Bear Republic / Fat Head's / Stone TBA | Stone Brewing

very good
209 Reviews
Bear Republic / Fat Head's / Stone TBABear Republic / Fat Head's / Stone TBA

Brewed by:
Stone Brewing
California, United States

Style: American Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.10%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by MasterSki on 01-14-2012

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 209 | Ratings: 604
Photo of barnzy78
4.06/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle, pours a ruddy brown with a thin light brown head that actually holds a bit of retention as foam atop the ale. Still nothing special to look at. Aroma is great! Lots of fruity hops, floral hops, brown sugar, and molasses. Fruity hops are up front in taste as well, followed by the brown sugar and molasses, a hint of chocolate, followed by a nice bitter citric/piny hop finish. Mouth-feel is full and smooth. Goes down easy and is refreshing. Overall, an an American Brown Ale, this is not an accurate representation of the style, but for what I think the collaboration of brewers were shooting for, this is well done.

 630 characters

Photo of TheHoppiest
4.09/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. Pours a hazy, almost silty brown, like the color of cola, with a 2" off-white head that reduces with tons of sticky lacing.

Has a very piney, hoppy aroma, with loads of evergreeny goodness. There's an undercurrent of maple and brown sugar, and a hint of biscuity malt.

Starts and finishes bitter, yet sweet; the maple and brown sugar are quite present, but the piney hops, full of resin and sticky sap, do what they can to crush the sweet and leave a lingering hopped finish. There's an aftertaste of an ole-timey sweet, like a rootbeer hard candy taste that, once I identified it, was difficult to ignore.

Medium mouthfeel, this has more of a DIPA feel than a brown ale feel.

While the strength is not quite that if a DIPA, this beer smells and tastes like a highly malted DIPA, with a deeper and darker color that you'd otherwise expect. I understand this is supposed to be an "old school" brown ale, but I've got to believe that old school brown ales were never this aromatic or hoppy. I'm enjoying this quite a bit, but at $4 a pop and as intense as it is, this is a one and done.

 1,134 characters

Photo of quirkzoo
4.03/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice opaque brown with two fingers of khaki head. As the head recedes it leaves massive amounts of lacing. After taking a few sips I increased the appearance from 4 to 4.5 because of the massive amounts of lacing that are sticking all over the inside of the glass.

The smell is nice, very hop forward with a standard piney aroma. Behind that I get some nice nutty, toasted, biscuit malt aromas that are very complex with a bit of a caramelized brown sugar. The taste is more of the same. Very well balanced with less bitterness than I was expecting given the hoppiness on the aroma. There is a slight warming alcohol very pleasant and complementary to the rest of the beer. Mouthfeel is perfect, good body but still very drinkable.

Overall this is probably my second favorite collab from Stone behind the More Brown than Black IPA. A really solid brew in a unique style.

 880 characters

Photo of srandycarter
3.8/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice collaboration. Pours brown with reddish hue. Off white, thick head, slow to leave. Lots of cling. Nice. Citrus and pine big players in the smell, juicy for sure. Taste does not disappoint. Bit IPA like hops, not as much malt as I would have liked. Body is medium, good carb, good balance. A nice offer.

 307 characters

Photo of chugalug06
4.05/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - A very nice, two-finger, off-white bubbly foamy head rises. Brew is nice mahogany color. Decent viscosity for a brown. Lacing/tiers is just ok.

S - WHOA! Lots of huge pine and earthy tones. Very unique and off the beaten path. Some VERY bitter cascade/ hops on the bottom.

T/M - Very surprising, but not too far from the scent. A very aggressive Am. Brown that boarders the style line, but still fits. It almost smells/tastes like a pale, but drinks like a brown. It's very bitter and high in ABV, but the heat goes undetectable. Very thin for a brown, not like it's appearance.

O - A delightful surprise! Try it if you're able to grab one. A decent value for a unique offering.

 686 characters

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.5/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours an almost opaque super dark brown with a 1 inch foamy khaki head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Small streaks and dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of bready malt, brown sugar, spicy/herbal hops, and alcohol. Taste is of malt, dank/herbal/spicy hops, and very mild brown sugar flavors. There is a mild bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a crisp level of carbonation with a bit of a drying effect in the mouth. Overall, this is a pretty good beer but nothing I would go for again.

 545 characters

Photo of TheBeerologist
3.37/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass

Translucent amber/red pour with a finger and a half head.

Smells overwhelmingly of brown sugar and a bit of pecans with a slight hint of piney hops

Taste was all pecans and piney hops on a caramel malt backbone

Medium carbonation - seemed creamy and just about perfect

Overall an interestingly sweet beer that was solid. Glad to have tried it but I feel no need to pick it up again - especially at $4/bottle.

 450 characters

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

Shared a bottle of this with wesside89

Poured into a stemless snifter.

Copper/red in color with thin tan head that leaves a few spots of lace.

The nose has some brown sugar, a bit of caramel apple, and bready malt.

The taste has some of that caramel apple noticed previously. Some sweet, biscuit-like malt that carries most of flavors.

Mouthfeel is a lighter medium, feeling just right for the style.

Decent overall, but certainly not the best of the Stone collaborations.

 478 characters

Photo of rawfish
3.85/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours hazelnut brown, kind of muddy with a few yeast particles floating. Three finger high light tan head with decent retention and nice lacing appears as the head subsides.

Hops dominate the nose even as it warms I barely get a lick of some bready malts and a little bit of nutty and molasses sweetness. Pineapple, deep resinous pine and grapefruit rind with no noticable alcohol.

Nutty with a caramel malt backbone and gingerbread spice. Heavy pine, sweet citrus hop character very much heavy with Stone influence. Residual alcohol and bitterness, nothing too sharp.

Creamy over the palate, smooth. Adequate carbonation.

Okay not terribly original but still very tasty, like a Stone IPA with a different color. A bit let down that the brown sugar and molasses don't come through. Big and bold in your face hop fix, drink it now, I can see the sediment already beginning to gather.

 888 characters

Photo of Rhynes2
4.45/5  rDev +18%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked this one up at the local beer store after trying the Yin & Yang from Evil Twin. Opened it up the next day. Pours a great two finger head but not much for retention. Got some lacing down the sides but again it wasn't too impressive. Taste is very similar to brown ales in the malt area but then the hops hit you and you see how different this beer is. You can tell its stone with their trademark hop flavor that is brewed into every beer they do and I love it. It works well in the style though if you prefer a more traditional brown ale this one is not for you. Some nutty notes also come through on the tail end.

Great beer and while it's very expensive i would buy this again for sure.

 695 characters

Photo of wvsabbath
4.03/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Serving Type - Bottle

Appearance - Tanish brown with a monster 3+ inch head, tons of lacing, looks great.

Smell - Hops, dry malts, nut, added sugars like molasses and brown sugar.

Taste - Very hoppy with plenty of sweet malts and sugars. Floral fruits like orange, pine and lemon really come at you along with molasses and some caramel malt backbone. Spices add even more flavor. No noticable alcohol bite or warmth.

Mouthfeel - Medium thickness, sweet and easy to drink. Tounge gets a ton of hops and sugar. Malts come in and add a nutty, caramel-like flavor. Palette gets hops, malts and sugars. Aftertaste is sweet and nutty.

Overall - This si actually moreso a ipa then a brown ale. Very sweet, not overly but sweet enough. Hops are more dominate then the malts, and the add suagrs really add flavor. This is tastly, esy to drink, but not something id want alot of, and espically since i overpaid for it. Worthy of a drink.

 934 characters

Photo of DrDemento456
3.9/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Color is a very dark brown, clear in color with a nice 1/2 inch of mocha colored head.

S - A nice blast of pineapple and citrus hops and I can actually smell some molasses and brown sugar. Sweet

T - Pretty good the molasses gives it a smooth nutty taste and the Brown sugar compliments the malt characters pretty well.

M - Pretty sweet it has a light to medium body.

Overall it was kind of worth the $3.99 to try but nothing I would seek out again. It applaud the effort though and love trying these when they are affordable.

 535 characters

Photo of bluejacket74
3.33/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle. Served in a mug, the beer pours a murky mahogany brown color with about an inch tan head. Head retention is good, and there's a decent amount of lacing. Aroma is nice but weak, the brew smells like citrusy hops (grapefruit, orange peel), caramel and toasted malt, molasses, piney hops and brown sugar. The taste is pretty much just like the aroma, but with a slight nutty flavor also noticeable. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's a bit slick and creamy and is well carbonated (maybe has a bit too much carbonation). Yep, it's a hoppy brown ale. Unfortunately, it's not a great one. I think it's a decent brew, but it just seems that there's something missing that could have made this beer better. Oh well, it's still worth trying.

 745 characters

Photo of CHickman
3.98/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours hazy/opaque chestnut brown color with a huge 2 finger foamy light tan head that faded very slowly, leaving caverns in the foam and then great foamy lacing sticking to the sides and great looking rings as it went down.

Smells of big hops up front, with floral hops, flowers, piney hops, light citrus hops, grapefruit, flowers, caramel, syrup, brown sugar, light grains or bread and an overall sweetness that’s controlled by the hops. Says it’s brewed with brown sugar and molasses on the bottle, and the brown sugar comes through in the nose. I liked the way this smelled, as it was very sweet but in a good way.

Tastes of floral hops up front, followed by citrus hops, orange peel, grapefruit, grass/hay, sweet malt, caramel, brown sugar, light grains, herbs, piney hops/pine cone, peat moss, nut, wet wheat bread faint and mild spices like pepper and cinnamon; the hop blast up front fades quickly and lets sweet malt, brown sugar and grains control the back end which leads up to a slightly bitter finish. Not a traditional brown ale, but certainly a nice hoppy take on the style.

Mouthfeel was creamy with light carbonation, a medium body and a grainy bitter finish that trails off with a yeast like funk which may have been the only part of the beet that I felt was off and odd.

Good beer and good drinkability for such a hybrid, but there was something in the finish that made this not a session beer candidate for me. I liked this beer, it was good and I’m glad I was able to try it. It’s a bit on the pricy side, but still worth checking out as it's a very nice collaboration.

 1,605 characters

Photo of ocelot2500
3.28/5  rDev -13%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a hazy mahogany color with a pillowy, off-white head that leaves bits of lacing.

Smells of piny hops with a bit of malt sweetness.

Tastes a nice wave of hops with a decent malt base. Hops lead off with pine, citrus, and some grass. Moderately bitter. Malts come in with some brown sugar and a bit of chocolate. Touches of dark fruit also comes through as it warms. Slightly sweet and finishes fairly dry.

Mouthfeel is medium-full with a smooth amount of carbonation.

Overall, the individual flavors of this beer are good, but I do not particularly like this combination. That combined with price ($3.27 for 12 oz) gives it only an average grade.

 656 characters

Photo of SilentGlory
3.43/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- Poured nice and smooth with moderate head. Brownish orange in color with mild cloudiness.

S- Hops, has a brown sugar note

T- Unique Stone taste. Hoppy and bitter with a light sugar taste. Definitely taste the alcohol. Leaves a delicious aftertaste of molasses without a harsh after-bite.

M- Smooth and lighter than expected.

O- Pretty good beer. One of the better collaborations from Stone I've had. I would recommend this as an after dinner beer.

 454 characters

Photo of notchucknorris
4.17/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Deep ruby brown color with a huge foamy tan head. Spotty lacing down the glass.

S: A nice mix of piney hops, rich dark malt, and freshly baked gingerbread.

T: Toasted malt, a nice hint of piney hops, gingerbread and a bit of overripe mango. Fantastic mouthfeel. Really nicely done.

 287 characters

Photo of kojevergas
3.03/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into a conical Guinness pint glass in me gaff in low altitude Los Angeles, California. Acquired at Wally's Wine in Westwood, California. I don't recall the price. I've had Stone and Bear Republic before, but never Fat Head's. I view Stone as largely overhyped, and having visited their brewery recently, rather douchey and arrogant (congratulations, Stone: you have the image you wanted to!).

Served refrigerator cold and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues were anticipated. Paired with sourdough pretzels.

A: Pours a three finger head of good cream, good thickness, and great retention. Decent lacing. Colour is a murky nontransparent caramel-brown. There's nothing special or unique here. I want to drink it but I'm far from impressed. No visible yeast particles.

Sm: Hops - almost entirely floral, nuts, brown sugar, molasses, stale cream, yeast hints, and caramel. Musty and stale. Dry. A mild strength aroma. Vaguely evocative of cardboard. Hops dominate. Not alive or inviting. It's shaping up to be imbalanced.

T: Nuts sit awkwardly alongside floral hops. The cream is nice, but backgrounded. Brown sugar comes through in the body, but isn't present as a distinct note per se. The hops are nicely balanced, with hardly any bitterness emerging on the back end. Clean malts form the foundation, but seem neither to be dark nor bright. A hint of roasted barley; probably a small part of the malt bill. Not as nutty as I'd expect from a brown ale. Balanced awkwardly - with hops competing against brown ale nut notes and malts. Strangely built, but experimental. Hops are dominant, and are the only note detectable on the finish. Neither subtle nor complex.

Mf: Too dry. On one hand, the smooth cream is delightful, but the cardboard artificial dryness mixed with the stale hops of the finish is problematic. Very dry on the finish but not wet enough on the open to coax out the next sip. The thickness is awkward, but I can't tell if it's too thick or too thin - I do know that it's off.

Dr: No alcohol comes through, which is fairly notable. It's okay and I appreciate that it's experimental, but I wouldn't get it again.

Low C+

 2,279 characters

Photo of thecheapies
4.4/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A collaboration by Bear Republic / Fat Head's / Stone.

An old-style Texas Brown Ale noted as being 'extra hoppy'. Brewed with brown sugar & molasses.

Great big ol' head on this sucker. Sea foam consistency and light tan in color. The beer pours a somewhat murky reddish-brown, with an emphasis on the red when you hold it to the light. Excellent head retention for any American Brown I've ever seen, and it even laces well.

Awesomely potent nose full of brown sugar, minty/pine hops, and toasted grain. Impressive hop character in the aroma. I get a syrupy waft of what could be molasses. Crisp-smelling with some dustiness, sugar, and spice.

Lovely pecan nuttiness from the malts pairs with the burly brown sugar tangy sweetness like a pecan pie. Menthol hops in the back of the mouth composes the meat of any bitterness. Some molasses richness here, for sure. Great toasty flavor without being too roasted or too pale. Nice lingering sweetness on the tongue. The brown sugar really makes this one; that, and the vigorous hops. Mind you, this is no desserty brown ale, nor is it indicative of an Indian Brown. It's funny, all of the beers that this reminds me of are rye beers, and there's no biting rye character to this one at all to justify that. This style is fantastic and they should bring it back.

Nice medium body with sloshiness and medium-to-low carbonation. Superb chew factor with a soft chalky dryness in the mouth. Insanely drinkable. I might finish the beer before I finish the review!

For lovers of the sweet toasty malt and hunky herbal hop combo. I imagine the grain bill to be courteous of Bear Republic (similar to Hop Rod Rye). What a great surprise brew! If you see one, nail it down and drink it fresh. Great job, guys!

 1,749 characters

Photo of Nugganooch
3.88/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

TBA – To Be Announced…no Texas Brown Ale

Format is 12oz bottle with a 10oz taster flute

A: TBA Pours a lightly hazed dark amber brown with a great big stack of tan foam. Thick and withholding. Some spotty tracks of lace.

S: Smells of fresh alfalfa. Piney hops. Nutty caramelized malts and brown sugar with some faint herbal notes.

T: Taste has a signature brown ale character of nutty toffee-like malts but with an aggressive amount of hops to it. Lots of earthy dank herbs and pines. Some hints of citrus fruits here and there. Light molasses and a touch of oak. Bitterness is nicely balanced amongst the heavier malt notes. Slightly sweet with some alcohol warmth. But man herbals are lingering.

M: I get a real nice creamy texture with a bit of frothiness and some slick mouthcoating from the oily hop resins. Medium in body with decent carb. Finish is rather dry.

D: Really nicely done. This could have easily been a disaster and especially with the use of Molasses but great balance wise and easy to drink. A superb Brown.
Stone is finally collaborating with the right peops. I have been impressed with the last few editions.

 1,144 characters

Photo of KevinBrewer
4.55/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Hazy reddish brown with a tall tan head that dissipates slowly to a moderate covering, leaving sheets of lacing behind.

N- Light floral and citrus notes with dusty chocolate malt and toasted grain underneath. Soft fruity esters from the yeast blend well with the floral hops.

T- Wow, this beer is just bursting with flavor. Dusty chocolate malt pervades the palate, while tons of soft, floral, citrusy, piney hop oils coat the mouth for a lasting hop presence. There's also a nice earthy hop character that matches perfectly with the malt bill. Moderate clean grassy bitterness dominates the subtle sweetness implied by the brown sugar and molasses. The yeast character in this beer is amazing. Subtle fruity esters compliment the malt and blend with the hops to create a singular unique flavor. The finish is long and dry, with grassy bitterness clinging to the tongue, floral/citrusy hops enveloping the palate, and chocolate/toasted malt lingering into the aftertaste.

M- Medium-bodied, sticky, moderate-to-high carbonation with fine bubbles, and a dry, long-lasting finish.

O- Really, one of the most enjoyable beers I've had in awhile. I've only seen this beer sold as singles, but they really need to come in six-packs. Stone, please add this to your regular lineup. It would be a shame to let a beer like this disappear after the collaboration version is gone.

 1,375 characters

Photo of SageO
4.19/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a lovely shade of brown with a creamy head and good retention.

Smell is of fresh cut grass (kudos to pmarlowe for characterizing that – it’s exactly the perfect descriptor) and brown sugar.

Taste starts off with light fruits and then rolls into resiny pine and the brown sugar occasionally popping its head in the background. Pine is the dominant flavor for me though.

Medium bodied.

I like it. The smell is like nothing I’ve ever smelled, and although the taste doesn’t quite live up to the smell it’s still a good hoppy ale in the Stone tradition.

 569 characters

Photo of Jdub983
2.83/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A - light amber color, resembling the mixing of a brown and a red ale together, the head was very prominent like a higher ABV type of beer.
S - sweet, syrupy and a very prominent citrus smells
T - tart, bitter, very much like an IPA, lingering taste, with a pleasant drinkability.
M - smooth going down, not over-carbonated, pleasant
O - the did a much better job on this one than the other collaborations. Not a knock of the park but a great beer to start out the night with.

 476 characters

Photo of PintOHops
4/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Glass - Snifter

A - A murky looking, mahogany colored brew that didn't produce much of a head at all. The clarity is very low on the beer, and I got a few spots left on my glass.

S - Fresh dank hop, in the way of herbal, grapefruit, orange, citrus zests, and pine. Underneath I get brown sugar, wood and hints of smoke.

T - Herbal, rind, and citrus hop characteristics flood the palate, with strong woody, smokey, charcoal flavors quickly following. I also pick up brown sugar, roasted nuts, and molasses. It finishes with fairly strong bitterness, lots of warming alcoholic flavors, and more woody/smokey notes that linger on the tongue.

M - Medium-full bodied with soft crispness and a velvety, smooth texture.

O - This is one full flavored Brown Ale! I wouldn't like to drink this all night but it sure is a tasty brew that I'd have 1-2 of. The woodiness of the beer brings me back to the Arrogant Bastard, which I really enjoy. Overall I really like this beer, and I'd pick it up once in a while, that is if it's ever brewed again. Cheers!

 1,048 characters

Photo of JosiahS
4/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

glass: Tulip

A muddy brown appearance with a soapy tan ring atop. Brown sugar, molasses, date, papaya, lemon/orange peel, pine and alcohol on the nose.

Tastes of dank hops, pine, lemon, papaya, brown sugar, date. Finishes with a hint of cocoa, faint vanilla, alcohol and floral hops. Approaching full-bodied with medium carbonation and slick slightly oily mouthfeel.

An aggressive brown ale but a beer that's familiar to me. Stone's brewing characteristics are dominant, i'd like to see them step away from the usually hopping procedure and try something different (although the trailer on YouTube for this beer does mention Stone using a very common hop variety for the first time, it still seems too "stoney".)

 715 characters

Bear Republic / Fat Head's / Stone TBA from Stone Brewing
3.77 out of 5 based on 604 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

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