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Riggwelter Yorkshire Ale - Black Sheep Brewery PLC

Not Rated.
Riggwelter Yorkshire AleRiggwelter Yorkshire Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

299 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 299
Reviews: 241
rAvg: 3.85
pDev: 10.13%
Wants: 15
Gots: 9 | 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: 299 | Reviews: 241
Photo of battlekow
3.26/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Really an attractive clear mahogany color, like real maple syrup. Has nice lacing. Smells roasty and alcoholic. Tastes burnt and bitter, with an astringent alcoholic bite. Some banana if you hold it in your mouth. The lingering bitterness after the alcohol fades away is the best part. This beer falls into the category of overrated, predominantly alcohol-flavored brown ales, along with Samuel Smith's Nut Brown and Tommyknocker's Imperial Nut Brown. At least this one was slighty roasty and nutty.

Thanks to nsmit17 for sending this to me.

Photo of Buildscharacter
4.25/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had this beer while touring in Ireland. I was quite pleased with it's dark roasted character, it's beautiful dark black, almost red hue. The head is thin on this, but stays fairly well. It was lacing on the sides of the glass as I drank it. It could have been a little thicker in my opinion but it was a great beverage to go with our dinner. It came in a nice sized 500mL bottle and paired with the 5.7% ABV left you feeling pretty good afterwards. I enjoyed it. Hopefully I'll be able to find it in the states.

Photo of ommegangpbr
3.53/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Looks like a brown ale should: almost opaque with a fluffy tan head that comes with a proper pour.
Tastes of sweeter malts, bits of dark fruits... nut a nutty brown ale. Dry on the whole. I tasted the alcohol more than I smelled the alcohol; the smell was still pleasant.
Sam Smith's Nut Brown is way better in my experience but this is worth a shot. I prefer it to Brooklyn's Brown ale because it's drier.
Not a shabby brown ale... no freshness date to be found, and this is probably older than it should be... still worth a shot.

Photo of scooter231
3.75/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This pours a dark, deep red color with a small amount of head that leaves a lot of lacing around the glass. Smells... very chocolatey. Sweet, and cocoa, cocoa, cocoa. Tastes very sweet and chocolatey as well, and quite alcoholic- which is weird for a beer with only a 5.7% ABV. As if the initial sip wasn't sweet enough, the aftertaste hits you hard with yet another chocolatey blast, even stronger than before. Still, very nice.

Mouthfeel is a bit thick, slightly bubbly, nice. Drinkability... is okay. But, I can see this getting to be too much after a while because it is so, so sweet. Overall, a sweet, tasty beer. Almost like drinking candy, or another dessert. A nice sweet treat.

Photo of jimbotrost
3.09/5  rDev -19.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Reviewed 06/11/05. Pours a beautiful ruby hue with a tightly compacted head of medium thickness. Carbonation appears to be full, maybe a touch more than this style commands. Nose is full of malt, crystal malt comes through in a big way. Mouthfeel starts off dry, not too dry, very nice. Flavor runs from malty dryness to malty sweetness, interesting. Some diacetyl and mid flavor cloying sweetness. Finish dries out and then the sweetness returns, may be an old sample and lacking the hop influence for balance.

Photo of GuinnessSmurf
3.75/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a cola/rootbeer brown color with a nice beige/tan head that is really big and foamy. It really floats well.

The smell is very sweet. There are many dark malts and syrupy, sugary oils that hit the nose.

The overall flavor is a roasted cocoa bean blend, mixed with some dark malts and a slight oak flavor.

The mouth on this beer is very big. It has a lot of carbonation in it. But its all big bubbles.

This beer really scores well in most of the areas, but I'm still not convinced it has a drinkability too far above average. I'm just not intrigued enough to return for another.

Photo of TongoRad
4.29/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a mostly clear brownish copper with a tall dense head.

Aroma is damn nice- rich and complex. Dried fruits dominate, but there is also lots of caramel malt, butterscotch, herbal hops reminiscent of chamomile, roasted malt, nuts, and a touch of alcohol.

It falters a bit on the palate- it is thinner than the nose would suggest. But the hops, complex flavors and long lingering roasty finish save the day. Hell of a session beer!

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

Riggwelter's color is brown with a strong red hue. Head is light brown and quite large. Retention is great. The aroma is a little bland, just a light nuttiness. Taste is sweet and nutty, with a touch of roasted coffee. Drinkability is great, I could hang with this one all night and stay entertained, while not getting full.

Photo of NEhophead
3.62/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Creamy coffee colored head (like a milkshake) with pretty good retention. Condensed lacing with average strength. Semi-opaque, dark cranberry in color.

Coffee syrup; moderately sweet caramel and cherry. Creamy, chocolate-like maltiness. Noticeable alcohol aroma as well.

Nice coffee/espresso sweetness that's followed by an abrasive and almost artificial bitterness. A pretty hefty alcohol presence at mid-sip, with a lot of carbonation. A chocolate and nut-filled aftertaste, that is again filled with sweetness: a little too sweet for the style.

Medium bodied; heavier on the palate than what I would expect from an English Brown.

Flavorful but too sweet for my taste. The sweetness really gets to my tastebuds and prevents me from having another.

Photo of DrainBamage
4.33/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark mohagany color with many very small bubbles of carbonation. Has a half of an inch of head that's there until you're down to the bottom. You don't see better head on a beer than this. Ah, smell those roasted malts with a touch of hops. The flavor stays on your tongue for awhile and you're left with a sensation of hops and your palate that's not too strong. Not as carbonated as you'd think based on so many carbonation bubbles you see. Drinkability is high and I recommend this beer to anyone who enjoys a good ale.

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

Served from a fancy hopleaf embossed 16.9 oz. bottle - no freshness date.

Brilliantly clear orange-copper color with a rocky off-white head which stayed for a good long time.

Scent of coffee with cream and cocoa. Dark fruit (molasses) also.

Taste follows suite of the scent: creamed coffee, roasted malts with a mineral water flavor in there as well. For such a malty backbone, the 'woody' dryness is a much welcomed addition component.

Mouthfeel is quite english; low-med. carbonation with that clean, dry finish.

Drinkability is very high due to it's lower than avg. carbonation and overall light-med. body.

This beer really surprised me. I absolutely loved the creamed coffee flavor of this english ale. A bit lighter in body and flavor than Old Pecular, but just a flavorful - in it's own unique way. A little pricey @ $3.59 ea. - but a nice treat nonetheless.

Photo of BDTyre
4.32/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Whoa! Packed with flavour! Poured a nice ruby colour with a decent, sticky head. Initially smell is a good balance of malt and hops; as it warms, it takens on a grainy malt smell. Taste is like a very rich version of their Black Sheep ale, with a bit more emphasis on the malts A bit more bitter than some of their other ales.

Tastes good; fairly dinkable in my opionion.

Photo of brentk56
3.88/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Clear chestnut brown body with a nice head and plenty of lacing

Smell: Caramel malt with a touch of bananas and raisins

Taste: Lots of coffee flavor; starts out sweet but that is quickly overwhelmed by bitterness - some sweetness on the finish as the bitterness fades

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a fair bit of carbonation

Drinkability: This is a nice brown ale, but it is quite filling

Photo of deBeers
4.23/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Surprisingly, I enjoyed this bottle more than the cask-conditioned counterpart. The cask-conditioned seemed smoother, almost healthier for me, while the bottle surprisingly had a little more to offer. This was drunken out of a half yard glass. It opened up more as is warmed up.

Decent, initial head with moderate carbonation. Mahogany colored ale with a clear body. Initial notes of caramel malts turning into a strong notes of toffe/coffee. Tastes very strongly of coffee liquor.

First, I taste the alcohol, yet it's not overpowering, but balanced just right. The longer it sits on the palette, the more mellow it becomes. Still getting strong notes of coffee or kahlua. Very smooth beer, very dark for an ale. Excellent, and very quaffable!

I'll come back and edit this and explain what the name and label means soon.

Photo of Luigi
4.03/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a .5 liter mug from a 16.9 oz. bottle. Has a reddish-brown color with a big light brown head. Smells sweet, very fruit like. Roasted malt, mineral water, coffee, fruity hop come out in the flavor. I can taste some licorice too. This is one tasty Englsih ale.

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

Pours a deep translucent chestnut with copper edges. Develops a few fingers of creamy tan head which quickly resolve themselves into a creamy film and sticky lacing. Smells of toasted bread crusts over fragrant hops, with resinous notes and a slight diacetyl (butterscotch) background. The flavors starts with sweet caramel malts and strong butterscotch, slowly developing toasty and yeasty qualities, and finishing with good hop dryness and lingering woody, smoky, and almost port-like notes. Medium to medium-heavy, very creamy and moderately carbonated in the mouth. A tasty, solid, interpretation of the style.

Photo of CAMRAhardliner
4.23/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I really like Black Sheep beers, all the ones Ive tried have great hop flavor and are also impeccably balanced. This Brown Ale is true to form. It also has a wimsical label that I like a lot.

It pours a deep mahogany with a frothy cappucino head that lasts forever. Lacing is copious and chunky. The aroma is equal parts grassy, floral hops and chocolatey, roasty malts. The taste is complex with loads of Chocolate malts, husky grainyness and a subtle tea like astringency. Im sure this is a hop characteristic.

The hops are prevelant throughout. They are cedary, pithy and floral, with only a slight bitterness in the finish. This is not as hoppy as Sam Smith's Nut Brown, but the amount of hops provides a satisfactory compliment to the wall of malt flavors. Theres a dry slightly fruity yeasty flavor and some peaty notes in the background.

The mouthfeel is lighter than expected with toned down carbonation. The Black Sheep Brewery has down in again with this brew. Its an excellent Brown Ale that is dangerously quaffable.

Photo of shapudding
4.23/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Georgeous dark amber brown with an amazingly thick and creamy bubblebath of khaki head sitting on top. Caramelly chocolate, vanilla, and warm alcohol scents. This is very smooth and just flows so easily over your tongue. The carbination is not so much, which makes this very drinkable. I like the feel of this one. Body is not so thin, but not really medium... maybe somewhere in between. Alot of vanilla bean flavor, black coffee, and maybe some whiskey. Very good drinkability , good flavors and mouthfeel to it.

Photo of merlin48
3.78/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

According to the label, a riggwelter is a sheep that has fallen and can't get back up. Guess that explains the distressed sheep on the label. This English Brown pours a clear, copper mahogany body with a two finger beige head that is creamy, with good retention. Lots of patch lace gets left on the glass.
Aroma has a note of mild chocolate malt, but is mostly creamy caramel with earthy hops.
Mouthfeel has a medium body and moderate carbonation.
Taste mirrors the aroma, with chocolate and caramel maltiness balanced by a nutty and earthy hops bitterness. Slightly on the sweet side, overall, but quite tasty.
This is a tasty and satisfying English Brown Ale. Very solid.

Photo of mschofield
3.58/5  rDev -7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a dark mahogany, topped with a two finger creamy tan head, leaves puffy rings of lacing connected with webbing.
Fruity, cherry aroma, sharp and leafy, wet bread, and earthy.
Cherry and bitter apple taste, brown sugar, coffee flavored candy, hot cocoa note. Coffee aftertaste. Smells higher in alcohol than it is. Just too sweet for me.
Medium bodied.

Photo of GreenCard
3.43/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: chestnut brown, great clarity, thick spongey layer of tan foam forms on hard pour, good head retention, lacey

Aroma: chocolate, oats, coffee, wisp of alcohol, malt, woodsy hops, burnt sugar

Flavor: thick malt base, any sweetness is quickly swept aside by a roasty bitterness and a hearty rye-bread tang, finishes dry as a bone with a long-lingering hop/roast bitterness, aftertaste of dark malts and burnt caramel

Mouthfeel: full body, creamy texture, fine carbonation, slightly astringent

Other comments: Antoerh somewhat popular one at the Norwich Beer Festival. One of the best ones I've tried from Black Sheep Brewery. I do like the Old Norse name, Riggwelter: rygg = back, velte = fall over (very similar to the same words in modern Danish!).

Photo of claytri
3.93/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The beer poured a dark cordovan with a gorgeous tan head. The aroma was heady of alcohol and cherry over a toasted malt base causing great anticipation. The taste didn't quite live up to it. It started off with a slight fruit malt taste and followed up with a nice little bitterness. The feel was medium bodied and slightly dry. This beer for me was too middle of the road. I was looking for something sweet and or tart and would have been happy with something sharp and bitter. What Riggwelter did was promise both and delivered neither. Don't get me wrong it's a solid beer, just not one I would say was in the range of brown ales I'd be looking for.

Photo of Skidz
3.58/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours out light orange-borwn and sits crimson red in the glasss with a large foamy tan head.

Smells lightly malty with notes of caramel. Some fruity esters, apples, and a nice spicy tone.

Tastes bitter up front with big loads of spice. Light and fruity esters (apple) attack and smooth out with a touch of caramel.

Smooth in the mouth, medium body with small tingling carbonation. Nicely bittered.

A decent ale with interesting spices. Well built as a sipper or to pair with light past or Asian dishes.

Photo of TheLiterati
4.53/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Once again, the beer guru at my local Whole Foods suggested I might like this one. And once again, he was dead on.

The label, a black and crème motif on a brown bottle with a raised leaf design, hints at the color of the ale. It pours a deep red-brown and has a nice, frothy cream-colored head…a real beauty.

The smell was much hoppier than I expected. There were also hints of chocolate, coffee and fruit (raisins? grapes), but what really struck me was an undertone of what smelled like barley wine, which was off-putting for me at first because I’m not a barley wine fan.

The carbonation and texture makes for a refreshing mouthfeel. Very pleasant on the palate. And the taste…also much hoppier than I expected, again ever so slightly reminiscent of a barley wine, but not cloying, sweet or syrupy.

Very, very drinkable.

This is a damn fine ale.

Photo of oggg
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours a brown/amber color. Quite dark. Very clear still. Large head with big bubbles, but good staying power. The aroma is malty with some alcohol. It's malty and I can see it's in the English style. Lots o blackberry. It doesn't really have much in the way of roasted or burnt flavor, but there is a mild astringency. Also a wineyness, which is strange for this abv. The beer is light to medium bodied with a dry finish. Overall, the wineyness and astringency aren't strong, but enough for me to beer hunt elsewhere.

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Riggwelter Yorkshire Ale from Black Sheep Brewery PLC
87 out of 100 based on 299 ratings.