Scratch Beer 14 - 2008 | Tröegs Brewing Company

very good
67 Reviews
no score
Send samples
Scratch Beer 14 - 2008Scratch Beer 14 - 2008

Brewed by:
Tröegs Brewing Company
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.70%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
Scratch #14-2008 is our interpretation of a farmhouse ale—a once near-extinct winter-brewed (and summer–imbibed) Belgian ale. celebratory brew starts with a black pepper and ginger nose. The nicely carbonated brew releases a honey-malt flavor that gives way to a tart crisp finish that masks the elevated ABV. We use a blended yeast strain (Saison Dupont & Le Chouffe) to create the traditional peppery, spicy earthy flavors of the saison. Slight hints of ginger also come through in the finish. Drink it ‘til the wedding bells chime!

25 IBU

Added by akorsak on 09-28-2008

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
firstprev| 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next → last
Reviews: 67 | Ratings: 75
Photo of boralyl
3.47/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours 1 finger of white head that doesn't stick around too long and leaves minimal lacing. The beer is a semi-transparent yellowish-orange. There's a good bit of sediment visible in the beer, as well as some carbonation bubbles.

S - Right off the bat the pepper and ginger make themselves known. Belgian yeast is also very prominent in the aroma.

M - A light bodied beer with a fairly high carbonation, but it works well with the beer.

T - Honey is the first flavor that strikes the palate. It slowly blends in with the Belgian yeast, pepper, and spices. There's a slight ginger flavor in the aftertaste. The taste from the Belgian yeast lingers after you swallow.

A pretty decent offering from Troegs. The carbonation keeps it nice and crisp. It's worth a try if you can find any.

 789 characters

Photo of guzzle211
3.68/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle hand-delivered from the brewery by idesofmarch89 (thanks!) poured into a Sam Adams glass.

Pours a fairly light golden yellow with a white head that retreats into a halo rather quickly. Unlike a lot of previous reviews, mine poured rather clear (although poured very carefully.)

The Belgian yeast dominates both the smell and the taste. The nose also carries hints of citrus. Bananas and bread are also very present. As the palate adjusts, the light spicing is more apparent - clove stands out the most. There is an earthiness that emerges as it warms.

There is enough carbonation to keep this beer active. It is crisp and clear on the tongue.

A very drinkable offering where all of its aspects are present without being overpowering.

 751 characters

Photo of number1bum
4.22/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

As always, many thanks go out to Deuane and ClockworkOrange for hooking me up - this time with a whole damn case!

Pours a vibrant, golden tangerine sort of color, cloudy but impressively colorful. Two fingers of white head settle to a pretty full lace and leave some stick here and there. A good amount of sediment is evident in the bottle, and I stirred a bit of it up and poured it in, which contributes to the cloudiness and leaves a dusting of sediment on the bottom of the glass, as well.

Smell is quite a bouquet of floral, herbal and fruity aromas, many of which are clearly the product of a great yeast strain. Also some honey-like sweetness, ginger and a bit of spice. Quite a bit going on and it comes together very nicely.

Taste starts off with a nice, subtle sweetness upon which there are complex floral, herbal and yeasty flavors. Some clove, anise and other spicing is also evident, along with some ginger. There is a cooling, menthol sort of sensation, as well; I'm sure the ginger is contributing to that. The taste is just a bit more grainy than the smell, but still I really like it. Complex, flavorful, smooth, and very easy to put down.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and quite smooth, also a touch on the dry side, and overall this is a very drinkable saison. I'm extremely impressed by this effort from Troegs. I've found a lot of the Scratch beers to be only so-so, but this one is excellent. I'm glad I have a case!

 1,440 characters

Photo of joe1510
3.65/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz Bottle

I just received this freshly released bottle from jasonm in a trade last week, thanks Jason! The large carbonation bubbles hyperactively swirl to the surface keeping the clean white micro bubbled head at a constant cap. The body is polished golden with a touch of haziness throughout. Each quick swirl brings the head back alive in no time. A chunk or two of lacing is left behind here and there after each drink. I'd like to see more of the Belgian styled meringue-like heads that stick everywhere.

The on this saison has a lot of spice to it. Clove and banana leap from the glass and are the most dominant of the spices. Bubblegum plays a big role as well. The yeast Troegs used is hugely expressive and leads more along the lines of a hugely estery Belgian pale. There's a slight bit candi sugar-like sweetness in the pale malt profile. This beer smells good but I can't find a whole lot of saison in the mix which hurts the score.

The banana and clove fade in the flavor letting more of the bubblegum and some earthiness that I couldn't pick up in the nose. Actually as this beer warms the clove picks up on the swallow which doesn't seem to fit the style. There is a spicy hopping mid-palate that's very enjoyable and eventually leaves a little tingle on the tongue. A slight clean booziness can be felt in the nose. This comes closer to a saison than the nose suggested but the spices are still the main focus.

The mouthfeel isn't very saison like either but it does fit the flavor profile nicely. There's a moderate bodied smoothness with a touch of viscosity and a rather mellow carbonation. The body lightens up before the swallow. The mild grassy hoppiness lingers.

The drinkability on this beer is pretty good. The glass disappeared before I realized it. I'm usually not that big on clove but this beer just kept going down.

This wasn't much of a saison, in my opinion, but it is a good brew overall. I like trying these Troegs Scratch Series beers. Thanks for the bottle Jason!

 2,009 characters

Photo of younger35
3.48/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Received the brew from one of my main men BeerTruth. I've liked all of the Scratch brews except for the Belgium style ones. We'll see if this can change my mind. Drank from my Ithaca Excelsior tulip.

Appearance- Pours a nice bright yellow with a super fluffy bright white one finger head that recedes very slowly. Left behind is a thin cap and thick collar that manages to leave some spotty lacing. Champaign like carbonation bubbles throughout.
Smell- Starts with loads of sweet banana and lemon peel with a bit of spiciness in the background. I hope this doesn't taste as sweet as it smells. Ginger, white pepper and a bit of clove really come together nicely.
Taste- Soft banana and bits of ginger start the flavor with the tiniest bit of sweetness. A small amount of citrus lemon peel and maybe even a bit of orange is somewhat acidic. Bready at times with a raw doughy taste and light funky yeast. The finish is somewhat pithy and dry with a lemony bitterness.
Mouthfeel- A bit thin but not horribly so with some light crisp carbonation and dry tart finish.
Drinkability- Overall this is definitely my favorite of the Scratch Belgium brews. It's got a nice light Saison profile without being kind of over done like the others. Good brew but can't wait for 15, that's gonna rock. Big thanks again to Adam!!

 1,311 characters

Photo of krkearney
3.8/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle from Capone's (Norristown, PA). Pours hazy golden, capped with a moderate sized white head. Appealing aroma of spice, citrus, banana, yeast, and white pepper. Flavor of wheat, honey, and yeast, with spice and cloves building towards the finish. Spice, herbs and earth linger for a long finish. A bit thin bodied, but a nice, refreshing beer overall.

 361 characters

Photo of Deuane
4.27/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A bottle of the latest SB release. Had it on draft and while good I wasn't wowed by it.

A-Hazy, orange kissed, golden yellow with a thin white head that reduces to a ring leaving spotty lace.

S-Bright citrus aroma with lemon and orange being dominate. Earthy, musty yeast and a bit of chalkiness in the background.

T-Bright citrus smack with lemon and orange being dominate. Earthy, musty yeast and chewy biscuit malt in the finish. Dry chalky feel in the finish. Certainly a more citrus zing forward brew from the bottle than from draft.

M-Light to Medium-light body, bright and lively with a dry finish.

D-A rare case of a beer that is better from the bottle than it is from draft. Citrus notes are brighter and crisper with the musty, earthy yeast notes becoming secondary. This is what I enjoy in a saison. Very nice, jaunty, light and enjoyable brew.

 860 characters

Photo of BeerTruth
4.22/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks as always to number1bum and all the others in the PA crew involved that got another Scratch beer up to CNY.

12 oz. bottle poured into a tulip.

Pours a murky yellow with a one finger slightly off-white head that slowly falls to a thin layer of foam. A few thin spots of lacing remain on the sides of the glass, but not much. Smell consists of sweet banana's, belgian yeasts, and a touch of ground pepper. Honey and pale malts tickle the nose as well with a bit of orange peel. Taste begins with more banana and clove followed by a citrus hop sting. Bread, pepper, and some grit midway. Aftertase is lemony and somewhat dry with more yeast flavors that linger on the tongue. I could see why the other reviews wouldn't like the mouthfeel on this beer, but personally I really enjoy it. Yeah, it's unique for the style but I think that's why I like it so much. A creamy, medium body with a light and flowing carbonation. Very smooth in the mouth, me likey. The other Belgian beers in the series (two tripels and a belgian strong) have been so-so, but this Saison is a winner. I've said it before and I'll say it again, let's see a Quad!!

 1,142 characters

Photo of DIM
4.32/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

a: This was a cloudy, pale straw color. It poured with a medium sized white head that quickly faded to lace.

s: Aromas of sweet bready bananas are the most obvious smells. I also found prickly, funky rye, some peppery cloves, and some lemony hops.

t: This starts off sweet, with flavors bananas and doughy bread. The finish is hugely comples with a cluster of flavors all vying for attention. Drying rye flavors along with spicy (lots of pepper) and lemony hop tastes. This kind of reminds me of a cross between a hefe and a tripel.

m: They got the genuine, Belgian champagne like carbonation just right. The body has a slick, oily quality that I really like.

d: Troegs keeps putting out winner after winner. I keep waiting for a clunker in the scratch series but it hasn't happened yet. Lovin' Troegs more and more.

 821 characters

Photo of DrJay
4.29/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hazy gold with a short, bright white cap. Clumpy lacing. Looks pretty good. Nice aroma, lemon and bread up front with notes of yeast, cloves, honey and banana. The flavour was soft and full of malt (bread and honey sweetness) and light banana at first, but gave way to a solid spice character towards the end with plenty of white pepper and cloves lingering into the finish. Lemony citrus filled in mid-palate, creating a bridge between these two extremes. Quite tasty. Slightly slick texture with a smooth mouthfeel and very lively carbonation. Very drinkable with enough complexity to keep it interesting, but not enough to make it feel cloying. Another winner in the Scratch series.

 685 characters

Photo of Fish113d
4.15/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Pours a hazy, gold color with 1 finger-thick of an eggshell colored fairly dense head. The head dissipates to a thin surface layer after a minute or two.

Nutmeg and pepper hits my sinuses right away. A bit of sweet grapefruit and citrus aroma also comes through, but not very complex. Aroma is very aparant, but nothing flashy.

Sipping reveals a bit of a pepper right away on the tip of my tongue, while a bit of spice hits the sides of my tongue. A bit hoppy on the swallow. Again, nothing flashy, but good.

Sharp, tingly carbonation hits my palate right away. Fairly crisp, autumn brew. Finish is smoother than the upfront experience.

Very drinkable brew. Not the most flashy Troegs offering, but I don't believe it was their intention either. It makes a great session brew. I'm sure I'll finish my growler tonight! Sticks very true to the style, and represents the diversity that Troegs can really bring on. Overall, well done!

 934 characters

Photo of corey0212
4.37/5  rDev +9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Got a growler full of this liquid gold courtesy of Deuane in Growling at the Moon!!!

Pours a honey/lemon color, smallish white head fades out pretty fast, leaves a few stray spots of lacing on the glass. Smell is yeasty & grainy, a good amount of clove, and a faint whiff of pepper. Some banana flavors, more clove and pepper, hearty bread flavors, and some slight lemony tartness. Slightly creamy mouthfeel, but still relatively crisp and refreshing. I've got a growler to finish, so it's a good thing the drinkability is high on this one!! Big thanks to Deuane for hooking me up with such a tasty beer!!

 606 characters

Photo of DefenCorps
4.24/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle received in trade from Deuane. Thanks man! Into my Chimay goblet.

A: This is one yeasty, cloudy beer that pours a light mango color. There's a thin white head that dissipates fairly quickly to a ring

S: On the nose, this beer is pretty darned delicious with a ton of spices - pepper, clove, a hint of ginger, honey-like sweetness, fruitiness with a mild orange-like character. Beautiful and complex.

T: On the palate, this beer explodes with a ton of spices - pepper, clove and nutmeg spring to the front, followed up with some floral and honey-like sweetness. Dries up on the finish, leaving an excellent, spicy finish with a fleeting hint of ginger.

M: Oh dear lord, if this beer wasn't as flat, this would be spectacular. The carbonation in this bottle is lacking, leading to it being rather heavy on the palate. This is not a fullish- beer, though - it's rather dry and some carbonation would have been wonderful

D: Excellent, I could go for another. I'm going to hold off and hope that the others carbonate, though

 1,036 characters

Photo of John_M
4.52/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Many thanks to Dyan for sharing a bottle from his 6 pack of this delicious stuff.

The beer pours a hazy gold color with fair head retention and good lacing. The beer looks OK, but the first indication I'm in for something special occurs when I take the first sniff. Holy mother Maria! There is a huge presence of banana, clove and allspice, wrapped aroud sweet cherry honey. This beer really smells pretty amazing.

As good as this beer smells, it's even better on the palate. The beer is moderately sweet with tons of clove, allspice, nutmeg and honey. The combination of bubble gum and clove is mind boggling, making for a rich exotic flavor package. Mouthfeel is pretty smooth and the alcohol is fairly well disguised. The beer is not heavy or cloying on the palate, though rich as it is, I'm not sure I could ever drink more then one or two.

This is an absolutely amazing beer, one I wish Troegs made more of, or at least made it more available. Hopefully they'll have it at the brewery for a while, as I've suddenly discovered a need to go make a special visit, growler in hand.

 1,085 characters

Photo of Imstillthegman
3.92/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks go to Deuane for this bottle.

Pours an extremely hazy, yellow / dirty orange color. Probably the only beer I have ever seen that was this color. Thin off-white head leaves only a speck or two of lacing. Something about this just looks dirty.

The scent is very faint at first but improves as it warms. This one has a musty aroma to it... very barnyard. There's a bit of bread in there, wet hay and some citrus, too. Somewhat spicy.

The flavor is more on the spicy side. It has a dose of funk and some sweet lemon grass. Yeast is noticeable throughout.

Thinner feel to it. Prickly, dry tingle on the tongue. Overall a rather enjoyable beer. Another interesting brew from Troegs in the Scratch series.

 710 characters

Photo of akorsak
3.95/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A growler filled on 3-Oct-08 and consumed the following day.

A: The saison is a turbid yellow-brown color that I'd call yellow tang. The haziness is unmistakeable and never quite settles out. A small head emerged on each pour.

S: The nose is musky, strong with spices and yeast. The spices include anise and pepper; the yeast dry with heat and fruit.

T: The saison is somewhat pedestrian up front, showcasing some spices but nothing memorable. As a sip continues to develop, anise flavors emerge with some peppery heat. A touch of brett-inspired funk, like a fresh Orval, lingers in the background. Ginger? I'm not picking that one up but a subtle anise flavor nicely carries the ale. The yeasty dryness lasts long.

M: The dryness of the yeast really nails this as a saison. Anise, in a mild form, works well also.

D: A better than average saison, this one works but doesn't set a gold standard (like many other Scratch offerings have).

 941 characters

Photo of ffejherb
3.92/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Via growler pour into Mad Elf challice on 10/3/08. Shared with Deuane and brewslut.

A - Pale orange/cantaloupe-colored body with very slow-rising bubbles of carbonation and almost one finger of off-white head that transformed into a wispy film and left sparse lacing.

S - Spicy nose with a bit of pepper, ginger and citrus notes. Heavy on the Belgian yeast. Ginger becomes more pronounced as the liquid warmed up. Hints of orange zest also emerge.

T - Pepper and ginger up front with a mild fruity aspect and plenty of yeast. Barnyard funk and some wet hay in the backend with a bit of spicy, earthy yeast and a musty character. Some crusty bread emerges in the finish as well.

M - Pretty light bodied with a slightly syrupy texture and quite a bit of carbonation on the tongue, resulting in a prickly mouthfeel. Finish is dry, spicy and a little bitter on the palate.

D - Another solid Scracth brew from Troegs. Not one of my favorite styles, but this is pretty light and drinkable. This brew has a lot of spice and musty qualities, but otherwise it is pretty accessible.

 1,081 characters

firstprev| 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next → last
Scratch Beer 14 - 2008 from Tröegs Brewing Company
4.01 out of 5 based on 75 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.