Pig's Ear Brown Ale | Woodstock Inn Brewery

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Pig's Ear Brown AlePig's Ear Brown Ale

Brewed by:
Woodstock Inn Brewery
New Hampshire, United States

Style: English Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.30%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Medium bodied with a balance of roasted and crystal malts creating a hearty nutty flavor. Medium bitterness with a slightly sweet finish.

25 IBU

Added by UnionMade on 09-02-2002

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Reviews: 129 | Ratings: 408
Photo of oriolesfan4
3.71/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The only offering from this brewery at my local beer store is this one so I gave it a try. A pretty good brown ale overall. Pours a very dark brown, deeper color than most other brown ales. Has a nice body and mouthfeel to it but does have an odd aftertaste to it that is different compared to other brown ales. It isn't bad, it's just different is all. Nothing special but a solid beer all around.

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Photo of jlindros
3.8/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tap at texas bbq
Light fizzy head over nice clear dark toasty brown color.

Nose has a clear ale aroma, malty, toasty brown malts, light caramel, hint of brown sugar and molasses and even dusting of maple, light grassy earthy hops.

Taste comes with nice malts again, clean ale flavor, toasty brown malts, fairly nutty, light brown sugar, hints of molasses and caramel, little syrupy. Then hops, a decent but fairly light bitterness with slight earthy and a bit herbal hop with a light grassy taste, somewhat like a UK style hop, that kicks in with a nice bitter bite midway thorough. Finish is slightly sticky but fairly dry, bit of lingering bitterness, some light toasty brown malts and caramel lingering.

Mouth is med bodied, decent carb.

Overall its a nice beer, all around style, nice malts, decent hops with a nice bitter kick, very drinkable. Perfect beer for almost any weather, and always a good beer to grab a pint of at a bar.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.4/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

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

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

S: The aroma is of honey, caramel, vanilla, nuts and maple with a touch of hops.

T: The taste is malty and very sweet with flavors of vanilla, maple, honey, nuts and caramel. There's a mild hops presence that provides a little balance. The after-taste is sweet.

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

D: Tasty, goes down easy, not too filling, mild kick, good representation of style, it's a decent beer but some might find it a little too sweet. Personally, it wouldn't be my first choice if I were looking for this type of beer.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
2.91/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours a clear, red-brown body with a thin, bubbly, beige head.

Smell: I know we're focusing on the ear, but where's the nose? Only the vaguest hint of nuts. I'll assume this brown is saving its strength for the flavor. Bring it on!

Taste: A taste of chocolate and nuts with a low malty sweetness. Earthy, spicy hops, though only a touch of bitterness. Dry, nutty finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: Not recommend. A bit under par for a brown.

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Photo of smcolw
3.83/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Ruby-dark brown color and clear. Superior head: at least three fingers thick.

This is a very "clean" smelling beer. The aroma is relatively neutral, but appealing.

This brown ale features more hop than typical, like a darkened pale ale--not that I'm complaining. In fact, I believe this is better than most brown ales I've tried. The malt remains present with chocolate and nutty notes. A very dry beer, with a relatively thin body and an above average carbonation.

I like interesting beers; this is one. Whenever I find the experience difficult to describe, I find myself drawn to have the beer again. Hmmmm.

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Photo of woodychandler
3.98/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

My local sharer (we don't trade so much as swap or share our extras), Sam Knocken, provided this to me from his Beer of the Month Club take.

Can you make a brown ale from a pig's ear? I have heard that a silk purse is out of the question, but perhaps anything is possible.

My pour got me a finger of fizzy, light-brown head with moderate retention. Color was a deep brown with ruby/garnet highlights. Nose was quite malty, reminiscent of something that eluded me, but perhaps it will come. Did I sense a slight buttery quality? I usually have a blind spot when it comes to diacetyl, so I may be mistaken. Plus, I really do not mind such a flavor. Mouthfeel was medium and the taste was much more chocolaty than I had experienced on the nose. It had a powdery taste, like Hershey's Cocoa Powder right out of the tin and into the mouth. Do they even make that any more? I knew precisely where it was stored in my maternal grandmother's house and used to love it straight as a child. I sprinkled it on peanut butter to make a phenomenal sandwich. That's what the nose reminded me of - Ovaltine! Great Gar, but this beer really takes me back. I saw where Newcastle Brown is the standard bearer for the style, but this is drier than that. The finish was semi-sweet with the yeast having converted most of the fermentable sugar to alcohol. I was very impressed by this little piggy.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
2.2/5  rDev -38.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Appears a ruby brown mahogany tone with a large light cream head leaves specks of uneven lacing not too impressive but the head has decent retention overall looks like a nice brown. Aromatics a bit like cider with tart fruit notes coming through the moderately roasted malt additions that also bring mild chocolate and a woody tree bark barrage mild herbal hop additions noted mild and tame for sure. Flavors really clash the acidity of the tart character overrides the roasted malt and mild sweetness it should offer I’m never big on this style but I think this one’s poorly made. Pretty astringent yet it seems it hasn’t turned it’s just how the flavors came together after production, which is weird. Mouthfeel is medium bodied really coats the palate and it sticks around sadly I might have to go brush my teeth but the carbonation was moderate and flowed well just the lactic character that sticks to your palate ruins it. Drinkability not so much as Borat would say I’m going to stick other beers from this style when reaching for a brown ale pass on Pig’s Ear from New Hampshire.

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Photo of johnnnniee
3.53/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark clear reddish brown color with a huge bubbly tan head that slowly recedes before leaving some spotty lace on the way down. Smells of caramel and brown sugar with a hint of tart fruit, earth, roast and butter. The flavor is heavy on the caramel and butterscotch with an earthy hop bite that provides some balance. Medium body with a moderate to high level of carbonation and a creamy bubbly mouthfeel. So far this is the only brew I've had where I feel the diacytyl actually adds something to the beer. This is probably my favorite beer from Woodstock, but its still just an average beer.

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Photo of smakawhat
3.88/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a nonic pint glass. Good till Jan 2012, off we go!

Very large off white to hinting tan color head nearly four fingers and foamy. Body color is a real nice amber red and clear brown with some moderate rising slow carbonation bubbles.

Bouquet is a nice malt a little hop bitter perhaps also. Not much else fairly pleasing, but not varied.

Taste is good and milky. Milk chocolate palate with almost milk stout and brown toasty malts. Finishes almost like a lactose malt milk stout. A little sour, but nothing too offensive.

Overall quite refreshing for a brown ale, and one I could easily have again some other time.

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Photo of Billolick
3.45/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle purchased as part of a sixer on the recent Vermont trip. Has "Best enjoyed before" dating notched on the side of the label. Pours a typical brown ale hue, darker mocha head, that stays for a spell then drops to near nothing, just a thin collar over a near still. dull looking brawl. Bready nose, brash chocolaty flavor notes mixed in with a faint jammy note. Eh, not the greatest brown ale out there. On the unrefined side and a wee bit thin mouth feel wise. Will work fine as part of a marinade for chicken or pork, as I've found just about any brown ale will.

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Photo of puboflyons
3.83/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From the 12 fl.oz. bottle. Sampled on February 28, 2012. The pour is mahogany brown with a conspicuous amount of foamy, long lasting head. The aroma is subtle but it has a nutty malted quality as well as sweet. The body is smooth. The taste is higher on the bitterness than in the aroma with a sharp lingering hop note. This is one of those beers that I drink a lot and I am surprised that it took so long for me to review it.

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Photo of weeare138
3.9/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appears a dark brown with a small offwhite head. Some scattered lacings.
Smell is of slightly sweet and sour with the malts standing out in the sweet category and some hoppy bitterness coming through, as well as a bready, sourdough and black grapes in the background.
Taste is bready with a bit of nutty maltiness and dark fruit swirling.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied and smooth.
Drinkability seems pretty nice. A different fruity and nutty kind of brown.

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Photo of VelvetExtract
3.58/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A-Pours brown of course. Nice darker head that maintains and laces well. Dark enough to have me guessing the transparency.

S-Aroma consists of chocolate, coffee, and plenty of nuts. Smells mild and tasty.

T-Like the nose. Quite nutty. Nuts are accentuated by the chocolate and roast. Not much hop. Sweet and nutty.

M-Light bodied and easy drinking. Very sessionable. Carbonation is between light and moderate. Good feel.

O/D-A nice little brown ale. Will not wow you, but I drank my glass very quickly. I love the nutty aspect of this brew. A decent sip.

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Photo of ppoitras
3.98/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed on tap at Brew City, Worcester, MA.

Shaker 12oz glass presentation. 1/2" beige head over an orangey brown brew, which faded down to an uneven layer of bubbles, and had ample sticky lacing. Aroma is lightly malty. Taste is well-balanced, medium grains, with moderate hopping. Mouthfeel is soft and smooth over the tongue, and drinkability is very nice. Not my favorite style, but I'm liking this one.

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Photo of tigg924
3/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: clear, chestnut brown, no head, minmal carbonation

Smell: toasted malt, sugar, nut

Taste: toasted malt, nut, and some hops towards the end

Mouthfeel: smooth, light, sweet, medium body

Drinkability: This is just an OK English Brown. I had this on draft with a 22ounce pour and cannot say I desired another one afterwards. This one almost drinks like a bock.

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Photo of Brad007
2.65/5  rDev -26.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a mild brown color with a thin head. Aroma is kind of malty and chewy. Taste is similar except that it's slightly thin on the tongue. It has a dry mouthfeel and the malt shines through somewhat. Not impressive enough for me but it's still solid.

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Photo of Jwale73
3.38/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Best enjoyed by March 2008.

Served in a standard pint glass. Poured a translucent amber-brown in color with red highlights when backlit. Quarter-inch off-white head dissipated almost immediately into a spotty skim of foam; very little lacing. Scent of malt and something else. Flavors of malt, nuts and butter(yes butter), followed by a touch of hops at the finish. Nicely effervescent mouthfeel that left a clean, slightly tart presence at the end. Not a bad brew, but somewhat lacking. Buttery flavor was interesting, but made it a little less appealing for me as a session brew.

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Photo of cbutova
3.88/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Dark red/brown base with a two-finger light tan head which has a creamy texture. The retention is decent. Nice web of lace down the glass.

S- Mostly a base of slightly roast, nutty caramel malt. Some dark fruit present as well as some brown sugar.

T- Nutty malt in the forefront for me followed by a backdrop of roast, caramel and dark fruit, raisin flavors. Just a bit of earthy/floral hints and some brown sugar/maple as well.

MF- Silky body with a nice amount of substance to it, it drinks smoothly. Carbonation is appropriate followed by just a small bitterness.

DB- Solid brown ale for sure, full of flavor and easy to drink. Maybe just a tad bit too nutty for me but I like it.

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Photo of lordofthewiens
3.88/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The first beer I had at The Woodstock Inn. Also the one I enjoyed the most. A medium brown color with a thick head. Some nice lacing. It had a caramel aroma with a tiny bit of nuttiness. The nuttiness came out more in the taste, but still had that nice caramel taste too. Some sweetness gave it a good mouthfeel. I could (and did) drink a few of these.

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Photo of papat444
3.95/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Disclaimer: I enjoyed this brew at the Woodstock Inn but my notes are brief because i was with family & friends and my daughter beside me was very active :)

Appearance: Brown (duh!) and looks a little like cola. Very thin ring of foam.

Smell: At first nothing but as it warmed a whiff of bitterness, probably hops.

Taste: Subdued, malt-like taste with a very nice moderate bitterness.

Mouthfeel: A strong point. Smooth with a rather low carbonation that i didn't expect but wasn't unpleasant.

Drinkability: Very nice beer with a low profile taste but was still very enjoyable to drink.

Overall: I forced myself to write a review because i was pleasantly surprised by this beer. Definitely worth checking out.

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Photo of Durge
3.68/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Coffee brown brew with a big off-white head and good lacing. The aroma is of brown sugar, yeast and malt. Quite aqueous and a strong malty flavor with mild carbonation. There is a little charcoal in the back of the mouth, fairly sweet at the front. I would like to have better carbonation to cut into the watery quality. There is a very slight metallic hint but not really bothersome. Seems to grow on me with each swig, should be easy drinking these but I might tire of the sweetness eventually. Not too bad though. Definitely worth having another and worth you trying it.

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Photo of DrinkSlurm
3.42/5  rDev -5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from bottle into tulip. Best before June 2012 indiacted on bottle.
Pours a deep brown color with a red hue when held up to light. No head and very thin lacing.
Smells of english roasted malts with a hint of coffee.
Taste is very similar. Malted English style malts, a bit of caramel and smoky coffee notes.
Its very thin, but easy to drink.
Low ABV, as the style usually suggests, but wish it was more.
Overall, it is what it is..nothing spectacular here, but I have never had anything from Woodstock Inn. After having this, I wouldnt go out of my way for it...but would drink if someone handed it to me.
I bet this would go great with a nice burger.

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Photo of Bierman9
3.73/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The Pig is a dark brown/chestnut hue, with a creamy but short, fine, tan head. Lacing is present, but not real sticky. Nutty, somewhat malty nose, but minimal hints of hoppiness. The bier did not raise a ruckus over the tongue, but it leaned more towards being thin than medium bodied. Taste was a nutty, malty flavor at the outsewt, though a big, bitter, dry finish rounded things out. Fairly good, but perhaps a bit too bitter and dry overall.

overall: 3.8
appearance: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | mouthfeel: 3.5 | drinkability: 3.5


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Photo of woosterbill
3.96/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at the brewpub into a pint glass.

A: Clear dark amber body comes topped by a finger of dense off-white foam; decent retention and good lace throughout. "Very pretty" according to my wife. I concur.

S: Nothing special here: just smooth biscuity malts, some nutty sweetness, and a touch of crisp hops on the tail end. Pretty straightforward.

T: Much like the nose, but richer and fuller. Good amount of mildly sweet nuttiness without being cloying, thanks to a generous dose of hops on the finish. Very smooth and refreshing.

M: A little on the thin side of medium bodied, with spiky carbonation. Not bad, though.

D: Very sessionable indeed, as the ABV would suggest.

Notes: Extremely smooth and drinkable beer that doesn't sacrifice flavor. Nothing spectacular at all, but as servicable a brown ale as one could desire. Nice.


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Photo of Reagan1984
3.73/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured with a foamy white 2 finger head that faded rather quickly. The beer was crystal clear & a very dark brown. My son said it looked like a light root beer. A mere touch of visible carbonation.

The aroma was of light fruit, and of grains. I think I get a sense of the yeast as well. Not much in the way of a roasted aroma. I was expecting this from the visual.

The flavor was much more bold than the aroma led me to believe. Really nice. As crazy as it sounds it really reminded me of toasted walnuts. A nice roasted malt flavor up front, then the nutty flavor. Some fruits flavors in the background and then a nice hop character to balance with the malt backbone. Just the right amount of sweetness. I really like this.

The beer is medium bodied and big in your mouth due to the bold roasted malt flavor. Light carbonation helps bring the flavor to life.

Very drinkable. Enjoying during a snowstorm, in front of a fire with a football game on the tv. Perfect for the moment.

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Pig's Ear Brown Ale from Woodstock Inn Brewery
3.6 out of 5 based on 408 ratings.
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