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Brooklyn Brown Ale | Brooklyn Brewery

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946 Reviews
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Brooklyn Brown AleBrooklyn Brown Ale

Brewed by:
Brooklyn Brewery
New York, United States

Style: American Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.60%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by purplehops on 06-10-1998

For Trade:
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Reviews: 946 | Ratings: 2,328
Photo of mdfb79
3.58/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

a - Pours a deep brown color with 2-3 inches of light tan head and light carbonation evident.

s - Smells of chocolate, roasted malts, and caramel malts.

t - Tastes of roasted malts, caramel malts, chocolate, and some hops.

m - Medium body and low carbonation. Pretty smooth.

d - A nice brown ale. Some nice roasted malts and chocolate in the smell and taste. Would have again

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.71/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Best by July 2002 about a year ago, so I will take this into account. Just I will not pour this beer out, must sample and see how it holds up. Appears a very deep amber ruby brown with a cream toffe head very nice looking full three finger sized head that as it dwindles leaves even pattern of trickled lace. Aroma consists of pine cone like hops and a slightly burnt malt character. The two aromas blend fairly well, to form an overall pleasant aroma. The taste is a bit worn by the age, but I can still detect a slightly vinous grap character blended with a mild chocolate/coffe tone and the hop bitterness works well together. Overall one very nice session beer that I will try again due to the age of this one.

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Photo of woodychandler
4.48/5  rDev +21.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

It must speak volumes about my dedication to both CANs and AIPAs that it has taken me over 2,600 reviews before I have gotten around to this one. I am trying to reduce my backlog of bottles so that I may resume The CANQuest (TM) in earnest. Please bear with me in the interim.

From the bottle: "Brewed in New York"; "Ruby mahogany in color, Brooklyn Brown Ale is richer and hoppier than its mild and malty English forebears. Chocolate and coffee flavors punctuate the roasty malt background. Brooklyn Brown is brewed with malted barley, hops, water, and yeast, and will taste best before the freshness date indicated."

Chez Woody's kitchen is much like the alley at the beginning of each episode of "King of the Hill" - nothing happens until the CAN is cracked, the bottle cap is popped, the keg is tapped and pouring, etc. The bottle is like my Old Lady at this point - sweating in anticipation of my touch and ready to pop. Boom! The rush of liquid into my glass was fascinating, creating a big, rolling pseudo-cascade as I watched. Like most males, I am a very visual learner and I was transfixed by the creation of two-plus fingers of dense, light-tan head with great retention. I held it up to the naural light of the day to behold and I was not disappointed. I fully agree with "mahogany", but I might substitute "garnet" for "ruby" (SRM = > 27, < 34) as I need to put my own stamp on this review. Otherwise, I might just do a cut 'n' paste and call it a day. Did they mention clarity? No. I will classify it as "button-bright" and leave it at that. The nose was malty, sure, but cut with a minty, grassy hoppiness. Remind me, why have I not reviewed this until now? Mouthfeel was full and creamy and the taste was like Baby Bear's Brown Ale - just right! The malt was present, but not cloying and the hops were in the mix, but not overwhelming. I have had English Brown Ales that were sickeningly sweet and American Brown Ales that caused me to wonder if the brewer knows when to take his foot off of the gas when it comes to hops. Finish was smooth, semi-dry and eminently drinkable. I do not often drink Brown Ales, but when I do, Brooklyn Brown is my choice. Stay crazy, my friends.

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Photo of jwc215
4.09/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

According to the bottle, it was best served by the end of this month.
It poured a medium light mahogany with medium carbonation and an off-white fizzy head that was, unfortunately, very quick to disappear.
The aroma was a mix of chocolately, coffeeish malt and hops.
The taste was a medium balance of malt and hops. The chocolate and coffee taste were apparent. It would be improved, in my opinion, with a more nuttier complexity mixed in. Overall, it is a good example of this American style of the original British, less hoppier, more malty style.
The mouthfeel was good, almost a bit too sweet, but not sugary.
There was a very slight alcohol taste at the finish.
While not exceptional, it is certainly a good American brown ale.

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Photo of johnnnniee
3.6/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Bottle from Harvest Market.
Pours a deep reddish brown color with a decent sized bubbly off white head that slowly dissipates to a cap. Aromas of caramel and brown sugar with a hint of chocolate and a bit of minty earthy hops to balance. The flavor is malty sweet with just enough earthy hop flavor to balance. Nice malts caramel and hints of chocolate round this one out nicely. Medium body and level of carbonation. Its been a while since I've had a brown ale, but this one is quite serviceable.

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Photo of tdm168
3.88/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - dark, brownish, caramel amber with a thin lacing of brownish, soft head that has little retention

S - caramel, toffee and a citrus aroma that seems present in many of the Brooklyn year-round offerings

T - big roasty characters up front and throughout with some accompanying caramel, toffee, and nutty notes. There is a faint bitter hoppyness to the finish

M - medium bodied and smooth with a crisp carbonation

This is a decent, easy drinking, well balanced brown ale. I like the heavy roasted malt notes throughout. All around refreshing and enjoyable.

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Photo of feloniousmonk
3.72/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: deep, rosy-reddish coppery hue, with a slim tannish layer of film atop.
Aroma: brown sugary sweet, notes of toffee and caramel, light, malty & pleasant.
Taste: hmmm....first of all, the neck label asserts that this asserts a higher hoppiness in contrast to the malt, but, oddly, that's not how I found this brew. Quite the opposite. To continue, tasty mouthfeel, richly rounding the palate and coating it good, brief, but tasty hops, lush, chocolatey malt. Medium body, feeling thinner as we drain the bottle, with a simple, but assured finish.
Definiely tastier than the milder versions out there, (I'm talking about you, Newcastle)but not by too much.
Thanks to 36LbLoveChild for this one.

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Photo of smakawhat
3.04/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured on tap at Matchbox Pizza Rockville into an official Brookyln pint glass. Looks like tulip pint Sam Smith in appearance. Off we go.

Poured with no visible head, and leaving a pretty good faint tan lasting collar around the drink. Body color is a very good mix of clear chestnut and red, more hints of red on this body. Served pretty dam cold, glass sweats.

Bouquet, nothing. Probably because it's a bit cold, but there's a muted wet clean sense but honestly, I get absolutely nothing on the nose. Nothing. Bubkis.

Taste is initially sweet at first, a small bit of nut sense even some buttery feeling in the mouth but not diacetyl. Some minor brown bread on the finish, but the beer's sweetness really seems to come off as a dark fruit raisin. It's also a bit carbonated and prickly.

Overall it's a little sweet, and the dark fruit flavor of it reminds of some sort of weird Dubbel/Brown Ale cross or something. It's not particularly malty or roasty either, but it's easy drinking and can do in a pinch.

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Photo of WoodBrew
3.21/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Back in Johnstown, Pennsylvania AGAIN...for business. Had dinner at the Boulevard restaurant...AGAIN. This night they had the Brooklyn's Brown Ale....ON TAP! The color was a deep rich brown amber with white head that laced well. The nose had a hint of brown sugar or molassis. The taste was a little sharp, but decent. Certainly had rich malt subtle sweetness. The mouthfeel was good thank to the light ABV. This beer is worth a taste and definitely a SESSION!!!

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Photo of BeerForMuscle
3.77/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Nice reddish brown body and very clear.

S - The nose is mostly sweet and malty. Not a whole lot of other scents going on here. I was definitely expecting a malty sweet brown nectar.

T - The taste is quite opposite of the smell. I expected that sweet malt goodness and got a roasty toasted taste. Maybe some slightly smoked/roasted notes.

M - Easy on the mouth. Not overpowering in carbonation, flavor or body.

O - A decent brown ale but pretty one dimensional in its scent and flavor respectively. Still worth a shot.

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Photo of vfgccp
3.52/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A - Deep cherry amber color. Off-white head sits low with poor lace.

S - Semi-sweet. Brown suar and oak. Raisiny malt. Slightly sour backnotes.

T - Nutty malt. Pine and wood hop character. Oak-line dryness. Light raisin backend.

M - Med body with a semi-dry finish.

O - A nice session beer with a nice flavor.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
3.88/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle and served in a tumbler pint, the beer is a vibrant, slightly translucent ruby-brown coloring with a short stacked, off-white, light head that quickly settles down into a filmy coating with a ring of bubbling around the edge of the surface. Aromas are rich, roasted, and nutty, with a touch of toffee throughout. Smells sweet, but not overpoweringly so. Flavors are blended well and smooth throughout, with a roasted nut backbone that has touches of hazelnut as well chestnut and peanut characters. Sweet buttercream highlights keep all of the flavors playing along together, leading to a light, creamy aftertaste and a quick, clean finish. The increased carbonation and light body keep the beer from becoming cloying or overpowering. Very easy to drink with a very decent flavor profile overall. Tasty.

 824 characters

Photo of Billolick
4.07/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle, best before dating of August 04. Pours almond skin brown, clear, off white head, leaving some lace. yeasty, bready nose. Soft caramel, nutty, coffee flavor notes. Nice subtle maltyness. Medium bodied. Moderate carbonation. Hops well in background, mellow , with a slight grainy texture. Very drinkable, pleasant quaffer.

 337 characters

Photo of tempest
3.8/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at Faegan's in Syracuse. I've never really liked brown ales, including Rogue's Nut Brown Nectar, until this beer.

Rich brown body, poured with a short head in the pint glass and left a little lacing.

Not a lot of smell, but malty and sweet.

A rich malty taste that is strong but not overpowering. Some sweetness, but the main focus in on the malt.

Easy in your mouth and easy going down.

This is a great brown ale and I'd gladly have it again. Recommend for any malt lover. I could drink a lot of this one, it's damn tasty and satisfying.

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Photo of Tone
3.73/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear, dark brown color. 1/4 inch head of a pale tan color. Good retention and good lacing. Smells of hops, hint of alcohol, a burned grain smell, citrus, and slight yeast. Fits the style of an American Brown Ale. Mouth feel is smooth and crisp with an average carbonation level. Tastes of hops, sweet malt, slight roasted malt, a woody flavor, and finishes with some citrus. Overall, a rather interesting blend and body, but in a pleasing way. Props for a unique brew.

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Photo of WesWes
4.12/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a dark brown color with a thick off-white head that fades to lacing. The aroma is great. It is rich in roasted and crystal malts. It has an intense chocolate smell as well. The taste is good. It is smooth and creamy with a great "brown" flavor created through the use of multiple crystal malts. It also has a decent hop taste that peeks through the malts. The mouthfeel is good. It is a medium bodied beer with good carbonation. This is an awesome brown ale with real malt character; a great sessions ale.

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Photo of Gavage
4.1/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Clear deep bronze / brown in color with a nice 1" head. The aroma is of caramel and sweetness is detected. The flavor is nice as caramel, roasted malt, and light hops are up front, with some mild chocolate and nut tones in the background.

This brew is light/medium in body, and has a smooth and mildly crisp start with a smooth finish. The caramel tone lasts briefly on the tongue. Extremely drinkable - a great session brew.

 429 characters

Photo of liamt07
3.48/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle had at some hipster spot in Greenwich Village, given a stein to pour it in. Bottle indicates best before August 2011.

Poured a dark brown/mahogany with some chestnut highlights. Transient offwhite head head fades to a thin film, some lace. Nose is hoppy, some chocolate and roasted notes. Taste has some good hop flavour. Roasted and mild nutty notes, again a touch of chocolate. Mouthfeel is medium low, borders on thin at trimes. Residual chocolate and nuttiness in the finish. Decent drinkability. Hoppy brown ale, but leaves me desiring more out of this.

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Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a brown color with an off-white head. The aroma has some caramel and toffee malt, as well as some pine from the hops. The flavor is more of the same. I get some nice roasted malt and caramel notes up front, with a decent amount of bitterness and some piney hop notes also coming through. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

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Photo of Wasatch
3.83/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to drseamus for this one.

Best Buy Apr 08

Pours a nice clean/clear dark brown color, nice carbonation, nice one-finger creamy tan head, some nice sticky lacing follows. The nose is malty, some toffee/caramel. The taste is malty, nice touch of toffee/caramel. The finish has a slight bitterness to it. Medium body. Drinkable, a nice brown ale.

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Photo of tone77
3.43/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a dark brown color with a 1 inch head. Smell has a good bit of malts to it, a touch of nutiness. Taste is malts up front, some hops, nuts, a little bit of caramel, somewhat mild for the style. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall is a decent beer.

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Photo of BARFLYB
3.8/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle and fairly fresh from the date. Poured into a snifter.

A- Brooklyn Brown Ale is brown like some of the water from the neighborhood, J/K. This dark brown color is impossible to see through. A nice tan head rises up but falls short before the drinking begins. Minimal lace around the glass.

S- Dark roasted malt with some mellowing hops on the end. Some sweet caramel slight toffee plus some nuts. Not the strongest aroma and you really need to get yer nose in there.

T- Decent enough for a brown and towards the end I warmed up to it. Lightly toasted malt flavor with some light chocolate taste maybe on the lighter end such as cocco. Some hop bite in the end that may be precieved as sour depending on the person.

M- I enjoyed the feel on this although it is a bit on the lighter side. I would say a step below medium bodied. A bit of carbonation probably let the flavor and the creamy feel shine a bit more. Some bitterness detected on certain sips.

D- 5.6% aint to shabby and on the smaller end of some other browns i've tried. In fact i've been seeking out lighter ABV brews recently and this one fits perfectly. A good representative of the style and great for beginners.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
2.88/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours a light brown color with an off white head and lacing. Aroma of caramel, floral/citrus hops and nuts.

Taste: Caramel and slight toffee upfront, hop bitterness chimes in orange citrus flavors. There is a tart twang (overactive ale yeast strain/infection?) and is a touch metallic. Finishes more malty and slightly dry.

M/O: Light medium bodied feel, well carbonated. Overall, without the weird twang this would be a great brown ale. If I get a better sample I will re-review, but the bottle was fresh.

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Photo of plaid75
3.68/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a deep brown hue with a one finger off white foamy head. There was good retention and lacing.

The smell featured a light cramel sweetness with some solid toasted grain notes. Some coffee aroma as well.

The taste consisted of a light sweet grain with some milk chocolate and cafe au lait elements. There was a good drying hop toward the finish.

The mouthfeel was of average fullness.

Overall a nice and drinkable brown ale.

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Photo of biegaman
3.58/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Brooklyn Brown Ale is just that - brown. With a little brightness behind it, however, the beer's dark russet tone alights to an almost maroon shade. This chocolaty-stained colour is gorgeous and, although clear, doesn't really allow any transparency. An off-white foam replete with air pockets envelops the beer like moss on a rock.

The aroma is brash and gritty. Its scents are rough and rushed variations on the style's classics; not coffee but coffee grinds, not roast malts but the singed smell of burnt ones. Hops produce a very earthy aura. The bouquet is coated in an astringent, peaty, lightly smoked coverlet that lends a considerable likeness to overly-steeped Earl Grey tea.

But what seemed like it would be an astringent, unpalatable and overly bitter beer turns out to be an agreeable, savory, classically bittersweet ale. With the flavour of roast malts much more refined in taste, notes of dark caramel, roasted nuts and spongy toffee cake now make their appearance. Chocolate is also introduced into the fold.

Hints of maple, brown sugar and pecans conjure to mind comforting fall-time foods. A stuffy, earthy bitterness ties the flavours together. There isn't the taste of coffee but there is its characteristic element of smoky roastedness. The beer seems more substantial than its 5.5% would indicate. This makes a great session beer to enjoy in cooling weather.

Brooklyn's Brown Ale is neither my favourite Brooklyn Brewing beer nor my favourite brown ale. That being said, it is further evidence that even this brewery's most undistinguished of offerings still rates well above the average. Consistency and craftsmanship are not to be overlooked; I'll take Brooklyn's mediocre over many other brewery's best.

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Brooklyn Brown Ale from Brooklyn Brewery
3.68 out of 5 based on 2,328 ratings.
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