Duck-Rabbit Wee Heavy Scotch Style Ale | The Duck-Rabbit Craft Brewery

very good
283 Reviews
Duck-Rabbit Wee Heavy Scotch Style AleDuck-Rabbit Wee Heavy Scotch Style Ale

Brewed by:
The Duck-Rabbit Craft Brewery
North Carolina, United States

Style: Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
The Duck-Rabbit’s Scotch Ale is a full-bodied, deep copper-colored treasure. Bold and malty, this beer’s sweetness comes from a massive quantity of grain complemented by some serious kettle carmelization. The flavor is rounded out by a warming alcohol sensation.

Added by silver0rlead on 05-15-2006

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Reviews: 283 | Ratings: 468
Photo of HeyItsChili
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured from a bottle into a pint glass. Pours clear amber with bright highlights and almost no head.

S - Sweet caramel malts, toffee. There's a bit of dark fruit in there as well which is a great twist on this thing.

T - Has a rich, robust caramel malt flavor. There's also a modicum of citrus flavor and a little dark fruit.

M - Slightly under medium bodied, syrupy, viscous.

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Photo of readbaron
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy dark amber with decent tan head. a bit murky for a wee-heavy.

Smells sweet, full of caramel and dark fruit, with quite a bit of alcohol.

Taste is quite nice - more complex than I'd have thought - sweet caramel, lots of malt, some dark fruit and a bit of citrus.

Mouthfeel is good - fairly heavy bodied and sticky. Not quite as creamy as would be ideal.

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Photo of cdkrenz
3.95/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - The head is minimal and the body has a deep amber to almost a purple hue.

S - The aroma of sweet plums.

T - Mildly sweet plum and a pungent appricot with no citrus make for a tasty beverage.

M - The beer is soft and smooth with a very subtle abbrassiveness toward the finish.

~ This is a beer to be consumed sans food. Or, it should be enjoyed following a nice dinner.

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Photo of cosmicevan
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks a ton to my sis and bro-in-law for always bringing me local NC brews when they visit!

a - Poured a nice rich reddish brown with a bubbly head that went away quick. Has a nice glow to it. Lacing is sparsh and fleeting.

s - Quite syrupy...nutmeg...a bit cloying

t - Much like the smell, somewhat syrupy and nutmeg with brown sugar and sweet tarts. Pretty good and has a nice tang. A bit fruit-punch like.

m/d - Somewhere between medium bodied and heavy. Somewhat thick and syrupy. Wee heavies in general are a bit on the thicker side. I did enjoy this one. The sweetness wasn't too cloying, but a bit heavy. Aftertaste was a bit bittery and tangy. Solid offering for the style.

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Photo of steve8robin
3.77/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Got this on a recent trip to GA. Have enjoyed other DR brews I've tried. Nothing mind blowing so far, but solid brews. Time to try a new one. 12oz bottle, Enjoy by 10/2011...

A: A nice clear reddish deep dark copper with a smal 3/4 inch tab head that fades quickly to a bubble abyss atop the brew. Good.

S: Smells of sweet buttery bourbon upfront with some walnut and cranberry quickly followed. Finishes with some sweet caramel toffee on the backend. Very Good.

T: Taste is a oaky type bourbon taste that quickly fades into a watery rye with hints of dark fruit. More watery with a bit of metallic hidden in back. Decent.

M: Medium body with a heavy carbonation. Finishes with a creamy wateriness to it. Decent.

D: Goes down decent.

All in all, a decent brew from DR. Kind of follows suit with others I've tried from them, good but not great. This one definitely had some good potential. I'd say try if you have access, but no need to hunt. Many better in the style.

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Photo of chicagobeerriot
4.02/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours caramel brown with a heavy veil. Nice two inch off-white head that takes its time in settling down.

Deep toffee hits the nose, with some cherry and light milk chocolate.

Mouthfeel is straight down the middle. Thick enough to let the sweet malty flavors linger on the palate but with enough carbonation to keep it from being too syrupy.

Very nice example of some of the classic flavors of the style: toffee, caramel, dark fruit, but with a slight tang at the finish. Ideally, I'd like a slightly deeper malt toastiness to provide a base flavor for the rest to sit on top of, but overall this is a very good example of the style.

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Photo of farrago
4.12/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Finger plus head of creamy foam, full tan color with a light orange tint, dissolves until it reaches a steady thick coating across the surface, no lack of sticky grip to the sheets of lacing. Deep amber color, about equally red and orange, utmost clarity to the liquid, good scattering of bubbles throughout, brighter zinc orange at the glass bottom. Fairly boozy nose, leans on caramel, honey, brown sugar and candied orange peels for effect, mild dried fruit concentration to the peach, apricot, apple fruit scents, almond with a hint of cashew, over time a herbaceousness grows to the fore with supporting earthiness. Medium-bodied, the high activity of the carbonation increases its mouth presence, muscular. The sweetness of the caramel, molasses, cocoa and butterscotch packed into the mouth entry, dries out into semi-sour orange and white grapefruit citrus as well as a pinch of pepper. The apricot, peach, nectarine, apple fruit comes with notes of golden raisin and fig too. Peat, hay and charcoal dry it out a touch more. It wears its complexity with ease and comes close to convincing you it's not even that complex. For its burly demeanor, good drinkability. Needs a heaping of beef brisket and potatoes.

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Photo of Eriktheipaman
3.77/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a brown with slight amber hue. Little white head and no lacing.

The smell is dried dark fruits (raisins) and slight caramel.

The mouthfeel is a little on the thicker side but the hops and carbonation make it lighter as it goes down.

The taste is dark fruit and molasses which covers up the 8% ABV quite well.

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Photo of CuriousMonk
2.48/5  rDev -36.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Poured from 12oz bottle (best by 10/11 date) into snifter glass. Pours a dark, reddish brown with a short, bubbly tan head and nice lacing. Aroma picks up dried fruit notes of apricot, pear, prune, and apple skins with touches of caramel, brandy, and sourdough malts. Flavor is silky, slightly sweet notes of toffee and smoked malts coming through in front of fruity notes of apple, raisin, and fig with a dry, slightly warming brandy essence on the swallow. Palate is medium bodied with solid carbonation and a lingering, bittersweet, fruity finish. This is too fruity and syrupy for my tastes especially for a Wee Heavy Scotch ale...

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Photo of Pencible
3.68/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: This poured a hazy dark copper with no head.
S: It smelled like dark molasses and caramel, with some roasted barley and butterscotch and copper hops, along with honey wheat and a bit of biscuit.
T: It tasted murky and oxidized, with burnt molasses and rusty copper and stale honey wheat and cardboard. I poured a second bottle, which was much better. Roasty and dry with some sweetness.
M: The first bottle was watery and completely flat. The second bottle was slightly thick with a little carbonation. Moderate body.
D: The first bottle was almost definitely oxidized, but the second bottle was good. Interestingly, both looked and smelled about the same. Most of the flavor elements were similar, but much fresher and more vibrant in the second bottle. The body had the biggest difference. The first bottle was a drain pour mostly due to how flat it was. Totally undrinkable. The second bottle was easy enough to drink, with decently hidden alcohol. But ultimately, even the "good" bottle was only a mediocre wee heavy.

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Photo of smakawhat
4.25/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into a tulip/thistle glass.

Leaves a faint tan head of about three fingers. Body is a cloudy really interesting brown orange. I really like the color on this beer, it seems very unique. Head falls at a steady pace with minor stickyness.

Bouquet is very nice. First a cream malt, that gives way to a nuttyness. The bouquet feels even salty, and matches this nutty quality like fresh roasted and salted nuts. I enjoy this very much as well, I am craving meat and jerky smelling this.

And for taste... Solid. A big ovaltine like malt sweetness at first, coupled with an almost dry smokeyness. Finish is a little wet but not too bad. Salty in taste as well this feels like it would be good with cured ham or salted meats to eat with. Mouthfeel is a little too carbonated though. Some faint fruit on the finish of some type of stemmed berry fruit (slight sour cherries?) also after a swallow.

Alcohol does creep up though and get noticeable after awhile.

A solid Scotch Ale and another win for Duck Rabbit!

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Photo of BierSchuler
3.94/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass from a bottle
A: honey colored & cloudy with a weak head and no apparent lace.
S: mildly sweet aroma
T: taste starts with the tiniest bit of tartness and then the sweetness takes over for the finish
M: nothing particular to note
D: easily consumed, even at 8.0% alcohol; makes for a pleasant refreshment or accompaniment for food.

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Photo of KidsDoc
3.55/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle into tulip

A: nice deep orange, light brown with golden hues. Minimal head with large bubble surfacing after aggressive pour. slightly off white collar

A: very sweet, dark fruit/raisin, buttery, bready/yeast aroma

T: Similar but with a little more heat from the alcohol. Sweet, caramel malt. Dark fruit. Slightly bitter finish with a smooth buttery aftertaste. Fairly pungent alcohol comes through - not well blended. This is a very sweet tasting scotch ale - near excessive

M: light and very smooth to start, builds to a medium body in the finish with a sweet (not bitter) sticky feel

D: A little too sweet, even for me! and a little bit too much heat from this one. Very smooth and not something I would ever decline. Definitely has a lot of flavor going on but a little disorganized. I would still give this one another go as I really enjoy scotch/scottish ales but may do a taste/test comparison alongside one of my staples next time just to get to see if this is still a beer worth keeping around.

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Photo of sommersb
4.15/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a tulip pint glass, from a 12oz. bottle

Appearance is a dark brown/amber color, clear, with a creamy 2 fingers head of tan. Nice lacing as well. The aromas are super rich and strong -- malty sweetness with caramel and dark fruits. It's hard to pinpoint all of the aromas.

The taste follows the aroma of a complex beer with lots of malt flavors in layers. I get sweet caramel, raisin and plums in a way that reminds me somewhat of a Belgian dubbel. Alcohol warmth is there as well. The feel is a full body, with a medium amount of carbonation and a clean finish.

I really enjoyed this beer. Ideal to sip and enjoy slowly at the end of the evening.

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Photo of TheDudeBeers
3.66/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Mahogany brown ale in color, no head.

S - Smells of sweet malt and grain.

T - Tastes of toffee, sugar, carmel, with a fairly strong alcohol finish. perhaps the alcohol part is just because i'm drinking it a little bit warm.

M - It's pretty smooth and light on the tongue. Perfect amount of carbonation.

D - I'd put it on par for drinkability with a good winter warmer. Basically i'm saying it's pretty easy to drink for the alcohol level.

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Photo of IceTrey9785
4.57/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Didn't get too much of this at the store, grabbed the last six-pack on the shelf. Very excited about this beer, and decided to serve it just under 62 degrees.

A: Really rich, ruby, amber color. Nice tan head that quickly fades leaving a wonderful lacing that shows off the lees...

S: I poured this into a nice tulip glass, and immediately the smell gives off strong aromas of caramelized malt, toffee, and brown sugar. Perhaps some nice persimmons caramelized in a brown butter sauce? Toasted wheat bread, and fig round out the lively smell. Very appetizing and much more complex than many wee heavies...don't really notice the alcohol either. Seems to be a well-rounded, well executed brew...

T&M: Wow -- a bit creamy on the mouthfeel, with a super long finish. I'm still tasting the caramelized fig, brown bread ice cream, and subtle hint of allspice for a few minutes after taking a sip. This is an extraordinary beer that is soft, sweet, and spicy, but full of malt flavor, dried fruit, and the ever present saltiness of cured meat. I'm left with a cocoa covered dried prune, served on a nice Irish rasher...definitely can't say no to this one.

By far, this is my favorite wee heavy. I like Dirty Bastard and Skullsplitter, but I think this has the best balance of all three. There is sweet, savory, salty, and fruity aromas that the other two lack on some degree. Might have to do some bartering, but anything to get another six-pack or two is definitely fair game at this point.

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Photo of olympuszymurgus
4.37/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours fast and hard, a long day of work deserves a long beer. Sent by the good and honest bucketboy, I sniff with great interest.

Caramel and smoke, one might go so far as to say peat and earth come out, and with a taste I say "hello Special B!" it taste like fricken' raisins my man. Delightful, smokey raisiny toffee goodness.

No lacing on this, no head even. The thin white fizz disappears like soda in july. Very good beer, very enjoyable.

Duck-Rabbit - You are in the winner circle.

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Photo of Transatlantic
4.57/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured into a snifter

A - Pours a clear dark copper color. Head is just off-white, doesn't stick around too long but leaves a beautiful lacing.

S - Doesn't take much to smell everything this beer has to offer! Straight up is the sweet smell of caramel, the smokiness, and a big punch of dark fruit, mainly a raison and prune sort of smell.

T - Just as the smell, you pick up on just about everything in the taste. The sweet caramel strikes the taste buds first, followed by the powerful raison and prune taste. The smoky flavor of the roasted malts then finishes off as the beers goes down: this is where you get the only bitterness in the beer.

M - Medium to full bodied and very oil like (as others have described). The beer's appearance would have you assume it to be slick.

D - Oh my, what a dangerous beer. If you're not careful, you'll have the six pack all drank up without realizing it, then you'll be making a fool of yourself. There isn't the slightest hint of alcohol and after the first taste, you won't want to stop drinking it.

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Photo of elgiacomo
3.85/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle, 2010 batch.

Pours dark amber/copper with a one finger beige head that leaves a few spots of lacing and holds a good cap.

Aroma is caramel, toffee, fruity, a little chocolate, touch of smoke, bready, quite malty. Good strength.

Flavor features a lot of caramel, toffee, brown sugar, dark fruits such as plums and figs, some apple, a bit of chocolate and coffee, noticeable alcohol but not too hot, fairly sweet lingering finish.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, oily, medium carbonation.

Very nice Scotch Ale, one of the better examples I've tried.

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Photo of kkipple
3.6/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Grabbed a single from Asheville 'cause I can't remember the last time I had this one. Cracked after lunch on a cold, clear Sunday afternoon. "Enjoy by" date of 10/11

A. Murky, muddy red-clay. Short head with active bubbles and additional life thanks to my New Belgium lazer-etched goblet.

S. Sweet and malt-sugary, as most of Duck-Rabbit's bigger brews tend to be. This is sharp smelling, with some high fusel booze and some sugary, raisiny notes going on... sort of reminds me of a Muscat dessert wine. Minor aromas of darker malt and an almost tannic, woodsy-husky grain smell. No smoke, sadly. Subtlety is not this beer's strong point.

T. Hmm, yeah, this is pretty much how I remembered... fortunately the flavor here isn't as sweet as the nose suggests and has some real malt depth to it, sadly, it's neither as refined or approachable as that stalwart standby, Old Chub. OC is actually a good jumping off point, since most of my (few, if any) readers should be familiar with it. Duck-Rabbit's take is more 'rough hewn', with more evident booze in both the flavor and the warming factor. There is less dark fruit and more worty slickness, and I almost feel like I'm picking up a bit of hop citrus - probably just a byproduct of the fermentation though. This has a spicy, almost peppery kick to it upon swallowing. Interesting stuff, but not the best example around.

M / D. Slick, medium bodied, fully carbonated, perhaps a bit too excitable. Drinks... okay. I wouldn't go back for this one on a regular basis.

Duck-Rabbit here has a decent take on the style, too rough and sharp tasting for my personal preference, but your mileage may vary.

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Photo of Kkottonmouthkngz
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

dark red pour, two finger head, pretty thick. the color is beautiful.
smell ia also a huge hit, love it. its yeasty sweet bread, like fresh out of the oven type shit. i wish i could better decifer this, but i can tell you its awesome.
its got a nice sharp carbonation that really brings the breadiness and malts alive, the hop presence is fairly hidden in the background, and the sweet coating left on my tongue after each sip is delectable. the abv pokes its head out just a bit in the finish, but is by no means oppressive or offensive... its actually a nice touch.
this is the third duck rabbit ive had in as many nights and im very pleased with the experience. this particular brew would have perfect drinkability if the abv werent so high.

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Photo of micromaniac129
3.97/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Amber colored ale with very little foam formation. A slight haze is present and little carbonation.
A rich malty aroma, sweet and buttery.
A sweet tasting malt bill caramel and Vienna malt. Some bread or biscuit at end.Some fruity esters are present.
I can taste a very light smokiness.
Smooth with a medium body
A pretty good beer.

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Photo of Spica66
3.86/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got this in trade from thagr81us. Thanks, Calton.

Poured into tulip and shared with gwuilliums.

A: Red/brown with minimal head formation.

S: Sweet like fresh bread, but with a very slight sour note in the back. Gwuilliums noticed it first, then I could not miss it.

T: Sweet malt and alcohol. Caramel and raisins. Hardly any hops at all. Very tasty!

M: Full bodied without being too sticky as is often the problem with this style. Proper carbonation.

D: This is one of those beers that will get you into huge trouble! An extremely easy to drink 8-percenter!

Overall, I really liked it.

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Photo of slowbie
3.88/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a reddish brown color with a quickly disappearing head.

Aromas of toffee and dark fruit, but not very much aroma for an 8% beer.

The taste echoes the aromas, with the dark fruits taking center stage. Good sweetness level for a scotch ale. A little smokiness in the finish as well.

Great mouthfeel for the style. Good thickness and body and a subtle carbonation to tie it together.

Overall, this is probably my second favorite scotch ale so far. Granted, I haven't tried many (and none from outside America), but Founder's Dirty Bastard is the only wee heavy I've tried so far that's better than this one.

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Photo of stimulus
4.15/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a snifter (from a 6 pack).

A: Pours a clear red with a thin tan head.
S: Caramel malts and some peat (smoke flavor).
T: Very sweet upfront with the peat next, and more caramel and toffee on the finish.
M: Light bodied for the style, light carbonation, and a bit sticky on the finish.
D: There is a light alcohol burn as this warms, but it is pretty airtight for the wee heavy style. Good representation.

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Duck-Rabbit Wee Heavy Scotch Style Ale from The Duck-Rabbit Craft Brewery
3.9 out of 5 based on 468 ratings.
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