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The Civil Life American Brown
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RATINGS: 62   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.42/5   IBU: 35   EST. CALORIES: 144   ABV: 4.8%
COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
Long enough ago, all beer would’ve been brownish because of the difficulty of drying the malted grain without darkening it. Same was true in America until the fancy-pants German immigrant brewers started brewing pale lagers which eventually took over. Thankfully, American homebrewers and a few bold craft brewers like us have revived American Brown Ale for your pleasure. Malty, caramelly, tart and toasty, earthy and citrusy, with delicious hints of bitter chocolate and dark roasted coffee.

Y’know that story about the hypocrite who tattled to President Abraham Lincoln about General Grant’s drinking? Ol’ Abe answered, “Well, find out what he’s drinking so I can send a barrel to every general in the army.” We’re pretty sure Grant was drinking The Civil Life American Brown.

For those who want to know:
ABV: 4.8%
IBU: 35
COLOUR: Nice deep brown colour with creamy, long-lasting off-white foam and lace. BJCP STYLE: 10C. American Brown Ale, one of our all-time favourites
INGREDIENTS: US pale malt, UK Maris Otter pale malt, Crystal, Brown and Carafa dark malts, Cascade hops, American ale yeast


3.2
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 12/20
DrSilverworm (9671) - Cincinnati, Ohio, USA - JUN 28, 2014
Taster on tap at the brewery during RBSG. Kind of a hazy red brown color. Nice thin khaki head. Leaves decent bits of lace. Good toasty nutty chocolatey malt bill. Light spiciness, some toasty english style character. Light to moderate bitter, moderate sweet. Light to medium body. Smooth, kind of soft, lighter carbonation. Light slick finish. Solid, sessionable brown. I couldn’t help but think it tasted pretty english-style, though.

4.3
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 18/20
phaleslu (9254) - Cincinnati, Ohio, USA - SEP 15, 2011
UPDATED: MAR 25, 2015 Draft at the brewery. 4.8% ABV. Pours a cloudy chestnut brown with an inch-thick beige head that leaves some sloppy lace in the glass. Aroma of huge toasted malts, pecans, toasted brown sugar, wheat, and earth. Flavor of toasted malts- more subtle than in the nose- along with earth, nuts, and cola. Medium-bodied, with a toasty mouthfeel and moderate carbonation. Very much an American-style brown ale, and a damn good one at that. This really hit the spot.

3.2
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
arminjewell (9237) - East Lansing, Michigan, USA - JAN 1, 2015
Pour on tap at the brewery, dark reddish brown pour with off white head, aroma brought notes of caramel, toffee, nuts, grass, herbal hops into a bit of earthy notes, some red fruits. Taste is a mix of earth, grass, into some caramel, toast, some yeast with a hint of red fruit, slight nutty note, finishing bitter.

3.6
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
solidfunk (7222) - Washington D.C., Washington DC, USA - MAY 12, 2015
Light roast with some hops. Good all around package and easy to drink. Pours chestnut brown with good head and lacing on cask. Light bittersweet finish. Cask.

2.9
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 11/20
nimbleprop (7176) - SouthWest, Washington, Washington DC, USA - DEC 4, 2015
On tap at Burger Tap Shake at Washington Circle, pours a murky dark orange with some creamy, white head. Nose is OK, gristy, some bread crust, a little brown sugar, some yeast, a little vinous hop. Flavor is fine, a bit hoppier than a standard brown with some lemon and a little soap, but then mostly malt, a little whole wheat flour, bread crust, mild dough. Dry finish. Just OK.

3.5
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
TheAlum (6860) - Aurora, Illinois, USA - JUN 23, 2014
Draft on tap at the brewery (St. Louis, MO). RBSG 2014 Friday Bus Tour. Pours a deep chestnut brownish pour with deep darker middle, gentle orange brown glow with frothy tannish head, dies to a decent ring and laces ok. Aromas are brown malts, earthy with a touch of cocoa and earth. Gentle carmelized elements grow with touches of toast, earth and mellow soil. Initial is medium bodied, a touch lighter with some toast, gentle earthiness. Semi sweet middle is a bit of caramel, cocoa and earth. Sweeter toffee moves out to a more dry, toasty backend. Earthy hops, some dryness, lingering cocoa and faint hit of brown sugar. More dry and toasty as we finish up, running the gambit and bringing it home. While Brown Ales can be a bit boring, this one certainly hits all the checkpoints. Solid. Pretty pour.

3.4
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
Strykzone (6560) - Wood River, Illinois, USA - JAN 28, 2012
Sampled at an esbls tasting. Pat brought a growler. Opaque brown with a light tan head. I taste chocolate, citrus, more subtle malts.

3.6
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
BBB63 (6543) - La Porte, Indiana, USA - JUN 24, 2014
tap@ brewery during RBSG 2014: Slightly hazy brown with a firm white head and okay lace. Nutty, caramel, faint chocolate and roasted coffee along with light handed but noticeable resiny fruity hop juxtaposition. Yep it is indeed an American Brown Ale in all it’s glory. Tossup between this and the Milk Stout for my carry out... the Milk Stout won in extra time.

3.5
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
decaturstevo (5741) - decatur, Tennessee, USA - JUL 20, 2014
Brown pour with off white head and lace. Aroma of light chocolate malt, roasty, and earthy hops. Flavor is light chocolate, the roasted malt with a nice decent bitter finish. Medium bodied but a touch fizzy. a very ok beer by me

3.4
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
GenDV138 (5673) - Falls Church, Virginia, USA - JUL 3, 2014
Draft during RBSG 2014 Bus Tour at The Civil Life. Dark amber brown with off-white to light tan head. Aromas of nutty notes, caramel, light floral notes. Tastes of nutty notes, caramel, toast, biscuit. Medium body with a dry finish. Syrupy mouthfeel.


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