Jasperilla Old Ale - Independence Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Jasperilla Old AleJasperilla Old Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

94 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 94
Reviews: 61
rAvg: 3.48
pDev: 17.82%
Wants: 5
Gots: 12 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Independence Brewing Co. visit their website
Texas, United States

Style | ABV
Old Ale |  9.30% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: kbub6f on 02-02-2006

No notes at this time.
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Ratings: 94 | Reviews: 61
Reviews by mikesgroove:
Photo of mikesgroove
3.83/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

aramel smell coming off of this, literally took me by surprise. Nice aroma of oak and alcohol mixing and swirling around with it now, really starting to pick up steam the warmer it got. So complex, with rich earthy tones running rampant through it. Warm oak infused notes of brandy like alcohol running over the tongue, so sweet and sugary. As you roll it around you start to notice there is a little bit of a bitter bite to this one. Way down deep under all of the malt, there was a subtle bitter hoppiness, very grainy and earthy, but it was there, and really pushed through on the finish. Long drawn out finish it was, soo complex, with every sip letting you discover more and more flavors. Deep dark fruit now coming through for me, really started to actually dominate the scene all together. Huge raisin and plum notes giving it that sweet but yet tart dark fruit flavor we all come to love

More User Reviews:
Photo of Mora2000
3.5/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2008 Vintage consumed Dec. 15, 2009.

Pours orangish-brown with not much head. The aroma is very sweet with lots of caramel malt. The flavor has a lot of malty sweetness with some a caramel flavor. There is also some fruit, specifically apple. Medium mouthfeel and low carbonation. I have had this beer before but never reviewed it. I think it was better fresh.

Photo of Intrik
4.25/5  rDev +22.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2010 Vintage found on my way home from Austin after Austin City Limits music festival Great find to replace the lack of Austin Beerworks sadly.

A - Burnt amber that gradients into a brown/copper at the top. Lacing stays on the outer edges of the beer about 1 mm up and there's a few island-y spots of lacing left along the snifter.

S - Malts, dark fruits, and alcohol hit my nose. The smell reminds me of syrup; specifically brings back the viscosity of syrup as well in my mind.

T - Alcohol hot right off the bat, but smooths out with sweet fruits immediately. Happy to not have a hop bomb; instead it eases into them near the finish to give you a hint of bitterness.

M - Same as the smell: very viscous in its own memory-jogging kind of way. The taste of the sweet, sweet dark fruits also adds to the thick syrupy mouthfeel.

O - First I've had of this style, but after reading Independence's description is feels like they were very close to the mark on this beer. I'd love to try some with another year or two on it.

Photo of glid02
3.55/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle purchased from Common Market (?) in San Antonio, TX.

Pours a slightly hazy copper color with a half-finger off-white head. The head recedes into a wispy layer on top leaving decent lacing.

Smells of caramel malts that have a somewhat watered-down aroma. Hints of toastiness come in and out along with leafy hops.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Muted and mildly spicy caramel malt flavors kick things off. Midway through the sip somewhat earthy and leafy hops come into play and carry through to an ending that's equally sweet and bitter.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got a nice thickness with moderate carbonation.

Drinkability is OK. I finished my glass without a problem and could have another.

Overall this tasted more like a hybrid of DIPA and American barleywine that was aged long enough to let the hops fade. Strange for an old ale but not terrible.

Photo of IntriqKen
3.74/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Typical deep, dark amber color with a smallish white head that melts quickly to a faint ring. No lacing to speak of.

Aromas are very heavy with caramels and sweet, sweet, dark sugars.

Taste is a real disappointment after the aromas.
Thin, synthetic tasting roasted malts with some brown sugar but really thin both in mouthfeel and taste. But.... this may be what they were looking for. This is an Old Ale...not an Imperial or double old ale...or any of the extra heavy ones we've seen lately. Perhaps it is how they want it to be. Still, I miss the 'kick' I am accustomed to in this style. I think my 'benchmark' is North Coast Old Stock"...sorry.

Aftertaste is also a disappointing synthetic experience.

Photo of NeroFiddled
2.68/5  rDev -23%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Jasperilla Old Ale pours a clear copper body beneath a creamy head of off-white foam. The head retention is limited and it leaves little lacing behind. The nose is malty with a hint of caramel, and fruity with yeast character (apple, pear, red berries), but it has some higher alcohols and a touch of acetone as well. That carries over into the flavor and seems to dominate. It's like drinking a hot honey-mead. Perhaps the fermentation just got away on this batch - the cooling system failed or something - but it's not good. As it warms and the maltiness comes out a bit more it's a little easier to take, but at that point the alcohol becomes more prevalent. Flawed. Perhaps next years will be better.

Photo of goochpunch
2.46/5  rDev -29.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1.5

2006 bottle.

Pours out a copper amber with abundant carbonation and a nice small, but sturdy, head. Leaves some sheets of lacing. Aroma is mostly tart plum and granny smith. Lots of sherry and booze too. Is this already showing signs of heavy oxidation? Lots of plum up front in the flavor with a middle showing of sour apple. Toast starts to blossom towards the end, but is interrupted by sherry and an odd fungal/baker's yeast flavor and dryness in the finish. Carbonation is rather mellow and a touch creamy. The body isn't too thick, but holds strong. Not impressed with this at all. Not finishing this bomber.

Photo of charlesw
2.79/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Really cloudy pale orange/brown. Micro head of tiny bubbles. Needs to be clearer and darker.

Smells kinda of fruity, orangy. Something like Tang mixed with maple syrup. I know that's not entirely fair - it's not quite that artificial - and yet if you had one in front of you, you could see it. So... Light and faintly artificial fruits but with a good malt backbone.

Tastes like underattenuated prehopped extract brew. Too sweet for the amount of flavor present. Low bitterness. Hints, again, of, oh, orangeade, if you prefer.

A bit too thick in the mouth. Not a big hit, here. Maybe better super fresh - maybe there's more hop flavor to it. On tap I'd expect more carbonation, too - to help cut down on the body.

Photo of BeanBone
3.98/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: A slightly hazy, and pumpkin-colored body with plenty of sediment in solution. On top, a finger and a half of creamy, off-white head that endures well and leaves decent lacing.

Aroma: A mix of various fruits (mostly apples and citrus) over sweet toffee-like malt with some whiffs of alcohol around the edges.

Taste: Golden fruit and citrus notes riding on top of a bold toffee-and-molasses malt backbone. Towards the end some woody flavors manifest themselves. The alcohol is much more present in the mouth than in the nose and compliments everything well. As for the aftertaste, it's nicely boozy and peppery.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with smooth carbonation and a dry finish. There's some slickness from the alcohol left in the mouth and just a hint of burn.

Drinkability: Definitely approaching sipper territory.

Verdict: I'm happy to report that this is quite a tasty and complex beer, and would be a great brew to enjoy with a cigar in the evening. I'll be cellaring a bottle for a year or so to see how it ages.

Photo of EgadBananas
4.12/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

2008 vintage.

Pours a hazy auburn/copper color, with an off-white less-than-a finger of head. Lacing is spongy and spotty.

The aroma is chock full of dark fruits, light sweetness, malty sweetness, caramel,

Taste is mild dark fruits, sweet malts, a hint of nuttiness, some light heat, and a tinge of citrus.

The fell is a tad creamy, more medium in body at best. Carbonation is minimal.

The ABV is nicely hidden in this and is overall very smooth, and drinkable...very drinkable for an old ale and with the age, is a very tasty one at that.

I'm not sure where the carbonation issues, clarity issues and other stale issues, that I see complaints of, are coming from. Maybe storage is an issue, but the age has done well for my bottles and I don't seem to have those issues at all...

Photo of MEsquandoles
3.42/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

2007 just hit the shelves. It certainly doesn't taste fresh though. Definitely has aged at least few months.

Bomber poured into Dogfish Head chubby snifer.

Color of a pale ale or IPA. Bubbles get much smaller. Looked very unimpressive at first. Minimal Lacing.

Smells of English ingredients: toffee, fig, Christmas candied fruits. A little wood

In short: Green apples dipped in caramel. A let down from the smell, much sweeter.
Plum, dry pear rolled in brown sugar, custard, Turkish delight.

There is something artificial and unpleasant about it. A little too sweet for my tastes, esp. without some hop bitterness or roasty/smokiness. Tastes more like an Old Ale than anything else. Like a condensed English pale ale but with American yeast and without the hops of a bigger pale ale.

Strange drinkability. Thin and very drinkable in that the alcohol is not perceived; perhaps only in the sweetness. Finish and aftertaste aren't really for me. Becomes more pleasant as I drink it.

A good candidate as entry level big beer, given its lack of alchohol presence in nearly all aspects, lack of depth, and lack of hoppiness or bitterness. I don't think they were trying to go big.

Note on last year's (2006): Did NOT hold well with age at room temp. Green apple cardboard was undrinkable. I liked the 2005 by far the most of the 3 years.
Buy cold and keep cold!

Sure I'd try it again. Definitely worth a try if you like sweet, drinkable beers.
Feb 3 2009: The 2008 just hit the shelf. $6 for a 22oz bomber. Poured into a new New Belgium glass.

From their website:
Brilliantly golden, Jasperilla is a unique take on an old ale. Biscuity malt flavors meld with subtle plum and berry notes, produced by a special blend of English Old Ale and Chico yeasts. Brewed once a year, and aged for six months prior to release, the Jasperilla is smooth despite its 9% abv.
Style: Old Ale
Alcohol by volume: 9.3%
Beginning gravity: 19.0° Plato
Ending gravity: 3.0° Plato
Bitterness units: 29
Yeast: Ale yeast
Bittering hops: Horizon
Malts: Two-Row Pale

Reddish with some peach and burgundy. Not see-through. Very good head retention.

Dominate flavours would be caramel dipped fig. Toffee and plum as well. Toasted biscuit aftertaste. Unfortunately, sweet all the way through. Some English Ale flavors. Dr. Pepper with a slightly toasted wood aftertaste. Some yeasty flavors but no alcohol presence. Reminds me of Lagunitas Brown Shugga but without the hops. Mild bitterness but no distinct hop flavours. Hard to believe it's 9.3%

No serious off-flavors liked aged versions from past years. If only they could re-produce the 2005; although this seems like a more well-made beer than the previous year.

Drinkability: 3
Alcohol is not in the taste, but the thick sweetness makes it not so quaffable. I'll have a hard time finishing this bomber pleasurably.

Photo of franksnbeans
3.15/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a clear bronze with a thick creamy off white head that dies quick and leaves behind spotty lace. Smells very bready, caramel, sweet malt and almost a hint of banana chip. Taste is big on malt then big on booze. Finish is sherry like. Full in the mouth with minor carbonation. Had to choke the end of this down. Way too boozy.

Photo of Proteus93
3.53/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle courtesy dkachur. Thanks, Dan!

A: Murky golden hue. A sparkling, foamy head. Retention is quite good. It doesn't have a lot of lacing left behind on the glass walls, but the head does maintain itself all the way down.

S: Butterscotch and toffee. Quite sweet... both the scent and flavour are about the same in that sense. Some raisin and a bit of a cardboardy scent. Flavours feature some more fruity qualities, but it does seem to be a little off. Fortunately, it works out alright. I'm curious to know what it was like fresh.

M + D: Medium body, medium carbonation. Pretty straight forward, maybe even lacking a little something. This likely peaked a little while back, but it has managed to hold up alright. No real desire to hunt it down again, but not too bad. Glad I tried it.

Photo of Riccymon
2.71/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours from the bomber a transparent orange-red with a good couple fingers of head filling up the tulip. Smell is floral hops at first with some yeasty, almost barnyard notes when I swirl the glass. First sip was hops, some cherry/grape fruit juice, and a soft fusel alcohol note. Pretty light in body, almost wine-lilke, with a sour finish. While not the hottest beer I've had, I did sip a little slowly, given the alcohol.

It was nice to try this local, but I don't know if I'd buy another bomber of Jasperilla. I enjoyed the flavor at first, but after a while, it just became a chore to keep sipping.

Photo of twiggamortis420
3.32/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

2006 vintage, I think this may be the only bomber from a Texas brewery...useless beer trivia. Pours a clear, light copper color with very little foam, just a few large bubbles bobbing about on the surface.

Nose is pleasant, with oxidized malts and dark fruits leading the way. Sweet caramel malt makes an appearance as well. Pretty decent smelling Old Ale.

Taste is heavily leaning towards the sweet malts...burnt caramel, toffee and crystal malt. There is some muscadine grape fruitiness in there as well as a few hints of raisins and figs. Jasperilla is a bit watery and there is not much character to the ale, never will be called overly complex. I enjoyed drinking my half of the bomber though and would consider purchasing again.

Photo of Fenris244
3.48/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2010 vintage poured into my duvel tulip

pours a deep amber with a 1 finger rocky off white head, the amber is beautiful with good clarity, head retention is so so but leaves a good bit of lacing

A little boozey for some reason, sweetness is apparent, like apricots, some green apple and raisins as well as what was to me like cherry

flavors seem a little muted, bits of cider like apple, hop profile is nice gives a good bit of floral bitterness, a little sweet on the finish, sigh nothing pops at all.

Medium in body, light carbonation, smooth

Overall, a slightly boozey tasting, very reserved attempt at the style, not bad by any means but falls short of being good

Photo of hiikeeba
3.72/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours up ruby brown with a tan head that dissipates quickly.

S - Smells of caramel malt, with some vanilla and alcohol in the background. Reminds me of bourbon.

T - Subtle flavor of caramel malts, with some vanilla in the finish. Alcohol is well-disguised. This will sneak up on you. But it's very low key.

M - Feels a little thin.

D - If I didn't have to work the next day, I could drink a few of these. Very drinkable.

Photo of jasonjlewis
3.32/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a cloudy grapefruit juice ruby/orange color.

Smell is of grapefruit. This stuff smells like grapefruit juice. What the hell?

Taste is of grapefruit juice. There is a tiny bit of a hop balance with the huge malt sweetness. There is a caramel malts swetness in here, but the grapefruit tones come out in a HUGE way. They are hugely dominant. As the beer warms, it just tastes like grapefruit juice.

Puckering mouthfeel. There is a fullness and crispness, but there is a slight puckering feel on the palate.

A bit too much grapefruit, but it comes together decently well.

Photo of Pegasus
4.3/5  rDev +23.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Dark golden in color, with a touch of haze, a moderate white head, thick glass-coating lace, and slight carbonation.

Aroma: Sweet, spicy aroma, like Christmas cookies, pleasant, and rather evocative of the memories of Christmas past. There are notes of cookie dough, and dark fruits, as well. The finish is moderately hoppy with mild citrus hops, which balance quite well against the complex sweetness. The high alcohol notes are quite subtle.

Mouth feel: Smooth, rich, and very full, quite soft.

Drinkability/notes: Very pleasant example, which expresses great complexity for its style. Needless to say, recommended.

Sampled at Independence Brewing on Saturday, October 14th, 2006.

Photo of stumac
3.59/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

bottled in 2006. drank in 2008.

pours a dark reddish peach with a nice big frothy yellow tinted head. great lacing.

the nose is complex like the mind of a woman! sweet malts right off the bat, a little molasses, a lighter fruit like a ripe pear blended with lemons, doesn't smell like maple syrup but it has the same aromatic texture as hot maple syrup, subtle hints of cocoa powder.

although this bottle is starting to slightly turn, you still get notes of red apple, sweet malts, nice crisp hop balance.

very smoothe, low carbo, best beer by Independence Brewery by far.

Photo of JohnBender
3.85/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

2011 Vintage.
A- Pours light brown, very white head. Head is very slight.

S- Candy and booze.

T- More of the same. Certainly boozey throughout. Sweet with a slightly dry finish.

M- Medium bodied. Carb feels right on for a two year old old ale. Very solid.

O- A good beer. I haven't seen any of this since 2011. With a few tweaks, it could be great. I think the age definitely did this beer well.

Photo of ppoitras
3.33/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

22oz bottle obtained as part of Secret Santa 07 package from RickSawyer. 2006 Vintage. Thanks for the opportunity...

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 1/2" beige head over the clear dark amber brew. Head lasts well, with heavy coating lace. Aroma is strongly sweet, but also has some citrus and pine. Taste is lightly malty upfront, but strongly citrus and fruity in the middle, with a light hoppiness next, and then a warming close. The sharp citrus character is reminiscent of lemonade. Mouthfeel and drinkability are just alright as well, quashed by that citrus as well. This one fell apart a bit once I got past the eyes and nose.

Photo of JMad
4/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I drank this 2010 bottle from an English pub glass...

The beer was an orange copper color with a tan colored, thick head that did leave some nice lacing. I could smell apples, pears, a hint of white wine and a caramel background. The taste is similar, I got some alcohol, white grape, apple peel and lemon. It's medium bodied, very smooth, warming and dry. This is an enjoyable brew, I wouldn't mind seeing what a little more aging would do to it.

Photo of grub
2.8/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Viggo shared this one. thanks eric!

22oz bottle. 2008 vintage. sampled june 7/09.

pours ultra-hazy dark orange with a small dense tan head. the head drops fairly fast but leaves plenty of lace behind.

aroma is ok. light citrus - orange, tangerine - but mixed with a bit of musty rotted wood and cat pee. alcohol, stronger than i expected. bit of white bread and cracker. hint of caramel.

taste pretty much follows suit with the aroma. starts with some light caramel and citrus, then gives way to some musty/earthy character. medium bitterness level, too high for the style. warming alcohol, bit of white bread and cracker.

mouthfeel isn't great either. astringent. medium-large body is ok. carbonation is over medium strength and carries a bit of sting.

drinkability is ok. the balance isn't too bad for the style, but otherwise there's nothing bringing me back for more. don't really have much interest in finishing the glass, let alone considering another.

Photo of charlzm
4.05/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Consumed May 13th, 2012 at Whip In, Austin, Texas. 2011 vintage.

Clear dark golden beer, verging on caramel colored. Minimal head.

Aroma is butterscotch.

Flavor is sweet and esthery; lots of dark fruity flavors. Butterscotch and toffee/caramel notes up front on the palate. Significantly bitter on the finish. Alcohol is lurking but is well masked by the flavor.

Mouthfeel is slightly thick but has good carbonation to offset it. Slightly parching.

This is one well assembled beer! I would gladly have this again anytime, anywhere.

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Jasperilla Old Ale from Independence Brewing Co.
80 out of 100 based on 94 ratings.