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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: 246
Photo of smcolw
3.95/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Good initial head that settles well and slowly leaving some streaky foam lines on the glass. The color is a neutral amber--lighter than other Scotch ales I've had. There's a small amount of haze.

Semi-sweet caramel malt aroma. There's enough hop to give it balance to the nose. Blindfolded, I would guess that this is a American amber or British mild.

Far more hoppy than a typical Scotch Ale; still, this is a mostly malt brew. There's a yeast bite similar to a well-made homebrew. The swallow has a touch of pepper from the hop. The rich body is cut by the high level of carbonation. I note some earthiness to the finish.

This is not true to style, but is a very good beer.

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Photo of BranfordBound
3.88/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the True Blue Tavern at the Nathan Hale Inn across from the UConn South Dorms.

Pours a muddy amber color with a nice head and some lacing. Fairly cloudy so carbonation is hard to see.

Smells of malts with a touch of smokiness to them.

Very malt forward beer. Lots of malty goodness with touches of dark fruit and some smokiness. A bit of earthiness in the background, but other than that, not too much hops.

Mouthfeel is a little wet, this is fairly medium bodied.

Good drinkability if you're in the mood for a rich malty beer.

Note: I detect some resemblance to Penny Weiz Ale, perhaps they use the same yeast?

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Photo of Jayli
3.95/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had at Adams Mill in Manchester, CT on 11/2
Served in a pint glass

A: This beer pours a deep amber color with a one finger of pristine white, creamy head. Head recedes at a moderate pace and leaves nice splotches of lacing on the glass.

S: Nose is caramel malts, earthy hops, and a hint of smoke.

T: Taste starts with a burst of earthy, piney hops. The middle fills with a sweet caramel and toffee flavoring with just a touch of nuttiness as well and a hint of smokiness that really carries through in to the finish.

M: Medium body, medium carbonation, clean and crisp bodied with a bit of an oily finish.

D: Nice kick, nice representation of style, not too filling, this is a nice beer to have a few pints for an evening.

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Photo of socon67
3.67/5  rDev 0%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Tried on tap during lunch;

A - Pours a copper hue. Settles very quickly. Not particularly clear.

S - Smells earthy. Not much else to make of this.

T - Has the traditional scottish ale taste; the bitterness comes out very pronounced. A little sourness in the finish. Very noticeable hoppy flavor.

M - Relatively light, not much carbonation.

D - It is drinkable, but the style gets kinda tired after one. What is kinda cool is that there are no preservatives in this guy, so if you try one it pretty much has to be fresh. Worth trying but not a "must find".

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Photo of begforme4484
3.53/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Bidwell Tavern in Coventry.

Pours a somewhat copper color with decent nice off-white head, good retention, and leaves some good lacing.

There isn't much of a nose on the beer. It has some caramel sweetness, and a bit of sourness.

A lot of mild sweetness, that seems to be subdued with the yeast. Honestly, it tastes like a spicier version of Kix. Yes, the cereal. There's a hint of grassy hops on the finish, but I couldn't detect any sort of bitterness.

Medium bodied, good carbonation. Very smooth and easy to drink. Went well with the wings.

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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 aahynick
1.86/5  rDev -49.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

40F in a pint glass on tap

A- pale copper, lots of bubbles but no head

S- nearly no aroma

T- soapy and mildly peaty

M - thin and watery

D- at first I said forget about this. But after talking with other folks later, I think the poor performance was all the fault of the serving method. Got it at Red Robin and the tender put it in a frosted glass. I'm betting that the glass was poorly rinsed and gained a lot of condensation when pulled out of the cooler. I wanted to do a retest before leaving New England but it just wasn't meant to be. So take my review with a grain of salt.

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Photo of layapandora
3.76/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

While returning home from a family function, where the drink of choice was white wine, we passed a newly opened so-called "liquor warehouse" and decided it was worth a peek. With less than twenty minutes until closing to explore the massive space, we were pleasantly surprised when we walked into the refrigerated section and immediately saw Olde Burnside's Ten Penny Ale (growler) perched upon a shelf.

From what we heard, we knew this would be the perfect beer to enjoy on a beautiful summer night - perhaps while overlooking nearby Lake Zoar. Thanks to a broken GPS, we ended up in the wrong direction but enjoying this gorgeous beer on our back porch was still the perfect end to a perfect day. In fact, we couldn't wait to twist the cap back off the growler and pour some out for lunch. I am still drinking it as I type this.

Appearance: This is a truly beautiful beer. A rich amber color, when holding my glass toward the light I spy the delicate frothy white head being assaulted by an army of bubbles from below as they cut through the thick expanse of yeast and liquid. Peering from below, there are dark patches of yeast settled upon the bottom and (no matter how much is left in the glass) the light comes through more prominently only about a 1/2 to 1 inch from the top.

Smell: Caramel is the first thing I pick up when breathing in over the glass, as well as hints of other earthy scents that I can't really describe. There is a hint of spice, but as I've just begun to really pay attention to distinctions in beer I am not quite sure what it this scent is.

Taste: The taste is as heavy as this beer looks/feels. While I do prefer fruitier beers, I recognize the taste is of a decent quality. Again, the caramel surfaces at the top, as well as a bit of a nutty flavor. It is thick and tingly on my tongue, and I can feel the bubbles as it slips down my throat. The heaviness does sit a bit in my stomach, but the aftertaste is quite pleasant.

Mouthfeel: I do love how this beer feels! Again, the thickness and the carbonation do battle upon my tongue and throughout my mouth. Although, toward the bottom of the glass (where everything has settled) it does get thicker yet seemingly watered down. I really don't know how else to describe it. Fresh out of the growler, however, was the best feeling - especially while it was still ice cold.

Drinkability: This is a bit of a heavy beer for me, but my boyfriend quite enjoys it and we both feel it may be a better fit for winter. Last night was quite humid, as is today, and as the beer tends to just "sit" in your stomach it does fill you up quite quickly. I have spent the past half hour working on this pint glass, and last night it took me about the same time. (sadly, I couldn't finish it fresh out of the bottle on first open last night... as a moth decided it apparently wanted to take a nose dive into my glass). It is really a good beer for a summer night once the sun goes down, but the humidity did make it somewhat hard to enjoy. If I was sitting by a fire, curled up with my dog and holding a glass of this while it snowed outside, I believe the thickness and heaviness of it would lend well to a quiet Winter evening. Also, if the temperature can be kept cold enough, bringing a growler (or two) on a camping trip to share with friends around the fire would be an excellent way to end a day after a long hike.

All in all, I do recommend this beer - if you can get it. As it says on the company's website, it doesn't travel well since it is unfiltered and contains no preservatives. Those of us lucky enough to live close to the brewery (how I wish we could have gone to their festival yesterday that ended in an overnight camping experience!) can enjoy the flavor of this truly wonderful treat.

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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 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 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 Pabs311
3.68/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- pours a deep copper color with a nice off-white head, settling slowly to leave some good lacing but never fully settling.

S- light nose, with caramel malt and some earthy sourness.

T- alot more of the caramel sweetness here, less of the earthy tones but finishes with a quick snap of grassy hops.

M/D- medium bodied, good carbonation. easy drinking. could easily polish of a growler of this in the course of an evening.

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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 travduke
3.97/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Dark brown, 1 finger head that fades quickly, minimal lacing.

Smell: Sweet, a little citrus hops.

Taste: Very sweet and malty. A little bitter at the start.

Drinkability: I usually pick up a growler every couple of weeks of this. Goes down easy, its enjoyable.

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Photo of jeffthecheff
3.51/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a tall mug. It's color is a hazy murky brown with only a wisp of a white head that eventually fades to nothing.

Aroma is fruity with a subtle malt nose of caramel and grainy malts. There is also a touch of herbal hop. Not very strong in the nose, but the fruitiness is noticed the most.

The taste has some light fruitiness along with sweet grain and a very light caramel finish. Light brown sugar and a very slight toast are found in the finish. The mouthfeel is light with high carbonation, which takes away from the flavor of the beer. In the end this dulls the beer down a bit. It tastes good, but it's nothing really exciting. It's not at the top of my list as something to grab, but I enjoy it.

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Photo of Amalak
3.86/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I had at d.b.a. in Williamsburg, Brooklyn out of a hand-pump cask. It's reddish, but more rust/copper with a good head and lacing. Opaque with lots of sediment.

It tastes like a popcorn ale and has a fruity taste of bitter citrus and then some malt sourness. Interesting flavor.

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Photo of StevenBilodeau
3.56/5  rDev -3%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This beer is an unknown at my work. Obviously it can be a little ominous or intimidating to some, but of course I have no fear in trying new beers!!! I took this bad boy home and quickly opened to it to my surprise. A very good beer was inside. hey I'm kinda rhyming, weird. Anyway, this beer has a good head, good lacing. Tastes very good, don't go drinking it in all at once now, ya here!

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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 GratefulBeerGuy
3.7/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A bright amber beer, soft frothy and lacy head, looks healthy.

Sweet, buttery malt with some cloves and ginger, maybe some candy corn's.

The malt is the star of the show for this one, very English-like malty flavor, bready but sweet with decent hop bite with pepper and some herbal heat and a nice bitter finish. good balance here.

Medium bodied, smooth and crispy!

nice on-tap!

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Photo of JMD
3.43/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Rich copper color with small pillowy head that dissipates quickly.

S: Sweet toasted malt, some carmel and molasses.

T: Sweet and malty upfront. Carmel and some bread. A faint underlying smokiness as well. Finishes with a light touch of hops.

M: Medium bodied with light carbonation.

D: This is an easy drinking ale. Goes down easy but nothing really exciting about it to make me want to go back for another one.

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Photo of Wasatch
3.53/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks goes out to Ezone024 for this brew.

Pours a cloudy golden light brown color, nice carbonation, very nice two-finger creamy off-white head, with some nice thick/creamy sticky lacing left behind. The nose is malty, with some hop note, slightly sour/citrus note. The taste is malty, hoppy, soury, with some caramel. Drinkable, not a bad brew, nice to have had a chance to try it.

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Photo of bum732
3.85/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a nice burnt orange, great bubbly head, lots of lacing. Smells of caramel earthiness, some metal, hint of smoke. Tastes of semi-sweet caramely malt with a moderate bitterness. Ends slightly sweet with some smoky and roastiness. Creamy full mouthfull, moderate carbonation.

A very nice beer, i have it every time i'm at the Hartford airport. Wouldn't mind a little more flavor, but a great session scottish.

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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 ElGeordie
3.65/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had a pint of this in the Black Bear in Milford CT.
The piper pump badge piqued ny interest, it's been a long time since I've had a good Scottish pint.
It really looks like an authentic Scottish pint (probably resembles a traditional 70 shilling more than anything else.) In the glass the beer looks like dirty brown dishwater (that's not a negative !) with a minimal head.
It drinks just like a seventy Bob should too; plenty of malt and hops but not overbearing, a slight citrus note- but only slight.
A very refreshing and authentic Scottish pint - well done.

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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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Ten Penny Ale from The Olde Burnside Brewing Company
3.67 out of 5 based on 246 ratings.
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