A little extra kick to the nut
A Review of Imperial Nut Brown Ale by Tommyknocker Brewery
Posted on 4/24/2012 by Brew's Your Daddy
If you are a guy and you continued on to read this review after reading its title, I highly commend you. For showing such courage and dedication to the love of better beer, I promise to turn your view of the title from face cringing to head nodding in agreement. And if you are totally confused at this point, I don't blame you one bit. Just stick with me, and I will make sure we all make it out of this thing with our crotches fully in tact. In reality, all my title is referring to is the Imperial Nut Brown Ale from Tommyknocker Brewery. See? Get it? Imperial is to kick as nut is to....nut. Ok, it seemed funny at the time. Hey, they can't all be winners now can they? At least the beer itself, unlike my review title, turns out to be quite delicious.

The quick, down and dirty background on the Imperial Nut Brown Ale is that it is an ''imperialized'' version of the standard Tommyknocker Maple Nut Brown Ale. It was made initially as a celebration beer for the brewery's 10 year anniversary, and it seems it was met with such success, they decided to keep it around.

In the glass, the Imperial Nut Brown takes on a cola brown coloration with some ruby hues around the edges. Even on an aggressive pour the head is almost nonexistent, and the end result is a ring around the edges of the glass and spotty film in the middle of it. Somehow, even though the volume of head is on the low end, it still manages to leave a great deal of lacing throughout the entire session. There is a very sweet smell that greets you even before you can get your nose in close and it comes across as a general brown sugar aroma until you get a little closer, where it then starts to resemble rich maple syrup. Once you move past it there are some other bursts of ripe raisins, plums, freshly toasted dark bread, over roasted nuts, and a few lighter notes of toffee, chocolate, and alcohol. Much to my surprise, and if I haven't managed to make it clear up to this point, there is quite a bit of complexity coming from the nose of this one.

When you go in for the first taste of it, the initial flavors that greet you are of dark fruit. Again, raisins and plums seem to be very upfront, but they make a very quick exit, only to be replaced by a dominant and long lasting malt profile. It starts of very nutty, with pecans being the first thing that comes to mind. At times there seems to be some nutmeg sprinkled in random places, but it seems to be more of a bonus than an intention. The nutty layer then seems to move to more of a caramel and chocolate realm with a bit of earthy hops bite sprinkled in to keep it from becoming overly sweet. And then the maple syrup makes itself unmistakably known, and it seems to have no intention of letting you forget about it from that point forward. At times, the lively carbonation is almost a necessity to keep things cleaned up, but it still leaves just enough of an aftertaste of maple syrup and roasted nuts to keep you wanting to go back over and over again for more.

So when it comes down to it, the Imperial Nut Brown turns out to be quite a tasty brew. Have I had better? Sure. Have I had worse? You better believe it. Would I drink pint after pint of it all night long without so much as a single complaint? Absolutely. And my guess is that most all of you could do the exact same thing. It carries a pretty high ABV, so those with less experience should probably proceed with some caution, but flavor makes it justifiable for you to proceed none the less. The beer itself is yummy indeed, and is well worth the patience you will have to exhibit to get through it. So take your time, settle in, and get ready for an entertaining and enjoyable session. And if my title is still causing a you a bit of discomfort, wearing a cup while drinking this one is perfectly acceptable.

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Imperial Nut Brown Ale by Tommyknocker Brewery
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