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Old Town Brown Ale | Natty Greene's Pub & Brewing Co.

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Old Town Brown AleOld Town Brown Ale

Brewed by:
Natty Greene's Pub & Brewing Co.
North Carolina, United States

Style: English Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Malts: Maris Otter, Cara Vienna, Cara Pils, Crisp Caramel 77, Chocolate Malt, Special DH3, Aromatic, Biscuit

Hops: Progress

Yeast: London, 1028

Added by BeerAdvocate on 08-07-2004

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Reviews: 56 | Ratings: 162
Photo of Goblinmunkey7
2.76/5  rDev -25.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

Thanks to Rusel_G for the bottle.

Appearance: Perfectly clear dark brown. Some nice dark reds creep around the edges. Head is a light tan, creamy, and leaves a small loose cap. No real lacing. Moderate carbonation on the pour.

Smell: Caramel and molasses baked brown bread. Sweet and bready with an underlying herbal and grassy hop profile. Chewy malts. Deeply roasted with a ton of cooked and caramelized malt sugars. Nice yeast profile adds some undefined fruity notes.

Taste: A bit of grape jelly smeared on chewy brown bread. Cooked and caramelized malts. Sweet through and through without being sugary. Some backing earthy and herbal elements. A bit grassy. Warming just makes it sweeter. Delightful English yeast adds a bit of depth through the sip. Dark fruit and slightly roasted.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with a moderate to slightly above carbonation. A bit crisp on the finish, but it's clean. Not quite what it should be.

Overall: A pretty standard English brown ale. Yeasty esters and caramelized malts do what they need to. The mouthfeel is a bit off and hurts the overall enjoyment.

 1,101 characters

Photo of mikeg67
2.88/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

On tap at The Liberty in Charlotte. Pours dark brown with an off-white head and some lacing. Aroma is of toasted, nutty malt, prunes and plums. Light, smooth, quite thin body. Taste is of some toasted malt and some dark fruit. I’m not impressed with this brew.

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Photo of KajII
2.93/5  rDev -21%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

[Suggested Glassware: Dimpled Mug]

The pour was a murky dark mahogany brown with an average (1-2 finger) light brown creamy head that was mostly diminishing, leaving behind a medium collar and fair runny lacing.

The aroma was rather mild of toasted dark malts and a light doughy yeast with hints of coffee and a bit of chocolate.

The taste was mildly malty sweet with just a touch of milk chocolate in the beginning, changing slightly to a mildly bitter roasty coffee presence at the end. The flavor lasted only a short time after the swallow, with the light roastiness fading quickly off the taste buds.

Mouthfeel was a few steps light of medium in body with a somewhat watery texture and a mild carbonation.

Overall as Brown Ale's go, I found this one to be a rather average representation of the style...


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Photo of hoegaardenhero
3.15/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

a: just the most minor wisps of foam on an amber-brown body; really unfortunate that it is completely headless; a lot of bubble movement on the top

s: sweet syrupy grape; some light chocolate; some biscuit; the thick syrupy scent is definitely the most powerful

t: sweet syrupy grape is also most prevalent in the taste; some chocolate and malt balls on the back end; very light coffee; dry wheat

m: very fizzy and a pretty cloying; a very non-english brown mouthfeel IMHO

d: ok; not the best natty greene beer and one of the least enjoyable brown's i've ever had

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Photo of rebel1771
3.18/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a nice dark brown color with an off white head that fades quickly.

S: Strong roasted malt character with chocolate aroma right up front.

T: Flavor of pumpernickel dominates with a slightly charred nutty flavor at the end.

D: Decent brew, not my favorite though.

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Photo of DeltaGolfSierra
3.39/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Appearance is a very dark brown with a full tan head. The head fades very quickly however, with no lacing. Scents of chocolate and caramel are nice and strong. The taste is composed of chocolate, nut, and dark fruit flavors. Definitely malt-forward. The thin mouthfeel detracted from the experience.

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Photo of tdm168
3.41/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Natty Greene's in Raleigh

Pours a deep, dark brown with a thin lacing of head. The nose has notes of sweet caramel and faint toast. The taste is caramelly, sugary sweetness, faint toast, faint yeast, and there's faint earthy hop bitterness in the finish. The mouthfeel is medium bodied and lightly carbonated.

This ones a little sweet at times which for me detracts from its drinkability, but overall it's decent brown ale.

 435 characters

Photo of hman43
3.43/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Look: It pours dark brown with a light tan head.

Smell: It has aromas of nuts, toffee, and dark fruits specifically plum.

Taste: It has roasted flavors with some nut flavors, toffee, and hints of dark fruits (Plums).

Feel: It has a moderate feel with a slight bitterness. It has a fairly high level of carbonation.

Overall: It is a pleasant brown ale highlight by strong malt with some fruit flavors in the background.

 424 characters

Photo of Cylinsier
3.45/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz.

Pours a dark opaque brown, minimal light passes through and only around the edges. Medium thick tan head, dissipates to a film and retains there.

Smells of rich caramel, coffee, roasted nuts and toasty breadiness.

Taste is of toasted buttered bread, nutty bitterness, and mild tart acidity.

Body is medium, carbonation is pretty subtle and light, mostly on the tip of the tongue and in the back of the mouth.

Overall a pretty decent brown ale, nothing to turn your nose up at, but I've had better in the style. Still, glad that I had the opportunity to get some of this and will enjoy it, and I would have it again. The taste is a bit on the bland side.

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Photo of Cyberkedi
3.48/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a barely translucent warm chocolaty brown with a fairly thick and rather persistend light tan head. Malty aroma has an overtone of molasses and hints of miso and caramel. Satisfying malty flavor has caramel and molasses notes and a woody hop undertone with just a bit of bitterness. Texture has average fizziness and average body. Though nothing special, it still merits at least a try.

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
3.52/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into a nonic.
4.7% ABV, no date.

Thanks to Onenote81 for the N.C. gift pack :)

A - A moderately aggressive pour fills the pint with an effervescent dark ruby mahogany-colored beer and a quickly fleeting inch of khaki foam. Lace is absent from the pint and only a thin ring of bubbles remains.

S - The beer's aromatic, yeasty quality disappears with the head, leaving it tough-to-smell, but a swirl brings back some scents of booze-soaked wood and plum which is interesting considering it's low ABV. Slight cardboard undertones poke out around roasted malt, which imparts bittersweet chocolate and cocoa nuances though the majority of the malt is a pale base with caramel hints. Very earthy in nature.

T - Malty and straightforward, Old Town Brown has a simple base with a nice addition of roasted malt for a pinch of dark chocolate and coffee nuance to it. Subtle woody earth notes combine with dark fruit yeast esters well on the finish.

M - Highly effervescent, abundant carbonation is a bit distracting from the rest of the beer. The mouthfeel is otherwise smooth and medium bodied with a light dry and mildly acrid bitter finish.

O - Kind of all over the board, Natty Greene's Old Town Brown manages to keep a couple things consistent; detrimental high carbonation and moderate earthiness. The roasted malt works well though this beer, adding nice nuances, but the rest of it could use a little work.

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Photo of Thorpe429
3.55/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes. On tap at the brewpub.

Pours a chestnut color with a light tan head and a small amount of lacing. The nose brings some light toasted malt, caramel, and a bit of a nutty characteristic. The taste is pretty tame, with some bread, caramel, toffee, and nuts. Feel is good with adequate carbonation. Nice and smooth. Drinks well enough, but nothing special. Fairly sessionable.

 394 characters

Photo of daliandragon
3.57/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Autumn is coming and with it the return of dark beer to my beer fridge...yay. This understated brown ale pours a dark cola color with a head that withers to nothing almost instantly. The nose is more impressive with chocolate and vanilla and plenty of deep roasted malt. Smells creamy and tempting.

The flavor is robust malts throughout with some very late bittering. Mouthfeel is thin and could stand less carbonation. A little more body would give this greater character. The flavor is there but texture and carbonation put this back a notch back from where it should be.

Drinkable brown but not quite living up to it's potential.

 635 characters

Photo of antott0523
3.59/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a translucent dark brown with ruby red tones. Big light brown head that settles away. No visible carbonation.

S: Not much on the nose here. A hint malt sweetness and dry crackers.

T: Interesting malt sweetness that's reminds me of cola. A subtle sweetness, definitely not overpowering that is balanced nicely by a long, semi dry and nutty.

M: Mild carbonation and smooth.

D: Highly drinkable brown ale with a nice subtle malt sweetness and the expected dry finish. Overall a very nice brown ale.

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Photo of PatrickJR
3.61/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had this on-tap at a Ruby Tuesday in High Point, served in a pint glass.

A - Deep brown, with some light shining through on the edges. Half inch or so of foam never really goes away, with some moderate lacing.

S - Not much to smell. Faint caramel and buttery aromas.

T - Quick chocolately burst leads into a deep caramel flavor that dries out somewhat mid palate. A creamy, buttery flavor kicks in late palate along with just a touch of earthy, slightly floral hops. Finishes fairly clean with minimal bitterness.

M - Very smooth and medium bodied, moderate carbonation.

D - A great beer with food, though not too sure I'd session this for a night. A little more off balance than other offerings from Natty Greenes.

 720 characters

Photo of zeledonia
3.63/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours very deep brown, clear and slightly red at the edges, with about 1/2 finger of medium tan head. Head fades fast, but leaves some nice gobs of lacing.

Smell is pleasantly sweet. Brown sugar is the dominant aroma. Unfortunately, I don't get much beyond that. Rather simple. A touch of dark fruit on the edges, but that's about it. The smell also fades really quickly. After the first sip or two, I can't pick it up.

Taste has a little more variety, but lacks that one strong character. A mishmash of malty flavors, with nothing really standing out. A bit nutty (hazelnut), a faint hit of grassy hops. Finishes rather dry.

Mouthfeel: medium-bodied, good lightly tingling carbonation. And that dry finish again. I like it.

A well-rounded, straightforward brown ale. There's nothing really remarkable about it, but somehow it's all working together quite well. Nice, easy-drinking, reasonably tasty, and sessionable.

 921 characters

Photo of ClarkPinnock
3.63/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Have had this from a bottle and on tap. Not surprisingly, it is much better on tap.

Pours very dark, nearly opaque with a 1/2-1'' of head. Smell captures notes of caramel and chocolate. Taste is similar, with the faintest notes of coffee. Not too bitter, with a decidedly sweet finish.

Has a full mouth feel yet little carbonation. Perhaps this is reflective of the style, but this beer came across as flat--which detracted from it.

Certainly drinkable and enjoyable. The type of beer that one visits once or twice a year.

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Photo of IPhantom
3.64/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a bottle into my Hourglass brewing tulip glass (my de facto taster). Pours cola-brown with a surprising amount of carbonation, almost looks like root beer. Head dissipated to finelace in no time at all. Aromas of dark roasted malt, maybe a little chocolate, and something with a bit of astringency. Taste is sweet malts up front with a bit of dark fruit and a hint of chocolate and coffee. Finish is medium-dry with a little something like a anise flavor. Mouthfeel is right in the middle of the road--dryer than others of its ilk, but not all the way dry despite the aforementioned bubbliness.

Overall, a really solid, non-season specific beer. I'd buy it again if I'm craving something darker that's not a stout.

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Photo of devilben02
3.65/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Pours from the bottle with a deep, ruby-tinted brown color beneath a big, billowy, sticky tan head. The aroma features a wonderful caramel sweetness, but also a bit of toasted nuts that give an indication of some substance beneath the sweetness. The flavor doesn't quite deliver on the suggestions of the aroma, but there is still a pleasant combination of light, sweet caramel, a little coffee and milk, and a bit of earthiness. Unfortunately, the fine, prickly carbonation does not complement the smooth, sweet flavors, and it even distracts and drowns out the flavor to some extent.

Overall, this beer makes a great first impression, and if not for the texture, I would want to have another right away. Even so, this is still a nice brown ale that I will likely come back to.

 779 characters

Photo of JBStith
3.65/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Natty Greene's Old Town Brown was a descent example of an American brown, but I've had better.

A: Good medium brown color with a bit of haze. Moderate head, retention, and lacing.

S: Nutty and malty with slight hops. Very dry smell.

T: Similar to taste. Nutty, dry flavor with decent hops and bittering. Not a very strong malt backbone which mad is taste a bit thin and unbalanced.

M: Again, a bit thin for a brown ale, but not bad.

D: Drinkability was good. Not too heavy to have a few.

Overall, a descent American Brown Ale. I have several better versions of this style, but this one is not bad. I would have this again on occasion, but Natty's Amber is similar, but better choice.

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Photo of sgraham4
3.68/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

NAtty Greene's has got some good beers out and its about time they started bottling them. This is a decent brown ale that has a roasted aroma with a bit of chocolate. It tastes just about as good as it smells. Certainly an awesome brown ale, but not the best i've had. While i really like that Natty Greene's is bottling beers now, they are better on tap.

 355 characters

Photo of Durge
3.7/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This one has a heavy dark brown, mahogany, nearly opaque appearance. It shows a thin tan head and some lacing. I note subtle whiskey oak and raisin scents. It is fairly aqueous with tingly carbonation and a pleasant charcoal raisin flavor. Some winelike qualities. Nutty and fairly drinkable. A bit like some stouts, more so than the popular brown ales.

 353 characters

Photo of krausenman
3.7/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A-The beer poured a clear dark brown color and was capped with a tan head of foam that quickly changed to a lacey ring.

S-The beer had an aroma of dark roasted malt. It had little to no hop aroma.

T-At first, you can taste the malt sweetness that is followed by the roasted coffe and chocolate type flavors. The beer ends with a bitterness that lasts as you swallow.

M-With a low level of carbonation the beer has a lighter body.

D-Old Town Brown turned out to be an enjoyable brown ale but it lacked character and was punctuated with an abundence of roasted malt flavor that detracted from the overall flavor.

 614 characters

Photo of bboven
3.73/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Growler brought to a party, left in the fridge for three days.

Dark brown, clear body. Big head but fades quick and leaves no lacing.

Aroma is caramel and biscuit, the basic profile for the style, but nothing extraordinary.

Flavor has a lot of breadiness and caramel. Pretty good, really. I've had better, but not many.

Carbonation held up like a champ after three days, it was right where an English brown should be.

Good example of a brown ale. Nothing spectacular or outstanding, but a great basis.

 506 characters

Photo of clayrock81
3.77/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured a brown body with one finger head and a mild malt aroma of caramel and toffee, possibly some hazelnuts. Smooth body, light sweetness (not overboard with the sweetness), finish a little bready/dry on finish which adds a little balance to the beer. Overall, a simply and enjoyable brown ale.

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Old Town Brown Ale from Natty Greene's Pub & Brewing Co.
3.71 out of 5 based on 162 ratings.
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