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Dirty Penny Ale - The Olde Burnside Brewing Company

Dirty Penny AleDirty Penny Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
82
good

107 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 107
Reviews: 51
rAvg: 3.63
pDev: 15.43%


Brewed by:
The Olde Burnside Brewing Company visit their website
Connecticut, United States

Style | ABV
Black & Tan |  5.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Our popular “Dirty Penny Ale” is a hearty, but never heavy “black’n’tan” style* which is mixture of 60% Ten Penny/40% our own signature stout. This beer is also available year-round at your local bar or favorite beer store.

(Motto: Dirty Penny Ale …Polish One Off!)

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 04-02-2004)
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Ratings: 107 | Reviews: 51 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of mostpoetsdo
mostpoetsdo

Rhode Island

3.5/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Murky brown, light tan head. Less than stellar lacing.

S: Dirt and malt, kind of odd. Faint hoppiness. Decent chocolate notes.

T: Very much malt forward. A burly beer, quite flavorful, especially for 5%. Has a strong mineral and metallic taste to it, almost as if a dirty penny was sitting at the bottom.

M: Fairly thin, but surprisingly crisp. Carbonation is pretty good, nothing great.

O/D: Quite a bit of flavor packed in this brew, not something I'd want over and over again, but worth giving it a shot. Light, but a decent offering.

Serving type: growler

04-16-2011 13:43:06 | More by mostpoetsdo
Photo of ryan1788a5
ryan1788a5

Massachusetts

4.45/5  rDev +22.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Brass Cat, served to me in a 20oz stein.

A: Very dark brown, almost black, at least from what I could tell in the bar lighting. Head is big, rocky, and brown and sports great staying power.

S: Very malty, as expected. Huge hit of French roast coffee, some hazelnut, chewy caramel, light whiffs of milk chocolate, and some dirty, earthy yeast.

T: Taste followed the smell very closely. Lots of coffee up front, a light nuttiness, a bit of toffee, tons of chewy caramel, earthy, gritty yeast, and some slight milk chocolate toward the finish. Hops were not prominent, and played a balancing role only.

M: Medium to medium-thick. Smooth and creamy. Moderate carbonation. Good enough.

O: Very good. A malt lover's darling.

Notes: I have had this beer many times, but mostly out of the growler. This was my first time having it on tap at a respectable beer bar (I had it on tap at Hooters once, don't judge). Normally this is a solid B beer for me, but getting it fresh on tap was a real treat. All the flavors I remembered were there, but dialed up a few notches. Great stuff.

More notes: I understand that this is a blend of their Ten Penny Scotch ale and a house-special stout. I would really like to try that stout.

Serving type: on-tap

03-26-2011 23:26:20 | More by ryan1788a5
Photo of smcolw
smcolw

Massachusetts

3.48/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Excellent domed head. The brew is a solid brown; light shines through. It appears clear. Very little long term lace.

There's a mild sourness to the otherwise toasty malt nose.

Acidic flavor and quite thin. The darker, bisuity flavors are present but muted. Light hop throughout the taste, but the finish sour and citrusy.

Serving type: growler

01-23-2011 20:08:57 | More by smcolw
Photo of ams0286
ams0286

Connecticut

4.05/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Drink local is my motto! I picked this growler up off the shelf at the local package store. The growler had no freshness indicators which worries me slightly. In the growler format the shelf life on this beer might not be very long.

The appearance is darker than i would expect from a black & tan but in my opinion it looks very appetizing. The head is a little much for me. I prefer not to have to wait for it to settle but it could have been my pouring method. Nice tan color with not very much lacing.

The smell primarily consists of toffee. There are also notes of coffee and chocolate. The hop profile is lacking, even for this style.

The taste again mirrors the aroma, tons of toffee and caramel notes, with a slight background of roasted coffee and milk chocolate. Again not very much hop profile comes through, but the beer is not cloying.

The mouth feel of the beer is lighter than I would expect from it's appearance. Of course carbonation is on the lighter end, not only because of the style but also the packaging method. This is not terribly far off style.

Dirty penny is absolutely a sessionable beer. I like this because it isn't light in color, it is full flavored, and local! Despite the fact that I wish my local beers offered better taste qualities and more variety, I will always support them. I will be picking this growler up again soon.

Serving type: growler

10-29-2010 22:39:22 | More by ams0286
Photo of Arenbeer
Arenbeer

Connecticut

3.95/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Growler Into a Pint Glass

A- Pours a really dark brown with a decently large tan head that sticks around but doesn't leave to much lacing.

S- Burnt coffee and a good amount of sweet caramel and toffee.

T- Tastes just like it smells. Roasted burnt coffee with a nice toffee sweetness in the background from the ten penny ale that comes through like a champ. Really great tasting Black and Tan, probably one of the best I've had.

M- Medium body with a good amount of carbonation, almost too much. Not to much bitterness in the finish either, a very wet stout you could say.

SkÅL!

Serving type: growler

08-15-2010 20:58:55 | More by Arenbeer
Photo of donniecuffs
donniecuffs

New Jersey

4.33/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Just found my notes recently from last summer's Northwest Connecticut Brewfest. I was told that this 'black & tan' brew consisted of 60% Ten Penny; 40% stout. Poured a dark brown hue, with over a finger of beige head, good retention, and good lacing. Detected all of the same essence in the nose from Ten Penny, e.g. coffee and caramel, as well as a big chocolate/mocha presence. Great, great aroma. The taste began with more of a caramel/malty tone, and then eventually progressed to a mocha flavor with a dry coffee/chocolate finish. Thick yet manageably smooth mouthfeel, with low carbonation. Very sessionable, and again, another one of my few repeat table visits during the 'fest.

Serving type: bottle

08-03-2010 21:46:57 | More by donniecuffs
Photo of uustal
uustal

Rhode Island

3.73/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark brown pour with a above average tan head. Smells of sweet caramel and toffee. Toffee malt dominates the taste. Also hints of caramel and roasted coffee. Not much hop profile. High carbonation and a lasting sweet after taste. The toffee is the major player in this beer.

Serving type: on-tap

06-27-2010 03:13:28 | More by uustal
Photo of MikeBrandman
MikeBrandman

Connecticut

3.73/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

My first growler!

A - Pours into a pint glass with 4 fingers of head (gotta love growlers). Completely opaque with a deep brown body with slight ruby tones around the edges. Little visible carbonation near the bottom of the glass. Good amount of head and slowly receding head, delightful.

S - Smell is good mix of hops and malts. Coffee, burnt caramel, and bready smell. Overall good, just a little watered down.

T - Taste a little disappointing. All of the same characteristics of the smell are there, except the watered down feeling is a little more apparent. Also, there's a slight metallic taste that is rather off putting. Rather balanced overall, with lingering coffee taste.

MF - Great feel on this. Smooth and creamy. Full bodied and satisfying.

D - This is greatly drinkable. It's so easy to keep sipping this. Not sure if you want to, depending on how metallic the taste gets, but it's smooth and heavy and just goes down so easy.

Notes - On the last glass I noticed a LOT of dead yeast at the bottom of the glass. Usually I just drink it down, but it was unusual to drink it in anything besides an unfiltered wheat beer. I had a little before pouring the rest down the drain. The next day I woke up with a bit of a stomach ache. Not sure if the two are related, but I advice always keeping the growler standing up so the yeast stays on the bottom and then trying to avoid pouring the yeast in the end into your glass.

Serving type: growler

04-15-2010 03:29:35 | More by MikeBrandman
Photo of DNICE555
DNICE555

Connecticut

4.38/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Had this on tap at flatbread with small twink, soupedup, and andrea.

A - Dark brown, tan head.

S - Roasted to the point of burnt burnt coffe, which I quite enjoy. A very distinct take from the brewery. They hit it very nice.

T - Again that pleasant burnt coffee with a caramel sweetness that really lingers.

M - Nice and smooth. Looks very heavy but is actually pretty light.

D - Goes down so easy. Very refreshing. I could have multiple pints of this. I've never really had a beer like this one before. The only other beer I've tried from this brewery is the ten penny ale. Can't wait to seek some more out.

Serving type: on-tap

04-06-2010 13:44:50 | More by DNICE555
Photo of Thads324
Thads324

Connecticut

3.95/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark black into a pint glass...

A : black, unable to see through it. thin tan head dissipated quickly.

S : immediate roasted coffee with a hint of chocolate near the end. A slight aroma of toasted oats and what I think is hops but are blended and overwhelmed by the roastiness.

T : A hint of toffee and then a full on roasted coffee flavor. Not heavy like you would think. It is very smooth, and has almost a burnt caramel flavor that holds on the palate after a few sips.

M : lightly carbonated and lingers slightly.

D : despite the ABV and the hefty looking color, this stuff goes down real easy.

Another winner by Olde Burnside. A nice roasted coffee flavor and extremely drinkable. Unlike any other bottled black and tan I have ever had, but I like it enough to buy it again. As with the last growler of theirs that I bought, this one is super fresh, and my buddy and I had no time polishing it off. I really want to eat this with some steak and potatoes. Highly recommended!

Serving type: growler

03-29-2010 20:05:09 | More by Thads324
Photo of humanbeer
humanbeer

Connecticut

2.93/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This is my first review here on BA, how exciting

Last night I ran into the beer store with only 5 minutes left to buy, I knew I had to act fast so I limited myself only to the selection nearest to the registers. In the first cooler was a wide variety of 8 dollar bombers of Rogue and a few different half gallon jugs. Ive heard of Olde Burnside and since their local I figured I'd give it a chance.

It just wasn't my cup of beer. It poured nicely, very dark; couldnt see through it. Decent head, a little creamy tan color. Smelled roasty; with hints of caramel.

The taste just felt empty. I was expecting a fuller bodied beer. Smooth to drink with a little bit of chocolate. Very dry aftertaste to me. Slightly bitter

My buddy loved it, so it must hit the spot for some people. Just not for me

Serving type: growler

03-13-2010 16:10:37 | More by humanbeer
Photo of Duhast500
Duhast500

Rhode Island

3.53/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the tap into a tasting glass.

The color is a dark burnt brown with some brownish head and some slight lacing.

The smell is pretty malty, mostly dark malty flavor with a hint of a roasty nut flavor.

The taste is biscuty with a nice robust malt finish. Some coffee flavor and a bit of a bitter hop flavor does come out to counteract the sweet feel.

The feel of this beer was a bit of a medium feel. It was pleasing but not too exciting. It did go down pretty smooth and would make a good beer for food pairing.

Serving type: on-tap

02-13-2010 17:56:26 | More by Duhast500
Photo of bum732
bum732

Maryland

3.25/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown, decent bubbly head, good retention. Smells of sweet chocolate and coffee malt, caramel, hint of smokiness. Tastes of chocolatey and caramel like malt. Caramel sweetness dominates with just a hint of smoke. Moderate earthy bitterness giving way to a fairly neutral finish, touch of roasty dryness. Fairly high carbonation for the style, moderate mouthfeel.

An ok beer, way too highly carbonated, luckily this faded with some time. Fairly sweet and pretty one noted, but definitely drinkable.

Serving type: growler

02-08-2010 04:15:09 | More by bum732
Photo of stakem
stakem

Pennsylvania

3.35/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Review from notes taken on 11/21/09

Growler care of my frend Dan who was paying a visit from CT. Pours a dark brown with more than two fingers of tanned creamy head. Lacing about the glass from a slow and steady recession of the thick head of foam. Nose is hoppy with citrus and some malt. Also includes some sweetness and burnt grain akin to chocolate. Taste is minorly bitter upfront. Little bit of the chocolate character comes through as well. Med feel and low carb. Finish is quite crisp. Overall not bad and one of the more flavorful "stock" black and tans.

Serving type: growler

01-29-2010 20:28:45 | More by stakem
Photo of ShogoKawada
ShogoKawada

Rhode Island

3.38/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

64oz Growler @ 1776, $11. Always a sucker for the growlers. Poured into my 1L Lowenbrau seidel. Hell yeah! Bought this one without knowing what style it was... expecting an amber, but it's a black + tan.

A- A huge but weak dirty head that lacks any staying power. Beer itself is a nice, roasted brown, like brownie batter. Head is active but dissipates fast.

S- Rich, sweet malts, not much else. Fairly standard, not bland, but on the border of bland.

T- Better. A smoky, robusto supremo coffee malt goodness takes center stage. Hopped enough to provide some good counterbalance. Not the best B+T, hell, tastes more like a standard stout, but it's tasty nevertheless.

M- Too thin.

D- Fairly high, would have liked a better, fuller mouthfeel, although I'll have no problem finishing off this growler. I can't say I'd buy it again, though, @ 11$ I can get many better growlers for a few bucks cheaper.

Serving type: growler

11-15-2009 22:35:33 | More by ShogoKawada
Photo of Ezone024
Ezone024

Connecticut

3.73/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Growler poured
dark brown color, with thick creamy butterscotch head.

smells of roasted carmel and toffee with bready english malts

tastes like chocolate butter.
and drinks smooth as that sounds!

great beer to drink by your fire place with your dog. throw your sweater on throw on some football and indulge in a growler of TPA's Dirty Penny.

Serving type: growler

10-13-2009 22:07:36 | More by Ezone024
Photo of thekevlarkid
thekevlarkid

Maryland

3.93/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Off the tap at the Bluebird Tavern this beer was an opaque, burned-caramel color with a skim of mocha-like head. The retention was pretty good and the lacing in sliding curtains. The aroma was of mocha, roasted malt, toffee and chocolate. The flavors were equally complex and tawdry. I tasted dark caramel, rich molasses, coffee, chocolate, hints of wood, roasted malt and caramel. Yum. The mouthfeel was creamy, the body full and the carbonation perfect. Sweet and satisfying.

Serving type: on-tap

08-03-2009 17:53:48 | More by thekevlarkid
Photo of dbmcrorie
dbmcrorie

Connecticut

4.25/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation:
64 oz. growler poured into an American pint glass. No freshness date or inclination to the style.

Visual:
Wow. Pours thick into a pitch black body with slight brown hues when held to the light. Massive 3 finger head surprised me, khaki-brown with nice retention. Average lacing and a nice bubbly cap stays on top of the pint till the end.

Aroma:
Buttery diacetyl and rich biscuity malt punches the nose. Soft cocoa and espresso beans in the middle with hop earthiness around the edges. A slight smokiness piques, but doesn't linger. Slightly boozy in the finish. I'm curious to try the two ales on their own and compare which notes come from which brew.

Taste:
Porter-like chocolate and caramel malts create coffee, toffee, roasted almond, vanilla, caramel, and biscuit/bready flavors. Plenty of sweet flavors, but not overly sweet/sugary. Hops provide a decent balance with earthy peat flavors along the back of the tongue. Slight astringency between the hops and darkly roasted malt. There is a faint flash of dark berries somewhere in the middle, but has a hard time being distinguishable with all of that roasted malt. Full bodied with a creamy/oily mouthfeel. Rich chocolatey finish with a boozy cocoa aftertaste.

Overall:
Great version of the bottled Black & Tan style. Normally I can enjoy this style bottled, but am never impressed. However, this definitely took me by surprise; worth buying again. Rich body and a great aroma. Despite it's heaviness, it's extremely drinkable and easy to put back a few pints - glad it came in 64 oz's.
Would pair greatly with any savory or hearty dish, such as corned beef hash, clam chowder, shepherd's pie, etc. Would also stand up to rich chocolate/coffee based desserts such as chocolate cheesecake or tiramisu.

Cheers!

Serving type: growler

07-21-2009 23:23:40 | More by dbmcrorie
Photo of ChugsMugs
ChugsMugs

Maine

3.9/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

bought as a growler and poured into standard chilled pint glass.

A- massive head, solid inch and a half of thick dirty white foam. Almost black in color, charcoal/black licorice, hardly affected by light when held up. Some bubbles collected along the bottom of the glass but none racing up the edges.

S- faint sweetness, molasses maybe. Hard to fully describe the scent other than it definitely had some sweet tones to it.

T- pretty sweet in taste. not rich or bitter. most tastes are faint and subtle of molasses or chocolate. Complex blending of subtle tastes with no single one overpowering the rest.

M- not creamy but not thin either. A perfect balance. mild dryness left on tongue. Faint leftover taste in mouth made me take sips quicker than usual to get it back on my tongue for identification.

D- bought the growler hoping to split it between two nights, but enjoyed it too much to put down. Just subtle and not overpowering enough to pour glass after glass, but not weak enough to mistake for poor quality. I will gladly get it another one!

Serving type: growler

06-22-2009 19:58:26 | More by ChugsMugs
Photo of bgjohnston
bgjohnston

Connecticut

3.8/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

I have enjoyed several growlers of this beer. It pours dark, with a nice head and good carbonation at first, but it goes flat if you don't finish the growler in 1 night. Probably normal, but too bad since I can't buy it in smaller containers.

Taste is smooth, with roasted chocolate flavor, and very drinkable. Not so drinkable that I can pound away the whole growler in one sitting, but very enjoyable as a refreshing beverage in warmer weather.

Serving type: growler

01-16-2009 21:03:53 | More by bgjohnston
Photo of deltatauhobbit
deltatauhobbit

Maine

3.2/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Found this for the first time in Maine and was pleasantly surprised, I've been wanting to try something from Olde Burnside for a while now.

Pours a dark brown, almost black color, a little light shines through for some dark ruby hues, great sized head that fades slowly to leave some decent lacing.

Smell has a weird metallic aroma to it, not all that pleasant, slight caramel aroma.

Taste is rather bland, has that metallic feeling that the smell had, good carbonation, seems to me that they might have soaked some dirty pennies in this beer for its signature flavor.

Bit disappointed but hopefully I'll get a chance to try some of their other offerings in the future.

Serving type: growler

12-27-2008 23:08:42 | More by deltatauhobbit
Photo of OtherShoe2
OtherShoe2

Massachusetts

3.58/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured a dark brown out of the growler with a full rocky tan head and good lace.

Lots of toasted malt here, bready scents, maybe some hop.

Toasted maltiness, brown bready, some hop bitterness, and hints of sweetness -- maybe a little vanilla. Pretty decent. Fresh brew flavors.

This is medium bodied with substantial amount of carbonation. Maybe would have liked it to have a little less.

Overall, you can put these down. Wish it was available in a bomber or smaller, and not in a $10.00 growler, but hey...why am I bitching -- right next to it was a $16.00 Rogue Dead Guy Growler! This was very decent. Worth the try.

Serving type: growler

10-03-2008 23:12:42 | More by OtherShoe2
Photo of erosier
erosier

Connecticut

3.6/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark brown/black from the growler with a light airy caramel colored head that is huge - something like 3 fingers. It smells of dark malted grains and some light hoppiness, almost a homebrew smell to it. The taste is pretty good. Mostly a roasted grain taste to it with a hint of chocolate aftertaste. Not much hop flavor to it, but it seems to be there. The mouthfeel is nice and velvety and it is a decently drinkable beer. Definately worth a try.

Serving type: growler

12-26-2007 13:35:11 | More by erosier
Photo of Gambrinus1184
Gambrinus1184

Connecticut

3.68/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a growler into my frosted Ten Penny pint glass.

A: Pours a very nice brownish-black color that reflects dark ruby when held up to the light. A nice two-finger tan head billows to the top and fades to a decent lace.

S: An aroma of french vanilla coffee and toasted bready malts swirls into my nose. No real hop presence detected.

T: Those toasted malts are in full effect, but with a very slight herbal hop mixed in. It tastes more like a deep, burnt mahogany brown ale, then again, pre-packaged Black & Tans are sort of a unique style all their own.

M: It's a medium-light bodied brew. There's a bit more carbonation in the mouthfeel than what I'd expected, but then again, who knows what makes up the lager portion of this Black & Tan.

D: It's flavorful, light enough to drink for a session, and uses its relatively average ABV to full advantage. I'd pick up a growler of this again.

I think Ten Penny is one of the better Conn. breweries, but still has a pretty limited scope in terms of styles. Though I'm used to drinking layered Guinness and Harp black and tans, I think their blended version is better than average.

Serving type: growler

09-02-2007 19:44:06 | More by Gambrinus1184
Photo of WesWes
WesWes

New York

3.08/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

The beer pours a cloudy brown color with a thick frothy tan head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is sour almost lambic like. I think this might have sat a while. It has a mild caramel/roasted scent. The taste is average. It has a light and easy drinking flavor that boasts of pale, crystal, and roasted malts. It goes down easy, but it has a sour finish. I guess the yeast has given it some off flavors. Anyway, the mouthfeel is decent. It is a medium bodied beer with adequate carbonation. I would have liked to try this one fresh out of the tanks. As it is, I think I drank a sat beer that was past it's prime.

Serving type: growler

08-03-2007 10:42:26 | More by WesWes
Dirty Penny Ale from The Olde Burnside Brewing Company
82 out of 100 based on 107 ratings.