Three
Surly Brewing Company

Write a Review
Beer Geek Stats: | Print Shelf Talker
Style:
Braggot
ABV:
10%
Score:
91
Avg:
4.09 | pDev: 12.22%
Reviews:
43
Ratings:
93
From:
Surly Brewing Company
 
Minnesota, United States
Avail:
Retired (no longer brewed)
Wants
  22
Gots
  0
SCORE
91
Outstanding
Notes: Tap only.
View: Beers | Events
Reviews: 43 | Ratings: 93 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by Carb-Overlord:
Photo of Carb-Overlord
4.24/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I just had this on tap at the new brewery tasting room... and wow. This is an exceptionally great beer. They recreated this and I am so glad to have stopped in while I'm town. Sweet and smooth throughout. Definitely get your hands on this if. The opportunity arises.

 267 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of feloniousmonk
4.28/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

"Black Braggot" they're calling it, and it's pretty damned black, under a creamy tanned head, about a 1/4 inch, long lasting in my Darkness goblet.

Sweetness hits the nose, you get the honey tone, then it opens up for vanilla, cream, cloves, and more delicate spices. Very pleasant.

Tasting it, and the honey hits again. It leaps up and slides all over the palate, coating the tongue, and dripping delight all over the mouth. I like honey, and I like honey beers. The taste starts off with loads of honey, then leans back, as caramel and cocoa malt flavors fill in and temper the sweet stuff some. Still sweet, but far from treacly. Very mellow.

Full bodied, to say the least, finish is solid, sweet and mellow, not too short, not too long...doesn't overstay it's welcome. I find this one irresistible, but it be wisest to control consumption and keep this as a lovely nightcap.

Cheers to Todd and Omar for another remarkable, utterly unique brew, and to three great years of Surly beers!

 994 characters

Photo of Mdog
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Murky brown, decent head, good lacing.

Smell: I have trouble smelling on-tap beers, but three did give a sweet honey aroma.

Taste: Starts with some honey sweetness and then I get a tart cherry flavor. Not overly sweet, but on the sweet side.

Drinkability: Tasty but too strong to have much at the bar.

Congrats to Surly on anniversary #3! This beer reminds me somewhat of a Belgian quad, with its sweet, tart, and fruity flavors. Good stuff.

 458 characters

Photo of RDAdams
1.96/5  rDev -52.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 4 | overall: 1

The appearance is very inviting. Dark with a beautiful head.

As for the aroma, the honey and the Munich malt are both there, but there is no blending. It's like tha old McDonald's as where "the hot side is hot and the cold side is cold."

The taste is sickening sweet. It reminded me German Double Chocolate Cake with too much sugar added to the recipe.

The mouthfeel is full and smoth.

Drinkability: I couldn't finish it

 424 characters

Photo of KarlHungus
4.04/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of brandoman63
3.25/5  rDev -20.5%

Photo of Diomede
5/5  rDev +22.2%

Photo of BillRoth
4/5  rDev -2.2%

Photo of dfillius
4.78/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Served in a stemless wine glass. Enjoyed with lunch at Common Roots Cafe just before the keg was kicked! Manager told me it was half honey, half black Munich malt - doesn't that make it Braggot (http://beeradvocate.com/beer/style/114)?

A: 1 finger of dense tan creamy foam with tremendous retention. Opaque black doesn't match the manager's description of it as a 'Bright ale'. Looks like Guinness.
S: Floral hops with a bright (there it is) alcohol smell behind the hops. Maybe honey.
T: Fruity, tangy, delicious. This is new territory for me, I haven't had anything like it before. I could not ask for any improvements on the flavor of this beer. Sweet, but not cloying. Sweetness is grounded by the roasted malt.
M: Impossibly creamy, like on Nitro-tap (but wasn't, I checked). Delightful. Tiny bit of bitterness. Smooth.
D: I would have many of these. Not a session beer though! (I was surprised to see it listed as 10.00%!)

 929 characters

Photo of GbVDave
4.05/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served in a snifter at Small Bar 4/30/09. Thanks to HeatherAnn for the assist!

A: Served a deep, dark chestnut with a tiny head that quickly melted to a small ring and a small amount of lace.

S: Aromas of fresh honey, berries, homemade caramel, and toasted nuts.

T: See above with the addition of sweet caramel drenched berries and apples.

M: Sweet, sticky, and smooth. No trace of alcohol was detected! Sweet with a slightly dry tartness.

D: I didn't know what to expect and boy was I surprised. Excellent!

 512 characters

Photo of ndolover
4.48/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Had this beer at Winterfest 09 and 10...The 2010 was as follows:

A: golden with hues of orange. no head and very clear

S: Pears, and sweet malt aromas...no hops

F: Heavy pear with notes of sweet malt. lovely fruits dance as it finish. Honey notes come though as it warms

M; Very rich with full mouthfeel, some alcohol notes, but no real fusels.

O: lovely...I have never had a better braggot. A bit sticky sweet, but I love it!

Must try!

 443 characters

Photo of brdc
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this so called "Black Braggot" at the Great Taste of the Midwest, poured into a sample glass.

Quite black, tan head, nice retention and lacing.
Aroma is sweetish, dark malts, honey as expected, vanilla, roasted notes lost in there, some earthiness, minimal alcohol odor.
Full bodied, and I thought I did not like braggots!
Sweet but not cloying, vanilla and honey, a few spices. Caramel, chocolate, and more sweetness, but still easy to drink, and alcohol nowhere to be found.
Another great Surly, better than Two, but not quite as spectacular as One.

 558 characters

Photo of robbyc1
4.02/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On draft at Hopleaf in Chicago.

Sampled a small glass, nice deep brown, clearish look with little head.

Sweetness hits the nose, you get the honey tone, then it opens up for vanilla and delicate spices. Very pleasant. Wow.

The deep malt hits on front, with chocolate tones, and then a massive honey sweetness finishes and coats and lasts on the pallet. I'm not sure they used enough hops to mellow the sweetness, my only real complaint.

Full bodied, with a heavy mouthfeel, stays around for sure. The drinkability suffers from the sweetness, you must be ready for this. It's a dessert sipper. Hard to think about finishing a full pint.

Forget the Strong Ale designation, it is strong but this is a true to style Braggot, with a great malt linked to the underlying Mead, I would love to try this mead on it's own. As a Braggot it is very well done, if a bit over the top on sweetness, Love ya Surly.

 903 characters

Photo of beckje01
3.82/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Black color brown head with some lacing overall a nice looking beer.

S- Off putting smell but its the same as other braggots..

T- Great sweet mild flavor not over powering, with a nice almost semi tartness in there but goes away quick. A very nice taste and has a slight dryness that works well.

M- Nice thickness thin enough not to confuse the sweet flavors with a true mead and good activity to set it apart

D- Very nice to drink and a fun one, not something you find very often.

 488 characters

Photo of br3wmeister
4.04/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Small white head that dissipated quickly. Dark reddish brown beer, very dark.

S- Up front honey, and caramel. This is a very sweet smelling beer. Lots of sweet malt with very little hop presence. some nice alcohol comes through but is not overwhelming. This beer smells almost like a cognac.

T- Huge sweet flavors, mostly honey with hints of caramel, molasses and roasted almonds. A slight sour presence midway through that leads to a hop bitterness then back into a malty sweet base. plums, and pears make a small appearance in the flavor. Again the flavor reminded me of a cognac.

M- Thick oily mouth feel, that is more then welcome. This beer coats your mouth with nice sweet honey.

Overall- This is a very interesting beer. It taste like a liquor or a cognac, if you like sweet and like to get drunk quick this is the beer for you!

 846 characters

Photo of MasterSki
4.15/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Luckily got to try this at Hopleaf - served in a pint glass.

A - When I got the glass there was maybe a half finger of foam that dissipated quickly and left a thin ring of lace. Not sure if this was due to how the bartender poured it, so I'm going to give Surly the benefit of the doubt. Dark brown with some red highlights.

S - Reminds me a little of the Kuhnhenn Braggot. Sweet malt, berries, raisins, caramel, and honey. There's also a slight booziness to it.

T - Plenty of honey, caramel, sweet malts, and a slight sour cherry & Belgian yeast flavor. The high ABV is very well hidden, and the main flavor is a brown sugary sweetness. It drinks like a cross between a braggot & a quad. Very unique.

M - Thick, full-bodied, creamy, with slight carbonation. Very velvety and warming.

D - This is a one & done. It's high in ABV, and the sweetness gets a little exhausting - definitely a sipper, and probably best shared with a friend. If you're a mead/braggot lover this is a must try - otherwise it's more of a novelty.

 1,025 characters

Photo of younger35
3.09/5  rDev -24.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Had this at the Bavarian Lodge for their special Surly release party. I basically went for the 16 Grit but had to try this too! Drank from a small tulip.

Appearance- Pours a jet ass black with a nice two finger plus head that is thick and creamy. A smallish cap remains the entire duration of the "beer" along with thick rings of creamy lacing.
Smell- Starts with a very lightly charred smokiness with a light sort of honey sweetness that perfumes the background. Lightly floral and uniquely spicy as a light bit of caramel peaks its head in. Some red licorice and candied orange peel are also readily noticeable.
Taste- Starts lightly sweet with a sort of cherry start and that distinctly dry sticky earthiness I get from honey. Figs and a touch of dried raisins add a very dark earthy aspect. Some spiciness (white pepper and cinnamon) add a different aspect that I'm not sure I've experienced before. Finishes slightly sweet, slightly dry with a fruity sort of mellowness.
Mouthfeel- Fairly stout body with some zesty carbonation but unfortunately it gets cloying.
Drinkability- Way to sweet as it makes this brew hard to finish. This is the 3rd Surly brew that I've had that they age on White Ash and honestly I have no idea what the Ash brings to the table. I will say that this is interesting but it's also a Black Braggot (and has no business being on BA but whatever) so it's fun to try odd styles like this. Fun to try but only once.

 1,443 characters

Photo of ryancl
4.25/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of mnstorm99
3.3/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Dark brown pour with no head to speak of, which can be expected as this is true to style with very little carbonation. But it isn't the best looking brew in general. There is a lack of aroma, I get very small hints of honey and dark sweet malts, but they are hard to search for. Taste is extremely sweet, which is to style, but honestly a style I am not enamored with. Mouthfeel is nice and smooth, with a definate coating of sugars on the way down. The aftertaste is something I can't quite pick out, but the taste as someone next to me put it "tastes like flat coke" which is somewhat true, but I don't get the coke, I get flat sweet malts, mostly caramel. The best of their anniversary beers to me, but again, just not a beer I will seek out.

 745 characters

Photo of mothman
3.85/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had this on tap last week during Surly Week at Busters on 28th.

Poured into a Surly Pint glass.

Pours a 1/2 finger slightly tanned head. Leaves some lace rings. Color is a dark brown/deep dried cherry color.

Aroma: Grapes, wine like. Dried fruits (cranberries, prunes). Bready malts. Very unique.

Taste: Dried fruits (again, cranberries and prunes). Very wine like. Bready malts. Tarty. A slight amount of booze.

Mouthfeel: Very tarty and a little bitter. Becomes very boozy after a while being on the palate. Full bodied. Slightly high carbonation.

Overall, this is a very hard pint to finish. Interesting, but not something to have all the time. Very unique and worth a shot. Maybe a smaller serving would be helpful.

 725 characters

Photo of rtepiak
4.1/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

pour is dark dark amber. something shy of a porter but reddish in tint. small head. smell is mellow sweet, a bit sour cherry with a lace of alcohol. caramel apple malt, with hint of candied pineapple citrus. palate is heavy toffee, caramel. tastes like a very good english style barley wine with a cirtus quality similar to over sweetened tea... sweet mead like finish. pollen with a hint of sour cherry quality. not bitter finish. just a distinct molasses like bbq sauce. a very nice light lemon zest, honey comb mead sweet, with a very light sour kick. its hides the alcohol well.

pollen but not floral. clean. an english barley wine form with a unique finish similar to that of mead.

another great beer by this brewery. worth trying.

 740 characters

Photo of brewdoc75
3.96/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I thought this was long gone in the cities, but I found some by chance last night when having dinner at the Groveland Tap.

A: Beautiful mahogany with amber hues. Very little carbonation.

S: Really not a lot at first. I let the beer warm up and thne I got some strong sweet caramel aromas backed up by a nice honey aroma. There was a slight herbal character and some fruitiness as well. I did get a hint of acidic almost vinegar like aroma at the end.

T: Sweetness predominates, but not just honey here. There is a vast complexity of flavors with honey, caramel, toffee, plum, and a slight fruitiness. You do get some mild alcohol flavors, but it adds to the complexity. Faint hops in the end that balance the brew out nicely. Very flavorfull and unique. Almost belgian quad-esque. Somewhat wine like.

M: Really quite light bodied and thin. Not what I was expecting, but still pretty darn nice. No carbonation felt.

D: This was a very interesting beer (braggot) to say the least. I've had mead, I've had beer, but never a braggot. I thought I would hate it, but I really liked it. I may have to brew one of these sometime. This is a definite must try for any Surly fan or anyone who is adventurous.

 1,203 characters

Photo of optiontwo
4.34/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at common roots café (thank goodness I might add because it's cold and I didn't want to have to ride my bike too far to try this!)

Appearance: Murky brown/black. Almost looks like I just ordered a glass of cold press. No real head, just a ring of small tan bubbles around the glass.

Smell: Very intriguing. The first thing that comes to mind is bourbon of some sort with fresh apple and tart cherry. The honey is also pretty obvious. It's somewhat acrid and funky in a way that some sours and lambics are, giving off a sour grape like aroma.

Taste: The honey is prominent and delicious as it mixes with the tart fruits (cherry, apple, white grape) It reminds me of a sour brewed with honey. Some reviewers said Quad and I suppose that's about right too but the fruit flavors seem more tart and sour than they do juicy. Either way, the flavors blend together wonderfully. Besides the fruit and honey mixing together there are some more subtle flavors that make up the back bone of this brew such as nutmeg, caramel, and brown sugar. It finishes with a very slight, and welcomed, bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Slightly syrupy but not quite as thick as one might think for a beer brewed with half honey. There's a bit of alcohol heat at the end.

Drinkability: I would say that one glass of this is just about perfect. You may want more, and if that be case then by all means! But its sweetness and high ABV make it more like a great brew to end your night with.

Overall: I found Surly Three to be absolutely fascinating, and delicious! I can see why some people have said that it's too sweet for their palate, but you've got to know what you're getting into. I mean, it's half honey for pete's sake! That being said, I thought it was actually quite refreshing because of the tart fruit flavors. This is definitely one to try if you have the opportunity and another great brew from Surly. Happy third birthday Surly!!!

 1,921 characters

Photo of maximum12
3.8/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Sipped glasses of this on-tap at both the Muddy Pig & the Blue Nile over the past week - had to have some Three before it joins One & Two in the world of lost beers.

Three is very dark, just how dark is hard to tell in a murky bar setting. The nose on it is very sweet.

So is the taste. This is what I hoped for when, in my fallow & fickle youth, I tried Leine's Honey Weiss for the first time. Ain't no flippin' honey in that! Here, however, there's honey. I don't know how much, but I wouldn't dare take it outside in the summer. Bees would come from miles around to swim in it.

It's thick. Surly doesn't seem to give a butt about style, but this tasted more along the lines of a Quad to me. Whatever it is, it's tasty, but I'd be hard-pressed to down more than one a night, given the ABV & the fact it takes me about an hour to get through a glass.

Very good beer. Wish I had a bottle to see what some months would do to it, but that's just wishin'.

 960 characters

Photo of paco1029384756
4.1/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown color with a short off white head.

Scent of honey, sweet malts, wood, smoke and sugar. A nice amount of complexity, but the balance could be better.

Taste of sugars, honey, sweet malts, and a hint of smoke. A different beer, but not too different, I enjoyed this one.

Mouthfeel is medium heavy bodied and very smooth with a small amount of carbonation.

 374 characters

Three from Surly Brewing Company
Beer rating: 91 out of 100 with 93 ratings