Brewed by Williams Brothers (Heather Ales)
Style: Traditional Ale
Alloa, Clackmannanshire, Scotland


on tap

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RATINGS: 908   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.46/5   EST. CALORIES: 195   ABV: 6.5%
Bottled. A cask version at 5.8% is produced in October and November.
"Elderberry Black Ale"
Introduced to Scotland by Welsh druids in the 9th Century, elderberry black ale was part of the Celtic Autumn festivals when the "elders" would make this strong ale and pass the drink round the people of the village. The recipe was taken from a 16th Century record of domestic drinking in the Scottish Highlands. Elderberries were used for many natural remedies to cure sciatica, other forms of neuralgia, influenza and rhumatism as they contain tannins and fruit oils.
Ebulum is made from roasted oats, barley and wheat boiled with herbs then fermented with ripe elderberries.
A rich black ale with fruit aroma, silky soft texture,soft roasted flavour and gentle finish.
Recommended with stewed and baked foods.
Drink lightly chilled from a straight glass.

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IPFreely (1470) - Sanborn, New York, USA - NOV 24, 2003
All the signs of a porter: dark brown/black color, roasted chocolate malt aromas and flavor, medium body. All this with addition of dark fruits in the aroma and flavor and some acidity in the finish.

wildchefbill (245) - Sarasota, Florida, USA - NOV 20, 2003
Pours ruby/black with a vert small tan head. Mild black cherry aroma. Flavor starts very malty chocolate/cherry with an extreme dry finish. A little acidic with no bitterness. No hop flavor. Has the feel of a dry red wine. A strange brew, but nice.

MrRain (542) - St. Louis, Missouri, USA - NOV 9, 2003
Wow! Great suprise. I don't really like traditional ales but this was good. I don't know how to drink an elderberry beer so I used a tulip glass. It has a nice refreshing palate with just a hint of what I presume are elderberries. I didn't know elderberries existed other than for Monty Python to use as parental insults. It has a hint of smoke or malty flavor, it's a bit subtle. It still has the traditional beer rawness to it though. The taste may be a bit tainted by a raisin beer I drank earlier but all in all it is the best fruit-related beer I've had.

Andrew196 (1993) - Katy, Texas, USA - NOV 7, 2003
Color of coca cola.....head even resembled it. Distinct caramel and plum in the aroma. Medium bodied, lots of fruit and chocolatey malts in the flavor. Plum on the roof of the mouth in the finish. Pretty good!

AceOfHearts (1374) - Mountain View, California, USA - NOV 7, 2003
Bottle. So elderberries exist outside of Monty Python?? Opaque black, small head. A mixture of chocolate, licoriche, and (I suppose) elderberries. Doesn't seem to add up very well, and it ends a little too bitter for the flavor. I wasn't too impessed.

hopscotch (11236) - Vero Beach, Florida, USA - NOV 4, 2003
UPDATED: SEP 12, 2007 Bottle... This beer rocks!... It has a lot of the same characteristics as a Scottish ale. Very dark, handsome, crimson hue. The aroma is nice and malty with notes of milk chocolate, red wine, vanilla and toffee. The flavor is pretty well-balanced. A touch fruity, pungent and tangy with some lesser notes of coffee and chocolate. Well-bittered. Medium-bodied with a creamy mouthfeel and mild carbonation. The finish is fruity, astringent and dry. I really like this one! World Class Brew!

Shag (3045) - Chattanooga, Tennessee, USA - OCT 24, 2003
Appearance is very nice, dark with a long lasting beige head. Flavor is licorice, dark chocolate, raisins, and coffee with a mild sourness in the background. Very similar to a porter IMO. This is a nice beer even though I typically don't like Traditional Ales.

JPDIPSO (6286) - Wauwatosa, USA - OCT 15, 2003
Near black color with a tinge of rudy. A smaller tan head. Mocha and light lirorice in aroma. Roasted grains with a light fruity background. A somewhat fruity stout.

BBB63 (6567) - La Porte, Indiana, USA - OCT 6, 2003
Very dark brown hue with frothy tan head head and very good lace. Aroma hints of berry, smoke, leather, licorice, and wood. Twangy fruit and smoky malt taste. A bit of alcohol appears also. The finish is espresso like, dry and mildly bitter. Undertone of tobacco and black currents included. Weird and complex, yet the palate was a bit off as I found the beer a bit thinner than expected. The alcohol detected on the nose is not present on the tongue. Overall a very interesting beer that I will try again.

JonR888710 (999) - Cochabamba, BOLIVIA - OCT 5, 2003
Very interesting looking dark ale, looks more like a porter, 90% opaque. Thin head of off-white bubbles. Smells of sweet berries as the name suggests (blueberry and boysenberry), pipe tobacco and chocolate. Taste is bright, tart and strong. Flavors of chocolate, coffee, both sweet & tart berries, and alcohol. Aftertaste is chocolate, tart-coffee, and more alcohol. This is one of the most surprising, perplexing beers I’ve had in a long time. From the time I pulled the bottle from the fridge, poured it into my glass, and put the glass to my lips I had no clue what to expect. This is definately not a traditional ale. I really hope this review hasn’t ruined the shock for anyone. Sampled from a 12 oz bottle, purchased at Chevy Chase Wine & Liquors in Washington, DC.

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