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Mean Old Tom - Maine Beer Company

Not Rated.
Mean Old TomMean Old Tom

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

1,678 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,678
Reviews: 353
rAvg: 3.95
pDev: 9.87%
Wants: 84
Gots: 223 | FT: 11
Brewed by:
Maine Beer Company visit their website
Maine, United States

Style | ABV
American Stout |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
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 added by: dciBA on 03-03-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,678 | Reviews: 353 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of billab914
3.83/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

500ml bottle poured into my Devil's Backbone tulip. It poured black in color with a thin, frothy head to it. Nice lacing as I drank it.

In the aroma I get a good amount of roasted malts mixing with some notes of vanilla and chocolate. The vanilla was nice and seemed to smooth out some of the roasted malt flavors.

The taste also shows a lot of roasted malts to it throughout. I get some coffee flavors with some slight burnt notes to it mixing with a sweeter vanilla flavor. A little bitter-sweet dark chocolate is there as well.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with carbonation being below average. It felt a little thin and over carbonated for my tastes in the style. Overall it was a pretty good beer, nicely flavored and easy drinking. Very enjoyable overall.

billab914, Mar 05, 2012
Photo of Flounder57
3.83/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

16.9 oz bottle was poured into a tulip

Appearance: The beer poured a two finger mocha head that has reduced to a thin layer after a few minutes and left some nice lacing on the glass. Pitch black with no signs of clarity.

Smell: Vanilla, malty sweetness, and some coffee.

Taste: subtle vanilla, mocha, earthy and smokey notes.

Mouthfeel: very smooth, feels light for a dark beer, low carbonation

Overall: I had this on draft months ago at Jimmy the Greek's in OOB and the beer seemed more vanilla sweet. I liked it more on draft than in a bottle, but still a good easy drinking stout that does not leave you full. Would be interesting to see on nitro.

Flounder57, Jan 08, 2012
Photo of Viciousknishs
3.83/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A- pours an ebony color with a creamy looking light tan head. Good retention with some lacing as well.

S- bakers chocolate, soft roasted malt and cocoa aromas hit the nose at first. Light roast coffee beans and vanilla notes come out as well.

T- semi-sweet chocolate and iced coffee hit the palate at first. Soft roasted malt quality and a oily walnut note are there mid palate. Finishes with assertive vanilla bean flavor and more dark chocolate.

MF- slick oily mouthfeel with a light weak body and natural bottle conditioned carbonation! A thicker body and silky mouthfeel would do wonders for this brew.

D- really drinkable.

Overall a good stout with awesome vanilla tones. Just a little to thin and delicate.

Viciousknishs, Feb 16, 2012
Photo of WVbeergeek
3.84/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

They know dark beer at MBC, I love the King Titus porter, this one is pitch black big tan head forms thick and leaves fine even lacing. Aroma has dark chocolate malts, roasted malt brings out hints of coffee and the beer was aged on vanilla beans so therefore there's a define creaminess on the nose to bring it all together. Dark chocolate bitterness on the palate, creamy vanilla beans with a hint of acidic coffee notes from the dark malts because I'm pretty sure there's no coffee in this brew. No signs of oxidation bottled on 12/10/13, I'm okay with that it's a bottle I bought in Pittsburgh, yet MBC is not distributed here yet! The nose is magnificent the flavor is sufficient and it's a damn solid beer creamy smooth natural carbonation the palate goes down way too easily. Overall a very stand up solid beer that I will continue to enjoy when I have the opportunity to try it.

WVbeergeek, Mar 04, 2014
Photo of oakaged88
3.84/5  rDev -2.8%

oakaged88, Sep 01, 2014
Photo of lordofthewiens
3.85/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Batch #1
500ml bottle poured into a mug.
This beer was a very dark brown, nearly black color. A hint of red when held up to a light.
Medium-sized tan head and a little bit of lace.
Strong roasted malt aroma up front, followed by some sweet chocolate. A little bit of vanilla tucked in there.
Tasted like espresso with a shot of chocolate. I think I lost the vanilla.
A bit on the thin side.
Nice enough.

lordofthewiens, Mar 13, 2011
Photo of ar70584
3.85/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16.9 oz bottle

appearance: khaki colored head dissolves quickly in a thin film. Good lacing. Dark brown espresso color.

smell: brewed coffee, dark chocolate, alcohol.

taste: dry irish style stout with robust coffee flavors overshadowing the minimal vanilla flavor. respect for not using any vanilla extract. no lingering bitter taste. hides slightly higher than average ABV very well.

mouthfeel: light dry irish style stout character.

drinkability: very good. nicely balanced flavor, could definitely put a few of these away.

ar70584, Feb 10, 2011
Photo of BostonHops
3.85/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

16.9oz bottle served in a pint glass.
bottled date: 11/10/11

pours a deep mahogany / cola-like brown while yielding a healthy 2" head (w an aggressive pour); very respectable retention and lacing. nose is likewise very nice, headlined by coffee, some chocolate, and roasted malt.

flavor delivers more of the same, with the coffee and chocolate in particular being well-represented. i also get some secondary notes of vanilla and a hint of char. medium bodied mouthfeel, a touch thin, with average carbonation.

overall a very nice, easy-drinking stout. no wow factor necessarily but no worse than a C+/B- range brew.

(originally reviewed: 12-05-2011)

BostonHops, Jun 22, 2012
Photo of portia99
3.85/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500ml bottle (bottled 11/10/11) poured into a Brooklyn snifter.

A - Pours an almost totally opaque black color with a finger of dense whipped creamy tan foam with good staying power and a near uniform sheet of lacing around the glass.

S - Interesting aroma...bit of booze, lots of coffee, vanilla, dark chocolate, mild touch of dark fruit, perfumey floral hops, and a bit of molasses.

T - Quite bitter with strong contribution of burnt malt, dark chocolate and coffee. A floral hop flavor, and some dark fruits. The acrid bitterness dominates and probably pushes out some of the potential complexities here. Can't say I'm really getting much of any vanilla in here, which is a disappointment.

M - Body is fairly thin...a bit too thin for my liking. Carbonation is at a lower level too and gives a mostly creamy feel but still manages to give a bit of a tingle as well.

O - A decent example of an American stout. Body is a bit thin however. It is a fairly easy drinker. Smokey, acrid, burnt malt flavors take the lead with other typical stout flavors mixing in behind. Sadly not enough of the vanilla bean came thru for me.

portia99, Nov 20, 2011
Photo of cvm4
3.85/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A - Pours dark brown with a one finger khaki head. Not much lacing to speak of.

S - Roasted malts, vanilla bean and semi-sweet chocolate.

T - Strong bitter dark chocolate with underpinnings of roasted malts and a dry sweet vanilla (not overly).

M - On the light side of medium body with light carbonation. A dryer stout, not wet to me.

O - A simple addition to a stout that makes it intriguing.

cvm4, Feb 07, 2013
Photo of suspect
3.85/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 500ml bottle into a Central Waters snifter.

A: Deep deep deep dark brown. Not quite black but close. Aggressive pour leads to a slow creeping head that gets bigger to about 2 fingers, then slowly fades to a thin ring.

S: Big notes of toasted malts, chocolate malts, burnt coffee. Slightly lighter aromas of vanilla, smoke and dried wood.

T: Coffee notes first but it tastes like the coffee has had some milk and sugar added to it. Malts from the nose are present and accounted for but they are much less smokey and a lot smoother.

M: Big creamy mouthfeel. Ample carbonation. No alcohol notes to speak of.

O: An easy drinking stout that's full of flavor and complexity. Lots of things going on and none of them are offensive or overpowering.

suspect, Oct 05, 2012
Photo of MasterSki
3.85/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Reagan1984 for this one. Dated 11/10/11 - better enjoy those symmetrical dates while you can next December (or every month if you're outside the US). Served in a Darkness glass.

A - A finger of tan foam settles toa thin cap and chunky collar, leaving plenty of splotchy lace. Body is an opaque, very dark, brown.

S - At first I was convinced there was coffee in this, but after inspecting the bottle I realized that it was just really roasty. Nice chocolate, caramel, and molasses, and a very well-integrated dose of vanilla. I dig that this smells like vanilla beans and not vanilla extract.

T - Taste doesn't quite live up to the aroma. Somewhat ashy and chalky at first, although it improves as it warms up yielding more in the way of cocoa powder and vanilla beans. Finishes smokey and roasty, with light espresso bitterness that lingers quite a while.

M - Lighter body, with moderate carbonation. A tad watery, but not offensive for only 6.5%. Slightly chewy and sticky finish, and no obvious alcohol.

D - I appreciate that they've packed a lot of flavor into a relatively low ABV beer, but the flavor is a touch too burnt and the body is a bit too flaccid for this to be an unqualified success. Still, it's another quality effort from Maine Beer Company. I like that everything they release is polished and reliably good. Finished the 500ml bottle no problem.

MasterSki, Jan 14, 2012
Photo of Jimmys
3.86/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

500mL bottle into taster. bottled on 02.19.13.

A: dark brown body. nothing crazy, just a really dark brown. head is on the brownish side as well. retention is good. spotted lacing.

S: lots of coffee starts the nose off. dark chocolate combines with vanilla to have a very DD coffee elixir-like aroma (you know coffee coolata bullshit). a little bit of tobacco is there as well.

T: wisps of vanilla are there, but not nearly as much than on the nose. a lot of bitter roasted grain. slightly astringent towards the finish. chocolate, dark chocolate mostly. adds to the bitterness. unfermented sugars linger into the finish.

M: average/slightly high carb on a rich, medium body.

D: overall i enjoyed this brew. wouldn't have hated for more of the vanilla bean aspect to come across on the nose/palate, however, still a good American stout.

Jimmys, Mar 01, 2013
Photo of leaddog
3.88/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Appearance - Pours a dark cola brown with three fingers of creamy mocha head.

Smell - roasted malts, semi-sweet chocolate, vanilla, hint of coffee, slight hint of dark fruit.

Taste - Mellow flavours of roasted malts, semi-sweet chocolate, vanilla, hint of coffee and dark fruit.

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied with light to moderate carbonation. Milky (not to be confused with creamy) texture.

Overall - An American stout that is more subdued than I am used to for the style. There are good flavours in here but I wish they were more pronounced.

leaddog, Jun 30, 2014
Photo of EkimGram
3.88/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 4

Taken from my beer journal dated 2/24/12

Appearance: 16.9oz bottle poured into a standard pint glass. Colour is a very dark brown with a finger-thick toffee-coloured head that fades slowly leaving a nice lacing.

Smell: Rich, roasted, and toasty malts are strong and bold. I also pick up a slight bitterness in the mix.

Taste: Mild, dark, and balanced. Malts are burnt, roasted, and have an almost butter flavour - probably a sweetness passed on by the vanilla beans.

Mouthfeel: Medium body, a little watery, and mild level of carbonation.

Overall: I had feared the vanilla beans would be too much but I really enjoy the subtle nuance they add. A solid brew.

EkimGram, Jan 14, 2013
Photo of parksed24
3.88/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: Pours very dark brown with a quick rising caramel head. Pour it carefully, the head takes off! Head goes down to a thin layer quickly but what is left stays with the beer until the end.

S: Nice, roasty, full body on the nose with chocolate and vanilla coming on strong.

T: Lots of bitter chocolate coming through. More alcohol comes through than I expected at this abv. Less vanilla than I was hoping for, it seemed a bit lost. It's not overly sweet like a lot of beer with vanilla can be, which I did enjoy. Aftertaste left me wanting ice cream so I'm going to try this as a float beer (GASP)!

M: Thin for a beer this dark (similar to Atwater Vanilla Java Porter). A little light on the carbonation.

O: This is a solid stout that I would buy again. I don't know if I would classify it as a dessert beer by itself, but the lower sweetness level might make it nice to pair with sweet desserts. The only thing I really wanted was some more of that vanilla to come through on the palette.

parksed24, Aug 10, 2013
Photo of tigg924
3.9/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: dark brown in color, hazy, minimal head, medium carbonation, sediment

Smell: roasted malt, dark chocolate, and vanilla

Taste: big roasted malt and coffee start giving way to toasted malt and vanilla

Mouthfeel: medium heavy body, medium carbonation, sweet with roasty bitterness

Overall: A good stout where the vanilla is pronounced but never overly dominating. The flavors combine well here. I would get this again, but would not rush out to do so.

tigg924, Feb 04, 2013
Photo of metter98
3.9/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: The beer is jet black in color and poured with a thin light mocha head that quickly disappeared, leaving a thick ring of bubbles on the surface around the edge of the glass.
S: There are aromas of chocolate and roasted malts in the nose along with subtle hints of vanilla beans.
T: The beer is quite malty and has flavors of bittersweet chocolate and roasted malts plus some hints of vanilla beans towards the finish.
M: It feels medium-bodied and smooth on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation. It feels a little fuller-bodied than you would expect for its alcohol content.
O: This beer really packs in a lot of body and flavors for a beer that has a relatively low alcohol content compared to other beers in the style. It is also very sessionable.

metter98, Jan 30, 2012
Photo of twiggamortis420
3.9/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

500 mL bottle courtesy of sliverX pours black with a thick, rising cap of tan head. Great retention and lace...a really nice looking beer.

Nose is a fairly balanced stout, with a fair amount of hops and the vanilla is much more restrained than I thought it would be.

Taste steps it up a notch with a nice, clean drinkable stout with a moderate compliment of vanilla beans. I wouldnt mind a bit more sweetness to go with the beans, but I think MBC was going for an easy drinking, balanced beer here. Mission accomplished, vanilla additions are nice and would make a really nice cask ale to have a pint or two locally, but it just leaves me wanting a little more richness, sweetness and surprisingly - chocolate to compliment the vanilla.

twiggamortis420, May 27, 2013
Photo of GeezLynn
3.9/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark brown, almost black body with a patchy white-tan head. Pretty good retention.
S: Heavy milk chocolate with a little vanilla noticeable. This is one of those stouts that smells like a chocolate tootsie pop to me.
T: Rich cocoa, some roasted malt, a bit of nutty flavor and what I’m guessing is lactose. Just enough bitterness for balance. Full flavored but doesn’t stray into extremes in any area.
M: Medium-bodied with light carbonation. Very soft feel with velvety carbonation.

My second beer from Maine Brewing and enjoyed it very much. The vanilla referred to on the label didn’t seem all that strong, but it brought out the chocolate flavors nicely. Also the mouthfeel was full and smooth and reminded me of some of my favorite oatmeal stouts like Doubly Down and Dirty.

GeezLynn, Jan 23, 2012
Photo of Casey10
3.9/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This is a nice beer that while good doesn't match quite the american stout that a Cadillic mountain stout (a tall order) does exspecially based using price as a factor

This is a nice beer and has a nice appearance with a smell of cocoa.

The cocoa has a similar taste but has a bit watery/smoked taste to it not bad but not outstanding.

The drinkabilty might be really good but per bottle it is expensive.

The beer is worth a try hoped for better though.

Casey10, Feb 17, 2011
Photo of gonzo000
3.9/5  rDev -1.3%

Very, very good stout. Vanilla on the very back is light. Coffee dominates. A bit less body than anticipated. Good flavor. Cannot go wrong with Maine Beer Company.

gonzo000, Sep 01, 2014
Photo of cfrances33
3.9/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle dated 5/31/12 poured into a Tired Hands tulip/wineglass.

Pour: Very dark brown, almost black with a finger and a half tan head.

Smell: Vanilla, roasty oats, little bit of coffee.

Taste: Really great roasty oats and bitter mocha. Some espresso bitterness and vanilla. Really great.

Mouthfeel: Creamy, but light and drinkable.

Overall: Pretty solid stout. Has aspects of an oatmeal stout, so almost a hybrid. Nice though. Would maybe get again.

cfrances33, Jul 26, 2012
Photo of sprucetip
3.9/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From a bottle dated 11.10.11, so about 3 months in the bottle.

Black but not thickly so, as it is translucent and reveals good clarity when backlit. It is highly active, has a finger of mocha head that stays for a bit and leaves scraps of lacing.

The aroma includes a modest level of roast, a wee nip of vanilla, and some malty sweetness. It is not especially rich, strong, deep or complex. But it is well balanced and pleasant, and seems to become more robust throughout the sample.

The taste is composed of much the same elements as the nose. The roast is far from bold, the vanilla is so minimal that it is more like the vanilla tones imparted from an oak barrel that does not actually have any vanilla in it, and is joined by some mildly sweet malty character. There is some ever so faint roasty bitterness. It is very smooth and balanced, if not particularly complex or robust.

The strong carbonation occasionally burns a little but not uusally, it has a medium/full body, and is just a really smooth and easy drinking mid sized stout.

This is clearly a very well made beer. It is smooth and balanced, but not very complex or aggressive in the smell or flavor. It is an easy drinker, and does have some limited depth. Perhaps the vanilla comes through stronger when it is more fresh? This bottle came off a warm shelf, and was 3 months in the bottle. But, at $7 for a 500ml bottle, Cadillac Mountain at $5 for a 650 or $11 for a sixer is looking pretty good. Maine Beer Co makes nice beer, but I don’t think it is quite as good as it should be for the elite level pricing it sells for.

sprucetip, Feb 10, 2012
Photo of BMMillsy
3.9/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Bottle dated 7/2/13 poured on 12/27/13. Shared with Dad. Says drink within 90 days but whatever. Dark brown to black pour with a light brown creamy half finger head. Aroma of huge roast and light vanilla, some smoke, semisweet chocolate. Flavor follows the smell with big roast and semisweet chocolate, light vanilla, and lingering bitter roast lingers. Medium carbonation and light medium body. This comes off as a porter rather than a stout and with that expectation is very nice. Recommended for lighter stout fare for sure.

BMMillsy, Dec 27, 2013
Mean Old Tom from Maine Beer Company
89 out of 100 based on 1,678 ratings.