McEwan’s Scotch Ale, 8% abv.
“Widely considered to be a benchmark for the style and a longtime favorite for craft beer drinkers, this warming crimson/brown ale from England drips with notes of cocoa and caramel. It’s a perfect beer for a crisp fall evening and a fine accompaniment to smoked meat and late-night cigars.” $3 per 11.2-oz. bottle at The Charleston Beer Exchange; $11 per four-pack at Total Wine
Orkney, Skull Splitter, 8.5% abv.
“From Scotland’s Orkney Islands, this brooding beer inches a little closer to the realm of barley wine for strength and rich complexity. The satin-like body boasts threads of raisins and toffee that twine themselves around warm, melting brown sugar. If you have more than one, the reason for the name becomes all too apparent.” $3 per 11.2-oz. bottle at The Charleston Beer Exchange; $13 per six-pack at Total Wine
Founders, Dirty Bastard, 8.5% abv.
“Hailing from Grand Rapids, Michigan—a land of robust winters—it is no surprise that this brewery’s flagship ale has a rich and warming nature. Its bold malt depth speaks to fig and dried stone fruit but remains well balanced by the dry notes on the finish contributed by an assertive hop addition. This brew is well suited to a hearty steak or wild game.” $2 per 12-oz. bottle at Charleston Beer Exchange