Wee Heavy
Belhaven Brewery Company Ltd.

Wee HeavyWee Heavy
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Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy
Ranked #17
Ranked #4,114
4.09 | pDev: 11.49%
Belhaven Brewery Company Ltd.
Scotland, United Kingdom
Wee HeavyWee Heavy
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Reviews: 576 | Ratings: 1,091 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of scotorum
scotorum from Massachusetts

4.07/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25


An oversight not to have reviewed this before. Have been buying it on and off for years. Poured from the 11.2 oz. bottle into an English nonick pint.

a: Clear dark copper with a finger thick white head which receded to even surface foam and spotty to dense lacing.

s: Sweet malt.

t; Mild Caramel malt.

m: Medium, good body and some carbonation tingle.

o: My favorite Scotch ale, the epitomy of the style.

Aug 29, 2020
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woosterbill from Kentucky

3.75/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle into a tulip.

L: Clear garnet-brown body under an inch of soft tan froth. Decent retention, light lace. Quite pretty, particularly the color and clarity.

S: Butterscotch, toffee, overripe apple, candied orange. I'm having trouble getting past the buttery diacetyl and overripe fruit, but it's definitely rich.

T: Sweet up front, with dried fruit and caramel leading the way. Some toasted brown bread and warmth toward the back end. Bold and mouth-watering. Enjoyable.

F: Slick medium body with lively carbonation. The effervescence makes it feel lighter than it tastes. Slightly incongruous.

O: I like it, but its over-the-top sweetness heads off in tangents that distract from the core malt flavors I was expecting, and not always in entirely pleasant ways. Fun to try, but I doubt I'll seek it out again. Beer of Fame review 174/250.


Nov 22, 2019
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chitoryu12 from Florida

4.21/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

Look: Dark, clear amber with a distinct off-white nitro head that forms from the bottom.

Smell: Sweet bread, piney hops, mild banana esters. Relatively light.

Taste: Liquid bread with a touch of sweetness and toasted malt. Very low hop bitterness. Mild metallic aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Thick and creamy, with minimal carbonation.

Overall: Could use a somewhat stronger flavor, but a solid choice that gets close to a “real ale” on keg.

Oct 11, 2019
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REVZEB from Illinois

3.58/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Finally got to try this classic! Solid scotch ale, with caramel, molasses, raisin, spices, and a cereal base. Has some odd dankness, perhaps a aftertaste of peat? All flavors seem to be on the surface instead of become part of the whole beer, wish there was more depth, but solid

Sep 21, 2018
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Sigmund from Norway

3.65/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500 ml clear bottle, from Voldby Købmandsgård. ABV is 6.5%. Drunk a bit too cold. Ruby colour, moderate off-white head. Nice malty aroma, notes of caramel and treacle, a hint of oak and mild spices. Malty and sweet flavour, low bitterness. Strong notes of caramel and treacle. Quite nice beer, if you want to satisfy your sweet tooth.

Jun 27, 2018
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Lone_Freighter from Vermont

3.67/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

This was poured into a thistle glass. The appearance was a nice looking hazy dark amber to brown color with a slim finger’s worth of foamy white head. Light lacing sticks and then slides. The smell had a nice blend of sweet and roasty English malts with a decent subdued caramel malts. A light meaty to somewhat peaty sweetness invades nicely. The taste was mainly the same - sweet meaty to peaty awesomeness rolling over my tongue in the flavor department. There’s a light sweet meaty aftertaste leading to a sweet wet finish. On the palate, this one sat about a light to medium on the body with a fairly decent sessionability about it. The carbonation was there and decent for the style. Actually, a super nice sweet smoothness rolls over my tongue. Overall, this is good as a Wee Heavy/Scotch Ale. I dig this. I’d have it again.

Jul 14, 2017
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cwalter from New York

3.35/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Med-dark brown with a thick head that dissapates quickly. An odd puckering quality at the end of each sip that leaves the mouth dry. Malty taste with other funky notes too complex for me to identify

Aug 20, 2016
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John_M from Oregon

4.36/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

On tap on nitro at highland stillhouse pub.

The beer pours a fairly dark, reddish amber color, with excellent head retention and lots of sticky lacing all around. The nose is attractive enough, as I pick up light sweet malt, cereal, and a hint of vinegar. On the palate... does a scotch ale get much better than this? On the nitro, this beer is incredibly silky and smooth. It only enhances the lovely sweet malty flavor coupled with a hint of bitterness, smoke, sherry and nutty butterscotch. The finish is long and smooth, and the relatively low alcohol enhances the beer's drinkability. So delicious and easy to drink... this one is highly recommended of course. Excellent stuff.

Aug 11, 2016
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Buck89 from Tennessee

4.18/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On nitro tap in a pint glass. Dark reddish copper color with a faint tan head. Pleasant malty aromas-caramel, cherry, plum, toffee. Rich taste. Loads of caramel mixed with stone fruit.

May 23, 2016
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CTHomer from Connecticut

3.75/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A: it appears to be a murky medium brown, but when held up to the light, it's pretty transparent; with a fairly aggressive pour, <1 finger off white head that receded quickly to a thin collar; very little lacing;

S: dark fruit, caramel, a little vanilla;

T: tobacco is predominant from start to finish with dark fruit, molasses and strawberry behind it; mild bitterness on the finish;

M: medium bodied; moderate carbonation; moderately dry finish;

O: a little too much tobacco character for my taste;

May 12, 2016
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GrumpyGas from Illinois

4.1/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

16 oz pint pour from nitro tap.
The dark maroon body floats a light tan head of 1/2 inch and it has legs.
The aroma is floral with a hint of alcohol.
the flavor is more subtle. Someone said 'piney': I can taste that, but it's not dominant and there is a late burn aftertaste which seems odd with such a relatively low abv. Not bad, just a reminder.

Nitro makes it nice and velvety with little carbonation.

Deep color. Rich mouthfeel. A nice dessert.

Mar 14, 2016
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mlockman from Indiana

4.7/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

Perfectly balanced malt-forward flavor profile. The only drawbacks were little to no head and a slightly prickly feel on the tongue that I could have done without. The prickly sensation was by far overshadowed by the intensely rich flavor, however.

Jun 14, 2015
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burnerfinger from Texas

4.91/5  rDev +20%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

really one of the best I've tried.
Bought this just because I liked the name - "Wee " heavy made me think of Groundskeeper Willie from the simpsons. OMG what a surprise:

A Khaki head settles to a thin film, leaving no lacing at all
ULtra clear when held to a light - and the color made reminds me of rosewood

S a touch of sweet caramel, and a touch of the "skunk" weed I smoked in my twenties.

T HOORAY! nicely complex caramel with a piney hops touch. LOVE this.

M solid body

D ultra fine - sip in order to fully appreciate the beauty of this GEM.

Jun 04, 2015
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bassboneman from New York

4.39/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

L= dark red/tea color, minimal head - spotty lacing
S = certainly a funky aroma floating about - but just adds to the mystique of the beer
T= whisky-ish sweetness - and a lot of it! Very mild bitter finish - especially as it warms.
carmel/dried fruit
F= mildly carbonated
O= this is my first wee heavy anything...so -
This beer is quite good - due to the sweet flavor present this might almost qualify as a dessert beer :o)

Mar 30, 2015
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hreb from Washington

3.57/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

50cL clear glass bottle served in craft pub glass. Beer is rich, red in color, and translucent. Aroma is mild with just a whiff of skunk. Flavor is much better. Thin on the palate, but hits the notes of caramel, butterscotch. Neither sweet nor bitter. Very well balanced, in a decided Scotch Ale kind of way, as opposed to an English Ale kind of way. There is undoubtedly some diacetyl content here.

I like this but it's not my favorite. Too strong to session, but too simple / flat to really savor. I think it's just too "clean" for me. Still, it's a great execution of its style, and it does have its place.

Feb 14, 2015
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ThisWangsChung from Maryland

3.95/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

11.2 oz bottle into a wine glass.

Appearance: Pours a clear dark ruby color. The head is a finger high, and off-white in shade. Not as creamy as other wee heavies in texture, nor as well retaining, it makes up slightly by having a certain consistency. Not much lacing is left behind. (3.25)

Smell: Wow, it has an intensely jammy nose right from the get-go. After opening up, the massive dark fruits and caramel will give way to some slight smoke (peat?) and tea leaves. While it's fairly standard by scotch ale standards on the nose, it's also very well executed, with well-defined notes. (3.75)

Taste: It follows the nose rather well, opening up with a strong caramel sweetness. The smokiness (more ham-like than woodsy) quickly follows suit on the mid-taste, but remains subtle throughout. I even get gentle notes of chocolate, brown sugar, and vanilla on the back end. While it's a sweet beer, it's also very well balanced - somewhat complex, too. (4)

Mouthfeel: In one aspect, it's creamy and full-bodied. And yet, in another aspect, it slides down the palate rather effortlessly, even dryly. It doesn't even rely on hefty carbonation, either - it's just naturally dry. As a result, this is a luxurious beer that's also very easy to drink. (4.5)

Overall: I am a total sucker for a good example of this style, which is exactly what this is. No wait, it's a GREAT example of the style. It doesn't rewrite the book by any means, but its execution is spectacular. The feel is particularly wonderful. Yes, I'll definitely seek this out in the future... (4)

3.96/5: It's a dessert beer you can chug! How can you not love that? Wait, don't answer...

Dec 20, 2014
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JLSIV from Georgia

4.06/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a 20oz tavern glass, had to pour aggressive to get a two finger head of medium bubbles which dissipated to a frothy layer. Lots of foam clinging to glass. Color is a beautiful reddish copper when held up to the light.

Aroma is mostly sweet and malty, with some toffee and brown sugar. By attribute, this is the least strongest trait of this particular ale.

Taste is toasty malt, with a little caramel, noticeably sweeter than I expected. I enjoy brown ales, so this one hit the spot for me personally.

Mouthfeel is medium, very slightly syrupy. Light carbonation was surprising, but seems to be correct for the style.

Overall, I enjoyed this ale very much, I would like to try it again on tap, and may try my hand at brewing one using a kit. Glad that I tried this style. The name really doesn't make sense from an AMerican point of view.

Dec 13, 2014
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philbe311 from Pennsylvania

3.66/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Less than a finger's worth of fairly textbook khaki colored audibly fizzy froth that quickly recedes... The lacing that is left is slightly splotchy and carbonation bubbles can be seen bursting through the surface... The color is a warm inviting caramel brown... Some carbonation bubbles cling to the glass, the remainder powers through at a rapid pace... The nose is rather subdued, but all the usual suspects are present... Caramel... Toffee... Peat... Toasted malts... Light brown sugar... On the palate, the peat is dialed up in intensity and much of the expected malty goodness is buried deep in the background... There is a very subtle booziness which lingers on the finish... There is a greater than expected hop bite even though it is still relatively minor... Medium bodied... Sturdy... Limited carbonation... A bit chalky throughout.. Some syrupy characteristics as well... Overall, this one is a rather pedestrian Scotch Ale... As a lover of the style I can't help but be a bit let down by this offering which has proved somewhat elusive for me...

Dec 09, 2014
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Smakawhat from Maryland

4.41/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the clear bottle into a medium sized snifter glass.

A deep caramel red, almost ruby colored in appearance with some good clarity. Head is barely one finger and fleeting tan in color, leaving a whispy swirling top and creamy collar.

Straight forward aroma. Hints of toffee and thick caramel, but with a good amount of herbal and spice notes to match. Clove, sweet brown sugar and a bit of honey as well round out nicely, almost tea aromatic to an extent. More importantly we have dodged the skunk monster.

Palate hits nicely, and takes it down perfectly without sacrificing flavor. Thick liquid toffee in the glass, creamy but light bodied caramel coating everywhere in the palate. Washing light almost crisp bitter like quality, but with real coating feel.

Overall a great benchmark easy drinking wee heavy that doesn't go for the throat. Could drink lots of this

Nov 29, 2014
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MisterGone from California

4.25/5  rDev +3.9%

The clear bottle had me a bit nervous, so I took one from the way-back of the shelf. Poured a deep brown with some coppery red hints. Tall, dissipating head of khaki. The aroma was certainly of butterscotch and caramel, not much in the way of hops to describe. The flavor was a direct hit from the aroma, really what you smelled was what you tasted. Really smooth butterscotch and caramel maltiness, balanced by a good bubbly carbonation and hops so subtle I can't describe a profile - but enough to cut the sweetness and make it a very enjoyable brew. No real alcohol on the finish, even at the early cold sips.Solid offering, will definitely put this in the stable for when in the mood for malty brews.

Nov 24, 2014
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Jaysauras from California

4.5/5  rDev +10%

L: Pours a deep dark brown with hints of red. It was topped by a very thin creamy head with the thickness of about a quarter. Tons of lace and the head tends to hang on the glass quite heavily.

S: Sweet. Right up front. Very sweet with a malty caramel scent. Tiny bit of booze scent to it as well.

T: The taste is in the smell. The sweetness of caramel hits right up front with a bit of malty butteriness afterwards. It also had a bit of a dry, metallic finish to it which is commonly seen with a heavier carbonation. Very solid flavors right up front though, and it's that simplistic scotch ale taste that makes the style great.

F: Considering how sweet the beer is, it has a surprisingly dry finish to it. Dry, sharp, and thin.

O: Exceptional. A great testament to the style. It's not a complex drink by any stretch of the imagination, but it does all it needs to do and does it well. It maintains that sweet, but light sharpness, without becoming watery, over-carbonated, or too syrupy sweet. It's an easy style to mess up, but Belhaven have come through on this one. Easily drinkability to boot.

Nov 05, 2014
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JMS1512 from New Jersey

3.97/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sight- Deep, deep brown body. Red highlights. Pours a beige head that reduces to a small floating island the size of a poker chip. Lacing hangs dainty on one side, thick and bandy on the other side of the glass. Is my glass not “beer clean?”

Smell- Subtle toasted caramel, sugar, roasted malt. Hops are not noticeable.

Taste- Mimics the initial aroma quite closely. Great caramel-ly malt, a bit of… butter? Again, hops are Spartan. It has that stereotypical Scotch Ale taste, one I enjoy. At 6.5%, no feeling of alcohol- much appreciated, though I have sought out boozier brews.

Mouthfeel- Gently coats my tongue, a bit oily. Maybe a Medium-minus? Tiny bubbles ceaselessly rise to the surface.

Overall- A nice offering by Belhaven, one I like as much as their regular Scottish Ale.

Nov 02, 2014
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BuckeyeSlim from Ohio

4/5  rDev -2.2%

Nose of caramels and brown sugar with bits of toffee and butterscotch supported by moderately toasted malts and a touch of ABV. Taste is rich caramels on a foundation of toasted malts that lasts through the finish. Body is a tad on the light side for a wee heavy. Beer is a solid, classic presentation of the style.

Oct 22, 2014
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BrewQuest from North Dakota

4.25/5  rDev +3.9%

I tried this again recently after not having it for quite a few years and it just didn't seem to have the same "wow" affect that it did then. Still a good beer, but it seemed to be malt heavy this time. Hopefully it was just this particular brew. Still a pleasure though!

Oct 13, 2014
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pat61 from Minnesota

4.75/5  rDev +16.1%

Rich malt aromas, fresh baked bread crust,
Brilliant dark chestnut, 2” off-white head with fine bubbles, dissipates to ¼”. Very lacy.
Palate: Rich British malt spice, a dark sugary malt flavor, no roast, whole wheat bread.
Chewy, creamy, medium low soft carbonation.

Sep 26, 2014
Wee Heavy from Belhaven Brewery Company Ltd.
Beer rating: 91 out of 100 with 1091 ratings