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Robinson's Old Tom Strong Ale - Robinsons Family Brewers

Not Rated.
Robinson's Old Tom Strong AleRobinson's Old Tom Strong Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
84
good

85 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 85
Reviews: 34
rAvg: 3.72
pDev: 15.86%
Wants: 8
Gots: 3 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Robinsons Family Brewers visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
Old Ale |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Mora2000 on 10-12-2010)
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Ratings: 85 | Reviews: 34 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by BedetheVenerable:
Photo of BedetheVenerable
BedetheVenerable

Missouri

3.68/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Presentation: 11.2oz brown pop top bottle with classy raised letters and nice, simple label. Best before June 2012. Picked this up at Sainsbury's in Gateshead. Damnit, how I miss Northumberland...

Appearance: Into my New Belgium Globe, this pours a beautiful dark walnut with bright garnet highlights, crowned by a thick, immensely creamy (almost like nitro) cap of dark ivory foam that shows great retention.

Smell: Near room temperature this shows attractive notes of juicy, almost wine-like dark fruit overlaying a subtle, sweet caramelly malt backbone. Swirling brings out toasty pale malt and a ghostly hint of smoke, which is a bit surprising. This is quintessentially British, and it's quite inviting, even if it's not immensely complex.

Taste: More malt than suggested in the nose. This is actually toasty malt-forward at first. A bit of sugar as well, both in a brown-sugar sort of flavor, and the fact that this feels significantly lighter than a beer of this gravity should. Winey dark fruit takes over the flavors almost immediately, and while I have no reason to believe this has any kind of bugs (esp. Brett) in it, as does Gale's Prize Old Ale, there's just a hint of acidity.

Mouthfeel: Feels like about 6.5%, rather than 8.5%. This aids in drinkability, yes, but I'd like just a bit more malt chewiness here.

Overall: This was on my "gotta find" list for several years, as I love traditional English Old Ales and Barleywines, so I was stoked to find it at Sainsbury's on our first night in Gateshead. Is it all that I hoped for? Well, not quite. I'd opened a bottle of this across the pond and was flat-out disappointed. Seems like I drank that bottle far too cool. At room temperature, this is much better. The booze is wonderfully warming, the dark fruit/winey esters are much nicer than in some examples of this style, melding with the sweet, soft malt background, and the dark caramel is nice as well. Do I love it? No. That being said, it's probably coming up on 9-10 months old (at least) now, and it's aged very nicely. The mouthfeel's a bit thin, but the flavors are nice, and for what I paid for this (about $3.60 US), I would definitely pick up 2-3 of these each winter. Game changer? No. But definitely a well-crafted, ultra-traditional, and quite tasty English Old Ale.

Solid B (84-85)

Serving type: bottle

03-31-2012 01:15:55 | More by BedetheVenerable
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Colorado

4.5/5  rDev +21%

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05-09-2014 00:27:46 | More by Northtexan
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United Kingdom (Scotland)

3.49/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This is a dark brown beer with a red tint and relatively little head. The nose is fairly strong treacle. The taste is reflective of that, treacle, becoming sweeter after a while and then slightly more minty before a more bitter finish. Simple, but good.

Serving type: bottle

05-08-2014 22:00:50 | More by charlatan
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Croatia (Hrvatska)

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05-07-2014 19:10:44 | More by hansavijaticar
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04-29-2014 19:49:32 | More by atrocity
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Misanthropy_Sipping

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4.58/5  rDev +23.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Can't recall what I paid up for this brew. But would say that it was no more than the average Belgian dark/strong ale. This will come in to play later. Bear with me.

Pours quite dark with a khaki head that hangs around the edges and whisky along the top as it calms. What is really spectacular about the appearance is the very lovely burgundy/mahogany hue to it. I was surprised it was as dark as it was. It looks very nice.

The smell is quite nice. I get a lot of earthy hops and malts, a dusty, dried fruit. You can really pick out the dried cherry note that is nearly sour. It has a slight wine like quality to it. Maybe a touch of chocolate and caramel. You pick up a bit of the booze toward the end as well.

The taste launches forward pretty brilliant and bright with a citrusy taste but drops quickly into dried cherries and dark fruits. The dark chocolate comes in with a red wine like taste and then the caramel in the background. Quite dominated by the fruit qualities in the beer. There is just a smudge of brown sugar and vanilla in the sweetness with a breadiness as well that I find quite appealing and really helps bring the beer together and ease the booze.

The mouthfeel is on the lower medium side. Quite drinkable, not sticky at all. It remains bright and a bit dry and smooth. A bit of a spicy tingle. It really hits the spot. I was feeling like a drinkable dark ale tonight and the body was just what I was hoping for. The carbonation is not explosive. Very average but clinging. A good quality brew in that regards.

Overall, this is quite reminiscent of a Belgian dark ale. But a Belgian dark. It isn't quite as yeasty an stacked up with fruit esters as a Belgian dark ale, but one can easily find the similarities in the rich dark fruits, spiciness, breadiness, and booze. The ale is of a very good quality, you can easily tell and it is also quite a bit better than some belgian dark ales that I have had. I would drink this again and am actually pretty interested in having the chocolate beer they do as well.

Serving type: bottle

04-29-2014 03:14:46 | More by Misanthropy_Sipping
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robotiks

Illinois

3.75/5  rDev +0.8%

04-27-2014 01:06:37 | More by robotiks
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DMarlinJ

Michigan

4/5  rDev +7.5%

04-25-2014 00:50:41 | More by DMarlinJ
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Russian Federation

4.75/5  rDev +27.7%

04-24-2014 03:52:13 | More by Matvei
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FLima

Brazil

3.78/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Dark brown reddish color with a one finger beige head with medium retention and leaving some laces.
Aroma of molasses, Port Wine, licorice and mild chocolate.
Delicious flavor of nuts, roasted malts, peppery yeast, English earthy hops with a tangy citrusy, caramels, dark and red fruits, pears, chocolate, Port Wine, mild nice sourness and tobacco, licorice and home-made coffee. Dry and bitter aftertaste.
Medium body with perfect carbonation. Alcohol of 8.5% abv is very well hidden.
This is a tasty, complex, bold and pleasant old ale. Surprisingly drinkable at 8.5% abv.

Serving type: bottle

04-20-2014 16:49:47 | More by FLima
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Massachusetts

4/5  rDev +7.5%

03-15-2014 03:09:38 | More by PEIhop
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AnchorsAndAxes

Oregon

2.75/5  rDev -26.1%

02-28-2014 05:44:30 | More by AnchorsAndAxes
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janubio

Spain

3.13/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

500 ml. bottle. Dark colour, with a small off white head that vanishes soon, leaving a small lace. Smell of a damp cellar, chocolate, notes of caramel, red wine. Medium to light (too much light) body, soft palate. TAste of caramel, chocolate red grapes.

Serving type: bottle

02-12-2014 21:49:19 | More by janubio
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MikeCactusGordon

Ohio

3.75/5  rDev +0.8%

02-02-2014 14:23:01 | More by MikeCactusGordon
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DruC4

Michigan

3.75/5  rDev +0.8%

01-28-2014 04:50:54 | More by DruC4
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Patrick_E_Sweeney

Virginia

3.5/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Served in a beer tulip, chilled. One finger of off-white head, dark brown/amber color. Aroma is very busy; strong malt with caramel, alcohol, and hints of prunes, dried cherries and pears. Also an herbal component that seems a bit metallic. The taste initially hits with a combination of malt and fruit, particularly cherry and pear. Sweetness dominates for the first half second, then a very slight hoppy bitterness follows.

This beer screams mustiness and age, without seeming stale or unpleasant. It is a very interesting combination of flavors that feels a bit disjointed. Still a good beer, and worth trying once. Seems like a hit-or-miss depending on your particular tastes.

Serving type: bottle

01-06-2014 23:53:51 | More by Patrick_E_Sweeney
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Mr_Pink_152

United Kingdom (England)

3.75/5  rDev +0.8%

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Knapp85

Pennsylvania

3.5/5  rDev -5.9%

01-05-2014 23:48:59 | More by Knapp85
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ChainGangGuy

Georgia

3.48/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a dark brown body with a thin, brief, ivory-hued head.

Smell: A mingled of a surprising fruitiness of red berries, dates, cherry with sweetish malty accents of treacle, toffee, toasted biscuit tops. Also, some herbal, anise hints and a sniff of the alcohol.

Taste: A quick flush of sweet toffee and caramelized sugar with a lingering sweet-tart cherry fruitiness (with an additional handful of berries, dates). Faintly nutty, chocolatey. Herbal, leafy hops with a bitterness that melds to the alcohol warmth. A little licorice. A hint of soured treacle on the backhalf. Drying right at the last second of the finish.

Mouthfeel: Just a bit above medium-bodied.. Medium carbonation.

Overall: Quite decent. Would've preferred a bit more refinement and a slight, slight boost to the body for some desired chewiness.

Serving type: bottle

11-06-2013 03:01:42 | More by ChainGangGuy
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biboergosum

Alberta (Canada)

3.71/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

330ml squat bottle, another Liquor Stores Intl/Depot/Barn/Emporium exclusive here in Wild Rose Country. Um, yay?

This beer pours a gently hazy, very dark ruddy amber hue, with two fingers of foamy, fizzy, and broadly bubbly pale beige head, which leaves some weirdly spooky Swiss cheese lace around the glass as things move southwards.

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The bubbles are present, but generally out for no more than a pleasant stroll, the body just on the lee side of medium weight, and tacitly smooth, as a certain metallic essence rears up as it warms. It finishes on the dry side, the fruit bleeding out, the malt packing for vacation, or something, and the noble hops holding down the fort, a fort replete with mellow sipping alcohol.

Definitely old-tasting, but not in the 'something might be dead and buried here' sense of Thomas Hardy's or the like. That is to say, more fruity, than musty and/or dusty, and lighter in bearing. At any rate, and agreeable enough strong English ale - ageism need not come into play here.

Serving type: bottle

10-31-2013 02:11:51 | More by biboergosum
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Illinois

4/5  rDev +7.5%

10-27-2013 04:49:23 | More by robthepenguin
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ygtbsm94

Virginia

3.25/5  rDev -12.6%

10-25-2013 15:17:34 | More by ygtbsm94
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Minnesota

3.75/5  rDev +0.8%

10-24-2013 03:49:51 | More by SaxmanRick
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Robinson's Old Tom Strong Ale from Robinsons Family Brewers
84 out of 100 based on 85 ratings.