Samuel Adams Brown Ale | Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

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Samuel Adams Brown AleSamuel Adams Brown Ale
Samuel Adams Brown AleSamuel Adams Brown Ale

Brewed by:
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
Massachusetts, United States

Style: English Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.35%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
None provided.

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

User Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 563 | Ratings: 708
Photo of Cavanaghty
3.8/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Stumbled onto my old notebook of which I used to track beer and when I had tried them and what I thought. So, this review is not at all how I study and revieqw a beer, but seeing that this beer is since retired, seems like a good place to start coping down my old notes.

Drank straight from the bottle, tasted on October 21, 2007, came from one of the Sams Adams varity packs.

This beer was ok, it was heavy for what I thought an ale would be.

Yes folks that is all I wrote down, but I was new to the beer scene then. I do recall it having a dark brown color and what I thought then as a strong smell. Thanks for one of my first reviews, I have learned some much since then.

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Photo of Brenden
3.6/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I found some old Sam Adams tasting notes and realized these beers are now retired. Oh well...notes are still good.

Brown this beer is: pretty much your standard, straight out of the crayon box regular brown. A brown head about one finger high retains itself moderately well before dropping to a thin foam that leaves thin, spotty lacing behind.
Pretty sturdy malts are the backbone, appropriately, with sweetness and some biscuity aromas accompanying. Possibly because of diacetyl, possibly not, this beer's also got some butter in the smell of it.
Malts come out with a bit more character and complexity in the flavor, adding bread, toast and caramel elements with that light buttery note. Hops are present behind the malts, adding an earthy element and a touch of spiciness.
The body is medium, and this seems a little more crisp than smooth (odd for a brown).
This is a soild, well-rounded beer that I could have a few of in one sitting.

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Photo of KajII
3.4/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

[Best served in a Dimpled Mug]

Bottle. Poured a rich brown in color with a nice thick foamy off white head that lasted a while with very nice lacing.The aroma was of molasses and toasted bread malts with a hint of chocolate. It tasted smooth and sweet yet mildly bitter at the finish. The mouthfeel was medium to full bodied, very creamy with soft carbonation. Overall a tasty brew, fits well in its category.

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Photo of JizackFH
3.5/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - This pours a nice reddish-brown color. It has a thick creamy beige head, that left quite a bit of lacing on the glass.

S - It smells of sweet caramel malts. There are also nice toasted malts and toffee notes present. I am noticing a little bit of breadiness as well.

T - The taste is similar to the nose. It is sweet and malty. There is a nice toastiness and a bit of hop presence as well. The finish is toasty and slightly bitter.

M - This has a medium body and the carbonation is a bit higher than I think it should be. It goes down pretty easy, and the finish is dry.

D - The drinkability is pretty good. It goes down pretty easy, and it is pretty refreshing. It's a decent brown ale, but it's pretty average and ultimately forgettable.

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Photo of chefhatt
3.62/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured the beer into a pint glass, it has a nice dark brown color with a 1/2" head, that resided to a thin creamy white lace around the edge of the glass. The smell is nice of toasted malts. The taste is malty and hint of caramel malts and a little nutty. Very nice mouth feel and i think is a great ale. I wish they would have retired this beer, but hey life goes on.

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Photo of nrbw23
3.68/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours nice dark brown/amber color with a very thin off white head. Head left pretty much no lacing.

S- Smell is light roasted malts, bready, and dried fruits.

T- Not quite sweet as I first thought. Some toasted bread, a bit of chocolate, a touch of smoke and lit floral hops.

M- Medium in body and a bit high in carbonation.

D- Easy to drink just nothing really exciting here.

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Photo of beerwolf77
4.1/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to BeerFMAndy for tossing this one my way.

Poured into my pint glass the beer is chestnut brown with orange highlights. About two fingers of light beige head recede quickly leaving a very nice coating of lace.

The aroma is rather nutty with toasted malt and just hint of hops. Maybe a touch of spice and even a bit of chocolate.

The flavor is real nice. Roast malt blended with nuts, coffee, caramel, and even a touch of bourbon like character. This really surprised me with an emense flavor.

Medium body with just light to moderate amount of carbonation.

Overall a very good brown ale. It's a shame this ones retired. I would love to pick up more.

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Photo of Riccymon
4.19/5  rDev +19.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours from the bottle a brown color with a finger of beige head; this is looking better than many lifeless browns I've had. Lots of carbonation at first. Smell has a wonderful grainy malt aroma with caramel and milk notes and a light hop presence. The nose brings me back to fall weather, dead leaves, and Oktoberfest celebrations.

Taste is just as delicious as the nose, dominated by sweet, bready malt, and light vanilla and ginger spices. Hops dance in and out of the mix, ending in a pleasant, drying finish. Body is light and goes down easily. This here is top-notch English Brown territory.

I wasn't expecting this much from SA's brown, but I was definitely pleasantly surprised by how much flavor is packed into it.

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Photo of superdedooperboy
3.78/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. brown bottle into a beer mug. This one is apparently half a year past its prime, as a freshness date of July 2009 is notched on the label.

Pours a clear deep reddish-brown hue with a thick, creamy topping of beige-colored foam that shows wonderful retention, fading away slowly and leaving behind thick-legged rings of lacing on the walls of the glass.

Aroma is full of sweet caramel and buttery toasted biscuit, with a slight whiff of burnished toffee.

Medium-bodied with a creamy mouthfeel. Not much carbonation, which adds to the smooth creaminess of the feel. As with the nose, lightly sweet notes of caramel and biscuit show themselves on the palate, alongside a mild nuttiness. Hop bitterness is low but serves very well to keep the sweet malt in check and from reaching anywhere near cloying; hop flavor manifests itself as vaguely herbaceous, just the faintest bit grass-like. The nuttiness and herbal hop flavors carry over into the semi-dry finish, with a far-off hint of caramel-drizzled biscuit lingering.

Very drinkable; a nice, restrained English-style brown ale worthy of sessionability. Quite balanced and true-to-style, and certainly losing nothing with its additional six months of age.

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Photo of jimj21
3.63/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Twelve ounce bottle bought as part of Fall Harvest twelve pack. Best by date marked on the side of the label. Poured into standard pint glass. Pours a dark reddish brown. Very clear. Some bubbles rising in the glass. Initially topped with two fingers of beige head. This recedes quickly to a small cap.

Very malty aroma. Sweet bread and dark caramel. Hoppy aromas come through as slightly floral.

Similar to the nose. Flavors are mostly sweet and malty. Sweet caramel and toasted bread. Slight roasted character. Light bitterness on the back of the tongue. Slightly citrusy.

Medium bodied. Carbonation is good and maybe slightly high. A little dry on the finish.

Easy to drink. Nothing overpowering. Decent, but not the greatest effort from the Boston Beer Company.

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Photo of pasdachuri
3.07/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured a clear brown color with a fizzy light tan head.

Smelled a little toasty and quite nutty with some subtle notes of chocolate.

The brew starts with a slight tartness that mellows to similar hints of walnut and oak, but the flavor is sweeter than the scent. Overall flavor is a bit mild.

Mouthfeel is thin with more carbonation than needed in my opinion.

Not a bad brown ale but not a bit lighter than I think it should be.

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Photo of jovy1097
4.1/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12 oz bottle into nonic pint.

Appearance: Brown and clear with a small, 1 cm head that diminishes to a film very quickly. Leaves cream on the sides of the glass as you drink.

Smell: Bread, caramel, dates, and butter. Not very strong.

Taste: Extremely malty and almost no hop flavor. Mild in flavor, but you can definitely taste the caramel and butter. Maybe even a hint of vanilla and dates. I think it's delectable.

Mouthfeel: Very little carbonation. Slick and smooth with a texture that sticks to the mouth. Almost thick.

Drinkability: Very mild and nice - one that I'll be coming back to. A perfect quaff for a mild spring or fall day. Sweeter than normal, but not cloying at all. You still want more after you finish.

Comments: Call me boring, but I love brown ales. They are never out of season and they go with anything. This one is a perfect match for the style. Such a mild-mannered and comfortable beer. This is the "girl next door" of brews.

I recently also had an Abita Turbodog, which is also classified as an English Brown Ale. It was atrocious! The offering by Sam Adams is much more like it.

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Photo of dbtoe
4/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a shaker pint glass
This is a good brown. Nothing special and nothing really stands out. Before I knew it I had finished all 4 bottles I had in an afternoon.
Look is brown with a finger of head that reduced to a ring fairly quickly.
Smell is toasty malts and a hint of hops.
Taste is mainly toasted sweet malts nothing over powering and finishes with a mild spicy bitterness.
Feel is smooth and creamy with good amount of carbonation.
Drinkable is very high a lot of these can be drank in a sitting. All in all a real good football game beer.

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Photo of Kallessin
4.03/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep amber to brown color. Full foamy head that's slight tan with very nice lacing. Very clear with tons of bubbles floating up through it.

Smells of sweet malt, caramel, toasted biscuits. A fair amount of hops come through with some earthy grassy notes.

Tons of malt in the flavor and again caramel, toasted biscuits. I think it has some pretty meaty flavors. I swear at one point I picked up some smoked ham for a second. Very light hop bitterness in the background. Very well balanced flavors.

Very smooth with lots of carbonation that has a slight tingly sensation. Pretty much as expected.

This is a very solid brown ale with great balanced flavors. Nothing earth shattering here, but that's what I expect out of a brown ale. An all around very enjoyable beer.

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Photo of RJLarse
3.75/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

From the Brewmaster's Fall Collection series, 6 beers, 2 bottles per ½ case. Poured in to a pint glass.

Pours a walnut brown color and is clear. Frothy white head produces moderate lacing.

Smell is an earthy nutty dough aroma, with a bit of sharp sweet spice scent.

Taste is malty, with a spiced cinnamon bread essence,and a caramel and mildly bitter hazelnut flavor. Bit of a black licorice after taste.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and clean. There is a spice zest to it.

A very drinkable brown ale, and a nice representation of the style. A nice brew to enjoy on the on the last darkest day of autumn.

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Photo of bonkers
3.63/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a standard pint glass. It has a deep brown color with a 2 finger white head, a bit of lacing. The aroma is nutty, bready. It has a sweet bready flavor, enough bitterness to keep it balanced. A medium/light bodied beer, moderate carbonation. Overall it is a fairly standard brown ale.

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Photo of david18
3/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

i'm not a fan of brown beers and, even though i do like some, i'm not a big fan of this. Sam Adams frequently makes classic examples of the produce, so if you really like brown ales, this would be a good one. For me, i like the browns that fall a little outside the style.

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Photo of cdkrenz
4.5/5  rDev +28.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Transparent purple-red-brown body with a head slighting at brown from eggshell.

S - Cherry and subtle oak with a background of malt.

T - Subtle brown sugar, medium roasted grain, backdrop of pale hops. This is a great tasting brown ale!

M - The feel is smooth to start and slowly increases with a slight texture until the finish where it seems to wash itself away.

~ This beer is really good. The look, the aroma, the flavors and the feel are all winners. You are doing yourself a disservice if you don't have one. I'm disappointed in myself that it took me so long to try one.

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Photo of SpdKilz
3.63/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - Poured into my SA Perfect Pint with about two fingers of fluffy cream colored head that is receding at a medium pace leaving quite nice lacing. Held up to the light the beer almost looks ruby red with a hint of brown intermixed. A very nice looking beer.

Smell - Sweet malts on the forefront followed by notes of nuts, caramel, brown sugar, and a bit of bready dough.

Taste - Just a little bitter at the beginning which almost immediately dissipates to a more malty, bready taste. Nice roasted malts can be had here with just a hint of hops and caramel (and the more it warms up now, a bit of coffee?)

Mouthfeel - Light to medium bodied with a proper amount of carbonation makes this a refreshingly light tasting beer.

Drinkability - Goes down easily and is quite quaffable. I wouldn't necessarily seek these out on their own but it was a good beer to try from the fall pack (just found this in the back of my refrigerator and thought I better review it!)

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Photo of Spineypanda
4.08/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A pretty darn good brown ale.

Has a nice dark brown, almost non-see through, with a good head that laces well.

Smells of roasted malts and esters.
Has a taste of roasted malts and a little sweetness. Aftertaste is a good clean finish.

I will buy it again, and I will drink it...

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Photo of Gatch
3.68/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A consistent Brown Ale to have at any time of the day. Slight creaminess to complement the malt, which isn't too strong or heavy and isn't too light in the flavor. Nice body to it and goes down very easily. Seems to be a forgotten style by Sam Adams but it's one of their true styles.

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
3.43/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into an American Tumbler. Enjoy before DEC 2009 notched on the label.

A - Clear brown color with a fizzy light tan head. Very creamy with decent retention and a thin blanket on top. A small bit of lacing.

S - Toasty, biscuity brown malts with an underlying sweetness to them but predominantly toasted. A clean and light hop aroma finishes up with an earthy, light grassy nose.

T - Toasty with tiny bits of biscuity flavor and a light background sweetness. The hops, once again, finish out the flavor with a dry and clean flavor. A bit of nuttiness to the whole flavor too.

M - Crisp and sharp clean flavor with a dry, lightly bitter and carbonated finish.

D - An ok Brown Ale that's not as complex as I had hoped for but provides for a drinkable brew. A few would be ok for a night of relaxing with something malty but not in-your-face.

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Photo of flagmantho
3.53/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: medium-dark brown-amber with a two-finger light tan head. Nice lacing is left as the glass empties.

Smell: a little toasty; quite nutty. There are a few notes of chocolate and even a dash of fruit. Overall, however, it is a bit subtle.

Taste: malt is a little sweet with some caramel flavors and a little nuttiness. Pretty good.

Mouthfeel: body is medium with a tiny bit of an astringent quality, which is not my favorite. Carbonation is appropriate to the style.

Drinkability: pretty good but the beer isn't multidimensional enough to have me grabbing for another right away.

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Photo of jhammel01
3.45/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours dark brown with alot of carbonation. Keeps a decent 2 finger head and dissipates quickly.

Didnt pick up much smell. Perhaps just a bit of malt and some kind of nut??

A malty tasting brew. Plenty of malt up front with slight hop bitterness and nuttiness behind it. Not bad. again though....More metallic taste! I cannot shake this from sam adams beer Ive been drinking lately. I only get it in bottles....

Light bodied. Not bad...Id say typical for the style.

A good beer from Sam Adams. I really enjoyed it for being a nice solid beer thats not too extreme. However, That metallic taste is a turn off.

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Photo of maleman
3.56/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into an SA glass. Freshness dating was on bottle.

A - poured a darker brown than I was expecting. Started with a one-finger creamy, tan head that recede quickly into thin cap. Tight lacing all down the sides.

S - nothing overbearing. some hops with a slight hint of alcohol.

T - could detect the phenol up front, then some nuttiness settled in. a little bit of clove, or some other neutral spice. not as much bread as i would have thought. some grass.

M - light to medium-bodied with decent carbonation. smooth beginning and finish with little aftertaste.

D - not on par with a Sam Smith Nut Brown, or maybe even a New Castle, but is session-worthy. I could knock back several of these and not be a lesser man for it.

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Samuel Adams Brown Ale from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
Beer rating: 3.5 out of 5 with 708 ratings