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Old Boy Ale - Parallel 49 Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Old Boy AleOld Boy Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
82
good

65 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 65
Reviews: 17
rAvg: 3.61
pDev: 6.93%
Wants: 0
Gots: 3 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Parallel 49 Brewing Company visit their website
British Columbia, Canada

Style | ABV
Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB) |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: canucklehead on 08-21-2012)
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Ratings: 65 | Reviews: 17 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Sammy
Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

3.5/5  rDev -3%

06-30-2013 03:51:22 | More by Sammy
Photo of UCLABrewN84
UCLABrewN84

California

3.73/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle I brought to share at the Revenge Of Instant Replay bottleshare held at Instant Replay in Canoga Park, CA.

Pours a clear dark brown with a foamy tan head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace slowly drip into the remaining beer on the drink down. Smell is of toasted malt, nut, and slight cocoa aromas. Taste is much the same with toast, nut, and earth flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of toast bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer that is tasty, mild, and easy to drink.

Serving type: bottle

05-26-2014 03:02:54 | More by UCLABrewN84
Photo of biboergosum
biboergosum

Alberta (Canada)

3.58/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

341ml, corporately embossed bottle, another single from my craft six-pack from a heretofore unfathomable Whyte Ave booze purveyor. A Mr. Peanut parody, obviously involving a pint glass, holds the fort on the actual label.

This beer pours a clear, dark ruby amber tint, with two fingers of tight foamy, somewhat creamy beige head, which renders a decent string of broad webbed lace around the glass as it eases its way out of existence.

It smells of biscuity caramel malt, some further toffee nougat, a subtle oily nuttiness, and soft earthy, leafy hops. The taste is lightly toasted bready caramel malt, some mild crackery biscuit notes, further indistinct bar-top nuts, a slight twinge of bittersweet chocolate, and more forest floor, somewhat herbaceous hops.

The bubbles are fairly restrained in their ardor, the body a solid medium weight, and rather smooth by any measure. It finishes on the sweet side, the dark bread, toffee, and roasted biscuits basically lording it over those punk-ass, underachieving hops.

A decent enough ale, with a hell of a lot more to recommend it as an English Brown Ale, than the current ESB designation, a style otherwise close to my heart and/or palate. Anyways, approach this as the former, and you will be adequately, if not pleasantly, satisfied.

Serving type: bottle

09-12-2012 03:53:05 | More by biboergosum
Photo of biegaman
biegaman

Ontario (Canada)

3.58/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Old Boy has a coffee-brown colour that does a fair job of concealing the fact that it's actually perfectly clear (at least until some backlight comes into play, at which point the beer's dashing maroon highlights have nowhere to hide). Its head, though off-white, also has some glint.

The beer has a very subtle sweetness reminiscent of roasted pecan or hazelnut; this nuttiness can be found throughout but is nowhere as enticing as in the aroma, where it melds right into the malts' faint coffee-like smokiness and soft chocolatey notes.

Despite prospects of some dark and heavy flavours, no sootiness or meaningful richness ever emerges on the palate. The beer never get's dirty; it's almost as clean as a pale lager. This neutrality is sure to suit mainstream drinkers but is disappointing to those capable of handling even the smallest amount of roast or bitterness.

As mentioned, this recipe showcases light and very agreeable notes of roasted nuts, milk chocolate and toasted whole grain bread. Coffee oils I definitely note too. I don't get much dark or dried fruit myself but I can understand where others are coming from; it's difficult though as all tastes seize completely the moment they slide down the throat.

It seems as though Parallel 49 Brewing designed Old Boy so as to entice drinkers with fuller flavours but carefully ensured nothing too rich or substantial ever actually materialize, less they upset or overwhelm the simple palates of a mainstream audience. The result is pleasant but really only useful as what one would refer to as a "transition beer".

Serving type: bottle

08-07-2013 00:29:54 | More by biegaman
Photo of dirtylou
dirtylou

Washington

3.5/5  rDev -3%

06-17-2013 16:30:16 | More by dirtylou
Photo of wordemupg
wordemupg

Alberta (Canada)

3.6/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

341ml bottle poured into pint glass 3/11/12

A clear dark amber with lots of bubbles of all sizes but just a short lived finger of foam that leaves a couple random patches of lace

S nutty milk chocolate with a little fruit, cherry and plum perhaps, some earthy herbal hops and a little dark bread, interesting take on a bitter, more of an English Brown in my eyes

T some more nutty toffee but a little less of everything else, again its missing the hops I think of when drinking a bitter

M medium bodied, decent carbonation and a earthy aftertaste, not much for a bitter kick

O decent brew but not the best out of my mixed pack, I drank a few of these with no issues but wasn't as impressed as I was by some of their other offerings

I wouldn't turn one down but I wouldn't go looking for it either, another decent beer that won't leave an engraving in my memory

Serving type: bottle

11-04-2012 05:34:22 | More by wordemupg
Photo of TheSevenDuffs
TheSevenDuffs

Ontario (Canada)

3.25/5  rDev -10%

06-14-2013 17:47:37 | More by TheSevenDuffs
Photo of spinrsx
spinrsx

Ontario (Canada)

3.46/5  rDev -4.2%
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.

Serving type: bottle

06-02-2013 00:43:56 | More by spinrsx
Photo of tbeckett
tbeckett

Ontario (Canada)

3.46/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Bottle from the mixed pack. From notes.

A - Poured rusty brown/red. Quite dark with a one finger beige head and mild haze and mild carbonation. Spotty lace with a half finger of retention.

S - Earth, caramel, butterscotch, mild smoke.

T - Raisins, dark bread, mild smoke. Much sweeter than aroma. Dark maltiness dominates.

M - Good mild carbonation, medium body, long fruity finish.

O/D - Not a bad English style. Kinda lacked hopping that other beers in the mixer showed off. Well done, but I wouldn't want lot's.

Serving type: bottle

07-03-2013 21:01:43 | More by tbeckett
Photo of canucklehead
canucklehead

British Columbia (Canada)

3.88/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was the mystery beer in the mixed 12 pack and I found it quite complex once it warmed up.It is on the dark brown side in colour and tastes like a cross between a Brown Ale and an ESB. The hops are English and the beer reminds me of Blood Alley from Russell. Good beer that explores the malty side.

Serving type: bottle

08-21-2012 23:54:41 | More by canucklehead
Photo of KevinGordon
KevinGordon

North Carolina

3.75/5  rDev +3.9%

04-30-2014 23:00:19 | More by KevinGordon
Photo of Molson2000
Molson2000

Ontario (Canada)

3.75/5  rDev +3.9%

07-27-2013 00:50:46 | More by Molson2000
Photo of schopenhauerale
schopenhauerale

British Columbia (Canada)

3.5/5  rDev -3%

05-01-2013 00:01:02 | More by schopenhauerale
Photo of bumchilly25
bumchilly25

British Columbia (Canada)

3.5/5  rDev -3%

09-29-2012 05:55:37 | More by bumchilly25
Photo of DaPan
DaPan

Ontario (Canada)

3.5/5  rDev -3%

06-01-2013 01:21:14 | More by DaPan
Photo of cfalovo97
cfalovo97

Ontario (Canada)

3/5  rDev -16.9%

07-20-2013 02:26:50 | More by cfalovo97
Photo of joemcgrath27
joemcgrath27

Alberta (Canada)

3.78/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - clear deep brown, finger of head slowly settled at a half finger covering, no significant lacing
S - very nutty with some caramel and light dark fruity notes
T - big cashew and almond nuttiness, mild notes of caramel and brown sugar
M - biggish body and very creamy, finishes full
O - this is definitely better characterized as an english/nut brown rather than ESB, and in that light it makes a rich malty treat

Serving type: bottle

11-23-2012 02:01:14 | More by joemcgrath27
Photo of LJWalker
LJWalker

Alabama

3.75/5  rDev +3.9%

07-11-2014 05:29:08 | More by LJWalker
Photo of SebD
SebD

Ontario (Canada)

3.79/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Appearance: It has a nice deep amber color to it. It has a nice off-white head that dies down moderately and leaves little lacing.

Smell: The aromas definitely give out hints of caramelly malts, a slight nuttiness, dark fruit chocolate and some smokiness.

Taste: Like the aromas, it has a some sweet caramel, some nuts, slight roasted chocolate, sweet dark fruit and some earthy notes.

Mouthfeel: It has a medium carbonation with a nice overall balance and feel.

Drinkability: It's a very smooth drinkable beer accompanied with good flavors and aromas.

Serving type: bottle

07-22-2013 21:24:23 | More by SebD
Photo of chickenm
chickenm

British Columbia (Canada)

3.5/5  rDev -3%

11-14-2012 06:06:19 | More by chickenm
Photo of DeanMoriarty
DeanMoriarty

California

3.75/5  rDev +3.9%

06-30-2014 20:31:53 | More by DeanMoriarty
Photo of DaftCaskBC
DaftCaskBC

British Columbia (Canada)

3.75/5  rDev +3.9%

09-16-2013 15:40:48 | More by DaftCaskBC
Photo of thehyperduck
thehyperduck

Ontario (Canada)

3.38/5  rDev -6.4%
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.

Serving type: bottle

08-18-2013 18:21:19 | More by thehyperduck
Photo of beerhunter13
beerhunter13

Ontario (Canada)

4/5  rDev +10.8%

03-12-2014 21:02:00 | More by beerhunter13
Photo of ZachT
ZachT

British Columbia (Canada)

4/5  rDev +10.8%

09-28-2013 19:17:40 | More by ZachT
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Old Boy Ale from Parallel 49 Brewing Company
82 out of 100 based on 65 ratings.