Allagash Musette | Allagash Brewing Company

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Allagash MusetteAllagash Musette

Brewed by:
Allagash Brewing Company
Maine, United States

Style: Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Our interpretation of a Belgian-inspired Scotch ale, Musette undergoes a caramelization process in the kettle, where the first runnings are condensed and caramelized, imparting a unique and subtle caramel character and amber color to the beer. Following fermentation, a portion of it is aged in oak bourbon barrels for three months. Musette features raisin and ripened banana aromas. Its taste is malty and caramel with a hint of roast, and its warm finish strikes a balance between dry and caramel characters with a hint of smoke.

Added by barleywinebrewer on 05-22-2006

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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User Reviews
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Reviews: 159 | Ratings: 189
Photo of NCSUdo
4.48/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750 mL bottle, bottle May 2006

A: Pours a rusty brown under a medium sized white head. Excellent lace and retention.

S: A lot of sweet fruit, some sweet grapes, malty, toffee, hint of oak, even a little bit of Belgian tropical fruit character. Very nice smell.

T: Oak really comes out here and it is damn near perfect. Very oaked up front, with a bit of sweetness, finishing in a slight bitterness, bit of toffee, booze and alcohol warmth. Excellent taste.

M/D: Full bodied, carbonation is a bit too prickly, alcohol is there but done nicely. It's a sipper and one bottle is probably enough, but this is still a fine beer. Very good example of what oak and oak alone can bring to a beer.

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Photo of macster
4.03/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

December 2006 750ml.

Pours into the chalice a clear amber-burgundy hue. Pour creates an impressive 1" frothy, tight beige colored head with superb retention throughout. No lacing noted.

Ddn't seem to get a whole lot of punch from the aroma side of things here. Nothing off, but very reserved notes of caramel apples, fresh cut hay, brown sugar, vanilla, white grape and a touch of cut wood just barely tickle the olfactory nerve.

Very smooth and fluffy mouthfeel with a lively carbonation but a silky finish.

The flavor has a bit more oomph than the smell. Moderately sweet notes of caramel candy, melted brown sugar, buckwheat honey, nuts, toffee, vanilla bean and just a hint of grass and oaky chardonnay come through. A faint touch of hoppy bitterness makes a late appearance. Any perception of 10% alcohol is fairly non-existant making this a deceivingly easy big Belgian-style beer to put away.

Economically not such a great deal at $16.99 when you can get the real deals from overseas for a lot less. Not sure what Allagash is thinking of at that price.

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Photo of RomanW70
4.2/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Publick House in Boston. Pours dark amber with minimal light tan head. Aroma of caramel, brown sugar, and whisky. Really nice taste. The flavor has real complexity, with notes of chocolate and dark fruits in addition to the caramel and whisky. The whisky is present throughout, but adds to, rather than dominates the flavor. Warming alcohol on the finish. Excellent offering.

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Photo of Blakaeris
4.5/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours red-caramel brown with a pillowy beige head. Sticky with plenty of lacing.

Aroma is very sweet with caramel malt and candied sugar. Light fruit, with underlying yeasty spices.

Taste is toasted malt and a peaty smokiness. Fruit and strong alcohol notes add a brandylike quality. Finish is dry and woody, with earthy hops and mild spices.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and creamy.

An unusual and very tasty brew. Complex flavor profile, and dangerously easy to drink. Who knew that the malty smoky aspect of a scoth ale would match well with belgian sweetness and spices. Good stuff.

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Photo of bashiba
4.58/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a deep dark copper with a huge thick and pillowy head, super sticky lacing all the way down the glass.

Smell had a big caramel malt odor with a bit of oak and vanilla.

Taste is outstanding! Big slightly sweet malts with great oak, vanilla, smoke, and peat flavors. Very much a superb wee heavy with oak! Has a lightly bitter earthy and smokey finish with a touch of mint.

Mouthfeel is warm and full with a crisp dry finish.

Super drinkable 10% Wee heavy. Only wish it was cheaper and more readily available it would become a staple in my fridge.

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Photo of nickfl
4.03/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - One finger of off white foam with a tinge of brown, settles quickly to a thick film. Extraordinary copper-red color with good clarity.

S - Malty, oaky aroma. Lots of caramel with notes of vanilla and coco.

T - Lots of woody oak flavor up front. Thin caramel flavor in the middle followed by some chocolate and coffee flavors. The finish is drawn out with lots of oak and some smoky tobacco flavors.

M - Smooth, slightly thick body with moderately high carbonation and alcoholic warmth in the finish.

D - Pretty drinkable for a strong, wood aged beer. The flavor of the base beer is a bit weak, but the oak character is quite nice; substantial, but not overwhelming. The finish is particularly complex.

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

This was a version that was dry-hopped. On tap at Capone's during the Philly Beer Week Big Beer offering.

A-Clear, dark copper with a thin tan head that laced well.

S-Bourbonesque with some matly sweetness and the funk of "belgian" yeast.

T-Very complex with creamy sweetness, smoke, bourbon/scotch and woodiness. A bit of nuttiness too. Then in the finish the hop bite kicks in! This is an all in one brew!

M-Medium-light body with a puckering astringency. Slightly syrupy at the end.

D-This is a crazy mixed up brew that comes out all good in the end IMHO! A very nice offering.

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Photo of Pencible
3.87/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This poured a hazy, dull copper color with light tan head. It smelled like a perfectly balanced blend of wild Belgian yeast, caramel malt, and floral and pine hops. It immediately had a watered-down oaky flavor, along with the semi-sweet/semi-bitter taste of burnt honey, caramel, salt, and lemon hops. It was slightly thick with some carbonation, and had a clean and sweet aftertaste. Overall this was an interesting drink with many good elements, but could have been further refined with a bolder flavor and body.

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Photo of leftmindedrighty
4.25/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Capone's. Advertised as being the Dry Hopped version.

Smell, Tart cherries, fig, caramel, and light raison with some underlying funkiness

Taste, pretty much keeps going where the nose was heading. This baby is tart, but not over powering like a Flanders Red. Light notes of hops, which I couldn't pick up in the nose. Also this beer has a good raison flavor, but its not over the top. Subtle caramel and oak notes round out the beer.

Overall, a wonderful beer. Saying this one is complex is a terrible understatement. Layer upon layer of flavor. Seek the Musette, you'll be happy you did.

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Photo of JohnGalt1
4.02/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750 received in trade with I think nflmvp (If I am wrong beermail me and I will edit immediately).. shared with Steven.. mine in my New Belgium snifter.

Big fizzy head drops pretty quickly into a reddish brown brew.. fairly clear but not alot of lacing.

Malty and fruity at the same time... not as Scottish as I would have guessed.. there is a big whiff of Belgium in there. A little oak.. and touches of vanilla as it approaches room temperature... notes of almonds.

Flavor is again the cross continental mash-up ... but in a good way. Rich malts with medium caramel popcorn notes... raisins and subtle plums... not as much Bourbon and wood as expected but still more than present. Less Belgian fruitiness than the nose but it adds well to the overall complexity. Mouthfeel is significantly lighter than a wee heavy.. and carbonation is much more. Again this is a pretty good colliding of the style guidelines.. I like it more and more as it warms... and the viscosity also increases quite a bit as do the bourbon barrel notes.

I really enjoyed this brew... now I just wish I had access to this fantastic brewing company... I've been hearing rumors that Allagash is coming to Boise sometime in the Spring .... now somebody just needs to make it happen.

Thanks again to nflmvp (I think .... I recently lost my trading notebook).

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Photo of m1ked
4.11/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Dlucky for this one.

A- Clear dark caramel with active bubbles streaming.

S- Low sweet maltiness. Almost salty biscuity, with definite caramel.

T- Subtle creamy sweetness, light smokey peatness. Some nuttiness, slight bitter finish, noticeable heat with some sort of spiciness to it.

M- Slightly syrupy, tight carbonation.

D- Yet another very enjoyable offering from Allagash. I could drink a whole bottle of this stuff.

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Photo of irishkyle21
4.12/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Has a white foam that drops to a thin ring but leaves lots of lacing. Has a slightly hazy copper color.

The smell is pleasant and complex. Notes of fruits (apples come to mind), yeasty, sweet malt, wood and alcohol.

Tastes of spices, fruits a bit of oak and the yeast adds some more character.

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Photo of morebeergood
3.54/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

May 2006 bottle, kept in my beer cellar until this past Friday. Poured into two belgian chalices. This beer had a golden tan color, with a fizzy amount of carbonation and a thin head. The oak aging was apparent in the smell. The taste was of raisins and peat, but the oak aspect really stopped at the palate. I have had beers that really tasted oak aged, but this one was faint. It's a good beer but not the best example of oak aging. As for price, I am glad that I got this one for 1/2 off normal price.

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Photo of djwilson
3.53/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Beer poured from a corked bottle 1pint 9.4 fluid oz
Bottled December 2006. Aged 1 year in cellar conditions.

Poured a hazy copper with a thin white head slowly disapearing and leaving a light Belgian lace on glass (snifter).

Smell is lighter then I expected from an oaked aged ale slight sherry aroma, and light caramel and citrus undertones.

flavors of caramel, alcohol, and slight bitterness from the hops, finishes with a slight hint of charred oak.

very full and smooth in the mouth.

This beer is a little thinner than I expected from the oaked aged series from ALLAGASH. Complex but not all that interesting to me especially for the price.

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Photo of DrJay
3.95/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle from May 2006.
This beer was clear and a dark burnt orange colour topped by a thin layer of bright white foam composed of small bubbles. The head eventually receded to a collar and produced some spotty lacing. The aroma was quite fruity, some white grape character, with lots of earthy notes - some vanilla, oak, and tobacco. Low bitterness with a fruity flavour, fairly spicy with a bit of alcohol throughout. Bready malt and vinous character balanced tobacco leaf and peppery spice, and there was some vanilla and oak in the background. Though there was plenty of warmth it definitely wasn't hot. Medium to full bodied with carbonation on the high side, the texture was a bit slick. Good stuff, pretty complex but still accessible. The oak didn't come off as overdone or unbalanced next to the base beer.

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Photo of grub
3.73/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

got this one in a trade with johnnnniee. thanks!

750ml bottle, corked and caged. august 2006 vintage. 419 cases bottled. sampled dec 31/07.

pours deep red-brown with a small fluffy tan head. the head drops slowly and leaves spotty lace.

aroma is nice. bourbon and vanilla. bit of peat. bread and biscuit malt. bit of alcohol.

taste is great. big bread and biscuit malts. lots of caramel. bit of toffee. vanilla and bourbon. medium bitterness level. bit of mineral character. hint of peaty smoke.

mouthfeel is good. medium carbonation level. a little more than medium body.

drinkability is good. nice balance, with a good balance between the barrel and the base scotch ale.

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Photo of MiguelMandingo
4.08/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bought this at Grapevine Market about six months ago. Thanks James. This is my first scotch ale.

December 2006 vintage.

Poured part of a 750ml bottle into a snifter.

Appearance - It produced a solid two finger whitish head. It has really great head retention - the head never really dies, it just becomes a thick crown on the surface of the beer. It leaves light lacing behind. It is a transparent ruby burgundy, and has a constant carbonation stream rising to the top. Very nice.

Smell - I can smell the alcohol as the beer warms to room temperature. The alcohol presence doesn't affect it in a negative way, IMO. I can smell vanilla and oak notes. There is a dark fruit scent as well, almost like rum raisin, or figs. There is a tiny citrus scent as well. It also has that Belgian yeast scent contained in pretty much all Allagash brews.

Flavor – The brew has a slightly sweet taste as it first enters the mouth, along the lines of toffee or butterscotch. The middle flavors are the fruits – there is a large dark fruit presence like raisin and fig. There are also flavors of banana, which intermingles with the vanilla very nicely. The end flavors are slightly smoky tied in with a bitter hops. The whiskey flavor comes into play heavily at the end. The alcohol presence makes itself known, but it doesn’t detract from the flavor in any way.

Mouthfeel – It is medium bodied. It has a very effervescent mouthfeel, but goes down creamy and smooth. It isn’t sticky or oily – it barely coats the mouth.

Drinkability – This is a pretty drinkable beer. It is very tasty, and it goes down pretty smoothly. I would never be able to tell that this was 10% ABV unless I read the label. I would definitely drink it again… if I wasn’t paying for it.

This beer was just way too expensive for what it is. $17 is just not worth it. It would be worth it for $8 or $9, maybe – but $17 is pretty ridiculous. If you have a heap of cash to spare, give it a shot. Otherwise, save your money, there are much better and cheaper beers out there.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
4.73/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a slightly clouded dark ruby. Flavor is amazingly smooth. Wood character comes through as does a good sweet tone. Who cares about specifics. I give it a 5 on flavor. Feel is perfect balance between liquid and carbonation. I cant believe I am having this on tap. So drinkable, I want to kill the keg. I can only imagine what this is like on bottle and plan on finding out at some point.

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Photo of Murchmac
3.88/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled in 2006.

Pours with a faint head with a rimming along the outside.

Smells scotchy, not like scotch guard, but the drink.

Some carbonation, butterscotchy, warm, alcohol,

Nice mouthfeel. Light and fizzy for a scotch ale, but if you like the brewery, not a bad beer. Kinda like a belgian scotch ale. A belch, if you will

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Photo of Raymond69
4.05/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Small head , some lacing. Hazy brown.

Smell is very fruity , dark cherries, grapes, and some citrus,

This beer has a nice fruity taste that is tamed by a slight alcoholic warmth. Small hop profile.

Mouthfeel is thick and sweet.

Drinkability suffers slightly because of the sweetness and ABV, but I like this beer,

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Photo of Georgiabeer
4.25/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly hazy brown with little head. The smell is slightly sour and slightly sweet, and a bit yeasty. The taste has nicely balanced flavore of sweet malt and nicely subtle oak as well astypical Belgian yeast flavors of banana, spice, and coriander. The mouthfeel is creamy and smooth with a bit of spritz. Nice, and a bit different for a wee heavy- more like a wee heavy and tripel hybrid.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a deep copper color ale with a big foamy head with good retention and small lacing rings. Aroma of sweet malt with some notes of light oak. Taste is dominated by a big sweet malt base with some toffee notes. The bourbon and the alcohol were not discernable. I was expecting more peat malt and less sweetness but I enjoyed this one very much even thought it stray very much from the style guideline.

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Photo of ojiikun
4.24/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

August 2006 bottling poured into a nice, wee tulip. Typical 750mL cork, cage, and brown glass. Body is a very dark red and nearly clear save a bit of chill haze. Head is burnt-creme white and took a bit of coaxing to produce. Fell fast to spotty clumps and not much in the way of lace.

Smell is sweet and malty, clearly with newage belgian yeast. Oaking is surprisingly subtle, first-used burnt oak, I'd guess. Some grassy notes. Mild booze and chalky chocolate.

Taste is meaty as can be at first, then the oak really pours out. Less smokey than on the nose and not at all bitter. Yeast continues to make an upfront statement. More grassy and herbal notes - fresh parsley. Not much fruit save some mild berry character. Malting is really quite hard to place. More cocoa and burnt milk. Finishes a bit more tart.

Insanely clean mouthfeel for a 10% beer. Carbonation is strong and no coating can be felt. This along with a brilliant flavour makes this all too easy a drink.

The first of the Allagash oaks that I've tried, this beer is unexpectedly delicate. Serve warm, stay away from rich food pairings, and enjoy slowly. It might drink like water, but it hits like a brick.

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Photo of malcontent
4.58/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Clear amber body crowned by a champagne-like, bubbly head.

Apple skins, oak, smoke, fallen leaves and distant alcohol comprise a delectable nose.

Rich malt but never overbearing in its sweetness. Charcoal and vanilla themes are complimented by a long, woody finish. Strong cider flavors prevail throughout.

Shockingly smooth given the ABV. This is only enhanced by the lively, leading carbonation and a wonderfully tannic finish. Sophisticated like no Scotch Ale I've ever had.

Yes, it's strong, but it goes down effortlessly. Allagash sometimes gets my expectations up higher than they're able to meet. This beer, however, surpasses anything I could have imagined from the style. An absolutely exceptional ale.

It should be noted that I received this as a gift and therefore haven't been influenced by the price (as it seems others have). Who knows, if I were to have shilled out close to $20 for the bottle I, too, may not be so in love with it.

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Photo of fartingdog
3.38/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours hazy amber with a slight head that dissipates soon. Aroma is a bit of funk, sweet (vanilla?), faint oak. Taste is yeasty, spicy, earthy and slightly tart. Mouthfeel has lots of carbonation, medium body- certainly not what I'd expect from a scotch ale, it's too thin. Leaves a residual 'twang' in the mouth.

It's good, but not great. It's not a 'Scotch' style and certainly not a wee heavy, it's a decent Belgian strong, but either way it's just not worth $17 a bottle.

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Allagash Musette from Allagash Brewing Company
4.02 out of 5 based on 189 ratings.
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