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Kelpie Seaweed Ale - Williams Brothers Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Kelpie Seaweed AleKelpie Seaweed Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
82
good

387 Ratings
THE BROS
84
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 387
Reviews: 277
rAvg: 3.63
pDev: 13.5%
Wants: 14
Gots: 10 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Williams Brothers Brewing Company visit their website
United Kingdom (Scotland)

Style | ABV
Scottish Gruit / Ancient Herbed Ale |  4.40% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
At least four hundred years ago, the coastal & Island farmers of Scotland used seaweed beds to grow their cereal crops. This barley produced very interesting flavors in the ale and whiskey they produced. Including bladderwrack seaweed in the mash tun along with organic barley gives this wholesome dark ale a distinctive flavor.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-18-2001)
View: Beers (42) |  Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Kelpie Seaweed Ale Alström Bros
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Ratings: 387 | Reviews: 277 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of John_Squires
John_Squires

New York

1.75/5  rDev -51.8%

08-28-2013 02:33:07 | More by John_Squires
Photo of Nachos4two
Nachos4two

Illinois

2/5  rDev -44.9%

02-07-2013 21:31:36 | More by Nachos4two
Photo of prisoner1572
prisoner1572

Illinois

2/5  rDev -44.9%

05-24-2012 22:08:10 | More by prisoner1572
Photo of BDeibs
BDeibs

Colorado

2/5  rDev -44.9%

04-27-2013 00:48:59 | More by BDeibs
Photo of Sloppymilkshake
Sloppymilkshake

Michigan

2/5  rDev -44.9%

01-23-2012 19:18:18 | More by Sloppymilkshake
Photo of chefdejour
chefdejour

Pennsylvania

2.05/5  rDev -43.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A: Dark Mahogany/red when held to some light, otherwise dark brown/black. Poured with almost no head, and no lacing.

S: Chocolate malts, vegetal and very little hop aroma. Kind of "salty?"

T: Some veg flavors, mostly dominated by the astringent salty and chocolate malts.

M: thin and crisp with med. carbonation.

D: to astringent for more than the 1/2 bottle I shared.

Serving type: bottle

09-13-2007 18:15:12 | More by chefdejour
Photo of seymourbottoms
seymourbottoms


2.1/5  rDev -42.1%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Ok, here it goes. Long-time crafty drinker, first-time reviewer.

Pours very dark and quite uneventful. Even with a heavy pour, there is minimal head and little more than a dense and dark looking brew here. Carbonation looks to be somewhat minimal, however will be addressed later.

Smell is not surprising with this style, so neither a disappointment or a surprise, just merely, and mostly, non-existent.

On to the taste. We have a beer that uses seaweed as its primary highlight and it shows here. This is definitely the saltiest beer that I have had, and the salt is well balanced. However, I get very minimal accompanying flavors. If you are into very straightforward taste in your beer, then this could pique your interest.

On to the only surprise that i had with this beer. While I saw very minimal head, and little signs of carbonation with this beer, it does have quite a bit of soda-like carbonation on the tongue while drinking. Still a relatively light feel, and somehow it reminded me of drinking a coke if i took all of the sugars out and replaced it with a bit of salt.

There it is... my personal breakdown of this somewhat mediocre beer. At least in this advocate's eyes.

Serving type: bottle

01-02-2013 02:26:17 | More by seymourbottoms
Photo of Zbeetleman
Zbeetleman

California

2.25/5  rDev -38%

07-16-2013 03:44:06 | More by Zbeetleman
Photo of tubaguy
tubaguy

Germany

2.25/5  rDev -38%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Imagine this scenario: you're at the beach catching waves and your beer is firmly planted in the sand near your beach towel. Meanwhile, waves, seasalt, squid, seaweed, microorganisms, and fallen sandcastles are all falling into your brew.

Pour some ocean water in a guinness and then you'll have a Kelpie. The kelp and seaweed tastes were not subdued enough to enjoy this stout-like ale. I could almost taste the sand in the beer.

Smells like ocean and tastes like ocean. Coming from a guy who loves the beach and beer, trust me you can skip this one. Just go to the beach and grab a Corona.

Serving type: bottle

04-30-2009 18:39:11 | More by tubaguy
Photo of flyingpig
flyingpig

United Kingdom (Scotland)

2.38/5  rDev -34.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Dark brown in colour with an almost black look to it and a lively looking body. There is a thin, centimetre tall head on top that is an off white colour and settles to a patchy lacing after a few seconds.

Almost nothing in the way of an aroma here when I first smelt it. There is some roasted malts and a hint of chocolate along with a faint stout like aroma. There is also a smell similar to miso soup as well but none of the smells are strong ones.

Basic in taste as well with some basic dark malts and a hint of chocolate along with that same basic stout characteristic. It does seem a lot stronger than the 4.4% mentioned on the bottle though.

Light medium bodied with an alcohol laced flavour and medium carbonation. There is a slightly gassy feel to the beer as well.

A rather poor beer for me here, it was far too light on the nose and tasted with a cheap stout mixed with salt water. Nothing about this one really appealed to me and it won't be one I'll have again.

Serving type: bottle

12-14-2012 14:35:03 | More by flyingpig
Photo of mattmaples
mattmaples

Oregon

2.4/5  rDev -33.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

They are at it again!!! This time it is a beer made with sea weed. This is a dark beer bordering on porter. The sea weed give it a bit of a funk smell and after taste. Not the best idea they ever had. I do have customers though that have come back and bought this more than once.

Serving type: bottle

09-18-2001 20:09:52 | More by mattmaples
Photo of Murrhey
Murrhey

Montana

2.4/5  rDev -33.9%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.25

Poured from a standard pressure-cap 500ml bottle into a conic pint glass in high elevation Libby, Mont. Reviewed live.

A- Half-finger off-white head with low retention. Limited spotty lacing. Dark chocolate color, very little light permeates.

S- Caramel, toffee, funky-earthy smell. Slight salinity in the nose, along with a very distinct fun that must be the seaweed. Very hard to describe.

T- Earthy, slightly watery, funky. Caramel, toasted malts, some vegetation.

M- Very watery. Not a very nice feel.

O- Swing and a miss.

Serving type: bottle

05-14-2013 02:18:15 | More by Murrhey
Photo of TheBigBoy
TheBigBoy

Pennsylvania

2.5/5  rDev -31.1%

05-02-2012 16:23:53 | More by TheBigBoy
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ShakaShakaShaka

Pennsylvania

2.5/5  rDev -31.1%

10-18-2012 20:58:10 | More by ShakaShakaShaka
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rsinomega

Illinois

2.5/5  rDev -31.1%

12-21-2011 23:30:22 | More by rsinomega
Photo of Shmobo
Shmobo

Ontario (Canada)

2.5/5  rDev -31.1%

02-12-2012 03:12:24 | More by Shmobo
Photo of lacqueredmouse
lacqueredmouse

Australia

2.6/5  rDev -28.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a deep dark brown colour, with tinges of red at the edges. Head is very minimal, just a tiny, loose-bubbled collar around the edge. Lacing is also absent. Body looks a bit thin. To be honest, I'm not enamoured of it, in fact, I feel a little bit of trepidation when I look at it.

Dark grainy notes on the nose. Toasted bread aromas, with light hints of caramel and a little cocoa sweetness. Not huge, and the flavours are a little generic, especially considering what was expected, but it's pleasant enough.

Quite thin on the palate. A slight roasty character, and a dry chocolate note later on, but the feel is woefully thin, leaving just a spent grain character to go with some fine-bubbled but overzealous carbonation. Feels like a very disappointing attempt at a dark ale, much lacking in body, depth and flavour. Mouthfeel in particular is disappointing.

Sorry guys, this just doesn't cut it for me - despite the uniqueness of the recipe, it doesn't have nearly enough on the palate, leaving it flaccid and weak. True, the main characters it has are dark grainy notes, but they exist in isolation with nothing else to back them up. Probably chuggable, but otherwise disappointing.

Serving type: bottle

12-14-2009 21:15:10 | More by lacqueredmouse
Photo of Urbancaver
Urbancaver

Ohio

2.63/5  rDev -27.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I had NO clue what to expect with this. Frankly I thought it would be aweful but it surprised me... a bit at least

Appearance- No head.. not as dark as I would like to see but a deep brown none-the-less

Aroma- Smelled exactly like your typical stout... no real complexity here

Taste- Tasted like it smelled. A watery stout.

Mouthfeel- Doesn't really sit well on my palette...

Drinkability- Light enough to suck down but it gets worse as it goes

Serving type: bottle

12-10-2009 19:04:23 | More by Urbancaver
Photo of TappaKeggaBrew
TappaKeggaBrew

Ohio

2.65/5  rDev -27%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

A: Clear, but dark brown color doesn't let much light through. Head is just half a finger of golden blond foam that fades without leaving much lacing.

S: The toasty grain is there for sure, but what I notice most is the soy sauce and seaweed aroma, reminding me of something from a sushi restaurant more than a beer.

T: A little sweet malt and well-toasted grain balance each other early. Then the seaweed shows up with its smoky, briny flavors. It really isn't a good combination. Only by pairing it with some spicy food was I able to finish the glass without a lot of effort.

M: Thin, watery, and flat. Even most macrobrews are better on the palate.

O: Creativity in brewing is only a virtue when the result is enjoyable. This one tastes like an experiment, needing a few more attempts and adjustments to get it right.

Serving type: bottle

08-27-2013 00:37:06 | More by TappaKeggaBrew
Photo of chumba526
chumba526

Oregon

2.65/5  rDev -27%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

Appears black with a sizeable tan head.

It smells slightly smoky, chocolaty and slightly sweet. It pretty much smells like a stereotypical English style porter.

It tastes much like it smells. It's a bit smoky. There is a bit of roasted nut flavor and a chocolate flavor. There is a very slight seaweed flavor but it blends with the smoky and roasted flavor of the beer.

The carbonation is way too high for the style. It has a very carbonated soda pop feel which is very unappealing.

Overall it's as drinkable as an average light porter. However the high carbonation makes me want to only have one.

Overall an ok beer but it doesn't have that interesting of a taste and the carbonation is too high.

Serving type: bottle

09-12-2010 23:17:26 | More by chumba526
Photo of RedDiamond
RedDiamond

Oregon

2.65/5  rDev -27%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Kelpie begins with porter-like properties. It is dark brown, nearly opaque, and pours with a light tan head. It initially tastes porter-like as well, with a fair measure of roastiness. But the further it strays from its porterish attributes, the less good can be said of it. And it does stray afield.

The brew is faintly carbonated with an aroma that floats like a sea breeze across berries – raspberries perhaps. The body is thin; the aftertaste is dank and unwelcome. Thankfully, the taste itself is not overtly suggestive of seaweed as I feared it might be. The fleeing porter notes are supplanted by a berry basket of raw twigs, which in turn is subsumed by wet cardboard.

I gave this highly improbable concept every honest opportunity to win my favor but can only report that the experiment was a ghastly failure. Kelpie is flat and fails on many fronts -- as an ale, as a porter, as an herb-flavored brew, and as a Scottish novelty. By comparison, I have long enjoyed the Fraøch Heather Ale brewed by the same company.

Kelpie has a brief moment of budding potential, but the paint smock of an aftertaste and the coarse woolen mouthfeel destroy any enjoyment that may hope to linger.

Serving type: bottle

04-28-2004 03:21:22 | More by RedDiamond
Photo of TheManiacalOne
TheManiacalOne

Rhode Island

2.68/5  rDev -26.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a dark reddish brown color, with a very thin off-white head that fades almost instantly and leaves very little lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of dark fruit, spices, caramel, roasted malts, some chocolate and some hops, none of it seems to blend very well.

T: The taste starts out sweet with flavors of dark fruit and chocolate up front and flavors of spices and caramel in the background. There's a mild hops presence that provides some balance. However, whatever it is that the seaweed brings seems to throw everything off a bit. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and a little smooth, light-to-medium body, medium carbonation, slightly sticky finish.

D: A little tasty, goes down ok, not too filling, mild kick, it's certainly a unique beer and it's not too bad, but I'm not sure that I'd really want to drink it again.

Serving type: bottle

04-17-2008 02:49:31 | More by TheManiacalOne
Photo of sullysbeer
sullysbeer

Michigan

2.73/5  rDev -24.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Aroma: Chocolate, toffee sweetness. Not much hop aroma detected. Hershey's chocolate with a slight earthy aroma.

Appearance: Dark deep brown with a slight ruby hue when held up to the light. Light brownish head retention that lasts with a tad bit of Brussels lace.

Flavor: Watered down roasted and chocolate malt flavor with a hint of toffee. Light bitterness at the end of swallow.

Mouthfeel: Light bodied and light carbonation.

Overall Impression: Very light bodied dark ale. To me it tasted like a watered down stout. Roasted character is distinct. A session beer for sure. Wouldn't run out and get another bottle anytime soon but well brewed.

Serving type: bottle

12-05-2006 20:57:15 | More by sullysbeer
Photo of Rhettroactive
Rhettroactive

District of Columbia

2.73/5  rDev -24.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

From bottle to Bruges hybrid glass

A: Dark brown, almost royal purple in color. When put up to the light, it is quite easy to see my hand on the other side. Zero lacing and head retention.

S: Yeasty, stouty, biscuity. It's easy to pick up the little alcohol that this beer contains. It certainly drew me in.

T: Malty up front, then falls off almost immediately, at which point a dirty, low tide twinge snuck up and bit me on the mid palate. A very short finish that wraps up quickly.

M: The forced carbonation is sharp and unappealing, like drinking seltzer water. It's deceptively thin and lightweight.

O: This is something I have been looking forward to trying, and am really glad I finally got a chance to split one of these with my Pops. Having said that, I respect what is going on here and truly appreciate how different it is, but I can't say it is something I'll go back to. Give it a spin though, as I can't think of another beer quite like it.

Serving type: bottle

01-17-2011 05:37:43 | More by Rhettroactive
Photo of JackRB
JackRB

Ohio

2.75/5  rDev -24.2%

01-31-2013 02:17:38 | More by JackRB
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Kelpie Seaweed Ale from Williams Brothers Brewing Company
82 out of 100 based on 387 ratings.