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Third Stone Brown - Empyrean Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Third Stone BrownThird Stone Brown

Educational use only; do not reuse.

72 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 72
Hads: 162
Avg: 3.6
pDev: 19.44%
Wants: 5
Gots: 18 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Empyrean Brewing Company visit their website
Nebraska, United States

Style | ABV
English Brown Ale |  5.30% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: PhantomVodoo on 07-29-2002

A myth shattering ale that proves all dark beers don't have to be filling. Sweetly smooth with nutty hints of roasted caramel flavor. Brewed with American, Canadian and English grown barley and American hops.

13 IBU
View: Beers (24) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 72 | Hads: 162
Photo of lawlerj
3.48/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Had on tap at an Applebee's in Lincoln, NE. Who knew?

A - Nice thick head on the pour, a dark amber brown color. Leaves decent lacing as it was being drunk. Look pretty dang good.

S - roasted malt, a bit of coffee/espresso, not a lot else. Intriguing...

T - strong malt flavor, mild bitterness on the back end. Tastes like a brown ale should in my mind.

M - definitely on the thin side for this style. Could have been better in my mind.

O - overall, not too bad, but not the best brown ale I've ever had. Drinkability wise, I could put a few down, but I'm not sure I'd want to. As an aside, I was just tickled pink that I could get it on tap at an Applebee's. I was thinking the only half-way decent thing I might be able to find was Blue Moon.

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Photo of FosterJM
2.98/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

377th review on BA


App- A rounded off brown color with some dark no. A fluffy 1/2 in head and some decent cling.

Smell- Same as the NBC Brown, as I had them back to back. Pretty standard brown ale scents. Roasty with a bit of little touch of grains and dark chocolate.

Taste- Again, the Empyrean beers let me down. It was a standard brown ale with some light roasty smokiness and a bit thin with some nuttiness behind it.

Mouth- Very thin bodied and a slightly higher carbonation level with a weird after taste.

Drink- After the NBC brown this was my least favorite beer of the night but was a decent tick in the middle of America. Probably would not go back to this.

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Photo of koopa
3.33/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle sent to me by a buddy in SD who rocks!

Appearance: Pours more like a dark dull iced tea than a rich mahogany, with a tiny off white crown that offers little retention and a small outer ring of lace.

Smell: Subtle roasted malt, a bit of nutiness, and powdered cocoa.

Taste: Same as nose but with a bit of an acrid quality.

Mouthfeel: Light side of medium bodied.

Drinkability: Light in body, low in abv but lacking in flavor.

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Photo of Mora2000
3.75/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to a77cj7 for sending me this bottle.

The beer pours a medium brown color with an off-white head. The aroma is great. I get a lot of chocolate and coffee as well as some toffee, caramel and nuttyness.

The flavor is not quite as good as the smell, but it is still very nice. I get chocolate, hazelbut, toffee and caramel.

Thin to medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

A very nice English-style brown ale.

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Photo of Jayli
3.62/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Acquired this from a77cj7 via the Under 100 - Fishing for Minnows BIF so a big THANK YOU goes out to him!

A: This beer pours a ruddy reddish brown color with a one finger of light brown head. Head recedes to a film that retains throughout. Spots of wispy lacing lacing are left on the glass.

S: Nose is cocoa, light roasted malt notes, caramel malts, and a bit of nuttiness.

T: Taste starts with some sweet caramel malt notes before moving in to a a nutty mingled with toffee flavoring. Cocoa comes in and fills out the middle with just a mild roasted malt in the aftertaste. Tastes from the middle to the finish are muted and somewhat watery.

M: Lighter side of medium body, medium carbonation, slightly creamy body.

D: Goes down easily, not too filling, not much of a kick, a touch too watery in the taste though I really was enjoying this beer for the most part.

D: Goes down easily,

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.28/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

"The man who removes a mountain begins by carrying away small stones."

--Chinese proverb

Foreboding burnt orange with bronze-like undertones and a generous number of rapidly rising bubbles. The result is a thick slice of buttered wheat toast colored froth that is especially creamy and rich. Decent enough lace solidifies a good score.

The nose is pretty typical for an English brown (or an American brown for that matter). It features midrange malts that have a modest cocoa character and a bit of fruitness. No hoppiness isn't a sin in beer of this style.

Third Stone Brown will not turn the head of your average beer geek. In fact, with each sip, the taste score slips closer and closer to average. It's a relatively light version of the style and is slightly too boisterous bubbled. The 'best by' date isn't until mid-summer, for whatever that's worth.

Flavors include cocoa powder, baked nuts, an orchard fruitiness, and a peppery phenolic quality on the drying finish. More boldness and more depth would have been good. TSB is probably a pretty good burger-n-fries washer-downer. Solo, it isn't a standout.

The mouthfeel is more 4.0% ale than 5.3% ale. The carbonation has settled down some, though it's still slightly too sharp-edged and doesn't pamper the mouth in the least. More malt and fewer bubbles should fix this one right up.

Empyrean beer has recently started appearing in local beer stores. Third Stone Brown doesn't really get us started off on the right foot, but maybe the rest of their lineup will be more to my liking.

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Photo of tjd112
4.6/5  rDev +27.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation - Poured into Flying Fish pint glass

Appearance - Dark mahogany brown, half-finger tan head that does not last too long, good lacing

Smell - Chocolate, roasted malts, less nuttier than most ales of its type

Taste - Basically follows the smell

Mouthfeel - Thin and light bodied

Drinkability - Could do so all day

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Photo of brewdoc75
2.44/5  rDev -32.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A: Mahogany brown with light undertones. Moderate to strong carbonation. Head dwindles to a lace quickly.

S: Roasted malts, some chocolate and a faint fruitiness. Maybe some prunes or raisins. Really not exciting and the fruits are a bit offputting.

T: Faint roasted malt flavors with a hint of chocolate. Strong fruitiness ending in sourness. Not what I was expecting. These flavors end quickly into nothingness, leaving only a faintly bitter sourness in the back of the throat.

M: Light bodied and thin. Good carbonation.

D: I'm not a huge brown ale guy, so take my review with a grain of salt. Even for a brown ale there was some stuff going on here that didn't belong. I may have had a bad bottle. I may pick up another to give it another whirl, but I'll probably pass.

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Photo of mikesgroove
3.88/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another gem of a beer that I would have never had the chance to try otherwise. This one came with my third stone gift pack. Served cold and consumed on 12/01/2008.

The pour was decent, nice dark brown with a smallish head of tan that covered the top of the glass. Nice retention left a good bit of side glass lacing and a nice rounded look to it. The aroma was classic brown ale, little light, but still solid. Nice roasted malts, hints of caramel and other earthy tones mixed in throughout. Rich caramel flavor with a hint of earthy hop. Nice touches of brown sugar maybe and just a hint of bready tones underneath. Solid carbonation and a smooth, easy, medium feel.

Overall a very solid ale here. Nothing earth shattering but still damn fine. I would have no issue at all with going for this one again.

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Photo of Adamthome1
3.18/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I have reviewed this beer in the past. Being from Nebraska I like to support the local brewery. Is it just me or has this beer changed for the worse? Maybe I just had a bad batch but it seems that while all other micro beers have been raising their prices in the last year or so I can still get Empyrean beers for the same price of $5.99 at Super Saver in Omaha. So my conclusion from the price standpoint is that they have substituted inferior ingredients to keep the price the same as opposed to raising the price outright and not sacrifice taste. I've noticed the Vanilla Porter tastes a bit off too but not as much as the Third Stone Brown.

The key things that feel different to me are the taste and aftertaste where the aftertaste is the most noticeable difference and is not very appealing.

Maybe it's just me, still an allright beer that I will support.

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Photo of Zadok
3.47/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a deep brown with minimal head nor lacing.

Nice aroma of malts with a hint of fruit.

Smooth malty flavor with a tinge of dark fruit.

Smooth mouthfeel with mild carbonation.

Overal has a decent drinkability with good flavor and mouthfeel. Could consume several of these. Not to much else to say.

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Photo of Reanimator
4.05/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours bottle brown with some porter-esque ruby hues. Big malty aroma with some sort of herbal/spicy quality that I can't nail down.

The flavor is milk chocolate and light roasted coffee, like a breakfast blend - a very nice combination. Some more of that herbal-spiciness as well, not sure what it is but it isn't unpleasant. Medium bodied mouthfeel, nothing special here.

I love this brewery and their consistently great beer across many different styles, and like all Empyrean Ales the Third Stone Brown is incredibly drinkable and delicious.

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Photo of Tucquan
3.65/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Served in a bottle at the Omaha, Nebraska airport

Attractive label and bottle. This was the only local beer served at this airport bar. Cost was $6.00 for the single bottle (airport prices).

I expected a hearty beer but was surprised that it was on the light side for a brown ale. The flavor was well-balanced with an initial malt and citrus taste and a mild-hoppy finish.

I enjoyed the beer as a prelude to the flight to Chicago. I'd try other examples of their beer.

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Photo of BadRockBeer
3.51/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Serving Type Sampled: On tap at Old Chicago in Kearney, Nebraska.

Appearance: Nutty Brown with copper hue. 1 finger rocky head, lead to nice tight lace.

Smell: Malty, cider vinegar, grainy.

Taste: This brew is slightly sweet right up front. I taste a spectrum of flavors, from nutty to chocolate to caramel. I don’t get a whole lot in the way of hops, mild grassiness. However this brew is very well balanced. I do taste a mild oxidization probably from poor draft equipment.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium in body, mild carbonation.

Drinkability: Average, A little on the sweet side for me but still a nice brown

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Photo of Romulus141
4.45/5  rDev +23.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pub glass. I've had this many times before at the Brothers bar in Lincoln.

Appearance: Pours a rich, dark brown with a fair amount of cream-colored head. The head dissipates after some time, but a thin layer remains on the top of the brew. Lacing is apparant on the sides of the glass.

Smell: Fulfilling wheat smell is predominant. The smell is strong, and a good indicator of the taste.

Taste: Full-bodied, with a strong burst of roasted grain. The taste is very distinctive, and it makes an immediate impression. The finish is quick and crisp, and there is no lingering aftertaste. All in all, this is a very good brew.

Mouthfeel: It is thinner than some other ales I've had, and a little over-carbonated. However, it is still quite good. Though, I would cut down on the carbonation a bit if I had the opportunity. Empyrean really likes to lay on the carbonation it seems.

Drinkability: Quite good. I order pitchers of this at the bar often, and it is not filling or too rich for a session. Combined with its superb flavor and light mouthfeel, this is the ideal brew to drink while at a bar in Lincoln, NE.

A very good brew, and one of my personal faves from the local breweries in Nebraska.

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Photo of IntriqKen
2.85/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

An agressive pour gave me 4 fingers of foam....had to be careful after it died down to yeild a half finger of tan atop a very dark amber brown.
Smells like toasted malt, caramel, and burnt sugar
Sweet toasted malt with hints of chocolate and caramel yeild to a citrus sour hops.
Aftertaste of sour hops and burnt sugar with a hint of alcohol.
A different sort of brown, to me.

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Photo of arguemaniac
3.2/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to jhammerly for getting this one to me:

Not a bad brown ale, but nothing stellar either. A nice mouthfeel with some decent nuttiness and a tasty touch of roast. The hop bite is there and though it balances to some extent, it’s pretty mild. However, this is a brown ale, after all, so I wasn’t expecting a tremendous hop spice anyway. Recommended.

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Photo of MaltyGoodness
2.43/5  rDev -32.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

12oz. bottle thanks to jhammerly

Pours a clear, deep, chestnut brown with a small tan head that thins. No real lacing to speak of.

Aroma is nutty and slightly roasty with a bit of a medicinal smell.

Taste is slightly malty and nutty upfront followed by a mild bitterness and a slight medicinal taste at the finish.

Thin body, light carbonation.

Not quite a drain pour, but the slightly medicinal character will keep me from drinking one of these again.

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Photo of jdhilt
3.08/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours with two-finger light tan head that goes quickly leaving a little lace. Deep amber color. Burnt chocolate nose. Light carbonation and light bodied. Starts almost sweet, with chocolate overtones, quiet finish. Not a bad brown. $6.93 for a 6-pak of 12oz bottles from Supersaver Lincoln, Ne.

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Photo of russpowell
3.57/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had this at brewskys in lincoln (nearest the airport), NE along with a truly tasty primerib patty melt!

Poured light btrown with a 1' white head. Minimal lacing & head retention

Nice nut & malt scents

Taste: Fruitty up front, the nuttiness. Finishes fruitty

MF: slightly thin with good carbonation

Goes down easy, but just a run of the mill brown

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Photo of jhammerly
3.16/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A nice deep brown with a slightly tannish head, the body is a bit thin when held up to the light. It has some transparency to it. A faint smell of roasted malt that touches the nose. A sweet, nutty flavor that is common in most brown ales, just a bit thin on the palate. Though I am not the biggest fan of brown ales, I do find this a decent brew that is a good session beer.

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Photo of Bitterbill
3.68/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 120z bottle(room temp) a dark brown with a smallish head of foam that dissipated slowly.

The smell is a roasty malt.

The taste is quite roasty up front, with malty sweet notes also present midway through. The finish is a bit on the weak side and that's too bad because I enjoyed it up to that point.

Bottom line: This is a good English Style Brown Ale that deserves a try.
Thanks go to BDitty 187 for this sample!

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.33/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appears caramel ruby brown forms a decent sized tan beige head leaves rings of uneven lacing. Aroma contains toasty roasts with a slight metallic character some tart fruity tones and herbal earthy Williamette hopage. Taste is roasty upfront with a touch of soft chocolate, toasted nuts, and more mild fruity undertones light herbal/earthy hops with overall mild bitterness. Mouthfeel is medium bodied evenly carbonated stays on the palate leaves me with a nutty finish. Drinkability is solid nice brown ale straight out of Nebraska thanks to bditty187 for the sample I enjoyed it pretty much just nothing to over the top.

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Photo of neonbrown82
4.37/5  rDev +21.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This is a good, drinkable brown ale. Pours to a light nutty amber brown color, still fairly transparant. What little head exists fades quickly to a thin ring. Carbonation is quite weak.

The smell is fairly robust but still has that light and sweet caramel maltiness with only a hint of roast. Smells very clean with noble hops.

The taste is also quite good. One of the better browns I've had. Very smooth and dry with a slight sweetness in the finish. Nice caramel flavor with roasty coffee undertones. Very well done.

The mouthfeel is a bit sharp with the carbonation, even though the beer appears to be damn near flat when first poured. Very crisp and clean, almost lager-ish. Very refreshing. The body is fairly light with a nice clean noble hop finish.

Drinkability is great. I only wish Nebraska brews such as Empyrean were available outside of Nebraska.

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Photo of aforbes10
3.21/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had this on tap at Lazlo's and this is from my notes:

Apperance: dark brown color (duh), no head, some lacing.

Odor: malt, chocolate and yeast

Taste: Almost exaclty like a newcastle. malty with that strange newcastle metallic flavor.

Mouthfeel: Fine and smooth with some carbonation.

Drinkability: I guess i could have a few (although i didn't)

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Third Stone Brown from Empyrean Brewing Company
82 out of 100 based on 72 ratings.