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Fat Squirrel Ale - New Glarus Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Fat Squirrel AleFat Squirrel Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

1,414 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,414
Reviews: 508
rAvg: 3.79
pDev: 11.35%
Wants: 73
Gots: 122 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
New Glarus Brewing Company visit their website
Wisconsin, United States

Style | ABV
English Brown Ale |  5.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: UncleJimbo on 05-17-2003

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,414 | Reviews: 508 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of AdmiralDiaz
3.85/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle to pint glass.

A: Small one finger off-white head with very little retention and no lacing. Body is a hazy brown.

S: Nutty with a malty sweetness and small vanilla and coffee notes.

T: Sweet malts, caramel/toffee, with small notes of hops and some coffee and vanilla. Wasn't impressed at all until it warmed up, serve this one at about 55.

Overall: Pretty smooth, could use a bit more carbonation though. Pretty drinkable, not too heavy, not too light.

Photo of wheatyweiss
3.9/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a tumbler.

Pours a medium to dark amber with a slight cloud. Head is nice, but short lived. Leaves a thick veil of lace along the glass.

Aroma is floral and fruity at the same time. Hops are well represented in the aroma department. There is a toasty grain aroma that rides the background with toffee and caramel notes.

Flavor is nutty roasted grain up front with a nice hit of sourness to set off the sweetness of the roasted grain. The nutty flavors abound as well as butterscotch, toffee and caramel. A little bit more hop would cut the sweetness ever so slightly, but the sweetness of this beer is actually one of it's pronounced characteristics, so I wouldn't want to kill it too much. There is a strange boozy hit that trembles on the brink of phenolic or medicinal, but I'm pretty sure it's just alcohol.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation that helps keep the sweetness at bay.

A very good brown ale, I would drink it again.

Photo of Gueuzedude
4.33/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A vigorous pour into my 25cl tulip glass fills it with four-fingers of tan colored froth. The beer is a ruddy plum / amber color that shows an almost brilliantly clear, copper tinged, amber color when held up to the light. The aroma smells quite malty up front with notes of toasty grain, a light nuttiness, and a whole grain bread crust aroma. There is a backdrop of malt sweetness, a berry like fruitiness and a hint of toffee. As the beer warms a touch of herbal hop character becomes noticeable.

Lightly sweet up front, but picks up more sweetness through the middle where it picks up and finishes with a solid berry fruitiness. The sweetness is offset by a light toasted malt character, a hint of coffee in the finish and a lingering toasted nuttiness. There is an herbal hop note, the hops add to the berry notes here as well as a soft bitterness in the finish. A touch of chalk-like malt, a nice toasted whole grain bread crust flavors and a nice freshly crushed malt flavor anchor the sweeter malt notes. This beer is eminently quaffable, it is light, but not watery and has a touch of chewy malt body that just helps to make this an enjoyable brew to quaff.

This is a solid Brown ale, I like the berry like fruitiness, and I like that it is well balanced by the toasty malt character. This drinks quite easily and I could easily spend an afternoon with a couple of these beers. This was exactly what I was looking for right now.

Photo of CrellMoset
3.95/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of dkachur - thanks! Poured into a traditional American pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a light reddish amber body with one-finger of initially bubbly but ultimately pretty sticky and foamy, off-white head. The retention - after the initial fade - is pretty good, and leaves runny, sticky streaks of glittery, moist lacing which solidifies and becomes sheet-like the more one drinks. There's tons of carbonation in this one, speeding towards the surface, well-distributed and medium bubbled. A nice start.

Aroma: Very sweet, honey-like, slightly earthy. Nuts emerge upon close inspection ... sniffspection? Caramel and toffee emerge as it warms and the sweetness becomes more complex, and the nuttyness becomes more prominent as well. Pleasant, though not earth shattering.

Taste: Very sweet and nutty - Fat Squirrel indeed. There's tons of brown sugar and toffee here, the most prominent notes in my mind. There's also tons of nutty though faintly chemical notes - walnuts, hazelnuts. A very light bitterness, hints of wood and vanilla. A very solid tasting beer.

Mouthfeel: Thin-to-medium bodied, but fairly full due to all the carbonation. It's incredibly soft and subtle, despite all of the effervescence, which works well with all the residual sweetness - almost powder sugar-esque in places, or melty milkshake-like. Great feel.

Drinkability: Not my favorite style, but what a pleasant beer. Easily one of the best browns I've ever had, this one has it all - balance, flavor, great lacing, soft, pillowy feel, low and well-hidden alcohol. Recommended.

Photo of dancinwillie
4.22/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Active pour, but not too much so. Medium brown in color, with some suspended solids. Inch white head, tight bubbles, that drops to a centimeter and holds steady.

Aroma is sweetish malt.

Light bittering up front. Followed by a solid malt profile. Sweet, but not cloying. A bit of the nut flavor is coming out, and although I personally can't describe it as hazelnut, it does provide another lovely facet. A gentle roasted flavor is here too, and it keeps the sweetness from being too overbearing. Hops are in the background, and are herbal, and they too balance the sweetness.

Mouthfeel is very active, medium bodied, with a long, dry, roasty finish.

Drinkability is super high for this one. I have not liked Brown Ales in the past at all, including this one. But my tastes have grown, as this is a fantastic beer. Balanced, and full of rich flavor. This is as good as anything New Glarus brews. One of my new favorites, and a nice surprise to find out I love it. Cheers!

Photo of Buebie
3.7/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz brown bottle with no freshness date, into a Sam Adams Turbulator.
Nice spotty webbing of lace. Color is fairly light for a brown ale. Lots of floaties in the glass with quite a bit of carbonation rise.
2 finger off white head.

Aroma is quite light with smallish amounts of malt. Some grassy hops, a bit of caramel.

Malty and sweet in taste with a pretty good dose of carbonation. The taste is much more potent then the smell might have indicated.
Carmelly malts, some bready rye flavors. Clean and crisp with a minerally water flavor.
Finishing slightly bitter with a lingering of grassy hops.

Not bad. Not sensational, but not bad.

Photo of Jekster
4.3/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance: Pours a light mahogany brown with dark orange highlights. There is only a slight thing off white head.

Smell: A nutty roast and malt character are forward in the smell. Upon a second smell I get hints of dark cocoa and roasted coffee. The aroma is thick and quite pleasent.

Taste: The taste begins with a slight toasted malt character. Almost the taste of roasted popcorn kernels. There is then a presence of roasted coffee flavor although it is not overpowering. The beer finishing with a nice linger malt and bready aftertaste. There is a slight bitterness that lingers on after the swallow.

Mouthfeel: The overall feeling is fairly light and thin. It is appropriate though given the delicate nature of the beer. The beer is fairly carbonated which does add an effervescent spritz to the beer.

Drinkability: This beer is very easy to put back. It's light mouthfeel makes it thirst quenching and and quaff-er

OVERALL IMPRESSION: Overall, I would seek out this beer again. Although the flavors are not overpowering they are enough to keep the beer from being boring. I like how it balances a nice level of flavor and complexity with a light body. I could see myself sitting back in the fall with a this beer, grilling up some burgers and enjoying the slight chill in the air.

Photo of PittBeerGirl
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to deliriiumfest for this one!

A- Body is a transparent mahogany brown color with nice highlights of ruby red shining through it. Pours with a 1-2 finger foamy, slightly off-white (cream colored) head. Head fades slowly to a thick collar and leaves plenty of lacing behind in the glass.

S- Nose is pretty sweet. Gives off balanced aromas of caramel, toffee, and nuts. No hints of bitterness and hops are hard to detect.

T- Very similar to the smell. Caramel malt and smooth nuttiness are the highlights of the initial flavor with just a hint of toffee coming through also. The finish is consistent with the initial flavor. Flavor is well balanced and is not too strong or overpowering (like I have seen in many of this style) but is still very good.

M- Medium carbonation and light, smooth, drinkable body. Body has the feel of a nice lager.

D- This was a very nice nut Brown and one of my favorites of the style. Would love to try this again. Flavor has great strength and I find this very drinkable. Looking forward to trying other NG beers in the future!

Photo of Wisconsin
4.25/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a dark brown body with a one finger head that dissipates to a lace after a few minutes.

S - Nutty with some grains and malts. Overall the smell is not that strong. There is some underlying sweetness, maybe caramel that stands out.

T - Taste is nutty and malty with a good smooth crispness. The caramel is very faint but is apparent.

M - Smooth overall. The malts and nuttiness is there throughout.

D - The smoothness of this beer makes it very easy to drink. The nuttiness in the beer is not overwhelming and the malts are a good compliment to the beer.

Photo of Bitterbill
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I got this bottle in a trade with russpowell. Thanks Russ!

This pours a clear golden brown with a 2 finger head of foam.

The smell has notes of caramel malt and roasted malt with a light but definite presence of some hoppy bitterness and tartness.

The taste has a nice nutty character up front with some sweet tones, light biscuit, and a light but nicely done showing of hops...some bitterness and a very light tartness. Tasty.

The mouthfeel is medium and the carbonation is on the light side of medium.

Drinkability? This is *very* easy to drink! I find myself taking sips far too often. Oh and the head retention is excellent and there's quite a bit of sticky lacing. All around, a very nice brew!

Photo of tpd975
3.95/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a beautiful golden brown hue with tints of amber showing thru. Nice 1/2 finger head with sparse lace noted.

S: Tons of nice sweet toasted malt. Hints of caramel coated nuts and a touch of citrus.

T: Very much like the aroma. Tons of malt comes at you in waves. Sweet caramel up front with a big blast of roast. Toasted biscuit comes next with hints of gooey nutty toffee.

M: Medium in body, very smooth.

D: Not my favorite style, but I really dig this one. It is cold as hell here during my visit to Wisconsin and this one really warmed me up and brought a smile to my face.

Photo of mikereaser
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a almost clear mahogany brown with very little foam, only a few bubbles ring the glass and leave just a bit of lacing.

S - roasted malt and a woody aroma

T - nice malt flavor along with some hope to make a nicely balanced brew with just a hint of a woody taste

M/D - Very mild, easily drinkable beer. Nothing is too overpowering and it is balanced well. I could take a case of this and be very happy.

Photo of ColoradoBobs
4.05/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Website says this beer is 5.8%.

Moderate pour into a New Belgium chalice yields a small off-white head over a mahogany brown body. Head fades quickly to a small ring.

Smell is mild roasted malt and some more cracker malt. Not very overt.

Taste is crisp, mild and tart. Really spot on for an English Brown Ale. Nice nutty finish. Slight hoppiness.

Mouthfeel is crisp and full with ample carbonation. Nice.

Exceptionally drinkable. Good for sessioning. Perfect for an English Brown.

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

Pours a slightly cloudy amber color with a 2 finger, light brown head that recedes to a watery ring that has moderate lace.

Smells of toasted malts with a sweet, yeasty character throughout, like fresh baked bread.

This has a delectable sweet malt flavor, caramely and toasty, somewhat nutty with a well balanced bitter cushion towards the finish.

This light to medium bodied beer has very smooth finish, with moderate carbonation. It feels nice and smooth going down and quite drinkable. Definitely one of the better Brown Ales I've had, albeit probably thinner than many other brown ales I've had, but certainly not lacking in flavor. I pick these up a lot, especially since I can find it in most of the bars around here. One of my "go to" New Glarus beers, I'll slam a Fat Squirrel any day.

Photo of kickapoodude
4.1/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I recommend this brown ale because of it's borwnaleiness. It is a simple and relaxed brown ale that has subtle sweetness, nuttiness, hoppiness and a unique earthiness. Pours deep copper with an inch high head that stays for days. When customers ask about this beer I tell them that it is an american version of the newcastle, but earthier. Try one, you'll see.

Photo of slyke
3.85/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Fat Squirrel pours a hazy copper-brown color with a finger of white head that laces nicely.

Sweet roasted malt with a slight floral hop note is present in the smell.

Nuttiness, slightly sweet malt, and a tinge of hops come out in the taste. The flavors would go well with roasted meats.

Mouthfeel is medium-bodied, slightly coating with a lingering roasty finish.

Drinkability is good. Definitely a tasty brown ale. Recommended.

Photo of KI9A
4.1/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Not alot of experince with Brown Ales, but I'm digging this.

A: Hazy brown, puffy off white head, looks, umm, nutty.

S: Nutmeg, pumpkin pie ( ? ), bready.

T: Malty, slight hop taste, sweet, spicy

M: Smooth, slightly oily, like a lace inside of the mouth feel.

D: Session beer for certian, but, what a great one to have with a Thanksgiving dinner!

Again, everything I have from NG is just great!

Photo of russpowell
3.88/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this from HogWildLiqour, cheers Cody!

Pours an effervescent amber with 1 finger of sand colored head. Above average head retention & lacing

S: breadyness, slight citric hop presence & then nuttyness show up as this warms

T: Breaddyness, nuttyness & citric hops up front. Nuttynes dominates as this warms, carries on to through the finish, plus some grainyness

MF: Medium bodied with slight over-carbonation & pretty good balance

Drinks easy, not a bad brown, could session on this easily

Photo of mwilbur
4.03/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 12 oz bottle into shaker pint glass.
A: Pours an orange amber color with thin white head that quickly dissipates. Ordinary.
S: Surprisingly aromatic! Roasted malt, hazelnut, and wood notes. Very nice.
T: Nicely balanced roasted light caramel malt and mild citrus hops. Hazelnut with a hint of orange zest in the background.
M: Extraordinarily smooth...dare I say silky. Almost oily mouthfeel.
D: Very drinkable and a nice representative of style. Many English browns have bitter notes and this one--which sets it apart--definitely does not. Also more complex than the typical English brown. Honestly even though New Glarus is a quality brewery, I was still pleasantly surprised by this one. Thanks to my wife for bringing this one back from Madison for me!

Photo of paco1029384756
3.9/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy amber brown color with two fingers of off white head.

Scent of brown sugar, nuts, spices, and a hint of pumpkin. Good stuff, but nothing really stands out with this one.

Taste of brown sugar, nuts and spices initially. Damn good stuff, one of the better Brown Ales I have had.

Mouthfeel is smooth and light enough to encourage good drinkability.

Photo of shroompod
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours muddy brown , smallish head , some lacing.

Aroma is slightly sweet , some grassy slight hop notes come through.

Nice combination of hops and malts keep this very balanced. Finishes with a zesty sweet orange flavor , although I'm pretty sure no oranges were used in brewing.

Mouthfeel is medium , creamy , good carbonation.

Overall a very easy drinking beer.

Photo of kenito799
3.68/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a pint mug.

Nut-brown beer under a creamy tan head. Little lace.

This beer smells nutty and malty, caramel-toffee notes. The mouthfeel is very nice here--very creamy and soft. In keeping with the style, which is achieved very well here, very little bitterness, just nutty creamy caramelized malt. Not sweet, though. A bit boring, but a good session beer, well made, like everything else from these guys.

Photo of Proteus93
3.93/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Quite a pale brown - a brown sugar golden colour, with a bit of a fizzy head that draws back to a thin trim of lace.

S: Warm malts, soft fruit peel - kinda like notes of apple. Quite a nice aroma.

T: Taste is very similar to the aroma - soft, toasty, with a sweet fruity note.

M + D: Medium body, a little bit of weightiness. Decent brew all around, and a nice brown even if it is a little pale.

Photo of deltatauhobbit
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to starofindia for including this extra.

Pours a light light brown color (more amber than anything) with a thin wispy head that fades fast, no lacing.

Smell is pretty much all caramel malt, subtle nutty tones.

Taste has a strong caramel and nuttiness, toffee is also quite present, strong prickly carbonation that works rather well with the caramel malt.

Not the best English brown ale I've had, but it's fairly solid. Love the label as well, plenty of fat squirrels in Maine, I guess the same is in Wisconsin.

Photo of BedetheVenerable
3.88/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to my fiancee for picking this up for me in Wisconsin, since New Glarus doesn't distribute outside of the state...

Presentation: 12 oz. brown bottle with (surprise, surprise) a chubby squirrel on the label.

Appearance: A decent pour reveals a medium-amber beer with red tints. A decent ivory head forms, but soon fades to a thin ring. There's a decent amount of ultra-fine yeast sediment in suspension throughout the beer from the bottle conditioning. No lacing to speak of.

Smell: Sweet and caramelly. There's supposedly six different varieties of Wisconsin malts in here, and it shows, with sweet biscuit, toffee, chocolate, and caramel notes. There's definitely a hint of sweet hazelnut in the background as well. Hops are not really noticed.

Taste: Pretty much in keeping with the aromas. Sweet caramel, a roasted breadiness, and some nuttiness; the hazelnut flavors come out more as the beer warms. There's actually a decent hop bitterness and flavor here, which wasn't really perceived in the aroma, but it keeps it nice and balanced. The finish is dry and nutty, with a hint of lightly roasted coffee, and a tea-like bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Light-medium bodied; there's actually something almost chewy about the texture, it's quite nice for the style.

Drinkability: The hop/malt balance and medium weight make this fairly drinkable. Maybe not truly sessionable, but definitely good for a couple. At 5.8% abv, it goes down quite smoothly.

Conclusion: A good English-style brown ale, no doubt about it. While there's nothing extraordinary about it, the hazelnut and chocolate aromas and nutty flavors are nice, while the malt/hop balance is near perfect for the style in my opinion.

Fat Squirrel Ale from New Glarus Brewing Company
85 out of 100 based on 1,414 ratings.