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

Smuttynose Scotch Style Ale (Big Beer Series)Smuttynose Scotch Style Ale (Big Beer Series)

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BA SCORE
89
very good

433 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 433
Reviews: 276
rAvg: 3.99
pDev: 9.52%


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:
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%

(Beer added by: Bierman9 on 12-26-2001)
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 433 | Reviews: 276 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of Sammy
Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

4.05/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A scotch ale I really liked. Great malt and candi with a fruity mdi sip makes this very drinkable and popular, carrying the peat moss smoke, which is controlled and you can smell it. Above average hoppiness and rich brown chcolately colour. Above average carbonation.

Serving type: bottle

02-17-2008 03:46:28 | More by Sammy
Photo of UCLABrewN84
UCLABrewN84

California

3.76/5  rDev -5.8%
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.

Serving type: bottle

12-30-2013 05:20:35 | More by UCLABrewN84
Photo of BuckeyeNation
BuckeyeNation

Iowa

4.1/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Dark caramel with a copious infusion of reddish orange and an exploding orange sunburst visible through the bottom edge of the glass. A heavy suspension of fine particulates makes it look a shade or two darker than it really is. The large, overflowing (I was too slow yet again) head of creamy foam is too soft to leave more than a short collar of lace that tags along as the beer falls with drinking.

The nose is a Scotch ale bull's eye. All style elements are present, some better represented than others. I smell well-toasted caramel malt, dark butterscotch, dark brown sugar, light chocolate and a wee puff of smoke. The aroma may not be potent enough or deep enough to be a true whiz-banger, but it's quite good all the same.

The flavor is along the same lines as the appearance and the nose in terms of quality; very good, but not great. The description for the nose still applies so I won't repeat myself. Words that occur to me as I drink include well-integrated, harmonious and balanced. If I can be picky though, some member of the flavor profile needs to stand up and be counted. Something needs to slap my taste buds around a bit and give them something to get really excited about.

Don't get me wrong, this effort easily surpasses the lion's share of Scotch ales out there, but I've come to expect more from Smuttynose. Perhaps what's keeping this one from being considered exceptional is the body. It's solidly medium and more than adequate, but a more full, luxurious mouthfeel would improve things mightily.

The long finish is bittersweet, toffee-like and lightly smoky. For the life of me though, I can't appreciate the fact that the brewers aged a portion of each batch in Jack Daniels barrels. The char and ash that distinguish that particular whiskey (it's *not* bourbon, but is Tennessee whiskey) thanks to charcoal filtering, is nowhere to be found.

I feel that I've been too hard on Smuttynose Scotch Style Ale, but only because I wanted to love it. I don't, but I do like it a whole hell of a lot. It's a much better than average version and is a beer that I'm enjoying immensely, despite my bitchin' and moanin'. Recommended.

Serving type: bottle

03-22-2005 22:21:52 | More by BuckeyeNation
Photo of mikesgroove
mikesgroove

South Carolina

4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This one has been sitting in the fridge for months, I have to admit, and there for probably should
have been drank earlier as it was a 2007 vintage, but it has been refrigerated so lets see how it
holds up. The 22oz bottle was poured into a Pint glass and served at a nice chilled temperature.

Appearance - The look was very nice, with a rich, brown, caramel colored liquid being presented in
front of me. Very nice clarity here as the light was really shining through and looking very nice. A
decent two inch head of white foam rose up from the bottom and proceeded to settle down rather nicely,
leaving behind a nice coating on the glass and about a half inch of pillow like foam on the top.

Smell - The aroma was an interesting mix of malts. I was picking up some nice bready tones in here
almost immediately. Hints of some flowery like aromas coming through now as well. Slightly bitter
aroma, astringent almost from something, but cannot place what it is. Hints of clove, and heather, and
a touch of lavender come through as well. Very nicely done.

Taste - The flavor was spot on to the aroma. A rich bready, malt came through almost immediately, but
as you let it warm, swish it around, and really let the flavors start to come though it got a good
deal more complex. Rich floral tastes coming through, like a nice meadow. Lots of clove coming through
on this, and an almost chewy like grass flavor. Nice hints of caramel to sweeten it up, but it really
had a chewy earthy like flavor overall. The taste had a quick cut off, not really lingering long at
all before cutting off and leaving the taste of caramel in its wake.

Mouthfeel - Nice and light bodied, only fault would have to be that it was a touch under carbonated,
but that's ok. Decent coating feeling and a nice smooth flavor made up for it and gave it a decent
rank overall.

Drinkability - Not bad at all given the Abv, as none was able to be detected. It really did come off
quite nice and overall I could have easily let myself have another.

I really thought this was well done. A more then decent Scotch ale, and a little on the interesting
side. Big fan of Smuttynose and this only improves my opinion of them. Definitely a must try if you
can find them.

Serving type: bottle

05-11-2008 12:45:49 | More by mikesgroove
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brentk56

North Carolina

4.43/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a clear dark amber body with a decent head and lacing

Smell: Strong notes of caramel malt and a touch of peat; almost smells like a barleywine

Taste: Lots of chewy caramel flavor; the subtle smoky peat flavor also peaks through along with a chocolate malt flavor as well; a nice mild bitterness presents itself on the finish

Mouthfeel: Big mouthfeel with relatively low carbonation

Drinkability: An excellent sipping beer; sweet but subtle and never cloying

Serving type: bottle

06-20-2005 02:39:51 | More by brentk56
Photo of metter98
metter98

New York

4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Pony Bar Upper East Side, New York, NY

A: The beer is hazy amber in color and has some brownish hues. It poured with a half finger high light beige head that has good retention properties and consistently left a thin head covering the surface.
S: There are light aromas of caramel malts and peat smoke in the nose.
T: The taste is similar to the smell but the flavors are a little stronger and notes of peat smoke linger through the finish.
M: It feels a little more than medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: I enjoyed the smoky nature of this beer because it helped to cut through the strong sweetness and syrupy nature that is usually associated with beers of this style, making it rather drinkable.

Serving type: on-tap

11-03-2012 19:49:47 | More by metter98
Photo of ChainGangGuy
ChainGangGuy

Georgia

4.38/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Clearish, medium brown body with a small, off-white head.

Smell: Sweet-smelling, smokey malt aroma with dark fruits coated in caramel.

Taste: Sweet caramel, fruity flavor permeated by the just right smoked malt character. Faint hint of cocoa powder. Slight touch of spicy hops but no real bitterness. Smokey, sweet finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation. Sticky mouthfeel.

Drinkability: While some Scotch Ales inspire nothing but eye-rolling with every strained sip, this one's actually pretty tasty.

Serving type: bottle

02-06-2008 05:39:11 | More by ChainGangGuy
Photo of oberon
oberon

North Carolina

4.05/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a light brown with some deep orange tint with a thin head,awesome malty aromas big and fruity with some caramel and brown suger in there as well the aroma alone warms ya up a bit.The body seems just a tad thin but not to watery by any means,a malt bomb here caramel and brown suger are the base of the flavors with some alcohol dipped fruit in there as well.This will keep the dampness of the day from getting to me,very solid Scottish ale a style I really enjoy I would drink this again anytime.

Serving type: bottle

06-02-2005 19:41:54 | More by oberon
Photo of NeroFiddled
NeroFiddled

Pennsylvania

4.1/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

As you pour it, it's not hard to coax a head on this rich but still drinkable beauty from Smuttynose. It's hazy, cherry-stained mahogany body appears almost black as it sits upon the bar; and reveals beautiful, gleaming ruby accents when held to the light. The creamy ivory-colored cap upon its head holds quite well before it drops slowly to a wide collar and lacy surface covering; and it leaves some minor lacing about the glass as well. Dry, caramelish malt with the suggestion of chocolate; a hint of yeasty fruitiness; and a subtle waft of roastiness greets you in the nose. It's smooth and creamy across the palate with a gentle caress of bubbles that awaken the tastebuds, and a full body that smooths them out. As is appropriate for the style, the flavor is malty and rich but reigned in by a sublime touch of roastiness; a concisely handled, firm bitterness; a sprinkling of subdued, mildly floral and grassy hop flavors; and a soft caress of alcohol. Well done!

Serving type: bottle

02-01-2005 00:10:59 | More by NeroFiddled
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TheManiacalOne

Rhode Island

4.47/5  rDev +12%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2006 release, poured from a 22oz. bottle into a tulip glass.

A: The beer is a deep dark brown color with a thin off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is robust with caramelized malt, brown sugar, vanilla and some dark fruit.

T: The taste very well-balanced with flavors of brown sugar, caramel & vanilla. There are also background flavors of dark fruit, spice and smoke. The malt character is very hearty but not overly heavy and the hops presence is mild. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

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

D: Very tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, decent kick, nice representation of style, this is definitely one of the best that I’ve had in the style and I find myself saying that about most of the Smuttynose beers. If I’m in the mood for a Scotch Ale, this would be one of the first beers that I would look for.

Serving type: bottle

08-12-2007 00:13:03 | More by TheManiacalOne
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russpowell

Oklahoma

3.4/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Cheers to ppotrias for this one!

Pours an effervescent caramel with 2 fingers of sand colored head. Above average head retention & lacing

S: Slight smokeyness & even slighter caramel

T: Smokeyness & a hint of caramel up front. Sweet malt & some peat, plus dryness as this warms. Finishes with some boozeyness, a bit of toffee & smokeyness that reminds me of liquid smoke

MF: Slick, a bit chewy, low carbonation. This one seems to thin out as it warms

Drinks good for the abv, but the smokeyness seems a bit artificial to me & more malt backbone is needed. I'm somewhat suprised this one didn't measure up to other offerings from this brewery

Serving type: bottle

05-06-2008 03:58:01 | More by russpowell
Photo of WesWes
WesWes

New York

4.1/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours a brown color with a thick frothy tan head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a strong nut brown type scent to it. It is rich in pale, crystal, and victory malts. The taste is good. It has a rich roasted barley flavor to it along with crystal and pale malts. It is full of flavor and a bit warm on the finish. The mouthfeel is good. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a damn good brew. It is not real thick, yet it has an elevated abv. and great flavor. This is a great drinker and another winner from Smuttynose.

Serving type: bottle

11-25-2004 17:46:51 | More by WesWes
Photo of jwc215
jwc215

Wisconsin

4.47/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours mahogany/deep amber with a thin off-white head that stays around, leaving some trailing lace.

The smell is of dark malt and fruit, some wood, some toffee and peat smokiness. A touch of alcohol comes through as well.

The taste is of peat smokiness. A tofffeeish maltiness is balanced by some dark fruits. Malty with appropriately light hop presence, as per style. Sweet with a dry, warming finish.

Lower side of full-bodied, it is smooth despite the noticeable alcohol.

This is a nice one to sip. Complex maltiness with an intermingling peat smokiness makes this one a good example of the style. Well-done!

Serving type: bottle

10-27-2007 22:19:19 | More by jwc215
Photo of RblWthACoz
RblWthACoz

Pennsylvania

4.38/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours mildly fogy with a minimal dark crème head. Nose is nice. Noticeable malt presence with some almost burnt leaves there as well. Sweet tones lie in the back. Flavor is super peat! It’s just like peat all up in my mouth *makes motions with fingers in front of mouth*. In no way is it overdone. Full and consistent. Feel is full with carbonation and well bodied on the liquid. Nice to drink. A bit too much going on here to go far beyond large sips. But it’s still pretty darn good.

Serving type: bottle

01-01-2008 07:18:59 | More by RblWthACoz
Photo of WVbeergeek
WVbeergeek

Ohio

4.1/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Ruddy burgundy creamy off white head leaves specks of lacing, not bad. Aroma: Reserved smokiness rich fruit and kiss of alcohol blends beautifully. A deep bready character weighs in with the rich malts very nice Scotch ale, definitely classifies as a Big Beer. Taste: Chocolate tones peated malts nice blend no heavy fruit undertones a bit reserved in some ways but tasty altogether capped with a touch of hops. Mouthfeel: Medium bodied ale with a smooth carbonation hard to believe how easy it was to polish off one with a friend. Drinkability: Could a drink a couple, of course. However save these for special occasions and share with friends they will enjoy imbibing on this bad boy.

Serving type: bottle

04-28-2004 20:48:34 | More by WVbeergeek
Photo of Gavage
Gavage

New Jersey

4.4/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Clear brown in color, sporting a thick 2 inch head that hangs around a while. The aroma was strong with malt, pine, and peat. Multiple flavor tones make up this beauty - thick malt, toffee, peat, toasted nuts, and raisins. Some earthiness, hearty bitterness, and alcohol warming round this out beautifully.

Medium / heavy body. Smooth and mildly crisp mouthfeel. The finish is long on the malt and peat. This is well worth seeking out, an extremely enjoyable and flavorful brew.

Serving type: bottle

08-11-2005 12:12:10 | More by Gavage
Photo of smcolw
smcolw

Massachusetts

4.05/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Foamy, rocky off-beige head that leaves clumpy pieces of lace. Dark amber/light brown color.

Malty aromas of cocoa and crystal malt--slightly sweet and a touch of warming alcohol.

This is a well-hopped Scotch ale. That's not to say this is a hoppy beer; dark malt is the predominant flavor here--nutty and off handedly bitter as if there is black patent. I do not detect any smokiness as noted on the bottle. Rich body with an above average carbonation.

All in all, a very nice scotch ale.

Serving type: bottle

11-16-2008 02:11:10 | More by smcolw
Photo of mactrail
mactrail

California

3.95/5  rDev -1%
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.

Serving type: bottle

12-16-2013 04:29:00 | More by mactrail
Photo of akorsak
akorsak

Pennsylvania

3.93/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 650 mL bottle from State Line.

A: The scotch ale is a dark ruddy brown color, concentrated tea. Amaretto highlights at the bottom of the glass add a nice visual. A finger of creme-colored head laced in patches around the glass.

S: The aroma is rather pedestrian. I searched for a long time before anything popped up. What did emerge was malty with a floral, non-hopped element. I expected a little more oomph.

T: The taste is a significant improvement over the nose. Thick malts dominate, vegetal with a a concentrated, smoked element. Underneath the malts are flowers, sweet and juicy, that are not a result of hops. That;'s not to say that there aren't any hops though, they have a citrusy flavor and linger alongside the heather. A veritable meal in a glass.

M: The mouthfeel is lush. The thick malts, heather and touch of peat mix nicely.

D: Except for the underwhelming nose, this is a great wee heavy. The meatiness is filling with no sign of of the slightly high alcohol.

Serving type: bottle

12-14-2008 22:36:28 | More by akorsak
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Billolick

New York

3.98/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bomber bottle, w/o freshness dating. Pours murky and cloudy dark chocolate in color, with a long lasting tan head. Leaves extensive, sticky lacing. Nose is of some more chocolate and peaty, earthy goodness. This is a smooth, full bodied brew. Notes of semi sweet chocolate, more peat, some smoky, brandy and dark berries. Tasty smokey and also sweet, this is a nice malty brew with pleanty of character and flavor. The last pour adds a healthy dose of yeast, adding to the richness and complexity. Chalky dryness late. Well worth a try

Serving type: bottle

12-20-2005 02:13:39 | More by Billolick
Photo of rhoadsrage
rhoadsrage

Illinois

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

(Served in a dimple mug)

A- This beer has a dense but clear auburn-brown body with a light tan mousy head. There is a strong carbonation of tiny bubbles that keep the head going.

S- There is a soft smoky peat note that is pleasant when cold but turns pretty band-aidy when warm.

T- The soft caramel flavor fades into a big band-aid flavor with some softer light brown sugar notes and a light roasted malt note. There is a light peat tartness with a soft bitterness from hops at the finish. There is a slight sweetness that lingers after the finish.

M- This beer has a medium mouthfeel with a slippery texture and no alcohol heat at all.

D- This beer has some nice underlying flavors but the band-aid is pretty dominating.

Serving type: bottle

12-30-2007 15:35:05 | More by rhoadsrage
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jdhilt

New Hampshire

3.55/5  rDev -11%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Another in their big beer series, a good ale for mid winter. Not the usual scotch ale. The ABV is 6.2%.

Serving type: bottle

12-28-2001 19:15:51 | More by jdhilt
Photo of Wasatch
Wasatch

Utah

4.38/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz. Bomber
2006 Vintage
Enjoyed: 29 Jul 09

Still tasting very nicely.

Poured into a chalice a dark brown color, nice carbonation, nice small creamy tan head, some nice sticky lacing follows. The nose is malty, slightly spicy, slightly dark fruits (figs, raisins, prunes), and some caramel. The taste is malty, and some good tones of dark fruit and spice, and caramel. The taste is also slightly sweet, nice warming efffect going down. Medium body. Very drinkable, another awesome brew from Smuttynose, getting close to having quite a few offerings from them. Highly recommended.

Thanks goes out to brewandbbq for this brew.

22oz. Bomber
2005 Vintage

Poured into a chalice a dark brown color, nice carbonation, nice small creamy tan head, some nice sticky lacing follows. The nose is malty, slightly spicy, slightly dark fruits (figs, raisins, prunes), and some caramel. The taste is malty, and some good tones of dark fruit and spice, and caramel. The taste is also slightly sweet, nice warming efffect going down. Medium body. Very drinkable, another awesome brew from Smuttynose, getting close to having quite a few offerings from them. Highly recommended.

Serving type: bottle

10-30-2007 23:28:58 | More by Wasatch
Photo of corby112
corby112

Pennsylvania

3.08/5  rDev -22.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a very dark chestnut brown/mahogany color with dark golden amber edges when held to a light source and a very thin tan head that immediately fades leaving no lacing.

Smokey, roasted malt aroma with hints of licorice and chocolate along with some earthy and floral hop notes.

Smooth, creamy medium body with lots of roasted chocolate maltiness, dark fruit(especially dark cherry), licorice and surprisingly, earthy and floral hops. Nice balance of malty sweetness/roastiness and bitter earthy hops. This beer is pretty complex but unfortunately it just doesn't taste that good to me.

Serving type: bottle

05-14-2010 04:33:26 | More by corby112
Photo of ppoitras
ppoitras

Massachusetts

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

22oz bottle from Yankee Spirits, Sturbridge, MA.

Poured into an imperial pint glass, the reddish-brown liquid forms a deep frothy head, which is slow to fade and leaves ample lace. Strong aroma of maltiness, like a loaf of bread in a bottle, but this bread's been soaking in EtOH, and the alcohol is noticeable. Not overdone, but apparent. Taste does not disappoint, the full malt flavor, slight bite of hops, and warming aftertones of the 7.8% play a beautiful harmony. All this for $2.95?!? Get thee to the store and try it for yourself.

Serving type: bottle

01-24-2004 23:10:44 | More by ppoitras
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Smuttynose Scotch Style Ale (Big Beer Series) from Smuttynose Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 433 ratings.