Scotch Ale - Rohrbach Brewing Company (Brewpub)

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Scotch AleScotch Ale

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very good

131 Ratings
no score

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Ratings: 131
Reviews: 55
rAvg: 3.98
pDev: 12.31%
Wants: 9
Gots: 26 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Rohrbach Brewing Company (Brewpub) visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-05-2001

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 131 | Reviews: 55
Reviews by StuyBeerGuy:
Photo of StuyBeerGuy
3.28/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

I got this beer at a bar in the Rochester region without any prior knowledge of the Rohrbachs brewery.

Appearance - Dark and dense for a scotch ale with good carbonation. Poured from a pitcher into pint glasses and got good head with decent retention.

Smell - Burnt caramel and some earthiness.

Taste- Has a dense chewy mouthfeel that fits with the caramel flavors and lingers well after a short buildup to full flavor.

More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
3.88/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled yesterday for about the fourth time,pours a deep amber with a touch of brownish tint a well formed tight thinner white head sits atop and sticks around for a bit.Malt aromas with is expected for the style mainly dark fruit and caramel malt mainly.A well rounded Scottish ale a few different malt based flavors going on quite fruity wich was appetizing with some brown sugar tones a hint of earthy hop in the finish but its faint along with some woodiness.I have yet to get over to Rohrbach's but I will in time this beer is pretty darn good for the style in my opinion.

Photo of sponberg
4.5/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A pint on tap at the brewpub. Beautiful deep red/brown color, with a slightly thin cream colored head. Great aroma - honey, hints of smokiness, and a whiff of maple syrup. This one had potential...

... and delivered in a big, big way. The balance is what got me - sweet, with dark honey and toffee and hints of smokiness, but it's never at all cloying. Solid, chewy but not syrupy mouthfeel. The gentle underlying hop bitterness and alcohol presence just keep everything in "precise Modern Lovers order" - a beer I could enjoy again and again. One of the best Scotch ales I've had the pleasure of trying. And let me tell ya, it was simply spectacular alongside a bratwurst and kraut.

Many thanks to BAs John, Murtyman, and GreatPondBrewer for suggesting this brew the night before. Spot on, guys! Next time I hit Rochester I'm bringing serious growler tankage.

Photo of generallee
4.27/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: It was poured from tap and served in a pint glass at the Rohrbach brewpub.

Appearance: The body has a nice dark brown color with deep amber highlights. It raises an average 1.5 to 2 inch beige head. The head holds on well and makes some cool lacing on the glass.

Smell: In the nose I pick up a good toasted malts character with lots malt sweetness and candy like sweetness as well. (This candy like note reminds me of aroma notes in some German Doppelbocks.) Also way off in the background I get a hint of citrus and herbal hops.

Taste/Palate: The flavor is full of toasted malt and grain sweetness with some light fruity candy like sweetness as well. The hops offer a slight herbal back note and just the slightest bitterness near the finish. For such a firm malty beer it is quite drinkable and the sweetness never gets out of control. It has a smooth mellow feel with mild carbonation.

Notes: Overall I feel it is a well made and very enjoyable beer. Cheers!

Photo of mbratt93
3.78/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Tries to be an Eddie fitz and its not. Still a good scotch ale.

Photo of Calico
3.88/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Someone else in the pub remarked, "This beer is like candy." I'm not sure about that, but it is a malty brew.

Appearance: clear brown amber. Nice. A little cloudiness, to be expected in a Scotch ale.

Aroma: All about the malty sweetness, caramel nose, some kind of flowery hops but I can't tell what kind.

Mouthfeel: full, round-bodied, delicious. Very malty and caramely. Well carbonated.

Finish: Slight sweetness lingers on the tongue.

Photo of Sammy
3.06/5  rDev -23.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Their brew for craft brew appreciators, according to staff. Some scotch taste, pale brown colour. Nothing else stood out. Light to medium mouthfeel and well carbonated. On sweet side, caramel.Could use more something, hops, barley. Ok to drink once but boring.

Photo of animalchin
3.72/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a growler purchased 8-25 (day of review). No freshness date available.

A - Dark brown in the body with very bright red hues shining through the bottom and sides of the glass. Pours a nice half inch thick head that quickly breaks down but leaves about a centimeter of circumference head.

S - One of the sweetest upfront malts I've ever encountered in any beer. Sweet chocolate, mocha-like aromas come through afterwards assisted by a robust backbone.

T - Somewhat alcohol-infused sweetness upfront with a darker malty body that infuses, almost takes over, the overall taste experience. A lot of thick bread and yeasty features come through in the aftertaste. The modest mixture of strength and humbleness it very apparent.

M - Smooth - rather creamy, almost chewy body in the introduction, but the carbonation makes a late appearance.

O - Every time I go the local craft store here in Liverpool, I eye the Rohrbach growlers with a lot of purchase pressure. In the end, I'm happy to give the Scotch ale a try. It seems a modest (perhaps to modest) in the body and taste for a Scotch, but a lot of nice characteristics shine through. Up the ante a little bit! Otherwise, a beer worth the try.

Photo of SweetBooze73
4.77/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Hands down an exceptional beer. The look is dark but not so dark that you cannot see it's great amber tones. The smell of the beer is a pleasure to experiance and dosn't hit you with anything, strong or unpleasent. It smells like it tastes which is key to a great beer as long as both are favorable. Smooth and delicious taste and mouthfeel. The malt flows nicely throughout and the over all taste never lets up. In fact the best part of this beer is that the higher than average APV gives this beer a warming finish that keeps you comming back for more. I could drink this beer all day but more likely 5 or so might leave me under the table.

Photo of GreesyFizeek
3.75/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

On tap from a friend's kegerator.

Pours a clear medium-dark brown, with a 2 inch foamy head, and some good lacing down the glass.

Smells malty and pretty sweet- caramel, tobacco, toffee.

The taste is the same. Slightly watery, but still tasty and warming. Creamy caramel, some chocolate, leather, tobacco, toffee, with no real hop presence at all.

Medium bodied, slightly thin for the style, low carbonation, very drinkable.

A ubiquitous beer around here, it's on tap basically everywhere. Not too bad.

Photo of markmiller
3.13/5  rDev -21.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

My first Scotch Ale, I feel the need to say this because I was underwhelmed, and I'm not sure if it's the style or the beer.

Counter-pressure filled at Premier in Buffalo, NY. Love the swing top style 32oz. growlers.

Poured into a snifter and it really looks gorgeous. I'm unsure if it is because the introduction of nitrogen, but there is a lucious creamy head on here that leaves great lacing. Dark brown, but still amber, not like a Quad.

The smell is above average. Extremely sweet, almost toffee like. Maybe a little bit of fig or raisin. Very nice.

The taste is where I felt the most underwhelmed. This was a great priced, excellent nose, and then it was disappointing when it came to the sip. The flavor is there at first. Great warming sweetness, malts, caramel, smooth. The problem I had was with the finish, you sip and swallow, and then start to wonder what the beer actually tasted like. Kind of watery/creaminess. Does not make an impression.

The mouthfeel is subpar. The thick water mixed with cream doesn't do anything for me. The drinkability is decent though, you keep drinking for the first initial taste.

Re-reading this post, it seems I'm overly negative for a beer I scored at or above average. It is decent, drinkable and I would not shy away from this offering. I just wanted it to pull through to be a magnificent beer, and it fell a little short.

Photo of mjaskula
4.15/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Finally reviewing the beer that got me into craft beer. I ended up sitting on the growler for about a month before I had a chance to drink it. Not sure if that had an affect on the carbonation or not.

Served in a Guinness glass. The beer pours nice dark brown with a thin white head. The head thins to a film and leaves some nice thin lacing.

The aroma has a little bit of hot alcohol followed by some toasted and sweet malt aroma. I really love the flavor of this, it is very smooth and malty - sweet and carmely. The toasted malts of the aroma aren't as present as expected in the flavor. Bitterness is very mild, almost nonexistent.

Mouthfeel is slightly thin for all of the malt flavor. Overall it's very drinkable.

Photo of MTNboy
4.12/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance- Reddish amber with an average off white head and lace. I it is a good looking beer.

Smell- Excellent roasted malt aroma. You know from the smell that this is going to be a sweet beer. It has a little bit of an old classic smell to it.

Taste- It has very roasted sweet taste with note of bread, caramel and very mild hops.

Mouthfeel- Thick and well carbonated.

Drinkability- This is a great beer you could enjoy whey o have moment to relax.

Photo of rohrbachsfan
4.73/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Serves a deep reddish brown color with not much of a head. The carbonation is on the low side. The smell is sweet. The beer has a rich and smooth mouthfeel and tastes of sweet delicious malts and has a mild bitterness. Goes down easy and is very drinkable. The alcohol taste is not as pronounced as with other high alcohol content ales, but don’t be fooled… it’s in there and will catch you by surprise because it is such a drinkable Scotch ale. I have had this ale many times over the years and it’s always consistent in body and flavor. This beer is served at many different pubs in the Rochester area and I haven't met a craft beer drinker in the area that hasn't praised it.

Photo of papat444
3.75/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Had this at Famous Dave's in Greece, NY last weekend.

Wall of creamy foam covers the sides, bit of smoke in the flavor as well as the aroma. Peat is also present (especially in the finish) as well as loads of toffee throughout. Medium body and quite well made.

Photo of motleybrew
3.66/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I am tempted to scale back the rating in numbers as this beer was good, but had just a little to go to be exceptional. great mouth feel like a nitro tap (not sure, it might have been...didn't ask). Subtle flavors of oak and scotch are definitely there, with a hint of vanilla. Dark verily, long lingering head. I could probably drink a 6 pack (OK, 4 pints...), and I didn't see anything deceptive. hops were minimal, and that was OK.

The only thing i wanted from this beer was MORE. more flavor like it had, and more scotch, oak and vanilla. There is a time when subtle just plays under the limits, and this was it. Could have been a much better beer, like an Old Dominion Oak barrell, but instead it whimped out a little.

Must say, was the best of the bunch at Rohrbach. try this if you go.

Photo of Rudgers73
3.9/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from a growler on it's 2nd day.

A- Nice amber/brown color. Not much for head but a ring.

S- Sweet, almost a pipe tobacco smell, molasses, creamy.

T- Very sweet and malty, just a touch of hops, sugary ending, smooth all over.

M- This was a little flat due to it's growler container but smooth otherwise.

D- I would drink it all night except for the high ABV might catch up quickly. I didn't even notice it was high until I looked above. Nicely done.

Photo of barleywinebrewer
3.18/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

had this as my second beer over dinner. a bit of a let down after the oatmeal stout. A great copper looking brew with a nice off white head which develops into a caramel sweet malt beer. A bit sweet and missing some depth in the flavors. Glad I tried it, but would pass on seconds.

Photo of GreatPondBrewer
4.87/5  rDev +22.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This is a Rochester gem and should be savored. This occaison happened to be my friends birthday. The scotch poured a clear, dark, ruby color without very much head. That is why I did not give it a 5 for appearence. There were heaping amounts sweet scotch flavored malts and a sticky, salty alcohol note as well. The taste was sweet with robust alcohol flavors and more sweet maple drenched malts with a deep grainy aftertaste and a high alcohol kick. Thick mouthfeel with very little carbonation. This is nectar if there ever was one.

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

Poured from a 64 oz to a pint glass, g, you wit me?

Pours a nice dark brown with reddish hue, iced tea look with a 2 finger head that melts to a lace. Nice touch of caramel malts and sugary spice. Dark toasted malts, chocolates, sweet breadiness, slight coffee character with a some nice spice to blend the flavors nicely. Medium on the feel, leaves the mouth dry and awaiting the next sip. Overall i thought this was ok, i would probably try this again.

Photo of BigBry
4/5  rDev +0.5%

Draft pint, served from the tap pictured below.
Deep amber brown liquid with a tight, white head. Foam lasts nicely leaving strings of lace.
Malt aroma with a good dose of caramel. A nicely balanced and good tasting Scotch Ale, lots of malt and some dark fruit flavor. Earthy hops in the finish keep the sweetness in check.
Good level of carbonation, smooth, easy to drink, alcohol is well hidden.
Nicely done.

Note to self: Rated #33 Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy when I tried it.

Photo of wiseguy142
3.56/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked up a growler today after doing a quick tour of the new facility near the public market.

Pours a nice creamy orange brown with a very impressive head that lasts almost too long. Nice white lacing and a thing layer of foam follows the beer down the entire way.

Aroma of toasted grains and whispy dark fruit. A little soapy (not my glass, I wash the hell out of these things).

Taste is very malty, with a touch of chocolate malt sweetness and bitter alcohol and hops. Actually fairly bitter for a Wee Heavy. Nutty and extremely dextrinous with low carbonation.

Every time I have this beer it's different. The first time I had it was on tap at Dinosaur BBQ and I thought it was way too thin. I've had it at Jeremiah's and thought it was great there. This falls short of my experience at Jeremiah's but it's still a tasty beer. I think I prefer the Amber Lager due to consistency/drinkability. If this could emphasize one of the flavors (chocolate, nuttyness) instead of having a noncomplimentary mixture it'd be a little better but I definitely enjoyed it.

Photo of mrdalton
4.48/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

An exceptional beer. Beautiful amber coloring. I cannot smell very well, but the taste is outstanding. It starts out with a faintly hoppy taste, maybe even a little sour, not sure if that's how I would describe it. But then as it goes down, you get a smooth, sweet taste and when I think of this beer, that's the flavors that come to mind.

Had this beer on tap at Railroad St. as well as in growlers from Beers of the World. Absolutely one of my favorites.

Photo of BCD0412
4.48/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

One of my fav Scotch Ales. Excellent color and taste.

Photo of TheBrewo
3.77/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The pour gives a brew of deep red-brown. It is dark, but translucent, with carbonation visible around the glass. It initially throws a tannish head, but it immediately dissolves to speckled bubbles sitting across the surface. The odor is both malty and sweet. The latter is lent by apricot, cranberry, and passionfruit. There are also mild suggestions of citric hops and alcohol. The taste begins much like the aroma. There are obvious malts, with a mixing of grapey fruitiness. This becomes enhanced as the carbonation rolls the sweetness from end to end over the palate. The finish is a bit boozy, but otherwise clean with the simple tastes from the beginning, that never really left at all. This is true through to the aftertaste, which breaths with those same grapes and berries. The body is medium, with the carbonation towards the higher end of the spectrum. Despite the astringent fruitiness, the mouth is left surprisingly watery. It is not coated, but rather satiated. The abv is within range and the beer has a nice drinkability.

Overall, what we liked best about this brew was the overpoweringly fruity and, borderline tropical, aroma. It also gets bonus points for being local. That aside, the unexpected aroma was followed appropriately by a uniquely fruity taste, making for a solid offering.

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Scotch Ale from Rohrbach Brewing Company (Brewpub)
89 out of 100 based on 131 ratings.