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Drink of the Week: 13 Stripes Brewery's War Must Be Scottish Ale

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$3 at WECO Bottle and Biergarten. 4.5 percent ABV.

Normally, around this time of year, I’d have written about two to three Oktoberfest events a week, with another few weeks to go.

While that’s not quite the case in COVID times, I’ve still managed to enjoy quite a few marzens and festbiers and, yes, even a few pumpkin brews over the last month or so. And while I can’t believe I’m saying it, I’m actually ready for something a little different.

I still want something that celebrates the fall weather and is sessionable enough that I can enjoy a few at one sitting, but just not German. Luckily, 13 Stripes just released a new Scottish Ale that fits the bill perfectly. I haven’t written much about 13 Stripes before, but the Taylors brewery has always put out an impressive lineup of beers when you can find them.

This War Must Be 80 Schilling Scottish Ale is on the strong side as far as Scottish ales go. Traditionally, the 80 schilling ales were generally of a higher alcohol content than the 20 or 40 schilling ales so that they could travel overseas.

13 Stripes has stuck very close to style with this one, with a slightly sweet, malt-forward beer that pours a lovely reddish brown. There’s some pleasant nuttiness and the tiniest hint of smoke that comes from pecan-smoking the Appalachian wheat used to brew the beer. It’s a terrific brew to kick back with in the coming cooler afternoons.

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