The Don | Minneapolis Town Hall Brewery

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11 Ratings

Brewed by:
Minneapolis Town Hall Brewery
Minnesota, United States

Style: Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
This Special Bitter was made in memory of Don Younger of the famed Horse Brass Pub in Portland, OR. Thanks, Don, for inventing beer bars!

Added by kbutler1 on 03-07-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 11 |  Reviews: 9
Photo of mattmarka1
4/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of millelacsmark
4/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of Chriscrundwell12
3.73/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured on tap into a 10 oz snifter

A- Head dissipates quickly, brown copper appearance, very clear, filtered, little if any carbonation, lacing sticks to the glass.
S- Sweet, caramel, molasses, hints of dark fruits, brown sugar, malts as well.
T- Malts, toffee, caramel, it’s definitely a sipper, slight bitterness as well, very warming as it goes down your throat.
M- Low carbonation, medium mouth feel, very sticky on the palate.
O- Unique brew, very tasty, it’s a sipper, warms up the stomach; it’s a decent beer, but not one that really stands out.

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Photo of tewaris
3.7/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Clear and deep honey orange with an off white creamy head. The head retention and lacing are good for the the size of the head.

With rich residual sugars, notes of fruit (banana, caramelized apple), and dark fruit, this beer has the potential for greatness. And still, the presence of this beer is unimpressive. The body is thin and the excellent flavors don't seem to last on the palate.

Finish is slightly tannic, noticeably so with warmth, and sweet, even though strong bitterness kicks in towards the end. I think that the bitterness is a little discordant.

Eventually the alcohol gets noticeable to an interfering extent and definitely affects the scores.

As noted, there is potential for greatness but needs tweaking. And the lack of body is a minus.

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Photo of ccrida
3.72/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

As a Portlandian whose had the pleasure of pints with Don, I'm very happy to see MTH paying him the respect he deserves with an honorary brew.
On draught at the Town Hall, The Don is is pale chestnut brown with a small off-white head leaving no lace.

Smell is malty, a bit sweet, hint of leafy hops, some all-spice.

Taste is similar, pretty generic malty strong ale. I can taste the ESB influence, some breadiness, but really not a lot of character. Pretty similar to his Rogue imperial ESB, I'm sure he would have enjoyed it, it's smoothness being it's best attribute. A little graham cracker on the finish is nice.

Mouthfeel is fully carbonated, but soft, and medium-light bodied.

Drinkability is pretty high, I can definitely see slugging back these more then I realized, would be a good beer for a long session of BS at the brass. Miss you Don, thanks for all you did for good beer in Portland and beyond!

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Photo of mothman
3.28/5  rDev -13%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours 1/2 finger of off white head. Good retention with lace left all the way. Color is a clear amber copper.

Aroma: Very Malty. A lot of English flavored malts. Grassy bittering hops. Caramel and biscuits. Pale malts also.

Taste: Sweet. Toffee and caramel. Big biscuit flavors. Grassy and weedy. Has a flavor I can't figure out. It is kind of buttery. Very English-like.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, but dry. Medium bodied with a medium amount of carbonation. Ends dry and sticky.

Overall: I liked the infused ones better. This was straight up English, but very hoppy for an English beer. Decent.

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

On tap at the brewery poured into a sampler glass. Clear copper red pour, a decent amount of very light brown head, ok lacing and retention. Aroma is a bit of sweet malt, some biscuit, floral hops, some grass. Flavor is malt forward, with sweet crystal flavors giving way to decent hop bitterness on the back end. Quite creamy. Overall, a fairly enjoyable brew that is a fitting tribute to Don!

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Photo of younger35
3.26/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A special Bitter honoring Don Younger. Pretty big Bitter at 8% but I do enjoy this style a lot. Drank from a generic pint glass.

Appearance- Pours a light copper orange with a decently fluffy half fingered bright white head. A nice cap and collar are maintained along with a touch of random lacing.
Smell- Like most Bitters the nose isn't overpowering or particularly exciting. A light grassy hop is present that leans toward almost dirty or earthy. A touch of malt sweetness is discernable as light caramel wafts about.
Taste- Starts lightly bitter (seriously) with the same sort of grassy hoppiness I got in the nose. Its earthy and vegetable like in its hoppiness. A light sweetness hides under everything with a touch of toast and brown sugar. The sweetness sort of lingers into the finish but I can't believe this beer is 8%. Gotta be a misprint.
Mouthfeel- Pretty solid beer as the body is full and rich with a fairly loud bite of carbonation. All things considered I wish the carbonation was just a touch softer.
Drinkability- Overall I really enjoyed the beer as it was a good representation of the style (minus the 8%). Although the booze wasn't noticeable in the slightest, I think of a Bitter as a beer I can drink all day and/or night. 8% doesn’t subscribe to that thought. Enjoyable but certainly not sessionable.

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Photo of feloniousmonk
4.2/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From the brewery: This Special Bitter was made in memory of Don Younger of the famed Horse Brass Pub in Portland, OR. Thanks Don for inventing beer bars!
Also, I heard report that it was a "revamped, beefed-up Single Malt"
Either way...

Clear, brilliantly bronze appearance, high carbonation, firm, solid, slightly beige-ish head of foam. Looks great.

Sweet, malty aromatics, caramel, toast, a little nutty, a little creamy, with a touch of hops.

Tasting it: Smooth, lush fruity malt flavor abounds, with snappy hops kicking in. Feels like some good ol' citrus-y Pac NW goodness coming through. Malt sweetness comes back with every sip, and hop bitterness steps in to keep it in check. We call that balance. It's tasty and it's balanced.

A very sessionable English-style bitter, with a bit of good ol' American hop character thrown in, to illustrate, perhaps, what a guy like Don Younger was all about.

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Photo of KarlHungus
4.02/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer pours a semi-hazy red color. The head is half an inch in height, and recedes quickly into minimal lacing. The aroma is of cherries, toffee, caramel, and a hint of hibiscus. The taste is full of caramel and toffee with a nice floral and honey aftertaste. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with moderate carbonation, and a velvety texture. Overall, this is a really unique beer. I don't recall ever encountering a beer with the combination of flavors and aromas that this beer has. Every sip is interesting, and I can't ask for much more from a beer than that.

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Photo of kbutler1
3.98/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Draft. Pours into a pint glass a copper red color with a 1 finger light tan head. The aroma is pretty clean with slight notes if toasted bread and caramel. Sweet bready caramel flavor upfront transitions to some hop bitterness notes, but nothing too extreme. The 8% is not noticeable at all and is deceivingly drinkable. Minimal lace.

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The Don from Minneapolis Town Hall Brewery
Beer rating: 3.77 out of 5 with 11 ratings
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