Riggwelter Yorkshire Ale - Black Sheep Brewery PLC

Not Rated.
Riggwelter Yorkshire AleRiggwelter Yorkshire Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

301 Ratings
THE BROS
85
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 301
Reviews: 242
rAvg: 3.85
pDev: 10.13%
Wants: 15
Gots: 8 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Black Sheep Brewery PLC visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
English Brown Ale |  5.70% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 05-31-2002

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 301 | Reviews: 242
Photo of chinchill
3.84/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

500 ml bottle purchased and consumed in Fife, Scotland - May 2015.

This "Strong" Ale pours clear mahogany with a fine tan head that leaves decent sticky lacing.

The aroma is appealing and promising, wit ample notes of dark fruits, toffee and roasted nuts. Hints of apples and spicy hops.

Taste: not what I expected from the nose. The flavor is more malty with a darker roast, as the appearance suggests. Bittersweet with hints of burnt toffee, toast, caramel, apples, a touch of smoke, raisins, dates and other vague dark fruits. There are some earthy hop flavors in addition to the bitterness.

M: Full body; very slightly astringent; medium carbonation.

O: 5.7% ABV fully apparent in the nose, taste and feel.

Photo of jazzyjeff13
3.71/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A 500ml bottle with a BB of Sept 2014. Acquired a while back from a supermarket. A local hero; named after a Yorkshire term for a sheep that has rolled over and got stuck on it's back.

Poured into a tulip pint glass. A clear, dark reddish-brown hue with medium carbonation. Yields a large head of creamy beige foam that lasts for a few minutes before reducing to a patchy surface layer. Aroma of vaguely fruity malt with hints of roasted grain, caramel, ale yeast esters, faint dried fruit and stewed hops. A twinge of warming booze in the background. Nice.

Tastes of caramel malt and subtle roasted grain with a seriously bitter finish. Notes of roasted malt, caramel, fruity yeast esters, mild dried fruit, leafy stewed hops and faint earthiness. Well-attenuated, with a hint of alcohol in the background and a strident hop bitterness upon swallowing. Mouthfeel is smooth, tingly and dry, with spritzy carbonation and decent body for the style. Could stand to be a shade thicker. Somewhat astringent, followed by an aftertaste of bitter stewed hops, fruity malt and ale yeast.

A solid, nicely-balanced example of a strong ale. In fact, Riggwelter forms my mental template of the style. Looks alright, while the aroma and flavour have a rich malt presence accompanied by a considerable hop bitterness. Subtle roasty and fruity notes mingle on the palate. Mouthfeel is OK but could be slightly more substantial. Well-crafted and traditional; shame it's filtered as I imagine live yeast would add an extra dimension to the character. Doubtless a cracker on cask. Worth sampling if you come across it.

Photo of Brenden
4.23/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

This beer lets a little bit of light into the body but is otherwise a very dark brown. The brown head is about 3/4 of a finger, nice and tight with good retention. Lacing is somewhat more than moderate, spotting and lacing with a few legs here and there.
I'm not sure how to tag this beer upon first inspection. It seems initially to have lots of dark fruits along with creamy sweetness, maybe a touch of roast, and some dark cocoa. It's got a hint of nut and something leafy.
I might initially have pegged this for a traditional Scottish ale, but there's a bit of transition that occurs. It has a warmth that seems to be from alcohol despite being below 6% with lots of caramel, roast, nut and dark chocolate. While not peaty, there's some earth with just a ghost of something smoky. Hops aren't neglected, but this is allowed to be malt-forward, and it's good here. Lots of fruity sweetness and gentle tanginess run through as an undertone from beginning to end. This beer, ultimately, is rich, deep and complex with some layers to sift through.
This has a big body for a brown, particularly an English brown, though it doesn't stray from its purpose. It has depth in the feel, too, with dryness underneath a sweeter overtone and a certain richness to it. Crispness is light but firm and consistent from first hitting the tongue to the back of the throat in every sip, while it goes creamy smooth for the duration.

Photo of soju6
3.66/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

A: Pours a deep amber color with a good frothy tan head that fades slowly to nice lacing.

S: Aroma of roasted malt, some chocolate, bit of coffee and malt sweetness.

T: taste follows with roasted malt, dark chocolate, with some caramel sweetness, bit of coffee and nut. Nice bitterness and a dry finish.

F: A very medium body, clean, smooth and creamy. Nicely balanced.

O: Enjoyable beer to relax with.

Photo of tonton
4.28/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Label and bottle design average for an English ale. Big black lettering not appealing.

A very nice dark red caramel color with a slight off-white head that dissipates quickly.

Smells like a typical dark ale, dark caramel malts and English hops.

The taste adds something. It's nether chocolate nor coffee not sweet caramel, just can't put my finger on it... but I like it. A very distinctive flavor that makes this a very good beer. Perhaps it's simply a darker, more carbonic caramel than usual.

Finish lingers with that nice flavor.

I really enjoyed this one, and the import price is well reasonable.

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.58/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear dark copper brown with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to a thin cap on top of the beer. Foamy rings of lace line the glass on the drink down. Smell is of toasted malt, caramel, oatmeal cookie dough, and a spiced rum alcohol aroma. Taste is much the same with a toasted bread flavor on the finish. There is a mild amount of roasty bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer that is fairly tasty but I think this one has a slightly better smell going on.

Photo of horshack7
4/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Very dark mahogany with a rocky two finger head that leaves behid sticky lacing.

Aroma: Dark fruits, plums, faint black licorice, twinges of cinnamon and sugar. Raisins, apple, figs with some molasses notes in the tail end.

Taste: Malty backbone, bready mouthfeel, figs, brown bread, licorice and molasses. A little bit of caramelized banana.

Notes: Malty all the way through a good example of an English Brown ale. Cheers.

Photo of flyingpig
3.89/5  rDev +1%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Chestnut brown colour with a really good, thick looking and foamy head about a thumbs width tall that manages to stay consistent without any noticeable reduction in size.

Once settled there is a mix of coffee and roasted malts coming through.There is some sugar and a definite fruity finish with some caramel in there too.

More pronounced than the aroma to begin with, there is some light caramel and a nice earthy malt taste to kick things off with. This is all followed by some bitter malts, a fruity sweetness and a nice biscuit flavour with a hint of vanilla at the end.

Medium bodied with moderate carbonation and a bittersweet mouthfeel and a slightly dry finish.

Starts off slow but gradually opens up and grows on you with the aroma becoming more noticeable and the taste was pretty good throughout. A very easy beer to drink and one that I'd have again.

Photo of StJamesGate
4.05/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A very fizzy pale chesnut with loose cola-like tan foam that webs. Flinty grain, raisin, Irish brown soda loaf crust and autumn leaf on the nose, with undertones of cocoa and ash - roasted malt in there? (Pale chocolate, as it turns out.)
Carob, dark toast, tea brack, plum jam, some tannins and demerara sugar, a roasty chocolaty hit then dried (and drying) orange rind (Goldings) hops end.
Kendal mint cake finish and savory melanoidin linger. Medium, some chew, dry finish, lively but goes syrupy as the bubbles fade.

Lots of dark notes without ever getting heavy and an uncommon interplay of roast, sweetness and hops. Startlingly drinkable. Definitely English Strong rather than Brown.

Unique and very tasty.

Photo of angusdegraosta
3.91/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another score for Black Sheep. Deep brown, excellent volume to the head - you'll have to wait it out to pour the whole thing. The smell is more evident at room temperature - roasted coffee, as others have noted, and sweet carob. Good earthy flavor with more than a touch of umami and a whole lot of English yeastiness and malt. I guess coffee and malt are the predominant characteristics. It is a little astringent, but I wouldn't say bitter in the least. Robust is a great word to describe this beer. The roasted malt stays with you long after the last sip. Certainly an English brown with character.

Photo of sfprint
3.45/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Had in the UK in Nov 2011

A: Reddish cola, with a cola head and cola bubbles lining the glass, soda like lacing and soda like rising carbonation.
S: Wood and smoke which is thick like motor oil, coffee ice cream.
T: Very smokey, under that is an unsweet coldish soda between mild and moderately bitter. Similar to German smoked beer.
M: Moderate sting, slightly astringent.
O: Decent, smokey, Ok.

Photo of EmperorBevis
3.77/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a rich chocolate brown body with an off white big fluffy head impressive.

The aroma, wow not smelt that since I was in a brewery, a real smell of the mash, rich hoppy hints of roast and real beer smells that make the mouth water.

We are on fire here and I've not even sipped it yet
then it falls a part a little.

A real mix of tastes going on nice roasted malts come through and some great hops tastes start to develop when a smackering of burnt coffee and tin comes in a crash the party
I bet that on cask this disturbing aspect is not there.

Nice carbonation if a little thin on the mouthfeel leave a flawed beer that still remains quite drinkable thanks to its positive elements.

Photo of clayrock81
3.7/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a brownish body with one-finger head and lace patches. A hearty aroma of dry, roasted, bready malts as well as a touch of caramel and dark chocolate along with a leafy, grainy hop presence. The roasted malts and bitter hops give this beer a dry, roughish edge, even slight coffee notes hit my tongue. Medium to full body, a heavier brown ale that places the emphasis on dry malts and bitter hops as that's the predominant taste and it finshes with a sry, crisp bite. Some caramel and dark chocolate in there for sweetness but they're overpowered. The carbonation and dryness made a few sips rather unpleasant or else would've given this beer higher rating.

Photo of ChrisCage
4.5/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- This pours a cola color, and is for the most part clear hued. There is a modest looking taupe colored head that starts out about one finger thick but settles quickly to a thick patch ridden layer over the beer. It would appear that there is very mild carbonation, which is a good sign I would say! As for lacing, there is all sorts of sticky goodness clinging to the side of my glass. A very good looking beer, especially if the head would stick around a little longer!

S- There is a distinct roasted aroma going on here. It is primarily of roasted coffee beans, burnt almonds and with a hint of burnt brown sugar...there is even a bit of black licorice on the nose. The finish is a blend of fruitiness....more like bitter rinds, and a hint of hops too.

T- This is a very tasty beer....very rich indeed! I find it contains an oak character, even though this isn't the case. Deep toasty malt sweetness followed by small doses of slightly unripe banana or even plantain fruit. Also blended in here is dark chocolate, coffee and I have to say again, a hint of licorice root. The finish is dry more so than bitter, but clean.

M- Solid medium body and very smooth to drink, as the carbonation is very mild and refined. The alcohol is very well hidden, as a good English Brown should be. The flavors really shine with this one and the roastiness of the malt is very noticeable.

O- Another stand out English Ale, and to be more specific, by Black Sheep! Nice strong flavors, well hidden alcohol, and very easy to drink! As it warms, it becomes even better...I let this review linger over an hour, which I never normally do! I very highly recommend this one and consider this to be amongst the great English brews!

Photo of damndirtyape
3.71/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

Bottle (no date) poured into a Tulip Stout glass.

Appearance: Dark brown orange on the table, clear dark copper-red beer when held up to the light. Poured a light tan 1/4" head initially, and this died down a 1/16" persistent foam across the top. Thick sheets and strands of persistent lacing noted. Good looking beer.

Smell: Burnt sugar and faint leafy hops / English bitter smell. Some malt in the back of all these smells. A bit too faint though. With a swirl I can pull out more malt and something that smells more like a porter with some chocolate, alcohol, and coffee notes.

Taste: Bitter flavor (burnt sugar again) moving quickly into malt and blended with an English bitter hop flavor. Very much an English brown ale, but with a distinct English ale bitter flavor. Tasty and simple, and only gets better as the beer warms up.

Mouthfeel: Surprisingly high amount of carbonation for an English ale - quite spicy on the tongue. Borderline fizzy but not quite. Carbonation dominates - hard to sort out anything else.

Overall: Not crazy about the mouthfeel on this one, but the taste, smell, and appearance work out to a nice English brown ale. On the bitter side of flavor, but it works well with this beer. Paired well with a burger for dinner and good by itself after the meal.

Photo of Halcyondays
4.06/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Half Liter bottle,

A: Pours a deep brown with a medium soapy white head. Solid retention and lace.

S: Toasted malt, hint of chocolate.

T: Strong biscuity flavour, lots of rich English malt and minerality. Like a Burton Ale/Old Ale hybrid, just has something extra.

M: Medium to full-bodied, creamy, well structured.

O: So English, and just a tasty brew. Can't believe I haven't had this in 5 years. Just as full-flavoured and exciting as the last time I had it.

Photo of wremrats
4.13/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - beautiful clear mahogany color with a thin creamy head that is forming a nice lace as I'm consuming this pint.
S - Dark carmel, molasses, with a hint of roast.
T - Carmel malt, with some hints of peach and vanilla. Followed with some roast and a slight alcohol finish.
M - Nice medium body.
D - Very nice brown ale and one I will drink again with out hesitation.

Photo of Francepants06
3.88/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It had the appearance of a stout, more brown than black, dark coffee roast color. Small foaming head with smell of metal barrel, Dark roast coffee with espresso taste to it. An overall good beer the smell wasn't the greatest but I would drink it again.

Photo of EkimGram
4.13/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: 25oz bottle poured into Imperial Pint. Colour is a dark toffee brown with a bit of a reddish hue. Big fluffy head fades with excellent lacing.

Smell: Malty, nutty, sweet.

Taste: Plenty of roasted malt with a nice smooth nut character. A slight twinge of bitter, a hint of alcohol. Very nice and balanced. Milky-sweet.

Mouthfeel: Medium-full bodied, mildly carbonated. Finishes sticky.

Drinkability: An excellent session beer; flavourful enough to keep me interested, nothing too overpowering. Warms you up nicely. I would love to try this with a nice hearty stew and biscuits.

Photo of metter98
3.82/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is mahogany in color and has a moderate to high amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a finger high dense beige head that died down but never completely faded away.
S: There are aromas of toasted malts and nuts in the nose.
T: Like the smell, the taste is very nutty and also has some flavors of caramel from the malts. There is some bitterness in the aftertaste.
M: It feels medium-bodied and smooth on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: The flavors are interesting enough to sip and savor, although it doesn't go down easily enough to be considered sessionable.

Photo of donteatpoop
3.56/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice rich ruby color, clear, with a nice cap of tan head that retained nicely throughout.

The smell is a dark fruit mash, tofee, and caramel malts.

A nice smooth taste, grape skin fruitiness upfront followed by a nice caramel flavor and some dark fruit (prunes, raisin, etc).

Nice blend of bitter and sweet, smooth mouthfeel and an all around good beer.

Photo of CrazyDavros
3.84/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours ruby/copper with a quickly fading head.
Nose shows rich malt with sultanas, dried figs and caramel. After swirling, some banana can be detected.
Flavours are similarly rich and sweet with more dried fruit, caramel and bready malt. Finishes weakly on an oxidative note.
Carbonation is too high for these flavours and cuts out the finish unnecessarily.

Photo of InebriatedJoker
3.95/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from pint into my favorite beer drinking glass -

Poured a nice dark amber with two finger tan head - lots of lace and bubbles.

Smell was pleasant and malty

Taste had hints of burnt coffee - toffee - vanilla ? .

Drinkability - Not a bad Yorkshire Ale - I could easily drink a few of these in a sitting.

Photo of eric5bellies
4.14/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Drank from my Bombardier Traditional cone pint glass.

A - Pours a nice dark copper colour with a hint of Ruby. The head is large afoamy but receeds slowly and laces down the glass.

S - Stewed sweet fruits and yeast.

T - Initially bitter before giving way to lots of Vanilla that is creamy and smooth, a little bitter on the finisg with some nice burnt caramel flavours.

M - Medium to full body, very very smooth and very good balanced medium carbonation.

D - This is an extremely hig quality Brown Ale and probably the bench mark for me.

Photo of rlshep
4.1/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Aroma: Lots of fruit, some Banana. Dark Caramel.

Appearance: Deep amber almost red color. Thick creamy long lasting head. Lots of lacing.

Flavor: Medium bitterness. Raisin bread slightly toasted with fig. Dark caramel and sugars. Low to none hop flavor. Very fruity.

Mouthfeel: Chewy. Medium carbonation. Alcohol noticeable and warming.

Overall: A lot going on with this beer. Fruit and dark caramel malt mix very well. An excellent beer. I was a little surprised to see this categorized as a brown ale. I'm getting a lot of complex malt but nothing screams to me brown ale. This could easily be called an ESB.

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Riggwelter Yorkshire Ale from Black Sheep Brewery PLC
87 out of 100 based on 301 ratings.