Fat Scotch Ale - Silver City Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Fat Scotch AleFat Scotch Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

165 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 165
Reviews: 83
rAvg: 4.03
pDev: 12.66%
Wants: 45
Gots: 18 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Silver City Brewing Co. visit their website
Washington, United States

Style | ABV
Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy |  9.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: RoyalT on 11-27-2003

Previously known as Fat Bastard AAle.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 165 | Reviews: 83
Reviews by idResponse:
Photo of idResponse
4.44/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thank you to my coworker and friend who brought this down to give to me to let me try. Thank you a LOT!
Pours a dark dark brown that is almost impossible to see through even when held up to the light (BAD MAN don't do that!) and has a smallish head that retains a fair amount of lacing. The first thing I noticed was the amazing pleasantly strong scent that flew out of this beer! Something resembling a candied scotch on the rocks with a freshly cut lawn thrown in for good measure spiced with brown sugar... or something... i don't know. i'm sitting here by myself and said "WOAH! I don't even know how to describe that!" out loud. It tastes GREAT! It's like... it's like ... an imperial stout without the stoutiness and all the sweet and smooth that goes with it. i don't even know how to begin describing this beer. All around one of the better beers I've had. Before today I didn't even know Silver City Brewing Company existed. Now I'm a huge fan and want to try more of their products! If you see this beer, buy it, try it, enjoy it. It's very much worth it.

More User Reviews:
Photo of RoyalT
4.03/5  rDev 0%
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.

Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.87/5  rDev -4%
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.

Photo of merlin48
4.5/5  rDev +11.7%
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!

Photo of warriorsoul
4.27/5  rDev +6%
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.

Photo of OldFrothingSlosh
4/5  rDev -0.7%
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.

Photo of timontheroad
4.06/5  rDev +0.7%
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.

Photo of daveytheformer
4.2/5  rDev +4.2%
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.

Photo of IntriqKen
4.45/5  rDev +10.4%
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.

Photo of AKBelgianBeast
4.42/5  rDev +9.7%
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.

Photo of hreb
3.13/5  rDev -22.3%
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.

Photo of ElGordo
3.97/5  rDev -1.5%
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.

Photo of Murrobert
4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Tasty, but tough as woodpecker lips.

Photo of Beertracker
4.27/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Silver City's Fat Bastard (Scotch Ale) is best served at warmer cellar temperatures (50-55°F) from a small brandy snifter or thistle glass. This award-winning Strong Scotch Ale (Wee-Heavy) pours up with some authority along with a moderate carbonation that creates a low, short lived beige-light brownish colored head that sits proudly atop a deep auburn-russet body. The clarity is bright with surprisingly good head retention and even shows some alcohol legs. The incredibly rich caramel aroma showcases the abundant maltiness with some fruitiness reminiscent of a banana sundae topped with hot caramel & walnuts. In addition, there's a leafy earthiness and peat smokiness which emerges as the beer warms in hand along with an intermingly of whisky notes that adds to the overall complexity. The malt dominated flavor starts off slightly fruity (plum preserves, raisin pie, ripened fig) with a rich, caramel maltiness that shows lots of kettle carmelization and carries a touch of oily smokiness. The chewy, full-body shows both power and grace with a big, bittersweet finish that stops short of being syrupy and packs plenty of warmth. This is just the tipple to add some color to the cheeks during a long winter's night. Here's to one hedonistic Fat Bastard!

CHEERS! Beertracker

*Taster's Note: Thanks to amatuerbeerguy for waiting to share this one!

Photo of GRG1313
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Ruby red with an orange/tan head.

Sweet coffee with carmel and sweet whiskey/Bourbon nose.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, creamy texture and incredibly balanced with elegance and lots of character.

Flavors are of cooked peaches, figs, prunes and plums with a sweet whiskey flavor; complex and layered.

Medium Scotch coffee'd fruit finish.

This is a nice drink, although there is a bit of a "Dr. Pepper" or sweet carmel "Coca Cola" flavor that underlies the flavor profile. Still, very nice!

Photo of waldowin
4.41/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured out of a 750mL swing-top jug, aged for three months (I ran out of patience).

Appearance - Pours a dark, dark syrup, so dark it's black. When it's held to the light, thin streamers of blood red wrap around the sides which give hint to the true color. Absolutely massive head at least four fingers tall, so thick you could cut it with a knife (I actually did, as a test, the cut stayed). Fades to a thin cake of foam for several minutes, and finally fades to a sheen with a ring, and leaves ringlets all the way down. Very impressive for a beer this high in ABV. Every dark beer should have heads like this.

Smell - First hit is strongly of cinnamon, which surprised me. Having had this beer before, that wasn't something I'd noticed. Plums, scotch, and spiced rum. Almost a tropical smell.

Taste - Up front taste is malts. Caramel, toffee, buttery and some plum and molasses. Almost a bubble-gum like sweetness in there, like a Bazooka Joe is sitting on the bottom. A hint of smoked peat midway through, and a *very* slight hint of single-malt. Finishes with some cedar-like hops, and a bit of smoke. Definitely a big beer, it's easy to see how this won two golds back to back in '02 and '03.

Mouthfeel - Feels a bit slick (wondering if maybe this one was oxidized), and dry, at first. Then widens out to a massive chewy, bubbly feel, that almost literally tumbles along the tongue. The syrupy thickness of this brew combines with the large amount of carbonation to make a wonderful experience.

Drinkability - This stuff is scarily drinkable. It'd be so very easy to drink enough of this to be sick later, especially with all this sugar. Once it hits your lips, it pulls itself down your throat with abandon. The alcohol really sneaks up on you.

Would absolutely recommend it to anyone who hasn't tried it, but it's so much fresher and bigger off the tap (I've had both tap and bottle).

As a footnote, as this beer warmed up, the buttery slickness faded, and the sweet notes got deeper. Once this beer hit about 50 degrees or so, it was fantastic. If you buy some, let it warm a bit before drinking it from the fridge.

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

appearance: The pour creates a good looking .5" khaki head that steadily retreats back into the liquid, save for a slight layer on top and a ring around the glass. The beer is an awesome reddish chestnut brown in color. A little more lacing and head retention is all I could ask for.

smell: Plenty of malt on the nose gives dark fruity aromas of candied cherry, plum, peach, and other fruits. There is also a considerable peat presence. Hints of milk chocolate, toffee, and butterscotch are present...and maybe even a slight nuance of smoke that reminds me of alderwood. The aroma is pretty complex, while keeping with the scotch ale trait of being subtle, though there could be a little more depth to the malt character. There's a low, English type hop aroma. The ethanol is very well hidden, though it does prick the back of the nose a bit.

mouthfeel: The carbonation is right on the border between the upper reaches of the low range and the low side of the medium range. The body is medium, and slightly slick.

taste: Ahhh, maltiness. The flavor is pretty much completely malt...there is only a hint of hop flavor, and the light bitterness that cleans up the finish. All this malt brings with it delicious flavors of dried, dark tree fruit, caramelized sugars, and toffee. There are also some hints of flavorful hardwood smoke and peat. Alcohol unnoticeable on the tongue.

drinkability: An easy drinking scotch ale. Limited somewhat by the ABV, as I am feeling it after consuming about 2/5 of the bottle.

One of two .26 gallon swingtops I acquired in an awesome trade with waldowin. This has been cellared since early January, and I'll probably keep the other until fall.

12-12-06: The ethanol has practically disappeared from the nose. Seems to be pretty similar to my last bottle, though the malt may have opened up, and a little more smoke revealed due to the reduced sweetness. Big notes of dried, sugary fruits and a light bourbon note. One of the better aging experiences I've had. Kicking the aroma up to a 4.5.

Photo of weeare138
3.63/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to hopdog for supplying both this and the Fat Woody for a side by side tasting...
Appears a semi-transparent, dark amber with a smal, off-white head that slowly fades out.
Smell is of vanilla, caramel, toffee, raisins, and smoked peat.
Taste is of the mentioned aromas with an herbal hop flavor peaking it's head out in the midst of the caramel.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied, slightly thin, with sweetness and citrusy bitterness clinging to the finish.

Photo of claspada
3.57/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear dark dark copper color (basically brown if not held up to the light) with dark ruby highlights, a small light khaki head that drops quite rapidly leaving some splashy lacing behind.

Aromas begin very sweet and malty. I get lots of maple syrup, dark caramelized sugars, brown sugar and toffee. As it warms i get some of the earthiness (presumably from the hops) and some light but pleasant amount of peat.

The tastes begin with just waves of malt. Initially I get sweet toffee, dark caramelized malts and the peat. As it warms I can appreciate more of the base, bready/biscuity malt flavors. As I continue to sample I get a nice amount of dark fruits (raisins and prunes mainly). It becomes a bit too sweet and one-dimensional towards the bottom of the bomber.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with medium to low carbonation. Finish is full bodied and slightly toward the sweeter end, but far from cloying in any sense.

Overall this is a nice example of a Scotch Ale in my opinion. Carbonation is a little low for my liking which makes this borderline too sweet but the earthy and peat flavors help to balance out those detractors. Overall this was enjoyable, bit I do not need to revisit anytime soon. Worth a go because of the reasonable price and if it is readily available to you but no need to seek it out.

Photo of ChrisPro
3.82/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

2009 bottle poured on 3/3/10.

Pours a dark ruby with tan frothy head. Beautiful lacing. Aroma of peat, pine and treacle. Great rich brown sugar sweetness, then a dry earthy finish. A bit boozy even after 6+ months, but still an incredible scotch ale.

Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.37/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Acquired via trade from waldowin, so a big "thank you" goes out to him. Poured from a 22oz. bottle into an imperial pint glass.

A: The beer is a bright reddish brown color, with a thin off-white head that fades very quickly and doesn’t leave very much lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is sweet and contains banana, vanilla, caramel and butterscotch.

T: Malty and sweet flavors of banana, dark fruit, butterscotch & vanilla hits you right away. There's a little bit of smokiness in there. After-taste is quite sweet.

M: Extremely smooth, medium-to-heavy body, light carbonation, clean finish without a lot of stickiness especially given the style.

D: An excellent beer, very tasty, easy-to-drink, not as filling as most beers in the style. This is definitely a sipper though.

Photo of zdk9
4.1/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours a dark copper. Not much head or lacing.

S- My first impressions are dark sugar- brown sugar, molasses, raisins. As it warms up there's more bright fruit- cherries or blackberries without any sour notes.

T- Delicious. Sweet caramel coating some nice warm fruits. Plum, ripe peach.

M- Really appropriate. A little syrupy but not overly so, and doesn't linger too long. And it's surprising this is 9%, very well hidden alcohol

D- I quite enjoy this beer. I'm not usually a fan of the caramel sweet beers but this one warms up into somthing more complex and delicious.

Photo of ppoitras
4.43/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle obtained via trade with CRJMellor. Thanks for the opportunity...

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 1/2" tan head over the clear burgundy brew. Head fades slowly, with lots of sticky lacing. Aroma is sweet malts, with some peat, and light alcohol tints. Taste is very tight, with the noise's peaty malt dominant, and a lightly alcoholic close, which lingers warmly. Everything melds nicely together. Mouthfeel is tremendously smooth, and drinkability is excellent as well. Wouldn't mind having this regularly in the fridge.

Photo of beerceller99
3.8/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

32 oz. ceramic swing top bottle pours a mahogany fluid with a tan head. Smokey, sweet malt smell. Nice lacing. Sticky sweet smoked malt flavor with molasses and alderwood smoked tasting malts. Medium/heavy bodied with a very smooth mouthfeel.
The smoked flavors here went well with a cigar on Superbowl Sunday 2005.

Photo of hopdog
3.95/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottles acquired in trade with Larry Pitonka. Tasted side by side with the Barrel Aged version so notes will reflect the side by side tasting.

Both versions poured a medium mahogany with a small sized off white head. The BA version was cloudy with the regular version being clear. They both had an earthy, peaty and caramel aroma (stronger in the BA) with the BA also possesing the expected aromas of vanilla, wood, and also a smokiness. The overall aromas of the regular were on the softer and subtle side. They both shared tastes of nuts, caramel, and earthiness. The BA also had wood, vanilla, smoke, and citrus. Overall the BA was more complex and enjoyable.

Notes from 9/7/07

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Fat Scotch Ale from Silver City Brewing Co.
90 out of 100 based on 165 ratings.