Brawler Pugilist Style Ale | Yards Brewing Co.

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Brawler Pugilist Style AleBrawler Pugilist Style Ale
1,148 Ratings
Brawler Pugilist Style AleBrawler Pugilist Style Ale

Brewed by:
Yards Brewing Co.
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: English Dark Mild Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
The most approachable of our ales, Brawler is malt forward and delicately hopped for a knockout flavor. Its smooth character, hints of caramel and toast, and remarkable drinkability define this ruby colored brew as a true session ale. Perfect when you want to go more than a few rounds.

Added by garcia2a on 12-10-2008

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Ratings: 1,148 |  Reviews: 316
Photo of iuhoosier336
3.77/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into my dogfish head glass. I got about two fingers of head but it went away a little quick. There wasn't much carbination. The color was a very dark red, very pleasing.

The smell is of malt and some citrus. The taste is of strong malt which I get from a lot of Yards' brews. The malt is followed by a nice oakey finish. The mouthfeel was good.

This is a good session beer that I could go for more than one round of.

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Photo of jwc215
3.15/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had on-cask at Pizzeria Uno, Metuchen, NJ:

Pours hazed/clouded/murky brown. A thin head soon becomes a swirl.

The smell is odd - musty (woody?) It has a floral/herbal presence that just doesn't fit so well.

The taste is woody/mossy oak with some raw hops (though not bitter - herbal, but sweet). Water comes through. Odd. It has a semi-sweet finish.

I bumped up the score of the "feel" a bit as it progressed. Didn't really go anywhere, pretty thin, but in a way appropriate enough for the style.

This is an odd one. I know - the word "odd" again. But, the mustiness really doesn't work for me here. Not "bad", but not more than mediocre.

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Photo of jlandis
4.02/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Deep translucent brown with a thin to non-existent white head that quickly dissipates.

S - Crisp malty caramel with bready toasted grains.

T - Malty and simple with hints of caramel. Also picked up very subtle green apple yeast flavors.

M - Light and thin with restrained carbonation

D - Very drinkable! A perfect balance of flavor in a session beer. One of my favorites from Yards.

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Photo of ColForbinBC
3.96/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

12oz bottle poured into a pint

A rather clean, clear brown body with slight auburn highlights. A 1 finger off-white cap rose, subsided to a thin layer and hung around for the duration. Scattered lacing.

Cleanest malts in town. Lightly sweet caramel, bready, cereal-like. Toasted grains.

Sweet caramel and toasted grains dominate. Very clean malt profile with a mild earth hop balance that hangs real low and adds a low end musky element. Faint maple syrup in the finish.

Medium bodied. This beer is gritty up front, but finished smooth and creamy.

Coming from a hophead, this beer is almost devoid of any hops, and I would still drink this all night long. Highly sessionable. I am glad that Yards is back up and brewing again.

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Photo of Dulliwhig
3.73/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A- clear reddish brown, no haze whatsoever, 2 finger thick off white billowing head that gets gets chunky and globby as it settles
good lacing and the creamy head had good retention

S - Brown sugar, caramel, maple syrup, plums

T - subtle sweet toasted breadiness, slight hop bitterness, a good flavor but understated and lacking fullness and

M - creamy and smooth, adequately carbonated at first, but toward the end of the glass, it was undercarbonated,
slightly light body

D - the mildness of this beer and ABV make it a good candidate to drink a few. It goes down easy and would be
good for a fishing trip.

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Photo of BillManley
4.6/5  rDev +24%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I know that big, high-alcohol, massive flavor beers are en vogue at the moment but I'm really starting to appreciate the easy drinking subtleties of a mild.

During Philly Beer Week I must have sample over 100 different beers and one of the beers that sticks out in my mind is truly Brawler. After 4 plus 12 hour days of drinking, brawler is just what I had been searching for. An easy drinking flavorful, low-alcohol beer that I could sip on all afternoon without loosing my head.

Kudos guys...job well done. To make a tasty beer with big flavors in a session strength is no easy feat.

I hope more breweries follow suit and I can't wait to get back to Yards and try another glass of Brawler.

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Photo of drtth
4.3/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Chilled and poured into Duvel glass and allowed to warm some over the course of the tasting. Glass of cold water on the side to sip from periodically.

Appearance: Pours clear dark amber or copper with ¼" light tan head which fades to a thin film with a rim of foam around the edge of the liquid. Sipping leaves behind nice strands of lacing.

Smell: Light, sweet, bready malt smell, caramel with hints of brown sugar and fruit.

Taste: Sweet malt with nothing particularly strong or dominant. The sweetness does not cloy and just disappears in a dry finish without the hops ever having made a serious showing beyond a touch of earthy bitterness that begins to emerge mid-way through the sip.

Mouthfeel: Light creamy carbonation and a medium length malt finish.

Drinkability: This is explicitly brewed to be a session beer, which means you should be happy to have 5 or 6 of an evening and not be falling off your seat. I think it succeeds admirably. Another characteristic of a good session beer is you find it just as or even more interesting in the 3rd or 4th pint. I haven't tested this beer that way but I suspect it would pass.

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Photo of KOPBeerDrinker
3.55/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from bottle into a pint glass. Head was almost non-existent and dissappeared completely very quickly.

Smells only of malt. Reminds me of the smell of Yuengling.

Tastes bready with some sweet caramel notes.

Mouthfeel is medium. Crisp carbonation with not much of an aftertaste. Could probably drink quite a few of these.

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Photo of Seanibus
3.48/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A pleasant trifle of a beer, particularly if you are looking for a malt-forward session beer.

Pours dark cherry amber with thin head. Aroma of roasted malt. Flavor is smokey and roasted like a light porter. Little hop influence but a nice smokey, woody character, like a brown ale or porter. A little sourness on the finish. Mouthfeel is light but with a surprising cling. Mellow and drinlable.

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Photo of srandycarter
3.17/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Like a clear, reddish tea. Nice head, reduces to disk. Lots of sticky lacing.

S - Barnyard, base smells. Maybe a little ashtray too.

T - Sweet malt, not much else to back it up.

M - OK... Medium body, yada yada.

D - Glad to try, just so many beers out there. I would session if it was all I had.

Just kinda dull, and the barny smell a bit of a put off.

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Photo of Beertarded
2.94/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I must say this is not the Brawler I remember from years ago. Additionally, the flavor did not vary from the one I had on cask to the one I had from the bottle. I found it malty and sweet, too sweet. It had a biscutty aroma with no presence of hop whatsoever. I would rate this beer a "C" at best.

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Photo of MikeRa
4.03/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Yards Brawler has a excellent brown, almost amber, looking color, most certainly from the malted barley that was used. You can also taste the hops that were use and smell the aroma of the hops. It has a unique taste to it. It does also have a nice aftertaste to it as well.

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Photo of ffejherb
3.36/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz. bottle into shaker pint glass on 2/5/09. Thanks to sholland119 for sharing.

A - Poured a clear reddish copper color with loads of carbonation and a finger's width of thick, bubbly beige foam that retained well and left a bit of lace.

S - Initial aroma is very macro-esque with hints of toasted grains, corn, maple syrup, earth and bark. Nose is quite gritty, if you will. There's also a good bit of caramel malt sweetness present.

T - Toasted grains and sweet caramel dominate the flavor of this ale. Hop bitterness is scant, though there are distinct gritty, earthy undertones, which are in sharp contrast to the sweetness.

M - Medium bodied with a syrupy texture and quite a carbonated mouthfeel overall. Finishes with a mild bitterness across the palate.

D - Brawler isn't bad per se, but it's also not too terribly exciting. This could benefit from a cleaner hop profile to balance its malt-forward flavor. If you like grainy, malty brews, give it a shot.

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Photo of Gavage
3.96/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance: clear brown in color with a 1" head that produces some mild lacing on the glass.

Smell: mild malt sweetness is all that comes through.

Taste: mild bready and grainy malt base. Caramel, hint of ripe fruit sweetness, and a soft bitterness.

Mouthfeel: lightly crisp to start, smoother towards the finish. Medium bodied. Aftertaste is very short and almost clean.

Drinkability: superb session beer with low alcohol content. Simple beer with a nice flavor profile does not bore you.

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Photo of NJpadreFan
4.1/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Yards- Brawler

A- Clear golden brown with a frothy, good lacing, head.
S- Brown sugar, molasses, and a light touch of sweet fruity raisins.
T- Thick sweet malt. Brown sugar, molasses, and a dusting of cocoa powder make up the body of this 1.
M- Thick sweet malt up front and throughout with malty, somewhat dry earthy hop finish.

Overall- Sweet and malty, not bad for a mild.

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Photo of Finn
3.98/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From a fresh Yards variety case. Served in a imperial pint glass.
Color is a ruddy red with brilliant clarity. A creamy head rests on top, and dissipates after anfew minutes. Aroma is mild chocolate/roasted malts, with a very "grainy" aroma, which is a bit sharp. Smells most similar to a brown ale. Flavor is of mild roasted malts and a tad of bitterness to balance it out. There is a very subtle sweetness behind the roasty flavors. The finish is a bit astringent, much like the sharp grainy aroma, but this isn't a bad thing. Moutfheel is on the lighter side of things, but we're not talking bud light here: there's still a little something to chew on, and it's a little creamy, and the carbonation is moderate.
Drinkability? As the label states, yes, you could drink a few rounds of this. It's a unique "Brown Ale Light", and worth a shot.

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Photo of eldondre
4.1/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I don't have a ton to add to the previous posts but I did want to agree that this is not the Brawler I remember. Additionally, the flavor varied considerable from the one I had on cask to the one I had from teh regular draft system. I found it a malty, caramel accented smooth ale when drinking from the cask but the regular draft was entirely too sweet for my taste. I would rate the cask version a B+ and the carbonated version C+.

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Photo of fishtownhxc
3.58/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

great session ale. the nose has a nice biscuity aroma, which matches the chewy caramel flavor you get from the body. i also got a slight butterscotch (diacetyl) flavor, which goes well with the malt forwardness of this beer. no noticeable hop aroma or bitterness, at least that i could tell. i could easily drink a few of these in one sitting. nothing that will floor you, but a good drinking ale for the long haul.

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Photo of edskirk3
4.13/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bought a case over the weekend. The brewery is about 12 miles away so I know its fresh.

The neck label could easily be mistaken for Sam Adams Boston Lager. I wonder if that's on purpose.

Pours amberish copper with an off-white head, about 2 fingers. The head eventually wears down to a thin layer, with some minor lacing on the sides of the glass.

The aroma is bready and biscuity.The taste is very soft. Toasted biscuit with caramel. There's a fruity note reminiscent of apple cider and just a whisper of hops if you taste carefully.

Smooth and most importantly, drinkable, which is what I imagine Yards is going for here. I could easily go more than "a few rounds" with this.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
3.88/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Well this is certainly not the Brawler that I knew and loved. It's totally changed. What was once a creamy, malt and hop accented pale ale is now more of a soft, caramel-accented pale ale.

Delivered to the bar via tap it has a clear copper-colored body beneath a short head of creamy off-white froth that holds well and leaves some nice lacing about the glass.

If you tilt the glass to the side you can watch as very tiny bubbles run slowly up the side until they join the short-lid topside. And in the mouth that fine-bubbled moderate carbonation and medium-light body leave it creamy and smooth.

The nose is limited, but it expresses some grainy malt and a hint of fruitiness.

The flavor is more pronounced, and it's slightly biscuity with a dollop of soft caramel and a bit of grainy toastiness. A hint of pear and apple comes and goes due to the yeast, and some mild leafy and grassy hop notes are found in the background.

Perhaps not surprisingly, this is a rather drinkable ale with just enough character to keep it interesting into a second or third pint. And more than enough drinkability to get you there. Charming!

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Photo of wgarton
3.83/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Nice fluffly white head, dark brown color. Head gives way to a thin lacing of tiny bubble.s

S: Smells smoothly of some light malt along with some nuttiness.

T: The taste jives pretty well with the scent. Light malt and a nutty top note.

MF: Nice carbonation, washes across the tongue as it goes down really smooth. Dry lingering finish.

D: Super drinkable in both alcohol content and flavor, I could go through these all night (it's early yet...) In all this was a really enjoyable beer, and I'm happy to see Yards bring out a great session beer. With all of the strong beers out there this is a great change of pace!

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Photo of SkinnyElvis
4.01/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A new brew from Yards which part of their mixed case. Pours with a thick head that laces nicely. Dark amber in color. Not much smell but a little malt. Tastes of smooth malt. Extremely drinkable. I would love to see this on cask. A worthy brew which would make a great session beer. Cheers.

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Photo of garcia2a
4.1/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours a deep ruby-amber tone and clear. Everso slight carbonation with a fine lacey head that was retained.

The bouquet has nice earthy roasted grains, a sllight hint of toffee and chocolate and then at the end, a hint of malt. This translated well to the body where those roassted grains leave a nice warm biscuit taste on the tone with a smooth, clear crisp finish of slightly sweet malt.

Mouthfeel is what you would expect for a beer of this type. The body is slightly lighter than I would have expected for the style, but this is a fine pub beer that one can enjoy with some banger's and mash or spotted dick.

Welcome back Tom, its been far too long. I can stop hoarding the old stuff!! Met you back in '99 at a charity event at Reading Market through Adrian and George of the Foodery. What a beer night, you, the Troeger's and Jim from Old Lehigh (defunct). Enough soppy stuff, get back to the kettles, I'm running out of Saison!

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Brawler Pugilist Style Ale from Yards Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 3.71 out of 5 with 1,148 ratings