Jekyll Cooter Brown American Brown Ale

I used to think I disliked brown ales, but I then ran into some that seriously changed my mind. Now, I look forward to them cautiously. Jekyll really impressed me with their first beer, but the second beer came up a bit short. This is make or break time for them, though, as I only have this last one to try out.

It's oh so very deep brown. It's like beyond mahogany brown. The head is not all that big to begin with, and it reduces to a thin layer of foam that just wants to make sure you know this is beer, not just really, really dirty water. The smell is delicious. It smells chocolatey and even sweet, but I think I smell some wheat in there with it.

First sip is less chocolate than the aroma made me expect. It's got some coffee bitterness and some grains and various caramel and toffee tastes. Yes, there's a bit of chocolate floating atop the bunch, but it is hardly the defining characteristic of the beverage.

A proper swig is my next logical step. Tip-in is light carbonation with very mild milk chocolate and a goodly amount of soda water. The middle is more complex than I would expect - with toffee and caramel and grains and even a few flowers. I'm used to beers getting watery or milky in the middle, but this is just throwing a bunch of solid flavors at me. As the finish arrives, a wave of bitterness is followed immediately by a very coffee flavored malt. The bitterness and the coffee trail off into the distance.

Bottom Line: A pretty good beverage. Strikes me more as a porter than a brown ale, but it's pretty good.



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