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Brown Ale | Capital Brewery

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Brown AleBrown Ale
70 Ratings
Brown AleBrown Ale

Brewed by:
Capital Brewery
Wisconsin, United States

Style: English Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): not listed

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 08-15-2001

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 70 |  Reviews: 68
Photo of DrunkMcDermott
3.48/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This is probably the best of the beers I've sampled from this brewery, which otherwise hews too closely to style. A nice malty smell greets me when I pop the bottle, then it pours a nice thick head over a dark brown body. I get a taste of roasted coffee, maybe even chicory atop a bed of caramel. A sharp hop sting gives it a little fruity note like… all I can come up with is blackberries. Carbonation enhances the delivery of flavor. This is close to being a nut brown ale. Capital could really cut loose if they wanted to.

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Photo of chilidog
3.98/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This Brown makes a nice easy in-between, regarding pils & stout. It pours a true brown color with an impressive tan head. One thats frothy & maintains well, laces great. The aroma is sweet, malty and of caramel. The taste is also malty caramel with little hints of coffee. Hops don't play a taste factor on thisone. The drink is smooth and pleasing. It can be enjoyed alone or with a meal.

 389 characters

Photo of BeerBuilder
3.72/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Sampled on 8/14/03

This brew pours to a bronze-brown color with a tan head. The aroma is malty, nutty, and bready with hints of grain. The flavor has a nice toasted maltiness throughout. The hop aroma and flavor is minimal on this one. It is a light-medium bodied beer with a semi-sweet finish. A tasty, easy drinking brew.

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Photo of Redrover
3.65/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz brown longneck.

Beer pours a translucent coco brown with a medium beige head. Decent lacing.

The nose is of malt, bread and what I think is the signature Capital yeast strain smell.

Beer is mild with a nice malt backbone. Malt sweetness with a slight touch of roasted coffee. A little bit of alcohol presence as the beer warms. Hops are virtually non existent. Nothing threatening here, perhaps a perfect beer for getting a Killians type drinker to take the next step-up. Tasty in a mellow way!

Excellent low carbonation per style. Smooth mouthfeel as well.

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Photo of hotstuff
3.87/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

When poured, this beer had a medium sized ivory creamy and smooth head with fine-small sized bubbles.The body was carbonated and clear with a reddish-brown hue.The nose was malty and caramel.The flavor was caramel, malt and a hint of coffee with a very smooth mouthfeel that made this beer very drinkable and enjoyable.

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Photo of Tballz420
3.03/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer comes out with a brown body and a off white head. Theres a bit of a caramel smell somewhere in there. A bit of a roasted and caramel flavor is what this beer has to offer, but it is on the weak side of things. Its not a bad beer, but dont drive to wisconsin just to pick one up.

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Photo of MJR
3.82/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a brilliantly clear light brown with red highlights. It's tan head starts out rather small, then shrinks down to a simple ring of bubbles around the edge of the glass.

Smell: The aroma is very malty and a touch sweet, with nutty and bready notes. I detect a hint of chocolate, but it's really buried.

Taste: Starts out sweet and malty, with a warm baked bread graininess. Mid-palate, a touch of spiciness that almost gives the impression of rye appears. That same ghost-like, chocolate hint from the smell is present as well. After the spiciness subsides, a huge burst of nuttiness takes over through the finish. There's a bit of hop bitterness on the tail end, bringing some balance into the picture.

Mouthfeel: Well carbonated, with a mouthfeel that's on the lighter side of medium. Finishes with a touch of dryness.

Drinkability: While a brown ale from this well-known lager brewer is a bit of a surprise, this is a decent brew. It's not as interesting as some of the better browns out there, but still drinkable.

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Photo of Shiloh
3.75/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A very nice offering from Capital Brewery. It poured a nice deep amber hue with a full but short tan head which quickly was replaced by a minor glass ring.
Nose was persistantly bready but not heavy or over powering.
Body was medium and carbonation light.
Nice malty start with a very slight bitter finish.
Malts slightly edged out the hops on this one.

 370 characters

Photo of tavernjef
4.12/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled full bottle at the Capital Brewing Seminar for distributors and establishments in Brooklyn Center. Thanks to AL for the invite.

Color is a lighter brown of chestnut hue with red tones near the bottom, a small light and loose glue bubbly white head sits atop, leaves stringy lace. Smell is a nice lightly sweet bread-like malt with a touch of nuttyness. Taste is mild of malty sweetness and nuts with a favorable hoppy light bitterness thats lingering into the finish. Feel is medium bodied, moderate and late bitterness, smooth, mild, and easy. Gets really nice as it warms, really nice.
This is pretty good brown thats balanced and mild to the point of very good consumption.

 688 characters

Photo of feloniousmonk
3.39/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: clear, light brown hue, with a short whitish head.
Aroma: nutty as all get-out, but nothing else,and largely dry, after that.
On the palate, unimpressive, little hops, decent malt, but nothing really good is going on here, it all just lays together and asks to be drunk, and quickly, that's all. Some dry fruitiness shows later in the flavor.
Texture is light, as is body, and overall this beer feels far too thin. I lost track, and didn't know if I was having a beer, or some somnambulistic nightmare!
Seems like they were trying to craft a Newcastle clone, and succeeeded spectacularly. Finish is too short, as is flavor.
Sorry, Capital, better luck next time...

 681 characters

Photo of AtLagerHeads
3.6/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The body is clear bronze, the head tan, and the lace is minimal, but shows up. The aroma is of malt, somewhat toasty smelling and resonably full. The taste is balanced against the malt with some nice hopping that gives this brew a decent ending bitterness. There is an odd sourness that comes in at times, but gets pushed to the back by the malting. Decent feel that is just a little thin. Very good drinkability that is supported by the clean crisp finish.

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Photo of bditty187
2.96/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Amber/tan hue, translucent, smallish white head, soapy retention, minimal spotty lace. The nose was hollow… nutty, malt was detectable as was chocolate powder; this combination wasn’t inviting. The palate had mixed success, it started off quite tasty: the malt foundation was solid, nicely nutty with caramel and floral hops too. But the sudden and flavorless ending diminishes the quality of this beer greatly. It was empty and lacking… only the carbonation seems to holdup. The mouthfeel is thin and inadequate. Overall this Brown Ale is below-average for the style, maybe Capital should stick with lagers.

 611 characters

Photo of cokes
3.5/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Deep amber-brown below a skimming of beige cream.
Mellow whafts of dusty chocolate, bread crusts and English hops.
Begins with an easy-going earthy nuttiness dusted with cocoa powder. Toasted, crusty white bread body with a light caramel topping. Floral hops gradually build, and become featured by the finish.
Shy of medium bodied, but sessionable
Not an exciting Brown, but not a bad one.

 395 characters

Photo of Winter
3.8/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

So far one of my favorite offerings from Capital. Poured a dark amber in color with a white head that remains throughout consumption. Aroma consists of malt and a sweet nuttiness is present. Mouthfeel is medium to thin with a tingling tongue sensation present from plenty of carbonation. This lessens as the beer warms, though. Sweet caramel front with a rich toasted malt middle. Finish is soft with and contains a pleasant nuttiness to it. Indeed reminiscent of Newcastle and Goose Island's Hex Nut Brown (though nowhere near as smoky and complex as HNB).

 557 characters

Photo of Dogbrick
3.43/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Along the same lines as Newcastle's version. Dark brown with a thin off-white head. A little thin with hints of brown sugar and caramal in the flavor. Mild nutty aroma. Not the best Capital has to offer but it is definitely potable.

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Photo of marc77
3.79/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Dark bronze / light brown hue w/ brilliant clarity topped by a light beige head that readily recedes into a thin, spotty layer. Assertively spicy and herbal noble hops hits the nose upfront, then is ensued by mellow chocolate, medium caramel and biscuit malt. Rich, toasty continental, perhaps Vienna malt adds richness in aroma. Flavorwise, this brown doesn't quite deliver on the aroma's promise. The strong hop flavor, although a trait I usually savor, cuts into the malt profile, and partially overshadows the chocolate malt. Dark caramel thus becomes the dominate malt character, w/ toasty base malt present as an undertone. Hop bitterness is secondary to malt, but provides sufficient contrast to caramel sweetness. Full bodied for a brown, w/ a agreeably smooth mouthfeel. Finishes relatively clean, w/ a combination of light residual sweetness and herbal hops quickly fading. Capital's Brown Ale is an odd, unique, yet enjoyable brown. It is akin to a Dunkel / American brown ale hybrid. Overall, it's quite lagerlike, partially due to the virtual lack of esters.

 1,082 characters

Photo of beernut7
3.53/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This dark brown ale pours with a frothy white head and a buttery caramel malt aroma. The sweet caramel malt is nicely balanced by dark malts and a well-placed spicy hop character with just a hint of bitterness. The finish is lightly bitter and lingers some. The body is pretty smooth. All around a well built brew.

 317 characters

Photo of Wildman
3.8/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer poured a dark amber color. Light tan head that didn't hold and left only a little lace. Slight aroma of malt and nut. It had a flavor of honeynut and malt. It had a nice, slightly sweet finish. Not as sweet as nut browns, but very similar and feel it falls under those types.

 291 characters

Photo of ADR
3.7/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Big head, pretty ordinary brown color. Smell is just vaguely sweet. Taste has an interesting cinamon spice to it, a little more oomph than your average brew of this style. Its too carbonated for me, letting it wait twenty minutes improves the mouthfeel. It is still on the thin side however. An OK warm-fermenter from a mostly cold-fermenting brewery.

 356 characters

Photo of Bighuge
3.6/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours dark amber with a creamy dense head that has some retention. Smell of sweet caramel malt. There's a nice nuttiness in the taste. Pretty balanced overall. A little light in body. Being one of the few ales that Capital brews, this isn't half bad.

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Brown Ale from Capital Brewery
Beer rating: 3.63 out of 5 with 70 ratings
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