Long Trail Brewing Co.

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Scottish Ale
Ranked #101
Ranked #40,031
3.68 | pDev: 12.5%
Long Trail Brewing Co.
Vermont, United States
Notes: A Vermont classic returns in 2017!

Built to take the bite from a cold winter night, Hibernator features a rich malt base highlighted by warming notes of caramel and toffee. Don't sleep on this rich, robust winter brew.

Last year we awoke the bears with a limited run of cans offered at our brewery in Bridgewater Corners. In 2017, we're culminating a year of throwing it back to our roots, by sending Hibernator out for a full run of distribution in 6pks and 12pks of 12 ounce bottles and on draught.

Keep your eyes out for it as the weather cools down!

32 IBU
Reviews: 279 | Ratings: 775 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of VoxRationis
VoxRationis from New York

3.96/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Decanted from a 12 oz (355 ml) bottle into a Samuel Adams Perfect Pint glass; string of numbers starts with 27/09/19, so perhaps bottled September 27, 2019.
A: Pours a somewhat hazy, copper color with bits of yeast clearly present at the bottom, a one finger, orange/tan head, no more than rim retention and spotty, irregular lacing.
S: On the tart side of tangy with cherry wood, white pepper, and molasses more than caramel. Earthy and leathery.
T: More semisweet than semidry and slightly tart. Flavors have cherrywood present, but tobacco, leather, toffee, raisin, and pepper predominate. Bitterness strong, blending with the pepperiness.
M: Medium bodied. Moderate carbonation.
O: Hibernator is a very direct and enjoyable Scottish Ale. A little rough around the edges, which only seems to add to its charm.

May 20, 2020
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BEERMILER12 from Maine

4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a mahogany color with 2 fingers of head that fades down to a thin cap that leaves decent lacing

S: Toasted malt, nuttiness, dark fruit, caramel, and light toffee

T: Starts off with the toasted malt and a light but firm bitterness. Goes into some of the nutty notes and dark fruit before picking up some caramel and toffee sweetness. Finishes with lingering nuttiness and toffee

M: Medium bodied with moderate carbonation

O: A solid winter brew that is warming but not too heavy. Could definitely have a few in a session. Check it out

Dec 11, 2019
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jlindros from Massachusetts

3.94/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours a light fizzy head with low retention, no lacing, hazy deep auburn slight brown color

Nose toasted biscuity toffee, sweet caramel, touch syrupy malt like, quite fruity, like berry and tree fruit, fig date paste too, little spices

Taste more sweet syrupy malt, toffee, biscuity, little smokey caramel, rich malty toasted, fair fruits again more tree fruit, fig date like, little nutty, light nutmeg like spice and other winter spices, medium bitterness, mild sticky finish, lingering bitterness and fruits

Mouth is fuller bod, rich almost syrupy but not sticky, medium high carb

Overall not bad, gives that big heavy winter warmer but without the alcohol, tasty and doesn't get too heavy

Jun 19, 2019
Photo of keithmurray
keithmurray from Connecticut

3.32/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Appearance - copper/crimson color with tan head

Smell - cherries, roasted grains

Taste - cherry, malts, roasted grains

Mouthfeel - medium bodied, medium plus carbonation, a bit malty upfront, bitterness in the back end

Overall - lackluster beer here, nothing memorable about it, will not revisit

Price point - $1.99/ 12 oz bottle

Dec 14, 2018
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rudiecantfail from Pennsylvania

3.71/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12 ounce bottle poured into a tulip glass.

L---Clear, burnt amber color. Thick tan head with very nice staying power. Very good lacing. Looks for all the world like a proper Scottish Ale.

S---Malty. Some caramel/toffee notes. A touch of butter.

T---Grains & malts are dominant. A bit of caramel. Not really that much going on.

F---Medium mouthfeel with a lot of effervescent carbonation. I would have preferred a bit of a heavier feel, but it was still really nice.

O---A pretty damn good scotch ale. Nothing fancy, but that's not what the style is about, anyway.

Nov 27, 2018
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Claude-Irishman from New Jersey

4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours translucent nutty brown color with quickly receding creamy head. Lacing in glass. Smells earthy,buttered hot biscuit,hazelnut,toffee, hops. Taste is unique. Almost has a mild IPA bite washed away by caramel malt. Feels quite drinkable. Semi Dry, nice carbonation and finish. Worth a try In my opinion.Labels itself as a Scotch ale reminds me more of English nut brown ale.

Nov 26, 2018
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atr2605 from New York

3.5/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A-pours a copper, soft amber color with a white head with average retention
S-caramel, nutty, subtle butterscotch and biscuit
T-more caramel, nutty dry biscuit in the finish, hops providing nice balance and slight herbal characteristic
M-medium bodied with average carbonation, a bit smooth
O-nice, malty brew that is easy drinking and perfect for cool weather

Dec 04, 2017
Photo of Lone_Freighter
Lone_Freighter from Vermont

4.16/5  rDev +13%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

The appearance has a dark brown/almost dark golden colored body with a small white head that lasts just a couple seconds. Spotty lacing running down the sides of the glass. The smell has some mild roasted malts along with some nuts. The taste is slightly sweet through the roasted malts. The palate is light and sessionable with a mild nutty aftertaste and finish. Overall, this is good for the style, and awesome to me.

Jun 07, 2017
Photo of johnnnniee
johnnnniee from New Hampshire

3.52/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Bottle shared by Kelly and Paul, thanks for the opportunity! deep brown color off white head. Rich toffee and caramel with a bit of butterscotch and movie theater butter. Decent beer.

Dec 05, 2016
Photo of Gajo74
Gajo74 from New York

3.76/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Look- unfiltered copper color with a very modest head, a thin lace that dissapears halfway.
Smell- sweet, buttery, caramel, toffee, and butterscotch.
Taste- the toasted malts taste predominates. Also, some fruity sweetness. However, a modest but significant battering hops presence is felt on the backend and balances it out nicely. Dryness in the finish.
Feel- medium bodied, buttery, and soft carbonation. I thought this was a very smooth drink.
Overall- I enjoyed this one. A simple and clean malt forward drink that is sessionable.

Nov 21, 2015
Photo of jzeilinger
jzeilinger from Pennsylvania

3.53/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.5

A - Dark amber colored pour with a thin, soapy, toffee colored lacing.

S - Earthy and grainy toasted malt aroma.

T - Toasted earthy caramel malt with a light pine and grassy finish.

M - Full medium body, very light carbonation with a slippery feel.

O - Not my gig.

Oct 24, 2015
Photo of Paul432_1
Paul432_1 from Pennsylvania

4.78/5  rDev +29.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

THIS IS (WAS) THE BEST SCOTTISH ALE TO HIT THE SHELVES OF PA. Long Trail brewery discontinued making this beer. Very unwise decision. R.I.P. Long Trail Hibernater

Mar 28, 2015
Photo of illpass78
illpass78 from Maine

3.62/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle poured into a becker.

Appearance: This bottle was shaken pretty badly, so this is kind of skewed, but it poured a cloudy amber with a big eggshell head that stuck around for the duration. A little lacing.

Aroma: Kind of a muted aroma. A little caramel, a little sugar, some faint grass.

Taste: Caramel, buttered toast, earth, grass, some sugar. Flavors come out a little more as it warms, especially the caramel. Not bad. A solid malty winter beer.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied. Easy on the palate.

Overall: Solid winter offering. This bottle was kind of old and also fell out of the refrigerator prior to serving so conditions were less than optimal. Not sure they still make this one - a little bummed if they don't.

Jan 04, 2015
Photo of Jlabs
Jlabs from New York

3.93/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured into a pint glass via bottle

color is an amber red

smell is dark malt and a faint scent of honey

taste is a bit malty, but the honey sweetness comes in at the end

medium carbonation

light mouthfeel

one of my favorite winter ales

Nov 07, 2014
Photo of woodychandler
woodychandler from Pennsylvania

3.73/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

I am stunned at just how many and of what kinds of beers are in my backlog. I bought these with every intention of drinking them in season and then things seemed to get away from me. At least, I am catching up at this point.

From the bottle: "HIBERNATOR This robust and malty brew will take the bite from a cold winter night. ENJOY!"; "UNFILTERED WINTER BREW"; "TAKE A HIKE!"; ""; "A Vermont classic, built to take the bite from a cold winter night with a rich malt base highlighted by warming notes of caramel and toffee."; "Don't sleep on this rich, robust Winter brew"; "32 IBUs".

I popped the cap and let fly, watching breathlessly as the pseudo-cascade took place, slowly morphing into two-plus fingers of dense, tawny head with great retention. Color was a brownish-copper (SRM = > 13, < 17) with NE-quality clarity. Nose was rich and sweet with malt - caramel, cocoa, toffee. Oh my. There are times that I question my buying habits because as a hophead, this is not in my wheelhouse. The head fell in an unusual way, collapsing down and in on itself. Mouthfeel was medium and the richness of the malt almost threw me into diabetic shock! It was tasty, though, more like toffee than caramel. Finish was sweet, but not cloying, so I did not have any problem drinking all of it. This is one that would be more suited for the Winter season, if I were to get it again.

Jun 25, 2014
Photo of GreesyFizeek
GreesyFizeek from New York

3.03/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Bottle purchased at Acme Bar and Pizza in Rochester, NY.

Dark orange amber pour, with little head, and not much lacing.

Not much in the aroma. Maybe some caramel.

The flavor is better, but not by much. Caramel, butterscotch, some peat, and oak, but all very muted.

The body is too thin and watery for a "rich winter brew." Medium carbonation, goes down easy.

Overall a miss from Long Trail. Too many flaws.

Mar 22, 2014
Photo of Carolvs
Carolvs from Texas

3.85/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into pilsner glass. Phat Tuesday celebration prior to sacrificing beer for Lent.

A - Light brown with a great head and lacing trailing all the way down the glass.

S - Subtle malty sweet.

T - Effervescent malt: Not overwhelming, but not disappointing - just right.

Overall: I love this beer. Hibernator might be a slight exaggeration in the sense that this really isn't a "heavy" beer, but, it is most satisfying. Strong enough for winter but light enough for spring.

Mar 04, 2014
Photo of scotorum
scotorum from Massachusetts

3.18/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Bottled 8/25/13. Cute graphic of a bear sitting at a fireside smoking a pipe and reading a newspaper.

Poured from the 12 oz. bottle into a plastic cup.

a: Clear copper with an inch tall offwhite head which receded to rocky surface foam and dense lacing.

s: Nothing other than a single hint of vinegar.

t: Rather medicinal malt. Grassy and a bit spicy later. Some bitterness lingers at the sides of the tongue.

m: Medium.

o: Fortunately neither the initial hints of vinegar nor the medicinal tinge lasted. However, this "Scottish Ale" did not offer much other flavor..

Jan 30, 2014
Photo of curasowa
curasowa from New York

2.82/5  rDev -23.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Hazy, reddish-copper color with one finger of head that fades to a ring with little lacing.

Aroma: Toasted malt, slight dish rag/lemon cleaner, mild spice, some earthy hops.

Taste: Caramel malt up front, then thinning a bit with floral hop notes and some yeast, then flattening out to a more dull bitterness on the back end with some nuttiness and a slightly astringent dried spice note.

The Rest: This one doesn't do a whole lot for me. Body is medium and carbonation is fine, but the aroma is slightly off-putting and the taste didn't really make up any ground. Drinkable but nothing special.

Jan 14, 2014
Photo of Andrew041180
Andrew041180 from Massachusetts

3.45/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured a deep amber/orange color in morning sunlight. Hazy, with ample visible carbonation and a creamy head that retained rather well. Thick, creamy lacing persists all the way down the glass. Regrettably for me, this is the best part of the beer.

S - Predominately roasted malt aromas. I expected to smell something a little sweeter.

T - Not really what I expected. This may be my first Scotch Ale, so that could be a big part of it. The roasty aroma that I smelled is there, but it plays a lesser role. The dominant flavor is some kind of bitter coffee type flavor. It's the kind of bitterness from coffee, but without the coffee flavor, if that makes sense. Seems to be some smoke present. Not really a strong combination for my palate.

M - Medium bodied, but it a little more watery than I expected given all the visible carbonation. Not a fan of the aftertaste.

O - I bought a 12-pack for my wife and I'm glad that she likes it, because I wouldn't really jump at the chance to have another one. Not a terrible beer, but just doesn't suit my tastes.

Dec 31, 2013
Photo of Tingle
Tingle from New Jersey

3.3/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Poured from a bottle into a stein.

Appearance is medium-brown. There is little foam on pour and it does not retain. Malty and some roasted aromas. Taste is similar, with mainly bitter dark-chocolate or coffee type malts and some roasted taste and scent. Feels a bit inconsistent in the mouth - sometimes creamy, sometimes poignant, sometimes just watery.

Advertises as a good beer for a winter night. I agree, especially since better dark beers are a lot more expensive. Overall not a bad beer at all.

Dec 28, 2013
Photo of thecheapies
thecheapies from Pennsylvania

3.89/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Amber to deep amber. Decent clarity. Laces nicely after a fluffy head settled.

Cereal grains with a whole-grain Wheaties vibe. Subtle cherry nuances and hints of vanilla. Seeming notes of cinnamon and light roast. Dry and a little musty.

Sweeter grains with dark fruity esters, roasty bitterness, hemp, pomme, maraschino, husks, and light booze. Some tea notes in the mix.

Medium body with an early bumrush of carbonation. Works for drinkability. Booze never oversteps its boundary.

Dec 20, 2013
Photo of bigdeuce
bigdeuce from Pennsylvania

3.55/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Another good beer from Long Trail. This is a good company. Beer pours a massive 3 finger head with a sticky lacing all the way down the glass. Scents of peat and grassiness on the nose. Taste is medium bodied with a bit of unbalance, only drawback. It is an easy to drink beer and good enough to session. Not sure why it's classified as a winter beer, but Hibernator is a nice alt style beer, although classified as a scottish ale.

Dec 07, 2013
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Givemebeer from Vermont

3.74/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

A: The cloudiness and color of apple cider. Not sure how I feel about that. Some head retention and good lacing.

S: Caramel and toasted malts. Faint floral hop present on the smell.

T: Interesting - Some spiciness and the toastiness and caramel is there. A bit of toffee.

M: A little too light bodied for my taste. Tad watered down.

O: Nice for a winters night for sure. Not great but worth a try.

Nov 11, 2013
Photo of Altrurian
Altrurian from New York

3.73/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Drawn into a pint tumbler at Long Trail's brewery pub in Bridgewater Corners, the beer is a fetching dark amber, topped with a short off-white head that leaves a dense web of cling.

The aroma, of toffee, is mild, complementing a lightly sweet flavor that is rather hoppy for a Scottish ale. The taste and mouthfeel bespeak not so much deep autumn as Indian summer. Pleasant. Sessionable.

Oct 19, 2013
Hibernator from Long Trail Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 83 out of 100 with 775 ratings