Gale's Jubilee Ale (2002) | George Gale & Company Ltd

very good
46 Reviews
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Gale's Jubilee Ale (2002)Gale's Jubilee Ale (2002)

Brewed by:
George Gale & Company Ltd
England, United Kingdom

Style: English Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 12.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by TheLongBeachBum on 12-14-2003

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 46 | Ratings: 52
Photo of cokes
4.8/5  rDev +26%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Still and beautiful, a jeweled, pumpkined auburn hue.
Rifles up the nose with tanned hide, rasberries, orange preserves, Shiraz, and fig jelly.
Malt bestrews the mouth with a thick layer of toffee and horse saddles. This is the foundation which the fruit shall emerge. Sour cherries, orange rinds, black and red berries, figs, and dates, and red grapes. Plum wine gains favor, as it conjoins a restatement of leather and toffee, and a lavish woodsiness comprised of sandalwood and oak. Vinousness lingers long through the finish, coupled with maple syrup and suede.
Glassy and glossy, and never fat in the mouth. It's far from brutish with it's alcohol, but a embering, warning glow is everpresent.
Finessed and capitvating. It makes Americanized versions (though I love them) seem barbaric and uncouth. Even Tom Hardy bows before this Queen.

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Photo of putnam
4.61/5  rDev +21%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Evidently this is flat, as the dark amber pour shows. Good color. Aromas are roasted and nutty, with a textured, feminine curvature. Various nut-based preparations occur on the nose: roasted Galicia-almond butter, Luebecker Marzipan, dark chocolate, red cherries soaked in Asbach Uralt, split oak, vanilla, EKU 28 eisbock (only flatter), toasted nutshell, roasted pitch, fresh cherry, ripe raspberry, sappy plum and pepper. It's quite a stunner. Buxom and sophisticated -- !
Even-textured and authoritative, like great Marsala, it bites on entry with orange-hued, roasted tannins. Sweet, near-eastern pastries, replete with pistachios and honey and rosewater, occur in an alcoholic bath of flavor. This is a remarkable acheivement for how utterly gasless it is. Fans of Metaxa, Calvados, Amontillado and botrytis-affected Gewuerztraminer should purchase every one of these that are available.
My only question is regarding the amount of trapped gas. It might seem conventional and delicious to close more in.

Shout out to Bay City River Dwellers!

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Photo of sulldaddy
4.59/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This brew comes in a corked bottle, already a sign I am in for something special. I pour it into a snifter and a nice glug, glug, glug emits from the bottle. The pour is a very rich clear mahogany with tints of garnet mixed in. No head to be found anywhere.
Aroma is rich and complex. I get caramel malts, raisins, plums, pears, bourbon hits and some strong alcohol esters.
First sip, very mild almost zero carbonation, thick body with almost syrupy texture. This is good!
Flavor is molasses, pears,plums, maple syrup, bourbon and no hint of alcohol for me.
This is an incredibly smooth brew for 12%abv and the complexity in the flavors is outstanding. I am stoked to have another cellaring right now and may go pick up a few more. This is an excellent beer!

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Photo of gory4d
4.49/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Came across this bottle randomly at New Beer -- there weren't any others, and it was old, so I grabbed it. Shared it out with some friends after dinner tonight. Notes:

It pours a slightly clouded, deep orange color, obviously thick. A few bubbles, but no head to speak of in the snifter. The nose -- and this is a nose, not just a smell -- is huge: big sweet toffee hit, rich malts, faint minerality, altogether complex and alluring. The taste comes up sweet, with more toffee, almost buttery, notes, hefty grain, and some bitterness in the finish. It's not as complex as the nose, but has plenty of depth to it; the alcohol is pretty well muted. It's a thick, viscous mouthful, as though someone took a good Scotch and maple syrup and stirred them together. Very easy going down. Better to sip it, I think. Wish I had another.

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Photo of Citadel82
4.42/5  rDev +16%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours dead flat like ummmm wine? Deep red mahogany color, poured carefully it is quite clear 2nd pour was slightly cloudly, the bottle has a thick cake of sediment in it when all is said and done.

Appearance is remakably translucent deep red mahogany,,, did I mention no head and no carbonation.

Aroma is ripe and dried fruits not even a whiff of alcohol. Reminded me of some of the fruitier red wines.

Taste is adventurous and complex. the wine analogy is both convenient and appropriate. Lots of fruit and some earthy spice. hints of wood as well. A rather dry and tea -like finish. Complimented some unsalted almonds rather nicely.

Mouthfeel was smooth and warm. Substantial and clingy.

Very drinkable. I may have to grab a few more bottles of this to save for a special occasion.

Taste is distinctly fruity and wine like

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Photo of rallison
4.4/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Had a bottle of this at Stuffed Sandwich. I do love that beer selection!

This was one of the smoothest barleywines I have had. Definitely seemed to be an English style barleywine - but with 5 years of aging, this was infinitely drinkable.

Vinous flavors - lots of brandy, grapes and some raisins. Nice touch of caramel. Never too sweet. The hops are now completely gone. No trace of the 12%. Wow. This is one of the easiest to drink barleywines I have had (and I love barleywines too!).

Mouthfeel is smooth and rich, but definitely far from being syrupy. Again, no alcohol is present, with just a touch of carbonation left.

Drinkability is too high. Seriously.

Recommended. A very easy drinking BW at this point.

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Photo of rtepiak
4.4/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

the pour is work. A collection of malt yeast at the bottom of the bottle that has lived there for a while. Nose of booze and honey. Palate of nice fig and acidic pollen qualities. An elixer quality of a malt magnitude. The honey sweet, pineapple, and brown sugar. Herbal mild bitter. Port sweet finish with a good hidden note. Grape tart but subtle... Apple pie malt. Overall consistent sugars and yeast protein development. Nice fluff on an eight year old beer. Good head. Good tart. Good malt.

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Photo of Suds
4.39/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a corked bottle, the beer has virtually no head. The tawny, woodsy colored almost completely still. The aroma is centered on alcohol and malt. It’s also very fruity, full of plumb and cherry. Also molasses. It’s a winy, warming, soft and solid beer. The alcohol is well hidden for the 12%. Sweet, spicy and full. Still, it’s not as complex as a log of English Barleywines. On the other hand, it’s dangerously drinkable and very enjoyable.

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Photo of DmanGTR
4.37/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Review from notes Aug 14, 09

A - Poured a cloudy amber brown, nearly garnet with little bits of sediment. No worries though. 4.0

S - Extremely malty and sweet. Huge aromas of figs and raisins, very ripe fruit, and a touch of maple syrup. Alcohol as well, but this is very nice. Like a fine sherry. 4.5

T - Very similar to the smell, with a lot of maple syrup and sweet maltiness. No hop presence. Immense taste of rum-soaked raisins. Similar to Thomas Hardy's Ale from 1994 but not as smooth and rich. 4.5

M - Rich and full bodied, no carbonation at all. Dry finish. 4.5

D - Definitely a sipper. But oh so good! 4.0

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Photo of BeerBuilder
4.32/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours to a tawny brown color with no carbonation. The aroma is sweet, alcoholic, fruity; like fruit cake and raisin bread. The flavor is sweet, raisin-like with grapes and malt. It is also somewhat fruity with an alcoholic finish. This is a full-bodied beer with a complex aroma and flavor. A very tasty beer. Top notch.

Sampled 4/2/04

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Photo of ADR
4.3/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A rather limp pour, no real head to speak of. Ruddy brown and opaque, blackish sediment on the bottom of the glass. Thin rings for lace. Rich sherry-like aroma, deep and building, with those vomitous characteristics of the biggest Barleywines. Mouthfeel is plenty sturdy, carbonation is low but still there. Pretty impressive combination of woodiness, dark fruits and spices with a clove-like sharpness and huge impact. Molasses rum senses, lots of raisin and prune. Thick and sticky at the back end and with a load of aftertaste alcohol on finish. Gingery, winey, and thick, huge sticky B-Wines are becoming not real favorites of mine, but still, an impressive beer and pretty much what you would expect from its make-up.

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Photo of GClarkage
4.24/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

03/05/07- 1000th review celebrating the birth of my first child on March 1st. Purchased at Plumpjack's in San Francisco in 2004.

Presentation- 9.3oz bottle. Squat in size and shape. Celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Queen of England. 2002 release, poured into my Old Stock Ale tulip.

Appearance- Copper-brandy colored hue. The very smallest of head which evaporates on contact pretty much. Looks kinda like a flat soda. Not unlike most English styles of this type. Cork pops out without a sound. Leaves behind a slight trace of lace.

Smell- Very brandy-esque in the nose. Dark sugary muddled fruits abound. Prunes and rasins are predominant. Mild alcohol whiff with a hearty vanilla following. Quite nice.

Taste- Fruit medly when swished around. Pippen apples, figs, prunes and rasins. Caramel candy sweetness, but not thick. Small hop bite in the finish. Alcohol is very well hidden. Could be a bit thicker in texture to draw my attention a bit more.

Mouthfeel- Very very slight carbonation level. Cask like for sure. Very warming with a mild slick mouthcoating.

Drinkability- Was expecting a much sweeter and succulent brew from the nose. Very restrained. Tasty, but doesn't quite grab me by the balls as I was expecting. Still a quality beer that I am glad I tried and would buy again if ever seen.

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Photo of BEERchitect
4.2/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very nice and well aged. Much like Thomas Hardy's brews, but with a ligher malt base and deeper esters. The pour brings a brandy-like appearance with stiff legging, no head retention, and a seriously viscous pour. Color range from deep chesnut to golden highlights. Aromas of all the dark, dehydrated fruits that we beer-folks use to describe such esters, all woven into a rum-like alcohol sweetness. A touch of dusty, musty notes dance around the nose. Flavors are much the same, but more reliant upon the sweet malts to cary the esters and other yeast-derived flavors. Lightly textured despite the added weight of low carbonation. Finishes with a long, sweet, lingering taste of figs and rum. Definately a sipper. Thanks Jeremy.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.15/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours flat, as is to be expected from the higher alcohol Gale's beers, with no head and no lacing. And that's OK for a barleywine. It's attractive, regardless, with its hazy reddish-copper body and glowing ruby highlights. The nose expresses caramel, alcohol, and a lightly vinous note. It's viscous and smooth across the palate, but not particularily creamy. Caramel appears first in the flavor, followed by darker fruits (fig, plum, raisin), and finally a quick splash of hops before the alcohol comes forward at the swallow and lingers in the aftertaste. It's an interesting beer, and it works well as an after-dinner drink or nightcap, but there are much better barleywines out there (English or otherwise). As far as Gale's goes, my recommendation remains their Prize Old Ale.

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Photo of Westsidethreat
4.14/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Uncorked May 25, 2006

A: ZERO carbonation. Appears like cider but glides like oil...Not generally pleasing but ok for this style.

S: Wow...lots of brandy on the nose. Lots of oak. Earthy aromas with brown sugar, caramel...Almost like fortified wine. Pungent. Unique. This will be interesting.

T: What a trip. Begins malty like a sherry...then things get wierd. Notes of cardboard, grapefruit, day old coffee, and loads of black pepper. Scores of oak resins and malty menthol on the front of the tongue. Not much alcohol vapors though...that's what four years of aging does I suppose.

M: Thin yet sticky. No carbonation makes it weak on the tongue but the oily base makes it somewhat thick.

D: Every sip is an adventure. Not many beers out there this truly complex. Its past its prime but well worth the trip.

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Photo of jdhilt
4.12/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours without any head (bottle was straight up) so the glass is squeaky clean. Cloudy amber color with yeast left in bottle. No carbonation and medium bodied. Nose is alcohol and vinious. Starts on the sweet side not cloying, the high abv is not noticeable, some sourness (raisin??) is there, great barleywine. The 275ml bottle is not enough, $5.49 from Oliver's Beverage Albany, NY.

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Photo of dogfooddog
4.12/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

cork comes out with a small pop. Beer pours with virtually no carbonation; typical for this brewery's corked products. Nose is a rich, deep, barleywine odor with just a hint of that pervasive sweetness I associate with over-aged ale. Very inviting. No alcohol in the nose despite huge 12% abv.

Taste is a lot of sweet winey malt with just a small dose of hops in the initial taste. The over-old beer sweetness is fairly subtle, this beer at 4 years old remains very drinkable. Despite the 12% alcohol is only faintly visible in the taste. I don't know if this beer touched wood but it certainly tastes like it.

A very nicely crafted product from this now-defunct brewery, a style of beer of which very few examples remain and almost none at this ABV.

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Photo of oberon
4.11/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a murky borwn with some red hue with absolutely no head to speak of here but was expected,great aromas of cocoa some sugar cookie dough and orange with some noticable nuttieness.A real sipping brew here and fruity to the hilt big orange flavors along with some sour cherry and I have to say it does have this vodka and cranberry flavor to it the first I have ever experienced that in a beer,as the beer warms a real nutty presence come out as well.A nice before bed beer very enjoyable and exremely complex.

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Photo of feloniousmonk
4.07/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

My last Gale bottle from a recent splurge and I hope this one reverses the trend of negativity and gives me something to rejoice over, we hope, we hope...
I pour, and observe the color, a nice, dark plum, but very little carbonation, practically no head, and I glance at the bottle, "12 %, eh, we may be in for a ride!"
Aroma: Fruity, though faintrich in cherries, berries, grapes, and lately unfolding, becoming richer, deeper, darker, more pointed and potent. Spicy, sweet, containing a juicy sting in the nose.
Taste: Mmmmm, warm on the mouth, lushly malty, fully fruity, with small hop content, but not remiss with flavor, and the booze rides high, washing all over the taste and cascading upwards into the brain before long. Full-bodied, good texture, warm, sweet, cognac-y finish, this is a luxuriant ale, perfect for frosty January nights, keeping one company against harsh, disconsolate distractions. Rich flavor continues to loll up into the palate again and again, tossing rewards aplenty into the senses. Yum, I keep thinking, yum, yummy, yum, additional tastes enter in, and I'm getting anise and spices, cinnamon, along with the strawberry and cherry... this is a good one! My initial fears of disappointment are allayed, and I relax in the undertow as it washes over me, spreading pleasure throughout...
Again, though...worth $5.29 for a mere 9.3 ounces? Perhaps not, but this is one time that the monetary gamble was at least closer to the reward on the tongue.

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Photo of lackenhauser
4.02/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy amber color. No carbonation at all here. Big, vinuous, wine lika aroma. When I sniffed it in the bottle I figured it would be a port or burgundy color thats how wine like it is. Somewhat caramel like and vanilla. Sour and tart flavors upfront. Musty and earth like flavors. Raison notes. Very complex overall. Slight alcohol harshness in the finish. Great body on this puppy. Well balanced against the complex flavors. A very drinkable and enjoyable beer. A true sipper. The 12% is very well masked. Worth trying and even laying some down I would think.

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Photo of kbub6f
3.99/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Violent pour, no head on my hazy, dark tea brown beer. Interesting nose: sweet + walnutty + raisins + bread + spice = bread pudding. Waf! Tangy, spicy, sour, butter and raisins in front. Rotting fruit in the hugely intense, flat, oily middle. Tangy alcohol and fermenting raisins in the finish. Holy Cow! This is like fermented Christmas pudding. A strange, powerful, Christmasy drink. Shocking at first, but a very pleasurable experience. This is why we don't stop looking for new beers.

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Photo of TheLongBeachBum
3.97/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: The usual typical looking Gales short bottle that was corked and sealed with a black plastic wrap. The label is dark purple with silver writing. Listed as “Jubilee Ale 1952-2002” with an advertised strength of 12.0% ABV. Specially brewed to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the reign of Queen Elizabeth II.

This was the last of the beers that I shared with fellow BA’s Davo and DavidBanner during our short trip to the Stuffed Sandwich in San Gabriel last night.

Appearance: Poured with some carbonation, this was a very viscous brew that had a thick dark brown hazy body with little, if any, head. It has a very mundane appearance that does not look inviting.

Nose: Lots of toffee and caramel with some alcohol notes. Figs and Sultanas are evident also.

Taste: Sweet malts and rich thick toffee start the beer. The middle is a warming emulsion of raisins, plums and figs. The beer wraps up with a melted chocolate toffee and rich caramel finish. Lovely tastes that certainly improve when the beer is warmed.

Mouthfeel: Solid beer, immense presence from the beers body, but not that much from the alcohol actually. Smooth and rich with a thick feel on the tongue.

Drinkability: Easily partaken, even after several other beers, it was a pleasant sipping beer. Nice, thick and warming I thoroughly enjoyed wrapping the night up at the Stuffed Sandwich with this one. The 12% is well hidden.

Overall: Thankfully it smells and tastes much better than it looks. A very pleasing warming brew, which is a true sipper and finished the night off the right way. It went well with DavidBanner’s Fries surprisingly. I am not sure how much of this brew made it Stateside, or whether it is still available, but I was quite impressed with this.

Thanks to Sam at the Stuffed Sandwich for this one.

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Photo of tmoneyba
3.92/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle shared by shigadeyo.

Poured clear copper color with a diminshed and virtually no lacing. Moderate sweet complex dark fruity aroma. Medium body with a thick smooth sticky texture and flat carbonation. Moderate complex dark fruity sweet flavor with a medium to heavy sweet and alcohol burn finish that was moderate to long lasting.

This is a good complex beer.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.92/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

"Premium bottle-conditioned ale. Brewed, matured and bottled in Horndean, Hampshire, U.K. to celebrate the Golden Jubilee of Her Majesty the Queen."

--rear label

Bright ochre that became dull, murky ochre with orange-cherry edges as the beer from the bottom of the bottle was added. Like most beer from ol' George, if memory serves, there's almost no head formation. At the moment, there's only a thin rim of beige where the upper edge of the liquid meets the glass.

The word that first comes to mind when assessing the nose is 'earthy'. The beer smells like dried autumn fruits and dried autumn leaves. There's also a hint of caramel and a wee dram of Irish whisky (since there's no peatiness that would make it Scotch whiskey-like).

Jubilee Ale is typical of beer from GG & C in that it's anything but bombastic. Five years in the bottle will do that, but I doubt that it was ever a rip snorter, even when newly bottled. In that respect, it's a quintessential English-style barleywine that is impressively gentle and well-mannered; especially given the ABV. Stately is another word that fits.

Caramel and butterscotch make up the malty portion of the flavor profile, lending the beer an English old ale or even a wee heavy vibe. Christmas fruitcake fruits make up the rest: candied cherries, dried orange peel, dates and golden raisins; all plumped and glistening after soaking in Bushmills. I was going to say Calvados since there's a definite apple brandy flavor as well. This is yummy stuff.

I hate to be too hard on the mouthfeel, but it just isn't hefty enough. It sure does make drinking a breeze, though. More substance would allow more flavor intensity and more flavor linger... which would, in turn, probably result in higher scores all around.

Gale's Jubilee Ale is a delicious 'little' sipper that needed to have set its sights higher. The rawness of the Sex Pistols' version of God Save The Queen wouldn't have worked, but polite and respectful will only get a barleywine so far.

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Photo of ChrisBowers
3.87/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a snifter from the 275ml bottle. No carbination or head. Initial smell was somewhat caramel, port wine, raisiny. Taste... Way better as it warms up. When cold it was tart and sour with very little complexity. As it warmed it developed some subtle port and calvados notes, prunes, figs, raisins. Not as complex as a Hardy's or JW Lees, but pretty good. Very viscous mouthfeel. Probably the best Gale's beer I've had, though I wish I had drank it a little fresher. Gale's beers don't seem to age very well.

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Gale's Jubilee Ale (2002) from George Gale & Company Ltd
3.81 out of 5 based on 52 ratings.
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