Mean Old Tom | Maine Beer Company

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Mean Old TomMean Old Tom

Brewed by:
Maine Beer Company
Maine, United States

Style: American Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Our American-style stout aged on organic vanilla beans. Intense notes of coffee and dark chocolate lead way to subtle notes of natural vanilla. Flaked oats generate a silky mouthfeel.

Added by dciBA on 03-03-2010

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Reviews: 456 | Ratings: 2,358
Photo of shafnutz05
4.03/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a bottle at my local Whole Foods.

A - A pretty smooth pour. No noticeable head, Pours a dark brown/black.

S - The first thing to hit my nose was the chocolate/coffee undertones, with the vanilla coming in after that. Was expecting the vanilla first.

T - A nice combination of multiple flavors. The vanilla, chocolate, and coffee flavors combine nicely and none of the individual parts are overwhelming. It maintains that consistency throughout.

M - Very heavy, and carbonates quickly (but not in a bad way). Almost takes on a creamy quality, and that's not a bad thing.

I'm a huge fan of stouts, and this is a very good example. Not too overpowering, but you can definitely pick out the different flavors that combine nicely in the final product. Definitely a slow-drinking brew, but recommend.

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Photo of BeerKangaroo
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Fresh Batch in Freeport, Maine:

In a pint glass:

A: dark brown/black body with a half finger of white head. The head lasts about fifteen seconds. The body was too dark for any carbonation to be seen and there was no lacing.

S: good mixture between coffee, cocoa and vanilla, and a slight bit of chocolate comes in as the beer warms.

T: bittersweet through the vanilla and cocoa mixed well and in front with the coffee coming in just to balance it a bit

M: medium with a moderate carbonation, good blend between wet and dry, sessionable for the standard, but I had it on a hot July day ( probably gonna have to come back to this in the colder months)

O: I'm glad I tried this because I did like it

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Photo of liamt07
3.95/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle shared by Pino, 500ml into a tulip - dating is smudged here.

Black body, beige head of a couple fingers. Moderate retention and a bit of lace. Nose has dark chocolate, cocoa, roast and a mild vanilla bean note. Tastes of milk chocolate, coffee-like roast, and vanilla bean notes are quite subtle. Medium mouthfeel, but on the lighter side of things. Quite nice in terms of carbonation though. A nicely flavoured stout, certainly revistable.

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Photo of peensteen
4.03/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Jet black in colour, about a finger of dense tan head, quite a bit of lace going on here as well. Smell is of cocoa and roast, a big dose of vanilla follows closely behind, coffee and milky chocolate with more deep roasted qualities. Taste is of roasted malts and chocolate, vanilla flavours start to come in and bring with them a bit of coffee as well, lightly bitter with some coffee and vanilla in the finish and aftertaste. Lightly carbonated, medium bodied and a decent feel as well. While this is not outstanding stuff it is a very flavourful and delicious stout that I found to be quite an easy drink.

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Photo of ngeunit1
4.47/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a dark black-brown with a finger of frothy chocolate colored head. The head fades down at a normal pace leaving behind some lace.

S - Aroma is a mix of roasted chocolate malts with vanilla, cocoa, and coffee.

T - Starts off with a mix of roasted dark and chocolate with some sweet vanilla and cocoa. Through the middle, some coffee comes through alongside some more roasted and lightly burnt flavors. The finish is a mix of roasted chocolate and coffee with some vanilla.

M - Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Feels smooth with a dry, roasted, and lightly sweet finish.

D - Very drinkable. Really nicely balanced American Stout. The vanilla adds a nice complexity to the beer.

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Photo of BostonHops
3.85/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

16.9oz bottle served in a pint glass.
bottled date: 11/10/11

pours a deep mahogany / cola-like brown while yielding a healthy 2" head (w an aggressive pour); very respectable retention and lacing. nose is likewise very nice, headlined by coffee, some chocolate, and roasted malt.

flavor delivers more of the same, with the coffee and chocolate in particular being well-represented. i also get some secondary notes of vanilla and a hint of char. medium bodied mouthfeel, a touch thin, with average carbonation.

overall a very nice, easy-drinking stout. no wow factor necessarily but no worse than a C+/B- range brew.

(originally reviewed: 12-05-2011)

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Photo of ehammond1
3.48/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle (2012)

Acquired via trade
Thanks, whartontlalboy!

(Aged for 6 months)

Black throughout with a small dark brown head that leaves spiderwebs of stick down the glass.

Somewhat mild aroma, though what's here is nice enough. There's a pleasant combination of roasted malt, a bit of ground coffee, and just the slightest hint of vanilla.

The flavor too is simple though similarly nice. Roast and ground coffee lead the way, along with a low to moderate level of bitterness, and a little vanilla. Nice, though not complex.

Medium bodied with moderate carbonation.

Good enough, and a nice night cap, but a somewhat simple stout overall. Maybe I should have consumed this one as fresh as possible?

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Photo of kagent777
4.4/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

500 ml bottle brought back from a recent trip to Boston. Poured into my beer goblet. No bottling date that I can see.

Appearance: More of a dark brown than black. I got very little head on this one. The ring around the edge did leave a little lacing as I went, though.

Smell: I smell vanilla, chocolate, and roasty malts. The smell is some what subdued. When I swirl the beer in the glass I also get a stronger sense of dark pumpernickel bread.

Taste: The taste follows the nose mirroring everything, especially vanilla. The taste is stronger than the smell will have you believe. A nice chunk of char up front followed by a bit of (semi) chocolate and vanilla.

Mouthfeel: The finish is strong for a non imperial stout. The body and carbonation are perfect, body in the middle to strong range while the carbonation is lower.

Overall: This is a really good beer. I wish we could get it here in Utah, but I am glad to try it. I am a sucker for vanilla in my stouts and this one has the perfect dose of vanilla. Highly recommended!

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Photo of danedelman
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thank you to the beerbug for this extra.

A-deep black with small half finger head. Stuck around though the whole drinking session.

S-lots of coffee, roasted malts and vanilla beans.

T-vanilla hits you first with a nice touch of roasted malts and a hint of lactose. very smooth and creamy.

M-smooth creamy and very drinkable. Very good beer in my eyes. Thanks to beerbug for this one, well worth it.

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Photo of jegross2
3.96/5  rDev 0%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Reviewing the Mean Old Tom from Maine Beer Company.
Score: 89

Bottled 11/10/11, served in a Three Floyd's teku glass and enjoyed on 01/19/12.

Appearance: Pours a jet black color with a finger of creamy khaki head that settles to a ring around the glass and a thin floating island of head in the middle. Amazing lacing and retention. 5/5

Smell: Roasted chocolate, chocolate malt, a touch of sweet caramel, a little leather, and a light amount of vanilla. Some unsweetened fudge too. Very very light amount of grain. 4/5

Taste: Fudgey chocolate and a subtle smooth, unsweetened vanilla flavor upfront transitions to chocolate malt and a light amount of grain in the finish. Nice chocolatey aftertaste. 4/5

Mouthfeel: Lighter side of medium bodied, light carbonation. I realize this is a non-imperial stout, but it still feels a bit thin on the palate. Watery, slightly creamy mouthfeel. Dry and chocolatey finish that is ever so slightly sweet. 3/5

Overall: A really nice chocolate flavored beer -- surprisingly so given the anti-hype behind this one -- that is not going to get you blitzed, but falls flat on the thin mouthfeel.

Recommendation: I would certainly drink this one again, but I am not going to go too far out of my way to hunt it down again.

Pairings: Gouda cheese or brie.

Cost: $6.99 for a 16.9 oz bottle.

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Photo of BeerMaverick
4.5/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Black coffee appearance with minimal head and no retention. With the dark color, it's hard to tell if there's any sediment, but this brew appears to be thoroughly translucent.

S - Pure coffee bean aroma with some sweetness from the vanilla beans. Slight milk chocolate esters compliment the coffee character delivering for an aroma that provides as advertised.

T - Pretty much spot on with the aroma here...the coffee facet carries a little more load though. The vanilla beans are less noticeable, but they clearly provide that "something's missing" present in many stouts out there.

M - Very full bodied beer that I would have assumed to be classified as a coffee stout, but good either way. The coffee bean taste holds firm into the aftertaste.

O - Very good beer that delivers as promised and I'd definitely purchase it again. Even though this beer isn't classified as a coffee beer, it still might take the cake for my favorite coffee beer (even over the BBC Coffeehouse Porter).

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Photo of drinkmorebeer07
3.42/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Smells better than it tastes. Very Chocolatey taste with a very malty finish. Could use a bit more booze in it. Could have been a great imperial.

Not Bad, but did not blow me away.

For 8$ a bottle, it was worth a try but i prefer others in that price range.

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Photo of jsanford
3.55/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark black with a creamy tan head that settles to a thin haze and solid ring, leaving behind spotty lacing. Sweet aromas of roasted malt, chocolate, and vanilla bean. Wishing the vanilla was more prominent. More flavors of dark roasted malt, bitter chocolate, and coffee-with-cream. Bit more vanilla then the nose suggests, but I'd still like more. Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy, with a medium-full body and good carbonation. Overall a solid Stout, but I'll stick with their IPAs in the future.

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Photo of Huhzubendah
4.03/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle shared by mdfb79. Thanks Dan.

The beer is dark brown with a beige head that leaves ample lacing stuck to the glass. The aroma offers some pleasant roast and chocolate notes. Lots of tasty roast in the flavor as well. Light bodied and really easy to drink. I would have this again.

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Photo of tzieser
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

enjoyed on-tap from the pour farm tavern. review taken from notes.

a: black in color, completely opaque with a thick tan head that slowly settles into a nice lacing around the glass.

s: rich malty aroma with notes of chocolate and roasted malt.

t: lots of malt flavor with a heavy chocolate malt sweetness. roasted malt flavor is there with subtle notes of vanilla. well balanced and easy to drink but this stout leans a bit towards the sweet side.

m: wonderfully smooth mouthfeel.

glad i got the opportunity to try this one. a good stout well worth trying.

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Photo of Devoidb
3.97/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- it pours a dark brown with a nice tan head.

S- smells of rich roasted malts, dark chocolate with a slight vanilla bean scent.

T- a great stout with a nice caramelized malt flavor that finishes a bit sweet. lightly hopped but very well balanced.

M- good carbonation, body isn't as thick as I was expecting but it was a very refreshingly smooth stout.

O- It's a great stout, I enjoyed the fact that it wasn't super "heavy" and I could easily enjoy this brew on a summer day.

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Photo of rfgetz
3.65/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark brown, near black, cap of firm khaki head, decent lacing. Scent brings heavy roast from grain, light char even, bitter cocoa and baking chocolate, heavy roasted coffee beans, light berry like whiffs, moderate lingering creamy sweetness. Taste begins with big roast yet again, clouds positive notes of chocolate, coffee and berry and the vanilla is no where to be seen except a faint twinge of potent alcohol laden extract. Body thinner for style, carbonation moderate and beer has a faint graininess despite being mostly smooth. A decent stout heavy in roast and lacking the vanilla.

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Photo of oline73
3.16/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured from a bottle into a goblet.

Appearance: Pours an opaque dark brown color with just a bit of light coming through at the edges. There is just under a finger of light tan head that fades to a small layer on top of the pour.

Smell: The roast dominates right off the bat. The the grain shows up and reminds me of cereal, but burnt cereal with you add the roast. There is a mild sweetness to this beer as well.

Taste: This is a solid stout, but I'm not picking up much vanilla. Roasty and fairly smooth. The grain definitely dominate. No real hop bitterness to speak of. The finish is slightly sweet and roasty.

Mouthfeel: The body is a bit thin given the style. Smooth carbonation with a dry finish.

Overall: Not a bad stout, but not overly exciting either. In the future, I would probably pass on this and just have some of the other Maine beers.

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Photo of Firkin-Bunghole
3.38/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

1 pint .9 fl oz bottle 11/10/11 bottle date

Appearance-Black body with medium brown head that recedes in a minute

Smell-Milk chocolate, coffee, roasted malts, not picking up any vanilla sadly

Taste-I picked up this stout due to the natural vanilla beans description-i couldn't discern vanilla in the taste, I picked up alot of milk chocolate, roastiness and slight coffee. The beer was very easy to drink.

Mouthfeel-Pretty light, average on the carbonation.

Overall-Don't know if I waited too long from the 11/10/11 bottle date to pick up on the vanilla beans. With the price $6.49/bottle may pick up a fresh bottle again as this is a stout that could be enjoyed any time of year. Wouldn't repeat trying to age it though

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Photo of philbe311
3.65/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - A fairly vigorous pour yields nothing more than a fingers worth of light to medium brown slightly creamy froth with an active rocky top... Still with no discernible carbonation... A light flat black color that allows just the slightest bits of light to leak in around the edges of the glass...

S - The roasted malt is predominant... Very faint hints of dark chocolate and mild coffee... Any vanilla notes are quite subtle... Fairly standard and pedestrian for the style...

T - Roasted malts... A bit nutty... Some dark chocolate... A faint kiss of coffee... Dark bread notes... Again, I really struggle to find any vanilla... A unique slightly burnt after taste lingers...

M - On the lighter side of medium bodied... Perhaps a bit on the thin side... Limited carbonation... Sleek... A slightly chalky finish...

D - A very average American Stout... Text book for the style... Though nothing blew me away, this is a very solid beer... My biggest complaint is that for a brew that's aged on vanilla beans, this one had almost no vanilla to speak either in the aroma or on the palette... Solid, but uninspired would be best description...

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Photo of kscaldef
3.71/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to rlmartin for the bottle. What I believe is a bottling date on the label reads 111011.

A: Pours quite dark with a large, dense, tan head that leaves lots of lacing on the glass

S: Roasty, woody aromas with a little undertone of raisin or prune. I'm not picking up on any vanilla notes, though.

T: Lots of roast, coffee, and light cacao. Finish is woody, but with a bit of lightly acidic brightness.

M: Very light body for a stout and not much linger. Fairly bitter, but clean finishing.

O: I'm a bit disappointed that the vanilla seems completely MIA, but if I hadn't been promised that on the bottle I'd be quite happy with the drinkability of this beer. It does seem a bit light compared to some stouts, but it's got good flavor.

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Photo of RonfromJersey
3.7/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

My first thought on appearance is Coke with a bigger longer lasting head. Dark brown/Blake body, ruby highlights, and a light tan loudly fizzing head that started at five fingers and settled down to a more stable three.

Aroma is coffee au lait, milk chocolate, and just a hint of vanilla, then the vanilla releases more as the head recedes.

Taste is a little different, the coffee more of a black dark roast and much more dominate. Just a shadow of chocolate and a twinge of vanilla.

Mouthfeel could be a bit cheesier.

A good effort from a brewery to watch.

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Photo of Number45forever
2.9/5  rDev -26.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I was in my local store and saw this...a stout aged on natural vanilla beans. Having never head of this beer, I picked it up with high hopes.

Pours jet black with little head and very visible carbonation.

Smells roasty, with a lot of hops. You would have no idea this is supposed to be a vanilla stout. Coffee smells.

Taste is quite plain. Not bad, completely unoffensive. NO VANILLA whatsoever. Coffee is the dominant flavor, a lot of hops for a stout. Some malty sweetness I guess. It's ok.

Moutfeel is way too carbonated for a stout. I prefer a smoother feel.

Overall, this beer is average. I wouldn't seek it out again, but I'll have no problem finishing this 17oz bottle. I cannot believe this is supposed to be vanilla. This should be labelled as a stout, not a stout aged on vanilla.

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Photo of cradke
3.98/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: A great black stout with a fine finger thick head.

Smell: Malty. Some chocolate. The vanilla isn't as strong as I would have liked.

Taste: A decent stout. Nice sweetness. Very little bitter notes. Like the nose, it's missing the vanilla I was looking for. Solid beer but a little plain jane.

Mouthfeel: Nice carbonation throughout. A little thin but pretty good.

Overall: A solid beer. I was hoping for more vanilla which wasn't in the nose or taste. The beer had good sweetness and an almost total lack of bitterness. The beer didn't have anything which wowed but it had nothing that offended. A great beer to keep in the fridge.

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Photo of drabmuh
3.7/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Beer provided by Dan, thanks Dan. On my wants list no less. Beer is black with a thin tan head of small bubbles, some lacing, low carbonation.

Aroma is sweet almost vanilla, a little roast.

Beer tastes a little plain, the aroma was the best part, medium bodied, nice finish, a little bitter, dry, good mouthfeel and connectivity and a nice finish. I may have this again.

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Mean Old Tom from Maine Beer Company
3.96 out of 5 based on 2,358 ratings.
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