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Belhaven Scottish Ale - Belhaven Brewery Company Ltd.

Not Rated.
Belhaven Scottish AleBelhaven Scottish Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

1,744 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,744
Reviews: 838
rAvg: 3.81
pDev: 13.39%
Wants: 45
Gots: 166 | FT: 0
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:
Beer added by: Mitchster on 08-07-2001

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (27) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,744 | Reviews: 838
Photo of phishgator
3.83/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had this at Dwyer's Irish Pub. Served with on a nitro-tap. Came out creamy with a large foamy, thick head that dissipates quickly. The flavor is nice and mellow. A nice malt dominance. There's not much else in there, a slight hop presence, but notenough to balance. This is for someone who wants the malty beer without it being overly sweet. The body is medium and I drink this all night when I'm out.

Photo of tkarsies
3.8/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served cool from bottle into standard pint glass. Could not find a Best By date. Looks like a dark iced tea in a glass. Small tan head that leaves some lacing that lasts.
Smell was sweet with some malt aroma. Maybe a trace of smokiness. No hops discernable. Taste is also sweet up front with noticeable smoky and peat flavors. In my first sip, I thought I was tasting some alcohol flavors, but I soon realized this was just the peat and smoke. Very little nondescript hop bitterness allows the subtleties of the malt to show through. As thiswarms, the underlying smokiness comes out even more. I really didn’t notice nutty flavors described by some others.
Fairly light mouthfeel with slight creaminess. Not a lot of carbonation.
Easy to drink and had enough complexity to keep my interest as much as many bigger beers. This was my first Scottish ale and was very enjoyable. There was a lot of depth for a beer that is quite inexpensive.

Photo of Damian
3.74/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Drank on-tap at Matt Murphy's, Brookline, MA

Poured a crimson brown with a foamy, light saddle, two-finger head. Lots of nice effervescent action happening below the head. Intense lacing left a thin spider web film all the way down the glass.

Smell was mild and rather uninviting. Oakey, smoky and a bit musty with some dry English malts.

Taste was rich, sweet and practically all malt from start to finish. Notes of maple syrup were detectable up front before the beer turned somewhat nutty. Slightly crisp and dry finish.

Mouthfeel was creamy, smooth and syrupy. Medium to full-bodied. The only disappointing aspect of the mouthfeel was that there was too little carbonation (by the end of the beer, there was hardly any).

Overall, however, this beer was quite flavorful and easy drinking.

Photo of BitteBier
3.98/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a light caramel color as the widget-driven cascade does its thing. Settles into a clear, slightly reddish copper color, topped with a generous amount of tight, off-white foam. Nose is pleasant enough but faint until the beer warms a bit. The smell is highlighted by appetizing, lightly caramely malts with a hint of hops. The chewy smoothness of the mouthfeel is particularly striking and actually shows some hoppy crispness too--more balanced than expected and making this more drinkable than it might otherwise be. Taste is sweet and malty with some nutiness present too, all yielding several seconds later to let the hops join the dance. While not particularly exciting, this is an enjoyable beer.

Photo of jaluria
3.26/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured a translucent, medium brown color with a thick, frothy, white head. Aromas of alcohol, taffy, and roasted malt. Creamy texture, but not much beyond that. Hint of flavors that never seem to come together; not very flavorful. Some bitterness in the finish, but more dry than anything else. Not nearly as rich or as flavorful as others in this style.

Photo of Sixpoint
4.28/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Received this bottle from Robert Hodson at Union Beer. Thanks bro.

Nice slight haze in my pour...was this bottle-conditioned? A dallop of murky haze infused upon the last decant.

Smell? Love the peat-smoked malt. Very subtle, but it is there.

And it's in the taste! It's the highlight of the show. The peat shines through as a musty, carbon devil.

Slightly thin in the mouthfeel, but just a slight oiliness to make it interesting.

Hell of a drinkable brew. If it were on tap, I'd be all over it.

Photo of cerveza5150
3.95/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a dark amber color with a small, soapy head and small bubbles of carbonation,

S: Earthy/peat tones give way to caramel malts. No hops noticed.

T: Reminds me of a micro-brewed version of Newcastle. Tasty!

M: Clean and dry with subtle hop tones.

D: Excellent!!

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

On nitro-draft, 16 oz.

A - nitro tap effect is obvious. Head is thick, rich, and creamy. Very smooth, slightly off white. Retention and lacing are both excellent.

S - malt sugar, sweet, with slight hint of wood smoke, bare discernable. Little or no hop aroma.

T - decently balanced Scottish ale. Slightly sweet, malty beer with light notes of smoke. Flavors more subdued than other Scottish ales. No hop flavor, but there seems to be sufficient malt bitterness here to balance things out and not make it too sweet. Little bit of alcohol warmth too, although alcohol content is not too great.

M - medium bodied, very smooth. Carbonation average.

D - tasty beer, but not really something I'm going to go after again. There are better Scottish ales out there.

Photo of Albertv05
2.41/5  rDev -36.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12oz bottle.

Poured a nice dark copper color with maybe a few hints of reddish-orange. Nice head that remained with some lacing. The smell is minimal; smelled faintly of malts with no hops.

The first sip gave way to some sweet malts as I was expecting but then was followed up immediatly after by an overwhelming flavor of peatiness/earthiness/smokiness/and burnt flavors. These flavors would have been okay in the background but they are on the foreground so much so I was having a difficult time drinking it. It makes me wonder if I got a bad bottle. As the beer warmed up a bit, the flavors blended together a bit and it was easier to drink. Still, too much of those flavors I described.

Overall, I'd try this again and give it another shot but I really was not impressed.

Photo of arizcards
3.88/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a single at Cost Plus World Market at the end of June for $1.99.

Beer poured orange with a nice bubbly long lasting head. Nose has a malty, woody, and nutty notes. Taste has some complexity to it, definitely malty, somewhat nutty, but there is a slight apple hop finish to this. I am not sure if this is a pale or scottish ale. Mouthfeel is creamy and medium bodied. Drinkability is good. This is a pretty interesting beer, kind of different, and definitely worth a shot.

Photo of jasonjlewis
3.68/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Apperance: Good head, decent retention.
Smell: Roasted malts come through, but are faint.
Taste: Chocolate and caramel malts are present. Beer is malty, yet smooth. Not a lot of hops. A beer for malt lovers.
Mouthfeel: Smooth, Good mouthfeel. Not very carbonated.
Drinkability: A session beer. Doesn't go to hard on the taste buds. A good cold weather beer.

Photo of kirok1999
3.25/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours a bright amber/orange with a huge creamy head. Thick and sticky lacing.

Smells slightly sweet, faint malts, bready notes.

Tastes kinda thin and watery. Malts come through at first, mildly sweet. Some bread and butterscotch as well.

Very smooth and slightly carbonated.

Probably a good session beer but I prefer a stronger taste than this one.

Photo of Freshie
3.65/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

On what I assume to be a nitro-tap at the British Beer Company in downtown Plymouth, MA.

Nice dark amber colour with ceamy white head.

Aroma is sweet, and malty.

The taste is syrupy malt, and sweet, with hops coming after, and it finishes clean. After awhile the syprupy sweetness gets sticky in your mouth.

Very drinkable though, a good one to have if you want to for go the usual stout fare.

Photo of SkeeterHawk
4.02/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a slightly cloudy burnt copper color with a 1/4" of thick off white foam on top after a relatively aggressive pour. The head stuck around for about a minute to end up as a pretty consistent layer across the top of the beer. There is a bit of lacing left on the glass after drinking.

Aroma: There is a mild woody component to the aroma to add complexity to the sweet caramel driven base. This beer has a strong malt balance. There is a little fruitiness in this beer that is really pleasing and makes the aroma remind me of a caramel apple or something. It doesn't come across like a dessert would, but it is still a mild version of the aromatics.

Taste: The flavor is much bolder than the aroma suggested. This is a really nice beer with a malty backbone that has a defined dark caramel thing going on. There is a dry mossy/peaty flavor here that was only hinted at in the aroma. It is balanced toward the malt the whole time, and I really can't pick out any hops per-se. I get the mossy flavors and the dark caramel to give the balance a less than cloying edge, but very little in the way of bitterness. The lingering sweetness on the back of the throat suggest that this beer is bigger than it is.

Opinion: I am really enjoying this beer this time. I have had it in the past, but never on such a fresh palate. I like the malt complexity, and in some ways it rivals some traditional German Bocks. This is an easy drinking beer, and one that I would definitely drink again.

Photo of pmcadamis
4.15/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a very nice bottle depicting a horse drawn cart in a Scottish village. This brew is a reddish rootbeer brown and offers a one finger frothy head. Some nice sticky lacing coats the hell out of the glass. The head drops a bit, but a quick swirl brings it right back to one finger. This has one of the nicest heads I've ever seen. The brew itself looks a little bit watered down though.

The aroma is full of rich sweet malt. I detect candy caramel, loads of vanilla, tapioca, and brown sugar. A trace of hop sting is hiding behind the confectionery of candided malt notes. This smells rich, warm, and inviting like baking a cake in a warm kitchen in the winter.

Tastes rich, earthy, peaty, and sweet. There is a firm earth base that supports a wave of sweetness follwed by a nice hop bite and a dry finish. This is exceptional!

My only complaint is that it is very watery and very thin. I love the nose and the taste is great, it's just ....well, watered down like weak tea.

This brew is extremely quaffable though, and that makes up for the watered down mouthfeel a little. I really like this one alot, but I feel like it could have been better. Almost there, but falls short.

Photo of Toddv29424
3.48/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a crystal brown color. Smell is basically non-existent, with a hint of malt. The taste is firmly in the malt column, and though there is some talk of hops on the bottle. The carbonation, however, is perfect for the style. Very light and serves as a terrific foil for the malt.

Photo of agharris73
4.17/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - Warm amber, watchful carbination, excellent head retention.

Smell - Not much of a smell, aroma is pretty clean. Slight hint of malt and nuts.

Taste - Very smooth with a velvet finish. Rich flavors not overly concentrated on one specific region.

Mouthfeel - Almost makes you want to hold longer than most to let it absorb deeper into your thoughts. Excellent taste.

Drinkability - Finished 2 of 4 and may conosider another 4. Recommending to all by fellow beer lovers. Not for the faint beer drinker.

Really tasty beer that takes the edge off. Can see myself drinking this more and more. Not sure of any pubs that serve in my area this treat. But will keep my eyes out.

Photo of beachbum1975
3.88/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this last Saturday night on tap at deSha's in Montgomery, Ohio. Served in a traditional pint glass, it had a wonderful cascading effect leaving a two finger tall offwhite head. I was a rich, opaque amber in color.

It had a wonderful, well-balanced ale taste. Excellent fall beer, because it was thicker in body. I really enjoyed this ale - so much so, that I had to have three that night - (for the purpose of BA reviews only, of course).

Highly reccommended if you can find it!

Photo of MrHurmateeowish
3.78/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I was fully expecting a wee-heavy type ale (theirs is very good), but that is not what this beer is. Reddish-amber body with initially finger-thick head that dissipates. Smells malty, like a scotch ale or a wee heavy. Tasty, malty with some muted hop. Tastes similar in some ways to Old Speckled Hen, but not quite as strong and way better.

Photo of nlmartin
3.86/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer was served in a Imperial Pint glass.

Appearance: This beer has a clear effervescent caramel coloration. The head is a massive at three fingers. The beers head is a creamy biege coloration. The beer leaves rings of lacing around my glass. This is a fantastic looking beer.

Smell: The beer doesnt really have a assertive smell. The beer has a bit of spicy smokeyness combined with a wiff of peat. The maltyness lifts its head just slightly in the smell.

Taste: The beer has a good toasted malty flavor. The beer has undertones of smoked peat and oakyness.

Mouthfeel/ Drinkability: This beer has a very creamy mouthfeel. The beer is well carbonated. The beer doesnt have any extreme flavors present. This beer is very easy to drink. I think I would pick this one over Guiness any day of the week. This has just become my new sessionable beer.

Photo of Alexmc2
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

My definition of a Scottish Ale is a Belhaven. That said, the beer pours a dark brown, with a light tan head. I wasn't too impressed with the smell. Maybe it smells better off tap, and the nitro-can affected the smell somehow. But this beer tastes like pure malt, with some mild nut and other flavors. It goes down easy as well, I could find myself drinking 3 or 4 of these in a night.

Photo of elricorico
3.98/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked up in Cranbrook BC a couple of weeks back. This beer has a very unique colour, a medium brown with a hint of redness to it, but that doesn't quite describe it. A good two centimeter thick head of foamy ivory froth has formed, and leaves sticky lacing on the sides.

The smell is mostly hops, kind of a fresh soapy aroma. A little bit herbal and a little bit nutty. Not bad, but nothing too exciting.

Taste starts a little light, but really comes to life in the middle. A nice malty peat smoke flavour, that is layered over a caramel base. Nut flavour remains, but is faint. Finish is quite smoky, and after a big mouthfull, the smoke seems to rise into my nose. Quite a big flavour for a smaller beer.

The body is fairly light, and the carbonation is on the higher side. It works for this beer, although a bit more body would be even better.

I wasn't expecting to be so pleased by this beer, in fact I almost didn't bother picking it up even though it isn't available here. Now I wish I had gotten two.

Photo of HoustonTX
4.12/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Ruby brown, poured a nice sized head. Average lacing/reten.

S - Nutty malt/small notes of hops.

T - Mid-bodied. Taste has a nice nutty malt carress upfront - hugs the palate. Hops sweep in to balance everything out. Creamy mouthfeel.

A highly sessionable Scottish Ale, and one that's always refreshing to drink.

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

Pours clear light brown, rather tea-like in color. Head is stark white thick and creamy. Solidity is amazing.

Smell is buttery caramel maltiness. Hints of fruit and nut.

Taste is far more mellow than the nose had led me to expect. Pleasant toasted malt, peat, and a nice nutty quality. Fruitiness adds complexity. Finish has a touch of floral hop.

Mouthfeel is light bodied. Quite smooth in character.

A very mild but interesting and complex brew. Well worth a try.

Photo of bashiba
3.96/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured a nice dark crystal clear amber with a long lasting thick tan Nitro Head.

Smell had a sweet malty aroma with hints of bread and hops.

Taste has a nice light grain body with a slightly sweet woodyness and a strong smoke flavor in the finish.

Mouthfeel is creamy smooth and full - Thanks Nitro.

Very tasty beer, maybe the best beer I have ever had out of a can.

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Belhaven Scottish Ale from Belhaven Brewery Company Ltd.
86 out of 100 based on 1,744 ratings.