Nut Roll Ale
Pennsylvania Brewing Company

Nut Roll AleNut Roll Ale
Write a Review
Beer Geek Stats: | Print Shelf Talker
Brown Ale - American
Ranked #636
Ranked #43,212
3.61 | pDev: 14.96%
Pennsylvania Brewing Company
Pennsylvania, United States
Nut Roll AleNut Roll Ale
Reviews: 34 | Ratings: 152 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of rudiecantfail
rudiecantfail from Pennsylvania

3.41/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle poured into a Duvel tulip glass.

L---Dark brown body with a fluffy light brown head. Head faded into a ring pretty quickly and left good lacing.

S---Strong, very strong cinnamon. Light vanilla.

T---Follows the nose, mostly. Cinnamon is less prominent and vanilla is more so. There's also light chocolate & caramel.

F---Fairly light given how flavorful it is. Well carbonated.

O---Cinnamon is a bit overpowering and detracts from the overall experience. Still, a rich, flavorful beer.

Aug 20, 2020
Photo of Bluerabbitbell
Bluerabbitbell from Pennsylvania

3.78/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

For a specialty offering, this is pretty decent. I drinking this in the early spring, but it's 39 degrees and raining, so it hits the spot. Leah thinks it tastes like cough medicine, but I do think it's decent.

Apr 16, 2018
Photo of devo1980
devo1980 from Pennsylvania

3.23/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

It is a decent brown ale. I don’t think you would call this great, but I like how subtle the spices are. Hardly any smell, which is a bit of a draw back. After taste has some cinnamon or nutmeg. Easy drinking on a cold night.

Dec 14, 2017
Photo of Lone_Freighter
Lone_Freighter from Vermont

3.94/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a non-frosted clear mug.
The appearance was a fairly dark brown color with a two finger's worth of white foamy head that dissipated fairly well to leave some sly lace running here and there.
The aroma had some cinnamon and vanilla character up front over top of some sweet and roasty nuts. Light toffee/caramel malts. An even lighter cocoa powder to biscuit-like maltiness came out nicely.
The flavor was moderately sweet pulling in the cinnamon and vanilla in a nice even balance flowing just as I had hoped it would. Mild aftertaste of the nuts, caramel and vanilla start and then after more sips - more cinnamon seems to come in on the aftertaste.
The mouthfeel was about medium bodied with a good sessionable quality about it. Carbonation felt spot on. ABV felt as projected. Finish was well balanced between spices and malts, nothing out of place.
Overall, as a brown ale it works with a fairly nice English twist on Pennsylvania Brewing Company's ingenuity. I'd have again.

Oct 08, 2017
Photo of Dodo2step
Dodo2step from Pennsylvania

3.38/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

A- dark amber almost cola like color. Half finger bubbly head that leaves a hilly lacing.

S- cinnamon and vanilla

F- cinnamon and clove spice with hints of vanilla

M- creamy and chewy. Carbonated and bubbly

O- over carbonated and the spices dominate over the vanilla a tad much.

Feb 24, 2017
Photo of mvanaskie13
mvanaskie13 from Pennsylvania

3.91/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a narrow pint glass: color is dark amber to brown, head is tan with fine bubbles and presents 1 inch thick with some lacing.

Smell is vanilla, light cinnamon, then touch of cocoa and caramel malt.

Taste is similar to the aroma with moderate dose of vanilla and cinnamon first, then lighter chocolate malt/cocoa/caramel malt - a light maple like finish.

Mouthfeel is crisp, well carbonated, a bit dry on the tongue.

I was not too excited for this brew at first look, but the execution is better than the name may lead to believe. A sweeter brown ale with moderate but drinkable vanilla and cinnamon flavor.

Jan 21, 2017
Photo of drtth
drtth from Pennsylvania

3.87/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

The beer pours out into a Duvel glass a fairly dark brown with a slight reddish undertone. The 1/2” light tan head leaves little lacing on the sides of the glass as it recedes slowly but there is a ring of foam. Sipping creates a few scattered patches and legs of lacing on the sides of the glass. The head soon recedes to an irregular shaped island on the liquid.

The aromas include some subtle medium roasted malt with chocolate, cinnamon and some vanilla in the background.

The flavors are much as expected from the nose with a toasted malt sweetness, almost like chocolate, up front against the background of cinnamon and vanilla. All of which become more noticeable as the beer warms. There's very little hop bitterness in the flavor profile.

The mouthfeel is on the light side of medium bodied and slightly crisp with the moderate but persistent carbonation. The medium length finish begins as the toasted malt flavor starts to fade, allowing the cinnamon and vanilla to play a more prominent role before they fade away, along with the sweetness, to leave a hint of bitterness that is more like roasted malt than hops.

Overall I liked this beer and thought it was well made. So I'll be looking to have another. The sweetness is well controlled, the spices are noticeable but not overdone. This one is reasonably temperature sensitive in that the prominence of different flavors seems to change as the beer warms. I also think I’d prefer just a bit more dry bitterness in the end since the sweetness does come close to being a too bit much.

Jan 15, 2017
Photo of lastmango
lastmango from Pennsylvania

3.29/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Pours a murky copper color with a one finger white head that dissipates to a thin head. Moderate lacing. Aroma was a bit floral with a hint of malt. I did not notice the vanilla. Taste - Malt hit first followed by a spiciness like clove and cinnamon. Light-moderate carbonation. This beer is ok but it is not one that would seek.

Oct 01, 2016
Photo of DavoleBomb
DavoleBomb from Pennsylvania

3.77/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Had at the source, received in a pint glass.

3.5 A: It's dark in here, but I think it's a clear light brown color. Two fingers of creamy tan head. Average retention and a few wisps of lacing are left.

4.0 S: An almost musty sweet nuttiness. Sweet brown sugar with plenty of toastiness and maple syrup.

3.75 T: All of the above flavors but in different proportions. Less sweet than the nose with reasonable complexity.

3.5 M: Medium body. Good moderate carbonation. Bity carbonation with moderate creaminess.

3.75 D: I'm a sucker for brown ales and the maple syrup thing does a good job drawing me in.

Dec 22, 2015
Photo of 57md
57md from Pennsylvania

3.59/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours a brownish copper with a huge head that ends up about two fingers high. The nose is as expected - nutty and bready. The nut roll essence also translates into the flavor profile. The deal-breaker for this offering is the somewhat fake flavor on the finish.

Dec 15, 2015
Photo of Brian_L-2056
Brian_L-2056 from West Virginia

4/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours a very nice light chocolate/caramel color with a creamy off-white head. Plenty of carbonation but very little lacing. Definitely smells of caramel, toffee and roasted malt. Initial taste is pleasant with hints of toffee, coffee and caramel also. It then mellows out to a sweet toffee finish. Overall this brew will hold its own with any brown/amber style ale, really enjoyed!

Dec 12, 2015
Photo of Cyberkedi
Cyberkedi from Georgia

4.02/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Comes out of the tap a deep sable just a whisker above coal black with a decent pale tan head. Strong, malty aroma has a firm overtone of horehound and notes of clove and cinnamon. Flavor has malty, nutty, caramel and horehound notes with a subtle undertone like chocolate milk. Sweetness is not too strong, though. Texture is about average, typical body but good fizz. Roll up to this one.

Jun 04, 2015
Photo of Slatetank
Slatetank from Pennsylvania

3.54/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

I purchased this at brass rail, enjoyed the 12oz in a goblet chilled.

The color is dark brown with opaque clarity and thin quick dropping light head with fine bead. Lace and retention is decent. The smell is very light with malt and nutty roast odor with light coffee like smell. with a slight sweet malt presence. The feel has light body and semi-sweet texture with moderate carbonation and lightly chalky accent with semi-dry finish.

The taste has a gentle nuttiness with slight dried fruit and sweet caramel and moderately strong vanilla extract type flavor with slight chalky element and dry earthy finish with mild toasted grain and caramel in the finish. Overall I think this is a pretty decent yet a little smooth with out much nutty flavor compared to its inspiration with a basic vanilla nut brown effect which is good but could be better

Dec 14, 2014
Photo of BigRizz62
BigRizz62 from Maryland

3.75/5  rDev +3.9%

Not a big fan off adding things to beer, but I take exception here. Dipped the rim of the glass in vanilla vodka and then dipped it in cinnamon sugar. A nice dessert beer especially with the ladies

Nov 28, 2014
Photo of beerdedking
beerdedking from Pennsylvania

3.93/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Really nice brown ale here. Vanilla, cocoa, and toasted almond wrapped in a blanket sprinkled with brown sugar. Mouthfeel is substantial for a beer of this ABV. Will revisit...

Nov 24, 2014
Photo of BMMillsy
BMMillsy from Florida

3.53/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle from trade side by side with other Penn stuff. Pours a reddish amber color with a creamy white head. Sweet cinnamon candy aroma, a bit of toffee and caramel. Flavor is a bit of cinnamon on top of what seems to be that cream cheese icing flavor that I didn’t expect. A bit of nuttiness in there as well. Medium bodied with slightly prickly carbonation. This is a neat beer and seems like it would be good for the holiday times. Just like it is described.

Mar 30, 2014
Photo of Beer_Store_Guy
Beer_Store_Guy from Pennsylvania

3.56/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I don't know why everyone treats this beer so unfavorably. I tried basically every winter beer this year (2013-14) and this was one of my favorites. Call me biased because it's from my hometown but this can hold its ground next to the more aggressive beers of the season. It's got the subtle spices that you'd want in a winter beer but it doesn't brag. The relatively low alcohol content doesn't make it much of a sipper but Pittsburgh winters have the mildness to match. Overall, I'm glad I found this in a variety pack but I would probably not buy a whole case of it.

Dec 18, 2013
Photo of Darkmagus82
Darkmagus82 from Texas

3.79/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Served on tap in a pint glass

Appearance – The beer is served a deep brown color with a one finger of tan colored head. The head fades relatively quickly leaving only a trace level of lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell – The aroma is heavies of a big sweet vanilla and chocolate smell. Mixed with these are some roasted malt aromas with a good deal of nutty aromas mixed within. Overall it has a delicious sweet chocolate bar smell overall

Taste – The taste begins with a moderately strong roasted malt flavor with a sweetness of caramel and a light vanilla mixed in. As the flavor advances, some chocolate begins coming to the tongue. It starts out of a sweeter milk chocolate flavor with it transitioning to a more semi-sweet flavor later on. A nutty flavor starts developing more in the middle of the taste, starting out of a lightly roasted almond flavor and becoming slightly more bitter and potent as the flavor moves to the end. With the advent of the chocolate and the nut that comes into the taste and takes it to its end, one is left with a still rather sweet, but nicely balanced chocolate and nutty flavor to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel –The body of the beer is average in terms of thickness and creaminess with a carbonation level that is average as well. A little thicker of a body and lower carbonation level may have suited the brew slightly better, but overall it was rather decent.

Overall – A pretty easy drinking nut-brown ale with a good deal of a chocolate presence. Rather tasty overall.

Dec 18, 2013
Photo of CheapHysterics
CheapHysterics from Pennsylvania

2.48/5  rDev -31.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2

Normally I at least like stuff from Penn Brewery. Sometimes I love it - St. Nikalous Bock and Penn Gold, for example. Nut Roll Ale was an unpleasant surprise.

A - Nice brown color but almost no head from a rough pour. What little foam there was disappeared quickly.

S - Vanilla, sweet fruit, and a bit of dark malts. Didn't get any of the "nutty aroma" advertised on the bottle.

T - Tastes like it smells, but in a bad way. Nowhere near enough hops to balance the sweetness. The vanilla, even though I don't think it's artificially flavored, it tastes kinda artificial with a chemically/medicinal note on the finish that is just off.

M - Body is decent but the carbonation was prickly in a soda pop kinda way.

O - With so many great winter and holiday beers out there, this one is absolutely not worth trying. Avoid it.

Nov 18, 2013
Photo of woodychandler
woodychandler from Pennsylvania

4.22/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Now, as much as I would like to give the previous reviewer credit for providing this to me, my local in-person trader, tone77 was not a part of the process. Instead, it came from my neighbor's singles cooler and once more, I had to wait for the picture to be approved before popping the cap. Out of season?!? Well, which season is it now? It sure as s**t does not feel like Spring!

From the bottle: "Winter Ale"; "Nut Brown Ale Malt Beverage with Natural Flavors Added"; "Contains No Nuts".

No nuts?!? What?!? I feel like a nut right about now! I will never forget the spirited debate in class many years ago over crunchy vs. smooth peanut butter. Finally, one student blurted out, "For me, it's gotta be crunchy! I love the feel of nuts in my mouth!" I had to leave the room as educators are NOT supposed to laugh at anything students say. The room erupted at that point.

My pour resulted in a finger of thick, light-brown head with good retention. Color was a deep-brown with seemingly good clarity given the low level of light penetration that I was able to generate. I REALLY need an SRM chart if anyone has an extra! Nose was characteristically sugary sweet as befits the style, but with a slight grassy hoppiness. Mouthfeel was thin-to-medium but the sweetness was cut with a cinnamon spiciness. Would they have spiced this beer for the holidays? If so, high kudos! Loads of sticky lacing began to appear as I drank through it. Finish was slightly spicy with a definite cinnamon stick flavor. How brilliant is that? I have always liked their St. Nicklaus Bock in the Winter, but this would be great with the Old Lady by the fire.

May 25, 2013
Photo of tone77
tone77 from Pennsylvania

3.47/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a dark brown color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is mild, some spices. Taste is spices, mainly cinnamon, some nuttiness, not bad, easy drinking. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall this is a decent and unique beer.

May 04, 2013
Photo of Cylinsier
Cylinsier from Pennsylvania

3.19/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3


Pours a mostly hazy dark brown, minimal head.

Hints of clove and brown sugar in the nose with some mild bitterness.

Bland taste, flat caramel malts and not much else.

Medium body with minimal carbonation.

An otherwise appealing offering that falls short in the single most important area: taste. I like the idea of this beer and hope they try it again, but I'd be lying if I said this year's version was worth having, or at least this particular batch.

Feb 02, 2013
Photo of SNUZ

1.53/5  rDev -57.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.75

A- who cares?

S- weak musky

T- Terrible!!!

M- Cant focus on this due to the horrid taste

O- Could only bring myself to sip twice. Never again!! Good thing I have this Reuben and potato salad to mask what I just tasted! I predict tis keg will take a long time to kick, and wont come from people requesting seconds.

Jan 18, 2013
Photo of Tucquan
Tucquan from Pennsylvania

2.91/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Had this on 2013-01-01 in Columbia, PA

A - Pretty clear dark mahogany with a 2-finger tan head that fades to 1/3-finger very quickly leaving very good lacing.

S - Date nut bread, maple syrup, nuts. Very sweet smelling.

T - Tastes like a diet soda version of date nut bread. There's also some banana, citrus and even a little pine. The finish reminds me of what your mouth tastes like after stopping chewing gum, in this case, date nut gum (if such a thing existed). It tastes artificial. The bottle says "Natural Flavors Added".

M - Medium body and carbonation. The substantial, smooth feel seems appropriate to date-nuttiness aspect of the beer.

O - Not my cup of tea. It's not bad but not my idea of a brown ale / winter warmer. Can't get past the artificial taste so I'll not be seeking this one out again. Interestingly, my wife liked this a LOT more than me so she finished the other half of the bottle.

Jan 01, 2013
Photo of metter98
metter98 from New York

3.47/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is somewhat hazy brownish amber in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a quarter finger high beige head that rapidly dissipated, leaving specks of bubbles on the surface and a thin collar around the edge of the glass.
S: There are light to moderate aromas of nutty malts and spices in the nose.
T: The taste is similar to the smell, except that the spicy flavors are prominent and include notes of cinnamon and hints of vanilla.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This is an easy drinking beer for the holidays that has an interesting mix of spices and isn't as heavy compared to the typical winter warmers.

Dec 16, 2012
Nut Roll Ale from Pennsylvania Brewing Company
Beer rating: 82 out of 100 with 152 ratings