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Downtown Brown - Lost Coast Brewery and Cafe

Not Rated.
Downtown BrownDowntown Brown

Educational use only; do not reuse.

821 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 821
Reviews: 393
rAvg: 3.65
pDev: 12.6%
Wants: 18
Gots: 62 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Lost Coast Brewery and Cafe visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
English Brown Ale |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: kbub6f on 01-01-2001

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 821 | Reviews: 393 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Bockrules
3.69/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

poured from the bottle into a pint glass

A - Pours a chocolaty brown with very little carbonation. One finger, tanish head that is gone about 15 seconds after the pour.Leaves behind no lacing.

S - Plenty of sweet caramel malty notes with some brown sugar and some earthy hops.

T - Sweet caramel and bit of brown sugar up front. The body is quite complex with caramel, chocolate and brown sugar notes being sufficiently supported by earthy hops. Flash of earthy hops as the beer passes over the back of the tongue followed by a caramel finish.

M - Light bodied with little carbonation. Could stand to be much thicker and maybe a tad more lively.

Picked this up a few years back on a road trip with my dad at a gas station in the middle of nowhere in northern California. Packs more flavors and complexity than many brown ales i've had, but the limp mouthfeel and lackluster appearance leave something to be desired. However, I could see this making for an excellent session beer due to the low carbonation and great taste.

Photo of TMoney2591
3.11/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served in a Walter Payton shaker pint glass.

Sweetness is helpin' me with yet another random TJ's single. It pours a clear sunset garnet topped by a finger of dirty cream-white foam. The nose comprises watered-down molasses, very light roasted malts, dusty biscuits, and cocoa powder. The taste brings in more of the same, along with some light candi sugar and plenty of balsa. The added sweetness helps, but not too much. The body is a light medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a slightly watery feel. Overall, a decent brown, nothing close to special, but also nothing entirely offensive, either.

Photo of dgilks
3.53/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear moderate brown colour with a small creamy tan head. Good head retention and lacing.

Nutty and bready malt with a touch of earthy hop. Good.

Big, nutty brown malt flavour. Slight chocolate character. Nice touch of earthiness. Earhty hops.

Medium ody with moderate carbonation.

Nicely balanced brown ale. A touch more bitterness would be nice here but it certainly ain’t bad.

Photo of Brunite
3.73/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - It poured out a dark brown with a foamy, one-finger head that left some lacing.

S - Nutty aromas...mild maltiness.

T - Somewhat sweet malty taste. The nut flavor seemed like hazelnut.

M - Medium-bodied.

O - This is a decent Brown ale. Nice...not fantastic. Solid.

Photo of kflorence
3.47/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Imported from my ratebeer.com profile - MAR 3, 2008

Pours dark amber brown with minimal, lacy head. Smells of roasted coffee, malts, cocoa, brown sugar and nuts... very earthy. Tastes are heavily dominated by the roasted coffee flavor, but there are ample notes of cocoa, malts and some hop presence. It’s a medium-bodied beer, a good mixture of heavy and light. It finishes quick with a sweet aftertaste. A very nice brown ale.

Photo of jmbranum
3.77/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bought at The Library in Manhattan, KS. Enjoyed at home in Oklahoma City.

Poured from bottle into pint glass. Pours a medium brown color, clear with a large head. Leaves lots of Belgian lace on the side of the glass. Nice chocolate malt aroma.

Fairly sweet for the style with a slight toastyness. Very few hops. Lingering sweetness. A little bit of nutty notes. Thin mouthfeel.

Not bad but a bit too sweet for my taste. I tend to prefer by brown ales more on the dry side, leaning in the Porterish direction.

Photo of ADZA
3.4/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very light mahogany hue with average carbonation that leaves a fast vanishing one finger head and sporadic lacing,the smell is toffee,maple syrup,brown sugar and nutcake,it has a light body with average carbonation and has tastes of berries,toffee,roasted nuts,maple syrup and finshed with a touch of sweet nutcake and overall this brew is no standout but very quaffable.

Photo of spicelab
3.59/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle into a De Dolle stemmed tulip with thanks to Beermasons.

Mostly clear burgundy. Meek cream head dies down quickly and is resistant to agitation efforts.

Maple syrup, prunes, dates, raisins, brandy snap and hints of wood. It's all malt but it's not stupidly sweet.

Taste is a bit one-dimensional. Caramel, stewed plums, touch of biscuity malts and mild fortified-wine undertones. Still, it's nice and not boring.

Pretty light with a dusting of fizz, mostly noticeable on the mid-palate.

Easy drinking and tasty enough. More body would showcase the malts better, but that's probably a difficult task without increasing the ABV.

Photo of matjack85
3.98/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I found this single 12oz squatty brown bottle at the Binny's store in Plainfield, IL for $1.59. No freshness date or any other information about the beer on the label.

The beer poured a reddish brown mahogany wood color that turned even redder when held to the light. Crystal clear see thru clarity with a 1½-finger tan head that lasted awhile and produced some nice lacing.

The beer has the aroma of toasted malts, chocolate, and caramel.

Big toasted malt flavor but with some mild bitter coffee taste that I didn't pick up in the smell. There is also some caramel sweetness and a touch of chocolate, but just a dash of each. Even less noticeable are the Saaz hops and the alcohol. Nutty finish and aftertaste. Not a bad little brown ale.

The mouthfeel is not as creamy and smooth as most brown ales despite the moderate carbonation level, and I found the body to be only slightly heavier than light.

Overall a good quality beer.


Photo of RashyGrillCook
3.33/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A slightly better then average brown ale pours a clear distinct brown with an almost non- existent head and zero lacing. The nose is of your basic brown ale variety but with a bit more coffee and nutmeg showing up. The taste is a little muddled and specific flavors are hard to distinguish. However it is very easy and pleasant to drink as there are no bad/harsh "off" flavors and the smoothness(read "light carbonation") of the brew is excellent.

Photo of 2cansam
3.69/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

A - amber brown, carbonated head dissipated quickly leaving a bit of lacing

S- toasted nuts and caramel malt

T- sweet and malty, picked up a bit of a coffee taste but not the nutty taste I got from the aroma

M - a bit too carbonated for my tastes

O- if it was a little more on the creamy vs carbonated side I would really love this beer, but its still a great beer

Photo of lechroy
4.33/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12 oz bottle into glass. Exceptional brown that is well balanced with warm toasted tones and mild hopiness.
A - loved the rich amber color and a nice 2 finger light head.
S - toasted warmth with sweet hops
T - Yum, the best part of the beer for sure. Really nice malt bill with chocolate overtones. A taste of hops. Dry for a brown, thats points in my book.
M - solid friendly feel. Smooth.
O - highly recommended brew for beer drinkers of all tastes.

Photo of Long813
2.92/5  rDev -20%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Dated: Can't read it.

A: Dark murky brown body with no head. Leaves no lacing.

S: Notes of sweet malts - caramel, maybe some coffee.

T: Roasted malts with a definite taste of coffee beans. Not to bad.

M: Light bodied with large amounts of carbonation. Texture is water like and no notes of alcohol.

D: I feel really let down with this brew, nothing else to note really. Decent at best.

Photo of GarthDanielson
3.92/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bomber into a pint glass, the beer is a nutty brown coloring that is semi-translucent when held up to the light. Moderate amount of bubble action in the glass, so the carbonation appears to be up. The beer started with a short-stack head, but that beat feet before I could even sit down with the beer. The nose is caramel and nut sweetness, but not overpowering. Some earthy sweet as it sits for a bit, too. In mouth, the beer is a nice, light balance for the flavors the brew showcases. The beer is toffee and nutty sweetness, almost like eating a Rolo. Very flavorful, and does a decent job of not being overpowering with all the sweet characteristics. The body takes on a creamy texture as it warms, while still remaining light in mouth. The aftertaste is all nut, almost like a little Nutella, only liquid form. The finish is fairly smooth, and leaves no overbearing trace of the flavors. Decent beer. I could see this pairing up with just about anything, but especially spicy foods where the sweetness can really take over and help sooth your tastebuds. Easy to down, too, if your in that kind of mood.

Photo of hickmancase
4.07/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

On tap at Tequila Hoppers in Upland.

A: Translucent brown ale with a two finger head.

S: Milk chocolate beer.

T: Brown ale with a nice coffee aftertaste. Delicious

M: Thinlike.

D: Great. So much flavor, but it wouldn't be too overpowering to kick back a few of these.

Like a coffee Newcastle.


Photo of kbrady9
3.7/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A- Very dark amber, almost a plain brown. Very small head after it is first poured and it dissipates almost immediately. No lacing to speak of.

S- Sweet, malty, a little mocha comes through. Masks the alcohol content very well, a nice hoppy smell at the end.

T-Nice malt character, although a bit too carbonated. Not as smooth or creamy as I would like to get from a Brown Ale.

M- Overly carbonated, not as smooth as I would have liked.

D-Thought I would enjoy the beer much more than I actually did after I cracked it open. Not something I would order on tap anywhere.

Photo of birddogg66
3.95/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Lighter brown color, more of a reddish when held up to the low light of the Hawaiian sunset. The off white head stayed around throughout the beer, but no real lacing to speak of.

S- Hints of smoke, toasted malt, and a bit of burnt sugar emerge at first, then perhaps a bit of vanilla starts to present itself toward the second half of the ale.

T- Very smooth first sip, as most brown ales are, with some more of the toasted malt, and some smokiness that was present in the nose. There is a hint of bitterness in the finish.

M- I found the mouthfeel to be somewhat dry. Where the bitterness is about the only flavor to truly linger on.

D- As with most brown ales, this beer has a good drinkability. At 5% it is a bit of a session brown. This would be a great tailgating beer in the fall during college football season. A bit of toasted malt with the crisp air of fall, and some bar-b-que chicken would be fabulous. A beer that you could enjoy in a parking lot time after time.

Photo of dbmernin83
3.33/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep burnt amber, nice frothy head, spotty lacing
Light caramel malt on the nose, a hint of hazelnut.
Big malt sweetness, very light hop flavor and a hazelnut finish that lasts. The sweetness definitely sticks with you after a drink, mostly in the form a hazelnut.
Very thin in body. Being an English brown though, they usually are.
A drinkable brown. Not blown away, but I'd have another.

Photo of afksports
4.17/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I have sessioned the bejeezus out of Downtown Brown, and I have been very pleased. Interestingly, I was dancing to music by a white rapper at the time. Feels excellent.

Downtown Brown is not like Action Jackson. Not flashy, not exceptionally brutal or exceptionally bold. Just ... brown. And not in the dirty downtown way. More like the downtown that gets you ready to party. It looks like a brown, filtered, amber to chestnut, and it's nutty in the smell. Sweet malts and a bit of nut. A tinge of spice comes through, along with a wee bit of hops. Nothing exceptional, nothing brutal.

Same with the taste, which is smooth and sweet at the start, tiny bitter at the finish, and feels watery and clean as it goes down, despite the solid feeling it has in the mouth as you swallow.

Easy to drink and solid without being heavy, my boy Downtown Brown is better than his "B" rating on BeerAdvocate. Even if only for the simple observation that I danced to a white rapper while drinking it.

Photo of nrbw23
3.35/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours a dark brown color with a nice creamy head. Head has ok retention and leaves a bit of spotty lacing on the glass.

S- Smell is a bit nutty, caramel malts a bit of coffee and pretty much no hops that I can pick up.

T- Taste is nutty sweetness with roasted malts and a grains flavor.

M- Lighter side of medium and carbonation seems to be right on.

D- Not bad to drink and worth a try for sure. Not my favorite by any means or style.

Photo of joemcgrath27
3.8/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - deep mahogany clear with a tan head, retained decently
S - nuts and molasses with light cherry and woodiness
T - strong nutty malt with woody smokiness and light syrupy fruitiness
M - very little carbonation, rich up front, finishing slightly thin
D - a nutty malt bomb, strong flavour and still pleasing all around

Photo of BerkeleyBeerMan
3.48/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 5 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance: nice mix of gold and brown chestnut. Good enough head retention. No lacing.

Smell: good roasted malts with some solid hop backing. A little bit of a rank alcohol smell that I don't like.

Taste: Nutty roasted hints of chocolate. Good hops a slight bitter finish.

Mouthfeel: Nice heavy feel. Good finish. Spicey notes on finish.

Drinkability: Yes. I could finish a six pack and fall asleep. A good winter beer with a bite. A fine alternative to a stout.

Photo of thagr81us
3.35/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Big thanks to Gobzilla for sharing this the night of my arrival to Cali. Served from bottle into a Firestone Walker sampler shaker. Poured red-orange with a minimal off-white head. Maintained good lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt and nutmeg. The flavor was of sweet malt, nutmeg, and slight roasted malt. It had a medium feel on the palate with mild carbonation. Overall the nutmeg turned me off from this brew. It might be a personal thing, but nutmeg and my palate do not get along very much. Other than the fact that it had a flavor I didn't like in it, it wasn't that bad. Worth trying.

Photo of brewerburgundy
3.43/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle, Bruery tulip, bottled 11/11/10.

Pecan red-brown beer, with a three finger head on the pour in a middling tan. The retention is a good, as is the lacing.

Dry mineral characterizes all of the aromas of diner coffee, nuts, and carob. Things are on the earthy side.

Distinct flavors are really discernible in the flavor, it's a conglomeration of exceedingly dry mineral laden earth with some carob and date.

While alcohol isn't apparent, this is a hugely dry experience that leaves the tongue literally dry. The carbonation is on the high side.

My dad really seems to like this beer and now I can specifically ask him why. It doesn't have the coffee or chocolate flavors I expected. It is a unique Brown Ale in my experience largely due to the dryness which might be repulsive to some.

Photo of Gobzilla
3.92/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a chocolate brown in color with a half finger of head and left a little lacing sticking to the glass. The aroma was huge on the nuttiness but I also was able to detect some roasty character but hints of coffee and toffee. The flavor was a bit more chocolatey but had coffee roasty accents and a touch of nuttiness. The brew was medium in body with a nice amount of carbonation which had a chocolatey, sweet, roasty, and nutty finish. Downtown brown is better than I remember. I just wanted to revisit the lost coast line up. It drank good and was a soild brown ale.

Downtown Brown from Lost Coast Brewery and Cafe
83 out of 100 based on 821 ratings.