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Trader Joe's 2012 Vintage Ale - Trader Joe's Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Trader Joe's 2012 Vintage AleTrader Joe's 2012 Vintage Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
85
very good

241 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 241
Reviews: 77
rAvg: 3.79
pDev: 13.19%
Wants: 3
Gots: 33 | FT: 4
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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerDocT on 11-02-2012)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 241 | Reviews: 77 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of avckc
3/5  rDev -20.8%

avckc, Jan 03, 2014
Photo of Brandegee
3.96/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured in tulip glass... this was a New Year's Day share.

A: Lovely head with lots of lace, a hint of brown in the thick, dark pour.
S: Not much going on here, but a few hints of spice and sweet malt. It's pleasant, however.
T: I didn't try a fresh example, so I can only assume the aging helped bring out some of the dark fruit flavors, which dominate the profile without little hint of sourness or bitterness. Raisin, plum, dates even. Sweet malt and clove round out the flavors for me.
M: Nice, full, lots of room for the spices to play.
O: A nice Belgian seasonal and good effort by Unibroue and hopefully I can still get a 2013 to age for next year. This was well worth what was probably a low price tag.

Brandegee, Jan 02, 2014
Photo of Guinnsslvr
4/5  rDev +5.5%

Guinnsslvr, Jan 01, 2014
Photo of InfernoBoss
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

InfernoBoss, Dec 31, 2013
Photo of BrownNut
3.93/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Aged this a year. It was very nice. It was raisiny and something fresher in the fruit department like plums. The spices were subtle and the characteristic Belgian yeast taste was somewhat muted, which is good if you're me. It tasted refined, as in fine, as in fancy and mature and good. It was very accessible at the same time. I can't remember if I ever had this vintage fresh but aged one year was nice.

BrownNut, Dec 31, 2013
Photo of bigbluebeerguy
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

bigbluebeerguy, Dec 30, 2013
Photo of Darkmagus82
3.86/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into a chalice glass

Appearance – The beer pours a deep brown chestnut color with a big billowy cream colored head. The big billowy head has a good level of retention, slowly fading to leave a fantastic level of foamy lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell- The aroma was slightly roasted and rather fruity. A good dose of a slightly grainy but roasted and toasted malt smell along with darker fruits of cherry and raisin are there. Along with these aromas are some smells of yeast and a little bit of a spicy smells and some hot rum like aromas are there, producing a nice Belgian strong dark aroma.

Taste – The taste begins with a slightly roasted and malty flavor with the darker fruit cherry that was detected in the nose. Some yeasty and spice flavors of a clove and nutmeg later come to the tongue as well as some other flavors of more raisin and fig. As the flavor advances further to the end, the malty flavors dwindle further as the darker fruit and spice seem to increase, combining with a little bit of a boozy rum flavor, which all in all end up leaving a rather nice Belgian dark smell to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is on the average side for a Belgian strong dark of 9 % adv. with a carbonation level that is on the slightly higher side. The combo of body and carbonation are nice for styles of the brew as well as in keeping the brew very drinkable but not too drinkable in light of the abv. and the boozy flavors.

Overall – A rather nice drinking Belgian strong dark ale with some nice fruity flavors as well as a good level of roast and booze.

Darkmagus82, Dec 26, 2013
Photo of bluejacket74
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml caged and corked bottle, best before 07-06-2015. This is about a year old now. Served in a Dogfish Head signature glass, the beer pours dark brown with about an inch and a half light tan head. Head retention is good, and there's a decent amount of lacing. The brew smells like cloves, dark fruit (plums, raisins), peppery spice, and molasses. It tastes like cloves, dark fruit (plums, raisins), cola, dark bread, molasses, and a bit of nutmeg. Mouhfeel/body is medium, it's slick and creamy, and is well carbonated. This is very similar to the 2011 bottle I drank right before this, which I liked. Guess I'll have to buy a bottle of the 2013 now!

bluejacket74, Dec 14, 2013
Photo of Stalgondo
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

Stalgondo, Dec 13, 2013
Photo of IMSPEAKNOENGLISH
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

IMSPEAKNOENGLISH, Dec 13, 2013
Photo of dhannes
3.34/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Poured from a bottle with 11 months' worth of aging into a standard pint glass.

A=Dark, reddish brown with larger, 3-finger eggshell head.

S=Spice...nutmeg or allspice.

T=Similar to a porter's rich cream malt backbone, but nutmeg and cherry present...at times, it reminded me of cherry cough syrup. Alcohol taste present much of the time.

M=Lighter body...felt flat...also a slick feel to it.

O=I was somewhat disappointed in this beer and would not seek it our or buy it again...for numerous reasons, it was too much of a chore to drink.

dhannes, Nov 29, 2013
Photo of Falcone
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

Falcone, Nov 24, 2013
Photo of Beersnake1
4/5  rDev +5.5%

Beersnake1, Nov 22, 2013
Photo of superspak
3.9/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle into signature tulip glass, best before 7/6/2015. Pours clear nearly opaque reddish brown color with a 1-2 finger fairly dense light khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Spotty foamy lacing clings on the glass, with a lot of streaming carbonation retaining the head. Aromas of raisin, pear, apple, grape, clove, peppercorn, cardamom, coriander, orange peel, caramel, molasses, herbal, brown bread, toast, and yeast earthiness. Nice and pleasant aromas with good balance and complexity of malt, spice, and yeast ester notes; with solid strength. Taste of raisin, pear, apple, grape, caramel, clove, coriander, orange peel, peppercorn, cardamom, molasses, toast, brown bread, herbal, and yeast earthiness. Lingering notes of light fruits, caramel, toast, clove, peppercorn, cardamom, coriander, orange peel, herbal, brown bread, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Very nice balance and complexity of malt, spice, and yeast ester flavors; with good flavor robustness and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a fairly slick, smooth, and lightly syrupy mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a slight warming present after the finish. Overall this is a very nice spiced Belgian dark ale. All around good balance and complexity of malt, spice, and yeast ester flavors; and very smooth to sip on for the ABV. A very enjoyable offering.

superspak, Nov 21, 2013
Photo of Rollzroyce21
3.5/5  rDev -7.7%

Rollzroyce21, Nov 18, 2013
Photo of djaeon
4/5  rDev +5.5%

djaeon, Nov 16, 2013
Photo of caverog
3.5/5  rDev -7.7%

caverog, Nov 14, 2013
Photo of BAsbill
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

BAsbill, Nov 06, 2013
Photo of bzach
4/5  rDev +5.5%

bzach, Oct 25, 2013
Photo of scottwurst
4/5  rDev +5.5%

scottwurst, Oct 11, 2013
Photo of Tsar_Riga
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

Tsar_Riga, Oct 06, 2013
Photo of jabo134
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

jabo134, Oct 02, 2013
Photo of vfgccp
3.5/5  rDev -7.7%

vfgccp, Sep 22, 2013
Photo of BGsWo22
3/5  rDev -20.8%

BGsWo22, Sep 21, 2013
Photo of davegray
3.5/5  rDev -7.7%

davegray, Sep 07, 2013
Trader Joe's 2012 Vintage Ale from Trader Joe's Brewing Company
85 out of 100 based on 241 ratings.