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Trader Joe's 2013 Vintage Ale - Trader Joe's Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Trader Joe's 2013 Vintage AleTrader Joe's 2013 Vintage Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

235 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 235
Reviews: 44
rAvg: 3.82
pDev: 11.52%
Wants: 4
Gots: 39 | FT: 7
Brewed by:
Trader Joe's Brewing Company
California, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: djaeon on 11-16-2013

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Contract brewed by Unibroue.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 235 | Reviews: 44
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2.75/5  rDev -28%

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3/5  rDev -21.5%

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3/5  rDev -21.5%

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3/5  rDev -21.5%

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3/5  rDev -21.5%

Photo of levineju
3.04/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Opened one of two for this review, cellaring the other for a few years. Poured from a corked bomber (750ml) into a tulip pint glass.

A - Shows a dark cola brown with red-orange highlights. A little muddy to the eye. Lots of head, about three fingers and sandy-beige in color. Carbonation is moderate. A little bit of lacing on the glass, agitation does not yield back much head.

S - bread-y; lots of banana; malt; a little medicinal; fermented, like wine; grape; red fruit. A little dank in the glass.

T - a little coppery; malt; getting grape/red wine again; no discernible hops; metallic on the exhale, coppery, almost like blood. Anise/root beer as it develops.

M - sharp, acidic

O - it's ok. I have another for cellaring, so we'll see if there is a noticeable difference in a few years.

Photo of csmartin6
3.25/5  rDev -14.9%

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3.25/5  rDev -14.9%

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3.25/5  rDev -14.9%

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3.25/5  rDev -14.9%

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3.25/5  rDev -14.9%

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3.25/5  rDev -14.9%

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3.25/5  rDev -14.9%

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3.25/5  rDev -14.9%

Photo of hail_seitan
3.37/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from bottle into brandy snifter.

A - A dark opaque brown body.

S - Plum, burnt sugar, cinnamon, banana, and clove.

T - A funky yeasty flavor typical of Belgian brews, but this one is not as refined as most. The taste of the malt is a bit cloyingly sweet, too. The spices do add a nice touch, and I get hints of cinnamon, anise, and all-spice. The finish is a little too sharp and boozy, especially since Belgians usually excel at hiding high alcohol.

M - Viscous, but almost a little too syrupy. The carbonation is nice, though.

O - Not a bad beer and at $4 a bottle quite a good deal. However, it certainly is not as refined as most other Belgian-style brews out there. I would be curious to see if some of the overly-aggressive or off flavors settle down with a year or two of cellaring.

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3.4/5  rDev -11%

Photo of Hopswagger
3.49/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

P: Dark brown almost black with flashes of ruby highlights. A thick rootbeer head crowns the top and leaves behind an intricate chain of lacing.

S: Aroma is pleasant with loads of doughy bread, dark malts, cardamom, figs, plums, nectarine pits, roasted toffee, amaretto, syrupy rootbeer and cloves.

T/M: Taste is prominently spiced and accompanied by doughy dark fruit breads, cherry cola, burnt toffee, amaretto, grain alcohol, and finishes with bitter persimmons. A vivacious, relatively thin body accentuates the spice profile. Scorched grains cover the palate in a chalky film.

O: I have to say for a $5 bottle BSDA it's a surprise. I'm really missing some good Belgian candy sugar and more dark fruit sweetness. The spice and carbonation seem to hinder the cohesiveness of the ale. Overall a good beer but not one of Unibroue's best.

Photo of baakabak
3.49/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Agreed. Poured into a tulip it looks just like coca cola.Dark brown with frothy tan head that settles to a thin sliver of tiny clinging bubbles

Smell is cherries,almond,shortbread, and yeasty rum

Tastes of the same. Little chocolate and rum raisin ice cream . 9% abv shows on the finish.

Carbonation is good but feels a little thin.

Overall this beer is a bargain. For a $4.99 bomber I don't know that you could find a better buy. Especially for the style. Aging might do some good but I can't seem to hold on to them for long enough.

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Trader Joe's 2013 Vintage Ale from Trader Joe's Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 235 ratings.