Imperial Nut Brown Ale | Tommyknocker Brewery

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Imperial Nut Brown AleImperial Nut Brown Ale
640 Ratings
Imperial Nut Brown AleImperial Nut Brown Ale

Brewed by:
Tommyknocker Brewery
Colorado, United States

Style: American Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Commemorating the 10th anniversary of Tommyknocker Brewery, this special brew is meticulously crafted with pure maple syrup, the highest quality chocolate and crystal malts and is accented with the finest blend of European and American hops. Imperial Nut Brown Ale, at 9.8% alcohol by volume, is a bigger, bolder version of their Maple Nut Brown.

Added by Bierman9 on 12-17-2004

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 640 |  Reviews: 351
Photo of Backer2004
3.75/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Aroma - Just a little hops, nice smell of caramel, bit of toffee but not too much diacetyl. No hints of fruit.

Appearance - Low off- white head, small streaming bubbles, much darker than most brown ales. Ca not see through it at all.

Flavor - Heavy on the malt sweetness. Medium dry finish. Little hop flavor. Do not notice any of the alcohol. Caramel flavor. A bit butterscotch - lots of flavor.

Mouthfeel - A lttle astringent. Nice carbonation, warming down the throat, a bit creamy.

Overall - The "imperial" part of the brown ale is nothing too exciting. Lots of malts, a little off balanced. Easy enough to drink, especially after it gets to room temperature.

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Photo of rousee
3.65/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours almost black and quite thick looking with a small head of large bubbled foam. Decent cling to the sides of the glass.

Smell is almost exclusively caramel and roasted malt. Hints of the maple that are mentioned on the label of the bottle are also apparent.

Taste is up front maltiness with some toffee and caramel. Woody elements and of course the maple flavor as well. Finish is a little syruppy and there is some sort of fruit aspect that becomes noticeable on the finish.

Mouthfeel has good carbonation and effervescence with the noticed sappy syrup-like quality. This is to be expected for this style to a good degree so its nothing I would call a real negative.

Overall, I think this is a pretty nice imperial brown froma brewery I have never tried before. I would definitely try this again and I would be inclined to try some others by this brewery also.

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Photo of Kudashov
3.2/5  rDev -14%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

While watching the Boxing Marathon on ESPN classic and having the Manic Street Preachers on the Hi-Fi . Thought it was time to enjoy a brew . A 22oz bottle wrapped in gold foil around the cap & neck . Large scroll label which has a nice singe on the side . The back label tells me that the Tommyknockers were mischievous elves who slipped into the minning camp of Cornish miners . Maple syrup ? Wonder if it is the good stuff . The syrup you get when you go up north to NH , VT , to hit the ski slopes . Just like good beer nothing beats real maple syrup . There is no freshness date on the bottle . Remove the foil wrap to find a bearded miner on the cap with a hard hat , a mug ( of Tommyknocker Imperial Nut Brown no doubt ) in his left and a pickaxe in his right . When poured into a pint glass , a dark brown clear liquid with a nice head . I smell the syrup and some sugar too . Where are my waffles ? The head did not last long . My first taste was very smooth . Maple flavor and some cocoa . It is tasty and at 9.8 % ABV you don't feel the " heat " on my cheeks 9 well not right away , anyway ) I did enjoy this while Riddick Bowe vs. Evander Holyfield III . I would try it again . A pleasant brew . My first nut brown ever & will not be my last .

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Photo of Enola
3.82/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The appearance of this brew is what I think a brown ale should look like. I rarely give a 5 but this is deserving. Deep brown with a fair tan head and lacing a plenty. The smell is caramel and slightly metallic. Fair. The taste is a little bit of smoke, oak, maple syrup and a myriad of other flavers combined. Good. The higher abv is not evident immediently but shows a little as the ears warm and turn red. Mouthfeel is good considering the abv. A good drinkable beer that is a very good example of the Imperial Brown. I would drink this beer again.

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Photo of Hibernator
4/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tommyknocker Imperial Nut Brown Ale
22 oz brown bottle w/gold foil top
Served in a 20 oz tulip pint glass

Pours a dark chestnut brown with ruby highlights. A dense, frothy head forms and then transforms to a thin lace. Nice trails of sticky lace patterns decorate the sides of the pint glass. Actually, really nice trails of webbed lacings are all over.

Malty nose with whiffs of maple syrup sweetness and a touch of dairy. Where are the pancakes?

The first sip provides a syrupy brown sugar, maple syrup & molasses backbone. A touch of milk chocolate and roasted peanut flavors shine through with heavly malted punch. A mini-hop snap on the finish provides some balance and bitterness. The 9.8% is extremely well hidden and quite deceiving.

This is my first time having an offering from the Tommyknocker Brewery and it was a treat. If you like Nut Brown Ales, you'll enjoyed this beefed up version.

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Photo of Big78CJ
2.88/5  rDev -22.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed: Jan 28, 2007

Appearance: Dark brown beer, as one might expect from an Imperial nut brown. Lighter brown tones are visible near the stem of my glass. Although it originally has a nice half-inch light tan head, it has disappeared since beginning to write this.

Smell: Originally I smelled a sour yet sweet maple syrup but this faded a bit as the head died off. There is definitely a candy sugar or chocolate smell to the lingering aroma.

Taste: Very tasty for such high alcohol, the sweetness takes over but never becomes excessive. It is surprising this beer isn’t sweeter with maple syrup, chocolate, and sugar added! The alcohol does have a significant kick, however, and you can taste it as you swallow.

Mouthfeel: Smooth and not thick at all. This is definitely not a chewy or heavy beer; it flows right down with not too much carbonation to slow it down.

Drinkability: Very easy to drink considering its ABV and I plan to recommend it to my mother (a fan of brown ales). I wish the regular maple brown was as drinkable as this one.

Serving Type: 650 ml bottle poured into Koenigs Hoeven goblet

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

Poured the whole bomber into an oversized DFH snifter. Nice, deep caramel brown color. Slight head. Nutty, oakey and caramel aroma rolled into one. Lingering sort of alcoholic trace. Good, nutty flavor. Some burnt raisens and sugar flavor. Maybe a little graininess. Good full mouthfeel. The alcohol comes in and out of play. I dont know about making every style "imperial"-can be a good idea gone bad. This one is quite nice for a late night apertif.

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Photo of macster
4.05/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a brown, almost black color with burgundy highlights. Creates a 1/2" dense tan head which fades to a paisley patterened wispy coating. Minimal spotty lacing. Emits rich, pleasant aromas of toffee, maple syrup, molasses, hazel nuts, raisins, cocoa powder and brown sugar. Full, chewy round palate with a fine, subtle carbonation. Flavor much like the aroma, but not as rich and hefty as one would expect from the nose. Pleasing notes of dark fruit, cocoa, toffee, roasted malts and molasses with a faint hop and alcohol presence to tame the sweetness. Unfortunately, seems to have a slight weird mid-palate watery thiness that detracts from the enjoyment. Overall very reminiscent of an English-style Barleywine to me. The 9.8% abv is almost unperceptible and this is an easy big brew to enjoy. At $3.99 a bomber it’s a good deal and certainly worth another visit or two.

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4.04/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer formed little head that had a slight yellowish hue. It dissipated quickly and left a slight ring around the glass. It smelled great with hints of maple and malt. Mouth-feel was surprisingly light for how dark and heavy it looked in the glass. It was dark in the center of the glass with almost rose edges. Tommyknocker did a good job of keeping it light on the tongue with a strong after taste that lingered well. Smooth and buttery with a hint of maple that was not overpowering at all. At 9.8% it packs a smooth punch.

I was very impressed with the first Imperial Nut Brown Ale that I have tasted. A good beer for the money and the mouth.

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Photo of WanderingFool
3.65/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

As far as I recall, this is the first Imperial Brown ale I've tasted. The beer pours a flat dark brown color that appears ruby when held to the light. A small, light tan head forms on top. The foam dissolves quickly to a thin ring around the surface leaving no spots of lace on the glass. A faint malty aroma with a hint of brown sugar and maple floats above the beer.

Each sip of this medium bodied beer is smooth and somewhat creamy with a nice moderate fizz on the tip of the tongue. The flavor is full of sweet caramel malt, brown sugar, nuts, and raisins. At the end there's a mild hoppy pine bitterness and alcohol that gives the beer a dry finish. I can't really detect the maple except for a hint in the aftertaste.

This is a sweet, tasty, malty brew that hides it's nearly 10% alcohol very well. It's quite drinkable and tasty, but I thought the maple flavor was a bit subdued.

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Photo of Estarrio
4.1/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I've always wanted to try a beer with maple syrup and at $5 a bomber, I figured this was worth a shot!

Poured a dark, opaque brown with some ruby notes. The medium, tan head retained quite well with some sticky lacings on the side of my glass.

Nuts, malt, caramel, and maple syrup goodness in the nose. There is also a nice hoppy presence to balance to balance out the sweetness. Some fruity notes appeared as this warmed to room temperatures.

The flavor is sweet malt with a nutty backdrop. A strong maple syrup character with very subtle oak properties quickly overtakes caramel and chocolate malt flavors. The sweet flavors are again balanced well by the pleasing mix of hops. There is a slight pine presence in the finish that really compliments the maple syrup. I feel like I should be drinking this outside of a log cabin after a long day of chopping wood in my flannel attire. Amazingly I do not sense the high alcohol percentage in the flavor at all.

This brew is medium/full bodied with ample carbonation and a light syrup viscosity. This is dangerously drinkable with the balanced flavors and well-masked alcohol.

I'm typically not a big fan of the style but this is a fine brew that cannot be beat for the price. I highly recommend giving this one a try!

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Photo of cabsandking
3.27/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very dark brown and crimson when held to the light. Tan/yellow colored head quickly fades to a thin layer of small bubbles. Sweet malty nose with notes of bold fruits and raspberry. Aromas are echoed in the flavor with maple syrup as a prominent point of sweetness. Starting off is a more sweet, tart wave with flashes of carbonation on the perimeters. Earthy roasted nuts are heavier at the end of the gulp and follows strong into the finish. You are aware of the alcohol but doesn’t get in the way of its finer flavors. As it warms notes of vanilla, banana, and smoke appear. Full body and a syrupy thick mouthfeel with a touch of cream hear and there.

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Photo of akorsak
3.8/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: The ale is a deep muddy brown, almost but not quite to the point of black. There was a thick head on pour that has since whittled away to a small ring.

S: The aroma is a strong nutty malt aided by some sugary sweetness.

T: The taste definitely is a ramped up brown ale. The malt body lives up to its name, delivering a solid nutty malt flavor. On top of the nuttiness is a very distinct sweetness. The sweetness is definitely maple syrup. It provides a dry sweetness that layers nicely on top of the nuttiness.

M: The sugary sweet mouthfeel is very pleasant and easy to drink. That sugar also leads to a higher abv but you really can't tell when drinking it.

D: An interesting take on a traditional style. The amped up sweetness is nice without overpowering the nutty base.

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Photo of sullysbeer
4.27/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Aroma: Chocolate, malty sweet. Huge alcohol nose, marshmallow. Very light almost none on the hop aroma. Toasty and Toffee hints.

Appearance: Clear, deep brownish with a nice ruby hue when put up against the light. Very nice creamy head retention that has a very light brown color.

Flavor: Malty sweetness followed by a huge alcohol flavor which finishes quite dry along with a spicy hop bitterness that is not overpowering.

Mouthfeel: Medium to medium full body. Creamy and slick on the tongue. Perfect carbonation.

Overall Impression: A nut brown with a huge alcohol warming, hence "Imperial." For sure a winter beer. The alcohol dominates the rest of the flavoring, malt, and hop flavors. A great example of an Imperial Brown and doesn't stray from the Brown Ale category.

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Photo of Procrastinator
4.03/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle poured into large weizen glass

Appearance: a very dark brown, almost stout-like color with reddish hues when held up to sunlight. Nice size head rests into pillowy off-white floaters.

Smell: sweet flowers, alcohol, maple syrup, sugar and overripe fruits.

Taste: sweet fruit, alcohol is well disguised, not much hoppiness.

Mouthfeel: excellent, chewy and full bodied, malty.

Drinkability: while the alcohol may keep me from drinking too many of these, I really enjoyed this beer.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.52/5  rDev +21.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Acquired via trade from northertimber, so a big “thank you” goes out to him.
Poured from a 22oz. bottle into a mug glass.

A: The beer is a deep brown color, with a medium-sized foamy tan head that fades slowly and leaves a heavy lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is rich, malty and nutty with notes of maple syrup and caramel.

T: The taste is robust with caramelized malt, roasted coffee, maple syrup and chocolate. It’s sweet but not too sweet. There’s a little bit of hops character, but the maltiness over-powers it quite a bit. The sweetness lingers in the after-taste, which makes you crave another swig.

M: Very smooth, crisp, medium-to-heavy body, light-to-medium carbonation, clean and dry finish especially for the style.

D: This style wasn’t one of my favorites a first, but it has started to grow on me and this is the best that I’ve had in this style. This beer is tasty, has a damn good kick to it and it’s very easy to drink for a beer with 9.80% ABV. It’s slightly filling, but I can still drink a heck of a lot of this beer and enjoy every sip of it. I know "Imperial" gets thrown around rather loosely and I've never seen it used for a Nut Brown before, but this beer certainly seems worthy of the term.

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Photo of Vancer
4.15/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Now this is what I’m talking about in a brew! Yeah! Dark mahogany pour, rings of tan. Molasses, caramel and maple in the aroma. Also noted some coffee and nuts (almonds, per se? or was I getting too ripped?).

Very rich, but still slightly thin bodied. But I really dug the 10% buried behind the smooth, malty body of this frosty. Slid down as easy as a 4/5% brew – which makes it kinda dangerous.

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Photo of wedge
3/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Pours a shadowy, deep auburn color with a slim creamy beige head. Timid aroma of toasted caramel, burnt sugar, dark maple, and nuts. Sticky, toasted dark malt flavors begin as mapley brown sugar but ends up cloyingly sweet and seems to lack some depth. Alcohol is a little more prominent than it probably should be. Pretty heavy in the mouth. Half a bomber and I'm done.

I lost interest in this halfway through my glass. Seems too "artificial" for it to really come together as a satisfying beer. Its not awful, but I can't recommend it.

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Photo of tastybeer
3.15/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Color is a deep redish brown color. Pretty thick but light does come through in the form of crimson highlights. Head is a light tan, creamy color. Not that large but holds good retention with bits of sticky lace. Nose isn't powerful but does have a good amount of maple maltiness, brown sugar/mollasses, some fruit and maybe some toffee. Not an "imperial" nose really, but certainly more than your typical brown ale. Tastes similar with sweet brown sugar, fruity, spicy alcohol, nuts, and caramel. The alcohol gives a little kick to your palate through the finish and in the aftertaste. The flavors don't seem really well blended; the beer flips between kind of cloying, and less sweet but more alcoholic. Within one sip the flavor varies in this way. Mouthfeel isn't bad but the body feels separated and loose, yet ironically sticky. There needs to be more substance/body to hold this together. Drinkability was very decent for the first half of this but once I got more into it I was just getting it down to finish it. This reminds of Pete's Wicked Ale intensified to a higher abv.

Meh. I usually like nut browns so style's not the problem. This "imperial" brown ale is random and under developed. It has the abv of a big beer but every aspect of it is scattered around. Most of the components and flavors are there but they don't come together in a good pleasing way.

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Photo of scruffwhor
3.57/5  rDev -4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A beery maple syrup color leaves a 22oz bomber into my imperial Carlsberg pint glass. Great syrupy tan/brown highlight with a very deep brown molasses middle. A nice, subtle sweet maple aroma mixed with some cocoa butter and vanilla bring out interesting notes in this beer. The start is a mdeium roast with some mapley sweetness. Sfter awhile, I noticed some brown sugar and molasses and toffee notes. Good night cap beer on a cold fall evening.

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Photo of Byeast
4.07/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle is a 650ml bomber.

Appearance: Poured very dark , almost opaque brown , with some slight reddish hues. Head was small and tan.

Smell: caramel malt sweetness , maple , hint of chocolate , and just a tinge of alcohol.

Taste: Mmm! Rich maple and brown sugar sweetness , full bodied malt , some slight bittersweet chocolate , very well hidden alcohol , and some nuttyness.

Mouthfeel: slick , slightly viscous , and a bit dry in the finish. ( like eating nuts)

Drinkability: I am impressed by this brew. A very interesting , new style they created. If one is worried by the name that is may be too sweet , dont. It's not at all. Sweet yes , but balanced very well. And the alcohol is virtually completly masked. If you like Impy stouts , give this neat brown brew a try.

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Photo of walleye
3.47/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From the bottle. poured a nice mahogany with a nice sized tan head. aroma, toast, dark cherries, plums, red grapes, roasted malts, some smoke as it warmes alcohol and nice sweetness comes out. flavor. the malts and hops come out nicely followed by cherries, maple syrup with a good hit of alcohol. easy drinking beer will get more of this

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Photo of MuenchenerKindl
4.03/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber to a pint glass. The liquid is a dark opaque brown, nice carbonation. The Head is big 2 fingers, dark brown, smooth and creamy looks like a porter.

The smell is not so pronounced, Sweet thick molasses coated malt, not very hopy.

The taste is big!, Sweet thick big dark malt shouting at you. Almost too sweet, with the maple syrup.

The mouthfeel is full and thick, syrupy might be too thick. Carbonation does not break it up.

The drinkability falls of some, but not bad. A big bottle but I could have more. The price ir right. MK

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Photo of CharlieMopps
3.6/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Dark brown, mostly black with a faint red hue. No head, and very little lace clinging to the glass.

S: Mapley smell w/chocolate and burnt malt notes. Ever so slightly tempting.

T: Deep chocolate malts, heavy but delicious. Maple is a nice backing accent to this beer. Hoppy tones do sharpen the taste toward the end though, with a faint nutty taste.

M: Crisp and light, but sharp due to the ABV. Still, quite balanced w/decent carbonation and easy on the palate. Syrupy and sticky texture, but somewhat pleasing in this regard.

D: Limit to a couple. The hops sharpen it in the finale to the point that goes beyond its malty side. Nevertheless, a strong nut brown ale that surprises.

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Photo of weeare138
4.05/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appears a dark brown with a deep auburn hue. A 2 finger tan head slowly fades out into a mild cap. Nice amounts of chunky lacing is left around the glass.
Smell is of maple, molasses, roasted nuts, nougat, and rich brown sugar.
Taste is of the same aromas with a caramelized wort flavor that is actually pretty rich, bountiful, sugary, and delicious.
Mouthfeel is full bodied, intense of alcohol, sweet, and bitter with a roasted nut feel that lingers along the palate.

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Imperial Nut Brown Ale from Tommyknocker Brewery
Beer rating: 3.72 out of 5 with 640 ratings