Dismiss Notice
Save $5 when you subscribe to 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine by selecting auto-renew.

Subscribe now →
Dismiss Notice
Join Our Email List →

And we'll send you the latest updates and offers from BeerAdvocate, because knowing is half the battle.
Dismiss Notice

Pre-order your Respect Beer "Hipster" Hoodie today!

Plus: Free shipping (US only) on orders of $25 or more until 12/18/15. Just select "Free Shipping" at checkout.

Shop now →

Brown Ale - Legend Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Brown AleBrown Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

147 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 147
Hads: 443
Avg: 3.85
pDev: 21.82%
Wants: 18
Gots: 67 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Legend Brewing Co. visit their website
Virginia, United States

Style | ABV
English Brown Ale |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-04-2001

Our most popular beer, Legend's is a full bodied version of a British Brown Ale. Expect a rich, malt-forward brew with a beautiful mahogany tone. Generous amounts of specialty malts bring flavors of sweet caramel, toasted nuts, coffee, and molasses, all perfectly balanced by a steady but cautious hop dryness. Fruity undertones provided by our house yeast strain bring the final flavor element to round out this world class ale.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 147 | Hads: 443
Photo of metter98
3.79/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: The beer is clear but dark brown in color and has a light to moderate amount of carbonation. It poured with a finger high beige colored head that died down, leaving a small patch of bubbles on the surface, a collar around the edge, and some lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: Light to moderate aromas of nutty malts are present in the nose.
T: The taste is similar to the smell, except that the flavors of nutty malts are somewhat stronger and there are also notes of dark malts. No bitterness is perceptible, but there are enough underlying hops to mask any sweetness.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is rather malty, but its lighter mouthfeel doesn't make it seem heavy or filling and is therefore relatively easy to drink. It is a good representation of the style.

 847 characters

Photo of brentk56
3.88/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a tea brown color capped by an inch of foam; decent retention and a few shards of lace

Smell: Caramel, nuts and chocolate powder with a hint of fruit

Taste: Nutty caramel, up front, with a chocolate malt character developing by mid-palate; the fruit flavors build, after the swallow, rounding out the finish

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation

Overall: Not a very exciting style, but this beer makes the most of it

 449 characters

Photo of oberon
4.04/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a chesnut brown with a thinner white head that is gone pretty quickly.Nice roasted nut and brown sugar notes in the nose,one of the more appetizing aromas for a brown ale that I have come across.Praline flavors are very nice but the mouthfeel is a little prickly,in saying that the flavors are still pretty rich and satisying.The abv% is high for the style but it's very well hidden,a solid offering from Legend.

 418 characters

Photo of oline73
3.74/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a goblet.

Appearance: Pours a clear brown with a half finger of thick off white head. The head sticks around pretty well.

Smell: The smell is mild and malty. I'm getting a faint sweetness along with some dark fruit.

Taste: This is a very nice brown. The malt is the star. Not particularly sweet with a slightly fruity undertone. Bready and a tad bitter in the finish.

Mouthfeel: The body is just on the thin side of medium with aggressive carbonation and a slight dryness in the finish.

Overall: Very good and easy to drink. Nothing I didn't enjoy.

 582 characters

Photo of Rifugium
1.58/5  rDev -59%
look: 2.75 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

First had: on tap at Legend

Clear, medium brown pour with a small white head that fizzled out pretty quickly, leaving a few spots of lacing on the glass. Very little in the nose, toasted cereal grains, and not much else. Buttery off-flavors, caramel malt sweetness, grainy, phenolic fruitiness, and a tiny hop bitterness coming through. Thin body, not very drinkable. I'm not a big fan of brown ales to begin with, but this one was just flat-out poorly made.

 459 characters

Photo of jwc215
3.97/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to jcwattsrugger for bringing this 22 oz. bottle back from Virginia for me.

Pours copperish brown with a thin tan head that recedes to a thick ring.

The smell is of brown sugar with nutty, earthy, caramelish/toffeeish notes. Nice malt complexity.

The taste follows the nose precisely. Sweet maltiness - nice lightly roasted nutty tones mix with caramel/toffee. Sweet, but with some earthy balance.

It has a rich medium-to-full body. A bit prickly at first, the carbonation soon eases to a nice medium level.

This is a nice, malty, drinkable brown ale. Interesting.

 576 characters

Photo of billab914
4.05/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Otter Creek World Tour shaped pint glass. Poured a dark, caramely brown color, with a bit of cherry red coming through where the light hits it. It started with a huge foamy and bubbly head but it settled a bit after a minute or so. It did leave a good covering over the beer though as I drank it and left some decent lacing.

The aroma has a big toasted malt, toffee and caramel flavor to it. It has a bit of brown sugar sweetness coming through as well. Very nice and appealing brown ale aroma.

The taste also shows a good amount of the caramel and toffee flavors. It has some good toasty malt and nuttiness coming through as well. Some hop bitterness helps it from becoming too sweet. It finishes though with a little malty sweetness that lingers for a bit. Excellent taste and one of the better flavored brown's I've had.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Drinkability is good, it's a very nice and enjoyable brown ale. it really had some nice caramel, toffee and nutty flavors to it.

 1,047 characters

Photo of woodychandler
3.68/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Once again, my local, in-person trader, tone77, has come through with an interesting beer for me to try. I tend to eschew beers not in CANs or other than AIPAs so he keeps me honest and in the game. Well done!

An aggro pour resulted in a brief finger of light-tan head with limited retention. Color was a mahogany brown with NE-quality clarity. Nose gave off notes of milk chocolate, nuts, caramel and toffee. Whee! Mouthfeel was unexpectedly effervescent with a very nutty flavor on the tongue. This was turning out much better than I had expected. Finish was semi-dry with the nuttiness being offset by a butterscotch-caramel-toffee flavor. For not being my cuppa tea, this was quite a nice beer. It just reinforces my need to diversify whenever possible.

 758 characters

Photo of smakawhat
3.61/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into a nonic pint glass.

A real solid looking brown, with a deep copper red hue, and large brown mahogany dark body. Large evenly tan and four finger tall head is produced with a large staying foaming cap. Solid and impressive looking with very slow rising carbonation barely seen in the middle.

Light toasty notes, but a bit grainy with a weak sense of caramel. Kind of dry. A little gaseous perhaps also. Otherwise ok.

Palate is interesting. Most of the flavor hits in the aftertaste. Predominant on milk chocolate with a very good coating mouthfeel if a bit fizzy just a tad in the finish. Flavors don't seem to last and provide a little bit of sticky syrup quality after some time.

Overall sort of missing the nutty character and malt depth, but it's not a bad brew though and certainly not a horrible brown that's for sure.

 855 characters

Photo of tempest
3.98/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Capital Ale House in Richmond. I didn't realize this brew's strength until seeing it hear. If it were lower in booze, it'd make a heck of a session beer. It's got a roasty edge, like a brown porter, and then underlying cocoa and toffee flavors. It's dry, drinkable, and tasty. Just watch yourself, a few too many will put you in a ditch.

 347 characters

Photo of Wasatch
3.83/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks goes out to jwc215 for this brew.

Pours a nice clean/clear golden brown color, nice carbonation, nice one-finger creamy off-white head, which leaves some nice sticky lacing behind. The nose is malty, slightly sour, bitter, with some caramel notes. The taste is malty, slightly sour, nice touch of bitterness, and caramel. Medium body, the finish is bitter/slightly dry. Drinkable, this is my first from Legend and not too bad, thanks Joe/John.

 451 characters

Photo of plaid75
4.03/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On draft at the Williamsburgh International Airport, Va.

Poured a deep amber hue with a two finger frothy white head. There was very good retention and sticky lacing.

The smell featured an earthy caramel malt and a grassy hop.

The taste consisted of sweet and earthy malts, cocoa and a balancing grassy hop.

The mouthfeel was full and creamy.

Overall a tasty and well done brown ale.

 393 characters

Photo of tone77
3.53/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a dark brown color with a 1 inch head. Smell is of malts, a bit nutty. Taste is well balanced hops and malts, a bit of nuts, just a touch of caramel. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall is an enjoyable beer.

 255 characters

Photo of ppoitras
4.13/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle purchased from Wine & Beer - Westpark, Richmond, VA.

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 1 1/2" beige head over the burnished copper brew. Head is resilient, and laces well. Aroma is is malty, with a sweetish component, vanilla, perhaps. Taste is sweet caramel malts, with that vanilla flavor so strong as to seem artificial adding a bit of depth. Mouthfeel good and drinkability high. And interesting take on the style, I like it, and would love to find it on cask...

 493 characters

Photo of DrJay
3.4/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear, deep brown with a reddish hue topped by a thin beige cap. Good head retention, some lacing. Not much other than grapefruit citrus in the aroma, perhaps a bit of malt and brown sugar. Moderate bitterness, citrus dominates the flavour, fainter notes of dark malts, nuts, and brown sugar. Medium/light bodied with moderate carbonation, a bit dry. Decent overall, particularly if you like a lot of citrus in your brown ales.

 427 characters

Photo of Bitterbill
3.58/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I got this bottle in a trade with jwc215. Thanks Joe!

My first sampling from this brewery:

It pours a...whoah...lots of foam here and I just took it out of the fridge. Anywho, it has a nice hazy brown with some gold colour and a very thick head of offwhite foam.

The smell is nice and malty with notes of caramel, some earthiness, a touch of nuttiness, and something with a slight tart tinge to it.

The taste has a nice caramel malt base that is followed with some nutty tones, toffee, earth, and a noticeable tinge of tartness. I don't know if that was intended but it sure makes this Brown ale different.

The foam is really sticking around and there's sheets of lacing on the side of my glass. Perty looking, I'll say.

Mouthfeel is on the thin side but it works.

Overall an interesting interpretation of an English Brown Ale that for me, lets down only because of this tartness that I find out of place. Other than that, it sure is easy enough to drink. I'd say, try it if you see it.

 995 characters

Photo of clayrock81
3.7/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A one-finger frothy on top of a see-thru brown body. Subdued roasted malt smell mixed with some toasted and sweet malt smells as well. Nice smoothness with a subdued dry backbite. Has caramel sweetness and maybe some sugar cane with a little tartness from the hops. A low-key quality brown.

 290 characters

Photo of avalon07
3.7/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had a dark brown color and a somewhat thick texture. There was quarter inch of foamy head and some good lacing.

S: There was a malty, nutty quality to the smell, along with some sugars.

T: Not as complex as I would've like, but not bad. Roasted malt, toffee and a nutty quality common to brown ales.

M: A decent amount of carbonation with a dry, yet slightly thin finish. Medium-bodied.

D: Overall, this is a pretty good beer, though not my favorite among Legend's output. The taste was good enough, but bordered on mediocre.

 571 characters

Photo of ccrida
3.52/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle poured into my large Duvel tulip, Legend's Brown Ale is a murky brown with an off-white head leaving scattered lace.

Smell is fairly rich, toffee, and a little charred roast.

Taste is malty, nougat, a touch nutty. A little herbal hop snap, earthy, but little bitterness and really none of the char I picked up on the nose.

Mouthfeel is slippery, light bodied.

Drinkability is ok, a little to much like a milky way candy bar for my taste, I tired of the sweetness quickly. The fairly high ABV is well hidden though.

 532 characters

Photo of rfgetz
4.04/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a lightly hazed brown with moderate cap of off white foam. Scent is wonderfully nutty with light touches of caramel and roast, mild earthy hoppyness with a kick of herbal scent. Taste follows scent, slightly less aggressive then the nose would lead to believe. Medium bodied, lightly creamy but a faint bit of wateriness and the carbonation escapes. A nice brown ale with a good chunk of different scents and tastes.

 422 characters

Photo of Darkmagus82
3.89/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from bomber into pint glass

Appearance – Pours a medium to deep brown color with a billowy off white head. The head fades relatively fast initially but thickens, and fades more slowly over time. It does eventually fade however and leaves a medium amount of lacing.

Smell – The smell of this one is quite delicious. It has a nice roasted malt base with sweet toffee accents. Caramel, brown bread, and light coffee aroma are there as well. A wonderful roasty sweet smell.

Taste – A sweeter brown sugar and brown bread flavor meet the tongue. These form a base for the taste and are present throughout. Notes of the toffee and caramel come and go as the taste moves on with at the end the taste bittering up ever so lightly; bringing on some more roasted flavors.

Mouthfeel – The carbonation level of this brew is a bit on the higher side with the body on the mid to higher side as well. The carbonation level creates a more refreshing style at a little expense to the creamier and roasty flavors of the body.

Overall – Very easy drinking with great flavors and aromas.

 1,089 characters

Photo of AgentMunky
3.58/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 2L swing-top growler into a St Bernardus goblet. Filled at Fry's Spring Station in Charlottesville about ten minutes ago.

A: Large amounts of white head top a dark brown beer. Translucent in direct light, with reddish hues, Legend Brown is otherwise opaque and nearly black. Nice lacing.

S: Vaguely metallic. Some malty sweetness. Actually, very malty and deceptively deep.

T: A bit watery, but a nice beer. Balanced, malty, and pleasant. Maintaste is full of sweet malts, vaguely nutty? The aftertaste is

M: Full-bodied, malty-round. Very nice.

O: Good beer; very drinkable. Still, not especially compelling. Would drink again, in the right circumstance. Recommended.

 688 characters

Photo of thagr81us
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Big thanks goes out to the BA who sent this one my way as an extra in a past trade (can’t remember who, but will look it up soon)! Served from bottle into a Samuel Smith imperial pint. Poured a deep red-orange with a five to six finger cream colored head that subsided to three finger very slowly. Maintained excellent lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, subtly roasted malt, nutty, earth, and caramel. The flavor was of sweet malt, earth, tart, caramel, nutty, and wood. It had a medium feel on the palate with medium-high carbonation. Overall this was a fairly decent brew. I was concerned that this one was going to be infected based on the amount of head that formed upon being poured gently into my glass. Upon smelling the brew it didn’t seem like there was any infection evident. But on the flavor there was the slight tart note that one would not expect. It was not sharp or strong, but it was definitely present. Still a fairly easy drinking brown ale that I wouldn’t mind having again sometime.

 1,042 characters

Photo of Pencible
3.77/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Can't remember the smell exactly, but was about average. This was very smooth to drink and pretty sweet, with a good brown ale flavor. The texture was a little thin, perhaps from lack of enough carbonation. Overall it was one of the better brown ales I've had, but still nothing too spectacular. (Drunk straight from the bottle, so I don't have notes on the appearance.)

 370 characters

Photo of blackie
3.83/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

a: dark brown in color with a well-retained head and nice lacing

s: a muted version of the taste, hard to pick up on too much but it carries a nice toasted maltiness and earthy hop aroma

m: carbonation a little on the low side for my taste, medium body

t: smooth toasted caramel malts dominate and give a moderate sweetness, great earthy hop character with a bitterness that builds in the finish with subtle notes of dry chocolate

d: easy

standard pint at Taphouse on Queensway, Hampton, VA

 495 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Brown Ale from Legend Brewing Co.
86 out of 100 based on 147 ratings.