Nut Brown Ale - Garrison Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Nut Brown AleNut Brown Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
82
good

71 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 71
Reviews: 40
rAvg: 3.58
pDev: 10.06%
Wants: 1
Gots: 5 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Garrison Brewing Company visit their website
Nova Scotia, Canada

Style | ABV
English Brown Ale |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-30-2002

Like the rich, dark brews of southern England this traditional ale draws on specialty malts such as chocolate, caramel and black patent. “Nut Brown Ale” is a deliciously flavourful dark beer like those popular in early Nova Scotia.

20 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 71 | Reviews: 40
Photo of hopsolutely
3.85/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A well brewed and well balanced example of the British brown ale style. Very attractive pour, a clear dark chocolate brown with impressive white head. Aroma of roasted malted grains and a nutty chocolate tone, with emphasis on hazelnut. Sweet taste has enough bittering hops in the finish not to be cloying. The caramelized malt sweetness fades quickly, leaving a pleasantly lingering dryness.

A beer I'd definitely recommend to any brown ale fan.

Photo of leaddog
2.91/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance – Pours a dark cola brown with a finger width of bubbly off-white head.

Smell – Nutty aromas (hazelnut), roasted and sweet aromas. This bottle seems to have some skunkiness to it.

Taste – Very nice hazelnut flavour along with caramalts. Again, picking up something skunky (perhaps an off bottle).

Mouthfeel – Medium bodied with light carbonation. Slightly thin.

Overall – Not what I was expecting for a nut brown from Garrison. A bit thrown off by the skunkiness in both smell and taste, kind of a turn off. Wouldn’t make a special trip for

Photo of BDTyre
3.46/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Dark brown with a big, sandy coloured head. Nutty malt profile, and a noticeable, bitter - almost metallic - nose. Caramel in the background.

Nuts, milk chocolate and caramel flavour. The metallic bitterness is noticeable, but not as present. Slight citrus from the hops. Flavour is somewhat muddled.

Good mouthfeel. Not a bad brew, but the flavour does need a bit of work - the bitterness needs to be toned down.

Photo of Risser09
3.47/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into a snifter · fridge temp · 2011

Appearance: Pours a dark brown (black) color that lets no light in or out. 1/2" head is light brown, shows decent retention, some spotty lacing.

Smell: Mushrooms, raw barley, triscuits, wood. Obscenely different from any beer I've smelled. Not terrible though.

Taste: This beer has a weird pancake batter, wood, extremely raw barley taste to it. Maybe this is the NUT of the nut brown ale. Either way, it sure is interesting.

Mouthfeel: Thin but smooth. A nice drink.

Overall: A particularly interesting, nutty, virgin flavor of a beer. I like it. I would have 6.

Photo of Converge
3.06/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

341ml bottle poured into a 16oz pint glass.

A - Pours with two finger of bubbly mocha head. The beer is a deep mahogany hue. Nice head retention that generates spots of lacing.

S - This actually smells really skunky upfront. Almost like cat breath... Notes of nut and caramel malt are detectable though. Relatively bland overall.

T - Now this is where I begin to question the quality of the bottle I received. Strong metallic notes, almost tastes like blood. Nutty flavor isn't really detectable. A bit of roasted malt and a dash of hops in the finish. Really easy to drink. Smokey notes here and there. A bit of woodiness. Not really roasty/nutty like I had anticipated. A decent coffee presence appears as it warms.

M - Medium body with a bit of bubbly carbonation. Finishes quite creamy.

D - The off putting metallic taste in the flavor really killed this for me. However, this is a re-review, and in my prior experience with this beer, this flavor was not detectable. This has me thinking this bottle was just not good. Really hoping the rest of this Garrison sampler isn't like this...

EDIT: After popping open the Irish Red and trying to review it, it's clear now that this whole Garrison box is going to be drain pours... Bummer.

Photo of kjyost
3.48/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured ~6C from an undated brown bottle into a tulip. Thanks BBrianBoogie!
A: Deep brown, verging on opaque body. Tall tan head drops slowly leaving light lacing. 
S: Biscuit malt dominates initially with hints of earthy hop. Later thick molasses notes play through. 
T: Thick molasses and caramelized sugar dominates with a bit of roasted malt. Little of the promised nuttiness comes through. Nice for what it is, I was just expecting something substantially different. 
M: Thick molasses notes linger with light bitterness. Fairly strong carbonation keeps the beer crisper than it actually is
O: A decent beer, but just not what I was expecting. Something I would have again, though not expecting a nutty nut brown. 

Photo of mrmanning
3.08/5  rDev -14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Thanks goes out to Jer for bringing home the bacon on this one. Body is dark brown, with a caramel coloured head. Aroma is a combination of roasted malt and a sweet earthiness. Taste is suprisingly smokey and earthy as well. Smooth mouthfeel. Somewhat nutty aftertaste. Decent indeed.At toronro spring tasting, 2004.

Photo of Rutager
3.53/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance. Nice deep (nut-)brown-red with over a finger of creamy tan head that leaves some nice lacing.

Smell. Sweet caramel malt, some maple and molasses, and a little herby hops.

Taste. Sweet caramel, some molasses and roasty grains. A little bit of grassy hops.

Mouthfeel. On the heavier side of light in body with medium, smooth carbonation

Overall. A little sweet for me. A bit of a medicine taste that I can't put my finger on.

Photo of joemcgrath27
3.68/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - bubbly deep amber brown, generous tan head was consistently replenished from the rising bubbles
S - caramel and nutty malt, cedar, cherry, and light grassy hops
T - very nutty and sweet thick molasses malt flavours dominate, some fresh cedar and a hint of leafy hops
M - well carbonated with a creamy feel up front, finishes sweet and full
D - a solid nut brown ale, doesn't stand out in any particular way but does everything well, maybe a bit too sweet to be a sessioner

Photo of IronDjinn
3.53/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From a variety 6-pack from Garrison, in a 341ml brown bottle. Pours out a dark brown, bright translucent garnet when held to light. Creamy beige head that settles to a healthy cap.

Nutty, toasty malt on the nose, some sweet notes.

Nutty and toasty malt also in the flavour, accompanied by some wafery chocolate character, with notes of coffee and toasted malt on the finish, very mild leafy hops in the aftertaste.

Medium-bodied mouthfeel, the texture makes it seems fuller than it is, while the carbonation adds to a more quenching finish.

A pretty decent brown ale, so far my favourite of what I've sampled from Garrison so far, they did a pretty good job with this style.

Photo of andrenaline
3.89/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a nice dark brown with a ruby red tint, finger of tan head with little retention and no real lacing.

S - Scent is sweet with dark chocolate, maple syrup and burnt sugar. Touch of fresh ground coffee on the finish.

T - Definitely more bold than I was expecting with the chocolate and coffee malts bearing a strong presence. The burnt sugar and maple syrup linger on the finish alongside some faintly detectable earthy hops.

M - Although it appeared thin, the carbonation filled up on the tongue and came across as smooth and creamy, though the finish was a tad too dry for my liking.

D - Overall a pleasant surprise which boasts bold flavours for a brown ale. I quite enjoyed this one and could easily toss back a 6-er. Easily drinkable, yet full of flavour.

Photo of Long813
3.81/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dated: NA

A: Dark brown body with two fingers of light mocha head. Retention is great and leaves loads of lacing.

S: Strong essence of nuts and roasted malts, and some sweet toffee.

T: Full up on the roasted malts with a slight hint of almond/walnut maybe. Sweet chocolate and caramel blends nicely with mild coffee beans.

M: Medium-light bodied with high carbonation. Water like texture and leaves a bitter aftertaste. I find the carbonation is a bit much.

D: Another good brew by Garrison. For it's style, it's basic and to the point, making it a pleasing beer for all.

Photo of biboergosum
3.7/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

341ml bottle, part of the MIXED-6 pack currently available in Alberta.

This beer pours a clear, very dark reddish cola hue, with two fingers of weakly puffy, yet densely foamy beige head, which leaves a few promontories of jagged lace around the glass as it quickly settles.

It smells of gritty bready caramel malt, bittersweet cocoa powder, hazelnut and pistachio nut, a touch of sour milk, subtle earthy yeast, and some earthy, weedy, and leafy hops. The taste is sweet 'n nutty caramel malt (the particular nut character obfuscated as it is in most confections), stale milk chocolate, a wisp of meaty smoke, a certain metallic flintiness, and some wan leafy, herbal hops.

The carbonation is on the low side of things, with its plain Jane frothiness, the body medium-light in weight, mostly smooth, and perhaps a tad creamy. It finishes well off-dry, the sweet nutty malt giving way to the feebly surging weedy, herbal hops.

A nice, generally balanced brown ale - lots of flavour - the only drawback is that middling, weird, and kind of medicinally herbal hop essence - surely a different varietal would do this offering a whole lot more justice, eh?

Photo of nighthawk
3.76/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Growler whisked from the brewery into my fridge. Poured into nonic.

Dark brown body with hints of ruby-hued browns where the light pierces the otherwise opaque beer at the edges. Head is large and fluffy at first pour, settling to a persistent finger (1cm or so) light tan head. Bits of sticky lace cling here and there along the glass.

Chocolate-covered nuts comes first to mind when smelling this beer. Surprising amount of fruity esters in there too, something along the lines of apples, pears, bananas and maybe a touch of citrus. The more the beer warms, the more the chocolate and nutty aromas come out, even giving some mildly roasted coffee.

Taste follows the aroma, though the fruit is a bit more subdued. Chocolate, nuttiness, some caramel, very light fruit, finishing with a bit of something that I can't quite put my finger on, but makes me think of (alternately) smokey, sour, and lactic flavours. A fair bit going on here, and blended decently.

Mouthfeel is a touch above light, maybe a bit lighter than what I would really prefer, with mild carbonation.

This is a very drinkable brew. Not the tastiest beer, or even nut brown I've come across, but it has some nice flavour and goes down nicely. Worth trying.

Photo of Mora2000
3.63/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The beer pours a clear brown color with a tan head. The aroma is toasted malt, toffee, caramel and some chocolate. The flavor is toffee, chocolate, earthy hops and some toasted malt. A pretty basic brown ale in both flavor and aroma. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

Photo of JohnnyBarman
3.67/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Friends of mine did a road trip out to Halifax and picked up a sampler for me - cheers lads!

Poured into a nonic glass. Dark chestnut brown with a touch of red when held to the light. Thin, foamy off-white head, dissolved fairly quickly. Ring survived throughout the pint.

Nose is coffee, chocolate, hazelnut, caramel, marshmallow. Smells great!

Taste is that of a solid brown ale, but doesn't deliver on the same level as the nose. Malts were big here. All the flavors were there, but were a bit muted, especially towards the finish. A bit of a bolder effort would have made for a quality brew. As it is, the taste is merely satisfactory.

Slightly watery, decent carbonation. About right for the style to avoid being classed as a porter.

An okay brown ale, nothing fantastic, nothing to rave about, but certainly tasty.

Photo of socon67
3.79/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured coffee brown to dark brown with a creamy foam. The smell of roasted malt, nut, and caramel is whaffing from the glass. I found that this got even better as it settled in the glass. The taste was very traditional; a rather heavy malty taste. The taste is more potent over time. Decent drinkablility, though after one I was ready to move on to something else.

Photo of Evocatus
3.77/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice dark brown, as what you would expect from a brown ale. Aroma was nutty and roasted malts. Taste was similar to the armoa. The nuttiness was strong, as was the roasted malts; although the latter came off a little too strongly. Good thickness. Overall one of Garisson's better brews.

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.5/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured a clear deep brown color ale with a off-white foamy head with good retention and minimal lacing. Aroma consists of medium sweet caramel malt with light nutty finish. Taste is also a nice enough mix between some well balanced sweet caramel malt with light nuttiness and no discernable hops presence. Body is a bit light with good carbonation. Not bad but not s style that I have any passion for.

Photo of berley31
3.48/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured with a very small head that was gone very quickly. The body is a dark brown color that has a ruby hue when held to the light; body is clear.

S: A smokey aroma comes through, with a slight nut and chocolate smell as well. Again, as I've detected with other Garrison beers, there is a very small note of alcohol.

T: Bittersweet chocolate, slightly sweet and nutty, with a light bitter and dry finish. Not bad at all, really.

M: Light bodied, thin-creamy texture, with average carbonation... maybe a little too much carbonation for the style.

D: Not a bad beer at all, but not fantastic, either. Joins most of Garrison's other offerings, being drinkable but not overly special.

Photo of BigBry
3.72/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown with a short, off white head. Head quickly shrinks to a thin cap, thin lacing left on the glass. Nice smell of nuts and chocolate, light but evident. Taste mirrors the aromas. More nuttiness, some chocolate/light cocoa, minor bitterness at the end to balance the caramel sweetness.
Very smooth, enjoyable. Well balanced. Would be a 'go-to regular' if it were readily available in Alberta. Very comparable to Wild Rose Brown.

Photo of wordemupg
3.7/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

341ml bottle poured into pint glass nov30 2009

A clear deep red/maroon with a fast falling thumbs worth of head that left no lace

S mild chocolate brown sugar and faint cola

T perhaps a little toffee and a little nutty but other then that it tastes similar to what I smell

M fairly smooth but a little flat

D not a bad beer overall the taste put it a fair amount above average

thanks to Long813 for this east coast gem from a brewer I'm only starting to get acquainted with

Photo of Seanstoppable
3.85/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown with a finger of head. Head quickly evaporates to a thin covering. Minor lacing left on the glass.

Smell consists of a nice mild nutty chocolate.

Taste follows suit with the scent, but it more clear. The nutty chocolate is like chocolate covered almonds. Really enjoyable. Some minor bitterness is also present, mostly in the swallow. Some toffee tastes are also apparent. Further drinking introduces some minor coffee flavoring as well.

Very smooth, very nice, very enjoyable. You can easily go through a few bottles of this in one sitting.

Photo of biegaman
3.85/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Garrison's Nut Brown is certainly dressed appropriately for the fall: it has a creamy khaki coloured head and its chestnut body is replete with blushing, autumn leave-like tones of auburn and amber. Its kindled highlights give way to shallow pockets of clarity. This earthy shaded beverage looks quite at home against a backdrop of withering foliage.

There is just the right amount of sweet, dark caramel to balance the smokey, sooty scent of roasted malts. The aroma is surprisingly redolent of mocha for a style that normally steers slightly clear of the more heady, full-bodied flavours. It pleasantly smells like roast pecan and chocolate covered hazelnut. It is robust like a porter.

Likewise, the flavour is unexpectedly layered. True to its name, the beer boasts flavours of nuts: namely the chocolate covered almonds and hazelnuts and roast pecans that were already given away by the aroma. It tastes as though both coffee and cocoa beans were grounded into the mash; they pair fantastically with the sweetish, toffee-tinged malts.

It is likely the yeast imparting these lightly fruity undertones. I sense a bit of dried fruits and also the faint impression of banana. These soft, suggestive notes are easily lost amongst the smokey, roasted nature of the malts (which, for the record, includes: pale, caramel, Munich, dextrin and chocolate). Bitter and sweet are perfectly entangled.

Nova Scotia doesn't produce a lot of beers but of the ones they do I'd say an unusually high percentage of them are well above average. I'd have an easy time keeping the fridge stocked if I lived in that part of Atlantic Canada. This is not only a good rendition of the style but a highly quaffable, flavourful, all around well-crafted beer in its own right.

Photo of PEIBeerGuy
3.98/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I saw some of the Garrison beers in Baddeck a week or so ago. I decided on trying this style, because it seemed the most unique.

The beer looks good, with a dark colour similar to a glass of cola. The head is pretty tall, and lasts a good minute or so at least (I drank it, so I dunno how long it would actually last). After pouring, it cascades up a BIT like Guinness would.

The smell is just OK, & doesn't really match the flavour. It's a fruitier smell, like a Trappist beer (not my fave).

Its taste is a rich one, but not terribly filling (not nec. a bad thing). It has tastes of dark chocolate and coffee which come through strongest.

For a flavourful dark beer, it's not that thick. It's a bit smoother than a pale ale, and has a fair bit of carbonation. Not too much, but I wouldn't want any more.

As for drinkability, I instantly liked this beer quite a bit. I had three in a row the second time I tried it.

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Nut Brown Ale from Garrison Brewing Company
82 out of 100 based on 71 ratings.