723: Newcastle Brown Ale

723 - Newcastle Brown AleName: Newcastle Brown Ale
Brewery: Newcastle Federation *Please note, BeerAdvocate says The Caledonian Brewery Company Limited brews this beer.
Country of Origin: England
City & State: Newcastle upon Tyne, England
Style: English Brown Ale
Alcohol Content (ABV): 4.7%
First Brewed: 1927
Price: $1.79

Tasting Notes
This is a full-bodied beer with a palate that is dominated by brown sugar and candy caramel flavors; fruit notes follow on mid-palate, before the lingering sweet finish. The beer is well balanced and although hoppy notes are low, they are definitely in the mix.

Ricky’s Thoughts

The only reason I picked this beer was so I could unlock a badge on Untappd. There is a World Cup badge, and you need to drink 2 beers from 2 different countries represented in the World Cup. I had a beer from the United States earlier, and now England. Cheers for unlocking badges! Since hitting 2,500 unique beers a few weeks ago, I have been obsessed with unlocking badges. I should have them all in the next few months. Wish me luck!

Also, wish me luck on enjoying this beer. I like how they call it sweet and mention sugar and candy caramel flavors. I haven’t had a Newcastle in a while, but I don’t remember any of those flavors. Of course, palates change. Let’s see. Cheers!

In the Glass: Well, the bottle is clear. That isn’t good for beer. Especially beer that sits on the shelf for a while. I did just buy this yesterday, but who knows how long it has been sitting on the shelf at the store. It doesn’t look much different in the glass than it did in the bottle. Not much lace, either. What lace there is is thin and carbonated like a diet soda.

I am hoping for some sweet aromas on this one.

Nose: There is a hint of sweetness, but nothing to write home about. I do get a little dark chocolate aroma, too. I bet this is too cold to truly enjoy, but let’s see what Newcastle taste like. I have a feeling this is going to be a good introduction to craft beer for someone that says, “Can I get a Bud Light?”

Flavor: Meh. Boring. To be honest, the aroma is better than the flavor. It has a weird finish, too. Not sweet, but almost bitter. Think ESB bitter. I don’t like that style whatsoever. Not a big fan of this style, either. I wold say they are my 2 least favorite beer styles.

Mouthfeel: It isn’t as carbonated as I thought it would be. It does leave a nice thin layer of flavor on my tongue after I swallow, but the flavor is quickly gone. Just not a good beer overall.

Aftertaste: What aftertaste? The flavor is pretty much gone as soon as I swallow. Maybe it’s the clear bottle that changes the flavor of this beer. Oh, and why do they brew it at a much higher ABV only to dilute it? I don’t understand that! Reminds me of Crown Royal. (Please tell me you have heard that story…)

I told you this would be a good introduction beer for a new craft beer drinker… It is. The next time your buddy orders a domestic, ask him or her to try Newcastle. They might be surprised and like it! Cheers.

Newcastle Brown Ale – The bottle says: “It’s well known that Newcastle Brown Ale is full of flavor and remarkably smooth. What’s less well know is that the birthplace of this legendary English ale owes its name to William the Conqueror’s son Robert, builder of the “New Castle” of 1080. A suitably royal heritage for our great tasting ale. And good reason to carry the city’s name proudly on our label.”

Rating: 1.5/5

Sheryl’s Thoughts

I’m tired. It has been a long day. Have you ever had one of those days where it feels like people just ask you for stuff and keep right on asking and expect you to do everything? Yeah, that’s the kind of day it’s been. Sounds like the perfect time to have a beer.

I don’t expect too much from this beer. After all, it is Newcastle. Newcastle has been around for quite a while, and it is basically just one step above a domestic. I haven’t had it in a while, and I do like brown ales (well, definitely more than Ricky likes brown ales), so maybe my thoughts on it will have changed since the last time.

It looks like a typical brown ale in the glass. It’s not too thick and not too thin. It’s a rich brown color with not much head, although mine has been sitting here a while, so the head probably went away long ago. There is almost no nose to it. I generally expect brown ales to have kind of a rich, nutty smell to them, but on this one I’m getting almost nothing. What I do pick up is maybe a hint of dark fruit and spice, but it’s nothing special and is barely there.

First sip… meh. This definitely doesn’t have the richness I’ve come to expect from most browns that I drink. I had to take a big gulp to even get much flavor at all. And with a big swig, the nose does pick up, but it’s still not really the nose (or flavor) I want from a brown ale. Also, it has a pretty gross aftertaste. It’s not quite as bad of an aftertaste as the Guinness we reviewed last night, but it’s still not very good. I couldn’t even finish the Guinness because the aftertaste was so bad. This one isn’t as bad as that, but it’s still not very good. Honestly, the overall flavor and aftertaste that I get from this beer can best be described as I’m drinking a penny. That’s what it reminds me of. And who wants to drink a penny. Yuck. Definitely not my favorite, and it’s probably only something I would drink again if it was the only choice I had over a domestic. Actually, I might even choose the domestic.

Rating: 2/5

722 bottles of beer on the wall…

One Response to “723: Newcastle Brown Ale”

  • Marcus Bartlette

    Oh come on now! This brew is outstanding! It’s smashing, a little bit of all right! One will never confuse Newcastle Brown for a domestic (US, that us)! I look forward to the day where I can enjoy an ice cold Newcastle Brown at St. James Park while Manchester United demolishes Newcastle United. Go Red Devils!

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