Battle of the nut brown ales

Winter is upon us and in case you have a fireplace that isn’t working, you should have a good brown ale to keep you warm. Today’s battle is a slugfest between a domestic craft brewer, Goose Island of Chicago, and an English import, Samuel Smith. Both breweries are well-regarded and offer Nut Brown Ales. So, in a side-by-side pour, Fat City decided to see which ale came out on top.

Goose Island Nut Brown Ale. This ale checks in at 5.2 percent alcohol. It pours a very dark brown and smells of malt and coffee.

The taste is nutty with a hint of caramel — a bit heavier up front, followed by a finish that had the slight bitterness of hops. I also get a burnt taste that, while not the dominant note, is strong enough to make me take notice in this medium-bodied ale.

Drinkers of Newcastle Brown Ale might want to slide this beer into the rotation. Those who like the smell and feel of roasted nuts or coffee beans would be drawn to it.

Categories: Dining, Food & Drink