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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: 445 | Ratings: 2,316
Photo of Kendo
4.08/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Born-on-date on the bottle says 02-19-13. Consumed on 3/16/13, so this is very fresh.

A: Poured from the bottle into a pint glass. Body is black with a 2-finger tight-bubbled tan head that leaves behind a thick curtain of lace. Lots of lace on the way down.

S: Chocolate does battle with roasted barley and a touch of char. Chocolate wins.

T: Same battle, only here the winner is roastiness. Tastes more like a Porter, with notes of charcoal, roasted barley, roasted coffee beans and some cocoa powder. Vanilla shows up late, on the back of the palate, and is modest, not in-your-face at all.

M: Medium in heft with active carbonation. Vanilla at the back end provides the illusion of a modest slickness.

O: Very good. Drinks more like a Vanilla Porter than an American Stout, but no matter what you call it, it's good.

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Photo of korguy123
4.04/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

012713 on the bottle.
Bottle into snifter.

Opaque black pour with a half finger tan head. Spotty lacing.

Dark chocolate, burnt coffee, burnt toast and the slightest hint of vanilla.

Nice mellow vanilla, burnt toast, medium roast coffee with bittersweet chocolate. A slight metallic taste in the finish.

Light to medium body.

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Photo of davey101
4.08/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

01/27/2013 vintage, 500 ml bottle into a tulip glass.

A - Pours a jet black body with tons of mocha foam. Dies down quickly but leaves behind excellent lacing and retention.

S - Really huge blast of coffee beans, milk chocolate and sweet vanilla. A bit minerally on the finish. There is something about this aroma that reminds me a lot of HIll Farmstead's Everett, but it falls a bit short.

T - Coffee, chocolate malts, sweet vanilla and some light roast. Quite tasty.

M - Medium bodied and creamy.

O - Perhaps it was my inclination to stack this up against double and imperial stouts....but that is not what this beer is. Its a relatively moderate ABV stout with a solid coffee and vanilla flavor. Its tasty and enjoyable, but not exactly world class. Once again I feel conflicted on the price tag of an MBC beer....

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Photo of Mertzy81
3.97/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

a: This was black and it poured with a big, sticky, khaki colored head.

s: Vanilla is certainly noticeable, but not overwhelming. Lots of deeply roasty cocoa as well. Not much complexity, but it is very appealing.

t: Very strong roast cocoaheld in check by a nicely prportioned dose of vanilla. Strong lingering roasted bitternessat the finish. Not a lot of layers here, but a very nice juxtaposition of flavors.

m: Very creamy.

o: Other great beer from MBC, no surprise there.

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Photo of elgiacomo
4.17/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

16oz bottled January 27, 2013. Served at cellar temperature.

Pours black with a three finger creamy/foamy brown head that slowly recedes to a small foamy cap and leaves nice rings and webs of lacing behind.

Aroma is vanilla, chocolate, caramel, roasted malts, sweet-smelling and dessert-like. Good to very good strength.

Flavor is rich vanilla, chocolate, roasted malts, coffee, some caramel, moderate sweetness, some bitterness, minimal alcohol. Tasty.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, pretty smooth and creamy but a bit of a carbonation bite too.

Really tasty vanilla Stout. The vanilla isn’t subtle, it’s definitely here and a big component of this brew, nice chocolate notes too. I’ve got one more bottle that I’ll sit on for a couple of months to let the hops fade out a bit which I think would help.

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Photo of Chaney
4.13/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Bottled 1/27/13

Served in a Duck Rabbit snifter.

A: Opaque as hell, with a mean-looking, mocha head that contained bubbles the size of NYC.

S: Kinda understated, yet still quite inviting. Smelled like high-grade coffee, a good bit of char, and some vanilla to boot.

T: Quite enjoyable and delectable, with a smooth disposition all around. Sure, the bitterness was there, but it didn't detract from the flavors whatsoever. The vanilla definitely helped with that in this setting.

M: Thick and then some, with the perfect carbonation bill and roast (char) level. The lacing was ridiculous, and my glass looked as if it went through a car wash without a rinse.

O: Heck, I'd pay $7-8 buck for this again. Maine never disappoints. Welcome to DC!

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Photo of Jimmys
3.87/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

500mL bottle into taster. bottled on 02.19.13.

A: dark brown body. nothing crazy, just a really dark brown. head is on the brownish side as well. retention is good. spotted lacing.

S: lots of coffee starts the nose off. dark chocolate combines with vanilla to have a very DD coffee elixir-like aroma (you know coffee coolata bullshit). a little bit of tobacco is there as well.

T: wisps of vanilla are there, but not nearly as much than on the nose. a lot of bitter roasted grain. slightly astringent towards the finish. chocolate, dark chocolate mostly. adds to the bitterness. unfermented sugars linger into the finish.

M: average/slightly high carb on a rich, medium body.

D: overall i enjoyed this brew. wouldn't have hated for more of the vanilla bean aspect to come across on the nose/palate, however, still a good American stout.

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Photo of Cavanaghty
4.78/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: Black, no light through this one, about three fingers of thick beige head, heavy lacing on the glass.

Smell: Roasted malts with coffee, vanilla, and maybe some chocolate.

Mouthfeel/Taste: Thick, but smooth. Alcohol is up front with raosted malts, vanilla, and coffee. Leaving a roasted coffee bean after taste.

Overall: Once again Maine Brewing has done it!!! Another excellent brew that I will continue to enjoy!

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Photo of ElCommodoro
4.09/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This is a beautiful looking beer. It had an inch of thick, brown, fluffy head. The smell was pretty mesmerizing too. Very roasty and chocolatey. The taste was almost disappointing after that. It's good. Maybe even very good, but not mesmerizing. The chocolatey and coffee notes hit you first, but as your palate adjusts to their bitterness, it's a pretty straightforward stout. It's a very thick one with a lot of bitter notes. The roasted malt, the chocolate bitterness, and the cold coffee ground flavours all come together in a nice way. And maybe the vanilla bean flavour helps to mellow those out a bit, but I sort of wish it did more to that end. Breckenridge's Vanilla Porter may be catering to a different crowd with it's sweetness, but I thought it did a much better job of making the vanilla bean flavour a key part of the beer, at least. This one just screams of cold coffee flavour. It's still a decent stout, though. It, too, is partakable. Be prepared for a bitter, more traditional American stout, though. There is no sweetness here. I was wondering how something aged on vanilla beans could be "mean," but now I know. Tom was indeed a rascal, drinking stuff like this. However, that hint of vanilla flavour that ties it all together and mellows out the flavour just enough shows that he had a soft spot for those willing to look for it. I may not have been expecting a bitter beer, but I got one and it's still worth giving a chance.

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Photo of gr0g
3.75/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Pours solid black with a light tan head about one and a half fingers tall. Retention is OK while lacing is spotty. Vanilla is prominent on the nose and dominates. Cocoa powder is the other noticeable component of the aroma.

The flavor profile is dry overall with a healthy portion of vanilla-infused roasted malt. Texture is a bit prickly at first but eventually settles to a silky smoothness. Body is a bit thin. The flavors here are very straightforward and nice, if lacking in complexity. While it's quite easy-drinking as-is, I'd like more roast and more sweetness.

The vanilla is a nice complement to a solid base stout. This is a restrained stout that can be enjoyed in a large serving, though the same restraint hasn't been applied to pricing, which makes it hard to recommend wholeheartedly.

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Photo of CharlatanSin
3.89/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a tulip. Born on 1/27/13. The newest addition to the CT market.

A- Black, with a nice, persistent tan head.

S- Chocolate malt, with some vanilla. Toasted dark grain.

T/M- Milk chocolate and coffee. More roasty as it warms up, a little burnt even. Vanilla, especially on the finish. A little thin, but smooth. Good flavor but not a great mouthfeel.

O- Good stout overall. The vanilla isn't super powerful but keeps it interesting.

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Photo of mikem0487
4.28/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

1 Pint Bottle with born on date 01/27/13. Poured into my Green Man Brewing Co. snifter glass.

A-Dark black chocolate body with a nice two finger width brown head. Leaves nice lacing as I swirl it in the glass. Looks heady!

S-Defiantly pick up those vanilla beans with dark chocolate, cocoa, roasted malt with a coffee-esque aroma. Also reminds me of hot chocolate and baileys. Love how everything is well balanced and that the vanilla mellows out the dark chocolate/roasty characteristics that become more pronounced in the end.

T-Vanilla is more subtle in the taste than it is in the aroma. Its defiantly there but wish there was more. The roasted malts defiantly shine through here. Coffee, dark chocolate, mild tobacco on the palate. Finishes with the roast notes with a touch of citrus hops coming in there.

M-Good carbonation. A little thin for this style. Finishes dry. Enjoyable none the less.

O-A great rendition of an American Stout. Aroma is great and wish I could have gotten more of that vanilla in the taste to balance out the roastiness. Highly drinkable and another great beer from MBC!

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Photo of cvm4
3.84/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A - Pours dark brown with a one finger khaki head. Not much lacing to speak of.

S - Roasted malts, vanilla bean and semi-sweet chocolate.

T - Strong bitter dark chocolate with underpinnings of roasted malts and a dry sweet vanilla (not overly).

M - On the light side of medium body with light carbonation. A dryer stout, not wet to me.

O - A simple addition to a stout that makes it intriguing.

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Photo of greenmountain13
4.04/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Really liked this one, poured into glass as suggested, small head, good carb... bottle conditioned Aroma- didn't pick up too much vanilla, a bit of coffee, and some nice malt aroma.
Definitely taste some coffee and some subtle vanilla, slight bitterness at finish.
Tasted better towards the end of glass, I would serve it a bit warmer next time and let it open for a couple minutes. Good beer.

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Photo of tigg924
3.9/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: dark brown in color, hazy, minimal head, medium carbonation, sediment

Smell: roasted malt, dark chocolate, and vanilla

Taste: big roasted malt and coffee start giving way to toasted malt and vanilla

Mouthfeel: medium heavy body, medium carbonation, sweet with roasty bitterness

Overall: A good stout where the vanilla is pronounced but never overly dominating. The flavors combine well here. I would get this again, but would not rush out to do so.

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Photo of Immortale25
4.19/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Funky Buddha Brewery snifter. Label says 030315.

A- Pours a fully opaque black color with a 1/2 inch dark tan head that retains well before becoming a thick ring around the edge of the glass and a half sheet of surface foam. Semi-resilient lacing leaves large clots behind.

S- Firm dark roasted malt aroma with some hints of vanilla sweetness. Also notes of chocolate and caramel.

T- Easygoing stout flavor with some semisweet chocolate tones. Vanilla isn't as prevalent as expected. The roastiness is right out in front bringing some mild char to the table. As the palate acclimates and the beer warms, the vanilla starts to come out more. Iced coffee aftertaste.

M- Semi-creamy with medium-low carbonation and a full body.

O- Quite flavorful and drinkable. A great stout for those looking for something heavy but not too strong.

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Photo of DIM
4.18/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

a: This was black and it poured with a big, sticky, khaki colored head.

s: Vanilla is certainly noticeable, but not overwhelming. Lots of deeply roasty cocoa as well. Not much complexity, but it is very appealing.

t: Very strong roast cocoaheld in check by a nicely prportioned dose of vanilla. Strong lingering roasted bitternessat the finish. Not a lot of layers here, but a very nice juxtaposition of flavors.

m: Very creamy.

o: Other great beer from MBC, no surprise there.

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Photo of maxk
4.05/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle chilled, poured into a nonic pint glass.

Pours dark brown to black. Only a little bit of light gets through around the very edges. There's a pretty mocha colored head which settles to be pretty thin.

Smells of coffee, milk chocolate and vanilla. The milkier notes on the nose make it seem like it's going to be very creamy.

Tastes of some chocolate, with solid coffee flavor and bitterness behind it. The vanilla really comes across in this one and is very pleasant. The vanilla and coffee flavors do feel as though they're fighting a little bit, it could be a little bit more balanced in that sense. The mouthfeel is very creamy, well carbonated.

Overall, this is a good American stout. I love the vanilla and how it comes across. It's not perfectly balanced, but then again I have very high expectations for Maine Beer Co.'s offerings.

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Photo of ksimons
4.19/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A-dark brown, almost black, with no highlights seen in the light and two fingers worth of tan head

S-backbone of roasted malt with espresso, dark chocolate, and sweet vanilla

T-very nice, a strong roasted flavor comes out the most, roasted coffee, slight burnt flavor, and light vanilla sweetness

M-medium body, light to medium carbonation, left with a dry slightly burnt mouthfeel

Overall I like this one a lot, really great smell to it and a nice roasted body. Easy to drink and enjoy.

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Photo of dogfishandi
4.19/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

16 oz. bottle at fridge temp poured into a snifter. Bottled 12/01/12 (about 1.5 months old).

Pours out opaque black, no light getting through. A nice big fluffy light mocha colored head off the pour, it eventually settles to a nice retentive tight layer. Some decent spotty lace clings to the glass as it drinks.

Creamy smelling from the oats, a nice roasted malt aspect brings forth some nice coffee aromas that almost makes it seem as though actual coffee was put into this beer. A creamy vanilla aroma, and a bit of what a brewery smells like, mashed grains in a way.

A nice tasting stout. Everything tastes pretty much spot on. Creamy vanilla melds nicely with roasted malts, a bit of roasted coffee and dark chocolates. Hints of sweet toasted malt somewhere within. A nice hop bitterness, just a touch more than you might expect from the style, cuts through what sweetness is there and lingers through the finish. Finishing out with a bitter dark chocolate roast flavor with a bit of bakers cocoa.

Very smooth and very creamy. Carbonation is appropriate. Great drinkability.

Maybe perceived at first as somewhat of a simple stout, but well made and very flavorful. Something about this reminds me of the aroma and taste of a mash from a stout. Nicely done, now throw some in a bourbon barrel!

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Photo of kwiley03
4.28/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Sam Adams Perfect Glass. Beer was 54 degrees.

From the top down I notice the dark tan frothy head about 2 fingers in depth which disipates to a thin silky film after 5 sips. Long strings of tiny bubbles migrate upwards. The beer is an opaque brownish black with the exception of a thin maroon band across the base of the glass as the light passes through.

Sweet aroma of roasted chocolate malts with a slight hoppiness. Very light and pleasant in the nose. No real aroma of Vanilla however.

Coats the mouth without the impression of being viscous. Has a perfect hearty stoutness.

Tastes of roasted chocolate malts and coffee minus any bitterness that over roasting imparts occasionally. Slight hop bitterness remains on the back of the tongue while allowing some milk chocolate notes to develop. Finishes with the typical stout aftertaste. Once again no real presence of the Vanilla mentioned in the label.

Overall this beer is delicious. Real easy to drink with a great balance of components. This one is probably very appropriate to be paired with a dessert like Lava Cake but works equally well with Beef Stew. Will definitely buy more when my local store stocks up again.

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Photo of Sammy
4.15/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A Very tasty stout. This is the best stout with vanilla I can remember having. Soft carbonation. Bottle from Capone’s. Great drinkability. Soft mouthfeel of dark black with bubbly head. Chocolate and roast aroma. Another great mastery by this brewery.

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Photo of ummswimmin
3.95/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

I poured Mean Old Tom into my snifter glass. This is a very dark black beer. I don't get any light through this one. The thick stout has minimal foam on top, as you would expect from a stout like this one.

Off the top I get a good dose of coffee and vanilla. The aroma on this beer has really good balance. I like the chocolate I pick up from this beer.

This is a very rich stout. You get a lot of coffee in this one. I get the vanilla on the back end.

The mouthfeel is a little challenging with the after-taste. The bitterness really stands out.

This is a good beer from the Maine Beer Company. I would recommend picking up a bottle.

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Photo of JerzDevl2000
3.92/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was given to me by a friend for Christmas, with the intent that this would be the first time I gave it a go. I had never had anything from the Maine Beer Company before and after having this, I'm surprised that their beers aren't more readily available. While this wasn't a knockout, this was a great example of the style that quietly grew on me as I worked my way through my pint glass.

Naturally, this beer poured dark - not quite black but very brown with a head that looked like it solidified once I let the liquid settle. It did dissipate but it took and while and what was left ended up clinging to the sides of my pint glass. The aroma wasn't terribly strong but the taste more than made up for it. Coffee grinds, espresso, and milk chocolate all combined for a pleasing taste coupled with just a hint of carbonation that kept this from being too heavy. I could only taste the vanilla in the aftertaste but it didn't have that boozy, overpowering nature that it takes on so often in a beer of this style. The consistency of this beer was that of milk chocolate as it went down smooth from start to finish and felt like a liquified version of a nice chocolate mousse cake.

This may have been one of the lightest Stouts that I've ever had, when it came to the alcoholic content. Downing this 1 pint, 9 ounce bottle was a joy and had I had the time, I could have had another in a sitting. Anyone who's new to this style would be well-versed to start out here, as this is strong enough to easily fit into this category while being easygoing enough to offend no one. A great example of why beers of this style are desserts unto themselves.

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Photo of EkimGram
3.84/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 4

Taken from my beer journal dated 2/24/12

Appearance: 16.9oz bottle poured into a standard pint glass. Colour is a very dark brown with a finger-thick toffee-coloured head that fades slowly leaving a nice lacing.

Smell: Rich, roasted, and toasty malts are strong and bold. I also pick up a slight bitterness in the mix.

Taste: Mild, dark, and balanced. Malts are burnt, roasted, and have an almost butter flavour - probably a sweetness passed on by the vanilla beans.

Mouthfeel: Medium body, a little watery, and mild level of carbonation.

Overall: I had feared the vanilla beans would be too much but I really enjoy the subtle nuance they add. A solid brew.

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Mean Old Tom from Maine Beer Company
3.96 out of 5 based on 2,316 ratings.
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