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 connecticutpoet
3.24/5  rDev -15%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bought this because it's been at the packy for 5 months and never been touched, and I finally read the ABV and decided it was worth the $4.99. Well, was it? Let's see...

This was a corked, bottle conditioned ale, but it poured out red and clear into my chalice. However, at the end of the glass, I noticed particles in the bottom of the glass. There was absolutely no head to speak of.

The aroma was of rich strong malt, fruits, oak, and hints of whisky and brandy. That boded quite well for the experience to come.

Unfortunately, the flavor was rather... well, flat, and not just in lack of carbonation. There was a taste mainly of oak tannins, slightly bitter, and strong slightly roasted malt. Hints of brandy worked their way in. But it seemed rather two-dimensional, just lacked the kind of fullness one would expect from a true barleywine. Maybe it's because it was 3 years old, and well aged... maybe not.

Mouthfeel was smooth but flat, as mentioned before, and somewhat bland.

Drinkability... well, I am glad I tried it, as it was quite a bit different than any other beer I've had before, but I don't think it was worth $4.99.

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Photo of bditty187
3.6/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From notes…

Bronze with amber-gold influences, it kind of looks like apple cider, cloudiness encompasses the liquid. The head was poorly developed, the bubbles were white, and at the apex the head was nothing more then a foam cap. Head retention was poor, the bubbles faded quickly away, all that was left was a thin collar, and the liquid was left naked in the middle. I guess some of this “flatness” is do to the high abv. There was no subsequent lacing. Overall the appearance is pleasant enough if not unremarkable.

The nose is exactly what I was hoping for… the first sniff says, “I am an English Barleywine.” Well, then ma’am, what is that vodka aroma behind the delicious sweet, caramely malts and dark fruit? I also smell oranges and raisins soaked in a bready, rum mixture. There is also a hint of spice at the finish. The aromas I could smell were lovely and dead-on for the style, however the potency was really lacking here. Even at near room temperature I really have to work at it to smell it. That is a disappointment. I want my Barleywines to be loud. Nevertheless the nose is inviting.

The first sip went straight to my belly… it is feeling a tad warm down there! The abv is hidden on the tongue, for the most part, but this is a serious belly warmer. In reality this beer is not that flavorful, yes it is tasty but the flavor profile doesn’t run that deep. There is enough going on here for me to care and enjoy this beer but it lacks excitement. The palate is malty sweet; it is dripping with caramel and dark fruit. At the back is noticeable flavor of vodka soaked in oranges. Raisin bread. The palate is good but nothing more. The aftertaste is very short for a big beer, I would like the sweetness to linger a bit… it does not. Decent. It would work well with cheese.

Medium in body, low carbonation, the mouthfeel is slick, uneventful but (surprisingly) it works. I really don’t have any complaints even though the carbonation is so lacking. Was this by design?

The drinkability is the strongest aspect of this beer. I like drinking it, it tastes good enough, and it is easy to drink. That is a winning combination. Two things would stop me from going back to this beer. It is not available in Nebraska nor have I seen it “around.” Secondly, the price was a bit high for a 9.3 oz beer. I purchased my bottle in Milwaukee, WI for $4.50. Overall, this is a good beer but not great. It is worth a try if you see it at a price that works for you. Solid.

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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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Photo of TastyTaste
3.39/5  rDev -11%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a very small bottle, after I used the corckscrew on it (that's a first for me). Pours absolutely flat, with no head whatsoever. Hazy brown in color. Smell is very raw alcohol and some roasted malt and raisin presence. Tase is very tart and bitter, slightly fruit and somewhat cloying. Needs to be laid down for a decade, IMO. Very raw, needs to age, just like the queen that it's celebrating did.

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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 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 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 UnionMade
2.8/5  rDev -26.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Well, at least the cork didn't fall into the beer with the slightest amount of pressure like the last beer I had from these folks. Uncaps neatly with a satifying little pop. The beer pours a murky, muddy, oxide red. Nary a trace of head. Upon further examination, a trace amount of miniscule bubbles line the egde of the glass. No lace, no head of note.
The aroma brings forth sweetish, sourish malt tones that dominate the beer. Lurking fruit, mainly a sourish, cidery apple with some cherry notes. A soft touch of oak and cork adds some pleasant woodiness. Really sort of unpleasant, in the traditional sense, with some odd, lambic-like qualities. A fair amount of wildness and farm quality.
The flavor opens with a soured malt sweetness, tinged with oak and cork flavors. Heady fruit adds it's presence. Sour, under-ripe white grape and cherry. The sourness continues into the finish, bolstered by a boozey, fusel sweetness. No detectable hop presence. Soured apple sweetness takes up the aftertaste, lingering with a sappy wildness more inclined toward lambic. A heavy, syrupy body, unassisted by carbonation in any way, shape or form. Subsequent burps bring up a rather sour, crabapple flavor. Gross.
As much as I spent on this small bottle, I was reluctant to toss this down the drain. I just couldn't finish the last half, the vinous sourness got too much for me. I mean, it's complex as hell, but not in quite the right way. This is something I could deal with in a lighter bodied lambic, with less booze-hound sweetness. It's so overbearing, I just can't do it. I hope the queen forgives me.

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Photo of blitheringidiot
3.13/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Label Lingo: Purple single labeled 9.3 fl. Oz. Brown stubby. Horndean embossed. Corked and gold plastic wrapped. “Premium bottle conditioned ale. Brewed, matured and bottled in Horndean Hampshire UK to celebrate the Golden Jubilee of Her Majesty the Queen.

Well corked, two bubble clumps that dissapear atop a russet dim, slightly clouded pour. Zero heaad cap or lace to speak of, instead a few microscopic bubbles at the ring edges.

Vodka and orange juice scents spike thru with some cocoa.

First Swigs: Woody oak and sherry. Flavors point towards Samuel Adams Triple Bock and fruit notes of cask cherries. Barrel woodiness and booze like flavors. Awl-kee-hawl cuts through easily. English style flavors. Whiskey malts and a bit of Scotch peat moss light port wine flavors. Vinous red flavors. Dry pancake batter and overly ripe brown bananas sugar aftertaste.

Smooth medium body. A bit too gin like and burning to be considered drinkable. Do not go anywhere after drinking this one.

Last Swigs: Fig or date flavor meets whiskey barrel malt sipper. Quite an offering! 12.0 % ABV. A welcomed taster but not to be sought again. Worth the try. I prefer the American style Barley Wines.

Beer is good. Happy beering.

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Photo of Rastacouere
2.68/5  rDev -29.7%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Appearance is a boring clear ruby brown color with no head whatsoever. Fruity aroma, complex maltiness: apples, oranges, pears, plums, peaches together with big toffee flavours and some caramel. Taste is surprisingly tart, is this a bad bottle? Red apples, pears, brown sugar, not too well melted together. No balancing bitterness, light medicinal bananas and moisture qualities. Sharp thin body, especially for a barley wine, no carbonation to speak of. Probably another bad bottle due to their silly corks which made it pretty much a "Miss" in the Hit or Miss balance.

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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 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 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 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 CRJMellor
3.67/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours absolutely dead still almost like liquor. Brown with with lighter tan color streaks.
Aroma of figs, grain, alcohol, grass and spicy yeast.
Flavors of caramel, orange, grain and pale malt. In the background there is a heavy resiny and oily hop taste.
Mouthfeel is sweet to start but then also as a powerfully puckering sourness and a big hit of spicy alcohol.
Drinkability is decent, I'm not a big fan of sourness and no carbonation in beer but this has some decent falvors especially as it warms.

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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 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 comat0se
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Nice fruity nose, full of malt goodness, hints of chocolate and cherries.
Pours a nice, hazy, flat, bubbleless brown with ruby touches. Very very little carbonation, no head. Taste starts with a raisiny, lightly sherry-like flavor, followed by some alcohol punch, livening up the stage with some light nudges from the hops crowd. The mouthfeel is nicely thick, and very smooth, nearly oily... very enjoyable. Finish is a great black cherry roundup. The alcohol was fairly smooth, but could probably stand a little more aging to round off the corners a bit. All in all a decent beer, but I was expecting a bit more complexity in the flavor.

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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 ElGuapo
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A very dark pour with no head on top, but there were some bubbles in there. Big full nose loaded with spices and fruits as well as a healthy serving of alcohol.

The body is full, and the mouthfeel is smooth and rich. It has a lot of flavor. There are roasty notes with pieces of caramel. The spices are excellent with bits of cinnamon and big warming alcohol blasts. Fruits are in there as well to add to the high level of complexity. It is very drinkable even though the alcohol flavor can get big at times.

This was definitely a head turner from Gale's, as I have not really enjoyed one of their brews yet. It is definitely a great winter warmer.

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