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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

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,235 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,235
Reviews: 794
rAvg: 4.25
pDev: 14.12%
Wants: 209
Gots: 179 | 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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Todd on 12-18-2000)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of J.W. Lees Vintage Harvest Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,235 | Reviews: 794 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of lupercmda
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

lupercmda, Feb 10, 2014
Photo of bschinelli
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

bschinelli, Jan 11, 2012
Photo of tbone1384
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

tbone1384, Aug 10, 2013
Photo of TheBeerAlmanac
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

TheBeerAlmanac, Feb 03, 2014
Photo of unclekeith
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

unclekeith, May 24, 2014
Photo of Donnie2112
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

bottle of 2K6 in an oversized wine glass

appearance: dark brownish with a bunch of tiny little bubbles and tons of chunks of lees that inevitably get spilled into the bottle

smell: rummy molasses, incredibly rich

taste: rich dark malts, tons of carmelized sugars in this one. a bit of alcohol burn in there but it's subtle

mouthfeel: this is the interesting part, it's thick and oily, so incredibly full bodied, the carbonation is smooth and extremely light but still there

drinkability: it's drinkable but you're not going to drink any more then say two? I mean I can't imagine drinking a four or sixer of this stuff it's just too rich. Granted that's not the usual drinkability standard that I would apply to a barleywine, so I'll say. It's certainly not offensive but it doesn't really snap either. Maybe I just need to start drinking older barleywines.

Donnie2112, Jun 13, 2008
Photo of bsuedekum
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

bsuedekum, Nov 07, 2012
Photo of Jamison85
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

Jamison85, Apr 24, 2014
Photo of chuckv
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

chuckv, Mar 08, 2014
Photo of patm1986
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

patm1986, Jan 21, 2013
Photo of unclederby
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

2000 vintage... Poured vigorously into a tulip.
Medium amber in color, this ale poured with very little head.
Smell is sweet with notes of bourbon, caramel, raisins, vanilla, molasses and butter. The taste brings all of the bouquet to the fore and it's rich without being cloying really. I'm getting a heavy dose of cherry too. Mouthfeel is full and syrupy and quite satisfying. This is so tasty that i need to slow down... i'm drinking it too fast.
Drinkibility is surprisingly good for the ABV and alcohol is only minimally perceptible; i could drink two bottles easy (before lights out) but like a fine port i'll savor one as something special.

unclederby, Aug 05, 2006
Photo of Tom-Peters
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

Tom-Peters, May 13, 2013
Photo of Patrick999
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

1999 vintage. Wow, nice gunsmoke upon opening the bottle. Dark pour and even plenty of foam! When they say these beers age well, they aren't kidding!

Aroma is actually kind of a letdown. It smells like alcoholic raisins and not too much else. Port. I was expecting thicker aroma.

Well holy crap. To say this beer aged well is an understatement. The flavor here goes on and on. Maple, whiskey molasses up front, a lot of pipe tobacco, mint and black licorice in the middle, and I'll be damned, a fair bit of earthy hop bitterness in the end after all these years. This is nice. NO f'ing alcohol burn at all! At 11.5%! A sweet, awesome barleywine. Deserves its rating.

Mouthfeel is thick and luxurious with just the right amount of carbonation. Exceptional to say the least.

Awesome. If you have 1999s, check in. I don't see how they could possibly drink any better. I tend to be an aged-beer skeptic, but this is pretty impressive.

Patrick999, Oct 29, 2010
Photo of meerkat2
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

meerkat2, Dec 01, 2011
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

Photo of deapokid
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

deapokid, Nov 25, 2011
Photo of starrdogg
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

starrdogg, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of jophish17
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

jophish17, Dec 06, 2011
Photo of gjoker321
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

gjoker321, Apr 01, 2013
Photo of GonzoHomebrewer
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

GonzoHomebrewer, Jul 27, 2013
Photo of Quackus
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

Quackus, Jun 21, 2013
Photo of barleywinefiend
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

1999 vintage sampled on January 21, 2010.
Poured a hazy deep orangish brown color with good carbonation and a dirty white head. Nose is tons of honey and brown sugar, caramel and maybe some dark fruits. Very complex.
Taste was a punch of sweetness,burnt brown sugar, molasses, alcohol, sweet malts, wood, raisin, prune. Motuhfeel is sweet.

1998 vintage sampled on August 5 2008. Heavy oxidation,dried fruits,malts and subdued hops. Ten years is to much for me. Bigger dried fruits here, caramel, molasses burnt brown sugar.

barleywinefiend, Jan 22, 2010
Photo of TurdFurgison
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

TurdFurgison, Jan 19, 2013
Photo of jaasen64
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

11.2 oz bottle poured into oversized wine glass. Special bottle from 1988 pulled out of the Lord Hobo cellar for Zwanze Day 2012!! Bottled a year before I was born over 23 years ago!

A- Pours a fairly still dark slightly brown cherry that is mostly opaque. Not much carbonation or head.

S- Fairly sweet and very aromatic with scents of maple syrup, dark fruits, figs, prunes, and some mustiness from age. This smelled like a fine port and has held up amazing with age. Definitely some oxidation but nothing that subtracts from the aroma.

T- Dark fruits, some figs, a tiny bit of prunes, maple syrup, some light mustiness, definite oxidation but if anything adds a little bit to the taste, tastes more like a fine port then a beer.

M- Not much carbonation, smooth, easy drinking.

O- This was definitely a treat that held up amazingly well with time. There was some oxidation and not much carbonation, but neither of those took away from the overall taste. There were a lot of great dark fruit tastes going on that balanced very well with a sweet maple syrup quality. I definitely enjoyed drinking this beer and it's one of the best English barleywines I've had. I definitely recommend laying one down in your cellar and trying it again in a decade.

jaasen64, Dec 02, 2012
Photo of jampics2
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

jampics2, Jan 21, 2013
J.W. Lees Vintage Harvest Ale from J.W. Lees & Co (Brewers) Ltd
95 out of 100 based on 1,235 ratings.