beer had a nice caramel color to it, the overall texture and taste was decent but lacked depth. Generally good tasting but nothing to write home about.

bdelanghe, Oct 17, 2011
Photo of busterthecat
3.63/5  rDev -7.6%

Best by Feb. 2012. Poured into a SA perfect pint glass.

A- Pours a dark caramel hue from bottle and sits very deep red in glass. A neat little khaki head forms.

S- Sweet candied figs, freshly baked fruitcake. Pretty damn sweet smelling. A touch of holiday spice. Aroma is very malt forward and full of sweetness.

T- Follows the aroma. Adds in a kick of metallic zing. Freshly canned peaches and figs in heavy syrup. The metallic zing, spice and fruit syrup linger, yet much lighter, in finish. Flavors are a bit on the watery side.

M- light to medium bodied. Good amount of carbonation can be felt. The flavors coat palate before quickly letting go. There is some chewiness to the middle of the taste. The beer stays very wet until the finish and then abruptly dries. Sweetness lingers on palate.

O- A good brown ale from Smuttynose. Very easy to drink. It was just a bit to sweet for my taste. Needed a bit more body to it to hold it all up. Glad I tried it. Looking forward to Really Old Dog with a year on it.

busterthecat, Oct 12, 2011
Photo of soju6
3.85/5  rDev -2%

A: Pours a deep ruby brown color with a decent head and some lacing.

S: Aroma of roasted nuts, caramel and a bit of dark fruit sweetness.

T: taste of caramel, roasted malt, bit of fruit sweetness aith a mild bitterness and a clean finish.

F: Medium body, smooth and well balanced.

O: Very enjoyable, easy drinker. Nothing fancy just good beer.

soju6, Oct 09, 2011
Photo of rlee1390
3.95/5  rDev +0.5%

A-Cloudy deep red, with a one finger head.

S-Roasted malt and caramel, not much hops.

T-Roasted malt and caramel dominate, some hops sneek into the finish and the balance is solid.

M-Medium bodied, smooth with decent carbonation.

O-A solid high B+ beer. I'd almost say this in combination with GI's IPA is what I'm looking for when I want an everyday beer that is a B+.

rlee1390, Oct 08, 2011
Photo of JohnnyChicago
4.13/5  rDev +5.1%

Bottle served at a restaurant. They put it in one of those weird weizen/flower vase looking glasses.

A: Pours a perfect brown with two fingers of tan head.

S: Woody resins, cocoa nibs and raisins along with some roast and coffee notes.

T: Nice cocoa-caramel sweetness that is far from cloying. Peanut brittle notes and minimal hop presence.

D: At 6.5, its a bit stronger than most browns, but the alcohol doesn't show up in the taste at all. Supurb balance. Decently sticky mouthfeel as well.

Overall: An above-average American Brown from a continually impressing brewery. This is a solid beer that I will definitely be revisiting.

JohnnyChicago, Oct 07, 2011
Photo of mdfb79
3.73/5  rDev -5.1%

Thanks to cbeer88 for this bottle; thanks Carl. Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

a - Pours a deep reddish brown color with one fingerof off white fluffy head and moderate carbonation evident. Once inch of head stays throughout drinking it and light spotty lacing is left on the glass.

s - Smells of nuts, caramel malts, toasted and bready malts, lightly roasted malts, and light fruits.

t - Tastes of caramel malts, bready malts, burnt and toasted malts, light fruity malts, butter, and light chocolate.

m - Medium body and low to moderate carbonation. Super smooth and easy to drink.

o - Overall a well above brown ale. Super easy to drink and felt like I could have had a few of these. Would definitely have again if I was looking for a brown ale.

mdfb79, Oct 05, 2011
Photo of buck1futter
4.08/5  rDev +3.8%

a-a light cinnamon stick color, very nice, small tanish head fades with drinking. My fav. part of this beer and the mouthfeel.

s- dark dried fruit, slight molasses on the bottom of the nose.

t-slightly buttery. i hint of alcohol in the nose and upper back mouth. small hint of raisin or something close to it there as well. plus a mild bitterness

m- very good, creamy moist. goes down really well 6 pack no problem if i wanted to have some fun.

pretty good brown overall was hoping for more flavor, but its still really nice.imo not as good as the samuel smith nut brown, but fairly close.

buck1futter, Sep 30, 2011
Photo of Schmidts
4.6/5  rDev +17%

Pours from the bottle rusty brown with a tan/white head. Smells of roasted malts, brown sugar and toffee.
It is very creamy and malty with tastes of toffee and caramel, very flavorfull, nice touch of bitterness and a semi sweet finish.
Is is rather delightful in your mouth, creamy a touch of sweetness then a hit of bitterness, very nicely balanced.
Overall I have to give this one a 4.5 this is a wonderful Brown Ale.
Give this one a try! This is the way a brown Ale should be outstanding flaovr.

Schmidts, Sep 27, 2011
Photo of Morey
3.9/5  rDev -0.8%

12oz. bottle with October 2011 notched on the side of the label.

Pours a hazy light brown color. Reddish-brown when held to the light. Beige colored head has settled to a thin layer after a few minutes. Impressive head retention and lacing being left behind.

Slightly nutty aroma with a touch of malty sweetness. A bit mild overall.

Nice rounded toasted malt flavor up front accompanied by a touch of hop bitterness. A bit of sweetness towards the middle, but not too much. Full bodied smooth finish.

Medium...leaning towards full bodied with moderate carbonation.

A pretty good Brown overall.

Morey's Bottom Line: This isn't my favorite style, but this one is pretty tasty. A nice change-of-pace fall beer (I've been sipping on Oktoberfest and Pumpkin Ales).

Morey, Sep 25, 2011
Photo of Beer4Baltimore
3.9/5  rDev -0.8%

- from the notes and a 12 ounce bottle poured into a short glass
A - light brown and clear with a hefty head.
S - moderate malty sweetness with caramel and brown sugar character.
T - taste follows the smell closely with the added touch of fruit and bread.
M - not as heavy as I'd thought it would be. Carbonation is adequate.
D - I had more than one and would have it again.

Beer4Baltimore, Sep 25, 2011
Photo of BigCheese
3.88/5  rDev -1.3%

A: A lovely coffee with cream colored, light chocolate brew, pretty clear. Pours a lovely sand colored 1' head. Some webbing/lacing nothing insane.

S: roasted marshmellows, toasted bread, chocolate, caramel. mm. Some booziness comes through too.

T: Yummy, irish creamish flavor, toffee, chewy malts, also has a nice elegant bitterness too it. So well balanced in a casual way. Nothing fancy just great flavors.

M: Light in body, good amount of carbonation, easy drinker. Great for session beer for a nice autumn day.

O: Havent had brown ale in awhile. I might need to go on a brown ale binge lol. Great balance of flavors nothing else to say, probably my favorite english style brown ale.

BigCheese, Sep 24, 2011
Photo of BeerResearcher
4.22/5  rDev +7.4%

On Tap served in a standard pint glass
It pours a burnt, orange-hued tan leather color with a medium-sized beige head and a fair amount of webby lacing.
A pleasant aroma of roasty brown malt rises at first pour. A light tea-light follows and lingers throughout. Mild resinous hops and a touch of alcohol fuminess round out the aromas.
The flavors match the smells to near perfection, with the exception being, a hint of a metallic tang noticed in the aftertaste.
This is a very fluid liquidy brew. The alcohol is fairly well disguised, so don’t just sit there enjoying one after the other and thinking to yourself, “man, these are tasty suckers, I can drink these all day long!”

BeerResearcher, Sep 19, 2011
Photo of Marty30
3.93/5  rDev 0%

12oz bottle poured at 55 degrees into a Sam Adams perfect pint glass.

A. Looks like iced tea in the glass with khaki colored highlights when held up to the light. 2 finger off-white head. Not much lacing to be seen. I can see this is well carbonated right off the bat.

S. I get some chocolate notes,followed by some toffee. I get some hops there also.

T. First you get some chocolate,with some caramal and toffee. I also get some gramcracker along with a small hop bite in the finish.

M. Mouth is medium and a little creamy.I'm not sure I ever found any brown ales to be heavy alot of carbonation stings the tounge.

Overall this is a quality brown ale. Lot's of flavor in this. I would recommend if you are into the style.

Marty30, Sep 18, 2011
Photo of flagmantho
3.43/5  rDev -12.7%

Poured from 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: light brown hue with a bit of haze to the body. Head is two fingers of frothy tan foam; pretty attractive overall.

Smell: biscuity, bready malt aroma with just a touch of chocolate thrown into the mix. An interesting yeast character is present which makes it seem kind of musty. Not really bad, but not my favorite.

Taste: biscuity malt with some caramel malt character and, again, the tiniest hint of chocolate. Vegetal hops are present, but the bitterness is balanced and works well. Some of that weird yeast character is also present but it is not as unwelcome in the flavor as it is in the aroma.

Mouthfeel: medium body with a decent carbonation level. Walks the line between creamy and fizzy.

Overall: not a bad beer, but it's not really my favorite brown ale. It seems well put-together, but the flavor profile just doesn't float my boat.

flagmantho, Sep 16, 2011
Photo of powellmg
3.98/5  rDev +1.3%

A fairly clear, brown beer with a tan head. Good head retention. Aroma of toasted malts, dried fruit, and leather. Rich roasted flavor, with a slight sweetness. Lingering bitterness in the finish. Moderate carbonation.

Overall, balanced with great flavor but a bit of a rough edge. This could make a world-class lager: same flavor but smoother.

powellmg, Sep 14, 2011
Photo of nickthetick
4.47/5  rDev +13.7%

A: pours a sorta opaque brown with some pretty ruby tints into a Duvel glass with a half finger of tan head that thins slowly and doesn't leave any lacing.

S: coffee, toffee, roasted nuts, grassy, leather and earthy.

T: dark roasted nuts, an earthy sweetness. Leathery in a good way. Medium roast coffee and a sweet toffee.

MF: a tad heavy, good effervescence and a dry finish.

O: great brown ale. One of my new favorites.

nickthetick, Sep 08, 2011
Photo of match1112
4/5  rDev +1.8%

a: hazy brown with some copper highlights. one finger off white head that recedes to a collar with very little lacing.

s: nice subtle caramel malt with a hint of nut.

t: folllows the nose, no surprises.

m: medium body with good carbonation and a slight creamy feel to it.

o: very good example of what a brown should be. no surprises, just a very well put together beer.

match1112, Sep 07, 2011
Smuttynose Old Brown Dog Ale from Smuttynose Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 2,114 ratings.