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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.

4,387 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,387
Reviews: 1,488
rAvg: 3.32
pDev: 18.67%
Wants: 36
Gots: 408 | 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: 4,387 | Reviews: 1,488 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Stinkypuss
3.35/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

A. Served on tap at the local bar. Dark amber in hue with little to no head and no lacing to be found.

S. A hint of sweet grain and some malt.

T. Very sweet initial taste with some grainy aspects and slight caramel flavor. Little to no hop profile.

M. A bit slick on the palate and a bit dry.

D. Fairly drinkable, but nothing to write home about. For the price, not really worth it.

Stinkypuss, May 31, 2008
Photo of rye726
2.78/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Not a bad brew, just a little over priced in my book. It has a brown color with a beige head. The nose is mostly malty with some nutty bread in there. The taste is more of the same. Mild malts and possibly soft bitter hops. A light body, but smooth after it opens up. A good drinker.

rye726, May 21, 2008
Photo of Hokies
3.13/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Had on tap at UNO in a 22oz glass. Pours a nice amber color with a little head that left some light lacing on the glass. It gave off scents of sweet caramel and malt. The beer starts off sweet as the malt dominates and little else is going on as the beer finishes dry. The beer is light on the palate with medium carbonation and finishes with a dry taste. This is a decent brown ale that one could drink quite a bit, but I probably won't rush out to get this one again.

Hokies, May 18, 2008
Photo of nem2006
2.2/5  rDev -33.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Drank in a pint glass. When I poured it, there was almost no head and as I drank it, there was very little lacing left on the side of the glass.

The beer seemed a little flat, though I could see some carbonation through the clear, brown colored beer.

The biggest let down for me was the smell. It was extremely skunky. Most likely due to the fact that the bottle is clear and not colored like every other beer to avoid this exact thing.

I was able to still pick up a little of the sweetness at the beginning followed by a very slight hoppy bitterness at the end. At least the aftertaste didn't last long.

nem2006, May 14, 2008
Photo of iceball585
3.75/5  rDev +13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Dark brown color, semi-transparent, half finger thick head that faded fairly quickly to a thin ring

S- Toasted grains, dark malts, sweetness, slightly buttery

T- Brown sugar, sweet, malty, toasted grains, hint of dark fruits

M- Medium body, low/medium carbonation, starts sweet then turns to a semi-dry finish

D- Good brown ale

This beer is what I would consider a better than average english brown ale. The auroma starts the second you open the bottle. I would love it if this beer had just a bit more powerful flavor but I definatly still like it.

iceball585, May 14, 2008
Photo of Offa
4.08/5  rDev +22.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is flavourful and has a somewhat full character, yet is light,refreshing, and very easy to drink.

It's dark, faintly reddish brown with a decent light tan head that steadily shrinks and leaves a little lace.

The aroma is caramel, grain, hints of nuts and fruit.

The taste and texture are very smooth and easy on the palate, yet uit has a nice, persistent character of fruit, caramel, a little wine, a hint of nuts and bread, and a toasty grain finish. It is a good balance of flavour, body, drinkability, and lightness. However, most of the character is lost if it's too cold, in which case it hardly seems to have much taste at all, so make sure it's not straight out of the fridge.

Offa, May 13, 2008
Photo of Iheartstouts
4.58/5  rDev +38%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

As my favorite beer, this review may be a bit biased.

A: A perfectly brown color, with and almost reddish tinge.

S: Smells of deep roast. Some yeasty aromas along with a caramel hint.

T: Newcastle tastes about the same as it smells. Yeasty with a hint of caramel.

M: Medium lingering. Low carbonation and very smooth.

D: A little too drinkable, if you catch my drift.

Iheartstouts, May 11, 2008
Photo of brushtachio
3.68/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

A British friend in college lived on Newcastle so over the years I've had my share. Now, sitting down to review a bottle, this beer seems to be somewhat of an enigma. I have a hard time getting much of a head even with a vigorous pour. There is almost no smell whatsoever. The taste is subdued with light malt, caramel and chocolate tones.

Not a stellar review but here the catch.... This beer is incredibly drinkable. As mentioned in a previous review, most people I've introduced it to, like it. Even my mom who dislikes beer in general

brushtachio, May 06, 2008
Photo of Fireal1222
4.47/5  rDev +34.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

this is one of the few beers that i'd actually recommend you to drink from the bottle.

with that said.

this brew goes down like iced tea.. and honestly. it even has the same color.. its the perfect beer because it suits just about anybody. your lady friends will enjoy it as well. because its just that easy to drink.

probably the most drinkable beer in the world.


Fireal1222, May 04, 2008
Photo of MusicaleMike
2.58/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I had a pint of this Brown ale when I stopped into the Rusty Bucket in Dublin, OH. Not a bad place, but the servers could use some beer training.

A: About a finger of sticky, cream-colored head sat on top of this clear, dark brown bodied beer. There was some modest carbonation visible in the deep brown. The head died down to a ring around the edge of the glass, which stuck for the first couple of sips while the beer was too cold.

S: Absolutely nothing...I get a "clean" smell out of this beer. I am sure that the temperature should be much warmer for this beer. About mid-glass there is a nutty malt character.

T: There is a mild malt character at first. No presence of hops, until the beer warmed a bit, when there was the faintest glimmer of hop in the aftertaste. The beer was too cold, and it completely stifled the flavors. It was only in the aftertaste that I was able to enjoy the nutty malts. With about 1/4 of a glass left, I was able to determine the well-balanced nature of this beer. However, the flavors are decidedly weak.

M: Light-medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation which gives it a smooth feel.

D: The lightness and smoothness also lend to this beer being more drinkable. It is not a complex beer, and by the end of the pint, I just wanted to be finished with it (bad sign). I would recommend drinking this at room temp or warmer.

MusicaleMike, Apr 30, 2008
Photo of PatrickJR
3.88/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this on tap at J.P. Looney's in Greensboro, NC.

A - Dark brown with small head that faded quickly into almost nothing, no lacing.

S - I couldn't smell much from this on-tap. Faint caramel malt is about all I notice.

T - Much more even than the bottles. A nice balance of Newcastle's burnt sugar and almost briny character. A shade less complex, but the continuity is worth it.

M - Very smooth, barely carbonated in contrast to bottles.

D - One of the easiest beers I can go to bar and drink. It goes down smooth with no aftertaste, and without all the carbonation to give me the hiccups right in the middle of a night out. Always a great choice.

PatrickJR, Apr 30, 2008
Photo of Rayek
3.5/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had this on-tap at the City Grille in Denver.

A: Nice chestnut brown color has good clarity. White head was thin but had decent retention. Left a tiny amount of lace.

S: Subtle. Toffee, oak and toasted malt. Not much else.

T: Taste is quite mild. Toasted malt has a nutty taste that reminded me a bit of walnuts. Bitterness has a slightly woodsy quality. A little bit bit of toffee and caramel sweetness is there too. Finishes clean and dry.

M: Good. Medium-light body with the right amount of fizz.

D: Very drinkable. Not a beer I'd drink alone, but with dinner out with friends, this stuff goes down very easily. Low ABV keeps it from going to your head.

Rayek, Apr 29, 2008
Photo of everetends
3.8/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

I get this on tap or in the bottle as my old reliable beer.

A: A nice dark amber that pushes red through when put against light. Always a nice, frothy head.

S: Malt and faint nuts.

T: Pretty much the same as smell. The nuttiness comes out a bit more in taste.

M: Good on carbonation and has a smooth finish.

D: Great drinking beer. They don't get old as far as taste goes. I have this beer with meals, watching a football game or while relaxing.

everetends, Apr 28, 2008
Photo of berserker256
3.18/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A little dissappointing. My memory failed me. I thought this beer was better the last time I had it. It's dark amber brown with a nice head but is lacking any kind of aromas that jump out at you. It smells sweet and malty and tastes very mild. Sort of a sweet nutty flavor with almost no hop bitterness. Good texture and easy to drink but I think the microbrewed brown ales that I've had lateley are superior to this one.

berserker256, Apr 28, 2008
Photo of GJ40
3.55/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Sampled from a 12oz bottle in a standard pint glass.

A brown molasses like color with good clarity and a moderate head of small bubbles. The head doesn't last long but it's got decent lacing. A yeasty, slightly nutty aroma. A sweet, malty flavor with a clean yeast presence (almost like a pilsner). A bit thin in the mouth.

A decent beer that's pretty readily available. I happened to buy these at a gas station for tailgating before a basketball game. I picked it because the only other options were bud, miller, etc. Bu it's a decent beer.

GJ40, Apr 24, 2008
Photo of gpogo
4.03/5  rDev +21.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Clear reddish brown. Off-white head quickly dissipating

A- Sweet malt with some bready aroma

T- Mellow, slightly sweet with a bit of a nutty flavor. FInishes off medium dry. Not much of a noticable hop taste.

M- Medium-light body, low carbonation.

D- Definitely drinkable. My drink of choice at shows with shitty bars.

gpogo, Apr 22, 2008
Photo of Greggy
3.25/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance- 1 finger head, amber body, head receedes down into lacing quickly.

Smell- Very skunky hopiness, a little malty, a touch nutty.

Taste- A little nutty (nut goody) malt, a touch of skunk..

Mouthfeel- Low carb but works with smooth body.

Drinkability- The skunkiness is terrible and really hurts the beer. I do not intend on having another one of these until it's on tap.

Greggy, Apr 22, 2008
Photo of CharlieMopps
2.45/5  rDev -26.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The pour reveals the same transparent, ruby-brown hue that I've seen in bottle form, with about two fingers of off-white head on top. Bready and caramel malt notes come to mind, with a real underlying sweetness supporting the whole thing. Some floral and earthy hop notes, but only a whisp of an accent in that regard. I wonder if there will be subtle nuances due to preservation and packaging, or if it will pretty much be the same thing.

I'm surprised to find that the beer is actually less flavorful than it is from the bottle or on tap. With a near tasteless introduction, only a brief flash of the toasty malt profile is accompanied by a weak caramel sweetness that disappears as soon as it arrives. Middle and finish are as bland as can be, with only a quaint reminder of bittering hops and dryness making themselves known. Much, much different than the other formats I've tried, and not in a good way.

To be fair, I didn't know what to expect from this. Am I asking too much from a beer that already isn't overly impressive to me? Maybe, but I figured that I'd give this one a shot to see if I found a format that I like. Obviously beer can take on different characteristics depending upon its packaging, and I wanted to give this one an honest shake. My suggestion would be to go bottle or tap with this one.

CharlieMopps, Apr 18, 2008
Photo of yelterdow
3.7/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From a sixer purchased last night, the bottle is lasered 30 11 R, then L311 59 08. The clear glass bottle has a raised "The One and Only" saying near the neck. Served at a few degrees over fridge temperature in an English pint glass.

Appearance- Two solid fingers of soapy, foamy head rests atop this very nice light caramel beer. It's quite clear, and the lacing is great... nice thick rings are adorning the inside of the glass. After five minutes, the head is thinning but still complete.

Smell- A classic English brown ale hop nose... creamy, sweet, really good. There's doughy, bready aromas that add some nice balance. Mellow, pleasant character that screams "session me"!

Taste- Mellow, smooth, and just sweet enough to please, the ingredients are in terrific balance. While good, it's not one to contemplate your navel over. Straightforward is success here.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability- Upon entering the mouth, the beer prickles and begins to foam up fast, then it releases its microbubble carbonation and easily goes down. As far as choosing this particular English Brown Ale over other available brews of the same style... I wouldn't. Glad to have tried this with an open mind, though.

yelterdow, Apr 17, 2008
Photo of Lexluthor33
2.9/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured a clear brown with a medium head. The aroma was a bit skunky,roasted malts and a bit of hops. The taste was sweet,malts,some nutty notes and it had little hops.
The mouth feel was high carbonation with some grains.
The beer went down smooth and it seemed to be an ok beer,but for it's style it fails miserably.

Notes: I know this beer is popular and it spends good money on Ads,yet it failed to impress me and I feel this is just another beer I would avoid unless given to me free. It was highly carbonated and it lacked the hops and malt balance to give it respectability. I see many will disagree,but Brown Ales are my first love and this is not a good brown ale-just slightly below average. I will try once more in the future, but I distrust beer in clear bottles.

Lexluthor33, Apr 16, 2008
Photo of lionking
3.5/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured out of the bottle into a glass. Half finger head, dark copper color.

Smell is malt first then hops. Malt taste then bitter hop finish. Taste is balanced. Its like this beer is brewed to be a little different but not to far off the beaten path. Brown ales are not really something I usually grab. This one came in an Xmas variety pack.

lionking, Apr 15, 2008
Photo of Pauly2X
3.58/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Deep amber, half finger head.

S- Sweet mellow malty aroma, not much in the way of hop aroma.

T- Slightly sweet, grainy malt character on the take. Mellow yet pronounced nutty dryness in the middle fading of to a barely precievable caramel finish.

M- Carbonation is a little high, but otherwise smooth.

D- This has been a go to for me for some time.

While some snobs knock it, this is a classic. "Ol' Nukey Brown" is responsible for weening many of us off BMC, and for that alone deserves praise.

Pauly2X, Apr 09, 2008
Photo of erosier
2.6/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours an ornage copper color from a clear bottle with a short and thin off-white head that settles pretty fast. Not much to the nose except some nice sweet toasted malts and a tiny bit of hoppy bitter at the end of the aroma. The taste is more bland than I was expecting with some malts and some hops present to round out the flavor. It has a clean and light mouthfeel which makes it pretty drinkable, but something I don't plan on getting very often.

erosier, Apr 09, 2008
Photo of Slynger
3.43/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear amber-brown with a light tan lid that settles quickly. A light nose is sweet and a bit fruity. Caramel malt flavors along with toasted grains and light earthy hops. A bit fruit and nuts show up as well, and the finish is lightly bitter. Not bad overall, this is a fairly tasty English Brown macro-brew that was a definite stepping stone for my journey from light beer binge drinking to quality beer appreciation.

Slynger, Apr 08, 2008
Photo of ubermick
3.6/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a standard American pint glass.

A: Nut-brown colour, with a quickly disappating head, and substantial carbonation.

S: Pleasant roasted malt, with notes of nuttiness and caramel.

T: Medium bodied, with a nice malty sweetness.

MF/D: An enjoyable brew, best served from the bottle. It's very drinkable, and my beer of choice in most "English" pubs. Perhaps a little "generic" for some, it's still a solid beer from a large(ish) brewery.

ubermick, Apr 07, 2008
Newcastle Brown Ale from The Caledonian Brewery Company Limited
76 out of 100 based on 4,387 ratings.