Brooklyn Brown Ale | Brooklyn Brewery

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Brooklyn Brown AleBrooklyn Brown Ale
2,393 Ratings
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:
This is the award-winning original American brown ale, first brewed as a holiday specialty, and now one of our most popular beers year-round. Northern English brown ales tend to be strong and dry, while southern English brown ales are milder and sweeter. Brooklyn Brown Ale combines the best of those classic styles and then adds an American accent in the form of a firm hop character and roasty palate. A blend of six malts, some of them roasted, give this beer its deep russet-brown color and complex malt flavor, fruity, smooth and rich, with a caramel, chocolate and coffee background. Generous late hopping brings forward a nice hop aroma to complete the picture. Brooklyn Brown Ale is full-flavored but retains a smoothness and easy drinkability that has made it one of the most popular dark beers in the Northeast.

Added by purplehops on 06-10-1998

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,393 |  Reviews: 962
Photo of thefireman
4.33/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I got this with a sampler case so I could try a couple styles for the forst time. Pours a rich, dark brown with a nice 1/2 inch head. First taste the rich maltiness, nutty, coffee flavor. Enough hops to balance without being overbearing. Very drinkable any time of year for me. On my list of "must stock" beers.

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Photo of marc77
3.54/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Clear, ruddy deep chestnut in hue. Thick, persistent, dense tan head leaves lace. The aroma is predominantly of dry baker's chocolate and stately toffee along with faintly floral hops. Tame. Biscuit and burnt bread upfront in flavor ensued by mellow cocoa and an herbal tinge of hops. Salty, lightly mineral notes mid palate along with hints of whole wheat cracker. Mild hop bitterness. Light, crisp, with well calculated attenuation and residual dextrins. Finishes mostly clean and dry, with fleeting hints of molasses and savory biscuit. A no frills drinkable brown with enough character to keep the palate interested. Tasty, but mostly unremarkable.

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Photo of kmo1030
3.92/5  rDev +8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

nice apearance with a little bit of a thin head. ruby brown in color.
it has a very pleasant chocolately nutty smell to it, with a touch of hops underneath.
the taste is pleasantly hoppy, with a nutty, creamy, chocolatey finish, that reminds me of walnuts or almonds and chocolate with a little hoppy bite at the end. the malt has a nice roasted flavor.
the mouthfeel is decent in that it is thick enough of the slight richness. drinkability is good, it's nice and easy and not too rich.

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Photo of dwarbi
4.02/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Dark brown color, with a reddish tint. The head goes away quickly, but provides decent lacing. Smells very nutty and complex. Wonderful aroma. Tastes clean, a little light, but very, very drinkable. One of the best "all night" beers made by Brooklyn Brewery.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.71/5  rDev +2.2%
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 BeerResearcher
3.91/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

"The Pre-Prohibition Beer." Shiny cordovan in color with a nice off-white head and trails of sticky lace. Sweet malt and hops aroma with a light fruity bouquet. The malt is caramel sweet and slick. Abundantly hopped with citrusy bitterness and some back of the throat bite. A hint of chocolate and coffee peek through the velvety texture making for an easy to drink brew.

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Photo of bditty187
4.18/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Darkish, reddish-brown, good depth, smallish beige head, a little less than a finger’s worth, soapy retention, some unorganized lace. The aroma seems a tad muted, nicely hoppy, spicy, floral, malty, unsweetened chocolate. Awesome palate, it makes you rethink what a brown ale can be, bittering hops establishes the flavor profile with subsequent toasty malts, floral, pine, spiciness… very well constructed. Unbalanced, leans towards the hops but the caramelized influences create a nice linger aftertaste. Dry finish, leafy. Ideal carbonation, excellent mouthfeel, medium-bodied. This is a very impressive brown ale, recommended… thanks stegmakk for the sample!

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Photo of Gusler
3.95/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

One of the better offerings in my humble opinion from a great Eastern brewery, and second only to their Double Chocolate Stout in my heart and on my master list for this brewery.

A deep unblurred sangrineous color on the pour, the head portly in size, spumescent in texture, a winsome light beige in color and a thick sticky sheet of lace to conceal the glass. The nose is sweet malt, crisp and slightly floral, a real treat for the old schnozzle with a rich malt start that is somewhat sweet, and the top fair to middling in feel. Finish has a perky acidic bite, the hops pounce on your palate, like the Brooklyn Dodgers did the Yankees? Quite dry aftertaste and a real sweetheart of a beer and a real keeper in my book.

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Photo of SchmichaelJ
3.48/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

One of the first things that struck me about this brown ale was that it looked almost predominantly red, rather than brown. The actual combination of these two colors makes for a rather impressive appearance, along with the small but consistent head. A sweet, alcoholic odor mixed with a subtle roasted fragrance. The same sweetness, coupled with a caramel or toffee flavor comprised this ale's particularly complex taste. Bitter hints were also present, along with a bit of a yeasty or grainy taste towards the end. This ale could have been fuller, however, especially to complement the more complex taste. Nothing beyond average in the mouthfeel of this beer, unfortunately. Overall, the Brooklyn Brown Ale had a good, sweet, somewhat roasted taste that allows for a continuously pleasurable drinking expereince. The beer tastes good, and will not disappoint fans of a darker ale.

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Photo of IrishRedRock
4.25/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a good one!
Brooklyn Brown is that, brown, with a nice red glow to it. Nothing overpowering in the aroma, but sweet malt and toffee is detectable. Mouthfeel could use an improvement...I was hoping for a fuller, richer body. That's my only complaint, and it's not really a very important one.

This brew has a wonderful flavor. Sweet maltiness precedes mellow caramel and chocolate flavors. I could and would drink this all night. Great aftertaste as well, as others have mentioned. Possibly my favorite brown ale...however this does not surprise me as I have only had one other brown ale on tap...Newcastle. Eh, right? Brooklyn's effort is applauded! This is a smooth, malty, flavorful beer. I thoroughly enjoyed it!

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Photo of goz
3.08/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a medium brown with ruby hints to it, medium white head, minimal lacing. Aroma is doughy, chocolate, some nuttiness showing through, and a very minimal hop note towards the end. Flavor is mainly chocolate, some caramel, mildly hoppy finish. Fairly thin in the mouth, feels smooth due to light carbonation.

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Photo of Brent
4.06/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A thing of beauty in the glass -liquid mahogany. A little more hopped-up than the English variety of brown ale, but still retained a fairly mineral crispness. I think brown ales in general get shortchanged because they strive for a certain balance, rather than grabbing attention with excess or novelty. This is a well-crafted brown with good drinkability - I would happily drink more.

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Photo of Running4beer
3.8/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a dark amber/copper with a little hazy color a thick white head that is gone within seconds. A sweet malt aroma is giving off. Taste is similar to the smell sweet malts a slight hint of hops and some caramel. A bit of carbonation on the tongue a smooth taste with an easy going drinkability. A good beer but nothing special about this. Was expecting a little more from this.

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Photo of Stubbie1
2.86/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a real dark orange. Gives off a decent off white head. Doesn’t leave much of a lace. Aroma was a bit nutty but mostly malt, somewhat sweet. Taste was the nose. A nutty malt flavor. A bit dry and bitter at the finish. Nothing to crazy but over all an OK beer.

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Photo of UncleJimbo
4.01/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sample on cask at Redbones.

This cask conditioned ale poured a clear, dark, chocolate brown color with good, creamy, light tan foam. The smell was modest and was mostly floral hops. The taste was initially floral hops, but then chocolate malt and sweet caramel malt flavors poked through. There was a bit of floral hops in the finish. The mouthfeel was very smooth and clean, with a slight chocolate aftertaste. This was a very drinkable brown ale from cask!

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Photo of ZAP
4.07/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A tasty brown ale with nice maltiness, and a very good hop load....pours a cherrywood in color....tan creamy lace...nose is spicy hoppy...leathery...tobacco....medium bodied for the most part but at times it feels a little thin.....soft caramel malt backbone but the hops are what really stand out.....same as the nose...spicy...leafy...leathery...very nice hop flavor....finishes on a dry note....a very good Brown Ale that leans more hoppy than malty....

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Photo of hyuga
4.03/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A well-presented chocolate brown brew with an off-white head that stays very well and leaves lots of lace. I'm glad I poured this perfectly, it's the only bottle I've got and it's not available in my area. I was only able to get this thanks to francisweizen! Anyway, on to the aroma. Certainly smells like a well-hopped beer, I'm getting hints of earthy and leafy hops. Chocolate malt makes itself known quickly, combining very well with the hops. A bit of grainy malt character is detectable under all of this. As for the flavors, it looks like we've got a winner in this department too. Hops are really leafy throughout, hitting their peak in the middle of the palate. Chocolate malt is the major player on the sweetness side, making itself known best at the front and back. Rind-like hop bitterness balances things out. Crisp, dry finish. Nice medium body, but flavorful. Not much complexity, but this is a good, solid beer that will satisfy your palate well. Easy drinking and refreshing, it would make a good session beer. I'd definitely get this again.

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Photo of IPA17
3.73/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

A good product. Not overwhelming in any sense--good or bad-- but a beer that you can drink any time. I brought a six-pack over to 2 different friend's houses (people who don't understand good beer-- and they were both against trying it, preferring their Amstels or Buds) but they were both like "wow" when they tried the Brooklyn Brown. It will not turn off those who normally drink tasteless from beers from the big breweries. For fellow beer advocates: don't look for this beer to knock your socks off but it will satisfy and quench your beer desire.

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

Pours a dark mahogany brown, mostly clear with just a hint of haze. Decent sized head settles to a layer of extremely fine bubbles that lace well.

Smells of baker's chocolate and confectionary sugar with just a hint of earthy hops.

Taste follows suit without ever becoming cloying or bock-ish. Starts with a delicately bitter chocolate note, moves to an earthy, rich yet still dry malt flavor, and finishes with just enough zesty hop flavor to balance the beer out. A wholesome yeast flavor underlies the entire progression.

This is very well-balanced and drinkable; as others have said, it would make an excellent session beer.

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Photo of ElGuapo
4.32/5  rDev +19%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A deep amber or mahogany color witha nice foamy off-white head that leaves lace all over your glass. OH does this have aroma. It has a great malt sweetness that is combined with some spicy hops, and a touch of dark malts and chocolate.

The flavor of this beer is also enjoyable. Tingly carbonation gives it a crisp start. The sweet malts come first with a bit of cherry flavoring to it (atleast it is the same kind of cherry flavoring I got out of one of my homebrews). Chocolate comes in strong, and then you get the roasty dark malts. A fair amount of bitter hops also get into the mix. Just before the aftertaste, you have a hit of chocolate cake. This is a very complex beer, and I did not expect it at all. A medium to full bodied brew that is also very drinkable.

Many different people have selected this beer from the store I work in, and I figured that it was just a trendy thing, since not too many people actually pick good ones, but I am glad I finally got it. A friend said, you haven't had this, Give it a whirl, so I did. You gotta have this one.

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Photo of jeffboo
3.84/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer has all the right stuff for a great session beer.One to have many pints over an evening's conversation. It's a beautiful reddish brown in color with a fluffy tan head. The aroma is a nice combination of malt and hops. There are hints of roasted and chocolate malt in aroma and flavor, with a nice earthiness in hop flavor and aroma. The finish also has a nice balance of malt and hop dryness.This is a great quenching beer, nice smooth medium/light body with an orangy-chocolate flavor in the beginning
and nice hop character for a brown. Well done for an American brown lower alcohol brew, easy easy to drink. Thanks to Francisweizen for the bottle.

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Photo of mzwolinski
4.59/5  rDev +26.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I really enjoyed this beer. It seems a lot more assertive than most other browns I've tried. Vey dark amber/ruby in color, with almost no head at all. Aroma is dominated by rich caramel malt, with a nuttiness than becomes more assertive as the beer warms. The flavor is quite terrific. Starts with a sweet caramel malt, develops some chocolatey notes mid-palate, then gives way to a satisfyingly bitter hop finish. Just when you think it's over, a surprisingly roasty aftertaste kicks in, lending an extra dryness to the finish and leaving you yearning for another sip. Medium-full in body, this was quite an enjoyable beer.

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Photo of vitesse
4.2/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

i think this has to be the epitome of what a brown ale should be.

At first pour: a huge head. i don't know if it was the particular bottle i got, but the head was just enormous this time around. there was a ton of lace on the sides of the glass as well and the head stuck around for quite a while.
The smell of the beer was nice, too. i detected chocolatey and nutty notes there.
the taste was what really does it for me. This beer just put me back in a british pub. i'd say this has to be the quintessential american rendition of a brown ale. They don't go overboard with the hops like most american brewers, so there's a nice balanced malty flavor that comes through.
I would highly recommend this beer to just about anyone: from BA to swill-drinker. It's also a good bargain at $5-6 per six-pack. Just one of the best beers you can ever get at that price.

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Photo of Denali
4.1/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Clear dark brown/red color, nice tan head.

Smell: Hints of chocolate and coffee.

Taste: I was suprised by the initial hops flavor. That flavor is followed by a sweet, almost raisin-like taste, and then finishes with a nutty taste. I liked the three-phase taste - very good.

Mouthfeel: Slightly dry.

Drinkability: Slight alcohol taste, but drinks very easy. I would have no problem drinking this all night.

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

Nice color very little head,nice chocolaty aroma.Nice malty/cocolate flavors with earthy undertones just like a good brown should be.Finished nicelel didnt thin out towards the end like alot of brown ales do.Really enjoyed will have again,hopefully soon.

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Brooklyn Brown Ale from Brooklyn Brewery
Beer rating: 3.63 out of 5 with 2,393 ratings