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 werent 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. Its a beer that pairs wonderfully with all your autumn and winter dishes. We hope you enjoy it, and hey dont ever say we never did nothin for ya.

Malt: Brewmasters 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%

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   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
Maverick34 (3132) - New York, USA - DEC 14, 2009
I had no clue what this was supposed to be. I guess the hops and malts made it vaguely English. Some interesting tastes but ultimately it didnt work in the end for me.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
jb (3119) - 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 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
tgncc (3118) - Bellmore, New York, USA - DEC 11, 2009
Aroma is caramel, bread, fruit, brown sugar. The appearance is a clear chestnut color, off-white head. The flavor is brown sugar, malty, spicy and resiny hops. The finish is purely a spicy/resin hop bittering. The mouthfeel is on the thin side of medium. I love the idea of a brewer doing a bold experiment like this, but I am underwhelmed by the results. Still, a good, solid session ale all the same.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
PilsnerPeter (3045) - Flushing, New York, USA - DEC 21, 2009
@ Blind Tiger: Hazy deep rusty copper pour with a fading off white head. Grainy aroma- some off esters and solventy notes (hot fermentation?) Slick body. Solventy and metallic flavors with some restrained grains. One dimensional and filled with off flavors.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
dchmela (3041) - Orlando, Florida, USA - DEC 19, 2009
Tap at Redlight. Nice amber pour. Fresh grain and a touch of fruit in the nose. Smooth malty taste, slightly sweet, some roast and a touch of bitterness. I found this to be a decent session beer.

   AROMA 4/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
italianjohn (2999) - Penndel, Pennsylvania, USA - JAN 3, 2010
Clear copper pour off white head not much aroma little bit of sweet malt .... taste of honey sweet malt and lots of it .... little roasted taste other than that kind of sweet bubblegum taste alcohol hidden well on this one .... kinda flat on the palate ..... not bad for an english strong however I wish the back breaking work turned out a better brew

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 11/20
corby112 (2804) - philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA - MAR 4, 2010
UPDATED: MAR 6, 2010 Pours a dark golden amber orange color with a thin one finger off white head that quickly settles into a thin lasting ring. Not much lacing. Sweet caramel malt aroma with hints of mares otter and subtle earthy hops and citrus. Biscuity malt and orange peel in the nose. Medium bodied with an overly sweet malt profile with hints of toffee, biscuit and caramel. Subtle earthy pine hops with hints of orange peel and tangerine. Decently balance but kind of simple and pedestrian.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
glennmastrange (2766) - hobe sound, Florida, USA - JAN 12, 2010
Tap. Moderate bready and caramel malt aroma, light flowers and dough for the hops and yeast, with dried fruit and cane syrup in the background. Head is small, creamy, slightly off-white with fair lacing and is mostly diminishing. Color is clear light copper. Flavor starts moderately sweet and a bit tart, then finishes lightly to moderately sweet and acidic and lightly bitter. Palate is medium, oily, with a soft carbonation and a chewy finish. A nicely balanced English Strong Ale, and very easy to drink.

   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 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
adrian910ss (2570) - philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA - JAN 9, 2010
On draft at Capones. Pours a clear copper with s medium sized off white head. Aroma of light fruit, toffee and almond biscoti. Taste is lightly fruitywith hints of toffee and almond biscoti. Bready aftertaste and a bit watery.

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