Listed as a “session mild ale,” one of Grizzly Peak’s Autumn offerings for 2010 is the Fouch Hill Dark Ale. An ale with a Scottish flavor, the name seems to foreshadow that, though Fouch Hill is actually located in Northern Michigan, on the Leelenau Peninsula near Traverse City.
Anyway, onto the beer. The aroma is very light, with almost no hint of hops, and mostly a peaty scent (again, reminiscent of imports from Scotland). I could do with a bit more aroma there, actually.
The flavor itself is heavily peat-y, almost something straight out of Scotland, with almost no hint of traditional flavoring hops. There are roasty malts a-plenty, along with a decent alcohol flavor – belying this session beer’s 4.8% ABV. A sweet, malty flavor persists throughout.
The color is a deep caramel, though the beer is a little more transparent than you’d expect from the style. The mouthfeel is a little light for the expectation from the flavor, though it sticks around a bit after swallowing. The carbonation is a little lacking, but that’s more likely a service issue than one from the brewing process.
There are a few (minor) deficiencies with this beer, but in all honesty, it’s the best craft brew I’ve had in at least a few weeks. I’ll be glad to have it as long as it’s on tap at Grizzly Peak.