Samuel Smith's Nut Brown Ale | Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)

1,471 Reviews
Samuel Smith's Nut Brown AleSamuel Smith's Nut Brown Ale

Brewed by:
Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)
England, United Kingdom

Style: English Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 07-11-2001

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Reviews: 1,471 | Ratings: 3,855
Photo of sokol_1993
4.13/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Look: dark brown, with a good amount of head that lasted for sometimes and laced around the glass.
Taste: Very creamy, and as its name, quite nutty too. Quite dry also, with some bitterness from the roasted malt. Little hop taste.

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Photo of kitschiguy
4.85/5  rDev +19.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

355ml bottle into 350ml beer glass.

Poured a nice dark redish brown with a good head which died and left a film. Lots of lacing. Looks great.

Nose is lovely - complex - notes of coffee and coffee coming through with raisins, dark fruit and molasses. Lovely.

Palate is wonderful - complex malts with coffee, buitterscotch, nuts, cherries and a faint vermouth note. Super stuff.

Mouth is nice - quite full. Pefect.

I had this beer once before in a bar and although I liked it I was expecting more because of all the good reviews I'd read. That was after a few. This is a beer that needs to be appreciated - it's not a session beer. One has to be prepared to fully appreciate the complexity.

Highly recommended.

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Photo of AZBeerDude72
4.74/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Love this beer. Has a very nice aroma upon opening, pour is great, dark and nice foamy head, recommend a nice gobbler style glass. I prefer it very cold, seems to improve its character more. Very nice flavor and texture. Long time drinker of this beer and never have been let down. Good in summer or winter.

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Photo of Bruno74200
4.09/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Complex yet simple. Good balanced between the butterscotch from the malt and the herbal English hops. Better enjoy at room temperature. The smell Is mostly of dark fruit. A real benchmark for the style

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Photo of RizanTastingBeer
4.02/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a mason jar.

Look: Pours a very dark amber. Pillowy, light khaki head with smaller bubbles. Moderate, patchy lacing.

Aroma: Notes of toffee and caramel, as well as tree nuts which for me were most associated with pecan. Also a dark cherry note as well as some chocolate roastiness. Subtle herbal and earthy aromas in addition to a light rose flower note.

Taste: Toasty malts reminiscent of caramel, pecan and toffee up front, with a spicy, earthy background. Bitterness is assertive, especially in the finish; which opens up to perfumy rose, cherry, and chocolate notes.

Feel: Medium body beer with a noticeable level of carbonation that finishes rather dry.

Overall: It's a very palatable ale. I was anticipating a bit more body from this "classic" British brown, but it was nonetheless pleasing and rather crisp, not unlike a mild ale or English bitter, and definitely having very similar hop and yeast characteristics in the background, but more nut and toffee/chocolate qualities. Recommend serving on the warmer side, as the characteristics of the beer really only begin to shine above about 45 degrees F.

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Photo of Tomais
4.45/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A beautiful beer!
Needs an open pint glass -- my glass was too narrow leaving the beer too carbonated.
Needs to be cellar temperature as opposed to fridge: it got better and better as it warmed, but then it was gone...
Must see can I get more and give it a proper review during the week.

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Photo of Beginner2
4.09/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

With Beer Advocates giving this the unique position of being highest and most-often rated beer in its style, it will be hard for me to improve on all that has been said.
The simple pleasure of admiring Nut Brown in a Samuel Smith nonic, is equalled by the malty caramel aromas, but is surpassed in the simple, nutty, full taste and the subtle hops, balanced, soft mouthfeel that, somehow, finishes dry. A classic that highlights, if not defines, the English yeast character.

Listed in the "1001 Beers To Taste Before You Die."
MJ's "Guide" gave it only 3 of 4 stars, but said "it is the maltiest, nuttiest example of the style in Britain."
Seems hard to argue with that.

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Photo of StringsAreWings
4.44/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I am really starting to understand why Samuel Smith's has been around for so long.

L: Pours a beautiful deep dark amber with a two finger head. The head takes a good 5 minutes to fully recede to a thin layer and halo leaving behind beautiful lacing on the glass.

S: Smells a bit malty at first with only the slightest booziness right after pouring but there is also a smooth, sweet, nutty scent there that gives away the treasure ahead.

T: Wow. This is an amazing brown ale. Probably the best I have tried. The malt is perfectly balanced as is the mild nut flavor and there is a sweetness to the whole affair that is not overboard but just enough. Very impressed.

F: As with most Samuel Smith's I have tried the feel is close to perfect. Just enough carbonation and you can tell the water they brag about is more than marketing. They claim it to be 'dry' on the label but I don't know that I would describe it that way. A slightly dry finish perhaps.

Overall this is an utterly fantastic brown ale that is of a highest quality like all of Samuel Smith's beers. I would buy it again and most certainly will.

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Photo of AleMan66
4.46/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I poured this into a clear teardrop beer glass. A really nice light brown color with almost a three finger head. The taste is nutty and creamy--almost beer heaven for me. Lightly, but perfectly carbonated. The best nut brown ale I've ever had.

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Photo of GStone899
3.58/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

A solid beer and a good drinker, but a 100 rating? Come on. Is there money exchanging hands here? Anyway, the beer had a very nutty smell with a brown color that is seethrough. Taste is nutty as well but a little watery which is where it dissapoints. If this was less watery I'd score it the 4.5 range but unfortunately there may be too much 1754 well water in this one.

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Photo of 911CROFT
3.9/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

550ml bottle into a tulip. Paid £2.49 for a single bottle.

Pours a clear, dark, shiny, chestnut body that transforms to a bright ruby when held to the light. A tall, foamy, three-finger in height, beige coloured head dissipates quickly, leaving behind patchy bands of soapy lace.

The nose consists primarily of lightly roasted malts, and subtler aromas of fruity yeast and floral hops. Taste roughly follows suit. Lightly roasted malts, traces of caramel and touches of slightly sweet toasted barley/ grain lead the flavour profile upfront. Towards the middle, faint fruity yeast becomes noticeable, along with some earthy, vaguely nutty flavours. On the end, moderately bitter floral hops and dry roasted grains provide excellent balance to the initial sweetness, while touches of burnt caramel have the last say, as they are left lingering on the palate. In the mouth, a medium body and moderately lively carbonation give a smooth and crisp feel that dries out just enough in the finish to encourage another sip.

Overall this is a very good beer. It’s well balanced, easy drinking and refreshing but the nuttiness and toffee flavours I enjoy in the style are a little underplayed. As a session beer, its low ABV% and huge drinkability combined with just enough character to keep you interested however would make it an excellent choice for this purpose. Recommended.

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Photo of Slowjamcdub
3.75/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Nothing bad about this beer. I really like the bio of it on the back. Something cool about getting a beer from another country. The names are a bit odd. Samuel smith? Micheal Jackson's brewing co??? Idk. But a pretty good beer. B+

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Photo of SLeffler27
3.76/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Almost clear, dark amber in a nonic glass with big occasional bubbles of carbonation. A two-inch khaki froth lasts a few minutes before settling to a blanket leaving thick patches of lace.

Sweet malts and cookie dough pair with cocoa powder, while faint floral hops dance in the background. Other notes of cashew butter and caramel are present, while warmth brings out peanut skins.

This brown ale is more bitter than expected and is distinctly reminiscent of Triscuit crackers. Cashews and caramel feature prominently, while buttered English muffin is also present. The finish is long, with a bitter astringency.

Medium body with a woolly texture and fine, prickly carbonation. Alcohol has a higher presence than expected, which accentuates metallic notes.

This is a decent drinking beer that would pair well with football and quesadillas. While age may be a factor in this sample, without a freshness date, the consumer has no means of knowing.

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Photo of Gauss
3.7/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

I really don't see how this is a 100 for the bros. That means they drank this beer and decided that there was no other beer better than this....THE QUEST IS OVER?!?? But seriously, it is a good beer, but far from "perfect" and not worth the money in my humble opinion.

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Photo of stevoj
3.38/5  rDev -17%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Overly sweet brown beer, with some nutty characteristics, along with the toasted malt. Dark brown with minimal beige head. Medium weight, somewhat dry finish and sweetness lingering afterwards.

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Photo of PhillyB
3.89/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This was among the first three Samuel Smith beers I tried. Like the others, I was not disappointed.

Look: Basic brown ale, like a dark walnut finish. Small but lasting head.

Smell: Light, chocolate, nuts, dried fruits.

Taste: Same as the smell. Quite light, dominated by chocolate and nuts with dried fruits bringing up the rear. Very pleasant.

Feel: Again light, but quite pleasant.

Overall: Not as oomph as say Ithaca Nut Brown, but a little more developed. I might buy it again, and would definitely enjoy it again.

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Photo of manfromanotherplace
4.35/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Looks a bit thin, but feels much thicker than it appears.Smell is subtle but nutty, the taste is excellent, bready pudding and malts upfront washed down with a superb nutty taste which lingers, no nonsense stuff, one of the best brown ales ive ever tried, these guys could be the best in Britain.

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Photo of Bonkinishwa
4.1/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Samuel Smith Old Brewery - Samuel Smith's Nut Brown Ale. 5% ABV. 12oz bottle poured into standard pint glass.

Look: Pours a dark amber/copper color. Semi aggressive pour yielded a small white head, that quickly dissipates into lacing.

Smell: Strong dark fruits, plums, black cherries, figs, and some faint chocolate, caramel, and nutty tones.

Feel: Creamy, rich, and carbonated. Very smooth and easy to drink.

Taste: Semi sweet dark fruits, some chocolate and caramel tones, with a nuttiness backing them. Also a unique taste from what I assume is the well water this beer is brewed with. Very pleasant.

Overall: This was the first Brown Ale style I tried, when I first got into craft beer. It has a very good reputation, and its well deserved. Very rich body and flavor, not overpowering. Very pleasant and easy to drink.

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Photo of q33jeff
3.42/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Clean Aroma…nothing sticks out….maybe too cold. Opaque Copper appearance. Small but lasting head, Feel is Leathery, but smooth.
Side by side Brown Ale tasting:

1. DuClaw x11 Mesquite Smoked Brown Ale
2. Rogue Hazelnut Nectar (4.01)
3. Clown Shoes Brown Angel (3.99)
4. Samuel Smith's Nut Brown Ale (3.42)
5. DuClaw Euforia
6. Voodoo Wynonna's Big Brown Ale

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Photo of davesfolly
4.62/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

OK in keeping with the all 5's advice I had to go with 4.5. Add another .5 here.

The appearance of this beereminds me of Ancient Times in beer land. Dark with a generous amount of foamy goodness rising out of the top of the Pint and standing on it's own a full inch and a half above the rim.

Smells like chocolate and Pumpernickel bread. I am not a person with good sinuses though and it may smell completely different to other people.

Tastes like the Nectar of the Gods. Really. This is one of the most temperature tolerant beers on my shortlist.
You know when other things are going on you may not get back to your beer right away! So it is good warm or cold. I think you could put some in a cup and warm it in the microwave and it would still taste like fresh pumpernickel bread. Some nutty flavor almost like almonds also. But like I said, my sinuses have seen better days.

Others have noted that it is remarkably light on the palette and I agree. Sometimes you want a Guinness and sometimes you don't. This is one refreshing nut brown ale!

It really is a world class brown ale!

Thanks for making it for the last 300 years or whatever!

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Photo of gmoneyproductions
3.99/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

550 ml bottle poured into a pint glass
pours amber brown with a moderate off white to tan head
smell is malty and caramel initially with some fruit and chocolate notes as it warmed
taste is malty caramel and slightly fruity
feel is dry
solid overall
i am not a huge brown ale drinker but prefer tommyknocker imperial nut brown and oskar blues one nut brown

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Photo of Pantalones
4.16/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Written from notes from last night; had no access to a computer at the time so I couldn't post it up at the time. Had a bottle of this from a mixed pack at the local beer/wine store, after rave reviews from my sister who refers to this one as the best beer she's had so far. Wasn't able to find a clear date stamp, but I know these haven't been in the store more than a couple months so I'm not worried about age.

Color is a nice dark red-brown; sort of a chestnut-brown type color, hence the name. Huuuuge head of light tan foam on top, just barely fitting into the glass (had to slow down toward the end of the pour and be really careful just to avoid any overflow; foam still ended up rising up maybe half an inch above the top of the glass.) With the aid of my phone's screen, I can see that the beer is mostly clear (with maybe just a tiny bit of haze at most), with a good number of rising bubbles. The foam on top gradually shrinks, leaving thick bubbly trails behind along the insides of the glass as it went, but never quite disappeared entirely while I was drinking. So fluffy-looking that it reminds me of a milkshake or melting ice cream almost. Have to say, this is probably the nicest-looking brown ale I've seen.

Smells really nice too -- sweet, rich, malty sorts of things, really making me think of caramel more than anything. Doesn't seem to change much (if at all) over time, but it's a really nice smell so that's not exactly a bad thing.

On the first sip, the flavor is surprisingly mild considering just how strongly caramelly the smell was -- but still very good. Really nice dark bread sort of flavor going on that seems to linger as an aftertaste for a long time after a drink. On the second sip I'm noticing that there's a quick burst of caramel-like sweetness right away, then it's like a whole slice of dark whole-grain bread, both the crust and the inner bready parts. As I'm getting further in the glass I'm noticing a bit more of the caramelly sweetness coming through after the initial burst, though the bread/bread-crust flavor is still the most noticeable. At around 1/3 of a glass left, I'm noticing a distinct nutty flavor, mostly in the aftertaste and (interestingly) when I breathe out after drinking some. Kind of reminds me of walnuts?

Feel is really nice too -- it's surprisingly light for something so dark brown in color, but soft and bubbly rather than ever feeling fizzy or watery.

Overall impression is that this is like a drastically better version of Newcastle Brown Ale -- I can tell they're both the same style of beer (dark brown, lighter body, caramel flavor/smell, very drinkable) but this is just so much MORE in pretty much every way. Very good beer! I'm thinking I'll be going back and grabbing a full pack of these at some point in the future.

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Photo of Back_in_the_Saddle
3.79/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours brown and leaves the same colored body that gives a spectacular one finger foamy off white head. Some nice spotty foamy lacing is observed. The body is too dark for any carbonation to be seen rising; the aroma has a fair amount of nuts, caramel malts up front, hops slightly in the background; the flavor is exactly the same; its fairly easy on the palate with a good creaminess all around; overall well worthy to come back to

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Photo of Brew_42
4.06/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark reddish Amber with a beige head that leaves lacing and lasts a while.

Smells like caramel and malts. A little bit of molasses too.

Taste follows the nose Up front and leaves a dry nutty aftertaste.

Mouthfeel medium and dry

Overall a decent brown ale. Fairly cheap given the quality.

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Photo of sjdevel
3.95/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A decent head with a moderate pour from a 550ml bottle. The color is a crystal clear dark reddish-copper color. Not much carbonation. The head recedes quickly.

Tart fruity smell at first, then a rush of sweet caramel, wood, nuts, chocolate, and coffee.

First wave of flavors are sour and of fruit (apple, grape, peach). Only a slight bitterness from hops. There are smoked grain, wood, and roasted nut flavors next. As the beer finishes (a tad bit dry), you are left with hints of toffee, coffee, and tobacco.

Medium+ body (higher end just before truly reaching full). A tad dry and a bit oily feeling.

This was good but was too much on the sour side for me to really like it. I believe all of Samuel Smith's beers are fermented in the open where wild yeast and other things can dive in. I am not a fan of soured beers as to me, they seem like they have spoiled. Still decent as there are many other flavors to offset sourness. I have heard about this as being a benchmark Brown Ale, but I don't believe it lives up to the hype.

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Samuel Smith's Nut Brown Ale from Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)
4.07 out of 5 based on 3,855 ratings.
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