Indian Brown Ale | Dogfish Head Craft Brewery

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Indian Brown AleIndian Brown Ale
BA SCORE
4.12/5
Exceptional
Indian Brown AleIndian Brown Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Delaware, United States
dogfish.com

Style: American Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
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

BEER STATS
Reviews:
2,099
Ratings:
6,255
pDev:
10.68%
 
 
Wants:
379
Gots:
1,296
Trade:
7
 
User Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 2,099 | Ratings: 6,255
Reviews by Georgiabeer:
Photo of Georgiabeer
4.28/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a quite dark brown with a relatively thin head but very good lacing. One of the darker brown ales and with ruby highlights. The smell is dry and hoppy with an underlying aroma of brown bread. The taste is really quite remarkable- big and bold for a brown ale with an unusually strong hop presence for the style and warming spicy flavors.It has the same underlying dense brown bread background with spicy hop notes overlaying. There is a touch of sweetness, but not raisiny, more a bready sweetness with some malt notes. Really nice body- robust and full bodied but not overly heavy. Really probably the best brown ale I've had.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of claytong25
4.85/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I really got started into the whole craft beer market by some tasty brown ales and porters. I've continued onto IPA's , but not to much of a stout fan.

Anyway, this is by far the best high alcohol brown ale I have ever had. Its just so perfect in every way. Absolutely smooth and so enjoyable to sip and swirl.. I plan on using this beer to introduce craft beer virgins into this exciting market. I love the idea of giving these small breweries my money that the giant commercial beer makers out there.

Cheers to Dogfish on making me a so very happy customer with this WONDERFUL BROWN ALE!!!!

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Photo of milwaukee512
4.72/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Another fantastically unique beer from Dogfish Head. Like Namaste or Aprihop, Indian Brown Ale makes a strong case for DFH's "other" beers that aren't really as well known as their 60 or 90-minute IPAs, at least not in WI. Like the aforementioned "other" beers, Indian Brown Ale is a superior and unique take compared to the standard for it's category. Too hoppy to be a true brown ale, but too malty to be even an English-style IPA. The hops take the edge off of the big coffee and caramel flavors, and this beer feels light for its style. I don't drink brown ales often, but this will be my go-to from now on.

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Photo of jp32
4.54/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Looks nearly like cola in a glass. The color, thickness (or thinness) and its bubbly carbonation all remind of the appearance of cola. Maybe a point darker than cola, it is not transparent... but its close.

Aroma is wonderfully hoppy in the beginning. The more that it warms in the glass, the more the malty aromas stick through.

Oh man, its taste is beautiful. Absolute bliss. The perfect blend of malt character followed by hoppy notes. Some sips I get the hops first and the wonderful roasted malts second, other times it seems to taste the other way around. Either way, this is an excellent balance of the two. Very nicely done.

Exactly medium-bodied. If anyone ever asks me what a medium-bodied beer should be iike, I will show them this one, it is spot-on.

I'm impressed with this one.

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Photo of VirginiaBeerMan
3.92/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've tried many Dogfish Head beers and frankly, I don't find many of them very good. I appreciate pushing the limits and trying non-mainstream ingredients, but every experiment doesn't need bottling.

This one, however, is one of the few that I find very, very good and would recommend.

Nice dark brown color with tan head that slowly dissipates. Good lacing. Good malty caramel aroma that is not overpowering. Slight hop and bitter blends well with the malt.

The beer as is advertised.

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Photo of RozzieBoy
4.14/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

L - Poured dark brown with a ruby tinge and had a light tan head. No lacing.
S - Malty and somewhat roasty but a real good mix.
T - Nice roasty back-taste to it.
F - Slight bite on the roof of my mouth. Dry after taste. Beer got smoother as it warmed.
O - Really good beer. Tasty.

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Photo of wmblair
3.96/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pretty silky smooth. It is very dark for an ale. The bottle says it is "hopped liberally and often" but the hops is balanced by the sweetness so it doesn't taste as "hoppy" as an IPA normally does. It is quite sweet. Pleasant.

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Photo of ACD
3.7/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I like the smoother traditional brown ale but if u like Scotch Ale IPAs and Brown Ale this is the beer for you

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Photo of BEERchitect
4.2/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

High praise is had all around as Dogfish Head celebrates all of what's brown with a unique dry toasty beer with a heavy hop influence.

With an appearance that looks austerely like porter, the beer lands in that dark bark-brown realm with onyx-like refelection and firm head formation and retention. The medium sand-tan foam laces extremely well and forms the final impressions of a well made ale.

Heavy toast, roasted nuts, rich cold-press coffee, cocoa, and starchy malt begin the aromatic dialogue as the balance of pine, citrus, and grass emit in their hoppy form to counter the dry malt influence.

Burnt molasses, bold roast coffee, bittersweet chocolate, walnuts and malted milkshakes start to form the taste just as the citrusy build up from hops begin. Soon, the sweetness is supplanted by dry bitterness both from char and hops and seem like saw dust, grapefruit, and burnt embers carry the beer into its semi-dry bitter finish.

Medium bodies, the beer's early creaminess is quickly shed and makes way for the lighter mid palate of toast, powder, hops to easily develop with an even fade into dryness, warmth, and quickly closing dark malts.

The American influence on this beer is undeniable- it's much more toasty (almost roasty), it's drier, and much more hoppy (American citrus hops)- all making it easily agreeable for a pairing of medium-well cheeseburgers with sharp cheddar!

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Photo of aleigator
3.99/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brown, coarsely foam, with an almost black, ember color.

Bitter chocolate, burned malts, toffee, almost stout like aromas.

Malty beginning, hints of sweet toffee, soon overwhelmed by a more breadish taste of malt going along with a sligthly sweetened chocolate. Hoppy bitterness brings in even more complexity, goes well along with the upcoming coffee flavor. Kicks in late, gives the malt aromas much time to develop. Bitterness adds a floral taste to the beer, which pairs up well with the malty body which dominates throughout. Coffee aftertaste is very present, staying long on the tongue. Surprisingly it isn’t very bitter, but leaving a smooth dry mouthfeel.

This is a very interesting and enjoyable beer, reminds me somehow of the "Schumacher 1838er", while being a little more aggressive on the hops.

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Photo of Pepper7
3.85/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Great beer from a great brewery

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Photo of superspak
4.2/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle into signature tulip glass, bottled on 10/15/2014. Pours crystal clear dark reddish brown color with a 1 finger dense khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Nice spotty soapy lacing clings around the glass, with a good amount of streaming carbonation retaining the head. Aromas of big dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, caramel, brown sugar, toast, dark bread, molasses, light dark fruit, herbal, grass, light pine, and roast/toasted earthiness. Damn nice aromas with good balance and complexity of dark/roasted/bready malt and moderate earthy hop notes; with great strength. Taste of big dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, caramel, brown sugar, toast, dark bread, molasses, light dark fruit, herbal, grass, pine, and roast/toasted earthiness. Fair amount of herbal/pine bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, toast, dark bread, molasses, herbal, grass, light pine, and roast/toasted earthiness on the finish for a while. Incredible complexity, robustness, and balance of dark/roasted/bready malt and earthy hop flavors; with a great malt/bitterness balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a very smooth, moderately creamy, and lightly sticky/chalky mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a slight warming present after the finish. Overall this is an awesome hoppy brown ale style. All around great complexity, robustness, and balance of dark/roasted/bready malt and earthy hop flavors; and very smooth to drink. A highly enjoyable offering.

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Photo of Indydoc
3.21/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

This is the DFH offering that I like the least (so far). Exceptional, in the wrong direction...

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Photo of captainkrad
3.92/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Hoppy approach. Chocolate, brown sugar, and caramel. Bitterness lingers.

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Photo of blackcompg
3.8/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - Pours 2 quick fingers of light mocha head, color is a transparent deep dark copper brown with reddish maroon highlights. Active carb rises from the bottom, and each quaff leaves a nice foamy ring of lace.

Smell - Roasted malt, brown sugar, light molasses, lite soy sauce, lightly toasted wheat bread, and a light grassiness.

Taste - Begins roasted malts and toast with a dusting of brown sugar, even a hint of dark unsweetened bakers chocolate - this is almost immediately followed with a good dose of grassy and herbal hops, with hints of basil, mint and pine on the back of the tongue. The finish is dried lightly burnt toast, some dried fruit stones, bakers chocolate, and dried brown grass. This is probably the most hops I've tasted in a brown ale.

Mouthfeel - Nearly medium and very smooth, with some slight astringency and dryness at the back. Carb is on the lighter side, with a few light edges at the back of the tongue, but no scrub whatsoever - allowing the hops to "sink in" and assert during each quaff.

Overall - A very flavorful brown ale, and very interesting to me, not your typical brown ale with the stronger presence of hops here. Not a bad thing at all, as it clearly says this on the label - and they mean it. Throw a few ounces of your favorite IPA into a brown ale and that's what you have here.

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Photo of FullRW
4.43/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured from bottle into pint glass.

L- Brown with a bit of red when held to the light. Perfect head came right to the top of the pint glass.

S- Smells kind of like a porter with a bit of a sweeter brown sugar aroma.

T- It taste like a scotch ale (which I admittedly haven't tried very many of). It really reminds me of the taste of Oskar Blues Old Chubb, except this Dogfish Head tastes a little more hoppy, and a little more sweet, but only just a little.

F- Carbonation is just a tad weak. It seems like they wanted to create the illusion that it has more body by slightly under carbonating it, but this beer is a little to thin to pull this off. If it was carbonated just a tiny bit more it would be perfect.

Overall, this is a very solid beer that I will definitely pick up again. This would really hit the spot if you're craving a darker beer during the warm summer months.

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Photo of Schimms
4.78/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

L: Pours dark brown with reddish tint. Nice sustained one-finger creamy head. Great lacing on the pint glass.

S: Smells very caramel up front with some hop.

T: Wonderful caramel with that delicate coffee flav at the end.

F: Creamy mouth feel with light carbonation - perfect balance.

O: One of the best browns I've ever had.

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Photo of Joncasso
3.23/5  rDev -21.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

The beer was interesting. The alcohol is very present In this beer. This isn't for me

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Photo of Jasonkyeager
4.88/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

I liked every thing about this.

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Photo of Griffin2
4.12/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a really good brown ale. I would definitely drink it again.

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Photo of Chuck6860
4.33/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Sweet malty beverage. Dogfish does not disappoint

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Photo of hopphead31415
3.76/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

My eye spotted this one serendipitously as I meandered down the rows of craft brews and was happy to snag a six pack. It was a tough call though between this one and a variety of other excellent beers such as Ommegang, Founders, and New Belgium. I found a small fridge where they had some 6 packs of this already chilled for me so I grabbed one and headed for the checkout counter. It boasts an 7.2% ABV and 50 IBUs, let’s take a gulp!

Look: This one pours a clear dark cola color with plenty of carbonation trails running up to the surface. The head is medium and about one to two fingers thick with a decent pour and has lingering thick lacing on the glass. The blackness gives way to orange copper hues in light, very beautiful and clear.

Smell: The aroma is thick caramel and oak. I get a strong sense of smoky oaks and toasted butter and brown sugar.

Taste: This beer is a rare and amazing mixture of Scotch Ale, an India Pale Ale and an American Brown which is one of the main reasons I wanted to try it. It really does exhibit the subtle hops of an IPA, the caramel backbone and rich smooth flavor of a Scotch Ale, and the color exhibited by an American Brown. Quite the trio here and well worth a try.

Mouthfeel: This beer drinks so smooth and lacy at first and then the fizzle that comes from the plentiful carbonation makes this one mildly reminiscent of a coca-cola.

Overall: I’d say that this is an excellent beer for anyone to try. It really packs a unique variety of smells, flavors, and attributes making a refreshing experience outside of the norm.

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Photo of MarkLinton1
4.4/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Exceptional and unique. In a class by itself. Don't pass this one by. Enough said.

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Photo of Guiltybyproxy
5/5  rDev +21.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Excellent overall beer. Must try for anyone

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Photo of HoppyBeerisHappyBeer
3.07/5  rDev -25.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Too sour. Reminds me of Bell's Oarsman. Is this beer supposed to be sour? Bottled on 11/21/14.

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Indian Brown Ale from Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Beer rating: 4.12 out of 5 with 6,255 ratings