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Smuttynose Scotch Style Ale (Big Beer Series) - Smuttynose Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Smuttynose Scotch Style Ale (Big Beer Series)Smuttynose Scotch Style Ale (Big Beer Series)

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

286 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 286
Hads: 515
Avg: 3.99
pDev: 12.78%
Wants: 64
Gots: 44 | FT: 4
Brewed by:
Smuttynose Brewing Company visit their website
New Hampshire, United States

Style | ABV
Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy |  8.20% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Bierman9 on 12-26-2001

Our Scotch Ale is a bold amber beer that balances smooth rich sweetness with a hint of peat smoked malt. The infusion of this subtle smokiness invites images of heather fields, platters of haggis, & the poetry of William McGonagall. Enjoy one with your mates!

2007 - 8.2%
2008 - 7.1%
2013 - 8.0%
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Smuttynose Scotch Style Ale (Big Beer Series) Alström Bros
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Reviews: 286 | Hads: 515
Photo of richj1970
4.14/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured from 22 oz bottle into snifter.

A: Dark brown with 1-2 finger light tan head that settles to a thin cap. Some lacing but not much.

S: Caramel and sweet malts mixed with some dark fruits and smokey peat.

T: Follows the nose. Lightly smokey peat and sweet caramel malts. Nicely balanced.

M: Medium to full body with average carbonation. Finish is slightly sweet.

O: Excellent wee heavy. A barrel aged version of this would be off the hook.

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Photo of Immortale25
4.35/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Due South Brewing Co. snifter. Bottleneck says Bottle Conditioned Aug 2015.

A- Pours a medium brown color with a 1/2 inch tan head that retains well before becoming a thick ring around the edge of the glass and a large center patch of sheer surface foam. Resilient lacing leaves a broken ring behind.

S- Toasty, somewhat sweet malt aroma with hints of vanilla and malted milk balls.

T- Very balanced between the sweetness and toasted character of the malts. Incredibly drinkable for the 7.7% ABV. Traces of black licorice and smoke.

M- Slightly creamy with medium carbonation and a fullish body.

O- One of the more outstanding wee heavies I've ever had. Has a more pronounced sweetness than others, which is probably why I like it, but it has all the qualities that one expects from the style.

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Photo of cindyjeffsmith
4.21/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

look: hazy amber with a modest tan head.
smell: Some dark fruit, brown ale type malt, and subtle smoke.
taste: wow, the flavors are the same as the nose but they pop and sizzle in the taste.

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Photo of tekstr1der
4.37/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a beautiful deep mahogany with light tan top. Aroma of malty sugar with just a whiff of peat smokiness. Flavors of caramel candy and almost no alcohol. Very smooth finish. Just delicious!

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Photo of Jimlikesbeer
4.07/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Very good Scottish Ale. Hint of sweetness. Caramel notes. Faint taste of barrel aging. Has that triple/quadruple taste I really like. No real alcohol taste, but you know it's there.

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Photo of KensWorld
4.61/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

2012 vintage bomber. Looks ok, smells great & tastes awesome. Nutty, tangy, malty, raisins, pumpkin, and lots of other flavors all come through. A truly outstanding well balanced Scotch Ale! 4.70

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Photo of madelfonatree
4.33/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2013 bottle drank July 2015

Look - Dark brown with red and yellow tint. Medium head with aggressive pour. Light tan head with very light lacing.

Smell - Malt. Caramel. Fruit. Sweet.

Taste - Malt. Caramel. Very sweet finish. Earth. Alcohol.

Feel - Smooth with a little carbonation bomb. Dries up on the tongue.

Overall - I bought this beer on sale for $2. Good. Surprising how similar it was to a wheat dunkel beer I like. It is not skunked which I was slightly worried about. I have no idea where my bottle shop found the dusty, moldy cases and cases of these 2013 big beer series beers.

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Photo of scotorum
3.81/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from the 22 oz. bomber into a Tree House stemmed tulip.

a; Clear dark ruby with a fionger thick offwhite head which receded quickly to thin surface foam and spotty lacing.

s; Caramel malt and dark ripe fruit.

t: Follows the nose nicely with noticeable hop bite balance. Sweet to dry finish with some lingering bitterness. Later the flavor notes tend to fade.

m: Light to medium, plenty of carbonation tingle.

o: A good but slightly lightweight Scotch ale.

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3.58/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A super creamy two finger tall bready tan head has beautiful resilience as it sits a top a deep mahogany stained brown body. Nose is very sweet and welcoming with tones of toffee malts and dark over ripe fruits. Rich and roasty but not smokey maltiness comes through quickly with first sip. A little woodsy on the back side with some mineral based flat spice tones that lay a dry mouthfeel. there is a hint of chocolate graham cracker feel on the backside as well. This would go well with pumpkin pie. Thick and cloying in the mouth. Only drawback to this brew is overall drinkability.

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Photo of Cyberkedi
3.94/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Strong, malty aroma has notes of cloves, cinnamon, wood and caramel. Pours a clear sepia with a fluffy and thick, if not too persistent, dark buff head. Flavor - hoo ha, now this is good! Malty, woody, earthy, with hints of cloves and hops, subtle bitter and sweet notes. Smooth texture has average body and fizz, but leaves a nice woody, malty and slightly hoppy texture. This is no wee beer, laddies and lassies!

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Photo of allengarvin
4.4/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

This is a reddish-tinted dark amber beer with a dense packed head of foam, about 3/4ths of an inch in this pint glass. The aroma is big, malty, and complex, with caramel notes, some light roast, and a delicious smokey underlay. Flavor is top notch as well: rich caramel (slightly toffee) taste, just a touch of nuttiness. The smokiness isn't as apparent as in the nose but it lurks underneath. Bitterness is low, but this isn't an overly sweet scotch--a little roast malt perhaps, and perhaps also some kettle caramelization are present. The yeast is strongly fruity as well--reminiscent of some Belgian yeasts.

One of the great beers. I've had it on occasion, and was surprised I'd never reviewed it before.

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Photo of Brutaltruth
4.19/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I always have and will always love this offering from Smuttynose Brewing. Beer pours a lightly syrupy reddish amber with a thick tannish head that dies down to a nice constant layer of tan pooling foam with light lacing. Absolutely beautiful in a glass. Nose is of caramel, minimal herbal hops, and even more caramel malt. Taste is up front brilliant, slick and creamy caramel malt up front and on the back. Light herbal tinged aftertaste, light sweet bread like aftertaste, and even more caramel malt. A serious scotch ale drinkers brew. Always welcome....and at 5 dollars a growler at Jungle Jim's, and 5.99 a bottle average, THIS is a beer that will change many peoples minds on what a good beer IS and SHOULD be. A heart felt CHEERS!

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Photo of BeerandWhiskeyHQ
3.55/5  rDev -11%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Deep brown, caramel, looks delicious, copper hue in the light
Caramel and toffee. Strong, thick malt presence
Caramel and toffee and heavy with malt. Alcohol presence makes itself known throughout the drink, almost a peat smokiness
There’s a lot of flavor and a good alcohol kick in this beer. It packs a big punch in the taste but comes up a little lacking in the nose besides the basic scotch ale characteristics. Drinkable for a big beer., relatively well balanced.


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Photo of ESkirv
4.49/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bought this on a whim at Payless LIquors in Fishers, IN while looking for 3 Floyd's brews a couple weeks ago and was pleasantly surprised. I've known for awhile Smuttynose is considered a quality brewer but this is the first of their beers I've ever had. The aroma is quite pleasant (reminded me a little of Kahlua) and the appearance is nice; a creamy head with a dark auburn body. This is a very smooth scotch ale. There are strong chocolate, coffee and carmel notes the moment it hits the tongue, followed by a nice complex tangy finish. It seemed to get better the further into the bottle I got. Very impressed Smuttynose...scotch ales are not usually my favorite but this is one I'll definitely scoop up again the next time I see it.

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Photo of BurgeoningBrewhead
4.23/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into fluted snifter; deep ruby, clear, with a fluffy cream-colored head. Fades after a bit leaving chunky lacing.
Smells of sweet malt, caramel, crisp bitterness, hint of smoke.
Taste follows nose; sweet malt, doppelbock-like, crisp bitterness with a bit of smoke in the aftertaste.
Mouthfeel is slick but hefty in body.
Overall, this is the biggest scotch ale I've tried. Very big flavor and mouthfeel, definitely a sipper. It went great with my family's "pretend we're irish" meal of corned beef and cabbage.

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Photo of CloudStrife
4.12/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle poured into a snifter. Bottle conditioned in 2013.

A: Pours a very deep copper amber with a slightly yellowed head on top. Pretty dark but when held up to the light it is clear with a few bubbles of carbonation. Leaves some spots of lacing on the sides of the glass.

S: One sniff of this beer will help anyone understand why this style of beer is named after scotch. Carmel and toffee notes blend with a mild sweetness and a complimenting peat smoke aroma.

T: Very well balanced scotch ale here. All the flavors work together nicely to add something to the mix instead of overpowering others. The roasted malts give a base sweetness that is built on with a mild rauch like smokiness. A dose of alcohol brings up the back-end reminding you this is one of the big beer series.

M: This beer has a medium body with a slightly sticky mouthfeel. Moderate to low carbonation. Alcohol isnt too hot considering how it comes across in the flavor.

Overall this is certainly a solid beer at a great bomber price point. Comes off malt forward and has great appeal to scotch lovers. Worth a try.

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Photo of Rhf9120
4.42/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

2012 Vintage

This beer pours a copper color with a two finger off white head. The aroma is of caramel, malts , hints of peat smoke and toffee. The taste is very similar to the aroma with only hints of the peat smoked malts which gives way for the nutty and sweet flavors to shine. The beer finishes with only a slight bitterness and the carbonation is very slight so the beer and a nice dry and crisp mouth feel overall. I really enjoyed this Scotch Ale and it is definitely the best one that I have had so far.

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Photo of delta490
4.39/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A- a deep clear mahogany with about one finger of khaki head. Moderate retention leaves some nice lacing

S-Rich and nutty with some toffee sweetness and a hint of smoke

T- The taste is right in line with the aroma. And it's more delicious than the already great aroma would indicate

M- light on the palate but with a nice fullness as well as a slight crisp bite on the finish

O- a delicious, malt-forward scotch ale

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Photo of Beer-A-Lot
3.92/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

This is a very solid scotch ale. Not my favorite by any means, but it still drinks nicely. Smooth. Not as caramel-flavored as I'd like. But still an easy drinker with nothing off-putting or severely lacking. Very easy to drink, even in the big bottle format. Well done.

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Photo of PorterLambic
3.99/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a rich, deep, clear, dark chestnut color. Head is well sized, nearly an inch high from a solid pour. Off-white in color, dissipation happens gradually and evenly over several minutes until a slightly lumpy film remains. Lace is minimal.
Smell is roasted malt, fruit (apples?), light smoke, and some faint wheat notes. Good balance.
Taste is nicely roasted malt, some hops, light fruits, faint smokiness, some wood, and just a whiff of what seems like thistle. Nicely done, well balanced.
Fairly smooth, not too rich but it makes a statement. Alcohol is present but not overpowering. Warming. Not as much body as I'd like, coming in just a bit over medium. Effervescence is as expected, enough to cut the malt and sweetness (in concert with the hops) without getting fizzy. A really nice brew, would gladly drink several of these.

One question though: It says "bottle conditioned" on the label. Shouldn't there be some wee yeasty bits in here, then? I can't find any.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.77/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Bottle I brought to share at the DTLA bottle share held at Beer Belly in Los Angeles, CA.

2013 vintage.

Pours a hazy copper with a foamy beige head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Foamy swaths of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of toasted malt, caramel, toffee, fruit, and nutty aromas. Taste is much the same with malt and nutty flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of toasty bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and dry mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer with some solid aromas and flavors for the style.

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Photo of mactrail
3.94/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very attractive brownish red color in the chalice, with a thin foam. Plenty of carbonation in the mouth.

Smooth and mellow with a tangy aftertaste. Plenty of malt, but darkly roasted and touched with hops. Some smoke with the distinctive peaty sweetness. There is a drying sensation, like this was brewed with a Belgian yeast.

Quite drinkable and makes an excellent strong nitecap. One of the better Scotch ales I've had. It strikes a nice balance between the sweet malt, the smoky flavor, and the dark bitterish finish. From the 22 oz bottle purchased from Bine & Vine in San Diego.

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Photo of DoubleJ
4.24/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at 38 Degrees in Alhambra. On to the beer:

The color is caramel brown and is topped with a thin head which gives off some sticky lacing around the goblet. Pleasant aroma, consisting mostly of molasses and kilned smoke. That takes us to the taste, which is very surprising. It could have been the cold night, but this is a tasty Scotch ale. Kilned malts, raisins, hidden alcohol, a woodsy accent to the malt. Very pleasant indeed. The body is medium-full, really smooth, and a great "appetizer" at the time.

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Photo of thedoubler55
3.66/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: A light amber in color with a slight redness to it, a nice white head at the top that left a little bit of lacing around the glass as you drank it.

S: Caramel and biscuits up front, very present, a slight hint of floral aroma as well, not to much booze present on the nose.

T: The caramel is right on the tongue at first sip with hints of smokeyness, slight hints of floral and sweetness as well not to much alcohol on taste.

M: Medium bodied and a good amount of carbonation, crispy and slick.

O: Not a bad beer, very subtle and well balanced and refreshing.

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Photo of brureview
4.04/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer poured a dark tea color with a 2F head in a Scotch Ale glass.
A more attractive look than other Scotch ales.

The aroma is weak for a scotch ale. Some peat-smoke, almost no candied sweetness- a common aroma in the style.

The mouth feel is very carbonated, a bit too much for this style.

The taste is unique- wonderful and different than other Scotch ales. Quite smoky, peaty, with some toffee sweetness. I haven't tasted a scotch ale as peaty as this beer.

Overall, quite unusual- a very good approach to the style.

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Smuttynose Scotch Style Ale (Big Beer Series) from Smuttynose Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 286 ratings.