Highland Gaelic Ale | Highland Brewing

BA SCORE
86
very good
1,472 Ratings
Highland Gaelic AleHighland Gaelic Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Highland Brewing
North Carolina, United States
highlandbrewing.com

Style: American Amber / Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.80%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
A deep amber colored American ale, featuring a rich malty body. Cascade and Willamette hops add a complex hop flavor and aroma. This ale is exceptionally balanced between malty sweetness and delicate hop bitterness.

Hops: Chinook, Willamette and Cascade

32 IBU

Added by stirgy on 01-11-2002

BEER STATS
Ratings:
1,472
Reviews:
538
Avg:
3.81
pDev:
11.81%
 
 
Wants:
44
Gots:
318
For Trade:
0
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,472 |  Reviews: 538
Photo of cjl1209
3.65/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

"A deep amber colored American ale, featuring a rich malty body. Cascade and Willamette hops add a complex hop flavor and aroma. This ale is exceptionally balanced between malty sweetness and delicate hop bitterness." Website says Chinook hops too.

A - Medium brown/cola color with a very small tan head. Surprisingly nice lacing considering the lame head.

S - Intense floral scent with light malt notes

T - Finely balanced just like advertised. On the tongue expect plenty of roasted malts while giving a good mouth swirl will yield a nice hoppy bitter characteristic. Bitterness lingers after you swallow and the malt flavor returns.

M - Smooth with light carbonation. Not exactly creamy but a bit heavier than expected.

D - This brew is easy drinking. However I could see the hops being a bit much after several of theses if you're not a fan of bitterness.

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Photo of PierceMyers
3.65/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

It produced a small head and wasn't very carbonated. The color is a great clear red however, which makes for a solid appearance.

It was served colder than recommended which altered the initial flavor of the beer. Once it warmed up some I could really taste its finer notes which I could best describe as woody and caramel(ly). The amber aroma got stronger as well.

The mouthfeel got better as it warmed, but it seemed to run over the palate without wanting to stick around. The last couple ounces were very enjoyable, however, enough to make me alter my initial ratings.

The beer has a very great combination of flavoring and drinkability. The aroma is nice and the tones are solid as well. I didn't see to much of the bite that I read about, and a little more carbonation would have been nice. All around, I will buy it again. And make sure to serve it around 45 degrees!

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Photo of tctruffin
3.65/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured with a rather limited cream colored head that disappated quickly. Not too much aroma; just a slight cascade hop presence. Taste is where this ale shines. Got some roasty caramel notes from the malt with earthy citrus hops on top. The Gaelic does a good job of unifying these disparate flavors. In the mouth, it's a bit stickier than called for, but that doesn't make any less drinkable.

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Photo of Jason_cs
3.65/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of DCon
3.65/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bought a 12 FL. OZ. bottle of this from Ingles Grocery Store in Asheville, NC & added to my Mix-A-Six Pack for $8.88. Poured from the Red/Golden Labeled bottle w/ a Scottish character playing the back pipes into a 0,47l New Belgium Oversized Snifter Glass. Does not have a freshness date.

Aroma- Strong sweetness, maltiness, and caramel. Smooth and smells like its going to be an easy going brew.

Appearance- Pours a 1 finger head that has average retention. Has a light amber colored body and is fairly clear. Leave thick lacing behind.

Flavor- Starts clean with light caramel and good amount of sweetness. Has a sweet finish too. Lightest hop flavor and no bitterness.

Mouthfeel- Medium Bodied, Light-Medium Bodied, Smooth, Clean, and has a sweet caramel aftertaste.

Overall Impression- Easy going brew with light character and all around nice amber ale. Could enjoy many of these back to back but definitely wish there was more hop and character to them. Above average overall and definitely know there are much better brews from Highland. How should I say this without be cliche? Session ale?

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Photo of BeerDawgs
3.65/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - An amber red with cloudiness and 1 finger of head. Slight lace left on the glass. Looks good!

S - Lots of sugar, molasses, and brown sugar. Huge maltiness in the nose.

T - Malts kick in up front. Like the smell, sweet, sugar and caramel. Nicely balanced with some bitterness at the end.

M - Light bodied and fairly well carbonated.

O - A very drinkable amber ale. Well balanced, and good.

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Photo of MbpBugeye
3.65/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The last in a journey through the Highland flagship, captained by Ryan011235. Its been a weird and wild trip. I barely made it out the other end of this gauntlet.

A- Very small head with no retention or lace. I thought it might be getting flat, but now Im thinking its just a very low carbonated beer. The color of the beer is a deep, autumn brown.

S- Extremely weak nose, I cant get much of anything. I think I would rather have a beer that smells disgusting but is very strong than a nice smelling beer with no power to the aroma at all. That would at least gives you something to explore.

T- Well, after expecting the worst I am delighted to report that this is a very tasty beer. Very nice balance with the flavors leaning ever so slightly towards sweet, fruity malts. Nice and mellow, very unobtrusive and casual but delightfully tasty.

M- Low levels of carbonation and a surprisingly fuller body make a nice smooth beer.

D- Geez, I just caught myself gulping this stuff. Its not the best beer by a long shot, but for what ever reason, it drinks alarmingly easily.

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Photo of ski271
3.65/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Medium-dark ruby color with a touch of amber and a small, off-white, milky, quickly-diminishing head. The smell has a good balance of toasted malts and citrus and piney hops. Brown sugar sweetness in the nose and taste. Caramel, grainy bread and doughy yeast. It has a medium body, dry texture and low carbonation. Smells better than it tastes, but it’s still refreshing and above average.

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Photo of htomsirveaux
3.65/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle tried 3 Dec 2007.

Small amber head. Well carbonated. Deep copper color. Aroma is light, sweet and resiney. Fairly sweet and caramel to start. Roasted nuts. Becomes a little drier in the finish. Medium body. Light alcohol.

Well balanced, easy to drink.

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Photo of silver0rlead
3.66/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Really a spectacular looking beer, deep amber/mahogany color with a thick beige head that retains well and leaves nice lacing. Smell is sweet caramel malt with a fruity background, maybe strawberries or cherries. Taste really doesn't live up to the smell, this really isnt that complex of a brew but it is tasty nonetheless i was just expecting a bit more frankly. Taste is your basic irish red with a very slim hops profile that isnt very noticeable. Begins with a sweet caramel/molasses flavor and a light fruitiness that resembles strawberries and a barely noticeable piney hops flavor that is very much in the background. I think this beer could be really good if they upped the hops a little as it would balance the brew out alot more. The mouthfeel is appropriately creamy and smooth with somewhat low carbonation. The drinkability is pretty good, and this could be a session brew but there are alot better irish red's out there (really King David's Red by edenton is a much better choice).

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Photo of Btrue121
3.66/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance is a good burnt red
Smell is pretty faint, only small downfall
Taste is a toasted caramel biscuit. Havent never had that, but this is what it would taste like. More amber, than red.
Mouthfeel is smooth, a little thick sweetness and some thinning hop bitterness(slight) to end. Smooth.
Overall i will buy this beer again, not from a "wow its good" but just to have a "good" beer. Not my favorite, but i can say this; i hope one day i can brew some beer this good. So therefore i definitely enjoyed it. Recommended, at least to try my beer friends.

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Photo of SlappyMcGee
3.67/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Drinking straight from a 12 oz bottle.

Didn't bother smelling it much to make any decent comments. Nice mouth feel and good golden, slightly red amber color. It has a nice main flavor with a slight hint of caramel and a good bit of malt. My only complaint is that it has a slightly offputting aftertaste. I'd definitely drink it again, but not on a regular basis.

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Photo of socon67
3.67/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours copper with a slight white foam. Some mild lacing. Good clarity, and some carbonation noted.

S - Smells of caramel, fresh grains (wheat), and some mild malts.

T - A good balance of sweetness and refreshing grain. Not all that noteworthy, but it is an enjoyable amber.

M - Crisp and refreshing, this is a good drinking beer that has a sweet finish.

O - A decent Amber that is typical of the style. I'd be happy to have this again.

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Photo of Dillinger
3.67/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of buschbeer
3.67/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle
Served in a nonic pint glass

A - It is a rusty orange color. I got two inches of beige head.

S - The aroma is sweet. I get some toffee and some biscuit.

T - The taste is toffee, caramel, and toast.

M - Moderate

O - This is a tasty brew. It kind of reminds me of Conways Irish Ale. Not quite as good, but would work as a poor man's substitute.

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Photo of HopHead84
3.67/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

5/8/2012

A: Red tinged orange with an inch of dense beige foam.

S: Expressive caramel malt melds with earth and baked bread. Light pine and grapefruit notes linger in the distance. Lightly sweet.

T: Like the aroma, the flavor is malt centered, focusing on baked bread, biscuit, faint caramel, and toasted notes. There's a low earthy bitterness with a light apple fruitiness. The finish exhibits a stronger apple presence with the complex bread and toasted malt notes carrying through to an ultimately dry, earthy, and lightly bitter ending.

M: Medium in body with moderate carbonation. The mouthfeel is smooth, sticky, and dry.

Overall: An enjoyable malty red ale. Smooth and easy drinking.

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Photo of feloniousmonk
3.67/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Color here is a dark ruby, but there is no head that I can report. Aroma is sweet and fruity. Malt is huge in this ale, hops have a small role, but still, the body is full, and the mouthfeel generous and tasty. Much more flavorful than other ales I've encountered recently. Worthy to associate itself with Irish reds. Thanks to Uglyradio.

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Photo of oberon
3.68/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Nice mahogany color,decent,had a musty somewhat fruity smell.A well-crafted brew like better on tap,its a little more fruity.Has a light touch of hops to finish it out,with no real lingering aftertaste.Highland is a nice brewing company have been to Barleys taproom to try many of theres on tap.

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Photo of papat444
3.68/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Part of a haul of beer my parents bought me on their way back from Florida.

Poured from a 12oz. bottle, bottled 10/05/11.

Appearance: Body is a nice mix of orange and amber. A voluminous head that slowly recedes yet hold strong at 2-3 fingers. Spidery lacing glues itself to the glass.

Smell: Resiny hops mixed with caramel malt, tangerine and orange.

Taste: Tea-like bitterness (discreet) with a strong caramel overtone as well as a biscuity side. Earthy hops but malt controls this. Plush fruit as well.

Mouthfeel: Low lying bitterness that tapers off as it warms. Overall nice feel.

Overall: Not a standout but i ended up liking it. Definitely a viable option as compared to bland beers.

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Photo of mwckiltedsavage
3.68/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Enola
3.68/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on-tap at the Olde Hickory Taproom last night. It came out to me with a average sized head. It was a nice red tone. It had a good aroma as well. The taste was very close to Killian's. The drinkability was good as well. I could have drank several more. I would order another one of these in the future.

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Photo of jlindros
3.68/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this interesting guy thanks to beandip.

A: A light fluffy 1/2 finger head fades slowly and leaves a decent lacing. Some haze in the orange reddish slight rose colored beer.

N: Some toasty malts, little bready, fresh pale malt aroma, very light spices almost, little earthy juicy hop aroma too, and slightly grassy hops too.

T: Starts with toasty malts, lots of fresh malty pale malt flavors, little bready and toasty, light grassy hops, little earthy flavors, slightly spicy, crisp ale flavors.

M: Medium body with decent carbonation.

F: Finishes slightly dry with a slight sweetness, slight bitterness with a little grassy mild hop flavor, and some earthy flavors lingering. Crisp ale flavors also linger.

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Photo of mixedbrewer
3.68/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap this poured a nice amber color with two finger head and slight lacing.

The aroma is of spiced bread, almost like graham crackers.

This beer is just spicy enough. It has a nice sweet and bready taste with a good mouthfeel. It goes down easy with a clean and pleasant finish.

Recommended try.

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Photo of TomMahan
3.68/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of sinistrsam
3.68/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The Gaelic Ale was served in a pint glass with a mediocre head and very impressive lacing. The color was a wonderful red-amber. I did my best to take in the bouquet and decipher what made it up, but couldn't get a good read. Maybe served too cold, maybe just a beer with mediocre aromatics.
The taste started off interestingly, somewhat bitter and quite hoppy, but quickly faded into a watery, tasteless beer. It had no tatse of being skunky or anything like that, but just finished with litle or no taste at all. The mouthfeel was also relatively flat, watery and uninteresting. it was a decent beer to have with friends but nothing very impressive.

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Highland Gaelic Ale from Highland Brewing
3.81 out of 5 based on 1,472 ratings.
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