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Old Jubilation - Avery Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Old JubilationOld Jubilation

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

778 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 778
Hads: 1,580
Avg: 3.87
pDev: 15.25%
Wants: 59
Gots: 122 | FT: 4
Brewed by:
Avery Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
Old Ale |  8.30% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 04-05-2002

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 778 | Hads: 1,580
Photo of jletts
3.55/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured amber-garnet with a rich, creamy head. Smelled of whole-grain bread and sunflower seeds with some nice fruity esters and hop bitterness. Flavors of whole grain bread mingled with a hop bite and metallic undertones; some nice, sharp, fruity hop layers occupy the taste buds for the majority of the taste. The alcohol is late in coming and doesn’t taste as strong as it really is, noticeable only after a few sips as it begins to warm the insides. The low point of this beer was the distracting metallic aftertaste. But eventually the 8% ABV takes over and warms the insides. All is forgotten.

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Photo of MarcGetty
3.78/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

My local beer store gave me a free six pack of Old Jubilation for the trouble they caused me by screwing up my keg special order (different beer) for two weeks straight. I mentioned that I liked Avery's The Reverend, thus I got this for free to try.

I'm not a huge fan of hoppy beers, but this is pretty good.

Little to no head to speak of, but that is okay with me. Little to no smell, but that is okay with me too. For a thick dark beer it drinks okay as well.

I would not buy another six pack, but then again, this is not my thing. If you like hoppy beers, I would definitely give this one a try.

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Photo of righlander
4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Wow! This stuff really does have a warming effect...It's 48 degrees outside and in Florida That's a wet cold. Pours a mean clear brown with a respectable head. Sticky lacing. Smells of rich deep malt with some oily hop bitter. Taste is great, Rich toasty matly with a nice hop bitter. The hops are not overly dominating in the after taste. Caramel, Toffee, Toasted bread. Maybe oak chips. Very interesting flavor. Mouth feel is perfect, for sure full bodied to the max! Drinkability, hmm... I could probably hammer down like 3 of these then switch to a macro that way I don't get too drunk way too fast!

All in all an excellent winter warmer

I will surely buy this again.

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Photo of BiereBlanche
3.65/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle poured into a 22 oz working glass.

Pours a clear red-tinted amber capped with a fluffy tanish head that settles slowly and leaves decent lace. The nose has a bit plum like sweetness and plenty of spicy, piney hops. Alcohol comes through in the nose. On the palate malt sweetness is short-lived before giving way to the strong hops flavors and medium-high bitterness. Alcohol has a definite, biting presence and sticks in the mouth for the short, bitter finish. Medium and light carbonation mouthfeel with large alcohol presence. Drinks fairly easily for the ABV, but makes a nice sipper. The high bittering and alcohol keep it from being greatly sessionable, but a few of these would certainly warm a cold winter night.

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Photo of awall422
4.23/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a beautiful deep red with an inch head that had good staying power and left nice lacing all the way down the pint. Aroma was failry sweet. Initial taste is almost, but not quite cloyingly sweet, with hints of raisins and prunes on the finish. The alcohol shows itself just a bit in heat, but just enough to make this a real "warming" winter ale. One of the best winter beers I've had, must find more!

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Photo of donaldchapman
4.2/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Vertical tasting at Avery 15 year anniversary.
A - Dary Ruby Color with long lasting head.
S - Nice hop aroma followed by some malty chocolate aromas.
T - Chocolate malt, with a caramel backing and a medium high level of bitterness.
M - Good full bodied feel with a nice alcohol warming.

A - Remains about the same as the 2007.
S - Hops begin to fade and the malt aromas begin to dominate.
T - Malt flavors are complex and mix well with the lower level of bitterness.
M - Full bodied and alcohol warmth is smoother.

A - Color remains the same, a slight more haze due to age.
S - huge malty caramel smell in the nose, very little hops.
T - Chocolate malt flavors have given way to more roast flavors.
M - Full bodied and a smooth alcohol warmth.

This beer seems to age pretty well, I thought the 2006 was the best. The 2006 had a great balance between hop bitterness and flavor of malt. The 2004 had a better malt aroma, but was lacking in the flavor.

Good beer.

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Photo of LennyV
3.8/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Growler purchased at halftime.

Pours a dark mahogany into my triple karmeliet glass small 1 finger head little to no lacing.

Smells malty sweet with cherrys.

Taste of malt with some cherrys and chocolate. Nice hoppy bitter ending with some alcohol warming.

Full bodied and heavey like a winter warmer shoudl be.

Nice brew but I would not seek it out.

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Photo of BassAssassin
4.38/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

--2006 Vintage--

A: Amber in color, similar to maple syrup. Thick, almost tan head that stays until the last sip.

S: Sweet with strong aromas of plum, cherry, and raisin. The yeast adds a certain musty character that is very pleasant. It's hard to tell, but some diacetyl might be present, also.

T: Sweet, spicy, and fruity, much like the smell. Immediate alcohol warmth. Hints of diacetyl add character, rather than detract from this brew. Malt is definitely dominant. Finishes with a smoky hop bite that just barely keeps the malt in check.

M: Medium to full bodied. Smooth and round, but not cloying.

D: This could be my favorite winter warmer. Perfect sipping brew for a cold, snowy day. A definite "must buy" each winter season.

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Photo of crc1935
4.34/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A - dark brown/black. opaque. fluffy tan head dissipates quickly.

S - nutty, sweet - brown sugar and toffee, light yeast, slightly candied.

T - malty with hints of caramel and vanilla. also - a little hazelnut.

M - very smooth. medium body. refreshing finish.

O - great stronger ale for late-fall/winter weather.

Served in a bottle

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Photo of Gobigvt7
3.21/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz bottle into pint

bright chestnut brew with a really creamy white head that won't go away. beer-stache alert! Caking on the glass all the way down.

smells of roasted nuts and fresh bread yeast

a little "beerier" than I anticipated with a dominant nutty malt bill. Some semi-spicy hops are tossed in so you can tell where the malt ends. Some coffee-like toastiness and comforting heat on the tail end.

A tad heavy, but not overwhelming. Very malty without being too sweet and sticky.

Decent, but not an immediate must-have-more bottle. A palate warmup before I delve into some 10%abv+ beers with more going on.

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Photo of ksbrainard
3.46/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance: Dark garnet colored and not at all hazy. It is nearly black. There's a good head on there which slowly fades to a thin coating.

Smell: Musty and "brown". Whoah, I can smell alcohol very strongly. Behind that, or in between it, there may be some lightly browned caramel and some roasted grain. Man the alcohol is almost a nail polish remover smell.

Taste: Thick alcohol cough syrup is my first impression. The alcohol is warming my mouth down my throat all the way to my stomach. I am not sure if that is a good thing or not. It has a dark pruney flavor, with some bitter chocolate notes. But it is really hard to taste past the alcohol - and this is only 8%? This thing definitely has an imperial taste to it, and it is very heavy. It is a deep complex mix, and I feel as though I am missing something. I will cellar a few and they should mellow for next year.

Mouthfeel: I still feel like there's some in my mouth (but there is not). This beer is as thick as can be. It is really a little too much for me in the mouthfeel department.

Drinkability: Sit by the fire and realx, it might take you a while to finish this one. With its heavy alcohol presence and thick mouthfeel, this is a very enjoyable sipping beer. I might try it with a rich smoked chipotle barbeque dish, or maybe a spicy Chinese food. But it might be best by itself after dinner.

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Photo of towersfall
3.97/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked this old ass bottle up in the Bruisin' Ales 15% box. Dusty as all hell and it seemed like it had been in storage for a while. Had this a few months to a year back and wasn't too impressed, but aged this beer is delicious!

Appearance: A rich mahogany with a marshmallow white head sitting like a pile of fluff on top of the brew. Lacing trickles down the glass all the way to the last sip.

Smell: A nice blend of malts with a slight caramel/toffee touch. Little notice of hops but a decent booze scent. Nothing over the top, but it has a nice smell to it.

Taste: A nice toffee/dark fruit blend with a slight hoppy finish. The age of the beer really did a lot for this brew as far as flavor goes. I remember feeling a fresh batch was too watery.

Mouthfeel: A sticky feeling is left in the mouth but the aftertaste is great.

Drinkability: Old Jubilation isn't too sweet and doesn't really show it's ABV% at all except in the smell, thus it's extremely drinkable.

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Photo of MVassar
4.01/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Elegant dark brown and ruby color, with a lush tan head and sticky lacing. Very appealing.

Faint spicy aroma, with hints of malt, caramel, black tea, and Christmas candy.

Dark roasted malt, with layers of creamy caramel, citrus peel, and a tinge of bitter hops in the finish. Good balance.

Medium body, ample carbonation, with a nice creaminess. Sturdy texture without feeling heavy.

A very likable beer, and a real pleasure to drink. Impressive.

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Photo of candcholt
3.85/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cellared for 3 years. Poured into a goblet.

Beautiful rich dark amber color.

This is a nice winter ale, with a lot of depth of flavor. I like that there are no spices as some beers go a little overboard with this in their winter warmers.

I cannot note a discernable change over previous years, but it's till great.

It's easy drinking, not particularly heavy, so the 8.3% can sneak up on you.

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Photo of velo343
3.72/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - A deep brown with a thick beige head.

Smell - A caramel sweetness. There is some deep fruitiness, such as apricots, partly due to the sweetness of the malts and also the hops, which have a touch of pine.

Taste - Lots of toasty, roasted malt flavor that is accentuated by the tartness of the hops. Contrary to the smell, there really isn't too much sweetness in the taste.

Mouthfeel - Very smooth and creamy. The hops dry out the finish a bit, preventing the beer from feeling too syrupy.

Drinkability - While nothing in this beer stood out to me as being exceptional (ok, the smell was really good), I'm very drawn to this beer. It just has a nice, comfortable feeling that, well, does a good job of warming you up, just like it's supposed to. Not at all over the top, a quality beer.

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Photo of jacobdunne
4.17/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

The light mocha taste was a nice change of pace. I got this beer free for going to Avery Brewery on cheesy Christmas sweater night, and I was not disappointed! Good holiday beer.

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Photo of keoki182
4.3/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Solid medium brown pour with yellow/brown head. Head held at about 3/4 inch until dissolving to a thin lacing on surface of beer and around glass. Smells barleywine-sweetish, notes of fruit (strawberry?) and some generic licorice. First sip impressions: bitter! strong, full mouthfeel. Toffee flavor, more berry. Wow, is this stuff good. Very rich, amazing feel on the palate. I just got some old school bubblegum, you know the rock hard sticks of bubblegum that came in Topps baseball card packs in the late 80s? That is the prevailing aftertaste right now. A nice, almost spicy bitter cocoa comes through quite soon in the pint. This is a fantastic English Strong Ale.

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Photo of accordselux
3.68/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a 2011 vintage bottle into a small tulip glass. A really nice mahogany color that is very appealing. Not much in the way of a head or lacing on the glass.

Smells like toffee, caramel, a little nuttiness and spice.

Taste was similar. A little bit of floral/medicinal hop notes on the end.

Mouthfeel was good- there was ample carbonation throughout the glass.

Overall- decent. I am not pressured to buy more and see how aging the recommended period affects the beer- perhaps because I have good beers I have to get through already.

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Photo of nsabo
3.36/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Oct. 2009 bottle opened in Dec. 2011.
Tastes like a creamier version of a scotch ale: very sweet, nutty in a brown ale kinda way. Caramel With winter warmers, I expect heavy malts and some variation of spice: the malts aren’t particularly heavy here and there are absolutely no spices. It’s not bad, but there aren’t any memorable qualities, either. Medium-thin mouthfeel.
I picked up a few packs of this 2 years ago and have been sampling it at different intervals since then. While still very drinkable and carbonated, at 2 years this feels past its prime. I remember thinking it was outstanding between 1-1 ½ years (sorry, didn’t take notes, all I remember was that the nose was wonderfully bready and the hops were still fairly present).

A final note: I've always known this as a winter warmer. BA labels it as an Old Ale, while Avery's website calls it an Old Strong Ale. Hmm

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Photo of BrewMan13
4.28/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

One of the finer alternatives to the spiced winter warmers, and its new to my neck of the woods. Its sorta similar to Great Divide Hibernation: both are fairly malty, un-spiced, similar abv's and tasty. This one is a tad less hoppy though.
The pour was a thing of beauty: I poured fairly aggressively and got a ~2.5 finger tan-colored head (very similar to the pic on their site, only mine didnt go above the rim of the glass) which was slow to dissipate, with some remaining for the whole duration of the drinking. Substanital lace as well. Body was a clear but dark ruby-brown.
Taste is a well-blended array of malts...hard to really discern the individual flavors...hints of caramel, chocolate and in the finish, a hint of roastiness and a very slight bitterness.
Mouthfeel is just right as well...a very creamy, smooth mouthfeel. Not full bodied, but a solid medium. Very nice.
Very enjoyable...one for the malt-fans. Glad we finally got Avery stuff here in Albany. I've got The Czar and The Reverand yet to try in my basement...should be good.

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Photo of denjen
4.3/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

$9.99 6pack
Dennis: If you considered this a winter warmer, I'd have to say it was the best of it's class. Rich and warm, with the chalky chocolate hints you'd expect, this comes across best about 1/2 through the bottle. A slight hop tartness really compliments the 8% alcohol and help drives it home. Over all a great beer that further solidifies Avery's reputation.
Jen: Yummy! Just what I look for in a winter ale. This has a nice blend of malts with a dry coffee and toffee and a mild bittersweet chocolate taste. It has a nice medium mouthfeel with slightly hoppy, yet sweet and toasty aftertaste. This is worth the $$, and it will be purchased again.

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Photo of beerogre
4.35/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I first encountered Old Jubilation last year, when I purchased it along with some Hibernation Ale, and I was immediately impressed by it as a very drinkable Winter Warmer, and as good as the Hibernation Ale was, I always slightly preferred this beer over it.

Towards the end of the Holiday Season last year, I decided to keep a bottle back, to see how it compared with the 2006 release, and I have to say that for those planning to get into cellaring, it really is worthwhile when you finally get to sample the goods.

This year's batch is every bit as good as I was expecting, but you really can taste the benefit the extra year has had on the 2005 version. It is just so much better in every way, the taste is richer, definitely sweeter and has acquired some sherry like aspects, and the mouthfeel is much smoother.

It makes me wonder how far you can go with this ageing process: If this is the result of my minor experiment with a good beer for one year, what about some of those great beers that are put down for several years or more?, They must be truely fantastic.

Interesting, very interesting.

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Photo of Blupoet03
4.15/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Pours brown with a foamy tan head to a pint glass. It smells of roasted malt and hips with a whiff of both toffee and yeast.

The taste is complex, giving tones of coffee maltiness, a pleasant bitterness, and sweetness on the tail. Mouth feel is prickly and tart.

Overall, it is a very peasant blend of flavors, and I can imagine it tasting great in the winter, but since the pint glass I was drinking from was sweating profusely, I wont comment too much on the seasonality of it.

I did feel that it was perfect in terms of drinkability. I was commenting that it must be a lower alcohol, thinking of an English Bitter, allowing you to drink several in a short amount of time - but was wrong. I still think you could easily drink several of these in a night, but you will be feeling it!

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Photo of smallbatchbrewer
3.77/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Amber with peach hues with lingering head and quite apparent lacing start to finish. Poured into a flouted ale glass

S- Fruit, vanilla, copper/iron

T- Malty sweet, not fruity sweet but fruit esters are present no doubt. I can feel and taste the hops pretty intensely in the finish

M- Good balance, maybe a little under carbonated. Warming alcohol in this case seems higher than 8% but isn't ridiculously obvious or overbearing by any means

D- Next!

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Photo of mattd017
3.71/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into an an english pint glass.

Deep, dark brown with a good, thick, creamy white head that takes minutes to settle. Smells of toffee, chocolate, piney hops. Tastes of sweet malts, slight hop presence, end with an alcohol bite. Thick, syrupy mouthfeel. Very sweet, very syrupy. Good beer, Nice warmer.

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Old Jubilation from Avery Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 778 ratings.