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Kilt Lifter Scotch Ale | Moylan's Brewery

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Kilt Lifter Scotch AleKilt Lifter Scotch Ale
744 Ratings
Kilt Lifter Scotch AleKilt Lifter Scotch Ale

Brewed by:
Moylan's Brewery
California, United States

Style: Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by kbub6f on 06-07-2002

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 744 |  Reviews: 400
Photo of Kemmerlin
4/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: burnt orange amber red color with thin head and no lacing
S: a burnt vanilla smell with some caramel malts kinds like a bourbon
T: has a vanilla citrus taste that is kinda light and summery
M/D: quite strong in the alcohol sense but light in texture. Quite drinkable but not really my style.

 294 characters

Photo of washburnkid
3.25/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Bomber to tulip

A: Very dark amber to light brown. Despite an aggressive pour, a small white head has barely arrived before it dissipates and leaves a small bubbly ring.
S: Roasted to burnt aromas. Deeper pulls reveal sweet caramel and fruit. There's an interesting (and heavy) sugary sweetness on the nose.
T: Super sweet kick immediately, more specifically caramel. Each sip ends in a fruity ester followed by sweet liqueur and ethanol. Flavors are overwhelmed by a pretty boozy flavor.
M: Light carbonation and light body, leaving very little residue (which was welcome).
D: I wasn't really in the mood for an boozy and sweet combination. A syrup-like flavor really takes over as the beer warms. I'm dying for a bit more balance in this beer!

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Photo of Traquairlover
3.23/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

22-bomber poured into a tulip.

A = Chocolate brown with light coppery tint at the edges. Small and medium bubbles compose the medium sized yellowish white head.

S = There is an interesting tropical fruitiness in the smell which is good but unexpected, also present are caramel and light wood smoke.

T = The taste profile of this while not bad is all wrong for my expectations of a beer that styles itself a Scotch-style ale. English strong ale is perhaps more like it. Very noticeable hops flavors seem to predominate up front and into mid-palate. It's not highly bitter, but there are citrus fruits, pineapple, some earthiness. Starting at mid-palate and lasting into the finish are the more common flavors I was looking for. There are some syrupy, caramel flavors, mild peat smoke, and a long sweet finish.

M = Medium body, foamy carbonation, good mouthcoating.

D = Drinks easily at first but gets cloying relatively quickly.

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Photo of RonfromJersey
3.95/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Terrific red color with exceptional clarity. Still body. Two level fingers of loose beige foam. Nice stretchy lacing.

Rich candy sweet aroma. Followed by a deeper malty fragrance.

Taste begins with a deep but sweet maltiness. Plenty of toffee. Mild undercurrent of hops are for balance only, and they don't quite do the job. Finishes a little too sweet.

Thick chewy mouthfeel does justice to the style.

Better than average drinkability for the style.

Scotch style ales aren't the first thing you think of with California crafts, but this is a good take.

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Photo of Nick3
4.14/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Beer poured into a Douglas Scotch ale glass. No head whatsoever. Gorgeous burgundy color and a steady, methodical flow of carbonation. Nose is heavy malt with some toffee notes, simple but very appealing. Taste is malt heavy with an alcohol burn in the finish. The brew has a thin appearance and mellow carbonation so the mouthfeel was a little thin as I suspected but the carbonation surprised me and provided a champange effervescence. I enjoyed this Scotch ale but have had some better ones.

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

22oz bottle into a half liter Victory mug pours a crisp dark copper with a thin diminishing off-white head. Aroma is a nice amount of caramel malts. Taste is loads of malts, both caramel and brown, almost no hop presence, but you can tell they're there doing their job. The beer is medium bodied, but the smooth carbonation hides the alcohol well. This is a very enjoyable Scotch ale.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.07/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz. bottle into an imperial pint glass.

A: The beer is a bright reddish brown color with a thin off-white head that fades quickly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of caramel, roasted malts, vanilla and a touch of hops.

T: The taste is malty and smoky up front with sweet flavors of caramel, bourbon and vanilla, although not as heavy as most Scotch ales. There's a mild but complementary hops presence. The after-taste is sweet and slightly smoky.

M: Crisp and very smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: Tasty, goes down very easily, not too filling, good kick, very good representation of style, it's flavorful and since this beer isn't as thick as most in the style, it's a good one to drink for a long time.

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Photo of demcorhip
3.92/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Picked up a bomber of this a few months ago in Duluth. The upcoming winter storm had me in the mood for something big and malty. It pours a somewhat opaque brown, and a vigorous pour produced just over one finger of pale tan coloured head atop the mildly carbonated ale.

Rich malty aroma of mostly toffee reaches out to lift the kilt. There is a slight smokiness as well as a sea like twang. Just a faint hint of earthy hops present. A light touch of fruitiness as well, im getting plum. Im looking forward to tasting this.

Im actually surprised at just how fruity this is on the tasting. A good shot of plum is followed by toffee then the phenolics with a touch of clove like spice and a whiff of smoke. A light graininess is also present, reminiscent of multigrain bread. Very lightly hopped with a mild earthiness and very little bitterness.

Im also surprised at how light bodied this beer is. It could stand to have a touch more body and a sturdier malt presence. The tanginess and hint of phenolics is spot on for the style though, and provides a nice counterpoint to the malt. Quite fruity as well, with minimal hops.

The light body makes this pretty drinkable, as well as the fact that for a malty brew this isnt an overt malt bomb. An interesting take on the style with a more pronounced fruitiness than i am used to, but is spot on with the phenolics and hint of mineral. This is going to be much easier to drink than i had though upon opening the bottle, and that is a good thing. Certainly worth a try for fans of the style, this is a very drinkable example.

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Photo of coldmeat23
3.72/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

GLASS: Snifter
TEMP: Cellared @ approx 45 degrees
Thanks to Jmoore50 for this one

Pours a murky copper color with amber highlights. Two-finger creamy head of tan foam. Retention is okay. Lacing is fairly decent.

Nice rich maltiness blends with subtle hints of citrus/tropical hops notes. Big molasses and caramel presence. Slight hints of peat/smoke, giving a slight whiskey impression.

Good presence of malts, but they are quite mild, compared to the nose. The peat is more forward here, bringing about a stronger connection to whiskey. Very light hops notes on the back-end give this an unexpected twist. Very bready/biscuity.

Good medium, almost full body. Fairly mild level of carbonation. This is very smooth, but would be even better if it were creamier.

Very drinkable, overall. This could be an everyday scotch ale. Maybe even a beginner version. Super smooth and easy to drink. Enjoyable.

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Photo of Haybeerman
3.94/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Hazy red/brown color. Poured a 1 finger tan head that dissipated quickly. Broken, thin and uneven lacing. Almost unappealing flat look.

S: Sweet carmel malt. Surprising floral hop aroma.

T: Sweet carmel malt like the smell; biscuity. bready grains. Ample bitter hop to balance the finish very nicely.

M: Medium body. Very low carbonation. Overall, smooth and coating.

D: Very drinkable beer and has a great malt character. Don't be thrown-off by its appearance.

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Photo of efhart
4.66/5  rDev +25.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This Scotch Ale has great taste, perhaps amazing taste is a better description. The malts are incredible. The color is as good as it get's beautiful. The head as poured from the bottle is somewhat small and the beer is not thick, but ample. I could drink this every night. One of my better all time beers.

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Photo of SilentSabre
4.12/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Part of my Raleigh, NC haul. This bottle, I believe, is part of my Sam's Blue Light bring back. It is also my first taste of anything from Moyaln's.
I had no idea what to expect. Poured up a slightly cloudy dark red colour, with a khaki coloured blanket of foam on top. Looks terrific. Smell is huge sweet malts with a bit of dark fruits. Almost sort of reminds me of J.W. Lee's Vintage Harvest, actually. Taste, of course, is huge malt, as well with extremely modest hops that you kind of have to search for after the finish. Mouthfeel is quite heavy, even with the 8% abv well concealed. Not exactly syrupy, but close. A very well crafted Scotch Ale. As good or better than some Scottish produced wee-heavies I've tried.

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Photo of Graham21
3.77/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark brownish amber color with a copper hue. 1mm of a light khaki colored lacing.

The smell is pungent of malt, burnt peat, almost sweat or mold, with some molasses, and bacon undertones; a hint of bitter chocolate, soy sauce and fresh cut grass.

T- immediately bitter like coffee or very dark chocolate. I pick up some earthy dusty flavors, tobacco and a hint of caramel and hops.

Nothing fantastic

Mouthfeel is Medium. Drinkability is decent.

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Photo of xhcadamx
4.04/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - transparent ruby brown. Minimal head, no lacing.

S - The smell isn't quite what it should be. Sweet carmel and smoked peat.

T - WOW. The flavor is amazing. Sweet carmelized malt but not cloying. Lots of flavors going on here.

M - Medium mouthfeel not too syrupy.

D - Very high for the style.

This was one of my frist craft beers I had ever tried and my second keg in my kegorator. I haven't had this in a while and I can't figure out why.

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Photo of thisisshsas
3.94/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- dark brown appearance, very cloudy, not amazingly appealing. The head was not particurly big, but that may have been my pour.
S- smell wreaks of molasses and has a slight whisky-like overtones.
T&M- taste is filled with barley and is syrupy in the best way, taste is good but not overwhelming
D- easily drinkable for a big beer, its my first scotch ale in a while, but I remember scotch ales being thicker than this.
pretty good beer.

 437 characters

Photo of clayrock81
3.58/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a seethru murky copper with a one-finger tan head that left some lacings. A caramel and bready malt smell with some herbal hops, but all is very lowkey and basic. A thin, smooth and slightly sticky beer with a good caramel and bread malt base that has some residual sweetness and chewiness. Some minor floral hops balance the beer and give it a slight herbal, dry finish. Also some dry fruitiness in the beer such as apples and pears (maybe grape). A good beer but a little thin/weak for a wee heavy.

 507 characters

Photo of nick76
3.48/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The aroma is malty with caramel, nuts, yeast, butter, and grain husks. The appearance is dark amber with an average head. The flavor is like the aroma with a little bit of a card board taste but not much. The palate is smooth. Overall a fairly good beer.

 254 characters

Photo of htomsirveaux
3.47/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22 oz. bottle tried 4 Apr 2008.

Small tan head quickly dissipates. Medium carbonation. Clear ruby red color. Smells of vanilla, cinnamon and tobacco. Starts roasty and malty sweet, some caramel. Somewhat medicinal. Finishes spicy and sour. Medium body, on the light side for the style. Alcohol well hidden.

Like a scotch ale lite.

 333 characters

Photo of BrewerB
4.12/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured into my Strong Beer Month 2009 snifter/globe glass. Medium copper in color. Good clarity. Two-finger, ultra-light tan head is holding up well and leaving lacing as it slowly retreats down the glass. Alcohol.

S - Rich malty character that offers up bready/caramel notes. Faint presence of chocolate. Earthy hop character is moderately intense.

T - Again, very rich and malty in flavor. Caramel is certainly present. Slight hint of a darker roasted grain/smoky. Medium/medium-low level of bitterness. Hop flavor is insignificant. Medium finish leaves a slight lingering bitterness and tastes of caramel. Missing out on some ester complexity.

M - Medium-full bodied with a moderate-low level of carbonation. Feels just a touch undercarbonated.

D - A bit rich and lacking complexity which would help increase the drinkability. Despite a couple areas for improvement, the beer is certainly a nice example of this style and I'll easily finish the entire bomber with no assistance. Tonight I'm pairing it with a Manchego cheese and this seems to be working well. The slight nutty, tart character of this sheep's milk cheese compliments the rich, malty ale and helps make for a more interesting session.

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Photo of mdwalsh
3.87/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 12 oz bottle into 22 oz heffe glass

A: 1 finger head, no active carbonation but not much. Amber/copper color. A little hazy

S: Sour fruit smell that was good. No hops, bitterness or malt in the nose.

T: Same sour fruit as in the nose. Has a very dry aftertaste. Again, no sign of malt or hops.

M: Smooth, a little thick.

D: Easy, but it doesn't settle the desire for BEER.

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Photo of cokes
3.42/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Kilt Lifter pours to a medium-dark, lightly hazed tawny amber with a tight crop of khaki lace that disappears with some haste, and leaves no trace.
It noses of hard toffee, golden raisins, tobacco, brown sugar, cocoa powder, and sherry.
It enters the mouth with a brown sugared mixture of granola and toasted nuts. Vague fruity tones arise (black cherries, figs, and/or prunes) as the toffee sweetness builds. Earthiness grows later on, with a subtle smokiness and dried tobacco notes. A light burst of equally earthy hop bitters precede an concluding blow of alcohol.
For an Scotch Ale of this strength, the body seems too thin and flaccid. It's needs more brawn to prevent the coup that the alcohol wreaks. Texturally, it's not where it needs to be, and while most of the other tangible elements are in place, it proves a significant detriment to this beer.

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Photo of brentk56
3.47/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours a dark amber color with a modest head that doesn't retain particularly well, although it does manage to leave a few dots of lace

Smell: Nice caramel malt aromatics, with a nutty rather than peaty character

Taste: Opens with caramel and shortbread flavor, with a developing nutty aspect; after the swallow, the flavor profile becomes astringent as it is joined by a noticeable presence of alcohol

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation; considerable warmth in the gullet

Drinkability: While this beer has some nice aspects, it lacks the peat and full bodied mouthfeel of the top flight wee heavies and, in failing to disguise the alcohol, these flaws are accentuated

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Photo of wheatyweiss
3.82/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into a pint.

Pours a deep amber with a medium head that sinks quickly leaving ample lacing. Aroma is of peaty, mossy earth with a hit of alcohol esters.

Flavor is sweet roasted malt with a peaty, smokey flavor. Earthy tones of husky grain come through. Malt is almost cloyingly sweet, has buttery bready flavors that are overcome with sweetness. Flavor of peat moss and rotted wood along with a hint of fungus like mushroom flavors.

Mouthfeel is pretty substantial and slick on the tongue. Carbonation is adequate.

Not bad, but not the best.

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Photo of farrago
4.02/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

One to two finger head of thick, super-tiny bubbles, not a great deal of lacing. Clear, unblemished amber red with more brown than orange, transparent in spite of hue depth. Sweet caramel, molasses inspired nose, cinnamon and clove spice, thick milk chocolate, candied oranges and then the hops kick in big time, punctures your nostrils with grass and dried black tea leaves. Full-bodied, features sweet plum, black grape, cherry fruit to frame the mouth entry. The carbonation makes itself known very quickly, chops up the sugariness even as post-fruit toffee and caramel notes appear. Leaves a lot of mouth weight through the mid-palate when its hoppy bite careens in with pink grapefruit, pea leaves and pine. Keeps churning through the finish, extra energy to spare. Nice smoky finish.

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Photo of WYVYRN527
3.52/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle...

Kilt Lifter pours a dark amber with a thick head that dissolves very quickly into nothing. Carbonation is there but no lacing occurs. The aroma is all malt, with hints of toffee and caramel. Upon tasting, I got pure malt at first, with doughyness and a sweet character that remnded me of fresh maple sap. There was a nutty profile on the finish, with a light mellowing hop finish. This beer is full-bodied, and does not take no for an answer. I was hoping for better, but this was a fun experience. Moylan's has yet to dissappoint me.

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Kilt Lifter Scotch Ale from Moylan's Brewery
Beer rating: 3.72 out of 5 with 744 ratings
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