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AleSmith Wee Heavy - AleSmith Brewing Company

Not Rated.
AleSmith Wee HeavyAleSmith Wee Heavy

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

860 Ratings
THE BROS
93
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 860
Reviews: 416
rAvg: 4.17
pDev: 9.83%
Wants: 175
Gots: 186 | FT: 15
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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-08-2004)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of AleSmith Wee Heavy Alström Bros
Ratings: 860 | Reviews: 416 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.4/5  rDev +5.5%

On tap at Beachwood BBQ & Brewing in Long Beach, CA.

Pours a clear dark brown with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to a film on top of the beer. A foamy latticework of lace coats the glass on the drink down. Smell is of toasted malt, burnt brown sugar, caramel, toffee, dark fruits, and alcohol. Taste is much the same with an alcohol kick on the finish. There is a mild amount of bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and slightly sticky mouthfeel. Overall, this is a very good beer with some awesome aromas and flavors that make it very easy to drink.

UCLABrewN84, Jul 07, 2012
Photo of mrsp1107
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%

mrsp1107, Jul 06, 2012
Photo of Bfarr
4.08/5  rDev -2.2%

Clear dark brown, good tan frothy head and great retention. Peat and light smoke aroma. Smooth chocolate with notes of peat and smoke. Light caramel sweetness with a gentle warming. Velvety smooth feel.

Very subtle but good malt flavor with a good amount of sweetness. There’s a high alcohol content but it is not present in the flavor making this a scary easy drinking beer. There’s a good peat presence in the nose though it is slightly more subdued in the flavor as I would say it should be though I usually like a little bit more.

Bfarr, Jul 04, 2012
Photo of mfgreene
2.5/5  rDev -40%

mfgreene, Jul 04, 2012
Photo of KyleMA
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%

KyleMA, Jun 27, 2012
Photo of birchstick
3.75/5  rDev -10.1%

birchstick, Jun 26, 2012
Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev -4.1%

Thanks to Dixonian for sharing this bottle.

The beer pours a brownish color with a tan head. The aroma is heavy on the peat smoke, with some toffee and caramel malt thrown in. The flavor is a bit more complex. I get some nice toffee and dark fruit notes, along with a hint of peat smoke and some light alcohol notes. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. A very nice Scotch ale, glad I got to try this one.

Mora2000, Jun 16, 2012
Photo of JohnLynch
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%

JohnLynch, Jun 06, 2012
Photo of Jammer42
4/5  rDev -4.1%

Jammer42, Jun 06, 2012
Photo of nmann08
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%

nmann08, Jun 04, 2012
Photo of Greywulfken
4.4/5  rDev +5.5%

A: pitch brown beer, formed a fat bibbly frothy head that simmered down but a nice layer of bubbles was always there; motes of lace and clingy bubbles

S: caramel malts and toffee, molasses and smoke

T: definitely the best wee heavy I've had - had a lot of barleywine characteristics: there was dark fruit, soft creamy caramel; but also had hint of smoky peat and earthiness

M: wow - not heavy - very drinkable and creamy; wonderfully refreshing with a great aftertaste

O: did I say this was the best wee heavy I've had? Super smooth, very flavorful, avoided being too sweet or chewy. I could drink a lot of this.

Greywulfken, Jun 01, 2012
Photo of Brewsed
4/5  rDev -4.1%

Brewsed, May 29, 2012
Photo of Pahn
4.48/5  rDev +7.4%

750ml bottle into Duvel tulip. Don't know when it was bottled, but it had silver foil over the cap. Can't remember if I bought it this Winter or last.

Appearance: Free pour yields a half inch frothy tan head that dissipates steadily. Pours an almost opaque dark ruby with lots of visible, shadowy sediment. Leaves leggy streaks of lacing after each sip.

Smell: Slight cherry-like dark fruit note, with some underlying cake. Smells a little oxidized. The aromas work, but they're too muted; don't contribute much to the experience.

Halfway through the first glass, the aroma really opens up. The growing booziness seems to uncover a sweet malt complexity that greatly enhances the flavor.

Taste: One of those "sold on the first sip," beers. Big hit of caramel and cake, working beautifully with the creamy feel. Second sip brings out some dark fruit to highlight the caramel and toffee. The finish has a strong boozy heat, and is semi-dry. Can't tell if there's a touch of smoked malt, or if that's expectation plus the dry heat.

Love the balance here. There's a strong hop bitterness working with the heat and low (for a thick, 10% ABV beer) final gravity to keep the beer from even approaching "too rich" or "too sweet". Raisiny sherry-like oxidation note becomes prominent in each sip, but works beautifully with the dark fruit and caramel (the latter always the most prominent).

My only complaint is that the beer is maybe too straightforward. It's so finely balanced and delicious that I don't mind the relative simplicity.

Mouthfeel: Light side of full bodied. Very creamy. Low but adequate carbonation. Dryish finish that contributes monumentally to drinkability.

Overall: The 5 I'm giving here harkens back to the old "Drinkability" category to some degree. Unbelievable for such a thick, caramely, boozy beer as this to go down so easily. The levels of bitterness, sweetness, heat, etc are just perfect. Great vehicle for bold malt flavor, which is my favorite thing to find in a beer.

In my last review of an Alesmith beer--2010 Decadence, the last Alesmith beer I've had before this one--I mentioned that the beer fell short, particularly in regards to the potential of the brewers. Alesmith Wee Heavy is the kind of beer I'm talking about there; only a world class brewer could make a beer like this.

Pahn, May 25, 2012
Photo of Duff27
4.43/5  rDev +6.2%

Collar left after initial short light tan head. Leaves a lot of lacing for a wee heavy.

Deep caramel/toffee aromas.

Rich rich rich, daddy likey. Caramels, toffee, slight dark fruit (prunes/raisins). 10% huh? Welp alright then.

So smooth, adequate carbonation. Medium mouthfeel.

This was awesome. Malt bomb to perfection. Perhaps the beat wee heavy I've ever had. Thanks again egrace84!

Duff27, May 24, 2012
Photo of monitorpop
3.75/5  rDev -10.1%

monitorpop, May 20, 2012
Photo of funkel81
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%

funkel81, May 10, 2012
Photo of vonnegut21
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%

vonnegut21, May 03, 2012
Photo of Dark33
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%

Dark33, May 01, 2012
Photo of DrFunkenstein
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%

DrFunkenstein, Apr 22, 2012
Photo of TBear1605
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%

TBear1605, Apr 19, 2012
Photo of freduardo
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%

freduardo, Apr 19, 2012
Photo of blmar311
4/5  rDev -4.1%

blmar311, Apr 16, 2012
Photo of Stumpy29er
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%

Stumpy29er, Apr 08, 2012
Photo of 4thmedbn
4.83/5  rDev +15.8%

Bottle at cellar temp in a tulip courtesy of Andrewinski1.

A - Just shy of black. The only indication that it's not black comes in the form of the deepest, most rich, dark ruby where the light manages to pierce the void.

S - Really nice notes of chocolate, and dark fruits. Think cherry and vinous character. The nose isn't as big as you might expect form a beer of this ABV, but I always respect when a brewer can be subtle .

T - Again, it's a delicate flavor profile, considering the style. Most examples of the Wee Heavy that I've come across are cloying, and crazily malt dominant. And while I do like some big malt character, again, I respect the restraint. Toffee, caramel, slight bit of vanilla, and definitely some chocolate. A little warming, but it's not hot by any means. This bottle has a year on it, so I can't speak for fresh examples, but it's nice and mellow. Finishes with a lot of toffee, raisins, and figs. It's delicate, but still boozy and rich.

M - Full mouthfeel, very smooth. Very low carbonation level. Once again, a big beer that shows a lot of artistry in its execution. This beer isn't chewy, seems fairly well attenuated, without seeming lean.

O - Really impressed with this beer. Love a beer that can be subtle and big at the same time. Reminds me of Kate the Great from Portsmouth Brewery in that way. Lots of delicate, fruity, malty notes. Boozy, without being cloying or requiring a fork and knife to aid in ingesting it. Really top notch stuff.

4thmedbn, Apr 06, 2012
AleSmith Wee Heavy from AleSmith Brewing Company
93 out of 100 based on 860 ratings.