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Stonecutter - Renaissance Brewing

StonecutterStonecutter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

86 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 86
Reviews: 59
rAvg: 3.84
pDev: 9.9%


Brewed by:
Renaissance Brewing visit their website
New Zealand (Aotearoa)

Style | ABV
Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: VitBAficionado on 02-12-2008)
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Ratings: 86 | Reviews: 59 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of Rifugium
Rifugium

Pennsylvania

3.85/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

First had: on tap at Farmers' Cabinet, Philly, PA

This will go down as my first beer from the fine nation of New Zealand, and I'm glad to have had it on tap. Dark mahogany-maroon color, almost gem-like, with a small cap of off-white head that receded to a thin ringlet. Aroma is basically caramel malts and a touch of smoke. Smooth on the palate, caramel, wort, smoked malts, dark fruits, mineral, cocoa powder, toasted wood. Body was about medium, and it went down smooth with really nothing to offend the senses.

Serving type: on-tap

06-09-2012 08:48:45 | More by Rifugium
Photo of lacqueredmouse
lacqueredmouse

Australia

3.15/5  rDev -18%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Tried at the Local Taphouse's Kiwi SpecTapular. Part of my ongoing effort to write up my reviews from that event.

Pours a deep bronze colour, with a fine head of white that sits strong and robust to begin with, but turns filmy rather disappointingly. Light body. Not a strong look for a scotch ale.

Nose is rather mild, with some cracked grain and a whiff of dry lucerne. Some biscuity characters, but not a lot else. It's quite mild, and very underwhelming.

Taste is light and reminiscent of an English Pale Ale. Mild and light, with a little toffee on the finish, that is indeed too little, too late. No hint of the 7% ABV, but giving a hint of it would have stopped this from being quite so insipid.

No, I'm afraid I'm not a great fan of this one. Too weak to be a proper Scotch ale.

Serving type: on-tap

06-18-2011 15:26:58 | More by lacqueredmouse
Photo of laituegonflable
laituegonflable

Australia

3.68/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a rich red colour. Head is beige, whispy, really, with disappointing lace. Good colour, bit underwhelmed by everything else.

Smells malty. Lots of English toffee with slight vanilla notes. Cedar wood and pine add some interest, and decent scotch ale smell anyway.

Taste is quite scotchy, really. Lots of caramel fudge and toffee upfront, gets boozey midway but enjoyable woody notes and a slight burnt sugar character that verges on bitter late. Pleasant, not too heavy, not too sweet either.

Lots of body as one would expect, but not too syrupy. Decent.

Yeah, I can't feign a great fondness for the scotch ale style, and I think Renaissance have done a good job toning down the potentially more extreme aspects, just leaving the nice aspects, the sweet booziness without the hot syrupy aspects.

Serving type: on-tap

06-01-2011 22:41:22 | More by laituegonflable
Photo of nztayls
nztayls

New Zealand (Aotearoa)

4.09/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

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.

Serving type: bottle

04-16-2014 08:06:26 | More by nztayls
Photo of mdagnew
mdagnew

United Kingdom (Northern Ireland)

4.38/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

500ml bottle bought online from Beermerchants.com

Poured a crystal clear coppery russet colour. Light tan head poured tight, thick and foamy then faded to decent wispy covering with thick edging... light carbonation drifts slowly to the surface... some patchy lacing lines...

Aroma - Roasted caramel malts, dried and alcohol soaked dark fruits (raisins, dates, figs and some sour apples), burnt nuttiness, light peaty smoke, vanilla, earthy notes, quite spicy and peppery, some oaky / scotch / rum traces, floral honey...

Taste – Lots of strong toffee malts, brown sugar / treacle sweetness, lots of peppery spiciness, (over?) ripe fruit - dates, figs, some banana. Faint smokiness, toasted bread, toffee apples, definite scotch alcohol notes coming through, very light grassy hop bitterness, nutty...

Feel - Very smooth and creamy... medium bodied... a pretty quaffable brew even at 7% although you never forget that the alcohol is there...

Overall - An excellent example of a wee heavy... perfect for a cold winters evening... recommended...

Serving type: bottle

03-23-2014 19:08:32 | More by mdagnew
Photo of LampertLand
LampertLand

British Columbia (Canada)

4/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Renaissance Brewing 'Stonecutter Scotch Ale' @ 7.3% , served from a couple of 500 ml bottles purchased for $6 each

A-pour is a dark cola brown from the bottle to glass with a medium size tan head leaving a sticky lace along the pint

S-lots of roasted malts , caramel , toffee , chocolate

T-sweet tart start , gives way to dry lingering finish

MF-ok/good carbonation , full body

Ov-good beer , lots of complexity

prost LampertLand

Serving type: bottle

02-17-2014 19:38:13 | More by LampertLand
Photo of chinchill
chinchill

South Carolina

4.03/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

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.

Serving type: bottle

01-16-2014 01:25:22 | More by chinchill
Photo of CalgaryFMC
CalgaryFMC

Alberta (Canada)

4.1/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to my buddy Mike for bringing this over last night, along with Renaissance's porter offering. These brews from antipodean climes kept catching my eye on the shelf but I never did pull the trigger and bring them home. Not sure if it was the rather fanciful labels or some other off-putting factor (or perhaps I am still suffering from a form of brain lock after spending much of the holiday season (unsuccessfully) searching for Lagunitas Sucks ... Yes, I live in Calgary, not where the craft beer falls from the sky like manna ... The homeless people in Cali probably drink more Sucks than I ever will), but it turns out I will probably still be buying them after all ... The Scotch ale exemplar reviewed here was poured into a pint glass, a nice coppery reddish-brown with a moderate degree of carbonation, sufficient to form about an inch of whitish head. Rich yet mellow aroma of toffee, dried dark fruit, and nondescript nuts greets the drinker, and a taste reveals much the same sensory experience. Is that a hint of citrus on the nose as well? Just a hint. Almost anything brewed in NZ has a little of that "twangy" hop aroma. There is some of the sour peaty smoke that you get with some authentic takes on this style but its relatively restrained and refined here, a background percept rather than a key player. Instead the sweet flavors are front and center, slightly salty burnt caramel, treacle toffee, prunes, hints of rum, and walnuts along with a little sour apple to provide additional seasoning. Moderately heavy body but smooth and creamy and remains quite drinkable in spite of the sweetness. The flavor components hang together well and there is only a little booziness. Few obvious hop flavors as per the style but there is enough of an earthy bucolic weedy character to cut some of the sweetness and provide added complexity. Well-crafted, super tasty Scotch ale weighted towards the sweet and nutty rather than the sour and smoky.

Serving type: bottle

12-30-2013 18:10:00 | More by CalgaryFMC
Photo of FLima
FLima

Brazil

4.05/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Brown reddish color with a huge thick beige head that would not go away.
Fruity aroma with notes of hay, smoked malts, caramels and plums.
Superb flavor with notes of peat, smoked malts, prunes, toffee, raisins soaked in rum, cocoa powder, figs, spices, earthy hops and licorice.
Full body with good carbonation which is a bit effervescent.
Very interesting and original beer, a Smoked Scotch ale with good complexity.

Serving type: bottle

12-18-2013 13:24:32 | More by FLima
Photo of REDAMI
REDAMI

Ohio

3.74/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from 16.9oz bottle into Chimay goblet.

A - Hazy, medium to dark brown pour with thick, highly-laced, souffle-like head.

S - Peaty malt, funky yeast, bread, toffee, raisins.

T - Rum raisin, toffee notes, smoke and peat.

M - Smooth, rich, but not cloying. Thins on the palate to a dry finish.

More complex than many of the scotch ales. An interesting and intriguing beer overall. Not the best, but worth trying.

Serving type: bottle

09-14-2013 18:13:20 | More by REDAMI
Photo of biboergosum
biboergosum

Alberta (Canada)

4.09/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

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.

Serving type: bottle

03-06-2013 03:29:29 | More by biboergosum
Photo of Timadae
Timadae

Ireland

3.43/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours a deep garnet red colour with a head that fades quickly.

S- Aromas of toffee, nuts and brown bread with a hint of sweet single malt scotch.

T- Rich palate with initial prune and toffee notes running in to a dark chocolate and brown sugar note on the end. Fresh effervescent slightly dry finish with a metallic tang.

Serving type: bottle

01-06-2013 23:27:23 | More by Timadae
Photo of ckollias
ckollias

Maryland

4.5/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed this bottle out of a large snifter glass.

A: Pours dark amber hue with ruby highlights and a large tan head that slowly dissipates down the side of the glass, leaving a decent trail and ending in a wispy lace.

S: Toffee and caramel aroma with hints of raisins.

T: Flavor comes through similar to the smell with a malty toffee and caramel taste. Hints of chocolate and raisins in the background.

M: Full body and medium carbonation.

O: Excellent Scotch Ale. Warming and rich and just enough alcohol.

Serving type: bottle

11-19-2012 03:47:36 | More by ckollias
Photo of CanuckRover
CanuckRover

Ontario (Canada)

4.43/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

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.

Serving type: bottle

10-11-2012 23:45:12 | More by CanuckRover
Photo of ngeunit1
ngeunit1

California

4/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a cloudy ruby with a touch of brown and a big finger of frothy tannish head. The head fades down slowly leaving behind some good lace.

S - Aroma is a mix of caramel malts, dark fruit, and chocolate with some black licorice, and a bit of smoke.

T - Starts off with some sweet caramel and toffee malts with some raisin, prune, and dark fruits , with a bit of black licorice. Through the middle, some brown sugar and chocolate malts come through with a bit of smoke. The finish is a mix sweet caramel and toffee malts, dark fruits, chocolate, and a bit of black licorice.

M - Medium-full bodied with moderate carbonation. Feels smooth with a sweet and lightly fruity finish.

D - Very drinkable. Nice balanced scotch ale. Good malty profile.

Serving type: bottle

08-30-2012 04:26:41 | More by ngeunit1
Photo of Phyl21ca
Phyl21ca

Quebec (Canada)

3.5/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

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.

Serving type: bottle

06-11-2012 16:25:52 | More by Phyl21ca
Photo of GONZALOYANNA
GONZALOYANNA

Spain

4/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 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!

Serving type: bottle

05-28-2012 23:12:53 | More by GONZALOYANNA
Photo of TheSevenDuffs
TheSevenDuffs

Ontario (Canada)

3.83/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

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.

Serving type: bottle

05-26-2012 20:01:12 | More by TheSevenDuffs
Photo of CrazyDavros
CrazyDavros

Australia

3.55/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 1 | overall: 4

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.

Serving type: bottle

05-06-2012 08:21:32 | More by CrazyDavros
Photo of BGDrock
BGDrock

Ontario (Canada)

3.98/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

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

Serving type: bottle

04-23-2012 02:33:42 | More by BGDrock
Photo of TheHammer
TheHammer

Ontario (Canada)

3.85/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Who controls the British crown? Who keeps the metric system down? I really expected to see that Stonecutter double claw hammer for this beer as the label. Oh well.

Appearance: Solid two fingers of head that produced decent lace and retained very well. The body is a dark ruby color whose body boasts steady carbonation but quite a bit of fine sediment as well.

Smell: There is a lot there but it's subdued. Warming really is a must here. A powerful thick caramel malt dominates the nose with dates, berries, walnuts and tea with a note of smoke.

Taste: Rich caramel malt with fruity berries and dates that give way to a somewhat overly powerful smokey roasted chestnut taste with a touch of plum and raisins. The smoke consistently stays around as a kick of rather bitter tea and slightly peaty hops finishes it off.

Mouthfeel: It does start to cloy a bit on the back of the tongue after a while, and the bitter hit at the end doesn't know when to leave. Sweet malt burps and nice carbonation and nice, almost sweeping transitions offer a good tradeoff though.

Drinkability: The cloying needs to go, and while it's left me burping, the after effects are pleasant. It's medium bodied so I wouldn't pack it away all night, but certain a good jumping off point or finishing touch. I can really see this going well with lamb.

Final Thoughts: Who keeps Atlantis off the maps? I'll stop, but much like this line of the song, this beer is surprisingly off the map it would seem, which is a shame because it is quite good. It's certainly not one of my top beers, but it's pretty solid all around. Good job New Zealand, I really hope this beer wasn't brewed to make me crave New Zealand lamb though.

Serving type: bottle

03-24-2012 02:31:19 | More by TheHammer
Photo of bryehn
bryehn

Ontario (Canada)

4.08/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy, copper-amber colour with a medium tan head. Good retention, minor lacing.

The aroma is fantastic. Dates, wood, a slight smoky texture and caramel. Notes of berries and nuts too.

Hearty, woody taste, with nuts and milk chocolate rounding out the body. The finish is dry.

Full-bodied with a low carbonation, bread and syrup qualities on the tongue. Finish has a cigar smoke character.

Very nice sipping beer, will try again if I come across it.

Serving type: bottle

02-28-2012 05:44:42 | More by bryehn
Photo of mintjellie
mintjellie

Ontario (Canada)

4/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 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.

Serving type: bottle

02-10-2012 04:06:59 | More by mintjellie
Photo of


3.88/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

500ml bottle poured into a duvel glass

Deep red amber with a large rocky beige head. Very decent retention and lacing.

Aromas of shortbread, uncooked bread dough and toasted malt. A little subdued here.

The palate is a little more promising with toffee and chocolate bursting forward. Blueberry jam and salted caramel aswell.

Mouthfeel feels a little thin and watered down.

Solid beer. Renaissance seems to do really nice malty beers. I would buy this again.

Serving type: bottle

02-03-2012 10:04:49 | More by
Photo of kojevergas
kojevergas

Texas

3.63/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

500ml brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into a Disneyland thistle glass (it's the only thistle glass I have!) in low altitude Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live.

A: Pours a three finger head of great cream, nice full thickness and foam, and great retention. Colour is a solid black.

Sm: Heavy toasted malt, caramel, and biscuity bready notes. A moderate strength aroma.

T: Pleasant warm toasted malt alongside biscuity caramelized malt notes and a bit of bready cream. Rich and balanced, if a bit simply done for the style. It's everything you'd expect from a Scotch Ale, but it doesn't rise above expectations. Built well. An enjoyable Scotch Ale.

Mf: Smooth and wet, but with some hefty thickness that limits the drinkability. Suits the flavours well, and is to style.

Dr: Drinkable and enjoyable for the style. It's everything you'd expect, but nothing more. Fans of the style would do well to try this one.

B

Serving type: bottle

01-23-2012 04:29:57 | More by kojevergas
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Stonecutter from Renaissance Brewing
86 out of 100 based on 86 ratings.