Flying Dog Tamarind Ale (Brewhouse Rarities)

Since the beer scene has really taken off, it’s been so easy to find Flying Dog’s Brewhouse Rarities. This one sounded interesting, so I picked it up.

ABV: 7%

Style: English Brown Ale

Trivia: According to, “Tamarind (Tamarindus indica) is a leguminous tree in the family Fabaceae indigenous to tropical Africa. The genus Tamarindus is a monotypic taxon, having only a single species. The tamarind tree produces pod-like fruit, which contain an edible pulp that is used in cuisines around the world. Other uses of the pulp include traditional medicine and metal polish. The wood can be used for woodworking, and Tamarind seed oil can be extracted from the seeds. Because of the tamarind’s many uses, cultivation has spread around the world in tropical and subtropical zones.”

Random: I got a rechargeable cordless screwdriver and it makes outdoor furniture projects so much easier.

The beer poured with a half a finger of cream-colored head that dissipated slowly. It left a bit of lacing on the glass. The body was clear and mahogany in color. It had just enough carbonation. The nose had a sour aspect to it with a lot of citrus peel. There was also some toasted malt and nuttiness that was an interesting contrast to the citrus. The taste, on the other hand, started off super malty. There was a lot of brown bread and toasted malt with some peanuts as well. The tamarind flavor was muted and didn’t pair well with the toasted malt. It had a medium thick body with high carbonation. The finish was lengthy and malty. A bottle of this was $1.83, which came to $.15 per ounce. This beer just wasn’t for me. I wouldn’t be opposed to trying another beer with tamarind, but maybe not one with a brown ale base.

Untappd Rating: 3.0/5.0

Dark City DCBC1

I visited this brewery awhile back with Val. We only had time to get a sampler paddler, so I didn’t review anything formally. I also thought that we could walk there from the main drag in Asbury (hint: you can, but it’s a long walk in the heat, so get the car). Let’s see how this one was.


ABV: 10.5%

Style: English Brown Ale

Trivia: According to the brewery website, “We often get asked about how and why we chose the name Dark City Brewing Company. We chose it for several reasons. Mainly it is a widely known nickname for Asbury Park. There are many interpretations as to where, when and why this nickname came about. Our decision to adopt this name and run with it comes from our desire to celebrate Asbury Park’s ability to bounce back from hardships of every form. This city has been around for a long time, it has seen a lot of ups and downs, hurricanes, ships running aground, race riots, power outages, you name it. Guess what? It’s still here, stronger than ever. We think that is pretty awesome and worthy of raising a glass to. Cheers to the City by the Sea.”

Random: When we visited, Val got a very small coffee there. It was alright, not great.

The beer poured with a half a finger of cream-colored head that dissipated slowly. It left a small crown on top of the dark brown body. There was moderate carbonation visible. The nose was filled with bourbon and vanilla. Along with the bourbon notes, there was a nuttiness from the brown malt. The taste was also filled with bourbon barrel, vanilla and some smoke. The nuttiness came through with ash as well. The beer was more smoky and ashy than I expected. The body was on the lighter side with lots of carbonation. It had a lengthy finish with smoke and ash. I don’t remember how much I paid for this one, but I don’t recall it being cheap. I thought this beer was a bit out of balance. I’m glad I tried it, but one was enough for me.

Untappd Rating: 3.5/5.0

DuClaw Euforia

I picked this beer up from the pick-a-six section of Canal’s in Lawrenceville. It’s one of the year-round selections from DuClaw.


ABV: 5%

Style: English Brown Ale

Trivia: According to the brewery website, “A true DuClaw Brewing Company original, this style-bending, English Brown Ale variant is dark brown, medium-bodied, creamy, and incredibly flavorful! EuForia combines roasted malt with gourmet coffee to create a jubilant swirl of caramel, almond, and toffee flavors that will leave your palate in a state of ecstasy. First brewed in 2006, this smooth, highly drinkable bottle/pint of 5% abv liquid bliss is available year round, so what are you waiting for? Come on get happy!”

Random: It’s been a long time since I had an English Brown Ale. I don’t find myself purchasing them a lot.

This brew poured with half a finger of off white head. It dissipated slowly and left a little bit of lacing on the glass. The body was a clear, sienna color with no visible carbonation. The nose had toasted malt, toffee and hazelnuts. It smelled like the typical brown ale and was really inviting. The taste was not nearly as good as the nose. At first, I got the same toffee and nuts as on the nose but then, this weird, almost tin-like twang came through. Cocoa powder was there as well, but the twang was so distracting from every other flavor. It had a medium-thick body with almost no carbonation. It needed to be dialed up. The finish was quick with toffee and toasted malt. This was $1.59 for the single bottle ($.13 per ounce). This beer was just a miss for me and the twang I kept picking up was really off-putting. I wouldn’t have it again.

Untappd Rating: 3.0/5.0

Cigar City Maduro Oatmeal Brown Ale

When I picked this beer up at Half Time, it still shocked me that I haven’t tried it before. It’s been on my list to try for years, especially since it’s a Cigar City brew. I’m hoping that the beer will live up to my expectations.


ABV: 5.5%

Style: English Brown Ale

Trivia: According to the brewery website, “Maduro is a Northern English-style brown ale with some American affectations. Maduro is higher in alcohol than the common English brown ale and features flaked oats in the malt bill which imparts a silky body and works to mesh the roasted, toasted and chocolate components together in Maduro’s complex malt profile. The end result is a remarkably full-flavored yet approachable and sessionable brown ale that pairs well with mild to medium cigars.”

Random: I’m not quite sure why Kids Bop radio is advertising on the sports radio stations.

This beer poured with less than a quarter finger of tan head that dissipated almost instantly. It left no lacing on the glass. The body was a clear, chestnut color with high carbonation visible. The nose was intensely nutty with brown bread and cracker. The taste had some bitterness and then quickly went into brown bread and hazelnuts. The beer was perfectly balanced and incredibly flavorful. It had a medium thick body with light carbonation. The finish was long and nutty with brown toast. This beer was $1.99 per can. which broke down to $.17 per ounce. This beer was exceptional and one that is my new benchmark for the style.

Untappd Rating: 4.5/5.0

Captain Lawrence Winter Ale

This was the brew that Val got when we went out to dinner. Captain Lawrence is located up in her neck of the woods since she grew up in Westchester County, New York. I’m hoping that one time when we’re up there, we get to make a stop at the brewery. I also have another beer from this brewery in my queue that I should be reviewing later this week.


ABV: 5.2%

Style: English Brown Ale

Trivia: According to the brewery website, “The one thing we all need on a dark winter night is a beer to help us forget about the cold & remind us that sunny days lie ahead. Not too dark, but evenly brewed with spices and malts making it a solid winter warmer.”

Random: We got this pine candle that smells absolutely amazing. It makes the whole apartment smell like Christmas.

This beer poured with a half a finger of white head. It dissipated quickly and left no lacing on the pint glass, but did leave a crown on top of the clear, mahogany body. There was some carbonation visible through the body. The nose was that of the typical brown ale with toast and nuts and some winter spice. The taste was much of the same. It had toasted hazelnuts and toasty malt with a smackerel of spice. The body was too thin with overly light carbonation. It had a quick finish with toast and nuts. This beer was just boring. It was like the threw a winter seasonal label on the typical brown ale. I wouldn’t have this one again.

Untappd Rating: 3.5/5.0

Dark Horse Boffo Brown Ale

I love Dark Horse beers. It’s a shame that they aren’t distributed to New Jersey. This is the seventh beer that I’ve tried from them. Let’s see how this one goes.


ABV: 6.5%

Style: English Brown Ale

Trivia: According to the brewery website, “The Boffo Brown ale is a beer that we brewed years ago and then put it in semi retirement for a couple years while we focused on other brands at the brewery. We have recently put it back onto active duty and are brewing it all year. The beer itself is delicious and is a favorite to many of us here at the brewery. Just as most of our beers it’s on the ‘full body’ scale pushing the envelope of what an American Brown Ale is to most people. The beer is a very deep/dark color of brown with a nice creamy tan head. The mouthfeel of the beer is very soft and is very drinkable. Flavors of malt, caramel, toffee, and a mild earthy nutty finish allow this beer to be paired with hearty food and sips of bourbon.”

Random: The Phillies managed to lose again today in extra innings. They’re doing extra awful this year.

This brew poured with a one finger, cream-colored head that dissipated rather quickly and left no lacing on the pint glass. The body was a really dark brown, almost porter-like with very little carbonation visible due to the color. The nose was really fragrant with chocolate and caramel malt notes. Some brown sugar and vanilla came through when the beer warmed. The taste was very much like the nose. There was big chocolate followed by caramel malt and some breadiness. There was also some toffee to it along with very slight nuttiness, especially given the style. It had a moderately long finish with some bitterness and nuttiness. There was also a bit of booze warming to it. This brew was one of the more interesting of the style that I’ve had and one I would definitely have again.

Untappd Rating: 4.0/5.0

Arcadia Nut Brown Ale

It’s been over a year since I had an Arcadia beer. I’ve had 6 others from their lineup and I’ve enjoyed most of them. This is one that Val picked up for me that I assumed was part of their year round lineup. After checking the website, it’s actually one of the seasonals that they currently offer and the first one I’ve had from their seasonal lineup. Let’s see how it went.


ABV: 6%

Style: English Brown Ale

Trivia: According to the brewery website, “This English-style brown ale has an alluring mahogany color and is capped by a rich foam head. It is brewed with six different varieties of premium malted barley, creating a robust body and delicious flavor profile that features hints of chocolate, raisins, dates and almonds. It’s ripe fruit notes and malty, sweet finish are counterbalanced by a subtle hop bitterness and aroma.”

Random: I’d be very interested to try their summer seasonal. Hopefully it appears on the shelves soon.

This brew poured with a one finger, slightly off white head. It dissipated at a moderate pace and left no lacing on the glass. The body was a slightly cloudy chestnut color with very high carbonation visible. The nose was very fragrant with nuttiness, toasted malts and bread with toffee and caramel as well. The taste was really nice. It started with lots of bready and toasted malts with caramel and toffee. I got nuttiness towards the middle of the sip and it tames some of the sweetness that was up front. The brew had medium carbonation and was towards the thicker side. It had a long nutty finish. It was a really nice brown and one that I will be trying again, no doubt about that.

Untappd Rating: 3.5/5.0