Fat Squirrel Ale | New Glarus Brewing Company

Your Rating: None
Want it   Got it 
Fat Squirrel AleFat Squirrel Ale
Very Good
1,611 Ratings
Fat Squirrel AleFat Squirrel Ale

Brewed by:
New Glarus Brewing Company
Wisconsin, United States

Style: English Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.80%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by UncleJimbo on 05-17-2003

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 1,611 |  Reviews: 535
Photo of robwestcott
4.05/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

it's new glarus weekend, this one follows crack'd wheat and spotted cow - both of which were quite good.

fat squirrel was poured fairly aggressively from the bottle a nice ruby brown / light mahogany to a sun king shaped pint glass with nearly no head despite the pour - though nice lace after each sip.

aroma of buttery burnt brown sugar and hazelnuts.

sweet malt forward, nutty, brown sugars, and toffee.

smooth, full bodied, light to medium carbonation.

very drinkable.

 477 characters

Photo of ericj551
4.03/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

New Glarus Fat Squirrel pours a red/brown with a nice off white head that lingers. The aroma is sweet, raisiny malt with some earthy notes. The flavor is crisp and malty but not as sweet as the aroma. Similar toffee and dark fruity notes upfront, with some nice mild, herbal and earthy hops. Not much in the way of bitterness, but enough to balance the malt.

 358 characters

Photo of Baraka
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a majestic looking brown with a thin head. hazelnut, vanilla, some coffee dominate the nose. Similar flavors are at play, and to great effect in my opinion. Malt dominated, but not sweet; no detectable hop bitterness. Finishes rather dry. Solid beer for sure, and very sessionable.

 287 characters

Photo of RTrain12
3.63/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured in to my New Glarus pint glass.

A: Pours a toasted brown in color with a 3/4" tannish head. No visable carbonation in glass. Head faded quickly with some lacing left behind.

S: Picking up sents of malt, hazelnut, caramel, and just the smell of brown!

T: Malty at first, then followed by some hazelnut. Leaves a nutty after tatse in your mouth.

M: At first the light carbonaton prickles your tongue. Then it smooths its way over your palate. I would say on the heavier side of medium bodied. It almost feels like a flat pop, in a good way!

D: This is a good Brown Ale! I could see my self drinking a couple on a cold day. Not so much on a hot summer day.

Alewatcher, I'll be over soon with that ABT!

 711 characters

Photo of AleWatcher
3.88/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Got this as an extra in my 4th in person trade with RTrain12-- Thanks again Ryan! Get your kids and wife packed up and come on over to my house-- we'll sample more beer... but bring me some New Glarus ABT!!!

Poured into a pint glass.

The beer pours a coppery brown color with hints of deep golden around the edges. White head stood 3 fingers at its peak, then slowly receded into the body of the beer leaving behind thick globs of lace that some how remind me of the Elvish writing from Lord of the rings-- one beer to rule them all, one beer to find them, one beer bring them all and in the darkness bind them.

The beer itself isn't dark or ominous, just the lace reminded me of LOTR.

Anyway... Smells roasty, nutty, and malty. Some dark roast coffee and cocoa are also hiding in there a little. The notes in the nose all come into play in the taste-- a sweetness early gives up to the nutty and coffee notes which lends a hint of bitterness in which we find a slight hint of cocoa. The finish is roasted malts-- not quite smokey, but about as close as you could get before smokiness became part of the profile.

The mouthfeel is, as usual with New Glarus beer, pretty damn good. The body is about medium with a nice level of carbonation and a smooth velvety feel-- almost slick on my tongue. This is yet another solid beer from what is rapidly becoming one of my favorite breweries. Very easy drinking-- I could gladly drink several of these at a pub somewhere in the Northwoods while "Nashville Skyline" played softly in the background... Oh, I actually have already done that... Well, I'd do it again.

 1,609 characters

Photo of Riccymon
4.32/5  rDev +14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours from the bottle a thin, clear brown with a quarter inch of short-lived head. The aroma on Fat Squirrel is subtle but pleasing. Fruity notes really stand out as unique and are accompanied by some dusty nut flavors. There's also a sweet cocoa/cream note that reminds me of the aroma from certain cream ales.

The flavor of this beer is out of this world for an English brown. Sweet bready malt mingled with a hint of hop spiciness makes for a full-flavored, well-crafted beer. Fat Squirrel feels more robust in body than it looks, which is a plus, but it's still easy-drinking. As before, the sweet, subtle flavors and buttery texture remind me of a cream ale. The beer also finishes quite dry, contributing to its drinkability.

A very well-crafted beer from New Glarus, one I'd buy again if/when I return to Wisconsin.

 825 characters

Photo of rhodeska
3.8/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Nice dark amber pour to it, very little head, almost none at all.

The smell contains some nutty, earthy tones, but nothing stands out as the main ingredient or overpowers the rest.

Nice solid taste, fairly bitter aftertaste. Nothing really superb stands out about this beer, but on a hot summer day like today, it's really refreshing to just kick back with a solid drink.

Good beer, fun label. What more could I ask for while watching the Hall of Fame game?

 461 characters

Photo of Beejay
3.77/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Nice brown with red throughout. The head is off white, and not very prominent. Looks nice.

S: Malt, and a slight hint of oak. Raisons, figs, dried fruit, and some nuttiness.

T: Slightly tart off the bat. A little bit of fruit leads into a sweet nutty flavor. Simple but nice.

M: Light to medium bodied. Fairly strong carbonation. The finish is very clean.

D: Overall very nice, very straightforward. This seems like a nice everyday type of beer. Solid enjoyable, and repeatable.

 488 characters

Photo of dbossman
3.55/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: Redish brown and clear with a thin head that dissipates fairly quickly; lacing is okay

S: Fairly subdued aromas--but a nutty caramel maltiness eventually pervades; a bit of an earthy mustiness

T: Nutty with a caramel sugary backbone; slightly sweet with a fairly rich maltiness; a bit watery

F: A touch thin and watery

D: A bit boring, but it is a fairly pleasant and drinkable beer nonetheless

 401 characters

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

12oz bottle into a pint glass.
A: A deep, dark copper body holds a nice off-tan head. Pours a fluffy head that hold good retention. A nice layer of foamy lace.
S: A subtle malt presence. Caramel and toffee notes.
T/M: The mouthfeel is a creamy lingering taste. A bold profile of flavors is found, but not easily found. The flavors are not the type that jump out at you, they sit on the back burner of the palate. Possibly the malt forward aspects of the beer, put the flavors on the backbone of the beer. It is quite pleasant to find a darker brew that has good all around flavors that are not too over the top. Good beer.
D: I think this to be a great drinkablity of the style, subtle flavors are nice on the malt forward side and for the color and cream notes, it is a very easy drinking brew.

 795 characters

Photo of CSAsylum
3.5/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A- Partially cloudy, perfectly maple-syrup brown. I would have rated it a higher percentage but there was almost no head at all. I couldn't even tell you the shade of the 1/4 finger head that formed because it's appearance was Oh-So-Quick.

S-A little malty, a little non-distinguishable nut. Special Lady Friend says" walnuts" but I;m not sure it's walntuts. But we both agree it's not peanuts or cashews....so some REAL nut, fer shure.

T-It's a malty front end with very definite nut flavors. An alcohol kick with a dry leave. Lips are a little sticky which makes me think the alcohol is thinning out the malt a little bit.

M-The mediumest bodied medium ale your likely to find. This is the definition of a BA 3.

D-My base assumption here is that you _could_ drink it over and over, and you certainly wouldn't end up in a horrible shirts-off, barstool-skootin street fight, but you might have trouble driving home if you didn't pace yourself. So....um...high marks on drinkability with a slight caution; I say.

 1,016 characters

Photo of deereless
3.72/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Decent head with good retention, medium amber in color, a few sticky spots of foam along the interior of the glass - 4.00, S: Very nutty and with loads of caramel and quite a bit of roastiness on the nose, I also appreciate a dry malt aroma - 4.50, T: Malt plays the primary role in Fat Squirrel, some coffee and nuttiness are the first flavors to step up to the plate, hop bite is noticeable though in the background - provides an earthy and somewhat grassy zing - 3.50, M: Medium bodied and with a slight silkiness - 3.00, D: All around a solid beer, coffee flavors play a larger role than I'd expect but I enjoy coffee, quite drinkable - 3.50

 648 characters

Photo of Ottertude
3.87/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Fat Squirrel poured a coppery brown into my pint glass with a thin off-white head that left nice lacing on my glass.

The smell was very pleasing. Some caramel, toffee, pacans, hazelnuts and a touch of maple syrup. The taste was of caramel, some burnt sugar, toffee, nuts and some hops come in later to help balance this. A slight bit of alcohol is present as well.

The mouthfeel is on the thin side for a brown ale. Maybe this helps to make Fat Squirrel plenty drinkable. Just right for when I am in the mood to drink a couple of beers and call it a night. I will seek this out again the next time I travel to Wisconsin.

 623 characters

Photo of bsp77
3.59/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into Nonic Pint.

Appearance: Cloudy dark orange (not brown) with a very creamy lasting head that looks surprisingly nitro-like.

Smell: Mostly caramel malts with light nut-like notes.

Taste: Semi-sweet caramel malts balanced by some nuttiness and very slight English hops.

Feel: Moderate carbonation, relatively light body (especially for a Brown Ale), quite smooth. English pub feel.

Drinkability: Highly sessionable Brown Ale that seems like it could be in a pub in England. The only downside is that it is a little too light on flavor.

 577 characters

Photo of kgebert
4.17/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from my own quarter barrel keg into a 14oz chilled glass. The head is light tan and creamy texture and reduces very slowly. Color appears to be a dark reddish amber color and somewhat cloudy.

Taste -- sweet hints of caramel and nuttiness along with a tiny flavoring of citrus undertone. Great combination of flavorings to compliment drinking with meals or snacks - especially nuts!

Has a nice mouth feel with ample carbonation and goes down nicely. Not a beer I would consider drinking all day and night but a nice treat to hit 3 or so in an evening.

Fat Squirrel Beer has a slightly improved flavor and smoothness coming from the keg vs the bottle. This beer rated high enough in my opinion for me to consider it "keg worthy" and put on tap in my home.

Great Job New Glarus!!

 787 characters

Photo of JohnGalt1
4.1/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Another 12'er picked up in Wisconsin by my Pops.. Thanks RoyBoy.. enjoying this one very much while finishing up some stuff for work tomorrow.

Tan head with great lacing.... short lived though.. the brew is beautiful polished deep amber/lite brown..

Nutty.. lite toffee essence.. clean and malty... very nice.

Flavor is again nutty.. lite caramel.. the malts are just plush from front to back.. maybe some background Noble hops.. toast with some sorta husky astringency on the finish.. hints of coffee as it warms up.... plain and simple, this tastes "brown".

I've had many of these bottles in travels and trades over the years, but surprisingly this is my first review.... I'm glad I waited. Earlier, I probably would have not paid that much attention, but now, I appreciate the nuances of a well made session beer. Warm and inviting.. an every day beer that won't require too much thought because it is so well made.


 936 characters

Photo of yeahnatenelson
3.77/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance -- Pours a deep amber, slight haze, with one finger of tight beige head.

Smell -- Golden toast, faint citrus, grassy hops, some nuttiness.

Taste -- Roast malt, faint caramel sweetness, bread and biscuit, grassy hops. Finish is bright and crisp with floral hop and lemon zest.

Mouthfeel -- Light in body, ample prickly carbonation. Crisp.

Drinkability -- Got to hand it to New Glarus, they know how to make a refreshing beer. Depth of flavor is a bit lacking, but that's not their main focus. Mind-blowing? Not really. Drinkable? YES.

 548 characters

Photo of bigbluebeerguy
3.25/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle into a pint glass. Poured a nice chestnut roan with a thin, off-white head, practically no lacing.

Nose is primarily raisins, coffee, and roasted malts. The flavor follows this pretty well, with a little bit of bready, toast coming through. Slightly bitter.

Mouthfeel is decent. Medium bodied with pretty good carbonation. Slightly drying on the tongue.

Drinkability is good. Although this seems to be missing a little something from a complexity standpoint, I wouldn't turn this down.

 500 characters

Photo of sisuspeed
3.46/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Light orange-brown body with a thick, creamy, white head on top. Head dies down a bit, but still maintains. Some lacing.

Light, sweet malts on the nose, mixed with a bit of nuttiness and faint citrus.

Sweet, crisp bread notes and light hazelnut. Much like the nose. Again, faint citrus, oranges and grapefruit. A pretty good English Brown, but not too much going on.

Mouthfeel is on the lighter side, but has a bit of maltiness. Carbonation is on the lower side, but not too bad. Overall, quite smooth.

Drinkability is good. This is definitely a sessionable beer. However, in the general realm of ales, there are others that I would deem more interesting and quaffable. That being said, I could still easily have a few of these.

Ovearll, this is a pretty decent offering form New Glarus. Nothing exceptional, but an easy drinking ale that still has some decent flavor. I'd be interested in trying this on cask.

 915 characters

Photo of udubdawg
4.27/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Fat squirrel pours decidedly coppery in color, I guess it is sort of light brown. The head is a half inch, somewhere between off-white and light tan. Reasonably clear in the glass.

Aroma has that toastiness I crave. No hop aroma, fruitiness, or diacetyl. Sweet, toast, mild caramel - I dig it.

Though not particularly bitter, the malt dries nicely on the tongue and easily avoids being too sweet and every bit of what bitterness it has shows itself in the finish. More toast, slight chocolate, light caramel. Carbonation is soft, body perhaps a touch thinner than I'd prefer but not out of style, and very, very drinkable.

 624 characters

Photo of Florida9
3.5/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Crystal clear, very translucent, light brown (dark tan) color - I've seen Pale Ales darker then this. Pours from the bottle to form a small, fizzy white head with little retention. Head reduces to a weak ring around the glass. No lacing.

S: Roasted peanuts. Maybe a little caramel malt. Faint.

T: Light notes of roasted malt. Toast. A little nuttiness. Maybe some light brown sugar. Just not a whole lot going on here, but what is of note is how clean and flawless the flavor is. So while there isn't a lot of flavor, the flavor that is there is very clean.

M: Lighter side of medium with appropriate carbonation.

D: Pretty good; really a very easy to drink beer. Quite approachable. Just not very interesting.

 721 characters

Photo of CaptainIPA
3.95/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazed, light chestnut color with a modest head that recedes to a thin layer of cream. Imparts some impressive lacing with each sip. Bottle conditioning results in an audible plop of sediment mid-pour.

Aromas of toasted grain, roasted malt, hazelnuts and maple syrup urge you to prepare for English Brown Ale goodness.

Medium bodied with a crisp and prickly mouthfeel. Toasted malt starts things out with notes of brown sugar, caramel and subtle hints of maple and hazelnuts. Spicy hops enter the fray with delicate, nutlike suggestions surfacing in the middle. Ever present hops contribute to a solidly bitter conclusion. Finishes dry with lingering notes of roasted caramel and barley malt.

Flavorful, refreshing and very drinkable. A good interpretation of the Nut Brown/English Brown Ale style.

 809 characters

Photo of Ryan011235
3.97/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a glass on 5/21/10

Pours a slightly cloudy shade of brown. Kind of reminds me of watered-down cola. Two fingers of tan head dissipates to a thin layer over several minutes. Minimal retention; a little bit of lace.

This smells very extremely earthy & very nice for the style. Piney hop notes are a lead-in to a prominent nuttiness. Lots of roasted malts too, namely caramel. Hints of toasted bread.

The taste mirrors the nose in an excellent fashion; nothing out-of-control going on, just lots of well-crafted good flavor. Modest bitterness by way of piney hops; has a faint notion of citrus, too. Nut overtones with a sturdy roasted malt background - mostly caramel. Some grassiness, too.

Slightly heavier than medium bodied; carbonation is rather low which seems to fit the beer nicely. Bitter residuals & toasted caramel are present on the finish. Mostly clean, though.

Drinkability is quite good. I'll definitely enjoy a few more bottles before calling it a night. New Glarus beers at a gas station? Heck yeah, Wisconsin.

 1,041 characters

Photo of michaelbutler
3.54/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

New Glarus Fat Squirrel Ale

12 oz bottle poured to pint glass

A: Clear, dark brown amber, thin head, dissipates quickly, light lace
S: Slight nutty aroma, overall fairly faint
T: Strong nutty flavor, slight spicyness and bitterness, sweet finish
M: Medium body, medium carbonation
D: Fairly easy drinking brown ale

 324 characters

Photo of Lolli1315
4.15/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Second reviewed beer out of the New Glarus sample pack.

A- A nut brown color that is edging toward a darker brown with less than a finger of head that disappears rather quickly not holding too well.

S- Sweet malt is the first smell that hits the nose followed by subtle hints of hops that are moved away by small amounts of nutty and maybe some crystal malt. A biscuity and bready malt also seems to make its way through.

T- Sweet malty caramel dominates the flavor profile as it melds into slight amounts of bicuit. Very small amounts of dark fruits and hop bitterness as the taste goes back to a sweet malty profile with minimal bitterness in the after taste. Very refreshing brown ale.

M- Medium body with moderate amount of carbonation. Creamy smooth the entire way down makes you keep reaching for this one.

D- Surprised how much I enjoyed this one, could drink it all day.

 883 characters

Fat Squirrel Ale from New Glarus Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.79 out of 5 with 1,611 ratings
  • About Us

    Founded in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.