Old Factory Whistle Scottish Ale | Penobscot Bay Brewery

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Old Factory Whistle Scottish AleOld Factory Whistle Scottish Ale
35 Ratings
Old Factory Whistle Scottish AleOld Factory Whistle Scottish Ale

Brewed by:
Penobscot Bay Brewery
Maine, United States

Style: Scottish Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Old Factory Whistle, our signature ale, is patterned after red ales that have a rich Scottish heritage.

This ale utilizes crystal, pale, chocolate and Munich malts with a dose of roasted barley resulting in a complex mixture of the toasty flavors of caramel malt and sweetness, and a classic rich red color.

English Kent Golding hops add to the depth and help produce that pleasing balance.

Added by Yeastcakes on 05-01-2009

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 35 |  Reviews: 21
Photo of Satchboogie
2/5  rDev -39%

Photo of rderedin
2.25/5  rDev -31.4%

Photo of PEBKAC
2.41/5  rDev -26.5%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1.5

Bottle shared around the table at a tasting this past weekend.

Poured into my Yards mug.

Dreary rust brown color. Minuscule amount of head.

Smell is of old leather, band aids & something like fruit punch. I'm a bit weirded out by this one, but curious enough to keep going. (Hears the move theater yell, "Run you idiot, run!") :o

Tastes of hairy/stale bread, more leather, more plastic, acrid smoke, burnt caramel, cream, & a fresh(wha?) note of grassy hops. I feel lost.

Mouthfeel was actually alright, with mellow carbonation & it not being very sticky, but I obviously had other concerns.

Bad dog. :|

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Photo of psdriscoll
2.5/5  rDev -23.8%

Photo of DIM
2.53/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

a: This was a chill-hazed coppery mahogany color. Bit of a gusher here, even a careful pour yielded a snifter half full of foam. The head quickly faded to a big bubbled ring around the glass.

s: Oddly enough, spicy, slightly minty, floral hops take center stage. I got some caramel and a little ginger as well, but this is definitely more bitter than sweet. As it warmed, noticeable alcohol emerged.

t: Very moderate sweetness up front in the form of taffy and caramel. The finish is a little flowery and quite bitter. There is also some burnt plastic at the very end.

m: Medium bodied with ample, fizzy carbonation.

d: Not sure what else to say about this one. Definitley off-style, but that isn't very important to me. This just doesn't taste good.

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Photo of indiapaleale
2.7/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Old Factory Whistle pours, for lack of a better term, aggressively. No lack of carbonation with this beer and its actually on the side of a bit too much carbonation. The head erupts over the side of the glass just about and I've got some time to kill before it subsides enough to drink.

The aroma is very grainy, like soggy cereal. There is also a brown sugar or caramel sweetness along with some slightly disagreeable smells that might be associated with rotting vegetables.

The initial flavor reminds me of butterscotch schnapps for a second or two. Its definitely sweet, borderline cloying. Lots of grainy flavor and caramel. There is also a slight flavor of medicinal alcohol that I can't quite shake. Tough to keep going with this one.

This beer was actually set aside as it was a bit rough. I ended up opening a bottle of Hair of the Dog Blue Dot Imperial IPA and moving on BUT because I love beer so much and because I hate to pour a beer down the drain I did go back and finish the Old Factory Whistle before going to bed (and waking up with a bit of a headache).

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Photo of CSeavey64
2.75/5  rDev -16.2%

Photo of Bierman9
2.81/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

My "Bro", Artied2, picked up a bomber of this last week during a foray through Maine, and we shared it last evening. Label has a fairly detailed description of the ingredients.

Poured into a pint glass, the bier was a clear, deep mahogany hue, with a thin, wispy beige head. Left minimal lacing in the glass. Nose was light, with a bit of floral hops but not much in the way of malt. Body was near-medium, and the feel had some carbo prickliness present.

Flavor? Well... It was supremely dry right off the bat. Where's the malty sweetness? Also has nothing in the way of peaty or smoky attributes. There was a distinct bitterness up front, likely from the roasted barley. There's some hoppiness, with earthy, floral hops lending more bitterness to the proceedings. I hope this was an off bottle, otherwise, Yikes! Neither of us cared for it, and we both poured something different to get a better taste in our mouths. Nowhere near what a Scottish Ale should be.

look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | drink: 2.5


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Photo of jsled
2.83/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Thin is the word for this beer. It's a bit too light, a bit too watery, a bit not caramel-y enough, a bit not as malty as I'd like, a bit too ... meh. There's no hop presence, which is to be expected, of course.

There's nothing particularly bad about it, but the characteristics of the style don't really stand out, either.

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Photo of oregonskibum
2.92/5  rDev -11%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a tulip glass.

A: Color is a coca-cola brown. Pours with a 1 1/2 inch noticeable fizzy head that drops off very quickly to a flat appearance.

S: Faint caramel malts along with a flavor I can't quite identify (not really a good flavor either). Overall, smell is not very remarkable and pretty bland.

T: Lots of caramel, toffee sweetness up front. Some wet breadiness in mid taste. The finish dies quickly and without much fanfare.

M: Medium body with limited carbonation.

D: This is fairly light and easy to drink, but not very enjoyable. Would not seek this out again.

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Photo of papollo
3/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I rate everything average. This is an "average" micro. Not especially off-putting, but not very exciting either. It beats the BMC, but isn't my first choice with lots to choose from.

It's a typical pale ale, certainly not approaching a Scottish Ale.

I'll support a local brewery. My next taste will be in 3-4 months. Til then, I'll not be repurchasing this with so much better on the shelf.

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Photo of erlenmeyer
3/5  rDev -8.5%

Photo of Rochefort10nh
3/5  rDev -8.5%

Photo of rab53
3/5  rDev -8.5%

Photo of BeerKangaroo
3.08/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Into my nonic:

A: deep rich dark brown body that leaves a half finger creamy tan head, it lasts for about thirty seconds. Some spotty, spider webbed lacing appears. No carbonation is seen rising.

S: toasty breadiness with a caramel buttery background.

T: has the previously stated smells combined evenly.

M: medium, pretty watery, but not a bad watery, perhaps slightly expected. This is fairly drinkable.

O: I've had better Scottish ales and probably wouldn't seek this one out again at least from the bottle. However, I am interested in more beers from Penobscot Bay Brewery.

 582 characters

Photo of jdhilt
3.11/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a two finger off-white head that fades slowly, leaving some lace. Crystal clear deep amber/garnet color. Malt/hop nose. Light-medium carbonation and medium bodied. Flavor has some maltiness with the hops close by. Lingering hop aftertaste. Not my idea of a scotch ale. There are better like Great Divide's Claymore Scotch Ale. Pricey for what we are getting at $6.70 for a 22oz bottle from Tully's Beer & Wine Wells, Me.

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Photo of lordofthewiens
3.16/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I liked this beer, even though it didn't have all the attributes of a Scottish ale. Garnet color, medium-sized off white head. Sweet fruit aroma, a little bit of caramel. It tasted a little bit like a caramel apple, with some bittering hops coming in late. A little thin in the mouth. Despite the tepid review, I'll probably try it again.

 338 characters

Photo of deltatauhobbit
3.16/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours an dark amber brown color with a thin head, fades fast and leaves no lacing, the color is intensely murky.

Smell is very weak although I can make out some grainy malt and some grassy hops.

Taste is a bit too assertive in the carbonation, mostly caramel malt with a weird grassy aftertaste, rather thin as well, that aftertaste is really score killer though.

This is the first beer from a new brewery, hopefully things only get better from here on out. I've read that they're hoping to open a distillery as well (other than the current winery and new brewery), which opens the door for many interesting barrel-aged beers. There's definitely potential if that's the case, they already have the wine down pat, give it time for the beer.

 742 characters

Photo of Jason
3.2/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

22oz brown bottle with no freshness date.

LOOK: Nearly clear brassy color, quick to froth to the top ... almost a gusher when poured in the glass.

SMELL: Yeast, toasted bread, caramel, hay, herbal hop, fallen apples, buttery

TASTE: Smooth, sweet caramel, very grassy, toasted husk, minimal hopping, estery, yeast, vegtal, broth, bone dry

Not much depth at all and a bit messy, if it was cleaned up and not so dry it would be a damn good beer.

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Photo of lzepplin01
3.25/5  rDev -0.9%

Photo of Bierliebhaber3
3.38/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

This Scotch ale pours a dark reddish brown color with a big foamy tan head. The smell is very mild, but is obviously malt oriented with caramel and grains being the dominant contributors. The flavors are more grain heavy than caramel heavy, which is not typical for a scotch ale in my experience. The flavor has a distinctly German flair, which is kind of confusing in a scotch ale also. Yeast and toasted bread also combined with a mild hop bitterness, which seems fine. There is a slight metallic taste as well, which is a flaw here. The body is medium. Both the body and the alcohol presence seem a little light for me compared to my favorite scotch ales. The finish is quite dry. Not bad to drink besides a slight metallic flaw, but definitely a bit confused. It tastes more like a slightly sweetened German lager to me than it does a scotch ale.

 850 characters

Photo of gueuzeonhigh
3.43/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a caramel color reddish brown. Produced a short lived frothy head.

Slight nose with a slightly flowery aroma and a tad of hops.

When I see the term "scottish ale" I'm accustomed to a rather hearty flavor and a brawny mouthfeel.

This beer as a scottish ale is a rather meek and mild flavor.
The flavor is a mild hops bitterness and not much else.

The flavor continues and the bitterness remains as it traverses into a finish.

The mouthfeel is thin and light weight with a touch of effervescence..

Drinkability is good-- the beer is not heavily alcoholic and while it's a light bodied beer (when I expected a much more robust flavor) it's still quite enjoyable.

Now whether it's was worth it's $6+ for a 1pt 6oz bottle is another question. There are a lot of wonderful beers out there...

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Photo of GarthDanielson
3.55/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured on-tap and served in a tumbler pint, the beer is a clean, vibrant, ruby-copper coloring with a filmy ring of head. Aromas of rich malt and nut, with caramel and booze highlights. Flavors are rich and roasted, with a caramel tang overtone. Floral and syrupy sweet highlights over the palate, also. Decent cling while you drink, with a sugar sweet and thistle aftertaste. The finish is rich and slick. Different twist on a solid style. Interesting brew.

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Photo of ChipChaight
3.61/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of bishopdc0
3.64/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Good dark amber color with a thick head. There is little aroma with the beer a slight sweet smell. The taste starts sweet but quickly turns to a roasted caramel and it finishes with a nice bitterness. This is a refreshing beer with a variety of flavors that come in.

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Old Factory Whistle Scottish Ale from Penobscot Bay Brewery
Beer rating: 3.28 out of 5 with 35 ratings