He'Brew Funky Jewbelation - Shmaltz Brewing Company
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Ratings: 437 | Reviews: 127 | Display Reviews Only:
4.03/5 rDev +9.5%
Poured from 22 oz. bottle into a Surly Darkness Chalice. Batch/Cases No. 001/999. Bottling date 3/6/2012.
Appearance: Pours a deep dark black with no other color. Moderate amount of bubbles and a decent two fingers of tan head that slowly fades into a thin layer. Lacing is moderate on the glass.
Smell: A pretty interesting smell. The first thing that stands out is a somewhat sour dark cherry presence like a wild ale. Big hints of rye and a little bourbon with vanilla and oak. Dark roasted caramel malts with hints of chocolate and coffee. Also some hints of sugar, dark prunes and figs along with the cherries. Crazy but smells good.
Taste: Tastes just as complex and crazy as it smells. Big dark fruit taste with sour cherries, fig, and prunes. A good amount of rye and some bourbon with hints of vanilla and oak. Dark malts with hints of caramel, chocolate, and a little coffee. Also some brown sugar and molasses. With six different beers things are starting to get a bit jumbled. But this does taste good and is pretty drinkable.
Mouthfeel: Very full bodied with a moderate level of carbonation. Syrupy and chewy but smooth enough so it goes down fairly easy.
Overall: With this many flavors competing you would expect a mess, and to an extent this kind of is. But this is balanced and smooth enough to be an enjoyable beer. The dark fruit flavors are pretty good. This is like a combination of a dark Belgian ale and American Wild ale, and barrel aged.
04-08-2012 06:08:10 | More by MattyG85
3.98/5 rDev +8.2%
A: loved the pour - super dark brown - nearly black in the glass - with a great foam head that thinned into a rim as the drinking continued
S: sugars, coffee, fruit
T: dark fruit and sweetness predominate - bits of raisin, vanilla, and bourbon flare to the front - the rye and any dryness I might have expected is barely in the background; alcohol weaves throughout lending the drink a boozy quality
M: rich and silky/creamy - very satisfying, but with enough alcohol to put a sharp edge to it, too
O: my first Shmaltz beer, and in the "American strong ale" category, there is a lot of variation, so I wasn't sure what to expect. I really enjoyed this beer - it was delicious and sweet, but I expected something less homogenous in its taste - it was a sweet, rich beer, period; but being unfamiliar with all of its component beers' tastes, I would liken it to a dark Belgian quad, or some of the excellent Pannepot beers I've had of late, but the sweetness of this beer may have cost it some overall depth of character.
04-06-2012 20:59:31 | More by Greywulfken
3.1/5 rDev -15.8%
A: pours a nice hazy brown with orange highlights and a decent half inch head with some retention, but not much.
S: earthy, sweet, some dark fruit, and bourbon. Not a lot of bourbon flavor. A bit bland.
T: again a bit bland and unimaginative. It's fine, the sweetness isn't cloying, and it's plenty complex. It's like they found a blend that was good enough and bottled it.
M: medium-thick body with medium carbonation. Smooth overall.
O: decent beer, but I never thought it was better than average. It's fine, but for $10 a bottle it's terrible. Might be a while before I pick up a Shmaltz beer again. I always thought it was cheesy so I avoided it.
04-06-2012 03:16:57 | More by Holland
4.08/5 rDev +10.9%
Picked up this bottle a good three weeks ago or more, I've been meaning to try it. Also, meant to pick up another bottle to play with, but as it stands, I'm drinking this as the basis of purchasing another.
Funky Jewbelation. A crazy whiskey barrel-aged blend of a hodgepodge of beers in the He'Brew lineup. Their 'messes' of beers haven't turned out to be messes. So, despite reading a few prior reviews, I have much hope.
Pours a deep brown-black that is very dark. Little bit of head of a tan color. Looks very typical for an American Strong Ale. 4.0
What's with this smell!? Almost as if this bottle is already infected, but that can't be. At least not for such a new release. I feel like it's highly improbably. Smells a lot like Spike & Jerome's Rye Barleywine from Switzerland, but a tad sweeter. Heavy rye influence from the barrel aging with a tart/flat note. The malts aren't huge in the nose, and there are no traceable hops. Just some dark fruit sweetness, some woody tartness, and the heavy dose of rye in grain-form and not so much in whiskey-form. At least, not in the aroma. 3.5
Okay, woah! I'm wrong. I can taste the confluence of a million flavors from all of these different aged and blended beers. Works as a strong ale. The whiskey is here now, and very comforting. I like the heavy dose of rye whiskey barrel aging versus bourbon. A little more interesting that way, and without the sweetness. The malts are supplying enough of that right now, anyways. I can taste Origin in here, that would be the pomegranate beer. The Jewbelations are in front. Never had Messiah to know, but Lenny's is hiding behind the whole picture somewhere. This is a burly beer with big flavors, but few typical roasted malt qualities that a dark beer like this would warrant. There's the big sweetness, and some woody bitterness that I'm attributing to the different barrels in the aging process. Fruity characters come off as candied fruits like prunes, dried dates, and raisins, but slightly sour, if that makes any sense. There's a nice dark vanilla outlining everything. The whiskey barrels are perfectly colliding with the other flavors, bouncing around a bit and getting slightly lost. They're not huge, as it would not work for this beer. I don't know, I was certainly skeptical after smelling it, but this is dee-lish after all. Reminds me a bit of Bell's Batch 9000 aged in rye whiskey barrels, if there was such a thing. 4.5
The feel is kind of funny. It's rich enough to pull in a medium-heavy body, but it's not syrupy or anything. The booze is right where it should be, if not somewhat deceiving. The carbonation isn't much, but that's a plus for the style and the ABV. The overall drinkability suffers a bit from the stickiness, however. It's not a super-sweet tasting beer, but sticks a bit cloyingly. It's succulent and juicy and not overbearing, so those are all good things. 3.5
I had some difficulty in pinning taste elements down for this beer. It's a very interesting brew. For what composes it, I'm surprised that it's not a nightmare. It's a great cool night pick-me-up. If you love rye whiskey barrel aging, then this is worth the try. Either way, pick it up. Taste it. Do a little review. I think somewhere deep down inside of you, once the bottle is gone, you wish you could have this again. 4.0
04-05-2012 04:06:08 | More by thecheapies
3.55/5 rDev -3.5%
I asked my beer store guy what was new and different, and he recommended the Funky Jewbelation. He was correct on both. It's certainly new (Batch 001/999 cases, bottled March 2012), and a barrel-aged blend of 6 different beers is certainly a notable effort. I value the creativity; and, echoing what an earlier reviewer stated, the price to value ratio was right on. So, it was really a no-brainer.
Immediately, the question which needed to be answered is the whole greater than the sum of its parts? Personally, I think the answer is "no." That's not to say this isn't a noteworthy effort and a beer worth trying. To that, I'd say "yes" on both counts. I just think it fell short a little bit.
It poured reddish brown with an amazing creamy white head, that quickly dissipated, leaving no lacing.
The smell was very good: caramel, bread, brown sugar, mild bourbon.
The taste and mouthfeel was syrupy and a bit sweet. It was a little cloying, as somehow the flavors weren't quite working together.
Overall, I ended up sitting it down and forgetting about it, as I watched the NCAA Basketball Championship game. But, when I went back to it, it still tasted fine at room temp, which a good strong ale should. So, there you go.
It reminded me mostly of Thomas Hardy's Ale, if your tastes run that way.
04-04-2012 18:47:23 | More by DWolf
3.63/5 rDev -1.4%
This is another barrel aged blend from Schmaltz that tastes really similar to other Jewbelations I've had, which is to say pretty middle of road in a world of barrel aged goodies. Easy to find and reasonably priced, so definitely worth a try. Looks like coca cola, almost exactly. The aroma could fool me on a hot day too, very cola like, with a bit of sweetness and dark candied fruit. A bit of "barrel" character creeps in as it warms, but nothing too distinct. The taste, again, is eerily similar to liquor spiked coca cola. You get some definite sweetness, a little bourbony vanilla, and a definite kind of twang in there, almost like it was aged on cherries. Is this the 'Funky' part? Its not out place (read: Cherry Cola!). Feel is very good, medium/full body with low carbonation. Slick and not syrupy. Unfortunately the more I think about this beer the less I enjoy it, so I'm going to end this review. Not amazing, not bad.
04-03-2012 02:02:45 | More by jbuddle
3.95/5 rDev +7.3%
A very nearly opaque deep ruby red color with a thick and bubbly light tan head on top that sticks around for a good long time. It leaves plenty of lacing with it as it goes. The aroma is pretty much everything plus the kitchen sink with aromas of deep dark fruits underlying tobacco, leather, booze, herbal/earthy hops, and even a bit of mint, caramel and chocolate. The boozey notes intermingle with the herbal notes making for an intoxicating bouquet of aroma that makes me want to keep my nose in it. Even though it has that crazy mess of aromas going for it, it remains balanced and incredibly aromatic.
Pretty sweet on the palate with juicy dark cherries, grapes and figs coming through on the fruit side of things. It is followed with a touch of that mint, throwing the whole palate for a loop as the chocolate and caramel struggle through only to be overpowered by the near-cloying sweetness of the fruit and the herbal note of the mint. Farther into the bottle, more of the hearty spices come out to combat the sweetness, as well as just the slightest touch of that rye whiskey barrel aging. However, it remains very herbal and a bit cloyingly sweet. Surprisingly little in the way of alcohol taste. Slick mouthfeel that doesn't help the cloying factor, almost a little too smooth and a bit undercarbonated.
Extremely interesting beer. I was really hoping more of that balance in the nose would translate to the taste, maybe with some more of that tobacco, leathery heartiness. The sweetness kind of ran away with this without a whole lot of things to say from the hops. Now to be fair to this beer, it was bottled less than a month after I'm drinking it. This one may have mellowed out with the cloying factors after some time. Then again maybe not. Either way, if you're feeling adventurous, give it a whirl. I've liked everything from Shmaltz to this point and don't see any reason this beer would change that perspective.
04-01-2012 04:16:24 | More by chodinheaven
3.8/5 rDev +3.3%
22oz bottle into Duvel tulip. Bottled 3/6/2012, Batch 001.
Appearance: Free pour yields a 1 inch frothy/fizzy offwhite head that dissipates quickly and lacelessly. Pours black with red highlights. Sparse, short-lived lacing.
Smell: Some hops (pine, foresty), some whiskey, bit of caramel. Prune note comes out with time. Overall smell is bold and good.
Taste: First sip: wow, spicy and weird. Lots of caramel/vanilla oak up front, then an unexpected hit of herbs/spices (anise one of the few I can pick out distinctly), then grape, prune, and molasses in the finish. Long aftertaste, not bad.
Subsequent sips integrate a lot better, and generally are more caramel and prune than anise, but there's the occasional spicy surge. I would like a bit more flavor, but what's happening is ultimately good.
Mouthfeel: Medium to full bodied, extremely smooth and creamy. Low but not too low carbonation. Slightly dry finish. Great.
Overall: Good barrel aged oddity. The flavors work well together, but don't really sing (bit of a cliche; think I've written that exact sentence in previous reviews). Price not bad at all for a barrel aged strong ale ($11~ I got it for... though at the same time, I would like more barrel influence in the flavor; you get what you pay for this time).
Vertical Jewbelation was better, but this is a worthy beer.
03-30-2012 02:46:37 | More by Pahn
He'Brew Funky Jewbelation from Shmaltz Brewing Company
83 out of 100 based on 437 ratings.