Grozet | Williams Brothers Brewing Company

Liked This Beer
3.53 w/ 460 ratings

Brewed by:
Williams Brothers Brewing Company
Scotland, United Kingdom

Style: Scottish Gruit / Ancient Herbed Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
From the Gaelic "Groseid", Since at least the 16th century Scots monks and alewives brewed indigenous drinks from cereals, wild herbs and ripe fruits. Tibbie Shiels green Grozet was immortalised by such Scots literati as Sir Walter Scott, Jas Hogg. (The Ettrick shepherd) and Robert Burns whoconsidered it a most convivial drink. Brewed with lager malt, wheat, bog myrtle, hops and meadowsweet then secondary fermented with ripe Scottish gooseberries.

Added by canadianbarman on 09-12-2001

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Ratings: 460 |  Reviews: 329
Photo of montageman
3.18/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 11.2 oz. bottle into a glass mug. A bit of head that stuck around for a little while then disappears with little to no lacing.

Moderately amber in color, very sweet smelling - gooseberries are immediately noticeable. The berries are also heavily noticeable in the taste and the finish is citrusy. A nice brew, nothing spectacular. This would be nice in the summer as it is quite refreshing.

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Photo of nouseforotacon
4.15/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

330ml/11.2 Fl oz. bottle, best before 6/2006.

This one poured out a swirl of carbonated bubbles that formed a creamy white head with good retention. The body was cloudy with visible sediments, dark blood-orange like color that pales as it warms. Interesting appearance.

The smell was STRONG, gooseberries definitely present, dry and doughy malt aroma also heavy. Some wheat/straw presence in the aroma. Very rich.

The taste is, again, strong berries with some light diacetyl notes. Taste of nectarines gives a little tartness. This one was warm and refreshing, light body but not terribly watered down, with slight carbonation in the mouthfeel. Also, aftertaste was a bit doughy from the malts, wheat presence resurfaced.

I had good expectations for this one, and they were surprisingly met. This is a good brew for all seasons - light and refreshing, with enough body and character to keep your palate interested. Recommended.

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Photo of IrishRedRock
4.05/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Hazy gold, thin frothy lace. Buttery, herbal-tea nose with just a hint of the wily and elusive gooseberry. This particular berry flavor follows through more in the flavor, and balances the bitterness from the herbs oh so very nicely. Dry and grassy at first, but does yield quite a strong malt profile considering the other flavors going on here. Reminds me very much of Heavyweight's Juhlia, and even moreso? A real Snakebite like you'd get in a real Irish pub, complete with the black currant on top, though certainly not that sweet. Carbonation is a bit lacking but I'd barely noticed due to the overall enjoyment factor I'm getting from this. Quite refreshing and an easy drinker for sure. One which I'd certainly quaff innumerable amounts. Cheers to the Scots!

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Photo of tgbljb
3.57/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

poured a slightly hazy medium amber color with modet white head that rapidly fell to a thin ring. Smell is very difficult to describe. At first I thought it had a wine-like scent, then again maybe it was lime-like. Maybe this is what a goosebeery smells like?? I like it but i'm not sure why. Taste is very ordinary with maybe some medicinal?? notes. Very unique. Finish is very thin and a the flavor quickly dissapears. An OK beer, but not really something to try again.

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Photo of Derek
3.51/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Murky golden-yellow, pours with a little white head, which quickly dissipates. Almost looks like it could've been brewed in the middle ages.

S: Gooseberries! (with a little bready malt).

T: Balanced slightly to the sweet side, with an acidic tang in the aftertaste. Like a slice of bread covered in gooseberry jam! (though not THAT sweet).

M: Moderate body with a lower than average carbonation. Could use some more carbonation.

D: Fruit aroma is enticing, easily approachable, not too filling, and not too fruity.

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Photo of asabreed
3.97/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

33 cl. bottle into a pint glass

Appearance: Hazy golden yellow, with hardly any head or lacing to speak of. Color's nice, though.

Smell: Lots of herbs, citrus, and the hint of what I imagine to be gooseberries. Smells like possible articifical sugars also, unless that's some candied malt or something.

Taste: Light, sugary sweet at first, then it dies down into some lemon-like dryness and finishes that way on the palate. I wish the finish was longer, but this is pretty decent stuff, especially for my second stab at the style. Slightest bit of hops maybe, but it's not extremely sugary or malty. That said, it's not extremely complex either, but I dig it. It's such a weird style that I welcome the newness to the taste buds, also. And there's also good balance.

Mouthfeel: Pretty thin-seeming at first, but it turns out to be fairly full with the sugars and malt I think, and the carbonation's fairly light. Almost like a fuller spritzer with less carbonation? Fairly odd, maybe, but I dig it, especially for this style, as it fits well.

Drinkability: I think this is the first time I can say I've had gooseberries before, even though technically it's not physical gooseberries. Still, a beer that I'd suggest to try, as this is not something you encounter every day. But it's good, tasty, and thirst quenching. It's always good to keep your taste buds in check and flexible, too.

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Photo of russpowell
3.38/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

BBD Jan 07

Poured clear golden with a white flurry head. Light lacing and head retention

Smell: Malted wheat and floral notes

Taste: Dryness upfront and then a honey-like sweetness, floaral notes, and spices: Ginger and brwon sugar

MF: A little to prickly and thin for my palate

This didn't really come together for me. A little to sweet and cloying. Bet you it went like gang busters a few 100 years ago

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Photo of crwills
3.52/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a standard pint glass. Very hazy and dark yellow/gold, with a small head that dissipates quickly.

Unusual smell, although this is one of the first beers of this style I've tried. Overripe fruits and melon predominated, as well as a bit of skunk. Also present are some root vegetable traces (squash or turnip), and some grass and weedy flowers.

Taste is unusually close to the smell. Usually there's a big shift in perception on the first sip, I find, but in this case the taste is quite matched with the smell. Very flowery up front (clover and other wild, weedy flowers), as well as some damp, very ripe fruit, and a mild fruity aftertaste.

Not something I'd drink on regular basis, but great to try and definitely worth looking up for something different.

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Photo of scooter231
1.22/5  rDev -65.4%
look: 3 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

Clear clear clear golden color. Pretty but a bit boring. Smells like... stale cigarettes. With lemon. Yeah... so... um... Taste- better. But better isn't really good. Tastes like dirt. Stinky cigarette-infused dirt. Mouthfeel feels kinda dirty, too. Grainy and not smooth. Not that drinkable. It just... it's dirt. This is beer dirt. Dirt beer. Yech. And it's fresh, it says it's fresh... this must be a big burly man Scot beer.

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Photo of allergictomacros
3.41/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A - Slightly hazy orange with a small head and little head retention.

S - Has a bit of a fruity smell. I'm not familiar with gooseberries so I can't say if that's what it is. Sweet and tart, maybe a bit bready.

T - Dryer than I expected. Mild hoppy finish. Not especially flavourful.

M - Medium bodied.

D - Easy to drink, good everyday beer (if it was easier to find/cheaper).This beer isn't going to spur the microbrewed grozet revolution, but it's interesting.

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Photo of RealityDeviant
3.93/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 11.2 oz. brown bottle as part of a pre-Christmas present from a “Historic Ales of Scotland” gift box. The notches in the label indicate that it is best before the end of February 2007. For a seemingly light-bodied beer with a low ABV, I must note that I’m surprised at that estimate.

Appearance: The beer pours a slightly hazy but bright amber color, verging on straw. It leaves a relatively light, white head that quickly reduces to a lace around the rim.

Smell: The overall smell doesn’t seem to be terribly strong in this brew, but after close inspection it seems that notes of wheat, fruit (gooseberries and overripe citrus), and herbs. I detected a honey-like undertone in the aroma, but nothing is overwhelming.

Taste: The flavors of berries and wheat seem to be strongest in this brew, with the faint hint of honey and spice lingering in the background. There’s a little sour kick towards the end. Overall, this is delicate and fruity.

Mouthfeel: Definitely a light-bodied beer, although the little tartness to it seems to give it a fuller flavor. There’s something more to the mouthfeel, though, beyond the sourness. It seems a little like a young, red wine—tannic.

Drinkability: A brew that’s easy to drink and with such an ABV and low bitterness, has the makings of a decent session brew. It certainly did go down smoothly enough.

Notes: I find this one both unusual and highly unique. I’m glad that I tried it once, but I’m not sure I’d revisit it for awhile. In spite of the high drinkability, I usually prefer something with more complexity. However, any beer aficionado should give it a shot, especially if you can find the whole gift set it’s included in.

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Photo of BamaScholar
3.54/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

it is hard, with this style, to review within the style...i think i favor the fraoch offering over this, but here are some notes...

poured a cloudy topaz with champagne bubbles from slender brown bottle: best by feb. 2007. bubbles dissipated, no head.

smell is very nice...floral, a little musky, a little sour and bready (the yeast, presume?)

taste is similar but not as balanced. sour and watery herb/floral component is really all i find. i can see the malt being a lager malt because its pretty wimpy too. not altogether bad, just one-dimensional.

as i said its thin on the mouth though carbonation is just right.

not a bad beer, not great. i'll try the kelpie next and continue to let the style work on me.

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Photo of jakester
3.85/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks, Amber

I had this as a single at Union Jack's on the Manatawny. I drank it in a tulip glass.

Pours a hazy golden orange with a 1/2 finger head of off-white foam. The head falls very quickly, with almost no lacing. Carbonation looks fairly active.

Aroma is very light and citrusy from wheat. There is also a detectable smell of spices, slightly piney, with (I guess) the smell of gooseberries coming through as it warms. Very light herbal hops comes through late.

Flavor is very light and fruity, with a nice citrusy tang on your tongue. The fruit flavor is delicate, but pleasant, according to style. Spices and gooseberry flavor come through much better as this approaches 55 degrees, and the sweetness is more noticeable. No real hop character in the taste.

Mouthfeel is light bodied, with a medium level of carbonation. It's kind of champagne-like, but not as carbonated. Finish is short and slightly sweet.

This is definitely a slammer. It's not real complex, and I would personally like more of everything, but for the style, it's damn good. Recommended.

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Photo of wl0307
3.12/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served in a weissbier glass.
A: slightly hazy dark orangey golden hue, looking like kristalklar weizen actually, especially in my weissbier glass... constant fizz detected, but no beer head is produced no matter how carefully I pour this beer.
S: most unusual smell... gooseberry and elderberry juice for sure, some coriander as well, slightly menthol, grass, and sour prune... overall fruity and wild-flowery. Different, pleasant enough, despite being a bit thin on the nose.
T: very soft texture of light malts plus a thin-bodied gooseberry juice flavour and a slightly medicinal/phenol taste; very lightly floral hops at the back, while the finish is rather short and thin. Actually there're some more elements on the palate I simply fail to pinpoint, but they don't really stand out and make just a little contribution to the overall pleasantness.
M: pretty light and thin on the mouthfeel, with a slightly spicy sting at the back, but apart from that, the fruity palate is very flat and tart indeed.
D: personally I find it very interesting, but not so much as enjoyable, almost like fermented juice w/o the sweet edge. Need to try more of its kind to get used to it I suppose.

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Photo of jayc333
3.51/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear golden yellow with no head to speak of. Since there isn't the usually burst of bubbles going to the top of the glass, I'm guessing this won't be very carbonated.

Smells very fruity, with hints of wheat. Very nice.

Very clean fruit and wheat taste. Also, quite nice.

Like most beers of the style, goes down incredibly smooth with ease. As assumed earlier, barely any carbonation.

Not much to look at, but this a prime example of not judging a book by its cover. Recommended.

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Photo of CAMRAhardliner
4.04/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a slightly hazy blond color with a minimal head and less than average lace. The aroma is of Spices and herbs with some wheat malt. The taste is gingery, with some spruce, wheat and fruity notes. Any berry flavors are very subdued. Hops are low key and mingle well with other spices in the finish. The mouthfeel is light and pleasantly carbonated.

This is a good spiced ale from Heather. Its definitely worth a try, very unique and good use of unconventional ingredients.

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Photo of hopsaplenty
3.03/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a bottle with a Sept 2005 Best Before date.

The beer pours with a thin, almost non-existant white head, that disappears about as quickly as it forms. It has an opaque, dirty tan body, cloudy enough so that I cannot see my hand through the glass. There is no lacing. There are light fruit notes, and a slight tartness with hints of clove in the nose. The taste is crisp, with dry fruit notes. Hints of wheat and tartness are followed by subtle malt sweetness. It has a medium body, and slight tingly carbonation on the tongue.

This is an interesting beer and would be refreshing on a hot afternoon. It is not a session beer, but one that I would enjoy again in the future.

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Photo of unklesyd
4.18/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is my first from the Heather company. I'm glad it was. What a nice introduction to their product.

Much lighter than expected, both in color and mouthfeel. Clarity was excellent. Bottle stated that there would be some haziness, but none seemed to be present.

Nose was muted, slightly sweet and muddled with light herbs.

Extremely complex flavor palate that evolved the whole way through the glass. Sweet notes, tart/sweet notes, some earthy funkiness later on. Really interesting.

Drinkability is very high because I keep wanting to take a sip and find out what's next.

Keep it up alewives!

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Photo of bark
3.9/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

The colour is pale golden yellow; the liquid is cloudy. There is almost no head at all.

The smell is mild, sour with distinct notes of spicy cinnamon, berries (gooseberries).

The taste is spicy and a bit sour with a surprisingly good body. There are of course notes of matured gooseberries among with some sweet cinnamon. The beer was much fresher than I had expected.

The carbonation is mild with small bubbles.

An very interesting, different and yet well crafted beer.

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Photo of mjohn27603
2.8/5  rDev -20.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours pale yellow in apperance with absolutely no head. Aroma is of dough and bread and wheat. I sure don't taste any gooseberry in this beer. Taste is thin without much substance. A bit of cardboard taste. Maybe a hint of cinammon or other spice. Beer indicates that it is good to 2008 but I wouldn't want to age or mellow this much more as it is already pretty docile.

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Photo of jhu1995
3.58/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance was a clear gold, almost khaki color. For a lager, I was surprised by the head retention - very full and lingering. Had a delicate, fruity smell that was very subtle. Initial taste was a very faint fruit with a surprising hop finish. Smooth on the mouth but the unfamiliar fruit taste requires some adjustment. Not sure I would have a few of these in one session, but definitely worth a try. A very interesting lager beer.

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Photo of baugherlager
3.17/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured a slightly hazy yellowish color.There was no head to spreak of.

Aroma is hard to grasp but got some herbal medicinal notes along with grass and blueberries.

First sip I tasted alot of unfamliar fruitiness. Upon drinking more I started to detect fruity herbal tastes that reminded me of herbal tea.

Mouthfeel was kind of thin and a little watery. Fine carbonation.

I found it hard for me to drink this beer. It wasn't a bad beer, it was just a beer that wasn't very appealing to my tastes.

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Photo of pjwilson
3.63/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This beer can be at best described as ok. It's not worth 2.59 a 11.2 bottle. It's basically very close to hefewiezen with some subtle differences. looks a hazy yellow. Smells of some sweet wheat. The taste is wheat malt with some different flavors in there, some sweet gooseberries. It's good and i would get it if was cheaper, but it's too subtle to comand that price. With a shot just don't except anything that different or anything.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.98/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

"My sooth! right bauld ye set your nose out,
As plump an' grey as onie grozet;
O for some rank, mecurial rozet;
Or fell red smeddum,
I'd gie ye sic a hearty dose o't,
Wad dress your droddum"

--from 'To A Louse', by Robert Burns

I hope Grozet Gooseberry & Wheat Ale is more fathomable and more accessible than that verse, because I haven't the foggiest idea what the crazy Scotsman was going on about. Perhaps he'd had a wee dram too much before he sat down to put his thoughts on paper.

Bright sunflower yellow suffused with the slightest amount of orange possible. The densely creamy head of parchment colored foam doesn't appear to be deflating at all. A thick, ragged collar of lace forms eventually and looks like it'll be around for the duration. Even though this will likely be an offbeat beer, there's nothing out of the ordinary about the appearance. I like it just fine.

The nose is a little weak. It has an earthy, musty, herbal funkiness that smells like it belongs on a different beer. Or at least a beer different from the one I was expecting. Coming back to the nose after drinking most of the bottle, it's a good approximation of the flavor, although in muted form. I feel much better about the nose after getting used to (and enjoying the hell out of) the flavor.

GG & WA is much more forthcoming on the palate. The soft, wheaty base is just what's needed to show off the gooseberry and the spices. The beer tastes much more herbal than spicy, although I have no idea what was added. In any case, it's wildly different, incredibly interesting and sneakily good.

A mysterious blend of herbs and spices dominates without overwhelming the remainder of the flavor profile. They become even more apparent as each mouthful ends in an increasingly (still only mildly) sweet, lightly viscous manner. I just checked the label and discovered that bogmyrtle and meadowsweet have been added. I've never heard of either one, but they're delicious and were an inspired addition to this fine ale. Nothing like a little Scottish bog funk.

Grozet Gooseberry & Wheat Ale (good use of an ampersand) is a wonderful example of the gruit style. Some may find it bland and uninteresting, but I respectfully disagree. This is yet another beer from The Brewery Craigmill that I've found to be fascinating and remarkably drinkable. Perhaps after a few more bottles, ol' Robbie's verse will start to make sense.

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Photo of woemad
2.65/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

11.2oz bottle purchased at The Cheese Monger's Shoppe in Leavenworth for $2.59. According to the label, this is good until June, 2006.

Poured a hazy straw color, with a small white head that dropped faster than the K.C. Royal's pennant hopes. VIrtually no lace.

Smell is of tart gooseberries (duh), along with a slight, earthy wheat odor.

Taste is dominated by tart gooseberries, which nevertheless don't terribly stand out. The wheat flavor is way, way in the background. There's a bland, sweet flavor of some kind as well that reminds me of corn. The flavor doesn't fade out at the swallow so much as it collapses. This could use some sort of hoppy bite at the end. Not horrible, but not very impressive tasting either.

This is a very light bodied ale - too light bodied, as this is rather watery. Not enough carbonation, either.

Not very impressed by this one. I've yet to have a spiced ale from the UK (or anywhere else for that matter) that has impressed me, despite not going in with any expectations. I think I'll give this style a wide berth from now on.

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Grozet from Williams Brothers Brewing Company
Beer rating: 34.8% out of 100 with 460 ratings
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