Caledonian 80/- | The Caledonian Brewing Company

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Caledonian 80/-Caledonian 80/-
Very Good
136 Ratings
Caledonian 80/-Caledonian 80/-

Brewed by:
The Caledonian Brewing Company
Scotland, United Kingdom

Style: Scottish Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.10%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by UnionMade on 11-06-2000

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 136 |  Reviews: 98
Photo of jazzyjeff13
3.73/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A 500ml bottle with a BB of Dec 2011. Described on the rear label as a blend of six malts and three types of hops.

Poured into a Sam Smith's pint glass. A clear coppery-amber colour with good carbonation. Yields a large off-white head of foam with a creamy texture and decent retention. Aroma of sweet, grainy malt with hints of roasted grain and caramel/toffee.

Tastes of slightly sweet malt with a mild bitterness. Notes of grain and caramel with faint hints of chocolate and roasted malt. Underpinned by a subtle leafy bitterness, although no aromatic hops are discernible. Mouthfeel is smooth, tingly and somewhat astringent. Aftertaste of mild bitter malt.

A highly drinkable ale with an undemanding but moreish flavour. The sweetness, grainy notes and mild bitterness all blend perfectly to create a pleasing beer. Well worth sampling if you encounter it.

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Photo of paxkey
1.36/5  rDev -63.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

different can than one pictured. can is black and not striped.

rust colored beer poured into a nonic. generous offwhite head. rocky.

that is a hit to the nose. getting almost a celery-like aroma. might be the malts, sensing some grain in the back of that powerful note coming from the glass. some alcohol underneath the main aroma. i'm sensing the smell may be mostly from the hops actually. is it bad? freshness date says jan 31,2012. smelling horseradish now. its a strong smell its unusual and not entirely welcoming but i will taste anyway.

ya that is off. spit it back in glass. feh.

better luck next time caledonian...luckily i have a fresh weihenstephaner

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Photo of biegaman
3.85/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Caledonian 80/- looks the product of layers upon layers of brown and amber shades laminated one atop the other; it is a deep-set tone with a heavily lacquered tawny overlay. It has as much clarity as a whiskey but a much denser, heavier look and is crowned with a loose splashing of stagnant white suds that travel part of the way up the glass.

I feel as though I've just stepped into some kind of secret garden; the smell of scorched earth and peat reverberates with tremendous presence. A mead (fermented honey)-like sweetness silently stoops behind the notes of heather and peaty tree bark. Vapors of fruity esters and a little kettle caramelization rounds things out nicely.

Caledonian 80/- doesn't smell or taste much like I remember it smelling and tasting. It is much more distinct than I recall, with a far more pronounced peatiness and is buried knee deep in a smoky, scorched earth flavour. Chances are hops could be partly behind that earthiness, although the beer's bitterness is not by any means compelling.

I might be mistaken, but my first (and last) few times trying this beer were from a nitro-can, which would explain why this sample doesn't possess the same creamy texture I remember it having. It also provides a clue about why the beer seems so much more rounded, complete and confident; the unapologetic peat, gritty earthiness and smoky, dry finish.

Caledonian 80/- should be exactly what you think of when you close your eyes and imagine a Scottish ale. It has a distinctive peaty character that portrays the true charm of Scotland, something that North American (or English) brewers are simply incapable of capturing. It certainly earns a spot alongside haggis in the Scots' gastronomic highlight reel.

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Photo of bylerteck
3.38/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a nice deep copper/ruby colour. Fizzy, creamy two finger eggshell head. Mild to medium carbonation. As head fades, it remains in the form of a nice cap, leaving a small amount of lacing. Bright.

S - Toasty, sweet, quite malty, caramel. Very mild.

T - Metallic, sweet caramel, and that toasted or smoky sort of characteristic is present again. Not overly sweet, but fairly malt forward. Nice but not overly tasty or complex.

M - Fair amount of body for such a low abv, clocking in around medium. Low to medium carbonation with a sweet finish.

D - Nothing seriously deep or interesting about this, but it's easy to drink and quite flavourful. The smokiness is what really dominates the taste, making it somewhat difficult to get down quickly, but the sweetness backing it up is a good balance. Not bad, not amazing, I'd drink it if someone offered it.

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Photo of StJamesGate
3.97/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours pale rosy tan with a loose off white head that surprisingly holds. Whisky brack nose: raisin, barrel, malt. Sugar roasted almond malts and prickly ginger spice tea hops Dry finish. Minty linger. Lively, light-medium, some stick.

Balanced and the flavors work very harmoniously together. Especially appreciate the hops presence - first conscious experience of WGV, which are seemingly a high alpha Goldings variant.

One of the better examples of the style.

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Photo of Zimbo
4.23/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear dark copper brown with a rich head which stays the distance.
Truly smooth and slightly fat and rich on the tongue like velvet.
Loads of treacly malt with elements of pear. Vinous, morish and rich to taste. Ends that way too. Very satisfying.
From a well kept cask this really sings.

One of Scotland's best examples of 80/-, the seemingly disappearing beer style.
May it always be brewed in direct flame open fire kettles in Slateford.

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Photo of case4816
3.61/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Dark Auburn brown, orange hints in Colour. Very clear. Head poured very foamy, and dissipated fairly quickly and did not really linger, just some spots of the head remained for any real amount of time

S- Heavy Caramel smell, lots of Vanilla as well. Can also smell the nice lightly roasted malts. Can also detect the alcohol in the smell. There is a light hint of some coffee (from the malts) as well, but not very much. Also fairly yeasty smell can be detected.

T- Tastes heavy of the caramel and vanilla combination. The malts are very heavy tasting as well. The taste of the alcohol comes through a little, but is not that bad cause it's not overpowering at all. The coffee flavour is also there but only just a hint. There is also an unpleasant flavour of yeast that is detectable the longer the beer sits on the tongue.

D- Very drinkable, but nothing special. Tastes just like a standard Scottish Ale, almost like a Red Ale to me.

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Photo of MattyV
3.6/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a deep amber colour with fluffy off-white head that recedes to a thin ring and leaves a few sporadic gobs of lacing.

Aroma is all malt; bread and caramel.

Flavour is malt-heavy, as expected. Sweet caramel and bread notes with a light roastiness; very rich tasting. The roasted malt flavour lends a touch of bitterness to maintain balance. Some very slight fruitiness detected, presumably the hops trying to make their presence known.

Medium body and carbonation.

This is successfully malt-dominant without being overly sweet. That being said, while an enjoyable beer, more than one would probably be too much. Would have enjoyed more fruity hoppiness, which would've definitely helped its drinkability for me.

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

Amber-red color with an inch head the dissipates to a mild skim.

Aromas of sweet caramel with some toasted notes. A fruity character is there but nothing in particular stands out.

Taste is really great working together with the caramel and toastiness with that odd fruit character coming through as well. Clean on the pallet yet complex.

Mouthfeel is medium with a good level of carbonation.

Surprised at how good this one was, I want more, one can isn't enough. Quite sessionable I must say.

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Photo of kwjd
3.23/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a amber colour with thin head with a small amount of lacing on some parts of the glass. Smells of caramel and bread with maybe the faintest hint of hops. Small bitterness, but more sweetness comes through in the flavour. Fairly thin mouthfeel. I would like to try this on cask as I suspect it would be much better.

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Photo of spinrsx
3.03/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

500ml can poured into a pint glass

Appearance - pours a clear copper brown colour with a fair size foamy off white head. Lots of carbonation showing, and also some decent lacing. The head dissipated fairly quickly.

Smell - this beer has some hops up front and some caramel notes. Also a nutty aroma and slightly metallic.

Taste & Mouth - Average amount of carbonation on the drink, light hops and malts at first, a pleasing not overpowering taste. The middle of the drink brings a malty/almond like sweetness, followed by a slightly bitter finish. It's too bad that the beer is a little on the watery side

Drink - A nice well rounded beer that has a little of everything. The richness of a dark beer, but the refreshing aspect of a light beer.

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Photo of kjyost
3.84/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice rich and clear orange-red with a moderate head, but no lacing. Very enjoyable aroma with notes of caramel, toffee and bread. Taste has many of the same notes, but it seems thin at times, almost watery. No substantial bitterness nor hop aroma. The thinness is the only drawback to the beer, killing the mouthfeel. Nevertheless, an enjoyable and drinkable beer.

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Photo of champ103
4.52/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a slighlty hazy dark brown color. A one finger beige head forms with good retention. Lots of patchy lace is left behind.
S: This is awesome. At first some toasted caramel aromas. Though that quickly gives way to a great fruity aroma. Pears, cherries are present. A tart green apple aroma lingers on that is great.
T: Follows the nose. Lots of toffee and sweet malt. A huge fruity flavor. A medely of pears and cherries. One of the biggest tart, green apple flavor I have come across for the style. Just amazing.
M/D: A medium to full body. Velvety smooth, creamy and rich. This is something I can drink all day long.

This is amazing. A great cask offering. One of the best Scottish Ales I have come across. There is really no smoky peat character, but what is here is really unique. A perfect example of a Scottish brewery pushing the bounderies. Highly recommended to say the least.

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Photo of jonnypopgun
3.36/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pleasant enough drinking, if not exceptional. Only the faintest of aromas, not the best in that department. Flavour is chiefly sweet and malty. Nicely carbonated. Pretty much no bitterness at all. Good session beer, but prefer Deuchars IPA from this brewery. Would like to try on tap and have spotted it somewhere, so may report back...

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Photo of seand
3.98/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a clear brown with an off white head. Enough of the head retains to leave a small amount of lacing.

S: Sweet, light fruit and brown sugar.

T: Sweet but nicely balanced, with some subtle but noticeable hops on the finish.

M: Medium body, medium carbonation.

D: Drinks very nicely, would be a good session beer.

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Photo of imprezawrxsti
4/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured out of a 500ml bottle purchased at the Odd Bins on the Royal Mile in Edinburgh.

Pours out a dark gold, almost brown colour. Some lacing remains, even almost half an hour after pouring.

Tastes of nuts and malt, slight citrus notes, coriander. Really tasty. Just enough fizz that one can tell it's there. This claims to be "the definitive Scottish style ale", and tastes like a good benchmark to start from. Feels just heavy enough in the mouth, not syrupy, but with a presence.

Definitely a good choice, certainly better than the Tennent's that started the night.

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Photo of ericj551
4.17/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Caledonian 80/- pours a bright amber with a nice lingering layer of head. The aroma is malty and fruity, with some caramel, toffee and butterscotch. The flavor is nice and malty and a bit sweet without being cloying. There is a bit of ripe dark fruit, and some darker crystal toasted sweetness. Some light buttery diacetyl comes through in the end. The finish is crisp and almost heavy, very flavorful for a beer of it's strength.

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Photo of biboergosum
3.53/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours a clear medium reddish amber colour, with two fingers of creamy off-white head, which leaves some scattered lace in its wake. It smells of sweet, fruity biscuit malt. The taste is caramel and biscuit malt, some mild generic fruitiness, and mild muddled, kind of mineral-like hops. The carbonation is soft, the body medium weight, smooth, and fleshy, and it finishes off-dry, with a bit more of that indeterminate fruitiness.

A decent enough session ale, but a bit on the sweet, non-bitter side for me, though.

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Photo of jhall00
2.73/5  rDev -27.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A- Pours a reddish brown with light initial head that quickly recedes to only a faint tan lace

S- malty nutty smell

T- initial maltiness that fades to the light hops bitterness with a hint of smokiness

M- light body with residual hops bitterness. large amount of carbonization, in my opinion, too much carbonation for the style.

D- Okay light body beer. Nothing memorable.

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Photo of cfrancis
3.29/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Aroma is faint, but there is malt, woodsmoke and barley. Colour is a gorgeous brown/gold colour. Taste is malt with a woodsmoke aftertaste. Great mouthfeel and good balance. Funny that they call this a bitter since there is very little bitter taste to it.

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Photo of zoso493
2.78/5  rDev -26.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Well, having reviewed this beer from the tap earlier, I decided to give the bottle a go. I gave the tap version a D- because it was truly a bad beer, but after having read a lot of other reviews, I thought I may have had a completely different beer. I've had it on tap twice, and it tasted the same both times, so let's see what the bottle has going on.

Appearance: Pours a watery-looking reddish-brown with a nice eggshell colored two-finger head. Honestly, it looks a little thin, but the head gives me hope.

Smell: Ah, yes, this is the same beer I had on tap. Smells very much of sweet malts, but this time has a nicer aroma of some faint hops.

Taste: Upfront is a slight malt sweetness that finishes with a decent but light hop bitterness. Really not a hell of a whole lot going on.

Mouthfeel: Very light, thin and watery, as the appearance had indicated. Good amount of carbonation, though. Does leave a sort of soapy feeling in your mouth.

Drinkability: Not so bad, I guess. I would never want to have more than one of these, but it's fine.

Overall, this was definitely a better experience than what I had on tap, but I certainly would still maintain that this beer is mediocre at best. Try it if you must, but I wouldn't recommend it.

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Photo of MeisterBurger
3.35/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a reddish brown, nice and clear, with a respectable if not particularly showy head.

The aroma is malty with hints of freshly torn Italian bread crusts with a bit of herbal hops and aluminum.

The taste is similar, very bready and malty with only a hint of herbal hops in the finish. Nuts. There's a weird metallic dryness in the aftertaste I find off-putting. It's all a little watery.

Mouthfeel is a little harsh. I'd like to try the nitro-can or cask version for comparison. I think it would help.

It's drinkable enough I suppose but not one I'd seek out again any time soon.

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Photo of ecoastman
4.05/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Drinkability - very easy to drink. This is a slightly earthy-hop type beer so it's not my personal favourite - but it's definitely worth a try.

Appearance - a nice clear dark copper with a good head to start and recedes to a thin layer.

Smell - malty chocolate-caramel sweet with some clean herbal hops in the balance.

Taste - The malt isn't too sweet off the start and the transition is smooth to some slightly earthy hops. There's also some faint smokiness present.

Mouthfeel - thin / watery and smooth. Low carbonation and quite refreshing. Slightly course in the finish.

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Photo of DerBayer
3.48/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a light chestnut colour with creamy head

Smells of malt and hops with slight floral and herbal character

Tastes of the above - well balanced

Mouthfeel is adequate for the sztyle - a bit flat

Yes definitely drinkable but not great will try again though

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Photo of crowncapcollect
1.95/5  rDev -48.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

Pint on tap, Pub who's name I've forgotten, Edinburgh

Scotland produces some really good beers these days, not like ten years ago, but this is not one of them.

It is really too sweet and malty. I rarely leave beer behind, and had to force myself to finish this one. But, the same brewery makes Deuchars, which is delightful.

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Caledonian 80/- from The Caledonian Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.76 out of 5 with 136 ratings