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Imperial Nut Brown Ale - Tommyknocker Brewery

Not Rated.
Imperial Nut Brown AleImperial Nut Brown Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

600 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 600
Reviews: 345
rAvg: 3.72
pDev: 14.25%
Wants: 29
Gots: 18 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Tommyknocker Brewery visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
American Brown Ale |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Bierman9 on 12-17-2004

Commemorating the 10th anniversary of Tommyknocker Brewery, this special brew is meticulously crafted with pure maple syrup, the highest quality chocolate and crystal malts and is accented with the finest blend of European and American hops. Imperial Nut Brown Ale, at 9.8% alcohol by volume, is a bigger, bolder version of their Maple Nut Brown.
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Ratings: 600 | Reviews: 345 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Retsinis
4.07/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

While I was on vacation visiting family in Woodbridge Virginia, I got a chance to go to a Total Wine in Springfield to pick up some local beers, or any that are distributed there that are not sent to California. Picked up one bottle of this as part of a make your own six pack.

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Bruery Tulip glass.

The beer pours a murky dark chestnut brown color with about a inch of short lived tan colored head, with just a bit of lacing.

The Aroma's are of maple as you would expect, earthy hops, a bit of toffee and caramel, and a nice malty backbone. Smells sweet.

The flavors in the taste are not as sweet as the nose indicated, which was good. Notes of roasted malts, hints of caramel, light chocolate, but the maple sweetness is the most prominent flavor. It does not taste hot, as far as heat from the 9+% alcohol, which is masked by the sweetness.

The mouth feel was medium to high, fairly well carbonated, thick, with a slick viscosity to it.

This was a nice beer to try, easy to drink, smooth. I like brown ales, so this sweeter imperial version with the maple notes was nice. Last beer that I had with this much maple flavor was Life and Limb fresh ( though the maple in that one seemed to evaporated after a few months)

Recomended if your a fan of the style, and like maple syrup on your waffles and pancakes!

Photo of bucklemyshoe
2.74/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

12 oz bottle at 48 degrees into a Stone IRS tulip.

A: It pours a very dark mahogany color with a finger and a half of light tan head that has great retention and laces very well.

S: Maple, sour dark fruits, nuttiness, and booze.

T: Nothing sticks out too much despite its strength; maple syrup, toasted bread, hazelnut, and some booze.

M: It has a thick mouthfeel that coats the palate with a bubbly/foamy stickage. This makes it very chewy.

D: It began promising but there is a lot wrong with this.

Photo of fragilehearted
3.97/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've reviewed the Maple Nut Brown, & although I've had the Imperial Nut Brown before, don't think I've reviewed it yet. So why not today? Bottle into an oversized snifter.

A - very dark brown, opaque. Almost no head. Spotty lacing.

S - maple syrup, brown sugar, nutty, some caramel, sweet malts, raisins. Faint alcohol smell. Gets a little fruitier as it warms.

T - follows the smell, but a bit more complex. A bit more bitterness, though it's not unwelcome - keeps it from being overly sweet. Very malty. The alcohol is present, but well-hidden considering the ABV. There's a little difference in taste...some coffee, some spice that I didn't catch in the smell. Alcohol comes out a bit more as it warms. Complex (more complex than the average brown, I'd say), but not overwhelming.

M - full MF, low carbonation, but it kinda fits w/ the imperial-ness of it (if that makes sense). Again, alcohol well-hidden, though I am feeling the warming just a little.

D - definitely a sipper, but not the first sixer I've bought, so obviously it was good enough that I went back to it. It's really drinkable for an imperial beer of its ABV.

Photo of Kkottonmouthkngz
2.5/5  rDev -32.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A: a rather thin looking raisin brown, almost non existent head. there are a few tannish bubbles floating on top after about 30 seconds.
S: sweet maple dominates, but i dontget much of anything else in there to break it up a little. im left wanting something else because its quite sugary smelling. its relatively pleasant smelling, but theres no complexity.
T: not feeling it. i know its a maple syrup brown ale, and i basically knew what to expect, but this is just too much. its so mapley ( if thats a word) and my palate hates me right now. it tastes like chewing on carmelized brown sugar.
M: my teeth are tingling. syrupy and just too much to handle.
D: none really to speak of. going down the drain.

Photo of brewmudgeon
3.36/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

tommyknockers imp nut brown

update: cracked another cellared bottle 2/2012, and the beer seems to have improved with another year under its belt (guess it's about 1.5 years old at this point). still faint aroma, but the taste is about at 3.5-3.75 territory. body still a bit too thin of course, but did not encounter as much of "latex coating" issue.

a 4-4.5 somewhat aggressive pour yields a one-finger tan head above a cocoa body with orange highlights. the ring holds well and leaves spotty lace.

s 3 smells more like a faint brown ale than an imperial one. then again there may be an enhanced presence of alcohol.

t 3 faint roast, generic malty sweetness, faint nuts, some astringency in the finish.

m 2 medium bodied with low carbonation--kinda watery especially for the size of this beer abv-wise, yet it does apply a latexlike coat to everything it touches. the main issue is it needs more creamy carbonation. the coating issue is actually starting to give that issue a run for its money. ewww.

d 2.5 just too boring, especially for the abv. doesn't justify itself in my book.

Photo of atsprings
3.85/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Flying Saucer served in a tulip glass an almost opaque black with a thin khaki head that diminishes to a ring and leaves slight lacing on the glass. Aroma is a nice amount of dark malts with a hint of maple. The taste is a nice blend of dark malts, cocoa and maple syrup that leaves a nice lingering maple finish. The beer is on the heavy side of medium with a nice smooth dryness. This is a very enjoyable beer, one I would love to have on-tap again.

Photo of cdkrenz
4.07/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Medium to moderately dark brown body that has a slight transparency.Head is medium tan at a half inch or so and has decent stamina but only following an aggressive pour.

S - Nutty, molasses, sweet brown sugar and a hint of coffee.

T - It has a slightly tart nut flavor, which is almost an oxymoron. However, if you sample this brew you'll taste what I mean. There's a bit of plum, fig and of course a solid nutty flavor.

M - There's a small grained coarseness in this brew that assists in bringing out the unique flavor. It has a medium thickness to the body but it remarkably light.

~ In my opinion this is a solid brew. It's not one I would seek out again but I will say this, if II found on draft someplace, I'd certainly take a sampling.

Photo of Radome
3.37/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Served from 12 oz bottle into a snifter.

A - Color is dark brown. Beer is murky and opaque. Head is thick, tan and long-lasting. Very thick lacing on the glass.

S - Aroma is thick with malt, like a British barley wine. Some nuttiness and alcohol. Inviting.

T - Much drier and more bitter than I expected from the smell. There is a strong hop taste, but it gives an impression of being stale and a little vegetal. The strong malt taste follows along with alcohol burn. The finish has a slight note of vinegar and metal that makes me think this may be an old bottle that hasn't aged well.

M - Body is thick. The vinegar-like finish is accompanied by a slight astringency that dries the mouth.

D - This is pretty drinkable for such a big beer. It is slightly spoiled for me by the vinegar and astringency, but I suspect this is a mistreated, oxidyzed bottle.

Photo of Nutleybeer
4.23/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Never heard of an Imperial Nut Brown before, but it is just a kicked up version of the style. Billed as made with pure maple syrup. I wasn't sure if it would be too sweet.
Poured from the bottle with a tiny head. Not too strong of a smell. Deep cherry brown in color.
I was impressed with the first sip. Stronger than I thought, less sweet. The 9% ABV is clearly there. I get very mild maple flavor, maybe more of a dried fruitiness.
Minimal lacing.
Reminds me of a barley wine, or in that class. Limited hoppiness. A little bit perhaps in the aftertaste.
Overall, I enjoyed it. Like any imperial type, a sipping beer. Probably good with some cheese and fruit as opposed to dinner.

Photo of Fish113d
3.72/5  rDev 0%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours into a tulip glass a dark chestnut brown color with a thin off-white condensed head forming on top that quickly dissipates leaving very little evidence of it's previous existence.

Lots of brown sugar and maple syrup on the nose, along with some alcohol phenols. Maybe a bit of spice in there as well. Nothing too crazy here...just sweet on the nose.

Sipping reveals a very sweet but somewhat tart plum flavoring along with some brown sugar and maybe some slight nuttiness. The finish is fairly smooth with the hotness from the alcohol being pretty well hidden. Nothing real flash. Just sweet and bit warming.

A bit thin on the finish for an "Imperial" ale. Carbonation is well balanced.

An easy drinker really. A good session brew, but I'd be afraid the alcohol would sneak up on you!

Photo of BeerFMAndy
2.55/5  rDev -31.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

12 oz bottle poured into a Sprecher nonic. 9% ABV, 2/4 Notched on the label with no apparent significance.

A - Hazy dark brown pond-water color with almost no head on the pour. Very little retention to what's there with a ring of bubbles left around the outside. A tiny finger of lace reaches up.

S - Maple syrup definitely comes through which adds a nice sugary sweetness but the backing caramel and amber malt isn't doing much at all. The brew has a lack-luster brown ale nose with a bland nuttiness. No booziness in the nose but there is certainly a presence of heat.

T - Yeasty brown-amber malts seem off some how and I'm having a hard time putting my finger on what's causing it. Maple syrup tastes nice and is just about the only redeeming quality. The dry nutty kick to the finish and odd sweetness is cloying. A touch of earthy dirty wood too.

M - Medium-full bodied and rich with an attacking, cloying dry sweetness to the finish. No alcohol heat at all. The flavor comes across incredibly thin mid-palate.

D - I'm pouring this out. Each sip feels like a mistake I wish I hadn't made. The flavor and feel are both off and don't have many redeeming qualities to them at all. I like the maple syrup addition to it but that's really about it. This beer needs a lot of work. Note - If only the notched date made sense.

Photo of logmacschlog15
3.8/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Served in a US tumbler from a bottle.

Appearance: Pours one finger of creamy, tan head that holds strong for a couple of minutes. Dark, dark brown with reddish hues when held up to the light. Good looking carbonation and some sediment lingering.

Smell: Sweet notes of maple syrup and caramel. Stong alcohol smell.

Taste: Sweet maple and dark caramel malts, with undertones of chocolate as well. Earthy hop flavors and mild bitterness on the back of the tounge do well to balance the sweetness. Definite alcohol presence.

Mouthfeel: A little watery, expecting this beer to be a little heavier bodied than it was. Carbonation is just right for the style though. The high ABV gives a great, wholesome warming sensation.

Drinkability: For the high ABV, this is very drinkable. Definitely one to sip, which works well because the flavors become even bolder as the beer warms. Great for warming up with after coming out of the cold.

Note: This beer goes great with marble rye bread and mild cheddar cheese.

Photo of Pimento
3.53/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A--3 cm of head that quickly dissipated. Cloudy medium roast coffee color.

S--Roasted maple maltiness. Dank, moist wood hops.

T/M/D--Cloying and buttery with malt overshadowing subtle hops. Extremely smooth and enjoyable. Would definitely drink again.

Photo of JayS2629
3.85/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Opaque deep mahogany with spider web lacing and medium foam.

S- Sweet malts, slighlty nutty, with hints of maple and vanilla. Alcohol

T- Sweet malt, maple and faint nutty tones. The 9% alcohol is hidden better in the taste than the smell. Hint of vanilla and spice.

M- Medium balanced.

D- Very drinkable, but a sipper. Take this one slow.

Photo of HiLLWiLLiam
4.42/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Im drinking one as I write this entry and I must say Tommyknocker's never fail. A considerable improvement over the Maple Nut Brown Ale, which is also excellent. At 9.00% ABV it is well worth a college try. I've had several Tommyknocker's and the Imperial Nut Brown definitely tops the list.

Photo of TCgoalie
3.12/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a dark brown with a tint of red when held up to the light. Hardly any head, but there is a touch of lacing.

The smell is funky with notes of maple syrup, milk, oak, vanilla, and dark malts.

The taste is malt heavy with a good dose of maple syrup. A bit of spiciness comes from either the syrup or hops, but the effect is more fuzzy than providing a bite. Some earthy tones exist in the end rounding out a strange taste.

The mouthfeel is very light for the ABV. Some drying exists in the aftertaste, but not much stands out.

I don't want much more of this, very average.

Photo of Adamthome1
2.9/5  rDev -22%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12oz bottle

says 9% alcohol and brewed with pure maple syrup...Ya don't say, the smell is alcoholy with the maple syrup and black lickerish smells coming through.

Pours a 1 finger head that dissipates to almost nothing

Flavor is very Imperial Indeed. Rich and robust, very sweet, the aftertaste is dominated by a sweetness. Kind of one dimensional, but nothing really negative about the taste to note for what is there.

What's not there is that it's not very nutty, that's what I miss here, not too pleased about that.

Very sweet, almost too sweet, but I suppose that is what they were driving at. Share this one with a friend.

Photo of knoxtennessee
4.07/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- Dark brown. Deep mahogony red when held to the light.

S- Rich barley wine aroma, complext malt, caramel, maple, toffee, alcohol, fig, hazelnut, pie crust, molasses, pear esters, light spices.

T- Malty sweet, caramel, maple, toffee, nutty (peanut, hazelnut, pecan), molasses cookies, light spicy hops, mild bitterness, fruit(fig, dried pear, berries).

M- Big and full, like a barley wine but more carbonation and drier finish.

O- Good but not amazing. They should let it sit in a bourbon barrel for three-six months and then it would bring kings to their knees.

Photo of BeerAdvocate
4.09/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from BeerAdvocate magazine Vol. II Issue VII:

To commemorate 10 years of brewing, Tommyknocker took their Maple Nut Brown Ale and amped it up. It's brewed with pure maple syrup, chocolate and crystal malts, and spiced with a blend of American and Euro hops. The final result weighs in at 9.8-percent alcohol by volume (abv).

Quick to foam, the tiny bubbled head stays together for a good while. Color is a few shades from black, sporting ruby edges in the light. Big aroma of buttery toffee, hint of cake batter, maple, toasted bread and raisins as well. Full creamy mouthfeel, with some smoothness from the mild carbonation. Supersized malt character here with flavors of buttery toffee, milk chocolate, maple syrup, brown sugar, mild espresso and brownies. Hops are on the back burner but come to life quickly with some balancing bitterness; the alcohol is warming and helps to balance with a spicy warmth, yet compliments the malt with dried plum and raisin flavors. Sweet finish of sugary dark malts, but it's never cloying.

Though the "nut" gets lost in the massive complexities of this beer ... wow, what a killer malt bomb this is! Very drinkable, but it's a sipper, and a great pick for pairing with chocolates or a bowl of warm, spiced / spicy mixed nuts. This would no doubt be a fine match to a robust cigar, too.

Photo of jpmclaug
3.7/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into a pint glass.

A - Dark brown body with a small white head on top.

S - Sweet malts, dried fruit and a touch of maple syrup. Not picking up any hop presence here but that's OK. Smells like it may be a bit sweeter than I'd like however.

T - Picking up on the dried fruits again, big malt presence in this one. A hint of maple syrup but not as much as I was expecting. Pretty sweet, only a tad too sweet. No hop flavor at all.

M - medium bodied, slightly syrupy, light carbonation

D - Pretty decent beer. Nothing too offensive about this but nothing too great about it either. Worth trying but I don't think I'd buy it again.

Photo of theboozecruise
3.89/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a straight glass. Not ideal but it's the best option here! Has a cola appearance, small head but I'll give it some leeway.

I really like the smell. Delicious malt flavor and the alcohol is mild.

The taste is good but a little thin on the mouth. Same malt flavors but nothing else happening. Again, can't pick up the high abv.

All in all I'm happy with this one. Definitely worth a try and better than the average nut brown ale.

Photo of Reaper16
3.78/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

served on-tap at Egan's, Tuscaloosa, AL, into a pint glass

Pours a mahogany sort of brown. Roasted chestnut perhaps. It is darker than the average brown ale but not porter-dark. I guess you could say it looks like a strong ale. It also looks as if it will taste like vanilla. That doesn't make sense to you, I'd bet. But to me it looks like a beer that will have some vanilla component; I believe that I saw some white in the body that wasn't actually there. Very little white head (but then, it was a bar pour) that laces pretty well; nice notching.

Not so much on that vanilla. Damn hallucinations. The nose is full of deep malts, toasted peanuts, maple syrup and brown sugar. Very, very sweet and not even complex to boot. I feel the same way about Tommyknocker's Imperial Nut Brown that I do about most brown ales. They aren't complex enough to suit my fancy. But this offering from Tommyknocker is better than that.

Taste follows the nose. No surprises. Lots of brown malt, nutty flavors, brown sugar & bread. Everything is sweet though; in this way it resembles a beer from Southern Tier brewery, who seem to to get satisfaction out of imperialising papers.

Mouthfeel seems pretty standard. Some swigs are plenty carbonated and sometimes the rises will reopen w/ a new theme. Such is the way of like in Disney or beyond it. The drinkabilit of this beer is insane. You will not taste nor feel the affects of the nearly 10% ABV. If pressed I would have guessed 7% ABV but I'm glad for it.

This is a decent beer from Tommyknocker. Among the better beers I've had from them. If you like malty, sweet flavors than this bottle is something you shouldn't avoid.

Photo of chefkevlar
3.16/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: Poured a deep dark brown with only a 1/4 inch or so of tan head (and this was only after a very hard pour)

S: A definate maple syrup/brown sugar smell at first...and that's about it

T: Very sweet, with little else in terms of complexity. A slight toasted nut flavor comes though after a few sips... and there's a little bit of a metallic flavor as well

M: Almost no carbonation over a medium light body.

D: Eh...it wasn't horrible, but the sweetness was over-powering

Photo of jmdrpi
3.6/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

label on bottle has a notched "2" and "1" but there is no indication what this means. date? batch #? no very helpful to the drinker.

A - pours a chesnutt brown color with amber highlights. minimal whispy head. slight lacing as I drank.
S - as the label indicates, the maple comes through in the nose. very sweet smelling
T - not as sweet as the smell. no hops, sweet malt. slight alcohol after taste
M - moderate carbonation. thicker body, but slick feeling
D- farily easy to drink for the ABV. smooth

Photo of rrski198
3.37/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Dark brown to crimson red in color. Small off white head with minimal lacing

S: Raisain, dark chocolate, carmel

T: Overly sweet, burnt dirt. Very sweet. Mildly bitter. Heavy alcohol burn.

M: Average carbonation.

D: Very sweet and heavy. Maybe two at a time and that is it. Alcohol absolutely comes through.

Imperial Nut Brown Ale from Tommyknocker Brewery
84 out of 100 based on 600 ratings.