The Halftime Pint: Avery Ellie’s Brown Ale

20130226-093136.jpgOne of the greater things about watching football in America is that most matches, especially those of the EPL, are early in the morning American time, giving people an excuse to day drink. This is part of our series discussing exactly what to drink when you’re at the pub, presented by our resident homebrewer, Keith

The Beer: Ellie’s Brown Ale, Avery Brewing Company, Boulder, Colorado

The Pub: The Black Swan, Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, New York

What You Need To Know: Avery Brewing Company is one of the linchpins of the vibrant Boulder scene, which also counts among its number hombrew guru Charlie Papazian and a few other excellent breweries. Avery was founded in 1993 by Adam Avery, and has continued to produce its excellent range of ales and lagers to considerable acclaim.

As I said back in December regarding the style, Brown Ale as we know it is a direct descendant of the Mild, which itself was once the preferred drink of the beer-loving English working class. Ellie’s Brown somewhat straddles the three-way Venn diagram of a sharp, strong Northern Brown, a sweet Southern Brown, and the hoppy American Brown.

So, About This Beer: Pours a deep brown with ruby highlights and a thin tan head. Chocolates on the aroma, and a big heavy roast and hop bitterness initially on the palate, with licorice overtones. Middleweight mouthfeel with very light carbonation.

The Verdict: This is a wonderful beer. The flavors are really nuanced, and there’s something different in every sip. And yet the beer never feels incoherent. I’d strongly recommend it.

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