Belhaven Twisted Thistle IPA | Belhaven Brewery Company Ltd.

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Belhaven Twisted Thistle IPABelhaven Twisted Thistle IPA

Brewed by:
Belhaven Brewery Company Ltd.
Scotland, United Kingdom

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.10%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by ADR on 09-24-2005

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Ratings: 828 |  Reviews: 428
Photo of dakid618
3.77/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a light golden color with a half finger of head that leaves tons of retention on the sides of the glass. Smell is not super strong but sweet. Taste is smooth and sweet. Hard to explain as I haven't had a euro ipa in so long. Medium-bodied mouthfeel with a clean light finish. Very drinkable. I wouldn't turn one down.

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Photo of mcsquint
3.48/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Imperial pint poured into dimpled mug.
A - Golden in color. A bit cloudy. 2 finger white head that diminishes rather quickly; leaving nice lacing on glass.
S - Predominantly grassy with some floral and citrus notes.
T - Maltier up front than the aroma would indicate. This is followed by subtle floral, citrus, and grassy hops bite.
M - Light to medium mouthfeel. Not as carbonated as I expected from the style. However, my only exposure to IPA's has been American versions.
D - This tastes good but I probably wouldn't buy it again. Nothing wrong with it, just not to my general taste.

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Photo of mwa423
2.59/5  rDev -30.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A - Poured with two fingers of head that died down to a small lacing that stuck throughout the glass

S - Strange slightly yeasty and skunky smell. Very little hops to speak of.

T - Very little hoppy bitterness, but lots of yeast, malt and floral flavors. Tastes more like an English pub ale then an IPA

M - A bit of a bite, goes down relatively smooth

D - The pub ale flavor would get overwhelming, not overly impressed.

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Photo of ABOWMan
4.53/5  rDev +21.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Nice pour at "The Pub" in Columbus, Oh provided me with 1/2 finger of fine white head in a Belhaven official pint glass. Straw/amber colored brew with very hazy appearance looks extremely tasty and complex.

The aroma is of mild hops, clover, lavender, heather and apple. Extremely complex and unique.

The flavor is a wonderful combination of hoppy bitterness, and sweetness with notes of honey, orange, and necterine. It could be said that this beer is nicely floral and very drinkable. I loved it and wich I could get this beer on tap locally.

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Photo of ncstateplaya
3.39/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This beer was recommended by the distributor to my gf as a very good representation of an English IPA.

It poured a hazy amber, orangish almost, and produced an extremely fluffy and sudsy looking head. The head was very substantial and left loads of lacing in the glass. Very good looking beer...

Upon first smell, it seemed to be pretty hoppy, but there was also a musty and dusty smell that I felt eventually began to dominate the nose. The smell was very flowery...wildflowers. I could pick up on the yeastiness of this beer as well.

I thought this beer tasted extremely yeasty for an "IPA". There was a hoppy bitterness that mellows out very quickly. There were notes very similar to a honey like sweetness and touches of pine on the finish.

The mouthfeel was very smooth and creamy. The beer was medium bodied and had fine (tiny bubbles) carbonation. It felt buttery in my mouth and finished with a hoppy bitterness.

This ale was extremely smooth and pretty enjoyable. And it may be a nice representation of an English IPA, but definitely not what I was looking for. There are so many more IPAs out there that I would prefer to drink.

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Photo of Vancer
4.45/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On tap at the new beer Mecca of the Midwest, iTAP. Fresh and tasty this first night of their opening.

Just a great IPA, English style - a superb orange pour in the pint shaker glass with an ivory head that produces nice lacing.

Sweet bubble gum malt in the aroma, but the quaff is where this bad boy takes over. Just an absolutely delicious blend of smooth malt with the tangy hops, hints of orange and citrus really balance it out.

The easy drinking of this beer is scary, at 6% you need to sip, but the taste draws you in like a moth to a flame.

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Photo of Brewsmith
4/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From a 1L bottle purchased locally. Aroma is like lemony iced tea. Color is a golden amber that is clear except for what look s like hop particles floating around. Flavor is malty, biscuity with some hop bitterness and citrusy hop flavor in the finish. Full and rich but not too sweet, but still balanced a little toward the malt. Do not expect an American IPA out of this one. This is more along the lines of an English IPA that is more balanced and malt focused. A slightly bigger pale ale.

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Photo of BradLikesBrew
3.98/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a: Clear, caramel colored body with a white head and patches of lacing.

s: Sweet biscuity malt and a spicy, slightly fruity hop aroma.

t: Buttery, biscuity, toffee flavored malt provides the bulk of the flavor with fruity, spicy, apricoty hops.

m: Crisp, smooth, plenty of body.

d: Damn good English IPA. Love the maltiness. Definitely a classic English beer. I could drink TONS of this.

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Photo of jujubeast6000
2.04/5  rDev -45.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Reviewed 7/22/2006 (Tap @ Kelvin at Arms, Houston, TX):

Cloudy color, orange color, small head, white, good lacing. Somewhat watery aroma, some hops, not overpowering aroma. Watery hoppy taste, bitter & unbalanced. Bitter aftertaste. Smoother as it warms up, but still not much flavor.

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Photo of aeminter
4.13/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Beautiful straw-gold color with a thick off white head like soft meringues. The head deflates quickly.
Aroma is hoppy, citrusy with a hint of pine and malt background.
It's a little more balanced than I look for in an IPA, but the hop presence is more than enough to keep it in the style category.
This is a good beer. Very drinkable and a good starting point to get people into IPA's.

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Photo of hathaway78
3.75/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Has a milky amber complexion. Solid beer with few flaws, but no outstanding qualities. A little bit of a twang aftertaste that leaves the mouth looking for more. I would not search for this beer, but I do enjoy drinking it. I am a general fan of Belhaven, and this beer will not change my good favor of the brand.

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Photo of thekevlarkid
4.23/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Out of a bottle this beer was a cloudy, light copper color with a two finger khaki head. The retention was great as a cap and the lacing was in thin, albeit broken bands. The aroma was quite appealing, citrus hops and floral hops with caramel malt and some hints of fruity alcohol esters. The flavors started with a flash of caramel malt immediately followed by a blast of hops, hints of citrus rind and tart apples behind which was a bready, malty backbone. The body was medium full, the carbonation just a touch high and the mouthfeel rich and quaffable. Very easy to drink and nicely balanced bitter/sweet elements.

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Photo of Bagman007
3.49/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served on tap in a pint glass.

A- Has a dark amber brown coloring. Darker than what you would expect for this type of beer.

S- Has a funky smell to it, I'm assuming from the yeast.

T- Surprisingly great taste despite the smell. Hoppy, but not overpoweringly bitter. Great IPA.

M- Not too bitter at all. Goes down better than most beers of this type.

D- Very drinkable for an IPA. Not too bitter.

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Photo of magictrokini
3.72/5  rDev 0%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

As much at their flagship Scottish Ale sucked, this one is quite impressive. Pours clear gold with a decent white head. Sharp, peppery hops that actually smell like a thistle. Astringent hop taste, more on the English IPA spectrum (duh, its from Scotland), with a decent amount of orange citrus flavors, and a sweeter, honey-malt finish. A pleasant surprise.

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Photo of mobyfann
3.86/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Paid $1.99 for the pint...

The beer pours a hazy amber-golden base with a 1/4" white head, excellent head retention, and a beautiful array of lacing on the side of the glass. Aroma hints at a mix of sweet malts and mild hops with a touch of lemon.

The taste is malty for an IPA, medium carbonation and a creamy head make it for a smooth yet light conclusion on taste. Awesome in the mouth due to the retaining head and at 6.1% abv very very drinkable for what tastes like a like beer.

Final Thought: It's like a hybrid of doppelbock and pale ale in a bottle, it's unique but not overly memorable.

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Photo of BeardedBoffin
3.75/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

500 mL bottle of this Twisted Thistle IPA. I love the name and the purple label with the thistle flower image on the bottle. The beer pours amber in color with a big pillowy head that had decent retention and lacing. The aroma is caramel malt, biscuit, and a little burnt sugar. Medium bodied as it moves across the palate. Sweet malt flavor up front morphs into biscuit in the center before finishing bitter. The slightly dry bitterness lingers for a few moments before dissipating away. This is a respectable brew. Hoppiness is not overt like most American IPAs but is in line with those brewed across the pond. Pleasant Indeed.

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Photo of bashiba
3.8/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a nice golden amber with just a touch of light tan head.

The smell has a light bit of yeast and biscuity caramel.

The flavor has a nice fruity malt sweetness up front with a long flowery bitterness. A nice bit of pineapple and vanilla are detectable along with a bit of pine in the hops.

Mouthfeel has a bit of oilyness leaving a long lasting impression.

Easy to drink and balanced, another solid offering from Belhaven.

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Photo of Blakaeris
4/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours clear golden amber with generous carbonation. Head is a thick pillowy mass.

Aroma is pale malt, a bit of yeasty funk, and floral hop.

Taste is initially malty caramel sweetness. Definite biscuit character. Light tropical and citrus fruit notes. Finish is dry with a mineral character. Floral hops linger in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and smooth.

overall a very balanced beer with plenty of subtlety as you would expect for the style. A pleasant easy drinking brew.

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Photo of Billolick
3.65/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

16.9 ounce bottle, w/o any freshness/bottling information to be found. Pours clear typical amber, light tan head, some retention and then some nice fine lace left on the glass. In the sniff phase, I'm getting some fairly strong notes of malt and whiskey/grain/woody peat. This is an enjoyable fairly assertively hopped (for a Brit. offering) IPA. Nice balance between the malts and Hops. Plenty of dark wheat, malty notes and the hops are softly grainy. Long finish with more whiskey/Scotch undertones. Nice stuff, nothing amazing but certainty a worthy session candidate

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Photo of spike882
3.45/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Very nice hoppy and floral aroma. Decent amount of head that leaves a nice amount of lacing on the glass. Taste doesn't have as much hops in it as the aroma. More fruit taste in the body than expected but a nice clean finish overall. The color is a light-medium orange copper. Drinkablity is medium to high on this one with wishes of a slight more hop flavor. Another good beer from Belhaven.

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Photo of botham
3.95/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

on tap poured into a pub glass at Duke of Perth in Lincoln Park, Chicago. pours a light amber color with a single finger of off white head that is mildly dense, and leaves moderate lacings. good retention here.

aroma is of smooth citrusy hops mainly, with a mildly fruity nose overall and a distant caramel and bready malt note that works well with the hops.

taste is of bready malt up front, with a mildly floral quality, along with a distant caramel note. finishes on a citrusy hop note, fresh and smooth with a lingering semi-bitter hop quality after the fact.

mouthfeel is medium bodied with a lightly biter texture and a smooth quality that help neutralize the bitter hop quality on the palate. upon finishing, the bitterness returns, completing somewhat of a cycle, which is quite pleasant.

drinkability is good. this is a smooth and easy drinking IPA with a solid hop quality and just enough malt to avoid becoming overly-hopped. cheers!

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Photo of batty
3.5/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

looks incredible. very thick, foamy creamy head leaving ridiculous amounts of lace on the glass. not sure i've ever given a 5 for appearance before, but damn. brew itself is a orangey-amber-red with slight effervescence noted.

perhaps because this sample is a bit older than it should be, but the nose is pretty minimal. bit of earthy notes, and a little.. something weird going on.

taste is good, although a bit fruity for my taste. once again, age could play in a little less hop presence than i would like. still pretty good hop flavor though, and a nice little bitter finish and quite smooth. Tiny bit of alcohol/ester presence.

mouthfeel i s very smooth and silky, beautiful.

drinkability is not great, based on the bit of strong cutting fruity, more so as it warms.

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Photo of EnojysAnyBeer
4.43/5  rDev +19.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

My 2nd Belhaven and i expect another good one

A- Nice 2-finger head that leaves good glittery lacing.

S- Smell is sweet fruity malt with a pinch of stingy floral hops

T- Good balance of sweet and bitter components that leave a unique flavor in the mouth that reminds me of cranberry bread.

M- Mouthfeel is is beyond good. Foamy carbonation and a medium body create a creamy feeling in the mouth

D- Drinks great like a pale ale should

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Photo of BattleRoadBrewer
3.56/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served cold in a Boston Lager glass.

Pours with a little bit of body, crystal clear golden color with a 1/4" head that quickly dissipates, but leaves a little lacing all the way down.

Aroma is pungently hoppy with a hint of skunk and hint of diacetyl.

Flavor and mouthfeel is typical English, with a butterscotch and toffee note, tea-like astringent bitterness.

Drinkability is good, goes well with dinner, though a bit too buttery, especially as it warmed.

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Photo of canucklehead
3.7/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I think the label and back of the bottle make you believe that this is some West Coast hoppy IPA but in reality this is a decent IPA that more Brit than PNW no matter what the hops are in the recipe. Orange Gold, with a pleasant hop nose this is a malt influenced IPA that has its own character ( You know it is Scottish). I like it but had to quickly realize that the C hops don't dominate.

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Belhaven Twisted Thistle IPA from Belhaven Brewery Company Ltd.
3.72 out of 5 based on 828 ratings.
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