Riggwelter Yorkshire Ale | Black Sheep Brewery PLC

very good
248 Reviews
Riggwelter Yorkshire AleRiggwelter Yorkshire Ale

Brewed by:
Black Sheep Brewery PLC
England, United Kingdom

Style: English Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.70%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 05-31-2002

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User Reviews
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Reviews: 248 | Ratings: 316
Photo of Sammy
3.51/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A brown ale with abundant ice cream float head. Hoppiness and malty character and complexity, some cocoa. Earthy, touch herbal, bit astringent mouthfeel, which is fine with food.Lace in glass. Definite nuttiness. Surprisingly drinkable. Satisfying. Good for its style.

 268 characters

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.58/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear dark copper brown with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to a thin cap on top of the beer. Foamy rings of lace line the glass on the drink down. Smell is of toasted malt, caramel, oatmeal cookie dough, and a spiced rum alcohol aroma. Taste is much the same with a toasted bread flavor on the finish. There is a mild amount of roasty bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer that is fairly tasty but I think this one has a slightly better smell going on.

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Photo of metter98
3.82/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is mahogany in color and has a moderate to high amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a finger high dense beige head that died down but never completely faded away.
S: There are aromas of toasted malts and nuts in the nose.
T: Like the smell, the taste is very nutty and also has some flavors of caramel from the malts. There is some bitterness in the aftertaste.
M: It feels medium-bodied and smooth on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: The flavors are interesting enough to sip and savor, although it doesn't go down easily enough to be considered sessionable.

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Photo of BEERchitect
4.35/5  rDev +13%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Largely impressed with this choice. Upon the pour, the color is a bright and rich ruby - brown color with a fim and dense head. Solid, creamy aromas of nuts, caramel, chocolate, and barley malt. Tastes even better than aromas. Throw in big roundness in flavor with heavy creaminess and smoothness. A very good brown ale. Only a light grain texture and bitterness exists in the back of the throat. Finishes sweet and a bit minty. Will have this one again.

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Photo of brentk56
3.88/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Clear chestnut brown body with a nice head and plenty of lacing

Smell: Caramel malt with a touch of bananas and raisins

Taste: Lots of coffee flavor; starts out sweet but that is quickly overwhelmed by bitterness - some sweetness on the finish as the bitterness fades

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a fair bit of carbonation

Drinkability: This is a nice brown ale, but it is quite filling

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.53/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured an amber color ale with an off-white foamy head with good retention and some good lacing. Aroma consists of notes of caramel with some dry malt. Taste is a nice mix between some dry malt with some subtle notes of caramel and what I believe to be a Fuggles hops ending. Average body with some medium carbonation. Well done and easy to drink.

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Photo of oberon
4.06/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Wow what a quality made yorkshire ale,nice chesnut hue witha a good rocky head.Good medium body with a nice almost rich malty flavor,good sour tinge to finish it off.First Black Sheep ale I have had the pleasure to try looking forward to many more.I will be sure to get this again.

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Photo of chinchill
3.84/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

500 ml bottle purchased and consumed in Fife, Scotland - May 2015.

This "Strong" Ale pours clear mahogany with a fine tan head that leaves decent sticky lacing.

The aroma is appealing and promising, wit ample notes of dark fruits, toffee and roasted nuts. Hints of apples and spicy hops.

Taste: not what I expected from the nose. The flavor is more malty with a darker roast, as the appearance suggests. Bittersweet with hints of burnt toffee, toast, caramel, apples, a touch of smoke, raisins, dates and other vague dark fruits. There are some earthy hop flavors in addition to the bitterness.

M: Full body; very slightly astringent; medium carbonation.

O: 5.7% ABV fully apparent in the nose, taste and feel.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a clear, chestnut brown body with a bubbly, whitish head.

Smell: Fairly fruity nose smelling of raisins, berries, and sherry-soaked bananas, with further notes of dark caramel and, to a lesser degree, roasted malts.

Taste: Dark maltiness yields a taste of caramel and tiny bits of roast and chocolate. Brown sugar sweetness throughout. All of the previous fruits from the aroma. Perceived wood hint. Spicy British hops provide a light, cleansing bitterness. Finishes dry and fruity.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. The medium-low carbonation makes for a smooth mouthfeel.

Drinkability: Fairly enjoyable and worth trying!

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.1/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Titian with amber highlights capped by a frothystiff ecru head that initially fills half of my pint glass. Foam clings in tattered sheets that fade piecemeal to become interconnected scraps as the sturdy head hangs around at one finger for the duration.

The nose is a bit shy, but is enjoyable. It consists of gently roasted malt with hints of cocoa powder and nuts. The flavor makes up for any deficiencies in the aroma and is bolder by half. Riggwelter is different from the majority of brown ales that I've had lately. In particular, it's less assertive while being deeper and more complex.

There's a lot going on in the flavor profile, including bittersweet chocolate, overripe fruit, tobacco, unsweetened tea and pecans. I find myself taking a sip and then rolling it around on my tongue to pick out each of the individual flavors time and time again. This is a beer to be contemplative over. The light-medium, yet sturdy, body holds up well throughout each mouthful and over time.

Black Sheep brews delicious, interesting beer. Although this one is on the lighter end of the brown ale spectrum, it has character and depth to burn. Who says that beer has to saturate one's taste buds with big, bold flavor to be enjoyable? Riggwelter Yorkshire Ale puts the lie to that notion after the first sip.

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Photo of smcolw
3.68/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark copper amber--clear. Nice tight-bubbled lace that leaves sip rings.

Sweet malty aromas. A touch of caramel.

Smooth mouthfeel. Lots of malt up front but this dissipates nicely to the hop bite. The hop bitterness lasts through the swallow and the aftertaste. Also notable are the coffee and chocolate notes.

A smooth English ale with a nice hop kick. Quite dark in taste and in color.

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Photo of Jason
4.08/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

16.9 oz brown bottle with no freshness date. Raised glass of a hop vine around the base of the neck is a bit showy. Fast to foam up and form a dense light tan head that takes a while to drop down. Solid brown with reddish amber hues glimmering off of the light.

Bit of a roasted twang, musty, fruity of black currant, caramel and earth in the aroma. The nose is creamy in a way from a very faint diacetyl.

Just as smooth as it is crisp with a sizeable dry and roasted malt character. Stable medium body with a nice flowing texture from the carbonation. Diacetyl is noticeable from the start but in a mild way, roasted flavours creep in slowly with light charcoal and coffee. Touch of fruitiness as well as a nuttiness from the yeast. Big push of earthiness middle to end. Alcoholic esters are in the back and don’t bother the palate at all. Finishes with a lingering diacetyl and toasted and roasted grain.

A fine dark ale to say the least, complex without taking away from drinkability. Went well with apple wood smoked turkey breast.

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Photo of Gagnonsux
3.91/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Riggwelter's color is brown with a strong red hue. Head is light brown and quite large. Retention is great. The aroma is a little bland, just a light nuttiness. Taste is sweet and nutty, with a touch of roasted coffee. Drinkability is great, I could hang with this one all night and stay entertained, while not getting full.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.88/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appears a brown caramel hue with an abundant amount of beige head forming thick and rises above the rim of my English style pub glass, lacing forms thin but evenly. Aromatics slight diacetyl earthy herbal tobacco leaves, mild dusted cocoa with an English funk from open fermentation. Roasted caramel malts bring out cereal like whole grain ntoes as well. Flavors is mildly sweet with a touch of wet cardboard, excellent earthy English hop dose mild chocolate bitterness touch of toffee as well. Toasted nut and a flow of mineral quality arises. Mouthfeel is medium bodied naturally carbonated with smooth carbonation no cloying qualities at all. Drinkability is session material all the way I'm glad to have local access to this ale.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
3.7/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On the palate it isn't powerful and moving, but it does give a somewhat smooth, sweet, and deep flavor. And overall, that is enough for me to enjoy it. It won't take a place among my all time favorites, but it is worth trying for the smooth flavor in itself. And on a total side note, the cap has a cool design I thought (I collect them).

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Photo of Billolick
4.27/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

nice and dark, almost molasses in color. Vanilla and saddle leather nose. Frothy head which leaves tightly knit lacing. Lovely malt character, smooth and toasty,,, nice mellow and balancing hops, finishing with a dry hoppy glow. Good, classy brew I'm quaffing here, worth seeking out and trying.

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Photo of jwc215
3.93/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The bottle has a sheep (black, of course) that is "riggwelted", with an explanation - an overturned sheep. Well, it does have some potency, but I'm figuring will take several to get anywhere near that, I suppose...but, thanks for the witty (entertaining, even) warning - will just have this one (for now)...

Pours reddish-brown with a lasting white head that is ever-lasting and leaves plenty of lacing along the glass.

The smell is of toffee, caramel, bready dark malt and hints of spicy fruits.

The taste of of a toffee-caramel sweetness upfront. Nice malt profile. Toasted grains and and earthiness balance it out. A minty bitterness with a peppery spiciness leave a long, dry finish. Sweet, balanced out by bitterness.

The feel is creamy, almost syrupy medium to full bodied. Smooth, with a spicy dryness that hangs on.

I'm surprised that I haven't rated this before, as I discovered it a couple of years ago, and get it as something different occassionally. I can't say that it is something that I would want to have as a sessionable beer, or, as good as it is, anything outstanding. But, it has something of a pleasant uniqueness about it that serves well as an occassional treat.

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

Color is dark brown, almost black, and the head is thick, tall, lush, and creamy. Aroma is soft, sweet, buttery, with hints of butterscotch, toffee, cinnamon, cocoa.
The labeling and name give little clue about this beer. "Yorkshire Ale"? It tastes like a brown ale, but I look above and see that the site designates it as a porter. Maybe it's a bit of both.
Taste is good, malt feels dominant, flavor is full, rich, delicious. Good texture and body, wholly satisfactory. I liked this beer, in a generous 16.9oz. serving, all the way down. One of the best brown ales,( or is it "porter, robust/baltic"?) I've had in a while, and a delightful surprise. Horray for uglyradio, who sent it out to me.

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Photo of stevoj
4.35/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Just short of a stout in color and bitterness, could probably fool a novice. Deep dark brown with creamy beige head. Aroma of coffee, chocolate, wood, smoke. Taste is chocolate , oak barrel, espresso. Finish is dry and abrupt with some lingering bitterness. If you’re a fan of stout, give this one a try.

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Photo of WesWes
3.7/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a translucent dark brown color with a thick creamy off-white head. The aroma is good. It smells like a bitter brown ale. It has a bitter smell with the addition of crystal and roasted malts. The taste is decent. It is extremely bitter with a dark malt palate. It has a dry, but creamy finish. The mouthfeel is good. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a fine ale. It drinks well; a good sessions beer.

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Photo of biegaman
3.8/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I rather enjoyed the label and presentation, this is a 'fun' brewery. Poured with a responsive head, I chose to leave 2 fingers worth of fluffy foam. Dense lacing! A dark looking beer, but a brighter, shinning copper colour when held to the light. Different shades highlight the body. A tofee, malty aroma - very Enlglish! Mouthfeel and taste also unmistakeingly English: a very coarse, mineraly mouthfeel. Some gentle hop bitterness to round it off nicely. A soapy, suddy lasting finish. Flavour with a touch of caramel malt maybe, dominated though by gritty brown malt. Filling and pleasent flavour but nothing too exciting or overly appetizing. Some 'nutty' characterstics, a good beer for many occasions. Quite solid.

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Photo of Zorro
4.2/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear mahogany brown brew.

Smell is exceedingly fruity with hints of chocolate sugar and vanilla ice cream. A very good smelling brew indeed.

Taste is dry with the fruitiness from the smell coming through in the taste too. Medium bitterness to this and a bit sweeter after the first few sips. Bitterness and sweetness get stronger as you drink it.

Mouthfeel is good.

A tasty all round good brew well balanced flavors, a beer that would go well for most every purpose.

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Photo of Halcyondays
4.06/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Half Liter bottle,

A: Pours a deep brown with a medium soapy white head. Solid retention and lace.

S: Toasted malt, hint of chocolate.

T: Strong biscuity flavour, lots of rich English malt and minerality. Like a Burton Ale/Old Ale hybrid, just has something extra.

M: Medium to full-bodied, creamy, well structured.

O: So English, and just a tasty brew. Can't believe I haven't had this in 5 years. Just as full-flavoured and exciting as the last time I had it.

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Photo of BlackHaddock
4.13/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Dark Ruby Red, with a thick creamy coloured head which I poured into a Palm Tulip glass, this allowed the flavour and aroma to stay in the glass more than if I had just poured into a normal British pint sleeve glass.

Burnt Malt and Hops come to the fore in the smell.

The taste is strong on malt, but not overpowering, a slight fizz, but not gassy in any way.

The throat holds the flavour (if you let it) and the mouth feel stays, this is not a watery beer.

Very drinkable and must be tried with Wensleydale Cheese, they come from the same valley in Yorkshire.

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Photo of Derek
3.91/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


The call it a "Strong Yorkshire Ale", and I think it is a little closer to a Strong Ale than a Brown Ale.

A: Copper-brown, light tan head, not a lot of retention, but a really nice lace.

S: Sweet caramel, candy-floss-like fruity esters, dark fruit, earthy minerals.

T: Dark caramel, dark fruit, bready, earthy minerals, slight nuttyness, pleasant fruity esters from the British yeast, good bitterness.

M: Moderately-full body is smooth; slightly lower than moderate carbonation.

D: A good drinker.

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Riggwelter Yorkshire Ale from Black Sheep Brewery PLC
3.85 out of 5 based on 316 ratings.
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