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Brawler Pugilist Style Ale - Yards Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Brawler Pugilist Style AleBrawler Pugilist Style Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

790 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 790
Reviews: 252
rAvg: 3.67
pDev: 14.17%
Wants: 20
Gots: 59 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Yards Brewing Co. visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
English Dark Mild Ale |  4.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
The most approachable of our ales, Brawler is malt forward and delicately hopped for a knockout flavor. Its smooth character, hints of caramel and toast, and remarkable drinkability define this ruby colored brew as a true session ale. Perfect when you want to go more than a few rounds.

(Beer added by: garcia2a on 12-10-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 790 | Reviews: 252 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of weeare138


4.1/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appears a transparent light brown with a small off white head that slowly fades into a mild cap. Streaky bits of lacing are left around the glass.
Smell is of brown sugar, caramel, toastd grain, and a bready, English yeast.
Taste is mild yet flavorful with gentle notes of bread, sugar, ripe fruit, and caramel pulling through.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied, clean, and gently carbonated.

Serving type: bottle

11-20-2010 18:41:05 | More by weeare138
Photo of DrDemento456


3.68/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Dark amber with an inch of head. Hard to believe its darker than Yuengling and less ABV. Frothy head with mild lace.

S - Gains, hops, and malts with slight bitters.

T - Well it wasn't really mild but had a nice body. Was more bitter than expected but was rounded out with a slight sweetness. Pretty good.

M - Light, could drink a few

D - Well I actually wanted more sweetness in this beer which was a type of a mild, but overall enjoyed this succession able beer. Will not seeks out again though.

Serving type: bottle

11-17-2010 19:56:34 | More by DrDemento456
Photo of BuxMontBeerLover


3.73/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

My buddy bought a Yards Brewery Variety Case. This was one of the beers I tried out of the case.

A-Dark amber color. Poured with a 1-2 finger head. Slight lacing left after drinking.

S-Malty smell but not very strong

T-Pretty good on the pallet. Nice malty flavor, some good background sweetness also. Alcohol is not noticeable at all. Since it is a mild, the looks are deceiving. You'd expect a much bolder taste from such a dark beer.

M-Nice carbonation. For such a dark beer very thin tasting (again a result of the style).

D-Good beer, nothing fantastic but I'd drink it again. A session beer for sure due to the low ABV and thinness of the beer.


Serving type: bottle

11-15-2010 19:37:47 | More by BuxMontBeerLover
Photo of mcnabb0001

New Jersey

3.2/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 12oz brown bottle no freshness

A- pours a slightly hazy ruby color with two finger sized off-white head.

S - sweet malt hint of toffee

T - mostly sweet malt flavor little to no bitterness in this.

M - medium body, with medium carbonation

D - Just like it says on the bottle brew to go a few rounds highly sessionable beer.

Overall I think they accomplished what they set out to do. This style is intended to be on the plain side with a high drinkabilty and thats exactly what it is.

Serving type: bottle

11-06-2010 23:48:18 | More by mcnabb0001
Photo of Bouleboubier


3.55/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Overall one of the more decent American attempts at an English style (mild) ale.

The Brawler pours a vermilion hue with a creamy head that collapses into a cloud cover that amazingly stays firm and steadfast until the end, while leaving sheety lacing all the way down.

The aroma is lightly bitter hoppy over a really fruity (strawberry, cidery maybe) foundation supported by a Maris Otter maltiness.

A fresh herby bitterness and marginally acidic bite on the sides of the mouth initiate the flavor which burst with a musty fruitiness, finishing with tiny caramel and medium-light malt punch. The feel starts off and follows through round and smooth, however, the flavor and feel seems to get sucked away dry suddenly by a cardboard/chalky wash. A little less of that, and you have a fine session ale.

Serving type: bottle

10-28-2010 02:57:20 | More by Bouleboubier
Photo of glid02


3.9/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cask at Local 44 in Philadelphia.

Pours a hazy chestnut brown color with a one-finger tan head. The head recedes into a wispy layer on top leaving solid lacing.

Smells of toasted malts with good amounts of caramel malt sweetness. As the beer warms slight amounts of diacetyl aromas waft out as well.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Moderately grainy toasted malt flavors kick things off and sweeten about midway through the sip. Mild amounts of earthy hop flavors make a brief appearance before fading out into a moderately bitter ending. As with the aroma, hints of diacetyl work their way into things as the beer warms along with indistinct medium fruit flavors.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got a solid thickness with soft carbonation.

Drinkability is also good. I finished my glass without a problem and could have another.

Overall I always enjoy having traditional versions of English styles on cask and this was no exception. A good example of the style and well worth a shot.

Serving type: cask

10-24-2010 00:43:32 | More by glid02
Photo of Thorpe429


3.6/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes.

Pours a moderately dark brown color with a light tan head. A bit of sticky lacing, though not much. Nose brings faint caramel, a bit of bread, and some mild chocolate. Taste is semi sweet with caramel, light toffee, and lighter milk chocolate. Light feel. An easy drinking beer and a good pub option.

Serving type: bottle

10-21-2010 12:05:22 | More by Thorpe429
Photo of Buggabeer


3.88/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a 16oz draft glass. The coloring is red amber with a nice head at pour. The head fades away with little lacing on the glass. The smell is very nice. It has little to no hop presence and the maltiness is well done. This beer has a really nice taste and feel to it. I would really like to have another. I would recommend this beer to a friend. How about that a Pittsburgh guy recommending a Philly beer : )

Serving type: bottle

10-17-2010 20:38:57 | More by Buggabeer
Photo of Arithmeticus


3.5/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Overall, a solid session beer

A: dark amber, with decent head
S: caramel, vanilla aroma
T: sweet and light flavor; overtones of horehound candy; not much complexity
D: as advertised, a session ale; but it's not distinctive enough to draw me for repeated visits

Serving type: bottle

10-12-2010 15:12:21 | More by Arithmeticus
Photo of msubulldog25


3.85/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Tried one of these in Philly on the Yards tour two weeks ago, brought another back (purchased at the brewery); this is a 12 oz. bottle poured to a pint.

'Historic' label of a late-19th century bare-knuckle boxer about to throw with the devil; 'Pugilist Style Ale' has a funny ring to it, as if sweat and blood and the stray incisor might be expected adjuncts.


A: Ding! A spectacle of lovely copper-tinged auburn, clear and crowded with carbonation when held to light. Topped by only a half-knuckle of ivory cream that wobbles well beyond a 10-count before finally falling to a canvas of gauze and a goopy ring. Lace hangs like sagging ropes...

S: Sweet grain and nuts and cocoa - a pleasant smell but one that fails to pack much punch.

T: Chewy chocolate and candied grain, caramel to match. Dances deftly around a latent bitterness, singed nutshells and a dry spice launch the occasional uppercut. Sure it's 'mild', but this ain't some scrawny weakling, flavor-wise...

M: A butterfly's lightness without a bee's sting, Brawler's a lighter-bodied jawful that glides down smooth as silk, a slight stickiness jabbing at the finish. No alcohol presence whatsoever.

D: Quite the awesome drinker; tiny ABV and and sizable flavor would mark this as a favorite at the corner pub. A contender? Yeah, for lightweight champion, at least of the handful of EDMAs I've sparred with. Not sure I could go a full 10 rounds with this one, but I'd like a shot...


Serving type: bottle

09-28-2010 22:09:53 | More by msubulldog25
Photo of LaeliaPumila


4.13/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

Appearance: clear tawny brown (not ruby as the label implies) with a small beige head that fades quickly

Smell: malts and caramel, not strong but pleasant enough

Taste: exceptional balance in such a light beer. There's a nice crispness that fills your mouth and a good strong malt backbone without any cloying sweetness. Not a strong aftertaste, but a pleasant lingering maltiness that goes great with pizza or grilled chicken

Mouthfeel: somewhat thin and acerbic on the tongue

Drinkability: exceptional, this is one of my favorite session beers.

Overall, a great take on the style from Yards. I always have some of this in the house for when I'm craving a lunch beer without an afternoon nap afterwards.

Serving type: bottle

09-06-2010 17:00:40 | More by LaeliaPumila
Photo of biegaman

Ontario (Canada)

3.6/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Brawler looks far better in the light than it does away from it; what is actually a moderately attractive pecan colour just looks plain muddy and lusterless without proper exposure. Although the bubbles are showing a sense of drive, its head remains completely threadbare and even where it continues to persist along the trim it's riddled with holes.

The smells of this aroma seem to have no campaign for cause. Swirling will arouse momentary scents of toasted malt but no real flavours develop and, seemingly content, the bouquet falls back to a state of starkness and self-effacement. It's not that I smell nothing, but that I don't smell much of anything. At best, it smells like an old, empty coffee can.

Both figuratively and literally, bottle-conditioning a beer can be like travel insurance: you don't always need it but it's never a bad idea and it's especially smart if you have 'special' conditions. The fact that Yards Brawler is only 4.2% and, really, not even all that malty suggests to me that bottle-conditioning this sucker would have been beneficial.

The beer tastes tired and weak; the malts seem so exhausted they can breath little more than an ounce of sweetness or flavour. Their toast seems faded and, if I didn't know any better, oxidized even. The flavour is lightly nutty at best and bears little to no fruity, caramelly or chocolaty flavours - you can't underestimate just how mild it is.

It looks like something knocked out the Brawler Pugilist. Whether it was the right jab of pasteurization, the left hook of larger scale production or some other factor, I can't say. But what I do know is that it's not the size of the dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog... and this dog has neither size nor fight. Next contender please.

Serving type: bottle

09-05-2010 19:25:49 | More by biegaman
Photo of rhoadsrage


3/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

(Served in a nonic)
A- This beer has a slightly dense brown body with a fizzy head that soon disappears before the first sip.
S- The soft brown malt note is otherwise a very clean aroma with a finish of watery coffee that grows a tad in the finish.
T- This beer has a light tartness with a faint brown malt note and a stronger taste of tap water. The finish is thin with a faint sweetness.
M- This beer has a light mouthfeel with a soft fizzy finish.
D- This beer is very light and has no real flavor. The tart note and fizz are all that really stand out.

Serving type: bottle

08-31-2010 02:58:28 | More by rhoadsrage
Photo of callmeclemens

New Jersey

3.95/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Malty, coffee, caramel, chocolate, toasted goodness. I was handed one of these, and was superimpressed, wasn't particularly beer like as far as my palate was concerned. Much more of some sort of other drink, but still wonderful. It's a nice after dinner beer just as a suggestion.

Serving type: bottle

08-27-2010 20:41:01 | More by callmeclemens
Photo of IronLover


4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Color is dark brown to nearly black with a reddish hue and good clarity. Nice foamy head that reduces to a thin white cap and lots of wet lacings on the glass. Sweet toasted malt aroma after the pour and nutty aromas when taking a sip. Dark fruit aromas kick up with a swirl of the glass. Light bodied with lazy carbonation. Toasted malt flavor in the front that tapers into a lightly bitter apple, dry finish with some nutty undertoneds as well. Very drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

08-22-2010 03:37:27 | More by IronLover
Photo of wordsampersand


3.45/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A buddy brought this over for a board game session, and I was impressed.

The Pugilist had a ruddy brown tint and smelled a little like beans roasting from the coffee shop down the street. The taste was interesting -- my mouth registered almost no taste initially, but some malty, almost chocolately goodness swept in and stayed there for a bit. I made little exclamatory remarks like "huh!" and "hmmm" as I drank. I think that's good?

Not my favorite beer, but I'd definitely drink it again. And it's another good one from Yards.

Serving type: bottle

08-17-2010 20:21:25 | More by wordsampersand
Photo of SamuelJackson45


3.75/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- This has a Dark Ruby Red in Color.

S- Has a nice mild hops aroma.

T- Taste of hops pretty mild and caramel malt.

M- very crisp with the flavors of hops and malts all over.

D- This Ale has good flavor not to bold like other Ales but good. Would drink this again for sure.

Serving type: bottle

08-13-2010 08:23:28 | More by SamuelJackson45
Photo of jmdrpi


4.05/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

poured into pint glass

A- a nice clear dark ruby brown color. thin white head, some lacing
S- malt-heavy in the smell, caramel
T- mild, but malt forward. bread, a little nutty
M- lower carbonation, medium body
D- definitely agree with the label that this would be an excellent session beer

Serving type: bottle

08-13-2010 03:40:36 | More by jmdrpi
Photo of droomyster


3.78/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear mahogany with a small head that betrays little in the way of aromas except for a distant whiff of toasted malts and tea. On the palate, there are big flavors of overcooked biscuits, lots of earthy and tea-like bitterness with a lightly fruity sweetness; altogether these flavors call to mind a burnt apple fritter. Medium bodied with low carbonation. Altogether very interesting and very enjoyable.

Serving type: bottle

08-01-2010 01:38:42 | More by droomyster


3.95/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From bottle to pint glass. No date or batch # indicated on the label.

A: One finger of foamy/fizzy head is produced on the pour and is gone shortly after. Light brown. The body is a gradient of shades and color, ranging from brown to ruby to tawny on the edges. Very clear. Persistent up rising bubbles are visible when held to light, keeping a fingernail thick crescent moon collar alive. Lacing is non-existent.

S: Heavy malt aromas of brown-bottomed oatmeal cookies, caramel and cappuccino, nearly roasted. Hops are light and resiny. Yeast is light and earthy.

T: The flavor is pretty remarkable given the low ABV. Notes of brown sugar, tobacco, syrup, vanilla and dried wood come to mind. Very long flavor duration. Light to moderate sweetness with a mild sour tanginess from mid to back end of the palate.

M: The body is medium light with a thinner texture than expected. Carbonation level is average with tingling bubbles grazing the tongue.

D: A 4.2% with plenty of flavor means high drinkability. Yards Brewing Company definitely has a niche.

Serving type: bottle

07-17-2010 13:12:01 | More by FeDUBBELFIST
Photo of mzrebiec


2.68/5  rDev -27%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

I have NO idea what a Pugilist Style Ale is....but this is a pretty good session beer. It pours a clear dark amber/brown with little to no head. the flavors are of roasty malt and a light hint of coffee. Very drinkable and light on the mouth feel. Not my kind of beer.

Serving type: bottle

06-29-2010 01:17:56 | More by mzrebiec
Photo of goblue3509


3.7/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a coppper brown color with almost no head and no lacing present. However, the color is very nice. The smell is of caramel malts along with some breadiness. The taste is of caremel and sweet malt backbones with some dark fruits in the middle, raisins and plums. The end has a slight hop kick. The mouthfeel is creamy with low carbonation. Overall its is a very solid beer, nice sweet flavor that has nothing to dislike, it is also an easy drink. I would say for sure this could be a session beer.

Serving type: bottle

06-27-2010 22:49:11 | More by goblue3509
Photo of tjd112

New Jersey

3.4/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I poured this into my Sam Smith's pint glass. The appearance is ruby/dark brown with white head that dissipates fast w/o lacing, the smell is that of dark chocolate, but it leads to a roasty, bready taste. The mouthfeel is light and somewhat dry. Drinkability is fairly good.

Serving type: bottle

06-24-2010 23:12:32 | More by tjd112
Photo of berpwillie


3.43/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

pours a brown ruby color mostly transparent but a bit cloudy. Spare off white head, spare lacing and lively carb. strong bread malty flavor with burnt toasted nutty hints. light body and slick oily texture. goes down very smooth with a slight chalky finish.

Serving type: bottle

06-14-2010 13:46:44 | More by berpwillie
Photo of EPICAC


4.08/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this beer in the Philly airport after flying back from Madrid. After a week of beer in Spain, American beer in the Philadelphia airport was a breath of fresh air. Actual hops, and actual flavor!

Brawler pours a clear, reddish brown, and is topped by an off-white head that fades to a film. The aroma was nice and malty. There were notes of toffee, caramel, and dark fruit. The aroma is very inviting.

There's a moderately sweet malt backbone throughout this beer. Caramel upfront quickly moves into notes of toffee and dark fruit in the center. The finish is mildly hoppy. Despite the mildly bitter finish, this beer sees very balanced. This mild is medium-bodied, and moderately carbonated with a mild dryness in the finish.

I really liked this beer. It's sweet, but seems to magically pull balance from somewhere.

Serving type: on-tap

06-13-2010 21:42:18 | More by EPICAC
Brawler Pugilist Style Ale from Yards Brewing Co.
83 out of 100 based on 790 ratings.