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Theakston Old Peculier - T & R Theakston Ltd.

Not Rated.
Theakston Old PeculierTheakston Old Peculier

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

958 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 958
Reviews: 575
rAvg: 3.96
pDev: 11.36%
Wants: 48
Gots: 61 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
T & R Theakston Ltd. visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
Old Ale |  5.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-31-2001

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 958 | Reviews: 575 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ViveLaChouffe
4.25/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a dark translucent brown with a thick tan head. Very lacy. Smell is malty and lightly bitter and lightly metallic.

Taste is malty and sweet. Also nutty and lightly bitter like dark chocolate. A bit of alcohol burn perhaps in the finish? Caramel undertoones and lightly smoky. Very smooth with a lingering sweetness balanced slightly by that light bitterness. Did I say smooth? this one used to get me in big trouble when visiting Britain. Smooth as a mild but 50% stronger. It really sneaks up on you after a few. One of the most drinkable beers I've ever had. On cask, it's heavenly but I'll take it from the bottle anytime.

Photo of hustlemuscle
4.05/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep ruby/maroon with a good whiteish head that does not linger.

Tart, coffee and mild hop scent, with a slight caramel candy touch.

A sip starts smooth, and then gets almost rough in the mouth, with a tart and tangy finish. Puckers the mouth, even. Malty, with a touch of what tastes like dirt.

Photo of crookedhalo
3.98/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep coppery-brown color with a thick beige to tan head. Dusty and musty malt aromas, intertwined with some traditional diacetyl-like buttery malt notes and a faint bit of hops round out a nice interpretation of an English old ale. Easily drinkable after a night out on the town. Slightest puckering tartness in the finish, but adds to it's drinkability.

Photo of waughbrew
3.98/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark mahogany, beige head with good retention. Roasted barley leads the aroma with just a hint of caramel, earthy hops, butter, and apple esters. Flavor has surprising similarities to an abt12 - just missing some alcohol. Smooth milk chocolate flavors, lingering watery sweetness. Very good brew, I am surprised I have not heard more talk about it.

Photo of arizcards
3.7/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This brownish red ale poured a nice head which dissapated quickly but is leaving a nice lacing of my pint. Nothing overly powerful smell wise but did detect some sweet malts. The taste is an interesting start of the smooth sweet malts and finishing with a slight pleasant bitterness. This is a medium bodied beer leaving a semi decent mouthfeel. Not a bad beer and would drink it again but nothing noteworthy about it.

Photo of hyuga
3.92/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A crimson-mahogany hued beer with a soda-like head that thins after a bit. Big peaty aroma with a vinous tone. Almost a bit cheese-like. Molasses, peat, and caramel make for a big sweetness on the palate. Hops are leafy, adding a little bitterness to support and staying in the background. A bit thin, but tasty. Reminds me a lot of McEwan's Scotch Ale. They are both owned by Scottish Courage... Not bad, enjoyable, but there are lots of better beers in the style. Orkney's SkullSplitter is a much better example of something like this.

Photo of BitteBier
4.05/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A murky amber brown pour with a finger's worth of uniformly foamy head with average cling. Sweet malts and caramel remind one of Scotch ales. A very interesting and pleasant mouthfeel--creamy and clean, not syrupy. A wash of mild bitterness starts at the front of the mouth and methodically crawls to the back. Creamy malts are strongest in the middle of the taste, eventually giving way to some bitterness and lightly spicy alcohol flavors. This is a pleasantly interesting and drinkable beer.

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.43/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours with a thick light brown head that sits atop a deep, dark amber, clear beer. The aroma is sweet and has notes o f molasses, caramel and dark fruit. The taste is fairly clean compared to the rich brew that I remember that this once was. This beer is lightly sweet with almost no balancing bitterness. There seems to be a threshold level of buttery diacetyl, which, adds a bit to the complexity of this beer. There seems to be some subtle dark malt flavors that are evocative of chocolate. It is quite drinkable, but need to be served quite warm to get any of the flavors.

Photo of Beersignal
3.77/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep walnut brown showing burgundy highlights with no particulate matter in suspention. Initial rich and generous foam dissipates somewhat quickly to a thinnish film that leaves very fine lace clinging to the glass. Smelled rich and malty with chocolate, spice (nutmeg and cinnamon mostly), ripe fruit and diacetyl notes of butter and nuts. A solidly structured beer supported by malt and molasses which are joined by a slight ''horse blanket'' character and black fruit tastes. Finishes on this sourness and a mild but well defined bitterness leaving you wanting another sip 'til it's all gone. I'm now looking for a place which serves this on tap.

Photo of merlin48
4.01/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle poured into a Fullers pint glass. Clear mahogany that is a distinct ruby when held to the light. One finger beige head with staying power and moderate lacing. Aroma is a bit subdued with hops, toffee, and some peppery spices. Mouthfeels is initially thick and creamy, finishes dry and exuberating. Taste is bitter/tart at the beginning, then the walnuts and toffee take over. Overall, an excellent execution of well balanced malty caramel and hops bitterness. Reminds me more of an excellent ESB than a Porter. This is my first Theakston, but it is one of the more drinkable British ales I've come across. Excellent drinkability.

Photo of beergeek279
3.55/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served in the 12 oz. bottle, into a pint glass. The color was a dark amber with a nice white head. The smell was a nice sweet malt. The taste was a very light malt sweetness with very little hoppiness. Mouthfeel was somewhat thin. Drinkability-wise, could have a couple.

Not as good an old ale as some of the ones I've had recently, but was a servicable beer. I'd probably have one in the future.

Photo of TAMU99
4.2/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark Brown porter that pours a medium tan head with some staying power.
Strong scents of chocolate and coffee.
Great taste. Bold choclate malts, coffee tones with carmel underpinnings. Slight hoppy aftertaste.
Nice lace down the glass with a rich, smooth feel.
Very drinkable. A good solid beer.
I liked this one a lot - good for cooking and cold nights.

Photo of aaronh
4.32/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've always though of this as a robust porter. Don't know why.

Dark brown with a thin, fine-bubbled cream colored head. Great coffee, chocolate and sweet fruity aromas greet the nose and draw you into the beer. The flavor is sweet caramel balanced by bitter roasted malt and a decent hop bitterness. The finish is exceptionally dry. The mouthfeel is hearty, with light carbonation. Drinkability is pretty good, but eh dryness seems to detract just a bit for me.

Photo of Hobbz
4.4/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A classic English ("strong") ale.
It's been years since I have had this one! (the last time may have been on-tap in Stowe, Vermont at Pickwick's Pub).
The other day I picked it out of the beer listing at a joint where I had just had three other lighter, lager beers. Perfect timing and positioning!! Wow, what great flavors.

The dark beer poured into my glass had very little head and had a sweet aroma. The taste was complex: sweet malts with a slight woody and roasted background, augmented with a molasses presence (brewing licorice?). I also found the mouthfeel and its drinkability well-suited to drink alone or mixed with others before or afterwards.

Photo of GreenCard
3.88/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Best before date: 31/7/03...

Appearance: dark mahogany, sudsy transformation w/ OK retention, some lace

Aroma: roasty maltiness, prunes, wisps of hops, and something slightly vegetal

Flavor: smooth malt flavor rounded out by a roasty twang, woody hop notes, tasty bitterness from the dark grains and the hops, a hint of something like molasses (treacle?), rather dryish finish w/ a roasty aftertaste

Mouthfeel: medium-full body, crisp carbonation, slightly acidic

Overall Impression: Haven't had one of these in a long time. Tried it when I was fairly new to "beer geekdom" and really liked it. Classic beer. Easy to drink and deliciously interesting to boot. However, it's funny to me that a 5.6% abv beer is considered a "strong ale". I know that's attributed to English law, but over here in Belgium, of course, 5.6% is "normal strength".

Photo of silks636
3.9/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz. brown bottle.

Dark mahogany color with a thick foamy tan head. Smells heavily of caramel with notes of floral hops and roasted coffee. Starts with a buttery caramel that builds into a richer chocolate malt flavor. A flash of fruit and grain appears as it finishes with a lingering toasted malt. Good hop presence throughtout provides an adequate balance. Mouthfeel is smooth to slightly creamy.

Nothing fancy or pretentious, just a damn good drinking beer. Definitely one to check out if the opportunity arises.

Photo of HardTarget
4.14/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Aroma: The smell of dark bread, with alcohol, and a hint of peat? Mild esters noted.
Appearance: Black, that showed a deep amber red when backlit. Clear, with a creamy light tan head that lasted a while
Flavor: Clean taste with malt and hints of smoke. Great balance with the malt being dominant, but not heavy handed. I let the beer sit for a while and the carbonation died off, but still left a bubbly and dry aftertaste.
Mouthfeel: Medium, with a very clean finish.
Overall Impression: Not particularly one of my favorite styles, but this beer has me thinking I should explore some more. I liked this. Drinkability is solid, the dry finish and clean taste makes it hard to put down.

Photo of Jarod
3.58/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Best by dated: 1-26-05

This beer poured a dark garnet/amber color that was crystal clear when held to the light. The head that was produced was semi thick and a full constancy, tan/beige in color and not overly lasting. Some spotty lace present. The aromas that came out of the glass were of roasted malt, fresh floral hops, some alcohol, caramel and light fruits. Not an overbearing amount of aromas but present. The flavors were of fresh floral hop flowers, roasted malt and nuts, some coffee, earth tones, caramel, plums, and some alcohol. It left a roasted oily feel in the mouth. Semi sweet in the beginning, dry and watery near the finish. Medium bodied. Not overly impressed with this beer, good but not impressive IMO. Lots of other beers of this style out there to try before I would go back to this one. But it was drinkable.

Photo of Rumrunner
3.73/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz. bottle.

Pours a dark almond brown. Good beige frothy head. Decent lacing. Scents start off sour. Then some sugary molassass and caramel appear. The scents finish with a bit of bitter on the nose.

The flavors are a bit mixed. Somewhat uneven for me. A sour fruit taste leads off. Then there is a used coffee ground flavor. Good toffee and sweet caramel. A nice burnt finish.

A decent mouthfeel. A bit of a tang. Good and dry on the palate. One could drink a few in a session.

Overall a good offering. It is just too tangy and the flavors are too much of a mixed bag. I did not completely dislike this ale. There are just many I would rather have in its stead.

Photo of grynder33
3.41/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dark amberish color, better head than expected. Not much of any aroma on the first sniff, a little chocolate became evident on the fourth pass. The first taste had subtle cherry and chocolate competeing mildly for your attention. Overall the taste was pleasant but thin.

Photo of beerguy101
3.78/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Deep garnet color, small foamy head, slightly malty and sweet aroma. Full rich malt taste. Malty and subtle. Fruity, slightly nutty, some yeastiness. Mild and flavorful. Taste is very smooth. Mouthfeel is very smooth. Finish is clean and smooth. Aftertaste is slightly bitter.

Photo of WVbeergeek
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Deep ruby brown tone with a frothing tan head arising from quite a vigorous pour, nice even lattice of lacing not bad. Aroma: Contains mild chocolate with the tosted malts producing a certain musty characteristic one of those English open fermentation things I'm almost sure of, either way it's not bad at all. Taste: Semi fruit infused sweetness with a clean toasty finish of chocolate running through it, I always was turned away from this beer for the simple reason that here in WV it runs at 9 bucks a six pack not bad I am enjoying this one finishes very clean. Mouthfeel: Slightly creamy medium in body a great selection glad I found a single. Drinkability: Amazingly drinkable compared to what I thought it was going ot be like, refreshing ties all flavors together well seems like a classic English ale glad I finally gave it a shot.

Photo of nomad
3.62/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a ruddy brown and ruby color. Has a soft pillowy foam head that often falls to a well-retained sliver. Occassionally leaves spots of stain in no partcitular order.

Smells rooty, roasty, nutty, malty, but more so of dates with the former notes awash within this dark fruity goodness. Opens to some sweet, un-attenuated maltiness. Lots going on in my nose, but nothing alluring or so well brewed to win me over. Taste is complex, and I find it varying and still tough to get through after having a bunch in a couple days. Starts off tangy and tart with some barky bitterness. Smoothly transitions into subtle fruit flavors, for me closest to dates. Supported by calm and full dark malt flavors, just on the other side of a scottish ale. Short finish, quite rooty and at times rough to handle, but luckily short. Very thin mouthfeel.

A good beer, but not something I'd thirst after, especially among many of the tasty beers in the old ale range.

Photo of TripelJ
4.1/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Now Quaffing: Theakston ~ Old Peculier

Pours a deep mahogany with little visibility through the glass. Head is moderate with good lacing upon recession. Aromas are sweet malty and somewhat bready/yeasty. Taste is a wonderful contrast of malt sweetness up front followed by a long mellow bitter, dry finish. Fruit flavors of grapes and plumbs are there along with an acidity that gives this beer wine-like attributes. Very smooth and easy drinking despite the abrupt dry finish. A nice beer to finish the night off with.

Photo of Seumas
3.13/5  rDev -21%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Old Peculier is odd in being one of the few ales I know that I've always found to taste better from the bottle than it does on cask.

I think its the carbonation in the bottled product drying out the beer, which improves taste, mouthfeel and drinkability. This is an ale that I have so loved in the bottle that I have dragged case after case of it home whenever the Liquor Control Board brought it into Ontario. It's also an ale that has never failed to disappoint me when I tryed it on cask. It's not that it's bad, it's just that it's overly sweet and (oddly) slightly thin on cask. [2006-11-18: Maybe it was just that the body has changed, over the years. My overall rating hasn't changed, but now I discover that the bottled product seems to have thinned down, as well - at least that imported to Waltham MA.]

There's still the lovely aroma and flavour of Christmas pudding, but not as rich and dry [though now thin] as it is from the bottle.

Theakston Old Peculier from T & R Theakston Ltd.
89 out of 100 based on 958 ratings.