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Harvest Ale (Limited Edition) | J.W. Lees & Co (Brewers) Ltd

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Harvest Ale (Limited Edition)Harvest Ale (Limited Edition)
BA SCORE
4.24/5
Exceptional
1,530 Ratings
Harvest Ale (Limited Edition)Harvest Ale (Limited Edition)
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
J.W. Lees & Co (Brewers) Ltd
England, United Kingdom
jwlees.co.uk

Style: English Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Todd on 12-18-2000

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#864
Reviews:
865
Ratings:
1,530
pDev:
13.68%
Bros Score:
4.6
 
 
Wants:
269
Gots:
226
Trade:
14
HISTOGRAM
 
View: Beers | Events
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,530 |  Reviews: 865
Photo of warmbier804
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Photo of aasher
3.95/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of durlta
4.26/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2005 vintage. Super sweet, appoaching mead territory. Full of chunks. Absolutely no head. Golden brown. Tastes and smells of carmel, honey, bread, fried bananas. Tons of flavor. No carbonation.

 193 characters

Photo of fthegiants
3.75/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Mesa512
4.71/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of LooseMoose1978
4.36/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of gobuccos
4.09/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of infinitebruner
3.61/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

August 15, 2015

9.3 oz bottle, snifter

2010 Vintage

A – Medium brown with a lot of copper, slightly mahogany. Thick, and slightly hazy/cloudy. Basically no head, a quick off-white foam-up and then gone.

S – Raisins, caramel, brown sugar, some sherry and fruity alcohol esters. Rich, but not as dense as I would expect.

T – Toffee and raisins, with a spicy note I can’t quite put a finger on, almost vegetal and garden pepper-like. Not particularly pleasant. Sherry and esters here as well.

M – Carbonation is light though definitely noticeable. Body is full, thick. The alcohol is still warming tipping towards hot.

O – Everything that should make a great English barleywine is here, but the odd vegetal flavor and too-prominent alcohol throw the entire thing off. Unfortunate.

DISCLOSURE: Because it's a big, complex beer, it's hard for me to say one way or the other if this was infected or if it's just a flaw in the beer. I'm unsure enough to allow the review to stand, for now.

 1,015 characters

Photo of DeadeyeOTDO
4/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of grover37
3.77/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of t2grogan
3.75/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of HaveUSeenMyCellar
4.74/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of SaisonRichBiere
4.43/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2011 Vintage, consumed on 8-12-2015

Pours rich amber with carbonation in the pour but almost none in the glass. Smells like caramel, candied nuts, brown sugar, figs, pralines, and a tart vinous note. Tastes like caramel, butterscotch, candied pecans and cashews, sweet wheat cereals, as it warms, it tastes exactly like a vintage Kellogg's cereal called Nut and Honey Crunch. Very tasty beer. Feel is slick and sugary. Overall very tasty. I prefer this to some of the barrel-treated versions. Great beer.

Cheers!

 521 characters

Photo of Williaar
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of FreshZ
4.26/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of XmnwildX12
3.5/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of SierraFlight
3.57/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Photo of jschott75
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of jpd026
4.8/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

from 2012, *homer simpson drool*

32 characters

Photo of funkel81
3.68/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of BradenMK
4.53/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

The hazy apricot color was pretty brilliant, to be sure, but the smell was perplexing. At first I thought I'd accidentally picked up a wild ale. And, hell, maybe there is some spontaneous fermentation going on in this beast, I wouldn't know, but the thing smelled like bread at first. Not sweet bread, but, like, buttered white toast or something. It has a somewhat sour note to it like sourdough. It put me off at first, but then I poured it from the bottle into a glass.

And everything changed.

The taste is incredible. Massive caramel bomb, to the point that I almost feel like I'm tasting some salt in this. Certainly very sweet up front, reminiscent of sherry but not nearly so raisin-y, though a little bit of white grape juice. Let's call it vinous but without getting raisin-y, if that makes sense, but then it flips a little and the huge caramel/sherry notes fall to earthy hops and a surprising smoky, burnt honey/sugar character. So you have a strong beginning and end, two very distinct vibes, and yet in the middle is more complexity than I recall ever enjoying in a barleywine. Great, great stuff.

Somewhat overcarbonated, not that I expected it to be flat, but there was juuuuuust a bit too many prickles in the mouth to render this beer as smoothly as I feel it ought to be. Medium but thick, though the hops and the smoke (wherever that comes from) cuts the sweetness so much that it never becomes cloying. Heaviness is less than some of my favorite imperial stouts and yet I sipped on this a lot slower than any beers in recent tastings.

The smell certainly improved as it warmed, going from a savory, yeasty bread to that caramelly/chocolatey cake that most people were talking about.

Overall, the most interesting, complex barleywine I've had, possibly, ever. I'd have to give Sucaba another taste test (as when I had it I was barely a young pup when it came to craft beer, though I loved it), but I'm confident this is just as good and I imagine probably better. Amazing stuff, if you see it under $8, even for just 9.3 oz, buy it. It's the only beer in that price range I've ever bought that I'd say was worth it.

 2,140 characters

Photo of ryanflc
4.05/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of beast464
4.4/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of wethorseblanket
4.24/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a clear copper with only a trace of thin white cap. Aroma of malts, alcohol and a bit of smoke. Sweet caramel and smoky flavor on warming. Full body. A slow sipper.

 171 characters

Photo of Bradaplast
4.47/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Harvest Ale (Limited Edition) from J.W. Lees & Co (Brewers) Ltd
Beer rating: 4.24 out of 5 with 1,530 ratings
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