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Victory Harvest Ale - Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown

Not Rated.
Victory Harvest AleVictory Harvest Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

150 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 150
Hads: 787
Avg: 4.12
pDev: 20.15%
Wants: 45
Gots: 121 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
Pennsylvania, United States | website

Style | ABV
American IPA | 6.50% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: akorsak on 10-01-2006

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: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 150 | Hads: 787
Photo of emerge077
3.16/5  rDev -23.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

BBD: 3-7-16
Yeah...no. Not good, and not that old either.
Dark amber orange, lasting surface skim. Spotty flecks around the edges.
Initial aroma is rough, burnt rubber, cabbage, onions. Swirling gets rid of some unpleasantness, but it's still there. Malt sweetness starts coming through, tea, greens. Just not that good at all.

Taste is malty and tea-like, lightly piney bitter greens in the aftertaste. Lingering bitterness, somewhat bland, the hops aren't very present. Not something i'd revisit unfortunately.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
4.1/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Seattle Beer Week pint glass. Pours a medium to dark bronze amber with a half finger light khaki head with good retention and lots of lacing. Aroma of tropical and citrus fruit, piney and citrus hops, lightly caramel malt. Flavor is bready malt with hints of caramel and biscuit, piney, somewhat dank hops, light tropical and light stone fruit. Finishes with resinous dank and piney hops. Medium bodied with light creaminess and good mouth feel. A nicely complex wet hopped ale with an interesting hop bill that was robust throughout the taste and left a long lingering resinous bitterness while still retaining great herbal flavors. The malt is also rather multi-layered with the hints of biscuit in a malt body that leaves the flavors to the hops, but adds good support and interest. A great year for wet and fresh hopped ales and this one is right up there with the best. I'll look forward to it next year again.

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Photo of pinyin
4.02/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Purchased in Long Island NY, 4 pack $12.50 in the Union Distribution footprint.

Somewhat disappointing that I was unable to find it anywhere in North Eastern Pennsylvania. Victory has virtually no market share in this section (Monroe County) of their home state.

Served 40F from a 16 bottle into an 18 ounce tulip.

Color is a reddish orange, translucent and clarified. Look is very similar to Sierra Nevada Celebration. Celebration has more of cloudier shade and a better mouthfeel which I tend to prefer, but Victory Harvest ale edges it out slightly in taste and aroma. If you hadn't noticed by now, this is Victory's attempt at the style (Harvest Ale) that Sierra Nevada Celebration originated in the early eighties.

Aroma is a nice balance of sweet dark malt and fresh hops. Very pleasant but also subtle and not too overpowering like many double IPA's.

With the taste you get the familiar Victory house blend yeast up front, bready malts and then the hops kind fall right on top in perfect succession. Now Harvest Ales aren't as pleasing to my palette as a DIPA, but still great when in season and fresh. I do get a slight diacetyl note in the aftertaste, which I can presume came from improper handling during shipping and retail stocking. It's as if the hops are kind of fading away exposing the actual alcohol content of the ale. Coincidentally, I also get this in SN Celebration. Perhaps it is hop blend though, although I have never noticed this in Troeg's Hop Knife, which is the superior product of the three.

Mouthfeel is smooth, very typical Victory state of the art brite tank conditioning. Carbonation is done to perfection as all Victory products are.

Solid seasonal ale from Victory. Certainly not the best, and I think it is definitely overpriced at $12.50 for the 4 pack. Hop Knife is a much better tasting product and is $12.99 for the 6 pack. Yes the ABV% might not be as high, but it is same style and is superior in my opinion, so Victory might want to take that into consideration for next years launch.

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Photo of scottbrew4u
4.3/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours from 12 oz bottle a clear, amber color with an off white head half inch thick. Aroma is dank, fresh as if squeezing a fresh picked hop cone. Light brewed tea aroma and a caramel and toasted grain sweetness underneath all those hops. Sweet taste for a second then waves of glorious dank, herbal, and piney hops close in on the palate. This beer is delicious fresh and not overly bitter but very pleasing for a hop lover!

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Photo of stevoj
4.09/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Damn tasty stuff. Gentle hops dominate aroma and taste. Aroma is more citrus, taste more pine. Light orange copper body with small soapy head. Mild yellow grapefruit finish. Very well done IPA.

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Photo of Kennethzelljr
3.73/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours a deep copper nothing crazy on the appearance.aromatic presence is huge grapefruit,Orange peel,slight dank.taste is bitter fruits and citrus fruits,slight pine and dank resin.dry,refreshing,a lot of aggressive complex flavors in this beer.mouthfeel was pretty average.id give this one a B possibly B+.dont think I'd buy a full four pack but very nice I recommend seeking this out for an enjoyable wet hopped ipa.

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Photo of jopezu
4.5/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

pours a clear amber with a small head. nose; citra hops, light pine, orange zest and syrup. taste; big caramel malt, piney hop, herbal citrus (grapefruit & orange), and melon sweetness in the middle. aftertaste has an almost farmhouse ale peppery bite on the end as well as the advertised tea notes. very nice! medium carbonation and slightly thin mouthfeel. a great example for wet-hopped ipa's!

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Photo of ChrisMon02
4.09/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into a Duvel glass.

Looks nice. Orange in color with a decent fluffy head. Strong smell of fresh Citra hops and maybe a bit of Mosaic. Dank spicy tea, semi-sweet caramel malt and a touch of cat piss. Smooth easy drinker. A well done fresh hop brew from Victory. Not top notch but certainly a worthy offering. Recommending.

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Photo of HattedClassic
4.18/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a nice off-white head that dissipates moderately while the beer itself is a nice clear deep amber with a very nice copper hue, which makes it a very appealing look.

The smell is pretty good and very enticing. The beer has a strong wet hop smell that is mainly resin and a light grapefruit note. The hop note is nicely balanced with a sweet and lightly toasted malt note.

The taste has the same notes with a bitter resin hop note balanced by a sweet and lightly toasted malt note. The difference is that the hop tastes a bit drier than the smell but is still pretty good. There is also a slightly tea like taste as a result from the malt and hop notes.

The feel is medium body but seems to be a bit on the heavier side. The biting carbonation gives some very welcome texture to a smooth beer.

Overall ,a pretty good beer and Harvest Ale. Feel free to go for it.

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Photo of andrewjraab
3.99/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A pours a golden brown with a finger of off white egg shell colored head which sticks all the way down.

S - Citrus hops, piney, oily, weed.

T - Wet hops, citrus, oily and resinous. Medium bodied with a wet mouthfeel, finishes semi sweet.

O - Solid harvest ale that is definitely a worthy brew to try.

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Photo of Beers-es
4.52/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a copper/amber that's very clear. Half-finger of foam that doesn't stick around. Smell is citrus and pine right off the bat, then more of an herbal spice with a bit of malt, with hints of tropical fruit. I don't get a ton of citrus or pine taste, more the herb and spice. Also there's some sweeter malt underlying that provides a nice balance. Feel is a nice medium body that's just a little watery, which slowly resolves into a dry bitter aftertaste that lingers pleasantly. This is a really balanced, well-made, complex beer that's worth checking out if you like harvest ales.

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Photo of avalon07
3.99/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had an amber color and a clear texture. There was an inch of foamy head that lasted an average amount of time. Good lacing.

S: A big aroma of fruit, pine, and hops. The pine is noticeable the second you open the bottle.

T: Tasted of a good amount of hops, a very distinct piney quality, malt, and some grapefruit mingled in as well. A fairly robust flavor that's complex and well balanced.

F: A well-carbonated beer with a somewhat oily finish. Medium-bodied.

O: This is an extremely well made, likable beer. Not exactly a groundbreaking beer (what could be these days), but enjoyable nonetheless.

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Photo of ThisWangsChung
3.85/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

One whiff of the nose, and I know this will be hoppy as fuck. Is that a bad thing? After all, the aroma is loaded with grass, pine, tangerine, grapefruit, and lemon. Also some sweet onion - I forgot to mention this seems to have a lot of Mosaic. I've said many times before it is not my favorite hop at all, but I'm quite impressed how fresh and hoppy this one comes across anyways. A bit more malt comes through when this hits the palate (bringing flavors of caramel and a touch of toast), but hardly enough to detract from the hoppy goodness. It's grassy and piny, with hints of dankness and tropical fruits hiding in the background. Despite the prominent hop bite, the malts keep things in balance nicely. It feels medium to slightly full in body, with slightly low carbonation. Aside from my Mosaic biases, this is a great wet hop ale that hits a wonderful middle ground between fresh hops and malt.

3.85/5: An impressive rendition of a seemingly rare style

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Photo of chicagoish
4.17/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: Poured from the bottle. Thin Head and nice lacing.

S: Hoppy nose of grapefruit and pine.

T: grapefruit juice and herbal, hops, bready malt. Finishes with lingering pineapple/grapefruit juice bitterness.

O: Solid wet/fresh-hopped ale.. Similar to Sierra Nevada. Very Good.

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Photo of Prager62
4.42/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

I love wet hop ales, so when I struck out looking for Founders and Sixpoint, I turned my sight to this recent delivery. I love Dirtwolf, so I figured why not?

Look- Pours a transparent dark amber color with with a finger of soapy white foam that lingers around. A very clean looking beer.

Smell- Dank spicy weed aroma up front. There are floral notes in the background along with some malt.

Taste- A spicy hop bite takes center stage. Flavors of herbal dank weed, pine and bitter grapefruit with some malt in the finish.

Feel- A bit thin, but oily and slick with a very dry finish that leaves you craving more.

Overall- A very solid representation of the style that deserves a place in the conversation with the best. I'm definitely going to pick up another 4 pack while they're fresh.

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Photo of BranfordBound
4.28/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

By far one of my favorites from them. Rivals the SN harvest ales in their deliciousness. Lighter than expected body and overall easy to drink. Delightfully hoppy through and through with some malt sweetness in the back.

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Photo of beerthulhu
4.03/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

- Spiegelau ipa glass. Enjoy by 03.20.13. Consumed 02.20.15.

A: Oxidized orange, sharp clarity with a feverish pitch of macro-effervesce. Whipped, old white colored head with a strong resistance to fold. Full skirt lacing down the vessel.

S: Freshly sliced lemon, hint of lime, and tangerine. Nice wet freshness.

T: Grassy-orange and dry pine hopping to open. Big front of hoppiness, backed by dry toasted speciality grains. Hints of dry flowery tangerine, green melon, white grapes, and dry toasted apple skin that finishes with a big encore of grassy hops.

M: Active carbonation, chewy malts, with a big dry touch of hops on the tongue.

O: Overall a big, fresh, wet nose, with a good complexity of dry grassy hopping and dry tropical fruits that stay on the tongue long after the swallow. Labeled as a APA but clearly has the an overclocking of hops on par with IPA standards with a huge helping of bitterness and flavor hops. ABV% is perfectly suited. Drink fresh.

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Photo of StoneTSR
4.64/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

APPEARANCE: This looks like a shiny, copper penny…well, one that you can see through…and with lots of bubbles. The head is eggshell white and about a half-inch thick. It does not stick around too long, but it also doesn’t settle all that much. The cap is more like a gradually sloping valley with the lowest point inside the rim being the exact center of the glass.

SMELL: The fresh cut grass on this is as intense as I have smelled since the first time I stuck my nose into a glass of Half Acre Daisy Cutter. Dank, piney and citrusy as well; this beer smells absolutely amazing.

TASTE: Earthy, herbal, “tea-like” (exactly like the label says) and citrusy. This is a largely bitter beer with just a hint of malt for balance. This is what I imagine (or wish) hops would taste like if I just put them in a juicer and squeezed.

MOUTHFEEL: The carbonation provides a strong sparkle, but with tiny bubbles, not quite a soda water-like sparkle. The body is medium to light and while a touch of sweetness provides balance, this beer is on the dry side…and pretty bitter.

OVERALL: This is what I remember the first few IPAs I fell in love with tasting like. I was going for as bitter as possible and beers like this were the reason why. The juicy, earthy, intense hop flavor is why I drink hoppy beers. This beer is still well within it’s ‘enjoy by’ date of March 10 and it seems to have been stored perfectly, but my only regret is that I did not pick it up when it was fresher. Not sure how much better it could have been, but I would have liked to have known for sure. Amazing beer.

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Photo of secondtooth
4.17/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Clean golden with medium head of off-white suds. Lace is light but ornate.

Aroma: Heavy on the tropical hops. A stunning experience, really, that seems to signal a great beer experience on the horizon.

Taste: Crisp, and bursting with fruity tropical hops and a dank, resinous, bitter finish. Overall, a well-balanced IPA, but not my favorite from Victory.

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Photo of KYGunner
3.97/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served a little older than I like it style kept a reasonably hoppy profile of aromatic flowers, pine needles, rose petals, barley and tea leaves.

The flavor is interesting as its bitter with hops and pine but has a bit of lemon and citrus. The malts are barley, tea leaf, maple and nutty.

I will have to revisit for freshness but I like this.

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Photo of TheBrewo
4.2/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

This was served from the bottle at the Intercontinental Hotel at the Cleveland Clinic in Cleveland, Ohio. Actually, we enjoyed this in our room, having brought it along with us to enjoy after attending to our business in Cleveland. We borrowed some house pint glasses, and poured a beer of ruby-honey hues. It held a finger and a half’s worth of eggshell colored foam, showing decent retention. This left doily patterns of lacing all down our glasses throughout the tasting. No haze or sediment was noted, and carbonation appeared to be moderate. The aroma popped off white grape skins, freshly juicy citric and herbal hops, sweaty pale and amber malts, green corn husks, lemongrass, wet sage herbals, darker tea-like tannins, juicy pineapple and papaya fruitiness, raw and fresh honey sweetness, spicy white pepper, lightly fusel booziness, and a more sticky pine sap as the beer warmed. The flavoring followed with notes of surprisingly bittering pale and amber malt toast, sweet and savory herbal, floral, and citric hoppiness, hibiscus florals, aromatic sage and parsley leafiness, honey sweetness, bittering white wine grape skins, juicy pear and apricot fruitiness, potato starchiness, powdered chalkiness of ale yeast, lemon balm, bitter lemon zest, fusel alcohol, green twigginess, and clayed mineral. The body was medium to full, and carbonation was medium. Slurp and smack were nice off the top of the sip, while cream and froth were only okay beneath it. The feel was otherwise oily, sticky, and resinously drying to the tongue and palate, broken up warmly by just enough carbonation. The abv was appropriate, and drinkability was nice.

Overall, this was an extremely flavorful and dankly sticky beer. The wet hopping gives it all the zest and zip of its freshly-hopped brother, the American IPA, but tucked into the vessel of an American pale. We’ve been excited about this one for quite some time now, with all of our beer loving compatriots berating us for delaying our sampling of this fine beverage. We have finally found it, and the timing was right to drink it. We were not disappointed. This is just a wonderfully fresh and clean beer, with malty toast that easily meets the challenge of balancing such an otherwise hop-heavy deliver. On top of it all, it makes us really happy to see some of these “bigger”, or “classic”, craft breweries like Victory keeping things relevant, competitive, and innovative.

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Photo of fps_dean
4.62/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a light golden color with moderate head that disputes quickly.

Smells of very strong hops of every kind. Fruity hops, floral hops, piney hops, grassy hops, and with a hint of citrus. And did I mention it smells like hops?

Tastes much like it smells, but with some noticeable bready malts and maybe a hint of caramel. Also, do I taste a hint of tea?

Goes down rather smoothly, with medium body and moderate carbonation.

Overall, this is an exceptional brew. It seems to have an identity crisis, as it's a pale ale, but has the hops of a double IPA.

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Photo of beerbully
4.27/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into DFH IPA glass
Could not find a date on the bottle

L-Golden amber 1/2 inch white head mild to thick lacing that runs down the side of glass

S-Floral hops with some sweet tropical fruits (mango, papaya, pineapple) spicy herbal notes (sage, thyme) sweet bready malts

T-first impression is the spicy herbal hops that give way to the sweetness of the malts.......lingering taste of sweet tropical fruits and some orange or lemon peel that provides some bitterness in the finish.........this is a pale ale that meets a spicy, peppery saison........plenty of hops, malts, but has that spicy dry peppery notes of a saison.......great combination citrus, fruity hops, sweet bready malts, and dry herbal tea leaf notes

F-Medium body, mild carbonation with a crisp dry feel

O-Provides a variety of flavors in each sip as waves of hops, malts, and spices push through.........well done

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Photo of rab53
3.31/5  rDev -19.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Was looking forward to this one (bought 2 4-packs). Probably past its prime, but flavor was quite vegetal. Medium body. Will update on future bottles.

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Photo of Mikus
3.53/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

The more I sip this brew, the more unfolds. 12oz bottle poured into my Spiegelau. Enjoy by 3/10/15. Nice deep amber hue with a 1/2 finger of off-white head (little retention). Light nose, but an APA so can't compare to the Head Hunter I finished earlier. Some bitterness, clean nose, with some interesting dank notes. Lemongrass. Tea? Odd grassy taste on the front of the palate, finished clean and slightly bitter. Overall decent body and good malt profile. I wouldn't compare this to other fresh hop favorites (Celebration, Hop Stalker) but not sure it should be. Something missing? Not sure. Definitely worth a try. Victory. Indeed.

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Victory Harvest Ale from Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
91 out of 100 based on 150 ratings.