Mill Street Black Watch

Reviewed by on January 25, 2016 in Winter Guide

The Details

  • Brewery: Mill Street Brewery

  • Origin: Toronto, ON, CA

  • Rated On: January 25, 2016

  • Best Before: bottled December 22, 2015

  • ABV: 6.0%

  • Ideal Temperature: cool to cellar temperature

  • Style: Scotch Ale

  • Rating: GOOD !

The Review

Today is the traditional Burns Night, where all things Scottish are celebrated via the observing of the birthday of Scotland’s famous poet, Robert Burns.  From a craft beer perspective, we have Toronto’s Mill Street Brewery, and their ode to the titular Highland army regiment.

This 355ml bottle pours a clear, dark bronzed amber colour, with two fingers of puffy, finely foamy, and creamy beige head, which leaves a thin wash of spectral tree branch lace around the glass as it gently falls away.

It smells of lightly roasted caramel malt, some treacly toffee, a smoky nuttiness, mild black orchard fruity notes, and plain earthy and leafy hop bitters. The taste is quite consistent with the aroma – more softly roasted caramel and toffee-accented malt, some generic sweet nuts, a red plum and bruised apple fruitiness, still rather tame earthy and kind of musty hops, and a tinge of metallic alcohol. The carbonation is adequate in its understated and generally supportive frothiness, the body a decent medium weight, and fairly smooth, with a growing creaminess as things warm up a bit. It finishes edging on sweet, with the caramel/toffee thing a real going concern, and the lingering fruitiness aiding and abetting.

Overall, a tasty enough offering, what with the robust sweetness and soft bittering offset. However, it lacks that extra punch to the sporran that one might expect for the style – so, with apologies to the old poet, as my words may seem inelegant – this particular stew would by no means make a pig sick!

Brady White

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