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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
95
world-class

1,295 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,295
Reviews: 803
rAvg: 4.25
pDev: 14.12%
Wants: 223
Gots: 184 | FT: 11
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.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of J.W. Lees Vintage Harvest Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,295 | Reviews: 803 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of comfortablynirm
4.75/5  rDev +11.8%

Photo of Cubatobaco
4.25/5  rDev 0%

Photo of rydev24
3.75/5  rDev -11.8%

Photo of jcugafsu
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

Photo of Kuaff
4.65/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Harvest Ale 2012, cellar temperature in a snifter.

This barley wine has a modest one-finger white head of foam which subsides unhurriedly. The color is a marvelous brownish, brackish, deep amber orange that looks clear and gem-like, though it isn't totally translucent.

The aroma is a superb one, filled with vanilla, caramel, toffee, ripe red apples, butterscotch, raisins, cider, and lemon zest. There may be a subtle earthy, leathury oak note too. Truly a pleasure to take in.

I taste sweet fruits at first; the sweet, juicy apple mixes with dark red cherries and, surprisingly, a grape flavor that bursts more in the middle, right before the finish sets in, which is something quite special: caramel, smoky leather, and earth abound, lingering prominently with some wonderful toasted nuttiness. And all the while those sweet fruits remain light in the background.

The feel is full, substantial, and a bit sticky.

A brilliant British barley wine with distinctive fruity and nutty traits.

Photo of Bilco
4.25/5  rDev 0%

Photo of MaseFace
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

Photo of Hellpop65
2.5/5  rDev -41.2%

Photo of sia478
2.25/5  rDev -47.1%

Photo of Syracuse12
4.25/5  rDev 0%

Photo of amalburg
3.25/5  rDev -23.5%

Photo of monketeeth
5/5  rDev +17.6%

Photo of 22Blue
4/5  rDev -5.9%

Photo of woodenbones
4.25/5  rDev 0%

Photo of emalc
2/5  rDev -52.9%

Photo of FLima
4.45/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Vintage 2006, finally! I could not wait more, but anyway it should be excellent by now. Let's see if it holds true against my expectations...
Brown ochre color with an almost inexistent head, so far no sediments. Almost showing some lacrima effect falling down the glass.
Wonderful aroma of Port wine, lots of high grade cocoa chocolate, licorice, molasses, oak, dry fruits, a hint of cinnamon and plums. I could mistake this by a chocolate panettone. I cannot get tire of sniffing this.
Surprisingly, flavor doesn’t entirely follow nose. Some new slightly smoked notes of charred wood or even tobacco. Also, molasses, very subtle earthy English hops, Port Wine, walnut, coconut, figs, cinnamon, prunes, apple juice, pears, licorice and maple syrup. Maybe some pleasant musty. Dry and sticky aftertaste with residual notes that mutates a bit.
Liquorish body with a very low carbonation, but it is still there. Alcohol of 11.5% abv is much better hidden than a bottle of wine given its malty body.
Extraordinaire beer, a sweet malty sipper with great complexity. Bold but still mellow. Highly recommended if you are into Barley Wines. This was in perfect condition after roughly eight years, I can’t wait trying one much younger and another one older.

Photo of OregonGrown7
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

Photo of unclekeith
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

Photo of SnifterLifter
4.64/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

2000 Vintage. 275 ml bottle poured into snifter, very excited to try this one.

Pours dark reddish brown, no murkiness, very little sediment. Leaves lacing and has a very quickly dissipating pinky sized head.

Nose is strongly of sherry, very very slight alcohol presence. I think there would be more to say, but I have a poor sense of smell.

Up front is the butterscotchy sherry flavor, dark fruit, caramel, brown sugar. Possibly a slight tobacco note in there that I didn't expect.

Mouthfeel is not particularly thick, leaves a coating of flavor on your tongue and lips which is pleasant.

This is a wonderful beer. I spent 8.50 on it and I was satisfied. Definitely a sweet sipper for a special occasion. I haven't had this before now but I suspect the age did this beer wonders. Very satisfying.

Photo of DerelictPI
4.76/5  rDev +12%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

2011 vintage.

Look: A beautiful reddish orange color. Almost like a honey color. I poured it straight out and it developed a nice head that went away immediately.

Smell: Sweet, dried fruit.

Taste: Follows the smell. I've been sipping on this 750 ml for about an hour and a half, so it has changed as it has warmed (and as I have warmed). Rich malty sweetness that is in line with dried fruits. The booze is well hidden. This is not a terribly carbonated beer but it does go down easy. I am glad I bought two more bottles to age!

Overall: If you like sweeter barleywines, quads and dopplebocks, do yourself a favor and grab this!

Photo of cultclassic89
3/5  rDev -29.4%

Photo of seangibbs60
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

Photo of kybeerdrinker
3.75/5  rDev -11.8%

Photo of iL0VEbeer
4.25/5  rDev 0%

Photo of Dougwillhike
4.25/5  rDev 0%

J.W. Lees Vintage Harvest Ale from J.W. Lees & Co (Brewers) Ltd
95 out of 100 based on 1,295 ratings.