Dismiss Notice
Subscribe to BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99! (Limited time offer, US delivery only)

Dirty Penny Ale | The Olde Burnside Brewing Company

Your Rating: None

Want it   Got it 
Dirty Penny AleDirty Penny Ale
BA SCORE
3.55/5
Good
152 Ratings
Dirty Penny AleDirty Penny Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
The Olde Burnside Brewing Company
Connecticut, United States
oldeburnsidebrewing.com

Style: Black & Tan

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Our popular “Dirty Penny Ale” is a hearty, but never heavy “black’n’tan” style* which is mixture of 60% Ten Penny/40% our own signature stout. This beer is also available year-round at your local bar or favorite beer store.

(Motto: Dirty Penny Ale …Polish One Off!)

Added by BeerAdvocate on 04-02-2004

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#38,916
Reviews:
58
Ratings:
152
pDev:
15.77%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
6
Gots:
14
Trade:
0
HISTOGRAM
 
View: Beers | Events
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Ratings: 152 |  Reviews: 58
Photo of OzmanBey
5/5  rDev +40.8%

Photo of neil2me
5/5  rDev +40.8%

Photo of PorterBoy14
4.5/5  rDev +26.8%

Photo of cbsoftware
4.5/5  rDev +26.8%

Photo of cstellats
4.5/5  rDev +26.8%

Photo of ryan1788a5
4.45/5  rDev +25.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Brass Cat, served to me in a 20oz stein.

A: Very dark brown, almost black, at least from what I could tell in the bar lighting. Head is big, rocky, and brown and sports great staying power.

S: Very malty, as expected. Huge hit of French roast coffee, some hazelnut, chewy caramel, light whiffs of milk chocolate, and some dirty, earthy yeast.

T: Taste followed the smell very closely. Lots of coffee up front, a light nuttiness, a bit of toffee, tons of chewy caramel, earthy, gritty yeast, and some slight milk chocolate toward the finish. Hops were not prominent, and played a balancing role only.

M: Medium to medium-thick. Smooth and creamy. Moderate carbonation. Good enough.

O: Very good. A malt lover's darling.

Notes: I have had this beer many times, but mostly out of the growler. This was my first time having it on tap at a respectable beer bar (I had it on tap at Hooters once, don't judge). Normally this is a solid B beer for me, but getting it fresh on tap was a real treat. All the flavors I remembered were there, but dialed up a few notches. Great stuff.

More notes: I understand that this is a blend of their Ten Penny Scotch ale and a house-special stout. I would really like to try that stout.

 1,237 characters

Photo of DNICE555
4.33/5  rDev +22%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Had this on tap at flatbread with small twink, soupedup, and andrea.

A - Dark brown, tan head.

S - Roasted to the point of burnt burnt coffe, which I quite enjoy. A very distinct take from the brewery. They hit it very nice.

T - Again that pleasant burnt coffee with a caramel sweetness that really lingers.

M - Nice and smooth. Looks very heavy but is actually pretty light.

D - Goes down so easy. Very refreshing. I could have multiple pints of this. I've never really had a beer like this one before. The only other beer I've tried from this brewery is the ten penny ale. Can't wait to seek some more out.

 617 characters

Photo of donniecuffs
4.32/5  rDev +21.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Just found my notes recently from last summer's Northwest Connecticut Brewfest. I was told that this 'black & tan' brew consisted of 60% Ten Penny; 40% stout. Poured a dark brown hue, with over a finger of beige head, good retention, and good lacing. Detected all of the same essence in the nose from Ten Penny, e.g. coffee and caramel, as well as a big chocolate/mocha presence. Great, great aroma. The taste began with more of a caramel/malty tone, and then eventually progressed to a mocha flavor with a dry coffee/chocolate finish. Thick yet manageably smooth mouthfeel, with low carbonation. Very sessionable, and again, another one of my few repeat table visits during the 'fest.

 685 characters

Photo of dbmcrorie
4.27/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation:
64 oz. growler poured into an American pint glass. No freshness date or inclination to the style.

Visual:
Wow. Pours thick into a pitch black body with slight brown hues when held to the light. Massive 3 finger head surprised me, khaki-brown with nice retention. Average lacing and a nice bubbly cap stays on top of the pint till the end.

Aroma:
Buttery diacetyl and rich biscuity malt punches the nose. Soft cocoa and espresso beans in the middle with hop earthiness around the edges. A slight smokiness piques, but doesn't linger. Slightly boozy in the finish. I'm curious to try the two ales on their own and compare which notes come from which brew.

Taste:
Porter-like chocolate and caramel malts create coffee, toffee, roasted almond, vanilla, caramel, and biscuit/bready flavors. Plenty of sweet flavors, but not overly sweet/sugary. Hops provide a decent balance with earthy peat flavors along the back of the tongue. Slight astringency between the hops and darkly roasted malt. There is a faint flash of dark berries somewhere in the middle, but has a hard time being distinguishable with all of that roasted malt. Full bodied with a creamy/oily mouthfeel. Rich chocolatey finish with a boozy cocoa aftertaste.

Overall:
Great version of the bottled Black & Tan style. Normally I can enjoy this style bottled, but am never impressed. However, this definitely took me by surprise; worth buying again. Rich body and a great aroma. Despite it's heaviness, it's extremely drinkable and easy to put back a few pints - glad it came in 64 oz's.
Would pair greatly with any savory or hearty dish, such as corned beef hash, clam chowder, shepherd's pie, etc. Would also stand up to rich chocolate/coffee based desserts such as chocolate cheesecake or tiramisu.

Cheers!

 1,785 characters

Photo of slim2043
4.25/5  rDev +19.7%

Photo of Buford_t_justice
4.25/5  rDev +19.7%

Photo of hefferee
4.25/5  rDev +19.7%

Photo of shigg85
4.25/5  rDev +19.7%

Photo of Theniz
4.25/5  rDev +19.7%

Photo of Amalak
4.2/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this at whistling willies in cold spring.
a--very dark red and brown with limited head. Can barely see through.
S- slight nut scent.
t- nice nutty and toffee taste. Crisp and malty. Has a nice smooth and balanced very. Very easy to drink. Very good on a spring day

 270 characters

Photo of WhiteHillsStore
4.2/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

It's always nice to get a growler of something. The appearance was nice and black with a coffee colored head. The smell was a lot of malt and very sweet. The taste was great with nice notes of the malt and a lot of chocolate flavors in the beginning which then led to a very clean finish. Easy drinking but with a lot of flavor. My favorite part though was the feel of the beer. Not overly thick, but a nice consistency that coated my mouth. I liked it a lot and would definitely recommend.

 490 characters

Photo of sinstaineddemon
4.17/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - this ale pours a dark dark brown, not quite black, but impenetrable by light, with a pillowy three finger head

S - a surpsrisingly pleasant chocolate aroma surrounded by a hops/roasted malt background, inviting

T - roasted malts dominate the taste, with a stout-esque chocolate/espresso flavor lying in wait

M&D - very smooth and balanced beer, as with other Olde Burnside brews, my father likes them as well, and he is a prototypical High Life Man, a great session beer for any hard worker, or oaf like me

 519 characters

Photo of ppoitras
4.1/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pre-packaged growler from Spirit Haus, Amherst, MA.

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a frothy 1/2" tan head above the barely translucent dark caramel-hued brew. Head hangs on at 1/4", with nice lacing. Aroma is creamy dark malts. The taste is upfront dark malts, coupled with the lighter body character of the "tan" portion of the brew. Closes with an almost slight citrus crisp hops bite. Mouthfeel and drinkability are both great, an obvious result of the creaminess of the overall package. Nice one here.

 521 characters

Photo of CTaleMan
4.1/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of MuddyFeet
4.08/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked this up on a whim. Growler. Did not realize it was a B&T. Kind of liked the name. It poured dark, dark brown in color with a stubborn head. There was also an incredible amount of lace. The glass was pretty much coated. The aroma was burnt malts, kind of like putting my nose into a wood fire. The flavor is kind of wierd. It has the mellow malts of a pale ale, but the bold and rich flavors of a porter. Dark chocolate, smokey malts, toffee, vanilla and caramel. Mouthfeel was very full, chalky and cloying. Just takes over the palate. Still very easy to drink and I wished I was closer to the brewery.

 609 characters

Photo of ams0286
4.05/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Drink local is my motto! I picked this growler up off the shelf at the local package store. The growler had no freshness indicators which worries me slightly. In the growler format the shelf life on this beer might not be very long.

The appearance is darker than i would expect from a black & tan but in my opinion it looks very appetizing. The head is a little much for me. I prefer not to have to wait for it to settle but it could have been my pouring method. Nice tan color with not very much lacing.

The smell primarily consists of toffee. There are also notes of coffee and chocolate. The hop profile is lacking, even for this style.

The taste again mirrors the aroma, tons of toffee and caramel notes, with a slight background of roasted coffee and milk chocolate. Again not very much hop profile comes through, but the beer is not cloying.

The mouth feel of the beer is lighter than I would expect from it's appearance. Of course carbonation is on the lighter end, not only because of the style but also the packaging method. This is not terribly far off style.

Dirty penny is absolutely a sessionable beer. I like this because it isn't light in color, it is full flavored, and local! Despite the fact that I wish my local beers offered better taste qualities and more variety, I will always support them. I will be picking this growler up again soon.

 1,364 characters

Photo of Grichard
4.03/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice and malty, I like it.

26 characters

Photo of FLAbeergutinMASS
4.02/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Growler from Ryan & Casey in Greenfield. Seems to be a fair amount of promotion going on by this brewery. Bottle came with a descriptive card, giving a brief history of the brewery and the beer.

Deep, deep red, almost black appearance. No head or retention for that matter. So few B&T's on BA, it's hard to know what "typical" characteristics are.

Smokey, toffee, and candy cane, a very complex mixture. Taste leans a bit to the burnt side of caramel; the stout seems to be more porter than stout. The sweetness is from the ale, which I have also had.

A fine tasting beer seems a bit confused as to what it is. A little too heavy for what it is.

 654 characters

Photo of MediocreatBest
4.02/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Murkey, muddy brown. Now that i am at the bottom of the growler i am noticing a good deal of sediment, that didnt occur in the first couple pours. As soon as i poured it i smelt the burnt/chocolatey malts mixed with a sweet hoppy aroma. oh so smooth. slightly chocolatey and somewhat like a rbwon ale but with thef ruity nature of a pale ale. very soft hop profile. at the end i am getting a more grainy feel to it, but i am also sipping a sediment filled glass. went down very well during opening day festivities.

i had a bowl of cherry vanillia ice cream taht went very well with this. i was surprised becuase i dont even normally like beer with ice cream, even an appropriately matched beer. but for some reason this went really well, very enjoyable and somethgn i will surely try again.

 794 characters

Photo of OatmattStout
4/5  rDev +12.7%

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Dirty Penny Ale from The Olde Burnside Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.55 out of 5 with 152 ratings
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston 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.