Lia Fail | Inveralmond Brewery Ltd., The

very good
87 Reviews
Lia FailLia Fail

Brewed by:
Inveralmond Brewery Ltd., The
Scotland, United Kingdom

Style: Scottish Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.70%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 04-01-2002

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User Reviews
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Reviews: 87 | Ratings: 126
Photo of mschofield
3.32/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours mahogany, topped with a one finger tan head, leaves only temporary webs of lacing.
Malty, sweet and floral aroma, bread and peat.
Malty, toast and dark bread, floral, small caramel note, biscuit.
Medium bodied, not bad it just didn't do much for me.

 258 characters

Photo of GCBrewingCo
3.98/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer poured brown and slightly hazy. The head was off-white and rose tall to fall slowly and lace the glass.

The aroma was chocolate and dark malty caramel. Earthy aroma with a mineral component.

The flavor was bitter with notable English hop flavor, very earthy. Notable mineral profile to the flavor. Late in the flavor the chocolate flavors reappear.

The finish was dry with a lingering earthy hop and mineral water flavor. The body was medium light.

16.9 ounce bottle. According to the label should be a bitter. I can believe that. A nice session beer.

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Photo of Todd
3.78/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

500ml brown bottle. Pours a deep, dark copper-brown, crowned quite majestically with a two-fingered pure white tightly laced foam head with a very respectable level of retention and clinging stick.

Wonderful aroma of milky coffee, caramel, deep toasted breads. Soft wheat germ-like character, too.

Super smooth and silky on the palate, a bit creamy, thin-ish watery mouthfeel. Little carbonation in the feel. Light, but distinct, caramel and toasted malts. Touch of metallic and grain. Very little bitterness. Raw-ish herbal character, with a milky flower pith edge. A bit bready and grainy in the finish with a coarser feel on the palate vs. the smoothness of the start, going dry and more-ish.

A very enjoyable light Scottish Ale and an easy choice for a session beer. Solid. Though ... I would have preferred a bit more malt backbone.

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Photo of bristerboy
4.17/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I was pleasantly surprised by this beer. Bought only a single to try and wish I had bought more. Expected more hops but pleasantly surprised by just a hint of bitterness to balance the coffee malts of the classic Scottish Ales.
Dark amber color, not a heavy mouth feel as in "wee heavies", but just right for a good session beer.
Very low carbonation. Very small tan head .
Really like this beer even though my personal preference this side of the Atlantic is Belhaven Wee Heavy.

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Photo of feloniousmonk
4.1/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A portentous name...omens speak of it's promise before the cap is cracked...Stone of Destiny...I feel priveleged to sip it, already.
Gorgeous looking ale, all crimson, with deeper, darker amber edges, and a luscious, utterly creamy cap of foam lay on top. Really good looking brew.
Aroma is vast and epic, a mystic mix of dark fruit flavors, plus coppery, nutty aspects, sweet spices, a real joy to have in the nose.
Nice taste, too, surprsingly mellow entry on the palate, rich, luch, creamy. Full malt, little hops, medium body...feels just too thin for the promise the look and smell evoked, but I do not believe they intended to make a blockbuster beer, just an easy-drinker with a Scottish flair. Long, sweet and nutty finish, this is a handsomely put-together ale. Tastes as good as any Scotch I've ever tried on. Although the label says it's "generously hopped", I'd have to know who they compare it to, or maybe the words mean something different in Scottish? In any case, whatever small hoppiness happens is handily drowned out by the thick, caramel-y malts.
Defineitely a damn good beer, definitely worth anyone's time, but have to wonder if it's really worth the $5.29 I paid for the 500ml bottle...once, or twice, maybe, but not too often.

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Photo of jdhilt
3.65/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours with a off-white two-fingered head that fades and leaves some lace. Clear, deep amber color. Medium carbonation and medium bodied. Starts with a rich mix of malts and hops, finishes smooth with a trace of hops; good Scottish ale. $4.20 for a 500ml bottle from Colonial Spirits Acton, Ma.

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Photo of zerk
4.45/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I have to say that when I bought this beer I had no idea what to expect... it comes in an attracttive 1 pint 9 oz bottle that talks about the Stone of Destiny... also called Lia Fail. It states that it has won an award in the Premium Bitter category - this however is not a bitter. It's more of a session scottish ale... maybe what would be called a 60 Shilling Ale in Scottland. Pours a slightly hazy deep amber with a thin but persistent tan head that leaves behind some patches of lace. Aroma is a mix of caramel, toffee, and some light bread notes with a touch of espresso. Flavor begins sweet with malty notes of caramel, and chocolate, finishing with some smokiness, notes of tobacco, and a touch of coffee. Bitterness is low, and mainly just there for balance. Mouthfeel is light with low carbonation. This is a mighty fine Scottish Ale... very easy to drink but quite complex. One hell of a good session ale!

 916 characters

Photo of BeerResearcher
3.61/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

16.9oz brown bottle. Freshness date etched on bottom of label.
It pours a ruby-hued mahogany/amber with a smallish beige head and thin wisps of lace.
It has a light sweet malty aroma with hints of wet hay.
The malt body is lighter than it appears. It's dry with only a dab of sweetness.
A tea-like and mild lemony bitterness are on equal footing with the maltiness. So, this is a balanced brew, but lacking in any upfront or aggressive flavors.
This is an easy quaffing ale. Good for a hot summer's night.

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Photo of connecticutpoet
4.2/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was yet another free sample I was fortunate enough to try, and one of my favorites that night. It was a nice brown color, but no idea as to the head in a 2 ounce glass.

The aroma was of light hops, nothing too strong, but foreshadowing something interesting.

There was a good deal of complexity and overlapping flavors to the malts, nicely balanced with the hop overtones. This was a nice drinking beer, and I enjoyed it. Definitely worth a try.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.5/5  rDev +20%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From the Inveralmond Brewery in Scotland comes an astonishingly full-flavored session ale. Its slightly hazy (it's bottle-conditioned), deep copper colored body borders on chestnut; resting gently geneath a long-lasting head of creamy white foam as its very fine bubbles slowly rise to the surface. The nose displays a distinctly rich, caramel-drenched maltiness. The body is surprisingly full, adding to a fuller perception of malt in the flavour; and its very fine, natural carbonation leaves it exceptionally creamy and smooth across the palate. In the flavor, a hint of some darker malts (perhaps a touch of roasted barley) lend depth to its rich, caramel side; and some subtle, delicately spicy and grassy hops round it out. The maltiness is perfectly balanced by its firm bitterness, and leads to a dry finish (that's again surprising given its full maltiness). A really well brewed beer that shows a clean fermentation and impeccable sense of balance. Quite exceptional, and certainly one of the best Scottish ales available at this time!

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Photo of ADR
4.22/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer seems more like a Special Bitter to me, but...

Medium brown and clear appearance. Sturdy pale yellow head, long lasting and creamy -- settles at under 1/2 an inch. Laces in partial drips. Nice aroma, toffee with jazzy nutmeg and a definite floral hopping showing through. Smooth mouthfeel, a little light but quaffable. Starts with butterscotch and some maple sugar, very nice transition to a cinnamony and prickly hop. Finishes lightly but continuing in the enhanced bittering, like a sound turning up. A thumb's up brew in my book, composed, subtle, but making a point.

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Photo of CRJMellor
3.53/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours semi-cloudy dark amber/caramel color without any discernible head.
Aroma of toffee, tangy hop notes with some minor peat and/or smoke.
Flavor of rich deep caramel sweetness followed by a minor peat hit and some residual bittering.
Mouthfeel is hard water, slightly buttery and biscuity with some sweetness and very minor bitter.
Drinkability is very pleasant but nothing outstanding.

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Lia Fail from Inveralmond Brewery Ltd., The
3.75 out of 5 based on 126 ratings.
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