Brother Thelonious | North Coast Brewing Co.

very good
3,017 Ratings
Read the review
Brother TheloniousBrother Thelonious

Brewed by:
North Coast Brewing Co.
California, United States

Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.40%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
"Vital Statistics

Style: Belgian Style Strong Dark
Color: Dark mahogany
ABV: 9.4%
Bitterness: 32 IBU's"

Added by sloejams on 05-04-2006

For Trade:
View: Beers | Events
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 3,017 |  Reviews: 1,057
Photo of KYGunner
3.66/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Deep mahogany color with a back drop of brownish light there was an impressive amount of carbonation. Off white head was creamy and thick and coalesced to a single unit.

Light plum and date aromas with a metallic tinge. Hints of molasses and wine finish the scent, albeit a very light one.

Strong plum and prune finish with a harsh alcohol taste. Maybe raisin in there but it's ruined by the brashness of the metallic alcohol. The feel aligns with the taste as dry metallic alcohol warms the chest.

I was really excited by this Strong Ale by one of my favorite breweries but it just didn't measure up to the excitement.

 622 characters

Photo of gwiedman1
4.25/5  rDev +12.1%

Photo of dabeers
4.25/5  rDev +12.1%

Photo of wrightst
4.25/5  rDev +12.1%

Photo of JHurley
2.5/5  rDev -34%

Photo of Jason
3.5/5  rDev -7.7%

Photo of bbrown12
3.5/5  rDev -7.7%

Photo of Groomsy
3.64/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

12 oz. bottle poured into an Orval chalice.

Murky crimson/brown body with a light tan head that dissipates quickly and leaves a little lacing down the glass.

Very nice aroma on this one. I pick up different kinds of dark fruits (I'm really reminded of plums and cherries), toffee, caramel, and some brown sugar with a big whiff of some alcohol. A less yeast-forward nose on this than I expected, but still very nice.

The taste starts with a big spicy note (coriander/cloves?) that transitions into a sugary, fruity sweetness on the middle of the tongue - I'm reminded again of cherries and plums. There is a steady toffee/caramel flavor underneath all of this, and the beer finishes with a bready, sweet finish and drying alcohol. Quite good.

For a Belgian-style ale, this has a remarkably heavy body. It still has the effervescent carbonation expected from this style, and finishes with an alcoholic dryness.

A very solid American interpretation of the Abbey style, with some of the yeast characteristics toned way down. Quite good and drinkable, though the alcohol heat tends to grow as the beer warms.

 1,109 characters

Photo of drrone
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

Photo of Gww1864
4/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of AAG
3.24/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a cold bottle into a pint glass after warming for a few minutes...

Appearance - Dark mahogany; opaque; lighter color at the bottom of the glass, darker at the top; poured a nice, thick 2-3 finger head but that head faded almost instantly, still ringing nicely on the rim of the glass itself.

Smell - Butterscotch; toffee; grains; fruity/slightly zesty; syrup

Taste - Butterscotch; syrup; heavy alcohol content (over 9%) masked well

Mouthfeel - Viscous; thick; yet smooth; easy on the palate...

Overall - Not the best Belgian Strong Dark Ale but still one that I am happy to drink on occasion. Reminds me of a dopplebach for some reason (though I am still generally a neophyte in this area). Easily accessible in area beer stores so I'm sure I'll have it again...

 779 characters

Photo of canawler
3/5  rDev -20.8%

Photo of QuakeAttack
4.25/5  rDev +12.1%

Photo of RobertColianni
3.5/5  rDev -7.7%

Photo of Chokobo
4/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of SadMachine
3.5/5  rDev -7.7%

Photo of Tiernan
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

Photo of Gtotango
3/5  rDev -20.8%

Photo of sullaspiaggia
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

Photo of SFNC
4.18/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Morey
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

Photo of JamesQuaff
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

Photo of cozmo
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

Photo of MVotter
4.1/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - The Brother Thelonius pours into a chalice the color of caramel. It has an ample 1-inch tan head.

S - Butterscotch, malts, brown sugar

T - Caramel roasted malts, licorice, toffee

M - Lots of effervescence, medium-heavy.

O - It's not Ommegang's Abbey Ale, but it's pretty substantial. Delicious. Not too heavy or rich. 9.4% abv is masked extremely well. Very nice.

 371 characters

Photo of williahd
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

Brother Thelonious from North Coast Brewing Co.
3.79 out of 5 based on 3,017 ratings.
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.

    Learn More
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.

    Learn More
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.

    Learn More