Coffee Bender | Surly Brewing Company

Your Rating: None
Want it   Got it 
Coffee BenderCoffee Bender
2,680 Ratings
Coffee BenderCoffee Bender

Brewed by:
Surly Brewing Company
Minnesota, United States

Style: American Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Bender steeped cold for 24 hours in coarsely ground coffee beans from the Vinca Vista Hermosa plantation in Guatemala.

Added by feloniousmonk on 05-28-2006

Bros Score:
View: Beers
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 2,680 |  Reviews: 860
Photo of elec
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%

Photo of Guffy
3.75/5  rDev -9.6%

Photo of matttttYCE
4.18/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours with a nice 2 finger high caramel-tan head that's more creamy than foamy. Decent lacing and a bit higher than low retention. I would describe the color as a deep, dark black cherry or a purple ruby.

Aroma is mostly of coffee, like a cold cup of joe. There are also hints of other things like chocolate, caramel malts, caramel, bread and dough but they are all on the lighter side. Hint of cola aroma also, but not a detrimental smell.

I feel the taste is better than the aroma. Lots of coffee flavors here and supporting characters like the chocolate, caramel, cola, and bready malt flavors from the aroma, but more prominent. Perhaps some hints of nuts and vanilla, and maybe even earthy hops. Very nice tasting coffee beer.

Medium carbonation, creamy consistency, smooth, almost velvety body, and a nice smooth finish of moderate length.

Overall I really like this as a coffee beer. The aroma isn't quite as good as the taste. In fact, the aroma is a little lacking when compared to the taste, but the taste definitely makes up for that. This is one that I could, and actually did, have in the morning on one of my days off. Awesome. It's never too early to get Surly! Must try if you like coffee beers. Big thanks to TIMMYJ21 for this in our recent trade! You're awesome Tim!

 1,288 characters

Photo of Wellmann
4/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of deanis30
4.5/5  rDev +8.4%

Photo of andrewborstein
4.75/5  rDev +14.5%

Photo of Oboogie
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%

Photo of Thingus
4.26/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Live tasting, can into Duvel Tulip... Huge thanks to OtisCampbell for this!!

Appearance; pours a dark, maduro cigar colored brown, with a two finger khaki colored head... Retention is moderate, and the head dissipates over a couple minutes to a thin ring around the glass... Lacing is pretty good, with patches of lace on the glass.

Smell; Smell is pretty mild, some slight coffee aromas, and a slightly bready, yeasty presence... Nothing extraordinary, but certainly not bad...

Taste; a great coffee flavor without any of the associated acidity or bitterness. The coffee kind of "sits on" the beer, and by that I mean it is the first flavor that pops right out, and as it gently fades out, a great , slightly nutty, bready brown shines through... The way the flavors meld together is wonderfully complex and it is perfectly balanced.

Mouthfeel; medium bodied with medium carbonation... Drinkability is superb at a touch over 5% ABV, it goes down extremely smooth... I could drink this all day.

Overall; probably the best brown I've ever had... Drinkability is superb, flavors are outstanding... Definitely a winner from Surly and I would drink this daily if I could... I also think it would make one hell of a beer bread...

 1,230 characters

Photo of match1112
4.12/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a: pours a dark brown, almost black. has a two finger mocha colored head that displays good retention and lacing.

s: straight coffee, nothing else.

t: varies slightly from the smell but not much. along with the coffee i also detect some malty sweetness, caramel and toffee.

m: medium body, good carbonation, long bitter coffee finish.

o: pretty nice coffee beer, not my favorite, but up there. wish there was other flavors to compliment the coffee, just too much like a cold cup of coffee to be my favorite.

 512 characters

Photo of rogueleonardi
4.75/5  rDev +14.5%

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

On-tap at a Surly tapping at Churchkey in DC.

A: Clear brown pour with less than a finger of white head. A small amount of lacing is yielded from the small amount of retention.

S: The aroma is all coffee. Wait is that something else? Nope, coffee. Honestly, I love it. Roasted and bitter.

T: Light malty taste up front leads to just a blast of coffee in the middle, which follows all the way through the finish and lingers on the palate for a good, long while. I seem to be getting something that resembles vanilla at the very backend, wasn't expecting that.

MF: Coffee Bender's light body has a nice amount of carbonation. Crisp overall, the coffee obviously leaves an extremely dry finish.

O: This is more like drinking a cup of coffee than a beer. Don't put this down too late at night or you won't be doing much sleeping. I do wish there was a little something else, the coffee wore on me after a while.

 913 characters

Photo of n00blar
4/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of doughanson78
4.53/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

16oz can poured into a snifter. Big thanks to storminspank for this one.

A: Dark brown, ruby red when light comes through. One finger big bubble, light mocha head with alright retention and great lacing.

S: Aroma is light but good. Coffee mainly with hints of chocolate and toasted malts. Light oatmeal notes.

T: Roasted coffee and chocolate. Toasted toffee and some light caramel. Aftertaste of coffee lingers forever.

M: Medium body. High carbonation. Crisp yet slightly creamy. Best mouthfeel in a brown yet.

O: Although lacking in aroma this might be the best brown ale I've had. Very flavorful.

 604 characters

Photo of iL0VEbeer
4.75/5  rDev +14.5%

Photo of ajcormier
4/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of jrcmlc
3.75/5  rDev -9.6%

Photo of BrandonEnriquez
4.5/5  rDev +8.4%

Photo of fiedler84
4/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of bpfrush
3.5/5  rDev -15.7%

Photo of buffs9
4/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of eorwar
4/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of majaqua
4/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of CelticAleMan
4/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of aclark44
3.5/5  rDev -15.7%

Photo of lovindahops
4.83/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Everyone has a favorite brewery that they don't have immediate access to. For me, it's Surly. I love every brew I have ever had and I would honestly buy pallets of the stuff if I could. Coffee bender is unlike anything I have ever had.... Yet I have never reviewed it. Great timing as this is my first review since the site changed.

A- a black as night body with the rockiest head of fluffy mocha foam I have ever seen with a brown ale. The foam barely recedes leaving elevated layers of foam on the sides of the glass. I would go on record as saying the layers are almost 3D. I'm going to go on record as one of the best appearances ever

S- great malt flavors that are enrobed in stalks of coffee beans. The scent is pure java that isn't a old coffee scent like some coffee brews. This is fresh and lively as it meshes with the malt and slight dry hop scent

T- Unstoppable black coffee bean flavor tastefully combined with a crisp and flavorful brown ale. Sweet malt flavor with a dry taste that mingles with the coffee. This is equivalent to a black iced coffee that is so flavorful with a commitment to the beans. Best coffee flavor that is not positioned with some cream and sugar if you will. Perfect

M- the coffee flavor is not only delicious but it settles fantastic in the mouth and palate. Flavor is coating and smooth

O- Surly has created one of the best brews I have ever experienced. The iced coffee attributes that are cloaked as a brown ale is unyielding. Coffee bender is a brew that I will always want and enjoy. What a brewery, what a beer. How I wish, how I wish they were here. I'd be one lost soul swimming in a bowl of coffee bender year after year

 1,674 characters

Coffee Bender from Surly Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.15 out of 5 with 2,680 ratings
  • About Us

    Founded in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.