Stonecutter - Renaissance Brewing
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Ratings: 94 | Reviews: 59 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by thehyperduck:
4.2/5 rDev +9.7%
500 mL bottle from the LCBO, best before June 2012. I've had some really good wine from New Zealand - beer, not so much, but this one looks more promising than Steinlager.
Pours a muddy reddish-copper colour, topped with about two fingers of creamy, long-lasting off-white head - it takes a long time to dissipate but leaves webs of sticky lacing on the sides of the glass. This is a very attractive beer, and the aroma is very enticing as well. Nice, sweet roasted biscuit malt backbone, lots of toffee, raisins and a few herbal/anise notes. All of these together impart the brew with that earthy, peaty feel one expects from a proper Scotch Ale.
"Proper", however, is a descriptor that is far too wishy-washy to use to describe this stuff - something like "delicious" or "fantastic" would be far more appropriate. As advertised, this ale is definitely a malt bomb - plenty of nutty roasted malt character, lots of toffee alongside lesser notes of vanilla and chocolate. Raisin/prune flavours are noticeable as well. Herbal and earthy toward the end of the sip, with a bit of peat and smoke that leaves some lingering dryness in the aftertaste. The ethanol is virtually unnoticeable. Medium-bodied - a bit too light for my tastes but this is really the only criticism I can come up with. Very mild carbonation, and extremely smooth/easy to drink for the style.
A bit pricy, but this is a solid Scotch ale; a bit less intense/rough than others but undeniably enjoyable. If this had a bit more body it would probably be my new favourite for the style. This is definitely worth a try, and is enough to make me overlook the systematic suppression of the metric system, as well as Steve Gutenberg's fame.
11-08-2011 04:27:43 | More by thehyperduck
More User Reviews:
3.73/5 rDev -2.6%
Another New Zealand brewery now available here in NC.Poured into my Isle of Arran glass a mix of ruby and russet with a one finger toasted almond colored head.Aromas are kinda muted,some light peat smoke and cocoa powder are what I picked up on most.Somewhat different on the palate than expected,its quite earthy and dry,cocoa powder in the finish,seems to be almost American in its rendition.It does have a full chewey feel but it lacks the deep fruity flavors that I like in the style.Its a good beer but maybe a bit off on the style in my opinion.
02-12-2011 22:04:03 | More by oberon
4/5 rDev +4.4%
Dark ruby chestnut in colour, with a billowing head that slowly recedes into a half inch layer of foam. Lots of lacing - looks great for the style!
Nose is malty and peaty, with a mild booziness. A bit of smoke and caramel as well.
A terrific wee heavy - really enjoyed this. Sweet and malty, but this is kept in check nicely. A real smoky and peaty character defines this brew and makes it a fantastic sipper. Maybe some leather as well. Finishes with a fruity sweetness.
Thin bodied, but good carbonation and nice mouthfeel.
Great wee heavy - I'd certainly recommend this as an example of the style. My first (great) beer from New Zealand!
11-19-2011 23:54:15 | More by JohnnyBarman
3.98/5 rDev +3.9%
Appearance: huge effervescence; dull red/brown like strawberry juice; cloudy and almost opaque
Aroma: sweet caramel malts; fruity; mild
Taste & Mouthfeel: starts with roasted malt and hints of coffee, and finishes with a smokiness that is balanced by very dry, hoppy bitterness; the smokey flavour is assertive, bringing to mind a single malt - even feels like the peat is there; smooth, with a medium body; dark caramel flavour comes through as it warms
Overall: love the smokey touch and interesting malt flavours, but the finish is almost too dry; makes you want to be sitting in a dark, rustic pub by the fire
04-23-2012 02:33:42 | More by BGDrock
4.03/5 rDev +5.2%
500ml bottle (7%) with a BB date of 10/2014 served in a stemmed tulip glass in Ohakune, NZ
Pours clear, deep reddish-amber color with a creamy and durable light brown head. Excellent lacing.
Aroma: Sweet malts, caramel, medium roasted malts and hints of wood, dark fruits.
Flavor: unexpectedly smokey, given that this didn’t show in the nose. The peat smoke is fairly well matched by the complex malt blend. Hints of licorice, toffee, raisins and dates.
Feel: smooth, medium-full body. Excellent soft carbonation.
O: a hearty recommendation.
01-16-2014 01:25:22 | More by chinchill
4.09/5 rDev +6.8%
500ml bottle, 7.1% ABV. I can't but help associate this with the Stonecutters of Simpsons secret society lore (We do! We do!). No apologies, we all get our culture from somewhere, yeah?
This beer pours a dark, yet quite brilliantly reddish amber hue, with two fingers of tightly foamy, puffy, and kind of creamy beige head, which leaves a low-lying circus tent spire array of lace around the glass as it slowly and steadily abates.
It smells of somewhat sour peat, well roasted meaty caramel malt, wet ash, a touch of smokey medium chocolate, singed dark fruit - raisin, maybe - understated anise, and sidling metallic notes. The taste is still on the smokey side, as the caramel malt, generic black fruit, less obfuscated raisin and prune fruitiness, edgy leafy, earthy hops, and seemingly loitering warming alcohol all exhibit at least a hint of it.
The bubbles are around and about, to be sure, but not really in an upfront, 'hey, look at me' sort of manner, the body a decent medium weight, and adequately smooth, the smoke taking a chink or two out of that particular armour. It finishes still off-dry, as this is indeed none other than a prototypical Scotch ale, so, um, there - the caramel/toffee malt isn't to be trifled with by any upstart, wannabe smokiness.
I don't think that this could be any more Scottish if it were actually from the auld country (hey Brewdog, how ya doin'?). Looking at the map around where this brewery is situated, this is now hardly a surprise - Scottish place names pop up everywhere. Anyways, the peat, the caramel, the fruit - this is eminently true to the style, even if its antipodean roots may not have the 'required' pedigree - meh to that.
03-06-2013 03:29:29 | More by biboergosum
4/5 rDev +4.4%
Mahogany brown and murky looking. Definitely unfiltered. Stonecutter is topped by a massive, retentive, and lacy pale tan head. Mild, pleasant aroma of freshly baked shortbread cookies, brown sugar, and raisins. Sweet and malty up front with notes of biscuit and treacle toffee. Raisin, plum, and faint hints of cacao in the midpalate. Finishes with a mild bitterness and light alcohol warmth. Raisin comes back in the burp. Medium-full body, medium carbonation. Could use a bit more heft. Nice beer to curl up with after a long day of classes, on the rare night I'm homework free.
02-10-2012 04:06:59 | More by mintjellie
3.88/5 rDev +1.3%
A pleasure to have this beer, spot on the style. Reddish brown, no head in sight. A nose of fruit, chocolate, sherry, mild booziness. Soft mouthfeel; rich malting. Very drinkable, hops are felt mid-sip through the finish. Lovely.Bottle from Premiere Gourmet.
06-07-2011 03:18:28 | More by Sammy
4.43/5 rDev +15.7%
Pours near-black red... at the right angle it's a dark, dark, dark, garnet. My bottle gives off a massive, rocky, rollicking, mocha head, that puffs up out of my Duvel tulip. Lacings are thick and sticky, like an icecream float.
I don't like Scotch in the least, so the aroma of this actually has me worried. Refined, comforting smoke, like from a wood-burning stove. A bit of alcohol lingering behind the smokey malt. Actually had to check the bottle again to make sure this didn't have a shot or two in it.
Just a masterwork in malt blending. Smooth up front, ripe red fruit gradually melds with sweet toffee, which gives way to chocolate covered cherries. Smokey finish with just the slightest bitterness, not acrid in the least.
Mouthfeel is pretty much spot on, at times I think a touch too much carbonation, but I'm being nitpicky.
A brilliant go at the style. A must try for malt fiends.
10-11-2012 23:45:12 | More by CanuckRover
3.55/5 rDev -7.3%
Pours brown with a large, growing head.
Nose shows chocolate, sultanas, caramel, and nutty malt. Pretty moreish.
Flavours include more caramel and chocolate alongside nutty malt. Quite sweet.
Spoiled a little by the excessively high carbonation though.
05-06-2012 08:21:32 | More by CrazyDavros
3.5/5 rDev -8.6%
Bottle: Poured an amber color ale with a medium size foamy head with good retention and some light lacing. Aroma of dry caramel malt with light cereal notes is pleasant though not as rich as I would have expected. Taste is also dominated by cereal notes with dry caramel grainy notes. Body is about average with good carbonation and no apparent alcohol. Not bad though I prefer scotch ale sweeter and with bigger malt profile.
06-11-2012 16:25:52 | More by Phyl21ca
New Zealand (Aotearoa)
4.09/5 rDev +6.8%
A - Pours a very dark brown with touches of red. A medium mocha head forms, though this quickly dissipates leaving some foam around the edge of the glass.
S - Sweet toffee smell, some very faint peaked-malt aroma. Little to no hop aroma.
T - Sweet toffee malt notes with a very subtle but noticeable peaked malt undertone that immediately takes me back to thoughts of Laphroig Malt Whisky. Very little bitterness
M - Soft medium-body mouthfeel.
O - This is a very drinkable Scottish Ale that has just enough peaked malt to be noticeable - without being overbearing. A great drink to have on a cold winter night when the rain is beating down on the roof.
04-16-2014 08:06:26 | More by nztayls
3.83/5 rDev 0%
Bottle to brandy snifter.
A - Medium to dark amber with only a very small amount of light passing through around the edges. A huge amount of thick, foamy cream coloured head formed on the pour and quickly receded to about a finger's width.
S - Dark caramel, toffee and a very light peat aroma. There is a slight metallic aroma in the background that is a touch off-putting.
T - A big sweetness up front that gives way to whisky, smoky and stone fruit flavours (raisin/dates/figs). Plenty of sweet dark caramel, burnt sugar and toffee notes. The alcohol is slightly warming and cuts through the sweetness very well.
M - Medium to full body with a very nice chew. Moderate carbonation.
05-26-2012 20:01:12 | More by TheSevenDuffs
4/5 rDev +4.4%
500ml bottle. Tumbler glass. Enjoyed on may´12. Dark amber in color, dark ruby to the light. Light beige, creamy froth. Brief crown. Caramel malt, toasted malt aromas, toffee & licorice hints. Gentle but intense malty sweetness upfront & fruity tea-like. Suntuous mouthfeel. Fruits –grapes & plums- & bitterness in the middle linger into the finish. Full body, moderate carbonation. Well balanced flavors & ABV just felt at the end. Such an smart beer!
05-28-2012 23:12:53 | More by GONZALOYANNA
3.83/5 rDev 0%
Appearance - Slightly hazy reddish/copper colour with a small size fizzy beige coloured head. There is a low amount of carbonation showing and there is some faint lacing. The head lasted for around 5 minutes.
Smell - Malts, caramel, butterscotch, raisins, leather
Taste & Mouth - There is a low amount of carbonation and I can taste malts, caramel and butterscotch. There are also notes of dark fruits such as raisins and maybe some dates. There is also an earthiness and a touch of leather and chocolate. It ends with a dark fruit and malty sweet aftertaste.
Overall - There is quite a bit of taste going on with this one. It keeps it interesting throughout the glass. It's not my favourite style of beer, but I'm glad I gave it a try.
01-13-2012 00:53:06 | More by spinrsx
Stonecutter from Renaissance Brewing
86 out of 100 based on 94 ratings.