Neil Reports: Dark Horse Scotty Karate

Dark Horse Brewing Company, Marshall, Michigan
Scotty Karate Scotch Ale
Scotch ale
9.75% alcohol
Served in a pint glass

[The following is a guest post from Neil. Enjoy responsibly.]

Guest blogger Neil reporting for duty from sunny Rochester, New York. As previously discussed, Perry and I traded representative beers from our respective regions. I have not seen much of the Midwest, so my experience with brews from Founders and Bells is limited to what gets bootlegged to my neck of the woods. When I first heard of Perry, I begged him to provide me what he could from these elusive-to-me companies. In this post, I cover Dark Horse’s Scotty Karate Scotch Ale.

(Disclosure: I’m working from scant notes months old, so there may be some artistic license taken. Confession: I sometimes confuse “poetic justice” with “artistic license”. Do you?)

I drank this beer the night of March 12th, a Friday. I had gone to a coffeeshop earlier in the night to see my friends’ new band Slow Light play. For reasons I don’t remember, I didn’t have any beer at the show. Maybe it was knowing that I was driving 2+ hours to, then attending, a wedding the next day. (The wedding turned out to have a cash bar. Lame. The toast was whiskey instead of champagne. Not lame.) My Google Chat logs inform me that I drank this while watching Leno. It’s not that I like Leno, nosirree. I’m With Coco. The reason I was watching Leno was that a childhood friend’s sister had advertised on Facebook that SHE would be on Leno. I wasn’t sure why until the show: there is a viral video of her falling in a hole. All of this is irrelevant to the beer.

The beer poured with a tiny head that quickly dissipated, just how I like it. The color was a very dark brown, rendering the glass opaque. On the nose, there’s what I have down as a “corn malt” smell. Is this a thing? Can you malt corn? I’d imagine so. I also got a bit of molasses in the sweetness. Upon drinking, I wrote down that there was a “good mouthfeel”. What does this even mean? I recall being told by elementary school teachers that it just doesn’t do to describe something as “good”. You must say why it’s good, what particular qualities are good. Things don’t just feel good, they said. I think I have to disagree, yet I later noted that the ale felt “bursty without being too”. Again, this is what I like in a beer: some textural kick but not overly carbonated. A milk chocolate flavor dominated, though the taste itself was not as sweet as the aroma indicated. It may sound like I was disappointed in the flavor, but I was not. It was a very pleasant evening-ender. The finish was almost too thin for what I wanted it to be given the flavor. This could be an aspect of the Scotch Ale style that I’m not used to or it could be about the high alcohol content, which would also explain the scents I picked up at first.

Overall, this was a very pleasant late-winter beer to end a night.

Look for more guest posts from me soon, Perry willing and the creek don’t rise!


~ by Perry S. on July 23, 2010.

3 Responses to “Neil Reports: Dark Horse Scotty Karate”

  1. Here is a nice video from the musician this beer is named after:
    “Eliza’s Over”

    (Scotty Karate)

  2. “poetic justice” is a movie with janet jackson and 2pac. it should never be confused with anything artistic.

  3. ^[guessing this is the chemical engineer-cum-œnologist rather than someone misled by a G00gle search of John Singleton’s œuvre. <– yes, that's two ethels in one sentence.]
    Neil: An excellent Debordian dérive through smuggled beers and holes in catwalks. I like the archive fever emerging from your own notes especially. While I hear that SK is a great beer, the name and the doodle on the label have always dissuaded me. What kind of 'not lame' whisky was it?

    Well bowled, sir.

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