Traquair House Ale | Traquair House Brewery Lld

BA SCORE
92
outstanding
1,067 Ratings
Traquair House AleTraquair House Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Traquair House Brewery Lld
Scotland, United Kingdom
traquair.co.uk

Style: Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by kbub6f on 06-07-2000

BEER STATS
Ratings:
1,067
Reviews:
619
Avg:
4.16
pDev:
10.1%
 
 
Wants:
141
Gots:
113
For Trade:
1
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,067 |  Reviews: 619
Photo of Sparty55
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%

Photo of cswhitehorse
4.3/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The House Ale pours a murky dark reddish with a finger foam head that dissipates pretty quickly. It tricks you as it looks like you see some small rounds suds but they soon go back to their home and not stay on the sides of the glass.

The smell is sweet and of figs. The taste is smooth and it malt dominated up front but as it lingers on the palate it is bitter. Very cool. It has a earthiness to it like a mushroom from the ground. Overall the best scotch ale or strong Scottish ale I have tasted to date.

 508 characters

Photo of ajs4bd
3.75/5  rDev -9.9%

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

Photo of themind
4/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of crookedhalo
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep coppery chestnut color with a pillowy tan head. Dark crystal malt aroma and a peaty earthiness (compost pile) mixed with a healthy yeast smell, too. Caramelly sweet with the same earthiness coming through in the taste. A little bit of vinous hop character, but predominantly malty. Alcohol noticable but masked with malty goodness. Best Scotch ale in the world, hands down. The quality of a Belgian trappist, only from Scotland. Enjoy at 55-60 degrees.

 465 characters

Photo of yelterdow
4.07/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served in a Duvel tulip at cellar temperature.

Appearance- Deep chestnut with just a hint of red. A three inch head rolls and expands from the beer, settling to a thin mat in a few minutes. Lacing is stretchy and spotty.

Smell- Huge, gigantic malts and a blend of leather and fruit... not unlike a well structured Old Ale. Some alcohol strength shows in the aroma. The faintest notes of smoke and beef jerky as it opens up.

Taste- Rich, dark malt flavors slowly give way to sweet, booze soaked fig-like fruits... very big indeed, even for a wee-heavy. The hop bitterness is showcased, mildly, in the finish.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability- Relatively quiet in the mouth, even with some gentle swishing the bubbles don't seem to want to emerge. Surprisingly thin as the beer gradually warms, but certainly big in flavor and warmth. A bolder and more full-flavored alternative to some of our more available Scotch Ales.

 923 characters

Photo of kmo1030
4.33/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

this house ale is a beautiful rich ruby brown with a very pale thin head. it smells somewhat buttery with a hint of fruit, maybe grapes. the taste is something between a tangy chocolate and toffee. something a little walnutty there too...and again, like the smell, something reminiscent of fruit, but i can't put my finger on it, really, really nice though. good thick mouthfeel, with more carbonation than i expected. overall a real treat, that i'll definitely be trying again (so expensive though).

 500 characters

Photo of Jredner
3.94/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Spiced raisins, dates and a good bit of alcohol and peat in the aroma. Poured rum brown with a sliver of a white head. Molasses-like texture and the flavors of bourbon spiced bread pudding. Very malty and full. The alcohol flavors actually would lead me to believe it was 10% rather than 7.2% but I have noticed many Scottish brews often taste more alcoholic than they actually are. it is kind of the inverse of the Belgian trademark of masking alcohol.

 453 characters

Photo of jmich24
3.83/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of klewis
3.04/5  rDev -26.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A: Poured a cloudy reddish-brown. Almost no head, even with a hard pour.

S: Huge smell, I can smell it without holding it up to my nose. Notes of butterscotch, malt, vanilla, and alcohol.

T: Much different than its aroma... Not much going on here for me. There are some tannic flavors that are overpowering anything else that might be trying to sneak through.

M: Nice body and weight, but the carbonation is a little rough and may be detracting from the flavor..

D: Based on the other reviews, I'm hoping I got a bad bottle. I may try this one again hoping that this is the case, but if it's like this one, it's just not worth spending the money on.

 662 characters

Photo of jduprey007
3.75/5  rDev -9.9%

Photo of Patrick999
4.05/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

By bottle, at The Room.

A - Poured into a snifter, attractive smoky red body when held up to a candle. Thin bony head.

S - A touch of whiskey - maybe it's the power of suggestion, but I get Scotch. Smells more alcoholic than it really is.

T - And tastes more alcoholic than it really is. Deep burnt caramel maltiness amid a lightly smoked character.

F - Solid feel, not syrupy, well-carbonated.

D - I wish I hadn't had this when I was already kind of full; I suspect I might have liked it even better than I already did. Still, I don't see how it can be anything other than a one-and-done.

 597 characters

Photo of Casterbridge
4.25/5  rDev +2.2%

Photo of jettjon
3.68/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From a 33cl bottle with no date evident, into a wine goblet. This beer is a deep ruby read with a few tiny carbonation streams. One finger creamy brown head fades slowly to a thin cap and scattered lace. Musty and earthy on the nose, along with semi-sweet malt. Clean and a bit plain. Tastes similar to nose, more akin to a Gruit/herb ale than a typically smoky Scotch ale. Definitely earthy and dusky with herbs. Subtle and somewhat plain. No fireworks here for sure, just earthy and natural. Mouth is clean and wet with light but full carbonation, smooth on the palate. Drinkability is very good given the light and subtle flavor profile.

Overall: A good, subtle brew, more akin to a gruit than Scotch ale in my opinion. Very mild and drinkable, perhaps to a fault.

 770 characters

Photo of TheHoppiest
4.38/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 330 ml bottle into a tulip glass. According to the label, this ale is brewed in the ancient brew house of the "oldest inhabited house in Scotland". Traquair's website states that, "Dating back to 1107, Traquair was originally a hunting lodge for the kings and queens of Scotland. Later a refuge for Catholic priests in times of terror the Stuarts of Traquair supported Mary Queen of Scots and the Jacobite cause without counting the cost." Clearly there's a fair bit of history behind this beer; will it live up to this legacy?

Pours a deep, rich mahogany with hints of ruby as it is held up the light. A 2 finger tan head slowly reduces to a thin skim on top.

The aroma of this brew is thick, sweet and peaty. Sherry, fig, and currants slowly rise from this dark frothy ale.

The taste is smoother and more refined than other scotch ales I've had; a sweeter taste up-front is followed by a hint of booze and and healthy dose of sweet fruit, including dates, figs and raisins. There's a lack of any bitterness to finish.

Traquair House Ale has a sweeter, thicker mouthfeel with a very smooth finish, leaving a trace of smoky peat floating in near the nasal passages.

A very drinkable wee heavy, though quite smooth, it is a more refined, less "in-your-face" take on the scotch ale. As it from Scotland, perhaps I should instead look at this as more representative as compared to its more aggressive American cousins. Still, a nice ale that you should make sure to have if given the occasion.

 1,510 characters

Photo of SheepNutz
4.37/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

11.2oz. bottle poured into a tulip-style glass. It pours a deep brown, almost black color with one finger of light caramel foam that fades away to a small collar. There is a tiny bit of lacing on the glass. The smell is a rich nutty aroma, with hints of coffee and toffee. The smell really pumped me up for the taste. The taste is a smooth roasted malt and alcohol mix. Not too much hops present, but who needs it with this sweet caramel and roasted nutty flavor. The body is heavy, yet smooth. The drinkability is also pretty nice for 7.2%. A big thanks to brewdlyhooked13 for this fine ale!

 592 characters

Photo of Bill235
4/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of elec
4/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of cypressbob
4.25/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

330ml bottle

Pours with a deep browny burgandy body, off white head almost tan, good retention, very creamy head

Smell, estery malt, sweet vanilla. Some hint of chocolate covered dried fruit

Taste, thick creamy malt mouthfeel, some chocolaty bitterness. This would pair really well with a nice dark chocolate. Not an overly heavy body

Fantastic, pricey (£2.50 a bottle) but well worth the money. Would work great as an after dinner beer, or with a chocolate dessert

 478 characters

Photo of Traquairlover
4.58/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2008 bottle (fresh) 11.2 oz bottle poured into a snifter.

A = Dark reddish brown, good clarity as can be seen when held up to the light, frothy off white to tan head with good retention, slowly dissipates leaving light lacing on glass.

S = Caramel notes, peaty malt overlay.

T = Caramel and strong notes of smokey peaty tasting malts, long deep finish somewhat bitter in the back of the tongue but with fresh sweetness continuing in the front of the mouth.

M = Medium to heavy body, creamy mouthfeel when swished, excellent mouthcoating.

D = If not for the ABV I could drink these all day. An excellent wee heavy.

Other vintages (not scored for the database):

(Mid?)-70's bottle. Label is printed with "Brew No. __" & "Bottle No. ___" into which handwritten numbers have been written Brew "82" and Bottle No. appears to be "120642".

Appearance is a slightly hazy caramel brown with small off white head that dissipates quickly into a small layer of foam on surface. Smell is of a musty attic, tobacco, some "sharp" scents like a sharp cheddar. Taste has a strong bitterness to it, some malt flavors of tobacco and a light maple syrup flavored with bitter herbs, has a distinct sour finish. This tastes almost more like an aromatized wine than a beer (especially a wee heavy), something like a dry vermouth or a Campari. It still has medium body and decent drinkability for an aperitif maybe where it was once a dessert drink.

(1977) The front label and neck label were in a glossy silver. The back label was plain white paper and indicating this was Brew No 6 Bottle No 8635, with hand written numbers filling in blanks on a preprinted label.

A = Very slight head, really just light tan bubbles on about half the surface, resolving into a ring around the edge of the glass, deep reddish brown, good clarity. (4.5)

S = Some musty attic smells, nuts such as walnuts, roasted chestnuts, maple syrup, vanilla comes out strongly as it breathes, some dried cherries and prunes, very complex. (3.5)

T = Wow! This is really, really good. Predominantly sweet with cocoa powder and confectioners sugar mixed into a heavily creamed coffee, with walnut syrup, maybe some light traces of almonds, light butterscotch and toffee, heavy chocolate notes as it breathes result in a flavor almost like licking the chocolate syrup off of a vanilla ice cream hot fudge sundae. Really heavenly. Much better than I had expected. (5.0)

M = Heavy body, lusciously smooth feeling, very light carbonation for a while after it sits in the glass but eventually sorts out to a still liquid, while still fresh in the glass there is a light, frothy level of carbonation. Great mouthcoating. (5.0, maybe only a 4.5 depending on your veiwpoint of stillness in aged beers.)

D = Goes down SO smoothly. I just keep wanting more. It was a sad moment when the glass ran dry. (4.5)

(Best by 2006 -- consumed in 2010)

A = Very similar to the 1977 but a little murkier on pour. However, it quickly settled into the glass and gained better clarity. Ended up looking virtually identical to the 1977, maybe a slight bit darker with more brown/less red. (4.0)

S = Sweet malted chocolate, Not as complex as the older bottle. As it breathes I get more malt with smokiness, very slight smell of almonds, some fruit including cherries, dried apricots, some earthiness. (4.0)

T = Very good sweet syrup flavors with cocoa, light almonds, some butter toffee, caramel, light smoke, a very light yeast kick at the finish. Less of the light bitterness in the finish than when it is really fresh. This is a great beer but not as complex as it older sibling. While the older bottle had developed some very interesting flavors, this one was closer to the original malt forward with some smoke and yeastiness that exemplifies a good wee heavy, that said it had mellowed from the way a fresh bottle tastes. (4.5)

M = Medium body (a little thinner than I expected actually), very good mouthcoating, light carbonation. (4.5)

D = Very good, as excellent beer, but not quite as interesting as the 1977. (4.5)

 4,063 characters

Photo of KalanM
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%

Photo of rarigney
3.9/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of keithmurray
3.76/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

appearance - murky chestnut brown with faint white head

smell - woodsy, oak, cherries, bourbon, malts

taste - caramel, chocolate, black licorice, hint of cherry, sweet malts

mouthfeel - low to medium carbonation, medium bodied, nice flavors linger on the palate, slightest of booze at the end

overall - good beverage, for the price not sure if I will revisit, but an overall solid beverage

 393 characters

Photo of jeffjeff1
4.32/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was an excellent beer. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

Appearance- dark, almost black, opaque

Smell- dark fruit, rich aroma, beautiful

Taste- dark fruit, rich flavor

Mouthfeel- full body

Drinkability- very drinkable, I will be drinking it again. Excellent beer!

 265 characters

Traquair House Ale from Traquair House Brewery Lld
4.16 out of 5 based on 1,067 ratings.
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