Bitter & Twisted | Harviestoun Brewery Ltd.

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Bitter & TwistedBitter & Twisted

Brewed by:
Harviestoun Brewery Ltd.
Scotland, United Kingdom

Style: English Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.20%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
English Golden Ale

Bitter & Twisted is a superbly-balanced, refreshingly-lively beer. It has a malty-sweet aroma with a floral, fruity hoppiness and a zingy, zesty flavour. Complex, rounded, sweet and dry; this is the connoisseurs' session beer par excellence!

HOPS: Hersbruker, Celeia, Perle, Bobek
MALTS: Lager malt, crystal malt, malted wheat & oats

34 IBU

Added by xlperro on 07-22-2002

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Ratings: 447 |  Reviews: 277
Photo of barleywort
3.89/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Serving: 500mL bottle poured into a Nonic Pint Glass

Appearance: Despite the moderate and quickly dissipating head and barely any lace to speak of - all of which point to a low to moderately carbonated beer - this one packs a deceivingly high level of carbonation. Not overly carbonated, but it hides beneath the surface in this murky golden brew. Surprisingly translucent as opposed to transparent, one could call this beer brooding, which seems to fit nicely with its 'Bitter & Twisted' moniker.

Smell: Exactly as described, it is bursting with lemony-citrus aroma and oddly enough, a bit of sugary sweetness in the nose. All that being said, it takes quite a bit of searching, as very little of that comes through on first whiff.

Taste: Again, no surprise here - just high-hopped citrusy goodness that manages to ease in as opposed to announce its presence. Bountiful bitterness from the hops, but again, not so forceful as to knock you over the head. Something here for everyone - the hopheads will get their fix, but the less hop-fully inclined won't be turned off; this beer even gives them some complexity to ponder, as it is sweeter that one might think and has just the teensiest hint of candied lemon to keep us delightfully perplexed.

Mouthfeel: Thin, yet with bursts of tiny carbonation bubbles. Bitterness lingers on the tongue and cheeks but is commensurate with the taste.

Drinkability: It would be hard to hide the fact that I'm a fan of this beer - it's crisp and refreshing and it's definitely bitter, but it achieves a subtlety that is often dismissed in favour of brute hop force by other IPAs. The neck label proclaims it as the "World Beer Awards: World's Best Ale", and while it might lack the complexity necessary to lay undisputed claim to that title, I can understand what those judges must have been thinking at the time.

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Photo of JohnnyBarman
4.07/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a regular nonic glass. A nice, vibrant golden, hardly any visible carbonation. Head doesn't last long, a thin ring and a bit of lacing.

The smell is nice and hoppy, with a bit of lemon to the back.

Taste is sweeter than most IPAs, but this isn't necessarily a bad thing. Very flavorful - a bit of herbs, lemon and bread. Tasty. Bitterness lingers on the tongue for a while.

Mouthfeel is lower carbonation, thin and slick.

Quite a drinkable little IPA. Crisp and refreshing. Not sure if it's "World Beer Awards: World's Best Ale" worthy, as it claims on the bottleneck, but it is pretty good.

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Photo of beerdrifter
4.24/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Clear yellow pour with quickly fading head and no lacing. Really unique nose. Grassy rye earthiness with a nice hint of pepper that reminds me of Orval. Wonderfully unique, complex taste that features the rye from the nose along with a toasty bitterness balanced with a touch of lemon sweetness. Very crisp and dry and totally drinkable. Planning another trip to Scotland just to get some more of this great beer!

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Photo of Brenden
3.71/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer pours a clear but fairly deep golden yellow into the glass. There's a fair cascade that forms a pretty nice, compact head of sturdy foam. Moderate lacing is left on the glass.
The aroma has some enticing if not odd character to it. It's got a lot of zesty lemony citrus, fresh juice and rind, along with a steady and firm hops presence that is good (lots of raw grapoefruit and pine) but has a mildly skunky character. There's also a little bit of soapiness that I most identify with certain pilseners, oddly enough.
Flavor contains all of the characters in the nose except that the skunkiness is lost, which is good, and there's a malt presence in the finish that's easier to find than in the smell. This brew's character consists mostly of the tart, zesty lemon and raw leaf.
The body is medium and carbonation is moderate. The mouthfeel is above average but not particularly noteworthy.
Drinkabilty's good since this is a pretty tasty brew with some balance and plenty of character and the ABV is low.

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Photo of Reinheitsgebot71
4.05/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Beer review number 20 huzza my first milestone here. Now I can post new beer if I ever manage to find them before others.
The twisted brew pours a fine golden hue with a slight opaqueness which adds a nice glow. A crisp perfectly white head crowns the beer holding on decently for a while never quite giving in.
The first smells to hit my nose were of fresh cut granny smith apples and mild honey. This was closely followed the t fine citrus zest much like grated lemon rind. The hops add nice floral notes along with a slight resinous piney character.
A tangy bite provided by the hops first struck my tongue; though it was strong it was subtle at the same time. A forceful astringent character was prevalent throughout the long time partner of robust hopping. Lemon, chestnuts and a hint of allspice mingled with subdued resinous flavours. The malt was there for balance and nothing more, almost being completely lost to the cascade of hops (pun intended) which dominated from start to finish. I detected a hint of allspice hidden deep within which manifested half way through the brew, as did a tad more sweetness from the malt. The finish was of a resinous nature leaving a very dry astringent feel in the mouth but yet strangely refreshing.
This is a superbly drinkable beer and quite a good thirst quencher, very sessionable at a modest 4.2%ABV to boot. I definitely recommend this fine flavourful brew.

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Photo of ecoastman
3.98/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

An easy drinker that has more flavour than most hopped ales available in Ontario (which isn't the greatest place to live to get hopped beer).

This beer has a nice orange haze and a good ring of lace to start after the head settles to a thin layer. The lace continues to spot nicely through the rest of the beer.

Smells clean and mild with sweet malt and spicy hops.

I expected overpowering flavour based on the name but I guess this is getting bold for an English IPA vs an American craft hopped-up version. While this beer is pretty good and it's flavour is noticeable with the spicy/earthy hops, it also somehow comes across a bit thin in the backbone. There's some mineral notes midway and the finishing bitterness is medium-low with a nice light lemon citrus aftertastes.

The mouthfeel is thin and smooth to start with some light courseness in the finish.

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Photo of projectflam86
3.88/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours a light golden color with a decent off-white foam head that leaves a bit of lace.

S- Fresh cut grass and piney hop with a bit of lemon. A bit earthy with some must.

T- A snappy hop bitterness with a toasted grain finish. A light fruity flavor with lemon and orange peel being the most notable. A tiny amount of biscuit malt in the finish.

M- Light bodied with lots of carbonation.

D- An easily sessionable brew that isn't packed full of flavor but is still easily enjoyable.

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Photo of Brad007
4.15/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice light golden color with a one-finger head into my fluted glass.

Aroma is full of floral hop bitterness that dominates the nose. Malt is present underneath.

Taste is full of floral hops with a nice pronounced bitterness and hints of grainy/bready malt underneath. Simple. Easy to drink.

Mouthfeel is full of lingering hop bitterness and malt. Carbonation feels fluffy and not harsh.

Very good and easy to drink. Well-done.

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Photo of biboergosum
4/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500ml bottle from the LCBO, downtown Toronto hotel room stylin'. The Scottish Danger Mouse (and his big acorns, um, I mean hop cones) adorn the label of this 'World's Best Ale'.

This beer pours a clear, glassy medium golden amber hue, with two fingers of puffy, weakly foamy, and bubbly dirty white head, which leaves a bit of radio frequency pattern lace around the glass as it evenly recedes.

It smells strongly of biscuity pale cereal grains, lemon zest, orange bitters, and punchy grassy, floral hops. The taste is exactly as advertised on the nose, with one major caveat - a pleasant black pepper dust spiciness - one which sort of hovers over the still heady cereal maltiness, simmering citrus notes, and sassy floral, grassy hops.

The carbonation is fairly low-key, and averagely bubbly, the body a decent medium-light weight, and dulcet in its smoothness. It finishes on the dry side, a bit of grassy, herbal bitterness dominating.

Maybe not the 'World's Best', but a nicely bitter and drinkable English-style ESB/IPA hybrid. The peppery character was a bit of a surprise, but a nice one at that. I would definitely have this again.

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Photo of juju7
3.48/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Yeah it's alright. A tidy little bitter that doesn't offer a hell of a lot on the nose but delivers a crisp medium carbonated fresh mouthfeel with some of those zesty lemon notes as promised. Some of the malt base you'd expect from a UK beer. Surprised how summery it is. I might come back to this when it gets a little hotter.

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Photo of Durge
4/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured cold into a tall glass on a hot summer day, this one is a slightly hazy iced tea color with a steady stream of bubbles with some white floaties and a goodly creamy off-white head. The lacing is substantial as well. The aroma is malty herbal hops, sort of a bitter rye quality. The flavor follows with all the same qualities. A fair citrus hop with some of that herbal overtone, maybe even a bit heavy floral. There's a toasted rye bread sense over smooth mellow lemon. Thin to mid bodied and decently drinkable. Refreshing while interesting to the palate. I was pleasantly surprised and will happily revisit. Nice stuff.

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Photo of BeerSox
4.42/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

500ml bottle into nonic

Crystal clear straw hue with a one finger white head that quickly settles to a thin bubbly cap. Stringy lacing.

Delicate malts that exhibit a light toastiness. The bottle has the word zesty on it, which describes the hops pretty well. Light citrus and herbal aromas. A touch of diacetyl in the background.

Sharp and bitter hops. Mostly a grassy and herbal flavor, not a lot of citrus. Light and slightly toasted malts. Full bodied.

I would like to try this fresh in a cask form considering how it's already pretty good from the bottle after being imported. A solid Bitter. Recommended.

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Photo of bmwats
4.12/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 50 cl bottle into an imperial nonic.

A: Dull, hazy, golden color. Pours into a 2 finger, foamy, white head. Settles slowly. Leaves some bubbly carbonation on the surface of the brew, a thick foamy beer ring. More beer ring lacing remains as you drink.

S: A little malt, a lot of hops. Has a vegetable tone, celery I think, also some citrus, and spice.

T: Really hoppy, and a little sweet. Has some spice too. . . clove and oregano I'd say.

M: Light body, but full hearty flavor. Lingering bitter hoppy aftertaste.

D: Good slow drinking beer. Full flavor, nice body.

Really solid appearance, and really full complex nose. Flavor also offers some complexity relative to this style. Other flavors offer a nice offset to the hops. Overall, this is a really good quaff.

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Photo of SFLpunk
4/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

16.9 oz brown glass pry-top. Neck stamped L8 346A.

Appearance: Poured into an imperial pint. 1/2 inch of soapy bone-friggin-white head that grips the glass with an iron fist. Crystal clear amberish yellow.

Nose: Understated with light citrus hop notes. Lemon oil (is this just because the label suggests lemon?), with some inklings of marris otter (medium malted).

Palate: Medium bodied and creamy up front, with a quick thwack of hop bitterness. Balanced between some moderate pale malt flavors and this lemon oil hop. Carbonation is creamy, and the finish is long and citrusy with an oily feeling.

Notes: A really tasty beer. The lemon note is pronounced. Could drink a lot of this, especially if it were on draft.

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Photo of mintjellie
4/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500mL bottle poured into my Marstons pint glass. A beautiful pale orange with a finger of head resting on top. Head eventually settles to a thin layer, a little thicker round the edges than in the centre. This stuff is sunshine in a glass. Some lace.

Lemon and flowers. A little bit of earth. Brown sugar in the background rounds things out. All elements complement each other nicely.

Mildly sweet malts are subdued but there. Lemony up front with a dry, tea-like, moderately bitter finish. Bitterness lasts long into the aftertaste, like your mouth is coated in it. Mild but noticeable acidity. Simple flavours that work really well together. Very well balanced.

Fairly light body with low carbonation. Very smooth. The long finish makes you feel as thought its coated your mouth. Very sessionable at 4.2%ABV, and tastes good enough that you'd actually want to session with it. This ones a winner.

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Photo of wesbrownyeah
3.77/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

41.2% Ipa?

A- Very nice burnt orange ipa look with more than enough floating sediment.(Tons) Mild frothy head that remains only on the edge of the glass. Has a good layer of lacing for the amount of head this beer has.

S- In one word FESTIVE. Very inviting spicy scent is the first thing I notice. Spicy and very pungent sweet grass, cloves, brown sugar, caramel, and sweet nectar.

T- Taste is mild compared to the smell but with the low alcohol content who can complain. The taste is excellent for an english ipa sweet fruity flavor of light plums, oranges and apples. Second is the raw flavor of light but whole hops with a nice bitterness to end.

M- Very smooth feel on the tongue due to light alcohol content. Mild astringent feel before the end. Dry finish.

D- As drinkable as they get. Nice all round beer with every reason to try, drink, and repeat. Great session.

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Photo of baggio
3.96/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

[email protected] (Thanks to BA Bark for this one!)

A: Golden color with a small, creamy, head. Liquid is clear.

S: Lemon, Spices, Malt and earth.

T: Citric notes, Bitter hops, Bread and a hint of caramel.

M: Quite bitter with a long aftertaste of lemon. Medium carbonation.

This was way more bitter than i expected. The taste of lemon mixes perfectly with the hops and makes for an refreshing drink. Interesting!

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Photo of bark
4.45/5  rDev +19%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The colour is gold, the liquid is clear. The two finger head is airy and off-white topped with a nice crater. Some lacing.

The smell is hoppy with distinct notes of lemon and lemon peels and lemon/lime candy. There are also some notes of fresh herbs and a hint of earth and meat. Some sweetness in the background.

The taste is fresh and clean with lots of lemon flavours. Some broth and rye bread. Medium body. The long dry aftertaste got notes of lemon acid, resin and lemon peels.

The carbonation is mild; the fresh bubbles are medium sized. The liquid is mid smooth.

A highly refreshing and drinkable beer with a unique lemon twist. I really enjoy this one.

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Photo of NightINgale
4.45/5  rDev +19%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A - Yellow/gold body, a bit murky, with nice frothy white head. The head retention is average. One is able to see plenty of small bubbles at first.

S - Very hoppy, you get that floral, pine-like, citrusy aroma. A slight touch of grainy malts is present too. The lemon zest notes start to come out in the aroma with time.

T - With an impressive blend of three hop varieties, the taste bursts with pine, lemon, and grapefruit notes. This beer has got a lot going on in it: refreshing lemon undertones, some spiciness, some tartness, a touch of bready malts, and a nice moderately bitter finish. As it warms up, the lemon becomes more apparent.

M - Light body. Very balanced mouthfeel to it, goes down smooth but has got a nice bite.

D - Very drinkable. Provided it's only 4.2% abv, this is a perfect alternative to stronger IPA's.

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Photo of Mit
3.3/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Straw coloured, somewhat unremarkable appearance.

S-Some spicey almost ginger like smells followed by some citrus.

T-Nice taste. Subtle hops coming through and bittering up in the finish. Bittered up further as it sat at room temp.

M-Not nearly as light as one would expect from a sub 5% beer. Felt heavier than it's abv would suggest.

D- This was a great beer. Not going to be top of it's class as far as an IPA but very drinkable. Great session beer.

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Photo of ZorPrime
3.5/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This one pours yellow with little to no head. The smell is hops with hints of flower. The mouthfeel of the beer is light with some hops + spice in the taste. The spice is noted near the end.

Well, the twist is the spicy taste at the end. This make the beer dryier at the end, in my opinion.

Overall, not an extraordinary beer but a good beer for the summer. Very thirst quenching!

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Photo of Seanstoppable
3.23/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured into a mug as a slightly hazzy golden color, with a finger of bubbly white head. Smell is floral and citrusy. Low carbonation and light feel, but leaves the mouth dry. Taste is somewhat sour - like a grapefruit sourishness - and you are able to taste some leafy hops. Decently drinkable, despite the odd sourishness at the start.

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Photo of ludachris
3.66/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear pale copper with a thin, quickly dissipating paper white head. Minimal lacing and very strong, big bubbled carbonation. Looks to me like a slightly deeper coloured macro more than anything else.
Nice bouquet of clean, crisp citrus with lemon peel taking the centre followed by some dry hops and a touch of pine. The smell definately makes up for the appearance.
Like the nose, clean and crisp citrus up front followed by a crisp lingering hop bitterness. Malt appearance is minimal, but nothing is over-pronounced.
Mouthfeel is decently smooth and very well balanced. If anything, the higher carbonation added to the hoppy finish. Easily drinkable and very refreshing.

Overall, another nice brew from Harviestoun. It started off rough with the appearance but gradually got better from the nose to the finish. I found everything subdued in both the smell and the taste but this served to increase its balance, crispness and drinkability. Next time I see this, I would definately buy another.

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Photo of Pauly2X
3.49/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A- Deep gold with floaties, full finger frothy head.

S- Big, freshm floral lemony hop aroma.

T- Clean dry crisp malt hits first. Its simplicity lends way to a refreshing lemony hop flavor. Some crisp bitterness sets up the dry finish.

M- Light bodied, low carbonation.

D- I was good, just not $5 a bottle good.

A good example of the low end or non-extreme IPA.

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Photo of fitzy84
3.18/5  rDev -15%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured with a murky gold appearance with a full, thin lacing on the side and minimal retention. Floral citrus lemon flavors were apparent in the aromas, along with a leafy hop smell. Taste is a little thin but maintains a slightly sourish flavoring mixed with bready malt. Again, a bit thin but refreshingly light. Overall, not too bad.

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Bitter & Twisted from Harviestoun Brewery Ltd.
3.74 out of 5 based on 447 ratings.
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