ClarkVV (3579) - Allston, Massachusetts, USA - MAY 1, 2007
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
Growler from Downeast Beverage consumed 4/27-4/29
God damn! This one caught me off guard. After the recent enjoyment of the Special Organic, I was hoping for a good beer, but didnít expect this caliber. Wonderfully conditioned, naturally carbonated, live, fresh beer pours a huge, well retained head, sporting sticky lacing. Dark brown with some chestnut-auburn tints and light haziness.
Whatever yeast theyíre using, I gotta get me some, because this stuff is just fantastic. Crisp, very aromatic and clean. It produces light, dry esters and just tons of crispness...donít really know how else to describe it. Maple, brown sugar, walnuts and moderately caramelized malts all apparent in the nose, with leafy, earthy hops that add a hint of bitterness. Nuttiness is low, as is the breadiness and there is a distinct, but light coffee note as well. Big, strong aroma, though nothing is overdone, nor is it overly sweet, the wonderful yeast seeing to that. No alcohol or flaws.
As good as the aroma is, the flavor easily tops it, with everything coming together more cohesively. You get a bit of light coffeecake and some vanilla icing, with an almost tea leaf-like hoppiness, showing some light green juiciness. It dries out significantly, adding sweet, but not thick, caramel that is wonderfully chewy and feels as if you are almost chewing on real caramel. Chocolate and light coffee add more complexity and balance as the beer finishes on a peppery, crisp, and lightly earthy yeast note, with caramel and light toffee lingering on. Balance is almost as perfect as a dark beer gets. Thereís definitely enough malt texture and sweetness up front, with even a light reprise on the finish, but itís still well attenuated and shows qualities of a dry, crisp, refreshing brew as well. Gets more flavorful and complex as it warms. Never overdone in any category. I thought it was good upon first sip, and near world-class by the last. Unfiltered texture and natural, tight carbonation is just icing on the cake.
BigBen2120 (688) - Derry, New Hampshire, USA - DEC 22, 2006
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
On-tap from Saraís in Wiscassett... Dark brown body with about an inch of offwhite head that leaves a fair bit of lacing. A really nice-looking beer IMO. Smells malty sweet. Malty sweet flavor with just a touch of roastiness and a slight hop bite at the finish. Medium in body. The flavors, while good, were a bit muted. I could be because the beer was served a bit on the cold side, but even as it warmed few flavors were amplified. Still, itís probably one of the better brown ales Iíve had and makes me want to try more from this newly-discovered Maine brewery thatís not too far from here.
ruggedman (645) - Portland, Maine, USA - NOV 1, 2006
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 18/20
I havenít found a new Maine beer in a while, and finally I found this! I was pleasently surprised also. The aroma is delicious, sweet brown sugar and malt. The only negative I really found was the somewhat thin body, but thatís inherent in most browns it seems like. The flavor is a sip of perfection. Thereís a hint of coffee, maybe a little chocolate. Thereís actually a lot going on when you really dig. This is a fantastic beer. Glad iíve got a half gallon of this :) Iíll be sad to see it gone though. Get this, if you can find it fresh you will be extremely happy!
ElPresidente1984 (173) - Maine, USA - FEB 27, 2006
3.4 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
My 100th Rating!!!. Had this last night out of a 1/2 gallon jug. Pours dark brown with a medium light brown head. Aroma is very nice roasted malt and brown sugar some molasas and slightly yeasty. Flavor is similar, reminds me of Malta Morena. Brown sugar and malts blend togeather very well, with just the slightest hint of hops in the finnish. This beer was Way better than i thougth it would be comming out of a huge jug. definatly a simple but solid brown ale. Will definatly buy again.
porterhouse (1581) - Boothbay Harbor, Maine, USA - DEC 21, 2005
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: MAY 10, 2007 (Draft) Dark brown body with a thin biege head. Mild aroma of brown sugar and malty sweetness. Nice lacing. Mouthfeel pretty full, on the dry side. Flavor is good but reserved: brown sugar and malt sweetness. Finishes bitter. One of the better brown ales from Maine (of which there are many). Donít know what the ABV is but would guess itís in the 6-7% range which makes it a little more interesting. Update 5/10/07 (Draft) Wow the mouthfeel is really nice, nearly velvet-smooth, along the lines of Fullers London Porter. Has more heft than previous sample.. Tastes richer, still featues brown-sugary malt flavor. Nice work Sheepscot!
jercraigs (6477) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - NOV 7, 2005
2.9 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Maine Brewers Festival 2005. Very dark brown body, small khaki head. Stupidly cold. Muted malt aroma becomes slightly sour as it warms. Dark malt with a touch of brown sugar, caramel and burnt sugar are all quite nice until a touch of sour acidity ruins the efect. I canít imagine thatís on purpose. Average palate. This would probably score at least 3-4 points higher in good shape, but when itís straight from the brewer like this...
RoverLR3 (1) - Alna, Maine, USA - OCT 18, 2005 does not count
4.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 19/20
Wonderful color and flavor. Not bitter like some Iíve had. Very flavorful!
lagermonkey (725) - Marietta, Georgia, USA - MAY 9, 2005
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
From a 64oz growler, sampled the day it was poured.
Pours dark amber brown with a light brown head. Smells sweet and malty. Lightly nutty.
Tastes nutty and thick. Syrupy like melted caramel. Very malty and warming with a smoky aftertaste. Full bodied and sticky mouthfeel. Not an everyday brew but sturdy and strong. Good winter ale.
Oakes (10941) - Savusavu, FIJI ISLANDS - NOV 6, 2003
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
B4K. Very dark brown body with very light brown head. Nose shows toffee, some toast, and a hint of caramel. Some butterscotch and citrus hop in there as well. Overall the beer is sweet. Quite yeasty – almost Belgian in character. Slightly astringent roastiness clashing with the sweet finish detracts from what overall is a pretty good brew.
VENOM (941) - Connecticut, USA - NOV 4, 2002
2.4 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 2/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 10/20
Dark chestnut. Creamy head. Sour with a little countering sweetness and heavy Belgian yeastiness. Medium body. Another disappointment.