Home > Old Ale, Scottish Ale, Traditional Ale > Traquair Bear Ale

Traquair Bear Ale

Rating: 3.15

Another beer picked up as part of the Aldi summer beer festival now, this one from the Traquair House brewery in Peebleshire that I was pleased to stumble across on my last visit to Aldi. I wasn’t aware that Traquair did any more beer other than the two I have previously reviewed here, their Jacobite and House ales that both feature in the 1001 beers list. The name comes from the Bear Gates situated on the ground of Traquair House, a set that has been closed 1745 when Bonnie Prince Charles was supposedly the last person to walk through them. I’ve only ever seen those two for sale in Scotland and even they are quite rare unless you’re actually on the look out for them so to find another of their beers in a supermarket was surprising. Described as somewhere between a traditional Scottish ale and an Old Ale, this is one that I’m looking forward to trying more down to how good the other two I’ve tried from the brewery were than down to how good I think this one will be on its own; hopefully it tastes as good as the other two, although I’m sceptical to say the least.

Traquair Bear Ale

Appearance (3/5): Dark caramel brown in colour with a clear body and a thin, patchy lacing on top of the beer builds up a little around the circumference but leaves a lot of bare patches in the centre.
Aroma (4/10): Definitely a malty aroma with a lot of earthy notes coming through and plenty of bitterness as well. Roasted notes appear around the middle and some subdued fruits as well but the earthy smells and strong malts dominate from the off with a strong nutty aroma backing this up. There is some spice but some off-notes seemed to appear throughout as well and I wasn’t particularly impressed with this one.
Taste (7/10): Thankfully this one picks up a little in the taste department and doesn’t seem to have the same seemingly off notes that the nose featured. There was a strong and quite malty flavour coming through with a nutty taste too and some lighter fruits as well. There was a nice bitterness to this one with some caramel as well but this is fairly light.
Palate (4/5): Medium bodied with low carbonation and a very smooth feel with a soft and slightly bitter and dry mouthfeel.

Overall (13/20): This one got off to a shaky start with the aroma seeming quite poor with a little too much spice and some notes that seemed a little off in places. Thankfully the taste was a lot better with a lot of malts and some light fruits offset with a solid bitterness throughout and the beer proved an easy one to drink and turned out a lot better than I thought it would after the nose.

Brewed In: Innerleithen, Peebleshire, Scotland
Brewery: Traquair House Brewery
First Brewed: 1996
Type: Old Ale/Scottish Ale
Abv: 5.0%
Serving: Bottle (500ml)
Purchased: Aldi (Wishaw)
Price: £1.99

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