Manchester Star Ale | J.W. Lees & Co (Brewers) Ltd

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BA SCORE
89
very good
109 Reviews
Manchester Star AleManchester Star Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
J.W. Lees & Co (Brewers) Ltd
United Kingdom (England) | website

Style: English Strong Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.30%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by yen157 on 03-17-2005

BEER STATS
Reviews:
109
Ratings:
174
Avg:
3.98
pDev:
9.55%
 
 
Wants:
17
Gots:
7
For Trade:
0
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Reviews: 109 | Ratings: 174
Photo of fx20736
4.45/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

I don't remember when I bought this, probably late 2014/ early 2015. Served at cellar temp in a Duvel tulip.

Look: very dark,, almost black, thick mocha head.

Smell: very prune like with licorice also,

Taste: prunes and a light charred roast.

Feel: soft, supple, smooth

overall: a delicious, tasty sipper. So easy to drink

 328 characters

Photo of eweneek83
4.46/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours an opaque brown, the head modest and creamy tan, as it evaporates, the lacing provides a concealing curtain to drape the glass.

Nose has a sweet malt aroma, molasses, caramel, and a touch of earthiness, with the roasted grain present.

taste -Start is rich in sweet malt, a bit of bitterness at the back; touch of bitterness, top is rich and full in feel to the palate. Finish has a benignant acidity, the hops understated but noticeable, quite dry and sweet until the end.

mouthfeel - very nice, a smooth full body with a creamy carbonation. no aftertaste

drinkability - exceptional. Just try it.

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Photo of drpimento
4.47/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Luscious beer. Full rich - fetid? Definitely not the usual porter. Lots of character. Huge aroma of all manner of dark things... coffee, chocolate, dark ripe fruits, earth, burnt sugar, old leather. Gnarly beer. But good. Actually a velvety texture. Great finish. Very close to the commercial description. Love to try it on draft.

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Photo of Cthulhusquid
4.52/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Look: Poured into a Duvel tulip. Solid black body, minimal to no head.

Smell: Booze soaked dark fruit, caramel, brown sugar, and a note of coffee.

Taste: Caramel, Brown sugar, earthy/nutty which might be hops, and a note of coffee. The dark fruits are much less pronounced.

Feel: Low carbonation, medium body. Creamy with a balanced finish.

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Photo of bruachan
4.55/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

skinnypinky of nice bone-colored (not the desert-bleached kind), tight foam. patches of opaque lacing. the liquid itself is not quite opaque: deep chestnut

excellent roasty, chicory aromas escape the brew. this beer smells like brown should smell! bread crust

surprisingly, hops are the first (or at least near to) thing i taste. a tasteful (i.e. not excessive) roasty sweetness takes over promptly. mostly dry and certainly all about the nutty/bready flavors. and since we don't want too much malt holding up those dynamite flavors, we ask the hops the do the work. they hold everything together

man, what a classy beer!

 624 characters

Photo of ccrida
4.55/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

550ml poured into an imperial pint, Great Manchester Star is a dark, brown murky black with a massive, long lasting, burnt tan head that leaves heavy lace, big chunky rings. Gorgeous. A fresh bottle from a new shipment, served at cellar temp.

Smell is strong, fresh raisins, rum, honey, prunes, very nice. Rice pudding, yum. A little sweet, but cut by the seltzer like lightness, a great winter/desert beer feel overall.

Taste is also very robust, big sugary malts, dark but not roasty. Honey, chocolate, caramel, cream, and leather, a touch of tobacco, diacetyl and pine tar, wow! This is a fantastic porter, I really love the depth of the dark malts without being to sweet or burnt.

Mouthfeel is slick, full, viscous but not too heavy, but really coats the tongue for a lingering aftertaste.

Drinkability is great, wow am I loving this beer! I could drink these all night, and will have to next I hang with Simon, who would love them also. I would take this over pretty much any RIS stout out there, and appreciate the price and reasonable strength. This is really a fantastic beer, without even considering the historical tie-in and back story. I love how satisfying it is, I'm in no hurry to finish this, and would surly have a second if I could!

 1,258 characters

Photo of bigsilky
4.56/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Wow, really impressed with this one. Poured into a crown-viking imperial pint glass. An off-white head forms and settles to a velvety blanket that perches itself atop the beer for a short time...

Enough with the poetry. I absolutley love this beer. I am usually a nut for porters and this is spot on. The dark-reddish hue that seems to entrance the imbiber. Winey notes of caramel apple and minerals spiral into a smoky english malt body. Just enough hops on to bitter and work with the judicious carbonation to give a snappy finish. Was the water Burtonized???

Who cares, the only thing that sucks is the price, but I think it's well worth it.

 650 characters

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.67/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

J.W. Lees's Manchester Star Ale pours an almost completely opaque, dark mahogany body that borders on black but doesn't quite make it there. The glowing ruby-crimson highlights along the sides and base of the pint are slightly muddled (bottle-conditioned?); and it's short head of creamy ivory foam rests lazily atop.

The nose is intriguing with notes of molasses, toffee, sweet dark chocolate, and some mild dark fruit.

It's medium-full body and gentle carbonation leave it dextrinous and smooth in the mouth.

The flavor is richer than the nose indicates, and it's clear that there's Maris Otter malts being used here. The dark caramel, molasses, demerara sugar, toffee malt appears upfront and dominates throughout. It's sugary sweet but balanced by a solid, underlying bitterness and some leafy and grassy hop flavors.

There's an earthy/mineralistic character to it, as well as some leathery, almost barnyard-like character; and I wonder if they've perhaps added some Brettanomyces in the secondary to give it some "antique", or "authentic" quality. Additionally, perhaps there's a small amount of smoked malt added to give it a touch of something extra... although that might be coming from just a touch of roasted barley or even very dark kilned chocolate malt such as Paul's.

It's dark fruitiness arises towards the swallow, and it's juicy like a plum or prune, but there's also a kind of bitter-skin quality to it as well. It fades rather easily in the finish, however, with alternating residual flavors that include the molasses, leafy hops, minerals, leather, dark fruit skin, toffee, and even a hint of coffee.

Overall, this is a really intriguing, complex, satisfying, and enjoyable pint that would make a great finish to a night; or perhaps an after-dinner drink, or even cigar-beer. Very nice!

 1,830 characters

Photo of drperm
5/5  rDev +25.6%

A: dark dark brown, nearly black save for the caramel-russet hue that's evident when you hold it up to the light. Dissipating brown head that lingers as a thin layer.
Sm: Toffee, madeira, warm spices, caramel, Christmas pudding
T: Complex, smoky, toffee (again), raisins, with a nice English-hop backbone that keeps it from being sweeet. Excellent complex, bitter finish.
P:Lingers pleasantly on the palate, encouraging you to take another sip. At over 7%, it's a tiger lurking in the shadows, but a friendly, cuddly tiger.
O: The best beer I've had IN A WHILE. Original and classic at the same time. I'd put this up against a robust steak or venison dinner OR a dessert such as creme brulee.
There will be more of these in my future. It's f%^&ing righteous.

 761 characters

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Manchester Star Ale from J.W. Lees & Co (Brewers) Ltd
89 out of 100 based on 109 ratings.
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