Dismiss Notice
Get 12 monthly issues of BeerAdvocate magazine and save $5 when you select "auto-renew."

Subscribe now →
Dismiss Notice
Join our email list →

And we'll send you the latest updates and offers from BeerAdvocate, because knowing is half the battle.

Belhaven Scottish Stout - Belhaven Brewery Company Ltd.

Not Rated.
Belhaven Scottish StoutBelhaven Scottish Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

278 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 278
Hads: 635
Avg: 3.93
pDev: 12.21%
Wants: 60
Gots: 94 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Belhaven Brewery Company Ltd.
United Kingdom (Scotland) | website

Style | ABV
English Stout | 7.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: John_M on 02-28-2009

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (29) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 278 | Hads: 635
Photo of TheSixthRing
3.69/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Pours black in color with a near 2 finger, light tan head. Good retention results in a thin but consistent layer of suds across the surface. Fair lacing all around the glass with decent stick.

Smell - Not especially pungent, but what's there hits with notes of dark, semi-sweet chocolate, faint roastiness and a touch of earth and smokiness.

Taste - Follows the nose, but with more abundance Dark, semi-sweet chocolate is predominant, and backed by moderate notes of smoky character. Slight sourness. Roasty, coffee-like bitterness can be found faintly in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel - On the lighter side of medium bodied, a bit thin for the style, and with low to moderate carbonation. Not much going on with the mouthfeel.

Overall - Solid flavor that's right up my alley, but let down by a fairly lifeless and thin mouthfeel. In all, a good beer, but for the price I'd likely look elsewhere for my stout kick.

 927 characters

Photo of woosterbill
4.03/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

500ml bottle from 2009, poured into a Duvel tulip.

A: A hard pour is required to produce an inch of fine tan head atop a black body with clear brown highlights. Retention is pretty solid, and there's some spotty lace. Quite nice for a vintage brew.

S: Brownie, cocoa, coconut, toasted bread, and faint coffee. No oxidation at all. Really pleasant.

T: There is a touch of sherry-like dark fruit oxidation here, but it blends quite well with the rich, creamy chocolate maltiness. Brownie batter, cocoa powder, and mild bitterness on the finish. Tasty.

M: Smooth, creamy medium body with low carbonation. Pretty good.

O: I bought this one years ago in order to tick the English Stout style, but then lost track of it in the cellar after finding another one on tap. I didn't expect it to be worthwhile after all this time, but it's been quite the treat. Really rich, smooth, and tasty. Good stuff.

Cheers!

 908 characters

Photo of jayhass
3.79/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Color is black with a little amber light coming through the top of the glass. Slight tan head that that keeps a light cover over the top of the beer. Smell - light chocolate with a good amount of nuttiness and very light roasted malt. Taste - Semi sweet chocolate with good amount of nuttiness just like the aroma. Some earthiness or wood from the hops. A different take on a stout that is well done.

 400 characters

Photo of artoolemomo
4.21/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours up a good amount of head which is currently dissipating rather quickly. It has slowed down somewhat with minimal amounts of lacing left. The head is a weak and pale beige while the body is a dark chocolate brown which shows some garnet when held up to the light.

Nose- Very nice and well integrated. Coffee (with sweet and some sour notes) is the most dominant aspects followed by chocolate and cherries (light). Lots of roasted malt notes with a lot of nuttiness as well. If the profile follows the nose, this will be a solid beer. What it might lack in the complexity, it makes up with presence. There is caramel on the nose as well.

Taste- Roasted and coffee notes start to appear at first followed by some nuttiness, slight hint of cherry. There's a bit of chocolate matched with caramel. If the flavor was as strong as the nose was, the caramel would hint at vanilla and toffee as well. There is some toffee as well. At the moment, this beer has a weak finish (somewhat watery and thin). However, a second taste shows this not to be case and this is simply what I have come to expect from beers from the United Kingdom- the beer is complex but so well integrated, individual notes tend to become lost. This is a very solid beer that appears to be slightly underrated by reviewers. Touches of honey exist in the flavor profile. All the sour, sweet, and bitter notes of the coffee are subdued to the point of sublimity. All the notes on the flavor profile seem to suggest coconut at times. This is a must for fans of well blended malts.

Mouthfeel- Medium bodied with a touch of silkiness. A touch of carbonation but this beer would be fine without it. Not exactly rich and smooth but close.

Drinkability- Very easygoing. Great balance and no heat present at all. At around 5 bucks, this could be a repurchase.

Overall- A little surprised. Lots of structure and balance. This is close to a 4.25.

 1,913 characters

Photo of hackmann
3.33/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Appearance: black body with a thin tan head

Aroma: moderate-mild nose with dark roasted malts, toffee, sour oak,

Flavors: dark roasted grains, mild bitter dark chocolate, sweet toasted toffee, smoky oak note, light sour and/or green bottle funk on the finish

Mouthfeel: light fizzy feel, smooth, mild bitter note on the mid and finish, deep roasted notes;

To the Point: it’s good, nothing memorable, can’t say I would look for it again

 446 characters

Photo of HomrQT
4.92/5  rDev +25.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

I'm a huge Guinness lover and this was like a Guinness but with more flavor. I would highly recommend this beer. Sweet, not bitter, not hoppy. Very smooth, fairly heavy drink. I'm going to start hunting around for these bad boys to have at the house.

 250 characters

Photo of chinchill
4.11/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Undated 500ml clear(!) bottle served in a Belgian snifter.

A: Pours with a dark tan head over a pitch black, opaque body. The head slowly fades to a light covering and ring, leaving

Aroma: Medium and dark roasted malts with some raisins, other dark dried fruits, toffee and chocolate. Sweet and inviting.

T: Lots of dark malt flavors with a strong suggestion of chocolate and a hint of coffee. Starts sweet and is very mildly bitter by the mid-aftertaste. A little dark sweet fruit flavor with a faint touch of smoke and peat.
.
M: Full and somewhat thick but not syrupy; Smooth; Medium carbonation is a bit lively for the style.

O: Exceptional and highly recommended. 7% ABV is partially hidden. Don't drink this too cold.

 733 characters

Photo of Blakaeris
4.13/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours very dark brown, almost black with cola highlights. Head is beige, dense and creamy and leave sheets of lacing.

Aroma is rather porter like, a little sweeter and lighter than a stout. Plenty of roasted dark grain. Hints of coffee, chocolate, and toffee.

Taste is much more rich and bold than the nose led me to expect. Sweet with roasted dark malt, coffee, fig, and raisin. A pleasant charred malt smokiness is prevelant throughout and offers balancing bitterness. Woody and earthy, with a metallic sting. Finishes with a strong tobacco quality, and alcohol warmth that lingers on the palate.

Mouthfeel is smooth and slick. Medium bodied.

Overall a pleasant dry stout. Quite tasty. A fantastic session brew.

 718 characters

Photo of BigBry
3.9/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Draft offering from the Flying Saucer.
Arrived dark brown with reddish highlights. Short and tight head of tan bubbles, fades slowly to a floating cap, leaves a nice lace pattern.
Smell is of dark malt, coffee, cocoa.
Taste is more of the dark roasted malt, chocolate, and slight coffee. Finished with a light bitterness, almost like a charred wood, or bittersweet chocolate.
This beer has a good level of carbonation, with a crisp and smooth mouthfeel, solid body.
Overall, this was a good beer, a nice surprise.

 514 characters

Photo of Larry18
4.67/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

very delicious. rich and hearty, with a good mouthfeel and pleasingly burnt aftertaste, but does leave the tongue a little flat.

Nice caramelly overtone and chocolate.

Color is deep coffee brown, with a low, foamy brown top.

This is a definite "try" if you like a hearty stout with tons of flavor and character.

 314 characters

Photo of BrownAleMale
3.14/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bomber bottle poured into Gulden Draak tulip glass

Appearance- Black with an off white pillowy cloud like head. It dissipates into a thin layer that leaves decent lacing.

Smell- Chocolate with that European beer scent.

Taste- Pretty much follows the nose. You get chocolate with that German/European beer flavor.

Mouthfeel- Medium to heavy with a watery and overcarbonated feel. Kind of weird.

Overall- It's an okay beer but nothing I would seek out.

 455 characters

Photo of nrbw23
3.03/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A- Pours a dark brown or black color with a nice brown head. Head has pretty solid retention and leaves some nice layered lacing.

S- A bit of char, coffee, roasted malts, and bakers chocolate.

T- Coffee and chocolate lead the way. Follows the nose very well with no sign of hops.

M- Lighter side of medium in body and low carbonation.

O- This one reminded me of Guinness, but a little drier.

 397 characters

Photo of BlurryVisi0n
3.83/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served ina pint glass.

Appearance: Pitch black, little bubbles on the body with a thin head. Rises to about 1/3" then before your first sip it settles to almost nothing even lacing ends up looking like thin glass of motor oil.

Smell: Light malt smell, compliment with a oaked finish not too bad but was expecting something little different.

Taste: Little different than the norm, malty plus oaked barrel feel that is hard to pass up. The chocolate is very light but it is still there, lightly bitter.

Mouth: Medium carbonation but leans a little towards the light side of things

Overall: Well finished, and easy to drink. Maybe not the best of stouts you will ever have but definitely one that won't disappoint. Salud!

 727 characters

Photo of BierStein711
3.25/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This is an English stout, and therefore sweeter; bottle poured into shaker pint.

This is a stereotypical stout in appearance: jet black, light red hue in appearance. Coca-Cola head that disappears rather fast. It looks good!!

Smells like roast malt, and a little floral hop

Tastes: grassy malt, molasses, and lastly chocolate finish with a hop bite

Mouthfeel: average

Overall, this is a good beer, but I'd choose something different. Perhaps another example of the style first...

 484 characters

Photo of vickersspitfire
3.58/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A:black with amber hue around the edge,lots of carbontion and a long lasting tan head

S: mildly citrusy, roasted malts, mild raisin, and dark fruit

T:roasted malts, barley, dark fruit, the roasted malts are a bit stronger in the aftertatse, alcohol

M: it has a medium-to-heavy mouthfeel, mild carbonation

O: overall, a pretty good stout to relax to.

 353 characters

Photo of RonaldTheriot
3.88/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Belhaven Scottish Stout has a thick, creamy, beige head and a dark brown, almost black, bubbly appearance with some lacing left behind. The aroma is faint, but one can detect a bit of roasted barley mast. The flavor is much bolder than the smell: lots of smokiness, dark-roasted malt, dark chocolate, and black coffee. Some syrup and sugar as well. Mouthfeel is light to medium, and Belhaven Scottish Stout finishes mild, easy going, and very drinkable. The alcohol just does not show itself. Overall, this is a very good beer.

RJT

 533 characters

Photo of LiquidAmber
3.8/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Review from 5/2010 notes. Poured into a Gulden Draak tulip. Pours dark, dark brown with a thin tan head with light lacing. Aroma of sweet and toasted malt. Flavor is dark roasted malts and a hint of chocolate. Dry malty middle and abrupt finish with slight hops and malt. Moderately creamy. A pleasant, low key English stout.

 325 characters

Photo of IPA4LIFE
3.6/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Deep, deep dark brown that pretends to be black, but decides to let just a tiny bit of color in at the edged when held to light. Really dark. Big, bold fluffy dark brown head looks like it could hold a bottle cap. But then the head resides a bit too abruptly. It still leaves nice, clingy lacing on the sides of the glass, but the head is a bit underwhelming. Still not a bad appearance.

S- Lots of standard stout stuff: chocolate and coffee beans are big and there is also some light vanilla oaky flavors. A little oak at the end, but mostly chocolate on the nose.

T- Like you might expect, chocolate and coffee are found throughout on the taste. There is some oak that can be faintly detected as well. Just a wee bit of acid (think cold coffee). Not bad, but the greatest stout ever.

M- Too light-bodied for my taste.

O- Solid offering. Not amazing, but it is quite a long way north of "ok".

 903 characters

Photo of Zachtheporter
3.67/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 500ml bottle into a pint glass.

A- Pours an incredibly deep dark brown with absolutely no light penetration whatsoever. Has a fat 2 finger fluffy tan head.

S- Has a strong metallic scent to it with a light sweetness to the finish. Some smokiness mixed with some sweet notes of cocoa scented malts.

T- The taste is very different from the smell. Very rich and sweet. Has a very strong cocoa flavor with a bit of an espresso/coffee bitterness to the finish. Some sweet butternyss is also present oddly giving off the flavor very similar to cola hidden deep beneath the chocolatey body. Has a bit of a slight grassy hoppiness that is barely detectable in the finish as well. There is a very strong almost sugery syrup finish at the end.

M- Nice and smooth and thick with a light to medium carbonation that is just enough to make it still rather noticeable.

O- A very good stout, Everything but the smell of the stout was actually really awesome. The flavor coupled with the price will mean that I probably end up purchasing this stout again sometime.

 1,070 characters

Photo of tempest
4.15/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a $5 half liter at Best Yet. Cool beer, poured black with brown highlights. I might call this a foreign export stout for the lighter body. There are sweet caramel cocoa notes up front, then a dry smoky and roasted finish cleans out the beer. There are hints of toffee and cola mixed in for an unusual (and delicious) stout. Give this a stout.

 352 characters

Photo of beergoot
4.15/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Roasted grains with touches of burnt toast and black coffee emanates from a deep dark, almost black body. The head is a creamy tan color, thick enough yet dissipates to a thin layer. Good traces of lacing down the glass.

The taste is as rich as the aroma with the added touch of a smooth milk chocolate. The beer feels smooth and medium-bodied, sweet at first then finishing clean with a residual bitterness at the end and a touch of alcohol warmth shining through as well.

Overall, this is a nicely balanced stout. Complex yet not overpowering in any sense. Deceptively easy drinking but definitely a strong ABV. Another excellent brew from Belhaven!

 653 characters

Photo of WildHighlander
5/5  rDev +27.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I have been a big fan of Belhaven Scottish Ale for a long time, when I found this on the shelf I was quite excited. I wasn't disappointed. It poured very dark garnet/black. Good off-white head and nice malty aroma. From the first sip I was impressed. Nice mouthfeel, not too chewy but nice body. The flavor was chocolate, vanilla and slight roastiness. Truly, even though the bottle says Belhaven Scottish Stout, it is a Porter, a strong porter, but still a porter. They even say so on their website. It does not have the coffee overtones associated with stouts. This one of my favorites. Slainte!

 597 characters

Photo of pmarlowe
3.55/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours coffee colored (black in the glass), with a finger of medium brown head. Decent retention and some lacing.

S: Roasted, creamy malt and sweet milk chocolate.

T: Roasted malt and some dark chocolate. Cola and coffee on the finish. A little hop presence which adds brightness without the bitterness.

M: Medium body, medium-light carbonation.

O: Pretty good, although the flavors don't quite come together.

 415 characters

Photo of timmos1
4.3/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Yep. This is a sweet beer. Deal with it. Unlike many other reviewers, I don't expect every beer I drink to be hoppy or bitter. It's nice to have a Sweet malt beer sometimes and this doesn't disappoint there. For me it goes down easy and tastes better as it warms up. Great for in the winter sitting at a pub on a cold evening. Malty sweet dark tasty scotch import. I was lucky to get it on tap during beer week. I'll have one more please! 7.0 abv hits you aftershock.

 467 characters

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

A: Pours very dark brown to black in color with a finger tall tan head. The head reduces quickly but a quarter finger tall head is retained. There is significant lacing observed.

S: Aromas of roasted malts, coffee, dark chocolate, and hints of dark fruit.

T: The flavor is full of roasted malts, coffee, and dark chocolate. There are hints of dark fruit and smoke present as well. I really like the lingering bitterness in the finish. There is a nice amount of complexity to the flavor. Overall this is sweeter than expected but very pleasant.

M: Medium to full bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Very creamy.

O: Not my favorite of the different styles of stout but this is avery nice example of the style and a very enjoyable beer. Hides the alcohol very well and I could easily sip of these all afternoon while watching some soccer.

 848 characters

Belhaven Scottish Stout from Belhaven Brewery Company Ltd.
88 out of 100 based on 278 ratings.