Old Yankee Ale
Cottrell Brewing Co.

Old Yankee AleOld Yankee Ale
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Red Ale - American Amber / Red
Ranked #85
Ranked #25,767
3.83 | pDev: 14.1%
Cottrell Brewing Co.
Connecticut, United States
Very Good
Old Yankee AleOld Yankee Ale
Notes: Our flagship brew, a medium bodied, American Amber Ale, that has a great up-front malt taste with a refreshing hop finish. Drown yourself in New England with this outstanding session beer.
Reviews: 147 | Ratings: 274 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by Jason:
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Jason from Massachusetts

4.94/5  rDev +29%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Presentation: 12oz brown bottle. Scored freshness date on a classic old New England style label.

Appearance: Copper liquid with an off-white, creamy, bubbly head.

Smell: Dry grain aroma followed by a citrus hop aroma.

Taste: This brew starts with a crisp carbonation paired with a sharp, grapefruit bitterness (almost steel-like at times). This slowly fades into a malty, chewy, sweet, caramelly profile that blends with a leafy/earthy flavour. Unlike many beers, this beer does not finish out entirely dry. A somewhat chewy caramel is left behind in the sweet aftertaste.

Notes: Ohmibeergod this is a complex and delicious beer! A high quality brew. A BeerAdvocate favourite.

Aug 30, 2001
More User Reviews:
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bradco57 from Pennsylvania

4.85/5  rDev +26.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Our restaurant just tapped Cottrell Old Yankee Ale yesterday. I was anxious to taste it since we already had their Mystic Bridge IPA on tap which I thought was fantastic.. The Old Yankee Ale even surpassed that... It was creamy, fresh, tasty and all I could look for.. This is the kind of beer you can enjoy all year round and has real character.
I had never heard of Cottrell until a few weeks ago but I stand impressed. Our restaurant brings in plenty of craft beers and this one ranks amongst the best we've ever had!

Dec 11, 2015
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Rifugium from North Dakota

2.8/5  rDev -26.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

First had: on tap at Standings, NYC, NY

A none-too-impressive pale ale. Poured copper-brown with a bit of a whitish head. Grains in the nose, with citrusy hops in the background. Grains and light citrus tasting, fading to a bitter, somewhat metallic, sweet maltiness. A bit thin. Medium-light mouthfeel, and below average drinkability.

Apr 29, 2011
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PicoPapa from Connecticut

4.05/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle with a "freshest before date" of Dec. Pours a dark, hazy copper color. Not much head and minimal lacing. Smells good. Some earthiness with a sweetness and some pine. A bit of hops as well. Taste is sweet with some malt and hops. Very refreshing and smooth. Overall nicely drinkable. A good beer brewed in CT that I often forget about. I need to start remembering.

Aug 27, 2010
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weazal from California

4.23/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

SMELL: On the bright side. Somewhat piney with strong citrus notes - particularly effervescent lemon. There's an interesting aroma I've not smelled before. Ah! One of the other reviewers nailed. A light mushroom aroma. Which is not at all un-appealing.

TASTE: Overwhelming fullness of body, yet refreshingly bright and quick. Prevailing nutty smokiness that pairs perfectly with mild hoppy bitterness. Spritzy carbonation adds additional layers. Overall, unique, rounded, balanced, and easy to drink. Perhaps a bit lacking in the flavor department, but not too detrimentally.

Feb 19, 2011
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Rhettroactive from Pennsylvania

3.13/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

From 12oz bottle to stemmed wine glass on 6/13/11
*From notes

A: Earthy sand with a off-pink hue. A careful pour yields a two finger head and passable lacing.

S: Like a German Pils. Über toasty grain and late harvest barley. If the bouquet was a season, it'd most certainly be Autumn.

T: Bitter grain and malt. It's like pumpernickel that's been left in the toaster too long. This is most certainly an olde-timey New England APA.

M: Creamy and spot-on carbonation. Far and away the standout of the brew.

O: Cottrell's Old Yankee Ale may very well be a good beer, but when I think APA, this ain't it. It just doesn't fit the bill in most any category - nose, taste, etc. I respect it, but I also won't reach for it the next time I want an American Pale.


Jun 23, 2011
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woosterbill from Kentucky

3.98/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

On-tap at Prime 16 into a shaker pint.

A: Clear bright amber body underneath an inch of frothy tan foam. Decent retention and some sticky, feathery lace. Not bad at all.

S: Toasty caramel malt up front with some understated floral hops providing bittering balance.

T: Big round malty flavors of toastiness, toffee, and butterscotch, all offset with a pleasantly crisp, bitter hop finish. Very clean and tasty, if a little boring.

M: Fairly thin with solid carbonation. Middle of the road at best.

D: Unquestionably a quintessential session beer, this goes down extremely easily.

Notes: I was blown away by this when I first had it in bottles a couple years ago, but this is just solid - by no means great. Ill have to grab a sixer and rereview, or see if my tastes have just changed. Still, one of the best beers brewed in CT.


Dec 09, 2009
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wrightst from Maryland

4/5  rDev +4.4%

Jun 23, 2014
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HopStoopid120 from Connecticut

4/5  rDev +4.4%

Nov 15, 2011
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tone77 from Pennsylvania

3.31/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a cloudy copper color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is rather mild, some hops are present. Taste is hops up front, some malts, good tasting but not overly flavorful. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall is a pretty good beer.

Sep 17, 2011
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gbrill from Arizona

3.5/5  rDev -8.6%

Jun 09, 2012
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ngeunit1 from Massachusetts

4.05/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a hazy orange-red color with a finger of frothy white head. The head fades down to a ring around the glass leaving behind some nice lacing.

S - Aroma is a mix of sweet toasted caramel malts and a touch of grassy hops. Not overly complex, but it is decently present.

T - Starts off with a nice blend of sweet roasted caramel malts and some grassy/floral hops in the background. Very nicely balanced. Through the middle some sweeter caramel flavors come through. The finish adds a touch of bread flavor alongside some hop bitterness with lingers nicely.

M - Medium-light bodied with moderate tingly carbonation. Smooth and crisp with a nice semi-dry finish.

D - Very drinkable. Nicely balanced smooth flavors and really crisp feeling. Also, the flavor is not overly powerful, but there is plenty there to enjoy.

Apr 14, 2011
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Chico1985 from Massachusetts

3.55/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I've had this a few times before, threw this one in a mix-a-six for a review. Very low key brewery for being somewhat local, I believe this is their staple beer.

Pours a hazy darkish orange, decent off-white head, eventually drops to a slight cap and ring, some lace left.

Nose is mostly malt forward, a pleasant combo of bready/caramel/nutty malts. Some light herbal+citrus hop there too.

Tastes like the smell and how I remember it, on the maltier side, closer to an English pale ale. Herbal hops, some grassiness and light fruit backed up by big buttery, biscuit, toffee malts. The hops do come out more with warmth, even with the malts ruling there is a decent amount of hop flavor here.

Smooth, balance is decent, not much complaints on the mouthfeel.

Good, but don't expect an American hop bomb pale ale - it has a little hop kick but this definitely leans closer to English style in my opinion.

Jun 26, 2012
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Ezone024 from Connecticut

4.12/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cottrell old yankee is one fine beer.

pours out a sweet deep amber color with a nice thin yet full head.. great aromas such as carmel and nutty with a hint of mild hops.

taste is very balanced, it's has a slight nuttiness over a fine hop finish clean and crisp.

for an amber a tad more on the malty side. it is just a really awesome brew. Well crafted and you can tell after the 1st taste.

should be as popular as long trail.

Feb 22, 2010
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BeerMasterD from Connecticut

3.95/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 OZ. bottle with June notched on the label.

Poured a darker amber/copper color, a soft orange in the light. A big off-white fluffy, somewhat creamy head that left little lacing and a super thin layer on top all the way down. Smells sweet and hoppy, with a very sugary/caramel like aroma. Tastes of hops at first but not intense, goes malty and caramel. With moderate carbonation and a slight bitter, but overall very smooth and balanced, this beer is super drinkable. Not amazing, but not just any ale, either. I'm glad i finally got to try this brew that's made so close to home, and i was pleased. Will buy again, and i recommend as a starter beer for new craft-drinkers.

I picked this up as a single, but now wishing i had just gotten a 6'er, as it was better than i had expected. Now off to try the IPA.

Feb 12, 2010
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ColdBrew87 from Connecticut

5/5  rDev +30.5%

Jun 01, 2012
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noel2977 from New Jersey

3.75/5  rDev -2.1%

Oct 06, 2012
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trecker from Georgia

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

Poured from a 12 oz bottle to a English pint glass. like another reviewer from Georgia, I got this in a beer of the month pack.

A: a nice amber/ copper color with small white head.

S: I didn't get a strong smell out of it either way. Maybe a little grapefruit.

T: A very smooth, sweet taste, bitter on the back end but in a good way.

M: medium

D: very drinkable.

Overall, one of the best American pale ales I've had.

Jan 02, 2011
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chrispoint from Connecticut

2.5/5  rDev -34.7%

Feb 20, 2012
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EkimGram from New York

4.48/5  rDev +17%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance: 12oz bottle poured into a standard pint glass. Colour is a rich roasted brown, amber with a finger-thick head that fades quickly. No visible carbonation.

Smell: Very malty, lots of roasted malts followed by some fruity, hoppy scents.

Taste: Very rich and complex. A lot of deep, rich malts followed by some bitter, fruity hops. Finishes with a sticky carbonated bite.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied with a fair amount of carbonation. Very syrupy and sticky.

Overall: I love this brew! It is a perfect example of what an APA from New England should be. The only regret I have about this beer is that I bought it while out of state; it isn't available in New York.

Aug 16, 2011
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micromaniac129 from Pennsylvania

3.75/5  rDev -2.1%

Oct 21, 2013
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djrn2 from New Jersey

3.25/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Jan 17, 2016
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steve8robin from Massachusetts

2.42/5  rDev -36.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Freshest before June 2010. 12 oz. bottle...

A: Deep copper brown with red hues with a 1 inch white head that fades quickly. Good.

S: Hard to get strong scents off of this one. Get some earthy notes. Not much else. Very one dimensional.

T: Just kind of a heavily carbonated sparkling water. Hint of coffee-esque roastiness on the backend. Nope, I'm not impressed.

M: A hint overcarbonated for my taste. Ok.

D: Goes down too easy. Like water. Ok.

All in all, all I have to say is no way! Avoid this one. Not worth your time. So many better brews.

May 23, 2010
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Franz4 from Ohio

4.13/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Best by April notched on bottle

A- poured a nice clear auburn color with a good 3 finger head that settled to a decent cap leaving lace on the way down, continuous bubbles rise from the bottom.
S- smell is crisp, fresh, and clean, nicely balanced between malts and subtle pine hops.

T- very crisp taste, hops come through with pine resin dominant balanced by a little toasty malt.

M- slight carbonation that is really just what the beer needs. Light-medium bodied helps this go down smoothly.

D- This is a very drinkable beer, I feel like it could go with anything, it'd be a good choice for the patio this summer.

Mar 05, 2011
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huxcrunner from New York

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

Had this beer at standing in nyc little white head with very nice citrus hop aromaes amber red color with good lacing good full mouthfeel overall not a bad beer worth trying with a good overall balance this is definitely worth the try overal a good ale

Mar 09, 2011
Old Yankee Ale from Cottrell Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 86 out of 100 with 274 ratings