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Fat Scotch Ale | Silver City Brewing Co.

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
90
outstanding
87 Reviews
BEER STATS
Reviews:
87
Ratings:
194
Avg:
4.07
pDev:
18.43%
 
 
Wants:
50
Gots:
39
For Trade:
0
Fat Scotch AleFat Scotch Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Silver City Brewing Co.
Washington, United States | website

Style: Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Previously known as Fat Bastard AAle.

Added by RoyalT on 11-27-2003

User Reviews
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Reviews: 87 | Ratings: 194
Reviews by Ryburr:
Photo of Ryburr
5/5  rDev +22.9%

More User Reviews:
Photo of Knuckles
4.9/5  rDev +20.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I've avoided reviewing this beer for as long as I've been a member of BA, simply because it's impossible for me to be objective about the damn thing. I've been drinking it non-stop ever since its introduction back in the fall of 2001, and love it as much today as I did back then. Fat Bastard got its introduction as a beefed up version of Silver City's regular Scotch Ale (which I don't particularly care for). Don Spencer added more peated malt, brought up the alcohol from 6% to 9%, and created an instant classic for the style of Strong Scotch Ale. This beer won gold medals two years running at the GABF, so it's been recognized for its excellence. I'd recommend getting your hands on some so you can recognize its excellence as well. If I were to equate a specific beer to a specific woman, this beer is Salma Hayek. Dark, intoxicating, beguiling, addictive, and not afraid to kick your ass.

Appearance: I am a Brewmaster VIP at Silver City (I realize I mention this all the time, but I'm just trying to justify the expense), so I get my beer in the big glass. This glass has caused great amounts of consternation amongst my drinking companions, as it seems to engender feelings of inadequacy. Don't feel inadequate, good people, enjoy your damn beer. What this means is that I get my beer in a 22 oz. mug that is approximately a foot tall. On the tray and on the table, the VIP glass filled with Fat Bastard possesses a sense of mystery and self-confidence that reminds me (for no particular reason) of the monolith from "2001: A Space Odyssey". Fortunately, there are no shilleighly-wielding monkeys about, so I can drink this dark brown beauty with the light brown head in peace. (SONOFABITCH!!!! I've already used this goddam line, and with a goddam Silver City beer no less. Crap.I'll have to edit.)

Take 2: On the tray and on the table, the VIP glass filled with Fat Bastard possesses a sense of mystery and self-confidence that reminds me of George W. Bush, yet I know my beer is smarter. I'm also quite confident that if elected, this beer will give me my four dollars worth.

Smell: Peat. Malt. Smoke. Beer. Mmmmm...this beer is a cornucopia of "ohmyfuckyes" aromas. The nose has just a hint of peat to it. It doesn't have the "Angus! Bring me another glass of fookin' whisky!" type of smell that the Traquair House Ale does, but it still smells damn good to me. In the words of Blackalicious, "Just a whiff of her ferment will make your knees get weak." My knees are weak now just thinking about it.

Taste: This is where my review always breaks down. How to describe the taste? Beautifully malty, just a wee bit smoky, and always, ALWAYS delicious. There's a brown sugar quality to it that reminds me of the sauce poured over Bananas Foster. This is a beer without fault to me, and the only beer in the world that my father and I agree on. Were we to be restricted to one beer only for the rest of our lives, this beer would be it.

Mouthfeel: I've never french kissed Salma Hayek (although it is on my 'to-do' list), but I hope her tongue feels half as sexy in my mouth as this beer does. It has the viscosity of melted ice cream, yet never leaves anything behind on the tongue. It wants to be with you, be part of you, and I welcome it's invasion each and every time. (That goes for the beer as well as Salma.)

Drinkability: I'm going to mark this bad boy down to a 4.5, simply because it's a 9.0% beer. I've had three of the 22 oz. Fats before, and needed to be shepherded home. Take your time and enjoy a pint, or two, or three. I mean, come on, would you limit the time you spent with Salma? I sure as hell wouldn't. Unless it got in the way of me getting another VIP Fat.

 3,711 characters

Photo of RoyalT
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance – Very dark brown with just the slightest hint of red. The head was monstrous even though I controlled it at the pour.

Smell – This smells like scotch; nothing more, nothing less. The faint peat aroma, sweet malt, and alcohol scream scotch all the way.

Taste – The sugars take over at the tongue (and go well with my hot dog). The malt deepens as well, making this quite the sweet, malty offering.

Mouthfeel – This one is “wee heavy” for sure. It gives the mouth the same feeling you’d get at the finish of a nice, long drink of scotch.

Drinkability – This went down way too easy for a 9.0 ABV ale. I’ll have to call it a night on account of the fact that this came in a .26 gallon bottle.

Comments – This offering from Silver City won the Gold Medal for the top Scotch Style Ale at the 2002 Great American Beer Festival. If there ever was a scotch session ale, this is it.

 909 characters

Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.87/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Review from BeerAdvocate Magazine Issue #47 (Dec 2010):

A crackling in the head leads to a thin ring of lace. Burgundy on brown. Stodgy malt nose with a hint of alcohol and a faint twang of smoke. Slick and mildly crisp, semi-syrupy full body. The maltiness reaches high--sweet but not cloying. Kiss of caramel, brown bread, fresh-cut grass and a ghost-like smoke. Light on the hops but this is par for the style; quick stroke of bitterness and a leafy flavor within. Alcohol is slow to warm, with a faint raisin tone. Sweet ending to a pleasant malt story.

 559 characters

Photo of merlin48
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Very stylish, .23 gallon swingtop bottle, obtained via trade with waldowin. Served slightly chilled into a Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Ale snifter. Pours a very deep brown body with an incredibly creamy, light brown head that is about one finger tall. Head is quite sturdy for the 9% abv, and lacing varies from sheets to island chains.

Aroma is bold, with vinous white grapes immediately leading into a kick of Scotch Whisky. Toffee, caramel, and brown sugar front an enormous malty profile. Smoky peat is prominent and engaging, and there is a pleasant fruity hint of berries and cherries.

Mouthfeel is almost full bodied, smooth and velvety, with the expected low carbonation and some alcohol warming that is welcome on a cold winter night. Slightly syrupy, in a good way.

Taste has lots of malty toffee with a kiss of brown sugar. Smoky peat and Scotch whisky notes are present all the way through. A restrained fruitiness of plums and cherries segues into figs as room temperature arrives. Turns a bit dry toward the finish, with a lasting smokiness embraced by the Scotch whisky notes.

I spent two hours enjoying this puppy, and each sip was better than the last. Very smooth, with a dangerous degree of drinkability. Quite a treat!

 1,249 characters

Photo of warriorsoul
4.27/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Chris and Redbones for having this one on tap and a big thanks to Muddyfeet for posting that is was still on...ran my ass down there today to find it still there...
Arrived a dark brown color with clear mahogony highlights in a 10.5oz. goblet with less than a half finger of off-white head...disappears almost instantly with very little lace.
Very nice aromas filled with raisins, sweet carmelized malt, and a nice underlying scotch scent.
The taste is great...semi-sweet with a huge malt profile...lots of rum raisins, subtle scotch, and toasted almonds.
Mouthfeel is thick, yet not cloying and the carbonation is perfect for the style....very drinkable and no hint of the alcohol until the very last sip. A warming sense comes over you with this one and it should be respected at 9%...either way, a great offering and one I am real glad to have enjoyed.
Get on over to Redbones if you can...it won't last the night.

 932 characters

Photo of jamesmk48
4.64/5  rDev +14%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

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

1 liter swing-top courtesy of the awesome west-coast BA RoyalT.

Poured a wonderful deep and dark cherry-colored gloriousness, with ruby-tinged highlights around the edges. Initial thick layer of barely off-white head quickly subsides into a paper-thin, edges-only ring. Decent lacing of the glass. Aromas are complex, to say the least. A funky "chocolatey-whiskey" smell is noted, along with a supporting cast of Heath Bar and caramel. Flavors are tasty, with some big-time sweetness shining through. Bourbon-soaked raisins also appear and mix nicely with the chocolate cocoa powder. Finishes with just a hint of alcohol burn and a smoky aftertaste that was as nice as it was unexpected. Mouthfeel is smooth...a little on the dry side. Quite drinkable, though the 9.0% ABV does limit you to a respectable quantity before calling it a night.

I'm liking this style more and more! Big thanks to RoyalT for this one.

 918 characters

Photo of RizanTastingBeer
3.34/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.5

22oz poured into a small snifter.

Look: Deep ruby-brown verging on dark copper. Moderate clarity. Thin, beige head that quickly dissipates. Little to no lacing.

Aroma: Light smoke/peat. Woody and earthy, almost cellar-like odors along with caramel and molasses, as well as bubble-gum and dark fruit esters. Light diacetyl note

Taste: Wee bit of peat smoke that lasts through to finish and beyond. Also molasses/caramel up front leading to bubblegum-like esters and dark fruit (plum/prune). Enough hop bitterness to balance the malt, but little to no hop derived flavors. Subtle roasted coffee flavor (or almost like burnt chocolate). Boozy flavors and slight acidity in the finish.

Feel: Light bodied, slightly astringent, dry.

Overall: An award-winning ale. I however find it a little on the dry side, and some of the esters feel a little out of place for me, but nonetheless an interesting and relatively enjoyable scotch ale. Respect should be given at 9%abv.

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Photo of IrishGermanAmerican
3.48/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Photo of timontheroad
4.06/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Dark reddish brown, very little foam that quickly dissipated to a thin film. Little to no lacing. Aroma is sweet, lots of vanilla, caramel and a bit of a medicinal smell also. Taste was fairly sweet and a little smoky. Got some dark fruits, bubble gum, caramel and vanilla notes as well. Mouthfeel was thinner than I expected, with a little bite from the 9.2%. Overall this was a pretty tasty brew, fairly complex and nicely done.

 430 characters

Photo of daveytheformer
4.2/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep brown with a light khaki head that immediately recedes to some spotting.

Smells boozy and sweet. Prunish aroma meets grape juice.

Tastes like candy with a big raisin like quality. Light caramel and cake all meet in the end for a nice syrupy sweet get together.

Mouthfeel is sticky and medium with light carbonation that suits this very well.

Overall I really enjoyed this a lot. Glad I picked this one up. I'll certainly be trying this beer again.

 464 characters

Photo of kevwcamp
4/5  rDev -1.7%

Photo of LXIXME
3.75/5  rDev -7.9%

Photo of Grant79Johnston
4.39/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of IntriqKen
4.45/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Many thanks to Skyhand for a growler of this wonderful Scotch Ale.
I really can't begin to evaluate it...it's very complex, yet so balanced in it's flavors that it seems simple.
Toasted amber malts give way to a light smokiness...sweet caramel, brown sugar and somehow a hint of hops on the tail end...enough to cleanse the palette and leave a slight drying although there is the lingering wonderful sweetness of the amber malts tasting a lot like candy or caramel.
This is a delicious Scotch Ale...too delicious. I'm gonna finish the growler tonight by myself and that may be a sin...but sinfully indulgent and delicious.
Pray for me in the morning.

 654 characters

Photo of mdaschaf
4.25/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of Tuckersmth
3/5  rDev -26.3%

Photo of AKBelgianBeast
4.42/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Big thanks to SuzyGreenberg for this one.

Pours a nice deep dark ruby brown color with a fizzy tan head that dissipates pretty quickly leaving almost no lacing.

Nose is very estery with some peat and dark malt and grains. A slight smoke and a dry dark fruit smell.

Taste is quite good! A very nice dark fruit and peat bog smokiness with a good deep malt backbone. Taste starts off easy with some nice creamy dark fruit flavors. Some plummy taste and good vanilla cream like presence amplified by the mouthfeel. Some slight oak and peat smoke come through the middle with a big sweet malt profile. A belgian like yeast flavor coming out of this one. A great sweetness without being cloying. The finish is moderately dry, right where it should be. The aftertaste lingers with dark fruit and some creaminess.

Mouthfeel is very nice here, almost perfect. The only beef I have is that the carbonation is a bit high, A bit lower would be perfect here. Was really suprised at the mouthfeel after the nose was sort of thin. Nice slickness.

Drinkability is very solid here, especially for the abv. This one drinks like a 6% brew. Very high marks here. Goes down easy.

Overall this scotch ale gets very high marks. The nose and carbonation really need work. The aroma really indicates a fairly average scotch ale, but the taste and mouthfeel just bring this one to life. Lower the carbonation a bit and this one would be divine. Drinkability is nothing short of amazing here. The scores I haven given here really do not reflect how good this beer is. If we had a rating system that went into tenths this one would be in the solid A range for sure. Grrr. A great brew.

 1,663 characters

Photo of jh1982
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%

Photo of hreb
3.13/5  rDev -23.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

22oz bottle of Silver City's Fat Scotch Ale. Beer pours dark cola brown, clearly a little syrupy in texture. Aroma is slightly phenol and chemical, I think. Flavor is dominant, malty, with molasses and spice. Also dark fruit: raisins, prunes. Could have been a barley wine in a parallel universe, I guess. Just enough bitterness to round it out. Aftertaste is neither cloying nor hop burn -- but it's not subtle, either. There's just a lot of flavor here. Unfortunately I'm not loving it.

 488 characters

Photo of ElGordo
3.97/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a rich brown hue with garnet highlights when held up to the light. A flourish of tan head rises on the pour, but subsides in mere minutes. Aroma of sweet dark malt, a hint of biscuit, fruity hops, and undertones of dark fruit, aka ripe plum. Palate is sweet up front, with darker, rich malts (no roasty flavor, though), more dark, sweet fruit, and a touch of peat on the finish. Body is rich, full, and just slightly creamy. Goes down easily enough, but the 9% ABV is evident throughout. A big, robust Scotch ale that makes its presence known, but still manages to be quite welcome throughout the evening.

 611 characters

Photo of Murrobert
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Tasty, but tough as woodpecker lips.

36 characters

Photo of barongearmu
3.9/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Photo of jmccraney
3.75/5  rDev -7.9%

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Fat Scotch Ale from Silver City Brewing Co.
90 out of 100 based on 87 ratings.