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Victory Harvest Ale - Victory Brewing Company

Victory Harvest Ale
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BA SCORE
87
very good

69 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 69
Reviews: 33
rAvg: 3.91
pDev: 11%


Brewed by:
Victory Brewing Company visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  5.80% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
Highly aromatic and sensual, this novel pale ale delivers a fresh hop flavor like no other brew. Its secret? Fresh hops piled into our boiling kettle just hours after their harvest. With many more of their essential oils intact, these ‘wet’ hops add glorious middle notes of juicy, fruit and tea-like bite to play off of its lightly toasted malt character deliciously.

(Beer added by: akorsak on 10-01-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 69 | Reviews: 33 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of argock
argock

Virginia

3.96/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

Served on-tap in a Shaker pint glass at Beer Run (Charlottesville, VA).

A: Burnished amber with 1/2-inch, off-white oatmeal-colored head with decent retention and a line of crusty lace at the top of the glass.

S: Big floral and citrus hops aroma greets with a pretty substantial caramel and fruity ale backing aromas. The fruity character is probably somewhat yeast derived. No detectable alcohol qualities.

T: Whopping fruity hops flavors with orange, grapefruit, lime, and floral qualities as well. The malt backbone is fairly caramelly with some bready malt/yeast character. The yeast character extends with some fruity esters as well. Moderately bitter. Nice beer with great wet hop flavor.

M: A tad thin in mouthfeel with lightish body, it comes off a bit watery. This isn't a super combo with all the fruity character. Finish is average-dry for the style.

O: A really solid brew that would be a bit better with some more body and a little lower ABV. All in all though, this is a good beer that whets the wet hop appetite very well.

Serving type: on-tap

12-30-2013 04:20:02 | More by argock
Photo of Gavage
Gavage

New Jersey

3.98/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Appearance: dark orange in color with a 1" head that lasts around a while. Moderate lace paints the glass.

Smell: caramel and some earthy hops are light in the aroma.

Taste: caramel, light grapefruit tones, some orange, and a nice earthy bitterness make up a a nice fresh hop ale.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied beer. Crisp to start, less crisp and a touch dry late.

Overall: this was a flavorful ale that can be a good session beer. Hits the spot on a cool autumn day.

Serving type: on-tap

10-31-2013 22:24:18 | More by Gavage
Photo of corby112
corby112

Pennsylvania

3.18/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

Draft at The Pour House in Westmont, NJ.

Pours a very hazy, dark copper color with burnt orange edges and a two finger pillowy white head that very slowly settles into a thick, lasting ring.  Spotty lacing left behind.

Slightly earthy floral hop aroma with a strong malt backbone.  Some resinous grassy notes but the sweet malts are a bit too strong, overpowering things with hints of caramel, bread, toffee and nut.

Full bodied with a dry earthy hop presence that's countered mid-palate by a sweet malt backbone.  Dry and resinous with pine needle and spruce tip flavor followed by sweet caramel malt, toffee, bread and hazelnut.  Decent but hop profile is boring and the malt presence are too strong for my liking.

Serving type: on-tap

02-14-2013 06:53:55 | More by corby112
Photo of NoLeafClover44
NoLeafClover44

Delaware

3.98/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

32 oz. growler poured into a HopDevil pint glass. The growler was filled a few hours ago.

A - Pours a totally transparent bright copper color. Some semblance of a head for a few seconds, but this dies away quickly to wisps of thin film. The lacing is spotty.

S - Big caramel malts and fragrant floral hops. It has a syrupy citrus sweetness to it along with the damp mustiness of fresh cut grass. I am really enjoying the fresh hop aroma.

T - Starts with clean, grainy malt. Citrus follows along with bitter hops. Dank lemon on the back end. The caramel and grain malts keep the finish moist, despite the prominent hop profile. Extremely well balanced.

M - Light-medium body with tingly carbonation. Impressive feel.

O - I was happy to see this Victory draft-only offering during a stop at Whole Foods. This is a great example of a wet hopped ale. Great citrus, floral hops, and a complexity of malts. Easy drinking and refreshing. This is a very sessionable beer perfect for fall, I wish it was available in bottles.

PS. I am confused by the style classification on this site, a this is clearly an APA/IPA.

Serving type: growler

11-20-2012 03:15:33 | More by NoLeafClover44
Photo of DIM
DIM

Pennsylvania

3.58/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

a: This was a clear, coppery color. It was served to me with a small, fizzy cap.

s: Caramel malts and a hint of pine.

t: Light caramel sweetness up front with some fairly strong bitterness at the end.

m: Crisp and fizzy.

o: Not bad, but kind of lifeless overall.

Serving type: on-tap

11-16-2012 22:08:36 | More by DIM
Photo of xnicknj
xnicknj

Pennsylvania

3.2/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

on tap at irish pol in philly - review from notes

Pours a deep amber color, froth of white head fades into faint film. Tons of ringed and patchy lacing are left behind.

Pine hop bitterness in the nose with some lemon peel and citrus. Plenty of bready malt with light caramel sweetness.

Decent pine bitterness, a little sticky and resiny. Larger malt backbone than expected. Caramel and bread crust with light toasted notes. Some residual sweetness towards the finish, which is bitter and lingering.

Lighter medium body, decent but higher carbonation, sticky and dry on the tongue. Drinks alright, but nowhere near the top of the harvest ale category. More hops needed.

Serving type: on-tap

02-08-2012 01:44:43 | More by xnicknj
Photo of Blanco
Blanco

Pennsylvania

3.98/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours an amber color with solid white head. Pretty good lacing. Some moderate carbonation. Smell has a nice, slighty hoppy aroma, a hint of breadiness. Taste is classic Victory pale ale, with less bready notes than usual. Hops are more dominant, but not apparently because it's hoppy, but more because malt backbone is light. Very well balanced. Medium bodied, only slight mouthfeel. Very nice classic hoppy beer. Not sure if this is supposed to be "wet" hops or "fresh" (Sierra Nevada definition), but it's a solid pale ale.

Serving type: growler

10-29-2011 00:12:20 | More by Blanco
Photo of Stinkypuss
Stinkypuss

Pennsylvania

4.08/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Victory Harvest Ale

Pours a clear copper color, white head forms and dies quickly. Aroma of fresh hops, piney, dank and resinous floral notes. In the taste, mild citrus, rind like bitterness, pine and a bready, caramel malt body. Mouthfeel is creamy and smooth, with a moderate to low level of carbonation. Overall, a nice, easy going fresh hop brew with deceptive strength.

Serving type: on-tap

10-18-2011 03:41:07 | More by Stinkypuss
Photo of JAXSON
JAXSON

Pennsylvania

3.9/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the brew pub. Pours a dark copper with a white head. Fairly mild nose of bitter citric hops. Mouth is heavily hopped, grapefruit skin, pine cone, light caramel malt. Fresh, robust, lively. Feels soft with ample carbonation. Not the nuance or balance of Victory's better IPA's but a really nice beer.

Serving type: on-tap

10-08-2011 02:47:20 | More by JAXSON
Photo of BeerImmediately
BeerImmediately

Pennsylvania

3.98/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Growler picked up 3 days ago at the brewpub.

First off - there's no way this can get lumped into that "strong ale" category. It's much closer to an American Amber/Red Ale, and doesn't present with anywhere near enough alcohol to be an ASA.

Pours with a short, off-white head over a clean amber colored body. Lots of lacing. Exactly what you want to see in a "harvest style" ale.

Aromas lean mostly on the malts, with lots of rich, fresh bread, and just a woft of English hops.

Fairly soft mouthfeel - carbonation is moderate, and the hops bring a fairly tight dry sharpness, but it's rich enough to be pretty smooth overall. Flavors present a really clean, pleasant hop bitterness that has no astringency. Plenty of caramel sweetness to make this really well balanced. Strangely enough though, the hops win the battle in the flavor category.

A really nice Fall beer from Victory - full of flavor, but not over the top in any category. I thought I could session this growler, but after two, it's clearly closer to the listed ABV here.

Serving type: growler

09-27-2011 01:40:30 | More by BeerImmediately
Photo of Rifugium
Rifugium

Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First had: on tap at Casey's, Newtown Square, PA

Another fine selection from Victory, who rarely disappoint. A copper-colored beer with reddish tints, and a small white head that retains as a ringlet. Clean aroma, sweet malts and floral and citrusy hops. Sweet caramel malts in the taste, floral and earthy hop notes, well-balanced. Nothing new going on here, but just a good beer in its simplicity. Light-medium body, and easily drinkable.

Serving type: on-tap

09-02-2011 01:13:40 | More by Rifugium
Photo of jpro
jpro

South Carolina

3.48/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Tried this one on tap at the Oak Barrel Tavern - a new place that we stumbled upon this evening. Served in a standard shaker pint...

A: Dark copper, with an off white head; not much lacing to speak of as the head quickly dies down to the thinnest layer of wispy foam.

S: Resinous hops... herbal and almost woody. A faint hint of crispy malts lies underneath.

T: Big time hop character is noticed first, as the slightly piney / resinous flavor dominates the palate; behind the hops, there is some roasted malt character that smooths things out. Lots of good hoppiness, but unfortunately not that well rounded.

M: On the high side of medium-bodied; lower carbonation, but the finish is really dry...

D: Interesting, this one... The dry resiny- ness makes this one rough to have a few of... Not the most interesting beer, but worth trying if you're into fresh hopped stuff.

Serving type: on-tap

12-12-2010 07:19:08 | More by jpro
Photo of david18
david18

New York

3.4/5  rDev -13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

The fact that this is a strong ale explains a lot. I thought I was ordering a wet hop pale ale and was surprised then when it came as dark and as strong as it was.

Overall, this beer did no knock my socks off but it was ok. Carmel color with a nice hoppy aroma and a light colored head. The flavor was quite bitter but the dark malt also came through. I'll try it again now that I know more about it but overall I wasn't all that thrilled.

Serving type: on-tap

12-03-2010 19:34:31 | More by david18
Photo of claspada
claspada

New Jersey

3.8/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Aromas are very caramely at first, with strong noble hops joining the party: crisp, floral, citrusy aroma, crystal clean.

The taste full of fresh clean hops, but very balanced and not overly bitter. Nice caramel malt, a smooth English style IPA almost. Biscuity, caramely, mildy toasty malts. Nice hops, balanced extraordinarily well with delicious malt.

Overall the best wet hoppeed beer of the 6 I had this evening, over Sierra NW hopped, Rogue's, Great Divide, to name a few. Well balanced beers always win in my book.

Serving type: on-tap

11-19-2010 01:34:19 | More by claspada
Photo of cdizinno
cdizinno

South Carolina

3.63/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Clear copper color with a finger+ of off-white head. Fluffy lacing that sticks to the glass.

S: Mild hop scent with some grainy, malty sweetness in the background.

T&M: Heavy pine and floral hoppy flavors at first. Very dry and fluffy. Almost like the muthfeel of a Sam Adams lager. Quite grainy.
Medium body; Almost too chalky and dry; very subtle carbonation

Not the most drinkable brew I've had by Victory. It's just odd with the lager flavor against the a non-fruity hoppiness.

Serving type: growler

11-07-2010 21:13:26 | More by cdizinno
Photo of Kegatron
Kegatron

Pennsylvania

4.05/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On cask, via hand pump, @ the Victory Brewing Company (Downingtown, PA) on 10/16/10. Served in a pint glass. I've got no idea if this year's edition is vastly different than any of the other years, so I'll just forego a new entry and put this under here.

Pours a hazed copper, topped with a rigid finger of smooth bright-white head. Retains with about half that original size and just absolutely COATS the sides of the glass with heavy and thick lacing. The aroma smells grassy and damp with earth & herbs, as well as a pronounced spicy character. Citrus peel and bitter fruit add some sharpness to the nose. Malt sweetness hangs on the edges, helping soften this up a little, but the hops really shine here.

The hops in the taste are coming off as initially more mellow feeling but still have a forcefulness to them, with a spicy bitterness that is softened somewhat by some easy herbal textures. This is well balanced by a flat and grainy Pale Malt sweetness across the back of the profile. Gritty bitterness lies on the tongue in the finish but isn't coming off as overbearing, as this steadily lingers with notes of bitter fruit and dry spice. The mouthfeel is medium bodied in the mouth overall, with a smooth creaminess and an easy mellow slickness that matches the flavor profile. This is just really easy drinking stuff here that helps even out that bitter finish. The alcohol levels do seem lower than 7%, so maybe this is more in line with some of the lower ABV efforts from the last couple of years.

I like their Harvest Ale here because it doesn't try to beat you over the head with hops, but instead offers a nice even amount of fresh flavors and bitterness throughout. The cask conditioning is just the icing on the cake, bringing out even more of that character and giving this a silky smooth body and feel. Good stuff.

Serving type: cask

10-26-2010 15:15:12 | More by Kegatron
Photo of Mojoman8561
Mojoman8561

Pennsylvania

3/5  rDev -23.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Had thison tap at my last Craft Brew Club meeting. Victory was the host and learned a lot about their process.

-L- Golden yellow. Light head.

-S- Lemon Zest and hops.

-T- Definately a creamy lemon taste with a distinct hops flavor. Apprently this comes from the wet hops process they use on this brew.

-F- Light in body. The hops really put a swift kick on the end of this mouthful.

-D- Not bad. Different. Wouldn't buy it by the case but wouldn't say no if someone offered.

Serving type: on-tap

03-06-2010 23:57:44 | More by Mojoman8561
Photo of Hojaminbag
Hojaminbag

Colorado

3.9/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Victory Harvest Ale has a slightly cloudy copper body with an thick, creamy, off-white head. Good retention and lacing.

The aroma features some grass/earthy hops and some pale malt.

I like the hop profile of Victory Harvest Ale; it has grassy and earthy flavors that I would assume come from the wet hops and just a taste of citrus bitterness. The malt balances out the hops with a biscuit like sweetness.

Mouthfeel is a medium but a bit creamy, pretty good.

I like the Hops in Victory harvest Ale, but I would honestly be happier with it if just a little bit of malt was cut out, along with a lot of alcohol. With that said, using fresh hops to make a strong ale is an interesting idea, and it's something I had not tried before.

Serving type: on-tap

02-13-2010 16:41:25 | More by Hojaminbag
Photo of jwhancher
jwhancher

Pennsylvania

2.5/5  rDev -36.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

For whatever reason, I think Victory missed the mark on this one. After tasting numerous other harvest styled ales, this one comes away with no real hop character and an odd taste I can't quite put my figure on.

A: Pours a gold color.

S: Rather subtle hop hints, mostly grains.

T: Misses out on the hops. Again, mostly a grainy taste.

M: Seems like it should fit more in a lager category. I'm not one to dodge beers in my fridge, but this one seems to be the red-headed stepchild.

D: There's almost no beer I cannot drink. This is certainly drinkable - just not one I'd reach out for or actively search out to taste. There's much, much better Victory beers to try well in front of this one.

Serving type: growler

12-30-2009 21:15:38 | More by jwhancher
Photo of Nickls
Nickls

District of Columbia

3.9/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

(From notes)

A - Golden yellow orange color; poured with a half-finger of eggshell head

S - Lager-like aromas with some grain sweetness; aggressive hops; touch of maltiness

T - Hoppy at first; very firm maltiness; a little grainy

M - Medium body; a touch chalky and dry; very subtle carbonation

D - Not the most drinkable brew I've had in the style (even though the style varies greatly); just a bid odd in the lagery flavors against the hoppiness

Overall, definitely a solid brew and it made my palate work, but not one that I would seek out too hard again.

Serving type: on-tap

07-05-2009 22:54:46 | More by Nickls
Photo of johnmichaelsen
johnmichaelsen

Oregon

4.25/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Much to my delight, this beer has been readily available over at Max's for the past week.

The beer pours an attractive copper orange color with outstanding head retention and good lacing. On the nose I get a good whiff of hops, which is exactly what I was expecting and hoping for. On the palate this beer is just delicious. There is plenty of citrus from the hops, with just the right amount of malt to balance it. There is also a hint of wet tobacco and earthiness, which I associate with wet hops. The balance of flavors is excellent with this beer, though the hops come on strong the more I drink of it (had to get a 32 ounce happy hour cup; it's that good!). The beer is light to medium bodied on the palate and drinkability is very good. The abv. is a bit high for my liking in a harvest ale, which is my only real complaint. Nevertheless, this is an absolutely excellent beer from Victory. Along with Sierra Nevada, the best harvest ale I've had this year (not including Killer Green - a beer that's in a completely different league IMHO).

Excellent beer!

Serving type: on-tap

10-27-2008 19:08:12 | More by johnmichaelsen
Photo of mmmbeer
mmmbeer

Massachusetts

4.33/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pint on-tap at the brewery - my sample is 6.9%. It arrives amber, with medium carbonation and a 3/4 inch, lightly frothy head. Very aromatic and deeply hopped, with orangey, minty, and resiny scents rising from the glass. A touch of toasted malts on the palate, overshadowed by mint, orange, bubblegum, and a late piney flavor. Not too bitter, which is nice as it lets all the hop flavors come through, riding on the smooth, medium body that makes quaffing a cinch. A delicious harvest ale with hop characteristics quite different from your standard pale ales and IPAs. Well-worth a try if you see it.

Serving type: on-tap

02-21-2008 20:48:36 | More by mmmbeer
Photo of Durge
Durge

Connecticut

3.98/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A light golden brown brew with a decent off-white cover and midland lacing. The aroma is pretty standard faire, a solid wheat toast with some carmel malt. The flavor builds very nicely on that aroma. A nice malty bread with tangy carbonation, very lively and refreshing. Lots of gritty wheat goodness without interfering with drinkability. Actually a refreshing brew, generally a bit chewy in a good way, very supple feel. There is plenty of carmel malt sweetness but it is offset nicely by the dry crispness of the wheat. There seems to be some subtle orange flavored hops in the background. All around a very solid offering and one of the better Oktoberfest offerings I have had in a while. Relatively mild but it has character for sure. Very much recommended.

Serving type: bottle

11-30-2007 03:39:13 | More by Durge
Photo of HopDerek
HopDerek

Pennsylvania

4.15/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Found on tap at Victory Brewing.

Beer appears deep amber in color with a fluffy white head. Amazingly, it doesn't have much of a hop smell to it, more prevalent maltiness and caramel. The taste though shows off the hops, though not the bitter piney hops, more sweet and citrusy, helped out by the malty finish. A very refreshing and smooth beer. Alcohol taste is conceiled nicely, though it may be too high in alcohol for its own good as wonderful a taste as it has and as easy as it is to enjoy.

Serving type: on-tap

12-15-2006 19:11:26 | More by HopDerek
Photo of WVbeergeek
WVbeergeek

Ohio

4.5/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Tapped recently by the Sharp Edge Creekhous definitely not a Strong Ale more so one of the most balanced harvest wet hopped ales in the land...so nice. Appears a clouded amber with hop particles a floating froms a large tightly bubbled cream head that leaves even lace all around the imperial pint glass as it dwindles. Aroma...it smells like a bouquet of fresh hps with grassy, citrus (grapefruit), and pine cone scented hops to it. A bit perfumey and seductive all at once with sweet caramel malts that leave a bready spice component there. Taste is awesome albeit not over the top like some brews that claim to have fresh hops...this brew knows how to bring the fresh hop flavor with a substantial bitterness with grassy citrus peel flavors and a touch of floral effervescence and the lucious not sugary but sweet caramel malt profile truly balances so well with the prickly wet hops. Once again a mild spice character is noted within the malts but it's warming yet the alcohol flavor is so hidden. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with soft gentle carbonation goes down so smooth can't wait to try more of this or something similar from Victory. Drinkability is so sessionable the true pinnacle of Harvest ales, thanks for the great brew bring more to the Burgh please.

Serving type: on-tap

11-17-2006 20:23:39 | More by WVbeergeek
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Victory Harvest Ale from Victory Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 69 ratings.