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Moonraker Ale - J.W. Lees & Co (Brewers) Ltd

Not Rated.
Moonraker AleMoonraker Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
83
good

151 Ratings
THE BROS
88
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 151
Reviews: 116
rAvg: 3.67
pDev: 16.62%
Wants: 8
Gots: 2 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
J.W. Lees & Co (Brewers) Ltd visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
Winter Warmer |  7.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Todd on 10-15-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 151 | Reviews: 116 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of lackenhauser
lackenhauser

Maryland

3.23/5  rDev -12%

Plain, deep amber sort of color. No real carbonation to it. No real aroma-somewhat sharp and wine like. Deep, sweet malty flavor though not overly impressive. Slight bitterness to it though it seems more from alcohol then hops. Somewhat thin body wise. Overall pretty average all around. No big deal.

03-25-2007 17:26:47 | More by lackenhauser
Photo of bcorrieri
bcorrieri

Tennessee

3.23/5  rDev -12%

Small to medium head.
No Lace.
Color is medium dark brown to a pale carmel rim.
Opacity is medium.
Smell is nutty and malty.
Taste is of heavy malt and pecans.
Carbonation is medium to medium-heavy.
Finish is light medium to medium.
Overall a good winter/early spring beer.

Brewed on 12 aug 09 and drank on 5 mar 10.

03-06-2010 03:49:46 | More by bcorrieri
Photo of Kremlock
Kremlock

Ontario (Canada)

3.25/5  rDev -11.4%

09-18-2012 18:30:36 | More by Kremlock
Photo of dgallina
dgallina

Georgia

3.28/5  rDev -10.6%

500ml brown bottle with no freshness dating.

Pours deep red-brown with zero head or lace, weak carbonation. Smells syrupy sweet; perhaps medicinal cherries candied in caramel. Sticky sweet fruit up front, works through some astringent sourness in the center, but leads to a drier leafy and lightly nutty finish. Flavor is better-balanced than you might hope from the aroma. Medium oily body with bigger carbonation than expected.

Not very well integrated or especially appealing.

06-13-2006 01:25:35 | More by dgallina
Photo of Vancer
Vancer

Illinois

3.28/5  rDev -10.6%

Pour was the downfall of this one – root beer fizz with no head or lacing. But a nice aroma of sour malts in the aroma picked things back up a bit.

Decent tasting brew of caramel, coffee and spices – finishes with a sour mash bourbon kick. Medium bodied brew, has a nice rich malty backbone. Just a tad to tart & sour to make this one a real session drinker – not to mention the 7.5% abv

Saludos to BRoss242 for the sample.

07-17-2006 16:03:20 | More by Vancer
Photo of ZAP
ZAP

Minnesota

3.35/5  rDev -8.7%

Pours a deep red with floaties all over the pace....little whisp of a head...Nose is malty...woody....like it was oak aged in bourban barrels almost....low carbonation....relatively smooth and firm mouthfeel....flavors are pretty complext....some berry fruitniess....also the oak/bourban flavor....bitter dark cocoa...pretty malty but finishes on a strong dry note..

Add it all together and it's pretty good....just doesn't blow my socks off...tastes very alcoholic...like drinking bourban....worth trying one bottle...I will not buy this one again....

08-18-2003 05:06:46 | More by ZAP
Photo of Crosling
Crosling

Colorado

3.35/5  rDev -8.7%

Dull brown color with a thin and diminishing white cream. Aromatically gentle, caramel smelling, along with several dark ripe fruits, completely malt-accented. Big, bubbly and heavy feel on the palate, with finely extracted malt tones. Soft caramel and toffee flavors, very sweet and a bit cloying. Brash alcohol as well, which could use a little more hop. Light almond extract flavor as well.

04-19-2006 04:15:04 | More by Crosling
Photo of Zimbo
Zimbo

United Kingdom (Scotland)

3.43/5  rDev -6.5%

In the bottle the nose is deep with some appetising fruit. In the glass it is more cola like. There is a contant head on top of this reddish brown beer and body is slightly carbonic and quite thin for a 7.5% ABV beer. Slight banana quality to the tasty but not much else of interest. Decent complex lacing. Eventually coats mouth with a slight sappiness. There is development over time in the glass as it opens up. At least I didn't serve it chilled.

Certianly is Moonraker. Too bad I was expecting From Russia With Love.

12-11-2010 20:08:42 | More by Zimbo
Photo of sacfly
sacfly

Maryland

3.43/5  rDev -6.5%

500mL, no date. $5.99
Pours a reddish brown. On the dark side. What little head there was is quickly gone. Smell is fruity. Raisins and a bit of toasted malt. A little sherry. First sip is a bit syrupy and slick. Over ripe fruit. Figs. Almost reminds me of a watered down JW Lees Harvest ale. Aftertaste is sticky and sweet. No hops to speak of.

Again, this seems like a little cousin to the Harvest Ale, which I find far superior. This is not bad by any means, but I would never choose this over the Harvest. Especially with the $5.99 price tag.

07-27-2006 21:10:11 | More by sacfly
Photo of sisuspeed
sisuspeed

New Hampshire

3.43/5  rDev -6.5%

Bottled on 8/13/09

Poured into a Foothills signature glass. Clear, dark, cherry-brown in body with a thin, off-white head on top. Light lacing left behind.

Aroma consists of cherries, sweet malts and a bit of spice. Some slight cider and grape notes as well. Overall sweet.

Sweet, bready malts wash across the tongue, mixed with a cherry cola flavor and a touch of spice bitterness on the finish. Ever so slightly tart at times, hints of banana, mostly sweet.

Mouthfeel has lots of small tiny carbonation, otherwise smooth and on the lighter side. Sweet with bitter aspects and slightly warming alcohol.

Drinkability is about average. I like the bready malts but the rest of the flavor doesn't really do much. However, this is one of the better winter warmers I have had. The spice is toned down and there is a bigger malt presence. One bottle is all you would want.

Overall, this is a decent beer. Nothing about it really stands out, but it will warm you up and has above average flavor. Not a beer I would seek out, but if you happen upon it you might as well give it a shot.

04-21-2010 02:39:17 | More by sisuspeed
Photo of Jason
Jason

Massachusetts

3.48/5  rDev -5.2%

Deep and dark reddish colour that fringes on brown. Fruity with a bubble gum and medicinal aroma. Smooth with a creamy back, nearly full body with a big maltiness ahead. Estery and yeasty in flavour with a husky grain and leafy hop that is a bit bothersome. Sweet from the large amount of malt but the all of the astringent flavours bashes that to hell. Not a bad brew, its just all over the place … not held together well at all.

03-16-2002 23:14:17 | More by Jason
Photo of ADR
ADR

Pennsylvania

3.48/5  rDev -5.2%

Dark mahogany brown color, appears slightly clearish overall with light transmission at the bottom of the pint glass. Very soft yellow head of about 1/2 inch to start. Laces thickly. Some cocoa to the deep smell, some carob as well. Lighter mouthfeel than I expected but the flavor is decently full, expressing chocolate powder, light coffee tones, and a burnt profile close to the end. Some slight sense of alcohol but relatively smooth and easy drinking. A good enough beer but I have to admit I was expecting better mouthfeel and a little more complexity to write about.

11-16-2003 18:31:13 | More by ADR
Photo of evilkalla
evilkalla

Alabama

3.48/5  rDev -5.2%

Pint bottle into an ale glass.

Poured a hazy amber/brown with a fizzy, off-white small head which remained until I finished the glass.

Smell is of malt with some hints of fruit, spice and candy. I think I detect some grape in there too.

Taste is overall pretty malty with some bread and cherry. Not bad.

Medium to high level of carbonation, mouthfeel is pretty fizzy.

Medium finish with a hint of booze. Somewhat bitter on the finish as well.

Not a bad beer, but the spices and malts flavor in this beer seemed to clash for me.

05-02-2010 23:38:04 | More by evilkalla
Photo of fionn13
fionn13

Ireland

3.5/5  rDev -4.6%

08-25-2012 03:14:13 | More by fionn13
Photo of Dylanjf
Dylanjf

New York

3.5/5  rDev -4.6%

02-21-2013 02:25:57 | More by Dylanjf
Photo of dsshuck
dsshuck

Delaware

3.5/5  rDev -4.6%

03-03-2013 01:56:25 | More by dsshuck
Photo of nafredet1
nafredet1

Vermont

3.5/5  rDev -4.6%

02-11-2013 00:28:48 | More by nafredet1
Photo of NeutroMan
NeutroMan

Illinois

3.5/5  rDev -4.6%

07-02-2012 01:09:09 | More by NeutroMan
Photo of brystmar
brystmar

Texas

3.5/5  rDev -4.6%

08-25-2012 19:30:35 | More by brystmar
Photo of polishkaz
polishkaz

Connecticut

3.5/5  rDev -4.6%

01-18-2012 00:20:26 | More by polishkaz
Photo of BuckeyeNation
BuckeyeNation

Iowa

3.5/5  rDev -4.6%

Swampy root beer brown that looks as if it could be dark amber-bronze if it ever clears. There's a tremendous load of what looks like flocculated yeast in suspension, which makes me think that this bottle might be a bit long in the tooth. The respectable looking cap of foam is the color of sand and is a solid one finger at present. Lace doesn't look likely, but I'll chime in with a lace update if needed.

While it isn't a bad nose, it's nothing too exciting. Malt is uppermost with a stale, somewhat earthy, dark fruitiness that is flinty rather than sweet. No hops to speak of. There might be a hint of spiciness (nothing specific comes to mind). The nose reminds me in some ways of Anchor OSA; a beer that I don't love. The more I smell, the less I like, so I think I'll stop now and take a drink.

I'm not sure what the target flavor was here, but it's one that doesn't appeal to me. Moonraker is still dark fruity with vodka-soaked raisins in the pole position. The malt tastes overroasted with a bitter astringency that appears in some stouts (though this beer isn't at all stout-like). The word stale keeps coming to mind as I drink. It's also moderately metallic, firmly woody and has a too-prominent ethanol presence. It isn't as bad as I'm making it sound, but it isn't much better either.

The mouthfeel makes an attempt at full and rounded... and then loses its way by the finish. It's also slightly more carbonated than I like my winter warmers to be. Lace alert: the thick band at midglass gives some visual interest, even as I'm losing interest in the rest of the beer.

Moonraker is okay, but there are much better winter warmers than this. In fact, I've had a few from lesser known American brewers that could kick its ass to the dark side of the moon and back.

05-27-2005 23:39:46 | More by BuckeyeNation
Photo of Sammy
Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

3.53/5  rDev -3.8%

I accept the description on the bottle - this must be great in pies and such. Straight drinking - a suitably hopped dark beer with distinct sourness, smooth mouthfeel. Nice dark colour. Secondary malt and licorice. Somewhat drinkable. Must be shared. Not for everybody.

07-31-2005 05:13:03 | More by Sammy
Photo of BeerSox
BeerSox

Virginia

3.53/5  rDev -3.8%

500ml bottle into nonic.

Deep, dark and cloudy mahogany color with a one finger tan head that rises to just even with the rim of the glass. It slowly settles to a thin cap.

Roasty malty background along with a bit of burnt caramel and cinnamon.

Toasted grains which load in the caramel flavor. Some light spices are in the middle, but a lot so they are noticed. The feel is slightly tart. Hops are on the low end - this is a mostly sweet beer. Full bodied.

Somewhat of a spicy Winter Warmer. Not overdone though. Some roastiness, but mostly sweet caramel.

03-13-2009 00:35:39 | More by BeerSox
Photo of BretSikkink
BretSikkink

Mexico

3.53/5  rDev -3.8%

Very dark brown, a few little clumps of sediment. When held to light, a few highlights of dark reddish amber show. Minimal head is foamy and quite sticky, although retention is not great.

Aroma is very thick and malty, very sweet with notes of caramel and toffee. Ester alcohol apparent as well.

Full, but not as thick as I expected, with plenty of bitter hops to balance the malt profile. Flavors emerge dramatically as the glass warms, with notes of coffee and oak join the fruity sweetness of the nose. There's an herbal sensation in the mouth, with a warming alcohol finish.

Winter warmer...interesting style. Big and well fermented, a complex brew but not as thick as other strong ale types.

06-26-2007 05:07:27 | More by BretSikkink
Photo of TastyTaste
TastyTaste

Minnesota

3.58/5  rDev -2.5%

Appearance: Dark maroon, still light-penetrable. Head is small, but retentive.

Smell: Fruity, yet somewhat sour and acidic.

Taste: Malty and more mellow than I would expect. Diacetyl is noticeable, yet not that strong yet. Malts are roasted, and the alcohol is weill hidden. OK.

Mouthfeel: Somewhat creamy, OK carbonation, not bad.

Drinkability: Not a bad winter warmer, but I think this might be a little past it's peak.

02-19-2006 06:11:58 | More by TastyTaste
Moonraker Ale from J.W. Lees & Co (Brewers) Ltd
83 out of 100 based on 151 ratings.