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Newcastle Brown Ale - The Caledonian Brewery Company Limited

Not Rated.
Newcastle Brown AleNewcastle Brown Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

4,292 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,292
Reviews: 1,482
rAvg: 3.32
pDev: 18.67%
Wants: 34
Gots: 368 | FT: 2
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)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,292 | Reviews: 1,482 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of superdedooperboy
4.1/5  rDev +23.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed on-tap at The Pizza Joint in Evans, GA.

Deep ruby-mahogany in color with no head and no lacing, courtesy of the lackluster pulling skills of the bartender in charge of pulling this beer.

Notes of sweet malts and toasted grain in the nose, without much else detected.

Light and smooth mouthfeel and medium-full in body, without much carbonation. Sweet caramel malt notes come in up front, melding into toasted biscuit, the faintest notes of chocolate, and a slight hop bitterness before finishing with a mild, roasty dryness.

Highly quaffable and extraordinarily desirable. Simple, yet splendidly balanced. The quintessential English Brown.

superdedooperboy, Oct 27, 2008
Photo of Tolnik
3.55/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - As a dark amber beer it was very pleasant to the palate. Good foam to start and reduces to a slight foam at beginning of drinking.

S - Not that much a smell to it. Barely get a flowery hoppy malt smell.

T - Good flowery taste. With hints at a slight hop taste with a balance of malt.

M - Was good mouthful flavorful beer.

Tolnik, Oct 15, 2008
Photo of WHROO
4.2/5  rDev +26.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

2 finger Honeycomb head, off white, pillowy & soft, fluffy. Reddish with some brown hues, clear & quite good carbonation. Head retention was good, with a nice foam ring till empty.
Big dose of honey aroma...also some buttersctoch, toffee, some dark fruits, & after swirling there was some citrus released.
The taste followed the aroma's: full honey sweetness, like honeycomb, some banana, toffee & no bitterness.
Mouthfeel was maybe a little too watery, but then again with the sweetness, if this was thicker it might have made this a little sickly.
Very easy drinkability, thoroughly enjoyed this & was a very nice surprise.

WHROO, Oct 14, 2008
Photo of craytonic
3.48/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

My favorite part of this beer is the beautiful brown color. Truly amazing. Not much as far as head or lace.

Faint smell, grain.

More malt than hops, has a bit of earth. Has a nutty, buttery taste - caramel and toffee as well. The alcohol comes through.

Its a nice beer, but it could be so much more. But, it could also be much worse. Nice every once in a while.

craytonic, Oct 12, 2008
Photo of rgb2807
2.9/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance, is average, appears a little lighter than Yeungling Lager. (For you guys from the east coast)

Smell is non-existent, I got nothing.

Taste is pretty meh, nothing objectionable, but nothing superb, I don't get any strong flavors, just blah.

Mouthfeel is fine, meh.

Drinkability is good, I could drink a few, but really wouldn't be memorable.

Overall- I would drink this stuff again, but I wouldn't buy. It's kinda pricey for a highly ok beer. Kinda a brown ale made to appeal to the masses, no one can't hate this, but I'm not sure who could love it.

rgb2807, Oct 11, 2008
Photo of skeetermoses
3.93/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Overall this was a pretty good beer, I tended to like this one. Overall this beer is not a horrible beer but it was not my favorite, it happens to be my neighbors favorite beer, it seems to have an overall good taste, the flavor was decent, my neighbor loved this beer, and since the price is not bad I can have him help me on my new deck.

skeetermoses, Oct 09, 2008
Photo of EatsTacos
4.1/5  rDev +23.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

For a beer that is so widely available and popular this beer totally deserves its reputation, this is a beer for people who really appreciate a good brown ale

The color is pretty light brown with a good white head that seems to stick around

Smells pretty nutty, some caramel, a little honey

Taste is sweet malt with nuts, honey and caramel, not very bitter at all, not much hop flavour. Smooth and more subtle than other brown ales.

Mouthfeel is a bit watery but overall effect is good and suits the taste

Very drinkable beer, the flavour is not so overwhelming and everything works very well together.

Clint Eastwood's favourite beer. What else do you want me to say? Great beer

EatsTacos, Oct 04, 2008
Photo of djeucalyptus
3.6/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Newcastle is as Newcastle does. It's one of the beers that opened my eyes to the alternatives when everyone else was drinking BMC, and I decided to have a bottle this afternoon. It's a solid brown ale. That's that.

Rich amber-brown color with a nice looking thin caramel head, leaving some decent bubbly lacing.

The aroma is pretty subtle, but malty, with hints of bread and candy. The aromas pretty much carry through into the taste, with malt, a bit of caramel, and a bit of breadiness. Nothing overpowering, or really all that flavorful, but decent none the less.

Mouthfeel is subtly better than the average macro, but not bad. Simple, light, with good carbonation.

Drinkability is high, with some pleasant brown notes of malt and bread making it a pleasantly light change from domestic micros, but a huge step above most macros. All in all, in its class, it's hard to beat. And I just may have one or two more.

djeucalyptus, Oct 02, 2008
Photo of theboozecruise
3.45/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Had this one at a local bar & grill, standard 12 oz. bottle.

Not too much new to write about this one, it's a very popular English brown ale, probably the most popular of its style in the States. A very nice beer to mix things up or to enjoy a beer drinking session with.

Nothing spectacular, but very solid and rarely disappoints.

theboozecruise, Oct 01, 2008
Photo of illidurit
3.13/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12 oz clear bottle. Poured into a pint glass. Clear auburn color with a frothy tan head. Aroma is barely distinguishable from that of a pilsener. It's a faint, grainy, and there's a bit of toffee. Flavor is milky with some roast up front and chocolate tones and sweet nuttiness in the finish. Smooth, sweet, and easy to drink. Flavor is noticeably watery; this is basically a 'diet' brown ale in taste. With more robustness, this could be a good beer, but as it is, it's just another mediocre-but-drinkable beer.

illidurit, Sep 30, 2008
Photo of simonjohansson
2.25/5  rDev -32.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Smell: some citric hops and sweet malt, some sugar, syrup notes.

The smell isnt very promising, and the taste is worse. Its too thin, with some caramell, syrup (almost an artificial sugar feel to it), some citrus, almost no bitterness, some nuts.

Overall: not very good. Too thin and watery. Avoid. There are many better brown ales (a style I like) out there.

simonjohansson, Sep 29, 2008
Photo of nicksta
4.1/5  rDev +23.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I was hesitant to try this beer. Popular European Ales usually let me down, but this beer was a pleasant surprise. The beer is a beautiful, translucent reddish-brown. The smell contains spicy, toasted malts, oils and that familiar skunky smell that comes with a typical European brew. The taste contains some nice spice (nutmeg? cinnamon?), but it is mild and balanced out by the oily overtones. The malt flavor is quite rich and the hops balance everything out nicely with a nice bite. Despite its richness it is a fairly light beer and that means I could drink it all day.

nicksta, Sep 22, 2008
Photo of Dogsgogrrrr
3.93/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Overall one of my more prefered brown ales. A nice beer to sit back and enjoy, but doesn't offer anything extraordinary.
Appearance: Nice amber brown color with light tan head that dissipates relatively quick, leaving slight lacing.
Smell: Very slight caramel aroma, paired with faint roasted malt. Not exactly one of the most aromatic ales I've encountered.
Taste: Buiscuity, caramel taste paired nicely with a slightly nutty aftertaste.
Mouthfeel: Relatively smooth, but seemed a little more carbonated than your typical brown ale.
Drinkability: Very drinkable, as no characteristics are too harsh or overpowering.

I would reccomend this ale to anyone not completely preoccupied with numerous complexities in their beer.

Dogsgogrrrr, Sep 20, 2008
Photo of TheSicilian33
4.72/5  rDev +42.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance- Straight out of one of the interesting looking bottles. Great color.

Smell- A musty brown smell, that only makes you want it more

Taste- Great taste.

Mouthfeel- Not too small, not to big. Very simple

Drinkability- This was very easy to down. I give the British an A for this very simple, stylish beer.

TheSicilian33, Sep 18, 2008
Photo of kguyty
3/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Newcastle Brown used to be the brown ale that I judged all others by. I don't know what happened though... The last 12-pack I got really let me down. The beer looks awesome in a clear pint, and has a decent head that quickly dissipates. The smell is nice as well - nice and caramel-like. The taste left something to be desired... I don't know what, but this beer just isn't as complicated as I thought it was, and the mouthfeel is pretty thin as well, which leads to a decrease in drinkability if you ask me. Decent beer, but I have had much better for the price.

kguyty, Sep 17, 2008
Photo of jbull
3.73/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pretty decent brown ale but lacking anything to remark about. Nice amber brown color with light tan head that goes away without much lacing. I don't taste the hop in this beer and the malt is medium unremarkable.

My best description is plain brown ale. A little too plain bordering on bland. It is very drinkable as there is nothing offensive about it.

jbull, Sep 07, 2008
Photo of larsee01
2.78/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12 oz glass bottle poured into pint glass

A--Iced tea color with pretty good sandy-color head

S--Skunky hop/yeast from quite a distance. Is this the plan, or is this just skunked-out beer? I hope the former. Maybe a little bready/biscuity, but skunkiness permeates.

T--Mild breadiness. Skunkiness not too strong. Smooth with mild phenols. Minimal carbonation after head dissapates. Almost flat feeling. Not much aftertaste. Rather bland. Tiny bit of bitterness at the back of the tounge at finish.

M--As aforementioned, smooth with a flat sensation. Light-bodied despite dark color.

D--An easy drinker for sure, but just because there isn't much to offer. A remedial brown ale for the American Lager crowd.

larsee01, Sep 06, 2008
Photo of ThreeWiseMen
2.6/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Clear brown with a tiny spattering of fizzy white bubbles on top. Looks almost like a cola.

Smell: Sweet malts and... [crickets]. Smell is almost non-existent, but at least its not bad. I don't really know how to score a beer that smells like nothing.

Taste: Sweet black malts and caramel. A little bit of hop bitterness at the end. Aftertaste is gone within a few seconds.

Mouthfeel: Smooth with higher carbonation than most browns, but not anything to complain about. Kind of watery.

Drinkability: Better than the typical American macro, but this a brown ale and shouldn't be sompared to macro lagers. For a brown ale, it's sub par but still mildly enjoyable.

ThreeWiseMen, Sep 01, 2008
Photo of WJVII
3.3/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Re-reviewed (as have had opportunity to broaden perspective)

Poured into a pint glass this beer has a sandy tan color with a slight white head that doesn't last and leaves minimal lacing. The smell is of malt and some slight roasted caramel. The taste is very thin and slightly nutty. Very light carbonation and not as much body as I would like. This brew is not as fantastic as I originally had laid claim. Hey as I get older my palate has gotten "better" in my opinion...

WJVII, Aug 26, 2008
Photo of Onenote81
3.63/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Excellent brown ale that's crisp and clean and full of carmel-y goodness! Smooth brew that goes well with most any pub food. I really enjoyed this one. It was a little smoky and nutty tasting. A very commonly found brew that I hadn't tried yet, but I will for sure visit this one again.

Onenote81, Aug 25, 2008
Photo of changeup45
3.03/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a dark brown color with a decent tan head and lacing. Altough I've had it before when it didn't generate any head. I kind of expected a stronger aroma and flavor. Kind of boring but solid. Subtle sweet malty flavor with brown sugar notes in the background. This is very easy to drink but sometimes I feel this could use an extra kick. Good Brown Ale that you can find just about anywhere.

changeup45, Aug 23, 2008
Photo of OtherShoe2
2.78/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured a bomber into an English pint mug -- no easy pour here -- just chugged it in. With all of that splashing is got about a half inch of cream colored foam on top of a deep brown/ruby (if held up to the light) body of beer. The head dissipated about halfway through the pint, and very very slight lacing stuck to the glass (dimpled glassware might be preventative --? I'll give it a pass here. If life was a work of art -- this would be a beautiful sight.

Smells of sweet caramel and brown sugar and a slight whaft of bitter hop leaf. So far, so good.

Taste: As this isn't my first time around with this beer, and the last time was many moons ago, I've given it every opportunity to shine. Generous pour; wide mouth vessel for the aroma and...wow what a disappointment. Tastes like thin brown sugar dissolved in distilled water. A slight vegetable bitter finish -- and I mean slight, with some fizzy characteristics as your palate clears.

I'd like to say that this ber has bad flavors, but it really has no flavor. Sweetness is the key. Nothing distinctive here. It puts on a very good show and fails miserably in the area that is most important -- taste.

This beer is pushed in every hipster magazine out there, and we've all seen the ads on tv. I encourage people to give this a try if anything to understand what a poor mass market brown ale is. Know your enemy.

OtherShoe2, Aug 23, 2008
Photo of PatronWizard
3.4/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

New Castle Brown Ale in a clear bottle...

Ok, so we're reddish brown in direct light and brown otherwise. Very respectable head that seems to fall a little fast. Not really fast, just a little fast (someone BM me the word I'm fumbling for).

Really light malt aroma. And that's it buddy. And by realy light, I mean really light.

Taste like a Sugar Daddy. Not a lot of flavor, but what is there is pleasing. Caramel?

Easily drinkable, at least one full step up from most macros. Good beer to have your Bud Light swilling buddy try as a trade up.

PatronWizard, Aug 22, 2008
Photo of philipquarles
3.23/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass, this beer is a dark brown that is lacking of head. Zero lacing.

Smells a bit like very slightly roasted malt and maybe a hint of hops, but that's about it. Taste is much the same, but even less impressive. Just not a whole lot there.

Mouthfeel is a bit watery. Very easily drinkable, but I'll avoid it in the future.

philipquarles, Aug 20, 2008
Photo of Deus1138
2.88/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

My wife ordered this at dinner tonight. I'd never had it, so I tried some. Not impressed.

Drinking this beer is like meeting a well endowed girl, bringing her home, and finding out she stuffs her bra.

The beer looked great. It's dark and rich looking. The smell was decent, malty mostly. Taste....what the heck happened?? You get a quick hint of maltiness, then it disappears. It's like half a step above a macro lager. I had high hopes from the appearance alone. But somehow, this one just doesn't deliver. It seems like the flavor should be there, but it isn't.

Deus1138, Aug 09, 2008
Newcastle Brown Ale from The Caledonian Brewery Company Limited
74 out of 100 based on 4,292 ratings.