Smuttynose Scotch Style Ale (Big Beer Series) | Smuttynose Brewing Company

Smuttynose Scotch Style Ale (Big Beer Series)Smuttynose Scotch Style Ale (Big Beer Series)
BA SCORE
4/5
556 Ratings
Smuttynose Scotch Style Ale (Big Beer Series)Smuttynose Scotch Style Ale (Big Beer Series)
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Smuttynose Brewing Company
New Hampshire, United States
smuttynose.com

Style: Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.20%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
Our Scotch Ale is a bold amber beer that balances smooth rich sweetness with a hint of peat smoked malt. The infusion of this subtle smokiness invites images of heather fields, platters of haggis, & the poetry of William McGonagall. Enjoy one with your mates!

2007 - 8.2%
2008 - 7.1%
2013 - 8.0%

Added by Bierman9 on 12-26-2001

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#3,869
Reviews:
295
Ratings:
556
pDev:
9.5%
Bros Score:
4.45
 
 
Wants:
74
Gots:
61
Trade:
4
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 556 |  Reviews: 295
Photo of bonbini26
3.5/5  rDev -12.5%

Photo of Faina
3/5  rDev -25%

Photo of JAHMUR
3/5  rDev -25%

Photo of PhineasGage
4/5  rDev 0%

Photo of donkeyrunner
3.31/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Purchased at the Smuttynose brewery. Bottled 2007.

Muddy copper color with a thin, beige head. Thin skim of retention hangs around until mid glass. No lace.

After four years of aging there's still some hearty peat kickin' around the nose. Scotch and caramel with some fruity highlights.

Unfortunately the flavor didn't hold up as well as the aroma. Tastes like caramel apple, dark brown sugar and a hint of smoke. The flavors blend well together but lack punch.

I'd like to try a fresher bottle.

 501 characters

Photo of rab53
4/5  rDev 0%

Photo of LostHighway
4/5  rDev 0%

Photo of brandoman63
4/5  rDev 0%

Photo of hdelavega
5/5  rDev +25%

Photo of Kranders
4.05/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up an aged bottle of this at Smuttynose after a tour, and opened it up during a far too early of the season snowstorm that killed the power. Nothing special during the pour or aroma, but man is this a tasty beer. Nice and malty, with a bit of sweetness and just a hint of that metallic earthy taste I love to find in a good Scotch ale. Great beer that I wish they still made.

 382 characters

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

Smells of thick, sugary malts, with just a touch of earthiness to it: a subtle olfactory hint of the peat-smoked malt inside.

The taste follows these smells almost exactly, as the ale delivers a shotgun blast of sugary and peaty malt. The combination here works well, as the sugary side of the beer contains nice fruit flavors and dark fruit esters, with caramels and perhaps a hint of brown sugar, but the peaty side of the malt lends a stabilizing tang, bringing a smoky, almost-sour quality that, if you've ever smelled a fire lit with dried peat moss, will be instantly recognizable. Hops are also present, giving a nice bitter third layer that lingers on your tongue for a bit after the brew has gone down your throat.

The only complaint I might have about this brew is that the aftertaste is vaguely metallic, as if I were sucking on a penny. Still, that's a very small complaint for what is otherwise a great Scotch Ale.

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Photo of dragonWhale
4.8/5  rDev +20%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Praise be to the good Pat for sharing this delightful little monster. The 2007 bottle popped and served in the dying heat. Crimson is forever! A little oxidized, but absolutely an enhancing of the qualities of this beer, fully integrated. Caramel, fading smoke, a little dark fruit. The age on this beer has put it in such a beautiful place..my belly. This is one of the best beers I've tried in a while. The little bit of smoke just tied it all in. Reminded me a bit of Adam, but I've never had Adam with so much age on it.
Good work, Smutty..

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Photo of justintcoons
4.03/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Aged 2 years; vintage 2008

A: Pours a hazy dark brown with a reddish tint. Two fingers of foamy head that dissipate slowly. Very nice lacing with hardly any carbonation.

N: Sweet caramel, booze, watermelon, vanilla and flowers.

T: Blast of rich caramel, smoke, some earth and wood notes and ends with hints of vanilla, floral hops and maybe even some cabbage.

M: Medium bodied and very balanced.

D: Very good drinkability.

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Photo of glid02
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at the Porter in Atlanta. 2009 vintage.

Pours a hazy golden-honey color with a half-finger slightly off-white head. The head recedes into a patchy layer on top leaving decent lacing.

Smells of sweet caramel malts with moderate amounts of light toffee and small amounts of vanilla. Also present are syrupy medium fruit aromas that intensify as the beer warms.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Sticky caramel malt flavors kick things off and are joined quickly by solid amounts of smooth toffee. Midway through the sip hints of light toasted malts and vanilla make an appearance. Near the end of the sip hints of syrupy pears and ripe green apple flavors come into play, fading out into a mildly bitter ending.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got a nice thickness with decent carbonation.

Drinkability is also good. I didn't have a problem finishing my glass and could have another.

Overall this was a solid beer for the style but it's nothing something over which I'd clamor to have again. Worth a shot.

 1,007 characters

Photo of airheadmtrcycle
3.78/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Just finished two at the Taco Mac at Prado in Atlanta. I was stunned to see it on the menu. Couldn't wait to have my first gulp. Both pours lacked much head. They were a hazy-brown color, but still transparent. Did get some lacing.

Smelled malty with some dark fruit essence. Taste was on the earthy side. Smokey malts and some fruit with an alcohol presence. Not too sweet, the alcohol seemed to help.

Mouthfeel was good. A higher carbonation gave it a more refreshing effect than I expected from a Scotch ale.

Very drinkable. I wanted a third but I had to drive home.

A solid beer that I would order again. Alcohol was listed in the menu as over 8%. Not what I expected from a Scotch ale. Much lighter in body and color than others of the style I've tried. Let's face it, Smuttynose does not make a bad beer and I really enjoyed these.

 841 characters

Photo of claspada
3.4/5  rDev -15%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Pour a dark amber-brown, slightly hazy color. Creates a solid/thick/white head with excellent retention throughout the entire glass.

Nose reveals a pleasant array of aromas of peat smoke, burnt caramel, dried fruit and some toasted malts.

Mouthfeel was disappointingly a bit too thin and watery in the finish for such a big beer. I prefer a thicker mouthfeel for my Scottish styles.

Flavor is like your typical Wee Heavy Ale with an ample amount of biscuit, caramels, toffee, dark fruits and peat smoked malts. Finish is bittersweet with a touch of spice hoppiness coming through to balance the sweetness. Not the best example of a Scotch Ale by any means, but worth the try for the value.

 694 characters

Photo of msubulldog25
4.2/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A rediscovered 22 oz. bottle, cellared in a dark, cool closet for over two years ~ Bottle Conditioned 2007. Opened recently and poured to a short goblet.

A: Deep and warming garnet/chestnut color, plenty of wriggling carbonation. Head is a short-lived 1/4" of dusty tan cream, fair lace in sliding sheets. For a beer aged almost three years, the complexion is mostly clear, a cloud of fine dust and a few flakes - nothing too detrimental.

S: All malty sweetness: sticky toffee pudding, raisins, molasses and cocoa. A little ash/wood and dark fruit.

T: Wow, remarkably peaty upfront - a husky smoke, woodsy barrel. Earthy, rich with berries and red apple skin. Velvety semi-sweet chocolate and an apt but abrupt bittering (slight char) in the finish. Hints at tartness, citric tang. Wonderful complexity.

M: Smooth feel with a pinpoint prickle and a gently prodding alcohol warming. Coating medium body, trace graininess in the finish.

D: As this is the first time I've tried this Scotch Ale, I can't make a comparison between aged and new. Though fresh beer is usually the most desirable, this 'vintage' sipper was still wonderful. Thank you, kind and distant trader for sending...I would definitely look for this again.

 1,225 characters

Photo of corby112
3.08/5  rDev -23%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a very dark chestnut brown/mahogany color with dark golden amber edges when held to a light source and a very thin tan head that immediately fades leaving no lacing.

Smokey, roasted malt aroma with hints of licorice and chocolate along with some earthy and floral hop notes.

Smooth, creamy medium body with lots of roasted chocolate maltiness, dark fruit(especially dark cherry), licorice and surprisingly, earthy and floral hops. Nice balance of malty sweetness/roastiness and bitter earthy hops. This beer is pretty complex but unfortunately it just doesn't taste that good to me.

 591 characters

Photo of indiapaleale
3.53/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Vintage 2008 - 7.1 %

Pour - decent looking dark amber color with a nice looking off-white head. Everything seems to look as it should.

Aroma - slight cherry tartness and some caramel and brown sugar smells as well some some biscuity aromas. Not much else to report here.

Taste - malty and very toasty with a rather thin mouthfeel. The smokiness that may once have been there is now gone. This is more like a straightforward amber ale without much else going on except a bit of oxidization. Bummer. I should have drank this a year ago.

Overall - not the candidate for cellaring that one might think. Maybe of the ABV had been a little higher like in years past. This one lost depth and complexity and mellowed out a little too much.

Would I buy more of it? - this is one I really wish I could get more of it fresh so I could see what it was like right off the bottling line.

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Photo of jmalex
3.86/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Big snowfall means big beers. I'm enjoying my day being snowed in by emptying out the fridge.

APPEARANCE: Pours into an English-style tulip a clear brown with crimson highlights. The head is tightly-bubbled and somewhat quickly goes from a finger's height down to an almost full cap.

SMELL: Bready, caramelly, and slightly smoky with a bit of a fruity ester profile. A bit of a lactic note has me worried, though I did find this bottle dusty on a shelf, so I won't hold this against it.

TASTE: No worries in the taste though. Bold yet restrained with flavors of caramel, raisin, fig, smoke, and fresh bread. These only intensify toward the finish, leaving me wishing for another sip.

MOUTHFEEL: Medium bodied with a somewhat surprising dryness. The carbonation is slightly to the higher end of average but still okay.

DRINKABILITY: Quite nice. The bomber is working out excellent given the fact that I've already drank a good sized portion of this bottle. It's not quite giving me the warming element I'm looking for, but perhaps that will change as I progress further down the glass.

The second chapter in today's snow day beer odyssey did not disappoint. It's worth a try, particularly if you're a fan of the other big Smuttynose beers.

 1,244 characters

Photo of ElGallo
4.42/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I live in Smutty's backyard, so this beer is readily available around the NH seacoast when its spot in the Big Beer rotation comes around, but so few locals realize how good this beer is.

This beer just seems perfectly balanced and tastes so damn good. I've had far too many standard scotch ales (not wee heavies, mind you) where the malty sweetness overpowers everything else, and the whole drinking experience is a letdown. Such is not the case with this beer. I wish it were available a little bit longer each year, but I also enjoy looking forward to the next release.

I like most - but not all - of Smuttynose's offerings, but the Scotch Style Ale is my favorite.

 670 characters

Photo of scootny
4.35/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Nice light tan head with a bit of lace on a clear dark garnet
brew with just a touch of stuff suspended in it. Smell is full of caramel and malt. A nice fruitiness with a hint of alcoholic sweetness. This is so close to the next score up as the smell is complex, hearty and inviting.

Taste is very malty with caramel and thick slices of buttered dark bread. A delicious raisin tinged fruitiness, carob and light rum play along the malt and a mildly hopped finish bring a biscuit and graham delight to the mouth. The lingering bready/biscuit maltiness is to be savored. The alcohol is so well hidden. It just folds in around the sides of your tongue and melts into the hops. Feel is full and creamy with a silkiness that has me wanting to score it perfect but I will remain calm. it borders on Quad like velvetyness. The superlatives just don't do it justice. Definitely the best feeling Wee heavy I've had.

Which makes the drinkability superb. The abv is the only indication that this stuff is quite strong.

A great brew. I'll be getting much more of this one.

 1,065 characters

Smuttynose Scotch Style Ale (Big Beer Series) from Smuttynose Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4 out of 5 with 556 ratings
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