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Wee Heavy | Belhaven Brewery Company Ltd.

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Wee HeavyWee Heavy
1,061 Ratings
Wee HeavyWee Heavy

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

Style: Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 03-24-1998

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Ratings: 1,061 |  Reviews: 571
Photo of gdfan47
4.12/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- pours a nice dark brown with a good white head
S- brown sugar, malt, honey
T- Brown sugar, some faint spice smells, some malt and finishes with a nice hop kick
M- really refreshing, good carbonation
D- pushing high abv status, but I think this one could get dangerous if you dont pay attention to it...

Ive slept and passed on beers of this style in the pass, but this one made me want to explore the category more

ps of course this beer is awesome.. its from Scotland...

 477 characters

Photo of plaid75
4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Rattle N' Hum, NYC.

Poured a murky deep amber hue with a half finger white head. There was decent retention and lacing.

The smell featured a light cereal malt with a touch of smoke and earthy hops.

The taste consisted of a sweet earthy malt, cereal grains, smoke and a subtle hop. Good nuttiness at the finish.

The mouthfeel was typical of the style.

Overall a tasty and smooth ale.

 401 characters

Photo of beerthulhu
4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured a dark ruby red color with a slight creamy head that faded rather quickly.

S: sweet caramel, some fresh apple fruitiness and fresh raisins.

T: The flavor was rich and sweet, with some smoked woodiness, roasted nuttiness, dried fruit and molasses. There were some apple and toffee notes as well rounding things out in the finish that ended slick and sweet on the tongue.

M: creamy, and slick on the tongue from the huge caramel backing.

D: A rich treat with a very good malt sweetness. Definitely not a session but could easily enjoy a couple of these and re-visit again.

 587 characters

Photo of phantomwyse
3.71/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Stained mahogany with twelve layers of varnish. Light khaki head that yields well spackled lacing.

S: Grape, cranberry, bread with brown sugar.

T: Soft dark fruit flavors with heavy oak and a touch of smokiness with an undercurrent of sweetness pulsing through the whole beer.

M: Dry and medium bodied that leaves you thirsting for another sip before you put the glass down.

D: Monet had paint, Mozart had his piano, Belhaven has malt.

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Photo of erosier
4.12/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L: Pours a deep amber-brown color with a tint of red as well. Nice big tan colored head that laces nicely on the way down.
S: Smells of sweet malts, heavy toasted malt, woody aromas, and a hint of alcohol at the end.
T: The malt is the big underlying flavor with layers of scotch, oak, and a hint of hops at the end.
M: Very smooth, warming, right amount of carbonation.
D: Very drinkable beer as I felt the alcohol wasn't too overwhelming and the flavors were all blended nicely.

 480 characters

Photo of xhcadamx
4.08/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Dirty amber with ruby highlights. Thick creamy head that is long lasting. Beautiful lacing.

S - Very complex. Smells like a fruit basket that has held several fruits. Hiding behind is some carmel malt.

T - Interesting. Sweet fruit with carmel malt. Not cloying but definitely sweet.

M - Medium bodied. I wish it was a little more chewy and had less carbonation.

D - These go down smooth and I am very interested in trying more from this style.

 451 characters

Photo of aeminter
4.55/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Deep deep amber, almost brown with a good cappuccino colored head and okay lacing.
The nose is malty, nutty and sweet.
Balanced, slightly sweet flavor almost reminds me of brandy soaked peaches. After taste reminiscent of breakfast tea.
I've only had one scotch ale before...I didn't like it, but this I like. Well worth the four bucks. We may even start serving this in the bar.

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Photo of popery
3.93/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Very nice Scotch Ale with excellent balance. This beer has a complex malt flavor and minerally hop bitterness. The liquid is a dark mahogany topped by a big, sticky, foamy head that leaves excellent lacing. The aroma is a bit on the mineral hop side, but I guess it could be the water. The malt is toasty, deep caramel with some thick doughy flavors. The hops are stronger than expected, and the beer is probably considered quite balanced. I almost wish that I could age it a bit to tone down the hop flavors, but that's just me. There are some slight medicinal notes lurking in the background. The feel is rich and creamy. It's a sweet beer that avoids being sticky. The beer gets better and better as the temperature increases.

 729 characters

Photo of SwiftyMcBeer
3.88/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass from a bottle. This is my first wee heavy and being absolutely naive to what "wee heavy" even means, I approached this beer with images of obese elves in my head.

Anyway, A small tan head dissipates rapidly with little to no lacing leaving a rich dark brown brew with hints or red racing through it. Beer smells really nice, sugary fruit, caramels, etc. I like it very much so.
If wee heavy means a malt-fest, then this is a wee heavy, never had this style before, but after a recent run of IPAs, I like it. Sweet, not overly sweet, but sweet. For about two seconds you feel like a load of concrete has been poured into your mouth, but this heaviness goes away rapidly, it's actually more of a medium body when it is all said and done.

I don't think I could drink a lot of these because the sweet taste would catch up with me, but one or two would do me just fine. I actually liked the beer a little bit more as it warmed up, seemed to bring out more flavors that cut the sweetness a little. Am I becoming a legit beer taster guy, or am I going crazy? Time will tell, but in either event, Wee Heavy from Bellhaven gets my stamp of approval. I will defintely seek out other Wee Heavys to try based on my time with this brew. Obese elves and I must have common tastes.

 1,294 characters

Photo of TMB0424
4.19/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

500 ML capped bottle. Poured into pint glass.

Pours a rich, deep amber brown. When held to the light, has reddish accents resembling a ruby. Light tan head is tight, reduces kinda quickly with little to no lacing in my glass. Pretty nice looking.

Smells of candied, sugared fruits. Great aroma. Up front is the sugar accompanied by caramel, with a dash of light, crisp fruit in the background. A nice buttery smell too.. hard to describe. Smoked buttery biscuits maybe. Nice.

Heavy, heavy on the malts. Lives up to its name. Very sweet, caramelized malts followed by a smokey finish with a tiny dash of hops and alcohol. Caramel is definitely on the forefront for me. Sugared fruits keeps entering my mind. Absolutely delicious.

The mouthfeel is where this beer gets me - it's incredible. It's so refreshing it seems light, but actually it's medium bodied, and yet still has that tiny bit of alcohol warmth that balances it out. It's creamy, smooth, smokey... just great.

Overall, a very drinkable brew. I could definitely down a few pints very easily. I could see the sweetness turning some people off, however. An outstanding scotch ale and in my opinion, one should try it at least once.

As this brew warms a little, the smokiness really comes out, moreso than before, and adds yet another impressive characteristic.

 1,325 characters

Photo of BedetheVenerable
3.79/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: Classy brown 16.9oz bottle with raised lettering. Served this one at cellar temp in a Samuel Smith's imperial pint.

Appearance: A medium pour produces a beautiful, rich dark copper brew, with steady, streaming carbonation and a thick light tan head with good retention.

Smell: Sweet, sugary candy and caramel notes backed by a mild fruitiness and wisps of smoke. The sweetness is almost a little bit overpowering. We shall see.

Taste: Big, toasty malts, a pronounced biscuit quality, slight toffee notes, mild dark fruit, and a mild, smoky, hoppy finish with just the slightest hint of alcohol. This is over all pretty darn tasty and is much more balanced than the aromas suggest.

Mouthfeel: Smooth and creamy, with decent weight.

Drinkability: 1-2 big pints of this would probably be sufficient, but it goes down pretty easy.

Conclusion: The flavors are tasty and well-defined, if a little bit delicate for the style, but this makes sense I guess, as it's a more moderate take on the style. Even so, this is a tasty brew and is a nice addition to a cold winter evening. This might even go well with a medium-sweet dessert.

 1,144 characters

Photo of stone3187
4.08/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep red copper color, smells of strong malt with a sligt earthiness coming from the hops. The taste is malt all the way through with a hop undertone that gives it balance. I am a big fan of the Wee Heavy style and this is a good representative, truly one of my favorites.

 280 characters

Photo of rye726
4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours as dark brown with hues of amber and a silky tan head. Really nice nose of ripe fruits, candy malts, and subtle hops. Taste not quite as impressive. It lacks the clean fruit presence found in the nose. Still a well balanced brew and good example of the style.

 265 characters

Photo of Hibernator
4.13/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Belhaven Wee Heavy
500 ML brown bottle
Served in a 20 oz imperial pint glass

Pours a deep dark brown with a reddish tint. An awesome head forms on top leaving excellent trails of sticky lacings all over the glassware. A really nice looking beer from the start.

Whiffs of malts, buttery sweetness and a hint of smoked wood.

Flavors of caramel malt, brown sugar. creamy butterscotch and prunes with a peat malt smoke quality. Super smooth to drink and heavy on the malts. A great representation of this style of beer and quite enjoyable overall.

 548 characters

Photo of droomyster
3.92/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Look: Pours a dark clear copper with tan head that sputters into some cool lacing.

Smell: Massively malty, with brown sugar and cherries. Quite a blast of aroma at first but you get used to it.

Taste: Dense on the malts ranging from biscuity to carmelized; pleasant sweetness. I feel a touch of alcohol before the earthy hops wipe it away.

Feel: Heavy at first and then the carbonation breaks it up. It's pretty cool actually.

Drink: I'll have a pint anytime but one of these is enough.

 494 characters

Photo of mcsquint
4.33/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 500ml bottle into dimpled mug.
A - Dark brown with ruby red highlights. 1 finger, persistent off-white head. Excellent lacing.
S - This is a maltfest. Caramel,roasted and chocolate with a notes of dried dark fruit.
T - Pretty much what the name implies. Heavy on the malt with the dark fruit being more prevalent than in the aroma. Sweet, but not overly so. The balance of malt amd hops definitely leaning to the malt side.
M - Full mouthfeel. Slick. Goes down well. Carbonation is on the low side, but that's a good thing.
D - Very drinkable; like an irish ale or strong ale with less hops. The higher ABV(6.5%)doesn't hurt! This style is not as popular as some other UK styles; try this one for a taste of the real deal.

 734 characters

Photo of BeardedBoffin
4.34/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours a dark caramel color with some amber highlights around the edges. Not much head developed after the initial pour, but what did materialize stuck around. The aroma on this beer is rich and deep with sweet malt, earthy hops, leather, and dark fruit. The beer has a solid medium-bodied consistency. Deep malt flavor characteristics with some sugary dark fruit. Finishes quickly with a little earthy hops for balance. All said, A well put together brew. This beer is the standard for the Wee Heavy style in my mind.

 527 characters

Photo of mntlover
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a rich mahogany color with nice two fingered light tan colored head, big and fluffy, falls slow to cap that leaves some decent lacing.

Aroma is nice sweet malt toasted caramel apples noted off the bat dies down some. Raisins, plums mixed with light peat and some smoke hints.

Taste is like nose nice malt base mingled with dark fruits earthy peat light smoke and lots of caramel. Flavor is good rich simple but complex and enjoyable. Nice finish that has light earthy, grassy hops to the mix its very tasty nice. Very right on style, very enjoyable.

Mouthfeel is big medium nice body good carbonation maybe but seems lighter then big medium at times big but easy drinking too.

Drinkability is good hell great representation of the style, a must try sorry it took me so long to get to it.

 797 characters

Photo of Blakaeris
4.08/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours dark murky copper with a white sticky head that hangs around awhile.

Aroma is sweet, bready caramel malt. dark fruit, brown sugar, and alcohol.

Taste is toasted caramel malt. Woody, earthy, with a mild smoke character. Plenty of rum soaked dark fruit. Sweetness gives way to a musty, dry finish.

Mouthfeel is slick and smooth.

A pretty tasty session brew. Plenty of subtle complexity to keep things interesting. Flavor is bold, but not overpowering.

 459 characters

Photo of EnojysAnyBeer
4.08/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- Hazy brown-red like caramel/apple-skin. Nice 2-finger head with good retention.

S- Sweet caramel malt and crisp apple hopping

T- Caramel apple no doubt.

M- Medium body and great carbonation

D- Very drinkable but a bit too sweet

Goes great with beef

 256 characters

Photo of BigJim5021
3.8/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a nice oaken brown with a good white head that settles into quite a bit 'o lacing.

Smells like caramel malts with a touch of fruitiness. Just a tiny bit, though.

Flavor is similar (unsurprisingly) to FFF's Robert the Bruce, which I happen to love. It's not as good as RtB, but it's definitely tasty. Malty and slightly sweet. A teensy (wee, if you will) taste of raisins pokes through. I personally don't like raisins on most occasions, but it works here, seeing as it's just on the finish.

Mouthfeel is too thin, but not enough to spoil the party. I like my beer to finish dry, and Belhaven's Wee doesn't disappoint there.

Overall, we're looking at a very drinkable beer. It's not the greatest thing in the world, and not even my favorite brew done in a Scottish style; but I (aye?) do like it.

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Photo of bashiba
4.14/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a nice dark Clear Mahogany color with a thick and fluffy off white head.

The smell was very light and had a light bit of grain and a hint of dark fruit.

Had a big full malty flavor with nice hints of oak, peat, and a big smoky taste. Light bit of dark fruits seep through as it warms. Just enough hops balance it out nicely.

The mouthfeel is full with a long dry finish.

Nice and drinkable, spot on for this style, I though the Smell was a bit lacking, but otherwise really good across the board.

 507 characters

Photo of illidurit
3.88/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass. Dark mahogany that turns ruby red with a strong backlight. Light tan two-finger head that leaves decent lacing.

Aromas of English cookies and toffee, only a touch of smoky peatiness.

Taste is rich dark malts with a little peat influence. Excellent balance; not too sweet and not too smokey.

Perfect carbonation, medium body. Just a really solid beer. Not a huge beer like many of the American examples of the style, but a solid, drinkable, tasty beer.

 480 characters

Photo of DoubleJ
3.48/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Half-liter bottle consumed with dinner and poured into a chalice. On to the beer:

Attractive bronzish-like color on the pour, but more of a mix of ruby red and brown. The head is ample on top. Solid aroma to be found, some plums, sweet malt, and a kick of booze. Upon tasting it, I was caught by surprise. Big whisky barrel flavor with sharp alcohol poking through. It's the most dominant flavor in the beer. Hint of figs. Toffee emerges as the beer warms, but remains subtle. The body is nothing to get excited about, thin enough to create problems...such as the somewhat messy booze in the taste.

How odd....this is one of the lightest Wee Heavy's I've had, and it turns out to be the booziest in flavor. It's still a solid beer, try it out if you're into the style.

 771 characters

Photo of WHROO
4.26/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Ruby Red, 1 finger head, no head retention or lacing...although good carbonation
S: Sweet malts, toffee, caramel, biscuit & bread.
T: Same although throw in some butter & a touch bitter to finish - nice balance.
M: Quite light for a 6%...little palate stickyness though (buttery)...I think this is quite usual with UK scotch ales yeah? (Diacetyl thingy)
D: not a prob...although after a few would probably turn to a clean lager to cleanse the palate.

 454 characters

Wee Heavy from Belhaven Brewery Company Ltd.
Beer rating: 4.06 out of 5 with 1,061 ratings
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