Mean Old Tom - Maine Beer Company

Not Rated.
Mean Old TomMean Old Tom

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

394 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 394
Hads: 2,048
rAvg: 3.94
pDev: 8.12%
Wants: 117
Gots: 345 | FT: 15
Brewed by:
Maine Beer Company visit their website
Maine, United States

Style | ABV
American Stout |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: dciBA on 03-03-2010

Our American-style stout aged on organic vanilla beans. Intense notes of coffee and dark chocolate lead way to subtle notes of natural vanilla. Flaked oats generate a silky mouthfeel.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 394 | Hads: 2,048
Photo of ryan1788a5
3.42/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

16.9 oz bottle poured into a snifter.

A: Pours a very deep purple, almost black. Beige head settles very quickly, lacing is sparse and patchy.

S: Lots of creamy vanilla and vanilla bean. Reminds me of the vanilla bean ice cream I used to make. Roasty and chocolatey scents underneath. Mostly cocoa and chocolate syrup. A bit of french roast and earthy yeast too.

T: Sweet cola-like character up front is quickly punctuated by woody and smokey malt tastes. Vanilla was so prevalent in the nose, but it's hard to place here; just the slightest hint of it within all the roasted malt. The chocolatey presence is also all but silent in the taste, with only a slight flavor of dark cocoa. Semi-dry finish with tastes of woody smoke, black cocoa powder, and a touch of vanilla.

M: Thin and somewhat watery in the mouth. Just enough carbonation to keep it from being totally flat. Very slightly silky. Not much body to it; lacks substance.

O: This beer tastes like a pretty decent home brew, not the product of a production brewery. It smelled great, but the taste just did not follow. The lack of body also contributed to its mediocrity.

Notes: I kept hoping that it would open up a little if I let it warm, but it didn't. This one needs to be revised, I think. (1,264 characters)

Photo of jmdrpi
3.43/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

500mL bottle. 111011 is marked on the label. I assume it means bottled on Nov 10, 2011.

appears opaque black, with 1" tan head that fades to a thin covering that stays. some lacing. mild roasted malt aroma, a little sweet.

taste is slightly roasty, a bit acidic. not really picking up the vanilla. it's on the thinner side, I'd like it to be a bit thicker. mild carbonation.

overall - a decent stout, but I don't see the vanilla bean aging. (446 characters)

Photo of HuskyinPDX
3.44/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

16.9oz bottle into the Duvel Tulip it goes.

A - Pours a dark brown with a large light brown head. Good retention and lacing.

S - Mostly old coffee.

T - Old bitter coffee with a hing of vanilla. Maybe I am just hopin for it.

D - Lower carbonation but still fizzy somehow. Thinner body.

O - Where's the vanilla bean? It would have been perfect here. (352 characters)

Photo of Thorpe429
3.45/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle courtesy of McGrupp612. Served in a mug.

Pours a deep near-black color with a very nice tan head and some good lacing on the way down. The nose brings forward quite a bit of chocolate and vanilla along with a touch of roast. Flavor goes quite a bit down from there with far too much roast. Simply an average stout profile. Medium body with good carbonation and a slight vanilla finish. Decent enough, but not something I'd go back to really. (450 characters)

Photo of BigPlay1824
3.45/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed in a pint glass

A: pours a very deep black with a finger of bubbly deep mocha colored head that lingers nicely and becomes more creamy in character over time, leaves a ton of lacing
S: really great coffee malt scent, very deep, vanilla is there just slightly at the end
T: hmm, im kind of disappointed, this is kind of a run of the mill stout, coffee malt notes but not much more, finishes with a slight burnt flavor which lingers on the palate long afterwards
M: a bit aggressive on the carbonation, drinks thick and leaves the palate cleanly
O: it was nice, drank nicely, tasted good, nothing stood out though, i had hoped for more of the vanilla flavor but really none of it came through which was disappointing. the only brew ive had from the folks up in maine that i likely wouldnt buy again, o well (813 characters)

Photo of steve8robin
3.45/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Glad to find this one at a local beer store. I love Pepper and Zoe from Maine Beer Co so I'm excited to see a stout from them. PT bottle, 01/05/12...

A: A nice deep darkish brown / black with a nice fluffy 1 inch tan head that fades at a decent pace. Good.

S: I get some nice sweet chocolate upfront which blends into a creamy lactose scent. Some mild raisin makes an appearance hidden on the back. Some nice vanilla notes blends well throughout. Good.

T: Not really as expected. A very acidic / watery roastiness that is quickly overtaken by a hop bite. The hop bite lingers on the palate throughout. A mild sweet chocolate sits in the background. Ok.

M: Light body with a huge carbonation. A dry finish. Decent.

O: All in all, I was hoping for more. It starts well, but needs some more tweeking to get the taste right. First disappointment from Maine Beer Co for me. (873 characters)

Photo of Holland
3.45/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: deep black color with some brown highlights, minimal head, very thick looking for a 6.5% beer.

S: lots of roasted smells like burnt sugar and coffee, with some vanilla coming through with a bit of brown sugar when it warms.

T: almost all roasted favors with some smoke flavor that is balanced by some sweetness at the end.

M: Thick feel for a smaller stout, and a little fine carbonation that improves at the beer warms.

O: decent beer, but I will stick with Maine's hoppy beers in the future. Can barely taste the vanilla, and the base stout doesn't seem fantastic. (574 characters)

Photo of vfgccp
3.46/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.25

A - Not a bad looking beer. Very similar to MBC's King Titus porter, but with a slightly darker khaki head and a shade darker body - black with a thin halo of muddy brown highlights. Ok retention and lace.

S - Stale oreo cookies. The staleness is more about a dryness than anything unpleasant. Fairly one dimensional.

T - Not bad. Soft milk chocolate with a medium roast coffee center. Touch of burnt toast and cream on the backend.

M - Light frame for the style, and it looses a little something on the backend.

O - I'd say that King Titus, as a porter, is a better stout than Mean Old Tom is, as a stout. (610 characters)

Photo of OldIronLungs
3.47/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours into a pint glass a thin cola brown with a finger of head that settles as a smooth light mocha disk.

Nose is light roasted coffee and bitter chocolate - hints of sweet vanilla.

A sip is thin, with prickly carbonation towards the back. Light coffee and chocolate, some roastiness, and a delicate bitterness to finish.

Simple, straight-forward, and ultimately pretty plain. The vanilla didn't come through appreciably in the sip. Not enough body for my tastes, felt like a sweeter porter. Still not unpleasant at all to quaff. MBC has hoppiness down pat, but this stout wasn't the direction I'd hoped they'd take. (620 characters)

Photo of Rukasu
3.47/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours impenetrable blackness. Literally, a halogen desk light could not penetrate it. Thick, long lasting, creamy brown head, about three fingers.

S: Very little smell, some roasted nuttiness with faint cocoa.

T: Roasted malts with mild vanilla hints and an acidic finish. Earthy and complex, cigar tobacco, apple skin bitterness.

M: Tart and a bit astringent. Not as smooth as I expected, but fairly light. Little carbonation makes it a bit syrupy.

O: Agree with some of the previous reviewers that something is a bit off with this. It's quite bitter, almost sour at times. Maybe aging would smooth it out a bit, but for something similar, I thought King Titus was better. (681 characters)

Photo of ToasterChef
3.47/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Reviewed from my notes. A draft pour from the only keg in existence (at least with this batch) into my Uprising chalice as part of Novare Res' beer and chocolate pairings for Valentines Day.

The beer is dark brown in color and has lots of clinging and rising carbonation. A small foamy head covers a portion of the liquid, some some bare areas remain. A coat of film and patchy foam cover the sides of my glass after I swirl the beer about.

The nose has a combination of coffee/chocolate/mocha aromas. It's roasty, sweet and has a touch of bitterness.

I can taste vanilla and and coffee bitterness. There is an interesting sweetness in the aftertaste that, for me, takes some getting used to.

The beer is sticky and leaves a big coat behind. Lots of carbonation can be felt and the body lies comfortably between medium and full bodied.

This is an enjoyable stout, but I prefer MBC's other offerings a lot more. I wouldn't drink more than one of these in a session, considering that it probably come sin 16oz bottles.

I should note that some of the flavors, textures and especially the appearance of this beer makes me think it could have come from a cask, but the menu did not indicate such, so I reviewed it as though it was a normal draft pour. (1,252 characters)

Photo of ehammond1
3.48/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle (2012)

Acquired via trade
Thanks, whartontlalboy!

(Aged for 6 months)

Black throughout with a small dark brown head that leaves spiderwebs of stick down the glass.

Somewhat mild aroma, though what's here is nice enough. There's a pleasant combination of roasted malt, a bit of ground coffee, and just the slightest hint of vanilla.

The flavor too is simple though similarly nice. Roast and ground coffee lead the way, along with a low to moderate level of bitterness, and a little vanilla. Nice, though not complex.

Medium bodied with moderate carbonation.

Good enough, and a nice night cap, but a somewhat simple stout overall. Maybe I should have consumed this one as fresh as possible? (702 characters)

Photo of mountdew1
3.48/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a goblet. Born on date 8/26/12. Color was a very dark dark opaque brown, with a nice 1 finger creamy light brown head. Head thinned out fairly fast, but left a thin layer with plenty of lacing. Aroma was very slightly sweet. Subtle chocolate notes, but very faint, with a bit of brunt vanilla. Flavor started off sweet, than developed a bit of tang, with some earthiness that hung around in the mouth. Mellowed out a bit over time which made it more enjoyable. Felt ok in the mouth. Definitely hung around for a while, coated nicely, but left a slightly strange feel at the back of the throat. Definitely showed potential, but perhaps needs a bit more time to mellow out. (683 characters)

Photo of tewaris
3.5/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks Jason!

Dark brown, medium head, medium retention. Smells burnt and acrid at times; the roast is powerful in the taste as well. So charrred with only hints of vanilla. Tastes too tart because of the acidity... I think the roast is up there for a beer not so big and could have been dialed down. The beer is lost in it. Mouthfeel is right on though. (355 characters)

Photo of Ryan011235
3.52/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured into an E&J Cask & Cream glass on 6/10/11

Batch #1

Massive thanks to Brez07

Not at all what I'm used to seeing with a stout. Pours a fairly light brown and maintains a brown hue even in the glass, albeit deeper. One finger head drops to a thinner layer, leaving some lace.

Doesn't entirely smell like I was expecting either. Cleanly roasted grain notes and some toasty dark bread aromas. Hints of fading cocoa; perhaps that way on purpose. Sugary overtones and some earthiness. Soft vanilla sweetness on the edges,

An earthy hoppiness leads off, scatters and regroups at the finish. A decent bitterness is had, also attributable to notes of roasted coffee and a nip of bitter cocoa. To greater extent is a lightly roasted grain bill that perhaps seems more in line with an American Brown Ale than stout. Bready and earthy. Vanilla sticks to the latter half but adds an enjoyable layer of complexity.

Sits comfortably on the plump side of medium in terms of feel. Though not harsh, carbonation is higher than I prefer and at times overpowers the flavors. The feel starts to coat mid-sip and builds toward the finish then tapers off to a lingering graininess and a bit of a kick.

Overall impression - for the most part, nicely done. I'm convinced this would be better labeled as an American Brown Ale as it seems more in line with that style than a stout. To that end, I have to knock it a bit to style but I'll happily give it the benefit of the doubt. (1,465 characters)

Photo of kevanb
3.53/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500 ml bottle, 8/20/2012 on the label, poured into a snifter.

The beer pours a nice deep brown color, almost black but not quite. A half finger of mocha head appears but is gone instantly leaving behind a thin layer of film and no lacing. The aroma is of roast and almost peated malt, mild vanilla sweetness and a touch of chocolate. The flavors are just as simple, light vanilla, milk chocolate and lots of roasted malt. The body is pretty thin, overly carbonated as well, it doesn't detract from the beer too much, but it's not really helping any.

Verdict: A much simpler beer than I was hoping for, I thought the vanilla might take this to another level, but instead, it came off artificial and lacking complexity. It's not a bad beer by any stretch and was enjoyable to drink, but it's nothing too special. (812 characters)

Photo of jvillefan
3.53/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

A: Dark brown to black body with a thin mocha colored lacing.

S: Roasted grains dominate. There are hints of chocolate, vanilla, toffee, and coffee. The smell is mild and not very potent. There is an almost lager character to it.

T: A sessonable dark beer (if that's possible). There flavors are very mild and are smoke and roasted grains in the front. Vanilla in the middle and a bready finish. A good beer.

M: Very thin body with excellent carbonation.

O: This is not one of my favorite stouts but is a good change of pace. It is definitely on the lighter side of dark beers. (581 characters)

Photo of gueuzeonhigh
3.53/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours like I expect a "Stout" should pour-- dark brown almost black color-- topped by a short lived head that laced the glass.

A slight nose of toasted malt.

The flavor isn't particularly up front and center. This beer is a stout, but maybe it's because I've been quaffing too many RIS's that when I see stout I expect WEIGHT! This beer doesn't provide that. It's a mild stout in every respect- ABV, flavor stance, even I might add complexity. there's the hops bitterness, hints of toasted malt, a little chocolate thrown in, maybe some sweetneess even.

Mouthfeel is quite cordial-- remember this is a mild flavored stout. But this beer's finishes quickly leaving me wanting more flavor, and more at the finish.

Overall I would choose this beer as a "lite" stout.

Now what exactly "aged ON natural vanilla beens" is-- stout filled barrels placed on a pile of vanilla beans-- or stout filled barrels fed a few vannilla beans from time to time... good question. (965 characters)

Photo of jsanford
3.55/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark black with a creamy tan head that settles to a thin haze and solid ring, leaving behind spotty lacing. Sweet aromas of roasted malt, chocolate, and vanilla bean. Wishing the vanilla was more prominent. More flavors of dark roasted malt, bitter chocolate, and coffee-with-cream. Bit more vanilla then the nose suggests, but I'd still like more. Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy, with a medium-full body and good carbonation. Overall a solid Stout, but I'll stick with their IPAs in the future. (503 characters)

Photo of donkeyrunner
3.55/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Don't see this one in these her parts too often. Opaque black with a Georgia clay colored head. Snowy lace left by fair retention.

Roast malt, vanilla and dark chocolate aroma. Some barrel char in there, not sure if it's malt character or when Tom was aged on vanilla beans was it aged in a barrel mayhaps?

Roast malt and vanilla blend very well with each other. Woody. Flavors come through dull and flat though due to a thin body and lack of carbonation. Every other Maine Beer killed it in the mouthfeel department which is curious that Tom is so unappealing. Maybe that's why he's so mean. (595 characters)

Photo of jbertsch
3.55/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a big wine glass. Appears black as expected. Head was off white, almost tan.

Aroma gave me powdery oats, bakers chocolate, and some general campfire roastiness.

The taste was very similar to the aroma. Oatmeal-like notes up front. S'mores-like, but with dark chocolate. I don't get too much vanilla, but there's maybe a trace of it the more I drink this and dig deeper. Primarily, though, oats and dry bakers chocolate prevail. However there's still a little watered down feel to it all.

Mouthfeel is thinner than I'd like.

Overall this was enjoyable, but as the vanilla is advertised, it lets you down on that front. No big deal. Still tasty. Just wish it had a little more body. (699 characters)

Photo of kingcrowing
3.57/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

500ml bottle poured into a HF tulip - Batch #1.

Pours a deep dark brown with a small thin/bubbly light brown head. Nose is vanilla, chewy/nutty maltiness, and maybe some molasses.

Taste is light and smooth, a balance between a bite of bitterness/carbonation and mellow vanilla and dark malts. There is that molasses taste here, almost like dark chocolate as well. Mouthfeel is a bit light and watery. Finish is crisp and a bit bitter. Overall quite nice - even on a summer afternoon. (485 characters)

Photo of n2185
3.57/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: pours black with two fingers of khaki head that fades into a thin layer with a little lacing.

S: lots of roasted and smokey malt aromas up front followed by sweet vanilla and cocoa notes.

T: again, lots of roasted, smokey, and bitter malt characteristics. The finish has some slight vanilla notes, but they're subtle compared to the smokey flavors.

M: medium-thick body with medium carbonation, this beer is slightly watery.

O: a pretty decent beer, though I'd like more vanilla presence. It's very smokey and roasted and not sweet at all. (547 characters)

Photo of RyanLigeia
3.57/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

appearance- Pretty average looking. Its saving grace is how absolutely pitch black it is. Lets no light through.

smell- Some chocolate, vanilla, malty sweetness. Nothing too strong.

taste- Its good at the very start but doesnt last long. Disappears pretty fast.

mouthfeel- Could/should be a little thicker in my opinion

overall- Somewhat dissapointed, it was a little over priced. (386 characters)

Photo of womencantsail
3.58/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours dark brown, almost black, in color with a small off-white head. Roast is the dominant aroma here with a fair amount of chocolate and cocoa. Smells a bit...dusty? Some hints of vanilla, but not as much as I would have expected. The flavor is a touch watery and thin. Does have a nice chocolate and vanilla character, though. Good, but could have been better. (363 characters)

Mean Old Tom from Maine Beer Company
88 out of 100 based on 394 ratings.