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Palo Santo Marron - Dogfish Head Brewery

Not Rated.
Palo Santo MarronPalo Santo Marron

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2,016 Reviews
no score

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Reviews: 2,016
Hads: 5,500
Avg: 4.16
pDev: 19.71%
Wants: 322
Gots: 1,093 | FT: 24
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: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 2,016 | Hads: 5,500
Photo of DanKarPgh
3.99/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

An interesting beer on draught with not much of a noticeable nose. A bit bitter finish but otherwise a nice sipping beer. And at 12%abv, it should be dipped, savored, and enjoyed. Vanilla and caramel flavors take a few sips to notice. A nice darker beer in general without being too "heavy".

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Photo of vince321
4.41/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Dark, like a stout, very little head. If you like malty, this will deliver. Woody and thick with a lot of alcohol but not boozy. Super nice and an excellent regular production beer.

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Photo of moonboogie_n8
4.89/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

I'm not sure what kept me from giving this beer a full 5... oh well.
it's quite possibly the best beer I've had this year. picked it up on a whim because the wood aging (and the high ABV)
wow, I was surprised it was so dark number one, dark dark brown almost black with a creamy dark tan head.
smells nutty and malty, with a good dose of booze.
follows the nose, nutty, lots of malt & maybe smoke?
full body & rich boozy finish, so yummy.
will get again for sure, and TRY to cellar one.

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Photo of Dave1999
4.1/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Pours pitch black with a tan coloured head. The head retains extremely well considering the abv.

The smell is sweet malts,some nuts and wood.

The taste is very sweet, nutty, woody,a lot alcohol with some hop bitterness .

The mouthfeel is thick, smooth and creamy.

Overall a big beer, would be good for dessert. Doesn't try and hide the alcohol.

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Photo of arizcards
4.07/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Picked up a single from TW Arrowhead in early May for $3.99. Bottled on 2-4-15. First of a 2 part tasting. Part 2 is a 2008 version.

Beer poured dark brown with a beautiful tan head that has some serious hang time.

Nose is roasted malts and hints of sweet wood.

Taste is heavy roast and wood with an initial alcohol warming. Molasses and vanilla round things out with a decent amount of hopping so that it is not cloying.

Mouthfeel is full and very smooth.

Overall a solid brew...looking forward to the 2008 version!

The 2008 version was a little more raisony and less hoppy which led to a slightly smoother beer but not enough of an appreciation so the ratings will not be changed. Cheers!

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Photo of manfromanotherplace
4.73/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Very rich beer, almost dessert like.its like a brown ale on steroids, the vanilla and caramel tastes really are brought out well by the palo santo wood. a really excellent beer.best brown ale ive ever tried

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Photo of Gear54
4.51/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From a bottle into a snifter

Pour is deep brown with 2 fingers of thick kaki head. Minimal lace on the glass as head fades. Middle of the road on carbonation.

Smell molasses and vanilla. Milk chocolate and vanilla with faint roasted malts in the background.

Taste follows smell well. Fantastic vanilla and molasses. Malts are faint and I get some fruit with it. Really complex. There are tons of subtle flavors and each sip seems to bring more in the nose and on the toung. Maybe the best brown ale I've ever had

Feel is also strong. Flavors coat the palate well and last until the next sip.

Overall this is a fantastic beer. Best brown I've ever had! I would expect nothing less from dogfish.

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Photo of rjmc64
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours dark dark brown with slight brown head that faded quickly. Nose is caramel, vanilla, molasses and booze. Taste is caramel sweetness and smooth vanilla, dark fruit. Nice complex beer.

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Photo of tone77
3.79/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a very dark brown, damn near black color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is of fruits, vanilla, molasses. Taste is dark fruits, malts, wood, some alcohol and vanilla. Feels full bodied in the mouth and overall is a complex and high quality beer.

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Photo of RexBanner
3.92/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Dark in appearance, almost black. Pillowy beige head. No carbonation bubbles detected.
Aroma of molasses was very prominent. Background whiff of chocolate was also present.
The taste was mostly molasses, followed by a cardboard aftertaste that I'll attribute to the barrel aging.
Heavy mouth feel. Somewhat syrupy, bitter finish.
Meh! Nothing to write home about. Good but not great. This tasted more like a porter than a brown ale. Too heavy IMO.

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Photo of cyclonece09
4.45/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a snifter. Pours black with a small light brown head. Smells of dark, deep fruitiness, slight nuttiness. Tastes of deep woodiness and fresh fruitiness. Beer is full bodied but dangerously drinkable. Overall a superb beer.

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Photo of Scott17taylor
4.85/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Look black with almost no head,
Smell woody sweet boozy and roasty.
Taste it starts Roasty but in the middle of the palate it is sweet and finishes with a woodsy character and alcohol
Feel thick and coating
Overall great beer. Must purchase if it is available to you.

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Photo of KarmicSkrambl8
4.63/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

oaky, smooth....viscosity is phenomenal, unlike many other DFH's I have had this is not out-of-balance in the sweetness realm

I really enjoyed the complexities over and under the tongue...the ABV% is not overpowering and is so nice in the "fee" department


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Photo of PeterParker
4.61/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours nearly black with a centimeter of brown head that doesn't last long.

Huge smelling beer. Licorice, dark fruits, oak, vanilla, toffee, and a bit of alcohol. Smells terrific.

Really friggin good. Roastiness up front. Lots of woody characteristics are omnipresent in this one. Slight Belgian style fruitiness ending with a very small burn from the alcohol. Really nice.

Surprisingly full bodied for the ABV. Slick and viscous mouthfeel which coats the mouth. Aftertaste of dark fruits and alcohol.

A tremendous offering from DFH. I usually overlook this one because it's so widely available but I think I'll pick this up much more often.

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Photo of Bunman3
4.35/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Oh. My. I have not sampled many beers that have this level of investment or complexity. Two bottles is all you need for a sitting, because there is so much going on in the Palo Santo Marron. The combination of malt, vanilla, wood and dark fruit is absolutely delicious. Easily one of the best beers I have encountered to date.

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Photo of Jonny41
4.18/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

had to have in small doses, 8oz pour first four great than gets a little rich,,, but once the burger arrived the rest of the beer was great also, very thick and chewy great with a meal but a bottle might be much

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

Pours a dark brown to color with a smell light brown head. There head is small and soapy. The odor is very malty sweet, roasted note, slight woods, boozy, smoky note, dried fruit, slightly spicy. The taste is very sweet, dry woods, very malty, almost a bourbon note, slight bitterness on the back, a little nutty, dry finish.

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Photo of brewskifan55
4.1/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sipped in a tulip glass. Thanks, Alan, for sharing.

A: Deep brown. A tan half finger head that leaves pretty fast. Not much lacing.

S: Anise, roasted malts, dark fruits.

T: Smokey malts, vanilla. So smooth and caramel sweet. Lots of complex wood effects from the barrels. The alcohol comes in late and kicks ass. Sip slowly.

M: Medium all the way. Kinda chewy on the carbonation.

O: Glad I finally got to try this one. Terrific to share with friends. Maybe break out the cigars.

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Photo of nicholas2121
4.65/5  rDev +11.8%
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.

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Photo of DKMII
3.96/5  rDev -4.8%
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.

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Photo of geodonnokepyo
3.76/5  rDev -9.6%
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 :)

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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.

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Photo of ONUMello
4.12/5  rDev -1%
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

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Photo of jellikit
4.41/5  rDev +6%
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.

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Photo of Bone53
4.6/5  rDev +10.6%
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.

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Palo Santo Marron from Dogfish Head Brewery
93 out of 100 based on 2,016 ratings.