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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

2,019 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,019
Reviews: 897
rAvg: 3.93
pDev: 10.94%
Wants: 66
Gots: 110 | 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)
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Ratings: 2,019 | Reviews: 897 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of mikeg67

New Jersey

3.33/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle from a variety pack. Pours hazy amber (?) with a large, long lasting, off-white head. Aroma of bready malt and some fruit. Medium body, medium carbonation. Bready malt, spicy, earthy hops and some dark fruit fill the mouth. Long, dry, bitter finish. Not bad, but this beer reminds me more of an Amber than Brown.

Serving type: bottle

11-15-2010 22:23:56 | More by mikeg67
Photo of mikesgroove

South Carolina

4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

the last beer i was able to try for about the next month so i went with an old classic. served cold in a pint glass at barleys, this one was consumed on 11/07/2010.

really a decent pour here with a nice medium brown color and a smooth even head of tan that came up from the bottom and coated the glass rather nicely i have to say. aroma is light chocolate with hint of nice roasted malts and a touch of coffee, well rounded for sure and definetely a nice way to end an evening. a mix if light carbonation with a smooth, velvet like texture to it led me to sip it down quite nicely and left a really nice overall impression.

very solid beer for sure and one i would have no issue in going back to again.

Serving type: on-tap

11-14-2010 05:53:52 | More by mikesgroove
Photo of tone77


3.33/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a deep caramel color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is mild, some hops. Taste is also hops a front, a bit of malts and grains. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and has average drinkability. Overall this is a pretty good beer.

Serving type: bottle

11-13-2010 18:12:18 | More by tone77
Photo of whisperjet


4.2/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a: Pours a creamy amber. 1 finger of off white head that is frothy and leaves a thick, sticky lace.

s: Very earthy and malty. Sugary sweetness of caramel malts. Nice hoppy undertones that are very smooth.

t: Crisp and light. The hops are much more prevalent than in the nose. Creamy and full but not overly rich. Well balanced flavors.

m: Medium bodied and smooth on both ends.

d: A perfectly good ale all around. Nicely textured and flavored it certainly doesn't disappoint. I would have liked just a bit more complexity in the taste though

Serving type: bottle

11-08-2010 17:38:34 | More by whisperjet
Photo of beersensei305


3.83/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reddish-brown in color, the head fades quickly. Smells sweet with some caramel malts, chocolate and some roasted characters. The flavor is big with roasted note, malts, touch of chocolate, and dark fruits. Good beer, if you like malts you'll love this.

Serving type: bottle

10-30-2010 00:14:04 | More by beersensei305
Photo of PicoPapa


3.6/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle with a Best Before date notched at January 2011. Pours a dark hazel color with a thin head that dissipates quickly. Some lacing. Aroma of roasted malts, bread, and a sweet caramel maybe. Flavors of roasted malts and a hard to pinpoint sweetness. Slightly bready. This is an easy drinking beer that was part of a Smuttynose mix 12 pack. Pretty smooth and tasty.

Serving type: bottle

10-28-2010 16:16:37 | More by PicoPapa
Photo of Thorpe429


3.93/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes.

Pours a moderate brown color with a bit of a light tan head. Nose brings toast, caramel, light roast, hops, and a bit of earth. Taste is slightly toasted bread as well as caramel, toffee, a small amount of dark fruits, and some sweetness. Good mouthfeel and body carry the flavors. Drinks quite well and is a nice American take on the style.

Serving type: bottle

10-26-2010 00:19:06 | More by Thorpe429
Photo of Sudsy89


3.98/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz. bottle, chilled.

Pours a reddish-brown, slightly cloudy, has a fizzy one-finger head, high level of carbonation. Seemed odd for a brown ale, but the aroma is very malty as expected, like a porter almost. Slight hop taste, a bit of alchohol taste, but slight. Roasted, caramel malts, but not too sweet. Medium-bodied mouthfeel, highly drinkable and refreshing. This would probably be even better on-tap at a bar, seems like a decent choice with food or just by itself. An impressive Brown Ale, I personally prefer Turbodog but this is much better than a blander choice like Newcastle.

Serving type: bottle

10-16-2010 00:17:31 | More by Sudsy89
Photo of Buggabeer


3.43/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

For a Smuttynose beer this is pretty good. I usually have not been impressed with that brewery before. It has a nice reddish color that appears to be a bit cloudy. The taste is better than I would have thought, this is deffinetly not a cheaply made beer. I can pick up the hop flavor which is not over done for this style of beer. I wish there was a little less malt flavor to the beer. It almost has a Malt Liquor flavor. While I would not run out and buy a case of this, if offered another I would drink it gladly. Everything about this beer I found to be average with exception to the smell. I find the smell of this beer to be very nice. After tasting this I thinK I will give a few other Smuttynose beers a second chance.

Serving type: bottle

10-15-2010 23:43:35 | More by Buggabeer
Photo of musicforairports

New York

4.35/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a mahogany, dark amber or light-brown, whatever you want to call to call it. Not too dark. Some bubbling. Okay head, practically no lacing.

Smells like nutty roasted malt. Smell is surprisingly rich and deep for a brown ale; kind of smells like a porter to me.

Tastes like a very good example of a brown ale. The roasted nutty-ness in the aroma carries through in the taste. Tastes very much like what it smells like, but remains solidly in brown ale territory. Just enough sweetness to accentuate the flavor. I haven't had an awful lot of brown ales, but this seems like what one ought to taste like.

Mouthfeel is clean and smooth, not too thick. Pretty drinkable, even though I usually go for beers that showcase hops over nutty malt. Smuttynose makes quality beers.

Serving type: bottle

10-15-2010 02:02:33 | More by musicforairports
Photo of cbutova


3.4/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A- Pours out brown with a small, creamy light tan head. Very low retention and a thin cloud and ring stay behind. Some fine lace.

S- Slightly roasty nutty malt. Some smoky hints. Some dark fruit and raisin notes. Definitely some hops in the background. Fades pretty quickly. Cinnamon comes to mind.

T- Roasty malt with cocoa and nutty hints in the foreground. Some spice presence, cinnamon and nutmeg. Raisins and yeast bread notes round out the flavor. Even some alcohol notes. Some earthy hops.

MF- A nicely creamy moderate body. Bitterness is higher than I am used to in Brown Ales. Carbonation is at a moderate level and goes down smoothly.

DB- A pretty good mix of Brown Ale flavors but the spice and bitter cocoa presence sort take away from it. It throws off the balance a bit and masks some of the nicer malt flavors. A pretty solid beer nonetheless.

Serving type: bottle

10-15-2010 01:28:19 | More by cbutova
Photo of SkunkWorks

New York

4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle into a pint glass.

Look: deep, dark amber color. Thin, off white head that retains for awhile and leaves a little lacing.

Smell: roasted malty smell with a bit of chocolate and hops.

Taste: I get some malty sweetness followed by some dark fruit and hops.

Feel: medium tending towards full. Good amount of carbonation.

Drink: high. I could session this if I wanted to.

Overall, very solid effort by Smuttynose. Definitely give it a go if you get a chance.

Serving type: bottle

10-08-2010 13:51:30 | More by SkunkWorks
Photo of jonB

New York

4.2/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Typical of a brown ale, the beer pours with little foam. However unlike many other brown ales it does have good carbonation. The taste is dominated by a malt with a caramel taste and a subtle finish of hops. Despite not having a taste for browns, this one takes a different approach and produces successful results .

Serving type: bottle

09-28-2010 23:35:30 | More by jonB
Photo of JRed

New Jersey

4.13/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A murky dark brown body with fleeting, bubbly white head. Aroma of chocolate notes, earth, hops, slight roast and some vague gingerbread. Flavors of chocolate, cocoa krispies, slight roast, earth, mild spice, a bite of a sugar cookie. Medium bodied and finishes clean with only a slight sugary aftertaste.

Serving type: bottle

09-26-2010 22:46:01 | More by JRed
Photo of JerzDevl2000

New Jersey

3.63/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Was given this bottle from a friend and I'd never gotten around to trying this out. I've probably had enough Brown Ales lately but supposedly, this was one of the better ones out there. Without a doubt, it was stronger than I imagined but there wasn't a lot that stood out to me in this beer besides that.

A good pour to this - the hue was a radiant brown with some head and virtually no lacing once that settled down. The aroma had just a hint of smoke while the taste was that of caramel, sugar, and molasses. Of course, this was quite malty and the mouthfeel was just a tad too thin for me. Maybe the alcohol stood out a bit too much but it didn't detract from the drinkabilty of this beer.

This would be a good choice for the fall but like I said before, there's not enough here to make it stand out from the other Brown Ales out there. It's a bit bolder and given how many Brown Ales side right down like Newcastle, that's probably a good thing. Certainly worth a shot as the fall approaches.

Serving type: bottle

09-23-2010 01:27:44 | More by JerzDevl2000
Photo of jbertsch


4.43/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Medium-to-dark brown in color. Fairly foggy. Offwhite head is substantial. It diminishes, but a nice coating stays throughout.

Cinnamon graham cracker aroma hits me first. But hops are there in the back making you you notice their presence. A nice balance.

Sweet caramel malts prevail on the palate. A little toastiness and fall spices are in there. Hops still make their presence known by balancing this brew nicely. There's even a faint bitterness in the finish thanks to them.

Mouthfeel is nicely carbonated to give the brew some texture and weight on the tongue, but it's still smooth.

Drinkability is great. Alcohol isn't noticeable at 6.7%.

This brew drinks like an old friend. Solid and flavorful without overwhelming you on any front. One of the better brown ales I've had.

Serving type: bottle

09-21-2010 00:52:10 | More by jbertsch
Photo of Canibacea


3.85/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

The First whiff of the smoke at the top of the bottle reminded me somewhat of feet, strong pungent yeastyness, i took another whiff and noticed a fairly strong grape like aroma, which was also present in the first sip.

Taste is sollid. nice and robust, yet somehow light. a well balanced beer that could be a single enjoyed with a meal, or a workable session brew for a couple buds.

Slight mettalic alcoholy taste that ive noticed in other smuttynose namely the ipa. I enjoy thier beers alot though and have grown used to this taste

Never would have guessed its 6.7 thats my kind of sesh

all around well crafted beverage!!!

Serving type: bottle

09-17-2010 02:57:42 | More by Canibacea
Photo of jhammel01

New Jersey

2.98/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Not much to look at, but its tasty!

Pours a redish brown, Pretty clear but with no head to speak of at all. No laciing...What gives? Has a good date on it...

No scent at all in this beer. A tiny bit of malty esters and thats about it.

But oh so good! Heavy roasted malt backbone, caramel, nuttiness, almost peanut like, very well rounded.

A good english brown ale! Just disappointed in the appearance.

Serving type: bottle

09-15-2010 03:30:42 | More by jhammel01
Photo of generallee

New York

4.45/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: Presentation: It was pored from a brown 12oz bottle into a pint glass. The label has a freshness date but no ABV%.

Appearance: The body has a dark brown look with a beautiful garnet hue. The pour produces a only a small on inch tall beige head which fades fast and leaves only a ring of foam on top of the beer. Lacing is minimal.

Smell: In the nose I pick up nice bready and roasted barley notes. This has a mildly sweet character overall with no hops.

Taste/Palate: On the tongue there is a pleasant sweetness and toasted character from the roasted malt and bready ale yeast. There are nice chocolaty and caramelized notes with suggestions of maple sugar dark brown sugar and just a light kiss of hop spice in the background. The finish is still on the sweet side but with hops coming out more in the late in the finish. Its palate has a full body with a smooth texture.

Notes: This is a very tasty and well crafted brown ale with nice complexity.

Serving type: bottle

09-13-2010 03:04:50 | More by generallee
Photo of dogfishandi

New York

4.1/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle at fridge temp poured into a nonik glass. best before november 2010, from a variety 12 pack that was packaged in may of 2010.

pours a perfect chestnut brown color with 2 fingers of lightly tanned head. average retention, left a thin layer. hardly a lace.

a nice roasty, malty aroma. roasty chocolate/ coffee metallic malts, burnt caramel, ripe dark fruits. smells like a really good brown ale.

the aroma tricked me a little with its complexities. that being said it is still a good tasteing brown. its all about the malts. ripe dark fruits, metallic, bakers chocolate, roasty, burnt caramel/ butter scotch.

feels really nice on the palate. medium bodied, perfect carbonation. leaves a residual, slightly bitter chocolate maltiness. alcohol just barely noticeable, i wouldve guessed a lower abv.

drinks good anytime of year, but i enjoy this most right when the summer comes to end, begining of fall. a simple, yet exceptional brown ale, gotta love that dog on the label too!

Serving type: bottle

09-11-2010 01:34:33 | More by dogfishandi
Photo of VelvetExtract


4.23/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A-Deep brown in color with a tan head.

S-Sweet caramel malt, chocolate, and some roasted notes.

T-Quite like the nose. Sweet caramel and chocolate. A bit bready with some dark spices. Booze becomes more and more present.

M-Pretty thick. A good slick mouthfeel.

D-Very drinkable. This beer is solid in all areas.

Gotta love the label of this brew.

Serving type: bottle

09-07-2010 22:11:22 | More by VelvetExtract
Photo of sellmeagod


3.9/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Heck yes a brown ale with all the hallmarks, great label, and taste to boot!

It wasn't too brown in the look, which perhaps was disappointing given the Brown Dog name, but also intriguing.

Nutty smells and a real taste for your buck. This is an inexpensive but honest brown ale that does not succumb to too much chocolatey taste or weakness, and it pretty much tops out at 6.7 abv making it a go to winner.

Serving type: bottle

09-07-2010 21:10:55 | More by sellmeagod
Photo of mostpoetsdo

Rhode Island

3.93/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a brown that is not too deep, and rather clear. A darker-than-tan head on top, leaving faint lacing.

S: Roasted malts are very prevalent, a bit of yeasty sweetness and a touch of hops.

T: A wave of malt hits the taste buds, but also packs a bit of earthy hops to it in order to balance the beer out. Not too much of a hop taste, but enough to take note of. Faint coffee notes come through now and then, met by even slighter bits of chocolate. The star in this is the delicious and not overly-sweet malts.

M: Pretty smooth, good carbonation. A very solid medium body.

D: Very good, it's a solid brown ale, with an ABV coming in 6.7%, hard to beat.

Serving type: bottle

09-02-2010 00:10:28 | More by mostpoetsdo
Photo of Lolli1315


4.33/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- A nice medium brown color that can be seen through. A nice almost creamy white head that leaves decent lacing around the glass.

S- A lot of sweet malt comes through the nose with touches of caramel and some dark fruit notes.

T- The malt dominates the taste profile in the same manner it did the smell. A roasted grain taste also comes through towards the middle of the beer. Notes of caramel and even touches of chocolate compliment the malt as a small hop bitterness makes a brief appearance towards the end of the beer adding complexity to the slight chocolate notes.

M- A medium body with nice carbonation and a crisp feeling in the mouth.

D- A great and complex brown ale, you'll enjoy a couple of these.

Serving type: bottle

08-29-2010 17:56:18 | More by Lolli1315
Photo of B967ierhunter177


3.45/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer pours a clear brown with 1/8 inch head that disappeared quickly. The aroma is caramel with hints of earth & plums. The flavor begins with toffee followed by vanilla & bourbon barrel notes, balanced. It has a medium mouthfeel and an increasing warming feeling as it warms, very pleasant. Old Brown Dog Ale is a good beer but not a session beer. It matched well with extra sharp cheddar chunks. Recommended.

Serving type: bottle

08-29-2010 03:25:23 | More by B967ierhunter177
Smuttynose Old Brown Dog Ale from Smuttynose Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 2,019 ratings.