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Brains The Rev. James - SA Brain & Co.

Not Rated.
Brains The Rev. JamesBrains The Rev. James

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

33 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 33
Reviews: 21
rAvg: 3.41
pDev: 18.18%
Wants: 0
Gots: 3 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
SA Brain & Co. visit their website
United Kingdom (Wales)

Style | ABV
Old Ale |  4.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
The Rev. James beer is one steeped in history. Acquired after the purchase of Crown Buckley, Rev. James is brewed to an original recipe dating back to 1885. The beer is named after one of the original owners of Buckley Brewery, the Rev, James Buckley, a business man with two conflicting roles – saving souls and satisfying thirsts.

The Rev. James is brewed to a traditional recipe and has been described as having a flavour not commonly available these days. Full-bodied and warming, The Rev. James is rich in palate, spicy and aromatic with a deeply satisfying finish.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-01-2005)
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Ratings: 33 | Reviews: 21 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of fionn13


4/5  rDev +17.3%

06-04-2012 15:29:25 | More by fionn13
Photo of JohnQVD

New York

4/5  rDev +17.3%

08-21-2013 22:45:19 | More by JohnQVD
Photo of atis


3.95/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours clear dark copper, dense off-white head with good retention, thin patchy lacing. Aroma is complex sweetish caramel, some dark fruit and bit of hops.

Taste is caramel malts, burnt sugar with herbal bitterness similar to tea and slowly drying bittery aftertaste. Mouthfeel is smooth, on the lighter side with moderate carbonation.

I like it. Nice one to drink after not so enjoyable working day.

Serving type: bottle

02-01-2010 15:45:49 | More by atis
Photo of wl0307

United Kingdom (England)

3.85/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

First time to try this bottled version, this is filtered and pasteurised. BB 28/04/09, served cool in a straight imperial pint glass.

A: pours a lightly carbonated, pale copper body that carries an off-white foamy head sustaining well on the top.
S: caramel and prune/plum-jammy sour-sweet fruits lead towards a refreshing and aromatic theme of hops... Quite pleasant for a Best Bitter.
T: yeasty, lightly savoury-sweet fruitiness (mainly citrus and berry-fruits), caramalts, then biscuit-iness catches up, leading towards a sherry-like dryish-woody and yet aromatic palate in the aftertaste, common to many Best Bitters and Pale Ales of Britain. A faintly roasty edge of tea-leaves as well as an herbally dryish bitter palate seem to outlive the other flavours. Rather clean in the finish as well.
M&D: moderately carbonated, very soft on the palate, medium-bodied... All in all, this bottled version drinks not bad at all. This Best Bitter is a fruity & aromatic ale that benefits greatly from a complex maltiness and the lovely dryish-bitter finishing touch. Worth a try!

Serving type: bottle

07-09-2008 18:50:44 | More by wl0307
Photo of BlackHaddock

United Kingdom (England)

3.83/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Hand-pulled pint in The Nottingham, Cleethorpes on 9th Nov 2012.

Looks good, very good in deed: Rich copper body with an overflowing head of tanned bubbley foam, poured beautifully and slammed onto the bar top by the barmaid, who then took my money!

The nose was malty molasses and dark fruits: not overly strong but easy to pick out.

The taste simular to the aroma, malty and fruity, almost a fruity malt loaf sort of flavour, but not as thick or rich.

Medium body feel, would have prefered a deeper depth of flavours and a slicker/thicker feel to the beer: still OK but could easily be a lot better.

Serving type: cask

11-19-2012 12:15:02 | More by BlackHaddock
Photo of PartyBear

United Kingdom (England)

3.83/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Deep amber coloured body with a foamy brown/off-white head, and very active carbonation. The aroma has lots of dark maltiness and grain, with a touch of caramel fudge, and an abudance of sweet cakes. Taste is much the same, with a malty breadiness, and sweet biscuit flavours, and full on the palete. A very drinkable beer, with great flavours.

Serving type: bottle

11-25-2009 19:48:56 | More by PartyBear
Photo of rarbring


3.8/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A clear amber ale, has a firm off-white head that leaves good lacing.

The smell is weak, some fruit (pears) and nuts.

The taste satrts with sweet brown bread, some brown sugar, oranges, nuts and some grass bitterness.

Medium low carbonation, soft and a good body, a dry finish.

In all a nice ale, although a bit on the sweet side.

Serving type: on-tap

08-05-2011 15:10:25 | More by rarbring
Photo of Shadman

Alberta (Canada)

3.8/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Spotted a 4 pack of these @ Trackside in Medicine Hat. Noticed that the brewer is from Wales. Haven't visited that country's beer yet so thought it's worth a go.

clear reddish amber colour, nice thick creamy head. Tons of lacing..good looking ale for sure.

Certain fruitiness to the aroma, slight rum raisin, toasted malts. Very slight dry spice hop

nice smooth caramel malts with some underlying fruits..tea-like bitterness mixes in, but doesn't quite mesh as well as some EPA's I've sampled.

Definitely smooth, a medium-light body.

worth a try..nice session beer

Serving type: can

08-21-2011 01:40:26 | More by Shadman
Photo of Jerseyislandbeer


3.75/5  rDev +10%

04-26-2014 08:52:12 | More by Jerseyislandbeer
Photo of MisledTitan

United Kingdom (England)

3.75/5  rDev +10%

02-25-2014 00:30:43 | More by MisledTitan
Photo of mrleebob

United Kingdom (Wales)

3.75/5  rDev +10%

11-21-2013 11:26:10 | More by mrleebob
Photo of CwrwAmByth

United Kingdom (Wales)

3.75/5  rDev +10%

12-29-2012 02:34:59 | More by CwrwAmByth
Photo of EmperorBevis

United Kingdom (England)

3.73/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

My what a handsome looking pint, making my pint pot look like a sugar bowl filled with crystal clear brown sugar topped with whipped cream.

The aroma is also a strong brown sugar affair with fresh baked brioche.

The taste also is right up there a good mixture of malts, hops and sugared spice, never getting the slightest bit sickly.

Good solid mouthfeel makes this beer most welcomed by the congregation.

Serving type: bottle

03-25-2012 00:15:22 | More by EmperorBevis
Photo of jonb5

United Kingdom (England)

3.61/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

440ml can, poured into pint glass.

A: Dark bronze, clear, small off white head, decent retention.

S: Malt, molasses.

T: Had notes of fudge, generally sweet but was balanced out by a fruity, bitter finish.

M: Oily texture, low to medium carbonation, medium body.

O: Wouldn't say it was a Pale Ale or a Bitter, more like a lower alcohol ESB. Good from the can but better from the cask.

Serving type: can

05-20-2013 10:36:57 | More by jonb5
Photo of woosterbill


3.6/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Handpump half-pint at the Coal Hole.

A: Clear reddish-brown body with a finger of off-white foam. Ok retention, not much lace. Not bad.

S: Very sweet, with nutty, caramel, and toffee malt dominating, underscored by some figs, raisins, and other candied fruits. Quite intense and enjoyable, but a little overly sweet.

T: Sherry-like fruitiness, toffee, caramel, and more sugar. Long, sticky-sweet finish. Very tasty, but unbalanced in the extreme for a 4.5% EPA.

M: Thick, sticky body with moderate carbonation. Nice enough.

O: Striking, distinctive, and somewhat confusing beer. I really enjoyed its overtones of sweet dessert wine, but didn't understand what those flavors were doing in this kind of ale. Weird.


Serving type: cask

06-20-2011 01:33:18 | More by woosterbill
Photo of bventure

United Kingdom (England)

3.6/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours clear amber/brown with a fair light brown head, which is retained well.

Smell is malt, some sweetenes and - a hint of cheese?

Taste is light fruity malt with a noticeable and lasting bitterness.

Seems quite smooth and somehow feels more carbonated than it is, if that makes any sense. Doesn't seem watery like some other reviewers found - maybe bottle vs keg?

Quite pleasant and drinkable, but nothing outstanding.

Serving type: bottle

02-23-2011 21:39:36 | More by bventure
Photo of Dave1999

North Carolina

3.56/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a transparent red with no head at all.

The smell is toast, biscuits and some earthiness.

The taste is malty,caramel, earthy some very slight bitterness in the finish.

The mouthfeel is light with medium carbonation.

Overall for a low abv old ale it's quite good, you could session these but doesn't hold up very well against it's higher abv brothers.

Serving type: bottle

09-24-2013 18:54:58 | More by Dave1999
Photo of thierrynantes


3.53/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Beer bottle (50 cl.) purchased from Bières & Chopes, and tasted in 2012.

Appearance : dark amber color, with white foamy head.
Smell : roasted malty aromas.
Taste & mouthfeel : roasted malt flavors with caramel and spicy notes, light bitterness in finish.
Drinkability : a good beer in the style English Pale Ale.

Serving type: bottle

11-15-2012 19:05:40 | More by thierrynantes
Photo of Hoppsbabo

United Kingdom (England)

3.51/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Deep amber with a frothy off-white head which dissipates.

S: Tart and grainy, not metallic grainy though.

T: Honey, but dry and tart. Has a graininess but not that Pilsner graininess. It's bitter. Floral honey in the aftertaste and a bit of lacquer/nail varnish.

M: Unremarkable

O: Hmm. Pretty average.

Serving type: bottle

08-21-2013 17:18:13 | More by Hoppsbabo
Photo of endless1408

United Kingdom (England)

3.5/5  rDev +2.6%

05-31-2014 17:42:55 | More by endless1408
Photo of Hanglow

United Kingdom (Scotland)

3.5/5  rDev +2.6%

12-26-2012 20:48:04 | More by Hanglow
Photo of ultrasupergenius

United Kingdom (England)

3.45/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500 ml bottle served in a Tulip glass.

Rich foamy head dissipates to a thin veil of foam in a minute or two.

Clear, amber brown color.

Faint aroma of malt.

Slightly malty. Dry. Some hop bitterness on the finish, but not overwhelming. Mellow overall. Not a ton of flavor. Slight bit of sourness.

Moderate sparkle from CO2.

Serving type: bottle

12-12-2011 19:37:22 | More by ultrasupergenius
Photo of charlatan

United Kingdom (Scotland)

3.45/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Half pint at the new 'spoons in Dumbarton. Peaty coloured with a reddish hue and an offwhite head. It smells of treacle and margarine which is probably considerably better than it sounds. Tastes of tobacco, treacle and roasted malt before the margarine flavour becoems apparent, but the more I drink the greater the hop impact and the maragarine oddity becomes more, er, marginal. Smoky plus buttery equals interesting.

nb: I discovered through barmaid's incompetence that if you mix it with old hooky it remains eminently drinkable.

Serving type: cask

07-19-2014 15:51:58 | More by charlatan
Photo of cypressbob

United Kingdom (Northern Ireland)

3.43/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On cask at the Bridge House, Belfast

Pours with a rich copper body, thick off white tan head with great retention. Lots of patchy lacing all up and down the glass

Smell, some noticeable caramel sweetness, little bit of faint biscuity malt. A few off flavours present, some burnt rubber and an almost slight skunky aroma.

Taste, crisp solid malt backbone, toffee and burnt sugar, very faint english hops, tiny little bit of bitterness on the finish

A solid ale although its let down by a few off aromas, its also just a bit dull

Serving type: cask

07-10-2007 10:30:25 | More by cypressbob
Photo of biboergosum

Alberta (Canada)

3.33/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

440ml can. Time to go up that 'mountain'...

This beer pours a clear, bright brassy copper colour, with three fat fingers of light tan creamy melted marshmallow head, which settles very slowly, eventually leaving a few broad swaths of sudsy lace around the glass in its wake. It smells of lightly roasted, fairly sweet malt, some nice drupe-like fruitiness, and a mild earthy hoppiness. The taste is a more astringently bready malt, kind of metallic, the fruitiness tempered almost wholly, and the hops turning fairly green, leafy, and bitter. The carbonation is low, but still noticeable, the body medium-light in weight, and a bit prickly on its way to a just-adequate smoothness, given the initial nitro-esque qualities. It finishes off-dry, the metal edge (can't think of any Welsh metal bands) still there, amongst a feeble resurgent fruitiness.

Such a pretty, inviting offering - too bad it turned out so sharp, well, sharp in the English mild ale sense. Still, hard to see wanting a whole quartet of these for flavour alone - and at 4.5% ABV, I don't reckon there's any further reason to do so.

Serving type: can

08-26-2011 21:56:42 | More by biboergosum
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Brains The Rev. James from SA Brain & Co.
79 out of 100 based on 33 ratings.