Brooklyn Back Breaker
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RATINGS: 68   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.21/5   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 210   ABV: 7%
Making malt has always been hard work. The barley needs to be soaked, sprouted to exactly the right point, and then gently dried, capturing the enzymes that will convert grain starches into malt sugars. For hundreds of years this was done on a “malting floor”, where workers would control the sprouting of the malt by constant raking, adjusting temperature and preventing the rootlets of the malt from weaving together into an inseparable mat. But it was backbreaking work. Men dragged 75 lb wrought iron rakes through the malt beds and then smoothed it all over by hand with specialized shovels and ploughs. Eventually maltsters created mechanized malting methods. It was much easier, but the malts weren’t quite the same, their flavors not as rich. So some maltsters retained their traditional malting floors and still use them today.

In August brewmaster Garrett Oliver traveled to the Crisp Maltings in rural Great Ryburgh, England to make malt on their 150 yr old malting floor. After five days of raking, ploughing, shoveling and kilning 19 tons of malt, he gained a new appreciation for the flavors of traditional floor malts. And he took the malt back to Brooklyn. Now we bring you BackBreaker, a robust honey-colored ale bursting with the juicy flavors of our heirloom Maris Otter malt and aromatized with earthy English Fuggle hops. It’s a beer that pairs wonderfully with all your autumn and winter dishes. We hope you enjoy it, and hey – don’t ever say we never did nothin’ for ya.

Malt: “Brewmaster’s” Floor-malted Maris Otter Pale Malt, Great Ryburgh, England, English Crystal malt.
Barley grower: Teddy Maufe
Hops: English Fuggle
OG: 17.0° Plato
ABV: 7.0%

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
JCB (3999) - Durham, North Carolina, USA - JAN 23, 2010
On tap at Tyler’s, Durham. Still looking amber pour, but almost merits a 4 for simply being so bright. The nose is sweet fruit and juniper to begin with, some soft malt emerging just a tad. Body is a bit thin, and the beer is certainly flavorful enough. But the Fuggles get a bit lost in a beer that doesn’t seem quite to know what direction it’s headed.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
ucusty (2691) - raleigh, North Carolina, USA - FEB 14, 2010
On tap at Tylers-Durham, NC. Bright amber pour with a fizzy off white head. Aroma is lemony with a touch of biscuity cereal grains. Body is thin. Flavor is malt driven with just a touch of fuggles

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Kinz (3737) - Glen Allen, Virginia, USA - MAR 5, 2010
Draft at Cap Ale House with Butters and maniac for maniac’s b-day. Pale amber, decent head fades quickly. Lightly malty aroma of caramel accented malts. Flavor was lightly caramel malt and a touch of earthy hops faint on the finish. Just not much going on here - I was really wanting the Maris Otter to smack me in the face. Instead it just sort of waved at me from across the street. Too bad.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
mabel (8640) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - MAR 8, 2010
[2646-20091205] Tap. Boozy grainy fruit malt aroma has a hint of banana. Slightly hazy, light brown orange body with a quick foamy white head. Fruity weird banana malt flavour. Medium-full body. Nice to try but odd banana fruit characteristics.
(@ Mr. Goodbar, Buffalo, NY)

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
thedm (5668) - Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA - JUN 30, 2010
This bottled brew from a beer festival poured a small sized head of foamy fine to medium sized white colored bubbles that were and left behind a softly carbonated transparent light orange brown colored body. The mild aroma was rye and malty. The vinous mouth feel was weakly tingly at the start mediumly tingly at the finish. The flavor contained notes of vinous rye and malt. A decent one that I would consider drinking again.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
Thorpe429 (5016) - , Illinois, USA - MAR 5, 2011
Reviewed from notes. Pours amber with a bit of brightness. White head and a bit of lacing. Nose is sweet malt with a bit of fruit, toffee, and caramel. Taste is lightly sweet wihout much else. Medium body wig a bit of alcohol. Great concept, but fairly plain overall. Serving type: on-tap Reviewed on: 10-19-2010

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
rudolf (2353) - Buffalo, New York, USA - DEC 3, 2009
Tap @ Goodbar. Really pretty dark copper body, thin white head. Noose is some nice toffee & honey malt, lightly spicy English hops. Flavor is caramel, floral hops, brown sugar, alcohol. More burnt sugar comes forward in the finish.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
jb (2935) - Rochester, New York, USA - DEC 5, 2009
On tap at McGregors Henrietta. Very interesting, English style ale. Dark, with orange highlights. Clear. Nose is very sweet, with toffee. Quite malty, a bit of English hops to balance it out. I liked it, but it is nothing terribly special.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
hopscotch (10612) - Vero Beach, Florida, USA - DEC 28, 2009
Draft... Clear, beautiful copper ale with a small, creamy, white head. The aroma provides toffee, caramel and light chocolate; beefy, musky hops and medium-roast malt. Medium-bodied with lively carbonation. Sweet, toasted malt and candied fruits are highlights. Lingering, sweet finish.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
Slipstream (2464) - USA - JAN 25, 2010
This was a good day for unusual beers. I like the story behinds this one. A lightly fruity and sweet ale. Low on hops, and with a bit of citrus. It is definitely unusual and hard to categorize. The empasis seems to be on the fruity tones (altho there is no fruit added), and there is a touch of skank. On tap at RnH.

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