Green Flash / Pizza Port / Stone Highway 78 Scotch Ale | Stone Brewing

very good
328 Reviews
Green Flash / Pizza Port / Stone Highway 78 Scotch AleGreen Flash / Pizza Port / Stone Highway 78 Scotch Ale

Brewed by:
Stone Brewing
California, United States

Style: Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.80%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by HopHead84 on 02-07-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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User Reviews
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Reviews: 328 | Ratings: 580
Photo of thebrood1987
4.8/5  rDev +26.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

It pours very nicely with an amazing ruby reddish brown color to it. Amazing smell for a scotch ale that isn't hopped up. I get all the typical smells of bready chocolate toffee and caramel malts but they are very rich smelling and I also get a noticeable sweetness and almost a soy sauce in the smell. I also get some of the alcohol on the smell and some subtle spicy earthy hops. The taste is just like the smell pretty much with amazing rich malt tastes but with an actual sweetness that compromises the whole body of the beer.

You get a slight spicy earthy hop on the back end which pops up there at the last minute after the attack of rich malty sweetness. Definitely not too sweet at all but it almost has a chocolate malt or milkshake taste to it as well. Not to say it stout like though in taste. You do get a little bit of that soy sauce taste that you get in the smell. I'm sure this is from all the malts and thick body coming together. It tastes awesome though and definitely isn't a bad taste at all. Best Scotch Ale I've ever had..too bad it's only a limited release.

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Photo of ElCommodoro
4.64/5  rDev +22.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This beer was fantastic. I can't say anything about the appearance because I enjoyed it in the dark (in a cinema).
The smell was sweet and of prunes (as I find many scotch ales to be).
It was a thick, sweet, deliciously malty beer with a wee bit of hops to add some balance, but certainly not enough to take away from the sweetness. And I thought that was a great idea. Let all the maltiness and the sweetness come through. I'm a big fan of that. It was a wonderful brew.

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Photo of cyrock1
4.57/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance: Deep amber to amber brown.

Smell: Lightly roasted chocolate maltiness with a hint of toffee.

Taste: Whoppers! Malted milk and caramel.

Mouthfeel: Nice steady carbonation keeps the flavor and aromas lively.

Drinkability: I feel this is one of my favorite Scotch Ales I've tried. Excellent job on this colaboration.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
4.54/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Review from 2/2011 notes. Poured into a MacAndrew's thistle glass. Pours a ruby orange amber. Thin head and some lacing. Caramel malt and light fruit aroma, nice. Flavor is sweet caramel malt, bready malts, some dark and light fruit, a hint of chocolate. This tastes as if it has already aged for a year or two, very mellow and well integrated. Medium bodied, almost creamy. A very nice, mellow scotch ale.

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Photo of Murrhey
4.52/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Finger width head that lingered with a lovely mahogany color and a delightful buttery aroma.
The smell is very strong but not at all unpleasant.
The taste does have some of the same butter twinge as I picked up in the smell, with a slight burnt flavor at the end.

The mouthfeel, as a personal preference of mine is perfect. Not too watery but with a real fluidity to it that can be lost in darker Ales.

Enjoyed this beer greatly.

(also, this is my first review for the site, so I hope I'm doing this right.)

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Photo of abgba121
4.5/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: pours a medium brown with a light tan head that recedes fairly quickly and leaves a small lace down the glass

S: smells sweet and chocolatey, the alcohol is also present

T: Sweet, toffee, chocolate and coffee hints, a very slight alcohol burn in the middle, finishes long and sweet

M: medium to thick with just the right amount of carbonation

O: very tasty beer, a great warmer

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

Appearance: A nice dark ruby red color, very clear, a decent whitish head leaving no lacing.

Smell: Smokey malts with a nice earthiness to it

Taste: Smokey malts, really very malty. Earthiness, bread, hints of caramel. It has some sweetness with some rounding out bitterness. The abv is well hidden

Mouthfeel: Thin to medium body, thinner than expected, medium carbonation level.

Drinkability: Drinks easy, but not a chugger.

Overall, this was quite excellent, and I'm sad that, like Ommegang's Kup O'Kyndness, this is another excellent Scotch style ale that was limited production. Might have to go find more than just the two bottles I picked up. And, its also interesting to see something that Stone was involved in that isn't hoppy.

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Photo of joshuasamantha
4.48/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Had on tap at Stone's Winter Storm event. I'd like to mention that this was a collaboration beer with Pizza Port in Carlsbad and Green Flashing brewing co. in Vista (All by San Diego if you're not from around here). Sometimes a scotch ale can be a little too overwhelming for me, but this beer was so smooth! A must if you can get your hands on a bottle ($3 bucks for a 12 oz.- kinda pricey). I hope they keep brewing it instead of having it as a special session ale!

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Photo of d4114
4.48/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Very dark red, when held up to light you can see through it a little and it glows red; 1 and a half fingers of head.

S- malty, rich and roasty. Also smelt very fresh which was really nice.

T- Very balanced; malty and bready; You can tell the alcohols there but I think it lends its self to the flavor; maybe leaves me wanting a little more.

M- Full bodied; Coats the tongue; warms your mouth and stomach.

D- Very tasty beer; I could drink a couple and it wouldn't be too much at all. I actually got another the night after trying this one.

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Photo of kbrady9
4.47/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

First Scotch Ale, received from a friend in SD.

A-Pours brown, with a little bit of dark red permeating throughout the beer. Makes a mahogany color. Very little head that dissipates nearly immediately. Pretty good lacing.

S-Very malty aroma, almost reminds me of a brown ale. I get the hint of some nuts and even light overtones of mocha. Even with the malts, cant help hide the hops at the back end.

T-Malts taste wonderful and the beer covers up the ABV unbelievably. After smelling the beer, expected to get much more alcohol, but not the case. Also pretty sweet and as smooth as any beer I have ever had.

M-The beer is deceiving considering its alcohol content, you'd never guess it was nearly 9 percent. Extremely smooth, although not as much of a kick as I would have liked. Leaves you wanting more after every sip.

D-This beer is so smooth and tasty, you could sit and have multiple pours and continue wanting more if you didn't realize it was so potent. Can't say enough about this beer. Great collabo between some world class brewers.

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Photo of Jesse13713
4.46/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I was excited to see this new collaboration offering at my local beer store.

Appearance - You can immediately tell from pouring that this beer has exceptional carbonation. It also has phenomenal lacing capabilities that don't want to let go of the glass. There isn't much head, but I was overall impressed with the way that this beer poured. It pours a medium-brown tone.

Smell - Definitely smells like a scotch ale. Hints of plum and dark berries. A very tart ale smell. Smells similar to Skullsplitter and other Wee Heavies. Smells slightly of coffee and chocolate.

Taste - Absolutely phenomenal. I'm overwhelmed with a variety of flavors here. Chocolate fruits quickly follow up the initial coffee taste. A very faint bourbon sting lingers in the background as plums fight their way into the taste towards the finish. A consistent tang at the end. A slight Merlot is mixed in there as well.

Mouthfeel / Drinkability - These three breweries have come together to make a truly delicious Scotch Ale. This is by far one of the best Wee Heavy's that I have ever had. I got this beer the first day it was available in stores; and you could tell that it was very crisp and fresh. Drinkability is concise. I could drink this slowly all night long. The mouthfeel is very pleasant and fruity as well.

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Photo of stckhndlr
4.46/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

A- Dark amber color but not a lot of head. Head actually appears when you swirl it. But once you do it has some nice lacing. But if you don't swirl it then there is not much happening.

S- Hops and caramel with a hint of sweet vanilla.

T- Light hops but strong on the caramel. Chocolate notes, Sweet with a little bitter on the end.

M- Thin and smooth with almost not carbonation feel. Kind of has the texture of a flat soda.

O- Personally I think this was a great beer. Disappeared really quick. Wish I had another one.

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Photo of laikom
4.45/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A – Very transparent, and cherry red. 1 finger foamy head that fades with lacing that lasts a short time.

S - WOW, Super sweet honey raisins and figs! I expected more, but very plesently surprised. NO alcohol scent. Not being a fan of sweet beers, at this point I’m a bit afraid that I’m about to taste a really sweet beer. But no.. read on.

T – A very well balanced NOT too sweet (as I have heard this beer is sweet) actually a touch of astringency, a little dry! The honey is still here but NOT too sweet at all! Sure it’s sweet but not too sweet since the alcohol and hops balance it perfectly. There is the bitterness which turns the flavors into some deep dark awesomeness. Not the hoppy beer that you would want to drink on that 90 degree summer day, but a very well balanced, without being too sweet at all.

M – Again, I’m pleased. Tiny tingly bubbles, thick and hearty. Want to drink this with meat sometime.

O – A very well balanced beer. I would pick this up at first sight, will be trying to get my hands on more!

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Photo of hoplover82
4.44/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Pours a clear bright rosy red color with a medium off white bubbly head quickly dissapates into a very thin ring around the glass and and a little "D" in the center of my Duvel tulip glass. Leaves ok lacing in the glass.

S-The aroma is chock full of sweet/buttery caramel and dark dried fruits like prunes and chocolate covered raisins. For a scotch ale, it is an impeckable aroma indeed.

T-The flavor is in no way dissapointing compaired to the aroma. It stand up to the aroma just fine. Notes of burned caramel, sweet creamed butter, and chocolate covered raisins seem to be the main players in this game. A chewy bitterness keeps this from being cloying, which is what it would be if not the right amount of bitterness.

M-Silky smooth, big yet not overwhelming body is what in my glass fo sho! It has a sweet yet slightly dry (long) finish.

O-Overall, I really enjoyed this collaboration, and was very excited to see which breweries that collaborated to make this beer. I knew it was going to be good and it was indeed good. Thanks for giving us this great Scotch Ale.

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Photo of smcolw
4.42/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Ruby-brown color and crystal clear. Decent head with some lasting time. Relatively moderate spotty lace.

Excellent brown sugar and dark caramel aromas. I also not alcohol and some balancing hop (very mild as the style would suggest). Attractive and inviting.

Pleasantly sweet with a rich body. Superbly balanced like the smell suggests. There's a hop spice in the swallow, but still this is a story of deeply caramel malted beer. Plenty of alcohol warmth. Frankly, this is one of the better Scotch ales IMHO.

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Photo of SirBenton
4.42/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had this on tap at the Barley House in Algonquin.

It has a deep red and almost dark brown color to it with a good amount of head. The head also remained for a good amount of time. Smell was overall dominated by dark fruits or something very sweet smelling. The taste, however, was a drastic differance at first. Chocolate and coffee were prominent, but as the beer warmed the malty fruitness started to dominate. The feel when drinking was very smooth and refreshing. Definitely a new favorite!

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Photo of SDtastentune
4.4/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Darker brown/red, no lace or head.. poured slow & into a sniffer.

S - Smells of malts and toast, maybe some lager or ale bread in there.

T - Taste is great, rich malty/scotch/bourbon, very balanced, slightly hot and can taste some alcohol.

M - Nice, balanced, medium carbonation, after taste is rich and slightly hot.

D - Drinks great for a taster, so taster status is up there, but expensive, thumbs up, nice style!

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Photo of siege06nd
4.39/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A. Pours a cloudy, muddled brown with a finger of cream colored head. Lacing is very good, producing a thick sheen on the glass. Retention is lacking, as the head quickly falls to a quarter finger.

S. Interesting. Loads of ripe dates, cherries, and fig. Good dose of raisin and brown sugar as well. All of this against a very malty, pie crust-like backbone. Has a very quadrupel type aroma. Some lightly toasted caramel and vanilla come out as this warms up. Surprisingly awesome.

T. Brown sugar, toasted malt, traces of chocolate, some molasses, pumpernickel bread crust, mild dark fruit. A little bit of oxidation is starting to show, though at present it is inoffensive. The finish is all roasted malt and a little bit of drying alcohol. Really good.

M. Full-bodied and moderately carbed. Pretty creamy feel.

O. This has held up surprisingly well. I don't recall how this drank fresh, but it is drinking really nicely right now. An excellent scotch ale with a hyper complex nose and a nice rounded flavor profile. Color me impressed.

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Photo of OStrungT
4.38/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a brown color, with a mohogany color when held up to the light. It has a thin foamy head that fades fast, leaving a decent lacing.

This beer has a malty sweet aroma. It smells slightly of toffee, with some biscuit like hints as well.

This beer tastes like it smells. Sweet caramel moat, with some toffee and biscuit. A slight molasses flavor mixes in as well.

This beer is crips and refreshing. It leaves a toffee like aftertaste. it is carbonated well for the style.

This beer might make a good session beer. It is high in alcohol, and that might be a problem since I cant tell at all. I could drink this all night.

Overall: This is a great beer from three great breweries. First great beer since I have been back in the States.

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Photo of rKunda
4.38/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I don't think I've had a Scotch ale before, but I really liked this. In my continuing quest to only buy beers I haven't had before I came upon this one. It was on an end cap at Bevmo with a price a lot lower than a lot of the other single bottles.

Really dark carmel-brown color and a thick, rich texture—both in the glass and in the mouth—I was really happy with this. The beer almost coated my mouth like a syrup (but not quite that thick). This actually might be one of the best beers I've had in months.

When I drank it, it was really cool, but not 100% chilled in the fridge. I normally like my beer (and most drinks) really cold, but the extra flavor brought out in this with the warmer-than-usualy temp. was great. It smells really strong, you can smell the 8.8% alcohol, but it does not taste very strong at all. I will definitely be trying this again!

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Photo of Briant230
4.38/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I really enjoyed this beer and was suprised to find how tasty and smooth it was despite the high alcohol content. I really enjoyed how it had such a clean finish which the Arrogant Bastard Ale lacks. I think this would also make a great session beer because of the light and smoothness.

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Photo of oldsailor
4.38/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I'm a huge fan of the Stone Brewing Co and have been lucky enough to be able to visit them a couple times this year. Went for lunch and to fill my growlers this Saturday and was pleased to see the Highway 78 Scotch Ale was available, so I filled my 2L growler with it. I'm not quite a sophisticated beer reviewer yet, but what I can say is the following:

A: Dark amber body with tan head. Surprisingly the head wasn't as big as I'd thought it would be.

S: Toasted malts, seemed like a typical amber beer smell to me.

T: I thought this beer was delicious. It has a good late winter feel to it and I could say I probably wouldn't prefer it during the hot summer months, but right now it's perfect.

M: Very smooth, very nice to drink.

D: Again, for me it's got a winter beer feel so right now it's very drinkable but in hot months I think I'd prefer something lighter/more refreshing.

Overall I thought this was a very successful collaboration and I'm glad I was able to have it.

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Photo of LoneWolfMcQuade
4.36/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - This beer pours a clear red/dark brown with about a finger thick head.

S - Smell of caramel malts, smells nutty, but slightly sweet as well. Maybe some toffee with a faint alcohol smell (scotch).

T - Toasty and sweet with a bit of hops and dark fruit, accompanied by some toffee/caramel. You get a tiny amount of sugar and the spiciness of the hops followed by a nice faint scotch taste, alcohol warmth in the chest.

M - This has a medium body and lower carbonation. Pretty smooth, with almost a silky quality, light carbonation and head retention isn't much.

O - Easy to drink, tastes fairly true to the Scotch Ale style, especially considering it is a collaboration beer from some of the more hoppy brewers in San Diego. Be careful though, its sweet and smooth but with an 8.8% abv it'll sneak up on you.

Serving type: bottle, Tap at Stone Brewery

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Photo of BelgiumBill
4.36/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured the 12oz bottle into a chalice. Produced a thin creamy head which dissipated in a few minutes. It did not produce any lingering lacing. The pour produced a clear ruby/mahogany color that was beautiful and reminiscent of a dark scotch.

The smell was sweet though slight.

Taste was sweet, almost toffee like, with hints of espresso on the finish.

It carried a little viscosity in the mouth, very silky smooth with more carbonation then the think head would suggest. At 8.8% ABV I would have expected to sense the alcohol more but it was masked by the sweetness and richness. I nursed this over the course of an hour and it held up very well as it warmed. I plan to buy more of these and found it drinkable enough to have two (or more) at a time.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.35/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

For a beer that's been hatched through the collaboration of three American breweries, Stone's Highway 78 is a pretty traditional and authentic "Scotch" ale.

It's deep mahogany body is about 26 SRM in color beneath a creamy head of tan. The head retention is good and the lacing is average.

The aroma expresses toasty bread with a thin edge of burnt crust, caramel, a hint of dark fruit, a whiff of smoke, and an edge of spicy alcohol.

In the mouth it's full bodied, creamy and smooth.

The flavor is remarkably well-balanced, and although there's a bit of sweetness to the malt, it's also toasty, deeply caramelish, subtly chocolatey, and a touch smokey which all help to keep it from coming off as "sugary". That's then balanced by the soft dark fruit, and the spiciness of the alcohol; as well as a bit of spicy hops and around 28 IBU's. The finish is where it really shines, however, with more complexity appearing in the lingering finish. The spicy and peppery hops make a quick appearance, and then it becomes woody and smokey with a drizzle of residual golden caramel that's then followed by some grassiness. At that point, however, you're ready for another sip!

Overall it's quite impressive. There's no real American spin to it, it's simply intended to fall into style, and yet there's somehow an American impression put upon it (must be the spicy/peppery hops). For fans of Scottish ales this is not to be missed!

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Green Flash / Pizza Port / Stone Highway 78 Scotch Ale from Stone Brewing
3.8 out of 5 based on 580 ratings.
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