Ring Neck Braun Ale | Brau Brothers Brewing Co. LLC

very good
89 Reviews
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Ring Neck Braun AleRing Neck Braun Ale

Brewed by:
Brau Brothers Brewing Co. LLC
Minnesota, United States

Style: English Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.80%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Chaz on 10-14-2007

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Reviews: 89 | Ratings: 193
Photo of Sammy
3.6/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Malty brown, pours brown with initial white foamy head. Some bitterness apparent, but well washed over with malt, making it easy drinkable but essentially another malt. Some chocolate malt. nothing really roasty came through, but did come to a fruit finish.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.47/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: 12 fl oz (355 ml) brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into an Orval goblet in high altitude Castle Rock, Colorado. No best before date is listed. Acquired in December 2011, at a bottle store in Minneapolis, Minnesota. My label describes the epithet as "The Ring Neck Braun Ale"; no ABV listed.

Expectations are average.

A: Pours a one finger head of nice cream, fair thickness, and good retention (especially for the above average ABV). Colour is a dark brown (shocker!). Looks pretty good so far. The cream is laced. She's good and fluffy.

Sm: Nutty and creamy - just like a brown ale should smell. A moderate strength aroma. I'm excited to take a sip.

T: A nice creamy open with persisting undertones, and a nut tone beginning roughly from the midpoint through the 3rd act, stopped short by the cream on the finish. The nuts are a bit underdeveloped (insert phallic joke here) but the cream compensates. It's pretty well balanced in that regard, and built as it should be. It doesn't try anything bold and isn't experimental - but it doesn't need to (be). A nice little cream brown ale. Nothing wrong with that.

Mf: Delightfully creamy and smooth, with enough wetness to refresh. Not too thick or too thin. Suits the flavour well.

Dr: Very drinkable and pleasant. Almost refreshing. I wouldn't mind trying this on nitro if it's available. The cream in particular is lovely. Hides its ABV well. Give her a spin, especially if you're fond of brown ales.

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Photo of zeff80
3.85/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured out a golden brown color with a one-finger, off-white head of bubbly foam. It had nice retention and left minimal lacing.

S - It smelled toasty with a biscuity malt aroma.

T - It tasted grassy and earthy with a biscuity malt backbone. Nice caramel and toffee flavors, too.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A medium bodied ale with a dry finish.

O - This is a nice English Brown Ale. A solid brew from Brau Brothers.

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Photo of oline73
3.32/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from the bottle into a standard pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a cloudy brown with a half finger of off white head that fades to a ring around the pour.

Smell: Lots of dark fruit with some brown sugar and slightly sweet grain. Definitely a malt forward beer.

Taste: The taste doesn't live up to the smell if you ask me. The bitterness is a bit too strong and overpowers the sweeter notes. There is a slightly tart dark fruit note in the background.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with large bubbles and a dry finish.

Overall: This one was a bit too bitter for me. Smells quite nice, but I don't think I'd look this way again if I want a brown.

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Photo of mothman
3.12/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a layer of beige tan head. Color is a clear copper brown.

Aroma: Toasted oats, nuts, caramel, toffee, and raspberries. A pleasant nose.

Taste: A big amount of toasted oats, followed by the similar flavors in the nose. Really nutty. Some chocolate. Ends a bit bland.

Mouthfeel: Toasty and smooth. Medium bodied with a medium amount of carbonation. Ends a little charred and bland.

Overall, I liked the nose the best, but the taste and mouthfeel dropped off a bit. Very average.

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Photo of superspak
3.22/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle into pint glass, no bottle dating. Pours with instant head that takes forever to settle. Hazy reddish brown color with a very dense 2 finger off white head with insane retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lingers. Nice thick soapy lacing on the glass, with a ton of carbonation streaming up. This is probably infected. Aromas of huge apple skins, caramel, molasses, toasted malt, bread, light chocolate, and light herbal hops. Way over the top apple notes makes finding anything else difficult. Taste of chocolate, caramel, biscuit, toast, nuttiness, brown sugar, light herbal hops, and light fruitiness. No bitterness on the finish with lingering notes of chocolate, biscuit, caramel, toast, nuttiness, and light herbal on the finish for a good bit. Good balance of malty flavors with no cloying sweetness. Low noticeable infection traits in the flavor. Medium carbonation and body; with a fairly creamy mouthfeel. Alcohol is well hidden with only a small warming after the finish noticed. Overall, despite the obvious infection, this was still a pretty tasty brown ale. Good balance of some pretty robust flavors, and quite easy to drink. I am sure this is a great beer without bugs in it.

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Photo of mactrail
3.53/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A more sharp and robustly hopped brown ale.

Nice chestnut reddish brown in the glass. Head pours creamy and dissipates to a pleasant carbonation. Nutty flavors, a little murky but with more of an edge than malty mellowness. Hops are more forward than you'd expect. Quite well balanced. Some toasty notes and fairly aromatic in the nose.

A little thin but a good quaff. Malt comes through nicely as it warms.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.47/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a clear, dark brown body with a small ring of bubbles.

Smell: Mild, chocolatey aroma with a hint of biscuit, caramel, nuts, and even some spearmint.

Taste: Caramel malts with some light hints of chocolate and nuts. Soft, earthy bitterness. Dry, minty finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-thin body. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: A pretty average, though drinkable brown ale.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.92/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bloody nut brown that is closer to dark russet when held up to the rectangle of overcast morning sky outside my front window. A generous escape of CO2 on crown cracking led to a large, airy, ecru colored cap that looks so-so as it deflates. Lace is also so-so.

The aroma is enjoyable and is becoming more enjoyable with each sniff. It features more cocoa-like aromas that toasted and earthy ones... which is precisely my preference when it comes to beer of this style. It's also fruity and baked nutty. Could this be the best Brau Brothers beer yet? Here's hoping.

The first mouthful says that, yes, this might be the brewery's best effort so far. It's also the first of the Single Batch Series, so maybe that has something to do with it. It would be even better beer with a more accomplished mouthfeel, but more on that later.

Boldness of flavor is not a problem. Ring Neck Braun definitely tastes bigger than your average English brown ale, although it isn't the 'double nut brown' that BB claims. The flavor profile includes toasted pecans, steely dark caramel, severely bruised Granny Smith apples and dates that have had most of their sugar removed.

24 IBUs doesn't seem like much, but it's enough to keep bitterness ahead of sweetness through the entire flavor arc. Good use of hop flavor as well. Since things are changing for the better as the beer warms, the taste score gets an upward bump.

My hope was that the mouthfeel would firm up and settle down with time. Thankfully, it has done both. What was initially too light and too buzzy is now light-medium and less buzzy.

Ring Neck Braun shows that Brau Brothers can brew good beer if they put their minds to it. Their standard lineup borders on awful at times, but this first offering in the Single Batch Series is something to celebrate. Thanks to feloniousmonk for the bottle.

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Photo of woodychandler
4.01/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Many, many thanks to Chaz for this, seemingly in the same vain vein as tone77, both wanting me to keep my bottle numbers up while not abandoning The CANQuest (TM). No worries on either count, my brothers! I accept the bottle as brethren to the CAN and I am now shooting to broach the 500-500-500 club (bottle-CAN-draft, so inclusiveness is paramount.

From the bottle: "First brewed in the fall of 2006, RingNeck Ale was a stepping stone for Brau Bros. in terms of melding styles and pushing ingredients to produce unique flavors and aromas. This ale is nutty, with noticeable chocolate and raspberry. Moderate body and carbonation allow the malt to come through. Fuggle vines edge the southern face of the brewery's hop yard and make up the bulk of hop additions. The focus is on malt, however, with toasted oats and biscuit malt highlighting the bill."

Zounds! Yoi and double yoi! This sounds like a winner! I am the jagov that just blended Sam. Smith's Raspberry Ale with Bear Republic's Big Black Bear and here we are again with chocolate and raspberries. Holy double take, Batman!

My pour resulted in a finger of dense, medium-tan head with reasonable retention on a humid evening. Color was a deep garnet/ruby-red with NE-quality clarity. I am in love! Nose was VERY malty, more truth in advertising. The biscuit malt was definitely in the forefront, but with pecan undertones. I thought of Lazy Magnolia's Pecan Beer for a moment. Mouthfeel was medium, approaching creaminess, with the chocolate/raspberry flavors the immediate senses on the tongue, followed by a nuttiness that I had not achieved earlier. Wow! Not to be sexist, but this might have been the night to have CAPT Midnite (a counterperson at my local mini-mart who often gets to close at 0000) over for a drink. Man, but this was super sweet and certainly a dessert beer. Chicks seem to dig this sort of thing. Finish had a melange of nuttiness and raspberry, but the chocolate seemed to fade initially before making a reappearance on the extreme finish. Hoo! I may need some insulin after all of this sugar. It was wild and a perfect accompaniment to my earlier experiment, but I would not want a steady diet thereof.

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Photo of jwc215
3.9/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to morimech!

Pours light to medium brown with a thin tan head. Broken rings of lacing stick.

The smell is of toffee/caramel, raspberries, nuts and toast. Pretty complex - malty, nutty, fruity. Sweet with a sour edge.

The taste is of sweet maltiness - caramel, toffee, nuts - balanced by toasty bread and a tart raspberry fruitiness.

It has a smooth medium body with mild to moderate carbonation.

An interesting twist on an English-style Brown. According to label, Fuggles hops used - It is an English-style brown with a tart raspberry undertone and is higher in alcohol (that shows somewhat) than is typical. It's a creative take on a traditional style. Nice!

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Photo of feloniousmonk
3.97/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brau Brothers Ring Neck Braun Ale, 12 ounce brown bottle.

Appearance: opaque, ruddy brown, small head.

Aroma: caramel & nuts, nice and malty, good and toasty.

Taste: medium-bodied, with flavor of nuts, and toffee. Dry finish. Grows in complexity through the life of the drink. Getting a deeper feel that reminds me of a Belgian dubbel...makes me wonder what the malts are. Hops seem to be on the way-down-low, but are around here somewhere.

Missing something, though, could use a little this, a little that, to make it memorable.
But quite good...As an autumnal seasonal, not bad at all...I can feel the warmth, already.

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Photo of Tone
3.94/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 2.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear, brown color. 1/5 inch head of an off-white color. Slight retention and slight lacing. Smells of sweet malt, hint of chocolate, slight yeast, slight oatmeal, alcohol, hint of wood, and a hint of dark citrus. Fits the style of an English Brown Ale. Mouth feel is smooth and clean, with a low carbonation level. Tastes of sweet malt, hint of chocolate, slight yeast, hint of roasted malt, slight oatmeal, alcohol, and a hint of wood. Overall, weak appearance, but good complexity, aroma, and body. The blend isn't great either, but the oddity is intriguing rather than disappointing.

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Photo of sweemzander
2.63/5  rDev -31.5%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12oz. bottle poured into a snifter.

(A)- Pours a burnt sienna brown color. Some tan froth.

(S)- A slightly smoky oatmeal and cocoa driven profile. Slight hint at a rustic nuttiness.

(T)- A bit of a honey and nutty sweetness to it overall.

(M)- A mellow carbonation level. Quite sweet overall with a mellow nuttiness.

(O)- A bit sweet, particularly for the english variety

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Photo of pat61
4.25/5  rDev +10.7%

Light chocolate, caramel, toast and a hint of plum on the nose. Pours brilliant brown under a 1” off-white foam cap with a slight brown tint. The palate follows the nose with traces of nuts and chocolate over lightly toasted grain and bright fruit. A semi-sweet beginning leads to a drying finish. Very creamy with slightly above average carbonation and a medium body.

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Photo of ColForbinBC
3.47/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a chalice

Pours a dull brown with no head whatsoever. Some dots of lace strewn about. The aroma is mainly of toasted oak, biscuit malt and nuts. This is a malt bomb with subtle earthy notes from the fuggles. On the palate, the same notes come through only with some cocoa powder and berries. The feel is thin, light body, with mild carbonation. Smooth and slightly creamy. This is a tame take on the style, but good nonetheless. Nuts and toasted oak linger with a mild berry sweetness. This is definitely one I wouldn't turn away if given the opportunity, but not one I would seek out again.

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

Clear auburn/scarlet red. Thin light brown head. Lacing is more than adequate. Really nice aroma. Kind of dusty, yet quite meaty as well. Thick with malts and nutty goodness. Flavor starts with nice maltiness. Very smooth. Nuttiness is quite prevalent throughout. This flavor has some substance to it. Hops provide balance. Finishes chalky with grain dust coming to mind. The mouthfeel is quite good. Smooth and silky in the mouth. Just enough carbonation. Very good ale. Very good all around.

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Photo of Viggo
4.22/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

My homie oakbluff hooked me up with this one, knows I have a soft spot for the brown ales. Thanks Scott!

Pours a cloudy red/orange/brown, nice colour, thick off white head forms, settles to a thick layer, leaves behind some decent lacing. Smell is neat, caramel, spices, bread, nuts, lots of sweet fruit, brown sugar, really neat. Taste is nice, caramel, very nutty, light bit of roast, bread, brown sugar, fruit and nuts in the finish. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with low to medium carbonation. Very smooth and drinkable, nice flavour, great brown ale. Thanks Scotty!

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Photo of ZAP
4.57/5  rDev +19%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

My first foray into this breweries beers was a slight disappointment. I'm excited to see if this single batch series effort is any different than the basics they offer. This is billed as a double nut brown ale.

Appearance: Nice looking bottle. Pours an impressive dark brown/maroon color....minimal head...

Smell: I like the aroma....big chocolate/caramel malt notes...some doppelbock like sticky sweetness is evident on the nose...rich and sweet smelling....VERY inviting....a mild yeasty note as well.

Taste: As expected (from the aroma) this features a boatload of sweet malt flavors...while this is certainly not a lager it does remind me flavor wise of a mild doppelbock....toffee...caramel...milk chocolate...even some dark fruits...

Mouthfeel: I do not know if they used oats in this but it sure feels velvety and creamy as if they did. Medium bodied....not an enormous beer but its big enough and the velvety texture really amps up the drinkability.

Drinkability: This is a very enjoyable beer. I was going to save the remaining two for another night but they are going down the hatch tonight. To me that is drinkability. When you can't wait to drink it again. My overall score may seem high but to me this is a dandy. I wish I could buy more. About the only drawback is the yeasty aroma I noted and which is evident in most of the beers I have tried....in this one it blends with things nicer and does not bother me as much as say in their Pilsner or Pale Ale...

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Photo of jera1350
3.8/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Coppery brown color with a thin layer of suds that shrinks to a ring around the glass.

Earthy, sweet caramel malt dominates the nose. Kind of like Newcastle with some more earthiness.

Rich caramel malts fill the flavor. Hints of chocolate, oats and coffee peak out. Some muddy earth graininess is coming through as well. Toasted nut goodness.

Smooth and medium bodied. Nice satisfying feel all around.

Nice solid brown ale. Makes for a nice cool weather beer. If the earthiness was a bit toned down, this would be even better. I will have this again.

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Photo of ovaltine
4.35/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

For the style, this is a really enjoyable beer.

A - nice coloring, nothing out of the ordinary.

S - again, nothing out of the ordinary. Biscuity malts are remindful of Fat Tire.

T - I taste the chocolate, I tasty the nutty flavor, I taste the raspberry, I taste the biscuity maltiness, but there's a nice little hop kick. A very drinkable beverage.

M - nice carbonation. Very smooth.

D - this beverage is one of my favorites. Normally the browns are fall beverages, but this one is good anytime of the year.

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Photo of andrenaline
3.95/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a nice dark ruby red with a brown hue, thumb of big bubbled head with some retention and some sporadic lacing.

S - Scent is dominated by bitter cocoa, hints of metallic raspberries and an espresso finish.

T - Classic brown ale, offering up more sweet milk chocoalte than the bitter cocoa, the finish provides hints of espresso and burnt toast, toasted almonds and buttery biscuits.

M - Medium, smooth and wet.

O - For a random single, this provided loads of flavour and was definitely fitting of the style. A true sessionable brown ale that packs a little extra ABV that goes completely undetected. Well worth a try, a tasty ale indeed.

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Photo of twiggamortis420
4.14/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle courtesy of mymrnngjckt. Pours a dark crimson color with some clarity. Head fades fast and only leaves a few spots of lace.

Nose is a nice melange of roasty, chocolate and Rice Krispy-esque maltiness. Decent amount of fruit and bready yeast. Very good smelling beer.

Taste is pretty simplistic in its maltiness, but what is there is extremely deliciouss. Cocoa Kripies keep coming to mind as it is very smooth and chocolaty. I could easily sit down and drink 2 or 3 pints of this in a row, no problem. My first Brau Brothers beer has impressed, I look forward to trying some more!

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Photo of KarlHungus
4.52/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This beer pours a clear brown color with ruby hues around the edges. The head is one inch in height, and recedes slowly into a nice cap of lacing. The aroma is very strong. Caramel, nuts, toffee, a hint of butter. The taste is as bold as the aroma. Caramel and toffee round dominate the flavor, with a slight yeasty note that seems to be common to Brau Brothers beers. The mouthfeel is medium-full bodied, with nice carbonation and a velvety texture. Overall, this is one of the better brown ales I have had. I would drink this on a regular basis, and can only hope it is brewed again someday.

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Photo of morimech
4.05/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep, dark brown with a thin, tan head that quickly disipates to just a ring. Leaves just a little lacing.

The smell is of milk chocolate and nuts. Maybe just a hint of sour. I don't get a big nosefull of many aromas.

The chocolate malt really comes through with some nuttiness and nice hop bitterness to balance everything out. I would say it is medium bodied but the fizzyness of the carbonation makes it seem lighter. This is a really good beer. Just needs to be more active on pour with better head retention.

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Ring Neck Braun Ale from Brau Brothers Brewing Co. LLC
3.84 out of 5 based on 193 ratings.
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