Fat Scotch Ale | Silver City Brewing Co.

90 Reviews
Fat Scotch AleFat Scotch Ale

Brewed by:
Silver City Brewing Co.
Washington, United States

Style: Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Previously known as Fat Bastard AAle.

Added by RoyalT on 11-27-2003

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 90 | Ratings: 208
Photo of soze47
2.92/5  rDev -28.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I had this at Red Bones at the NW Fest on 11/09/10

Appearance: Very clear body with a deep red color. Almost has a grape/cherry kool aid color to it. Odd looking

Aroma: Not too much on the nose except some spicy sweetness. Generic malty breadiness and hot booze. Not too pleasant.

Taste: Hot and sweet, but it does mellow out as herbal spiciness and dark fruits come out a bit. A cinnamon and all spice flavor develops. After it warms in the glass, all the flavors create an overwhelming butterscotch flavor.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability: Hot and viscous in the mouth. This is not an easy drinker and should only be enjoyed as an after dinner drink.

Overall: While I know Scotch Ales are not my favorite, even this one is too much. Too sweet, too hot, too much of almost everything.

 781 characters

Photo of champ103
4.56/5  rDev +12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A huge thanks to Dajtai007 for the trade.

A: Pours a dark brown, almost black color. At first a two finger beige head forms that quickly fades to a ring. Light lace is left behind.
S: An awesome aroma of toasted malt, chocolate, light coffee, and some toffee sweetness. More than that, huge peat, wood, and some smoke as well. Everything I love in my favorite style.
T: The nose is huge, and the flavor does not disappoint. Toasted malt up front with lots of chocolate and sweet toffee. Big peat and smoke that many American versions skimp on. Excellent.
M/D: A big full body that is low on the carbonation. Incredibly smooth, creamy, and decadent. Such an easy beer to sip on. A great night cap.

This is really exceptional. Maybe the best American version of a Wee Heavy I have come across (Founders Backwards Bastard is the only other that comes to mind). My favorite style, and Silver City has done it right. Highly recommended.

 933 characters

Photo of CascadeConan
3.23/5  rDev -20.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a deep brownish-red with an off white head.

Very sweet nose with hefty oak and scotch aromas and little to no hop character present.

At 9% the mouth feel of this beer is not as full as you would imagine but with sweet toffee flavor and notes of cherry and peat you may ignore the lack of body. Finishes with the smoothness of sour mash.

If I had to find a few things wrong with this beer I would note that it has an off flavor in the finish almost like the linger you receive from gorgonzola, I don't claim to be an expert but that's what literally minutes of deduction concluded.

The other down side, and it may not be a down side at all, is it's suicidally easy to drink. If you're going to have more than one of these throw your keys as far away from yourself as possible and soberly find them with a metal detector the following afternoon.

Not my favorite scotch but decent.

 892 characters

Photo of Briken
3.97/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Deep clear brown with a bit o' red with a foamy brown head with no retention or lacing. Slightly smoky and peaty with a hint of chocolate. Taste is the same but much more bold and a little more chocolate than the nose. Alcohol warming and finish with a hint of hops. Beefy mouthfeel that's lightly syrupy and fuzzy.

A good scotch ale, I definitely prefer this one over many so called scotch ales. Great balance, this is exceedingly easy to drink which is especially surprising in light of the ABV.

 498 characters

Photo of grittybrews
4.04/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a molasses brown into a Duvel tulip with minimal head.

Strong, sweet aroma of bourbon, fig, and raisin. Low carbonation and a slightly flat mouthfeel that borders on syrupy. Very sweet initial flavors of bourbon, brown sugar, and dark fruit. Just a hint of peaty smoke on the finish.

I really enjoy bourbon flavors in beer, but this one bordered on too sweet (although I appreciated the noticeable alcohol warmth). I would have enjoyed more smokey scotch character for a better overall balance. Still, a very nice offering from Silver City.

 549 characters

Photo of woemad
4.29/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big-ass bomber purchased at Bottleworks in Seattle for $6.79 (I think). My first beer from Silver City.

Poured a dark, cola-like color with a half-inch of bubbly beige foam. Spotty lace on the sides of my St. Bernardus goblet.

Very fruity in the nose. Big, banana scent up front, with a fig-like dark fruit smell more in the background, along with caramel and brown sugar notes. There's also a peaty scent, to be expected in a Scotch ale, but not nearly as prominent as I expected. As it is, it's way, way in the background. Once this warmed up some, there was a lot more balance, with the banana notes receding to let other scents stand out more.

Very malty and fruity in the taste. As it warms, the banana notes dial down a little, but are still strong. Sweet toffee flavors duel with dark fruit. Smoky peat notes provide a kind of gift-wrapped effect. As time goes on, the booziness of this beer becomes more obvious. Hops are conspicuous by their absence.

Fairly thick bodied, with a sticky, coating mouthfeel.

A pretty good beer after a meal or for a nightcap, but I doubt I'd want more the one in a sitting. This reminded me more of a quad than Scotch ales I have known. Yummy stuff.

 1,194 characters

Photo of ChrisPro
3.82/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

2009 bottle poured on 3/3/10.

Pours a dark ruby with tan frothy head. Beautiful lacing. Aroma of peat, pine and treacle. Great rich brown sugar sweetness, then a dry earthy finish. A bit boozy even after 6+ months, but still an incredible scotch ale.

 252 characters

Photo of barleywinefiend
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a deep burgundy color with good carbonation and a small dirty white head. Nose is sweet with peat and caramel. Taste is peat, fruits, caramel, smoke and big malts n booze Mouthfeel is sticky, coating with hints of smoked meat and peat. Very good brew.

 258 characters

Photo of jdense
3.18/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bottle from By the Bottle, Vancouver, WA, poured into thistle glass 4.17.10.

1/2 finger light tan head, very quick dissipation with minimal lacing. Dark brown body with reddish highlights, not visible carbonation. The nose is a big banana hit, very surprising, a bit fo bready malt, with some floral hops hidden in the back. Taste is banana, a wee bit of peat but not smoky, the banana overpowered any other nuances in the flavor profile. Mouthfeel was full with medium effervescence. Drinkability is quite good, ABV well hidden, but the overpowering banana flavor made it difficult for me to finish my glass. I am willing to try this again to determine if this was a bad bottle, but to be honest, I wasn't very impressed.

 729 characters

Photo of zdk9
4.1/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours a dark copper. Not much head or lacing.

S- My first impressions are dark sugar- brown sugar, molasses, raisins. As it warms up there's more bright fruit- cherries or blackberries without any sour notes.

T- Delicious. Sweet caramel coating some nice warm fruits. Plum, ripe peach.

M- Really appropriate. A little syrupy but not overly so, and doesn't linger too long. And it's surprising this is 9%, very well hidden alcohol

D- I quite enjoy this beer. I'm not usually a fan of the caramel sweet beers but this one warms up into somthing more complex and delicious.

 577 characters

Photo of GRG1313
4.3/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Ruby red with an orange/tan head.

Sweet coffee with carmel and sweet whiskey/Bourbon nose.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, creamy texture and incredibly balanced with elegance and lots of character.

Flavors are of cooked peaches, figs, prunes and plums with a sweet whiskey flavor; complex and layered.

Medium Scotch coffee'd fruit finish.

This is a nice drink, although there is a bit of a "Dr. Pepper" or sweet carmel "Coca Cola" flavor that underlies the flavor profile. Still, very nice!

 497 characters

Photo of Flightoficarus
4.7/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Serving type - 22 oz bomber into a glass

Appearance - Deep, dark brown, almost black color, with a thick, cream colored head and nice retention. You know this beer means business when you see it.

Smell - Sweet malt, and a bit of peat/smokiness. Notes of caramel, toffee, and perhaps vanilla

Taste - Taste is amazing! Lots of malty goodness. Notes of toffee, caramel, brown sugar, and a bit of peat. Perhaps some hints of dark fruit in there as well. This beer is exceptional!

Mouthfeel - Rich, decadent, and indulgent. Thick and creamy, but at the same time, not overly "big", and surprisingly drinkable.

Drinkability - Way too much for a 9% beer, that's for sure!

This is an outstanding Scotch Ale, and at this point, remains my favorite one. Silver City Brewing may not be that well known outside of Washington, but with a beer this good, maybe that will change. A must-try beer if you see it!

 901 characters

Photo of HopHead84
4.12/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Received as an extra in a trade with pranaferox. Consumed on 11/22/2009 and poured into a snifter. The beer has a one finger off white head creamy with good retention. The liquid is opaque dark brown.

The nose is rich sweet malt with a touch of peat and smoke. A dash of brown sugar is apparent, and I detect a touch of oxidation. Rich toffee accompanies layered caramel. A little booze is evident but it's well hidden for 9%.

The flavor is moderately sweet with rich malt and a little peat character. Toffee and a dash or caramel. Lush malt hides the booze well. Sweet smoke toffee finish with lingering brown sugar.

Medium bodied with a sticky and slightly thin mouthfeel. The carbonation is low. An enjoyable scotch ale that I'm glad I got to try.

 753 characters

Photo of ElGordo
3.97/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a rich brown hue with garnet highlights when held up to the light. A flourish of tan head rises on the pour, but subsides in mere minutes. Aroma of sweet dark malt, a hint of biscuit, fruity hops, and undertones of dark fruit, aka ripe plum. Palate is sweet up front, with darker, rich malts (no roasty flavor, though), more dark, sweet fruit, and a touch of peat on the finish. Body is rich, full, and just slightly creamy. Goes down easily enough, but the 9% ABV is evident throughout. A big, robust Scotch ale that makes its presence known, but still manages to be quite welcome throughout the evening.

 611 characters

Photo of blackc5
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 oz bomber at 50F.

A - Pours a dark brown with some reddish tint as well. Quiet dark, but not black. Medium head that disappeared quickly, and very minimal lacing.

S - Very malty, with lots of caramel notes. Some whisky scents as well.

T - Pretty darn good I must say. This is an excellent overall beer, with a very nice flavor profile. Lots of malty caramel and molasses goodness of course, but just a hint of smoke and of course the whiskey boozy taste is there just at the tip of your tongue, and some spice on the finish. A bit of oak as well, as if this was casked aged (don't think it is). Sweetens as it warms. Overall, great.

M - Oh so smooth and easy to drink. Low carbonation as fits the style, and a real nice soft, chewy feel to it.

D - Well, it is 9% so one bomber sneaks up on you pretty good. A definite sipper though, and would be a great brew on a cold, windy night (too bad it is like 85 today...). Nevertheless, for the style, it does everything right and thus you have to give it high marks here also.

A very satisfying, potent ale - and I can see why this is one of their most popular.

 1,128 characters

Photo of beertunes
3.45/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Served in straight pint glass. Poured a gorgeous ruby/brown color with over an inch of tan head that dissipated quickly leaving just a trace of lacing.

A yummy sweet aroma greets the nose. This beer delivers a rich malty flavor with a slight hint of fruit (cherry, plum) underneath. No strong hop presence.

The body is average for the style, perhaps even slightly thin. Drinkability is very good but hampered by the fact that this beer will knock you on your ass, so you probably won't have more than one at a time.

A good example of the style, worth trying.

 561 characters

Photo of Floydster
4.12/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle recently received as an extra in a trade with 5000, thanks a lot for sending one of my wants as a surprise Andre, split with friends last night, poured about eight ounces in a Chimay goblet

A-Medium brown that is on the darker side but has numerous red highlights, 1/2 inch bubbly beige head that did not last long, minimal lacing
S-Toffee, peated malt, caramel, smokiness, sweet aromas, marshmallow, molasses, and vanilla
T-Starts off with a big caramel flavor, some burned sugar and peat in the middle, finish is slightly dry with almonds and other nuts, toasted accents along with mild earthiness make up the aftertaste, gets sweeter as it warms but not much fruit in here, more sugar and neutral malts, nicely balanced and goes down quite easily
M-Sweet, smoky, and slightly dry mouthfeel, medium bodied, moderate amount of carbonation, taste lingered a bit
D-Could have drank the bomber, alcohol is well hidden for nine percent, smooth and has very subtle flavors, not filling like several other wee heavys

I am trying to become more familiar with the scotch ale style and this one helped me in doing so, one of the better ones I have had, nice seasonal from this brewery, originally looked for this after it won GABF a few years back, looking forward to trying the oaked version, would drink this again, recommended

 1,339 characters

Photo of NoLiberty
4.28/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This was a good pickup from a recent trip to Seattle.

Pours from a bomber into Mikkeller tasting glass a deep tannin red color. Rich and thick but very active and lively from carbonation that gives it a liveliness and bounce. A frothy full head builds up then mellows into a fuzzy cap with full edging and moderate lacing.

Aroma is full, sweet and satisfying with caramel, cider and dried dates, almost Belgian in some ways.

Flavor is full and rich but well balanced and drinkable. Starts cold and is refreshing and full bodied, but as it warms the softer flavors come out and it becomes more of a nice sipper. Starts fruity sweet then moves into a roasted malty middle with a soft and subtly spicy finish. Damn good. '

The mouthfeel compliments the flavors incredibly well. It's soft and crisp but retains enough residual sweetness to give a pleasant body.

Drinkability is way high. Could finish a few of these with no trouble.

 934 characters

Photo of drgonzo3705
3.73/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours an Iced Tea color brown with a thin head that recedes to a thin ring around the edge.

S: Not getting too much here, maybe it needs to warm a little more. Mostly just a caramel malty sweetness.

T: Sweet malt rushes over the tongue with a surprising little hop bite.

M: Medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation.

D: Not my favorite tasting Scotch Ale but still a good representation of the style. Worth trying but probably wouldn't drink too much.

 468 characters

Photo of joepais
4.32/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to thethrone sending me this bottle it wasn't till now did I recognize it was on my want list dam them for changing the name me. So a huge thanks goes out to him for another want knocked off the list
The bottle PC correct label and all poured into my DFH snifter produced a whopping two fingers worth of tan head but she didn't last long. The body on the brew was a darker burgandy when held to the light.

Aromas coming from my glass reminded me of a great Scotch, rich caramel, some peat, a hint of smoke, along with some dark fruits

Flavors are right up there as well a good malty sweetness with enough smoked peat to keep it from being to coy. Again I got some darker fruits in it as well. This brew is heavy enough in the mouth to make this a great sipper with almost no carbonation to it at all.

A great drinking Scotch ale, thanks again for sending it my way. I would drink it again but I probably should have split the bomber the 9% caught up with me in the end

 980 characters

Photo of ccrida
3.5/5  rDev -14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bomber poured into my Samuel Smith imperial pint, Fat Bastard (just fat now) is a very dark amber with a small, creamy, off-white head that doesn't leave any lace.

Smell is very sweet and fruity caramel, sugary, light peat and phenols.

Taste is also really sweet, chocolaty fruit, caramel and brown sugar, and a pretty stiff peatiness on the finish. Lacking nuance, it seems exaggerated, although I generally like the directions of smoke and sweet dark malts. Still, the high rating is inappropriate, and I even have a local bias...a good concept but not to well executed, it seems a little amateurish.

Mouthfeel is on the thicker, sugary side, with limpid carbonation that accentuates the attenuation that seems low, even for the style.

Drinkability is ok, I like the creative direction, but it doesn't really come togethef as smoothly as the better examples of this style. Still, even though it's not to complex or subtle, it's inoffensive and generally tasty. But for the high ranking, I was disappointed.

 1,016 characters

Photo of Beerzebub
4.2/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured in a big wine glass at 55 F/ 13 C.

Deep red-brown color, modest dense beige head, very finely textured archipelagos of lace.

Rich aroma of dark sweet caramel malt, molasses cookies, earth, plums, Concord grapes, raisins, dried figs, overripe apples, mild solvent, and a touch of wood smoke. Quite alluring.

Tastes sweet, fruity, and malty. After a few seconds, a deep brown malt flavor with a little savory woody smokiness develops, matching well with the sweet juicy complex of fruit that matches the aroma, and a little solvent. Some spice develops in the finish, along with tart bitter plum skin. It finishes drier than it starts, although sweetness does hold on for the entire ride.

Smooth medium bodied texture, with light carbonation. Quite drinkable, especially considering the sweetness.

Quite interesting and tasty, I enjoyed this.

 852 characters

Photo of erikm25
4.15/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Snifter from the tap. Sat a nice thickened brown and amber mahogany color. Not to hazy and not to crisp. In the end this was a trip color wise and depended on which angle you checked it out from. The head was impressive even off the tap. Lacing was pretty solid and draped around the glass.

S: This was heavy on the scotch end. Hints of toffee, peaches, and roasted caramel. Smoked peat and a tinge of hops. Raisins and freshly squeezed melons with a subtle cigar smoke aroma. Balance between spices and plums with a vanilla roundness.

T: Sweet with a solid butterscotch and malt backbone. Toasted almonds and a splash of brandy and grapes. Molasses that has been smoked with cherries and figs. Reminded me a barley wine that was wild eyed on acid and in a smoky trance. Even despite the alcohol this went down very smoothly and delicately. Rum and candy with dark fruits and a slick buttery finish.

M: Heavy and plush medium mouth feel. Creamy. Lives up to the name.

D: At the time I had this I did not know the ABV and because it is so drinkable it hit me like a wall of Sunn amps. One of my immediate goals, if possible, is to pick up a growler of this amazing beer. Agents of Oblivion go well with any beer. So give this a try and give them a spin.

 1,259 characters

Photo of RJLarse
3.22/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

I bought a bomber of Fat Scotch Ale at the brewery back in August. Appropriately stored until now. Poured in to a pint tumbler.

Pours a deep dark red/brown color and is clear. Fizzy light tan head dissipates quickly, leaving a small foam ring around the beer. It looks a lot like coke.

Smell is strong and sweet. Caramel, molasses and dark fruits, dates, plums and figs dominate the aroma. A bit of a medicine cough syrup aroma, especially cold.

Taste is overly sweet, caramel malt, brown sugar, no bitterness to speak of. A little alcohol/medecine taste. It tastes like a Dr. Pepper and whiskey.

Mouthfeel is thick, syrupy, with some alcohol heat on the back of the throat.

Not a real drinkable brew. Definitely not sessionable, but it does get better as it gets warmer.

I'm not much on the style and I'd probably pass this one up in the future.

 852 characters

Photo of AKBelgianBeast
4.42/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Big thanks to SuzyGreenberg for this one.

Pours a nice deep dark ruby brown color with a fizzy tan head that dissipates pretty quickly leaving almost no lacing.

Nose is very estery with some peat and dark malt and grains. A slight smoke and a dry dark fruit smell.

Taste is quite good! A very nice dark fruit and peat bog smokiness with a good deep malt backbone. Taste starts off easy with some nice creamy dark fruit flavors. Some plummy taste and good vanilla cream like presence amplified by the mouthfeel. Some slight oak and peat smoke come through the middle with a big sweet malt profile. A belgian like yeast flavor coming out of this one. A great sweetness without being cloying. The finish is moderately dry, right where it should be. The aftertaste lingers with dark fruit and some creaminess.

Mouthfeel is very nice here, almost perfect. The only beef I have is that the carbonation is a bit high, A bit lower would be perfect here. Was really suprised at the mouthfeel after the nose was sort of thin. Nice slickness.

Drinkability is very solid here, especially for the abv. This one drinks like a 6% brew. Very high marks here. Goes down easy.

Overall this scotch ale gets very high marks. The nose and carbonation really need work. The aroma really indicates a fairly average scotch ale, but the taste and mouthfeel just bring this one to life. Lower the carbonation a bit and this one would be divine. Drinkability is nothing short of amazing here. The scores I haven given here really do not reflect how good this beer is. If we had a rating system that went into tenths this one would be in the solid A range for sure. Grrr. A great brew.

 1,663 characters

Fat Scotch Ale from Silver City Brewing Co.
4.07 out of 5 based on 208 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.