Surly Brewing Company

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Strong Ale - American
3.85 | pDev: 16.1%
Surly Brewing Company
Minnesota, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Very Good
View: Beers
Reviews: 73 | Ratings: 359 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of rodbeermunch
rodbeermunch from Nevada

2.26/5  rDev -41.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.25

Its been a long time since I've said FTB (fuck this beer) but this one firmly brings those emotions and feelings back into the fold. Pours an orange colored liquid that if I was guessing uninformed style, might be a double ipa. But alas, this is far from it. Hot burning alcohol is the first thing in the nose, then a little bit of honey to try and cover it up, but it fails. Miserably too. Throw some shitty old person toffee/caramel/butterscotch candy up in there too.

Taste brings out even more alcohol sting. It is the primary mover and shaker in this beer, just straight up Ralph Wiggum style, "it tastes like burning." The malt base is admirable but it can't soak up this abomination of taste. I would be interested to know what something like, half this strength tastes like. For me, 20 year old candy + everclear grain alcohol is the one line sentence review of this beer that can get bent. Still miss you Dr. Carroll. Tom Petty next week in Hollywood, the final show on the final tour!

Sep 18, 2017
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StonedTrippin from Colorado

3.85/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

this is just too much, holy cow, its all of 15% abv, one of the strongest tasting and feeling, booziest beers i have ever consumed. shared generously with me by a good friend, this bottle was a lot for even two seasoned beer drinkers to finish. amber liquid without a ton of head or bubbles flows into the glass, i can smell the heat without even bringing the glass to my nose, lots of sweet malt too, barleywine-esque. i think its really cool they have aged it with six different types of wood, but its hard to tell what they might be, and its more of a novelty sort of fact about this beer than it is a real flavor nuance, it tastes woody sure, but i would not be able to say it was multiple varieties if i didnt know. tastes less like barrel and more like spirals or something, no whiskey or anything, just the wood, earthy and kind of bitter, nice with all the sugars in the base of this one. time has not been as good to this as one would think it would be in a beer like this, it tastes a little oxidized, a little stale on the malts, and like some of its interesting layers have faded, its pretty straight forward boozy and sweet, but this beer is real old now, so who knows what might have been lost. the alcohol is so intense it almost hurts going down, fusel for sure, burns like cheap spirits on the finish, and it ends up turning my stomach a little bit. a heck of a night cap, a guaranteed hangover even in a shared context, and a neat beer, but not the amazingly aged expression of wood we hoped it would be... if you have one, time to find some buddies and open it up, not a lot of value in keeping it in the cellar any longer i wouldnt think...

Sep 17, 2017
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Umdrunner from Wisconsin

3.79/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Cellared bottle, Poured hazy orange with fluffy white head. Strong boozy scent with notes of sweet honey and citrus. Flavor is quite boozy with upfront flavors of honey and toffee, lingering orange flavors with boozy finish. Carbonation levels held up very well while aged.

Apr 02, 2016
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SinjaminBentek from Nebraska

4.05/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle share at Courtyard & Cellar for Toppling Goliath Mornin' Delight release!

750ml Bottle.

Jet black in color. Decent strong ale. Doesn't stand out in crowd. Average.


Sep 15, 2015
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mjpolzin from Wisconsin

4/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this at the 2015 GTMW. Wasn't seeking it out but walked by the Surly tent and saw they had just tapped it so I figured I'd give it a try. A full bottle of this would get to be a little much but as a small pour, this was an interesting, outstanding beer.

Aug 09, 2015
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Jeffo from Netherlands

2.88/5  rDev -25.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Got this one from Rutger a couple summers ago and just haven’t been up for taking on this big bruiser alone. Finally found a couple willing volunteers to help out. Cheers for the brew man!

From a 750 into a snifter

APPEARANCE: Pours a two finger, medium looking, creamy, off-white head with good retention. Clear safety orange in color with no carbonation evident. Head slowly fades to a foamy cap with lots of lacing down the glass. A foamy ring remains leaving some splotchy lacing sticking to the sides of the glass as it empties. Looks pretty nice, really.

SMELL: Lots of toffee, caramel, some butterscotch, lots of piney hops, some melon aromas, and some nice notes of citrusy hops. Huge nose. Very bold with lots of everything going on. A touch of spice as well.

TASTE: Toffee, caramel, some nice melon sweetness and alcohol up front. Quite fruity with lots of honey sweetness. Some alcohol at the swallow with a big finish of toffee sweetness, honey, piney and citrusy hops and lots more booze. This certainly is a bruiser.

PALATE: Medium-thinner body with medium levels of carbonation. Lighter on the palate, goes down smooth enough with a bit of a scratch and finishes surprisingly dry. An astringent finish for sure.

OVERALL: What a beast. Some good flavors here for sure, with lots of malt character and plenty of hops for fun, but it is certainly boozy and the feel is too astringent for it to really be an enjoyable big beer. I understand why this beer is so divisive. I wasn’t the hugest fan, but the other two I drank it with were much more positive, with the one person absolutely loving it. Obviously a beer like this isn’t for everyone, which is what makes it so much fun. Thanks again Rutger! This one was good times.

Mar 18, 2015
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AndyAvalanche from Massachusetts

4.15/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

1 pint 9.4 oz. bottle poured into a Duvel tulip style glass. The beer comes out of the bottle a honey yellow color as if it were liquified honey. However as it rises in the glass it becomes more of a hazy orange color. Like an orange/grapefruit/tangerine juice color. Nice and hazy, there's a big frothy head on this one, sort of a cremecicle color, goes away after a little bit, minimal lacing to it.

Smell is really good; I'm digging this one; if I had to sum it up quickly, it's sort of like a sweet barleywine. A nice natural honey aroma with some nice citrus and piney hops following it. A decent malt bill though, like a lot of pale or caramel malts to it. Some woody aromas to it as well, but not like the vanilla like barrel aromas. A lot of fruity characteristics like plumbs and dates as well.

Taste is just as good. Citrus and woody, strong on both. Sort of a sweet liquor citrus gummy candy. Some nice candy sweetness in the beginning but not an overwhelming sugar bomb. Some nice dehydrated fruit characteristics to it. Some nice caramelized/candy coated pecan or some other type of bitter nut flavoring to it as well.

Mouthfeel is really good, it's full bodied with a lingering flavor, but light enough to drink on a hot summer day. I wouldn't call it smooth, but close to it because it's far from rough and gritty/gushy. It's carbonated enough, but not enough to cause any type of sting. The alcohol is certainly present, and provides a slight warming sensation, but after it's been consumed; I feel it more in my stomach than in the mouthfeel. Really drinkable, a nice sipper, but I could see why this one would be a little bit dangerous if you weren't careful on it. Another solid brew from Surly; one of the better breweries out there.

Jul 17, 2014
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Dave11899 from Minnesota

4.4/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from the limited one time release bottle. Nearly 2 years after available (on 06/22/14). Pours a cloudy orange with a off white white head that diminishes quickly. Aroma is of floral hops, alcohol and bright refreshing characteristics. Similar to an IPA on a hot day. Taste is boozy with honey, bread and slight caramel. This isn’t a bad thing as it is still sweet up front with a slight hops bitterness lingering. Palette is average. Nothing note worthy. Just sharp and awakening. Overall. Incredible. I will continue to search for more bottles. Probably the best beer to come from Surly except for Darkness.

Jun 19, 2014
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Alieniloquium from Florida

3.23/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

750 mL bottle poured into a snifter. Reviewed from notes.

Appearance - Cloudy burnt orange. Off-white hefty head. Settles very quickly. Leggy on the swirl.

Smell - Hoppy. Smells very barleywine-like. Boozy. Caramel, but not very rich or sweet smelling.

Taste - Sharp alcohol. Sharp hop bite, too. Less malty than I thought it would be. Very bitter. Surprisingly bright flavors for such a big beer, but it's kinda harsh by that same token.

Mouthfeel - Boozy. Not too heavy. Well carbonated. Harsh bitterness.

Overall - Gets sluggish and tough to drink.

Jun 15, 2014
Photo of Can_if_you_can
Can_if_you_can from Minnesota

4.81/5  rDev +24.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

Reviewed from notes.

Medium goldish brown color, thin yellowish white head, smells Great! Smooth honey aroma mild hops and malts. mainly honey stands out, taste is weird, initially very boozy and sweet then hoppy then malty, then very sweet sugary syrupy aftertaste! pretty crazy boozy but not 15% I would guess around 11 or 12%. Gets waaay better as you drink and it warms.

Apr 23, 2014
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angrybabboon from Massachusetts

3.43/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Cheers to Goblinmunkey7 for sharing this

Consumed 2/17/14

Appearance: Hazy, somewhere between burnt orange and copper - pours with a large, off-white head - leaves some nice streaks and blobs of lacing - appealing, especially given the age and rather high alcohol

Smell: Grainy malts, wood, and some hot, potent booze - big, cooked, caramelized malts - lightly toasty, somewhat syrupy - an above-average amount of sweetness, with some oxidation, kind of smells like a cross between an old ale and a barleywine, with extra booze - very hot - not trashy, fusel alcohols, more like a hard liquor... nice, but still excessively boozy

Taste: So much booze, is this supposed to be on the rocks? - caramelized malts, cooked malts, caramel and toasted grains - malt extract, liquified biscuits - above average sweetness, but the malty sweetness is somewhat tempered by the wood - hard to discern the woody flavor, so I'll just call it wood - some light fruity esters and some oily citrus - booze, layered with booze, with some booze poured on top - some oxidation, and more booze on top of that - some level of of booze would be nice, but this is over the top to an absurd degree

Mouthfeel: Full body, nice carbonation breaks up the stickiness, finishes hot with some booze

Overall: Not Surly Süx, but probably my least favorite offering from the brewery

Surly cannot make a bad beer. But they came pretty close with this one. The sheer quantity of booze in both the nose and the flavor is overwhelming. There are some nice malts here, and the wood is interesting, but it's mostly just ridiculous.

Feb 18, 2014
Photo of Goblinmunkey7
Goblinmunkey7 from Massachusetts

3.79/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

Big thanks to Sender1, KWMiles, and Minnesotaryan for this madness.

Appearance; Pours a bright yellow and settles to a rich burnt orange-gold. Starts with big white head. Drops to a bubbly cap and slightly larger collar. A touch of lacing. Moderate retention. Average carbonation on the pour.

Smell: Spicy alcohol. Boozy esters. Layers of fruit, mostly apple and pear. Some honey and a ton of wood. Oak, some softer slightly spicy wood...like cedar. Marmalade, a touch of mint. Vague notions of earthy and slightly bitter hops. Toffee, caramel. Cooked and caramelized malts. Seriously malty. Big and sweet, but the alcohol tempers it a bit. Some vague notions of grape and wine must.

Taste: Ummm...wood and lots of it. Some oak, a lighter greenernwood, and something that reminds me of cedar. Spicy alcohol esters coupled with some spicy wood elements. A touch of raw honey and some fruit. Mealy pear and apricot. Marmalade, a touch of mint, earth, and dirty grass. Herbal. Malts are massively sweet. Cooked and caramelized and breast as can be. Sharp punch of alcohol through and through. Boozy. A ton of wood and it gets more complex as it warms. Just a ton of stuff.

Mouthfeel: Medium pushing toward full body with a slightly syrupy feel to it. Moderate carbonation and finishes relatively clean. A bit juicy on the initial sip.

Overall: If you're 555 then I'm 66drunk.

A big boozy complex beer and then some. A ton of depth but it's never too much. Pushes the boundary to be sure.

Feb 18, 2014
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boilermakerbrew from Indiana

4.3/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A- Pours a very deep, full orange in color with a sizable, 3-4 finger head. Lacing and retention are both tremendous. Body is very hazy.

S- Hops, honey-like sweetness, and slight hints of barrel all collide in a very complex scent. Under all of the complexity is a fairly evident scent of booze. Slightly sweet overall, but still contains some balancing bitterness.

T- Starts with some light, yet strong sweet honey and fruity flavors. Fruity flavors are much like a traditional Belgian golden ale. In the middle of the drink, the fruity and sweet flavors take a backseat to the hops bitterness. Not tremendously bitter, but enough to make you notice, the hops balance out the underlying sweetness. Barrel characteristics come out just after the hops and mix in with the hops, fruit, and honey flavors to add to the complexity. Barrel isn't as prominent as in most BA beers, and displays just hints of char, oak, and whiskey. Ends with a lingering spiciness on the tongue and some alcohol bite.

M- Low to medium levels of carbonation with a rather light feeling on the tongue make you think you could drink this all night, but the very high alcohol level and strong flavors bring it back towards a sipping beer. Fairly slick and smooth on the tongue, but even that can't disguise the high alcohol level that will eventually catch up to you.

Overall, this is an incredibly complex beer. Very interesting take on using traditional flavors and modern barrel aging techniques. I should have saved this bottle to share with some people because of the strength.

Jan 17, 2014
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Jugs_McGhee from Louisiana

3/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

750ml brown glass bottle with orange-red wax-ed over pry-off pressure cap acquired in Minneapolis, Minnesota last year in a trade and served into a Guinness goblet in me parents' gaff in high altitude Castle Rock, Colorado. Reviewed live. 15% alcohol according to the label. I'm not sure which style this is; none is indicated on the label.

Served cold. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: No bubble show forms as the bottle is poured.

Pours a one finger wide head of white colour. Nice thickness and decent creaminess. Nice even consistent lacing clings to the sides of the glass as the head recedes. Head retention is above average - about 3 minutes.

Body colour is an orange-copper. Nontranslucent/nontransparent. No floating yeast particles are visible; it's pretty clean.

Overall, it's a generally appealing appearance, but I can't discern the style. A bit confusing, but generally appealing.

Sm: Abundant tropical fruit. Floral hops. Pineapple, mango. A biteen boozy. Generic fairly pale malts. It's a hard aroma to peg.

No yeast character or spice is detectable.

A confusing aroma of above average strength. There aren't many distinct notes here.

T: Boozy orange, pineapple, mango, and tangerine notes. Floral hop character. Pale malts. Tepid orange juice. Lots of ripe fruit character. Some questionable bitterness comes through as well.

I'm not getting any yeast character at all. There is some noticeable alcohol warmth.

Average depth, duration, and intensity of flavour. I wouldn't call it simple, but it's not real complex. Not subtle, nuanced, or intricate either.

Mf: Warm, smooth, wet, and way too thick. Too full-bodied. The heavy presence here isn't justified given the lack of depth, diversity, and complexity of flavour. A biteen overcarbonated.

Not oily, gushed, astringent, or harsh.

Dr: The whole warm tropical fruit vibe of this beer isn't doing it for me. I don't know that we'll finish this even with seven of us at this tasting. The alcohol warmth coupled with the relative lack of appealing flavour results in an underwhelming beer. Not sure what they were going for with this one. I hoped for better given it's Surly. Sort of an orange liqueur attempt.

High C

Dec 24, 2013
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reddfrogg from Minnesota

3.8/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

It took me awhile to really enjoy this beer!! This is my third bottle and at first I would have probably given this beer a 2.5 on the first bottle a 3 on the second bottle, so I'm doing the review after drinking the third bottle. My favorite beer?!?!?! not by a long shot, but it grows on you

Nov 06, 2013
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facundoCNB from New Jersey

3.79/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

a clean copper pour with 2 fingers of off-white head, creamy lacing left behind. smells of honey, tons of malt, heavy booze aroma, caramel, banana, raisins, brown sugar. a very sweet flavor up front.. tons of bready flavors with a subtle bitterness, lots of sugary sweetness, a bit of a belgian feel from the banana flavors in the yeast. full body with a low carbonation profile.

this is a pretty nice belgian style strong ale.. but a little underwhelming coming from surly. the alcohol is quite present and hits you fast and hard. maybe this wasn't an ideal one to open a few hours after that wootstout.. oops!

Oct 13, 2013
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SpeedwayJim from New York

3.68/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Onto the next 1000! Thanks to Jeff for this one. 750ml waxed and capped bottle into a Brooklyn Brewery snifter. Shared with schen9303.

Pours a frothy 3 finger cream colored head with moderate retention. Lacing is spotty with little cling. Beer is a slightly cloudy bright orange-bronze. Decent.

Nose is yams, sugar, caramel, honey, citrus and a slight booziness. Very sweet and hugely aromatic. Appropriate for the style.

Opens citrus, yam, honey, and pulp. Caramel, brown sugar, and mango sap deepen the experience. Molasses too. End is sweet brown and cane sugar with a boozy finish. Aftertaste is syrupy sweet. Solid but a bit too sweet at times.

Medium to full bodied with low carbonation. Oily and slick in the mouth and goes down silky and hot. Messy finish with a sticky, lingering aftertaste. Nice.

Not really one of the better Surly anniversary beers. This one's just a bit too much on all fronts. Too sweet and too boozy without the flavor to tie all the different flavors into one unified experience.

Oct 10, 2013
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beerpirates from Belgium

2.49/5  rDev -35.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

75 cl bottle poured in a tastingglass

Bright copper color with nearly no head. Messy aroma.
Oak, honey, slight citrus, and boozy. Not starting off well.
Sweet as balls. Thick and syrupy body. Lots of fruit, plenty of residual sugar, veryhigh bitterness in the finish. I’m not liking this. Thick, sweet, boozy. Wirh a very high bitter finish
I can’t fathom taking more than 3 sips of this,
One of the worst beers i ever had !

May 31, 2013
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Sirwootalot from Minnesota

4.42/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Aged for one year in my cellar, poured into three twelve-ounce pilsner glasses and shared with friends.

The smell is cloying, intense, and wonderful - like potpourri, honey, and fresh-cut-wood. It leaves a surprisingly thick head for its incredible ABV, white in contrast to the beer's vivid orange like a dreamsicle. Taste-wise, it's boozy, woody, sweet, and intoxicating - literally and figuratively. I cannot remember the last time a beer got me this dangerously drunk. It's like being in a pine forest and walking past a beehive, except in your mouth. The mouthfeel is more like a double IPA than a strong ale, sapping moisture from the mouth and encouraging yet more tasty dangerous boozy sips.

I wish i'd gotten to try this beer when it was fresh, but at the same time, it was absolutely fantastic and well worth aging to this point. If I haven't made a typo yet, that is incredible because seriously this is the strongest beer i've ever had and with no prior drinks it got me well and properly drunk. do *NOT* tackle this one by yourself!

May 16, 2013
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BirdsandHops from Oregon

3.91/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: pours a hazy orange-red with two fingers of white head that fade Iinto a frothy cap with good lacing.

S: lots of sweet caramel and toffee with oak dominating. There are also notes of raisins and Port.

T: similar to the aroma, lots of caramel with vanilla, toffee, and oak. There are raisins and Port toward the finish with a light alcohol burn.

M: medium-thick body with lowish carbonation, this beer is sticky sweet but avoids being overly so.

O: an interesting beer. It reminds me of an aged English old ale or barleywine.

May 11, 2013
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ngeunit1 from Massachusetts

4.16/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Hazy golden-orange with a finger of frothy off-white head. Fades normal.

S - Bready and biscuit malts, grapefruit, pineapple, and other citrus hops, oak, vanilla, booze.

T - Caramel, bready, and biscuit malts, grapefruit, pineapple, orange, and other citrus hops, some bitterness, oak, vanilla, booze.

M - Medium-plus bodied with moderate-light carbonation. Smooth with a sweet, bitter, and warming finish.

D - Nice hoppy profile with good base beer that holds up to the oak character.

May 01, 2013
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MasterSki from Canada (ON)

3.13/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 2.75

Bottle from joshuaseresse. Served in a Half Acre taster glass at Tom's birthday party.

A - White foam settles to wisps, thick collar, and specks of lace. Transparent apricot body. Surprisingly attractive considering the high ABV.

S - Very unusual; this has an unusual aged quality to it, almost as if it was 4-5 years old. Fruity, with big treacle and red licorice. Quite sweet, which gets cloying very quickly but masks the alcohol quite well. Not much wood, which makes me curious about the 'honeycomb' apparatus they used.

T - Taste is similar, but not as enjoyable as it develops some fusel and astringent notes, particularly in the finish. Kind of like an aged Belgian, in that it's fruity and slightly estery but lacking in yeast character. The fruit is a tad rotten here, and there's some caramel and toffee barleywine flavors supporting things.

M - Chewy, sticky, full body. Lower carbonation, with a bit of alcohol warmth. Alcohol is pretty well tamed, and this drinks closer to 10%. Finish lingers on the palate but isn't overly sugary.

D - The alcohol is reasonably managed, but I'm not digging the flavors so much. Reminds me of a cross between a wheatwine and an old Belgian strong pale, which are two flavors I already don't care for much. My least favorite offering from Surly.

Apr 01, 2013
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Beerandraiderfan from Nevada

3.55/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours out somewhere between orange and yellow. Nice 3/4" white head on it, kinda surprised how impressive this beer looked given its high abv.

Aroma was citrus, honey and high alcohol. Not fusels, but just big hammer of alcohol.

Warming sensation upon the first sip. Still hits hard with honey and orange. As a gran marnier drinker, this was kind of up that alley. Warm citrus liquor. Along with the orange you can probably identify some apricot and pineapple. A unique beer for sure. But it also is decent to drink, so that's helpful.

The mouthfeel is difficult to score. On one hand, its amazing that a beer with such a relatively light body can be so decent and hold up the rest of the flavor and alcohol profile. Its a one of a kind, but at the same time, far from an effortless drinking experience. There's some adequate hopping to it that stands behind the scenes. There's also a light woodiness to it. Slightly acidic and tart.

A good beer to have about 3-4oz of to yourself. The entire 750ml? Not a chance. Best to open with friends, which I did. Unfortunately, that ass clown David Hurley, El Dorado Casino Beverage Manager, put the kibosh on our bottle share, even after having higher ups approve said bottle share the last 3 years. Other than that dishonesty after we had all bought our plane tickets, rooms, bets, food, waters at the El Dorado, we won't be returning, and I urge you be aware of entering the dishonest den of El Dorado casino that values their Budweiser reps more than their customers and patrons.

But don't let that get in the way of you drinking good beer. This one, Surly Syx, should probably be opened with friends.

Mar 26, 2013
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JoEBoBpr from Missouri

3.88/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a tulip glass from a 750ml bottle. Thanks to arniepnminne for this.

Pours a hazy bright orange color with some nice copper edges. Very bright and attractive. There is a nice 1 inch dense off-white head that has some great retention. The head slowly recedes down to thin film while leaving some slight lacing

Aroma starts off with some juicy citrusy hop notes. Pretty intense at first inspection. This is then followed by some strong boozy heat. Wow. The booze has some sweetness on the back end that mixes well with the intense hop notes. Aromas of strong grapefruit rind with tangerines, oranges and some mild lemon notes. Very intense.

Wow. Flavor is very interesting and intense The citrus fruit rind is explosive and coats the tongue immediately. This is then combined with some heat. The citrus notes from the hops are intense. Notes of grapefruits and orange. There are also some slight resinous pine notes in the flavor. This brew is pretty hot and not for the faint of heart. There are some midl wood spice notes in the flavor as it warms mixed in with some mild caramel malt sweetness. This is a American Strong Ale for the ages. Not for the faint of heart. Mouthfeel is oily and creamy but also very smooth and easy to gulp down which is dangerous with such high ABV.

Overall, I dont want to say its disappointing cuz its note but its slightly one-dimensional. Quite hot and very very hoppy. Def a intense brew for an already intense style.

Mar 09, 2013
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inlimbo77 from Delaware

3.44/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle, Summer 2012
5oz mini tasting snifter

A: Pours out pretty much clear bright neon orange like color. I got a thin layer of bright white head that left some sticking lacing bits. Definitely some alcohol feet here. This is a big brew.

S: The nose on this is strange to me. I get alcohol heat. Some weird off nail polish like remover scent for a second. Some citrus sweetness. Not what I was expecting.

T: I guess the taste is better than the nose. It's not as boozy as I thought it would be when I first smelled it. You do get some hoppy notes up front. Some of that orange and citrus hints. Then it's some of that strange sweetness. Not like a strong ale or barleywine I've had before. It's a pretty long finish.

M: Big medium leading to full

Feb 04, 2013
SŸX from Surly Brewing Company
Beer rating: 87 out of 100 with 359 ratings