1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Belhaven Scottish Ale - Belhaven Brewery Company Ltd.

Not Rated.
Belhaven Scottish AleBelhaven Scottish Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

1,656 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,656
Reviews: 814
rAvg: 3.81
pDev: 13.65%
Wants: 35
Gots: 114 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Belhaven Brewery Company Ltd. visit their website
United Kingdom (Scotland)

Style | ABV
Scottish Ale |  5.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Mitchster on 08-07-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Belhaven Scottish Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,656 | Reviews: 814 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of stockingcpl
4.05/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: This brew pours with a nice thick foamy head. There are nice lacings and the liquid is a dark amber. Very nice presentation.

Smell: The predominant aroma is a light caramel. Pine woodsyness is also present. The totality of the aroma is of a light amber ale. Pretty good so far.

Taste: The taste is very interesting. During onset there is an applish twang. This is replaced by a light malt citrus flavor that tapers rather quickly. This is a very refreshing drink and would be great on a hot summer afternoon by the pool.

Mouthfeel: VERY refressing and light on the palate. I liked the initial taste jump during onset. Absolutely no afteertaste or alsohol "evilness". Excellent.

Drinkability: Very light brew that is amazingly refressing. I'm very impressed!


stockingcpl, Feb 07, 2009
Photo of cdkrenz
4.1/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Beautiful brew with a medium brown, hazy body and a head of light tan standing about a half inch. The head fades after about a minute or two but still leaves a remnant.

S - Sweet, bitter, pungent hops. Very nice.

T - The smooth hops are a gift. This is a complex ale with a ton of taste character.

M - The texture is smooth throughout with a slight coarseness on the tip of my tongue to start.

~ This is a great brew to kick back and drink with your pals while hanging at the pub. I wish I could find a place in Point that had it.

cdkrenz, Feb 03, 2009
Photo of robbyc1
3.6/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Interesting hazy orange look, expected a brown look, quick dissipating offwhite head, nice lace.

Alcohol, smoke, and malt on the nose, bit of sweetness detectable, ideal for this style.

The actual taste falls short of the nose, sadly. Decent malt, balanced, but not as deep as expected, maybe the travel is the problem.

Drinks nice in the mouth, some ashiness at the finish, but otherwise OK. Balance and dryness define this beer. OK drinkability for a session beer that this is, nothing exciting about it, or even freshness, prefer others made in the USA.

robbyc1, Feb 01, 2009
Photo of AdmiralDiaz
3.4/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle to pint glass.

A: Pours brown with a two-finger off-white head. Head has pretty good retention and becomes rocky after some dissipation. Leaves nice lacing.

S: Smells malty with a bit of earthy scents and some nuttiness.

T: Strong malts with a noticeable earth flavor that's accompanied by some slight fruit.

Overall: The mouthfeel was on the weaker side being that there was very little carbonation. But overall it's pretty drinkable due to the fact that it's pretty mild and has no overwhelming qualities.

AdmiralDiaz, Jan 30, 2009
Photo of droomyster
4.43/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

A classic that I revisit often. Beautiful bottle underscores the brewery's antiquity. I'd like to know more about how this particular beer has changed over the years. Pours a clear mahogany with a small tan head that settles very quickly. Yummy aromas of complex malts spanning the spectrum from sweet maple syrup and toffee notes to biscuity to toasty malts. Tastes like all of those aromas; malt-heavy (as a good Scottish ale should be) with a slight woodsy bitterness keeping it from becoming a malt bomb. Absolutely delicious. Only flaw is an overcarbonated body, but that's just my personal preference. Am having this with pate and crackers and loving it.

droomyster, Jan 26, 2009
Photo of Spikester
4.1/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Dark brown with a strong one finger white head which hangs on a considerable time. Good amount of lacings. Aroma is caramel malt. Taste is dark caramel malts with a hint of chocolate. Just enough hop bitters to balance the sweetness. Mouthfeel was silky smooth and that made for an easy session. Very nice ale.

Spikester, Jan 25, 2009
Photo of Yeastcakes
4/5  rDev +5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Serving: Hefe glass (all I had), celler temp
Aroma: nice malty sweetness
Appearance: cloudy, reddish brown, nice stable half-inch nitrogen head
Mouthfeel: nitrogen gives a cask like smoothness. Carbonation very light. Nice full body.
Taste: light smokey maltiness, very even flavor across the entire tongue.

Yeastcakes, Jan 24, 2009
Photo of aeminter
4.22/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Cloudy deep copper with a 1 cm tan head and no lacing.

Sweet smells of caramel and malt with an herbal/medicinal character in the background.

Creamy sweet malt flavor with a faint hop flavor at the back of the mouth. Very balanced.

Silky mouthfeel and easy drinking.

aeminter, Jan 21, 2009
Photo of Durge
3.95/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A fuzzy maple brown color with a medium off-white head and fair lacing. The aroma is nutty earthy and buttery with a mild raisin wine hint. The taste is a bitter caramel malt, a bit thin but an active carbonation. There is a sweet cherry lime touch over a malty undercoat. It's nice, pretty easy drinking too, not much alcohol.

Durge, Jan 21, 2009
Photo of farrago
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Extremely creamy white froth of a one finger head, looks more like a smooth plane than aggregation of micro-bubbles, heavy lacing. Clear amber red to copper in color, very consistent. In the nose presents bready, doughy accents with inviting honey, caramel, butter, cocoa powder notes, blends in mild apricot, cherry fruit and indistinct nuts, certainly malty but not devoid of hops. Medium-bodied, while smooth in texture comes across much drier than expected. Tea leaf, grain, bitters and meadow grasses elevate here and there's a white citrus zest tackiness as well. That said, never loses that overall smoothness and malty appeal of toffee, bittersweet chocolate. The bread, yeast components choose neither side. Fine enough quaffer but nothing remarkably memorable about it.

farrago, Jan 20, 2009
Photo of gabe23
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Deep, clear amber color with a quickly fading off-white head. Very nice lacing.

S - Not a lot of aroma, but what I can pick up is mainly malt and grain, with a slight touch of hops.

T - Toast and malt sweetness, smokiness, and a bit of fruit and nuts. The hops come through with some bitterness at the end, but the finish is smooth with little aftertaste.

M - Medium body, soft carbonation, and just enough creaminess.

D - I enjoy an occasional Scottish Ale, and this one is very drinkable. I could easily drink a few of these back to back.

gabe23, Dec 19, 2008
Photo of Stinkypuss
3.65/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Interesting. A scottish Ale on nitro tap? Im in.

a. Takes a LONG time to pour, poured into 3 pint glasses, then combined into one. Mahogony body with a super rediculous creamy head. Looks pretty good.

S. Interesting here also. Spiced baked bread and some undescribable earthiness.

T. Flavor is of malt sweetness, a slight roasted edge. Definately nutty, and some spicy hops are there in the background. Bourbon barrel booziness.

M. A heavy ale, creamy and well carbonated.

D. Certainly a good session beer in the winter months. Drinkability is somewhat limited do to the intensity of the flavors and mouthfeel. I think this would be a fine beverage to pair with a good cut of steak.

Stinkypuss, Dec 18, 2008
Photo of hoplover82
4.65/5  rDev +22%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This was an amazing bitter.

The beer poured a beautiful foggy light brown color with a hint of red.

Smells of sweet malt with a pinch of hops.

Well balanced flavor and aroma. The nuttiness is outstanding.

Very smooth on the palate. Feels full bodied. Just a well balanced ale.

Go get one... for real!

hoplover82, Dec 09, 2008
Photo of ckeegan04
3.2/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the Flying Saucer, Nashville.

A - Deep red, almost mahogany in color. Very thin foamy head, off-white in color. The thin head that forms does have some very impressive staying power and lingers throughout the entire pint. Also leave thick sheets of lacing.

S - Very weak aroma of sweet malts and a little spice. Not a whole lot going on in the nose but the smells that I do pick up are very inviting.

T - Very plain by Scottish Ale standards. Somewhat sweet toasted malts initially with a somewhat spicy hoppiness underneath.

M/D - Very thin on the mouthfeel, especially compared to other Scottish Ales that I have had. A passable beer, but far from one of my favorites.

ckeegan04, Dec 09, 2008
Photo of morimech
4.43/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Cascading head effect pouring from a nitro-can. Copper-golden color with one inch of dense white head that never really goes away. Moderate amount of lacing left on the glass. Has more of an English hop aroma then what I have experienced in other Scottish Ales. I absolutely love the aroma of English hops. A little earthiness and nuttiness as well. The hops also play a large part in the flavor. The hops give a floral and earthy quality that combines well with the slightly nutty and smokey quality of the malt. Has a creamy texture from the nitro but it feels a little thin. This is a very drinkable beer thanks to the nitro and low ABV. Love the hop profile as well. Definate purchases in the future for me.

morimech, Dec 07, 2008
Photo of magictrokini
2.5/5  rDev -34.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I am tired of companies naming their bitter a Scotch Ale. This is just a below-average English ESB in disguise. Pours dark amber with no head. Has the aroma of smoked malts and caramel, but that's it. Nothing even resembles the aroma in the taste. Flavor is flat, rotten, and above all, weak. Its also expensive. Avoid.

magictrokini, Dec 05, 2008
Photo of jujubeast6000
3.18/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Reviewed 1/26/2008 (bottle):

Pours a reddish amber color body, very clear. Foamy, whitish head, lasting with good lacing. Very malty aroma, almost acidic, not very nutty. Musty. Might be a characteristic of English malts. Kind of a turn-off for me. Malty, slightly musty flavor, some banana, maybe clove. Pretty clean aftertaste. Fruity. Somewhat creamy.

jujubeast6000, Nov 26, 2008
Photo of bigdeuce
4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice chocolatey orange color with a nice foamy head. Smells of peat and nuts and has a slight orangey twang on the nose. Great balance to this beer, so easy to drink. Medium bodied with a spicey dryness at the end. Malts and more nutty malts keep coming. Very good session beer, I cannot believe I had never given this one a whirl before.

bigdeuce, Nov 26, 2008
Photo of mcsquint
3.9/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 500ml bottle into large dimpled mug
A - CopperAmber in color with a quickly diminishing 1 finger off-white head.
S - Full caramel malt aroma with a hint of nuts and tea
T - Sweet,caramel malt, roasted malt and a mild nutty flavor. Light on the hops.
M - Medium mouthfeel. A bit slick,light on the carbonation.
D - This is very similar to an Irish ale but with emphasis on malt instead of hops. Very drinkable. Would love to find an establishment that has this on tap!

mcsquint, Nov 15, 2008
Photo of thespaceman
3.73/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12oz bottle into a pint glass

Appearance: Dark copper in color, pours a medium sized head with good retention and nice lacing. Lighter in color then I expected for a Scottish Ale.

Smell: Deep caramel notes exemplify nicely, the malty character stands out nicely through florals, a good bite in the nose.

Taste: Caramel, toffee, and roasted malts are perfectly balanced into the taste. This is a Scottish Ale that has mild depth, but is different from alot of other Scotts.

Mouthfeel: Creamy, nice velvety body. Carbonation is at a medium, but the mild bitterness to this could use more bite.

Drinkability: An easily sessionable Scottish Ale that is sure to please. This one intimidated me until I drank it and I must say I really enjoyed it. Not too rich for my taste but an excellent interpretation of the style.

thespaceman, Nov 14, 2008
Photo of maskaggs
3.95/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This was served in a small, 10 ounce glass shaped like a small version of the standard pint glass (with a bulge near the top, not the straight pint glass) at a rather cold temperature - a bit cold for my taste, but not numbingly so. Upon arrival the beer had a golden brown hue, something I'd describe as deep amber. It had about an inch of head on it, and the nose was rather sweet and hoppy.

The first sip was a real treat. The beer had a wonderfully smooth mouth, and was heavy. The butterscotch mentioned in The Pub's description was out in full force while I let it roll around the mouth and impart its flavour, and the aftertaste was long and full of caramel. After that first sip, I noticed the head had shrunk to about half an inch.

Sip #2 came seven minutes later. I noticed a flavour I couldn't quite pin down - something rather spicy, I should think, but enjoyable. The head faded to about 1/4 inch after this sip, with a decent amount of lacing along the glass. As I continued with the beer, I couldn't help but think "sweet" as time went along. That's the first word that came to mind with every sip. 20 minutes into my Belhaven, there was still plenty of foam lingering on the sides of the glass, and the slightest hint of a head remained. The final sip - which, as you may guess, was all glorious foam - was potent, spicy, and delicious.

If I had to choose one word to characterize this beer (besides "sweet"), I'd call it mild. It drank very easily and was, contrary to The Pub's description, creamy throughout the experience. I didn't notice a multitude of flavours, but then again that could be due to my rather inexperienced palate.

maskaggs, Nov 11, 2008
Photo of lhaqq
4/5  rDev +5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Dark copper body that separates quickly from a thick creamy off-white head.
S: Deep nuttiness and a creamy sweet smell.
T: Taste largely nutty and caramelized malts as well.
M: Creamy, but very little carbonation, so a bit more dull than I was expecting.
D: Okay on the drinkability. But nevertheless a good solid beer that I enjoy often.

lhaqq, Nov 06, 2008
Photo of BradLikesBrew
3.83/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Celebrating a glorious conclusion to an epic campaign.

a: nitro cascade effect reveals a dark red body, a creamy head, and a sheet of lace.

s: Sweet malty caramel aroma.

t: from the requisite creamy nitro body flows a light and balanced flavor of sweet caramel and just a hint of hops.

m: typical nitro feel. Super creamy.

d: One of the better nitro beers. Not as full-flavored as you may like, but still very tasty. I could drink this all night long and probably will.

BradLikesBrew, Nov 05, 2008
Photo of barleywinefiend
3.88/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a dark amber. Eggshell colored head on top was about two fingers high after a moderate pour. Nice thin lacing on the glass.Smelled of sweet malts and a little bread.Taste is sweet malts mostly with a little nuttiness. Also a hint of piney hops in the finish to make a delightful bitterness.

barleywinefiend, Nov 04, 2008
Photo of kshankar
4.22/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Clear red/copper/amber color. Nice tan foam with lacing. Looks good.

Aroma: Malts...grainy/bready. Sweetness to it. Minimal hops, but they're there. Pretty soft aroma overall, gentle but very pleasant.

Taste: Malty and bready/grainy with a mild sweetness to it, followed by a slightly hoppy finish. Everything is balanced well, and each flavor progresses into the next one wonderfully

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a coat the mouth feel to it. Creamy. Goes down great

Drinkability: Tastes great, lower ABV, medium body. Excellent for session. Will certainly buy this again.

kshankar, Nov 03, 2008
Belhaven Scottish Ale from Belhaven Brewery Company Ltd.
86 out of 100 based on 1,656 ratings.