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Old 06-08-2012, 05:05 AM   #1
hoptualBrew
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Default Best Scotch Ale

Would like to hear what your favorite Scotch Ales are, both commercially & homebrew (with recipe link if you can)!

Commercial - Big Sound / Cigar City Brewing Company

Homebrew - Have only brewed one so far and was too roasty for my liking. Second attempt Scotch Ale recipe I brewed today & recipe is;

Recipe Type: All Grain
Yeast: Wyeast 1728 Scottish Ale
Batch Size: (Gallons): 5.0
Original Gravity: 1.087
Final Gravity: TBD
Boiling Time (Minutes): 90
Primary Fermentation (# of Days & Temp): 28 days at 58 F
Secondary Fermentation (# of Days & Temp): 21 days at 40 F

Grain:
7# Asheburne Mild Ale Malt
7# Maris Otter - Warminster Floor Malted
1# Caramel 20L
1# Caramel 60L
.75# English Extra Dark Crystal
.75# Golden Naked Oats
.50# Aromatic Malt
.50# Special Roast
.50# Melanoidin
.10# English Chocolate Malt

Mash: Single infusion 90 minute mash at 157 F, pulled off one gallon of clear wort (recirculated) at 60 minutes and boiled down to 1/2 gallon for caramelization. Added this 1/2 gallon to the BK before the boil started.
Was amazing how much flavor change (candy sweetness!) came from the boil down, as I tasted before and after.

Hops
.75 oz UK Phoenix (10.8%aa / 60 mins)
.50 oz UK Northdown (7.2%aa / 30 mins)

1 oz Heather tips added at flameout


Hoping this one turns out well. My goal is to produce a better Scotch Ale than can be found commercially.

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Old 06-08-2012, 03:59 PM   #2
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I'm a big fan of Scotch Ale's myself. I've found a lot of bad commercial versions while taste testing them though. There's a lot of variation in the style's weight.

If your looking for a commercial Wee Heavy, go for a Traquair. It's chewy, malty, earthy, with just a touch of peat and oak. I wasn't impressed with Brau Bro's Bancreagie. I found it to be too sweet, with not enough of the typical scotch flavors to back it up. If you want to drink a bottle of syrup try the Sam Adams Wee Heavy.

I'm only on version 3 of my recipe, but I have high hopes for it. My biggest problem is that I don't know a lot of people that like Scotch Ale's, so it's been hard to get good feedback.

I haven't played with either of the hops in your recipe, but I think it looks good. Carmaelization is a great way to go with the Scottish style IMO.

Slaandjivaa!

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Old 06-08-2012, 04:09 PM   #3
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I'm a big fan of Kilt lifter.

http://beeradvocate.com/beer/profile/365/962

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Old 06-08-2012, 04:14 PM   #4
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Old Chub

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Old 06-08-2012, 04:25 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IXVolt View Post
This may illustrate the diversity of tastes and types of Scots/Scottish ales. This beer is often touted, but rates as 'average' my those who taste it. If I copy a brew I'd look for a 90, not a 79. Opinions vary obviously and I do think these ales are among the most difficult to find consensus on.
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Old 06-08-2012, 04:42 PM   #6
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But ... erm ... the OP asked for what OUR favorites were?

At any rate, Duck Rabbit Wee Heavy and Founders Dirty Bastard.

Adding to what you said though, Befus, there just aren't a lot in this style, and being so spread out geographically, it's hard to learn and appreciate all the tastes if you can't ever try them. At least this is true in my case.

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Old 06-08-2012, 06:22 PM   #7
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McEwan's was one of the beers the opened my eyes to the existence of BEER back in the early 90s.

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Old 06-08-2012, 07:01 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by SkipperNC View Post

Adding to what you said though, Befus, there just aren't a lot in this style, and being so spread out geographically, it's hard to learn and appreciate all the tastes if you can't ever try them. At least this is true in my case.
Absolutely. I go to my local package store and they may have 20 each pales and IPA's, several varieties of wheats/hefe's, quite a few Belgian's, 5-10 browns, even the heavy types have several to choose from, and there will be zero craft Scots except for a couple wee heavies (not my cup of tea) and McEwan's and Belhaven's. I think I saw one in a Dundee's seasonal variety 12-pack once.
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Old 06-08-2012, 07:43 PM   #9
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Same here, although it really varies by season. After summer I usually have a better shot at finding something nice at the beer stores.

I have yet to brew one though, although I'd like to. HoptualBrew, thanks for the recipe earlier. Please add some tasting notes once you try it.

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Old 06-08-2012, 07:57 PM   #10
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Quote:
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