Old Peculier
T & R Theakston Ltd.

Old PeculierOld Peculier
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T & R Theakston Ltd.
England, United Kingdom
Old Ale
Ranked #42
Ranked #12,712
3.96 | pDev: 11.11%
Dec 31, 2021
Jul 31, 2001
Very Good
Old PeculierOld Peculier
Notes: Old Peculier is possibly one of the country’s most well-known and loved ales. This unique, beautiful brew is often imitated but never matched and is sold literally all over the world. With countless awards to its credit, it is something of which every Briton can be very proud and is the epitome of the greatest of British brewing tradition.

In the early years of the modern brewing era, about two hundred years ago, many brewers produced a dark, strong ‘stock’ beer in the winter months, to provide a base amount of fermented beer to add to beers brewed in the rather more volatile months of the summer.

Old Peculier probably owes its origins to this. The name pays tribute to the unique ecclesiastical status of Masham as a ‘Court of the Peculier’ and is also reference to the strong characteristic of the beer! For many years it was affectionately referred to as Yorkshire’s ‘Lunatic’s Broth’.
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Photo of LanceBiggums
4.28/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25
by LanceBiggums from Canada (AB)

This stuff is great. Pours a very dark ruby, maybe garnet would be a better descriptor, with one finger of foamy tan head that recedes quickly. It's lightly carbonated, in the tradition of British ales. Sweet malts and dark fruits on the nose. Toffee, bitter roasted malt, cherry, and plum on the palate. Full-bodied, velvety smooth, on the sweet side but with a bit of bitterness to balance it out, very moreish - overall an excellent British Old Ale maybe the best.

Dec 31, 2021
4.29 by LesDewitt4beer from Minnesota on Nov 10, 2021
4.24 by bad_poetry from England on Aug 16, 2021
4.01 by Johnno on Jun 20, 2021
4 by Robertas from Lithuania on May 21, 2021
5 by doctorgary from New York on Apr 06, 2021
4.24 by ScrewyLoops from England on Mar 03, 2021
Photo of MJC_MN
4.7/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5
by MJC_MN from Minnesota

I love this beer , ever since my first taste in Yorkshire in 1987. Does anyone know where to buy this in the U.S.?

Feb 23, 2021
4.19 by StanleysCup from Maryland on Nov 28, 2020
Photo of Steve555
4.07/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by Steve555 from Wales

Rich mahogany colour with a 1.5 finger light brown head that fades into half a finger throughout, generous lacing Smells of dark malts, dark fruits and slightly of boot polish. Taste is burnt toast, caramel, treacle with a slight alcohol and hop bitterness coming through right at the end. Mouthfeel is a burnt sweetness with a touch of alcohol, body is medium. It's a rich fairly unique ale that has more character than an ESB. My go to supermarket ale.

Aug 10, 2020
4.1 by smi69 from New York on May 25, 2020
3.01 by stephenlee93 from England on Mar 27, 2020
4 by paulish from New York on Jan 20, 2020
Photo of mothmanscott
3.94/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by mothmanscott from Georgia

From notes 12/28/11: Pours an opaque, dark ruby brown producing 2.5 fingers of tan, large bubbled frothy head leaving splotchy lacing behind as it recedes. Aroma is dark malty caramel and fruity hints.Taste is malty: dark bread, caramel, toffee, dark fruity, cherry, amaretto, chocolate and butterscotch. There is a nice balance between the roasted malts and fuggle hops. A nice beer from start to finish.

Jan 04, 2020
Photo of James94
4.15/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
by James94 from England

L: Clear, dark red colour, strong lacing, best part of two fingers head
S: Banana, malts, grape, summer fruits, general sweetness
T: Candied banana, slightly bitter hops
F: Easy drinking, smooth, carbonation is well-balanced

O: 4.25

Dec 07, 2019
3.72 by unclekeith from Alaska on Nov 10, 2019
4.5 by igl from Russian Federation on Sep 02, 2019
Photo of shambeano
3.79/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75
by shambeano from Australia

500 ml bottle with a best before of 30/09/2019. Poured into a Tulip.
Look: I would call the colour a very dark brown, almost a cola-black. about 2 cm of off white head, which quickly subsides to a think film.
Smell: I'm not getting a lot on the nose, a bit of maltiness, caramel, something a touch metallic.
Taste: malty, caramel, toffee, a little bit of sweet dried fruit (raisin, date, sultana), roasted malts towards the end.
Feel: A little lighter bodied, nice tingly carbonation. A little dry at the end. Decent length of flavour.
Overall: Tastes quite nice. I could easily drink 3-4 on a cold day, sitting by the fire.

Aug 15, 2019
3.83 by smbslt from Illinois on May 05, 2019
Photo of Beer_Rabbit66
3.81/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75
by Beer_Rabbit66 from England

Pours a very dark brown and seems as black as a stout, light head on top but great looks
The smell is nutty and caramel with plenty of malt.
Taste is great, a smooth malty taste with notes of caramel and toffee with a small hint of nut and dried fruit.
Feels Smooth and finished more sweet than bitter but a great balance.
Overall a great ale

Feb 24, 2019
Photo of Snowcrash000
3.89/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75
by Snowcrash000 from Germany

Pours a deep, dark mahogany coloration with a reddish tint and a medium, creamy head. Smells of toasted, caramel malt and dark fruits, with just a hint of estery spice. Taste is dominated by sweet and lightly toasted caramel malt and dark fruits: plum, fig, raisins, with just a hint of chocolate, licorice, toffee, estery spice and herbal hops. Finishes bittersweet, with a light bitterness and some dark fruits and herbal hops lingering in the aftertaste. Smooth mouthfeel with a medium body and carbonation.

A rather nice English Old Ale with a good balance, although perhaps a bit too much on the sweet side. Still rather enjoyable, with a good mouthfeel and depth of flavor.

Feb 12, 2019
3.75 by lhwjanssen from Netherlands on Feb 08, 2019
Photo of Beck_Hardy_UK
2.7/5  rDev -31.8%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3
by Beck_Hardy_UK from Scotland

Bottle poured into pint glass. Dark w/a khaki head. Aroma of toffee, chocolate, and dark fruits. Taste is chocolate, roasted malt, coffee, etc. Mouth feel is creamy and smooth. Over all an excellent offering from Theakston.

Jan 27, 2019
Photo of KooVee
4.29/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5
by KooVee from Finland

Bottle, 8m to bb.

Deep ruby/mahogany, foam to match style.

Aroma is raisin, dried dark fruit, dark syrup with a slightly metallic edge. Some caramel and toffee once it warms up.

Taste is smooth dark bread, some grain, but not to any particularly large extent. Prunes, some dark sugar. Little bitterness as such, but it matches the sweetness perfectly so that the end result is balanced and if not dry, not wearying in any way. Very drinkable. Mouthfeel could be a bit thicker for my tastes... but that depends on the context.. on tap the fluidity is perfect, from bottle at home one is conditioned to have a more sip-oriented body.

The aroma and taste combination is quite recognizable, and actually feels like a bit of a cross between a (smaller part of) quad of rochefort 10 type and a dark British ale. The prune notes I guess and the aroma of dark syrup. A classic.

Jan 12, 2019
Photo of lordofthewiens
3.99/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by lordofthewiens from New Mexico

Dark brown with ruby highlights. Pretty. Little, if any, head.
Lovely aroma of caramel and toffee, with some dark fruit.
Caramel and toffee taste. A hint of peat. Cherry and raisins.

Nov 13, 2018
Photo of JonnoWillsteed
3.84/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75
by JonnoWillsteed from England

L- Very dark ruby/mahogany. Ours with a thin pale tan head that clears swiftly to lacing.
S- Dark puddingy smell, conjours up images of a trad Xmas dinner.
T- Gentle at first, but builds swiftly. Toffee, molasses (a rich smokey edge). Very distinctive profile, if this was a regular of yours you'd spot it a mile off in a blind tasting.
F- It has good hopping but it's on the richer side of the scale.
O- Lovely, I'd call this a classic winter-warmer. I'm enjoying it tonight together with a pre-prep'd lamb-shank in rich gravy [Tesco] and buttered mash. Perfect on a dark, cold and rainy night. Perfect combo too to mark my 250th review, 35 years after first drinking this beer whilst at university in Yorkshire :)

£1.80/500ml from Sainsbury's - a total bargain at that price. BB: 31/10/19

Nov 10, 2018
4.06 by DutchcdnTEXAN from Texas on Sep 20, 2018
4.04 by NOLANDMAN from Massachusetts on Sep 08, 2018
4 by GoHabsGo from Canada (ON) on Jun 09, 2018
Photo of Independent
5/5  rDev +26.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5
by Independent from Spain

This beer is as close to the nectar of the god's on Olympus as anything you can drink! I first tasted this, recommended to me as I drank pints of bitter in a Welsh pub as the best bottled beer in the world. I've never found anyone who really likes beer who didn't agree, from Yorkshire to Georgetown (Washington D.C.). Theakston deserves an International Medal of Honor for this incredible brew! Looks rich, smells like heaven, taste and feel? Pure nectar!l

May 03, 2018
3.78 by trevorpost from Pennsylvania on Jan 07, 2018
4.31 by TheCrowsEye from California on Dec 10, 2017
Photo of SpongeHop
3.11/5  rDev -21.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25
by SpongeHop from Belgium

L - Dark brown, nearly black. Clear. Amber-brown light shines through. Beige head that dissipates relatively quickly. Leaves lacing on the side of the glass.
S & T - Aroma of wholegrain graham crackers. Tastes like fizzy water with no real discernible notes at first, then goes into the wholegrain graham crackers taste, but very lightly so. Finally a strange mineralic caramel aftertaste alongside some bitterness, then finishes again with the fizzy water. Lingers on the lips with a mostly bitter tone, with a very slight generic hop-pellet taste.
F - Thin mouthfeel.

O - little bit disappointing. Very fizzy watery. Smells better than it tastes. Has a strange mineralic, metallic tinny quality to it.

Wouldn't recommend this one.

Sep 02, 2017
3.03 by Castolo from England on Aug 24, 2017
Photo of taxandbeerguy
3.89/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4
by taxandbeerguy from Canada (ON)

500 ml bottle served cool into a pint glass. Reviewed while on vacation in the UK. Best before April 30, 2018

Appearance - dark ruby and Amber brown coloured beer. A gentle and loose two and a half fingers of off white head are poured. Some sparse lacing.

Smell - some metallic notes mixed with hearty caramel, butterscotch toffee and even molasses. With no metallic notes this scores higher.

Taste- middling to heavy bitterness. Some peat and earthiness, with caramel and toffee and molasses . Some wood complexities too.

Mouthfeel - medium bodied, a bit sticky with a pricklier than expected finish. Very good and robust feel.

Overall - very good beer that improves as it warms. An impressive first beer in England.

Jul 29, 2017
3.83 by Phoodcritic from Michigan on Jul 03, 2017
4.24 by lupercmda from North Carolina on Jul 03, 2017
4.01 by Momon from Philippines on Jun 01, 2017
3.19 by TwiggyCZ from Czech Republic on May 17, 2017
Old Peculier from T & R Theakston Ltd.
Beer rating: 89 out of 100 with 1055 ratings