Tavern Ale | AleWerks Brewing Company

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Tavern AleTavern Ale

Brewed by:
AleWerks Brewing Company
Virginia, United States

Style: American Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.60%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Bleedingshrimp on 11-06-2006

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Reviews: 93 | Ratings: 226
Photo of ramseye4
3.55/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

No freshness date. Williamsburg Alewerks is probably Virginia's premier brewery at the moment, though I think as Blue Mountain gains momentum it can definitely challenge for the top spot. Pours a chocolate brown color with a 2.5 finger head that slowly fades down but never completely disappears, great lacing. Aroma is of roasted and nutty malt, faint cocoa as well. Tastes primarily of nuts and toasted malt. Not bad, but very simple. A bit of bitterness comes out in the aftertaste. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, sticky and sweet, and the drinkability is about middle of the road.

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Photo of thagr81us
3.8/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks goes out to breweryaprntc13 for giving me a bottle of this as a gift at Sexual Chocolate '11! Served from bottle into a Warstenier mug. Poured a deep chocolatey brown with a four finger light tan head that subsided to a two finger slowly. Maintained excellent lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, chocolate, roasted malt, slight burnt malt, nutmeg, and roasted pecans. The flavor was of bitter chocolate malt, roasted nuts, slight sweet malt, and nutmeg. It had a light feel on the palate with mild carbonation. Overall this was a pretty decent Brown Ale. The aroma on this one was stupidly complex for its style if you ask me. The flavor on the otherhand felt just a bit dilute to me. I did like the flavor I got of the bitter chocolate malt coupled with the sweet malt to help balance the brew. I just wish some of the flavors in this one were a little more robust as it would surely make this an excellent brew for the style. Still worth trying at least once for any fan of the style.

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Photo of tone77
3.68/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a dark brown color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is of malts, some hops. Taste is good, malts up front, a bit nutty, some hops are present. Feels full bodied in the mouth and is very drinkable. Overall this is a good quality brew.

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Photo of pnkRed
3.66/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Went down to the brewery and after a few tasters I got a growler of this.

It pours an amber brown with a nice light head that dissipates rather quickly, but leaves a nice lacing down the glass. The smell isn't really there. Nice and nutty, but nothing extraordinary. Caramel and nuts hit you up front with a bit of toastiness. Dry on the finish with a little hop bite. The taste is nice, but doesn't explode. I can drink this all day with no problem.

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Photo of BrewCrew2010
3.93/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a hazy brown body with a red tint with about 1 1/2 finger head that creamy in texture and off white in color. The head quickly diminishes, but leaves behind a good amount of lace.

S: A strong aroma of cocoa nips, caramel, and nuts. Has a floral hoppy backbone, but for some reason reminds me of chocolate milk.

T: A great flavor of chocolate malts with caramel notes and hints of roasted coffee and nuts. Finishes a bit dry with a hoppy bitterness.

M: A mouthcoating beer with a medium body and carbonation.

D: Great brown ale. A must try if you're able to get your hands on this. Really easy to drink.

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Photo of velkyal
4.1/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sight - deep crimson, slightly cloudy from being bottle conditioned (hurrah, more of this please!). Thin off white head.

Smell - mostly cocoa, but edged with a nice hoppiness - not in some psycho hop whore delighting way but actually an appealing hoppiness.

Taste - sweet up front, a gentle chocolate and nutty toffee blend. Mild and balanced, like cocoa edged with lemon peel.

Sweet - 3.5/5

Bitter - 2.5/5

Originally had this on draught in a local pub, had to try the bottle to get a proper impression. Very smooth and tasty, easy, all night drinking. My kind of beer.

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Photo of dzien
3.93/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 3

American brown ales, oh how you can be so different from your brothers, the english!

Poured into a tulip. BOD unknown/didn't look. Whoops.

Smells include espresso and a general malty-ness. Not overpowering but definitely there.

Decent head for the style, beige colored. Not too bad , some concentric lacing as it settles. Body itself is dark brown with some cloudy red hue as light passes through. Not opaque but not as light as most brown ales. Cloudy.

Taste includes the initial mocha/espresso from the malt and a tad bit of bitterness from the hops. A very feint sourness in the finish accompanied by some metallic notes though not nearly noticeable enough to detract from the beers excellent overall taste. Very reminiscent of a single estate dark chocolate bar - bold in its flavors and confident in what it is.

Mouthfeel is medium to full. Silky and lowish in carbonation. It suits the flavor profile very well.

Drinkability is decent for such a beer though i'm not sure I'd be able to throwback more than a few ( even if I wanted, which I would). It isn't that the taste becomes unwelcome but rather it is much too filling to make it a long session beer.

Overall, a fine first taste from a local microbrewery. I can be both a hops head and otherwise. This beer definitely has a noticable bitter hops taste to it that would appeal to a hops head but not nearly so much as to offend a seasoned craft beer drinker that isn't.

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Photo of breweryaprntc13
3.84/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

L: dark brown, with slight haze towards the bottom of the glass. one finger tan head that quickly disappears. Thin lacing that is slow to recede.

A: Great smelling beer! Nutty with a caramel presence leaning towards toffee. Slight floral hops presence but it is difficult to detect upon the first smell.

T: Caramel malts with a slight hopiness, but not enough to be distracting. Surprising dryness with a slightly sour finish. However it is primarily a rich caramel taste with a slight coffee note.

M: Medium body with mild carbonation and as I said before, surprisingly dry.

D: Definitely a drinkable beer but not what I would consider a top tier brown ale. However I would buy this beer again and continue to drink it. Great for session drinking or for a movie (it is on tap at the local movie tavern which is great!)

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Photo of argock
4.17/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz brown bottle into a Duvel tulip. No freshness date. Single purchased at Wine Warehouse (Charlottesville, VA) for $1.60.

A: Murky brown with solid 1-finger beige big-bubbled head with decent retention and a few specks of lace.

S: Surprisingly hoppy aroma with citrus and pine blended nicely with caramel and toasted malts

T: This brown ale gives DFH Indian Brown a run for its money and then some. A very substantial malt backbone of caramel and roasted dark malt to given a slightly toastier sweet malt flavor plays very well off of the PNW type of hoppiness with citrus, pine, and lighter herbal flavors. I would even say that, flavorwise, this is an ale in the mold of St Rogue's Red but in the brown ale style. Really big flavor and well-done.

M: Medium body is right on with medium carbonation and a slightly sour but most sweet and lightly bitter aftertaste.

D: A very nice surprise from Williamsburg Alewerks. I will be buying a fair amount of this in the months to come -- it surpasses even the big craft brewers' brown ales with its exceptional flavor aroma and very good feel.

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Photo of TAMU99
3.28/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Hazy brown ale pours with a thin, but persistent lace. Slightly alcoholic smell with hoppy, tart tastes to create a pleasant mouthfeel. A solid entry for brown ales. I enjoyed it. Probably would buy another, but wouldn't make it a regular choice.

Not spectacular, but certainly worth a pint.

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Photo of Minkybut
3.47/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I poured this beer into my tumbler at 45 degrees. The beer was a nice mahogany color and poured a tan head that did not hang around long. Smell was nice like toffee. taste was a little bitter but not too bad. Lacing was good. I liked the beer and will buy again.

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Photo of alcstradamus
4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes

Glowing brown pour with a finger of head. Lightly toasted malt nose, very clean and pleasant smelling. Hints of caramel and cocoa present as well.

Taste is mostly roasted malts. Nice flavor profile for a brown ale, which is a style I often find to be too bland for my palate. This one is pretty solid though. Background notes of caramel, ash, bakers chocolate, and tree bark.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, good carbonation levels. Nicely crafted beer here, I'm impressed at how much solid flavor is packed into this 5.6% frame

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Photo of yourefragile
3.74/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle

Dark brown, cola color, large fluffy tan head supported by steady carbonation and large streaks and clumps of lacing. Mild aroma of caramel and malt, not very strong or complex. Body is very creamy and smooth, mildly thick and chewy, with a strong pinch of carbonation. Flavor is a little sweeter and syrupy than expected for the style, at first thought this might have been a porter. Strong malt body with caramel and brown sugar sweetness and slight hop presence in finish. Looking at my scores for this beer, the categories that "matter" are fairly pedestrian and the more frivolous categories I have jacked up but I feel like the overall scores represents how much I enjoyed this.

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Photo of rtepiak
3.8/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a good color and poorly rounded brown. good earth. coffee. caramel. mild smoke some sour but a nice tobacco. no fruit really. bitter hop quialty. a finish of pepper. one sided but still consistent. i can see this opening in the presents of wood. so cask maybe.

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Photo of akorsak
4.05/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to guinnessfan for this 12 oz bottle.

A: The brown ale is aptly named, a dark brown wonder that has a cola color and is opaque. Atop the ale, a 3 finger head has left dried patches all around the glass.

S: The nose is mostly malts, caramel and nuts primarily. Decent hops midway through.

T: The ale delivers a nice pop from the first sip, lots of caramel malt mixed with nutty dryness. The result is a dry yet sweet malt body. The ale seems to be under-carbonated, removing some of the crispness from it, but also allowing each sip to linger. Caramel and chocolate, spiced up with some coffee, drive the finish.

M: The ale is a heavy hitter in the malt department, full of chocolate, coffee and caramel. A very filling ale that is a nice dessert.

D: Much better than I was expecting, a warming ale that doesn't skimp on the flavor.

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Photo of rugerj
3.5/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Beer pours a deep brown color with a half finger head that dissipates quickly, little lacing left in glass. Smell is of caramel, chocolate and brown sugar with a subtle hop aroma. Taste, malt dominates here, caramel, chocolate and brown sugar with faint toasty highlights that blend together well, beer finishes malt with some earthy hop bit in the background. Carbonation is good and not overdone.

I nice brown ale overall, well made but nothing outstanding.

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Photo of blackie
4.05/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

a: pours a thick, deep khaki head, the beer a deep brown in color, nice retention

s: herbal hop aromas drift about a bed of chocolate, caramel, and roasted malts, chocolate coated caramel is the centerpiece aroma here, good start

m: smooth, medium carbonation and a medium-full body

t: begins with chocolate coated caramel candies and a soft roast undertone, on the sweeter side, after swallowing the roast creeps a bit, introducing some astringent char notes, mild bitterness, tasty and well-rounded

d: easy, a nice brown

single from the brewery store

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Photo of yidbeer
4.06/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A nice dark brown color. I like a beer you can't see through. Took a sniff and really didn't smell anything. First taste was bitter with a lot of chocolate notes. Smoothed out with caramel and coffee. The bitterness mellowed out and became just a sharp note to remind me it wasn't a soda pop i was drinking. A nice session beer for me. Didn't want to switch up for any other taop.

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Photo of wingman14
3.36/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours dark brown with a light tan head that stays for awhile. The smell is sweet up front, not much going on, some faint malty smells. Starts very sweet, some sour notes in the middle, then finishes with some strong roasted notes. The aftertaste is of the roasted malt and gets pretty strong. The mouthfeel is ok, the different flavors don't work well together, lots of carbonation, not great balance. This one is an decent drinker, ok flavor, nothing amazing, but still worth a try.

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Photo of TheMistler
3.6/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured the color of brownie batter, and just as opaque. Thankfully, however, it isn't sludge. Soda-like, off-white head displays decent retention, settling to a thin but creamy cap and fairly thick ring. Good lacing.

Smell isn't unlike brownies either. Chocolate, maple sweetness, with slight nuts and grains. Roasted notes.

Nutty, grainy flavor. Roasted coffee grains. Malty, but not the sweet concoction I was expecting. A strong amount of bittering at the end, and definitely some drying to go with the roasted qualities. It's almost like the hops just jump out of concentration with the malt, they don't quite fit in.

A bit thin. A good amount of carbonation, some creaminess. A solid effort, but not one of Williamsburg's best.

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Photo of soupermirl
3.68/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Darker than expected, nice color. This beer was malty in taste with some what of a smokie taste in there somewhere. Very rich flavor and a bit of hops near the end to finish it off. It smells malty, almost chocolaty. Tavern Ale is good, it is much like the dark nut brown ales of many microbrews and very rich. Not a beer you want to drink one after the other, it more of a sipper's beer.

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Photo of 7ways
3.33/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A Dark, rich, earthy color, 1 inch malted milk head. Nice lacing that inexplicably disappeared when I wasn't looking.

S Sweet toffee, rich hop character. Kinda smells German. Some kind of vegetable/plant thing going on. Smells sweeter as it warms.

T A little better than the smell suggested. Sweet malt, moderate spices, and I still want to say German or Bohemian hoppiness. Some aluminum on the finish.

M Smooth, nice tingle. The body reminds me of a bock/doppel bock more than an ale. Dry.

D A fine session beer, at least until the dryness becomes too much.

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Photo of Gavage
3.17/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: cloudy brown in color with a 1" head that slowly falls. No lacing develops during the session.

Smell: very mild aroma as only a hint of caramel is detectable.

Taste: caramel, bits of chocolate, ripe fruits, some hints of brown sugar, mild bitterness, and an overall earthy tone.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied. Smooth throughout. Very brief aftertaste.

Drinkability: the flavor is all over the board, so this becomes tough to finish the pint glass. Try some other styles from this brewery first.

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Photo of jwc215
3/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours dark brown with a fizzy, bubbly tan head that pops down (in a rather unpleasant way) to a thin, slowly vanishing, cover.

The smell is nutty with a bit of caramel/toffee. There is a floral/leafy something going on that detracts from malt aromas.

The taste is of toffee - towards chocolate - sweet with a leafy bitterness that is slightly metallic. There's something I can't quite pinpoint, but is unpleasant (sourish?). It throws it off, but, thankfully, is in the background. Finishes sweetish.

It is on the lighter side of medium-bodied, with carbonation that borders aggressive.

A "forgettable" brown. The maltiness almost shows itself nicely, but there are detractors (metallic and that "something else") that get in the way. Maybe it was to create balance, understandably, but done in the wrong way. In the end, I neither "like" nor "dislike" this one. Ho-hum feelings about it, mainly from the little irritants about it that add up.

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Photo of asabreed
3.53/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: Nice dark brown with red highlights, billowing head slowly going down, and wild lacing left in smaller clumps, all amidst the tons of tiny carbonation bubbles surging toward the top.

Smell: Brown sugar along with nice mildly roasted malts, some graininess, and mid chocolate and coffee sweetness.

Taste: Roasred malt, brown sugar, mild chocolate with some hop sourness and citrus. An interesting balance and take on a brown ale.

Mouthfeel: More medium bodied, thought slightly slick, even with its mildly effervescent burst of carbonation at the end.

Drinkability: Flavorful where I could session it, though the sourness may end up being a bit too much after one or two. Still a solid choice and an enjoyable one.

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Tavern Ale from AleWerks Brewing Company
3.68 out of 5 based on 226 ratings.
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