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Chestnut Hill - Lift Bridge Brewery

Not Rated.
Chestnut HillChestnut Hill

Educational use only; do not reuse.

41 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 41
Hads: 137
Avg: 3.67
pDev: 23.71%
Wants: 3
Gots: 20 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Lift Bridge Brewery visit their website
Minnesota, United States

Style | ABV
American Brown Ale |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: mothman on 12-18-2009

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 41 | Hads: 137
Photo of Tracywithbeer24
3.81/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

very drinkable brown ale. Nice flavor and aroma. Just the right amount of caramel and nutty taste without it being too over powering for a brown ale. nice after taste. good beer!

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Photo of pat61
4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L: Bright dark brown with a 2” cream colored foam cap that hugs the side of the glass.
S: Toast, light roast and caramel.
T: Nuts, toast, caramel, and light roast flavors. Starts slightly sweet and gradually dries out.
F: Very creamy, medium body and carbonation.
O: A dependable, easy to drink brown ale.

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Photo of juanny
3.59/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Definitely an enjoyable brown ale from Stillwater!

Good dark brown color, but with little to no foam. The odor was subtle with nutty and malted notes. I enjoyed the taste, very malty, but with a nutty and almost chocolatey taste as well. Not sweet and a gentle hop background to round out the malty ale well. The beer was creamy, with a full-bodied feel, yet, not too much even on a warm summer day on a patio where I had it. Overall, a good brown ale, worth getting again. Not my favorite brew ever, but a good example of the style.

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Photo of mnredsoxfan69
4.28/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This roasty, nutty smelling brew pours a clear, dark brown with a finger and a half of lacy, off-white, rocky foam that dissipates to a fine lacing on the glass and ring around the edge of the beer.

The taste follows the aroma with lots of nutty, toasted malt on the palate and a nicely balanced, hoppy bitterness beneath. The toasted malt is definitely the backbone throughout the beer.

The moderate body on this brew is smooth to creamy.

I fully enjoyed this offering from Liftbridge and it complimented my flatbread pizza with chicken, tomatoes, feta, herbs and balsamic dressing nicely. Would I have it again? Oh, yes, most certainly.

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Photo of majorbase2
3.59/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This is my first full review. Poured from bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: Dark brown. Just a little bit of lacing, and relatively poor head retention.

Smell: Nutty, with some hints of chocolate.

Taste: As indicated by the smell, a blend of chocolate and nuttiness. Not as much chocolate in the taste. A little bit of sweetness. Overall, the taste is a little muted, but still a surprisingly pleasant balance of flavors.

Mouthfeel: Heavy, and a little syrupy. Although I did not initially taste much carbonation, the more I had the more I noticed....the carbonation is a little on the heavy side.

Overall: A solid, but still underwhelming beer. Easy to drink, but not too much in the way of extreme flavor.

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Photo of jimmah120
3.36/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

12oz bottle, no info other than "cinnamon and clove added"

Look is a very dark cola, nice fluffy mocha head. Smell is light, malty, nutty. Taste is light and pleasant, definitely picking up that chestnut... chocolate, toffee, caramel mat, toasted grain

...i don't know. it's not for me.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.08/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 fl oz brown glass bottle with unremarkable label art and unbranded pry-off pressure cap served into a stem-tulip in low altitude Minneapolis, MN. Reviewed live. Expectations are average. "Ale brewed with cinnamon and allspice."

Served cold - straight from the fridge - and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: No bubble show forms as it's poured.

Pours a half finger wide head of light khaki colour. Head retention is average at best - about 1 minute. No lacing clings to the sides of the glass as the head recedes.

Body colour is a very dark cola with vague amber hues. Nontransparent/opaque. No yeast particles are visible.

Overall, it doesn't look much like a brown ale. Not unique or special. No egregious flaws here.

Sm: Caramel. Brown malt. Toffee. Cinnamon. Chocolate malt. Allspice. An aroma of light strength.

No yeast character or hop character is detectable. An inoffensive aroma of light strength.

T: Brown malts, vague nuts - almond, walnut, etc. Limited cream. Pecan. Light caramelization. Build is loosely cohesive, but certainly not gestalt. Decently balanced. Probably too sweet. Clean.

No yeast character, hop character, or alcohol comes through.

Average depth, duration, and intensity of flavour. Okay complexity. Not much subtlety. No intricacy or nuance.

Mf: Smooth, wet, approachable, unrefreshing, and decently thick. Decent body. A biteen syrupy. Suits the flavour profile in a general sense.

Not oily, boozy, hot, gushed, astringent, harsh, syrupy, or thin/watery.

Dr: Downable but forgettable. I wouldn't get it again. A decent little brown ale, but I wouldn't recommend it to friends or trade partners. Not Lift Bridge's strongest work. I'll easily finish this glass, but I don't want another. I've had far better.

Low C+

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Photo of vette2006c5r
3.06/5  rDev -16.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Chestnut Hill pours a dark brown color, with a nice tan head. The aroma has just a very slight nutty sweetness to it. The taste is lacking, just hints of a roasted malt, mostly flavorless, but not bad tasting. Easy to drink, but weak flavors. Overall a pretty average brown, weak in flavors, but its certainly not a bad beer.

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Photo of zeff80
3.64/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A - Poured a clear chestnut color with a one-finger, khaki colored head of foam. It left sudsy trails of lace on the glass.

S - It smelled nutty with some caramel notes.

T - It tasted nutty and spicy with a nice malty finish.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A medium bodied ale with a dry finish.

O - This is an interesting brown ale.

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Photo of NilocRellim
3.61/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Served from the taproom.

Poured dark brown with a tan head.

Smelled light, malty, and nutty.

The taste was nutty, grainy (in a good way), and sweet-malts. Overall pretty clean and very drinkable.

Would I buy it again? Absolutely.

Had it mixed with their Farmgirl and the sweetness paired very nicely with it.

Also had a special brew with pumpkin, ginger, and cinnamon.
A = 3.25
S = 4
T = 4
MF = 3.25
OA = 4

The additional spices blended very well with this brew. The pumpkin was more apparent than the other spices, but very balanced.

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Photo of warnerry
3.45/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a slightly hazy brown with a tinge of amber. One finger of tan head dissipates quickly, leaving only scant lacing.

S - Quite nutty with some brown sugar, spices

T - Spice is quite apparent initially, with cinnamon, allspice and faint cloves. Malt quickly catches up and is mostly nutty, but a bit of bread i the taste as well. Finish is a mix of sweet, dry and somewhat bitter. The bitterness detracts from the taste slightly, but this is still pretty good.

M - Medium mouthfeel, starting a bit sticky sweet, changing to bitter and semi-dry.

O - Pretty good spiced brown ale, but doesn't stand out in any particular way.

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Photo of ChopperSmith
3.32/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a brown bottle into a standard clear pint glass.

Appearance: Slightly hazy medium brown color. One finger of beige foam that faded quick and left minimal lacing.

Smell: Sweet and malty with a little spice and some barely noticeable hops.

Taste: Semi-sweet and malty with a little caramel and brown sugar. Very little hops, so it's fairly smooth. Finishes semi-dry. Not much hops for balance.

Mouth Feel: Medium body with a bit too much carbonation. Finishes a little dry.

Overall: Not one of my favorite styles, and this one really isn't very exceptional or unique. So, I probably won't seek this one out again.

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Photo of NuclearDolphin
3.32/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a 12oz Pint Tumbler

Appearance - Dark Brown/Black with slight Crimson tinge around the edges. Pours a half finger head and leaves behind some good sticky lacing

Smell - Chocolate mixed in with coffee, toffee, and some cinnamon. There's also a slight earthy hop smell present as well.

Taste - Dark Chocolate and coffee flavor with hints of cinnamon and spices. Really warms you up thanks to the mixture of cinnamon and spices, which gives the flavor a distinct zing.

Mouthfeel - Carbonation is light, but the overall feel is a bit more intense thanks to the spices at work. Overall body is fairly moderate and not overtly thin.

Overall - This is one of the stranger brown ales I've had. It has enough distinct flavoring to make things interesting, but the chocolate and cinnamon combination does seem to be a bit out of place. It's certainly not a bad thing, it just seems out of place for a beer that traditionally has chocolate and coffee notes. If a winter warmer and a brown ale were to have a baby, this beer would be the closest thing I've had so far to being that child

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Photo of Mdog
3.53/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Apperance: Dark brown, good head.

Smell: Chocolate, not too strong.

Taste: Dark chocolate, a little nutty. Leans a little towards the bitter side with the dark chocolate.

Drinkability: Doesn't seem as strong in abv as listed, I suppose that's a good thing.

Brown ales are hit and miss with me. I had this a year or so and was pretty impressed by the nut flavor. However, this bottle was more like a mini-stout with the dark chocolate bitterness overtaking the nut flavor. Still pretty decent beer though.

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Photo of MattyG85
4.42/5  rDev +20.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12 oz. bottle into a Sam Adams perfect pint glass.

Appearance: Dark and somewhat cloudy brown with tints of amber red and lots of bubbles. Big three finger light tan head with very good retention and lacing.

Smell: Sweet aroma of dark roasted malts, chocolate, and toffee with big hints of cinnamon and dark berries from the allspice. The spices make themselves known well and are not overbearing.

Taste: Sweet kick from the roasted malts and chocolate with a bit of cinnamon spice from the allspice. Spices are followed by more roasted malt sweetness and light hints of earthy hops in the finish. Well balanced and tasty.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Very creamy and smooth.

Overall: A very good take on a brown ale. The allspice ads a nice kick of spice.

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Photo of THECPJ
3.5/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes:

appearance: dark brown with orange hue and 1 finger off white head

smell: spices, caramel, malts,

taste: nutmeg, cinnamon, spices, caramel,

mouthfeel: mild carbonation, medium body,

overall: intersting beer. just wasn't really into this beer.


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Photo of mdaschaf
3.89/5  rDev +6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a dark brown with a small head upon pouring, but it was gone very fast and left behind no lacing whatsoever.

S: Very nutty with some chocolate. It is on the sweet side with a little bit of spice and no sign of hops. Lightly roasted malt.

T: Opens up with some caramel and roasted nuts. This is followed by a bit of sweetness and a bit of dark fruit and a bit of cocoa.

M: Medium bodied with low to medium carbonation.

O: A nice little brown ale, relatively high in abv, but you can't tell at all. Nice nutty flavor with a bit of cocoa. Quite enjoyable.

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Photo of happygnome
3.81/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: pours a transparent deep brown color with about a quarter inch of head that disappears quickly leaving a good amount of lacing on the sides of the glass and top of the beer. Carbonation bubbles can be seen continuing to rise to the top.

S: Bready malt aroma, allspice, cocoa. The nose is a little sweet but there is some balancing

T: Strong roasted bready flavor, hints of cinnamon and all spice.

M: medium bodied beer with nice carbonation.

This is a very nice brew that I am sure I will pick up atleast one six pack of

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Photo of lurpy1
3.23/5  rDev -12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Split a bottle with my wife last night. This is our first Lift Bridge beer other than Farm Girl, which I like and my wife adores.

Pour a solid, opaque brown, with very little head. No head to speak of.

The smell is classic brown ale smell, a little deep, not overly hoppy, a nice mix of spices coming through.

A very good tasting beer, with hoppiness which is pronounced but not overbearing. I'm picking up undertones of nutmeg, cinnamon, and strangely enough, Dr. Pepper. This is why I don't taste for a living.

Good mouthfeel, reasonable carbonation.

Lift Bridge lives in the considerable shadow of Surly here, but they are now 2-for-2 in my book. This is an underrated beer, I might even like it better than Bender. I'll keep my eye on Lift Bridge.

EDIT 1/11. Upon further review, this beer is far too muted for the grades I gave it. Decent start, bland finish. Changing grade from B+ (old style) to C+ (old style)

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Photo of argock
4.15/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz brown bottle into a clear glass mug. No freshness date. Consumed thanks to the generosity of my brother Greg.

A: Murky thick dark brown with soft, tightly bubbled light beige, 1-finger head with decent retention and a few spare lace forms.

S: Chocolaty with a solid dark malt backbone with some burnt raisin and fig aromas. Hops are very muted. The spice sneaks in, mainly cinnamon.

T: I generally do not like spiced beers, usually because the spice is brought to the forefront and covers the maltiness. Not so with Chestnut Hill as they use spices like cinnamon and nutmeg to accent the dark maltiness, vanilla bean, and cocoa flavors. This is a really well-crafted brown ale, using complementary flavors to bring the whole up a notch from the sum of its parts.

M: This brew is very smooth and creamy with muted carbonation to give it a substantial feel without heaviness.

O: I am impressed with Chestnut Hill, and with the Lift Bridge beers I had a chance to try this week. I think this is the best of the bunch, with its nuanced spice maltiness and vanilla and cocoa notes. Definitely recommended.

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Photo of GeezLynn
3.05/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

A: Dark brown body with a moderate tan head that is well-retained.

S: Sweet and very malty aroma. Toffee, chocolate malt, and spices.

T: Raisins, allspice, and vanilla, with a light sweetness. Plenty of flavors here, followed by a strong roasted bitterness that is a bit excessive. Malt gives the impression of more of a chocolaty brown than a nutty brown. Finish is long, bitter and slightly cloying.

M: Medium bodied with large, somewhat harsh carbonation.

While I liked Crosscut, as someone who likes brown ales I’m not too impressed with this one. Mouthfeel is off-putting and I don’t think the spices add much. Have given this one a few chances and am not a fan.

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Photo of FosterJM
3.6/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

300th review on BA
Bottle to pint
12oz bottle

Thanks to Tmcelvain for this extra.

App- Dark caramel brown with a quick receding one finger head. No lacing at all.

Smell- Slight spice, brown sugar and a toasty nutty scent.

Taste- Spicy, nutty and a bit sweet. The malts balance out some nice underlying sweet flavors.

Mouth- medium bodied with a medium carb level. Slight sugary after taste.

Drink- A very welcome extra from a great BA in MN. Sweet, malty with nice flavors. I can see good things from this young brewery.

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Photo of msjacilynn
3.68/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: brown with sudsy tan head. decent lacing throughout.

S: hard to pick this one up. some sweet malts perhaps a bit nutty.

T: a tad sweeter than I expected. roasted malts, brown sugar, nuts and light bite of hops at the end. nice beer, especially if you are in the mood for a sweet brown.

M: medium in body and carbonation.

D: good drinkability...we decided it tasted like Christmas. :o)

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Photo of deebo
3.7/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A-tight foam (Guiness like) dark and clear
S-Roasted malt with sweet prune like aroma
T-Dark heavily roasted malt with coffee and dark chocolate notes. Heavy sweet bread yeast with smooth light hop flavor
D-Too heavy for more than a couple but good for dessert.

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Photo of BeardedBoffin
3.82/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Lift Bridge's Chestnut Hill is a rich brown color with only a wisp of foam, served in this instance from the tap. The mild aroma conjures wintery, spicy chocolate concoctions. The flavor follows the aroma with a bigger dose of cocoa chocolate and plenty of sweetness. Spice is certainly detected, but the sweetness dominates. The spice provides the balance here since very little hops presence is detected at the finish. This brew is a little sweeter than others in this category, but still solid and drinkable.

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Chestnut Hill from Lift Bridge Brewery
83 out of 100 based on 41 ratings.