Brekle's Brown | Anchor Brewing Company

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Brekle's BrownBrekle's Brown

Brewed by:
Anchor Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Single hopped with Citra.

Added by largadeer on 03-07-2011

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Reviews: 310 | Ratings: 855
Photo of VelvetExtract
2.7/5  rDev -27%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A-Pours a dark, yet transparent reddish brown. Head is minimal and tan. Bubbly and frothy. Leaves unconnected lace rings.

S-Cocoa and caramel are the first two things that pop out here. A bit nutty and the yeast is apparent too.

T-The flavor really surprised me. It has a strange twinge of tart sting that is not pleasing. The back of the beer is sweet, and creamy with notes of chocolate, nuts, and burnt caramel. But that strange initial taste kinda of kills it here. Also has an unattractive metallic twang too.

M-Light and watery. Soft carbonation. Not much else to note.

O/D-Not a fan of this beer. Two separate parts of the taste (the odd initial flavor, and the metallic flavor) are unappealing to me. Glad I only bought a single of this.

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Photo of allengarvin
4.59/5  rDev +24.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

New anchor beer! With some heartwarming story on the top label--eh, I stopped reading after about 8 words. Poured this into a NB chalice. It has a good pour, with a reddish brown color and a large creamy head on top of it, slightly tan. The nose is excellent. It's caramel sweet, with an unusually good yeasty fruitiness, and underlying of lightly citrus hops. I was going to give it a 4.5 at first, but I keep re-sniffing it. I don't swirl and sniff many beers this pleasant. A rare 5.

The flavor is really good as well. It's not excessively malty at all. A clean malt flavor permeates the beer. The bitterness is wonderfully balanced, taking the sweetness away but not drying things out; hop flavor adds a great grassy citrusness to it. The body is very light, making it a good quaffing beer despite the 6% strength.

I was exceedingly surprised by how good this beer is. It's unique, and doesn't taste like any other beer I can recall. Dark and brown ales are rarely my favorites, but this is one really, really good beer. Wow.

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Photo of damndirtyape
3.78/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12oz bottle (bottled on 1N9 = 29 Nov, 2011) poured into a shaker pint glass.

Appearance: Dark brown, but letting light through on the table, with a light tan thin head across the top. Some small strands and islands of lacing noted. When held up to the light, tarnished copper with some red notes.

Smell: When cold and first poured, the citrus notes of the Citra really shined through. A bit orange and mango. As the beer warmed up though, the hops get muted and merge with the roasted malt, giving an overall pleasant smell, but hard to pick out definite smell as the two blend together making it hard for me to pick out one versus the other. Every now and then the mango and tropical fruit shines out but not always.

Taste: Definitely roasty - solid roast malt flavor right away and again towards the end where it merges with the Citra bitter finish. Some sweetness in the middle to balance it out.

Mouthfeel: Good carbonation - a bit on the light side but it works. The beer is just north of watery, there is some thickness to it, but there is a hint of oiliness to it as well.

Overall / Drinkability: An interesting brown ale. Strikes me as a beer to go with food rather than drink by itself as I enjoyed it more when I was drinking it with my meal (refried bean and rice burritos) but that is not to say I didn't enjoy it when I finished it off after the meal. It grew on me quite a bit by the end of the glass which tells me the drinkability is quite good, as I wanted another one when the glass was empty. Does have a bit of a window though of temperature for drinking though - too warm and the roasted malt flavor gets a bit acrid, too cold and it's too bitter. So just right, and indeed, it's just right. I think a good addition to the Anchor family of beers.

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Photo of pwsoldier
4.04/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours deep dark mahogany with a modest tan head.
Very little lacing.

S - Very nutty with a pleasant floral undertone. The tropical notes of mango and peach that have come to define the Citra profile meld with the nutty malt backbone to create a very unique and enticing aroma that's almost perfume-like.

T - Citrus hops dominate up front with a subtle bitterness. Then the big malt backbone shines through with a strong, nutty sweetness that's accompanied by a bit of fruit. The flavor is well-balanced overall, with the malt having a slight edge in keeping with the style. The combo of Citra fruit and brown ale nuttiness creates a unique flavor profile that makes this beer one of a kind.

M - Medium-bodied with a nutty, tropical finish that carries over into the aftertaste.

O - This was a very interesting beer, and I really enjoyed picking it apart. The flavor is unconventional, but enjoyable. I can see myself drinking this again.

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Photo of Naugros
3.56/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Hard to find a prettier brown ale than this one. Couldn't pour the whole bottle into the Anchor pint glass due to the massive head. Crystal clear, brown body. Managed to get the rest of the bottle into the glass once the head reduced to a 1/2" dense, lasting structure.

Piney hops jump out immediately along with some bready malts and yeasty elements. There's a slight touch of sulfur here that I find off-putting. The taste is very similar but the malts strike first and deliver some carob tones once the pine of the hops comes into play. Dark fruit also exists from interplay with the yeast esters, Very complex, but not entirely cohesive.

The mouthfeel is pretty much on the light side of medium, with a strange sensation that beer feels warmer than it is once in your mouth. Hard to explain this and I've only experienced this a few times. Not sure what causes this. There's a slight tingle from the alcohol but no heat.

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Photo of One2Remeber
4.36/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass.

A: Light brown, tannish head that is creamy as could be. Brown body with a reddish hue making it easy to see through the beer. Thick creamy head stays through out the entire sipping:)

S: Smells over-the-top clean. Toasty, chewy notes off the bat with fruity undertones.

T: Whoa! Not your average brown ale. Explosive in flavor with a bready, gummy taste with a subtle citrusy, juicy wet hop profile that compliments the malts. Tons of crisp, clean flavor on the back end of swallow. Lingers with hints of toffee.

M: Soft on the palate with a slight bitterness from carbonation.

O: Off the wall according to style. Use to English hops which give a mild characteristic compared to an intense citrus taste more accustom to pale ales. I love the change up and definitely an eye opener to Anchor Steam being not too familiar with their product offering.

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Photo of merlin48
3.73/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bomber pours a hazed chestnut brown body with a two finger beige head. Good retention and some delicate spiderweb lacing is left on the glass.

Aroma is subdued, with faint toffee and caramel notes edged by citrusy pink grapefruit.

Mouthfeel reveals a light medium body with moderate carbonation.

Taste features caramel malt, baked bread, brown sugar, and a balancing bitterness from grapefruity hops. The use of Citra hops contributes to a one dimensional feel, overall. Finishes with a slightly astringent quality.

A decent American brown ale but I think I would have enjoyed it more with Cascades hops instead of the Citra.

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Photo of KarlHungus
4.12/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a clear brownish red color. The head is half an inch in height, and recedes slowly into a small cap of foam. The aroma is of caramel, toffee, and citrusy hops. The taste is of caramel, and bright citric hops. It has a less depth than the aroma, but is still quite pleasant. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with moderate carbonation, and a smooth texture. Overall, this is a nice beer that I would drink again.

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Photo of phishsihq
3.17/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A throwback to 1871, celebrating a rich heritage.

A few days ago we were lucky enough to bring you a little bit of Anchor Brewing Company's history through their flagship brew, Anchor Steam. Today we will let Anchor bring out some more of their history, with an eye on the future as well. Anchor's Brekle's Brown ale is named after a German immigrant, Gottlieb Brekle, who opened a brewery in San Francisco that would 25 years later be named Anchor Brewing. In tribute to Brekle, this brew features a classic all-malt, single hop recipe (old) that makes use of a new hop variety, Citra (new). Brekle's Brown pours a reddish-brown with a frothy, off-white head that leaves a good deal of lacing. Slightly sweet malt rushes into the nose, with dark fruit, caramel, brown sugar, and trace hop notes lingering. Sweet malt is again in the foreground, this time well balanced by the new hop, hints of coffee and caramel come through on a sweet and lasting finish. The brew features a creamy light to medium body with good deal of carbonation. Nothing too fancy here, just an honest to style brown ale from a brewery that seems to be able to brew nothing but good beers.

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Photo of flannelman808
3.54/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: looks pretty solid. mahogany in color and very clear, even with a copious amount of carbonation bubbles zipping up the glass. a generous light tan colored pancake batter foam instantly forms and sticks around for some time.

S: roasted malts dominate the nose giving suggestions of molasses and oatmeal. hidden away there is also a faint aroma of grass and citrus peel.

T: caramel and orange peel meet up front as well as a surprising amount of alcohol. prickly with good bitterness this sweet smelling beer finishes rather dry and with a rum like afterthought.

M: prickly

O: this one disappointed me I must say. Citra hopping did not show up in the end and there is a surprising amount of negative alcohol flavor for a beer listed at only 6%.

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Photo of Pahn
4.1/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into Duvel tulip. Bottled November 29, 2011, drank January 9, 2012.

Appearance: Free pour yields an inch of brownish white head that dissipates steadily and lacelessly. The beer is slightly hazy and is a color somewhere between ruby and maroon. Leaves a few small streaks of lacing.

Smell: From the bottle: Cascade-reminiscent hops (can't tell it's Citra) that don't make themselves known again afterward.

In the glass: Cinnamon-like spiciness, fresh grains like not-yet-boiled pale malts, with some underlying sweetness. Slight bubblegum / cinnamon gum aroma that slowly turns to caramel (maybe I'm crazy).

Interesting transformation of the aroma. I think there's a characteristic smell in many Anchor beers, sort of a fruity pastry smell, and it comes out in this one as well. Matches great with the fresh malt.

Taste: Very malt forward, with pastry and grain flavors up front, resolving with some tingly carbonation, bready flavors, and low but noticeable hop bitterness, finishing dry and clean. Grains have that same "taste the ingredients" freshness as in the aroma.

One main element in the flavor is a sort of "dark hard candy caramel" flavor... like maybe Werther's Original or something (I rarely eat candy, much less this kind, so it's hard to be specific here). It's caramel candies that you suck on because they're too hard to chew. Also a very slight cherry flavor, and a little bit of vegetal hop influence.

Solid American brown ale.

Mouthfeel: The flavor is good, but the mouthfeel is exceptional. Light side of medium bodied, smooth and creamy up front leading to a slightly sharp tingle of carbonation and hop bitterness, finishing very dry. Spot on.

Overall: This is a good, straightforward beer. Not too crazy, but still some interesting flourishes in the flavor. I'd like to taste the hops a little more, but that's a mild complaint.

Most likely a repeat buy. I'm a sucker for really well made beer, where the ingredients shine and the mouthfeel is perfect.

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Photo of TheCorkStopsHere
4.22/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

One of the newest additions to the Anchor Brewing lineup is the Brekle's Brown Ale. First brewed in 2010, this brown ale pays homage to their very first brewmaster. Sometime in 2011 they started bottling the Brekle's for distribution and this 12oz little guy found its way to our desk as a sample.

Brekle's Brown Ale pours out a nice dark brown color, mostly opaque but some light still makes it through. The lively foam is a light tan color, and lingers a bit longer than expected. Very little lacing left behind on the glass but that's not surprising. Aromas are nicely malty, slightly sweet with just a touch of caramel and toffee.

Flavors are great! The Brekle's Brown Ale is flavorful but super smooth. Completely dominated by malty flavors, I'm not picking up any hops bitterness at all. That being said it's not a candy-sweet style, as the Brekle's finishes nicely dry.

I can honestly say this is the single best beer I've every had from Anchor Brewing! It's smooth yet flavorful, refreshing yet satisfying: I'm legitimately impressed! This is a brew that we'll definitely be adding to our selection as soon as our distributors make it available to us. If you've never tried the Brekle's Brown, I'd suggest stopping in for a try.

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Photo of nimrod979
2.85/5  rDev -23%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours somewhat of a reddish brown. Big two finger off white almost tan rocky head. Pretty decent retention.
Aroma is caramel malts. dark fruit. Brown sugar. Slight roasty and a faint citrus hop aroma.
Taste is sweet caramel malts. Some roastiness and citrusy bitterness coming from the hops. Dark fruits. I don't think it really meshes too well. Kinda of all ver the place. Don't care for it that much.
Smooth and creamy mouthfeel medium bodied. Sometimes feels a little watery but it's clean with a lingering hop bitterness that offsets the sweetness of the malts. Unique.

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Photo of Chickenhawk9932
3.76/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep copper red that muddies to brown with a creamy tan head.

Smells of citrus and pine followed by malt and a faint hint of caramel.

Taste is bitter citrus and pine up front followed by a good sting of carbonation which gives way to a slick malt backbone. It finishes dry with coffee and caramel notes. A very good and interesting ale, but it tastes a little watery in spots.

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Photo of shand
4.22/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Sam Adams perfect pint.

This brew pours a deep brown with red highlights. Head is fairly small. Aroma is good, sweet malts and a bit of nuttiness. Big caramel aroma here. The taste is very good, this is quite the interesting brown ale. It might seem like it's going to be a cloying sugar bomb when it first hits your tongue, with huge amounts of caramel and sweet malts hitting the tongue. However, there's a fairly substantial amount of hoppiness (for the style, that is) that comes in the finish, along with a touch of roastiness that really helps to balance things out. The mouthfeel is perfectly substantial and well-carbed, and the drinkability is very good. Overall, yet another winner from Anchor. I find Anchor are really one of the most underrated breweries. They really don't do anything "extreme," but I've never had anything less than a great beer from them.

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Photo of Dodt
3.38/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

since bombers of anchor products are hard to come by in my neck of the woods i decide to pick this one up . poured from the bomber into a pint glass.
deep amber in color with a nice head. wonderful aroma and taste of roasted malt. for me not a great beer but a good beer none the less.

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Photo of warnerry
3.44/5  rDev -7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a deep clear amber/brown with two fingers of tan head. Head has very good retention and leaves rings of nice lacing.

S - Aroma is pretty faint, but I think I pick up some toasted malts and a bit of brown bread. Also a faint sweetness.

T - Mostly malt, with toasted brown bread and a bit of caramel. Citrus hops come in midway, but the finish is again very malty.

M - Medium mouthfeel with a bit of bitterness and a dry, earthy finish.

O - Not the most exciting, but a pretty solid brown ale. I was watching the Prohibition documentary from Ken Burns recently, and all the still photos from the '20s and '30s with people holding dark beers in hand made me wonder what beers were like in America before the adjunct lager took over. While I know bocks were pretty popular back then, I couldn't help but feel like I was drinking a historical beverage while downing this one (minus the Citra hops, of course).

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Photo of ithacabaron
3.49/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

The appearance, when held up to the light, is of a bright velvet cake red. When the pint sits on the table, it's something of a bruised brown. A thin cap of foam sits on the top. Not the most impressive brew.

Smell is rather nice. Tons of candied chestnuts on the front end, with a fog of that oh-so-distinctive Anchor yeast There are underlying whiffs of unsweetened cocoa powder and maple.

Taste is a tale of two stories. It starts out full of sweet cream and caramel, but, mid-swallow, a sharp and acidic bolt comes out of the blue. Unearned bitterness. The finish intensifies with more of the same, leaving an unpleasant, astringent, kiwi-like flavor on the tongue. A weirdo, and not in a good way.

Mouthfeel is fine, albeit a little low. Could use some a thicker, fuller feel.

Overall, somewhat nice, somewhat a disappointment. I think Anchor could make a truly tremendous brown ale (the yeast is born for the job), but this isn't it. Scrap the Citra, dose up the brown and chocolate malts, and bring it again.

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Photo of jlindros
3.8/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured too aggressive and got a huge 2+ finger head fluffy, dvds fades semi slowly with lots of lacing, semi clear darker mahogany ruby brown color.

Nose toasty brown malts, light sweet brown sugar, interesting soft steam beer that brings a lager like crispness and fruity demeanor. All that blended with a light fruity grassy hop.

Taste starts a bit sweet but not much, with a toasty brown malt and light brown sugar, and hint of toffee caramel and even slightly nutty. Then again with the light crisp malty like steam beer that gives it a lager like crispness and hint if fruity flavors. Hops barely come into play a first but bring a light grassy fruity hop and hint if spicy bitterness. Finish is slightly bitter with grassy hops, light sweet brown malts but dry, and a bit more of the crisp lager like.

Mouth is med to slightly lighter bodied, good carb.

Overall a nice beer, perfect touch of hop bitterness, nice brown malts, good stream lager flavors, soft with plenty of flavor and very drinkable.

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Photo of Mitchster
2.54/5  rDev -31.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

$2.09 for a 12oz bottle @ BevCo. Brewed with 2-row pale, caramel, and munich, hopped with Citra. 6.0% ABV.

Pours out to a sparkingly clear mahogany, forming a tall creamy tan head with excellent retention and solid sheets of lace. Mild to moderate carbonation. The aroma is that of a pale ale, with nice citric hops sitting on top of a malt base with toffee with the suggestions of hazelnut or walnuts. Mouthfeel is smooth, medium bodied, with a light acidity. It's a little watery feeling. The taste is pretty good...a recap of the aroma with a nice balance between the flavors, however as I get further into the beer, I pick up on wet cardboard and newspaper and slight fusels, like an open fermentation that was a little too warm. I wonder if they used their normal yeast strain on this because it tastes a little different than their other beers. Not a very clean example of the style.

Brown ales in general are not my favorite, and I don't really enjoy this one either. As far as brown ales go, I don't think it's very good. I'd rather have Bells Best Brown, Moose Drool, or Goose Islands Winter mild, which are much much better.

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Photo of laituegonflable
2.98/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a shiny red colour, clear, with nice beige head; visible bubbles but a nice dense foamy top. Lace streaks around the glass. Good-looker.

Smells quite potent. Malty sweetness with a fair quantity of hot booze behind it. Slight weizeny esters - banana and vanilla, touch of coconut maybe and some brass. Could be more toned down heat-wise and yet more kick could be added, with hops or spice for balance. Not bad, though.

Taste is quite disappointing. Just lacks a lot of the character of the nose - grainy with a touch of rye bread, some corn notes and a distinct pear-apple ester. Hint of copper towards the back but ultimately finishes thin and flat, without really much flavour at all. Not offensive; not really anything. Like a hollowed-out shell of a nice American ale.

Bit of body to it, but not a lot of texture. Strikes me as dull.

Really needs a whole lot more done to it. It's bland, in spite of the hints it displays of bold flavours.

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Photo of gordavidson
3.95/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Pours a clear, dark, ruby red liquid that borders on brown. The light brown head is thin but creamy and has decent retention.

S- Butter, cocoa powder, some light fruitiness, and some pine.

T- Butter, honey, cocoa, pine, mango, and caramel. A pretty unique combination of flavors.

M- The body is light and the finish is pretty clean with just. Few lingering flavors.

O- A unique take on the style. Although there are a lot of flavors, I feel that this is rather simple- which is not a bad thing. Nice for something different.

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Photo of heelsn02
4.12/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into New Belgium snifter.

Qtr inch off white / creamy head (not much though)... head dissipated very fast. Nice brown/ reddish color towards the bottom of my glassware

Really nice toffee/ caramel malty smell... very sweet.

Malty caramel taste... bitter finish. Definitely some "anchor" malt if you know what I mean. Just get that classic anchor flavor. hard to describe...

Smooth mouthfeel... good carbonation...

Overall... pretty solid offering from Anchor. Tastes like a brown version of the classic anchor steam brew, which I've always been a big fan of.

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Photo of wisrarebeer
4.03/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: incredibly deep copper-brown color, full tan head that kept it all the way, clear
S: mild roasted malt with spicy hops
T: deep roasted malt up front with good hop bitter finish that is well-balanced and not overpowering, a bit of metallic bite in finish that subdued over time
M: decent with a bit of metallic bite in finish that subdued over time

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Photo of gatornation
3.88/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

from 12 oz bottle

A- pours a mahogany brown color with cherry striations a fluffy tan head that recedes quickly with some nice lacing

S- was malty with dark fruit smells and malts, hops and bread

T- roasted malts, baked bread, some dark fruit tastes , a touch of hops, raisens and spice

M- was thin but full of taste with medium carbonation and a dry and fruity/malty finish

O- very nice brown slick and tasty will drink this one again

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Brekle's Brown from Anchor Brewing Company
3.7 out of 5 based on 855 ratings.
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