Bootlegger Brown Ale | Independence Brewing Co.

194 Ratings
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Bootlegger Brown AleBootlegger Brown Ale

Brewed by:
Independence Brewing Co.
Texas, United States

Style: American Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Xadoor on 10-13-2004

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 194 |  Reviews: 75
Photo of ATXRyan
5/5  rDev +40.8%

Photo of amalahow
4.96/5  rDev +39.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Photo of BeerRun13
4.62/5  rDev +30.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

thanks ot kbub6f.
First of all I really like the label on the bottle. The name is also cool... reminds me of stories my aunt used to tell me of a great uncle of mine being a rum runner.
The beer poured a dark, dark brown with a glimmer of red. Tan head that disipated quickly leaving a small amount of lace.
The chocolate and slight coffee notes tell me I'm in for a real treat. There's also some sort of toasty aroma to it.
Wow! This is one tasty beverage. Chocolatey and a slight bit of coffee as the aroma suggests. A toasty toffee flavor is there and gets stronger... and better as it warms. A little bitterness is in here too.
Full bodied and very smooth. This beer seems much like a porter to me but maybe not quite as heavy.
Drinkability you ask... Damn, I wish I had a 12 pack of this beer!

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Photo of chrismo
4.5/5  rDev +26.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of jandadeboer
4.5/5  rDev +26.8%

Photo of Xadoor
4.3/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Independence beers had previously only been available on-tap, but are now available in bottle as well.

Poured a clear, deep brown with a nice beige head. Foam dissipated quickly with some lacing in the glass. Aroma is malty and sweet with a hint of chocolate and toffee. Slightly sweet with smooth and rich chocolate flavours to start and finishes with a slightly bitter coffee flavour. Mouthfeel was a little thinner then I was expecting, but still a very drinkable beer and a great brown ale.

I'll definitely be drinking more of it during the winter months as my tastes shift with the seasons. I also discovered that it goes really well with buttered popcorn while I was watching a flick at the Alamo Drafthouse Theatre.

 729 characters

Photo of vincehayter
4.29/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of cracgor
4.29/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I was a little hesitant with this beer because I don't tend to like cartoon looking bottles. It is relatively local though and I thought I would give it a try. It was a very pleasant surprise. It has a nice appearance and a great nutty aroma and flavor. A very drinkable beer. If I was going to improve anything, it would be to bring out more toffee like flavors in the taste, but I might get another bottle in the near future.

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Photo of dustyonbass
4.25/5  rDev +19.7%

Photo of ret3
4.25/5  rDev +19.7%

Photo of RicoFalcon
4.25/5  rDev +19.7%

Photo of ckeegan04
4.18/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Dark brown with faint ruby highlights when held up to light. Solid, creamy two finger brown head. Excellent retention and light rings of lace left behind.

S - Nutty aroma with a faint hint of toasted bread. A somewhat spicy somewhat fruity aroma begins to strengthen as the beer warms.

T - Very nutty initially with hints of chocolate and roasted malts. Dark fruits and spice come through mid drink and finishes bitter sweet. Very well rounded tastes.

M/D - Medium bodied with light but adequate carbonation. Really easy drinking. Not my favorite style, but an excellent brown ale.

 588 characters

Photo of Redrover
4.17/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was another local option at Opal Divines. Served in a shaker pint, the beer is a reddish brown with just a skim of a tan head.

The nose is of lightly charred malts, a hint of wood smoke and some sweet brown sugar.

The taste is a solid mix of roasted malts, brown sugar like sweetness, brown bread and a bit of dark chocolate in the aftertaste.

The mouth is solid and pleasantly thickish. Very nice sessionable beer. My favorite of the evening. If I would have started with this one, I never would have switched.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.15/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Acquired from hojuwestlake, so a big “Thank you” goes out to him. Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep brown color with a thin off-white head that fades quickly and leaves a thin but even lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of coffee, maple and roasted malt with a slight touch of hops in the background.

T: The taste is very creamy and malty with flavors of coffee, maple, a little chocolate and a touch of spice. There’s a very mild hops presence but it definitely keeps the beer’s sweetness from overwhelming you. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and very smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is sticky.

D: Very tasty, goes down easily, slightly filling, good representation of style, I could see myself enjoying a few of these in an evening. The only drawback would be that I might get a little full after 3 or 4 of them. Overall however, this is a very good beer.

 949 characters

Photo of Gagnonsux
4.1/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The color is brown with a thin, off-white head. Bootlegger has a pleasent roasted aroma with notes of coffee and chocolate. The taste is much of the same. The roasted flavor really stands out and makes this beer great. Coffee and chocolate tastes intertwine with the roasted character and complete the experience. This is great stuff, but seems a little more like an American stout than a brown ale. Anyhow, I enjoyed this and hope it arrives in bottles soon.

 459 characters

Photo of ppoitras
4.08/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle from assurbanipaul as part of Too Much Beer (2MB) BIF. Thanks for the opportunity.

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 1/2" dark tan head over the clear ruby brown brew. Head fades but is still with us, and lacing is plentiful. Aroma is hearty grains, mostly of the dark persuasion, although maybe not as intense as I would hope. Taste is sweet dark malts upfront, with light hoppiness present but not enough to balance. Mouthfeel is ultra-smooth, and drinkability is very nice, although sweetness might get overwhelming after a while. Very nice brown, and even though it's not one of my favorite styles, I have to appreciate this one.

 660 characters

Photo of kbub6f
4.04/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Dog & Duck.

It's a very dark brown, hazy, muddy. The head is quite dense, slightly tan-colored off-white, and small but persistent. Nice aroma: lots of burnt toffee, sweetish, a little bitter, dark chocolate. Loads of burnt toffee up front, less sweet than I was expecting. Some powdery bitter cocoa in the middle. Quite flat and oily, but full and thick. The finish is coffee and bitter chocolate. Really, quite bitter, and a touch chemically. Overall, this is a good beer. It's more aggressive than I was expecting from a new brewery with such tame charter styles. It inspires hope.

 597 characters

Photo of Dubblebock
4.03/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The Bootlegger Brown is one of Independence Brewing's bottled offerings, and it's a really good introduction to their beers. Independence Brewing is still fairly new here in Austin, and their bottled lineup is still a little difficult to find. I picked up this sixer at the south Central Market for $7.99. Nice label on the bottle.

The Bootlegger Brown pours with a decent sized head and an opaque brown body. The nose is slightly sweet and malty.

Tastewise, you get a lot of dark coffee with nutty overtones. Very dry on the palate. Slight hint of hops on the backside, but the malts are clearly the star of this production.

Thin to medium body. Decent mouthfeel. Dry but tasty finish. Very drinkable.

Good effort from Independence Brewing. It's a good representative of the style, and it's clearly crafted with some pride. Good show all around.

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Photo of JMad
4.02/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I drank this from an English pub glass..

It pours a dark brown color with a thin tan head that quickly faded. The smell is mainly roasted nuts with a background of chocolate and caramel. The taste is roasted malt up front then gets smoothed over by sweet milk chocolate and toffee, there is just a slight earthy bitterness in the aftertaste. It's medium bodied and very smooth with low carbonation. This is a well done brown ale, it's perfectly balanced between sweet and roasted.

 481 characters

Photo of Atlas1
4.02/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I had never been terribly impressed by any of the other Independence beers, but we had a Texas Independence Day party last week and, fittingly, we served some of these. I had my first one tonight and was surprisingly impressed.

Pours a rich dark brown color with hues of ruby and mahogany that shine through when the beer is held up to the light. Decent one-finger tan head that dissipates quickly, and not much lace to speak of. The nose is where you first realize that this beer is a cut above the rest of the Independence brews. Sweet and malty with some dark fruit, molasses, toffee, milk chocolate, coffee, and fig. A distant smoky aroma is present here as well. Taste follows suit, delivering up some nice malty sweet flavors. Rich, but not syrupy sweet. Some dry hoppiness in the back of the mouth and the finish. A tad watery in the mouthfeel but a fine consistency on the whole.

I really like this beer much more than I expected to. Nice and malty. Smooth and soft with a dry finish. A totally sessionable beer at 6% ABV as well. Perhaps the only beer from Independence that I'd return to consistently, but a nice brown ale to revisit. I'd like to try this on tap sometime as well.

 1,193 characters

Photo of KTCamm
4.01/5  rDev +13%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

4/3....very dark brown, blacker atop, light flecks at the base. Some white foam sits atop. Nutty nose, coffee hints too. Hazelnut taste, firm bitter. Chewy caramel taste further in. Hint of root beer. Tasty.

 207 characters

Photo of JuniperJesus
4/5  rDev +12.7%

Photo of jheezee
4/5  rDev +12.7%

Photo of ExaltedNecrosis
4/5  rDev +12.7%

Photo of MurphyMacManus
4/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz. bottle into pint glass

A: deep mahogany with a cream-colored head that sticks around.

S: heavy on the malt, slight roasted note, caramelized sweetness? Definitely a little nutty, like roasted nuts.

T/M: Malty sweet, nutty, some caramel, very low bitterness. Carbonation off-sets what could be cloying and lightens the feel a bit. Malt sweetness gives nice body.

D: Great example of a brown ale. Doesn't push the envelope, but it hits all the important points for the style. It is a bit strong to session, though, as much as I might like to.

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Bootlegger Brown Ale from Independence Brewing Co.
3.55 out of 5 based on 194 ratings.
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