Upon seeing this beer, I wondered what Gaelic Ale would mean rather than a Scottish Ale. Basically, it’s made to honor the Irish and Scottish people who settled the area around Asheville, where Highland Brewing is. I’m also told to expect more hops than I would with a typical Scottish Ale, which is good to know before starting.
Pours a deep amber and is relatively clear. Sticky white head floats atop. Smells of toasted malt and smoked peat. I’m glad I knew to expect some hops, because they are definitely noticed. Thankfully, not overpowering (wouldn’t fit the style). Caramel, smoked peat and other complex malts are upfront with the piney hops balancing nicely. The malt lingers longer than the hops.Flavor of iced tea as it warms, as well. Clocks in at 5.8% ABV.
I’d say this is more of an Amber Ale than it is a Scotch Ale. Interesting how your own bias about a how a style should taste will shift your views, no? It’s tasty, has good balance, and is on the hoppier side of the spectrum.