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Brooklyn Brown Ale - Brooklyn Brewery

Not Rated.
Brooklyn Brown AleBrooklyn Brown Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,895 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,895
Reviews: 915
rAvg: 3.63
pDev: 12.95%
Wants: 33
Gots: 79 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brooklyn Brewery visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
American Brown Ale |  5.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: purplehops on 06-10-1998)
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Ratings: 1,895 | Reviews: 915 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Blitzstyle


3.58/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass from a 12oz bottle. Pours a clear brown with 2 fingers of head some laceing.

Light in smell, some sudel caramell malts, brown sugar and some earthy/grassy hop smell.

Malts are sweet, earthy mineral taste aswell, Nice brown sugar after taste.

Has a sweet smoothness to it that is not over done at all. Medium body would drink this all day.

Serving type: bottle

11-20-2009 17:43:27 | More by Blitzstyle
Photo of Ineedabeerhere

Rhode Island

3.58/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is the second beer i have had by brooklyn. After the Chocolate Stout, its a bit of a let down. But thats not a terrible insult...

Overall, its pretty average. Its something that would appeal to a non-BA pretty readily. After drinking something like DFH's Indian Brown Ale, it just doesnt compare though. The aromas and taste are solid, but seem to be almost light and watery (respectively) when compared to something of the DFH's caliber. I know these are slightly different, but if given the choice, i would go for the DFH. This beer has a pretty good drinkability, and i could see it being nice in the springtime. This beer seems a little unbalanced, but could be appealing to a novice BA.

Serving type: bottle

02-15-2008 06:09:22 | More by Ineedabeerhere
Photo of jkrich


3.58/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Served in a nonic - deep clear brown with ruby highlights with a tight slightly off-white head.

Smell was very tangy, almost wine-like with some malt aromas.

The ale had an initial roasty, malty flavor that quickly gave way to a slight hop bitterness. It seems assertive for the style. There was also a faint buttery flavor.

Medium bodied and moderately carbonated; the ale leaves a some sour bitterness on the tongue.

Not my favorite interpretation for the style. This really complimented my meatball and spaghetti dinner, but consumed by itself, the ale was not well balanced. Worth a try.

Serving type: on-tap

10-31-2009 19:56:04 | More by jkrich
Photo of biegaman

Ontario (Canada)

3.58/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Brooklyn Brown Ale is just that - brown. With a little brightness behind it, however, the beer's dark russet tone alights to an almost maroon shade. This chocolaty-stained colour is gorgeous and, although clear, doesn't really allow any transparency. An off-white foam replete with air pockets envelops the beer like moss on a rock.

The aroma is brash and gritty. Its scents are rough and rushed variations on the style's classics; not coffee but coffee grinds, not roast malts but the singed smell of burnt ones. Hops produce a very earthy aura. The bouquet is coated in an astringent, peaty, lightly smoked coverlet that lends a considerable likeness to overly-steeped Earl Grey tea.

But what seemed like it would be an astringent, unpalatable and overly bitter beer turns out to be an agreeable, savory, classically bittersweet ale. With the flavour of roast malts much more refined in taste, notes of dark caramel, roasted nuts and spongy toffee cake now make their appearance. Chocolate is also introduced into the fold.

Hints of maple, brown sugar and pecans conjure to mind comforting fall-time foods. A stuffy, earthy bitterness ties the flavours together. There isn't the taste of coffee but there is its characteristic element of smoky roastedness. The beer seems more substantial than its 5.5% would indicate. This makes a great session beer to enjoy in cooling weather.

Brooklyn's Brown Ale is neither my favourite Brooklyn Brewing beer nor my favourite brown ale. That being said, it is further evidence that even this brewery's most undistinguished of offerings still rates well above the average. Consistency and craftsmanship are not to be overlooked; I'll take Brooklyn's mediocre over many other brewery's best.

Serving type: bottle

10-05-2009 20:24:12 | More by biegaman
Photo of NightINgale

Russian Federation

3.58/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12 US.fl.oz. bottle poured into my tulip pint glass...

A - Nice clear brown body, with a ruby-red glow to it. Light brown foamy head. Some lacing, some carbonation, and a pretty decent head retention. This beer sure looks like a proper Brown Ale.

S - The aroma is very malty, with notes of roastiness, bitter chocolate, and brown sugar. However there is also a decent hop smell, with a floral and grassy feel to it. Hints of dark fruits...

T - Starts out quite roasty and chocolatey, with some bitterness from the roasted malts. Then a decent hop flavour comes through, lingering all the way to the end. Fairly sweet, a little sour, with hints of prunes or raisins. Tastes like a good Brown ale, but I've had better AMERICAN brown ales.

M - Light-to-medium body to it. A little disappointing, because it feels a bit thin. Some crisp carbonation at first.

D - Good, this could easily make a session brown ale. Goes down smoothly, since neither the flavour nor the body is too strong.

Serving type: bottle

10-02-2010 17:46:19 | More by NightINgale
Photo of mdfb79

New York

3.58/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

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

a - Pours a deep brown color with 2-3 inches of light tan head and light carbonation evident.

s - Smells of chocolate, roasted malts, and caramel malts.

t - Tastes of roasted malts, caramel malts, chocolate, and some hops.

m - Medium body and low carbonation. Pretty smooth.

d - A nice brown ale. Some nice roasted malts and chocolate in the smell and taste. Would have again

Serving type: bottle

07-17-2010 00:32:39 | More by mdfb79
Photo of Tschnab

New York

3.58/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- a light brown kind of reddish clear body with a good amount if tan head.

S- very very malty with a touch of nuttiness, and a good amount of caramel and toffee.

T- very sweet molasses and malt with a good note of biscuit and fruity malt. Very refreshing and light.

O- a very sessionable brown that is simple but nice. More hops would balance it perfectly.

Serving type: bottle

01-02-2012 20:57:57 | More by Tschnab
Photo of Flounder57


3.58/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle was poured into a pint glass at Estelle's.

Appearance: A one finger off white head was poured that reduced to a thin layer. It is a dark brown amber color with no vision of anything.

Smell: Some roasted, toasted, caramel, hazelnut, chocolate notes with earthy hops in the rear.

Taste: Same as above with mild bitterness in the rear. Somewhat tasty.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, light bodied, low to medium carbonation, and a little chewy.

Overall: Pretty standard brown ale.

Serving type: bottle

06-10-2014 00:07:05 | More by Flounder57
Photo of chinchill

South Carolina

3.59/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle, dated best by 6/11, served in a pint glass.

Pours a very dark mahogany but not opaque. Clear with 1+ finger of tan head. Head settles to a thin top coat rather quickly.

Surprisingly fruity aroma {investigating, I find there are some "Belgian aromatic malts" in here}, with a mix of toasted malts.

Taste - certainly some hops in with the malt; plenty of dark roast malt flavor. Aromatic fruitiness not evident in flavor, but it does have hints of coffee, burnt toast and roasted nuts (mainly walnut). Medium duration dark roasted malt finish with some hop bitterness.

M - good carbonation; smooth but [too] thin body; somewhat dry.

O - mostly recommended for its fine aroma and rich malty flavor.

Serving type: bottle

04-29-2011 01:56:44 | More by chinchill
Photo of johnnnniee

New Hampshire

3.59/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Bottle from Harvest Market.
Pours a deep reddish brown color with a decent sized bubbly off white head that slowly dissipates to a cap. Aromas of caramel and brown sugar with a hint of chocolate and a bit of minty earthy hops to balance. The flavor is malty sweet with just enough earthy hop flavor to balance. Nice malts caramel and hints of chocolate round this one out nicely. Medium body and level of carbonation. Its been a while since I've had a brown ale, but this one is quite serviceable.

Serving type: bottle

06-14-2014 03:16:43 | More by johnnnniee
Photo of smanders


3.59/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Had this at a friends house before enjoying some burgers on the grill. Not usually a big brown ale fan, but Brooklyn puts out some quality stuff. I love the freshness date on the bottle; thanks Brooklyn!

A: deep brown with a cream-colored, billowy head.

S: lots of sweetness from roasted malt. A dash of buttery caramel, too.

T: Like a Brown Ale should (i.e. sweetness followed closely by a touch of bitterness from the hops. I would've put a scoop of good vanilla ice cream into my glass if I had been thinking of it.

O:This is a quality Brown Ale that I would recommend to others looking for a good representative of the style.

Serving type: bottle

04-08-2014 20:56:15 | More by smanders
Photo of jakester


3.6/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is from the Brooklyn Party Pack sampler case. I drank it in a goblet. Date notched on the label.

Pours a mostly clear mahogany red with a 1/2 finger head of off-white bubbles. The head falls rather quickly to just a ring, with no real lacing. Carbonation appears low.

Aroma is lightly spicy or citrusy hops and clean, rich toffee candy. Neither one is dominant, but they meld together well. As it warms, the malt comes through more, as does a smell of raisins.

First flavor is caramel malt, then a fairly strong dose of hop bitterness. Citrusy hop flavor is next, with notes of lemons and oranges. Flavors are pretty crisp and clean, with a slight emphasis on hop character. Aftertaste has a flavor of raisins or dried fruit.

Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied, with low to medium carbonation. Finish is on the dry side, refreshing.

I must admit, this isn't what I was expecting, but it's pretty good. The flavors are very slightly watered down a bit, especially the malt character. The hop character isn't out of style, but it IS different. This beer also improves in character as it warms. This is a refreshing beer for a brown ale. Recommended.

Serving type: bottle

11-20-2005 15:59:08 | More by jakester
Photo of studentofbeer


3.6/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

very dark mahogoany beer with large milky tan head. i found it pretty.

sweet, bready malty smell with some caramel and spice. Body is pretty light--was expecting it to be a bit more robust. taste is slightly nutty and spicy up front with light caramel and milk chocolate. finish fades a bit watery with a vaguely sweet candy finish. definitely an english character to it.

a decent beer but i liked the brooklyn lager i had earlier better. i would also note i probably served this a bit on the cold side--this beer will do much better i think if served on the warm side. I waited a while after taking from the fridge to open, but more flavor comes out around 60 degrees or so, i'm guessing. the only thing i really didn't like was the finish.

Serving type: bottle

05-18-2006 05:06:20 | More by studentofbeer
Photo of DavoleBomb


3.6/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass. This is a special review for me as I am using this beer to compare it to my first homebrew (obviously a brown ale). I am going to include a review for my beer in parentheses below each category.

3.5 A: Dark brown. Hard to see through, but it is indeed quite clear. Poor to average head retention and minimal lacing.

(A: Hazy almost black color. Good head retention and an obscene amount of lacing. - 4.5)

3.5 S: Big nutty aroma. Dark caramel malts. Not much else.

(S: Not as strong as I'd like. Some nutiness and to a larger extent caramel. Also a tinge of alcohol. - 3.5)

3.5 T: Nut flavor dominates. Surprisingly not much sweetness as it has a minimal amount of caramel flavor. Good balance, though hop character does not distiguish itself much.

(T: Well balanced between hops and malts. Once again nuts and caramel. Alcohol to some extent. Pretty good overall. - 3.5)

3.5 M: Medium body, good carbonation, but not as creamy as I'd like.

(M: Heavy medium body. Perhaps a little under carbonated. Creamy and a bit chewy. - 4.0)

4.0 D: Not bad, sessionable, and no major weaknesses. Problem is that there are also no major strengths.

(D: Good enough to beat out any macro. I'm happy with the results. I learned a lot from brewing this and I'm confident that my next batch (a weizenbock currently fermenting) is going to kick ass. - 4.0)

Serving type: bottle

12-10-2008 00:33:15 | More by DavoleBomb
Photo of gabedivision

New York

3.6/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle to a Sam Adams perfect pint glass. Deep brownish red appearance with a big white head that disappears in no time. Not much going on in the smell department for me, very faint malty scent if any at all. The taste however is much better, sweet chocolatey, caramel on the tongue almost a bit fizzy going down the hatch. The beer is definitely drinkable for one or two.

Serving type: bottle

01-13-2011 02:51:16 | More by gabedivision
Photo of BeerLover729

New York

3.6/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Dark brown, close to black, beer with two finger frothy tan head.

S: Aromatic malts fill the nose with a lightly roasted finish.

T: Rich but not sweet flavors flow over my tongue. Roasted malt presences is pleasant and mild.

M: Muddy water texture that could maybe use some more dissolved solids, but easy going medium body is adequate. Low to medium carbonation.

D: Easy going and decent session beer but cloyingness persists after each sip.

Notes: Definitely a good drinking session beer.

Serving type: on-tap

02-19-2008 19:36:34 | More by BeerLover729
Photo of Clydesdale

District of Columbia

3.6/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: A dark, cola color with a rather large, fluffy off-white head with above average retention. Some decent lacing.

S: Sweet roasted malts, some caramel and nutty aromas. Some earthy and coffeelike tones as well.

T: Some caramel and roasted sweetness up front, with a rich nuttiness in the middle. A big dryness at the finish that accompanies some earthy hops. Perhaps a hint of smokiness as well.

M: Full-bodied with medium carbonation. Finishes surprisingly dry and rather astringent.

D: Some nice flavors and reasonable complexity. It comes off a little too dry for the style, in my opinion. I'd drink it again, but it's nothing remarkable.

Serving type: bottle

10-31-2008 19:03:30 | More by Clydesdale
Photo of Gaisgeil


3.6/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Not quite what I was expecting, but a fairly pleasant surprise nontheless.

Pours a medium brown with shimmering ruby red tones, quite clear with noticable carbonation. Has a thin creamy head that fizzled down into a light coating on the top of my glass. Nose is noticably hoppy, moreso than one might expect from a brown ale. Caramel notes and a slight breadiness indicating a decent malt backbone. Taste follows suit closely, floral hoppiness couple with a rich caramel background. Quite good. Not what I was looking for on this particular day, but a solid offering, easily sessionable. Nice easy and smooth mouthfeel.


Serving type: bottle

11-23-2005 02:21:38 | More by Gaisgeil
Photo of Douglas14


3.6/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown color with ruby shinning through. The head is dark tan and thick...it doesn;t leave much lace or have good retention. The nose is heavily of oak with hops and toasted malt coming through as well. The taste is also very oak-y - very nice - with notes of caramel and chocolate appearing as well. Moderately roasted malt and hops continue to surface throughout the sip. Very good beer...nothing outstanding, but you can tell the Brooklyn quality is present when drinking it.

Serving type: bottle

05-03-2008 00:19:02 | More by Douglas14
Photo of Hoppsbabo

United Kingdom (England)

3.6/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Dark mahogany, almost black. Big light beige head.

S: Fudge and floral hops.

T: Dry, sour, earthy, smokey, nutty and petrol-like. Floral hops, chocolate, fudge and liquorice. Lemonade in the aftertaste. Getting a burned malty flavour towards the end.

O: Complex but the sourness is strange and it ruins the drink.

Serving type: bottle

11-09-2013 15:13:21 | More by Hoppsbabo
Photo of lacqueredmouse


3.6/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the brewery December 09.

Deep clear red brown, with a filmy but solid head of beige foam. Lacing v good. Looks pretty good, head is a bit bubbly with loose-bubbled carbonation and a bit thin but otherwise.

Odd floral notes on the nose, might be honey, like Dave says. Some acidity, some crushed cacao chars. Oddly fragrant for a dark beer. I like it, it's unusual, but pleasant.

Taste is clear and pleasant, without being terribly interesting, which is a shame after some of the notes on the nose. Some spicy fragrance, a little chocolate powder. Quite a citric finish. The acidity contributes to the mouthfeel too, which is sparkling and clear.

Not bad, but not very exciting. It's a little bland apart from the nose, but undeniably drinkable.

Serving type: on-tap

12-08-2009 04:50:05 | More by lacqueredmouse
Photo of BeefyMee


3.6/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Great looking reddish-brown body with a nice soft head.

Smell: A good malty nose. There is a nutty sweetness that I don't find in many American Browns. Very promising.

Taste: A bit of a dropoff here but still pretty good. The nuttiness comes through in full effect. However, it is a little too sugary at times. The beer is not totally one-sided though, as it stays fairly well-balanced for a brown. There is also a detectable amount of alcohol all the way through.

Mouthfeel: Nothing special to speak of, but it's not bad either. It's just there.

Drinkability: The slight alcoholic quality might become disagreeable after a while, not to mention the fact that particularly sweet beers always tread a fine line with drinkability. Even so, I'd like to drink a few of these.

Beef Notes: This is one of the beers that I was into when I started drinking better brews. I still like it and have a bit of a soft spot for it, but it's not like I remember it.

Serving type: bottle

03-30-2004 04:53:44 | More by BeefyMee
Photo of EStreet20

New Jersey

3.6/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce brown longneck poured into a 20 ounce nonic.

A - Pours out a deep reddish brown color with a tiny off white head.

S - Definitely some nice caramel smell there with a bit of chocolate in there. Roasdted malts are present on the nose giving this one a nice smell.

T - Surprisingly the taste is very dry and quite devoid of the caramel flavor I had anticipated. However the roastiness really kicks in on the finish and leaves the tongue tingling along with a bit of a hop bitterness. Not bad.

M - A nicely carbonated beer that rolls around the tongue nicely.

D - I'm torn here. Not really what I look for in a brown ale due to the lack of a whole lot of flavor but definitely drinkable as a session beer.

Notes: Not too bad but a lackluster beer as far as an AMerican brown when compared to offererings from some other breweries. Better versions of the style (IE Smuttynose and DFH) come readily to mind.

Serving type: bottle

06-01-2006 04:43:46 | More by EStreet20
Photo of nriech


3.6/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Reddish brown, little bit of head fizzing out to a bit of lacing.

Smell: Nuts, tad bit of coffee, caramel. A little toasty. Kind of earthy.

Taste: Exactly like the smell. Maybe add a little bit of burnt sugar in place of the caramel. Slightly bitter but a good balance.

Drinkability: Decent brown ale. Very drinkable and a good comprimise for decent flavor and being not too powerful.

Serving type: bottle

02-26-2007 19:53:40 | More by nriech
Photo of BethanyB

New Jersey

3.6/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Medium brown in color, with garnet highlights. The light tan head is beady, but with a smooth and creamy top. It starts out large, but is somewhat quick to dissipate.

Smell: Roasted malt; grassy, resinous hops; and coffee are the prominent aromas. As the beer warms, peppery notes and some carob begin to pop out. Complex, yet well-balanced.

Taste: Roasted malt shoves the other flavors aside, and yet there's no escaping the overly strong citrusy character, which relays a sourness from start to finish. Later on, the roastiness dies down to reveal toasty and bready supporting malt flavors. The taste is cleaner and less complex than other examples of this style.

Mouthfeel: Medium light mouthfeel, with a slightly oily texturethat detracts from the taste. Fortunately, the medium high carbonation helps balance out the slipperiness. Some alcohol warming.

Overall: Layered malt and hop characteristics are enjoyable, but the sour quality and slick mouthfeel are distracting. While not bland, the lack of complexity is disappointing.

Serving type: bottle

08-15-2013 19:12:42 | More by BethanyB
Brooklyn Brown Ale from Brooklyn Brewery
82 out of 100 based on 1,895 ratings.