Smuttynose Old Brown Dog Ale | Smuttynose Brewing Company

very good
968 Reviews
Smuttynose Old Brown Dog AleSmuttynose Old Brown Dog Ale

Brewed by:
Smuttynose Brewing Company
New Hampshire, United States

Style: American Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.70%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Old Brown Dog has been cited as a classic example of the “American Brown Ale” style of beer. Compared to a typical English Brown Ale, Old Brown Dog is fuller-bodied and more strongly hopped.

18 IBU

Added by BeerAdvocate on 05-07-1998

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Reviews: 968 | Ratings: 2,673
Photo of Mollyellis
4.89/5  rDev +25.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Smuttynose does brown ales well. This American style brown ale does not disappoint. If you enjoy the English cousin (aka Samuel Smith) this is the same smooth finish but a deeper beer and darker in the glass. If you see this on tap and like anything close to a bock you need to give this a shot. The only points I deducted were for the label. It's super basic and definitely doesn't make you gravitate towards it. But that is so fitting for this beer. It's extremely classic and understated and will not disappoint.

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Photo of jamiejohnson
4.87/5  rDev +24.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

I can't believe I haven't reviewed a Smutty beer - one of my absolute fave breweries. In the mad world of the IPA craze (and I love them too -Smutty's Finestkind included) a malt based probrew like Old brown Dog is refreshing. Smuttynose is incredible value - all of their beers are solid and priced for the working man. Thanks to you all you hard-working Smuttiers for producing this classic.

I drink every day
But it's not my fault
It's those evil brewers
Of hops and malt

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Photo of RWLawman
4.83/5  rDev +23.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance – Pours a medium brownish color, almost rustic. Moderate head that has great retention.

Smell – Roasted malt, almost exclusively. Smells like a brown ale should.

Taste – Prevalent malty flavors with some nutty taste on the back, along with some sweetness from the caramel. Absolutely delicious. The prime example of a great brown ale.

Mouthfeel – Well-balanced carbonation and creamy texture. Very smooth and easy to drink. Leaves you wanting more with each and every sip, and then finally leaves you craving more once it's gone.

Overall – One of the (if not THE) finest brown ales I've ever had. I absolutely love this and Sierra Nevada Tumbler. Highly recommend both beers, if you like browns as much as I do.

I've had this beer both on draft and from the bottle. While draft is obviously the superior drinking method, the bottle is every bit as tasty. If you haven't tried this beer, you're missing out.

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Photo of msolar
4.83/5  rDev +23.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

One of my favorite beers by one of my favorite breweries. Beautiful amber with a nice even head, tastes terrific, and extremely drinkable. Maybe it's because it's the inaugural keg in my new kegerator maybe it's just because I've been drinking it... either way, I highly recommend this brew.

Update: After having this on tap for 50 days I can easily say this is one of the best beers I've ever had and at no point was I ready to switch. My wife, friends, dog, and family were all very impressed with it and I never got tired of it. I liked it so much that I'm currently trying to figure out how to get a ¼ barrel with the hope of having it as a long-term staple at my house. I very highly recommend this beer.

I hate to rate it as all 5's since I suspect nobody will believe me but I really couldn't think of any reason to rate it anything but perfect. This is certainly a fuller bodied ale. Compared to Sam Adam's Boston Ale, the Smutty is much more flavorful with a fuller mouth-feel. The Harpoon UFO I got as a follow up keg is nowhere near as delicious or satisfying.

I kept it at approximately 11psi and 45° and it produced a beautiful ½" of head every time. ...and I made sure to pour some out for Olive.

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Photo of StevieW
4.82/5  rDev +23.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Very rich creamy brown, the color of wet shoe leather. Thick rich creamy tan head. Smell is a burst of carmel sweetness, rich brown sugar smells, like a box of chocolates. Taste was a combination of rich creamy carmel, chocolate malt, and yummy hop kick. Medium bodied, slightly syrupy sweet, but in a good way. Very good, very drinkable, I can't wait to get my hands on more of these. Right up there with Rogue's Brown Necter. My favorite beer of all the ones I tried on my recent New England vacation.

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Photo of unclejimbay
4.82/5  rDev +23.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Smuttynose Old Brown Dog Ale
Smuttynose Brewing Company
Style: English Brown Ale
ABV: 6.70 %
reviewed ~11/1/09, thanks to Greg M for homebrew cider trade @ FL/GA party.

4.0 Appearance, Chestnut/brown in color, ok 1 finger head with mediocre retention with a mild hint of lace and cap/ring.
4.5 Smell, Dark fruity malts, hints of roasty nut aromas on an evident but smooth hop presence.
5.0 Taste, I very much enjoy the taste of this ale. Tastes as it smell on a a solid malt backbone... sort of amber meets brown meets dubbel meets hoppyness kind of mix... I dig the mild hop kick (more than most browns)
5.0 Mouthfeel is medium body with medium carbonation, right on in my book.

5.0 on drinkability, a very well balanced brown ale as it should be IMHO. A more hoppy fuller body brown, but one of the most enjoyable ones I have had to date of this style. I also appreciatte the higher ABV @ 6.7% a bit higher than most browns ale.

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Photo of bsimeone
4.79/5  rDev +22.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Great tasting beer. Caramel taste - very hoppy. If you like heavy american, this is great stuff.

The pour itself was a reddish brown - very deep. The taste was bready with hints of fruit and whisky - very pleasant and smooth. I highly recommend this beer.

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Photo of david23
4.77/5  rDev +22.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is a case where a brew looks as good as it tastes. Pours a deep brown with a creamy tannish head that lingers.Aroma of rich malt and grains. Almost reminds me of walking through the grainery in my old home town. This is all about the best use of grain to produce a great tasting, smooth drinking Brown that leaves you wanting more.Unfortunately, I just drank the last bottle and the stores are close. There's always tommorrow. Surpassed some of my old favorites in choice.

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Photo of Marcrates
4.76/5  rDev +22.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - Pours dark golden brown, nice cream head

S - chocolate and a candy bar

T - Great malt taste and balance. WOW! Best beer I've had in a while.

M - This is the perfect weight IMHO. Not a milk shake, but still coats the palate.

O - I am really enjoying this beer. I love a malty beer, but I don't like it when it's over done. This is classy malt. The kinda malt you can take home to mom and dad.

Outstanding beer overall.

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Photo of Boo_Bill
4.75/5  rDev +21.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

This is an excellent beer. I do not agree that it's a "hoppy" beer. It's less bitter and has a better mouth feel than New Castle. Medium bodied and delicious. I'll be buying more.

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Photo of BlackJeep
4.75/5  rDev +21.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

An old New Hampshire buddy has been talking up SmuttyNose for a few years via Facebook and so I had to try one when it showed up at Beach Liquors in Fort Walton Beach, FL. I was not disappointed.

Poured from a bottle into a clear plastic party cup (sorry)

A: Deep brown color typical of most quality brown ales. Nice brown head.

S: Nice hearty brown smell with an extra fullness to it I was not expecting.

T: First impressions were very positive. Noted a very well placed chocolate flavor that seemed to account for the unexpectedly hearty aroma alluded to in the smell. Taste kept going and did not let down through the experience.

M: Very smooth and easy to drink. Not filling or gassy. Coated my mouth nicely with a pleasant and lasting caramel taste.

O: Overall I'm quite pleased with this beer and would definitely buy again.

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Photo of TheDeuce
4.73/5  rDev +21.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Smuttynose Old Brown Dog Ale....

Appearance-pours a really dark brown with a tan foamy head that fizzles up and then finally simmers down into a two finger pile of lace, some lace left on the edge...

Smell-caramel malt simmers on top with a bite of hop nuances on the end of it it, a little bit of alcohol and caramel to round it out.

Taste-chocalatey malt comes through immediately with great smoothness on the toungue as it finishes some slight hop bites come into play, effortlessly smooth and chocolaty, great depth for a brown ale.

Mouthfeel-great depth and smoothness round out this brew and help it go down easy with a chocolate taste that is sure to please.

Drinkability-fantastic, tastes great, not that alcoholic, great sessioner.

Overall-the best brown ale I've had to date, wonderful malt flavors, decent alcohol content and a smoothness to it that adds greater enjoyment, pick this one up now if your at all a fan of brown ales

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Photo of jpbersa
4.7/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This was my first Smuttynose beer. I had this on Halloween and it fit awesome with the season. The smell is fantastic, the taste is sweet, hop taste is light.

Rich malt taste with just enough hops to balance it out

Head was solid, retention good

Feel was great

Overall this was a fantastic beer, if your looking for ambers with some serious taste and quality, then this is your beer. If you get the chance try it, it's worth it.

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Photo of AlCzerik
4.68/5  rDev +20%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This is the best Brown Ale that I have tried so far. Just an easy drinking ale, that is just perfect for the fall. A brown color when poured, and a hint of both caramel and chocolate. Going to be a staple for me from here on out. Look forward to trying it on draft.

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Photo of stvco
4.66/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

deep chestnut, almost translucent.

very nice

tremendous, not too hoppy, roasted malt, very drinkable similar to new castle brown

great, went down easy

too good, this is a beer that could get me in trouble, I had 4 in 1.5 hours, had to switch it up

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Photo of oqnid
4.64/5  rDev +19%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

One word...whoa!
Okay, more words...mahogany, dark rubis red color, a certain thickness even creamy look to it, too bad for the head though. The that strawberry jam I smell? Now for the mouth effect...this brew practices what it preaches, a fruity berry like taste, very creamy full bodied taste. The brew covers your palate and your entire mouth, making sure that every part has a taste. It coats your mouth as would a second skin.
Enjoyable, maybe not in a large quantity (sweetness), this brew is a must!
BTW, they added 0.2% more...just for that extra pleasure!

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Photo of MaineBeerMan
4.64/5  rDev +19%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark brown with some ruby highlights if held to light, small tan head dissipated rapidly to almost nothing.
Aroma of this beer is all sweet toasty malt, if you have any questions about what malty aromas are get one of these and have a big whiff at cellar temperature.
Flavor is delicious sweet toasty malt, almost like a dark brown bread. Almost no hop flavor present, just a hint of bitter fruitiness that vanishes into more sweet malt on a lasting, almost mouth coating finish.
This is a wonderfull brown that is quite drinkable, if you want a fine example of an American style brown, look no further.

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Photo of a-BeerDrinker
4.6/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

L - caramel, hazy, almost dirty with a reddish tint
S - malty, hints of oats,bread,nuts, and very subtle spice. Maybe allspice or cinnamon
T - absolutely delicious. Smooth, creamy, and clean, yet bold and full-bodied. Bready, with a little smoke. You get a little hops in the middle, but as it dissipates, the hops do too.
F - Full at first, but fades out a bit at the end. Almost watery finish, but flavor is so good it's disguised.
O - a great selection at the right price. Would definitely buy it again - the quality is very evident.

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Photo of Birdsong73
4.6/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this beer on tap at the Portsmouth Brewery in Portsmouth, NH. It has a pleasant odor and great, rich brown color. But, it has a smooth nutty hoppy taste that really sets this apart from the other beers that were also on tap. Even though there were twelve other beers to choose from, I got another Old Brown Dog.

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Photo of Kriztofuhr
4.59/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Look - Poured a clear brown with ruby highlights and two fingers of light tan head. Good retention and lacing.

Smell - Oatmeal, brown bread, faint caramel. Smells pleasant, just on the milder side.

Taste - Toasted dark bread, yeasty, almond-like bitterness, sweet hazelnut. Long aftertaste. Not hopped to hell like so many other brown ales, hops are subdued.

Feel - Medium bodied, prickly carbonation. If it were a tad thicker it'd be perfect.

Overall - Delicious beer, near perfect in my opinion.

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Photo of lic217
4.58/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Look: Orangish brown, with tan head, very clear
Smell: Slight spicey hops, malt, and coffee
Taste: Follows the nose, plus a slight citrus hop flavor with a great slightly sweet smooth finish.
Feel: Moderate to light carbonation, moderate mouthfeel
Overall: A great example of an american brown

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Photo of Nimbus_
4.57/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Look: Pours a dark brown, but holding to light reveals a hazy reddish amber color. Not much of a head formed, and any that did form dissipated quickly.

Smell: Loaded with malt aroma. Lots of caramel, nuts, and bread. I also may have detected some ever so subtle pine, but it really sat in the background compared to the malts.

Taste: Very delicious! The taste reflects the smell. Tons of malt with absolutely no hop bitterness. Starts sweet with caramel flavors and ends with a nutty aftertaste.

Feel: Surprisingly creamy. Mild carbonation. I would not guess this as a 6.7% ABV, because it drinks so smoothly.

Overall: I was very impressed with the flavor and drink-ability of this beer (despite that being somewhat dangerous at 6.7%). If you're looking for a flavorful, classic tasting brown ale, then you can't go wrong here!

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Photo of Kallessin
4.57/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a deep amber-brown color with a full creamy slightly tan-colored head. Very nice lacing on the glass.

Has a sweet caramel malt aroma with hints of toasted biscuit. A little hint of fresh hops comes through in the background.

This is a very malty beer with some sweet caramel, toasted biscuit flavors. There's also some milk chocolate mixed in with good amount of hop bitterness. There's a little fruitiness in there that plays very well off the chocolate.

It's medium body with little carbonation. It has a nice fullness to it, but it's not heavy. It's very smooth with a nice clean finish.

This is a very rich and flavorful beer with very nice balance (although it's a little more towards the malty side). A very easy drinking, great all around beer.

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Photo of Schmidts
4.55/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours from the bottle rusty brown with a tan/white head. Smells of roasted malts, brown sugar and toffee.
It is very creamy and malty with tastes of toffee and caramel, very flavorfull, nice touch of bitterness and a semi sweet finish.
Is is rather delightful in your mouth, creamy a touch of sweetness then a hit of bitterness, very nicely balanced.
Overall I have to give this one a 4.5 this is a wonderful Brown Ale.
Give this one a try! This is the way a brown Ale should be outstanding flaovr.

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Photo of droomyster
4.55/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very hazy, almost muddy, dark bronze with warm red edges a small head that settles to a collar. Very distinct cocoa powder aroma with toasted and woodsy notes. Taste is sweeter than the nose would suggest (in a pleasant way), with strong toffee and chocolate notes blending nicely with a roasted nut element and an light earthy bitterness. Individually these flavors have depth, together they have harmony; overall this beer is a symphony in a bottle. I'm in awe of its taste.

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Smuttynose Old Brown Dog Ale from Smuttynose Brewing Company
3.9 out of 5 based on 2,673 ratings.
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