Scotty Karate Scotch Ale | Dark Horse Brewing Company

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Scotty Karate Scotch AleScotty Karate Scotch Ale
1,841 Ratings
Scotty Karate Scotch AleScotty Karate Scotch Ale

Brewed by:
Dark Horse Brewing Company
Michigan, United States

Style: Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.75%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
For those of you who don’t know who “Scotty Karate” is… He is a local one man band who plays an amazing slurry of honky-tonk influenced, punk-country songs. (Check him out at A big bold musician deserves a big bold beer, that's why Scotty and our Scotch Ale are a perfect tribute to one another. Scotty Karate is brewed with cherry wood smoked malt instead of the traditional peat smoked malt offering up warming notes of coffee, caramel and sweet caramelized brown sugar. Scotty finishes earthy giving this beer a character all it's own, just like the man himself.

Added by ypsifly on 01-28-2006

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Ratings: 1,841 |  Reviews: 611
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4.5/5  rDev +11.7%

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4/5  rDev -0.7%

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3.5/5  rDev -13.2%

Photo of pBRale
3.75/5  rDev -6.9%

Photo of Nstgatr
3.25/5  rDev -19.4%

Photo of szmnnl99
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of Texasfan549
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of kjkinsey
4.25/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of Vonerichs
3.82/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A rather flat appearing root beer colored body with tiny floaters.

Smells of caramel, peat, and bread.

This thing is all malt, no doubt. There's a light warm burn to it. Slightly Sweet caramel and brown sugar favors, peat, bread, and dates.

Smooth and creamy mouthfeel with light carbonation, which plays well with the flavor.

This started out average, but came through in the flavor and mouthfeel. It packs a punch yet is very drinkable.

 442 characters

Photo of nmann08
3.5/5  rDev -13.2%

Photo of ritzkiss
4.27/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle from Hawthornes in Philly. No date.

Pours a dark ruddy brown, thin foam which recedes to a collar - don't really expect too much head for this style.

Nose is rich malty caramel sweetness, dark fruit, bread. Hints of smoke in the flavor, light but balancing. Rich without being syrupy, sweet in the middle with a nice dry finish. On top of malty, bready goodness - Cherry, dark fruits, slight leather and tobacco notes. Scary drinkable for ABV. Real nice.

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Photo of Beerontwowheels
3.75/5  rDev -6.9%

Photo of SpartanHistory2013
4.75/5  rDev +17.9%

Photo of buschbeer
3.95/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle
Served in a snifter

A - It pours a deep copper color and is topped with an inch of beige head.

S - The aroma is a ton of caramel and toffee malt. No alcohol to speak of.

T - The taste follows the nose, tons of caramel and toffee malt. The alcohol is well hidden.

M - Moderate

O - This malt bomb is packed with alcohol. I didn't realize it was 9.75% until my third. That explains my happiness despite my bracket being busted.

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Photo of thegerm87
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of ksimons
4.07/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A-a dark chestnut brown with a slight ruby like tinge. A small amount of white head leaves a bit of lacing around the top.

S-Smell is very nice. Big sticky malt and caramel predominates, with some dark sticky fruits mixed in.

T-Taste matches the smell but is even bigger, if that is possible. Big sweet malts, caramel, and a very light fruitiness.

M-full body, one of the biggest I can remember having in a while. Low/Medium carbonation and a malty sweet finish.

Overall this is one of the better scotch ales I’ve had. Big malt and caramel, full body, and great aroma. I will look for this again.

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Photo of Ultraman9000
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of bmoney
4.25/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of BarryMFBurton
3.74/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The label and the name got me again: really, how could you pass up a beer called Scotty Karate, especially when it’s emblazoned in a crazy purple and yellow designs? Plus, it’s my first Dark Horse beer, and that certainly helped me make the decision.

No freshness date to be found, but it was probably brewed recently (since I just began seeing it on the shelves).

A: Classic Scotch ale murkiness on the body, pouring a brownish-maroon color that lets just about 20% of light through. As I swirl it, I’m imagining what it would look like if you liquefied a chocolate Tootsie Pop; I’m guessing it would look something like this. Short and creamy white was the head – I say “was” because it’s down to nothing in a matter of seconds, without even a thought of lacing. For now, some bubbles hit the top of the body and make fizzy little patterns of film, and that’s all there is to the head. Though it’s 9.75% ABV, it doesn’t show off a thick character – on the contrary, its body color and lack of a head put a watery spin on the appearance.

S: Wow – I love this beer’s nose. Scotch ales have a tendency to have this overpowering booze and peat aroma, usually distracting me from everything underneath, but not this time: turns out that Scotty has a predominantly sweet profile, with notes of everything from cherry and strawberry to peach cobbler, pear, and raisin. This light, cheerful presence is contrasted by a wave of malt soon after, rising up high on aromas of maple syrup and caramel before crashing (smoothly) into the peat, wood, and chocolate aromas that have defined my previous Scotch ale experiences. Going along that same theme, there’s a noseful of whiskey at the end, almost as if Scotty needed to confirm with my memory that this really is a Scotch ale.

T: Miso soup. How the hell…? I’m seriously getting a crazy taste memory of that brothy Japanese dish every time I take a drink. And you know what? I kind of like it. It’s probably due to the buttery, grainy, somewhat salty malt/hop balance that casts its character over the rest of the beer’s palate – to me, though, it brings a good sensation to the taste buds, and that’s all that really matters in the end. Between the two, the hops are probably the main culprit, which are astringently pale but without so much as a second of pine or citrus taste. The malts give off that buttery straw feeling, but with some apple butter, fresh pear, and grape jelly flavors. Yeast and alcohol, playing second fiddle to the Asian food profile, give some rye bread and bourbon spice before hitting the aftertaste with a nutty earthiness. Some bitter hop notes end up mixing in to form a lightly-salted finish.

M: Not as watery as the appearance made it seem, though thankfully not as thick as miso soup. Good balance between the two extremes, you might say, though the watery tone wins out in the end.

O: I had an odd, yet pleasant experience with this beer. At least it left with something to remember it by, at least; and even apart from that, it certainly was a good beer. Give me a month and a second bottle to see if I get some more tastes of Japanese food…

 3,169 characters

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4.25/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of 2dogbrew
3.75/5  rDev -6.9%

3.75/5  rDev -6.9%

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

A - Pours a clear deep amber/copper with one finger of creamy tan head. Head has pretty good retention, eventually fading to a collar. Some lacing.

S - Sweet caramel malt and earthy brown bread, some spice,and a faint raisin aroma. Didn't really get any alcohol aroma from this.

T - Starts with a big rush of sweet caramel and quickly turns quite dry. Very bready, with a nice dense brown bread taste. Some subtle dark fruits and a faint tea-like flavor on the finish.

M - Starts a bit sticky sweet and very creamy. Finishes earthy and dry.

O - One of my favorite Scotch Ales. Very drinkable. Nice combination of initial sweetness eventually yielding to an earthy dryness.

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1/5  rDev -75.2%

Photo of Fitzmke
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Scotty Karate Scotch Ale from Dark Horse Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.03 out of 5 with 1,841 ratings