Chicagoist's Beer Of The Week: Ale Asylum's Madtown Nutbrown
By Jason Baldacci in Food on Mar 6, 2015 9:00PM
This week, we're showing some love to a style of beer that we feel just doesn't get enough these days.
Madtown Nutbrown is a nice, straightforward Brown Ale from Ale Asylum of Madison, Wisconsin. It pours a beautiful ruby-brown color in the glass, with big aromas of caramelized, bready malts and dried fruit. On the palate, the malt profile is definitely front and center, with the breadiness we noted on the nose being met with a pleasant, dry nuttiness. We specifically picked up hints of almonds and walnuts which come from the specialty grains in the brew. The overall mouthfeel of this one is very round, almost juicy, and the yeast lends a pretty prevalent fruitiness that plays off of the malts perfectly and lingers on the finish. At 5.5 percent alcohol content, Madtown Nutbrown is a solid representation of a classic style and a great accompaniment to a chilly evening.
Brown Ales are a classic English style that a lot of American craft breweries used to make years ago, but they don't get a ton of play these days. We understand why: with the flashiness and punchy flavors that pale ales and IPAs are packing, it's easy for more subdued styles like Brown Ales to taper off. That's a damn shame, in our opinion. These beers are wonderfully sessionable on their own but also pair very well with a variety of foods. They're great with BBQ or pretty much any piece of meat that has a little char from the grill. They're versatile enough to pair with breakfast, lunch or dinner, and they're just hearty enough to enjoy by a fire but also appropriate on a picnic table in the summertime.
Madtown Nutbrown is available on draft and in 12-ounce bottles, check beermenus.com if you're having trouble finding some in your neighborhood.