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Brown Ale | Legend Brewing Co.

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154 Reviews
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Brown AleBrown Ale

Brewed by:
Legend Brewing Co.
Virginia, United States

Style: English Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Our most popular beer, Legend's is a full bodied version of a British Brown Ale. Expect a rich, malt-forward brew with a beautiful mahogany tone. Generous amounts of specialty malts bring flavors of sweet caramel, toasted nuts, coffee, and molasses, all perfectly balanced by a steady but cautious hop dryness. Fruity undertones provided by our house yeast strain bring the final flavor element to round out this world class ale.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 10-04-2001

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Reviews: 154 | Ratings: 468
Photo of johnnyd10vt
4.69/5  rDev +22.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

One of the best brown ales we've ever had. The smell and taste feature an intense caramel note. Perfectly balanced. Light hops. Beautiful dark brown color.

 155 characters

Photo of Cyrano41
4.35/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Brown in Color, nutty rich aroma with a good half inch of head. Good carbonation and nice lacing on the glass all the way down. The nutty aroma carries over to the flavor. Robust flavor you'd expect from a brown ale, but finishes mild. Just shy of bitter but not sweet, very well balanced. I had it on the recommendation a bartender, on tap, a while back and had to look for at my local Total Wine. Great beer! I took a six pack to a friend's and they where a hit even with the MGD die hards.

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Photo of henrysunset
3.86/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

clean filtered reddish brown with a nice big head of tan bubbles. light visible carbonation.

smell is mild, malty and maybe a bit of nutty. sweet tot he nose.

so smooth and easy to drink. light malt finish with a pecan flavor. slight alcoholic tang in the mouthfeel.

exceedingly drinkable and enjoyable.

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Photo of Guppy314
3.78/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Light aroma. Really very well balanced and drinkable. More malt than hops, but nothing is overwhelming. There are also some caramel and molasses flavors. Light carbonation but moderately full mouth-feel.

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Photo of tkelley
3.57/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle from my Beer of the Every Other Month Club poured into a pint glass.

A -- Pretty nice looking body. Its got some stuff flotsam and jetsam floating around in it--sediment, if you will. Nice color, not too dark. Eggshell colored foam with solid lacing and very good retention of a layer of foam.

N -- Kind of nutty. Mostly malt smells here... breads or crackers or biscuits or something.

T -- Straightforward brown ale. Nothing crazy going on. Malty with a nice hop dryness and a little nut or fruit backdrop.

M -- Very drinkable and smooth.

O -- I liked this, i would drink it again.


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Photo of mattbk
3.73/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Dark brown, mostly clear, maybe slightly cloudy. Small head.

Smell: Faintly sweet, not a lot of aroma from this beer.

Taste: At first chocolate, then sweet caramel, and then slightly roasty. At the same time, not overwhelmingly flavorful, but it is fairly drinkable.

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is fairly good for the style, medium-full, just enough carbonation to give it a bit of zip.

Overall: A drinkable, very decent brown ale, won't knowck you socks off but definitely not bad.

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Photo of Steamer
3.77/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours a dark brown with reddish hues; a thick 2-inch, tan head with lots of staying power. The smell is surprisingly hoppy and brisk. The taste is an interesting blend of the hops and malts; citrus-grapefruit, nutty, a little bitter after taste more in line with a mild IPA but still a very good on the palate. Dry and high carbonation mouthfeel. Overall: Although the taste, aroma, and mouthfeel don't track with most brown ales, this brew is very good and enjoyable.

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Photo of danadeny
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a clear earthy brown body and a slightly brownish head. the smell is nice and malty, bready with some caramel and molases, a little toasty-ness. nice and smoth, balanced overall flavor. the front is mildly sweet, hint of alcohol. not as much maltyness as i would have expected. just a hint of a hop kick at the end, but still within balance of the rest of the flavors. the most interesting flavor is the hint of burnt toast in the after tase. Mouth feel is chewy, frothy, slick. and drinkability is pretty good, this could be a session beer.

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Photo of LadyOfMuchBeer
4.01/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance- pours a clear, dark brown with red hues. Little carbonation. Zero head. Lacing sticks to glass.

Smell- Bock, malt, spice, yeast. Smells like a whole grain beer bread we get at a local restaurant. Heavy tobacco smell.

Very grain forward, to say this is bready is an understatement, yet, it is decent. Dark fruit, and still a little tobacco lingers.

Feel- thin, little creamy, little invisible chew left behind due to the grain heaviness here.

Overall, decent, but not impressive enough to ask for another. Got as an extra and am glad I got to try it.

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Photo of nriech
3.93/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Clear light brown. Medium head, some lacing. Moderate carbonation.

Smell: Sweet and malty. A little nutty.

Taste: A decent mixture of lightly sweet caramel with malt. A little citrus hop is balanced in well. Very easy to drink and not offensive to any foods I have eaten with it.

Its overall a pleasant beer thats always fresh as it has a short expiration date and cant be left unrefered. Its always a good solid standby in the Richmond area.

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Photo of byrd
3.83/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I’ve had this brew once previously, but it came to my rescue in the days immediately following Hurricane Isabel when power was out all over the place and my fridge was nothing more then a closet. Oddly enough, one of the only gas stations in the region with power (for days after the storm) was a Texaco only 10 minutes from home. Not having a generator, I had no need to wait in the insane lines for gas, so just stopped in to get something cold to drink. On a whim, I passed by the beer cooler, and to my surprise right in the middle of all the 40s was a row or 22oz Legend Brown Ale bombers. This is the only Legend brew (or micro brew for that matter) that they carry, and I was surprised to see it at all. And after being out of power for a number of days meant no cool beer at home, I didn't ask any questions, and picked up a few bottles. Now on to the review...

Legend pours a nice clear copper color with carbonation cascading from the sides of the glass. A decent head forms on top that is slightly sticky and recedes to a fairly rocky top before falling to a bubbly lace that coats the surface for a rather lengthy period of time. The aroma is a well balance mix of both malt and hops. The malts have a noticeable caramel character while the hops are citric. The start is smooth with the caramel malt notes being evident first. The sweetness is very restrained, and compliments the hops well. Citric hop notes are also well stated and a bit lemony, but don’t overtake the malt flavor. The body is medium with moderate carbonation. Well balance brew that is very easy to drink. Although I enjoy this brew, I’ve had better brown ales.

Addition 09/04
I've since had this brew on tap a number of times at the River's Inn Restaraunt in Gloucester, VA, and have grown to enjoy this brown ale quite a bit. I'll also have to add that I enjoy it more on tap than from a bottle. The mouthfeel is a bit fuller and smoother on tap. The malt charateristics are more dominate. The malt is a little on the sweet side, but doesn't take away from the brew. The hops while still present, tend to have a less citric quality then I had noticed in the bottle. With no other craft brews to choose from at the River's Inn, I'll continue to be a happy customer as long as they keep this one available. Good session brew.

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Photo of hdf561
2.63/5  rDev -31.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Had on draft in legend brewery pint glass at the halligan bar and grill short pump location.

Very dark almost black color, maybe some minimal brown but more black.

Smell some Carmel nutty notes

Taste Carmel, nut

Mouth feel surprisingly smooth heavy finish but drinkable

Overall a decent beer from a local RVA brewery...not tailgater and not to complex just a solid offering

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Photo of eljefe21
4.17/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A: See through, ruby red brown liquid. Single finger head quickly rises and then fades to nothing. Lacing washes off quickly without much of a signature.

S: Sweet caramel and toffee notes. Fairly tame nose like most browns but maybe a touch sweeter than usual.

T: Roasted malts with sweet hints of caramel, toffee and biscuits. Sweetness lingers in the center of the tongue.

M: Medium bodied beer that coats the tongue in sweetness. Decent carbonation lifts some of the flavors.

D: Glad to have found such a good brown that's brewed so close to home. Will definitely stock up the fridge with this since my wife is a fan too. I assume this is a good session beer; it certainly doesn't feel too big. Had this with some sweet biscuits and this was a great match.

Served: in a standard pint glass.

Review from notes taken on: 12/5/09.

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Photo of nofunyons
4.55/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

This is my steady. I always have on hand. The best English style brown ale in the world.

From Legend Brewing Co.;

"Our most popular beer, Legend's is a full bodied version of a British Brown Ale. Expect a rich, malt-forward brew with a beautiful mahogany tone. Generous amounts of specialty malts bring flavors of sweet caramel, toasted nuts, coffee, and molasses, all perfectly balanced by a steady but cautious hop dryness. Fruity undertones provided by our house yeast strain bring the final flavor element to round out this world class ale. 5.8% Alc. By Vol."

 566 characters

Photo of Matt1516
3.53/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Well carbonated ale results in a frothy ephemeral tan head on a dark chocolate body (little lacing). Smells of caramel and sweet malts.

Thin taste but refreshing. Not much by way of hops but lots of chocolate malt and some vanilla tannins. Sweet with a little sourness in the aftertaste but I wish more bitterness prevailed or for a drier finish. A bit cloying in the end.

Still, it's a better than average example of the style.

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Photo of Justin23060
4.09/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark brown leaning toward amber. 1/2 finger head. Smells caramely chocolate with some sweet tobacco and dried fruit. Tastes sweet with a semi-sweet finish. Nice and malty with just enough hop to bitter. Adequate carbination and a creamy mouth feel. Pretty solid offering and quite drinkable. I'd recommend it without any reservations.

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Photo of davidt
3.22/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a reddish-brown color with off-white short lived head. The aroma is caramel with a bit of brown sugar. Caramel malt flavor, not too sweet. Some citrus hops come through at the end giving the beer a bit of a zing. A decent but not outstanding english brown ale.

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Photo of zymurgy4all
3.92/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Nice micro brew brown ale. Highly recommend if passing through Richmond. It has a flavorful malt bill along with some decent hop and yeast flavors. My pour had little head, but some lacing on the glass. Nothing sticks out with this beer--it is just a good beer with good flavor overall. Complex malt nutiness is present that makes it somewhat unique. Very drinkable beer.

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Photo of hops4me
4.03/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I enjoyed this beer alot. I have enjoyed all their beers thus far. Smells of cherries and faint chocolate. Some floral hops in there as well. Taste is slightly sweet with a subtle bitterness balancing it nicely. There is a very faint bitterness on the tongue. Light to medium body. This is a very good brown ale. I will definitely buy again.

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

It has a nice dark reddish brown color, with a decent head that sticks around. Not a lot of aroma, a little bit of malt. Very thick, creamy. Roasted coffee fills the mouth with notes of chocolate in the finish. Mouthfeel is fairly heavy. Very drinkable, I am quite impressed with this one.

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Photo of soupermirl
3.71/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Preety freakin' good. Had it at the Taphouse in Hampton, VA and it was very nice. At first sight, it is a brown ale, nice color. The scent left a little to be desired. Not what I expected. Kind of like old beer, but when I tasted it, yummy, very nice. The taste of malt filled my mouth, followed by an ever so slight hops. Very nice finish. And each time a drank it, I think I enjoyed it more. Nice.

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Photo of MadTown1000
3.88/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the 2nd Street Bistro in Williamsburg - an hour from the brewery, so maybe that helps. At any rate, the bartender described it as "kind of like Newcastle, but with a little more bite less syrupy", and that's a pretty good description. Foam leaves lots of lace as it recedes, and the ale is a very dark golden amber with enough translucency to differentiate it from a heavier style. Has a good deal of carbonation, and some hop bitterness, leading to the aforementioned bite. It also has some of the caramelized sweetness you'd expect, though, and lots of malt, although not as heavy as some browns I've tasted. I just had a pint, but easily could have had more. All in all a very solid beer.

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Photo of paulginva
3.88/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

APPEARANCE: Had this at Flemming's Steak House in Richmond, VA. This was the only craft beer on the menu (the wine menu, by comparison, was some five pages long). Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a pilsner glass (don't blame me -- not my choice), this beer had a 1/2" fizzy, off-white head that dissipated quickly with fair head lacing. The clear brown body showed little carbonation.

AROMA: Aroma reflected slightly toasted malt, with hints of caramel and toffee, together with a light hops inflection of grapefruit and pine.

TASTE: Taste consisted of a nutty roasted malt with some caramel and toffee and a light hop flavor of grapefruit and pine. The hop taste was slightly surprising but not unpleasant.

MOUTHFEEL: This medium-bodied brew's texture was a bit thin with light carbonation. There was virtually no body lacing. The initial taste was sweet, morphing into a lightly bitter dryness with a very slight bitter aftertaste at the short finish.

DRINKABILITY: This was a tasty, well-balanced, brown ale but certainly was not best of breed. It was easy to drink, could be consumed all night long, and was a reasonable value, even at the restaurant's sizable markup. I'd order it again and wouldn't hesitate to serve it to friends.

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Photo of boston2bburg
4.27/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Three plus fingers of creamy head, dense bubbles slowly settling, leaving 1/4" of head over the mahogany-amber body. For all the froth, lacing is minimal.

Watermelon, yeast, bubble gum on the nose. Fruity, malty, refreshing and light, but complex.

Fruity, candied malts up front, while light citrus hops provide a dry finish, and round out the malts.

Mouthfeel is spot on for a brown. Wet at first and dry on the finish.

Easy drinker, sits well. Perfect with some hot dogs watching the afternoon ballgame.

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Photo of tommy78
4.2/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Copper color with medium head, poured out of a bomber.

S: Quite malty in aroma. Picked up some caramel smell as well.

T: My favorite...quite sweet, with the malty aroma translating well into the taste.

M: Low carbonation. Pretty consistent with brown ales.

O: I enjoyed this beer. I tried it with a margarita pizza and the beer complemented the basil and olive oil tastes. I would have this beer again when in VA.

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Brown Ale from Legend Brewing Co.
3.83 out of 5 based on 468 ratings.
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