Beer Reviews Traquair House Ale

Traquair House is one of those places that seems to ooze history. At 900 years, it’s the oldest inhabited house in Scotland. Traquair House dates back to the 11th century when it was a hunting lodge for the kings and queens of Scotland. Since then it has seen the signings of treaties and many royal visits before passing into the hands of the Stewart dynasty. In fact, the current owners are descended from James Stuart, first laird of Traquair who was killed fighting the English in 1513. According to sources, the house and its property have been in the family since then.

Even the brewery boasts an impressive history when brewing started back in 1573. Much of the current brewing equipment dates back to the 1700s, some of which is made from wood and copper. Looking at the history behind the house and its brewery I feel as though I should have a story about how I came across my first bottle of Traquair House Ale and the love affair I’ve had with it since. Unfortunately, I have no such story, this being just another beer I grabbed from the shelf because something in the label looked promising.

Today Traquair House produces four beers including the Traquair House and Traquair Jacobite Ales. The Traquair House Ale is a strong, Scottish Ale clocking in at 7.2% abv and has been in production since 1964. Traquair pours into the glass deep brown with hints of ruby. Light carbonation supports a dense tan head with good retention.

Aroma starts out sweet, giving me raisins and molasses. Molasses is supported by a gentle nuttiness. Hop aromas show up in the nose in the form of damp earth and just a hint of leather. A slight aroma of alcohol provides a nice through note, giving the aroma an overall impression of rum soaked Christmas pudding. Traquair House Ale is full bodied and lush. Flavor is sweet up front, tasting of nuts and caramel. Sweetness moves into a nicely rounded center showing flavors of raisin and mild flavors of leather and fig. Flavors combine nicely, moving into a smooth, rounded finish.

Traquair House Ale gets a 9.26 out of 10. Traquair House ale is full flavoured, complex, and delicious. It’s complex and alcoholic without being oppressive or hard to drink. Traquair House Ale would be a fine accompaniment to any roast beef or lamb dishes or maybe a rich, deep beef stew.

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