Heavy Horse Scotch Ale | Big Sky Brewing Company

BA SCORE
85
very good
253 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score
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Heavy Horse Scotch AleHeavy Horse Scotch Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Big Sky Brewing Company
Montana, United States
bigskybrew.com

Style: Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.70%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by brownbeer on 03-31-2010

BEER STATS
Ratings:
253
Reviews:
111
Avg:
3.76
pDev:
12.77%
 
 
Wants:
4
Gots:
20
For Trade:
0
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 253 |  Reviews: 111
Photo of Texasfan549
3.5/5  rDev -6.9%

Photo of jaydoc
4/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of StonedTrippin
3.85/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a decent scotch ale. smells and tastes very very malty, with very little of the earthy depth many of these style beers showcase. palate is a little on the sweet side, with a touch of the alcohol coming through. almost tastes and feels like a barleywine in that respect, very grainy, in a good way. mouthfeel is good, i like the fuller body on this one, and the fairly heavy carbonation i think serves it quite well. this isnt my favorite scotch ale, or even my favorite big sky beer, but its sessionable for a its style and its one that works with all kinds of food, so i will probably grab this one again if i see it.

 618 characters

Photo of kjkinsey
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%

Photo of nmann08
3.74/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of zeff80
3.46/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Tap at The Bridge in St. Louis.

A - Poured a burgundy color with a one-finger, tan head of foam. It had good retention and left sheets of lace on the glass.

S - Not a lot going on here. A little malt. Some earthy notes. All very mild.

T - It was a little nutty with some good caramel maltiness. Nice earthy/grassy hops.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A medium bodied ale.

D - This is a nice wee heavy. I've had better, but it was worth a try.

 452 characters

Photo of LXIXME
4.2/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from an inch or so above the glass leaves a nice big light brown head that settles into a pretty decent lacing above a clear dark burnt reddish colored beer.

Butterscotch, and roasted caramelized malt aroma with a slight alcohol hint aroma is transfer to the taste just about the same, maybe a touch more alcohol in the taste.

The aftertaste of this medium bodied ale is a light dry with hints of alcohol, I was pretty pleased with this beer, you should check it out if given the opportunity.

 501 characters

Photo of zestar
3.5/5  rDev -6.9%

Photo of superspak
4.1/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle into tulip glass, best before 11/21/2013. Pours crystal clear deep ruby red color with a 1-2 finger dense khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a thin cap that lingers. Light spotty soapy lacing clings on the glass. Aromas of big caramel, raisin, fig, apple, toast, brown sugar, brown bread, light chocolate, light roast, herbal, light pepper, and yeast earthiness. Very nice aromas with good balance and complexity of malt and yeast ester notes; with good strength. Taste of big caramel, raisin, fig, apple, toast, toffee, brown sugar, brown bread, chocolate, light roast, herbal, light pepper, and yeast earthiness. Lingering notes of caramel, dark fruit, toast, toffee, chocolate, brown bread, brown sugar, light roast, and herbal on the finish for a good bit. Very nice balance and complexity of malt and yeast ester flavors; with great robustness and zero cloying sweetness after the finish. Medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a creamy, moderately slick, and lightly chalky mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with minimal warming present after the finish. Overall this is an excellent scotch ale. All around great balance and complexity of malt and yeast ester flavors; and very smooth to sip on. A very enjoyable offering.

 1,284 characters

Photo of mothman
3.53/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Copper bronze color. Tan head. Caramel and toffee malts. Light smokey and peat which is nice. Some fruity notes and molasses mixed in. Fairly easy to drink for a Scottish ale.

 175 characters

Photo of russpowell
3.59/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours chestnut/brown with a pinky of tan head. Bellow average head retention & lacing

S: Faint plummyness & some leafy hops, more fruittyness at the end...

T: Figs, slight cherry flavor & toffee up front, along with dryness & abit of brown sugar. Much sweet maltyness with caramel && figgy notes dominating as this warms, along a subtle smokeyness/peat/tanin flavor. Finishes sooo dry, figgy with slight peat notes

MF: Medium bodied, low carbonation, becomes chewier once warm

Pretty easy drinker, but there's just not enough here to get too excited about. I expected more from Big Sky

 589 characters

Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.65/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

"The stable wears out a horse more than the road."

--French proverb

Brick red with glittering topaz highlights and an attractive slice of buttered wheat toast colored foam. The head develops a moonscape surface as it melts, while a high collar of lace is the only glass decoration so far. A single shredded sheet sticks... eventually.

The nose is somewhat underpowered and lacks an olfactory hook. It's brown-caramel malty and earthy, with just enough boldness and definition with warming to earn the above score. There's work to be done on the palate.

Heavy Horse Scotch Ale favors the light end of the style spectrum in terms of both malt content and ABV. It's also darker than most wee heavies (which tend to showcase mid-range malts like caramel), thanks to the use of chocolate and roasted malt. Let's call it two parts light Scotch ale to one part Scottish stout.

All things considered, BSBC HHSA is pretty good beer, but I'm not sure it deserves the solidly good taste score. As in the nose, time and warming are helping to turn up the intensity knob a bit. Flavors include caramel, cocoa, baked nuts and bitter tea leaves. This must be a fairly fresh bottle since there were only 20 IBUs to start.

The mouthfeel is easily big enough for the ABV and has the well-calibrated carbonation that is a hallmark of this brewery. No complaints here.

Big Sky deserves more love than they typically get. Their IPA is still one of my favorites, and they knock a few other offerings out of the park as well. Heavy Horse Scotch Ale, despite not being the bee's knees, is still good beer that is enjoyable to drink. Nothing else really matters in the end.

 1,655 characters

Photo of mikesgroove
4.05/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

caramel in color with a light tan head on top that reached a height of around an inch before fading and leaving the top of the glass mostly bare. Light lacing on the sides as well. Aroma was spectacular. Rich notes of caramel and toffee, oozing with butterscotch and sweet herbal notes. Light hint of a boozy alcohol touch to it at well, but it played out quite nicely. The first sip made me fall back in my chair. Simply brilliant. Rich butterscotch and toffee flavors roll across the tongue. Enormously sweet like a wonderful piece of hard candy, each sip seemed more compelling then the one before it. Sublime. Nice herbal hop notes playing it up quite well and the smooth, delicate caramel finish with a light touch of booziness is just what the doctor ordered

 764 characters

Photo of MarkyMOD
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%

Photo of TMoney2591
4.15/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served in a Devil's Backbone willibecher.

Watching the Bears rock the Panthers (so far) and listening to the only song that's appropriate (that's right, kiddies, it's Jethro Tull's "Heavy Horses"!). The beer pours a clear ruby brown topped by a finger of ecru foam. The nose comprises caramel, figs, rye bread, wheat, raisins, and red grapes. The taste is very similar, with a hint of buttered biscuits and light flowers thrown into the mix. The body is a nice medium, with a sharp light moderate carbonation and a lightly chewy feel. Overall, a very nice scotch ale, a tasty treat from this Montana brewery.

 609 characters

Photo of WoodBrew
3.99/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The Heavy Horse is a good Scotch Ale....not to heavy and not to sweet. The beer pours a clear brownish amber with thin off-white head that is leaving a spotty lace. The scent has sweet malt and touches of peat and scotch. The taste is a nice even beer with heavy malt backbone with a touch of honey sweetiness. The mouthfeel is medium in body with good carbonation. Overall the beer is good...and definitely sessionable.

 420 characters

Photo of Hopheadjeffery
4.25/5  rDev +13%

Photo of Tone
4.04/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear, dark brown color. 1/3 inch head of an off-tan color. Great retention and decent lacing. Smells of sweet malt, caramel malt, slight roasted malt, slight yeast, and slight alcohol. Fits the style of a Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy. Mouth feel is smooth and clean, with a low carbonation level. Tastes of sweet malt, hint slight alcohol, slight yeast, slight roasted malt, hint of tea, and caramel malt. Overall, good appearance, aroma, great feel, and good blend.

 476 characters

Photo of a77cj7
4/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of LiquidAmber
3.47/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Review from 4/2011 notes. Poured into a Black Raven pint glass. Pours a dark red amber. Slight head, but some lacing. Aroma of sweet malt, caramel and slight dark fruit. Flavor starts as with sweet and caramel malt some dark fruit, somewhat nutty. Finish is a bit dry and sour with a little bit of hop kick. Initial flavors are nice, but the finish is not great. There are better Scotch ales out there

 401 characters

Photo of stevoj
3.19/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

Nutty aroma with hints of peat and oak barrel. Pours light brown with average beige head. Taste is more peat, wood, smoke, kind of dry palate. Not bad.

 151 characters

Photo of Mebuzzard
3.63/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a shiny but deep hazelnut color. Looks rich, head is fluffy and off-tan. Lacing could use more stick.

Malty aroma, but a bit light for the style. I would say more estery than earthy. Some slightly smoked caramel.

Yeah, this is a "fruity" earthy beer. Hard to explain. The malt is slighly smoked and sweet, with prune or plum backings. Raisin is too sweet for description. Good flavors, just a bit off for style, imho.

This makes the Feel a bit light, too. Otherwise it's darn good. Glad I have 5 more...

 512 characters

Photo of Whiskeydeez
4/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of Mora2000
4.03/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Glad to see a new Big Sky beer in Texas.

The beer pours a clear, deep red color with a tan head. A great looking beer. The aroma is very malty with a lot of toffee and caramel malt. I also get some dark fruit and a little bit of peet smoke. The flavor is also extremely malty. I get toffee, caramel, chocolate, dark fruit, cream, a little smoke and a little alcohol. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

 408 characters

Photo of enelson
4/5  rDev +6.4%

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Heavy Horse Scotch Ale from Big Sky Brewing Company
3.76 out of 5 based on 253 ratings.
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