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

Not Rated.
J.W. Lees Vintage Harvest AleJ.W. Lees Vintage Harvest Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

1,318 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,318
Reviews: 812
rAvg: 4.24
pDev: 14.15%
Wants: 231
Gots: 188 | FT: 13
Brewed by:
J.W. Lees & Co (Brewers) Ltd visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
English Barleywine |  11.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Todd on 12-18-2000

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (19) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,318 | Reviews: 812
Photo of baybum
4.06/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of HurrahBeer
4.4/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of RochefortChris
4.75/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of rden4654
3.43/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of McMatt7
4.53/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of outoffocus
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Dirtyhands
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of ONovoMexicano
4.32/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

2008 bottle served into a snifter.

The head is creamy, pale and white and dissipates quickly. I guess that's not unreasonable given the 7 years of age. At least there was head and carbonation at all. The body is medium amber and full of yeast particles. Ain't no thang, I'ma slurp those bad boys down. 4

Quite the lovely smell coming from this: tobacco, oak, caramel and vanilla with a bit of a spicy edge. Takes me to the caribbean for tabaco y ron. There's certainly a vinous quality as well though, port-like oxidation. 4.5

A mishmash of flavors circle on this and they take the beer in a number of different directions. There's a heavily oxidized caramel flavor that is entirely port-like and the hops have faded to the point of imparting a tad of grassy but almost vegetal flavor, but this quickly settles into the background. The deeper I get in the more it becomes a delicious play between rich caramel and port. 4.25

This beer is practically a port. Thick, creamy and smooth almost to perfection with so little carbonation yet it drinks wonderfully with feeling as if something is lacking. There's a tiny amount of bitterness and the sweetness isn't overdone, so it really just drinks like the smooth sipper and warming beer that you'd want and expect. 4.5

Fantastic and ages splendidly.

Photo of pisano
4/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of DavidHume
4.63/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of TheOakKing
1.45/5  rDev -65.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

After two sips I found it necessary to throw out the remainder of a $10 9.3 oz. bottle which doubly disgusted me.

Photo of beersgud
1.98/5  rDev -53.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 1 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 1

2010 vintage poured into a tulip.

The beer looks nice aside from a bunch of unfiltered crap at the bottom of the glass. Smells really nice as well, but that's about the end things to say about this beer. The faint tobacco aroma that was appealing on the nose becomes offensive when tasting. Tasted like old cigarette butts mixed with other garbage. Probably due to poor storage of a 5 year old beer ( I just bought it about a month ago ), nevertheless, one of my few drain pours.

Photo of Nyrangersgrrl
4.62/5  rDev +9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Photo of briancathy
3.66/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Photo of stcules
4.11/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2003.
Dark brown color, almost no foam.
Malty smell, some nut notes. It warms you, even if the alcohol is not directly noticeable (not to much).
Malty taste, with a lot of dried fruit (nuts), some woody note.
Dry finish.
Some green notes walnut husk. Raisin. Pistachio.
A really good and interesting barley wine.

Photo of slipperysoup
4.2/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Mike_Gentry
3.99/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Photo of T_Hass
3.58/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of Immortale25
4.55/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Funky Buddha Brewery snifter. 2011 vintage.

A- Pours a light brown color with a full two finger light tan head that retains well before popping away to a thick ring around the edge of the glass and a mostly full sheet of surface foam. Not-so-resilient lacing leaves small streaks behind.

S- Sweet, biscuity malt with notes of brown sugar, dark bread and toffee.

T- Powerful flavors of burnt sugar, caramel and more toffee. Toasty malt and minimal hop bitterness. The alcohol is hidden quite well but lends a fortified wine characteristic to the overall profile.

M- Somewhat sharp and tangy with medium carbonation and a body leaning toward the fuller side.

O- A fantastic representation of an English Barleywine. The sweetness in particular lends itself to drinkability even with the pronounced alcohol bite. You would expect those two things to clash with one another but this brew shows how the two can co-exist in harmony.

Photo of IMFletcher
4.35/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2006 edition. Super sweet and wonderful. I am really learning to appreciate barleywines.

Photo of barczar
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Very sweet, but huge caramelization and just a hint of sherry oxidation.

These age so well.

Photo of JerzDevl2000
4.24/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Had one of these last night up at the Cloverleaf in Caldwell. Never had this beer before and I had a feeling that this would take a while to sip through. That was indeed the case but because this was so street and strong in a subtle way, it was worth savoring as it warmed up in the small snifter glass that I poured this out in. A Barleywine doesn't get much better than this and I can't recall the last time I had a beer that was this smooth!

Nice pour to this, as this beer has an apricot hue, cloudy appearance, and little head. It reminded me of a nice sherry or other Barleywines that I've had that packed their punch once they warmed up and were sipped. Like those, this was boozy and like this, this was clear, strong, and unassuming. Unlike some of those, this was balanced - lots of rye here as expected with honey for body and hop oils for balance. Incredibly smooth while being sticky and sweet, this turned out to be what a Barleywine should be without having the alcohol overpower everything else.

Strong, this was but it never felt overpowering. It was so sweet and had just a hint of dark fruit in it while leaving a nice, slick aftertaste that the potency of this ended up taking a backseat. It's so rare to find a beer that pushes the edge of what a beer can be while still remaining true to form, which was the case here. Thoroughly enjoyable while still being a new experience for me, this is a brew that should be on everyone's must-try list, especially if some warming-up is called for this winter. Great stuff!

Photo of Lochnessmonster
3.08/5  rDev -27.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Heard a lot of hype on this one, had a 2008 bottle and just felt that I've had much better barleywines. No disrespect to J.W.

Photo of sd123
4.19/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of pdonovan16
3.75/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

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J.W. Lees Vintage Harvest Ale from J.W. Lees & Co (Brewers) Ltd
94 out of 100 based on 1,318 ratings.