Arcadia Loch Down Scotch Ale | Arcadia Brewing Company

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Arcadia Loch Down Scotch AleArcadia Loch Down Scotch Ale

Brewed by:
Arcadia Brewing Company
Michigan, United States

Style: Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
OG 1080; 28 IBU
Formerly called Arcadia Scotch Ale

Our tribute to the Scottish Highlands, this beer offers a gorgeous garnet color joined by the aroma of ripe plums and freshly-baked biscuits. The rich, full-bodied texture reveals notes of roasted chestnuts and caramel in the smooth single-malt style brew. Balanced with just the right amount of hop character, this beer delights with crisp alcohol finish.

Added by zerk on 10-02-2002

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Reviews: 271 | Ratings: 554
Photo of Raime
1.68/5  rDev -53.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

My brother picked up a 6 pack of this at a local Kroger and he handed me one. The appearance is a very dark brown, almost black, With a smell of stale burnt toast. The taste pretty much follows the smell, Except it adds a slight sour, dark coffee flavor. The mouthfeel is fairly warming for a moment, However it then just regains it's sour dark coffee flavoring. Did not like this beer at all. I am definitely not a fan of Scotch Ale in any way shape or form.

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Photo of GRMule
1.77/5  rDev -51.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.25 | overall: 1

A: Dark brown with a suggestion of red. Tan, fizzy head disappears quick.
S: Plums, lightly floral, a hint of bread
T: Up front is sour, fruits, finishes with fruity sour notes on bread
M: Thin, carbonation feels sharp with the sourness
O: Not what I look for in a scotch ale at all. I finished one from Founders previous to this one, day and night. This almost comes off as a sour mash, if I weren't expecting a scotch ale I might have liked it better, but I also think it would give me heartburn if I tried to drink more than one. Brutal hot take: this was like a brown Mike's Hard Lemonaide.

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Photo of jwc215
1.94/5  rDev -46.7%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Pours very dark brown with a huge foamy tan head that descends, quite loudly to a rocky cover then a thin lid that eventually disappears.

The smell is fruity, yeasty and sour. A hint of caramel and a touch of peat are subdued.

The taste is sweet, sour and fruity. Some caramel and only a vague hint of peat are present - though they take some patience to allow them to come through at all. The Pacific NW hops - usually welcomed - do nothing here and seem out of place. It's off on the style, and is too clumsy as a beer regardless of style. Sourness is too dominating. Sweetness is misplaced.

It is on the lighter side of medium bodied. The rush of carbonation in the first half disappears in the second, leaving something of a watery character to the body.

Too flawed to be enjoyable. Misses the boat on the style. Odd.

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Photo of NJpadreFan
2.21/5  rDev -39.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Arcadia- Scottish Ale

Appearance- Reddish brown (looks like cola) with an enormous head That won't go down.
Smell- Sweet caramel malt with corn syrup.
Taste- Like flat coca-cola. Caramel malt and coke syrup.
Mouthfeel- Flat and sweet. Sour aftertaste.

Overall- tasted like flat coke thats been in the fridge for a month. Bleech.

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Photo of bditty187
2.21/5  rDev -39.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Notes from August:

Dark brown with garnet highlights; beige foam that was quite loud as it dissipated. At the apex the head was only a half finger tall and the bubbles rapidly faded to a soapy collar. I am not impressed. There was no subsequent lacing. At best I’d call the appearance decent.

Very faint dark fruit hints with some caramel suggestions. Extremely low potency… this is unbelievable, I can hardly smell anything. My bottle was near room temperature when I poured it. Yikes. The nose is awful; I can’t smell a damn thing!

The palate is malty, alcoholic, and fruity with a vegetable twang along with plenty of diacetyl. What I taste is totally unpleasant. Harsh aftertaste and cloyingly sweet… I’d rather taste nothing over this mess. Gross.

Medium/medium-full in body, low carbonation, the mouthfeel is adequate.

This beer shows signs of respectability but it is too flawed. I love Scotch Ales but this one is a joke. Is my bottle bad? It would seem but not much from Arcadia has impressed me much. Surely not every beer I’ve tried (aside from London Porter) was off? What are the odds? Maybe this brewery doesn’t do it for me. Nevertheless, thank you RedHaze for the opportunity.

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Photo of billybob
2.3/5  rDev -36.8%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

don't like to do this but this beer just does not do it for me. pours a murky brown color with a small head with a hard pour and almost no lacing. smells of roasted malt and alcohol. tastes the same with some sweetness. mouthfeel light and carbontion ok. no complexity to this beer and i tried it at three differant times.

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Photo of kdahnke123
2.31/5  rDev -36.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.5

Poured into snifter. From brewery so presume to be recent bottling.
A - Thin medium brown pour with minimal head.
S - Smells sour, like an old stale beer.
T - Tast is similar to the smell. The sourness overwhelms any malt or hops that could show through.
M - Thin, lightly carbonated.
O - Not a good representation of a Scotch Ale.

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Photo of BasementDweller
2.34/5  rDev -35.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Can someone PLEASE tell me what all the fuss is about? I really tried to like this beer. Heck, I tried to like ALL of Arcadia's stuff, but I just can't do it in good conscience. Where's the smoke?? Where's the peat?? The commercial description says plums, toffee, caramel and roasted chestnuts, but all I could taste was (unsmoked) malt. Talk about unremarkable, while I was drinking this beer I thought to myself, "Hey, I should be drinking beer," followed by, "Oh wait, I guess I am."

Okay, technical stuff:

Pours brown, tan head. Aroma is malty, I guess, but utterly without character. If pressed to describe the aroma further, I guess I'd say, "dark malt, touch of earth," but that's just about it. On the palate this beer is thin with bland malt character. Low carbonation (standard) and too light in body for the style. It doesn't taste bad, per se, but it also doesn't taste like much of anything.

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Photo of baos
2.43/5  rDev -33.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

12 oz into Atlas Mason jar.

A: Doesn't look too bad as it pour a drak brown, except theres a serous lack of head.

S: An off caramelly smell, and a sour rum smell.

T: Nicht so gut. A sour-bitter caramel. Maybe I got an old bottle or a bad batch.

M: Not terrible.

D: I dumped it. Maybe next time I'm up in Michigan, Papa.

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Photo of Mitchster
2.54/5  rDev -30.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Nice looking brew pours out to a clear mahogany color with pretty ruby highlights and forms a thin, but creamy light tan head atop small to medium-sized bubbles. Carbonation is moderate. Aroma is potent with caramel, toffee, nutty character, and a fruity ferment. Hops are barely there, with no smoke character noted. Mouthfeel is extremely soft and smooth with a medium body. Lacing is sparse. Taste begins unpleasantly with some strong and nasty off-character fusel and isopropyl alcohols, leading into a metallic note, but halfway through, this beer becomes tolerable. The wet, soft finish is characterized by nutty, toffee amber malts with a subtle light molasses note and some faint rubbery hops. Smoke is not perceptable. It looks nice and has a nice finish, but that's not enough to make me want to recommend this brew to anyone, even Scotch Ale lovers. It seems these Peter Austin systems make all beers taste the same...this is the 3rd brewery I've tasted to use them, and they all brew unimpressive beers. Yawn...

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Photo of dsa7783
2.56/5  rDev -29.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Single, 12 oz bottle copped from Buy Rite on Oak Tree in South Plainfield...
Pours a deep, dark-brown hue with a modest foamy head and no lacing to speak of...
Dusty, malty, slightly bitter aroma that wasn't too enticing or appealing...
Taste seemed unnatural and artifical and way too unbalanced and sweet for a Scotch Ale - heavy on the malts, but shaky on the overly sweet and nutty flavors that dominate this one...
Based on aroma and flavor, this had to be one of the most mediocore samples of the style, despitely the relatively hefty 7.5% ABV...
Artifical mouthfeel coupled with a poor level of drinkability make this an inferior suggestion of the style... poor stuff from Arcadia - really expected more from them than this sub-par offering...
Not recommended...

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Photo of Doomcifer
2.63/5  rDev -27.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a very dark brown, giving way to burgundy hues when held up to light. Small, light brown head that retains very well for what's there. Aroma is very earthy, very malty, figs, citrus notes. Taste is characterized by a very off flavor. Slightly sour and tart and just way off. Underneath that, their is earthy malty flavors and finishes with a dry hop, bitter flavor. Subtle Peat Moss on the aftertaste. Mouthfeel is kind of light bodied for the style in my opinion. Very carbonated and dry finish. Fair drinkability. Better Scotch Ales out there. I'm not sure what that off flavor that gets in the way of the taste is all about.

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Photo of joshsbeerblog
2.77/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

my first michigan beer. we don't get many of the midwestern beers here in massachusetts, and the ones we get aren't really the ones you want. exhibit a, right here.

unusually dark. sweet malts capture nose and a little spice. not a bad taste, but a little muddled: bready, spiced, molasses. medium bodied, very lively in mouth. but a pretty dull wee heavy.

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Photo of SerialTicker
2.77/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Appearance: Looks like Coke or something -- dark reddish brown with about a finger of head that quickly bubbles away. Absolutely no lacing whatsoever, and very few bubbles stick to the side of the glass.

Smell: Really Scotchy with some traces of alcohol. Caramel malts are there as well, but this is distinctively Scotch-like.

Taste/feel: Now, there's no bottle date on this, but I have to think it's past its prime. Dark fruits and Scotch on the front, and it really stays the same the whole way through. Slight bitter aftertaste. Quite carbonated, and with a pretty thin feel.

This is the second Scotch Ale that I've had in a row (the other being Innis & Gun's Oak Aged) that has just been unappealing to me. This is considerably better than the I&G beer I had, but I still feel like it has to be an old bottle. It looks ugly, it smells "bleh", and it doesn't taste very good. I'd say it could be because I don't like the style, but I find Dirty Bastard and Old Chub to both be tasty brews. Not feeling this one by Arcadia.

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Photo of bnes09
2.8/5  rDev -23.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Dark leather brown. Fairly weak head that forms some lacing.

Big malty aroma of wheat toast, molasses and almonds.

Malty flavor, toasty, cherry sweetness. Rough and stale hop flavor ruins the experience. Old and musty aftertaste. Unpleasant.

Medium to full bodied. Low carbonation and strange texture with a dry finish.

I'll pass on this one. I am a fan of scotch ales but this is just not good.

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Photo of plumberman63
2.83/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Dark caramel, brown, descent light tan head. Caramel/ toffee/ alcohol smell. Taste follows smell, drank with a gourmet mushroom/pineapple/pepper cheese burger. At 8% wouldn't want to drink more than 2 in a setting.
This is OK but not a favorite.

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Photo of Sammy
2.84/5  rDev -22%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Nice black colour, with a bit of head. But did not deliver but a faint taste of licorice and molasses. Malt. Recently bought. Some numbing carbonation. Medium mouthfeel. More of an Inoffensive brown ale, particularly since licorice on the aftertaste.

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Photo of RenownedHack
2.85/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into tall wine glass.

A: The appearance isn't anything too horribly remarkable. Quite dark, slightly light-permeable, with about a finger of head which dissipated moderately quickly, leaving some light lacing.

S: There's a booziness there. The first thing I thought of was Jack and Coca Cola - maybe SoCo. Definitely some bourbon oakiness in this one. The nose really isn't that impressive.

T: I really hate to say this, but the balance on this one is off. I took a sip, waiting to see what the taste was reminiscent of, and it was just kind of...flavor. Nothing at all standing out, nothing at all balanced with or supplementing anything else. Just a blob of various flavors with an oaky finish. Very light hops for a moment or two, but that flavor dissipates quite quickly.

M: It doesn't feel bad in the mouth; it really doesn't. It feels pretty medium-bodied, just the right amount of carbonation, and no irksome, syrupy hanglings. It's really pretty basic, though, truth be told.

O: I really feel like so much more could have been accomplished by this brew, and that it's onto something. I feel like it fell short of its goals somewhere, however, and just kind of faded into the woodwork. It's disappointing, because it felt like it was getting there with smell, taste, mouthfeel...then it just stopped without peaking. A bottle rocket when you wanted a mortar shell firework.

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Photo of Jmamay22
2.88/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a two finger head that disipates into nearly no head. The beer itself is an opaque brown black. Looks as dark as some imperial stouts. The nose is intriguing and smells of dark sugar and nuts. The smell fails to develop and is fairly one dimensional. Tastes of sweet dark licorice, but like the smell it fails to develop and lack complexity. This really needs to develop more of a roasted malt backbone. Alcohol is evident, but in place and not overwhelming. Lacks carbonation and features a thin mouthfeel.

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Photo of kwalters
2.9/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Arcadia's Scotch Ale can best be described by me as a very average product. However, it's also one of the cheapest scotch ales I've seen and therefore will probably find it's way back into my fridge. I love scotch ales!

The head disappeared quickly and the beer beneath it appeared oily and dark. The taste was obviously dominated by malt, but wasn't as pleasant or sweet as other scotch ales I've had. It felt thick going down. I'd probably limit myself to two bottles per session.

Average, no more, no less.

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Photo of JohnnyHopps
2.91/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The bottle was poured into a sampler glass and shared with three other samplers. The ale poured a murky brown with little apparent head. One sampler described the aroma as smelling like old lady hair. If you have beer been to the salon with your grandma and smell the chemicals that go into the hair of the elderly, that is the essence of the aroma. The initial taste was that of a grapey scotch. The maltiness of the scotch is presented in the background and falls rather awkward with the grapiness. Dark fruit such as prune is also present, though the sweeter aspects of these fruits are absent relative to the drier aspects. The grape aspects turned medicine in the aftertaste, leaving a coating on the back of the throat. I really enjoy scotch ales, but I found this one to be quite flawed.

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Photo of bashiba
2.95/5  rDev -19%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured a very dark brown with a thin line of tan head.

Smell was thin with just a bit sweet caramel and alcohol.

Taste has a strong alcohol taste with a sweet bit of toasted grains, a light bit of earthy bitter hops with a touch of mint.

Mouthfeel is thick and oily, almost a bit cloying.

Overall not great, seems to hot and a bit on the bland side.

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Photo of JustLikeMyDad
3/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a nice coffee color, a dark brown color with a thin foam head that stays forever.

Smells of malts, warm, almost sweet.

Tastes of lightly roasted malt.

Feels smooth, creamy, full bodied.

Overall, pretty good, not the best Scotch Ale but not the worst, but good.

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Photo of FBarber
3.04/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Pours a dark brown color. Thin tan head dissipates rather quickly leaving no residual head. The lack of head is disappointing.

Smell is a rather subdued aroma of stone fruits - prunes and plums with a hint of malts. Appears sweet on the nose. Rather underwhelming.

Taste has notes of sweet plums and prunes initially giving way to a bland bread-y malt backbone. Slight bitterness on the finish cuts the sweetness somewhat. You really just end up with a very sweet raisin flavor. Its a bit watery.

Feel is light and drinkable. Amazing how thin and light this beer is for an 8.5 ABV - and thats not necessarily a good thing. Medium carbonation.

Overall this beer is just OK. I wouldn't drink it again, there are just too many other good scotch ales out there.

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Photo of danielharper
3.06/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Dark amber coloration, very nearly brown. Thick brown head that thins but does not disappear and leaves a small amount of lacing.

Smell: Strong aroma of bread, malt. Slightly sweet. Not a lot there, but it's not bad.

Taste: Strongly sweet, cloying. Quite dry on the finish. Notes of apples and cherries, a touch of citrus and grapefruit. It's pretty clean overall, but it doesn't even come close to the kind of immense complexity that a really fine Scotch Ale like Skullsplitter can offer.

Mouthfeel: Watery, but leaves a coating along the tongue and palate. No carbonation, no hops, very flat.

Drinkability: Overall I feel like my numerical ratings are a bit unfair for this beer. It's not really a bad beer (I'd probably buy it again sometime) but it's not really giving me anything to work with. A decent high-ABV programmer, nothing more.

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Arcadia Loch Down Scotch Ale from Arcadia Brewing Company
3.64 out of 5 based on 554 ratings.
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