Serve in Thistle


on tap

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RATINGS: 505   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.79   SEASONAL: Spring   EST. CALORIES: 255   ABV: 8.5%
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Big Sound Scotch Ale is dedicated to our good buddy Gino, the most punk rock bagpiper you’ll ever meet, and the rest of the men and women of Tampa Bay Pipes and Drums. Brown in color, Big Sound has huge notes of dark sweet toffee with underlying mild notes of coffee in the aroma. The flavor starts with a slight note of cherry and then opens into a Goliath of a malt character with notes of dark sweet toffee, slight hints of coffee and mild notes of toasted bread in the finish. Big Sound Scotch Ale pairs well with Haggis, Highland Games, Huge Heads and Enormous Pillows and of course Bagpipe music.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
ekstedt (5404) - Göteborg, SWEDEN - JUN 16, 2009
UPDATED: SEP 3, 2011 From a bottle at GBF 2011. Clear deep chestnut, medium beige head. DArk chocolate and toffee aroma, with notes of bananas. Medium bodied, soft carbonation. Medium sweet with low bitterness.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
FlacoAlto (3800) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - JUN 20, 2009
A solid pour into my 25cl tulip glass produces a three finger thick, nicely amber tinged, full amber color. The beer is a dark amber color that has a concentrated redness to it. When held up to the light the beer shows a nicely concentrated, red, ruby color. The beer has an interesting note to it up front, it is quite sweet with an almost cinnamon like character to it sweetness; almost reminds me of a deeply caramelized, cinnamon sweetened red-hot. There is a touch of toasted grain underneath the sweet aroma. Perhaps this is a bit too cold (though it is at 50ºF / 10ºC), a quick stint in the microwave has me noticing a bit more caramel character rather than straight sweetness, some berry like fruit character as well as more toasted malt character. Actually the sticky sweetness has now all but disappeared. The aroma started out a bit on the simplistic side, but it does get a bit better if you really let it warm up, though it still doesn’t quite have the complexity that I was hoping for.

This is sweet tasting with a thick, chewy body that easily tames the sweetness, which definitely is not cloying. The beer finishes with a touch of warming alcohol as well as a chewy, whole grain toastiness, and a deeply caramelized malt character. A bit of caramelized, marshmallow character is in the middle and the finish has a hint of roast grain that adds just a hint of bite to balance a smidge of the sweetness. This does have some salty smokiness to it as well, which is quite subtle and I would guess is not from any actual peat smoked malt. This has a touch of fruitiness to it with mostly a raisin-like note that likely is contributed by the malt character. While the sweetness is not too much in this warmed up beer, it does still have a candy like note to it with all of the caramelized specialty malt character floating around in this beer.

In hopes of cutting the sweetness I have taken to eating an overly sweetened brownie, this does tame the beers sweetness, but actually brings a touch of tartness out in the beer. It does accentuate a touch more of the light roast character, a slight bit more smokiness, as well as bringing out more of the toasted malt character.

Not a bad beer, I must admit that I got a bit too caught up in excitement around this brewery, my expectations of grandeur where probably a bit too much, but I was expecting a lot more from this beer. It doesn’t quite have the complexity and balance that I really want to see in a great example of the style. Really my biggest complaint here is that the beer has a bit too much sweetness; it does need some sweetness, but if it was a touch drier it would really allow a lot more complex malt character to come through. A touch more age might round this out a bit though; six months to a year might see this beer peaking. I am still quite excited to try other beers from this brewery, they seem to be doing some really creative things.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
AndyReynolds (879) - Dayton, Kentucky, USA - SEP 2, 2009
Bottle, thanks to alexdad06 at Natifest. I forgot to rank this one, but stumbled accross my notes this morning. Pours a dark amber-copper color with a thin head. Aroma is strong with carmalized malts. Notes of chocolate, roasted malts, a bit of wood, and the smallest amount of coffee come out. On the palate, it is thick and dry. The flavor brings out a bit of a nutty taste and brings the roasted malts to the front. Pretty good beer overall, but nothing too special.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
ajm (1065) - Los Angeles, California, USA - SEP 21, 2009
Shared by Shyam - thank you sir. A perfectly average Scotch ale. Nose is slight peat, very thickly caramel malt, Flavor is the same - brown apple, brown sugar, less malt. I just described a competent, standard Scotch ale. That’s what this is.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
DalzAle (1976) - Eden Prairie, Minnesota, USA - SEP 22, 2009
Bottle. Dark brown, little carbonation and a good caramelly/sweet aroma. Flavor was sweet malts, slightly smoky and dry on the finish.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
Skyview (5172) - Papoose Jct, Minnesota, USA - SEP 24, 2009
Sampled from 750 ml bottle, acquired via trade with dchmela. Pours a semi-clear dark caramel brown colored brew with a thin off-white head that quickly dissipates. Aroma of caramel malt, some peach, roasted nuts, apple and a touch of floral hops. Taste is medium bodied, with flavors of smoked caramel malt, some apple, and just barely a hint of peat. Finish is semi-dry with some caramel malt and floral hop aftertaste that quickly disappears. Average Scotch Ale with a well hidden alcohol presence.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
badgerben (4395) - Blaine, Minnesota, USA - SEP 26, 2009
Skyview Tasting 2.5. Courtesy of Skyview. Brown color with a thin head. Malty aroma with a little wet cardboard. Dry, grain taste, rounded out with an earthy hop/grain and light tobacco.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
JK (4401) - St. Louis Park, Minnesota, USA - OCT 4, 2009
Dry and earthy. Moderate malt. There is some earth and green plants. The alcohol is well hidden. Slightly roasted. Good, smooth palate and full mouthfeel. A well made beer that could use a little more complexity.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 12/20
mmather (145) - Colorado, USA - OCT 12, 2011
Bottle from 2009, source classified :-) Served in a chalice. Age seems to be catching up with this one, although there is some nice caramel notes, higher alcohols still very evident, not much on the aroma, but a bit of oxidation as you might expect. Still a very nice beer that is past its peak. If you have one of these DRINK IT!!! it won’t get any better!!

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
CLevar (376) - Minnesota, USA - NOV 14, 2011
Bottle to snifter. Nice hazy brown pour, big head, fades to a thick skim with nice lacing. Aroma is dried fruit and bretty cherries, lots of sugary caramelized fruits and malts. Taste has sticky sweet cherries up front, lots of sweet toffee malt on the back, finishing with a fair dose of, you guessed it, sticky sweet and slightly roasty malts. Light touch of balsamic wood present on the aftertaste as it warms. Touch of smoke perhaps? As I have more CCB, I am seeing a flavor and aroma trend. Lots of sticky sweet malts and lots of slightly funky, slightly tart flavors and textures....is it intentional? Is it the water? Who knows, but just keep that brett out of my zuhkov!

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