Bar Harbor Real Ale | Atlantic Brewing Company / Mainely Meat BBQ

218 Reviews
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Bar Harbor Real AleBar Harbor Real Ale

Brewed by:
Atlantic Brewing Company / Mainely Meat BBQ
Maine, United States

Style: English Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
A good, clean nut brown ale with a malty body. This is our most popular ale due to its smooth and malty flavor.

We use a mixture of pale, crystal and black malts in this one, and our primary hop is Target, though we also add some Whitbread Goldings Variation as well.

The Real Ale is best fresh, so fresh in fact, that it's great right out of the bright tank.

Added by UnionMade on 07-25-2001

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Reviews: 218 | Ratings: 365
Photo of yuenglingfan101
4.55/5  rDev +28.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

dark brown in color with a small tan head. Very malty taste more like a stout rather but over all good. Goes down smooth and creamy. worth giving this one a tray

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Photo of stirgy
4.45/5  rDev +26.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Touted as a real ale, this beer looks great with its deep auburn color and filmy thin head. Small bits of carbonation speckle the glass. The aroma is appealing with a sweet malt nose and a sour fruity tang hiding in there somewhere. The taste is almost perfectly balanced. Bitter earthy hops interlace well with the malt base. A somewhat hearty beer, but remains very drinkable. An almost Earl Grey like bitter tea sting remains in the back of the throat. Very nice and a fine beer on all counts.

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Photo of TAMU99
4.33/5  rDev +22.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Another Fine beer from Atlantic. They pick this one as their flagship and what a good pick. This is a great example of why microbrews are SO much better than the larger places that no longer really craft their beers.

A - A beautifully, crystal clear brown - just a perfect color. A medium quick dissipating head and very thin lace

S - A very satisfying beer aroma, with heavy malt

T - Balanced malt profile, sufficiently deep to keep you interested. Hint of scorched caramel is very tantalizing. Bold hoppy melody for finish.

M - rich, almost creamy with a very nice aftertaste

D - You could drink this all day. A really superb beer.

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Photo of Gavage
4.33/5  rDev +22.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: clear deep burgandy in color with a nice 2" head.

Smell: the aroma was a pleasant combination of caramels and floral hops.

Taste: the flavor is of lightly roasted malt, caramel, nuts, and a nice bitterness. The malt level is beefy here.

Mouthfeel: crisp at the start and finish, and the caramel nuttiness lasts shortly on the tongue after swallowing.

Drinkability: great flavor makes great drinkability here. Definitely a brew to find and enjoy.

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Photo of MaineBeerMan
4.3/5  rDev +21.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nice tasty beer with a dark brown color and a good light beige head. Sweet toasty malt aroma with some flowery hops mixed in and a toasted malt flavor to match. Just enough hop bitterness helps to balance the flavor and make this a very drinlkable brew.

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Photo of Citadel82
4.27/5  rDev +21%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a very dark amber with a soapy off-white head that fades rapidly. Some nice lacing in the withdrawl, with a collar of foam that lasted for some time before vanishing entirely when the beer reached room-temperature.

Aroma was sweet-roasted malts. Hints of pear and ripe apple. Some bready notes and caramel. Little hoppiness in evidence up front with some spicy notes and perhaps some faint grassiness in the finish.

Taste was mildly sweet and slightly hoppy with a mild finsh. Very balanced non-eventful ( a good thing here). Not as sweet as many browns nor as hoppy as dogfish Head's efforts. A nice balanced compromise. For me this would be a nice session beer.

Mouthfeel was slick and smooth coating the tongue and palate and dissipated rapidly. Little carbonation evident at first an even less as the beer warmed.

This is a nice drinkable brown ale. One of the better ones that I have tried and I will buy more of it when I make it back to Red Bank.

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Photo of flatblack80
4.21/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle in a Pint Glass

A: Nice transparent brown.

S: Nice hops and nutty

T: Real mild Brown ale, nice malts, wonderful butty flavor
great replacement for newcastle brown ale, if you can find it.

M: Excellent mouthfeel. Nice flavor stay. Great aftertaste

D: Very Drinkable. Could easily be one of my favorite regulars, if it was available in my area.

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Photo of bewareOFpenguin
4.2/5  rDev +19%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A creamy brown ale, well, that was my take on it's taste. It was wholesome, as wholesome as a beer can be. Poured a nice brown color, but it had a character all of it's own, one that I will be meeting again. Great balance of malt and hops, but primarily the malts are what give it it's great taste.Just plain good.

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Photo of indiapaleale
4.2/5  rDev +19%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice deep brown with a very tall, fluffy head. The fluff doesn't last long and before I get a sip its down to a quarter inch clinging to the sides of the glass.

Smells heavenly. Very toasty, malty with some molasses and coffee notes.

Taste is rich. I get a lot of toasted malt and sweetness along with some nice juiciness in the finish. This is a very tasty brown ale. I don't have anything bad to say about it.

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Photo of ommegangpbr
4.15/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours with a big crazy tan head that threatens to take over the world. Hints of lace leave a reminder of the previous heady carnage. Color of the body is a transparent medium-dark brown along the lines of a cola.
Thin bodied coffee with a splash of lowfat milk... maaaaybe a dash of sugar. Very, very dry for a brown ale and I'm diggin it.
The scents coming off of this guy from my weisse glass make me think of beer freshly poured from the tap. Aromas are bready for the most part with a hint of sweetness; maybe some spice. There was some dust on the bottles I picked up but I can't help but thinking "fresh" when I smell this stuff.
The taste, mouthfeel and finish make me think of dark bread with an edge of burnt sugar presence. Once upon a time I had molasses cookies; this makes me think of them without being so sweet.
I could imagine sitting at a bar with this as one of the happy hour specials. Very drinkable and very accessible. There's a little bit of bitterness that might not put off one who normally drinks macro brew. It could help one to start thinking about beer in a different way.
BA's should find this guy to be an enjoyable, sessionable brew.

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Photo of williamherbert
4.14/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark reddish brown color, like a dark cola. No head whatsoever. Can see through it but it's still a bit murky. Zero carbonation.

Smell of dark chocolate as well as a roasted malt backing. Has some of the bittersweet qualities of a Scotch ale. Dark and quite nice.

The taste is dark caramel; malt is more mild than the burnt smell. Sweet but with a balance. Some tobacco, beef jerky. Sweetish berries come out as it warms. Complex and utterly pleasant. Leathery.

Dry but smooth. Medium body just this side of watery. It's really easy drinking for a so-called "real ale." Rich with smoky, darker flavors, but not harsh ones. Excellent drinkin'.

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Photo of SheepNutz
4.1/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz. bottle poured into a tulip-style glass. It pours a deep dark ruby color with two fingers of off-white head. There's a good amount of lacing. The smell has some roasted malt character and a hint of cocoa even. Maybe some molasses too. The taste has more of that roasted malt sweetness. It's not too strong and it has just the right amount of sweetness. Almost a touch of pecan on the finish. The mouthfeel is fairly thick and smooth on the tongue. The drinkability is really good as well. A solid brown ale.

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Photo of Nipitato
4.1/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Purchased at the brewery in Bar Harbor, ME.

A: Brown with significant amber highlights. Thin off whtie head with good retention. Brilliant clarity.

S: Initially nutty and toasty. Some fruity character. A reasonable dose of diacetyl which adds to the aroma rather than detracts from the other characteristics. Some subtle chocolate. A touch of hop aroma.

T: Taste is similar to aroma. Malt is nutty and toasty with some caramel notes. Hop bitterness finishes. A dry finish with not too much aftertaste. some fruity flavors with a good dose of diacetyl.

MF: Medium body. Silky smooth, moderate carbonation. All of this combines for an excellent mouthfeel.

D/notes: Very drinkable. A solid well made brown ale - good taste, well balanced.

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Photo of kmpitz2
4.1/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle. The glass fills with a solid brown brew that has a finger and a half of light tan head over top that falls to a half finger and finally to a light film over top. Clarity appears to be very good and only a few stray bubbles are apparent. This is a nice looking brew. The aroma is lightly brown sugar sweet, with a moderate roasted grain edge, and a kiss of caramel. It is a very subtle smelling brew, which I like for this one. Taking a drink, I find a light caramel balancing a moderate roast, moving into a caramel and brown sugar sweet again, finishing with a mild bitter bite with a touch of herbalness in the hop. Mouthfeel is moderate with a mild carbonation. It feels nice and full and compliments the flavor nicely. This is easily a session brew. It packs a nice, and balanced, bit of flavor, has some body behind it, but not too much to make it big, and is just downright tasty. This is one that could find its way into my fridge as a solid drinking brew.

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Photo of RonfromJersey
4.1/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

light brown to red clear body, topped by two fingers of dense, but rapidly decaying, foam-rubber looking foam. Minimal lacing.

Aroma features some earthy hops, nuts and cocoa.

A nice deep malty start, a bit of chocolat, similar to a good octoberfest, substantial but not overly sweet. The malt is quickly joined by strong brush of balancing earthy hops, which assert themselves without dominating. Malt and hops fade gently away, arm-in-arm.

Good medium-to-light mouthfeel. Very good drinkability.

A pleasant surprise to find in a local story, nicely done.

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Photo of jmalex
4.08/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The final of the 4 regular offerings from Atlantic Brewing Company that I picked up on my trip to Maine. This was probably my favorite beer that I had on draught there, but now I get to sit down with a bottle.

APPEARANCE: Pours a reddish deep brown into a shaker pint. The beer is very clear despite the dark color, and the head is off-white and one finger high. It drops slowly to an almost full surface coating and is constantly being replenished. Picture perfect!

SMELL: The aromas are perfectly restrained yet strong enough to appreciate. Nutty, toasty, and a bit of burnt malty chocolate dominate the nose. Hop aroma is very minimal but seems slightly spicy.

TASTE: With such a nice aromatic smell, I expect the same in the flavor but don't get it. Simple light malty flavor with a hint of roasted grains are most of the flavor. Astringent black malt is apparent in the finish. Hop flavor and bitterness actually comes out a bit as the beer crosses the palate, though without any specific flavor profile.

MOUTHFEEL: The mouthfeel is light and carbonation is low creating a watery feel. This is an English-style ale however, so this would be somewhat expected and appropriate.

DRINKABILITY: Definitely my favorite from Atlantic Brewing and such an easy drinker. And true to English style, it's definitely sessionable.

It's not often you see an American-brewed English brown ale, but this one is pulled off quite well. I only picked up 2 bottles from the brewery, but I'm conveniently able to get it at home, which I can definitely see myself doing.

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Photo of lehows
4.08/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Picked up a 6-pack at Bellport Beer, this brew poured a dark mohogany color with a small but fine off-white head. Nice aromas of malt and lots of fresh grain, very earthy. Lots of malt flavor hits the tongue but it is extrememly smooth. Crisp and grassy notes of grain flash on the finish. Not much hop presence but thats not what they were going for here. Extremely drinkable and light on the palate. Definite session brew, great year-round, recommended.

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Photo of allengarvin
4.08/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served into a 12-oz mug, this is a reddish-tinted brown beer with a creamy lasting third of an inch of head. Malty nose with caramel crystal-malt notes. Flavor mostly consists of nutty, toasted malt, with a touch of bread-crustiness. Bitterness is apparent but no hop taste: emphasis is on a complex, interesting malt profile. Finish leaves an short aftertaste of lightly roasted malt. Body is a little thin and watery--not entirely inappropriate for the style.

This is the most interesting of the Bar Harbor beers I've had. A solid, drinkable brown ale.

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Photo of santoslhalper
4.07/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearence: Pours a clear, deep amber (almost brown), with a thin off-white head. Decent head retention, little carbonation.

Smell: Strong coffee and brown (for lack of a better descriptor) notes, with good, solid, strong, balancing English hops.

Taste and Mouthfeel: Smooth, creamy, and ever-so gentle and subtle. The complexities are so subtle yet tasty. Brown notes throughout with strong malt flavors, finishing with a nice amount of hop bitterness.

Drinkability and Overall: A nicely balanced brown ale that is easily drinkable. Definitly one I'd recommend to anyone who wants a tasty, slightly complex session brew.

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Photo of jlindros
4.07/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a huuuge head that takes up the whole Allagash tulip glass but quickly beds back down in time for me to pour some more. The giant bubbles precariously pop themselves down to a tetris looking holy mess. It attempts to be clear at the bottom of the glass, but has a huge haze through out. The marron colored dark brown-sugar brown color has a nice surprising brightness to it.

N: A pretty clear amber style ale to start. Light toasted malts, crisp aromas, slight red like fruit, and slight sweet brown sugar. Seems to have some aromatic malt aromas as well, and touch of nuttiness and spice.

T: If I can cut my way through the head I'll attempt to taste it... Wow, surprising, lots of roasted malts and dark crystal malts to start, lots of coffee and caramelized brown sugar. Other toasted flavors and some nuttiness. A slight chocolate malt as well. A very slight bitter. Pretty rich and creamy as well.

M: Semi thick and very very slightly syrupy, lots of carbonation.

F: Finishes very clean too. A little sweet and creamy still, but the high carbonation really helps clean the tongue off. A slight sweet caramel like taste sits at the way back of the tongue and never really goes away, but you can't taste it much and the rest of it is very clean. A slight bitterness pops up to tell you "Bob's your uncle" and heads back under for a pint of it's own I suspect. This would be a really good session beer.

Final thoughts: Very nice beer surprisingly. I was almost expecting an amber type ale from the nose and not knowing anything about it. Low and behold a nice rich roasted dark malt slightly sweet and semi bitter English brown. Hence the "Real Ale" which I guess I overlooked. Not only does it have all the nice dark rich flavors, but its still fairly light in body, presence, and alcohol so you can drink a bunch of em if you wanted no problem.

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Photo of spiffysamurai
4.05/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Came in a clean brown shade. A little dark but clean.

S: Smelt of nuts primary with a hint of chocolate.

T: The beer tasted of light nuts and a hint of chcolate.

M: The mouthfeel was great. The beer was smooth with a malty body.

D: the beer was very drinkable. the maltiness slowed it down a little bit but enoguh to enjoy the beer.

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Photo of oldirtycaffrey
4.05/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a beautiful tasting, robust beer! The appearance is a dark brown with a slight red hue. The smell is strong, a little bitter, with hints of oak -- very fresh aroma to it. The taste is also strong and slightly bitter, slight hint of coffee/espresso. The mouthfeel is good for a somewhat bitter beer such as this, but it really is flavorful. I'd love to spend a night drinking only this.

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Photo of doerickson
4.05/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Brown coloring with an off-white head that quickly vanished. Primarily toasty malt aromas with a bit of earthiness. Light carbonation contributes to the slick mouthfeel. Taste is the picture of balance. Sweet malts up front are quickly sliced into by a crisp hop bitterness. Notes of fruit and a slight paper taste. Finish is pretty short and dry. Another high quality beer from the state of Maine.

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Photo of ummswimmin
4.05/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I poured this beer into my snifter. I get really light foam from the initial pour. This foam sits around for a while.

In the nose I get the english hops and malts. This smells just like you would expect an english ale to smell.

The flavor is good. You get more of what came through in the nose. There is some additional nuttiness and a touch of sweetness in there. I like the balance of the flavors in each sip.

This is a pretty good example of an english brown ale. I recommend trying a bottle of this.

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Photo of jcdiflorio
4.04/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured with a slight off white head,a dark ruby red color.Seemed a little on the flat side,could have been served too cold.Smelled sweet,spicey,nutty.Taste nutty,carmally,chocolatly.A nicely balanced beer .A dry finish,slightly tart a choclate aftertaste.A medium body,slightly cloying mouthfeel. Very tasty and very drinkable.

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Bar Harbor Real Ale from Atlantic Brewing Company / Mainely Meat BBQ
3.53 out of 5 based on 365 ratings.
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