Claymore Scotch Ale - Great Divide Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Claymore Scotch AleClaymore Scotch Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

458 Reviews
no score

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Reviews: 458
Hads: 1,348
Avg: 3.86
pDev: 20.21%
Wants: 48
Gots: 161 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Great Divide Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy |  7.70% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: ClockworkOrange on 01-22-2009

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 458 | Hads: 1,348
Photo of Jeffreysan
4.6/5  rDev +19.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle, poured into a pint glass

Appearance: Pours a beautiful, deep, dark, almost opaque mahogany color with an eighth of a finger of white head that almost immediately dissolved into a thin halo of foam that gripped the sides of the glass.

Aroma: Very malty and roasty, with some notes of smoke, freshly baked dark bread, and brown sugar.

Taste: Very nice! Tons of toasted and roasted malt up front, imparting notes of freshly baked bread, flowed by some nice brown sugar-like sweetness, a hit of dried stone fruit and a hint of hop at the finish. Delicious!

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied and smooth, as there is practically no carbonation what-so-ever. With an ABV of 7.7% there is just a touch of alcohol on the palate.

Overall: Wow, this is a great scotch ale! Nice and malty and slightly sweet. Delicious! I’m definitely getting this again!

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Photo of woemad
3.71/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle purchased by my brother at Gravity in Olympia, WA, by my brother and given to me as a Christmas gift. According to the stamp on the label, this was bottled on October 29, 2014.

A rough pour into a Sierra Nevada shaker pint glass yielded a half inch of bubbly tan foam on top of a dark brown beer that gave up a tiny bit of rubyish highlights when held up to light. Said head dropped to a foamy skiff after a couple of minutes.

The aroma is sweetly malty, with hints of toffee and booze.

Sweet, malty and boozy flavor, in that order. First up is a caramel and brown sugary sweetness, with a slightly more vague taste of toffee in the immediate background. There’s a mild (but definitely there) warming alcohol sensation way in the back.

Coating, sticky mouthfeel. Not a lot of carbonation, but not low to the point of stagnancy.

A pretty good, “wee heavy,” but not quite what would be needed to vault this to the level of Silver City’s Fat, my personal favorite of the style. Still, it’s a quality beer, much as I expect from Great Divide. Thanks, Bro!

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Photo of MaximalC
3.38/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

Pours a murky, colloidal, dark chestnut color with a nearly nonexistent skim of coarse khaki bubbles. Bold, complex aroma smells of caramel, toffee, peat, char, and blackberries, with a whiff of alcohol to boot.

The taste is milder than the aroma would suggest, primarily a blend of brown sugar and alcohol, which is a disappointment considering the complex nose. Hints of peat come through as well, but for the most part the sweetness is fairly obtuse. The carbonation is mild and tingly, and the mouthfeel is a good deal thinner than what I would have preferred.

Overall, this is a simplistic scotch ale that lacks the beef to assert itself like a scotch ale should. It’s not light on flavor, but the flavor is unrefined and the body is sorely lacking.

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Photo of NEdward
2.62/5  rDev -32.1%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

L: Coca-Cola, very minimal head, no lacing to speak of.

S: Faint sweetness, burnt sugar, very obvious alcohol

T: Sweet, mostly but an empty space. Hints of barley on the edges.

F: Limpid, no carbonation, watery

O: Vague sweetness that's hard to pin down when one actually tries to locate it (though a sweet aftertaste that's easily found).

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Photo of That_One_Guy
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%

A good wee heavy. A little overly sweet, but it's got a warm feel to it. I enjoyed the heavy taste of a traditional Wee Heavy, but it does flow good. It's a solid introduction in the style and worth picking up a bottle or two.

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Photo of EHopkinsi
3.7/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a tulip glass. Beer brewed 9 September 2014; drank 31 October 2014. Happy Halloween!

Look- Dark but not thick, no head or lacing.

Smell- like an ale

Taste- plenty of carbonation and hop bite at the finish. Good wee heavy taste.

Feel- Rolls around the tongue like a liquid marble. Carbonation pairs with hops at finish for a bite.

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Photo of scotorum
3.91/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled on May 14, 2014. Five months old.

Poured from the 12 oz. bottle into a Samuel Adams nonick.

a: Black with clear ruby when seen through light. Inch tall tan head receded quickly to patchy surface foam and spotty lacing.

s: Dark caramel.

t: Creamy caramel malt accompanied by a considerable hop bite. Bitterness cloys the left and right insides of the mouth. Sweet to bitter finish.

m: Medium and exceptionally silky. Rather low carbonation.

o: A tasty Scotch ale with flavor and punch. Only drawback is the weak carbonation.

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Photo of majorbase2
3.95/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark brown with a small brown foam head that dissipates rather quickly. Tiny bit of lacing around the edges. Aroma leads with sweet, roasted malts and alcohol. A good amount of nuttiness. A bit of caramel. Taste is wonderfully sweet caramel malts, and a touch of bitterness. Roasted nuts, coffee, and cocoa. Alcohol is very well masked, although it does come through a bit more as it warms. This one is medium bodied, a bit thick, but still very smooth. Goes down with relative ease. As a relative newcomer to Wee Heavies, this is my favorite that I've had so far.

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Photo of corywalston
3.71/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A. Aggressive poor ¼ inch of mild thick tan head that dissipates quickly. Black/amber in color.
S. New Castle beer and dried dates.
T. Slightly watered down clone of New Castle. Like the label says mild hint of caramel, hops, and malt. Alcohol taste is astringent.
M. Crisp, again same as New Castle Brown Ale.
O. This is a very good substitute for you know what.

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Photo of CrazyDavros
4/5  rDev +3.6%

Pours very dark brown with a large, lasting pale tan head.
Nose shows peated malt, caramel, bready and nutty notes.
Rich flavours. Peat, cocoa, toasty malt, slightly solventy booze and sweet bready malt.

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Photo of tillmac62
3.92/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

BOD 6/30/14. Dark amber pour (looks like a porter) with normal head, lacing and retention. Weak nose of mostly caramel coupled with hints of roast, dark fruit and coffee/toffee. Almost full bodied with a nice almost creamy texture. Slightly below normal carbonation with a bit of effervescence on the finish. The flavor profile is quite nice and well balanced, but lacks the intensity and complexity of the world class Wee Heavies such as Traquair and Thirsty Dog's Wulver. It begins as the nose, mostly caramel with hints of dark fruit, roast and coffee/toffee. As the sweetness fades in the middle, hops and associated mild bitterness are noted. The finish leaves you with a touch of smoke and a very light alcohol burn.

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Photo of dcscientist
3.8/5  rDev -1.6%

This beer is a slightly heavier version of a traditional Scotch ale, and it's got some punch. Very malty, but not smoky at all, and not bitter either. Good take on the usual Scotches.

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Photo of SensorySupernova
4.5/5  rDev +16.6%

Appearance: Very dark red-brown. A small off-white head quickly fades to a small ring of lace.

Smell: Caramelized malt. Pretty faint.

Taste: Sweet up front with caramel and malt, followed by slight bitterness. After this some alcohol warmth appears along with a woody aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Strong carbonation hits the tongue up front, followed by a smooth, thick body.

Overall: Solid and hearty. If you like caramel, try it!

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Photo of hardy008
4.1/5  rDev +6.2%

Pours a dark brown to black color with ruby highlights, and a two finger foamy head with good retention and lacing. The aroma has caramel malt, peat, roasted malt, and some dark fruit.

Has a sweet taste from the caramel malt, with some bitterness from the roasted malt for balance. There is also peat, a little dark fruit, some smoke, and toasted malt.

Medium bodied with modest carbonation. Has a caramel and peat aftertaste. Very nicely made, and well worth trying again.

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Photo of TheTrevor
3.97/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer poured a dark brown with a tan head. The smell is mostly malt with maybe a little dark fruit. The taste is all malt in a wonderful way. Caramel and coffee are present, maybe some dried fruit. Prunes or raisins, perhaps. The mouthfeel is not as thick as you'd expect, with some nice warming from the alcohol. This is a great version of one of my favorite styles.

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Photo of TheVenerableMead
3.76/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

A - DARK brown that is crystal clear when bright light is passed through. Miniscule tan head that is hardly worth mentioning, but some fleeting lace. This is typical for higher gravity beers.

S - Well... there is hardly anything in the nose. It's certainly not foul, so middling marks on aroma. Maybe I'll try again after allergy season.

T - MAAALLLT!!! YES! Lot's of malt and crystal malt. The malt is there and you will know what malt is should you taste this beer. Also a nice taste of roastiness and a bit of chocolate at the back. Sweet, but not cloying and sickening. Just a hint of something earthy that may be peat- very nice! Bitterness is neutral of flavour and just enough. BUT... the flavour of this ale is somewhat simple for it all.

M - There is little doubt about whether or not there is malted barley product in your mouth! Carbonated, but not at all ebullient.

O - Got a wild hair on an hot summer day and wanted something new that I knew from reading I'd prefer for the cold months. Evidently, I like Wee Heavy. What can I say? I've never encountered a beer that I thought was "too malt-forward". Needs a nose. Why can't I smell this ale?!? Flavour really needs a bit more complexity. Just seems like something with so much crystals should also have a bit more specials. A little more peat (was it?) and a dram of smoke would've been nice. All in all, I'll be looking for more Scotch ales when Autumn is waning and cold extremities need quickness after a morning of waterfowling.

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Photo of garten
3.65/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Comes out a very dark maple-syrup like caramel color, leaving a beige-tanhead of about a finger or so in measurement. Minimal lacing. Looks fairly 'creamy' in the glass, similar to a stout.

Smell: Even as it is being poured, the sweetness and malty notes hit the nose right away. It is pleasant, not overpowering or unsavory. Smells a bit like coffee or toasted grains. Otherwise, no other scents come to mind.

Taste: A very robust toasty flavor, reminiscent of coffee and chocolate, that sits quite well on the palette. The aftertaste doesn't linger very much, although it isn't particularly notable. It's actually quite pleasant. Bittersweet would be the best way to describe it, although it is in every positive meaning of the term. Not bad at all, really.

Mouthfeel: Moderately-heavy. Not watery. Some carbonation, but not very much. Either the beer is flat or just doesn't have much carbonation to begin with. Very smooth.

Overall: A fine Wee Heavy by one of the many local breweries here, it lives up to its style and certainly to its reputation! I could see myself savoring one or two with a hearty meal or even on its own on more leisurely days. Compared to others in this style, it's not particularly a stand-out, but it can certainly hold its own and should be one to try out if you like a balanced, yet fairly robust beer.

Notes: Poured into a US-style pint glass. BOD (bottled on date) - 09 April 2014. Served chilled.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.91/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz brown bottle purchased from Leura Cellars. Bottled on date of May 05 2014, so around two months prior to opening it.

Pours a fine but a little thin: a deep dark brown tending to orange at the very edges. Head is fine but quite minimal, leaving only a thin skein of lace over the top and thin streaks as it goes down. Carbonation is fine however, and reveals that there is certainly some weight to the brew.

Nose is really extremely minerally initially. I get rock salt, a little seaweed and crushed bracken, with only a very moderated sweetness underneath it. In time, and as it warms up a little, there's a meatier malt character that comes through, perhaps with a touch of roast as well. It's certainly interesting.

Taste is very nice indeed. Here there's a crisp sweetness through the centre, which allows those mineral notes to provide a prickle around the edges of the palate while not overwhelming it. It slips towards the back, with a good wallop of warming heat that matches with a slight upkick in the dark malt character. Finish is long, with more mineral tones locked with a slick sweetness long after the beer is gone.

Feel is also very interesting. It's still relatively light for what it is, but the booze and the prickle give it a liveliness around the edges.

Overall, yep: very solid stuff, and unusual to boot. I like it when a beer manages to be both interesting and tasty—and I think it's fair to say I trust a brewery like Great Divide to pull it off.

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Photo of DanielMB
4.75/5  rDev +23.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Appearance: Darker than a typical wee heavy. It's slighty red with a light shined through it, with almost no head on it.

Smell: It had a nice malty, caramel, earthy sort of smell to it, pretty much what you would hope for from this style.

Taste: Very malty and rich, with a strong caramel taste permeating the entire brew. It has a sort of earthiness to it as well, reminding one of the hill country (the Scottish Highlands?).

Mouthfeel: Somewhat heavy, but smooth. It goes right down the gullet.

Overall: I think this is an underrated beer. I've had Oskar Blues's Old Chub Scotch Ale--a very popular wee heavy--numerous times, and I found this to be a superior beer. The taste is similar, but a little richer, and not quite as sweet. This beer is darker and has a sort of weightiness about it as well.

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Photo of BurgeoningBrewhead
3.77/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured into thistle glass; brown pour, shows deep gorgeous blood garnet red in the light. Clear, with a moderate khaki head that fades after a few moments leaving rings of sticky lacing.
Smells of caramel malt, soft heavy bread, and a grassy herbal slice at the end keeping everything aloft.
Taste is sweet bready malt; hints of cocoa and toffee and dark fruit amidst herbal bitterness.
Mouthfeel is wet and medium-light. Not too sticky.
Overall, this is a good example of the scotch ale style. Nothing makes it stand out, good or bad.

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Photo of fscottkey
3.98/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A: Looks black but has red edges when held up to the light. Sports a 1 finger head for about 20 seconds - then it is gone.

S: All very subtle. Hints of chocolate, coffee, toffee, bread and malts. Maybe slight fruits. Nothing very pronounced.

T: A very mellow coffee flavor with late sweetness. No hint of heat or alcohol at all.

M: Very nice mouth feel. Not too heavy and not too carbonated.

O: This is a really well balanced beer. I wish the nose offered a bit more - but the melding of flavors makes up for it. There is no bitterness and no off tastes to ruin the palate. This is so smooth that it is almost sessionable.

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Photo of Brenden
3.97/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Claymore is one of the darkest Scotch ales I've ever seen, about as close to black as the style gets. Some red-brown highlights do show in the light. The head is soft and compact, maybe half a finger tall, and leaves lacing spottily behind.
The malt holds a nice, firm foundation. Some light caramel and toffee notes give way to breads, while a sort of nuttiness resides underneath from start to finish. There's just a light kiss of dark cocoa. Dark fruits also rest on the tongue all the way through. At about the middle, a note of peat begins to gently build up a bit of a smoky note that adds a nice flavor without an acridity. A very light, not-quite-herbal hops bitterness complements the roast and other elements of the malt very well.
The body is about full but not heavy, rich enough but not chewy, per se. It balances crispness with smoothness and is semi-dry for the duration.

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Photo of tmm313
4.31/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A- Dark brown with a ruby tinge. Poured a nice 1 finger head with good lacing.

S- Raisin and caramel mainly. Chocolate and scotch as accents.

T- Caramel, chocolate, roasted malts, vanilla, fig, scotch, and a touch of earthy hop. Fair amount of spice in the finish. Very nicely balanced.

M- Medium body with good carbonation. Not much aftertaste. Lightly creamy.

O- I enjoyed this beer. The balance is what I'll remember most. No flavor stood above the others and all worked together very well.

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Photo of deadonhisfeet
3.92/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a dimpled mug. The pour is dark chestnut and sports a nice 3 fingers of rocky head that slowly dissipates down to a fine lacing on the surface and sides of the glass. The nose is subdued, but has some malt, hazelnuts, and a hint of smoke.

Medium body beer with a firm feel and a sweet, malty flavor. Lots of rich biscuity malt, fresh brown bread, and a hint of sarsaparilla up front. The sweetness fights its way through whatever hop dust managed to fall into this beer and joins a little bit of alcohol warmth on the finish. Some smokiness kicks in and lingers behind. Very pleasant and sweet. The flavor isn't terribly complex, just malt, more malt, and a bit of smoke, but still tasty.

A nice, enjoyable malt bomb. As much as I love American IPAs, I really do like to have a good malty treat every now and then and this beer is certainly a GOOD malty treat. Great as an after-dinner drink too!

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Photo of Axnjxn
3.77/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle into a tulip

dark red pour, mild head. smell of malts and alcohol...very typical for the style. taste is on point but a tad boring. caramel, sweet, very malty...medium bodied, mild carbonation. just true to style but not that exciting. worth a try...

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Claymore Scotch Ale from Great Divide Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 458 ratings.