Indian Brown Ale - Dogfish Head Brewery

Not Rated.
Indian Brown AleIndian Brown Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

1,938 Reviews
THE BROS
95
world-class

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,938
Hads: 5,596
rAvg: 4.1
pDev: 9.02%
Wants: 290
Gots: 839 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Brewery visit their website
Delaware, United States

Style | ABV
American Brown Ale |  7.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 08-07-2001

Forget about the car companies, this is the original hybrid. A cross between a Scotch Ale, an India Pale Ale and an American Brown, Indian Brown Ale is well-hopped and malty at the same time (It's magical!).

The beer has characteristics of each style that inspired it: the color of an American Brown, the caramel notes of a Scotch Ale, and the hopping regiment of an India Pale Ale. We dry-hop the Indian Brown Ale in a similar fashion to our 60 Minute IPA and 90 Minute IPA. This beer is brewed with Aromatic barley and organic brown sugar.

50 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Indian Brown Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,938 | Hads: 5,596
Photo of bluehende
4.19/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This is a great brown. A lot of very heavy roasted malts along with a lot of hop flavor. Very rich and nicely balanced brown. Deserves it's reputation as one of the best browns out there. (191 characters)

Photo of ClavisAurea
4.39/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Fresh 12oz bottle served in a pint glass. Bottle was dated 1/30/15.

Appearance: ruddy brown with a thick and billowy head.

Nose: roasted malt, chocolate, coffee, toffee,

Taste: chocolate, roasted flavor, caramel, toffee, brown sugar.

Overall: love it. I need more in my life. Potentially a cellar candidate. (315 characters)

Photo of Cuttlephish
3.71/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

While I feel like it combined IPA and brown Ale well in aroma, the taste did not live up to my expectations. Smell was caramel, floral, piney, roasty, and of alcohol. Body was a bit lacking, a little too carbonated. Taste was hoppy, cedar, and bitter malt flavors with almost, but not quite, too much alcohol. (309 characters)

Photo of WhiteHillsStore
4.09/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown with a coffee colored head that laces the glass. The smell is full of heavy flavors such as dark chocolate and coffee scents. The taste was nice as well with those heavy notes being well paired with some nuttiness as well as some light pine from the hops. Well balanced and a very delicious brown ale. (320 characters)

Photo of eddiechilton
4.05/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

A: Brown, I'd guess an SRM of about 25, nice cream colored head
S: Caramel, Spicy/Grassy hops, toffee, and a hint of raisin
T: Toffee, Herbal hops, Brown sugar.
M: Medium-light body, really drinkable
O: Really enjoyable beer in a style I am not generally fond of. With a name like Indian Brown ale, and the mention of "well-hopped" on the front, I expected more hops, but I'm actually glad there was less; there's a good ratio of IBUs/SG here. (444 characters)

Photo of Schimms
4.78/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

L: Pours dark brown with reddish tint. Nice sustained one-finger creamy head. Great lacing on the pint glass.

S: Smells very caramel up front with some hop.

T: Wonderful caramel with that delicate coffee flav at the end.

F: Creamy mouth feel with light carbonation - perfect balance.

O: One of the best browns I've ever had. (330 characters)

Photo of stephenipa
4.17/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Dogfish hit a home run with this brown ale. Solid malt flavor with good balance of hops. Brown ales don't stack up against IPA but a great beer - I enjoy it for a good change of pace. (183 characters)

Photo of hsfn09
4.73/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is the best bottled beer I have ever had. The balance between malted and hopped flavors is excellent and I am always excited to taste the full Dogfish Head experience 1500 miles from their brewery. (202 characters)

Photo of GOBLIN
4.17/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

As far as brown ales go this is fantastic ! A brown ale that is firing on all cylinders for sure. Beautiful color, aroma, taste and feel. A real treat. I wouldn't have believed it myself till I tried it. Might be better than Bells Best Brown in my book. (254 characters)

Photo of tedvr
4.29/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours dark, but somewhat clear with a small creamy head. Mild brown sugar smell with a malt background. Burnt coffee taste with brown sugar background. Nice mouthfeel, mild carbonation with a nice finish. Very interesting blend of three beers! (243 characters)

Photo of MemphisSooner
4.33/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: Brown with reddish hues, cream colored head. Good looking brew!

S: Burnt sugar, hops, malty sweetness, roasted nuts

T: Whoa! This one packs a lot of flavor in. Brown sugar, toasted bread, roasted malts. There is a lot to appreciate here. Dogfish head delivers the goods on this one.

M: Medium bodied, drinkable and smooth.

O: I am not crazy about brown ales, but this one is top notch. The hops and the burnt sugar set this apart from the pack of boring masses in this style. Well done Dogfish Head! (506 characters)

Photo of VashonGuy
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I admit I'm not a fan of brown ales. While there are several notable exceptions, if I walk into a new brewery and sample a range of their beers, the chances are pretty good that I will find their brown ale boring.

DFH's Indian Brown Ale is anything but boring. It's an excellent balance of malty goodness, a little sweetness and caramel, and just the right amount of pizazz from the hops. It's a great beer for drinking with a meal, but has plenty enough character to stand on its own. (490 characters)

Photo of Jeffreysan
4.7/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

12 ounce bottle, poured into a pint glass

Appearance: Pours a gorgeous, deep, dark, mahogany color, with a quarter of a finger of white head that quickly dissolved away into a thin lacing of foam that almost completely covered the top of the beer.

Aroma: Lots of toasted and roasted malt up front, imparting some subtle notes of smoke, freshly baked bread, dark chocolate, brown sugar and some subtle hops.

Taste: Damn, that’s good! Massive malt bomb up front, giving off flavors of freshly baked dark bread, roasted chestnuts or walnuts, dark chocolate, and brown sugar-like sweetness, all beautifully balanced with some assertive, but not overpowering hops.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied to slightly chewy, and pretty smooth, as there is practically not carbonation what-so-ever. With an ABV of 7.2%, there is just a touch of alcohol on the palate.

Overall: Jesus, this is an outstanding beer! Strong, beautifully balanced flavors of malt, sweet and hops, wrapped up in a smooth quaff! Delicious! Another awesome beer from Dogfish Head, one of my favorite breweries. (1,080 characters)

Photo of dcmchew
4.1/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark brown, a tuby shine when held towards the light, small beige head quick to a small lace.
Smell of roasted grain, caramel, faint nut, used coffee filter, some cocoa, light fruitiness underneath.
Rich caramel up front, with toasted grain, light hazelnut and some raisin and date too, and quite a lot of crisp citrus. Malts start to cover up, with some cocoa powder and rich toasted bread. Light coffee in the finish and a bit of bitter hop.
Aftertaste has roasted grain and bread, with a bit of nut and cocoa powder. Hops seem to disappear. Medium body, light carbonation, easy to drink.
Can't say it blew my mind. Rich, really tasty, with a bit of extra hop, a bit complex, but quite quaffable, and still, no real "wow!" factor. (732 characters)

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

12 oz bottle poured into a standard pint glass. If I am interpreting the coding correctly, this was bottled on 11/17/14.

A- Dark brown with slight amber and black highlights. Half finger head that moves a fairly thick lace. Decent retention on the side of the glass.

S - Grains, slight hops, dark fruit, cocoa, smoke, wood

T - Some caramel, cocoa, mild citrus, burnt grains. The description on the bottle seems spot on. Very clean and you can tell it was dry hopped.

M - Carbonation is medium light, things get chewy and a little sticky as it warms.

O - A well put together brown hybrid. Still looking for that brown ale that will stop me from reminiscing about the original Pete's Wicked. (704 characters)

Photo of everythingiszen
4.24/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a dark, dark brown, with a subtle red tinge. Almost no head, what there is is very fine. Lightly carbonated, heavier body. Smells of sweet and dark malt. Leads with brown sugar malt, balanced caramel sweetness and a fair amount of hoppy bitterness, lingering finish of coffee and subtle smoke. Small amount of alc bite on some finishes. An interesting, while not outlandish, brown. Not bad at all. I’m nota huge brown fan, but if I’ll order one, it’ll be this. (472 characters)

Photo of tekstr1der
4.59/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours the darkest brown, this smells of carmelized goodness. So malty and smooth with rich flavors of roast and molasses. Not usually a fan of Dogfish brews, but this is one of the finest ales. (193 characters)

Photo of The_Ox_Man_Cometh
4.72/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

This is one of the best beers I've ever had. I made an account just to review it!

That being said, I can't give you that in depth a review, but I'll do my best.

Looks: Nice deep brown. Very appetizing.

Smell:It smells good. Maybe a little underwhelming, but also appetizing.

Taste: This is where it really shines. Fantastic caramel malt start with a wonderful hoppy finish. Maybe even a little chocolate at the end, but my palette is not that developed. Really excellent, I can't swoon enough.

Feel: Very smooth in the mouth, and going down. I took off half a point because I felt it should be a little more carbonated.

Overall: Stellar on all counts. I bought this because I was worried the 60 minute IPA would be too hoppy for my friends, and figured this would be more balanced. I was right, and won big on the gamble. Everyone loved it. Get yourself some. (865 characters)

Photo of brownbass
3.85/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Unique blended concept. I'm partial to very hoppy beers. Although this isn't too hoppy, it's a good slightly hoppy option for darker fall or winter season beers. (161 characters)

Photo of ryan1788a5
4.1/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

12oz bottle poured into a small snifter.

A: Dark brown in color with garnet hues. Creamy tan head keeps at a half inch. Broken rings of lacing.

S: Nutty, cocoa, dark caramel, brown bread. light whiffs of grass, tangerine, and perhaps cantaloupe and passion fruit underneath.

T: Toasted crust, nutty, cocoa, burnt sugar, brown caramel. Hops ride up with flavors of freshly cut grass and tangerine. Vaguely fruity for a moment. Cocoa, caramel, and orange chocolate on the finish.

M: Medium bodied with a deep and creamy smoothness. Awesome velvety texture. Carbonation prickles lightly about the tongue.

O: For me personally this is the best beer in Dogfish Head's core lineup. Serious drinkability here. All the flavors at work play very nicely, and the body and texture put it over the top. (797 characters)

Photo of Reegze79
4.55/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

The first time I had this beer was on tap at the Warf Pub In Edgartown MA in 2012 and it blew me away; have had it many times since in the bottle. I consider this to be the benchmark for brown ale. Perfect deep brown color and sustained creamy head. Rich, malty, nutty. My fav for fall and winter sipping. No more Sam Smith... (326 characters)

Photo of illpass78
4.13/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into a standard pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a clear ruby-brown with a short white head that is gone swiftly. Minimal lacing. Carbonation seems average.

Aroma: Smells of caramel, pine, a little citrus, some grapefruit, and a touch of coffee.

Taste: Taste follows the nose, with lots of caramel, pine, and grapefruit/citrus. Nice hoppy flavor alongside a sturdy malt backbone.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied. Good depth on its own or with a meal.

Overall: One of DFH's signature "That ain't gonna work, bro" beers that somehow does. Super tasty hybrid of a brown ale and an IPA. I paired this with potato chowder and a sausage and it was the perfect winter lunch. My favorite DFH brew, I'd say. (714 characters)

Photo of dmgeng
4/5  rDev -2.4%

I have been wanting to try this but so many other beers keep getting my bid first. Finally tried and it was pretty good.

A - Dark brown color. Clear with a smaller khaki head.

S - Rich smell, like an American brown with chocolate, caramel, and malt but then the hops come with a nice herbal tone, and some citrus character.

T - Definitely done well with the same notes as the smell but more of it all and a distinctness that allows you to realize it is both an American brown and an IPA all wrapped into one delicious package. The caramel, chocolate, nut character sits highest but there is a good amount of hops to give it a great bump in flavor. Don't expect this to be super hoppy but it is hoppier than every other brown I've had.

M - Light-medium mouth-feel with nice balanced finish. Fine carbonation for brown. The sweetness on the front is balanced great with the hop bitterness.

Overall, a very good beer that should probably have it's own style and there should be more of these on the shelves. I would really enjoy an "imperial" version of this beer since this one is somewhat lighter than other beers in there roster. I think this beer would be a great paring beer for it's flavorful punch but it's balanced finish. Give this one a try and you won't be disappointed.

Glass- Pint (1,298 characters)

Photo of Gajo74
4.46/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice dark brown color with a thin head that for me, unlike most reviews here, did not retain for so long. Nevertheless, a thin ring of lace persisted throughout the drink. The aroma was malty and also reminded me mainly of coffee. There was also elements of alcohol. I also detected a citric aroma that reminded me of orange peel. The taste was very interesting in that it featured many sweet malt, coffee, chocolate, caramel and sugary tastes; yet, it was balanced by a slight hop finish that left a bitter aftertaste. The finish also had boozy overtones, and reminded me of scotch or bourbon ales. The feel was creamy and full bodied, with slightly low carbonation. Overall, I was impressed by this brew. Another winner from Dogfish! (743 characters)

Photo of Tilly
4/5  rDev -2.4%

Poured into a snifter. Dark brown pour with a short lived khaki head. Sweet caramelized sugar and malt atoms. Sweet chocolate and malt. Nutty and earthy. Medium mouth with nice carbonation. (189 characters)

Indian Brown Ale from Dogfish Head Brewery
92 out of 100 based on 1,938 ratings.