78 Anniversary Ale | Bootlegger's Brewery

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13 Ratings

Brewed by:
Bootlegger's Brewery
California, United States

Style: Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.80%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by DoubleJ on 04-29-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 13 |  Reviews: 7
Reviews by jminsc76:
Photo of jminsc76
4.2/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 2 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at The Library Alehouse a month or two ago.

Pours virtually no head, at all, atop a purplish body. Nothing happens as I swirl as there is no head. At all.

Aromas of peat, smoke, toffee, and malts. Mostly peat. Mmmmm, intense and complex. I could *whiff* me this for hours.

Similar to the aromas, flavors are smoky and peaty. Smooth, balanced. Drinks a lot like Alaskan's smoked porter but with substantially more caramel malts and significantly less roasted malts (virtually zero).

Mouthfeel is light to medium-bodied, with a mild softness permeating throughout the palate.

Overall, a smooth drinkin' Wee Heavy, with the added bonus of also drinking somewhat like a Scotch. Or at least a Scotch-flavored ale. Fantastic, and other than the lack of head this is a damn good way to celebrate an "Anniversary".

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More User Reviews:
Photo of wethorseblanket
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%

Photo of womencantsail
3.58/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Bootlegger's

A: The pour is a dark amber color, perhaps brown, with a thin layer of off-white head.

S: You can definitely get the smoke from this one. Toffee and toasted malt, along with a hint of caramel, provide the sweetness. There is a hint of metal, however. As it warms up, some vanilla comes out.

T: Smoke and peat are the dominant flavors as I take the first few sips. Things don't change much throughout the glass. Sweet caramel and toffee, lots of toasted bread, and a surprising fruitiness--perhaps some golden raisins and sweet apples.

M: Medium in body with a moderate level of carbonation.

O: I must, in fairness, say that smokey beers aren't my favorite. This one, however, manages to keep the smoke in check (despite it being a primary flavor).

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Photo of Lucasperea
4/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of Cavery
3.65/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from notes dated July 17th

poured into bootleggers moonshine jars (this has got to go)

A: Dark jelly with strawberry reds and off white coffee foams. There's an almost cola like character to the visual. Looks very much like a homemade soda-pop. Fizzy carbonation sizzles in the glass like a teppanyaki grill. It's like a jam fajita.

S: Light sweet mesquite BBQ smoke with buttery scotch notes. Very light with full flavors. The alcohol comes off cool and inoffensive. Slight maple toffee sweetness in the end. A good outdoor barbecue nose, sniffs of summer.

T: Tastes like a scotch spritzer. Light scotch soda pop with a distinct cane sugar sweetness. The beer is sweet but not requiring an insulin shot. Cola scotch tea with floral tea hopping. This is certainly an iced tea, as there is no hotness from the alcohol at all. Seriously, did they just flavor this with ACME scotch replacer? Bizarre lack of heat for the style.

M: Fuzzy soft mouth with a medium full body. Micro fiber like mesh feel that really keeps the presumably wetting ABV off the tongue. Magically light scotch soda-pop, oh where art though alcohol, because it's certainly not evident in the mouth.

O: Quite good, the cane sugar sweetness does this well. The drinkability is solid considering the style. Really though the scotch flavor comes off a bit artificial, even syrup extract like. The beer feels great and drinks solid, though the flavor is flat in areas where the mouth isn't. A contrast mind-game, and not a desirable one.

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Photo of Klym
3.88/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on top at the brewer (in a jar, of course).

A: Black cherry against the light with some strength in the red hues, no head (more likely due to the pour than the beer), and a tad of ring-lacing.

S: Honestly, pretty straight forward roasted wheat with a touch of watermelon to me. No hotness in the nose.

T: Very similar to the mouth, roasted wheat and grain, a mysterious thicker note borderlining on chocolate/coffee, and a very unexpected hit of peppermint in the finish. Taste is mellow, but no hotness tasted.

M: Carbonation is mild but fits the style, and there seems to be a granular residue left in the mouth after drinking the beer but I think that's also very fitting for the taste profile. No hotness in the mouthfeel.

O: A nice scotch ale. Very drinkable and very natural flavors.

 802 characters

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.56/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the Bootlegger's 5th Anniversary Celebration held at The Muckenthaler Cultural Center in Fullerton, CA.

Billed as a smoked Scotch ale.

Pours a murky orange-brown with a foamy khaki head that settles to tiny wisps of film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace slowly drip into the remaining beer on the drink down. Smell is of toasted malt, smoked malt, brown sugar, and caramel aromas. Taste is much the same with an earthy smoke flavor on the finish. There is a mild amount of roasty bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer but at 3 years old this one is showing some age in my opinion.

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Photo of DoubleJ
3.82/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bootleggers' anniversary ale of 2011, celebrating 78 years of the repeal of Prohibition. As usual for me, on-tap at the source, and on to the beer:

It's a lighter brown color with hues of orange and not much in the way of head. The nose....that's peat smoke alright, and it jumps right at ya. There's a little more character in the taste, but like the aroma, the peat smoke stands out above all else. A small dose of raisins and unsweetned choclolate run around the edges of the smoke. The smokeiness also at times gives it a snap of smoked bacon.

To put it short, I liked this.

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Photo of zestar
3.5/5  rDev -6.9%

Photo of Vanlingleipa
4.2/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I was sitting on a bench at Bootlegger's one fine day when the owner came over with a sample and uttered my favorite beer phrase 'Try this.'

Delicious. A few weeks later I attended the Bootlegger's 3rd anniversary party and officially sampled their 78 Anniversary Scotch Ale for the first time. Not so delicious.

The difference? The first taster was warm, straight from the vat while the second was ice cold. Hence, my introduction to how very much temperature can affect the ability to taste certain flavors.

So when I have a hankering for 78 - which has been in the regular tap rotation at Bootlegger's since April - I buy a second beer and let the 78 get to room temp. Cold, it's more like ice coffee.

Excellent smokiness throughout from sip to swallow. Residual flavors like malt and toffee. Very little alcohol burn for a 7.8. Wonder where they put it? Warm afterglow from the smoke flavor. One of my Bootlegger's favorites.

In the glass, the brew has medium-thin body and is very dark brown with a hint of red. Not much scent.

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Photo of t0rin0
3.25/5  rDev -13.6%

Photo of 2beerdogs
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%

Photo of Mister_Joshy
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%

78 Anniversary Ale from Bootlegger's Brewery
Beer rating: 3.76 out of 5 with 13 ratings