Ten Penny Ale | The Olde Burnside Brewing Company

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Ten Penny AleTen Penny Ale

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

Style: Scottish Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.60%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
“Ten Penny Ale,” our flagship brew is a smooth, amber-hued mellow version of a Scottish Ale. It’s a good “session ale” and was awarded “Hartford’s Best Microbrew” for 2005, 2006, 2007, and 2009 by The Hartford Advocate’s Readers Poll. This beer is available year-round at your local bar or favorite beer store.

Why “Ten Penny?” My grandfather used to say “You can get a good beer for a nickel, but a really good beer will cost you ten pennies!” (Motto: Work hard, drink well… Ten Penny Ale!)

Added by BeerAdvocate on 03-04-2002

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Reviews: 103 | Ratings: 247
Photo of beerich
4.8/5  rDev +30.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I've tried all the other local microbrews and keep coming back to Olde Burnsides Ten Penny Ale.
If they don't have it at your local Pub or restaurant, then it's time for a change.. go to one that has it.
This exceptional brew stands out amongst the crowd, smokey sweet flavor, frothy head, and a satisfying smooth finish.
My recommendation is this - Drink Ten Penny Ale because the rest of them are just beer.

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Photo of Thads324
4.7/5  rDev +28.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Picked up a growler today...poured into a pint glass

A : nice copper color with a solid head, dissipated slowly but left a bit on top throughout the pint. Lots of lacing.

S : A little bit flaky or smokey, I can't decide, with a hint of caramel.

T : A nice cara flavor up front transitions smoothly into a quick hop before mellowing out with a good Scottish ale malt towards the end. Smooth. Delicious!

M : The blend of malt and hop make the beer very smooth yet full on the palate, with a carbonation that carries the flavor for a while after the beer has left the mouth.

D : very drinkable. smooth, refreshing, easy to drink.

I am very impressed. Different from most scotch ales I have had. This beer has it all. I must have bought a fresh growler because a small ring of head stayed throughout the entire pint. The mouthfeel was excellent, lingering for a while after. After the first pint I had to have another. The mixture of caramel, a slight smokiness and tinge of hop lingering was just too good. I can't wait to try another style from this brewery soon!

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Photo of kelticblood
4.62/5  rDev +25.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Ten Penny Ale poured a great thick pure white head.A strong smell of hops and hay.Left a dark copper color with long white lace around my glass.The smell and taste is truly unique and is something im not accustomed to.The finish seemed a liitle flat as far as carbonation is concerned.Almost seemed to have a tea-like taste.Aroma of a freshly mowed lawn..Although the head showed great carbonation the taste didnt,being a bit flat.I give this brew a good review just for being unique and different,and for having a great taste.

After trying this on tap a few times I cant get enough of it.It has really grown on me.I've changed my review %

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Photo of donkeyrunner
4.6/5  rDev +25.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A local legend around these here parts.

Clear, copper color. Cascading white head leaves a thick crust of rocky foam. Dissolves into a frothy miasma that throws up some lacey splashes.

Light, sweet toffee, and nutty hickory kettle corn and earthy hop tea aroma. Velvety smooth mouthfeel although I could see it leaning towards tea-like and watery for some. Regardless, great for a 5.5% abv.. Taste is kettle corn, caramel and earthy hop spice.

Sweet and earthen and has that perfect balance of complexity and accessibility that mark my favorite beers. Great stuff.

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Photo of DrunkPagan
4.57/5  rDev +24.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Tenpenny, oh Tenpenny, the Scottish Ale that got me into Scottish Ales. Hallowed be thy name.

Appearance: Pours a dark amber/red color. The foam fades fast, but it's a growler, so that's expected.

Smell: Oaky notes mingle with hops and a sort of smoky maltiness, but not in an overpowering way. It's sweet with a touch of bitterness.

Taste: Yes. Just yes. While some Scottish Ales go a little crazy with the oaky flavor, Tenpenny keeps it simple and smooth. They create an exceptional beer.

Mouthfeel: It's light, crisp, but with a solid malt body.

Drinkability: I could drink this all day, and tried to once. I don't remember much, except it was the best Tuesday ever. I'm kidding, but seriously, this is so smooth, I literally could just pound it back all day, not a care in the world.

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Photo of sinstaineddemon
4.52/5  rDev +23.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A - this ale pours a dark orange/coppery appearance, with moderate to heavy carbonation with a two finger thick creamy white head

S - a great musty hoppy aroma with a slight spiciness

T - mmm, great bitters in here, with a nice wheaty-bready taste, very full bodied, almost chewable

M - a nice brisk taste, not over-smooth but very easy down

D - which leads to a great drinkability, even my father, who's a High Life man, likes this beer

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Photo of steinlifter
4.35/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a clear copper, foamy off-white head, that left broken lace all the way down the glass.
Floral hop aroma, whiff of raisins.
floral hop taste, slightly dry finish, smooth.
Mouthfeel is the weak spot on this beer, very watery, but doesn't take away too much from this well done ale. I'd rate the drinkability, as high, on this one.

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Photo of thespaceman
4.35/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a growler into my Otter Creek pint glass.

Appearance: A darker golden color, pour showed an excellent size head with sticky lacing that trails this Ale to the bottom of the glass.

Smell: Sweet malts blast you in the nose, a bit of an earthy/grassy note in the backround. Vanilla is somewhat present, and caramel maltiness makes you know this ones gonna be sweet.

Taste: This one has a good malty backbone to it, however, an earth dry hop in the front makes you know the malt isn't the star of the show. Again, some caramel, toffee malts are huge but a nice grassy hop tinge in the front keeps this one from being overly heavy.

Mouthfeel: Smooth and creamy, it's amazing how robust this one is on the tongue, decent carbonation and a malty like characteristic make this one feel alot creamier then it is. Doesn't get wet and stays firmly together.

Drinkability: In growler form, I've found a new brew that is oh so satisfying. I love how the maltiness and the hops cooperate with eachother perfectly to shape out this wonderful treat. An excellent offering from a local brewer and I will definetley have to pick up more of this soon.

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Photo of scottg
4.3/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a growler into a pint glass.

Pours a clear amber color with a one finger plus white head that has good retention with no lacing. The aroma is dominated by sweet carmelized malt. Up front flavors of toasted malt and smoke lead to some lemony hops with chocolate and molasses. Light carbonation, medium body, leaves a very clean, crisp mouthfeel, a little thin for the style but it works. The malt is very well controlled and balanced by the hops, there are so many different flavors. Too often, the smoke takes over the taste of this style, not here. Amazing drinkability for the style, I had no problem finishing this growler on my own. My favorite CT beer to date.

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Photo of donniecuffs
4.3/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Just found my notes recently from last summer's Northwest Connecticut Brewfest. Poured dark copper, with a finger of off-white head, good retention, and good lacing. Very pleasant and pronounced blend of coffee, caramel, and cocoa powder in the nose. Tasted of caramel and coffee, dissolving to more maltiness midpalate and finishing on a smoky note. Nicely smooth, not overly carbonated medium body. Very sessionable, and one of my few repeat table visits during the 'fest.

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Photo of assurbanipaul
4.3/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

Poured from a brewery-sealed growler as a hazy chestnut with a tall billowing head. Nose is mild malt with faint fruity hops, maybe some light citrus or spice.

Taste is spicy, semi-sweet malt followed by a mild hoppy presence. Elements of tobacco, tea and maybe even curry powder. Rather dry with earthy, woody flavors, nutty, smoky or even ashy tastes.

Mouthfeel is thin, possibly even a little watery. Finish is clean and very dry. Well-balanced and fairly complex flavors. Would make a very drinkable session beer.

This sample came to me (through no small adventure) as part of BIF 10, and many thanks to spiritdeus for sharing this gem with me.

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Photo of jlaplume76
4.25/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

My favorite session beer, crisp. clean. One finger head that stays throughout the pint. Malty aroma, a bit smoky. A citrus/grass hop note. The body was average for the style, with light carbonation, mouthfeel was average, but if it was 90 degrees out the mouthfeel would be exceptional. Very well balanced. I had no problem finishing a growler and a half. This is what I reach for after mowing the lawn. A winner in my book . I've got to make it a point to get down to the brewery, I would love to have a fresh pint.

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Photo of DNICE555
4.25/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at flatbread with Larsonstyle. The bartender told me they kicked a hooker tap off because they wanted to put micro brew on... I had seen this one at the brass city brewfest but didn't get the opportunity to try it. No idea what to expect here. Nice dark brown color with some serious head on this beer. Smells grainy and malty. Tasted kinda smokey. Rough at first but I eased into it. It has a very nice mouthfeel, strong but pronounced. I really like how this one goes down. I wanted to try the Dirty penny next but it seemed there was a problem with the keg as the head was unbelievable. I thought it was a very solid offering and I am anxious to try more from this brewery.

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Photo of Durge
4.25/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Was glad to see this offered at T. Pic's bar in Waterbury, CT (soon to be The Publick House, go there!!). Poured from the growler into a pint glass, this one showed a slightly hazey dark iced tea color with a modest off-white head and fair scattered lacing. The aroma was a somewhat malty rye, a touch grassy but mild and mellow, pleasant. The flavor was a very nice blend of spicey rye and mild brown sugar malt. Mild but effective carbonation in a medium bodied silky feel. I really like this with it's polite hint of bitterness, somewhere between herbal and citrus. This tasted better than I remember it from the tap some time ago, so I will be sure to snag a growler for home sometime soon. Well done!

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Photo of ppoitras
4.2/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pre-packaged growler from Randazzo's Package Store, Stafford Springs, CT.

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a creamy 3/4" off-white head above the caramel-hued brew. Head settles at about 1/2", holding steady, with heavy foam lacing. Aroma is of earthy, floral hops, some heather character, with an undercurrent of pale to caramel malts. The hops and heather character carries over into the taste, producing a reasonably well-balanced brew that tends a tad toward the hops. Mouthfeel is a little rough, but after a few mouthfuls you are good to go, and the drinkability heads on up. Enjoyable brew.

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Photo of rabidawg
4.15/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Deep, thick brown. White, creamy head that laced nicely.

Smell: Very malty, but with a very nice hop backdrop. I didn't detect the smokiness others did.

Taste: Sweet maltiness with a fruity tang. Definitely a substantial hop finish, with a satisfying dryness. Kind of light-bodies.

Notes: To me, this was extremely reminiscent of a Long Trail Ale, but with a fruitier aftertaste. Very enjoyable beer and highly recommended. Will try soon in the growler.

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Photo of Thrasher
4.1/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Store-bought growler. Amber with full head that dwindles. Exceptionally grassy aroma that suggests intense hops. This Pacific coast flavor is present in the beer and it is surprisingly hoppy for a Scottish ale but maintains its balance. Not too bitter, hints of peat and smoke in malts, but no caramel goodness that's in most malty beers. Venom did a good job of describing this brew. It really is too tangy with grass and grapefruit flavors, but a good aftertaste. It is unique, and commendable for that. I like it just fine and you gotta love a CT brew.

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Photo of Sam21
4.1/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Growler into pint glass.

Appearance - Deep copper body with great head retention. Big soda-like bubbles in the head. Some lace.

Smell - Caramel malt with a smoky charred character. Nice earthiness.

Taste - Interesting stuff. Sweet caramel up front. Leads into a really unique smoky earthiness. Little bitterness to the finish.

Mouthfeel - Real smooth medium-light bodied ale. Nice carbonation.

Drinkability - Very drinkable ale. I really like the smoky and earthy flavors and the balancing caramel sweetness. Great beer.

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Photo of LennyV
4.07/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark brown into my palm tulip. 3 finger head and some lacing.

Smells sweet with some citrus.

Taste's intially bitter but very quick. The sweetnes and malt kicks in quickly and it finishes sweet with some lemon.

Light to medium body nicely carnonated.

This is a nice easy drinker. Something to enjoy on a hot day. I have never had a scotch ale and I was expecting more of a whisky taste. What a nice surprise.

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Photo of Nascartailgatefa
4.06/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sampled at the International Great Beer Expo, Rock Hill, NY.

Pours a cloudy copper with a robust head , good retention and excellent lacing. Full bodied mouthfeel. Smooth start to finish. No aftertaste. Excellent drinkability. Will have to look out for this again.

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Photo of far333
4.05/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark amber color, with a dark tan head full of big frothy bubbles. The head lingers long and laces nicely down the glass. There is a strong hop aroma with nuances of esthers and yeast. The carbonation is low, and the flavor imparts a strong hop bitterness. Not too malty, but sort of a dough flavor with hints of apricot and pine. Light for a Scottish ale, but a very nice offering from a new young brewer.

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Photo of BigPapaLager
4.05/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Being that this beer is brewed about two blocks from where I grew up in East Hartford, I tried it as soon as a saw it for the first time. I've had many beers since then and this one has grown on me. From its half gallon tub Ten penney pours out a thick fat head, yet is not very carbonated. The hops are strong in this one. I go back to this beer every couple of months.

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Photo of cutlaz
4/5  rDev +9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I tried this beer on a whim when I saw it at the local liquor store. Very impressed. This beer doesn't look like much, but has a very unique and very nice, powerful taste. The smell is almost off-putting, as it smells very pungent, almost flowery. The taste however, is amazing, strong and smooth. Absolutely worth trying.

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Photo of wyllder
4/5  rDev +9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Drank out of a half gallon growler.

Poured a deep, clear amber. Nothing more than a small, fizzy head.

Smell is weak. Some slight hops creep through and maybe a little bit of caramel. When agitated the caramel/butterscotch scent is more pronounced.

First hit on the palate is weak floral hops. This is followed by a fairly pleasant caramel/butterscotch creaminess and a slight malty sweetness. Not much of an aftertaste here at all.

Feels pleasant enough in the mouth, but nothing unusual.

Very easy to drink and, if you're looking for a good food beer, this is actually quite excellent. Went great with my pizza and another BA'er noted it went well with his burgers. If there was a "goes well with food" category I would have given it a 4.5-5.


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Photo of necoadam
4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at the Rainforest Cafe at Westfarms Mall in West Hartford, CT

I looked at the bottled menu and saw just plain macros, so I had to ask what was on tap to see if anything can save me here. And to my surprise they had this on tap, so I quickly ordered a pint of this stuff. Came in a 16oz pint glass and appeared to be a nutty brown color with some nice carbonation in there. Quite malty along with some slight peat aromas, but very little. Could of used a little more peat-like aromas, but that's ok. Taste was nice. Slight toasted malts that seemed sweetened slightly. Some brown sugar was also in there to add a little more sweetness to it. There was some peatness to it, but it could of used a little more. But the flavors did blend in well which I liked about this beer. I do have a bottle of this and I'll see how these two compare. But on-tap, this is pretty nice.

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Ten Penny Ale from The Olde Burnside Brewing Company
3.67 out of 5 based on 247 ratings.
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