Pipers Scotch-Style Ale - Sprecher Brewing Company
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Ratings: 199 | Reviews: 118 | Display Reviews Only:
4.63/5 rDev +31.5%
12 oz bottle poured into a Sprecher nonic.
A - The lively off-white head plasters thick lacing on the pint before settling to a lumpy skim above the gorgeous, clear dark copper beer; Pipers looks so perfect and inviting!
S - Malty caramel sweetness wafts out with a nice bready aspect to it, closely followed by trails of peat smoke and hickory wood chips with suggestions of dark fruit, plums mostly, in the background.
T - Strong malty sweetness coats the tongue with caramel-drizzled wheat bread before being abruptly balanced out by hickory and peat smoked flavors that linger on the tongue like the prior evening's bonfire in your cloths (but without the hangover).
M - Pipers' rich maltiness lends the beer a hefty, full-bodied mouthfeel, which works perfectly with it's ludicrously absent alcohol perception and beautifully smokey, dry finish.
O - Not only is Pipers one of Sprecher's greatest beers, it's also one of the best Scotch-style beers made in the states. This complex, malty brew's peat smoked malts are most definitely noticeable and might surprise the uninitiated but certainly wont alarm those who expect what's coming; the waft of smokiness that caries through this beer is perfectly balanced.
04-17-2014 00:22:11 | More by BeerFMAndy
2.2/5 rDev -37.5%
Poured a beautiful amber with a very nice head. let it breath for a minute and inhaled but couldn't get a scent from it. The taste was a very unpleasant surprise. Very smokey flavor, actually overwhelming. First impression was smoke and as strange as this may sound, pine tar. It has a taste reminiscent of what pine tar smells like. As I drank the beer I could discern the smell and it was identical to the flavor. This beer will not cross my lips in the future. I actually dumped the first bottle thinking it may have had something wrong with it. Next question, what do I do with the two remaining bottles from the 4 pack. Cheers! Now I will have a bottle of Ballast Point IPA.
01-11-2014 00:16:41 | More by Karl46
3.69/5 rDev +4.8%
Beer of the month club bottle. Pours dark ruby brown with a small brownish cream colored head. Good clarity. Strong scotch aroma with lots of toffee, caramel malt, biscut, and some dark fruits. Flavor has a strong smokey peat flavor up front, some sweetness in the middle, and then some dry peat flavor on the finish. This one is a bit different from others I have had. Very peaty and earthy. Medium mouthfeel with medium carbonation and relatively easy drinking. Good beer overall.
10-14-2013 21:55:03 | More by BMMillsy
2.44/5 rDev -30.7%
12 fl oz brown glass bottle with generic label art and branded twist-off pressure cap acquired as part of a 6 pack at me local cornerstore and served into an Independence Brewing pilsner glass in me gaff in low altitude Austin, Texas. Reviewed live. Expectations are low given the brewery. Reviewed as a Scotch ale because it clearly identifies as such. 8.3% ABV per the label.
Served cold - straight from me fridge - and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.
It's clearly a twist-off cap, but I needed to use an opener. Either I have panzy grip strength or it was capped impractically tight (or both).
A: No bubble show forms as I pour.
Pours a four finger wide head of light khaki colour. Decent creaminess and thickness. Fluffy. Okay frothiness. Head retention is good - about 5-6 minutes. Not too shabby for an 8.3% beer. Inconsistent messy lacing clings to the sides of the glass as the head recedes.
Body colour is a clear translucent/transparent amber-copper of below average vibrance. No yeast particles are visible.
A bit light in colour for a wee heavy. It's not unique or special, but there are no obvious flaws.
Sm: Brown malts, biscuit malt, tobacco, molasses, toffee, amber malts, peat, smoked malt, caramel, Vienna malts, English malts, and a hint of taffy. Sticky. Plenty of residual sugars lend it an aromatic sweetness. Any hop presence is minimal and generic. I don't detect any yeast character or alcohol. The smokiness was unexpected. An inoffensive aroma of above average strength.
It's not particularly appealing for the style.
T: Nowhere near as complex or subtle as it needs to be to compete with the best beers in the style. I get a generally cohesive but certainly not gestalt build of biscuit malt, English malts, toffee, brown malts, caramel/caramalts, Vienna malt, chocolate malt, and smoked malt. Also some molasses and tobacco - neither of which is welcome here; those are tough notes to really pull off and they're not well incorporated here. Heavy sassafras. It's not so much imbalanced as it is loosely put together; it's not a carefully considered flavour profile by any means. The smoked malt comes off limp, making it feel like a cross between a mediocre wee heavy and a weak rauchbier. The peat surfaces mainly in the third act and isn't integrated well at all. A fairly messy brew across the board.
No yeast character, hop character, or alcohol comes through.
Very shallow depth of flavour. Average duration and intensity of flavour.
Mf: Smooth and wet, with some unnatural peat-derived coarseness and dryness in the third act. A bit too heavy on the palate for the lack of diversity/fullness of flavour. Thin and weak. Undercarbonated Lacks a good full body or assertive bold texture. Subpar presence on the palate; it's not approachable or pleasant. Sticky. Syrupy. Doesn't suit the style or the flavour profile well. Poor execution overall.
I could easily see this turning to cardboard with age. Oxidation would ruin this.
Dr: Tough to down given its low quality. I'm not sure what Sprecher was going for with this one, but in spite of the inclusion of elements that sound good on paper (peat, tobacco, toffee, smoked malt) it falls flat. I'd caution friends against buying this one. Poor show from Sprecher. This is the worst wee heavy I've had in recent memory. I definitely wouldn't buy it again, and finishing the 6 pack might prove a chore.
If you're looking for true style paragons, go for Oskar Blues' Old Chub or Founders' Backwoods Bastard.
Not recommended for aging.
10-08-2013 02:08:17 | More by kojevergas
Pipers Scotch-Style Ale from Sprecher Brewing Company
80 out of 100 based on 199 ratings.