1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Gritty McDuff's Best Brown Ale - Gritty McDuff's Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Gritty McDuff's Best Brown AleGritty McDuff's Best Brown Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
74
okay

157 Ratings
THE BROS
58
awful

(view ratings)
Ratings: 157
Reviews: 98
rAvg: 3.18
pDev: 17.61%
Wants: 0
Gots: 4 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Gritty McDuff's Brewing Company visit their website
Maine, United States

Style | ABV
English Brown Ale |  4.10% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-29-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Gritty McDuff's Best Brown Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 157 | Reviews: 98 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of pgenius
2.93/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A - Poured a dark amber with a nice bubbly white head

S - Sweet malt aroma

T - I'm disappointed because I enjoyed the best bitter and thought this one would be really good too. However, it was really watery and lacked flavor. All I could pick up on were some sweet malts and a miniscule amount of hops

M - Light bodied, refreshing, but lacking in texture

D - I probably wouldn't buy this again but I would drink it if it were offered too me. Overall, a disappointment

Photo of sstackho
2.68/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12oz bottle tasted one month after its Best Before date. Pours a clear amber - not particularly brown. Tons of carbonation. Malty aroma. Taste is a bit better than I was expecting from the appearance and my other experience with Gritty beers. Still not great, mind you. Some malt and molasses, but not a lot of complexity.

Photo of ColForbin
3.63/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Gritty's Best Brown pours a deep clear brown color with a light tan head that shows good retention. Aroma is molasses with some floral notes as well. Taste is relatively sweet, with caramel, molasses and some roasted flavors and an off-dry finish with some bitterness balancing out the sweetness. Fairly high carbonation (a bit too high), medium body. An easy drinking beer, perfect as the weather turns a bit cooler.

Photo of jmz62565
3.63/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer pours a dark reddish brown with a medium tan foamy head. A very nice looking beer. The smell is a little light with a roasted malt scent to it. The taste is chewy,nutty, and filled with a sweet malt, but it is with it's flaws. The texture is very thin and I keep hoping that I'll get more out of this. The m/f is too light with the flavors mixing well. Although it does have some flaws, this isn't a bad beer and I'd have it again.

Photo of GratefulBeerGuy
3.33/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle poured into a large glass mug.

Looks Light brown with reddish hues. 2" head that was gone fast. Minimal activity here.

smells mostly of roasty and semi-sweet malts.

Good balance in the overall taste. Roasty wheat, bready, slight "greens" hop effect at the end.

It has a good solid bite, feels more active on the palate than it appears.

Little interest, but it's easy nough to put down.

Photo of lordofthewiens
3.35/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Part of a !2 pack sampler. Not bad. It poured an amber color with a medium-sized head. It had a sweet, malty aroma. Taste was caramel with the tiniest bit of hops. Thin mouthfeel. Average drinkability, just because it wasn't very special. Gritty's has many better offerings than this one.

Photo of Nutleybeer
3.78/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Found a six pack of this beer while up in CT; its not distributed apparently in NJ. I was curious to give it a try. It cost about $7.99; pretty standard for a microbrew.

It has a reddish-orange color...almost looking like iced tea. A mild head to it. Not much of a smell to describe.

The taste is nice. Somewhat creamy...a bit of a roasted flavor, but not overpowering. This is mixed with a hint of sweetness. Quite drinkable. Smooth and tasty.

Photo of wedge
3.53/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Amber-brown color with a thin, creamy head with good retention. Dry, toasted malt smell and a soft breadiness. Smooth, crisp sweet malt flavor - nuts and earthy hops. Feels good in the mouth as a refreshing brown ale - medium light with adequate carbonation and pretty dry.

A fine easy drinkin beer. Simple but it does the trick...

Photo of JasonCoop
4/5  rDev +25.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a nice reddish copper color with big offwhite foam. fairly clear for a brown ale.

smell - nice and malty. almost doughy. some citrus hops come through as well.

taste - hops up front blend to very full buttery malty finish. delicious and perfectly balanced brew. pretty light for a brown ale, but packs a nice flavor.

mouthfeel is medium/full. well hopped as brown ales go. i enjoyed it.

Photo of JMD71
3.8/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Dark reddish brown, caramel. Small head when poured.

Smell: Malty, with hints of fruitiness?
Taste: Nice smooth malty flavor with clean finish.
Mouthfeel: Light body & heavily carbonated. The high carbonation made it very easy drinking.

This is a good beer for times when looking for a refreshing beer with a bit more character.

Photo of akahn
3.48/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

My first time have a Gritty beer, from the "Gritty Dozen" mixed pack. Neat thing is that I could choose from a variety of mixes, thanks to checkmarks indicating which brews were inside.

Pours a beautiful red color, almost ruby. A finger of lasting off-white head. Some sparse lacing. Lots of streaming bubbles combined with the color make this one attractive beer.

Sweet, caramel malt aroma, with subtle spicy hop overtone.

Full, sweet malt flavor. Hint of caramel, and later, honey. Dry, mineral finish. Very little hop flavor.

Strong carbonation. Too strong, in my opinion. Body is light to medium. I think a more substantial mouthfeel and less carbonation would make this beer a lot better. As far as drinkability, this beer goes down easily, and the sweetness is tame, but I'd go for something more interesting after one or two.

Photo of Shovelbum
3.7/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a chunky off-white head over a brownish-copper body that is quite light and clear for the style. Leaves a thin sheet of delicate lace to the bottom of the pint. Delicate malt aromas are detectable from a distance. Upon closer quaffing, pleasing sweet caramel malt and a hint of chocolate fills the nose. The taste however, doesn’t completely fulfill the promise of the bouquet. It is quite lean bodied, with just enough malt to balance out the rather healthy dose of hops for the style. A bit of a yeasty character as well, along with a touch of diaceytl. A drying finish.

This is definitely comes in at the lean end of the brown ale spectrum in terms of appearance and taste. It doesn’t have the signature sweetness of the style and perhaps due to its lighter body also has a bigger hop presence than most English brown ales. It’s a tad out of balance, and closer to an ordinary bitter than the other members of its style. Still, it is a treat for the olfactory system and a fine session ale.

Photo of charlesw
3/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a nice brown/amber with a small head that is gone before you know it.

Smells faintly of dry dirt...

Flavors are... Caramel, biscuit, chocolate... Light on all but the caramel... Kind of surprising to have so much chocolate in a brown. Not bad, just surprising.

Kind of weird, for me, but even with the tiny head it still feels overly carbonated on my tongue... That's surely just a light body talking through, there, but it did strike me as odd.

Hey, I'd drink the stuff. Sure, why not? I mean, it'd be a fine session beer and I bet that it'd be awesome on cask!

Photo of HoorayBeer
3.7/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sitting at Gritty McDuff's, this was an easy one to pick up.

Nice amber color with a thin head that left as soon as I started drinking it.

Hoppy aroma, with a nut and caramel infused finish. Almost a skunky smell, not a bad skunk, just pungent.

Good full flavored brew. Hoppy flavors present right away. Smoothe finish with the nut and caramel mix, and a bite with the bitters, well done.

Nice brew for a nice day on the porch. Overall a good brew.

Photo of clvand0
3.45/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a light brown color with a small head that falls fast and doesn't leave lacing on the glass. The aroma is nutty with some diacetyl and a little caramel. The flavor seems quite lacking - only flavor on the very front of the tongue - almost empty tasting. There are some nutty flavors with caramel hints. The mouthfeel is very light and the drinkability is good. This is an ok beer, it's just missing something.

Photo of kmpitz2
3.53/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a nice auburn color with a healthy quarter inch of head over top/ Very good looking beer. The nose is okay. I get a bit of diacetyl butteryness and a toasted nut maltyness. I'd rather the diacetyl was not in there. The flavor is better than the nose. The roasty, nuttyness is more prevalent and the butteryness is more in the background. The feel is moderate with a moderate carbonation. Overall, an okay beer. The diacetyl takes a bit away from it. I could probably do a nice session on this one though.

Photo of Gavage
3.9/5  rDev +22.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Gritty's in Portland. Clear dark amber / brown in color with a decent 1" head. Some spotty lace develops. The aroma was weak, only faint traces of caramel and some hops were detected. The flavor was a very nice earthy, roasted nut, and caramel combination with some reasonable bitterness and a hint of citrus.

Medium bodied brew. Mouthfeel was lightly crisp at the start, and finish dry and smooth. Caramel lingers briefly on the tongue after swallowing. I found this to be nicely drinakble.

Photo of WanderingFool
3.83/5  rDev +20.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bought a couple of bombers at Gritty's in Freeport on a recent visit. This beer pours a clear dark amber color with a frothy light tan head. The head dissolved quickly to a thin ring on the surface leaving only a couple of spots of lace on the glass. A malty aroma with notes of nuts, caramel and chocolate.

Each sip of this medium bodied beer begins with a sweet caramel malt flavor. Hints of nuts, chocolate and bubble gum blend in nicely and it finishes with a mild hop bitterness. A caramel malt taste is left behind.

This is a very drinkable well balanced beer. It has a bit more flavor on tap, but you can't beat enjoying a Gritty's at home.

Photo of BeerResearcher
3.83/5  rDev +20.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

It pours a brown-amber with a small beige head and some sticky and trailing lace.
A cut hay-like malty smell is noticeable at first. A tea-like hoppy smell follows, as does a light fruity bouquet.
The malt body is a little thinner than the usual Brown Ale style. A taste of toasty malt, dry hay and a bit of caramel sweetness blends well with the tea-like and citrusy hop flavors. A light fruity (mainly apples) flavor shows up about halfway through the glass. This beer paired well with Gritty's Beer Battered Fish & Chips.

Photo of ppoitras
4.05/5  rDev +27.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

20ozer from an October trip up to the Freeport brewery, fridged since then. Classic label art with the Gritty's bartender.

Poured brown-with-a-touch-of-red into an imperial pint glass, a thick-but-quick head formed and then went away, leaving some, but not a plethora, of lace on the glass. Taste is pleasing, with perhaps a bit more hop bite than I would like in a brown. Good potential session-ability, and definitely worth your trouble to find a sample.

Photo of oberon
3.68/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a lighter shade of brown maybe a little amber hue with a lighter head,the aroma is definantly malty with some caramel sweetness.Taste is nice and sweet (not overpowering) but some nice earthiness creeps in there some nice roasted malt flavors makes this a nice more complex brown than Iam used to.Did seem a little thin though as I drank more,a few modifications and this could be a real brown to look for.

Photo of ViveLaChouffe
3.6/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a nice bright ruby brown with a good sized tan head. Smells lightly malty and nutty. Sweet aromas, not much bitterness.

Tastes nutty, like th smell. Has a nice hoppy finish which I wsan't expecting from the aromas. Not nearly as malty as I would have expected and the body is a bit weaker than I would expect from a brown ale. It's quite "Newcastley" (but I mean that in a good way) but more flavorful. Medium bodied bordering on light. Would be a very nice session brew, very drinkable. Doesn't knock your socks off but is very good and solid.

Photo of UnionMade
3.85/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The beer is a rich mahogany brown, tinted with red. Good clarity. A thin white head tops the beer, dissipating into a ring around the glass, but never disappearing.
Aroma is mostly a sweet caramel maltiness. Some toasted malt, with very light chocolate. The chocolate isn't as pronounced as the cask or bottled version, but still present. Some light fig and plum, with a touch of diacetyl butterscotch. Slight graininess.
The flavor starts with a bready caramel maltiness, a bit of toasted malt and very light chocolate. Pretty much just a cameo appearance. Some graininess comes through in the middle, with mild estery plum and a suggestion of fig. Extremely mild herbal hops come through in the finish, with malt mostly carrying the beer all the way through. Moderately carbonated, with a lightish medium body. Some grainy toasted malt and a touch of diacetyl in the aftertaste.
A well balanced brown ale. Not as good as the cask or bottled versions, in my opion. It lacks much of the chocolatey goodness that really sets it apart from other brown ales. Still robust, but withouth as much complexity to the flavor.

Photo of edchicma
3.15/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Nice appearance with decent initial head. Smell was somewhat malty, bnut not overly inviting. Taste was somewhat light, with a light sweetness of malt. Mouthfeel was somewhat light, and not overly impressive. Drinkability was ok, but not spectacular. Ceratinly not a macro brew, but not spectacular either.

Photo of far333
3.55/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Amber color with a beige foamy head that sank right away. Smell is molasses and light roasted malt, with a flavor of toffee and caramel, light molasses and brown sugar. Mouthfeel is watery, with moderate to low carbonation. Fairly average beer, but pretty drinkable. Decent session beer.

Gritty McDuff's Best Brown Ale from Gritty McDuff's Brewing Company
74 out of 100 based on 157 ratings.