Saranac Season's Best - Nut Brown Lager
Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery

Saranac Season's Best - Nut Brown LagerSaranac Season's Best - Nut Brown Lager
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Vienna Lager
Ranked #140
Ranked #44,268
3.5 | pDev: 13.71%
Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery
New York, United States
Saranac Season's Best - Nut Brown LagerSaranac Season's Best - Nut Brown Lager
Reviews: 177 | Ratings: 256 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by sprackops:
Photo of sprackops
3.88/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: 12oz brown bottle poured into a pint glass.

Appearance: Dark brown with a dense beige head.

Smell: Nutty, caramel sweetness. Hint of floral hop aroma.

Taste: Intensely sweet caramel malt at the start. Chocolate, nut, and biscuit notes. Slight twang of hops near the finish, lingering on the lips.

Mouthfeel: Substantial and creamy. Medium to high carbonation.

Drinkability/comments: With everything well under control, this is a highly drinkable beer. One of the best from the winter sampler.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of Squire
3.53/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of rodbeermunch
2.71/5  rDev -22.6%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Small little brown and light red pour, 1/5" head, beige. Nutty aroma.

If you wanted an American boring brown ale, here it is, a little less sweet than Newcastle. Same vein. Search for toffee, nuts and caramel all you want. Some people will definitely like this beer. That person who wants to go beyond AAL, but doesn't want a lot of malt, hops, bitterness etc. . .

I'm not that guy.

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Photo of Zylod
3.48/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Photo of Miguel_W
4.56/5  rDev +30.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of SurrenderToTheFlow95
4.02/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of Jason
3.58/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: 12 oz brown bottle with no freshness date.

Appearance: Deep amberish brown, very clear with two fingers of head … good head retention.

Smell: Bit of nutty dextrin with a faint malt sweetness

Taste & Mouth Feel: Medium body with a thin crispness off of a moderate carbonation. Lots of highly toasted malt on the palate right from the beginning, with a lingering burnt caramel and husk flavor. Touch of soft hop oil shows enough bitterness to balance. Clean with a semi-dry finish.

Drinkability & Notes: Well balanced, lots of malt character for a filtered beer. One of the better beers I have had from this brewery.

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Photo of JMH_
3.92/5  rDev +12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

i found the dark amber appearance a bit misleading. much lighter in taste and feel than expected, but a good overall winter seasonal from saranac. like most saranac beers, i wouldn't go out of my way to find it, but would certainly have no problem drinking this one again.

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Photo of marc77
3.43/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Crystal clear garnet, with a distinct bister tinge. One fingered, persistent off white head leaves frothy, sparse lace. Sweet biscuit, along with a nutty, sugary marzipan like impression dominates the aroma. Bitter chocolate and woody hop tones timidly arise as the brew warms. Akin to a dunkel / English nut brown ale hybrid in aroma. Gentle dark toffee sweetness initially in flavor is ensued by mild toasted grain notes. Hop flavor is more herbal than expected from the aroma, with definite green, Hersbrucker hints. Hop bitterness is above the norm for a dunkel, but remains gentle and pleasantly drying. Once tepid cocoa eeks in mid palate, the flavor remains static, with little change other than trace salty cracker notes that emerge in the finish. Well attenuated, but sufficiently dextrinous and smooth in mouthfeel once the initial carbonic bite subsides. A relatively tasty dunkel, with an innocuous, one dimensional overall character. Impressively clean, well brewed and drinkable, though.

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Photo of jdhilt
3.2/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a one-finger light khaki head that fades quickly leaving a good lace. Nice clear amber color. Good carbonation and medium bodied. Nose is not discernible, flavor is nutty, some hops with hints of caramel, finishes with a slight bitter aftertaste. $1.75 for a 12oz bottle from Julio's Liquors Westborough, Ma.

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Photo of John
3.73/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

An above average offering from Saranac. NIce dark brown appearance, staying head. Flavors of nuts, chocolate and coffee interplay. A solid brew typically found only in the specailty packs.

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Photo of RonfromJersey
3.75/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Red/brown body, good highlights, topped by two fingers of level light beige foam.

Enticing aroma of fresh bread and mocha.

Deep semi-sweet chocolate beginning. Tingly earthy hops at the finish. Not complex, but tasty.

Smooth round mouthfeel.

Very good drinkability, easy to have a couple.

A nice tasty, slightly chewy, dark lager.

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Photo of IrishRedRock
3.68/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Somehow having had a college roommate who is a former Saranac employee, I never tried this and that's odd. My dad picked up a 12 pack of the holiday sampler when I arrived home fro Thanksgiving, so I figured post Thanksgiving dinner was a good time to give this one a go. And surprisingly, it's pretty decent.

Copper colored chestnut body with a sweet, nutty malty aroma. Flavor is certainly not complex, but it has a good flavor profile and is nonetheless enjoyable. Nutty sweetness balances a crisp, malt backbone with just the slightest twang of hop bitterness. Finishes smooth and sweet, a caramel nutty sweetness that thankfully isn't too overpowering. A holiday seasonal I'd drink again.

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Photo of Suds
2.86/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a dark, deep amber-brown color with a respectably solid head. Small tufts of foam cling to the sides of the glass. Aroma is toasty, nutty, and slightly malty with a distant backbone of alcohol. Nice aroma hop profile for the style. Taste is caramel and a little vegetal. It has medium body and is a bit grainy and rough. Moderate carbonation. Finishes with a lingering, and not particularly pleasant bitterness….something of a burnt graininess. I can’t say that it impressed me.

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Photo of shirfan
3.48/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Decent lacing sits atop a clear brown/garnet liquid, with a clean, malty aroma.

Caramel malt predominates, I suppose there's a nut type of flavor as well as the finish dries a bit. A touch of bitterness is present at all times, but never enough to move this out of the "big malt" camp.

A little syrupy even, I'm not sure what to make of this. The sugars are felt rather than tasted; I wouldn't want to tackle more than one of these in a sitting. However, it's a nice departure from the usual Saranac method of throwing hops at an average brew until it's passable.

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Photo of ElGuapo
3.5/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A copper brown pour topped in a nice fluffy off-white head that will sit for a bit and then leave lace all over the place. Aroma is a bit subtle, but it has nice sweet malts as well as a nice hoppy balance. A little citrusy.

Wow, this Saranac has a little balance to it. Last year I was very disappointed by the 12 Beers pack, but this is the first one this year, and it is doing pretty well. Nice backround of sweet malts, and the hoppiness is there as well. A touch of caramel at the start, and then it drops out of the way for a bit of bitterness. A nice flavorful brew. It is not a world class brew, but it is very drinkable and tasty. Well done on this one.

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Photo of Maestro
3.08/5  rDev -12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Thin, tan head atop a dark reddish brown pour. There is a hefty lacing that coats the glass. Definitely a nutty brew. This is my first Nut Brown Lager. The mouthfeel is very dry. The taste is strong with alcohol. The hops don't stick out too much. Seems like there is a ton of malt. Drinkability is good and it seems like a good session ale. Not sure about the ABV. A good holiday ale!

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Photo of NeroFiddled
3.71/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Matt's seasonal lager displays a clear chestnut body with a reddish cast and golden-orange highlights beneath a short but long-lasting head of creamy ivory froth. Some minor lacing about the glass adds nicely to its appearance as well. The nose is typically restrained for a dark lager, with only some mild malt coming through. The body is medium and it's fine-bubbled carbonation bristles gently on the tongue. The flavor is well-balanced and straightforward throughout with a bit of rich, caramel-kissed maltiness backed by a solid bitterness and some delicately spicy and floral hops. It finishes dry with some of its nutty maltiness and floral/spicy hops lingering amidst a dull bitterness. It's not complex, but it satisfies, and this is a well-crafted holiday seasonal that doesn't need to depend on any fruits, spices, or gimmicks to warrant attention and a place on your holiday table. Well done!

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Photo of stirgy
4.53/5  rDev +29.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A gorgeous looking beer with it’s deep cherry amber orange color, almond cream head and intricate lacing that’s left on the glass. The aroma, although light, is like a cherry cream chocolate cordial. Very inviting. Fruity and complex with bits of caramel, fig, chestnut and oak – with even maybe a slight touch of pineapple in there. The taste is bittersweet with emphasis on the rich caramel and nutty notes. The medium light body just seems right in this one. Has some malt character and finishes clean and satisfying. Wow, the quality of this one really blindsided me. I guess I wasn’t prepared for how good this was!

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Photo of shippos
4.42/5  rDev +26.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

excellent appearence with a brown amber color and tan-off white head. has a floral hoppy aroma with a rich malty hint. chocolaty chewy taste very nicely balanced. has a spicy hoppy aftertaste. wouldn't know this is a lager if it didn't say so on the bottle. very nice and very drinkable.

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Photo of sraimondi
4.2/5  rDev +20%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked this one up as part of the 12 beers of Winter. I must say that this is a really good offering from Utica, NY. While it doesn't exhibit the strong "nut like" nose or flavor of say a Sam Smith's, it is a good quality brew, which seems to be a good session brew. I will have to seek this out on draught, next time I go thru Utica on the way to Buffalo. Pours a nice deep brown color with a nice 1 to 1.5 inch head which retains for a bit, followed by nice lacing. The flavor is malty, with some honey tones to smooth things out, with a very faint hop character at the end. All in all, one of the better brews from Matt's. Yummy.

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Photo of UnionMade
2.53/5  rDev -27.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

The beer pours a middle brown, touched with brass. A rather thick head develops with an agressive pour, dying down slowly to a thin misty coating. Great clarity, with a couple slowly rising bubbles floating to the top.
The aroma is simple, but good. Definite corny DMA aroma, with plenty of base pale malt, a bit of caramel and maybe a touch of chocolate. Very mild floral hop aroma. Not particularly clean, but certainly not ale-like.
The flavor starts out moderately malty, with a faint corn flavor. Light caramel towards the middle, changing into an odd metallic sourness. Some sort of contamination? A touch of estery fruitiness, with a bit of burnt chocolate flavor towards the end. Some harsh grainy flavor. Rather agressive hopping comes through at the very ass end of the finish, providing a sourish herbal bitterness, rather than flavor. Some lingering metallic bitterness in the aftertaste, with a bit of hop sourness. Some vague lager qualities, but drinks more like an ale. Medium bodied, with fairly high carbonation.
It's definitely "full flavored", but the flavors that are full aren't particularly pleasant. The hops are more bitter than flavorful, the malt sourish, and the beer overall seems overburdened with flaws. It sure beats a bottle of Molson, but I'll pass this up next time i go shopping.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.72/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Ruby copper red with a nice fluffy cream colored head leaves little lacing not too impressive. Aroma: Full on toasted nuts this one is very similar to the Erie Railbender in my opinion not bad at all they do a nice job, I'm not sure what they are talking about the bottle as far as Belgian malts in a nut brown lager but whatever floats their boat. Taste: Nice rolling toasted nut tones not overly sweet nice earthy hop bitterness in the finish, simple but nice. Mouthfeel: A bit overcarbonated is the only thing bad about the texture, other than that a lighter to medium bodied amber colored lager not bad. Drinkability: Pretty tasty I could picture myself enjoying a couple of these very nice toned down compared to beers I have had as of late.

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Photo of GeoffRizzo
3.8/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Shoe leather brown, thick and well retaining head; a definitive nutty and hoppy aroma. Nutty and malty body, thick and warming; some chestnuts noted as it warms. Very rich, creamy, not overly powerful, but an incredible welcome to the winter season session beer, quite enjoyable!

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Photo of Shiloh
3.97/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This brew arrived a clear medium copper, almost tea like in presence.
The tan head was short leaving behind an above average ring and glass cling.
Carbonation at first sight was a burst of large bubbles and thick, then limited.
Nose had a middle of the road pleasent nuttiness with a minor of assorted spices.
An exellent taste that starts to a light malt presence that balances very well to a nut hoppiness with a dark chocolate back.
Very impressive.

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Saranac Season's Best - Nut Brown Lager from Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery
Beer rating: 80 out of 100 with 256 ratings