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Kilt Lifter Scotch Ale | Moylan's Brewery

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Kilt Lifter Scotch AleKilt Lifter Scotch Ale

Brewed by:
Moylan's Brewery
California, United States | website

Style: Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by kbub6f on 06-07-2002

User Reviews
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Reviews: 395 | Ratings: 730
Photo of beagle75
3.68/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into a tulip glass.

A: Slightly hazy, medium amber color with one finger of diminishing off-white foam head. Light lacing remains on the glass.

S: Unrefined caramelized sugar and estery mid-range fruit. An attentive nose can catch a trace of detectable alcohol from the undisturbed glass, but it disperses quickly and is slow to reform.

T: Begins sweet, with dark crystal malt that is briefly husky before smoothing out somewhat, and also spirituous with a slight alcohol edge. Acidity is very restrained into the middle where a mix of fermented grain, syrupy spirit, and cooked fruit are each potent yet in balance. Bitterness is mild in the finish, with honest herbaceous and lightly roasted flavors present.

M: Thin to medium viscosity, wet and boozy on the palate but not hot, with low carbonation.

D/O: This Scotch ale is successful as a wee heavy that is drinkable yet slightly decadent at the same time. Its sensory qualities are simple but adhered to well, with sugary malt and booze joining together in an appealing fashion. This beer has a lot of range--it could pass as a strong, malt-focused amber ale to be enjoyed alongside a meal, or it could be slowly sipped to satisfactory effect.

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Photo of andrenaline
3.72/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a dark ruby red, thumb of toffee head, some retention and spotty lacing.

S - Hint of smoky peat, playdough, caramel, toffee and a some grassy hops on the finish.

T - Solid caramel and toffee malt backbone, leafy green hops balance it out, sourdough bread, touch of metallic alcohol, and the peat is subdued but still nicely present. The flavours improve as it warms, offering up more intensity over time.

M - Lighter bodied ale and comes across a tad thin. Could use a carbonation lift.

O - A tasty scotch ale but there's certain aspects that were a bit disappointing. The mouthfeel was a tad thin and the flavours could use a bit of a boost. Higher ABV is well hidden though and it is rather drinkable. Definitely still worthy.

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Photo of depechemode1983
3.82/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours out a cloudy copper color with orange hues. Head is tan and a bit thin. Seeing just a bit of splotchy lacing.

S - Very malty. Getting tons or caramel and honey. Also bread is very noticeable along with a soft floral aroma.

T - Sweet and malty. Lots of bread and caramel, honey and alcohol. Not too complex but extremely flavorful.

M - Full bodied, thick and a bit oily. Carbonation soft.

O - Can't believe I have never bought this before. Its excellent for the price point. A great sipper.

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Photo of JayS2629
4.15/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a rich, deep red with great clarity, a thick two finger, rocky white head that left nice lacing and had great retention.

The aroma was big, rich, and malty. Toffee, bread, caramel, vanilla notes and dark fruit tones. Dark cherry, fig, and some boozy notes.

The flavor follows the nose. Full of rich, malty, toffee, bread, caramel. Dark fruit notes. Cocoa hints. Quite tasty with a scotch-like finish.

Boozy burn in the finish is not overbearing. Nice balance. True to style. A great example of the style. Great, tasty, sipper.

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Photo of DelMontiac
3.78/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Purchased from Macadoodles in Springdale, Arkansas. No date found on the brown bomber, but many accolades.

Pouring into a an Anchor pint glass yields a slightly hazed copper color on the verge of red. Love the color! An off white half inch head fades quickly and leaves minimal lace behind. Not very sticky.

Aromas are scant, but detectable. Bread dough, some green grass, grape/apple, and booze.

Very sweet caramel malt, apple, followed by a mild hop bite and a lingering buttery bisquit.

I think this brew is missing some body as it's a litte watery for what is expected. Carbonation is about right if you pour medium-hard and allow it to warm in the glass as instructed on the bottle.

Overall, I like this Scotch Ale, but I don't love it. You'll need to allow it to warm to at least 60F to see it's full potential. Laughing Lab has it beat, hands down. It is very easy on the wallet which is important during a shit-rittled economy. Worth a try at least.

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Photo of CrazyDavros
3.37/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours copper with a large, quickly fading head.
Nose shows chocolate, bready malt and nutty notes. Pretty moreish.
The nutty notes carry through as flavours, as does the bready malt, but little else is noticeable.
Watery body is unfortunate, should be thicker.

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Photo of 530veerguzzler
4.08/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Ive had this before about 2 years ago on tap down in So Cal, and i was really impressed. As with most beers in general, they usually taste better from tap. This beer had a good combination of smoothness and flavor....i would recomend if you happen to find this one

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Photo of DCon
3.62/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bought a 1 pt. 6 fl.oz. bottle of this from Hair of the Dog in St. Louis, MO for $5. Poured from the Green "Kilted" labeled bottle w/ awards all over the place & Yellow writing into a 16oz Pint Glass. Has no freshness date to be found.

Aroma- Strong, deep caramel and malty aroma. On the backside of the aroma, has a light boozy presence.

Appearance- Pours no head at all... Has a dark copper/ awesome caramel looking body. Semi-Clear. Leaves good lacing behind.

Flavor- Tons of malt and richness from the get go. Then has a light amount of scotch in the background. The hop flavor comes in at a light-medium level. Not quite to style but good representation of some of the characteristics.

Mouthfeel- Medium Bodied, Light Carbonation, Smooth, but then finishes a tad watered down... Sweet finish.

Overall Impression- This brew was good but needed more depth and more strength... Coming in at 8% ABV, I thought this would happen but not sure I ever caught what I wanted to classify as a Scotch Ale. Wouldn't diss this brew but many more offerings from Moylan Brewery that are much better.

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Photo of cindyjeffsmith
3.5/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: deep clear copper. Wispy ring of a head. Lacing appears only briefly and dissipates.
Smell: strong nutty smell, reminds me of peanuts. The rich malty nose I'm familiar with in old chub and dirty bastard is there but not nearly as pronounced.
Taste: peanut in the taste as well. No worries. I like peanuts. Malts imore subdued than in prev mentioned brews.
Overall: I'm lovin tryin all these new interesting beers so not a knock, but only slightly above average IMO.

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Photo of Reidrover
3.6/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle from "Lifesource" S.Salem. $5.45..seems like they dropped the "Kiltlifter" and its just "Moylans Scotch Ale" Smokey hazelnut broon with a small light tan heid. Aroma ..very malty as expected and with hints of cream,toast and a tiny smidgen of peat-smoke Taste is smooth malty goodness, some plum and again a hint of peaty smoke..creamy underfeel. Ok on the palate..on the thin side but in this case it is helpful. An OK beer again..but not a great Scotch Ale

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Photo of DaveBlack
4.12/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Viscous-looking mahogany brew has almost no head at all, except for a tiny bit when it is first poured. Not even enough to cover the surface of the beer even partially. Obviously, there is no lacing either.

S: This is a tasty smelling beer. BIG malty aroma, with lots of caramel. Some chocolate adds a complexity (and it almost smells like chocolate covered cranberries to me, which is odd).

T: Definitely a tasty beer. The malt isn't as big on the palate as it is on the nose, but it's still the primary flavor. The toasty caramel notes are dominant, without much of the dried fruit aroma. Enough hops on the finish to keep the sweetness from being cloying.

M: Heavy body, fairly thick and sticky.

O: A tasty beer to be sure. Sweet without being cloying and well balanced. Worth checking out.

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Photo of Duhast500
3.95/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the tap into a pint glass.

The color is a dark brown with a finger or two of foamy brownish head with some lacing left on the glass.

The smell is has a nice toasty malt aroma. There is a nice brown sugar aroma with some slight banana and a little bit of a pear aroma as well.

The taste is malty as expected, with some dark malts mixed with some roast flavor that is only slightly fruity. There is a nice touch of raisins and some other slight fruit flavor before giving into a slight bitterness toward the end.

The feel of this beer is smooth and goes down easy with a nice crisp, drinkable body that makes this beer just right. There is a nice aftertaste that hangs in the back of the throat and then is gone not long after.

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Photo of ibbjamin
3.31/5  rDev -11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bomber into a large snifter to review.

Half inch of dense creme colored head. Brown in color with an orange glow when held to light. Good lacing and a welcomed layer of retention after settling.

Well balanced nose with sweet caramel malts, fresh green hops and some rum-esque booze.

Taste is malt forward yet still balanced with some smokiness coming into play. Perhaps a bit too boozy for this being 8%, but I guess that somewhat goes with the style.

Medium full body, comes off a bit thin and watery. Medium length malty boozed finish. Light in the carbonation department.

Certainly not a bad beer, but somewhat forgettable.

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Photo of adman08
3.64/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A-Pours a copper color with nice brownish-white head that fades quickly and leaves no lacing on the glass and no remaining foam on the surface.
S-Aromas of chocolate, and a general malt sweetness.
T-Some toasted malt flavor along with some sweet caramel malt and some chocolate. Slight herbal hop flavor.
M-Fairly sweet and sticky. Very light carbonation.
Overall, a decent scotch ale. I would have liked more carbonation and a little more caramel malt sweetness. The flavor is actually fairly good and true to the style, I just like a little more sweetness and carbonation.

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Photo of ADZA
3.5/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a murky cherry copper hue which leaves a fast vanishing one finger head and no lacing,the smell is a touch of scotch,sweet caramel malts and fruit cake,the mouthfeel is medium bodied and has tastes of sweet sticky caramel and toffee,fruit cake,raisins soaked in brandy,a light touch of scotch,candied plums and finished with a light mix of herbal Tea and bittersweet toffee and overall its a SAWH and although very sessionable i would not buy again cheers.

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Photo of KajII
3.44/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

[Best served in a Snifter]

The pour was a murky medium brown with a small (less than 1 finger) light brown frothy head that did not have the greatest retention but was able to produce a somewhat fair lacing.

The aroma was very malty of a dark roasted bread malt and a sweet leathery yeast with a hint of caramel, plums and a moderate alcohol odor.

The taste was sweet and malty with a hint of caramel and toffee from the onset and then had a slight medicine flavor with a strong plum wine presence that was quite boozy at the end. The flavor lasted an average time on the palate but left you with a strong alcohol warming feel that lasted a bit longer.

Mouthfeel was medium in body with a watery texture that was slightly dry at the finish, with a nice soft carbonation.

Overall a sweet enticing brew, with a strong alcohol flavor that will most definitely rock your world if you drank too much.

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Photo of StlHopHead77
3.58/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A-Pours a hearty brownish amber with one finger of quickly dissipating beige foam that left spotty islands of lacing on the glass.

S-Sweetened cereal grains,clover honey,grassy hops,mild citrus and roasted nuts.

T-Bold but not overly sweet malts.Toffee glazed nuts,whole grain toast,earthy hops,hint of citrus and soft tobacco.

M-Medium bodied with a natural sweetness and good carbonation.

O-Another good beer from Moylan's.

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Photo of Merkur
3.45/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Found this on tap at the Flying Saucer in Nashville.

The beer was a mahogany color with a good amount of tan head.

The beer smelled very much of toffee.

The taste was very sweet. Toffee and caramel notes were present.

This beer, despite being 8% had a much lighter mouthfeel that I would have thought. Much easier drinking that I would have thought.

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Photo of lordofthewiens
4.03/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pleasant surprise. I don't know why, but I wasn't expecting too much from this beer.

It was a very rich mahogany color with a thick tan head.

It had a toffee, sweet caramel aroma.

Major toffee taste, some caramel. Kind of a roasted impression. Alcohol noticeable, but in a pleasant way.

A rich, rewarding beer. One to savor on a cold winter night.

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Photo of rcfunk
3.26/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Good stab at a Scotch style ale. I was impressed by the head retention for a beer with an 8% AVB. Aroma a taste were a little roastier than I would like in this style. The beer is really tasty however and drinkable. I recommend giving it a shot anytime.

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Photo of Siggy125
4.15/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into taster glass from bomber bottle. Hazy,reddish bronze in color. 2 fingers of off white head, minimal carbonation and lacing.

sweet malts on the nose. Some of the 8 abv present. I get a ginger like aroma. very pleasing aromas.

More sweet bready malts on the palate. Roasted toffee and caramels. Nice warm abv warmth on the finish. As it warms, I'm getting some baking spices..cinnamon, perhaps nutmeg. Unexpected pleasure.

Very pleasant example of a scotch ale. When most are fairly heavy, this one's very drinkable. recommended.

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Photo of dcloeren
2.81/5  rDev -24.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured a murky burnt orange with half a finger of fizzy head (if Khoi want to call it that). The "head dissipated before I even had a chance to set my glass down

Getting a very strong caramel malt scent with not much else going on...

The taste follows the nose. Nothing to it but carame malt

The mouthfeel is very thin and extremely carbonated

Overall, this beer was nothing short of disappointing. Thin, overly carbonated and very one dimensional. If your curious about this one, don't be

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Photo of Nerudamann
3.85/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a snifter glass.

Look - medium to dark brown, a little murky, with about half a finger's worth of light khaki-colored foam that dissipates somewhat quickly.

Smell - very malty, sweet, somewhat biscuity in aroma. Maybe a little bit of an herbalness to it.

Taste and Mouthfeel - very malty in taste too, maybe biscuity. There's a slight hinted of a roasted or burnt quality, but it's very subtle. Slight bitterness that actually tinges the upper back palate as opposed to the sides of the tongue. Texture is a little more toward the watery side.

Overall - pretty interesting brew in general, with a fairly unique tasting range.

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Photo of seand
3.54/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a deep reddish brown with a smal amount of off white head. Just a thing patchy layer retains on the surface, but a larger rim around the edge of the glass is enough to leave reasonable lacing.

S: There's a dairy note which was unexpected enough that it initially made me think of slightly turned milk. That was really just a snap reaction, as it's more like somewhere between chocolate milk and plain yogurt. A bit weird, for sure, but after the initial shock it's not unpleasant. There's also a slightly boozy bready malt note. The turned milk sensation comes back right at the start when I take a whiff occasionally, so I have to mark it down for that, but it's not so much below average as good, with an off-putting addition.

T: Sweet, with a touch of that dairy note coming through in the mid palate and mouthfeel. I'm not really getting much that resembles scotch.

M: Medium to full body, medium carbonation.

Not what I expected. It's strange, and not in a terrible way, so I'd recommend trying it just for that, but it's not something on the top of my list to have again and again.

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Photo of biegaman
3.73/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at 21st Amendment, in San Francisco.

Although the beer is perfectly transparent, good luck seeing through to the other side; its clay-red body has a deep, ruddy complexion that curiously gives off very little highlighting except for a light amber kindling at its base. Its head is thin as moss on a rock and, although it does endure, it looks fine enough to be skimmed off the top simply by blowing at it.

It smells almost as if the malts retained some of the copper from the big kettle in which they were brewed; there are hints of butterscotch, but the beer's sweetness is better described, not quite as caramelization, but "kettle-lization" - the melding of toffee and copper. There's also a bit of campfire smoke remnant of (but clearly not) something Speyside.

Indeed, Kilt Lifter affords a taste, albeit a purely superficial one, of Scotland. Oat-y, almost granola-like, grainy malt have plenty of peat flavour to them as well as plenty of dark fruit (plum, raisin) esters that fit nicely into the backdrop. While it has scotch-like features, it also a Madeira-like sweetness. A bit of earthy hoppiness also perks up time to time. Nice.

It must be said, however, that there are much nicer scotch ales on the market. It's the mouthfeel that sparks me to say that; it's not rich and the alcohol grows to a point where the gratification gained no longer outweighs the warming that accompanies it. It doesn't balance sweetness rather conspires with it. Peat flavours dissipate quickly and there's no smoke.

Kilt Lifter is a perfectly serviceable scotch ale, but one that is more likely to impress those new to the style than more familiar palates. It was probably among the first wee heavy beers I tried, some five plus years ago, and comparing the scores, my impression of it then was certainly much higher than it is now. But, as then, I certainly did enjoy it.

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Kilt Lifter Scotch Ale from Moylan's Brewery
84 out of 100 based on 395 ratings.