Belhaven Twisted Thistle IPA - Belhaven Brewery Company Ltd.
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Ratings: 640 | Reviews: 397 | Display Reviews Only:
4.85/5 rDev +31.1%
bought at a liquor store in suburban St. Paul, MN
Beautiful amber brew with giant, very fluffy, very substantial creamy head.
Great smell that pulls you in. The taste is great. I don't know if I would call it an IPA (at least by American standards) but it is a very well-balanced Pale Ale. Great malty flavor that reminds me faintly of the taste of a copper penny. Quite dry and just absolutely perfect. Very smooth mouthfeel.
Extremely drinkable. I wish I bought more than one bottle. This is the best beer I've had in some time.
09-10-2008 05:48:48 | More by jmbranum
4.83/5 rDev +30.5%
Tasted on-tap 01/10/07 at St. Andrews pub in Times Square in NY, NY.
Nice golden/copper color with a decent oof-white head. Very nice floral/herb/grassy (heather-like?) hop aroma and flavor. Seems perfectly balanced without being sweet or bitter in any way. Medium bodied and creamy smooth with a nice balanced finish.
One of the best English IPA's that I've ever had... refreshing more so probably because I had it right after the Belhaven Wee Heavy. What a contrast - 2 great but very different beers.
02-02-2007 17:56:52 | More by RBorsato
4.6/5 rDev +24.3%
I let out an audible gasp of delight when I saw this brown half liter bottle in a Moscow supermarket I'd never visited before. The brown and silver label shows a close-up of a thistle above the name. Cascade and Challenger hops are the only ingredients listed on the English label. The Russian import label also lists wheat and "sugar syrup." Best before 5/1/07, there was no way I was going to let this one stand in my closet or fridge for long.
Pours a clear copper under a one finger white head with nice consistency and excellent retention (there was still some head left when I finished the glass). The head clung well to the glass, leaving some very nice lace. The nose is wonderful - absolutely full of pine hops. The mouth is very prickly and fairly light, yet manages to stick well on the palate. Classic American IPA taste, despite its British origins, with sweet syrupy malt upfront, followed immediately by strong coniferous hops spice and bitter. Very smooth, despite the strong hops, which hit the finish with a great espresso and pine sap bite. The bitter lingers long after the liquid is gone, coating the jowls and tonsils with a lovely dry sensation. Only the second IPA I've found in 3.5+ years in Moscow, this is my kind of brew. Yum!
05-07-2006 16:18:04 | More by Globetrotter
4.6/5 rDev +24.3%
Appearance: Dark copperish color, fairly standard, nice fluffy white head, a little visible carbonation.
Smell: Nice floral/citrus hop aroma, sweet carmel and biscuit malt.
Taste. Tart and bitter, bready malts, fruity, and creamy. Definitely one of the higher powered and interesting british IPAs I have had. The higher levels of hops and the citrus flavor really set it apart.
Mouthfeel: Can't complain, carbonated well for the style.
Drinkability: Probably my favorite british IPA to date (besides the 1800 that was brewed in Minneapolis). Very good, try it, you american hophead.
10-21-2005 01:26:21 | More by TastyTaste
4.58/5 rDev +23.8%
This arrived with a finger of thick, bone-white head that slowly reduced to wisps. Color was a beautiful deep-amber with NE-plus quality clarity. BUPGOO! Nose had a pronounced citrus hoppiness - an American-style IPA from the SCOTS?!? Zounds! Mouthfeel was soft, like they had gotten really, really good water for use in its production. There was a flowery, mildly citric hop flavor on the tongue. This represented (for me) a welcome bridge between too-mild English IPAs and over-the-top-hoppy American IPAs. Hello, Goldilocks! Finish was a nice mix of hops and malt, very pleasant. It kind of put me in mind of DFH 60" or hop tea, neither bad things of which to be reminded.
07-06-2010 15:10:59 | More by woodychandler
4.56/5 rDev +23.2%
poured from a clear bottle(?) and smells skunky. pours a super light amber, nice color, minimal head but consistent lacing.
smells is skunky from afar and does not smell like the typical IPA. in fact, i think there MUST be some confusion. my bottle looks NOTHING like the bottle up top, nor is it THAT dark. it's not dark at all. and the label states abv is 6.1% has no one else caught these dissimilarities?
taste starts caramel-y and malty and sweet but finishes with the hop bitter and dry. "a bitter dry taste explosion", says the bottle. and it delivers. i like these Belhaven brews. the Wee Heavy is one of my all time favorites.
this isnt the typical IPA, but it is good. not that i like the IPA style. as i drink more i am more aware of the bitterness and it is more prevalent in my mind and mouth than the sweet maltiness i tasted on my first sip. while not my favorite style, i fully respect what they have done with this. 'mouthfeel' wasnt special for me, it seemed kind of 'regular' but the color is beautiful, smell was provocative and different than i was expecting and so was the taste. for me, my ratings are accurate of how i feel about this one....
02-08-2013 01:34:26 | More by pkalix
4.53/5 rDev +22.4%
**This is my first review, forgive any errors**
I had this on tap at The Pub (a small, regional chain), at the Greene in Beavercreek, Ohio.
I felt I should write this review because a lot of the reviews in the "D" category wrote about things I didn't experience with my beer. Twisted Thistle came recommended to me by the bartender (or "barkeep") there, and I found it to be delicious.
Appearance: Amber. The head I got, unlike some reviews, was a very creamy, offwhite color that stayed nearly the entire time I drank it. Also, I didn't see any evidence of these supposed "floaties." The barkeep gave an extra rinse to each glass before pouring, so those "floaties" could very well have been in an unclean glass.
Smell: A clean smell that really got my mouth watering. The smell is reminiscent of the taste, and will not let you down.
Taste: I had a Dogfish Head 60 min. IPA earlier in the night, and the barkeep suggested Twisted Thistle because he thought it had a "cleaner finish." He was right, the finish was very clean and didn't leave any impure or off-putting tastes in my mouth, promising me a great next sip. The flavor was much maltier than other IPAs I've tired, but it was a welcomed taste that differentiates it.
Mouthfeel: None too heavy. A little thin considering the full taste you get, but this feel just leads to a higher ranking for the...
Drinkability: I could have drank this all night. I've found a new go-to beer that won't let me down when I don't feel like trying something new.
12-07-2009 19:39:48 | More by flintm
4.53/5 rDev +22.4%
Nice pour at "The Pub" in Columbus, Oh provided me with 1/2 finger of fine white head in a Belhaven official pint glass. Straw/amber colored brew with very hazy appearance looks extremely tasty and complex.
The aroma is of mild hops, clover, lavender, heather and apple. Extremely complex and unique.
The flavor is a wonderful combination of hoppy bitterness, and sweetness with notes of honey, orange, and necterine. It could be said that this beer is nicely floral and very drinkable. I loved it and wich I could get this beer on tap locally.
02-08-2009 22:06:19 | More by ABOWMan
British Columbia (Canada)
4.5/5 rDev +21.6%
Finally a British brewed IPA that doesn't disappoint!
Nice light copper-amber colour with a thick white head. The scent is hops and malt, and they don't compete...they blend nicely. Citrus, floral hints.
Hop bite, but malt sweetness on the tongue. Very floral taste. The malts don't overpower the hops like many British IPAs, yet this is not nearly as hoppy as an American IPA. Well balanced. Sweet tart hints on the tongue.
Good carbonation, maybe a little on the light side. I only wish I had bought more.
06-12-2006 06:32:19 | More by BDTyre
4.5/5 rDev +21.6%
Bottle Inspection: Uniquely shaped thin necked brown 1 pt 9 fl oz bottle, mentions Cascade and Challenger hops (mmm...) 6.1% abv., imported by Belukus marketing in Bryan, Tx.
Aroma: Pine needle perfume backed by a gentle sugary malt base. Pine? I thought the C hops were citric! Interesting. There is almost a spice note; I cant catch what it is (the wife calls Apple butter), and hints of alcohol.
Appearance: Pours a clear perfect amber glass with a solid finger of frothy multi-sized bubbled head that looks like it might outlive me. It stubbornly holds long into the beer leaving 3 dimensional tide marks.
Flavor: Smoke?! Definitely a peat smoke flavor going on. The malt is full and rich, actually hiding most of the hop flavors. Guess that puts this into the English IPA slot. The smoke is the first taste, it flashes to slightly sweet malt, the fades out balanced with a gentle smoke whisper. Little to no hops in the profile. Wow, twisted.
Mouthfeel: Spot on medium body, lively but firm carbonation, lingering finish with a touch of oil, but not much.
Overall Impression: Wow, this one is different. Not over the top -look at me-look at me- different, just a lot of subtle notes that werent expected. They all fit together very nicely and have me thinking about trying to brew a Smoked IPA. Have to give this one a strong recommendation, good taste, different direction. Bravo!
11-08-2005 04:06:22 | More by HardTarget
4.5/5 rDev +21.6%
I poured this brew from a pint+ bottle, had a caramel aroma with hints of biscuit, poured golden clear color with a minimal head, tasted a medium bitterness, lightly sour and a dry bitter finish; definetly a smooth beer that I could drink all night long; I had this one while enjoying some pasta with shrimp and parmesan and was excellent complement to the meal
12-09-2009 03:09:51 | More by mikeborglum
4.5/5 rDev +21.6%
500ml bottle with batch label printed on the base of the neck. it is "L8 235 A", and i had to ask belhaven themselves what it meant: the only things pertinent to the consumer is the "8" (year 2008) and the "235", being the 235th day of the year.
clear, medium amber with copper tones. fluffy off-white head fades slowly to a wispy layer. lovely webby lacing.
aroma has moderately citrusy hops and mildly piney too, even while pouring. biscuity malt with hint of caramel. fruity apple notes, then a faint metallic whiff in the end.
a blast of american hops on the palate, with a biscuity malt foundation. moment of tartness with crisp carbonation and moderate bitterness in the middle. more apple hints, then a moment of diacetyl, then more resins and mildly citrusy hop for a crisp, semi-dry finish.
smooth medium body with faint resins in the finish, and nice crisp carbonation that isn't overdone and complements the flavors.
nice to see the scots using american (chinook) hops. this is really more of a hybrid american/english IPA, but great all the same.
03-16-2009 07:31:32 | More by tai4ji2x
4.5/5 rDev +21.6%
I had this beer at the Don Hall's restaurante on Coventry Lane in Fort Wayne, IN. An avid IPA enthusiast, I immediately settled for the Twisted Thistle after giving the beer menu a once over- a decision I can honestly say i rejoiced.
It is a fantastic beer. It was an IPA all right, but it had that distinctive Scottish quality wherein the hoppiness is subtle but at the same time, pervasive. I am already looking forward to my next bottle.
10-24-2006 04:34:42 | More by cafemondegar
Belhaven Twisted Thistle IPA from Belhaven Brewery Company Ltd.
84 out of 100 based on 640 ratings.