Indian Brown Ale
Dogfish Head Craft Brewery

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Brown Ale - American
Ranked #17
Ranked #3,127
4.12 | pDev: 10.68%
Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Delaware, United States
Notes: Also known as Indian Brown Dark IPA

Forget about the car companies, this is the original hybrid. A cross between a Scotch Ale, an India Pale Ale and an American Brown, Indian Brown Ale is well-hopped and malty at the same time (It's magical!).

The beer has characteristics of each style that inspired it: the color of an American Brown, the caramel notes of a Scotch Ale, and the hopping regiment of an India Pale Ale. We dry-hop the Indian Brown Ale in a similar fashion to our 60 Minute IPA and 90 Minute IPA. This beer is brewed with Aromatic barley and organic brown sugar.

50 IBU
Reviews: 2,104 | Ratings: 6,274 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of eameslover
eameslover from Michigan

4/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First time I had ever seen this style...Really good! No joke, I could taste a stout, an IPA (not a lot but some distinctive hops) and a good brown ale. Mostly the first and last but it wasn't entirely one if the aforementioned styles. I really enjoyed it

Apr 28, 2021
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Peach63 from New York

3.99/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

Pours copper with a 1/2 inch creamy, tan head. Thick lacing, both lasting right to the end. Heavy carbonation.

Aroma is nutty, malty, slight brown sugar.

Tastes of nuts, brown sugar, roast malts, caramel malts, and coffee. Moderate bitterness.

Full bodied, creamy, fizzy mouthfeel.

A nice brown IPA. Great color and carbonation.

Oct 11, 2019
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spectru from Florida

3.97/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very dark brown, translucent, not hazy at all, frothy light tan head, good retention, lacy; The aroma is slightly tangy with a hint of sweetness; Rich full bodied smooth flavor, slightly sweet; Mouthfeel is very smooth, almost thick, moderately carbonated; Tasty, pleasant, a good beer off the beaten path.

The label says Indian Brown Dark IPA, but it really doesn't taste like an IPA.

Aug 17, 2019
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travolta from California

3.38/5  rDev -18%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Very very dark brown, but ruby red up to the light. Off-white to cola head with a bit of spotted lacing and average retention.

Nose: Nutty, coffee and toffee. Lightly roasted coffee beans, brown sugar and some chocolate at the end.

Taste: Creamy but a little bit dry upfront. Not as malty as I assumed it would be. It is slightly dry and a bit like sucking on a lightly toasted coffee bean. Astringent throughout. I get an unpleasant bitterness from the hops. So much so that I switched glasses halfway through to make sure it wasn't my glass. My eyes and my nose wanted this to taste a certain way, but my mouth said otherwise. Mouthfeel is nice, but a tad watery.

Notes: I was excited for this one as Dogfish usually hits it out of the park (in my opinion). I think the hops being added to what should be a bit maltier brew throws this one off. It's a great idea, but doesn't know what it wants to be.

Aug 16, 2019
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Dr_Gonzo from Kentucky

4.25/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a tall clear pint glass. Pours a lovely mahogany/ruby-brown color with a finger-thick tan head with decent retention and lacing. Glows faintly when held to the light.

Nutty notes are upfront in the aroma, along with coffee, toffee, molasses, caramel, hazelnuts, barley, roasted grains, brown sugar, toast, and chocolate. Complex dark aromas and sweet notes.

Dark cocoa, roasted nuts, barley, pine, and brown sugar are upfront on the palette. The rest of the notes follow. Medium-light body feel.

Jul 31, 2019
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GuyFawkes from Illinois

4.25/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Brown hue.

Off-white head; frothy lace.

Nice coffee nose.

Creamy medium mouthfeel.

Creamy coffee & hazelnut flavor.

A delicious, flavorful brown ale.

Apr 22, 2019
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deniro from New York

4.03/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A hybrid of 2 of my favorite beers (IPA and Brown Ale) Also has a scotch ale in there as well, so I had to give it a try . I've heard amazing things about it. Head is a dark red color. Smell some chocolate and caramel and a little fruit as well. Taste definitely was good. Right off the bat you taste some cocoa, a little nutty, and some coffee hints. What shines through is you taste some hops, not West Coast IPA strength or even NE IPA strenght , but just enough to give this a little bite, more so than your typical brown ale. Mouthfeel is light, definitely tastes lighter than it's 7.2 ABV. It's definitely a solid beer, a little slightly overrated in my opinion but definitely solid. If you like Brown Ale's and IPA's it's a must try.

Feb 11, 2019
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RMehrenberg from Pennsylvania

3.94/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Reddish-brown with a head. Very Coke-like. Smells of caramel and a little cocoa. Taste is similar with a little bit of hops towards the end. Relaitively mellow for an IPA, but appropriate. Mouth feel is smooth but a little thin. 6 pack worthy

Jan 29, 2019
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Jeffrey_Moreland from Texas

4.08/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Brownish red color with a little head. Smells hoppy with a little earthy hint. Mellow citrus. Tastes the same. Very good carbonation with hoppy citrusy bite. Not a harsh bite though. Mouthfeel is full with a little creaminess. Overall a good balance of ipa and ale.

Jan 10, 2019
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spiker97 from Pennsylvania

4.65/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

One of my friends, who wasn't a Dogfish fan but loves IPA's, said this was one of the best brews she has had in a good while. Since this is a hybrid brew, it's very accessible not only to IPA lovers but to people who like an ale as well. I have always liked the taste and feel of this brew, and it also makes a good holiday beer for this time of year as well as for warm weather - when you can find it. Definitely a keeper.

Dec 24, 2018
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mothmanscott from Georgia

4.21/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

From notes 7/24/12: Pours a very deep brown; garnet hues dance at the edges when held to the light. The pour produces 3 fingers of tan, variously bubbled frothy, lasting head that leaves beautiful webs and rings of lace. Aroma is dark bread, toast, dark fruits, brown sugar, dark cocoa with pine, burnt hints and smoke in a light floral and citrus hop background. Taste is brown sugar, raw, bitter chocolate and dark bread malt; not sweet, burnt, smokey and nicely bitter. Hoppy citrus, pine and herbal throughout the sip but intensifying from the middle through the peppery finish and intensely bittersweet aftertaste that rapidly fades to a lasting bitterness. Mouthfeel is medium-heavy bodied with moderate carbonation; smooth and easy to drink. May be called a brown ale but this stuff is in a style of its own. 4 stars

Dec 08, 2018
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NedFredHead from Massachusetts

4.15/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a clear ruby-brown. Smells malty with molasses in the background. Taste is malty, nutty, slighty sweet, with coffee notes at the front and hops near the end. A solid dark ale.

Nov 03, 2018
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penguinsgoboom from California

4.5/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a one finger head. Color is a pomegranate wine. Lacing clings nicely.

S: Rich nutty malt. Chocolate is present. Some grassy hops. Luscious and warms the heart.

T: Dark roasted nuts and malt mixes with bitter herbal hops. Honestly tastes like an Porter mixed with an IPA.

O: My first sample from Dogfish Head and it's a hit. A big brew that delivers on the flavor and maintains balance with mastery. One of the better dark ales.

Oct 15, 2018
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lastmango from Pennsylvania

3.97/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a dark ruby brown with a 2 finger milkshake tan head that dissipated to a thin film for the entire session. Moderate lacing throughout. Malt and slight charcoal aroma. Taste of rich malt and brown sugar with piney hops on the end. Well balanced. Moderate body with light carbonation. Overall, this is a great brown ale.

Aug 26, 2018
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HotDogBikeRide from Texas

4.25/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pale/brown amber, translucent, frothy head with webby lacing. Smell kind of reminds me of smoke and charcoal but sweet and malty too. Not much in the way of hops as far as the nose. The taste remains largely the same, peaty, smokey brown ale with sweet and and sticky feel. Semi-dry. Complimented most lightly by the hoppiness, mostly just in the aftertaste in my opinion. The malty taste is sort of carried through by the hops though I guess it could be described as. Overall a solid beer. Found a couple six packs on sale for $5.00 a pop so I got a steal if you ask me.

Aug 20, 2018
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MoreBeer4me from New Jersey

4.5/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This has become one of my favorite beers and something I always have on hand. I could have given this one a 5.0 based on taste AND price, although I'll stay away from factoring in cost with beer quality. In a nutshell, the mix of a brown ale along with Dogs' IPA brewing talents add up to a winner. If you like good'll like this. Simple as that.

Jul 16, 2018
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Mike_Benson from Iowa

4.05/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

one of the first Dogfish Head beers I fell in love with, and made me realize that browns and IPAs could play nicely together. very few people try this, less succeed.

Jun 07, 2018
Photo of Rogerlb
Rogerlb from California

4.18/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Looks like Dogfish's Indian Brown Ale has added the word "Dark IPA" for rebranding. With same descriptors and ABV, I'll assume it's the same.

Anyway, this fella pours like a dark Scotch ale, with a deep brown look with clear amber hints at the edges of the glass. Head is minimal and even.

Aroma is like a porter. Malt, slight caramel and barley. Not getting any hops in the smell.

Their site describes this as a cross between a Scotch ale and a brown. Taste is more various. Tastes initially like a brown ale, with a light, lagery body, with a bit of bad coffee shop coffee. No chocolate. Caramel and a slight bite of hops comes in to suggest an IPA. Maybe I'm just looking at the label too hard. A little over cared. Slight hoppy bitter, some anise and hints of citrus and earth, through to the end. Those are the hops, right?

I'm also getting a feel of roasted barley, seems like it's close to a Guinness, no kidding, of the lightest variety.

But it falls short of a porter or a stout. Looks darker than it drinks. 7.5% ABV is pretty hidden. Ever so slight booziness, akin to how a Scotch or an IPA might feel.

Interesting mix of a brown with some added stuff like brown sugar and hops thrown in. Very drinkable, very well balanced. Interesting beer.

May 25, 2018
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Mintz82 from Delaware

4/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

One of my favorite DFH beers. I enjoy this more than 90 min. I'm not generally a huge IPA fan (will not drink more than 1 at any given time) but this is a pleasant mix of styles. Malts and caramel offset the hops just enough that they balance each other perfectly. No one flavor overpowers another, something I think a lot of brewers miss the mark on. You can taste all of the notes described very easily. Lacing on the glass through the entire beer and a great aroma. 4s all around for an above average beer.

May 24, 2018
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nicholas2121 from Ohio

4.43/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Indian Brown Dark IPA brewed by Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, with an ABV of 7.20% This American IPA pours out a deep brown color with a nice off white head. This brew has the look of cola,not saying that is a bad thing. There is also a nice amount of lacing to this brew, it sticks to the side of the glass well. The smell is rich with hop bitterness. Then sweet earthy roasted grains and malts. There is also a nice sweetness to this brew. Between the look and smell this is one inviting brew. Now for the taste, it is Bold with Roasted Hoppy Flavors. Reminds me more of a porter, than an IPA. It is also really hard to pick up on the 7.20% ABV in this American IPA, it is just that smooth. The body of Indian Brown Dark IPA is a solid medium. There is nothing overpowering about this brew, it has a super nice balance to it. The mouth feel is Bold, Rich, Sweet, Roasted, Smooth, Clean and Refreshing. Overall I am going to give Indian Brown Dark IPA a 4.50 out I 5. I would definitely look this brew up again giving the opportunity to Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, did a super nice job with this brew. If you are a fan of dark brews you should look this one up.

May 04, 2018
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Nass from Florida

4.33/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This remains as one of my favorite Dogfish Head beers to this day. This beer has held up over the years unlike many of their new age experimental craft beers that they make. It's not a heavy & roasty type of brown ale, yet it is not an IPA either. This beer is almost like a style on it's own. I have noticed a few breweries on the east coast have tried to copy this beer over the years. I highly recommend this Brown Ale if you have not already had it. Cheers! B

Apr 30, 2018
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Beginner2 from Illinois

3.85/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

At 50 IBU, this pushes my comfort level...but I think this crafty combination of styles makes me comfortable. If you accept that Dogfish Head combines three styles, Indian Brown is unique... and pleasantly so.

It certainly Looks like a Brown (or a Scots ale). The Smell also could be either style... except even I detect the hops. Tastes cascade starting with the dark malts balanced by the hops sweetened by the brewers sugar and then, inexplicably, finishes dry. I only give a great crafter this many points for their hoppy beer.

This might be a good ale for hop-heads to appreciate sweet browns.

Apr 13, 2018
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Brutaltruth from Ohio

4.11/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

From a growler via Jungle JIm's Eastgate in a snifter. This fine ale pours a rich
ruby tinged brown with a fantastic head of off white foam that settles to a
thick ring, thin light pool, and showcases some nice sudsy lacing. Nose of
light cocoa, subtle citrus notes of orange zest, light brown sugars, and light
piney hops. Flavors exceed the nose with caramel and brown sugar touched
with orange zest and light peach notes touched with bread crust and awash
in herbal and light pine tinged hop flavors that balance out the malty characteristic
of the ale. Nice mouth feel; medium body, medium light carbonation that is
perfect and quaffable for the style, and a lightly hop touched malt finish.

The best parts of two styles in one....NICE.


Apr 01, 2018
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EMV from Pennsylvania

3.77/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a Duvel tulip

L: Dark mahogany brown pour. Clear... 1 finger of white head. Solid rim of lacing.

S: Roast grains and piney hops. Mild cocoa.

T/F: Sweet toasted malts... piney hops... bitterness from both the roast and the hops, balanced by sweet caramel, brown sugar, and cocoa. A bit of espresso mixed in. Light bodied. Well carbonated.. the finish is sweet and roasty.

O: A very solid dark IPA. Great flavors and combination of roast and hops. Drinkable and tasty.

Mar 11, 2018
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Sable from Pennsylvania

4.99/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours with a decent head that dissipates very quickly. The color is very dark ... Coffee brown. The smell is very caramelly, with maybe a hint of maple. Tasting is where it really shows off ... Burnt sugar, caramel, molasses, more molasses, and a bit of dark chocolate. Should be cloyingly sweet, but it isn't. We're saved by the hops, this is an IPA after all, and that jolt of bitterness brings this into balance. I'm told that dry hopping means adding hops after the fermentation has completed to boost the hop flavor and aroma. It's works and it is brilliant!

Mar 02, 2018
Indian Brown Ale from Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Beer rating: 92 out of 100 with 6274 ratings