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Palo Santo Marron - Dogfish Head Brewery

Not Rated.
Palo Santo MarronPalo Santo Marron

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BA SCORE
93
outstanding

5,307 Ratings
THE BROS
95
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,307
Reviews: 2,010
rAvg: 4.18
pDev: 11.96%
Wants: 298
Gots: 961 | FT: 23
Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Brewery visit their website
Delaware, United States

Style | ABV
American Brown Ale |  12.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Imstillthegman on 11-19-2006

An unfiltered, unfettered, unprecedented brown ale aged in handmade wooden brewing vessels. The caramel and vanilla complexity unique to this beer comes from the exotic Paraguayan Palo Santo wood from which these tanks were crafted. Palo Santo means "holy tree," and its wood has been used in South American wine-making communities.

50 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,307 | Reviews: 2,010
Photo of Lezlibelle
4.81/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

This beer has flavor for miles.

Photo of nicholas2121
4.65/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Palo Santo Marron brewed by Dogfish Head Brewery, with an ABV of 12.00% This brew pours out a dark brown color, with a nice light brown head. The brew has the look of cola. The smell is rich with flavor and sweetness. You also pick up on grain, malts, and a hit of hops in this brew. Now for the taste it is bold with flavor, and sweetness. There is a lot going on in Palo Santo Marron. At first, there is a bold sweetness and it fads to a clean roasted grains after taste. The mouthfeel is full bodied and well balance, there is nothing overpowering about this brew. I like how this brew is different from most brews on the market. Overall I giving Palo Santo Marron a 4.75 out 5. I would buy this brew again.

Photo of Beer-A-Lot
4.17/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Hides alcohol well at first but gets big as it warms. Very solid beer. Nice taste with hints of fig, peppers, leather. BSDA like. Enjoyed it much.

Photo of GMan310
4.94/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

love it great beer. not for everyone very strong and heavy taste

Photo of DKMII
3.96/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Black color. Small light brown foamy head.
Smells like roasted malts.
Taste almost like dusty malts. Like a dark wood attic flavor deliciously captured in a bottle.
Good carbonation on tongue. Starts heavy with light malty finish.

Photo of geodonnokepyo
3.76/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Look - Pours a dark brown to black color. No light shines through. Grayish/tan head. Good head retention and nice lacing.

Smell - Roasted malt. Chocolate malt. Small hint of vanilla. No hops noticeable

Taste - Follows the nose. Very dark malt flavor. Dark chocolate with a smoky woodiness to it. Possible hints of dark fruits.

Feel - A little harsh with alcohol burn. Other than that it is pretty creamy.

Overall - I think some aging should serve this beer well (like it says on the bottle) to mellow out the high ABV. Good thing I have two put away for awhile :)

Photo of MaximalC
4.17/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours seal brown right out of the bottle, with nothing more than a ring of khaki froth around the surface. If I had a nickel for every brown ale that had such a deep, dark brown color...I’d be broke. This looks straight up nice. Aroma smells of salted caramel and peat, with hints of cherry and booze. Spotty lacing clings to the glass as the beer recedes.

Alcohol wastes no time asserting itself on the front end, but once it subsides, your tastebuds are treated to flavors of smooth, rich molasses accented by butterscotch, brown sugar, and vanilla. It doesn’t take long before your lips are ensconced in a sticky, malty, residue that could nearly glue your mouth shut. Earthy, herbal hops provide a subtle, bitter counterpoint without getting in the way of the malt. While the alcohol felt a little strident at first, some habituation reveals that it’s not nearly as pronounced as you’d expect for its ABV. The delicious aftertaste is a lingering haze of molasses and brown sugar. A hefty body provides plenty of substrate for the luxurious taste, while very fine carbonation lends just the right amount of texture; the mouthfeel is befitting of the taste is accompanies.

After recently trying a series of light, caramel-colored brown ales, this was a revelation. Palo Santo Marron comes across more like an imperial doppelbock than a traditional brown ale. It wouldn’t be hyperbole to say this tastes very much like a barrel-aged Celebrator. It has definitely earned some of my respect for what I’d previously considered an overrated brewery.

Photo of SuomiHobbit
4/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big, dark, sweet. Great winter brew.

Photo of ONUMello
4.12/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass
A: Dark brown, almost black, with a one-finger head
S: Cherry, dark malt, a bit of smoked wood, molasses and honey
T: Largely matches the nose, particularly the cherry and molasses. A bit woody and fairly boozy
M: Full-bodied, somewhat sweet with noticeable alcohol
O: Tasty and I love the unique wood aging though the alcohol is a bit strong

Photo of lbb
4.8/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nice. Can't drink more than 1.5 in one sitting but that's my problem

Photo of jellikit
4.41/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from Bottle.
Appearance: dark brown. Thin to no head. Clear when held to light.
Smell: smoked wood.
Taste: raisins, dates, figs. Followed by a light liquid smoke.
Mouthfeel: medium carbonation. Big body. Slightly sweet.
Overall: tasty big, smoked beer. Will buy again.

Photo of founddrama
4.32/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Wow. Complex isn't the half of it. Caramel notes, a subtle vanilla under it. A big malt finish.

Photo of Bone53
4.6/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Dark brown pour yet opaque in the glass when put up to the light. Two finger light brown head

Smell: Sweet malt (caramel, toffee), vanilla, light chocolate, dark fruit such as black cherry and figs, wood

Taste: Upfront is that sweet malt (caramel, toffee) character that quickly transitions into vanilla and very light chocolate, perhaps a touch of dark fruits in there, and finishes with all the notes mentioned with a undertone of wood.

Mouthfeel: Heavy body; Goes down just fine considering the abv. with moderate alcohol presence and a dry, slightly bitter finish

Overall: Im admittedly not a big fan of Dogfish, but this one surprised the hell out of me. Every time i take a whiff and sip i pull out different aromas and flavors. Its pretty complex from the sweet malt characters to dark fruits, light chocolate, vanilla, and wood. I like how the finish carries on for a while and the woody character along with the dryness is almost like chewing on wood itself. Along with Indian Brown Ale, this is my favorite beer from DFH. They sure know how to make a brown!

This is easily one of my favorite year-round offerings from any brewery available to me.

Photo of kfey
4.11/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Not as pungent or acrid as beers of this style and ABV usually are. Has the same malty flavor you'd get from a milder stout, which I appreciate.

Photo of SoupKitchenBeerSnob
4.09/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Damn fine brew... I've recently begun to step back back a bit from the big stout/porter beers that beat you about the head and neck regardless of how much I love them (see my review of Avery's Mephistopheles for where I stand)... Nevertheless, this brew is up there on my charts. Thick, big and black; it is a force to be reckoned with (keep your smartass racist/phallic interpretations to yourself). This is quite a departure from what I've come to expect from the guys at Dogfish, for sure. Definitely worth a try if you're thinking of a brute of a beer on a cold winter night. Not recommended for the hop-friendly types that would be offended by a malt-heavy, sweet and severely alcoholic brew... Cheers!

Photo of GOLee33709
4.63/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Smooth, potent, well-rounded and balanced. Glad I took the time to let it open up.

Photo of BB1980
4.89/5  rDev +17%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Dark Brown. Great carbonation. Fantasic Caramel flavor and vanilla tones. Sweat with a smokey finish.

Photo of GPayne757
4.7/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Love this beer. The nose and taste of this beer is very complex. Loaded with Vanilla and Caramel. The mouth fell is nice as well.

Photo of SFQuixote
3.08/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Real craftsmanship, but just too sickly sweet and syrupy for my taste at the end of the day.

Photo of Smelly
5/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Incredible beer. Thanks DFH for this masterpiece:)

Photo of draheim
4.24/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Revisiting this one as I last reviewed it more than 3 years ago. 12oz bottle (bottled 10/24/2014) into a tulip. Pours a deep, dark brown w/ minimal head.

Aroma is rich and complex, mostly dark sweet malt and gooey molasses/caramel. A hint of chocolate.

Taste is likewise complex. Dark malt, rum-soaked dark fruit, lots of warming booze, vanilla, subtle coconut. Equal parts bitter and sweet.

Mouthfeel is thick and rich. Good carbonation w/ a surprisingly dry finish for such a high ABV beer.

This is definitely a slow sipper, a dessert beer. A triple imperial brown ale.

Photo of Raziel313
3.3/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

A little too bitter for my taste. Nice abv though

Photo of Ace1490
4.63/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Aged 6 months and it's worth it

Photo of MisterGone
4.23/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

The power of suggestion reigns on this label. It is an American Brown Ale, and does indeed pour very brown, with a lovely dark khaki head. We are told that ther will be vanilla and caramel. And there is, certainly present in the nose. But also, a malty note in there as well. Hops are minimally present in the nose. Then the flavor delivers on two of the three promises. There is vanilla. There is caramel (both the candy profile and the malt profile... which was really tasty). There is a nice balance of the sweet with the necessary bitter. I am afraid I cannot detect specifics in the hops as the dominant sweet profiles mask them from my palate.

And then there is the wood. Just don't get it. Wood flavor that is. I understand the concept of practical uses for timber. I just cannot taste much in the way of wood. And I really want to. I want to taste the wood, like oak in a well made white wine (even though I don't like that flavor profile anymore). Or more importantly like wood from an American Bourbon. I know this isn't aged in Bourbon barrels, and I didn't expect that. Just wanted wood flavor period. Didn't get it, so I have no idea what a Palo Santo tree tastes like.

But the beer is damn good.

Photo of Dwkasper
4.35/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Superb brown ale. Plenty of caramel, vanilla and almost cedar?

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Palo Santo Marron from Dogfish Head Brewery
93 out of 100 based on 5,307 ratings.