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Sweet Josie Brown Ale | Lonerider Brewing Company

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very good
101 Reviews
Sweet Josie Brown AleSweet Josie Brown Ale

Brewed by:
Lonerider Brewing Company
North Carolina, United States

Style: American Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.10%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by atsprings on 05-07-2009

For Trade:
User Reviews
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Reviews: 101 | Ratings: 512
Photo of marshmarsh
2.91/5  rDev -22.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a Libby Porter/Stout glass

a - pours black with slight amber tint, no head at all, small amount of lacing around edge.

s - chocolate and caramel with coffee hints

t - starts smooth and sweet, like a milk chocolate bar, but not much flavor. Hint of spice. Finish is a little smoky. Not very bitter at all.

m - kind of watery, I'm wondering if something was wrong with this bottle

o - Definitely a great idea, it just needs more character and body. If I find after opening another bottle that this one was faulty, I'll re-review.

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Photo of Mike_Beasley
4.23/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Almost perfect. Hops are correct for this ale. Beautiful color. Always consistent. An excellent one beer beer to drink. Does not loose it's attractiveness after tasting other beers. One you will always come back to again. Love it's aroma. Strong enough to have some bite when 1st tasting every time, yet keeps delivering for each one. Alcohol content is enough for you to know you're drinking this beer at half a bottle. Does not loose it's flavor as temperature changes. Great to grill with. It's that "I've got this beer you've got to try" when entertaining. Very impressive and simple, not too much going on like some beers. I'm sure all beer lovers will enjoy this one for its drinkable attitude.

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Photo of Tone
3.59/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear, dark brown color. 1/5 inch head of an off-white color. Decent retention and decent lacing. Smells of sweet malt, slight roasted malt, slight hop, yeast, and a hint of chocolate. Fits the style of an American Brown. Mouth feel is sharp and crisp, with an average carbonation level. Tastes of sweet malt, slight roasted malt, hint of yeast, hops, and hint of alcohol. Overall, weak appearance, but average aroma, feel, and body.

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Photo of clayrock81
3.53/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured a dark brown body with one finger head on top of a hearty aroma of roasted malts, some bread to them, caramel and a good amount of chocolate. Unfortunately, the beer itself does not deliver like the aroma. Medium bodied, a little sticky, I get some minor sweetness from caramel and chocolate but there doesn't seem to be any balance as the roasted malts dominant and the beer is mostly dry with a drying finish. And there really isn't much more to say because this is not a real flavorful beer, either (not going to say it's watery, though).

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Photo of coasterfreak75
3.87/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Deep brown pour with a frothy one finger head that gives way to a thin ring on the glass and leaves a nice lace throughout the drink.

Smell: Sweet malt with hints of coffee, light hop spice in the rear of the nose.

Taste: Overwhelming sweet kick up front with a coffee like middle. The hops seem to sneak in middle to late drink, giving way to a clean finish. Just a slight lingering of coffee in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium carbonation, more pronounced in the back of the mouth. Clean drinking and finishing beer.

Overall: A good example of Brown Ale. Refreshing and has just enough body to it to be a good drinking beer.

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Photo of stckhndlr
3.79/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

A- Amber brown ale, ruby hues to it. 1 finger of cappuccino foam head that has the consistency of sea foam. Once the foam settles it leaves a nice ring of lacing on the glass.

s- A roasted malt fragrance mixed with cola sugars and coffee.

T- a good roasted nuttiness. coffees essence and caramels.

M- Has a good balance, A bit slick on the finish but enough body to hold it's own. A very nice feel to it.

O- This is a great brown ale. Nothing overpowers anything else, it's just a well rounded beer.

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Photo of BeerDocT
3.54/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Appearance 3.5: Poured out a deep brown with lighter brown around the edges. Not much of a head to speak of and I cranked the pour (as usual).

Smell 3.75: Very nice bouquet. I smell dark, toasted malt; sweet caramel; some coffee hints and a...oh, no. Is that the bleu cheese hops I smell? I'm going to act like it is not.

Taste 3.5: Front is slightly sweet and somewhat flat. Middle is dry, but I detect notes of toasted grains. Finish is slightly sweet and...I do taste that bleu cheese hop in there. Only slightly. Also, the finish is where the toasted grains, the caramel sweetness and a little bit of hop alkalinity all combine together to make you forget about the somewhat lackluster first two taste levels. Finish was short, but pleasant: more toasted, chocolate hints and a short alkaline bite.

Mouthfeel 3.25: Watery, but not a big distraction. Somewhat slick feeling also. Maybe a late MD addition?

Overall 3.5: Not a bad beer by any means, and a pretty good brown ale. I would imagine that this is the type of beer that would be great with food and I would love to try it on tap. that said, brown ales are not my favorite type of beer and -that notwithstanding-- I would nonetheless recommend this beer to lovers of brown ales. Whoever you are.

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Photo of thehooksman
3.95/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Had this quite a while back in a bottle from the grocery store. It didn't strike me as anything unique. But then again, brown ales are not a favorite style of mine. However, I was pleasantly surprised when choosing it from the small tap list at a local burger joint. I can't comment on the pour or head as the head was pretty much non-existent when the glass came to the table. The appearance was deep copper-brown, just a bit darker than good strong tea. The aroma and flavor was malty, bready, and nutty. The sweetness was just right. The mouthfeel was rather light for a darker style but was still very smooth.

What I like best about this is that it gives aromas, flavors, and the sweetness of a darker beer with an ABV that's kicked up just a bit, but still light enough that you can enjoy a couple of them over dinner.

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Photo of KYGunner
3.58/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The color was light brown, reminiscent of a cognac, with a fast fleeting fizzy head.

The aroma was strong with barley, grain, bran and malt.

The flavors were earthy and organic, very natural, with a grainy barley taste and bran cereal.

The feel was rather thin, not necessarily watery, but easy enough. The body was very fizzy but the feel avoided any negatives from the carbonation.

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Photo of avalon07
3.78/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A: Had this one on-tap, poured into a pint glass at Closed for Business. Had a brown color and a cloudy consistency. There was a quarter inch of foamy, fairly long-lasting head. Average lacing.

S: A pretty good, if predictable, aroma of brown ale nuttiness, malt, and caramel.

T: Tasted pretty much like it smelled: A good amount of caramel, some malt, the nuttiness, malt, and a hint of chocolate. A decent flavor, but not quite full-bodied enough. Still, a worthy effort.

M: A good amount of carbonation with a smooth finish. Medium-bodied.

O: On the whole, this is a likeable, but not exceptional brown ale. Nonetheless, a drinkable beer.

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Photo of Brenden
3.78/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A very dark brown but, yes, it does let some light into its thickness, though there's no opacity. Even from the look it's easy to tell this is a dark beer that's not particularly heavy, which is appropriate. The head, light brown in color, reaches one finger and leaves a stable, compact quarter of a finger that shows some stick initially before ceasing to cling to the glass.
The nose displays a malt backbone, but it takes some effort to draw out specific aromas. The effort I give presents me with a nice nuttiness and some cocoa primarily, with no char or bitterness to speak of and quite a light roast. A light caramel-like sweetness is detectable too.
The flavor presents itself for strongly, with an interesting element somewhat difficult to identify foremost on the palate. It's sort of a spicy earthiness. This does have a generous hops bitterness to it for a brown. Chocolaty sweetness balances it out, the nuttiness follows through, and roast is more pronounced than in the smell.
Carbonation is moderate and makes for a creamy feel off a light crispness. It develops the feel of an English brown to a point with a sort of metallic aspect and a little bit of chalkiness into the finish. It's nice to see a sturdy body in a style that sometimes neglects it.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.01/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle - $1.99 at Total Wine & More in Kennesaw, Georgia.

I see where they attempted a printed on "best before" date, but, unfortunately, it's smudged off. A teeny bit of lacing present.

Appearance: Pours a clear, dark brown body with a medium-small, soft-looking, light beige head.

Smell: Deep toast, roast, oven-roasted nuts with chocolate and touches of molasses and blackened caramel. Quite malty. Only offset by some slight, fruity esters.

Taste: You've got your roast, your heavy toast, your charred nuts, and your chocolate powder, with accents of burnt caramel and molasses. It's a brown ale. Lightly estery. Moderately sweet. A little hop flavor beyond the malts, with a little bitterness showing that plays well with the nuttiness and roasty tones. Drying, malty finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation.

Overall: Easy drinking, (dark side of) malty brown ale.

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Photo of Minkybut
3.68/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

I poured this nice beer into my tumbler at 45 degrees. The beer was very black indeed. The beer pored a fair head with a tan coloring to it. The smell was of roasted coffee and nuts. Head ended up going away pretty fast. The good news though is that the beer was very smooth and very nice tasting. I would certainly buy this beer again.

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Photo of jaycle
3.96/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: 1.5 finger creme colored head which dissipated to moderate lacing. Deep brown with a slight crimson coloring

S: nutty and bread aromas

T: A healthy portion of wheat. the nuttiness is very slight. The bitterness of the hops is there, but not obvious. An aftertaste of sweet-ish coffee.

M: moderately high carbonation. medium-light bodied.

O: Overall, no flavors stand out too strongly to me, but I'm a beginner at this. Mainly I think it is just a nicely balanced brown ale, with no one flavor grabbing you or distracting you. A great beer to have with a meal. And I believe that's how a brown ale should be, nothing too fancy, just a good rounded beer.

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Photo of Apellonious
3.95/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle from six-er at teeter.

A - dark brown/black with a one finger head that moves quickly to a thin lace

S - smoke, chocolate malt, faint hops

T - more of the same, with a chocolate vanilla sweetness, some smoke, and some dry hops on the finish

M - slightly watery, the carbonation is near perfect

O - one of the better brown ales, wish more places in Charlotte had this on tap. Fans of brown (ale...) should give this a try.

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Photo of alpinebryant
3.8/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a hazy light chestnut brown with large brown head that stood around for a while and a sticky lacing all over the edges.

S: Aroma of molasses and roasted brown malt, nuts and light porter aromas.

T: Taste of a nice roasted brown ale. There are great nutty flavors here, a very light bittering making this a very well rounded brown ale. I am naturally biased towards brown ales and especially so when done right. This brown is clearly done well. Well attenuated, not overbittered, not flat and not too simple. Roasted malt flavors, slight toffee , coffee and molasses flavors all mixing well together.

M: Mild body with a relatively high carbonation, slightly stinging. I let it settle for a few minutes and it tasted better, but this is probably the one area that could use some work without messing with the overall product.

O: Definitely worth a try . I really enjoyed this and would buy this regularly if it were a local. I used to be a regular Brooklyn Brown ale fan, but have found it to be a little lighter than I prefer a brown ale now.

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Photo of dbrauneis
3.51/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a clear dark brown in color with significant amounts of amber highlights and some light amounts of visible carbonation. The beer has a half finger tall creamy light beige head that slowly reduces to a thick film covering the entire surface of the beer and a slightly thicker ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate to significant amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Light to moderate aromas of toasted malts with just a hint of sweetness over a light amount of nuttiness and some spicy hops.

T: Similar to the smell, there is a light to moderate flavor of toasted malts with a light amount of sweetness over the top of some light nuttiness and light hints of coffee-like bitterness in the finish (which fades pretty quickly).

M: Medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Smooth.

O: The flavors of this beer are light and would pair well with lots of different styles of food. Relatively easy to drink and enjoyable, though this would not be a go to beer for me.

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Photo of chinchill
3.87/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle dated best before 11 Dec. 2012 served in a snifter

An unusually dark ale, for style, with the corresponding flavor: i.e., darker roast malt with hints of chocolate and smoke. Sweet and bitter in near equal proportion. Nice, lasting aftertaste of dark malt with a bit of spicy hops. The small beige head is short-lived and leaves only spotty lacing.

M: medium body and carbonation; slightly dry finish.

Overall: A well-crafted brown ale that leans towards an American porter.

(lightly revised upon tasting on tap in June 2013)

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Photo of RWLawman
3.53/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Dark brown with a generous head that retains very well throughout the drink.

S - Roasted malts and chocolate.

T - Follows the nose with roasted malts and chocolate, along with caramel. Very tasty.

M - Moderate mouthfeel with decent carbonation. Very sessionable beer.

O - Overall I enjoyed this beer quite a bit. Definitely top 5 in my brown beers. Highly recommended.

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Photo of ezterry
3.89/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Very dark brown, with a good bit of head, giving almost the appearance of a porter or stout rather than a brown ale.

S: Nice rich smell of roasted malts

T: Full taste with a strong coffee/chocolate like after taste.. The coffee like taste overpowers most of the hops.

M: Very full mouth feel, makes the beer feel a little heavy

O: A enjoyable dark beer, a bit richer flavor than I was anticipating from the bottles well balanced description.

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

Thanks to Woodrow for this one!

A: Pours a rather dark brown with a one finger off-white head on top. Decent retention with thin lacing all the way around.

S: A nice mixture of cocoa, nuts, and a little bit of caramel.

T: Similar to the aroma, some cocoa powder, a hint of coffee and nuts. There is a slight toasted bread flavor as well.

M: Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Easy drinking.

O: A very solid brown ale, no problems with it at all. Not overly complex or crazy, but very solid.

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Photo of bum732
3.97/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

S: Toasty malt, subtle fruitiness, some nuttiness, hint of cocoa powder. Slight coffee as it warms.

L: Hazy dark red, floaties, light tan head that dissipates.

T: Very toasty malt with some nuttiness up front. Some cocoa sweetness following a medium-low bitterness. Finishes nutty with some cocoa powder, little bit of roast.

M: Medium bodied, medium carbonation.

A really solid brown ale. When i think of a good brown ale, these are the flavors and aromas I think of.

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
4.5/5  rDev +19.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle poured into a nonic.
6.1% ABV, Best Before 07-17-2012

A - Sweet Josie pours a vintage burgundy color with ruby highlights and is topped by a creamy, ever-lasting pile of light khaki foam. Despite the fact my greasy nose accidentally touched the pile, this hasn't dissolved quickly at all. Thick lace clings to the glass pretty nicely.

S - Sweet indeed! Sweet Josie is malt-forward with a deep complexity of light roast from toasted whole-grain bread to dry cocoa to a mildly roasted coffee bean. Nutty undertones and discrete dark fruits compliment some faint earthy hops nicely.

T - The aroma certainly carries some roast character to it, but far less than I was expecting to encounter in the flavor. Bittersweet chocolate and coffee grounds present themselves forcefully but remain balanced by sweetness and earthy hops so as not to become overbearing. Ever sip becomes more and more delicious, especially as vanilla notes enter as it warms!

M - Moderate carbonation cares not if it's overtaken by a robust, silky smooth body! With a lack of strong hopping, faint acrid bitterness really plays a key role in making sure this brown ale doesn't become too malty-sweet. Sexy, Sweet Josie finishes out with just a light lingering on the tongue, drawing you back for more.

O - Sweet Josie, offering a smooth, voluptuous body and excellent taste is one seductive brown ale, through and through. Roast notes push this beer towards porter borders while it's round sweetness and drinkability offers a nice balance. I'd kill for a few of these on a cool fall day!

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Photo of Blargimus
3.4/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into pint glass. Best before 5/4/2012 - sorry, Sweet Josie. Received in a trade with heelsn02 - thanks!

Pours a reasonably dark brown, slightly hazy. Half a finger or so of head that fades almost immediately.

Hints of molasses and grains. No significant hop smell.

Predominantly malt and molasses on the tongue. Quite sweet, but with slight bitterness, and no real hops. Much better than I was expecting at this point in the freshness process.

Surprisingly thick mouthfeel- really coats the mouth. Medium-low carbonation.

Very solid brown ale. Sweet, but not cloying. I'd like to try this fresh.

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Photo of cavedave
3.55/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks to easyreader for some NC goodness. BB 7/12 Live review

Pours a very thick, opaque, dark brown with a brownish beige head that leaves a mountain range of lace along the rim of my tulip as it subsides to a lasting cap.

Light strength aroma, sweet dark caramel, light floral hints, not really much going on here.

Medium strength taste, quite delicious and sweet almost like a milk stout, then the roast kicks in with some bready and herbal coming in at the swallow. As it warms to room temp. light bittering hops begin to dry what otherwise is a very juicy beer.

Thick in the mouth, med. carb., fairly clean finish.

Palo Santo this beer is not. It is a highly drinkable and tasty beer, though, and one I would be happy to drink again.

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Sweet Josie Brown Ale from Lonerider Brewing Company
3.77 out of 5 based on 512 ratings.
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