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Belhaven Scottish Ale - Belhaven Brewery Company Ltd.

Not Rated.
Belhaven Scottish AleBelhaven Scottish Ale

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

1,671 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,671
Reviews: 816
rAvg: 3.81
pDev: 13.91%
Wants: 38
Gots: 117 | 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
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Ratings: 1,671 | Reviews: 816 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of livingregret
3.95/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I'd like to re-review the beer...my first taste was from a bottle and this time I am using a Nitro-Can...and WOW what a difference it made

Appearance: A creamy white head pours out to leave a reddish colour liquod beneath it. The head lingered around for a great deal of time

Smell: Same smell, light hoppy w/ some malts of coruse

Taste: WOW...I'm not sure if it's just better from a can or what. A somewhat dry drink at the beginning but even smoother going down than when from a bottle. Still malt and hops taste but no longer dry going down.

Mouthfeel: Exceptional. Very smooth, very creamy, perfection? Pretty damn close to it

Drinkability: I could drink this Ale any night of the week. Just a great drink, I love it

Photo of iceball585
4.33/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Golden brown color, semi-clear, thin tan lacy head that lowered to a thin cover

S- Toasted malts, earthy, caramel, buttery, fairly sweet

T- Caramel malts, biscuits, grains, toffee, creamy, toasted nuts, buttery

M- Medium body, medium carbonation, smooth, clean

D- Definatly a session beer

Not anything too complex. Just an over nice balance of flavors to create a great scotish ale.

Photo of oelergud
3.7/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear copper bronze body with a large tan head of mostly small bubbles, good retention and great clumpy lace. Moderate carbonation.
Mild molasses, subdued hops, butter and white bread.
Taste is as mild as the smell. Butter and white bread with just enough pepper to be detected. The aftertaste is pretty well balanced.
Full buttery mouthfeel and some coating.
Good drinkability. Easy and mild mannered.


Photo of Zephenbrewid
3.05/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Serving Type: 16 oz Nitro Can poured into 16 oz american pint glass

A: Impressive creamy off-white head, good transparent medium-red color with very few bubbles rising from bottom to top.

S: It's all about malt here. If I had to compare it to an outside scent, it would be salt-water taffy.

T: Good balance between malt and hops, I would shift it even further to the malty side. Dry finish.

M: Not bad in feel but would have expected the body to be slightly heavier. Also lacks the good tingle of carbonation.

Photo of Bookseeb
3.43/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance is a nice rich amber with a thick creamy head that just won't quit. Aroma is Malty, bready and I'd have to say the same for the taste, but with a little sweetness from the malt with low hop and carbonation. Mouthfeel is medium that is creamy, a good beer, nothing special, but one to try.

Photo of saintwarrick
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Originally tried this brew as part of a beer of the month club and have wandered to it every now and again. This beer pours a deep red, way beyond amber, with a solid white head throughout the glass. Smell is dry crackers, bread a sweet malty tinge. Taste is more sweetness, preserves and jam mixed with bread, though the dry portion of the beer fails to match the sweetness of the beer. I wish it were as dry and hoppy as the smell first indicated. Beer goes down sweet and smooth. A decent brew, but nothing to write home about.

Photo of John_M
4.43/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Had this on tap at Max's the other night. For my money, this is the perfect session beer.

The beer pours a gorgeous orange mahogany color, with a fabulous creamy head, showing excellent retention and lacing (as you would pretty much expect from the nitro pour). Appearance wise, this beer gets full marks. On the nose I don't get very much. There are no off flavors, and there is a hint of butterscotch and honey, but really not much of anything otherwise. On the palate this beer is just a joy to drink. It's so light and airy; like sipping a beer flavored cloud. Considering how soft, light and airy this beer is, the amount of flavor it packs is nothing short of amazing. One gets nuts, apple and toffee; the beer is basically dry, but there is just a hint of sweetness. The beer has a beautiful finish, gliding away with a whisper.

F*ck Miller. This is the true champagne of beers. This beer comes across as subtle, yet rich... which you would think would be a contradiction. The perfect paradox, this beer.

The beer is amazingly drinkable and is the sort of beer I would happily drink all day. I had this beer after a 10% DIPA and the Delirium Tremens, yet this beer still held its own in the flavor department. Just an amazing beer....

Photo of CharlieMopps
3.68/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a rather dark amber, almost the color of rust, but with a beautiful appearance. Foamy head yields about two and a half fingers that dissipates at an average rate, leaving behind a thick ring of lace.

S: A grassy and herbal aroma, kind of earthy and malty. Not too much in the nose, but still enough to pique the interest.

T: Maltiness is somewhat subdued, yet still tasty, and there are just enough hops to detect their presence in the middle, but not so much as to throw the beer off. As a matter of fact, its balance is quite nice, but perhaps a little more flavor couldn't hurt.

M: Creamy and well-carbonated mouthfeel, a hearty ale.

D: I can't find enough bad to say about this beer, but then again, not a whole lot of good either. To be sure, this offering from Belhaven is above average, but I'm not really sold on the taste. Perhaps this is an ale meant to be had in a pub, back-to-back pints. I could see myself doing that, but after the second, I'd probably opt for something else.

Photo of khiasmus
3.38/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- Perfectly clear, amber, with whipped cream like nitro head that both lasts and laces.

S- What comes through the head is like sweet grain. I can think of no other way to describe it. Doesn't really smell like malt, and no hop aroma. Slightly plastic tinge in there as well.

T- Some wheat and barley flavors, with some biscuity sweetness, melba toast, bad-tasting yeast, a faint hint of hops and a bit of caramel. Overall a bit muted, all of this is hard to pick out.

M- Creamy with low carbonation. Smooth. The mouthfeel of a guinness.

D- Solid scottish ale, but a bit too creamy and too sweet... and maybe a bit too boring for me to want to drink it a lot.

Photo of Mumps
3.93/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I have had this one on tap and in can. Color was a good dark amber. Good head (as I remember), with good retention and decent lacing. Good Scottish bitter ale taste. A good beer, though maybe a bit of an acquired taste.

Disclaimer: it has been a while since I last had it, kinda hard to find.

Photo of OWSLEY069
2.9/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a 20 ounce pint a nice deep amber color and off white head that disapates quickly. Aromas of sweet malt and a small hop presence. The taste is just about the same. The small hop bitterness is a very interesting balace to the beer. The sweet malt makes it a very easy beer to drink, especially with a hop bite.

Photo of slyke
4.1/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Belhaven Scottish Ale is a deep amber color with a nice puffy white head. Some lacing. A nice looking beer.

The aroma is bready/malty/biscuity. There is a slight hint of smoke as well.

Taste is excellent starting with a quick of taste of hop, the same malty flavor as the aroma, plus a clean finish and a little floral hop note.

Mouthfeel is very good. Full in the mouth, but very little aftertaste.

Drinkability is stellar. I could drink this beer all afternoon. Recommended.

Photo of Gasp100
3.63/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Beautiful dark amber / copper color and extremely clear even at cold temps; thin wispy lacing and a quickly receding head.
S - Bready, malty, slight smokiness - no other beers smell like Scottish brews. This one has that heavy on the malt, light on the floral hop aroma... nice.
T - Sweet toffee, biscuit, bready with a great malt backbone. The hops cut through nicely and add a sharp, bright bitterness to the finish.
M - Good carbonation, slightly slick and a nice pallete cleanser in the finish.
D - This is very sessionable with the emphasis on malt. It's not cloyingly sweet because the hops do balance the malt nicely. This is pretty full bodied for a mid-level Ale but I think it offers a nice change of pace from your standard XPA's and English Bitter's/PA's.

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

poured from a 16.9 oz. bottle no freshness date. a medium redish brown color with a one inch head that held well with some spotty lace. bready malt aromas with a hint of caramel and hops. taste is same, mouthfeel is very, very smooth and light with a light carbonation. this was my first beer from belhaven brewery and i'll be looking for more of their beers.

Photo of TheodorHerzl
3.73/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Enjoyed on tap at my favorite bar McNiven's in Indianapolis.

A: Light amber color with a nice head and slight lacing.
S: Malty with a strong bitter back flavor.
T: Nice and malty with a touch of sweetness all the way to the end with some good complex bitter flavors.
M: Low to mid carbination and very light.
D: On tap I am a big fan and will gladly come back to it.

Photo of BretSikkink
4.33/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Dark copper hue, not much head even with a vigorous pour. Lacing is better. Very clear.

Smells of spice-bread, slight butterscotch, main component is yeast. A hint of peppery alcohol and floral hops.

Pleasantly tasty flavor. Big malts, slightly sweet, a little smoky (probably peat fire right?). Buttery diacetyl makes the moderate body seem slick, overall very smooth with a kick from the hops. Great balance, good layering of flavor.

I still don't have a very good conception of the Shilling strata, but this one must be closer to an 80- or 90+/-, a good deal darker and more complex than their St. Andrews. I definitely prefer this one, very smooth and sessionable while having a lot of body for relatively low abv.

Photo of Weizenmensch
2.33/5  rDev -38.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 1 | overall: 3

Within date, not my favourite style but I tried it because it's cheap. I almost never like Scotch ales but I thought I'd give it a go... more or less against my better judgement.

A: Not bad, very thin head, lots of circle-lacing - not a proper spread but fairly good for the style. Colour is dark amber-nutbrown. Carbonation low.

S: Probably fairly average for the style. I hate this style so I haven't drunk any in a few years, but this is OK - not particularly offensive because I'm being friendly to a style I'm not so fond of. Fond is a Scottish word so fuck it, it's getting a 3.0.

T: Mostly tastes like bad water. There's hops, some kind of fucked-up malt they don't use in civilised countries that makes it taste beer-flavoured, but otherwise it's pretty miserable, like your average Scot. Perhaps it tastes like a really hoppy, sour shortbread. What do you think?

M: Mouthfeel is just like pure water. Even my girlfriend who doesn't know better, agrees.

D: Well, it's cheap, I'm a tightarse so whatever, it gets a three.

Overall: This reminded me to avoid anything Scottish, apart from Macallan, Highland Park and Aberlour.

Photo of bluegrassbrew
3.4/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a dark copper color with a two finger off white head that quickly drops. No lacing to speak of.

Smells slightly of roasted malt.

Tastes malty, very bready. Not alot here, but not bad either.

Smooth mouthfeel. Balanced and easily drinkable, yet just not that interesting.

Photo of zeff80
3.55/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured out a cloudy orange color with a creamy, off-white one-finger head never really disappeared.

S - It smelled of corriander, malt and a grassy/hoppy quality.

T - It tasted of yeast and a subtle maltiness. Slight bitter aftertaste.

M - It is very soft and very creamy, like a good cocoa. A light to medium-bodied beer.

D - A very nice beer. An excellent representation of the style. Nothing amazing in terms of flavors but a good taste that goes down easy.

Photo of afinepilsner
3.9/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz brown bottle

Belhaven Scottish Ale was a nice clear red-brown color. Ith had an off-white head with decent retention. The aroma was malty. The taste was malty and a little toasty with a hint of smoke and a dry finish. It was light to medium bodied with plenty of carbonation. Drinkability was good. It's a good beer and I could easily have several of these in sitting.

Photo of jwc215
4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours amber/copper with a one-finger white head that slowly descends to a thin cover, leaving some trailing lace.

The smell is caramelish, nutty, earthy with underlying fruitiness.

The taste is malty - caramelish, and nutty (hazelnut?). Although malty, it had a solid earthy, a bit oily, hop background. An underlying general fruitiness is subtle, but present. The diacetyl helps with the buttery smoothness and gives it butterscotch notes. Finishes long and appetizingly dry.

It has a firm medium, creamy/buttery body.

This is one fine sessionable Scottish Ale.

Photo of sethmeister
3.95/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

nitro can into pint glass

Pours a clear golden caramel color with a dense creamy light tan head that refuses to leave til the glass is empty, lacing the sides all the way down.

The scent is mild but I detect sweet raisins, nuts, earth, citrus hoppy notes and bread.

I taste raisins, brown sugar, a very slight grapefruit citrus hop flavor and a hint of peat smoke. More than a hint of buttery diacetyl.

Slick and creamy nitro mouthfeel.

Terribly easy to drink.

I've always liked Belhaven but this is the first time I've tried the nitro can. It's surprisingly good.

Photo of UkiPiper
4.5/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Belhaven Scottish Ale, Scotland

From tap into pint glass:

This beer pours a cloudy honey-brown with thick foam. The smell is of sweet herbs.
My first mouth full was just of the foam (on purpose,) the foam was a earthy sweet taste with a sharp kick in it; very nice.
The Beer settles to a clear honey-brown and retained it head for a long time, never fully leaving.
The taste was not too sweet and with a hidden sharp herbal kick. It drank very smoothly with just the right bitterness.

Photo of cabsandking
4.58/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours an amber to dark copper with a nice creamy one finger beige head. Floral hop esters up front with softer notes of peach, apple and warm buttery caramel. Very mellow nutty profile with roasted barley, caramel, brown sugar and hops offering slight peppery spice, tea herbals, and a little spruce. Nutty to sour earth tones throughout and malt and honey sweetness gain ground towards the end. The nuttiness and sourness moves into the finish along with some dryness and oaky notes, but fades too soon. Thin mouthfeel and creamy on a vigorous swill is really enjoyable.

Photo of Redwood21
4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was my first attempt at a scottish ale, and it was not a pleasant one. I bought a six pack and really tried hard to enjoy it. I felt like the taste was too chaotic. There was bitterness, nutty, coffee, chocolate....and some other stuff that reminded me of earth. I can't bash this beer too much because I have a friend who really liked it when i offered up what was left. This beer is for some ppl, just not me.
**Tried this one more time at a tasting, and felt like an idiot, very good beer and will rereview when i get a full bottle, until then im rating all 4's so it isnt unfairly rated

Belhaven Scottish Ale from Belhaven Brewery Company Ltd.
86 out of 100 based on 1,671 ratings.