Allagash Musette - Allagash Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Allagash MusetteAllagash Musette

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BA SCORE
90
outstanding

160 Reviews
THE BROS
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no score

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Reviews: 160
Hads: 189
rAvg: 4.05
pDev: 8.4%
Wants: 45
Gots: 5 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Allagash Brewing Company visit their website
Maine, United States

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

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: barleywinebrewer on 05-22-2006

Our interpretation of a Belgian-inspired Scotch ale, Musette undergoes a caramelization process in the kettle, where the first runnings are condensed and caramelized, imparting a unique and subtle caramel character and amber color to the beer. Following fermentation, a portion of it is aged in oak bourbon barrels for three months. Musette features raisin and ripened banana aromas. Its taste is malty and caramel with a hint of roast, and its warm finish strikes a balance between dry and caramel characters with a hint of smoke.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 160 | Hads: 189
Photo of BeerHonky
4.18/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed on tap in a nice wide tumbler glass at Barcade's Allagash night November 2006. Poured a nice dark amber color with hints of orange when held up to the light in the dark bar. Unfortunately not much head was present as there really wasn't much room for it in the low tumbler. The beer gave off pleasant scents of dark dried fruit with a touche of alcohol. Like any good barrel aged beverage would. The taste is pleasantly complex. LOTS of good carmelized malt with hints of dark dried fruit that ends in a nice warming subtle bourbon-esque after taste. Oh soooo good. Very drinkable in small amounts, but has a bit of stickiness to it that would prevent you from drinking more than say two of these. All in all, I love this beer. It is a beer I would want to drink every night during the winter months. (808 characters)

Photo of Gueuzedude
4/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled May 2006, Sampled November 2006
Pours with a frothy, thick three finger thick, tan colored head. The beer shows a lightly hazy, ruby, amber color when held up to the light, otherwise it sits a slightly dull, burnt, concentrated amber color. As I pour this beer I get a nice, sweetish fruity note of plums. Yep, notes of plum and raisins play a forward role in this beer. Towards the end the oak starts to become noticeably; touches of vanillin, and buttery oak character. The oak actually seems to accentuate the alcohol aromatics here, it almost gives it a hot, even bourbon like edge. Malty, caramelized notes of rum, brown sugar and toasted bread crust. There is also a touch of something that makes the aroma smell a bit tart; it sort of reminds me of tamarind.

The taste has a touch of complex sweetness to it up front, that dies down a bit in the middle and then picks up again through to a long, caramelized finish. Definitely has a certain tartness to it; it seems to remind me of plums and perhaps a touch of apples. For an oak aged beer, the wood is fairly subtle. Don't get me wrong, it is definitely noticeable, but it is not so in your face that it is the first thing I notice. The oak first becomes noticeable towards the finish, with notes of vanilla, a touch of astringent oak, and perhaps a hint of buttery oak. This beer has a nice fullness to it, it is not heavy, though it does manage to coat the palate for quite some time after the beer has left. Once again the wood seems to accentuate some hot alcohol notes, but it is even more subtle in the taste than it is in the aroma. The notes makes me think of spicy notes of pepper.

This is a nice beer to contemplate over an evening. Perhaps the best thing about this beer is that the oak is fairly subtle, so often the wood is overdone in the wood aged beers. In this one it plays a supporting role & it just works. As the beer warms and my palate gets used to it, it loses the sweetness that was initially here. It becomes actually a bit meatier, more chewy and more savory even. Perhaps not mind blowingly good, but this is certainly quite tasty and I am enjoying this quite nicely right now. (2,177 characters)

Photo of Bighuge
4.52/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled in August 2006.

Appearance: Clear burgandy. Lots of carbonation noted surfacing through the body of the beer. Healthy looking beige head. Moderate amounts of lace left while I drink.

Aroma: Oak, candy, sweet malts, Belgianesque like yeastiness, and a little cherry like fruitiness.

Flavor: Lots of complex subtleties. Sweet candied malts. Belgian yeastiness. Slight oak. Fruity esters abound. Sublte dryness. The slight alcohol that is present is integrated beautifully. This is really a tasty beer.

Mouthfeel: This is one of those rare beers that just kind of dissolves in the mouth. (Similar to a lot of the St. Bernardus brews in that respect.) LIght-medium body. Carbonation is perfect. Mouthfeel is perfect.

Drinkability: This is very drinkable. The alcohol is well integrated. This is not a classic Wee Heavy by any means. More of a belgian beer. Let's call it a Belgian inspired Wee Heavy. In any case, it's delicious. (952 characters)

Photo of Billolick
4.5/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Large Belgian bottle, caged and corked, "bottled August 2006" Pours cloudy, dull dark brown, typical tan head showing fine retention and leaving nice, fine and also blotchy lacing. Nose is musty,malty and sweet. Notes of more malt, light raisins and a hint of wood and rum. Fine, fine stuff, very smooht and enjoyable mouthfeel. Go get some! Thanks to my beer bud, Daver, for bringing this fine brew over.. (406 characters)

Photo of GolgiIPAratus
4.29/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled: 8.13.06

Appearance was a golden brown, like apple cider. A medium head rest atop, leaving some lacing, but not much. Nothing spectacular just to look at, but holding its own.

The aroma was of alcohol soaked wood. An appley weizen like smell really came through, as well as some light banana, tricking me into thinking this was closely related to a German style. Some sweet maple also hung throughout. The alcohol had a whiskey & sweet dark vermouth quality to it, pungent but enticing.

The flavor was rich vanilla in a wheat like tartness. Not so much sour for me, definitely tart. The alcohol was spicey and melded into a nicely hopped bitter finish. The bourbon & vermouth qualities in the nose carried into the flavor a bit, reminding me of the iced mellowed end of a Manhattan. Though, it’s billed as a Scotch Ale/Wee Heavy, it did not stand out as such while drinking it. Definitely had it’s inherent Belgian qualities, and some of the fruitiness had me thinking German. But regardless, it’s a quality beer. The brew was light but oily in the mouth and had a nice alcohol after-burn, warming your mouth and belly.

This beer goes down well, but it’s obviously another Allagash offering made to savor slowly and enjoy as it overcomes your senses. A real good one. (1,291 characters)

Photo of clvand0
4.1/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours a brown/red color with a decent head that falls quickly and doesn't leave a lot of lacing on the glass. The aroma is full of dark fruit smells - reminds me of grapes and it has a hint of alcohol. Doesn't really remind me of a scotch ale, but smells good. The flavor is very smooth, but has a hint of alcohol. Very malty and full of dark fruit flavors. The flavor is more of an oak aged belgian brown or something similar, but not a scotch ale. Either way, it's tasty. The body is fairly thick, almost syrupy. The drinkability is pretty good, but the bite from the alcohol hurts it a bit. (603 characters)

Photo of Viggo
4.47/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a cloudy brown/orange, thicks off white head forms, awesome lace, great retention, it really sticks. Smell is very sweet and malty, lots of toffee, vanilla, some spices, real nice oak character, some pears and apples, little bit of alcohol. Taste is very oaky, bourbon vanilla, some toffee, apples, some alcohol, very nice though, I really enjoyed the oak character. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, very well attenuated, low to medium carbonation. A very enjoyable beer, definate sipper. (489 characters)

Photo of dherling
3.53/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep brown color with a well carbonated unever off white head. The nose has some alcohol and yeast, a little bit of malty sweetness, but not much character otherwise. The taste is mostly an off sweetness, malt, mollasses, maple syrup, almost slightly woody. There's alcohol there, but not enough to be distracting. Has a creamy mouthfeel, and finishes fairly dry with some lingering mollasses. (393 characters)

Photo of RockyTopHeel
4.48/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Corked and caged 750 mL, bottled as one of 419 in August 2006. "Ale Aged in Oak Barrels."

Hazy amber in color with an off-white, two finger head. Aroma of Belgian-ish yeast and smooth sugars like maple syrup and caramel. Taste is very smooth, with some hoppy bite and smooth, sugary malts. Very easy to sip, and finishes clean despite the sweetness.

Very, very good. (372 characters)

Photo of 4thoseabout2bock
4.1/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Purchased in a bottle from Sam's Marcey St in Chicago late September for approx 14.99

Pours copper/bronze/mahogany with a light lacy white foam that dissapated quickly.

Clear and bright (not cloudy) with a reddish hue.

Smells sweet and maybe the faintest hint of oak.

This is nice abbey/dubbelish beer.
Fruity caramelly sweetness, a wisp of oak, definite vanilla.

A nice belgian style brown. (I wouldn't call it a scotch ale, sets up too much expectation -- call it a belgian brown aged in oak bourbon casks and it is delightful)

And VERY drinkable.
Just looked down and the glass is darn near empty! (621 characters)

Photo of sulldaddy
4.35/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I picked up this bottle in Portland ME. Pouring into a pint glass at room temp the beer exhibits a very clear copper to mahogany color with a frothy yet soft off white head of 3 cm that recedes slowly to .5 cm and holds. The aroma is malty with brown sugar, some oak, and bourbon notes as expected. First sip reveals an average body with very fine carbonation that is very tingly.
Flavor is sweet through and through with brown sugar, some drak fruit (plums) red grapes, borubon and a bit of oak and vanilla. I get just a hint of hot booze on the finish that makes the beer a bit of a sipper. Overall this is a tasy beer and I hope to score more next time it comes around. (673 characters)

Photo of nlmartin
4.65/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This beer was purchased at Jungle Jims for $12.99 a 750ml bottle. The beer was served in a snifter.

Appearance: The beer pours a very rich looking caramel amber coloration. The head is a fluffy biege and light tan coloration. Streams of lacing remain on my glass.

Smell: The beer smells odd for a scotch ale but I like it. The beer smells very pleasing like a caramel bourbon soaked raisin banana bread.

Taste: This beer is loaded with caramel maltyness. This combines well with the vanilla and oaked bourbon flavors. This beer delivers a hella good bubble gum and banana bread character to the flavor. This beer has a very warming and present alcohol flavor to the beer. This may be a distraction to others but I like the bourbonesque flavors. The beer has a flash of smoke flavors.

Mouthfeel/ Drinkability: This beer is medium bodied. The beer has a very aggressive and abrasive carbonation that helps to keep the beer on the dry side. The beer has a nice creamy finish. The beer is very drinkable in my opinion. I enjoyed the beer from the begining until the end. At 10% this beer may be too much for others to drink. I enjoyed how strong the beer was. (1,170 characters)

Photo of TheBungyo
3.87/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I did pour quite gently as the bottle suggested but at the same time, the head was not what I'd like. Body is a nice ruby brown but the head struggles to even fight its way atop. Nose is snappy bubblegum, an almost woody mahogany smell, followed by brown sugar and caramel. Finish is like licking a slab of cardboard ... but pleasant. I know of no other way to describe it. Taste is at once caramel, brown sugar, rum, vanilla, with the finish being dry. Mouth was at first perhaps overly carbonated but later very very smooth.
In all, this is a damn fine and tasty brew. The real question is:
should you pay nearly $20 for it? Nope. This tastes great but there are so MANY other great beers out there begging to be bought for a fraction of the price. I would honestly rather have my four Ommegangs to this one Allagash. Save your money and smile. (849 characters)

Photo of rhoadsrage
4/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(Served in a snifter)
Bottled May 2006

A- This beer has a warm brown crystal clear body with a sea of tiny bubbles racing toward the surface. There is a thick rocky tan foam that holds for a good bit.

S- The light toasted sweet malt note have strong notes of oak and some green wood qualities. There is a soft sherry alcohol smell in the finish.

T- This beer has a caramel sweet malt flavor with some alcohol taste that is mellow but definitely present. There are some strong notes of oak, and green wood in the finish of the taste also.

M- This beer has a medium mouthfeel probably from the strong carbonation and a light alcohol heat in the finish which cuts down the sweetness nicely.

D- This beer is complex but still pretty chaotic. With some more age it should really mellow and when all the flavors blend it should be amazing. (853 characters)

Photo of cjgator3
3.67/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottled May 2006

Corked and caged 750ml bottle. Pours a dark brown with a bit of orangish hues when held up to the light. Aroma is sweet fruity malts with a bit of spice and smoked oak. Taste starts out malty but quickly turns a bit spicey. There is also a large presence from the belgian yeast in the taste as well. Overall, this is a pretty good brew but I cannot help but be dissapointed in it from the steep price tag. (425 characters)

Photo of DarkerTheBetter
4.5/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer poured a solid dark amber that fades to straw near the edges of my glass. The head was even, creamy and off-white.

Smells of an awesome blend of green sappy oak, a dab of honey and a cool woody barley that’s slightly sour.

Tastes of a nice gooey barley and brown sugar over-laid with an electric oak, easy woody hop and alcohol that sweetens in the finish.

Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied with a creamy carbonation.

This one’s really well rounded. It was nice to have a barrel aged beer that wasn’t overly-dominated by the oak. (556 characters)

Photo of unklesyd
4.05/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Split this bottle with my wife, who took more than I after proclaiming that she loved it and yelling at me for only buying one bottle.

Pours a dark ruby at the beginning of the bottle, muddled clayish red-brown at the end. Short, dense head that maintains as a ring and skin.

Earthy Belgian nose and bitterness. Very characteristic of a BSDA. Very warming phenolics without the overbearing mouthfeel or aromatics. Nice touch.

Mouthfeel is what sets this apart as a Scotch-style Belgian. More chewy and dense than a standard BSDA, but with a drying aftertaste. Interesting.

Overall, nice brew, but glad that I only had half the bottle, and only bought the one. (674 characters)

Photo of EPICAC
3.85/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This was purchased at Downtown Wine & Spirits a few weeks ago. I let this warm to around 45º F and served it in one of my Duvel Tulips.

Appearance: Pours a hazy brownish-red with a fluffy, thick, beige head that thins to a persistent, half-inch layer, leaving heavy lace.

Smell: Rich sweet caramel malty aroma is predominant, with notes of dark fruits, especially dates. There are also notes of yeast and alcohol.

Taste: There's a malty and fruity sweetness upfront, followed by a woody flavor and a peppery alcoholic spice. The finish has a mellow bitterness.

Mouthfeel: High carbonation, creamy and medium to full-bodied.

Drinkability: Flavorful, with well hidden alcohol.

Overall: This is the first Wee Heavy that I've assigned a ranking to. The malty flavors are nice and are balanced well by the woodiness and bitterness. If I could find another bottle I would buy it for cellaring, perhaps next year's release. (935 characters)

Photo of mntlover
4.22/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a darker brownish copper color with sparce bubbles slowly rising to a beige/tan small head that falls fast. Not much lace left behind, still nice relaxing to observe.

Aroma is nice sugary malt with good spices and dark fruits coming thru. Some light bourbon barrel aroma (some light alcohol hints) with cherries, almost sherry like. Some even softer vanilla and oak hints. Nice smelling beer.

Taste is sweet malt, brownsugars/molasses, dried fruits, burbon barrels that add some vanilla and alcohol notes that warm. Finish is bourbon oak flavors hints of vanilla with light spice and some corriander present. More a Belgain Dark then a Wee Heavy, but guess the bag pipes on the bottle got the Scotch ale going but other then the sweet molasses notes don't see much Scothish influence here.

Mouthfeel is nice lightly zesty without being fizzy. Body is nice but only medium but that seems to suit the beer well.

Drinkability is good an enjoyable beer, one of the better Allagash beers I have had as far as enjoyablity goes and would purchase again for special occassion. (1,086 characters)

Photo of Goldorak
3.62/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks Clark for suppling this bottle!

Appearance: Caramel brown, with quite an enjoyable bubbly head.

Smell: Interesting tapestry of oak, yeasty spices, and prunes. The bourbon comes through nicely, much better than the Curieux I had a year or two ago IMHO.

Taste: The boozy presence takes center stage, which tries to hide the body lost by the barrel aging process and does a relatively good job of it, giving it more girth than width, if that makes any sense. Like a girl stuffing her bra with kleenex to drag attention away from the zit on her forehead. Maybe the "magician making you look to the left while he stuffs the rabbit in the hat on the right" analogy would fit it better, but it just wouldn't be as funny. Anywhoo, the belgian yeast strain sort of takes this beer on a tangent a little too far from the style, but that's not a bad thing at all. The bready, almost peppery yeast flavors give it a richness the weakend malt wouldn't have been able to give on it's own. I'm glad I've secured a bottle of this, it's going to be a very interesting cellaring experiment. (1,088 characters)

Photo of blackie
4/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

appearance: The pour produces a low, light khaki head that soon recedes to just a ring around the glass. The beer is a deep orange amber in color.

smell: Aromas of sweet toasted malts, dried dark tree fruits, and raw sugars greet me first...not to say that the aroma is very sweet, it is not. Then come hints of orange pulp, oak, and a mild to moderate ethanol note. The hop aroma is of a papery, aged variety. Pretty subtle yet pleasantly complex.

mouthfeel: The carbonation is high, and the body somewhere between light and medium. A little more body would be nice, as it seems a little overly fizzy to me.

taste: Sweet, tempered flavors of dried figs and dates with a healthy dose of Belgian yeast character upfront. Just a hint of woodiness and an even more subtle hint of bourbon. In the finish is a touch of ethanol in the back of the throat and a light flavor and bitterness of aged noble hops.

drinkability: easy enough

Bottle split with dirtylou during my stay in Madison...May 2006 bottling. I'll rate this beer with both a scotch and belgian strong in mind. (1,083 characters)

Photo of dirtylou
3.85/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml split with Blackie, bought at Riley's, $13.99

appearance: poured into a snifter...glowing dark garnet body, light beige head with pretty much no retention, lacing around the rim...pretty clear body and a nice looking pour

smell: strong vinous aroma, brown sugar, fig, dates, a bit boozy, sweet malt, yeasty, a touch peppery, raisins, pruins, nice woody nature, vanilla...nice ale

taste: First of all, this is not a scotch ale and should be reclassified because that is an extremely misleading classification. What it is is a nice Belgian Strong Ale. flavour is dominated by malt sweetness, strong belgian yeast presence, vinous alcohol bite, big dark fruit flavours - plum, raisin, prune, red apple...biscuity, oak woodyness, vanilla, toffee

mouthfeel: spicy pepper feel is a tad distracting, moderate carbonation, medium body

drinkability: about average, good opener (888 characters)

Photo of blitheringidiot
4.32/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another beautiful looking bottle from Allagash declaring 690 cases bottled, May 2006, 10% ABV.

Pours with an umber copper hazy hue, topped with a huge pillowy khaki cap coating leaving drippy lace in the glass.

Sweet molasses scents with tootsie roll sugar. Flakey oat grain, delicate suggestion of rum and wooden overtones. Delicious on the nose with a whisper of cocoa.

First swigs: Initial butter pecan ice cream. Soft cocoa chocolate blends with a backing of pistachio. Vanilla extract and rum torte cake sweetness carries this through to a dry powdery finish with hints of smoky wood. Latent hints of cinamon, and apple pie crust. Complexities abound.

Feel is a touch frothy on the palate yet robust. Firm crispness finds a robust interpretation that takes the style to a new level. Unmistakable creaminess. Kudos!

Last swigs: Complex dark buttery toasty sweet!

Beer is good. Happy barrel beering. (923 characters)

Photo of Ego
3.97/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

found for $12.99 (yeah, they mismarked it)

eyes...
well carbonated, one finger of clingy/semi chunky head, lacing is decent, deep brown with some amber highlights, pretty good looking

nose...
strong sweet aromas, the yeast plays almost perfectly off the sweetness, the alcohol is in the nose but not astringent in any way, underneath is a mat of dryness, it almost has a grape/wine odor component, very nice.

taste etc...
nice and almost creamy in the mouth, good body, the alcohol warms but does not affect the flavor in the mouth, the is a touch of bitterness left in the back caverns of your tongue, everything you smell is identical to the taste, it is a touch sweet but not overly so, it finishes dry and almost peaty? dare I say? This is pretty easy drinking for the ABV as it is a touch lighter than alot of scotch ales. (and also not as "too sweet" as some scotch ales)

verdict?
$20 a bottle? I think that is a bit much. Granted I paid less and for that money I would buy it in a second. (1,011 characters)

Photo of lordofthewiens
4.2/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I am of the opinion that Allagash can do no wrong, and this beer does nothing to dissuade me. I had a 750ml bottle, purchased at Tully's, that stated it was bottled May of 2006. It was a medium brown color, with a thin white, sticky head. It had a sweet, oaken aroma, with some maltiness. It tasted fruity, some vanilla, and fairly big malt that lingered a long time. Good mouthfeel, and very drinkable, as long as you remember to sip and not guzzle. (450 characters)

Allagash Musette from Allagash Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 160 ratings.