AleSmith Wee Heavy - AleSmith Brewing Company

Not Rated.
AleSmith Wee HeavyAleSmith Wee Heavy

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

434 Reviews
THE BROS
93
outstanding

(Read More)
Reviews: 434
Hads: 1,034
rAvg: 4.2
pDev: 8.1%
Wants: 189
Gots: 211 | FT: 16
Brewed by:
AleSmith Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Jason on 04-19-2002

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of AleSmith Wee Heavy Alström Bros
Reviews: 434 | Hads: 1,034
Photo of scott
3.51/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

V.06
Grade "b" molasses, with a root beer float head. Nice lacing.
Aroma was of caramel malt, with a little bite in the back of your nose.
A little too sweet for my liking - too mellow and mouth coating to make me want to ever finish this expensive bottle. But I will. It has to be terrible for drain pour consideration. This offering is so boring, I really don't have much to say about it. (393 characters)

Photo of walshclimb
4.77/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours dark brown with a thin, fine, tan head that leaves a slight lace. Rich smell of malt with strong carmel and nice coffee and chocolate notes. Initially tastes very malty with gentle sweetness and light smoke and chocolate with a hint of licorice. Aftertaste is nicely balanced with a nice hop bitterness and malty flavor that is medium lived and clean. Full bodied mouthfeel with slightly alcoholic finish - less alcoholic than you might expect for a 10% beer. Syruppy, heavy, dense, and smooth. This is a very tasty beer. It stands up well on its own or try it with something rich like beef wellington or a rich chocolate dessert. (636 characters)

Photo of davexisxrabid
4.57/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Split a 750 mL bottle with a buddy of mine at the Coffee Table Bistro/Lounge in Eagle Rock. Poured into a pretty standard pint glass.

This ale retained its head throughout most of the drinking period, which was pretty impressive. There was an excellent tan head that was about two fingers deep at first. Excellent lacing. Poured sort of a chestnut brown/copper color tinged with amber in the light.

Aroma was a mixture of a rich malty smell, slightly smokey, tinged with yeast. Very well balanced smell, I was pleasantly surprised.

The taste was almost as impressive as the smell. You can taste the creaminess of the malts right away. This brew is 10% abv according to the bottle. Damned if I could taste that much alcohol in there.

All in all, this ale was rich in flavor, full bodied, and not too heavy on the tounge. It's high abv and ease of drinkability makes me kinda wonder about pounding this stuff back. I'd hafta say I (and my buddy as well) was pretty impressed but this brew. Salud! (998 characters)

Photo of rdickey
4.32/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: First, it’s one of the coolest bottles I’ve seen – the Alesmith logo, and the beer name in a really cool font, painted on in purple, all topped off with a foiled top. It pours very, very dark. A pretty direct pour produces a very thin tan head, which dissipates pretty quickly but leaves great lacing.

Smell: Malt sweetness dominates, as you’d expect. Notes of cocoa powder and stone fruits combine nicely, and there’s the slightest hint of smoke. All in all, very… Scottish.

Taste: This is a simply amazing example of the style. The malt continues to carry the day, and the cocoa powder and stone fruits continue to dance. The hops are present but definitely in the backseat, of course. The smoke remains just a hint, but it adds a really nice – and definitely Scottish – feel to it. It almost feels like it should be raining outside.

Mouthfeel: Very full bodied – rich and creamy. It feels almost round in the mouth.

Drinkability: The high ABV, which is extraordinarily well concealed, makes this an obvious sipper. If you like wee heavies, though, you’ll be tempted to drink this far faster than you should. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

I generally consider Skullsplitter to be the best wee heavy, but I think Alesmith could give it a run for its money. I wish I had a Skullsplitter tonight to taste them head to head. Of course, that would probably lead to a skullsplitting morning. (1,427 characters)

Photo of drgonzo3705
5/5  rDev +19%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A: Very deep rust color with a small head but still manages to leave some nice lacing.

S: Sweet malt, caramel, dark fruits figs or raisins perhaps.

T: Still decently hoppy (Im pretty sure this is a bottle from the '07-'08 season). A nice wave of caramel and malt wash over your tongue, very appealing.

M: Medium to full bodied with a very nice creaminess to go along with it.

D: Originally I was only going to give this a 4 but after getting farther into the bottle I definitely could put away 2 of these bad boys in a night, even 3 if the mood is right!

Overall I think this is a great example of the style. Yet another great brew from Alesmith! This really makes me want to seek out the Barrel Aged version. (714 characters)

Photo of xhcadamx
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - dark mahogany with a light tan head. The head settles to a ring around the edges of the beer and leaves little notes of lacing.

S - Alcohol and sweet malt

T - this Wee Heavy has it all. Dates, toffee, brown sugar, molasses, and a bit of smoke. Very little hops but perfect for the style.

M - Thick and chewy

D - The alcohol is present but doesn't have the 10% burn I would expect. very tasty for cold nights. (417 characters)

Photo of Manoftyr
4.47/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance-Pours a dark chestnut brown with the slightest tinge of ruby red highlights, no real head rises to speak of and the body is too slick to leave any real lacing. Its color is nonetheless quite beautiful.

Aroma-Gently roasted malt, buttery caramel, brown sugar, molasses and finishes off with dark fruit; just straight up malty sweetness and classic Scotch Ale goodness.

Taste-The dark fruit comes through first followed by sticky caramel, dark molasses, toffee and just the slightest hint of sweetened peat on the finish. A sweet, sticky mess of rich malty flavor; just like a Scotch Ale ought to be.

Mouthfeel-Slick and syrupy with a rather low level of carbonation; works fine here.

Drinkability-I'm perfectly happy just sipping this, the bottle is empty and my glass is about two thirds full as I write this; I assume the glass will be empty after not too much longer. (884 characters)

Photo of srhoadsy
4.02/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served slightly chilled into a snifter.

Pours a sable brown with half an inch of dark tan head that recedes leaving moderate surface layer and moderate lacing.

Aromas of caramelized sugars, dried fruits with a hint of mineral and alcohol in the background.

Flavors follow through the aromas with a touch of bitter coffee.

Medium to heavy bodied with moderate carbonation and a sweet finish and moderate aftertaste.

Overall a very nice beer. My only complaint is that I expect a little more smoky flavor from the style. Would go very nice with some sweet BBQ. (564 characters)

Photo of MikeMilanoDesign
4.44/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

great beer. had it at story tavern in burbank, ca.

appearance: super dark, almost pitch black

taste: very full bodied scotch ale. bit on the sweeter side though. hints of berries and
sweat candied fruit. light warmth.

mouthfeel: thick and not to carbonated

overall its great but i think it would be 10x better if it aged for 6 months to a year. (351 characters)

Photo of radioscooter
4.58/5  rDev +9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Best non-McEwans Scotch Ale/Wee Heavy I have tried and found.

THIS is what the style should taste like.

Exceptional head, foamy and rich.

Dark, sweet, STRONG rich sipper with some caramel, molasses, vanilla, and just a wee bit too much coffee.

Sweetness is perfect.

Alcohol level makes it vaporize quickly off the tongue - McEwan's leaves a bit more tarry syrup behind, which I like.

They should really bottle this in some smaller bottles with some plaid on the label because this is the best Scotch Ale in America by far, and I think the best one still available period. (579 characters)

Photo of bifrostguard
3.9/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Burgundy with a small off white head and minimal lacing

S - Sweet malts, caramel and toffee with a bit of alcohol stinging the nostrils.

T - Somewhat more bitter than expected (a good thing), but still had a residual sweetness. Caramel and roasted malts are present in a healthy dose and a complimentary alcohol burn follows that is appreciated.

M - Medium bodied with a building residue on the palate.

D - I enjoyed this very much for the first few sips. Even on a small pour I thought that a little was enough. (521 characters)

Photo of RomanW70
4.28/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours dark reddish-brown with a one finger thick tan head. Aroma of chocolate, caramel with dark fruits and yeast notes. Initial flavor of smoky chocolate and caramel fades into a warming alcohol and bitter finish. Fairly full mouthfeel. Like every other Alesmith I've ever head, starts off great and gets better and better with each sip. OK, I know this is a Scotch Ale, and a Scotch shouldn't finish with big bitter, but delicious is delicious, and if Alesmith wants to make a dellicious scoth ale with a bitter finish, I'm good with that! (541 characters)

Photo of bradford
4.53/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Bought a couple bottles at the BevMo in San Luis Obispo, CA on 8/10/07
Appearance was very dark red with a small white head that remains for the duration of the glass
Smelled very much like a stout but with a slight smokiness that is the all-to farmiliar Scotch ale malts. perhaps some Pete malt?
Tasted fantastic. Tons of malt. More than expected in a brew renound for maltiness. Also lots of alcohol on the tongue which can either work brilliantly for a beer, or be it's ultimate downfall. I like the alcohol in Rochefort 10, but not so much in the Kentucky Breakfast Stout. It works very well for this offering.
Mouthfeel was a winner again. Very thich mouthfeel, that is helped in the throat with the alcohol. This beer feels on the palate like a 10+% abv beer, not the advertised 9.5%.
Drinkability was good on this one. It will be savored though and not drank like a weiss on this warm evening. I am already looking forward to my next glass. Great stuff. Highly reommended. (984 characters)

Photo of cpmichael
3.83/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a Cigar City snifter.

A: Pours a dark brown with hints of red, 2 finger tan foam that sticks around for awhile.

S: sweet caramel, molasses, hints of hops and smoke.

T: Sweet with caramel and molasses, raisins and malts, smoke is nice and more prevalent than in the nose, a nice mild hop finish. Booze is disguised well in this.

M/D: modest carbonation, thick bodied beer. It had a nice balance to the beer, wasn't overly sweet and the booze was barely noticeable. (479 characters)

Photo of Rzzzzz
4.35/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours dark brown with light head. Aroma of fruits & malt. Taste comes on big and sweet...tofee, molasses, caramel blended nicely with roasted malt, giving way to a nice lingering smokey, bitter hops finish. Mouthfeel is thick and warming. A big, delicious beverage with a good amount of punch. One'll do ya but you'll want more. (328 characters)

Photo of instrumentality
4.27/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

My introduction to this beer was on September 9, 2006 at the Stone 10th Anniversary Festival. I had it on draught and loved it, but I was 8 or 9 tasters deep when I tried it so I don't know how solid my judgment was. Now I will be able to verify.

I used my trusty Stone IRS tulip glass. This beer poured with minimal head but its body was a thick, deep, opaque mahogany, almost black.

The smell was as fantastic as I remembered it. I hate scotch, but this smells like scotch if it wasn't designed to burn all the hairs out of your nose. Mixed with this was a mouth watering burnt caramel smell. I'd have to say this is the best smelling beer I can recall experiencing.

When the liquid first touched my mouth, I felt like I was drinking a dry red wine, but the flavor evolved quickly from this to a very mild, malty scotch (but a heavy ass beer) to a soothing burnt sweetness. The more I drink, the easier this brew becomes to drink, the wine flavor dissipating and leaving the burnt malty goodness behind.

This beer burns the mouth, but I expect no less from a 9.5% ABV brew, and it finishes cleanly with no nagging aftertaste.

I rate drinkability in terms of how easily I can consume a beer. Alesmith's Wee Heavy is a sensory pleasure, but even without the compulsion to savor every sip, its intensity forces me to take it slowly. Again, the more I drink, the easier it gets, but I know I'm going to be wrecked by the end if I don't control myself.

I love this beer. I'm curious to know if it actually improves with age, because I think the alcohol intensity is a big part of what makes it so delicious. (1,622 characters)

Photo of sentomaster
3.83/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Nose- Nutty, toffee, sweet sugary phenols, caramel toastiness

Taste & Mouth- Buttery, toffee, powdered chocolate, roasted chestnuts. It manages to be uber sweet while staying just south of cloying thanks to baked and roasty flavors. Just a touch of figs. Slick and creamy. There's also a bit of light, soft, dark-wheat bread (think outback steakhouse bread loaf). Light fizzle of carbonation picks it up and carries it across the finish line with a big comeback from the roasty, nutty and toffee flavors. Nice earthy hops come through very lightly at the end.

Drink- A very nice beer and it certainly holds its own. Not sure it quite lives up to it's status for me. I would say Founder's DB beats it hands down, but they are very different. This is much lighter and softer in it's flavors than DB, which has more robust dark fruit profile. Neither are like the true "wee heavy" styles from Scotland (Traquair, Bellhaven, Orkney) which disappoints me. (952 characters)

Photo of jwolfie70
4.52/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer is a malt bomb, but does not cross the line into a cloying syrup. It pours a deep amber red, with a little head. It smells of molasses, caramel and biscuity malt. The taste is more of the smell. A great beer (and one of my favorites), but expect a malt-bomb. (268 characters)

Photo of Knuckles
2.76/5  rDev -34.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

I like my wee heavies to have a bit of subtlety to them. I don't want to be mugged by the alcohol or gassed by the boozy nose. This beer has all the subtlety of "Natural Born Killers". When I poured it out, I thought I was smelling the red wine my friend had been drinking earlier. Then I stuck my nose in the goblet. Whoops.

Appearance: Easily the best part of the beer. A deep, dark brown with a lovely tan head.

Smell: Umm, so I understand there's a bit of alcohol in this thing because it smells like I could douse a shirt-wrapped stick in it, light it on fire and explore underground Seattle with that sumbitch lighting the way.

Taste: The alcohol really overwhelms everything else in this beer. I don't know what the malts taste like, or if there is any peat or anything else, because all I taste is hooch.

Mouthfeel: Hey, with a beer this high in gravity, it should be nice. It is. Very velvety and smooth.

Drinkability: To be truthful, this was undrinkable for me. Too much alcohol and very little else going on. I've had this beer for over six months, properly stored in my cellar. Thank god I didn't open it when I got it, or it might have killed me. I've got a few more Alesmiths in the cellar, I hope they are a bit more complex than this one. (1,271 characters)

Photo of 3HovsepiansBrews
4.3/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Dark brown with some reddish hues and a tan head.

S - Dark fruits like prunes and raisins and dried apricots. There is also some coffee in the nose as well.

T - Mellow roast flavors with a hint of sweetness. The dark fruits in the nose also comes through. In addition, there is a slightly woody flavor. The finish is toffee with subtle dark chocolate.

M - For the abv, it is rather light bodied. The carbonation is low, which makes this easy to drink.

O - This is a great brew. The flavor is really great and the drinkability is nice, especially for the abv. I could drink this everyday without a problem. (614 characters)

Photo of MarineHokie
3.68/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

750 ml bottle

A - Pours deep mahogany, leaving a slim ring of foam around the rim of the tulip glass. Seemed a little bit undercarbonated.

S - Vinious, port like, earthy, & peaty.

T - Sweet dried fruit then smoky oak and malt flattens across the tongue. Drys with an oaky crisp finish.

M - Fairly thin bodied and alcoholic.

D - Just sweet enough to make one enough. Split the 750 with two other folks. (418 characters)

Photo of vladtheimpaler
4.53/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml. This is one of the best made beers you will find anywhere!. Pours a deep orange-brown with a nice tan head. massive rich malty aroma that reminds me of a fine German dopplebock of the best quality. Huge toffee and carmel notes. Sensational! Flavrs consist of explosive malts and carmel flavors, once again like a dopple. Very rich and desert like. Full mouth feel. Very drinkable, but it does go right to your head. Yummylicious. (436 characters)

Photo of gwood
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a rich dark brown with ruby accents with some backlight. Tan head comes on nice but doesn't have much retention and just a slight bit of lacing.

The nose is full of sweet malts, roasted malts, dark fruits, and hints of alcohol. The nose gives away most of the wonderful tastes of this beer. Sweet malts with hints of black molasses, middle is malts again, finishes deceptively dry with a hint of smoke with increasing alcohol warmth. Mouthfeel is thick and creamy. What a great sipping beer! (498 characters)

Photo of d4114
3.92/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Light barley come through a deep red body with a nice tan head.

S- Smoke, roasted notes, caramel, slight alcohol and a unique mintiness, all blend together really well.

T- Big smoky flavor, was expecting it to be sweeter. Smoke and malt notes with a dry finish. Not as complex as the smell but still a nice straight forward flavor. Also the alcohol is masked super well.

M- Medium to medium-heavy; creamy smooth feel but it's thick or viscus. Very drinkable.

O- Awesome nose, pretty straight forward flavor and highly drinkable, very solid over all. (558 characters)

Photo of BHopp12
3.86/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

750 ML Bottle

A: Black with an almost slight reddish tint with a small off white head with little carbonation

S: Some roasted notes, bits of vanilla, getting the hints of malt and bit of alchohol

T: Slight smoke flavor with hints of caramel and malt flavors with a nice finish. Alcohol is hidden pretty well

M: Low carbonation with a borderline think feel

O: As expected I was not dissapointed at all in this beer! I was expecting a lot from an AleSmith and I was impressed! Very good beer. (495 characters)

AleSmith Wee Heavy from AleSmith Brewing Company
93 out of 100 based on 434 ratings.