1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Burning Skye Scottish Style Ale - Empyrean Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Burning Skye Scottish Style AleBurning Skye Scottish Style Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
80
good

127 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 127
Reviews: 71
rAvg: 3.5
pDev: 13.71%
Wants: 3
Gots: 13 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Empyrean Brewing Company visit their website
Nebraska, United States

Style | ABV
Scottish Ale |  5.30% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Brewed in the tradition of Scotland's malty-sweet beers. Sweet and smooth with a wee hint of smoked character. Brewed with American, English & German grown barley and American hops.

13 IBU

(Beer added by: PhantomVodoo on 08-11-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 127 | Reviews: 71 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of MorningBeer
MorningBeer

Iowa

3/5  rDev -14.3%

I've been interested in scotch and scottish ales lately. Saw this one was new at the local store. Picked up a bottle and poured into a pint glass. Hard pour produced a two finger head...off white/creamy in color. Head turned to ring and light film after a few minutes.

Interesting appearance. Looks like a cloud that coherently hangs together...like there's one substance swirling around in another. Deep golden brown in the center but light golden around the edges.

Smells citrusy. Grapefruit. A bit odd for the style. A little bready.

Taste is similar. Fruity. A little butterscotch in the background, initially, but as I drink it down, not much aside from citrus.

A smooth beer. A nice fresh carbonation, but the flavor just hampers the nice mouthfeel. Although it's quite drinkable, the fruitiness makes it not all that desirable to drink.

Not much alcohol, yet leaves you feeling warm...which contrasts with the fresh, crisp taste.

Perhaps this beer would be more appealing if it were a different style.

12-10-2010 19:28:14 | More by MorningBeer
Photo of maximum12
maximum12

Minnesota

2.05/5  rDev -41.4%

Anybody else have cool, well-meaning friends who bring back beer for you from their trips to add to an already overflowing cellar? It's good to have friends! Thanks for this one, non-BA people who'll never read this.

The pour is a dead ringer for warm oak trim. Smell is mellow to the point of non-existence. I'm imagining sweet malts, & nearly had beer up my nose trying to inhale something, anything.

Burning Skye is weak tea. The first thing that comes to mind is "watery", like a beer bag that's been steeped like tea in a cup. Grainy to the point of a hefe. There are slivers of other tastes floating around in this concoction: caramel, apple bubblegum, sickly sweet malt.

At first I thought this was just OK, but as the beer warms, there's more & more strange - and not good strange - flavors coming off of it. Doesn't rise to mediocre, & am not planning on polishing off all 12 ounces. Disappointing.

11-13-2010 01:15:51 | More by maximum12
Photo of Jayli
Jayli

Massachusetts

2.7/5  rDev -22.9%

Acquired this from a77cj7 via Under 100 Fishing for Minnows BIF so a big THANK YOU goes out to him!

A: This beer pours a nice, hazy, amber color with a one finger of off white head. Head recedes relatively quickly. Nice sweeps of lacing is left on the glass.

S: Nose is pretty muted - mostly caramel malts with hints of hay.

T: Taste is pretty one dimensional. Caramel malts dominate the taste though it is a muted caramel malt flavoring. A bit of breadiness comes through and then toffee and butterscotch flavoring finish this out.

M: Lighter side of medium body, medium carbonation, crisp but thin.

D: Goes down easily, not filling, ok representation of style, body is a bit thin. Flavoring is quite muted - drinkable but not one that I would reach for again.

09-30-2010 23:56:00 | More by Jayli
Photo of ballz50401
ballz50401

Iowa

2.58/5  rDev -26.3%

Poured from a 12oz. bottle (enjoy by 7/10) into a Sam Adams perfect pint. Pours a cloudy yellow/orange with a lot of carbonation, way out of style. A light scent of malts in the nose but not much there, after letting it warm a bit I can sense a little smokiness in the backround. Taste is pretty bland, not much malt presence for the style, some toast/bisciut, almost has a slight sourness to it. Mouthfeel is thin and the carbonation level leaves the mouth dry. Not a very good example of a Scottish style ale.

07-17-2010 05:07:38 | More by ballz50401
Photo of u2carew
u2carew

Massachusetts

2.73/5  rDev -22%

12oz stubby. Brought back from Nebraska by a buddy on vacation.
A) Pours with a finger thick head then settles quickly to lacing at the edge of the glass. Transparent body. Minimal upward carbonation. Copper in color.
S) Citrus notes - orange. Mellow caramel tones.
T) The caramel sweetness is light and mixed with some nutty flavors. The hops in the finish but very mild, hardly noticeable. The aftertaste has some lemon like characteristics - sour and dry.
M) Fizzy and creamy. Light to medium body, not what I was expecting for a Scottish ale.
D) Not a great beer. I wouldn't have another one.

06-25-2010 01:31:24 | More by u2carew
Photo of BuckeyeNation
BuckeyeNation

Iowa

3.03/5  rDev -13.4%

Radiant pumpkin orange with banana colored edges and a thick slice of putty colored foam up top. The head has a decent look, lasts for a spell, and does an okay job with respect to lace deposition.

There isn't much going on in the nose. Maybe hints of toasted malt with a light earthiness, but that's about it. Also, there's no 'wee hint' of the smoked malt that the brewery says is present. Looks like there's some work to be done on the palate.

Burning Skye is an okay little Scottish ale that tries so hard not to offend that it forgets to impress. Like the color and the aroma, the flavor is on the light side. I wasn't expecting a wee heavy, but I was expecting more than this.

Specifics include lightly toasted bread, a faint nuttiness, a faint earthiness, a faint fruity sourness, and a (very) faint smokiness. Sorry, but this offering screams 'average' at the top of its American-brewed Scottish ale lungs. Warming helps a little, just not enough.

The mouthfeel is a little lacking at 5.3%. What body is present on contact dissipates quickly. The bubbles are slightly too sharp-edged and don't inject any creaminess whatsoever.

Even though the ABVs on most their lineup are low enough to have been legal in Iowa prior to the recent change in the alcohol laws, Empyrean beer only started appearing on local stores in the past several months. After trying Third Stone Brown and now Burning Skye Scottish Ale... we weren't missing much.

05-30-2010 12:00:32 | More by BuckeyeNation
Photo of MinorThreat
MinorThreat

Nebraska

3.68/5  rDev +5.1%

Served from a 12 oz bottle purchased while at a wedding in "The Good Life", Lincoln Nebraska.

A-Very light color compared to even the lightest Scottish 30 schilling beers. Amber with good clarity, nice white head that settles down to a skim and decent lacing.

S-Slight cereal grain notes and an ever so subtle smoke hint. Some caramel and yeasty bread are in there too.

T-Light, refreshing, soft notes of caramel, cereal grains, smoke (a tiny bit) and some fruity esters. None of the flavors are too powerful but they are well integrated.

M-Good amount of gas to keep it light while having a high enough terminal gravity to have a slight viscosity compared which is surprising based upon the overall lightness of this beer.

D-Very high, this is the quintessential session beer. Great flavors in light amounts. I miss Empyrean Ales, they do a fine job.

05-25-2010 04:41:09 | More by MinorThreat
Photo of katan
katan

Colorado

3.4/5  rDev -2.9%

12 oz into a pint

A - Pours a light brown color, with just a few golden highlights. Off white head formation, about 2mm in size. Seems to be a bit hazy.

S - Light amount of peat malts, some off sweetness. Otherwise, a very muted beer.

T - Starts off with a lightly astringent, husky, grainy note. Mid-stream gets a bit of the smoked peat malts, but little hopping. Slightly malt forward. Finishes clean.

M - Moderate to light beer body. Carbonation is also very restrained. Finishes clean on the tongue. No sting to the tongue.

D - Very easy drinking, especially for a scottish ale. ABV is low, very sessionable. Not filling.

04-24-2010 22:49:18 | More by katan
Photo of Misfit138
Misfit138

Tennessee

3.63/5  rDev +3.7%

poured from bottle into pint glass

A- Nice hazy cooper color with a generous head

S- Smell mostly caramel malt followed by some sweet citrus.

T- Very mild smoke taste that leads to a smooth caramel malt flavor with a tinge of bitterness.

M- Fairly light bodied with mild carbonation

D- While not the most interesting of beers, I don't have any problems with it at all. Its pretty easy drinking and certainly would go well with a pulled pork sandwich.

04-20-2010 04:18:43 | More by Misfit138
Photo of tedpeer
tedpeer

Iowa

3.53/5  rDev +0.9%

12 ounce poured into a pint glass.

A - copious white head that settled to an 1/8th inch layer. Light amber/orange/gold color. A little lace.

S - Lightly smoke, malty and sweet.

T - Yeasty, caramel, malty with a bitter finish.

M - medium to light body. Mild carbonation.

D - Yeah, it also is on the thin end of the style.

03-31-2010 00:22:22 | More by tedpeer
Photo of dbossman
dbossman

Nebraska

3.73/5  rDev +6.6%

A: Clear amber hue with a 1/2 finger head that dissipates quickly to a razor thin film of a head; lighter than expected for the style; lacing is quite good

S: Sweet caramel malts up front; something earthy and grainy as well; a slight sour funkiness that comes from the earthiness pervades rather unpleasantly

T: A balanced beer of roasted grainy malts and slightly sweet caramel; a bit watery but with a good finish

F: Even mouth coat but rather thin

D: A pretty tasty offering from Empyrean; this easy going session beer is pretty good in any season; there is, however, something slightly off puting about the sweetness over time

01-26-2010 22:39:18 | More by dbossman
Photo of emsroth
emsroth

New York

4.38/5  rDev +25.1%

12oz with freshness date

App: Beautiful, unfiltered amber ale. Quickly dissipating head

Smell: Roasty malt. Lots of caramel. Hints of dry, floral UK hops.

Taste: Greeted by a strong smoky, roasted malt. Followed by a wonderfully balanced hop bitterness. Ends with more smoke, leaving a nice aftertaste.

Medium, malty body with a crisp carbonation. Nice low ABV (4.3% despite what it's currently labeled as).

My first foray into scotch beers and I loved it.

09-12-2009 00:00:10 | More by emsroth
Photo of TheEclecticGent
TheEclecticGent

Georgia

2.83/5  rDev -19.1%

I had this beer on tap at Lazlo's in Lincoln, NE. The color of this beer was lighter than expected. Most Scottish Ales I have had were darker and had a rich earthy nose. The color and nose of this beer is much lighter. It is a light orange-gold in color with a very light malt nose. The flavor is very light as well. I do pick up malt and a very slight smoky / peaty flavor but very little overall. The Mouthfeel is very light with moderate carbonation. While it's one of the best I tried from the Empyrean Brewing Company, it still comes off as watery and too light in body.

07-06-2009 17:54:35 | More by TheEclecticGent
Photo of Zadok
Zadok

Kansas

3.43/5  rDev -2%

Poured a copper color with a slight amber hue. Had a small head that dissipated quickly.

Smells of a hoppy malty mix. Slight sweet smell.

Interesting flavor, initial impressions were of a lifesaver or starburst..strange. Has a slight malt flavor. Overall very sweet.

Smooth mouthfeel with light carbonation. Overall pretty light bodied.

An interesting beer, sweet and light makes for easy consumption but will also give you cavities. Overall a little to tangy but kind of tasty at the same time.

11-08-2008 01:15:30 | More by Zadok
Photo of BEERchitect
BEERchitect

Kentucky

3.23/5  rDev -7.7%

Decent brew that captures some of the intended Scotch Ale peat, campfire character, and with crisp, well-attenuated malts. Enough hops to balance, but not enough to compete with the sweetness or the prominant smoky character. Lightly phenolic (plastic and smoke) with a big bruised apple flavor and quite yeasty. Finishes mostly crisp, with a linger of the apple, fruity flavors. Good beer, but the apple is a bit distrating, and a better malty body would have drastically improved the beer.

01-18-2008 20:45:52 | More by BEERchitect
Photo of AgingWarrior
AgingWarrior

Florida

3.48/5  rDev -0.6%

I drank this brew on New Years Eve after a couple of domestic brews and I drank it straight from the bottle. The first whiff of this brew was nice, a semi sweet fragrance. This brew has a great mouth feel and a nice finish. This is my first experience with a Scottish ale, but I like it enough to sample some more.

01-01-2008 23:19:30 | More by AgingWarrior
Photo of CamuMahubah
CamuMahubah

Nebraska

3.7/5  rDev +5.7%

Ah the Skye is burning me lads! I've had this beer a few times and I always have felt I got me shillings worth. Pours a light amber into the mug. Maybe a caramel color is a better way of saying it. Mine are out of date as they say drink by 10/12/07 or something like that. Maybe that's why the head is a bit weaker than I remember. Tis a good beer to be sure. I like the malty profile with the sweet butterscotch finish. I remember reading somewhere that this beer goes good with barbecue chicken, Jolly Ho! I believe whoever said that was on to something. One must sip this beer to enjoy it. I plan on getting some of these for next Summer when I fire up the grill and smoke some leg-quarters. Will make a good fire putter-outter as well as thirst quencher, mind ye, I don't be using just any beer for pouring over my BBQ!

12-22-2007 08:54:56 | More by CamuMahubah
Photo of ViveLaChouffe
ViveLaChouffe

Georgia

4.08/5  rDev +16.6%

Another beer I picked up on my last trip to the midwest.

It pours a crystal clear coppery brown with a thin ivory head. It smells of sweet earthy malt, lightly smoky and lightly sweet.

The taste is no surprise as it mirrors the smell. Earthy and sweetish, hops way in the background here. I like the smoky flavor that they get in this beer, a lot of brewer's downplay that aspect of Scottish ales. (I find later that they do use Rauch malt.)

Body is a touch light but it's plenty drinkable. I've had better but it's still a fine Scottish ale.

09-05-2007 19:57:01 | More by ViveLaChouffe
Photo of Wasatch
Wasatch

Utah

3.38/5  rDev -3.4%

Thanks goes out to jhammerly for this brew.

Pours a nice clean/clear dark golden amber color, nice carbonation, tiny fizzy off-white head, some sticky lacingin around the edges. The nose is malty, slightly piney, and lots of caramel. The taste is bitter, malty, piney, and lots of caramel. The finish is dry. Medium body. Drinkable, a nice tasty brew.

07-29-2007 21:35:23 | More by Wasatch
Photo of sulldaddy
sulldaddy

Connecticut

2.73/5  rDev -22%

I am sampling a cellar temp bottle poured into a pint glass. The beer pours much lighter color than expected with a clear golden orange color and a creamy off-white head of .5 cm foaming up and fading slowly. Eventually becomes a thin surface layer..
Aroma is a grainy and malty with some caramel and just a hint of herbal hops.
First sip reveals a lite to average body with mild yet tingly carbonation. The texture is a little watery, which is a downer.
Flavor is decent with some caramel and toffee and just a bit of grain again. Some general sugary sweetness too. No hops or alcohol anywhere on the flavor. The beer drinks very easy but isnt the most enjoyable flavor. Decent but certainly not great.

05-07-2007 02:57:44 | More by sulldaddy
Photo of BretSikkink
BretSikkink

Mexico

3.28/5  rDev -6.3%

Lightish side of a brown color, decent head with not much retention. Some lacing.

Heavy on the malt aromas, some sweet caramel, but the smell is a little underwhelming.

The bedrock here is caramel malt, although there is a little buttery diacetyl that leaves some toffee character in there as well. Smoky aftertaste after a smooth finish, shy of creamy but still medium body.

Overall a very clean drink. Wouldn't hurt for some more complexity, but what can you do without using hops...

04-28-2007 01:20:53 | More by BretSikkink
Photo of BadRockBeer
BadRockBeer

Colorado

3.75/5  rDev +7.1%

Serving Type Sampled: 12 fl. oz. stubby brown twist top bottle. No real bottle features except the neat artistic label.

Appearance: Brilliant amber in color, crystal clear. Very small ½ finger head. Zero retention but still a little lingering lace.

Smell: Malty, sweet smell of caramel.

Taste: This beer is pretty complex. Strong malty back bone. I taste caramel and toffee notes. I also sense a ting of smokiness. I also taste a hint of diacetyl.

Mouthfeel: Medium in body. Moderate carbonation, very small smoothing bubbles.

Drinkability: Good. This is a great example of a 90 schilling ale. Very clean and complex.

04-12-2007 04:33:21 | More by BadRockBeer
Photo of neonbrown82
neonbrown82

Nebraska

3.68/5  rDev +5.1%

This is an odd beer. It reminds me a lot of a Girl Scout shortbread cookie. Not quite sure how I like that leavened cookie taste in my beer. I expected it to be a lot more aggressive, but it is actually quite light.

The beer pours to a golden amber color with a feint brown hue. Decent clarity and carbonation. The head is thin, but it retains to a centimeter film, leaving a washy lacing on its way down.

The smell is where the shortbread girl scout cookie comparison starts. Smells like shortbread with peanut butter and caramel. Presumably this comes from the wee bit of smoked barley.

The taste stays quite faithful to the nose. Dry up front, followed by sweet a bready malt flavor with hints of burnt toffee, butterscotch, peanut butter, and caramel in the finish. Very subtle roast. Mild coconut and cream flavors as well. Spicy finish of nutmeg and ginger.

The body is fairly full from all of the caramel malts. Carbonation seems a little much for the style, but it still feels fairly creamy even despite the prickly burning sensation on the palate. A decent all-around beer. Definitely one of the more unique examples I've had, though that isn't necessarily a good thing (nor is it really a bad thing... it just is what it is). I would definitely consider drinking it alongside a glass of scotch whisky, which means I might pick up a bottle or 6 in the future.

04-08-2007 07:51:11 | More by neonbrown82
Photo of Vancer
Vancer

Illinois

2.9/5  rDev -17.1%

This Burning Skye was more of a twig fire. Wimpyest Scotch ale I’ve ever had. Even the pour was a sissy amber color with a bit of brown around the edges.

No aroma to speak of, if I inhaled hard enough, I could pull in some malt notes. Taste was more of a hoppy PA than Scottish ale – but it did have some subtle notes of malt and caramel to at least make it average. Watery and thin, I wouldn’t spend any hard-earned cash buying a sixer.

03-14-2007 18:55:02 | More by Vancer
Photo of BeerRun13
BeerRun13

California

3.05/5  rDev -12.9%

Pours a very clear golden colocr. A super thick, just off white head sits on top with tiny bubbles feeding it from below. Almost champagne like bubbles. Highly carbonated, as a gentle pour produced a mostly head filled glass. Once it settled though, it looked pretty cool.
Kind of a fruity aroma. A slight touch of caramel that does get better as it warms. Almost caramel apple like on the first wiff.
Definately fruity. Somewhat apple like. I wonder if something's gone wrong with this one. A little bitterness, and again a little warming helps this beer out.
Light to medium bodied. Highly carbonated. Seems a little light.
I have to think this one's past it's prime, or at least on the verge. I just don't think this style is supposed to be this fruity. I'd love another opportunity to try this one, but in the mean time I've got to give it average marks.
If there were a 6th cattegory for Sound, this one would get a 5 for the Snap-Crackle-Pop.

01-31-2007 01:00:01 | More by BeerRun13
Burning Skye Scottish Style Ale from Empyrean Brewing Company
80 out of 100 based on 127 ratings.