Belhaven Twisted Thistle IPA - Belhaven Brewery Company Ltd.
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Ratings: 641 | Reviews: 397 | Display Reviews Only:
4/5 rDev +8.1%
Pours a one finger white head that fades quickly to a thin layer leaving a little lace. Cloudy amber color. Medium carbonation and medium bodied. Piney nose. Starts almost with a malty sweetness, smooth, hops are here but not in your face, finish is mellow. Very good IPA but McEwan's is better. $3.05 for a 500ml bottle from Colonial Spirits Acton, Ma.
04-14-2006 22:29:31 | More by jdhilt
2.15/5 rDev -41.9%
Pours an orange/yellow color with particles in suspension. Very light on the carbonation. Thin head of off white bubbles. Aroma is earthy with a touch of citrus and grass.
Taste uh taste is astringent and reminiscent of socks. Stinky, dirty, sweaty, socks. Simply awful. I am so overwhelmed and distracted by this awful sock flavor that I cant pick up much else. Cant wait to get the taste out of my mouth.
500ml is way to much of this tragedy. Oh the humanity.
04-08-2006 20:52:27 | More by sacfly
4.25/5 rDev +14.9%
The first 'real' Scottish IPA Ive tried, Im impressed.
Pours a gorgeous orange amber color with a blizzard like multitude of tiny carbonation bubbles languidly floating to the surface. The eggshell cap dissipates quickly but leaves spectacular lace trails and escarpments. The aroma is citrusy and a little piney with some toasted caramel cake. The taste is like a slightly hoppier Fuller's ESB with more citrus. Fruity malt and hops strike a perfect balance. Earthy and grassy hop flavors are also present.
I taste a slight smokeyness like in all the Belhaven beers Ive tried, maybe its my imagination but is there peat smoked malt in here? The mouthfeel is full and flawlessly carbonated. The finish is moderately bitter and slightly grainy.
This is a great IPA, much more hops than usual for a UK version. Its well balanced too, maybe my fav from this brewery.
04-06-2006 01:33:32 | More by CAMRAhardliner
4.03/5 rDev +8.9%
Served from a 375 ml bottle into a pint glass.
Appearance: Pours a hazy orange with a white creamy head.
Smell: Strong pine hops aroma with slight malt, fruit and sweet aroma.
Taste: Starts with out a malt sweetness that moves to a bitter/pine hop flavor. Ends slightly dry. As the beer warms a smokiness comes out which is not overpowering at all but adds to the flavor of the beer.
Mouthfeel: Smooth but slightly chewy Mouthfeel with the right amount of carbonation.
Drinkability: Very drinkable.
This is my first English IPA and thought that this was a good brew. I look forward to trying other beers from this brewery.
04-06-2006 01:09:12 | More by bahumutx
3.63/5 rDev -1.9%
This brew pours a crystal clear golden maple while unleashing a burly head which retains well.
Aroma is evident as soon as you open the bottle. Pine forest nose along with some fruit notes make for an enjoyable scent.
Moderate carbonation with a clean, almost thin to medium body. Taste onsets with some initial hop bite and alcohol astringency and tapers to a earthy, grainy finish. This is pretty bitter up front. The finish reminds me of an unbalanced pilsner. I guess this is what to expect from an English IPA? Not much experience in this arena, although IPA's are another thing. I wish I had the beer vocabulary to describe what it is that ruins this beer for me. Ruin is a bit strong of a word. This isn't a bad beer, it's just not great.
03-29-2006 00:20:15 | More by sinistermadman
3.98/5 rDev +7.6%
375ml bottle into a nonic. Tons of carbonation. A careful pour throws up 3inches of very active off-white foam that slowly dies down into a chunky rocky fluffy pillow. Plenty of lace. The beer itself is a slightly hazy orangey amber. Almost ice tea colored. Nice big aroma sweet with toffee, bread, orange and plenty of hops. The hops are big and very American in character. The bottle mentions a blend of cascade and challenger and both seem evident. The challenger does a nice job of providing body to the cascade.
Hits the tongue with a dual assault of sweet crystal malt and hops. Toffee, caramel, and fresh wholegrain bread are all in abundance along with a rich layer of herbal and spicy hops. The hops meld seamlessly with the malt to give a huge amount of flavor that lays thick on the tongue. Bitterness is apparent but understated. The rich sweet palate here could really use more bitter to balance it out and keep the fatigue down.
Mouthfeel is very full and sticky. Carbonation is high, but not enough to cut the thick malt. Drinkability is reduced as a result, but I would still love to drink more than I should. I was pretty skeptical of a Belhaven IPA but they did a great job with this one. Plenty of Scottiish malt character with enough hops to satisfy most american style hopheads.
03-23-2006 03:17:41 | More by skizziks
3.68/5 rDev -0.5%
Rich fruit cocktail hop aroma, with hints of spruce and dried pine, as well as hints of red apple and caramel. This IPA is mellow and balanced, and I like the hop character. Its not medicinal or floral at all, like other English IPAs. On the palate, yellow banana peel and red apple notes are present, with fine and sharp hop flavors coming in on the mid-palate. A heavy body comes next, with hints of caramel. Pretty good.
03-22-2006 06:12:16 | More by Crosling
3.68/5 rDev -0.5%
Pours honey colred with a 4 fingers+ fluffy off-white head. Average head retention & some lacing
Smell: Fruit and honey
Taste: Malt sweetness, grapefruitty hops, slight smokeiness. dry citrussy finish
mF: Syruppy with some creaminess
Drinkable enough, but nothing special for the style. Worth a try
03-21-2006 07:02:05 | More by russpowell
4.22/5 rDev +14.1%
The beer pours a hazy dark gold/amber color with a thick frothy white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a dry, malty scent that boasts of pale and crystal malts along with a nice bitter hop bite. It's creamy with a slight peated aroma. The taste is great. It has a smooth, malty flavor that is complimented with a bitter hop taste. It is dry with a smokey feel; very nice. The malt flavor is quite complex and well balanced. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a medium/full bodied beer with good carbonation. This is a damn good English IPA. It has good aroma and a wonderful flavor; a good drinker.
03-18-2006 21:57:37 | More by WesWes
3.35/5 rDev -9.5%
Poured a murky yellow/copper color with visible sediment lingering throughout the pint even though I left the last bit in the bottle. Poured with a healthy head which died away rather quickly. Smells of roasted grains with no hop aroma detectable. I realize English IPA's have less emphasis on hops than American IPA's, but I expected a different smell.
Taste is unlike any other IPA I've ever had. An initial citrus bite on the tongue hints that hops are present after all. This is followed by and finishes with a roasted maltiness that leaves me wishing for more hops. While this one starts strong I don't enjoy the finish and can't say I'll be going back for more.
03-17-2006 04:33:27 | More by bkett01
3.53/5 rDev -4.6%
Poured a amber, orangish amalgamation and very clear. Small, tight white foam with a soap dish type body.
Aroma of relatively fresh hops with a real citrusy character to them. A grass or hay notes linger in the back as well.
Flavors were very muted caramel and malted barely that were quickly overrun by the gritty, bittering present.
Mouthfeel is medium for the most part with just a hint of a metallic bitter hop grind. Not very characteristically UK to me, seemed more PAC NW.
Drinkability is pretty good and condering travel on the import, the beer holds up pretty well. would be intrigued by a draught version.
03-16-2006 16:08:24 | More by CRJMellor
4.25/5 rDev +14.9%
hazed orangey amber with a thick tan head.
the aroma is sweet caramel, with herbal hops and peat.
lots of sweet toasted caramel backed by a heavy dose of smoked peat flavor. bitter from middle to end. nutty butterscotch behind it all.
medium bodied and smooth with moderate carbonation.
good drinkability, though possibly not for everyone there is a lot of smoky peat in this one. very unique and very good in my opinion though.
03-15-2006 23:46:16 | More by kmo1030
4.33/5 rDev +17%
16.9 oz bottle poured into a tilip pint. The beer is a lightly coppered orange color with a finger with a little haze. A finger and a half of white head falls to a full coat over the liquid. A very healthy cascade of bubbles flow from the bottom of the glass. The nose is moderate in intensity, with caramel and toasty malt notes dominating, with a crisp lightly citrusy and mildly earthy hop. I like the mild hopping with the malt forward for the English IPA. Flavor is very nice. Definately reminds me a bit of the Belhaven Scottish with the peated malt character being very prevalent in the first sip. The caramel character is much more subdued. Hop notes are light citrusy sweet, but definately not a dominant part of the flavor. The finish is a nice combination between a good peatyness and a clean caramel sweetness. Feel is on the fuller end of moderate, with very mild carbonation. I like the fullness, as it gives me a feel of having a nice substantial brew. Overall, I enjoy this one. The peated character is not too strong, and balances well with the caramel and light hopping. This is a beer I will visit again. Very tasty.
03-13-2006 00:16:33 | More by kmpitz2
3.65/5 rDev -1.4%
Poured a rich deep golden with a nice creamy white two finger head that slowly settles leaving a sheet of lace behind.Aromas are English all the way herbal "green" a little minty over top of caramel malt seems to have a hard water elemant as well.Flavors are mild compared to the American more hop driven IPA's,herbal and a touch earthy with a big caramelly sweet malt base wich is just as big as the hop character.This is as balanced an IPA I have had not bad but I want more hops in my IPA I guess.
03-13-2006 00:13:04 | More by oberon
3.33/5 rDev -10%
This one poured a light amber color with a small head that was gone quick and didn't leave any lacing on the glass. The aroma had some toasted malt and quite a bit of European hops. The flavor was much the same. Lots of Euro hop flavors along with a toasted malt character. Interesting. The body is medium and the drinkability is ok.
03-10-2006 18:05:23 | More by clvand0
1.93/5 rDev -47.8%
I went into this beer with high hopes and was quickly shot down upon first sip. While I am a big whisky fan as well as an IPA fan, the 2 simply do not mix. The peat was just overpowering and mixed with the hops, it just was plain awful in my book. This soon ended up down the drain. Managed about 2 sips and that was all. Color was nice with a great head but appearance is about all this beer has going for it.
03-09-2006 23:43:15 | More by Jdiddy
4.03/5 rDev +8.9%
A orange/amber beer with a slight haze. Has a big creamy off white head and plenty of good lace. The aroma starts as soon as you open the bottle and a distinct piney hop character jumps out. There is also a light orange citrus note along with a caramel malt in the background. OK this IS a Scottish version of an IPA. Because the first thing you get in the flavor is a strong peat smoke character. Then the english toffee flavors come in followed by a light dry piney hop finish.
03-07-2006 23:33:01 | More by ybnorml
3.33/5 rDev -10%
Interesting and peculiar. Hopped to the extent that American IPAs would exhibit, but with the English variety. Moderately malty, caramelly, vanilla, and toffee. The hops impart a woodsy (oak), earthy, and a plastic character that's evident in the nose and flavor. Lightly fruity: from peaches and apricots to dates and nuts. Alcohols are light, lending a warm and drying nature to the body and finish. Good beer, just a little peculiar in the hop characteristics.
03-05-2006 16:51:28 | More by BEERchitect
4.1/5 rDev +10.8%
I've had this on tap but i'm going to review the bottle because i like it a bit more.
A - poured a cloudy burnt orange color with a solid finger of ivory white lace. Good bubbles dancing up the glass.
S - like a damp meadow after a light rain with a very slight touch of of a rounded bitter citrus.
T - Mmmm, i like this. The taste of earthy leaves with a mild hop bitterness that blends into a peaty smokiness. Not overpowering but present, consistent and flavorful. Maybe it's smashed thistle? Dont know but it's good.
M&Dr - good medium body and solid carbonation. Slick on the tongue and leaves an all around good feel in the mouth. I really like this brew. I'm going to be keeping some in my cooler.
03-04-2006 00:30:13 | More by SwillinBrew
3.58/5 rDev -3.2%
(Served in an American pint glass)
A- This beer has a faintly hazy golden orange body with a thin white lacy head. There was very little carbonation but a few slow bubbles gliding to the surface.
S- The soft faint hops note has a citrus note but the citrus is more with the lightly toasted malt notes than with the hops.
T- The pale malt has a hint of dry crystal malt flavor that is a bit earthy. There is a slight soft band-aid taste that might be an off flavor or might be a smoky peat flavor. There is a nice hop bitterness in the finish.
M- This beer has a medium mouthfeel with a slight creamy texture.
D- Im not sure about this beer. I can't tell if there was supposed to be that unique band-aid flavor, which was not nearly as strong as some homebrews with infections, or if it was another flavor of malt that I wasn't expecting in an IPA.
03-02-2006 23:27:58 | More by rhoadsrage
4/5 rDev +8.1%
Appearance The huge, stubborn, foamy head promised the traditional big yeast of the style. The body also was a deep, dark orange, alluding to the same commitment.
Smell Ah, definitely an Englander. The hops are mild, the nuts pronounce, the yeast . . . uh . . . yeasty, and the malts light but very prominent.
Taste Oh, man, this has a very strong smoky peat flavor that I missed at the nose. The spices are herblike and very big. The hops and malt from the nose are here but clearly overshadowed by the yeast and spicing.
Mouthfeel This is actually a solid medium-bodied with some good carbonation (examples of the style imported here into the US are often cheap and fizzy like Alka-Seltzer). The bitterness is very easy on the tongue.
Drinkability The herbal flavoring takes some getting used to and I didnt see that big smoky character advertised anywhere on the bottle, but me likes it. Also, the label says that it has Cascade hops, but damned if I could find them. Why would you put Cascade hops in an English-style IPA anyway?
03-02-2006 01:55:30 | More by RoyalT
4.22/5 rDev +14.1%
Poured out a light copper with a large, frothy, white head. Decent lacing throughout. A very hop-forwarded nose. Tons of cascade and challenger allow the malt to come through. This is one delicious beer. Lots of citrusy and resinous hops at first which lead into a peaty malt, followed by a pleasently lingering hop bitterness. I only wish that the malt would speak up a bit more, aside from the smokiness. The mouthfeel is full with a good amount of carbonation to liven up the palate. A truly unique IPA.
02-28-2006 03:25:54 | More by goochpunch
3.78/5 rDev +2.2%
Great looking beer on the pour. Light copper and slightly hazy. A decent sized head that went away but left a wonderful cap. Great lace. Some suspended floaties. I like it.
Aroma is very floral and grassy. A touch of citrus and a touch of chocolate. A bit of caramel and a lingering of pine.
A good mouthfeel. Creamy on the palate. Bubbly on the swallow which seem to wash the flavor away quickly. Some dryness.
Taste is hoppy, of course. Grassy. Pine. A tad harsh, but overall very good.
02-26-2006 08:19:20 | More by Fugazme
4.05/5 rDev +9.5%
500 ml bottle purchased at LaBodega in Riverside CA, Feb 2006, for $3.49. However, I also had a chance to try a small sample on tap at Hollingshead a week or so prior to this tasting. This review includes some of both, but focuses on the bottle.
Pours a medium orange-amber, slightly hazy, with a decent off-white head that quickly drops to a thin, but solid cover over the beer (Abbey Ales Imperial Pint Glass).
Aroma is flowers and bright semi-sweet citrus (tangerines).
Flavor is definite hops, grassy/weedy and slightly oily. Not nearly as strong hop profile as many US IPAs. This fits at the higher end of the hop spectrum for English IPAs. Citrus is there too, but more like limes or grapefruit than sweet citrus. Malts are roasty and slighty smoky. End is where the hops sharpness is most prominent.
Nice creamy mouthfeel- just the kind I like in a beer. Overall, a nice IPA on a Saturday afternoon.
02-26-2006 00:00:48 | More by Dukeofearl
3.65/5 rDev -1.4%
The beer poured into the glass hazy golden amber with a very low off-white head which lasted to barely lace the glass.
The aroma was malty with a lighty floral and fruity character. There was a bit of hop presence but it was low, slightly resinous and grassy. As the beer warmed a bit of smoky character emerged.
The flavor was dry from the get go with a mineral flavor profile and light/very low citrus and grassy flavors. Their was a caramel malt presence, but it was more akin to a Bitter than to an ESB level or an IPA. The flavor also contained a low level of smoke, perhaps a yeast contribution.
The finish was dry with a lasting grassy bittering into the aftertaste, but not a bright bittering and hop flavor, more of a muted presence. The body was medium. The smoke was a bit out of character for any IPA and the beer just didn't work out for me. Not bad, but nothing to seek out IMO.
16.9 ounce bottle.
02-13-2006 23:55:39 | More by GCBrewingCo
Belhaven Twisted Thistle IPA from Belhaven Brewery Company Ltd.
84 out of 100 based on 641 ratings.