Scratch Beer 119 - 2013 (Mushroom Ale) | Tröegs Brewing Company

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22 Ratings

Brewed by:
Tröegs Brewing Company
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.80%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
When we introduced our Scratch Beer Series back in 2007, our vision was quite simple: experiment! Since then, we have strived to push the limits of our own creativity by using non-traditional ingredients and employing new brewing techniques. If any Scratch Beer captures the essence of this philosophy, it most certainly is Scratch #119. We brewed this robust ale with an unusual ingredient seldom associated with craft brewing culture. The magic ingredient is – wait for it – MUSHROOMS! With research assistance from the American Mushroom Institute, PA Dept. of Agriculture, and Pennsylvania mushroom farmers, this distinctive ale is a true collaborative effort. Brewed with an exotic blend of champignon, maitake, shiitake, and portabella mushrooms, Scratch #119 displays an earthy quality that is appropriate for this brawny ale. With its atypical composition and spirited demeanor, this latest Scratch creation is indeed a “fun guy!”

Added by orangesol on 11-01-2013

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 22 |  Reviews: 5
Photo of JNForsyth
3.72/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Photo of barflybastard
3.25/5  rDev -8.5%

Photo of DrBier
3.75/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of curlybird
3.5/5  rDev -1.4%

Photo of Griffith
3.5/5  rDev -1.4%

Photo of WillieThreebiers
3.5/5  rDev -1.4%

Photo of campfirebrew
3.75/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of stakem
3.79/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Draft offering at Troegs taproom served in a snifter. The brew appears a dark brown to black color with a dark khaki head. Some brown clarity is seen around the edges and a patchy curtain of lace sticks to the glass.

The smell is earthen and roasty with black licorice and some herbal hops. Faint notes of chocolate are also present. This smells like a typicsl porter but with a hint of dusty age to it...almost like a several year old dead reckoning minus the hops.

The flavor has lots of black licorice and leather in the flavor blending to roast and a hint of herbal hops. It is lightly musty and sooty in the aftertaste with a dark fruity hint of alcohol and touch of anise.

This is a medium bodied brew with a modest amount of carbonation. It is a smooth delicious porter with a really dumb adjunct addition. This brew just screams "look at me, im different" and is really more of a gimmick than anything. A nice porter, nothing more, nothing less.

 956 characters

Photo of 1sophrosyne1
3.97/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Tasted on tap at the brewery and enjoyed from a growler a week later.

Pours a thick ebony that initially appears it will be almost headless. But then a tan uprising from within the core makes a creamy, bubbly cap. It's pretty, but has only fair retention, leaving a very thin film and spotty lacing.

Dark roasted malts are prominent in the nose with muddy, stoney earth. That almost flinty edge is enhanced by a hop note. Mocha and tree bark are deeper in the center. There are hints of cream, cinnamon, and hazelnuts, as well. It's only with warming that the essence of fungus creeps in around the edges--mostly champignon and a lightly grilled portabella.

The taste is dominated right up from with wet earth and almost charred malts; the latter lingers as pitch all the way into the aftertaste. These forces don't leave sufficient room for other flavor elements, even though i do like them. Chocolate finds its way through, strangely bound to the brightness of hops that hint at orange. It's not a very versatile taste profile, but remarkably good with pizza.

The mouthfeel isn't compelling--medium body with moderate carbonation. Slick and fresh, but not very clingy or chewy in a way that might fit the mushroom essences a bit better.

I find this creation surprisingly drinkable and push its overall rating higher, because I simply enjoy drinking it. I realize it's not a phenomenal brew, but I certainly think it has its place. And…unlike other breweries that choose atypical ingredients for novel creations, Troegs hasn't created a gangly un-beer here. It's good stuff.

 1,582 characters

Photo of Benish
3.75/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of InspectorBob
3.5/5  rDev -1.4%

Photo of Bdel34
3.75/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of Thesoundandthefury
2.99/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Hmmmm, really? I was hesitant to try this, but figured why not. The easiest way to describe this review is this: Rugged Trail mixed with water that mushrooms sat in. This beer tastes similar to Rugged trail until the finish, where it morphs into a fungus like dirty taste. Interesting thought, but no thanks. Novelty and nothing more.

 334 characters

Photo of touchmeimsac
3.75/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of ryser2k
3.25/5  rDev -8.5%

Photo of bigfnjoe
4/5  rDev +12.7%

Photo of jagada
4/5  rDev +12.7%

Photo of Slatetank
3.61/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

I had a pint of this on tap at the tasting room served chilled in a wheat style glass.

The color is walnut brown and it is almost opaque but had a bronze highlight at the base, normal thin tan cap, bead is fine and lace is average with ok retention. The smell is nice nutty earthy coffee and cocoa with a light caramel and mineral note from the yeast. The feel is decent, not very rich, mostly dry with moderately high carbonation and subtle alcohol with roasted body and medium fullness.

The flavor has a nice bitter dark malt up front which leans toward roasted coffee in the grain department with a slight accent of chocolate and perhaps a mild caramel accent. There is a mineral earthy quality which I am guessing is from the mushroom addition but the mushroom contribution seems more in the feel than flavor at least to my palate. Overall I think it is a decent porter but you could have left the mushroom out and gotten similar doesn't really strike me as something "mushroomy' meaning if you tried this blind you would probably not guess it incorporated four different types of mushrooms in the beer.

 1,125 characters

Photo of mikefuski17
3/5  rDev -15.5%

Photo of orangesol
3.52/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served on-tap at the brewery.

A - Pours super dark brown, might as well be black, with a pillowy one and a half finger tall tan head, dissipating down to a light film, leaving spotty streaks of lace down the glass.

S - Smells of dark roasted malt, good amount of damp earthiness, some light vanilla and chocolatey sweetness and a dash of hops round things out. Really earthy when first poured, gets a little more balanced as it warms up.

T - Starts off with a mix of roasty malt and damp earth that never really fades away. Hints of bittersweet chocolate, vanilla and very light hop bitterness try to keep it all in check. Finish is kind of a mix of all of the flavors, but mostly the bitterness from the hops and chocolate malt and the earthiness from the mushrooms, combining to linger on the palate long after the finish.

M - Medium-Heavy body with moderate carbonation. Slick, roasty feel combining with the earthy taste to cling to the palate after each sip.

O - A slightly above average porter made interesting by the inclusion of the mushrooms. The earthy flavors from the mushrooms come through throughout but never overpower the other flavors. Nowhere near as bad as I was envisioning it being, it's always nice to see them taking chances like this.

 1,263 characters

Photo of ShanePB
3/5  rDev -15.5%

Photo of Kegatron
3.25/5  rDev -8.5%

Scratch Beer 119 - 2013 (Mushroom Ale) from Tröegs Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.55 out of 5 with 22 ratings