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Black Oak Nut Brown Ale | Black Oak Brewing Co.

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69 Reviews
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Black Oak Nut Brown AleBlack Oak Nut Brown Ale

Brewed by:
Black Oak Brewing Co.
Ontario, Canada

Style: English Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Based on the traditional Nut Brown style, Black Oak’s award winning Nut Brown highlights the best features of this style of beer. Often referenced by local beer connoisseurs, and used in beer appreciation classes by local culinary institutions, with repeated appearance in magazines such Food & Drink. The Nut Browns accolades include being voted Best in it’s Class, accompanying a gold medal at The Canadian Brewing Awards in 2004. It additionally received a medal at Gourmet Food & Wine Show. A favorite enjoyed in winter or year round, this satisfying and robust Nut Brown Ale will pleasantly surprise you.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 02-06-2002

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Reviews: 69 | Ratings: 119
Photo of jhall00
4.18/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- The beer pours a muted red brown highlight. Little head with no retention.

S- roasted nutty maltiness. Muted, but nice.

T- straightforward beer taste, caramel, maltiness. Some prolonged roasted flavors

M- Thin to medium mouthfeel. Carbination was too high for the style

D- Over all good beer for the stylel.

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Photo of wordemupg
3.97/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

341ml bottle poured into pint glass jan7 2010

A clear amber except for a few random chunks and some suspended particles and some bubbles. a thin fast falling head leaves just a patch of lace

S lots of caramel with some mild hops and it's a little nutty

T not far from the smell but some chocolate comes out that I didn't notice on the nose and perhaps even a little coffee

M no too much visible carbonation but a fair bit in the mouth

D no major complaints with this beer, well rounded and worthy

thanks again adil for the chance to try this one. another pretty good beer I may not see this far west again for some time

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Photo of demcorhip
3.6/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Not overly brown, but its getting there. Nice and clear, half finger pale tan head subsides to leave a nice collar.

Decent aroma. Some floral and herbal notes from the hops, as well as some toffee and walnut from the malts.

Taste is much like the nose, but some esters with the character of apple and pear make a brief appearance between the malt and the hops.

Not bad, but not great either. Somewhat light and watery in body. Would prefer a touch more malt character as well. But other than my minor quibbles this is a very well balanced ale.

Also quite drinkable, and easy enough to session. Pretty approachable fare. Something i would enjoy again with the opportunity, although i wont be turning over stones to try to find more.

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Photo of cloakNdaggar
3.95/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Aromas of roasted malts, some nuttiness, sort of bready, sweet chocolate. The aroma overall, was a bit muted though.

Looks brown with red highlights in colour. Medium sized off-white head. Left some lace behind. OK head retention.

Tastes great, not really a very complex beer, but delicious nun the less. Chocolatey, caramel, nutty, and a pleasant restrained roastiness.

Medium bodied mouthfeel. Carbonation was a bit high in my opinion.

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Photo of MeisterBurger
3.79/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice cola color topped by a 1/2" head of bubbly, bright white head that leaves a film and laces really nicely.

The aroma is mildly caramel and a little roasty. Nothing mild blowing though.

There's a mild roasted nuttiness here, along with some minor toffee notes, some nice chocolate is at play also -- a decent amount of bittering hops in the finish lingers in the after taste. Finishes dry.

This is far from my favorite style of beer, but this is certainly one of the better brown ales I've had.

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Photo of cratez
3.9/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sampled at Chancey Smith's in London, ON, along with the Saison and Pale Ale.

Pours a dark brown hue with ruby edges and a thick beige head. Smells of caramel, toffee, hazelnuts, chocolate, and faintly floral hops. I'm also getting some tree bark. Taste is chocolate, almonds, mild sweetness, grassy hops, malty tartness precedes a hint of cinnamon in the finish. Mouthfeel is smooth and clean with moderate carbonation. Somewhat slick, though it dries out nicely towards the end. Overall, a very tasty drinkable brown ale.

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Photo of wiseguy142
4.25/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Plops out of the bottle with an audible glurp. Seems very light when the beer is going from bottle to glass, almost like gasoline. Very clear. Nice off white head, but not pretentious like in a west coast IPA etc. Dies down gracefully.

Aroma of light biscuit, chcolate, and caramel malt. Not overly assertive but very well rounded out and pleasant.

Taste really hinges on great use of crystal malt. Very pleasant sweetness almost overshadows some of the chocolate malt.

Very smooth and velvety. Really enjoyed it.

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Photo of ericj551
3.58/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Black Oak Nut Brown pours a clear light brown with a thin but lasting head. I smell a bit of sweet toffee malt and just a hint of a darker roasted malt. A bit of malt sweetness comes through at first, giving way to crisp, darker malt and hop bitterness. The bitterness and roasted malt meld together into a dry finish. The body feels a little thin at the end.

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Photo of decimator
3.4/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

From the OCB discovery pack no. 2.
341ml bottle poured into a mug.

A - Clear brown with 1/8" creamy white foam which was gone pretty quick.

S - Burnt toasts, malts, a little nutty, hint of coffee.

T - Strong toasted malt flavor with some bitterness. Also pretty complex with traces of caramel, coffee, nuts and wine notes.

M - Low carbonation with a smooth finish.

D - A little better than average because of the tasty complex flavours.

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Photo of mintjellie
4.12/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours medium brown and shows ruby highlights when held to the light. It has a well retained finger of beige head that leaves behind a good lace.

The scent of nuts and chocolate waft up from my glass with a nice compliment of toffee. It has an earthy quality to it as well.

Delicious chocolate and roasted malt flavour. It's deliciously nutty. Mildly bitter, and wonderfully balanced. I expected it to be on the sweet side when I smelled it, but it's actually pretty dry.

It's a little bit on the thin side, and would benefit from a heavier body. The low carbonation leaves it feeling pretty smooth though. I don't think I'd mind sessioning on this easy drinking brown ale.

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Photo of Seanstoppable
3.8/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Part of this summer's OCB pack, I picked this up on a recent trip to Ontario.

Pouring into a mug results in a nice dark brown colored ale, with a finger of off white head. Lacing is present, but very minimal.

Scent is a light malt with a hazelnut or walnut tinge to it.

Taste starts out slightly hoppy, but mellows out into some malts and nutty flavors. A hint of chocolate rounds it off.

Overall, a very nice, smooth, drinkable brown ale. I was surprised to look down and find it gone so quickly.

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Photo of hegelec
3.61/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 341 mL bottle into a chalice. Decent amount of off-white head and great retention (thanks to torrified wheat). Good lace. Looks appetising.

Smell is somewhat subdued. Hints of chocolaty sweetness and a slight earthy hop. Nothing is jumping out at me yet.

Taste is good, and gets better when it warms. This is bready, chocolaty, floral, and nicely nutty. It seems to me that the fine balance owes more to the roastiness than the hops. Finish is dry and bitter.

Mouthfeel is much, much lighter than expected; also, the beer seems slightly over-carbonated. Try this and the Sam Smith Nut Brown back to back and you'll realise why I scored so low on mouthfeel ... the SS is liquid velvet.

I'd ratchet up the body a bit and maybe lighten the carbonation a tad. Otherwise, it is tasty and quite drinkable. A good effort, but not the best this brewery has to offer.

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Photo of Bestuurder
4.13/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

341mL standard brown bottle. Poured a medium walnut colour. Fine lacing, minimal head. Yet lacing lasted throughout consumption. Light fluffy head (considering lack of head).

The smell is heavy in nuttiness; specifically that of walnuts, hazelnuts and almonds.

Taste is very similar to the scent. Balanced hoppiness with almonds, walnuts and hazelnuts. Possibly a hints oc chocolate notes, and a strong finish. Very little oak flavour, more subjective than anything else.

Fantastic texture, thick, but not chewy. Excellent carbonation patterning.

Very balanced and presented nicely. Would definitely be have again.

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Photo of DoctorStrangiato
3.93/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a 341-ml bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance - dark amber-brown beer with 1/4-inch sustained head of a soft and foamy nature. Solid lacing present, excellent to behold.

Smell - beautiful roasted barley malt with nutty aromatics. Lingering noticeables of chocolate-caramel also.

Taste - very full flavour with a very even, complex malt taste for an extended period but gives way to a molasses-hazelnut taste with just a little hoppiness to keep it balanced.

Mouthfeel - there's a strange way this brew seems very active at the beginning yet fades into a smooth, almost creamy feel in a very subtle way. Nice indeed.

Drinkability - probably only a couple of these. Tasty, but not a beer I'd have gallons of.

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Photo of ludachris
4.27/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Courtesy of TheHammer. You're the man Marky.
Pours a deep mahogany with a finger of off white, creamy head. Decent retention. Leaves sheets of sticky lacing.
Smell of roasted nuts, caramel and bready malts with a little bit of chocolate. Man does this smell good.
Taste almost identical to the nose. Like the bottle says, very robust. Sweet bready malts anc caramel nots are balanced out very nicely with a nice, dry hoppy, roasted nut finish.
Mouthfeel is clean, smooth and well balanced and the drinkability is excellent.

Overall, the best English Brown Ale Ive had to date. They didnt hold back at all in the flavour sector which helped its drinkability. I didnt want to put this thing down. Thanks again Marky for this mother of a beer. Highly recommended for anyone fond of English brown ale's.

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Photo of TheHammer
3.9/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Came in a brown bottle with an Acorn and Chipmunk on it. Poured with a half finger of head that did not lace but retained quite well. The beer itself is a deep brown with red highlights and yet is surprisingly clear. Carbonation also looks exceptionally good.

Smell: Definite nutty smell, as I'm catching a blend of almonds, walnuts and chestnuts. The background has a nice array of sweet malts, caramel and a light chocolate hint. I'm also catching hints of dry and fruity hops. Very good and true to the name but took a bit of warming to come out.

Taste: Very true to it's name, starts with a nice sweeter malt flavor then turns to a very well balanced bitter taste. An influx of nut flavor with roasted malts and a mix of hops makes this beer a treat.

Mouthfeel: It is quite good, but a bit conflicted as it does leave a nice nutty flavor, however it is a bit dry and lingers for a bit too long. It does make up for it though with how smoothly it goes down and for having solid carbonation.

Drinkability: This stuff goes down smoothly and refreshes nicely. However on the downside, the slight dryness hinders this aspect and I can see it causing stomach issues around the 5 or 6 beer mark. Still solid stuff.

Final Thoughts: All in all, a solid offering which is frankly is a beer for many different seasons. I can see this going well with food, being good on the patio, good for nursing, good as a desert beer. After I polish this six pack, I'm going to certainly try some of Black Oak's other offerings.

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Photo of biegaman
3.98/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A nutty shade of brown indeed; this shares the colour of roasted pecan shell and displays vivid chestnut highlighting. It's a dark, toasty tone but offers just a smidgen of smeared clarity. There isn't much topping although it's threadlike outline is surprisingly adhesive and tattoos layers of thin, gangly lace. Black Oak Nut Brown not only looks good, it also looks to theme!

The aroma displays a soft, quiet bouquet of cocoa dusted malts, heavy toasted bread, weak coffee and a handful roasted nuts. Neither the roast nor hops are very forward like they are in many American variations but they are present nevertheless. Despite all this making for a very pleasant smelling beer it never really becomes a very time consuming activity.

This is one tasty beer. It's fairly robust for a nut brown, showcasing ample roast, sweet caramelization, and crisp bitterness. Flavours of toasted bread, fresh roasted coffee beans, cocoa powder and a big bowl of candied nuts ensure the beer is drank in big gulps. I can't think of any more suitable pint to have around the cooling autumn season.

I can't make any sense of anions, cations or charged ions but I can notice that this RO (reverse osmosis) water certainly imparts a kind of mineral rich profile synonymous with the classic, original English nut browns. Although I know it's brewed 40 minutes from my house down Highway 401, you might guess it's a product of Newcastle or Yorkshire.

Ontario's craft brewers aren't exactly the most visionary or imaginative bunch but most of them do a pretty fine job at replicating traditional British ales; Black Oak's Nut Brown is evidence of that. Although this brewery has proven themselves capable of being creative with one-offs and casks releases, I still like their reproductions of the classic UK styles best.

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Photo of Voonder
3.45/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Finally I got to this one! Thanks bobsy!
Pours dark brown colour with literally no head. Smell - earthy, malty, nutty, sweet notes coming through as well. Taste - malts, some coffee, spises, nutmeg. Plain, but still enjoyable. Smooth, good carbonation, easy drinker. Pretty good beer, I'd drink it on occasion.

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Photo of GodOfBeer
3.46/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Dark reddish/brown with a thin beige head that leaves lots of lacing.

Not much on the aroma, some malt, grains and some dried/fermented fruit maybe.

Nothing special, pretty malty and sweet/syrupy, needs more hops!

Pretty drinkable thirst quenching beer, but I would never buy this.

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Photo of CaptainIPA
3.15/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

P: Thank you to my big sister and her family for turning me onto the Ontario Craft Brewers' Discovery Pack No. 2: 6 assorted bottles. All the way from Toronto. Nice Christmas gift, EH?
#4 in a series.

A: Pours a chestnut brown color with a thin white head that fades quickly. Nice lacing.

S: Faint malt sweetness in the aroma.

T: Malty and sweet on the palate with a nutty character that emerges in the foreground. Finishes moderately dry.

M: Thin-bodied to a fault with minimal carbonation.

D: Decent for the style. Easy drinking, but not complex enough to warrant multiple sessions.

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Photo of hopdog
3.45/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

341ml bottle acquired in trade with blankboy (thanks!).

Poured a medium brown color with an averaged sized off white head. Aromas of stronger caramel with some roast and nuts. Tastes of the same strong caramel, chocolate, and toasted nuts. On the sweeter side.

Notes from 12/29/06

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Photo of EatsTacos
4.21/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark chestnut brown with a very light head and some slight lacing

Aroma was fairly nutty and malty as I would have expected.

Taste was dominated by sweet malt with minimal hop flavour. The caramel malt is well pronounced and there is a lot of nuttyness to it as well. Quite good but not as complicated and bold as I would have expected.

Mouthfeel is medium and the carbonation is pretty low and soft. Very drinkable.

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Photo of MMansfield
3.18/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Had this around for a while.

Appearance: Pours a chocolate brown color with a modest off white head. Settles to a thin layer.

Aroma: Whaffs of chocolate malt, some toffee, a bit of fruit.

Taste: Holding up pretty nicely. Fairly sweet, fairly malty, not enough hops to balance it out. I question their choice of yeast strain.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium bodied.

Final Statement: Reminds me a lot of Big Rock Traditional Ale, that may not be a great thing.

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Photo of Antilochus
4.2/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up in a 6 pack at Summerhill LCBO in Toronto, ON. 5.00% abv, 341mL twist bottle. No freshness date, unfortunately. Into a wine glass @ fridge temp.

Even chestnut brown body with a small off-white head. Loses the head quickly.

First aromas I get are sweet and fruity. A bit of yeasty funk. Roasted malt. Very organic.

Carbonation is just right. Very creamy and full mouthfeel. Palate is a bit sweet, offset with roasted bitterness and a hint of sourness. Finish is malty, caramelly, but restrained and dry. Coffee is apparent. Spices and dark fruits. Yum.

The best brown I've had thus far.

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Photo of cyrenaica
3.95/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

341ml bottle
I tried this beer on May 6, 2008 at Smokeless Joe's in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The beer was mahogany brown with a tan coloured head. The aroma was roasted malt, coffee, and some slight hoppy tinges. The mouthfeel was medium bodied with medium carbonation. The flavour was roasted malt, some coffee hints, and some hoppy bitterness.

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Black Oak Nut Brown Ale from Black Oak Brewing Co.
3.86 out of 5 based on 119 ratings.
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