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Hope & King Scotch Ale - Minneapolis Town Hall Brewery

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Hope & King Scotch Ale
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BA SCORE
88
very good

146 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 146
Reviews: 73
rAvg: 3.91
pDev: 9.21%
Wants: 7
Gots: 7 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Minneapolis Town Hall Brewery visit their website
Minnesota, United States

Style | ABV
Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Our interpretation of the classic ale that originated in Glasgow, Scotland. A full-body ale, rich in malt complexity. Brewed with both English and American barley and many, many specialty malts allowing hints of roasted chocolate, caramel and raisins with very little hop presence.

(Beer added by: Jason on 01-28-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 146 | Reviews: 73 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Holland
3.53/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: appears a translucent brown with a slight red color. Good head and retention, and looks sticky.

S: coffee, roasted malts, and malt sweetness with a hint of peat.

T: ahh, here is the peat, but barely. It's not dominant, which is nice.

M: medium body, carbonation is medium to light, and it's smooth.

O: nice beer, but expected more bite to it. Not much peat, not much carbonation, and it's more like a brown ale. Didn't have the complexity that I expect.

Photo of RedDiamond
3.18/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Hope and King is outwardly brown with ruby highlights and no real head to speak of. The taste is much like a strong porter with a potent abundance of smoky chocolate malt. In contrast, the aroma is faint and gives no hint of the abundant flavor. Instead, the nose is sweeter and maltier without the smoke or chocolate of the palate.

I didn’t care for the finish of this beer which grows too thin too quickly and combines with a chalky mouthfeel to end on an unflattering note. That’s a shame, because this ale initially presents with a wealth of flavor which, if sustained or gracefully diminished, would make it a first rate beer. But the finish is cloying, almost metallic, and the mouthfeel is unpleasant and thin. The draught was laceless, a factor I can deal with. But the mouthfeel and the finish are in need of serious revision.

Photo of tigg924
4.33/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had on tap at the brewery. Served into a pint glass.

Appearance: clear, dark brown in color, 1/4 inch head, moderate carbonation

Smell: toasted malt, peat, and dark chocolate

Taste: toasted malt, caramel, peat, and dark chocolate

Mouthfeel: sweet, medium-heavy body, medium carbonation

Overall: A nice and chocolaty treat. I could have several pints of this. I actually think I like this more than Mama Masala although both are great in their styles.

Photo of morimech
3.8/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Cask serving provides a nice cascading head that unfortunately is short lived and leaves little lacing.

Smells of caramel malt with a bit of smokey peat.

The flavor is mostly of smokey caramel malt. A hint of alcohol is detected.

The texture is not as chewy as I would hope in a casked beer. Just feels unimpressive with a very low carbonation.

Has a good flavor but I was expecting more. Rather moderate ABV levels for a Wee Heavy.

Photo of jbaker67
4.03/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Dark clear brown with amber edges and dissipating head and nice lacing. Smell at first is of delicate grassy field, light toffee a caramel malt. Taste immediately sweet, then fruity esters, and then a dry malt and familiar scotch ale something, the mouthfeel is really full, creamy and gentle carbonation. It ends with a little butterscotch then a bitterness that appears out of no where but calms down to a satisfying and complex linger.

Photo of jera1350
3.58/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Dark ruby hued brown color with a tan creamy cap of foam that generates some acceptable lacing.

Very malty smelling. Caramel, toffee, lightly roasted malt and caramelized sugar.

Big malt heavy taste with lots of caramel and toffee. Some burnt sugars and a bit of an earthy taste. No presence of peat or smoked malt which I really like in this style. Mainly a sweet and malty taste.

Medium bodied, lightly chewy and very smooth.

Overall, this is a nice beer, but I find it hard to put it in the scotch ale category without any peat presence. It does appeal to a wider audience the way it is and is a tasty brew however.

Photo of argock
4.08/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured from fresh growler purchased on site at the brewery into a clear glass mug. Consume by 6/27/11 on cap.

A: Soothing dark brown with magenta/ruby highlights. Ample 1/2-1 finger off-white head with a few spots of lace.

S: Malty dark fruit aromas of raising and prune with some grape and cherry notes.

T: Malt is king with Hope & King with some breadiness coupled with dark fruit flavors. Hops are minimal and slightly herbal.

M: Low carbonation and medium-to-full-bodied for an extremely silky smooth feel.

O: Solid and extraordinarily drinkable for a dark malty beer with a lot of residual fermentables. This is comfort beer.

Photo of fredmugs
4/5  rDev +2.3%

Photo of CRJMellor
4.1/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep ruby red with a decent light tan head formed and leaves billows of lace on the glass.
Aroma of sweet malt, caramel, coffee and some minor earthy hop notes.
Flavors is sweet butterscotch upfront followed by a bitter coffee and hop note. Interesting turn on the style, somewhat of a porter profile.
Mouthfeel is smooth and easy.
Drinkability is very high, great twist on Scotch Ale style.

Photo of grub
4.8/5  rDev +22.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

deep red, almost brown colour, with a very thin tan head.

aroma is caramel and malt, with no noticeable hop presence (as expected), and just a hint of smokeyness.

taste is excellent. malty, slightly roasty, with just a hint of smoke. i also catch just a slight dried fruit taste, like raisins. a bit of alcohol in the finish. as it warms i notice some bittersweet chocolate that was hidden when served. great balance between the malt and alcohol.

the mouthfeel is great. low carbonation feels just right for the style.

the drinkability is great too. not heavy or hoppy. i think i'd be in trouble if i had a keg of this on hand...

Photo of ADR
4.05/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at the brewpub, I've seen this for years but haven't tried it...

Heavy semi-opaque umber color, nice rising head with some glistening speckles. Laces in long strands. Aroma is full but not strident, subdued malt with some spicy fig elements that might betray background hops. Verges on full-bodied with lots of cakey, yeasty, starchy qualities and malts that range into maple sugar. While hops aren't assertive, the beer composes to a paprika-like dryness near the finish, while keeping the good mouthfeel -- a little different for a Scotch Ale. Nice beer, lots of thinks to keep track of.

Photo of Adamostella
3.5/5  rDev -10.5%

Photo of bditty187
4.38/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark ruby in hue, brown influences as well. On cask there was also a slight haze to the beer, as desired. A foamy light beige head of over a finger in height graced with top of the liquid. The head retention was excellent as a half finger cap lasted the whole consumption. Sadly, there was hardly any subsequent lacing. Still this was a good-looking beer. The nose was not loud but the aromas I could detect were very malty, chocolate hints, some sweetness and some underlying astringency. I like the nose. Inviting. I couldn’t wait to take a drink. Why wait! The palate is great, the malty depth is wonderful, very ample yet subtle, hell, I’ll call it luscious. Deep chocolate flavors, there are some roast too but it is not stout/porter-like, there is slight astringency. The finish is very juicy from the big maltiness. The sweetness is moderate but it adds something pleasant and needed. No sign of the hops, I assume they managed to curb the sweetness but they don’t offer much in the way of flavor. Medium/medium-full in body, creamy mouthfeel, typical qualities of a cask ale. This is very drinkable. Lovely stuff, it was dynamite on cask. I didn’t try it on-tap but I can’t imagine it is better that this. I will cherish the fond memories of this Wee Heavy. I should have quaffed more of this when I was in town!

Photo of Herky21
3.5/5  rDev -10.5%

Photo of TastyTaste
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another good offering from TH. Translucent maroon colored, with a whitish head. Smells malt and roasted, with a little hint of alcohol. A nice thick beer, with a strong flavor. Was pretty close to a stout, only with more of a bite. I definitely will be getting this again.

Photo of CoryR
3.75/5  rDev -4.1%

Photo of CuriousMonk
3.9/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the brewery poured into sampler glass. Pours a clear chestnut brown with white wispy head that leaves almost no lacing. Aroma is surprisingly sweet and vinous. Flavor is intensely rich and vinous, though it’s "rich" without being "thick" or syrupy. In fact it’s a pretty thin palate on this beer. Very modest hop bitterness. Light to medium-bodied mouthfeel. Very nice scotch ale!

Photo of MattyG85
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the brewpub. Poured into a standard shaker pint glass.

Appearance: A dark brownish ruby red with a moderate amount of bubbles. Decent two fingers of off white head with good retention and lots of lacing around the glass.

Smell: A sweet and very bready aroma of malts. Lots of caramel and toffee. Big presence of dark raisins. Also some peat and hints of nuts and chocolate. Hops are very faint. Big on bready malts and fairly sweet.

Taste: A big mix of sweet and bready malts. A good taste of caramel, toffee, and raisins with a hint of prune. Hints of peat, chocolate, and nuts also linger. Light taste of earthy hops towards the finish. On the sweeter side but not overdone. Tastes good.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium bodied with a moderate level of carbonation. Light but somewhat chewy and very smooth.

Overall: A solid Scotch ale that makes a good option when seeking something lighter. Very nice use of malts.

Photo of richkrull
4/5  rDev +2.3%

Photo of blitheringidiot
3.75/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

GABF blue ribbon winner.

Dark shadowy mahogany clear topped with a settled khaki wafer thin head cap. (possibly high ABV equates the thin head)

Toostie Roll and smoked peat moss Scottish scents.

First swigs: Rude bold unbridled tootsie-roll and cocoa. Toasted malt & syrupy. Smokey peat with a hint of cherry. Lingering candi sugar toffee and even a yogurt like finish.

Last swigs: Makes me wonder if the house yeast here is a Scottish Ale yeast? Cocoa and peat.

Photo of gatornation
4.33/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

had on tap at MTH... the appearance an almost clear(some haze) amber/copper color with a thin off-white head and minimal lacing the smell was malt and some chocolate some toffee and a peat smell..taste is the same its a malt driven ale that has some toffee and caramel and chocolate a little hop/spice to round this one out this is another well balanced brew from a great brewery again it is perfectly balanced nothing dominates in this wee heavy but it is super tasty.recommended for sure hey every brew at MTH is recommended.. a must stop if you live here or are going to visit minneapolis

Photo of bigbeers84
4/5  rDev +2.3%

Photo of hardy008
3.98/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a mahogany color with little to no head and very little lace. Has a nice malty aroma and flavor. Smells of toffee and caramel. Likewise for the taste. A nice sweet flavor. The carbonation on this beer was higher than I expected, but did not make the beer less enjoyable. Overall a good Scotch Ale, but I would have liked it better if it were a little stronger and sweeter like SkullSplitter.

Photo of Localdrinklax
4.25/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of bsp77
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Serving glass: Cask pour into Pint Glass.

Appearance: Dark reddish-brown, dark ruby when held up to light. Thin head.

Smell: Smoky, caramel malts, light hops.

Taste: Malty, sweet, but not quite as sweet as expected. Smoke and biscuit flavors. I never know what to expect from Scotch Ales, as some seem to actually be Export Scottish Ales (80), while others are very sweet and are definitely Wee Heavys. This tastes in between; maybe this is what would be deemed a 90 shilling.

Feel: Low carbonation, relatively dry despite semi-sweet taste.

Drinkability: Easy to drink. Overall nice flavor, so could definitely have another.

Hope & King Scotch Ale from Minneapolis Town Hall Brewery
88 out of 100 based on 146 ratings.