Over Ale | Half Acre Beer Company

BA SCORE
86
very good
402 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score
Send samples
Over AleOver Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Half Acre Beer Company
Illinois, United States
halfacrebeer.com

Style: American Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Originally brewed as an ESB, but is now brewed as an American Brown Ale.

Added by beerfairy on 02-18-2009

BEER STATS
Ratings:
402
Reviews:
139
Avg:
3.83
pDev:
9.66%
 
 
Wants:
17
Gots:
30
For Trade:
0
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 402 |  Reviews: 139
Photo of billab914
3.83/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 16oz can into my Dogfish shaped pint glass. It poured a dark brown, almost approaching black color. It started with a foamy and sticky khaki colored head filling the top inch of the glass. After a minute or so it settled to a thin and spotty layer, but left some great lacing as I drank it.

The aroma shows some sweeter, caramel and toffee notes to it, with just a hint of some darker, roasty, coffee like flavors. I get some very nice and bright hoppiness to it as well with some lemon and grapefruit citrus peeking through. Very nice hoppy, brown ale aroma.

The taste starts off with some of the sweeter, malty, caramel and toffee flavors. The hops show up pretty soon after with some citrusy, juicy flavors. In the finish I get some bitterness with the hops mixing with a slight roasty, coffee like flavor.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with carbonation being moderate. Overall it was a very enjoyable brown ale, definitely hoppier then most, but it worked well for it. Very enjoyable and easy drinking beer, wit ha lot of flavor. Another very solid beer form Half Acre.

 1,094 characters

Photo of SpdKilz
3.92/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A big thanks to my buddy Kevin (kzoobrew) for this great beer. Cheers!

Appearance - Pours into my SA Perfect Pint with a light brown, amber color. Over a finger of off white head is achieved that dissipates slowly leaving nice lacing.

Smell - Toasted malts, nuttiness, caramel, slight hops.

Taste - Similar to the nose. A nice bitterness up front followed my roasted malts, caramel, and malt. Floral and grassy notes as well, with a hint of lemon zest.

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied, fizzy carbonation, finishes a hint dry.

Overall - Pretty good, easy to drink. Half Acre continues to impress.

 595 characters

Photo of nsmartell
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I enjoyed this beer from the comfort of my own living room. From the bottle to a standard pint glass. (From my notes on 05-26-10.)

Appearance: Pours ruby red/brown with a big dirty white head that does not last.

Smell: Bread, malts and pine hops.

Taste: Similar to the aroma with the piney hops, but caramel now comes through.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, crisp with good carbonation on the tongue.

Drinkability: Good, would definitely recommend and drink again.

 464 characters

Photo of Rhettroactive
3.37/5  rDev -12%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

From 16oz can to pint glass on 3/24/11

Cheers to cadaugherty for this one. Thanks, Chad!

A: Signifigantly more red-umber then your straight, by-the-book brown. It's dark, though fairly brilliant. A good pour yields a 1.25 finger head, and better lacing then I was expecting.

S: Nutty with a pinch of malt. Closing my eyes, it smells like an autumn afternoon by the fire pit, with the guys tossing the football in the yard.

T: Nice mild malt that lays down for the walnut and almond extract essence from the late fore to mid. It's all wrapped up with a faint kiss of hops at the finish.

M: It feels like an oil spill in my mouth. It's extremely slick, and quite a bit lighter then I would like. Fairly dissapointing.

O: For a brown, I can genuinely say I liked this one. Did I love It? No, but I'd certainly drink it again if offered. Half Acre's Over Ale is a good, everyday "drinking" beer. It's not overly complex, it's simply a nice can of suds.

 954 characters

Photo of Reagan1984
4.03/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Many thanks to GbDave for providing this beer in a recent trade.

Pours from the can with a thick/creamy light tan head that shows excellent retention. The beer is a very dark amber color that is clear when held to the light. No carbonation is visible. I am easily able to coax the head to rise well above the top of the glass. Nice looking beer.

Aroma is of dark toasted malt with a thick sense of caramel and a touch of cinnamon.

Chocolate a very brief moment of cinnamon.. Lots of light nutty notes mix with the roasted malt flavor. I like the finish which blends all of these elements nicely. Only after you swallow the beer do you get a nice bready flavor mixed with the nut tones.

Medium body with a little heft to the body. Very light carbonation and mostly very smooth.

A good representation of a fresh Brown Ale. Nicely done by Half Acre. Good beer from a very good brewer.

 887 characters

Photo of GoldenJet
4.25/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

While I know it's blasphemous to say this, what with Surly being in my backyard and all, but fuck, sometimes I wish I lived in Chicago just so I cold drink Half-Acre beers ALL THE TIME.

Seriously, their beers never, ever, disappoint me - like this new canned offering of Over Ale. I mean really, how many people just craft good brown ales these days? This one is great - lots of bready notes, some toffee, and a ton of woody and 'nutty' flavors. I don't get the hop resins that some other people do, but I do get a great roasted maltiness throughout.

The best part though, is that I don't get that continuous bitterness that most Brown Ales seem to have, making this a dangerously sessionable beer.

And by dangerous, I mean I could drink pint after pint after pint.

 768 characters

Photo of MbpBugeye
3.59/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Can provided by bauermj. I love Half Acre's label art. I think they are bringing some of the coolest looking bottles and cans to the market right now.

A- This brown ale has wonderful color. Its a clear mahogany, very dark, toasted red. There is a super dense foam of a head with crazy lacing.

S- The aroma is very clean, which is a good thing. I like these smaller brown ales to be super clean. Light chocolate and floral hops. Some candied orange drifts faintly in the background. Toffee and caramel release with a touch of warmth.

T- Nice stuff, pretty clean with no off flavors. Everything seems to know its place. Toffee, milk chocolate and sweet and fruity ale yeast. Its all grounded by grassy and floral hops with a squeeze of lemon.

M- The carbonation is a bit too sharp but it washes everything away leaving a short, crisp finish.

D- Really good stuff. Easy as hell to drink.

 894 characters

Photo of wagenvolks
3.71/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cheers to azaaron for an awesome extra! 16oz can into a Stella Artois goblet.

Over Ale pours with a burnt auburn-burgundy appearance. A splotchy custard head builds to a sizable half inch in height before slowly settling to a thick cap and draping nice webs of lace along the glass. Light aroma of English toffee and brown malt. Leathery shoe polish yeast esters and a hint of grassy, floral hops.

Thin, yet flavorful pale brown malts glide across the top of the palate and add notes of sweetbread and caramel. A tinge of piny hops, English yeast, and light booze esters ride out into the finish. Mouthfeel is appropriate for the style with a crisp carbonation level and medium-light body. Drinks easily and doesn't dry out the tongue too much. Over Ale: a sessionable, drinkable brown ale in a can. No frills, no shenanigans, just tasty beer.

 845 characters

Photo of yeahnatenelson
4.09/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance -- Pours a nutty brown hue with three fingers of creamy/sudsy beige head. Head retention is good, lacing is - for a brown - phenomenal. Very photogenic.

Smell -- Nutty malt, toast, floral and grassy hops. There's nothing off in the aroma, just vacuous.

Taste -- Base maltiness conjures roasted nuts and golden toast with gentle fruity esters and a mild Scottish-esque caramelization. As brown ales go, this is definitely hop-forward with spring flowers, prairie grasses, grapefruit pith, and a knife tip of pine resin. Upon first blush, it's very reminiscent of Surly Bender, though over time the hops become less omnipresent and toasted malt nuttiness takes the helm.

Mouthfeel -- Medium-bodied with medium carbonation. Tows the line between creamy and harsh rather well.

Drinkability -- With Half Acre's third canning venture - but long-time growler staple - they once again show how a 16oz can should be purposed: a crisp, refreshing, and sessionable. The malting is very much in the vein of the traditional English Brown but with the hop character characterized by Daisy Cutter and Gossamer. I firmly believe this will soon become my go-to quencher for weekends on the town.

Suggestion: Be sure to buy two packs, as the first will disappear rather quickly.

 1,277 characters

Photo of homebrew311
3.78/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 16oz can into pint glass.

A: pours a deep dark clear brown with a generous fluffy 2 finger white head. Great retention and a ton of lacing.

S: lots of caramel malts with some roast character in there. A big dash of earthy hops in the back with an almost tea like quality. Notes of brown bread in there as well.

T: The front is all caramel and malt followed by an assertive hop profile. The tea like character comes out at the end along with bready notes. The finish is long and leaves the tast of bread crust on the palate. Interesting interpretation of a brown.

MF: light body, medium to high carbonation

D: this is a well balanced brown ale with lots of character. This is yet another example of Half Acre putting their own spin on a classic style. Not mind blowing by any means, but certainly worth a try...or a session.

 840 characters

Photo of LacquerHead
3.93/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I picked this up in the 16oz cans a few days ago.

It poured deep brown with an off white foamy head.

S: It had a light malty aroma along with some hops.

T: This had a good balance of malt and hops. The malts are in the forefront. They have a fairly roasted flavor, but on the caramel side. The hops occupy the background giving this a slightly bitter taste and a low level of dryness.

M/F: a little too carbonated for my taste. At times I thought it distracted from the flavor. Sometimes it felt a little thin.

D: easy to drink.

Conclusion: It was good, nothing aggressive. For the most part it was a tad above average for a brown ale. This had a rounded flavor that was enjoyable.

 690 characters

Photo of emerge077
3.71/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brewery-fresh 16 oz. can, digging the new design, water tower, zeppelin, and classic blackletter type.

Attractive reddish chestnut color, bright clarity, visible carbonation trails rise upward. Drippy lace decorates the lip of the glass. Retention is great, as I left and came back for awhile and the foam remained unbroken.

Earthy malt aroma, bready, fairly clean and straightforward.

Malt forward flavors, again earthy and bready with some apple from the yeast. Some light toast and bitter tobacco. Residual hop bitterness in the aftertaste, fairly light. Bready and crisp like autumn leaves. Easygoing carbonation that lends a bit of bite, a fine local session ale.

 673 characters

Photo of rings
3.82/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Their flagship is their Over Ale, which is more or less a brown ale--they call it an American Bitter. It pours a deep amber or light brown in color, with a nice firm head. The beer is a little lighter in body than I expected, but is very clean, with a nice herbal head and spicy bittering finish. It's exceptionally balanced and surprisingly tasty, aside from my initial disappointment at the lack of mouthfeel.

I was actually pretty impressed and can definitely recommend another few rounds.

 493 characters

Photo of weatherdog
3.54/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4.5

Growler given to me by Richard as payment for a football bet. Thanks! Poured into my Three Floyds tulip shaped pint glass

It pours crystal clear amber with a billowing bone colored head. The color looks almost exactly like cola. The head dies down to a nice even creamy layer and a medium amount of lacing clings to the glass.

The nose is pretty bland, a hint of malt sweetness with just a touch on pine hops. Not too much character, just toeing the line of average.

A firm bitterness is present in the taste with a medium to medium high pine hop flavor. Some bready sweet malt is also there. It's pretty balanced between maltiness and hoppiness with the nudge going on the bitterness side.

The mouthfeel is way to watery thin for my tastes. It would be a good staple beer that I would keep in stock if it just had a little more body and some more carbonation to keep it lively. It still is greatly drinkable though and even though and I had no problem killing a growler by myself over a few hours time.

 1,007 characters

Photo of BeerLover99
3.33/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: amber, copper body, 1 finger head, brilliant lacing

S: nut, hint of caramel, light grain

T: mild nut, sweet bread, grain front with bitter finish.

M: light/med body, prickly tongue, big carbonation body.

D: very mild, ordinary ESB, slightly disappointed since I was such
a big fan of Daisy Cutter Pale Ale.

 316 characters

Photo of digitalczech
4.1/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I'm not a big ESB fan. There are few far and between ESBs which I really like. This is one of them. The bitterness doesn't overpower allowing this beer to be enjoyed rather than just tasted.

A - nice amber color. Looks really nice

S - Biscuit?

T - Grassy with grapefruit.. But it was a nice balance.

M - Nice... lively. Not flat but not over carbonated.

D - Very drinkable. The second bottle was better as my tastebuds adjusted. But it was a nice drinkable beer. I would buy it again.

 489 characters

Photo of stangski83
4.52/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Just purchased a half barrel from the brewery this fine evening for my kegarator. This stuff is dangerously drinkable - just finished my first pint and heading back for number 2 in quick order. Very solid brown ale in my opinion. The alcohol is not terribly noticeable and I'm suspecting that it will sneak up on me in quick order if i'm not careful. Although I intended to pick up a half barrel of daisy cutter, i don't regret this for a second. Very tasty and worth the drive from the south suburbs up to half acre for a fresh keg (dated 11/13/2010) of Over Ale. Just in time for Thanksgiving - and believe me when I say I'm thankful.

 636 characters

Photo of TMoney2591
3.33/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served in a hard plastic cup.

Thanks to TheStretch for sharing his growler while brewing!

The last of the Three Growlers from our Half Acre tour trip. It pours a clear dark sunset amber topped by finger of thick creamy foam. The nose comprises pine, grapefruit, grass, and some light biscuit. The taste holds notes of green tea, melon, cucumber, grasses, and very light biscuit. The hoppier notes seem to strangely overpower the very meek malts for me. The body is a light medium, with a light carbonation and a feel that migrates from fluid to dry. Overall, an okay brew, but a bit unbalanced and grassy for my tastes.

 621 characters

Photo of Vdubb86
4.16/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in a pint glass

Thanks to TheStretch for bring over this growler to our brew session.

I've had this before at the brewery and loved it so I figured now was a good time to review it. This pours a nice rosewood color with a good pillow head on the top that is well retained with beautiful lacing down the glass. The aroma is both of nice fresh hop and some caramel malts. There are some roasty and nutty smells in the background as well. The flavors are a nice balance of malts and hops. The hop flavors are akin to some nice orange zest. There are bitter flavors, but they are in the background of the nice roasted caramel and butterscotch flavors. This beer is very well carbonated and aside from bitter notes which are appropriate it was a very smooth beer. This was really easy to drink, it pairs well with most foods and is a definite recommendation from me.

 870 characters

Photo of kbutler1
3.46/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Draft. Pours a reddish copper color with a 1 finger off white head. SLight roasted malt flavor. Very simple, straight forward, and clean flavor. Slighlty sweet up front with a nice balance of subtle hops. Slight caramel flavor. Medium mouthfeel. A pretty moderate ESB.

 268 characters

Photo of ktrillionaire
4.35/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

A - Pours a nice woody-brown with a decent little clingy tan cap.

S - It smells brown and roasty, and a little sweet. There is a nutty-earthy quality, and the hop is quite leafy.

T - Toasty malt is deftly balanced by some very fresh tasting earthy-leafy hops, resulting in a very refreshing nutty-earthy-pristine flavor. This is a very good brown ale. (Edit: Later I learned that this is an ESB.) The flavor is all that the nose promised, but apportioned differently, and with the addition of some buttery notes.

M - Nice, though it could be a bit more on the velvety side. Seems like it would be fantastic on-cask.

D - Very enjoyable, very very drinkable. This is perfect ballgame brew.

 691 characters

Photo of Aguirre
4.1/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I pick up about a growler a week at Half Acre, and usually go for Daisy Cutter or something limited. However, I've been feeling some hop fatigue, so I decided to revisit Over Ale. The last time I tried it was on tap at a local bar and I remember being turned off by a strange, chemical flavor.

Poured from the growler into a pint.

A - A nice deep brown, with good clarity. Tan fluffy head.

S - Roasted malts, not much in the way of hops. You can tell this beer is FRESH!

T - Mmmmm, delicious. Not too heavy, not too light. I love the amount of flavor, it's not overpowering, but it stands up for itself. This reminds me of a Brown Ale much more than an ESB. There is a lingering hop bitterness, and the beer isn't too sweet.

M - Well carbed, but not overly so

D - Dangerously drinkable. I had three pints in just a couple of hours because I was enjoying this one so much.

All and all, a great beer, though maybe not an ESB. I can't vouch for bottles or old kegs, but fresh on tap at the brewery, this is a winner.

 1,022 characters

Photo of dnjmed
4.12/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- a reddish brown color with a slightly offwhite head.

S-smells of toasted bread, nuts, and spice.

T-Taste follows the nose quite well. Caramel comes on more strongly in the taste. Don't be fooled, though the nutty caramelized bread is very well balanced with spicy hops.

M-smooth with some good amount of thickness. very pleasing.

D-delicious. moving on to a 2nd. very drinkable right now.

 397 characters

Photo of GbVDave
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 64oz growler into a 20oz imperial pint.

A: Pours a deep mahogany with a full three fingers of eggshell colored foam perched on top. Retention was very good and a gorgeous looking ring of lace was left around the top of the glass.

S: Bready and woody. Lots of toasted malt, some burnt caramel, and a touch of lemon.

T: See above. Loads of toasted bread crust and wood. Nutty toffee, caramel, and lemony hops.

M: Surprisingly bitter and dry. Dry, roasty malt leaves a woody astringency plastered all over the inside of my mouth.

D: Pretty damn enjoyable. Make sure to let this get around cellar temp before pouring. It really opens up when it warms.

 667 characters

Photo of Bitterbill
4.13/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle courtesy of the great trader TATTORSO. Thanks Jeff!

Pours a clear and bubbly copper colour with a 2 finger head of foam and some good lacing.

It has a lightish smell of some bready malt, light fruit, and a nice light piney bitterness. None overshadow the others so I'd call it a well balanced nose. After a while though, the pine seems to build some momentum and *does* take over but in a good way.

The taste is lightly bready, lightly nutty, has some solid pine hop bitterness, and is just a solid tasting ESB all around and one of the better ones that I have tried.

It has a medium body with likewise carbonation and an overall smooth feel.
Oh and the foam retention and lacing turn out to be superb.

Drinkability? I could kick back 2 or 3 of these within a reasonable time and be a happy camper. I think this is an excellent example of the style and kudos go out to Half Acre Brewing and...Jeff!

 910 characters

Over Ale from Half Acre Beer Company
3.83 out of 5 based on 402 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.

    Subscribe