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Scratch Beer 14 - 2008 - Tröegs Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Scratch Beer 14 - 2008Scratch Beer 14 - 2008

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

75 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 75
Reviews: 67
rAvg: 4.02
pDev: 7.71%
Wants: 7
Gots: 0 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Tröegs Brewing Company visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale |  6.70% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: akorsak on 09-28-2008

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Scratch #14-2008 is our interpretation of a farmhouse ale—a once near-extinct winter-brewed (and summer–imbibed) Belgian ale. celebratory brew starts with a black pepper and ginger nose. The nicely carbonated brew releases a honey-malt flavor that gives way to a tart crisp finish that masks the elevated ABV. We use a blended yeast strain (Saison Dupont & Le Chouffe) to create the traditional peppery, spicy earthy flavors of the saison. Slight hints of ginger also come through in the finish. Drink it ‘til the wedding bells chime!

25 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 75 | Reviews: 67
Reviews by Gilgemesh:
Photo of Gilgemesh
4.1/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- A nice light straw color accentuated by a fluffy white head. Nice lacing. I almost forgot the sediment while pouring but none made it into the glass.

S- Slight hints of sweetness lead into a citrusy, yeasty odor that is quite low key and pleasant.

T- A spicy flavorfully beer. Tastes strongly of grapefruit and spice with a bit of a yeasty bready finish.

M- A nice feel as the carbonation hits to the front and is dispersed before you swallow. It is dry with only a hint of tart citrus.

D- I actually quite liked this. I haven't been big into Saisons, but I think I may give some a try as the weather warms up.

More User Reviews:
Photo of NJpadreFan
3.73/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Troegs- Scartch 14 (Saison)

A- Bright, yet slightly hazy, yellow with a small foamy sticky head.
S- Tart lemon and orange with cloves and hay/ straw/ wheat.
T- Big tart lemon and oranges with a dose of cloves and wheat thrown in. Sweet funky wet hay/ straw malt body. Slightly like a Hefe.
M- Sweet and tart with a spicy perfumy clove touch. Finishes off dry and tangy.

Overall- Nice taste/ flavors and enjoyable. A Hefe with quite a funky tart twang. I, personally, wouldn't make this a session beer.

Photo of Sammy
3.75/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks Dr. Jay. Aggressively carbonated and bold peppery saison. Pours a very white prominent head, with some lace. Spot on spicey and yeasty aroma. Medium mouthfeel, after the full felt carbonation and some cloves, corriander, a bit of wheat. Good background bitterness.

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.35/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy yellow-golden body beneath a creamy head of bright white that holds quite well.

Sweet malt and spice greet you in the nose. At first I thought it was a Bavarian hefe-weizen, but a few more sniffs suggested it was more Belgian-like. It's clovey, has a touch of plastic or "Band-Aid" phenolic, and a dusting of pepper. There's wheat to it as well, and a hint of chalky yeast.

In the mouth it's creamy smooth with a dextrinous medium body and fine-bubbled carbonation that opens up and expands to become pillowy as it warms.

The flavor is malty with a sugary edge, but also lots of straw and grass. Or are they grassy hops that I'm getting? The yeastiness delivers a hint of apple, and it's a touch chalky, as well as clove-like and gently plastic-like. Or wait... is it actually spiced with clove? There's also a tiny bit of sharper spiciness that's kind of like ginger. It has an underlying citrusy/lemony note that's nice. And, hmmm, perhaps some cardamom as well. Oh, and there's also some anise in the burp - very nice! The bitterness is kept restrained, allowing the sweet malt to shine all the way from the start and into the finish, and there the bitterness waits. It's just enough to put an end to things, and along with the mild residual spiciness, keep it from becoming cloying.

A very nice offering! I'd have loved to have seen something like this go into larger bottles for cellaring. Possibly my personal favorite from the Scratch collection.

Photo of dirtylou
4.25/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz single, preseason football bif package

appearance: poured into an imperial pint glass, bright golden-straw body with a wavy beige crest and wonderful retention...extremely hazy body - i try and try to see my finger through the body, but alas, nothing

smell: funky, sweet corn, fresh zesty yeast bite, corriander and citrus, white pepper - nice saison aromas

taste: quality saison offering from troegs - sweet citrus, zesty yeast, fresh white pepper, white corn, orange and clove, ginger, grassy hops. i like this one a lot

mouthfeel: fresh and zesty

drinkability: good

Photo of prototypic
4.42/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to the ever generous guinnessdoc for the bottle.

Appearance: It's a lighter shade of gold and fairly clear. A few loose chunks of sediment escaped the glob at the bottom of the bottle. The head is foamy and absolutely huge. It's easily three fingers deep. Retention was excellent. Thick sheets of lace stuck to the glass.

Smell: A strong wave of spices hit the nose first. Clove is the strongest, but pepper is prevalent. Belgian yeast is very strong and enticing. I love that scent. It's strong in the mix here. There's some earthy/grassy notes that come through at the next level. Light fruit scents emerge late. It's mostly apple and light pear. No alcohol is noted.

Taste: No dropoff here. Strong clove and pepper strike first. It's a very nice, spicy flavor. Belgian yeast is indeed very strong and flavorful. Definitely adds an illusion of authenticity. It's a little grainy and has a nice earthy/grassy flavor. Very light apple and lemon flavors are present and add some sweetness. It has a nice, bitter twist on the tail. Wasn't expecting that. Very welcome surprise nonetheless. Alcohol is blended extremely well. Finishes a little bitter and spicy.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability: It features a medium body and is smooth. Carbonation is very active and appears to get in the way a little. But, it's smooth overall. Drinkability is very high. Very flavorful, tasty beer that's under 7% to boot. What's not to love?

Scratch 14 is unfortunately my first beer in the Scratch series. I wish I'd had the opportunity to try every one. This one's very impressive. Flavor and character are strong with this one. It has no material flaws to note. Very nice representation of the style from an American brewery. Color me impressed.

Photo of Gonzoillini
4/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of Kegatron
3.5/5  rDev -12.9%

Photo of shbobdb
3.98/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Saisons are a style that I occasionally flirt with. I like a lot of aspects that saisons offer, but all too often I don't like the finished whole that they create; nor do I appreciate the price tag that many of the finer examples of the style come attached with. So when a friend (thanks Andrew) gave me a bottle of Scratch 14, approached it with some trepidation. But I have to say, I very much enjoy this one. It offers a nice creamy head and a good, lightly cloudy, body. Looks pretty nice to me. The taste offers a strange mixture of saison and hefe-weizen, due in no small part to the large and very loose yeast plug at the bottom of the bottle (much of which ended up in my glass). The beer smells of apricots and pears. The taste follows the smell, at least initially. Then the yeast crash the party bringing out a lot of earthy notes that I suspect are there anyway. The beer has a long, dry bubblegum finish. It is the finish that reminds me the most of a hefe-weizen. It just seems very very German to me.

A very nice beer. I dig it.

Photo of akorsak
3.95/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A growler filled on 3-Oct-08 and consumed the following day.

A: The saison is a turbid yellow-brown color that I'd call yellow tang. The haziness is unmistakeable and never quite settles out. A small head emerged on each pour.

S: The nose is musky, strong with spices and yeast. The spices include anise and pepper; the yeast dry with heat and fruit.

T: The saison is somewhat pedestrian up front, showcasing some spices but nothing memorable. As a sip continues to develop, anise flavors emerge with some peppery heat. A touch of brett-inspired funk, like a fresh Orval, lingers in the background. Ginger? I'm not picking that one up but a subtle anise flavor nicely carries the ale. The yeasty dryness lasts long.

M: The dryness of the yeast really nails this as a saison. Anise, in a mild form, works well also.

D: A better than average saison, this one works but doesn't set a gold standard (like many other Scratch offerings have).

Photo of philbe311
4.27/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Massive fluffy white head composed of big chunky bubbles... Pale gold straw color with an ever so slight haze though still almost fully translucent... Lots of medium to fast paced carbonation throughout... Spectacular head retention... Sediment floats throughout...

S - Pear... Banana... Clove... Pepper... Lemon zest... Ginger... Yeasts... White raisins... Nice complexity... Lovely aroma all around...

T - Earthy notes... Grains and wheat... Lemon... Banana... Apple... Pepper and ginger on the finish... Exquisite with a pleasant complexity...

M - Delicate... Light bodied... Super smooth... Crisp... Tingly carbonation... Lush start with a dry finish...

D - A very pleasant surprise... Troegs Scratch Series turns out one good beer after another, but this one is a special treat that raises the bar for the series... A truly special and well crafted Saison... Kudos to the Brewmaster... I need to see if I can't get me some more of this before it disappears...

Photo of JohnGalt1
4.15/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dan threw down as he always does.. the 14 was honestly only added to my wants not that long ago... yet here it is.. in my New Belgium snifter..

Fantastic 2 finger head.. great lacing atop a slightly hazy golden straw brew..

The nose is lite yet fairly phenolic.. peppery and with touches of band-aid... earthy comes to mind.... pale malts... yet dry.

Again.. lightly phenolic with soft pale malts.. slightly sweet throughout.. yeasty.. but not overdone.. fresh cut hay and some mild ginger.. green apple skin with some fruity pineapple as it warms up.. surprisingly complex for an American take on the style.. the body is lite/medium with a crisp carbonation.. some white grape essence arises at room temperature.. and it becomes alot more well rounded..

I love a great saison.. and honestly, I really appreciate a fresh American attempt.. this is pretty damn good.. I am glad I was able to try it on the fresher side.. but I bet with a little age, it will become a bit better..

I forgot to look at the ABV before beginning the review.. but it seems that it may be a touch on the high side.. the body may be light.. but it is pretty filling.. be careful once reaching the bottom of the bottle.. a big sheet of yeast will end up in your glass.

I need to say thanks again.. Dan approached me this time around.. and I haven't even touched the good stuff yet. Please .. Please... don't quit trading .. at least with me. ;-)


Photo of mikesgroove
4.18/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Another surprise from Guzzle last night, and boy did he ever keep me busy. I had not had a new scratch beer in a few months so I was very happy to see this one come across my plate. Served cold, this twelve ounce bottle was decanted into a pint glass as I did not know the style going into it. Consumed on 11/18/2008.

The pour was huge. A large billowing cloud of white came up to a height of around three inches and stayed there for what seemed to me to be like ten minutes, only then settling down to manageable level and depositing tons of lace up and down the glass. Very hazy golden yellow in color this was certainly a very nice looking beer with lots of carbonation running through it as well.

The aroma was highly charged. Lots of notes of banana, clove, light pepper like spices that just perked up the nose as well. Some light grain touches were balanced in throughout now as well. The flavor followed along rather nicely I have to admit. Really very solid here, with a rich grain bill evident right up front. Nice touches of fruit mixed in now s well, banana, peach, pears, hints of pepper almost and a nice bit of fresh grass coming in through the finish. Nice medium body was more then adequately carbonated and the overall feel on this one was one that I really enjoyed quite a bit.

Overall I really liked this one, one of the better in the style I have had lately, as I have had a few that I was less then thrilled with to be honest. I would not mind at all seeing this one again, in fact I would look forward to it greatly.

Photo of largadeer
4.35/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle from dyan, thanks brogg.

Appearance: Straw colored, opaque, pretty cloudy stuff and there's a ton of sediment in the bottle. The head falls flat somewhat fast, receding to a disc.

Smell: A nice farmyard aroma of apples and citrus, dry biscuit malts, a bit of musty cellar. Some banana-like phenols appear as it warms. Pleasant.

Taste & mouthfeel: Really crisp and dry up front. Lemon peel bitterness, light esters, white pepper. Delicious. The finish is bone dry and surprisingly hoppy and bitter, enjoyable so, though it borders on excessive for the style. This is a pretty impressive American interpretation of a saison. Hoppy, but with a great farmhouse yeast character. I'd drink a lot of this if it was locally available.

Photo of DrBier
4/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of NittanyBeerFan
4.27/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a really cloudy amber color, with very little bit of head that quickly dissipates to nothing. The color is a perfect hefe color. There is a ton of yeast in the bottom of this and it mostly ended up in my glass. The last half cm of beer got washed down the drain because it was all yeast.

S: Smell is initially of yeast and pepper with some fuity notes.

T: Up front, it mirrors the smell. Later on, you can make out some pear and some earthy tones. Finishes with a malty dryness and some strong hoppiness.

M/D: Very smooth with light carbonation and a light texture. I could definitely drink a 6er of these.

Photo of errantnight
3.85/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks leftmindedrighty!

Pours a pale, hazy straw with a couple fingers of head, light lacing.

Light ester aromas, a bit of powdered sugar and white pepper and floral notes. Bubblegum and banana. A little more tripel than saison.

Nice balance with moderate mid palate sweetness. A bit of wheat malt with the pale malt.

Nicely carbonated, on the high side, a bit spritzy.

Superbly drinkable, but doesn't quite have the earthy tones, funk, and depth of the best ones. Despite a bit of white pepper in the nose, there's no real spice presence, and while I'm fine with no adjunct spices, a few more could have been coaxed out of the yeast to good benefit. A tasty brew, but barely a saison.

Photo of oline73
4/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of jasonjlewis
3.57/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a small 1 finger head with subpar retnetion and clear yellow color.

Smell is of mild barnyard funk and hey, and some cloveyness

Taste is smooth and clovey with a sort of citrusy undertone.

I can't say too much about this beer. It's not as fun and exciting as most saisons. It is a little dull in my opinion.

I'd like some more carbonation on this bad boy as well!

That being said, the fact that it's not very over the top and barnyard like makes it very drinkable.

Photo of youngblood
4.12/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First experience with a Saison here...

Looks almost like champagne. Highly carbonated with slight golden coloration. Slight fizzing head that dissipates quickly.

Smells very spicy and fruity. Lots of banana and pear. Some coriander and lemon peel. Very nice and clean.

The taste follows the scents closely. Bit more of a yeasty aftertaste coming through though. Very complex yet easy on the mouth.

Nice light mouthfeel. Slightly slick.

High drinkability, especially with summer coming around. Was a big fan and will seek out more Saisons.

Photo of natasharai
4.5/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Poured with a large bubbly head that turned creamy and smooth as it dissipated. Dissipated to a 1cm layer head that remained throughout the whole glass leaving a some lacing. The beer is a pretty yellow golden color and became very cloudy and murky looking when I got the yeast in my glass.

Smell: Sweet fruit similar to apples and pears with a hint of banana, spiciness from the yeast, tangy malt, and some honey

Taste: Pears and banana, honey, spicy yeast, berries, raisins, and a wonderful tangy after taste.

Mouthfeel: Medium body, slightly sticky, nice tang and very small pucker feel, leaves mouth pretty clean.

Overall: Very drinkable, this is a wonderful representation of the style!! Nice sweet fruity flavors with spice and wonderful tangyness toward the end.

Photo of grub
4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

can't seem to remember where i got this one, so if you sent it to me then let me know so i can give thanks where it's due.

12oz bottle. sampled jan 30/09.

pours slightly hazy pale yellow with a small cap of dense white head. the head drops fairly fast and leaves a few spots of lace.

aroma definitely screams saison. cracker and white bread. tons of spice. corriander, bit of clove. a little cinnamon and ginger. bit of alcohol.

taste picks up right where the aroma left off. corriander, clove, cinnamon, bit of ginger. white bread and cracker. bit of alcohol. orange peel.

mouthfeel is good. medium-light body with a nice dry finish. just above medium carbonation level.

drinkability is good. while i generally prefer my saisons on the funky side rather than spicy, this one still gets my nod of approval. richly spicy, but without getting perfumey or overly floral. good stuff.

Photo of ClassicBrad
4.7/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Was able to grab a six pack of this at the brewery. The renovations are incredible.

Pours a hazy, dark yellow with sprinklings of yeast with very little head for the style; no lacing-- what so ever.

Tastes amazingly crisp and complex at the same time. Biscuit and fruit combines to make up the dominant flavors in this beer.

Mouthfeel shines through with this brew. Almost sparkling wine carbonation-- but, not in a bad way.

All I have to say about drinkability is that I am kicking myself for only getting the six pack when there were still cases available.

Photo of womencantsail
4.25/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Another round of thanks to Greg for this one.

A: The beer pours a clear golden orange color with a nice big white head that clings to the glass.

S: A mild funkiness to the nose with a big time floral aroma. A touch of honey on the nose with some mild grass and earth to it as well. I get a little bit of spice, particularly white pepper and some light fruits.

T: Sweet fruits, lots of pears and apples, with a little bit of white grape. Some white pepper notes, a little bit of coriander, orange zest, and an overall earthy and grassy aroma. Plenty of yeast and some pale, bready malts.

M: Medium in body with a fairly high level of carbonation.

O: A really nice surprise. This beer is fantastic and easily one of the better Scratch series beers I've had.

Photo of portia99
4.37/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle received in trade with Hophead101. Thanks. Poured into a gold rimmed Buzzards Bay fluted glass.

A - Pours a hazy golden yellow color with 3 fingers of whipped cream like white head, with very good staying power...wants to last forever. Takes a couple of pours with time for the head to die down to get the whole bottle into the glass. Neverending supply of bubbles rising from the bottom of the glass. Very active beer.

S - Yeasty and very fruity...combination of oranges, apples, lemons, tangerines. A touch tart and tangy on the nose. Very potent aromas - can smell them from several feet away. This might be the best smelling saison I've ever experienced. Really phenomenal.

T - Taste goes right along with the aroma. Tons of fruits, especially the orange and lemon coming thru. On top of that, there is a really good yeasty spiciness in there. A little bit of bready malt in the background, but this is largely masked by the intense fruit and spice character. Not quite as impressive as the aroma, but a very good interpretation of the style.

M - Fairly thin in body with tona of carbonation. The carbonation makes this very lively and prickly on the tongue and carries the fruit and spiciness to all corners of the mouth.

D - Man, I wish this was a 22oz bottle, or I had a couple more of these stashed away. This is a very easy drinker on its own and would be perfect with a nice meal. The saison style is one of my favorites and this one has to be up there as one of the best I've had. Anybody have more of this? Any chance of this becoming a regular offering from Troegs? Probably no on both...oh well. Glad I at least got to try it.

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Scratch Beer 14 - 2008 from Tröegs Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 75 ratings.