Harveys Old Ale | Harvey & Son Ltd.

Harveys Old AleHarveys Old Ale
9 Ratings
Harveys Old AleHarveys Old Ale

Brewed by:
Harvey & Son Ltd.
England, United Kingdom

Style: Old Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 3.60%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by rastaman on 08-06-2002

Bros Score:
View: Beers | Events
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 9 |  Reviews: 5
Photo of Spike
3.5/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

From a 500ml bottle.
L: Dark brown with a couple of off-white spots for a head.
S: Black treacle...but very faint.
T: Smoke, dates, burnt sugar, dark fruit. Moderate sweetness with very low hoppy bitterness.
F: Slightly thin body with no carbonation and a sweet finish.
O: Complex, attractive flavours that fall flat because appearance, smell and mouthfeel are so thin. Much prefer old ales with a higher ABV. 3.6% makes this version easy drinking but ultimately empty.

 470 characters

Photo of Calzyne
3.96/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of chinchill
3.72/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

From a cask at the 2016 Atlanta Cask Ale Festival.

Murky dark brown body with a bubbly light tan head.
Decent aroma despite some of notes. The malty flavor is better and has hints of raisins and vague dark fruits.
Near medium body.

 232 characters

Photo of CwrwAmByth
3.53/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of steverx8
3.72/5  rDev +5.1%

Photo of Rochefort10nh
4/5  rDev +13%

Photo of CanuckRover
3.7/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Cask at The Royal Oak in London.

Mahogany pour. Not much of a head, thin film around the glass. Thin lines mark progress.

Loads of dark fruit on the nose, this will be a malt-fest.

Dates up front with some red fruit sweetness. Earthy flavours give it a darker character, holding the sweetness back from, say, red ale territory. Clean finish.

This old ale is a session champ. Quite flavourful, but also pretty utilitarian, not that there's anything wrong with that.

 468 characters

Photo of wl0307
3.4/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Back in my "Brightonian days" as a doctoral student, I frequented a local pub (The Mitre, a Harveys' tied house) and this ale (on cask) was featured there during the winter seasons almost every time I walked in. Naturally I love it; I always cherished the soft, winey texture, buttressed by the mysterious yeasty magic and generous amount of Sussex hops as a solid backbone. But this is the first bottled (filtered) version that I have ever tried - can't complain since I don't live in Sussex anymore.

Got this bottle at the Harveys Brewery Shop three months ago, it comes in a 275ml slim, classic brown bottle, subtitled "Exhibition Brown". BB OCT 09, served cool in a pint-size jug (the same way I had my many a "pint of Old" at my local).

A: pours a dark mahogany hue with light carbonation and a beige fluffy head retreating gradually to a thin blanket.
S: a perfumy fruity-maltiness dominates the nose, quite hard to describe - it rings a bell of Chinese dried red-dates and red-bean paste plus some flowery hints (jasmine) but not exactly that, but definitely the magical work of the Harveys' open-fermentation tanks interacting with spicy-aromatic hops (possibly Styrian Golding) and a rich malty base.
T: a lightly spritzy entry of red bean paste again, with hints of brown sugar and brown malts... then, slowly, the rich fruity-malty theme expands, full of sweet prunes, earthy hops, faintly nutty malts and a firmly biscuity hint of pale malts, finishing with a mixed palate of Harveys' unique yeasty flavour (with an intriguing kick of "cobweb") and lightly dry and faintly spicy Sussex hops.
M&D: if served on cask, the hop elements would come in abundance in the form of a dry-ish bitter aftertaste, in an intriguing contrast to the quiet sour-sweet malty foretaste, although here, in this bottle, hops are not overly subdued, either. A soft, easy-to-quaff, medium-bodied old ale that one should try when it's served fresh on cask - this little bottle fails to do it justice I'm afraid.

 2,002 characters

Photo of rastaman
2.32/5  rDev -34.5%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Low ABV once agian, sweet jammy raisiny nose and flavour, thin and watery texture aswell, virtually no head whatsoever, and a bit sticky and sweet for me, no bitter bite in the finish, really short finish.

 205 characters

Harveys Old Ale from Harvey & Son Ltd.
Beer rating: 3.54 out of 5 with 9 ratings
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.