Gritty McDuff's Best Brown Ale | Gritty McDuff's Brewing Company

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Gritty McDuff's Best Brown AleGritty McDuff's Best Brown Ale

Brewed by:
Gritty McDuff's Brewing Company
Maine, United States

Style: English Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.10%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 03-29-2001

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Reviews: 97 | Ratings: 165
Photo of Risser09
4.05/5  rDev +25.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

12 oz bottle into a pilsner - fridge - best before jan 2010

Appearance: Garnet/orange/brown hues with plenty of carbonation activity. The beer gives way to an inch of ivory head with a craterous surface. Retention lasts 3 minutes until departure. Carbonation flows freely and liberally to the meniscus.

Smell: Buttery biscuits, LIFE cereal, mashed grain, pecan and some cherries. Minimal hop aroma.

Taste: Again with the smooth, buttery biscuit/cereal component. The flavor isn't very strong or sticky sweet at all. The beer itself is slippery wet and also sharply carbonated. A super slight hint of hop bitterness in the finish. I like the biscuit flavor.

Mouthfeel: Sharp carbonation that quickly fades, well-attenuated, slick in the mouth, medium/light body, barely any sign of alcohol (it could be under 5%).

Drinkability: I am quite fond of this one. It tastes fresh and feels lively, which makes me feel the same exact way. Certainly a session beer that you could go many rounds with. I will seek out and enjoy again!

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Photo of morebeergood
2.76/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Picked up a six pack the other day to give this brown ale a try. Poured into standard pint glasses. Dark brown color with orange highlights. Decent sized white head. Smell had that diacetyl odor to it, which I do not like. Flavor was not great either, as it was way too sweet and sugary. Not enough malt. No hops at all. Mouthfeel was buttery and too thin for a brown ale. I would not recommend this beer to a friend looking for this style.

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Photo of matty
3.38/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Light to medium brown colored beer with a slowly fading rich head.Aroma is caramel malts.Taste is also caramel malts and some sweetner.Flavor is OK but kind of on the watery side.Overall an OK beer that was nice to try once but I doubt I will ever seek out again.

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Photo of berley31
2.73/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A: Poured with an average-sized, off-white head that diminished fairly quickly. Body is an amber color (kind of light for the style) and hazy.

S: Weak and boring aroma... some slightly-sweet malt, but that's all.

T: Starts sweet, ends sweet. Did I mention sweet? It gets sickening, really... cloying, almost. Not impressed.

M: Light-bodied, kind of creamy, with average carbonation.

D: I don't particularly care for this beer... it's by far the sweetest brown I've had yet, and that ain't good. "Best Brown"? I'd hate to see the worst. Ok, you saw that coming.

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Photo of rfgetz
3.45/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a mid ranged brown color with little head, retention or lacing. Smell is of light malts and carmel. Taste is a very light belend of carmel, nuts, brown sugar. Thin body, heavily carbonated. A good gateway for BMC Adjunct drinkers who are afraid of the full flavor of craft beer.

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Photo of JimmieFrisbee
2.74/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 1.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pop off the cap, and right away I hear gas loudly escaping and see whisps of white vapor drift from the opening. I pour it into my pint glass, and this seems to be overcarbonated. I get about eight fingers worth of head to about two fingers worth of beer with a very gentle pour. Somethings probably not right here, but I review it as I see it.

Head is white and beyond generous, beer itself is very light in color for a brown, almost the same golden orange as the 21 IPA if I remember correctly, perhaps just a shade darker.

Smells mellow like a brown should, with an almost nutty sort of malt smell. Smell is very mild -- have to get my nose right in there to get much of anything.

Taste is bland. Very waterlike, actually. Not a lot of flavor going on at all on which I can comment, what I am getting I guess is just some dark malt.

Light carbonation, feels like water in the mouth except for those bubbles. Drinkability is probably exceptional as I could drink water all day.

Could be nicely sessionable, probably would have scored higher if not for appearance. I would choose this over an American Adjunct Lager any day, maybe something I'd want to drink several of for effect, but certainly nothing I'm going to drink just to enjoy and savor the flavor of. I maybe could see making a long night of this with friends.

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Photo of mdale13
3.65/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Brown with red highlights. Moderate white/tan head. Poured into a pint glass from tap at Gritty McDuff's in Freeport, ME

S- Some malts. Carmel. A understated sweetness.

T- Malts are present. Sweet flavor. Bitter finish.

M- A little too watery for my tastes. Carbonation is present.

D- I usually have a pint of this when I hit Gritty's with the guys. I usually follow it up with a different brew, but you could drink 2 or more in a night.

Other- Grittys in Freeport is my local brewpub, so I go there often, so I sort of learn to live with the beers. Not that they arent good, but they arent shining examples of the beer-types, which is the case with this, Grittys Best Brown.

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Photo of bum732
3.3/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark reddish brown, decent bubbly head leaving some lacing. Smells of caramel and toffee, some brown sugar, faint vanilla, toasted nuts. Tastes of caramel and nutty malt with a fairly mild neutral bitterness. Some brown sugar and vanilla on the finish. Very thin mouthfeel and a somewhat nutty finish.

A decent beer, smells fairly well, too bad the taste doesn't come through. I like the nuttiness and even the subtle vanilla, but the finish isn't great and the very thin mouthfeel doesn't help anything. Not bad overall.

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Photo of BostonBrewins
2.85/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A - Pours a reddish brown with a frothy head.

S - Fairly strong, sweet, almost fruity scents.

T - This is a sweet, fruity brown ale with a bitter finish. The taste is more citrus like than most browns. Taste is similar to a summer wheat ale.

M - Carbonation helps compensate for light, watery body.

D - Not my preferred interpretation of the style. I probably wouldn't buy this but wouldn't turn down a free brew.

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Photo of Durge
3.59/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

From the bottle into a pint glass this one poured a clear copper brown color with very little sign of an off-white head that clings to the edges of the glass without leaving much of any trace of lace. The aroma brings apple caramel toffee malt with maybe some berry highlights and brown sugar noted throughout. The flavor is a more intense translation of the aroma, not too bad, kind of bready tartness that collects at the back of your mouth. The taste is OK as brown ales go but it's a llittle more bitter and less sweet than I like in this style. My main gripe, however, is with how thin it is, which is a feeling I have had about other Gritty brews in the past. The carbonation offers a bit of soda-like spritz but not enough to undo the blase feel here. There is some flavor, still nothing I would seek out.

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Photo of jwc215
2.6/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Best by May '09 notched on label.

Pours orange copperish amber (not really "brown"). A thin head descends to a vanishing patch. Spotted lacing slides down glass, but no lacing sticks.

There is a smell of a "brown ale" toffee character, but something that makes me say "What IS that?!" A yeasty, fruity, husky character to it. There is a light peat smokiness in the back.

The taste is of light cocoa powder - towards artificial. The toffee is weak - almost washed out. There is a husky, slightly fruity, slightly medicinal (for lack of a better term)character that throws it off.

The body is light and a bit too carbonated. An aftertaste of tonic water and cocoa powder is shortly lived (thankfully).

It's "off". Drinkable to a point, I suppose (I drank it), but wouldn't want more.

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Photo of OtherShoe2
3.02/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a reddish brown with just a light haze of head and no lacing. Some bubbles clinging to the side of the glass, but this could have been soda had I not poured it myself.

Smelled lightly of caramel/brown sugar. Not much going on, but ok.

Sweet toasted malt, substantial caramel and sugar notes, minimal bitterness, and a citric bite -- not bitter, but acidic. Flavor is a little on the thin side -- which actually works for this, as the sweetness would be too much. I don't find any off notes, but I find nothing exciting either. Just average.

Thin, acidic, and not much aftertaste/finish. Eh.

A little higher score, but because you can put these back without any effort. Not much going on, so they are easy drinking, but I'd have a hard time pairing with food. Unimposing and average. If you were doing a brown tasting, I'd throw this in the mix to show the scale of flavor in the style (this at the mid/lower end).

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Photo of thekevlarkid
3.56/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Off their tap in Auburn this beer was a classic copper color with a thin off-white head. The retention was poor and the lacing the same. The aroma was of toasted malt with some understated hops. The flavors were simple but well-balanced. Toasted malt and some nutty elements with a touch of bitter hops that cut through to the finish. The body was medium, the carbonation delicate and the mouthfeel good. Definitely a session beer and, though boring, quite drinkable.

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Photo of mikereaser
3.68/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - pours a clear brown with a slight white foam that quickly disappeared and left no lacing

S - nutty earthy aroma with some caramel as well

T - roasted nutty flavor with hints of sweet caramel flavor at times

M/D - light bodied brown ale that has some nice flavor to it. Nothing too overpowering. If it was available to me I'm sure i'd pick up a case for relaxing with and having a few

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Photo of Yeastcakes
3.87/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Serving notes: Hef-style glass, served cool but not cold, age uncertain.

Aroma: malty, very slight earthy hop aroma
Appearance: head quickly dissipates, brown-ish red in appearance, clear
Mouthfeel: light body, very mild carbonation feel
Taste: balanced malty sweetness at the tip of the tongue, light bitterness near the back. Appropriately subtle but present in each regard.
Drinkability: Very drinkable. Good session beer.

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Photo of tmoneyba
3.62/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle from World of Beer, Clearwater, FL.

Pours a clear brown color with an average frothy off-white head that mostly lasted with good lacing. Moderate toasted malt and nutty aroma. Medium body with a sticky texture and flat carbonation. Medium sweet flavor with a medium bittersweet finish of moderate duration.

Average to Good drinkable beer.

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Photo of jdhilt
3.37/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours with three finger light brown head that fades slowly leaves some lace. Cloudy amber color. Light caramel nose. Light carbonation and light-medium-bodied. Flavor is a nutty caramel with hints of bitterness from the hops. $1.75 for a 12oz from Barb's Beer Emporium Concord, NH.

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Photo of Jayli
3.97/5  rDev +23.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a decent brown color, with some copper tinges to it. The head was tan, thin but dissapates rapidly. A bit of lace, but not much. There is roasty, malty, scent to it that is quite pleasant. Medium bodied, and pleasantly smooth, relatively-speaking, on the tongue. Flavor was malty, toasty, and a bit nutty. Not bad overall.

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Photo of dashirey
3.25/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A- Brown with some amber hues to it. Pours clear with a two finger head that dissapates to leave a thin layer. A small amount of lacing, but no a whole lot.

S - Certainly there are some caramel & nutty tones. There is almost a earthly smell coming from this beer.

T - Not much here. You have your typical malts up front, but I was suprised that there wasn't more. There is also a perfumey taste after the swallow. There is however a small bite from the hops in there too.

M - Pretty thin. Could be a bit more carbonation too.

D - I could drink a couple of these but I the perfumey may get to me. In my opinion not the best exampel of the style just because it is missing a lot of the typical malty/nutty taste.

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Photo of msolar
3/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I don't have too much to say about this beer - it's not my favorite. Gritty makes some good beers but I don't consider this one of them. Their "Original Pub Style", "Vacationland", and "Black Fly Stout" to name a few. If you're looking for an English Brown Ale, I'd highly recommend Smuttynose's Old Brown Dog Ale (from NH).

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Photo of Reagan1984
3.75/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This was a malt special and a nice example of a Brown Ale.

Dark Copper in color with a nice off white head.

Not much of an aroma but certainly what was there was roasty and sweet predicting the malt flavor to follow.

Flavor was Roasty, Toasty, slightly sweet and nice. Warmed the heart as I drank it.

I really liked that it seemed to have a crisp finish to it.

Good effort.

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Photo of Drewcifer
2.82/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours out a fairly clear brown, somewhat oddly clear, like brown food coloring. Somewhat odd. About a half finger of smooth white head.

Aroma is a lot of toasted malts, slightly sweet.

Taste is a small bit of malt, some coffee, fairly watered down though. Unimpressive.

Mouthfeel is a little light for a brown, doesn't really coat the mouth or tongue, just right on through.

Drinkability is actually not bad considering the weaknesses present. Might be a good beer for people just testing the genre to start in on, as it doesn't present much of a challenge or anything extraordinary.

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Photo of auxiliary
2.92/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

appearance - Dark amber brownish color. Not much head going on here just fades out.

taste - Toasted malt, and nuts present.

taste - Some malt, hops, coffee here. Not much taste.

mouthfeel - Light -Medium body, watery.

drinkability - I have had better brown ales then this one, was kind of weak.

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Photo of Drew966
3.85/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Gritty McDuff's Best Brown pours a medium brown color with an off white head from a brown twelve ounce bottle. There is a sweet malty aroma. The mouthfeel is on the thin side. The flavor is quite malty with a bit of nuttiness. There is a leafy hop flavor toward the end. A decent brown ale, worth a try.

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Photo of erosier
3.46/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a nice brown color with a short and tan colored head that fades fast and laaces the glass a bit on the way down. It has a sweet roasted malt and caramel aroma with some nutty aromas as well. The taste is of sweet roasted malts, caramel, some roasted nutty flavor, and a tiny bit of hops as well. The mouthfeel is ok and was fairly drinkable. Not bad and worth a try.

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Gritty McDuff's Best Brown Ale from Gritty McDuff's Brewing Company
3.22 out of 5 based on 165 ratings.
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