Trader Joe's 2015 Vintage Ale | Trader Joe's Brewing Company

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Trader Joe's 2015 Vintage AleTrader Joe's 2015 Vintage Ale
BA SCORE
3.96/5
Very Good
94 Ratings
Trader Joe's 2015 Vintage AleTrader Joe's 2015 Vintage Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Trader Joe's Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by brandoman63 on 11-02-2015

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

BEER STATS
Ranking:
-
Reviews:
38
Ratings:
94
pDev:
6.06%
 
 
Wants:
1
Gots:
37
Trade:
0
HISTOGRAM
 
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 94 |  Reviews: 38
Photo of Sammy
3.83/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of claminat420
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

750ml bottle poured heavily into a imperial stout glass. best before 09/04/18 then J04152020QFL marked on shoulder of bottle.

Appearance- typical stout color with a tan head. frothy head at first then dissipates quickly with minimal lacing.

Aroma- raison, prune, maybe burnt caramel. slight booze.

Taste- malty just like the aroma. abv is more pronounced in the smell and more muted in the flavor.

Mouthfeel- solid medium body. good carbonation. alil slick.

Drinkability- easily going to kill the two 750ml bottles tonight.

Overall- i was worried about the quick head disappearing that this brew would be flat but it's not. it's pretty much dead on description. glad i aged this to near best before date.

P.S. why isn't this listed under unibroue when on the back of the bottle it says brewed by unibroue chambly, quebek, canada?

 840 characters

Photo of chinchill
3.93/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle with a Unibroue cork and cage seal served in a pint glass. BB date of 3-10-2018.

Loosening the cork immediately resulted in a vigorous pop but no ale rose out the top of the bottle. A gentle pour produced a moderate size, overly bubbly head that slowly settled to a durable, creamy, beige top. The very dark reddish brown body is clear but essentially opaque in the glass.

Good mouthfeel with a creamy smooth feel in a full body. Lively but soft carbonation. Some alcohol warmth.

The aroma is spicy, yeasty and complex. Moderately strong.

Flavor: dark fruits and spices come to the fore in a complex array of spice, yeast, grain and fruit notes. Nice but too much spicing. Bitter and sweet present in about equal measure.

 747 characters

Photo of Sweffin
3.75/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of gobuccos
3.88/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of LiquidAmber
4.04/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured into a Gulden Draak tulip. Pours a very dark reddish brown with fine, two finger light khaki head with great retention and lacing. Aroma of bready lightly caramel malt, plums, figs, Belgian yeast and clove. Flavor is dry caramel malt, fresh and dried plums, fruitcake, figs and dates, Belgian yeast and clove. Nice light to moderately creamy body with sharp carbonation. I've been buying this now for a decade and believe that this improves for two to three years, then levels off and starts to get a little cardboardy. This bottle in the sweet spot, and shows a little mellowing of the flavors, although the clove is still quite dominant. The best improvement is to the body, which has a nice, mouth pleasing light creaminess to it that adds a lot to the already full flavors. Although this ale differs slightly year to year, it seems like pretty much the same recipe. This is a particularly good one and has become quite balanced and integrated with time. This is not only a very nice holiday ale, but is a great bargain at Trader Joe's price. Unibroue does a fine job on these.

 1,087 characters

Photo of gandres
3.86/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Wednesday, December 21, 2016 10:09 PM
750 mL bottle poured to tulip glass
Sight: Pale, bright yellowish, large off white foam, hazy
Smell: fragrant, fruity, nice aroma
Taste: very good, balance - medium to low bitterness
Mouthfeel: very good, long follow through, bitter after taste
Overall: excellent beer, repeat, look for yes

 335 characters

Photo of paulish
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Beginner2
4.26/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

I bought 3 of this vintage. I couldn't wait to have the first during the 2015 holidays. A quick disappointment. It needed to mellow. I had the second about four months later. The blending of flavors was hardly complete, tho clearly better.
This last one I had 18 months before TJ's Best By date of 3 years and it was more than fine.

Keeps its Looks, even by the second day. Aroma is still all fruit. Taste is surprisingly not sweet, very balanced. Feel is luscious (and I don't say that often.)
OA. Any BSDA that costs this little and mellows this much is my friend... and I hope for many more years. Maybe I should buy a case of 2016 and give it as presents !

 663 characters

Photo of atrocity
3.5/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of Derek
3.84/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black with a tan head, thin ring of retention.

Aroma is sweet and spicy, alcohol is hidden.

Cola-like caramel sweetness is up front and lingers. Not a bad brew, but that kinda spoils it for me.

Moderate body has a light residual sweetness, with a dry finish.

 262 characters

Photo of TheHopsman
4.19/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of token_23223
3.94/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of DamienI
3.74/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of CantDrinkEveryBeer
3.95/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Not a huge fan of raisins, which had quite a noticeable presence in the flavor of this ale, but enjoyable nonetheless. Poured into a pint glass, the look is nice and dark, and the fruity, spiced aroma is very pleasant and a good match to the taste. Good mouthfeel thanks to the carbonation. Overall, a great ale, and something worth picking up each year when a new vintage is brewed.

 383 characters

Photo of bowzer4birdie
4.18/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of FBarber
4.35/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Tsar_Riga
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Dark body, black brown opaque, tan head, extremely persistent. Some lacing.

S - Yeast, some mild sugar hints, plums and apple, pear and spice.

T - Follows the nose, but a bit of mild bitterness in the close, slight warmth.

M - Decent carbonation, some alcohol warmth.

O - Such a fine bottle, at a rock bottom price. Tasty, warm.

 338 characters

Photo of HabaJohn
4.08/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of godawgs
4.03/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of psoriasaurus
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of That_Bearded_Guy
3.88/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of aufie
3.99/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of SFC21
3.85/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Avatar113
4.06/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

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Trader Joe's 2015 Vintage Ale from Trader Joe's Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.96 out of 5 with 94 ratings