1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Alexander Keith's Tartan Ale - Alexander Keith's

Not Rated.
Alexander Keith's Tartan AleAlexander Keith's Tartan Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
76
okay

29 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 29
Reviews: 13
rAvg: 3.2
pDev: 14.38%
Wants: 1
Gots: 0 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Alexander Keith's visit their website
Nova Scotia, Canada

Style | ABV
Scottish Ale |  6.10% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: peensteen on 03-15-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | next › last »
Ratings: 29 | Reviews: 13 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Yoonisaykul
2.23/5  rDev -30.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1.5

Luckily found a can of this so I didn't have to buy a six-pack for $9.99

A- Light copper. Almost gold. Totally clear. Yellowish/beigeish semi-dense head.

S- Smells like malted barley and liquid malt extract but also metallic, sour and musty. Not very good. A bit of alcohol and caramel.

T- Better than (what they call) their ''india pale ale'' I think. A bit of a bock thing going on here. Less malty than the smell. Definite cardboard background, bitterness and after-taste. A bit of Elmer's glue.

M- Medium mouthfeel. Medium, soft carbonation. A little chewy which is nice.

Tastes so bad I'm pulling faces while drinking it. The mouthfeel is enjoyable though.

Will never buy this again and kind of feel like dumping the rest of my can.

Yoonisaykul, Mar 17, 2011
Photo of cam477
2.25/5  rDev -29.7%

cam477, Aug 26, 2013
Photo of kwjd
2.53/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

I was not going to buy a 6 pack of this, but when I saw this on tap at a bar with zero craft selections, I figured I may as well try it out as I had no good options to go with. Pours a copper-amber colour with thin white head. Ok head retention, minimal lacing. Smells incredibly sweet, caramel and bready malt. I don't pick up anything else in the flavour either, just sweetness. I had a little difficulty finishing off my pint, but it didn't taste bad. This is more just like a amber ale, and I think it is better than the Keith's Red.

kwjd, Apr 21, 2011
Photo of Cris4545
2.75/5  rDev -14.1%

Cris4545, Aug 11, 2012
Photo of ZachT
2.75/5  rDev -14.1%

ZachT, Oct 10, 2013
Photo of Sammy
2.85/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Smokey aroma but not a good taste. Pours a smokey dark colour, fast fizzing head. Aggressive carbonation, thinnish mouthfeel. Some peatiness in taste but not all that drinkable. even at this abv seemed boozy.I am sure they know what this style should be about, but minimized ingredients.
Thanks Peeno.

Sammy, Apr 17, 2011
Photo of DamageCase76
3/5  rDev -6.3%

DamageCase76, Jan 05, 2014
Photo of DreamDeath
3/5  rDev -6.3%

DreamDeath, May 18, 2014
Photo of TheBeeraholic
3/5  rDev -6.3%

TheBeeraholic, Apr 04, 2014
Photo of oldp0rt
3/5  rDev -6.3%

oldp0rt, Nov 24, 2011
Photo of GlendonTT
3/5  rDev -6.3%

GlendonTT, Jun 23, 2014
Photo of tbeckett
3/5  rDev -6.3%

tbeckett, Feb 05, 2013
Photo of biboergosum
3.08/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

341ml bottle.

This beer pours a slightly glassy medium amber colour, with two digits of tight foamy off-white head, which leaves but a few minor specks of lace around the glass as it quickly recedes. It smells of weak, stale orchard fruit, mildly sour caramel malt, and very, um, subtle, yeah, subtle, earthy hops. The taste is more of the same - un-fruity, bland fruity malt, but now with the bonus of a sour, ashy mustiness, which pretty much takes the driver's seat for the remainder of this flavour ride. The carbonation is average, the body an adequate medium weight, and generally, inoffensively smooth. It finishes off-dry, the caramel malt not letting go, and rightly so, as that weird, Scottish seaside character readily abates.

Given this company's heritage, I would like to expect a lot out of their 'Scottish' ale. However, given their track record, for better, and for much worse, this is about what I actually expected, and about what I got - the right idea, mostly, but still ineptly rendered - the trash-bin sourness is the fly in this particular ointment. As with the rest of AK's recent (new and improved!) one-offs, this is a step or two in the right direction, but still, caveat emptor.

biboergosum, Dec 13, 2011
Photo of JohnnyBarman
3.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the Whale and Ale pub in Kitchener.

Poured into a tall nonic glass. Dark amber, almost into ruby territory. Thin head, some lacing.

Nose is pretty faint, but amazingly it lacks that bizarre Keith's funk that permeates every other one of their brews. Malt, caramel, a bit of bread, some fruit.

Actually, I'm pleased to say that this wasn't bad. Malty, sweet, with a bit of fruit that gave the brew a mild bock feel to it. Little to no hops as per the style. Tasted like a sweet red ale, a style that will yield few complaints or criticisms from yours truly.

Credit where it's due, this wasn't a bad little brew. Unlike Keith's Red and Dark, Tartan ale actually tastes like its own beer, rather than simply being the basic Keith's recipe with some food colouring in it. If you're looking for rich, hearty Scottish ales, certainly look elsewhere; but if you simply want a decent red in bars that offer few alternatives, Tartan Ale might do the trick. Certainly my favorite Keith's brew thus far.

JohnnyBarman, Apr 03, 2011
Photo of spinrsx
3.23/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz Bottle

Appearance - Clear copper colour with a large size frothy beige coloured head. There is a low amount of carbonation showing and there is some fairly good lacing. The head lasted for around 4 minutes before it was gone.

Smell - Malts, toasted/roasted nuts, butterscotch

Taste & Mouth - There is an average amount of carbonation and I can taste malts mixed with butterscotch and a bit of a rustiness. There is also some faint dark fruit flavour and a bit of a roasted/toasted nutty smokiness. The beer finishes with a malty slightly smokey aftertaste.

Overall - It is definitely the best Keith's beer I've had so far.. not sure that is saying much though. The taste isn't bad and it's pretty drinkable. If your stuck at a local bar with no craft options, give this one a try.

spinrsx, Jun 29, 2011
Photo of BigBry
3.25/5  rDev +1.6%

BigBry, Mar 10, 2014
Photo of Kremlock
3.25/5  rDev +1.6%

Kremlock, Sep 24, 2012
Photo of andrenaline
3.33/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Cheers to joemcgrath27 for passing a bottle of this along.

A - Pours a crystal clear copper colour, finger of head with some retention and no real lacing.

S - Pretty mild o nthe nose, some light caramel, grassy hops and a touch of peat.

T - Definitely the most flavourful Keith's offering I've had with the caramel and toffee dominating the palette. Slight peat notes also come through and linger alongside some biscuit flavours.

M - A tad overly carbonated for my liking, but goes down smooth and finishes nice and wet.

O - Tasty and decent for a macro offering. Hats off to Keiths for producing something a bit different. Could easily session this beer. Don't expect to be amazed, but i certainly wasn't terribly disappointed.

andrenaline, Apr 24, 2011
Photo of peensteen
3.33/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours amber orange, one finger soapy head, no lace. Smell is malty, caramel, slightly fruity, light smoke, biscuity, sweet like notes present as well. Taste is smoky, good malty presence, caramel, light bitterness, fruity in the finish and mildly hoppy. Medium mouthfeel, lightly syrupy, good weight and decent carbonation. Really good beer as far as Keith's goes, this is the only beer I have had from them that I would willingly drink again, drinks well and is pretty flavourful.

peensteen, Mar 15, 2011
Photo of marty21
3.4/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a clear golden copper with two fingers worth of off white almost tan head. Settles to a ring around the glass. It doesn't leave any lacing.

S: Not the strongest aroma but there's some caramel and malt with a faint sourness in there. There's also some alcohol in the aroma.

T: It's a little sweet with some caramel malt. There's hardly any complexity to it but it's pretty good for Keith's. It doesn't have the weird after taste most Keith's beers have.

M: Light to medium carbonation with a medium body.

O: It seems more of a transition beer for someone going from macro to craft beers. It's a lot better then any other Keith's offering and probably my favorite from them.

marty21, Apr 07, 2011
Photo of joemcgrath27
3.45/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - crystal clear copper, respectable fluffy white head retained pretty well
S - toasty amber malt, leafy, slightly peaty scotch aroma, with a metallic note
T - toasty and molasses maltiness, light peaty woody scotch flavour builds, leafy hop note, metallic finish
M - fairly thin and somewhat watery, slightly bitter finish with the metallic hanging around
O - glad to see a mass producer of generally generic beers take a chance with a more uncommon style, its a fairly mild scotch ale in the grand scheme, but tasty enough and a step in the right direction

joemcgrath27, Apr 18, 2011
Photo of SebD
3.45/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: It has a nice amber/copper colour to it. It has a nice slightly off-white head that dies down moderatly but has minimal lacing.

Smell: The aromas definitly give out hints of caramely/toasty malts with a slight fruitness and a bit of alcohol.

Taste: Like the aromas, it has a sweet caramely maltiness but the hops are very light.

Mouthfeel: It has a low/medium carbonation with a light/medium body.

Drinkability: It's a smooth drinkable beer accompanied with decent flavours and aromas considering it comes from Keith's.

SebD, May 19, 2011
Photo of thehyperduck
3.5/5  rDev +9.4%

thehyperduck, Jan 30, 2012
Photo of TheBeermin
3.5/5  rDev +9.4%

TheBeermin, Jul 10, 2012
Photo of Converge
3.63/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

341ml bottle poured into a 16oz pint glass.

A - Pours with just over a two fingers of bubbly yellow-white head; fizzes out quickly. The beer itself is a medium copper-orange hue. No lacing to speak of.

S - Caramel malt and bread aroma upfront, with sweet grassy undertones. I enjoy it quite a bit.

T - Taste opens up with a strong smoky punch, rounded out with really sweet butterscotch and candy-like flavor; was not expecting this at all.

M - Medium bodied mouth-feel, with little carbonation.

D - The finish in the flavor really caught me off guard, I certainly expected something much more rich and amber-like, but I have to admit I enjoy the smoky sweetness a lot. Probably my favorite Keith's brew thus far.

Converge, Jun 11, 2011
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | next › last »
Alexander Keith's Tartan Ale from Alexander Keith's
76 out of 100 based on 29 ratings.