The Brown Note | Against The Grain Brewery & Smokehouse

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The Brown NoteThe Brown Note
Very Good
441 Ratings
The Brown NoteThe Brown Note

Brewed by:
Against The Grain Brewery & Smokehouse
Kentucky, United States

Style: English Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
The brown ale to end all brown ales. Enjoy it, because there is no longer any reason to drink another. You’ve reached the pinnacle. A healthy blend of traditional British malts give this popular style a semi-sweet, biscuity, slightly roasted flavor. Oats thicken the mouthfeel, and a handful of specialty malts add complex chocolate, toffee, and caramel notes. The hops are mostly traditional, earthy British hops, but we cocked it up a bit with some Cascade late in the boil just to show those snooty Brits that we don’t approve of that Constitutional Monarchy crap.

Added by mrfrancis on 04-23-2012

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 441 |  Reviews: 95
Reviews by Maudrey:
Photo of Maudrey
3.78/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

More User Reviews:
Photo of DrDemento456
3.75/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Really don't see the allure of this one I guess people just buy it for the silly cover art. It is quite quaff able with some nut and toffee notes but its just too light tasting to be "The brown ale to end all brown ales" like the cover suggest. Would need more body and some chocolate notes to pull that off. Still its not bad.

 327 characters

Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
3.93/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Price Paid : $2.99
Who can resist this can art??!?

Plopping open the can, it eeks a sneaky hiss and sharts a chestnut colored body with messy streaks of red/cranberry. Analyzing it further it shows 60% opaque; with a generous upper decker of 3 sterile fingers.

Turn on the vents! It reeks of malt, caramel, chocolate, rice, and walnut. The smell is not too hefty, but loud enough to get a good waft.

This stool sample tastes nutty! With roasted malts, a nice burnt hop flavor, and nods to caramel, it's a solid drop.

Drinks smooth like a relaxing bowel movement. Some gassy bubbling going on out front, and a starchy finish.

The can says to drink it at 48*F, but I find it's better colder. Although sometimes steamy browns are the most relaxing, so who knows. This beer is the shit. Literally.

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Photo of mynie
4/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

If the bottle art were less gross this beer's score would jump about fifty points. I mean, seriously guys, it's good to take design risks and I'm not saying you need to focus group this or anything, but do you know a single person who finds poop appetizing?

Anyhow, once you get the glass away from the bottle, you get a nicely sessionable brown. A nutty, lightly sweet start gives way to a finish of more sweet malt balanced out by medium-strength hops. Nice.

Brown ales used to be craft brew staples, but they've become rarer and rarer these last few years. I'd love to see a resurgence, especially my go-to brown (Rogue's Hazelnut) costs 12 bucks a sixer. But why the awful marketing? Are brown somehow not considered edgy enough, and so we have to make them appear more Xtreme by making poop or semen references? A good beer is a good beer, guys.

 853 characters

Photo of The_Kriek_Freak
4.36/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

It pours a chestnut hue of brown with three fingers worth of head. The aroma is nutty and with notes of freshly ground coffee. There many be some notes of fecal matter but that's probably because I'm staring at the label. The taste is bready upfront with some lingering sweetness and a nice bitter finish. Medium body and a barely noticeable carbonation. This is a truly amazing brown ale.

 389 characters

Photo of PittBeerGirl
3.84/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

16 oz can.

A really nice looking beer. Body is a transparent brown hurt that pours with a finger off white head.

Nose is quite welcoming. Brown sugar, molasses, caramel malt.

Flavor is good but a bit of a let down after the nose. Lots of roasted malt with a hint of sweetness in the back.

Medium carbonation and a smooth yet slightly watery body.

This is as advertised a good brown ale. Nothing fancy or complicated just a good beer. I would like a little more balance and a little less roasted malt.

 505 characters

Photo of braugon
3.75/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of Justin8mypants
3.73/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of WeymouthMike
3.88/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of rsquared59
3.51/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Photo of Franziskaner
3.92/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep brown in color with very light penetration to light. There's a fingernail of beige resting on top. Light Brussels lacing. There's a nice sweet aroma that is primarily caramel and perhaps some light chocolate. The taste is exactly as advertised in the nose with sweet caramel and light chocolate notes. The mouth is very smooth and creamy.

 348 characters

Photo of Clocker
3.68/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Cynic-ale
3.5/5  rDev -7.2%

Photo of HopsForBrains
4.25/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of BranfordBound
3.89/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from the 16 oz can into a nonic pint, this beer comes out a lighter brown color with ruby highlights, small white head leaves spotty lacing.

Smell is coffee and some rich maltiness. Taste starts with this doughy bread note, semi sweet, middle is coffee bean, chocolate, and a bit of char. Finishes bitter with some nuttiness, but the char lingers a bit here, too. Feel is pretty light, a bit of the thinner side of body.

All in all this is very tasty, there's a lot of stout/porter flavors here, it's not a malty nutty brown ale that one would expect. I think they could definitely beef this beer up a bit to make it better.

 633 characters

Photo of WVbeergeek
3.75/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of alcohline_trip
3.93/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of dacrza1
4.28/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

DATE: January 6, 2017... OCCASION: letting the annual post-Christmas dinner at Ss. Peter and Paul Church... GLASSWARE: HopDevil nonick... pours a heady, two-fingered clump of brown snow that sits atop a ruby-brown body full of effervescence... aroma reeks of lactose, tobacco, weathered leaves, woody pulp, chocolate, roasted malts, and sweet biscuit--a veritable panoply the opposite of the can's artwork... sips a creamy, textured start and approaches a full-bodied finish... this eschews the usual flat cola/butter consistency, in a favor of a lactic, thickening, substantial mouthfeel... continuing its narrative, the flavor strikes with chocolate, tobacco leaf, caramel, Fuggels-driven grass and herb, light citrus, mint, and mild tea... a truly enjoyable beer that unfortunately may be panned due to its crude can--in fact, I bought it as a gag Christmas gift for my brother.... in his generosity, he left me one of them, and quite a regifting...

 952 characters

Photo of odgw
4.03/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of zachthelaxer93
4.06/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of SomethingClever
3.5/5  rDev -7.2%

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

Photo of PBRmeasap1980
3.45/5  rDev -8.5%

Photo of tdm168
3.96/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

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

Poured into sample glass a deep, dark, murky brown, with very little hint of ruby highlights around the edges. Pleasant lace.

Nose says malts and roasted nuts. Typical and representative for a brown ale, and hits the nail squarely on the head with me.

Tastes nicely nutty, with a near-perfect balance of earthiness and hazelnut maltiness. Roasty, sessionable, and very enjoyable.

Re-reviewed in August 2015 (rating unchanged):

Appearance: Deep ruby amber with a thick head of off-white suds from the pint can. Attractive spider web lacing.

Aroma: Chocolate, coffee, some caramel. Nice and exemplary brown ale.

Taste: Nicely roasty here, with hints of cocoa and even a little bit of smoke. Body is light, making this a prime session brew for fans of dark malts. Big on flavor, this one’s pretty tasty and I’d revisit again no problem!

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The Brown Note from Against The Grain Brewery & Smokehouse
Beer rating: 3.77 out of 5 with 441 ratings