Wolaver's Brown Ale | Otter Creek Brewing

223 Reviews
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Wolaver's Brown AleWolaver's Brown Ale

Brewed by:
Otter Creek Brewing
Vermont, United States

Style: English Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.70%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by stirgy on 04-01-2002

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

For Trade:
User Reviews
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Reviews: 223 | Ratings: 370
Photo of StonedTrippin
3.53/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

pours a lovely chocolate syrup brown with a tall bubbly tan head. smells like dark chocolate and brown sugar. taste is bitter though, not hop bitter, more of a coffee bitter, not at all unpleasant, but unexpected. a full malt body and moderate carbonation give it an appealing mouthfeel, although probably not the best session brown ale. worked very well with braised beef shanks and winter squash

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Photo of t0rin0
3.26/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. It pours a nice transparent brown color. There was a thin head that floated on top of the beer but for the most part it was just liquid in the glass. The taste was off sweet caramel and roasted malts. There is a good amount of hop bitterness. Pretty enjoyable. The body was medium but it had kind of an oily texture.

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Photo of metter98
3.6/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: It poured dark amber with a thin, creamy head; a light to medium level of carbonation is visible.
S: Nutty aromas stand out in the smell, along with some hints of toasted and caramel malts.
T: The taste is slightly sweet and filled with malty flavors of caramel, nuts and toffee. There are no traces of hop bitterness.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied on the palate and relatively smooth, although it also feels a bit thin.
D: The beer is rather good and very easy to drink, but I would opt for having this with a steak or a burger.

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Photo of oriolesfan4
3.33/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

One of the oddest brown ales I've had to date.. I'm not even sure it fits the style. First off, it's basically orange with like a drop of brown in it.. a brown ale should be brown, should it not? The smell has a nice kick of caramel to it.. kudos to that. The taste is a bit odd.. not the usual nuttyness you expect from a brown ale. The flavor is hard to describe but it is a little lackluster for me. Finish is smooth and this is decently drinkable. A unique brown ale.. not sure if I'd ever try it again.

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Photo of brentk56
3.03/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours an unexpectedly light, clear amber body with a bit of a head and lacing; would score higher if it was appropriately colored

Smell: Bready nose with a bit of caramel and toasted malt in the background

Taste: Not a great deal of taste; starts out with a bit of hop tang along with some malty sweetness; finishes with a bit of tobacco bitterness

Mouthfeel: Thin and watery; not much carbonation

Drinkability: Kind of disappointing; organic, schmanic, give me some taste, Wolaver's

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Photo of largadeer
3/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle for a buck at Whole Foods. Can't go wrong with 1 dollar beer, right..? Clear pale brown in the glass, more of an amber perhaps, a bit light for the style and without much head retention. The nose is sweet and toasty, heavy on the crystal malt. There's a touch of dark fruit as well, plum or date-like. On the tongue it's toasty, bready, a bit like graham-cracker. The body is thin, semi-sweet and a bit astringent and grainy toward the end. Not terribly impressive stuff, but not outright bad. It's on the light side for the style, too thin and lacking character.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.65/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured a light copper color ale with a nice of-white foamy head with good retention and no lacing. Aroma of deep caramel malt is surprising and quite enjoyable. Taste is a mix between some deep caramel malt with some light toffee notes and no discernable hops presence. I wasn't expecting much for this one but I was quite surprise - the grain bill was perfect and quite dominant or more so then most beer form this sometime boring style.

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Photo of nickfl
3.9/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Two finger, off white head, nice lace. Clear, amber-brown body with amber highlights.

S - Brown, malty aroma with chocolate notes and some citrusy hops.

T - Rich, dark malty flavor. Hop notes come in the middle malty finish with just enough bitterness to balance.

M - Medium body, medium carbonation, and a slightly sweet finish.

D - A nice example of the style with a good balance of malt and hop character.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.1/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

It pours a crystal clear chestnut body that's capped by a creamy off-white head. It drops shortly but keeps a decent collar and some whispy surface covering throughout the glass, as well as leaving some thin lace. The nose displays a toasty, chocolate-tinged malt and some spicy hops. The body is medium/light and combines with a fine, restrained carbonation to give a smooth and gently creamy mouthfeel. The flavor displays an exceptional balance of softly sweet, lightly toasty and mildly chocolatey malt that's infused with gently spicy hops and backed by a supportive bitterness. It finishes dry with a flourish of spicy hop flavor and some lingering toasty malt. Very nicely done. Exceptionally clean and well-balanced with alot of finesse. Very drinkable, and with enough character to keep it interesting throughout several glasses. And I appreciate the fact that it's organic.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.92/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a light brown color, with a short off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is very roasty with caramel, nuts, maple, malts and a faint touch of hops

T: The taste starts out with a hearty malt character and sweet flavors of maple, caramel and roasted nuts. Then a mild but complementary hops presence comes in and provides some balance. The after-taste is slightly bready and slightly sweet.

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

D: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, mild kick, good representation of style, although there are better brown ales out there, this is a good beer to session with if you're in the mood for the style.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.75/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a clear, mahogany-hued body with a thin, white head.

Smell: Grainy, caramel-scented nose -- a bit simple, sure, but it is fragrant at least.

Taste: Pale and caramel maltiness that alternate back and forth between grainy and nutty flavors. Splash of cream soda. Medium-low bitterness aided by the crackling carbonation. Still though, the beer finishes relatively sweet, with a lingering grainy hint.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium-high, slightly fizzy carbonation.

Drinkability: While not great enough to warrant breaking out into song, it is better than many tired, lifeless browns languishing on the market.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
2.61/5  rDev -25.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Rust orange with bright amber accents. The ecru cap is several fingers in height after the pour and has yet to lose a full finger by the three minute mark. Although it looks like a fair amount of lace will end up on the glass, very little does. The beer looks more like an ESB or an APA than a brown ale.

I'm still not buying the style designation. Brown Ale smells nothing like a brown ale, nor does it smell very good. While it isn't as nasty as some beer from this brewery, I can detect the same off-aroma. Infected house yeast strain? Surely they didn't design their beer to smell (and taste) like this?

The flavor is tolerable at best. That odd, 'off' characteristic, whatever it is, prevents me from fully enjoying the beer (without completely ruining the experience). It tastes like I'm drinking an amber ale more than a brown. The beer is lightly malted with virtually no flavors gained by the use of chocolate malt.

There's much more hop bitterness (thanks to a lack of malt sugars) than hop flavor. I have to bump the taste score down another notch. This medicinal, quasi-phenolic flavor is wearing on me more and more as the ounces pass. Even though the finish is short, the worst aspects of the flavor profile linger the longest.

Wolaver's Brown Ale is yet another sub-par offering from a brewery that has provided me with so many sub-par offerings over the years. I enjoy Pale Ale and Stovepipe Porter, but have no interest in drinking most of the rest again. I'm sure this bottle is fresh and I know it has been well cared for since I'm the one who's been caring for it since soon after it was brewed. Sometimes I wonder how these guys stay in business.

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Photo of smcolw
3.93/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Moderate head, but it has some staying power. Spotty lace on the glass. Dark ruby amber color and quite clear.

Relatively mild aroma: some crystal malt shines through. No hop, though.

Some good darker malts--certainly crystal, a hint of chocolate (malt). Good hop/malt blend in the swallow. The aftertaste is more hoppy but still balanced. I like the mouthfeel; it's solid for the style, maybe even on the rich side. Good carbonation.

Overall, this is one of the better English style Browns I've had. It has flavor and fits the style well.

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Photo of Jason
3.65/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: 12oz short brown twist, on the neck states that this product is certified by the OTCO as organic. No freshness date.

Appearance: Deep clear amber in colour with a faded tan creamy lace.

Smell: Full toasted grainy malt aroma.

Taste: Crisp and clean with a semi sharp ,yet nutty , toasted malt and light hop bitterness up front. Then the brew goes a bit tangy from the hop, and is followed by the lingering remnants of the drying toasted malt flavours.

Notes: With so many brown ales out on the shelves, this one is above the norm.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.33/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appears a bright mahogany brown hue with a large tawny white head, brilliant foam with ample fine lacing. Aromatics offer up nice roasted nuts and minimal caramel with a touch of cocoa. Herbal hop quality comes across as well, not bad. Flavor has a slight sour dirty earthy character, from a mix of the roasted malts and more of an English hop profile. Mouthfeel is unoffensive medium bodied carbonation is smooth, drinkability is solid all around flavor is good but not stellar glad I picked up the 12 pack sampler with the IPA, Pale, and Brown to mix it up.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
3.5/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear amber with almost no head. Nose is slightly nutty with a caramel edge. Flavor has a slight nutty edge as well. Overall the flavor profile is smooth and even. Feel is good. Drinkable? Sure. Just doesnÂ’t seem that interesting to me at all.

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Photo of smakawhat
2.78/5  rDev -21%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured on tap into a shaker pint at Bee's Knees diner in Morrisville.

An interesting very copper red body and fairly clear. Slight tan brown head, with no lacing. Can't see much carbonation coming up from the glass.

Nose is virtually non existent, with perhaps some faint malt, no sense of nutty or brown bread.

Taste is rather unremarkable. Faint nutty action with an extremely wet and slapping body. Finish is lacking, flavors don't seem to stick around what little there are. Extremely weak body, that doesn't carry much forward. THere's some very faint nut and malt but that's about it.

Overall though it's still drinkable, but really nothing remarkable. Kind of hits like a very bad mild, not worth drinking there is so much better in this style out there.

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Photo of Billolick
4.07/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Ginger man in NYC. Pours toasted almond and clear. Small bubble head,dissolving to a fine sheen. minimal lacing. Sweet malt in the nose. Smooth malt profile, toffee and caramel. Mildly hopped. Quality brew, tasty on tap. Fine session brew.

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Photo of jwc215
3.65/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours light brown with a thin, lasting white head.

The smell is of tasted grain and some nutty aroma.

The taste is basic, but not bad at all. Toasted grain. Nuts. Just a hint of roasted hops. It's all on the thin side. But, what is there is decent.

It goes down pretty easily. On a whole, nothing exceptional or outstanding. But, a nice, smooth, basic "sessionable" brown ale.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
3.57/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a tumbler pint, the beer is a light, bright, chestnut coloring that is unfiltered and opaque. Sparse, thin, filmy white surface coating of head. Aromas of tangy caramel, richly sweet nut, and a slight roasting. Maybe even a hint of toffee dabbed in there, too. Smells inviting, but not overpowering. Flavors are a tad on the sharp side due to the light body and increased carbonation in the mouthfeel. Once past that, there are an abundance of nutty sweet layers cascading the palate, with hazelnut and roastiness being the mainstay. Touches of toffee again make their presence known on the tail-end of the palate. The sweet and roast make the transition into the aftertaste, but that stay is very short-lived. The aftertaste washes away very quickly, leaving a clean, slightly sweet finish. Not a bad beer, but not one of my top Browns.

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Photo of Tone
3.44/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy, brown color with an almost golden/copper color along the bottom. 1/6 inch head of a white color. Slight retention and poor lacing. Smells of tart malt, acidity, yeast, slight roasted malt, and some dark citrus. Fits the style of an English Brown Ale. Mouth feel is smooth and sharp with an average carbonation level. Tastes of tart malt, acidity, slight hops, and a hint of syrup. Overall, a good body and blend, but lacking in appearance.

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Photo of drabmuh
4/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a Chimay goblet. Beer is brown and hazy, forms a thin off white head that nearly disappears quickly after pouring and leaves a lot of lacing on the glass. Carbonation is low and steady.

Aroma is sweet with a hint of roast, caramel. Very nice.

Medium to full bodied, sweet up front, interesting caramel on the back end, not a lot of flavor back there. Second taste, more bitterness the second time with some more sweetness. Drinkability is high and mouthfeel is pretty good. Carbonation does really come into play in the palate for this beer but overall really nice.

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Photo of tempest
3.53/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A simple brown sugar aroma, and a light, sweet taste make for a very pleasant session beer. This is a beer you can order a pitcher off to share with friends. The flavor is a bit light, but there's nothing to dislike. The mouthfeel has a touch of cream to it, while the taste has a bit of roasted malts with molasses and a little cocoa. The aroma is simple, but that's really the only detractor here from a beer-geek perspective. Worth a try if you're into this style.

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Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.32/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - brownish-red colour with almost no head and very little visible carbonation.

S - nutty malt nose. Slight caramel. Average hop and malt profile.

M - somewhat thin with average carbonation.

D - The flavour profile dissipates somewhat after a few sips, which is disappointing. Becomes almost watery.

A decent beer, but not one that I would buy again.

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Photo of WesWes
3.88/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a "brown color" with a lacey off-white head. The aroma is of crystal malts and some roasted barley. The taste is good. There is a smooth chocolaty flavor that has residual sweetness. There seems to be a decent amount of hopping here. The mouthfeel is fine. This is a medium bodied ale with a mild carbonation. This is a good brown ale.

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Wolaver's Brown Ale from Otter Creek Brewing
3.52 out of 5 based on 370 ratings.
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