Fraoch Heather Ale
Williams Brothers Brewing Company

Fraoch Heather AleFraoch Heather Ale
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Williams Brothers Brewing Company
Scotland, United Kingdom
Gruit / Ancient Herbed Ale
Ranked #12
Ranked #21,962
3.75 | pDev: 13.07%
Nov 24, 2023
Oct 06, 1998
Brewed in Scotland since 2000 B.C. heather ale is probably the oldest style of ale still produced in the world. From an ancient Gaelic recipe for "leann fraoich" (heather ale) it has been revived and reintroduced to the Scottish culture. Into the boiling bree of malted barley, sweet gale and flowering heather are added, then after cooling slightly the hot ale is poured into a vat of fresh heather flowers where it infuses for an hour before being fermented.
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Rated: 4.73 by binno from Canada (ON)

Nov 24, 2023
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Reviewed by stevoj from Idaho

3.75/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75
Sample at GBBF Winter. Brass colored pour, more animal head. Aroma is wheat, sweet, woody. Taste is subtle, grainy, malty, oily feel. Heather adds minor herbal notes. Enjoyable
Feb 26, 2023
Rated: 2.75 by stephenlee93 from England

Nov 02, 2022
Rated: 4.79 by Andy-Stuart from Scotland

Jun 14, 2022
Rated: 3.5 by Tenebris

Dec 09, 2021
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Reviewed by sorsh_a_ghlinne from Scotland

4.89/5  rDev +30.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5
Brilliant sort of rich looking reddish gold colour to it. Smell is floral and slightly sour and milky, taste however is herby, honey-sweet, a bit smokey/peaty, has a hint of ginger early in the bottle from the bogmyrtle that lessens as it is drunk - but all these words are just me scrambling to explain a taste that is like nothing else. Only detracting factor is the feel is a bit heavy and lingers a little too long. But I can't complain really. Must also note that I've not had this on draught so it could be even better that way.

The real question, though: as a nation, why on earth did we ever stop drinking heather beer?

edit: I had it on draught some time in the past year and it was everso slightly disappointing. I will continue to drink it out of bottles though.
Dec 28, 2020
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Reviewed by JonnoWillsteed from England

3.4/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5
The lable has been 'Yoofed' now being a vivid purple-pink with the main 'Fraoch' in a white graffiti-like font.
L- Pours a vivid golden, clear, with a 2mm white cap. ps 15mins later, holding well.
S- Wow it's mild, nothing clearly distinguishable comes through to me, not even the basics like grains/malts and so on.
T- Quite bright intitially, then a bready middle, into a moderately dry finish with a touch of a dry woody note right at the very end. Was the latter the heather? No idea... ps. I've just noticed it's leaving a mild residual 'dry zing' on my palate, though am unclear of the specific cause.
F- 'Medium dry'? It has dry facets yet they've wrung enough mouthfeel out of it's modest 5%ABV to almost come back to a 'medium' centre-point. All in, it's pretty gutsy for it's 5%.
O- I might have some winter congestion but even then any specific heather notes seem subtle. So fear not those who have visions of being beaten about the palate with a moorland's worth of said bushes. The dry zing has by now evolved slightly from dryness into almost a mildly spicy brush on my palate, and most unusually, even my lips! Is this what the heather does!? It reminds me of the subtlety of the spicy zing you get from fine-ground white pepper.
Interesting one. Something a bit different, and mercifully it's subtle rather than a big/OTT slamming statement.
500ml bottle BB: 04/2022
Now reading the lable: A-ha! Ginger - that'll be the zing. Funny thing though, I got zero ginger taste, just it's zing.
Dec 19, 2020
Rated: 4.66 by crazyspicychef from Pennsylvania

Nov 15, 2020
Rated: 3.87 by smi69 from New York

Apr 17, 2020
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Reviewed by CWINS65

4.16/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4
Very good ale, crispy with a dark golden color. Somewhat sweet without going over the top, I taste honey & tea like hints. Not readily available but worth seeking out. Excellent!
Feb 14, 2020
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Reviewed by octortus from Canada (ON)

3.64/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75
330 mL Bottle. ABV 5%.
Appearance: Clear brownish gold, Above medium mesmerising carbonation, Terrific retention, Soapy lacing.
Aroma: Floral, Herbs, Spicy earthy yeast, Biscuit, Malt sweetness, Slight fruit, Very slight honey.
Mouthfeel: Medium body, dyry finish, Flat, Creamy, Slightly syrupy.
Flavour: Malt sweetness, Floral, Honey, Spicy yeast, Slightly herbal.
Overall: Quite interesting to try. I think it's a nicely crafted beer all things considered, but perhaps could be more balanced.

Review: 107
Jan 04, 2020
Rated: 3.75 by MTKATL from Georgia

Oct 30, 2019
Rated: 3.83 by NodakEric from Minnesota

Aug 13, 2019
Rated: 3.67 by Dazka from Italy

Mar 14, 2019
Rated: 4 by paulish from New York

Jan 19, 2019
Rated: 2.75 by Macamah from England

Oct 26, 2018
Rated: 4.02 by Captain68 from Russian Federation

Aug 11, 2018
Rated: 3.78 by Branlott42 from Missouri

Jul 28, 2018
Rated: 4.21 by Krajnyak from Pennsylvania

Jun 28, 2018
Rated: 2.46 by Callednumbers from California

May 12, 2018
Fraoch Heather Ale from Williams Brothers Brewing Company
Beer rating: 85 out of 100 with 1184 ratings