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Old Boy Ale - Parallel 49 Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Old Boy AleOld Boy Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

96 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 96
Reviews: 22
rAvg: 3.54
pDev: 10.17%
Wants: 0
Gots: 12 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Parallel 49 Brewing Company visit their website
British Columbia, Canada

Style | ABV
English Brown Ale |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: canucklehead on 08-21-2012

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 96 | Reviews: 22 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of atrocity
2/5  rDev -43.5%

Photo of Caleb_Mandrake
2.12/5  rDev -40.1%

Photo of Derek
2.65/5  rDev -25.1%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Oxidized... Why isn't this bottle conditioned? This is part of their core lineup, and I'm starting to wonder if they're having some growing pains.

Photo of ygtbsm94
2.9/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Nose of light caramel, malt, toffee, faint nuts. Taste light caramel, brown sugar, light body/watery, faint cocoa & nuts. Ok Brown!

Photo of cfalovo97
3/5  rDev -15.3%

Photo of nmann08
3/5  rDev -15.3%

From a bottle, pours a dark caramel mahogany with a very creamy white head.

The nose is sweet, crystallized sugar, chocolate, toffee with bitter and piney hops. A little toasty too. Flavor is smokey, which I was not expecting. It is very crisp, but the flavor finishes almost burnt oats or nuts. The chocolate is fighting to come through, but the smoke is overpowering it, damaging what I think the beer was supposed to be. It is almost like tobacco. It's thin and a bit watery, would be better with more body.

Overall, not sure what happened. Could have been better, but wasn't.

Photo of fizzyted
3/5  rDev -15.3%

Photo of pharmerdoc
3/5  rDev -15.3%

Photo of speedonthis
3/5  rDev -15.3%

Photo of Tolosa
3/5  rDev -15.3%

Photo of CWVegas
3.25/5  rDev -8.2%

Photo of GRG1313
3.25/5  rDev -8.2%

Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.25/5  rDev -8.2%

Photo of ThinkAgain
3.25/5  rDev -8.2%

Photo of rwshelton2
3.25/5  rDev -8.2%

Photo of Beerhemoth
3.25/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Photo of jbeervt
3.25/5  rDev -8.2%

Photo of Jlefa
3.25/5  rDev -8.2%

Photo of bschinelli
3.25/5  rDev -8.2%

Photo of thehyperduck
3.38/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

341 mL bottle from the LCBO, pulled from their Unparalleled sampler pack. No packaging date given - there's a spot for this information provided on the six-pack box, but it was left blank. I didn't mind the Hoparazzi I tried last night, but let's see how this brewery fares with a style whose base flavours can't simply be obscured with a dump truck full of hops. Served slightly chilled.

Pours a deep mahogany hue with some ruby red tinges under the light, and topped at first with two fingers of loose, puffy, light beige-coloured head. It recedes steadily over the next few minutes, leaving in its place a modest, dense cap about 1 cm thick. Not much in the way of lacing. The aroma is decidedly malty, but rather subdued. Hints of almond, chocolate and toasted bread/biscuits are noticeable, as well as a respectable dose of earthy, English-style hoppage.

Seems promising enough so far, but my first sip leaves me disappointed and confused. There is a lot of fruity, almost sour raisin-and-plum-like character in this flavour profile, and it is irritatingly noticeable from start to finish. This flavour mingles with the malts initially, which provide some notes of brown sugar sweetness, milk chocolate and toasted nuts. The hops become prominent toward the finish, providing an earthy bitterness that sufficiently counters the malts. Mildly earthy aftertaste that meekly clings to the palate. Medium-bodied, with moderate carbonation and very fine bubbles that gently prickle the tongue. Fairly balanced in flavour and reasonably drinkable, but not an inspiring English-style ale at all.

Final Grade: 3.38, a serviceable B-. I generally like English bitters and brown ales, but Parallel 49's Old Boy Ale just isn't doing it for me. The flavours aren't awful, but the fruity sourness clashes intensely with the rest of the profile, and it all adds up to a brew that is less than the sum of its parts. Suffice it to say, I'm not impressed, nor am I inclined to purchase this again. I agree with the other reviewers who consider this more of a brown ale than a bitter, although in all honesty it's not a great example of either style. There are plenty of imported British bitters that I would greatly prefer over this stuff, and I would recommend that you stick with them, too.

NOTE: The second bottle of this was consumed at (air-conditioned basement) room temperature, and it actually came together much more nicely. I'm not changing the score (since the bottle itself suggests serving this chilled to 4-7 degrees C), but it's a fact worth considering.

Photo of djoprahwinfrey
3.41/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - pours a really dark amber, pretty weak 1/8 finger of browner head which goes quick and leaves little lacing

S - fairly mild smelling, malts, coffee, caramel

T - toasted grains at the start, caramel, mild coffee, campfire but more so charcoal, malty but not overpowering, slighted toasted coffee finish

M - creamy, medium carbonation, medium body

O - pours okay with a mild aroma but makes up with a balanced taste with some nice flavors. Overall this was enjoyable and i would drink this again.

Photo of mactrail
3.43/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

Dark amberish brown with a decent but coarse foam in the New Belgium snifter. Brown rice aroma with whiff of root beer. Watery body. Pleasantly carbonated, almost creamy.

Maybe it's the suggestion of the name, but it tastes like they diluted an Old Ale with some English Brown ale. There is a grainy flavor with a good dose of roasted malt. Just a faint bitterness at the finish. There's a suggestion of molasses, though it's just slightly sweet.

This is a different sort of brew, and it goes down easily enough. The price of nine bucks is silly, though. From the 22 oz bottle purchased at Best Damn Beer Store in San Diego.

Photo of spinrsx
3.46/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz Bottle from the Orleans LCBO, part of a mixed 6 pack for $13

Appearance - Dark brown colour with an average size fizzy/frothy beige head. I can't make out the amount of carbonation showing and there isn't much lacing. The head lasted for 3-4 minutes before it was gone.

Smell - Malts, chocolate, grains

Taste & Mouth - There is an average amount of carbonation and I can taste malts, chocolate, and a light smokiness. There are also earthy notes and a bit of a dark fruit flavour. It ends with a chocolatey and matly aftertaste.

Overall - As the last reviewer said, more of a Brown Ale than a ESB. Either way, this is a solid beer if you're a fan of brown ales. Not my favourite style, but worth trying for sure.

Photo of chickenm
3.5/5  rDev -1.1%

Photo of MJ63
3.5/5  rDev -1.1%

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Old Boy Ale from Parallel 49 Brewing Company
81 out of 100 based on 96 ratings.