I haven’t had a bottle of Smuttynose beer since the Big A IPA that I reviewed back in February of 2013. For the longest time, Smuttynose was one of my go-to breweries, but you know how it goes. Once you start traveling down the Craft Beer road, you never know where it will lead you. You find a brewery you’ve never heard of, try their beer, like it, and then you try another. Travel a bit farther down that road and then you stumble upon another brewer. And then another. And then another. The next thing you know, your old go-to breweries become “has beens”. But then one day, as you’re perusing the aisles of your favorite bottle shop, you see a familiar name, but an unfamiliar label. And that’s exactly how I happened upon this bottle of Smuttynose Brewing Company’s Durty. Hoppy Brown Ale? Don’t mind if I do!
Big, Brown and Hoppy. You never know what Mud Season is going to throw at you, so we brewed a beer that covers all the bases. We took the malty notes of a brown ale and balanced them with the hop aroma and flavor of a double IPA. Now we’re talking Durty!
Let’s get our hands dirty and try Smutty’s Durty…
- Appearance: Muddy and ruddy is one way to describe the color of Durty. Think freshly turned damp earth with red clay highlights when held up to the light. Tan foam that tops out at about 1/4 inch and dissipates slowly. A wee bit of lacing.
- Aroma: Take a pine cone and dip it into espresso infused dark chocolate. That’s what this smells like. A touch of bitter orange comes through too.
- Taste: Very creamy mouthfeel with a touch of fizziness to the carbonation. Starts with those chocolate and coffee notes, then WHAM!, your taste buds get a big hit of delightfully bitter hops. It all comes together at the finish with a balance of coffee/chocolate/piney flavors. A touch of booziness comes through too.
- ABV: 8.4%
Smuttynose Durty is one seriously bold and delicious beer that lies somewhere between an IPA and a Black IPA, which in my mind, is a really nice place to be. What impressed me most was how the multitude of flavors all came together so beautifully. If only I could track this down on tap…