Saranac Brown Ale | Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery

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Saranac Brown AleSaranac Brown Ale
323 Ratings
Saranac Brown AleSaranac Brown Ale

Brewed by:
Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery
New York, United States

Style: American Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by shirfan on 10-24-2006

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 323 |  Reviews: 240
Photo of stomioka
1.25/5  rDev -63%

Photo of jzlyo
1.5/5  rDev -55.6%

Photo of dhep16
2.25/5  rDev -33.4%

Photo of Lexluthor33
2.43/5  rDev -28.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

I started beer tasting with the Brooklyn Brewery and later indulged in many varieties of Saranac beers when I finally found something I deemed different at my local market. Initially,they did not disappoint,until I found my Brew Haven.
The color pours deep brown and has a nice head. The smell is of grains,malt and chocolate. The taste is slightly sweet,malts with some bitter hops and of course burnt chocolate. It has a smoky feel. Some one else on this site mentioned the metallic taste and I have to say that is what ruins this beer. I can not get past it. I feel as if I am drinking something made with steel as opposed to barley and malts. this is a thin tasting beer and it needs to be re worked.
Notes: I avoid this beer,but if someone handed me a free one I would drink it because there are many beers that are so much worse. For it's style it lacks and as Brown Ale is my first love I can not easily forgive it's flaws.

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Photo of sluggermatt15
2.49/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours a yellowish copper color. Mine foamed up a little on me, but didn't take forever to settle. I wasn't impressed with the appearance. I was expecting a darker color closer to a brown. This one is weak in appearance.

S- Some nuts, a hint of caramel and malts. Doesn't have a powerful aroma, just average.

T- Nutty with a slight presence of malts. A little sweetness here and there, but some dryness at the end of the taste. A little too watery in my opinion. Didn't really care for the taste of this one.

M- Low carbonation saves this category. Pretty good feel in the mouth, the low alcohol content helps.

D- More drinkable than not. This is a drinkable beer, above average according to my rating. It's a little light on alcohol, so one could drink a handful of these in one session.

Overall, I really didn't care for this beer. I was expecting a better brown ale. I had Brooklyn and New Castle and both were much better than this one. I think the taste hurts this one, which is probably why I won't want to drink another.

 1,035 characters

Photo of david18
2.5/5  rDev -26%

Photo of skiit13
2.5/5  rDev -26%

Photo of chrispoint
2.5/5  rDev -26%

Photo of ClavisAurea
2.56/5  rDev -24.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle in a pint glass

Appearance: lighter brown with a slight red tint and a small head

Nose: alcohol, cheap

Taste: alcohol, acidic, hastily made, no other distinctive flavors

Well, I was generally unimpressed with this beer. I really like brown ales. I would spend the extra money any day and go for a Dogfish Palo Santo Marron six pack.

 348 characters

Photo of bashiba
2.6/5  rDev -23.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Poured a clear copper with a thin off white head.

The smell is light and slightly sweet with a bit of grain.

Not much to say here, bland and basic brown, just a smidge of caramel malt flavor and a smattering of light hops.

Mouthfeel is light and a bit dry.

Its drinkable, but oh so boring, even for a basic brown.

 318 characters

Photo of jpaltan
2.6/5  rDev -23.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Deep copper color. Barely any head what so ever. Smell is malty with notes of caramel. Taste is quite cloying, with a dry finish that converts into bitterness at the end. Seems quite poorly constructed and unbalanced. Even the mouthfeel seems off - very thin and watery, yet overloaded with carbonation.

 303 characters

Photo of stckhndlr
2.6/5  rDev -23.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

A- Dark Ruby red hue with a tan 1 finger head. Looks like there is some sediment floating in this one.

S- Some dark cherry notes with a hint of chocolate malt. There is a smell here that I can't quite pinpoint but it smells off.

t- Malt flavor is strong. Caramelish dark fruit. a bit of hidden smoke with bitters on the end from the hops. very short finish of flavors but the bitters stick on the tongue for a few more seconds.

M- Theres a carbonation that stays in the mouth like you get after drinking a birch beer soda. it just lingers. Kind of dry and a bit thin.

O- This beer has an off flavor that doesn't appeal to me. Half of it I like and half I don't. Unfortunately I could not finish this one.

 711 characters

Photo of craftaholic
2.62/5  rDev -22.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours a very dark brown pint with a finger length head that leaves behind a soapy lacing.

Smell: Nothing much going on here, some faint roasted malt and a hint of sweet caramel.

Taste: The aroma is a surefire precursor... nothing much happening with this one. Its a somewhat nutty malt with some chocolate sweetness and ends on a citrus crispness.

Mouthfeel: Very crisp and quite slick, has a creamy finish that coats the throat.

Drinkability: Easy to drink but too bland for me to grab another.

Overall: Just doesn't do it for me, nothing that stands out and asks you to drink it, a flawed beer in my eyes.

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Photo of dbmcrorie
2.64/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

12 oz brown long-neck bottle poured into an American pint glass. No decipherable freshness/bottling date.

Murky, deep brown/walnut body, with a fizzy light tan head. Doesn't stick around too long. I guess it had somewhere to go? And dammit... it took all the lacing with it.

Lots of hops in the nose, much more herbal and peaty than expected. Sweet cola notes slip in here and there from the malts, but are somehow lost amongst all those hops. Not what I'd expect from a brown ale. There is a faint burnt tone at the end. I can tell they are attempting to bring the chocolate forth, but are just missing the mark.

Again, far more hoppy than expected. The only malt sweetness offered are dry brown sugar notes, followed by astringent burnt nutty flavors that get drowned out by the overly bitter hops. A good floral palate is there - but I don't think that is what they are going for.
The body is rather thin with a watery mouthfeel. There is a bitter bite at the end that attempts to be crisp and tight, but fails at the last second and just leaves a dry/bitter aftertaste for your tongue to think about.

A bit of a disappointment to be honest. This is quite deviant of a traditional brown ale. The hops overwhelm what could have been a balanced malt profile.
With such a funky palate, I'm not positive that this particular brew can pair perfectly with anything. But if giving it a try, I would suggest serving it with some kind of earthy/nutty cheese such as asiago, gruyere, or fontina. It might also pair up against sharp flavors such as vinaigrette, or any savory beef stew.


 1,636 characters

Photo of sleazo
2.66/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

A_Pours a meduim clear ruddy brown. The crater pocked head is very fluffy and retains its shape for a good deal of time.

S_Fairly clean tasting, mostly caramel malt and some risen bread dough.

T_Not as sweet as I was expecting. It is actually quite light. There is some caramel malt in the front, a generic hoppy bitterness in the middle and an off metallic edge to the finish.

M_Seltzer like. Watery and over carbonated.

D_The beer looks good in the glass. That's the best I can really say. Way too light in taste and body and the aftertaste is somewhat unpleasant. Not a very good brown ale at all.

 604 characters

Photo of treehugger02010
2.66/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Not very good. I poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. There was a ton of head with a good retention time that left lots of sticky lace. The smell was very sweet, and reminded me of wisky. The taste was also sweet too, but not that bad, the malt wasn't blended very well. Don't drink and review.

 303 characters

Photo of zdk9
2.7/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A- Mohagany brown with dark ruby highlights. Two fingers of bright white head leave a touch of spider lacing.

S- Slight coffee, a little vanilla, a little brown sugar.

T- Weak flavors. Some very light brown sugar laced with a little coffee and a little chocolate.

M- Fairly watery. Good carbonation though.

D- This one has okay flavors, but really I want more flavor out of my beer.

 386 characters

Photo of speedvagen
2.75/5  rDev -18.6%

Photo of JimmytheSaintPSU
2.75/5  rDev -18.6%

Photo of rorjets
2.75/5  rDev -18.6%

Photo of TheBirdSanc
2.75/5  rDev -18.6%

Photo of TheRuss9585
2.75/5  rDev -18.6%

Photo of GeorgiaBeerGuy
2.77/5  rDev -18%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Photo of vandemonian
2.79/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

This beer has a dark brown, almost black colour and a great head that really lasts. The smell is hoppy and non descript. This beer tastes harsh and hoppy when it first hits your mouth, there are some coffee flavours that sometimes shine through before an aftertaste that is slightly bitter. It has a quite light body.

 317 characters

Photo of LairdChisholm
2.79/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Taken from notes 8-14-10

A - Chestnut drown with a ruby tint. A white, one finger head that dissipates quickly. No lacing at all.

S - Sweet malts with a touch of grains, caramel and alcohol. Very strong and pungent.

T - Sweet malts at first with blackberry, caramel and chocolate notes. Almost a chalky bitter and alcohol after taste which made the ale not nearly as enjoyable.

M - Oily and thick. Not enough carbonation

D - This ale seemed to go flat very quickly. This made finishing it a chore.

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Saranac Brown Ale from Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery
Beer rating: 3.38 out of 5 with 323 ratings