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Newcastle Brown Ale - The Caledonian Brewery Company Limited

Newcastle Brown AleNewcastle Brown Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

3,588 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3588
Reviews: 1459
rAvg: 3.34
pDev: 18.26%

Brewed by:
The Caledonian Brewery Company Limited visit their website
United Kingdom (Scotland)

Style | ABV
English Brown Ale |  4.70% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-29-2000)
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Ratings: 3,588 | Reviews: 1,459 | Show All Ratings:
Reviews by brandonlovesbeer:
Photo of brandonlovesbeer

South Carolina

1.64/5  rDev -50.9%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 1 | overall: 1.5

COLOR: Medium Amber


Varies depending on where you buy it. But it ranges anywhere from $11.99 to $16.59 for a 6 pack.

12 oz bottles, 12oz Cans, Draft

Depending on how vigorously you pour the beer, the head will be somewhere between nonexistent and 1/2 pinky finger. But it only sticks around for a brief period of time then dissipates.

Crystal clear. Light carbonation. It doesn't look like any brown ale I've ever had. The color was more like a dirty Budweiser.

Very fruity smelling beer. Just like most English ales. There’s a malt sweetness that is very present in the aroma, but nothing over the top. There’s a light breadiness that evens out the malt sweetness.

The first thing your going to notice is that there’s absolutely NO hop character in this beer, which goes right along with the English Brown Ale style.
The bitterness is only slightly noticeable in the aftertaste, which only sticks around on the back of your tongue for about a minute then disappears.
There’s no alcohol taste or presence in this beer. But I wouldn’t expect that from a 4.7% beer.
The pronounced English fruitiness is ever-present in the taste, and is one of the only redeeming qualities about this beer.

Surprisingly, in the bottle that I reviewed, there was none of that Import-Clear-Bottle-Skunkiness. This was certainly refreshing, as I’ve never had a bottle of Newcastle that wasn’t completely skunked.

Is it Worth the Money? "No"
This beer was on sale at my local grocery store for $12.99 for a 12 pack. That’s down from it’s normal price of $16.59. However, it’s normal price at my local beer and wine store was only $11.99.

I just can’t see myself paying nearly $18.00 (after tax) for the regular grocery store price. Not when it’s only $11.99 down the street.

Since there’s such a wide price-range on this beer, if your heart is dead set on buying Newcastle, seek out the best price. Don’t just go to your favorite grocery store and lay down nearly $18 when it can be much cheaper at another store. This is just too over priced for what it’s delivering to the senses.

I feel like the flavors and aromas are so light and muted that this beer just isn’t bringing much to the table.

If you’re looking for a flavorful beer that you can drink quite a few of, this is not the beer for you. It doesn’t really taste like much. However, yes you can drink a ton of them and not even get buzzed.

Although, I guess you could consider this a nice transitional beer for someone looking to dip their toes into the craft beer world. But would I call this a craft beer? Definitely not.

This is what I consider the English equivalent to a Budweiser looking like. It doesn’t taste like much but because of it’s worldwide hype, everyone wants to drink it.

If I’m going to spend nearly $18 on a 12pk of anything, it’s going to be something like Sam Adams or Sierra Nevada or another more flavorful beer than this. Something that I can sit back and relax and have one or two and be completely satisfied. Newcastle just doesn’t give me that sense of satisfaction.

This almost feels like a novelty beer to me. For example:

A point of advice when shopping for this beer...
I’ve always complained about how this beer usually has that clear bottle import skunkiness like Heineken and Corona. But as long as you don’t buy it off the shelf where it’s been sitting in direct light (even fluorescent light), then you should be alright. Personally, I always get the pack that’s all the way on the back of the shelf.
Always buy the 12 pack of bottles or the cans because the packaging shields the beer from the harmful rays. If you buy the 6 packs, there is more surface area exposed to the light which will skunk the beer faster.

Serving type: bottle

02-22-2013 05:10:45 | More by brandonlovesbeer
More User Reviews:
Photo of papat444

Quebec (Canada)

3.33/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

On tap in a bar in Quartier Dix30.

Appearance is the best looking part with an obvious brown body and good enough head that has a bit of cascading to it. Flavor is decent, mild nuttiness, easy drinking but pretty ordinary obviously. Still, an ok selection.

Serving type: on-tap

04-18-2014 12:29:30 | More by papat444
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South Carolina

3/5  rDev -10.2%

04-18-2014 06:21:40 | More by picklepastry
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3.5/5  rDev +4.8%

04-18-2014 03:30:52 | More by AirZombie
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North Carolina

4.5/5  rDev +34.7%

04-16-2014 02:14:16 | More by Sebas
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4.55/5  rDev +36.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

I love the tone. I really like the fact that it has the initial Heineken smell, I also love Heineken. However this beer does not have the heavy aftertaste. I do wish it were a little more potent ;)
Overall I would stock it. There are MANY beers around that Id pass up for this one. I am not into the IPA format. I prefer stout. But I love how smooth this beer drinks.

Serving type: bottle

04-14-2014 23:03:48 | More by bobvinson2002
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3/5  rDev -10.2%

04-13-2014 18:58:25 | More by KingSlayer
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4.5/5  rDev +34.7%

04-13-2014 18:13:00 | More by Fenton
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4/5  rDev +19.8%

04-13-2014 18:09:45 | More by Bendulum
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District of Columbia

3/5  rDev -10.2%

04-12-2014 12:19:36 | More by D-18V
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Ontario (Canada)

3/5  rDev -10.2%

04-10-2014 23:34:15 | More by hunterjames
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4.25/5  rDev +27.2%

04-10-2014 18:05:17 | More by Arriskuwonder
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New York

4.25/5  rDev +27.2%

04-10-2014 06:24:28 | More by krampert11
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3/5  rDev -10.2%

04-10-2014 00:00:30 | More by PetrusPalmgren
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3.25/5  rDev -2.7%

04-09-2014 03:09:40 | More by Seabass1964
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3.5/5  rDev +4.8%

04-08-2014 16:35:11 | More by harpus
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New York

3.25/5  rDev -2.7%

04-07-2014 21:24:18 | More by ACarp
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4.25/5  rDev +27.2%

04-07-2014 12:52:22 | More by pfhanlon
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3.75/5  rDev +12.3%

04-06-2014 22:36:40 | More by Czequershuus
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3.25/5  rDev -2.7%

04-06-2014 19:39:23 | More by Matthew607
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2.75/5  rDev -17.7%

04-06-2014 12:04:00 | More by Supra97
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2.5/5  rDev -25.1%

04-06-2014 02:45:23 | More by VeganUndead
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3.63/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

I'm confused about where this beer is brewed. I have always assumed that it's English beer based on the fact that it says "Imported from England" on the label. I've researched this a little on the web and can find no reference to a Scottish origin for this beer, as this website indicates. What gives? It's brewed in Yorkshire, England for crying out loud, isn't it?

Anyhoooo, an old favorite here. I bought an 18.6 ounce bottle for I think $3.19 or so.

One good thing about a clear bottle is you get to watch the foam gush up when you open it. A moderate pour into a sampler produces about an inch of snow white frothy head, which proves relatively sticky. The beer is a crystal clear ruddy brown, and definitely more pale than and American brown. Light to moderate carbonation. This beer has some visual appeal.

I pretty much notice minerals and light fruity malt in the nose, with hardly any hop aroma. The taste is sweet up front but sweetness recedes, being counterbalanced by a kiss of earthy hops, with some light fruitiness reminiscent of baked apples and raisins along with some pleasant and interesting mineral flavors. The mouthfeel is relatively creamy despite the relatively low body.

A very easy drinking ale with some light, rather simple, but nonetheless interesting flavors that can be a nice break from the ultra hopped craft brews or the typical AAL out there. This is considered a simple working man's beer in England, as I understand. It probably fits that definition, because I think this beer would quench thirst pretty well.

Serving type: bottle

04-05-2014 04:03:39 | More by archyquaffer
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South Carolina

1.75/5  rDev -47.6%

04-04-2014 13:08:34 | More by MacQ32
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04-03-2014 04:26:18 | More by sunilmallya
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Newcastle Brown Ale from The Caledonian Brewery Company Limited
76 out of 100 based on 3,588 ratings.