He'Brew Jewbelation 12 | Shmaltz Brewing Company

very good
213 Reviews
He'Brew Jewbelation 12He'Brew Jewbelation 12

Brewed by:
Shmaltz Brewing Company
New York, United States

Style: American Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 12.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by rhinos00 on 10-22-2008

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 213 | Ratings: 265
Photo of BeerAdvocate
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from BeerAdvocate magazine Vol. II Issue XI:

Cheers to 12 years. Their dozen is represented with 12 malts, 12 hops and a 12-percent ABV. Dark brown in color with garnet edges when put up to the light. Impressive head retention as it leaves a massive crowning of lace after sipping half a pint away. Sweet aroma of light molasses, faint anise, raisins, brown bread and sweetened iced coffee with a slight boozy alcohol in the nose. Full bodied with a luxurious, creamy, smooth mouthfeel, almost like sipping on a cordial. Sweet, semi-roasted maltiness shows an obvious dominance--dark chocolate, sweetened coffee, brown sugar, brownies and burnt cookies come to mind. The 12 hops lend a dollop of bitterness and herbal flavor that barely balance; thankfully, the alcohol swings in with a prickly peppery warmth that helps and moves the sweetness along with a mild raisin flavor. Pleasant, sweet, roasty finish with a bit of clean solvent alcohol on the breath.

Delicious. No doubt a big beer here that is a slow and very enjoyable sipper and a prime dessert beer to boot.

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Photo of BeerNinja007
4.11/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I picked up a bomber of Jebelation 12 from Johnstown Beverage in Johntown NY for $5.99. No date on the bottle, but since it's apparently last year's release, I'm guessing it has had some time to age. Served cold in a chilled tulip.

Dark dark brown brew gives a lovely 2" of thick smoky tan head that lingers for quite a while but eventually settles to a thick stable layer. Nose is thick and sweet, primarily a big dose molasses, a little mixed hop and licorice buried in there somewhere, and some peppery alcohol peeking out. The feel is pretty thick and sugary smooth with carbonation fighting hard to come through but feeling quite soft because of the brew's viscosity. Taste is big and dark- sweet burnt sugars and dark molasses, roasted malt, smoke, coffee, licorice. Finish is most of the same lingering on, but I also get a menthol-like cool mint aspect, which I guess could just be EtOH evaporating off the palate. Speaking of the EtOH, it's fairly well masked as far as taste but is felt on the breath and in the head.

Overall this is a huge dark tasty brown ale, very filling and handles its % ABV pretty well.

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Photo of kfsv034
3.52/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours Coke brown with a tan 1 fingered head that quickly dissolves

S - pretty much just smell caramelized sugars maybe alittle dark fruit but not much

T - Caramelized sugars, molasses, dark fruits maybe some licorice

M - Full bodied

D - one is enough

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Photo of philbertk
3.15/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Shmaltz Brewing Company--HE'BREW The Chosen Beer--Jewbelation Twelve--12th Anniversary Ale--Brewed With 12 Malts And 12 Hops--2008 22 oz. Bottle. 12.00% ABV. 100+ IBU's? (3.5 / 5.0) Stout--Imperial? Thick pour. Thin mild lace espresso head. Clear opaque dark black red color. Rich roasted plum cherry raisin malt aroma. Sweet complex roasted mixed fruit spicy cacao coffee thick hot overpowering body. Thick spicy hop malt EtOH end. TOO MUCH. Big not smooth. Sampled 3/14/2009. 2 @ $5.49 Each.

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Photo of srandycarter
3.96/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Cola brown, almost no head. Minimal lace. Ring.

S - Strong malt, dark or dried fruit. Prunes, apricots and raisins come to mind.

T - Bright flavors as described by smell.

M - Medium to heavy body, nice overall balance. Good carb and coat.

D - Too big and heavy handed to be sessionable. Nice brew, though.

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Photo of Pahn
4.24/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle into Duvel tulip.

Appearance: Free pour yields a half inch tan head that dissipates quickly, leaving little lacing. Pours a solid dark brown/black with some lighter brown at the edges. Little to no lacing, but nice legs.

Smell: From the bottle there's an immediate thick caramel aroma. In the glass, the same big toffee and caramel, with smokey and roasted notes along with some faint plum. As the beer warms, a lot of sweet yellow cake comes out, with some cherry following later. I can almost detect some piny hops. Overall, very rich, deep, and malty, with lots of development over time.

Taste: First sip: with almost no carbonation, a big, somewhat watery hit of roasted malt and chocolate gives way to an apparent slimy finish, that slowly transforms into a hot alcohol finish. As the heat dies down, some really nice roasty flavors that remind me of Great Divide's Hibernation Ale come out. A few minutes later, the second sip is much nicer, with sweet yellow cake complementing the deep roasted flavors (the taste really follows the nose closely).

I can only assume the wateriness and sliminess were a result of not waiting long enough for the beer to warm up, because they don't return again. Lots of nice, rich malt notes come out as I get deeper into the bottle; cookie dough, some plum in the aftertaste, a nice bitterness from the roasted malt (but little to no discernible hop influence), some smokey notes, and more. As with the aroma, there's lots of development of flavor here.

Mouthfeel: Medium-to-full bodied, though a little watery at first. Very little carbonation. Hot finish. Occasionally chewy. Despite the myriad malt notes and rich flavors, it's never even close to cloyingly sweet or sugary/chalky.

Drinkability: Don't think I could have more than one of these in a night (maybe over many hours), but would definitely pick it up if I happen to see another one still around somewhere.

Like Jewbelation 13 Bar Mitzvah, Jewbelation 12 is an excellent beer. I don't really understand why this brewery doesn't get more hype. These anniversary beers are world class quality at bargain prices.

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Photo of jlindros
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to FluffyMcTingle for sharing this with me.

A: Fluffy light 1/2 finger head fades quickly over a super dark brown colored beer almost black.

N: Malty, dark malts, sweet with some syrupy like characteristics, caramel and molasses. Lots of fruit with a little raisin, plum, date, some nuts, and with that is a slight earthy hop taste too, chewy malts and chewy hops.

T: Very rich and slight creamy. Lots of malts again, somewhat sweet but not really syrupy at all. Some roast and dark malts, biter too. A nice hop taste, spicy, earthy, and chewy hops with lots of chewy malts. A little scorched malt earthy bitter taste as well.

M: Semi thick and creamy, chewy. Lower carbonation but not bad.

F: Slightly sweet with a little sweet stickiness. Some bitterness with a some earthy hop bitterness mostly and a little charred malt bitterness with that. Some malts as well on the finish.

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Photo of emmasdad
4.15/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours an opaque dark brown color, with a good little light brown head. Huge aromas of dark fruit, figs, plums and molasses. Flavors of dark roasted malts, more dark fruits, molasses and hints of oak and vanilla. Very reminiscent of DFH Palo Santo, at a fraction of the cost. A very good beer.

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Photo of biglite351
3.54/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A - nice and dark with only mild bleed at the edges. Very disappointing short quickly vanishing head.

S - very nice and full malty scent. Amazingly it doesn't fade.

T - not as good as the scent. Malt and chocolate but also a bit too much bitter. Mild after taste.

M - mild coating but that is all for the mouthfeel. Slight tingle in the front of the throat around the Adams Apple area which I did not care for.

D - I would drink this flavor, but the tingle in the throat was very odd.

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Photo of ritzkiss
4.25/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle, no idea where I got this from, maybe my cross-country trip?

Pours a dark, rich molasses brown with a finger of head which sticks around for a bit.

Nose is thick and sweet, toffee and bread, molasses, dark druits, chocolate and cocoa.

Shockingly drinkable, I want to say a bit of sitting has done this some good but I haven't had it fresh so I don't know. It's just more mellow and restrained than expected for its ABV. Rich toffee and dark maltiness, chocolate, a hint of earthy oak and tobacco, vanilla, nuts, a pleasant drying in the finish with a faint hop bite still present. Alcohol well hidden, silky full mouthfeel.

Yep, I'd drink this one again, more than happily.

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Photo of bobsy
4.12/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Consider this the one that got away. My original bottle, courtesy of Alex, never ended up gracing my lips, so a big thanks to Eric for sharing this one. Worked out well too. It's a big beer, but I think it hides its size better than some.

Pours an oaken brown with a finger of creamy tan head that drops to a film and leaves some nice lacing. Huge chocolate notes in the nose before the glass even gets close to me. This is joined by nuts and brown bread, as well as a deep fruity richness. Smells pretty nice, actually.

Huge malt flavour, which goes yard on nuts, brown bread, raisins and bittersweet chocolate. The alcohol seems to have died down somewhat by this point, leaving behind a smooth, souped-up brown ale. While the heat is missing in the flavour it still provides a slight warming in the throat. A touch of leafy hops combine with nuts in the finish to provide a gentle bitterness. Smooth, medium mouthfeel, with restrained carbonation.

A neat beer - kind of made me think that this would be the result of asking an American brewer to riff off Sam Smith's Nit Brown. Not as good as the 13, but for someone who doesn't particularly like brown ales I can chalk this up as a win.

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Photo of gordavidson
4.37/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- A deep, syrupy brown bordering on black. The light brown head slowly rises to the top but settles to a few splotches. Looks serious and thick.

S- Raisins, figs, vanilla, cinnamon, alcohol, and a fruitiness. Aromatic, complex, and aged.

T- Raisins, maple syrup, figs, cinnamon, and alcohol. Well blended and smooth. Very tasty and intriguing. This may be peaking.

M- Syrupy and smooth with just the perfect amount of carbonation. For the ABV, this has a nice finish.

D- Drinks amazingly well for the ABV. Well crafted and tasty. Maybe a touch sweet and syrupy, but I am impressed.

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Photo of brentk56
3.95/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours just like a stout and I never would have guessed the style by looking at it; an espresso cap covers the liquid and leaves legs, if not lace

Smell: A kitchen sink of malty complexity, with dark chocolate, molasses, oak, tobacco, brown bread and rye

Taste: Opens with a fudgy character that adds dark fruit complexity, molasses and an earthy hop bitterness by mid-palate, when the alcohol starts to make an appearance; after the swallow, the alcohol juts out just as the beers sweeter elements begin to dominate; the hops are relegated to a supporting role but are noticeable even in the finish

Mouthfeel: Full bodied and creamy with moderate carbonation and warmth in the gullet

Drinkability: The sweetness is a bit much, as is the alcohol, but the complexity makes it worth the effort

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Photo of Adamdc
4.12/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had one of these a few months back and really enjoyed it. I want to give it another shot.

A deep brown/almost black pour capped off with a very minimal light tan head.

The aroma is the best trait of this beer----so much going on. Dark chocolate, dates, prunes, molasses, soy sauce, slight hop aroma, etc. Very nice!

Taste is similar to aroma but the hops are alot more noticeable---more present but not overpowering. The dark chocolate flavor in this is very nice. Also, lots of molasses.

Mouthfeel is very thick for a brown ale (although this is no ordinary 'brown' ale). I've had stouts that weren't as thick as this.

The drinkability is very high. There is a mild alcohol bite but it's just so creamy and smooth. The 12% will catch up to you quickly.

As far as 'big' brown ales go, I always thought that DFH IBA was the king but this ale by Schmaltz is definitely a contender! Highly recommended!

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Photo of Arbitrator
3.67/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Chilled bomber poured into a glass. I drank it slowly over a couple of hours, letting it warm and enjoying the flavor throughout.

A: Dark brown with ruby highlights. 1/2 finger of tan head that quickly receded into a swirl of bubbles on the glass. Pretty good for a 12% beer. Some lacing.

S: Roasted malt, chocolate, licorice, dark fruit (cherry, I think), nuts. A hint of vanilla. I really like the smell on this one. Like the 11, this reminds me of Palo Santo Marron, but without the wood.

T: Intensely malty, with a roasted grain and brown sugar character up front. In the mid-taste there is a blend of molasses and some sort of dark fruit, which I can't quite place, but it reminds me of cherry cough syrup. The finish is a nutty, hoppy bitterness with vanilla. It's noticeably warm, but not hot. There is an unappealing grainy bitterness in the finish that I can't quite figure out.

M: Creamy, syrupy, thick. The carbonation is mild, letting the beer's gravity do all the talking. Hard to drink this one fast. It finishes on the sweet side and never really cleans up, forcing each sip to be spread out. It would get very cloying to drink this any faster. It has cooled off considerably since release, but the thickness and sweetness are stronger than I remember.

D: This is very heavy, like the other He'Brew anniversary beers. It was enjoyable to drink, but I don't feel like I need to have another one again soon.

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Photo of markaberrant
4.1/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - pretty much opaque in my big 750ml snifter, no light or shading around the edges, very small tan head despite an agressive pour that quickly recedes to a couple splotches and a rim, no lacing

S - bready, toasty, carmel, light milk chocolate, clean, molasses, licorice, rich maltiness, maybe just a hint of sweet citrus hops (amarillo) to round things out, but quite faint

T - lots of raisin, hint of licorice in the aftertaste is about as roasty as it gets, finish is long and lingering, some earthy hop bitterness finally shows up, lip smacking malt and alcohol, huge malt bomb

M - fairly heavy, really coats the mouth, but enough carbonation and alcohol to dry things up, alcohol is there, but very smooth, mouthfeel really adds to the overall character of the beer

D - very drinkable for a beer this big and malty

I'm thinking they only used 12 hop cones in this beer. The label does say "brewed with 12 malts & 12 hops" so you never know.

So yeah, get over the fact that this beer is not hoppy. You want extreme? How about maltiness up the wazoo? This beer has it, and yet the alcohol is incredibly tame. I love how it comes up just short of that roasted character, yet it's not boring like a lot of imperial brown ales. I'd actually characterize this as more of a wee heavy, and one of the best I've come across. A fantastic beer.

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Photo of ReDave
3.98/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I Pretty much enjoy the "regular" He'brews.

Pours a deep brown amber, beige tan head.
Some lacing.

Some fruity aroma...

Brown ale? Is that what it said? Well this is interesting, but not what i wold call a brown ale... pretty complex, overall balanced, some nice hop character.
This is more like at least a strong ale or an impy stout [taste and complex wise].


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Photo of Dawkfan
4.02/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- This one pours a fairly opaque color with 2 fingers of thick tan head, retention is ok, lace is moderate.

S- Really sweet! Brown sugars, caramel, dark fruits, chocolate, and a bit of coffee lingering in the background.

T- Loads of roasted malt throughout. Some dark fruit, molasses, and caramel give way to a chocolate/coffee finish followed by a touch of bitterness from the hops. This is a malt bomb, reminds me of a barleywine to some extent. The alcohol is hidden extremely well.

M- Full bodied, syrupy, sticky, almost left with a chalky feel in the mouth.

D- I like this one, but it's a fairly sweet beer which would limit me to just this one. A nice offering from Shmaltz, can't wait to try the 13's I picked up the other day.

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Photo of biegaman
3.9/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

'The Chosen Beer', naturally, would not be so if it didn't wear a kippah. This one is a sort of walnut shade, it is thin and dotted with bubbles. It's actually a little more of a head scarf than it is a full-on skullcap, but it will do. The beer's colour is quite majestic: a very deep (essentially opaque) tone of mahogany with black shmutz observed at most angles.

And a shalom to you too, beer! Wow, just take a whiff of this thing! There's port-macerated raisins, what must be an entire tree worth of figs and fresh-brewed pot of Turkish coffee. There's also a nice waft of dark chocolate truffles. Altogether this smells like some soft of sugary, dark fruit compote - I bet it would go great over a bowl of ice cream.

The beer's sweetness is not actually quite as pronounced as its aroma would let on. In fact, there is a discernibly malty character about the beer. Rye bread and rye grains leave an especially impressionistic mark as do notes of authentic vanilla bean. Raisins, prunes and figs never part but are more subdued by the taste of a strong Turkish coffee.

The beer is layered with flavour which is not surprising given it's comprised of twelve different malts *and* twelve different hops (hand it to the brewer, he sticks to theme). There's no possible way of noting them all, foremost I'm picking up on an herbal bitterness (Fuggle? Tettnang?) that becomes slightly fruity in the finish (Amarillo? Cascade?)

The malts are much more easily identified. The very coffee-ish, dark chocolate taste is more than likely a result of the chocolate malt. The rye notes undoubtedly stem from rye malt (Munich also lends a thick breadiness) while the trace of dark caramel may be courtesy of the kiln amber (or perhaps Vienna). The beer has a thick, creamy mouthfeel that can definitely be linked back to the oatmeal. Either way, all malts are accounted for.

Despite its decadent, rich flavour the beer can become just a tad overwhelming (part of that stems from the fact that I have a 650ml bottle when the beer's profile lends itself more to 4oz snifters). The alcohol - although ever present - is reasonably subdued given its strength. That might be partly because it's had a year to compose itself.

I haven't had many He'Brew beers yet but enough now to know their shtick - they make dynamic, characterful beers that often involve gluttonous amounts of both malts and hops. This offering was certainly worthy of jubilation (err, Jewbelation, sorry). Without going all shmaltzy, I'll just say Mazel Tov to the brewers on their 12 year anniversary!

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Photo of Viggo
3.8/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle, thanks to Bobsy for leaving this at my place. Sucka!

Pours a dark brownish red, pretty opaque, very thick tan head forms, settles to a pretty solid ring, some lace rings on the glass, good retention, looks nice.

Smell is interesting, very sweet and malty, caramel and brown sugar, a bit buttery, some citrus, chocolate milk, biscuit, light roast, lots of raisin, sweet fruit, alcohol, neat.

Taste is similar, a bit strange, malty, some iron, raisin sweetness, caramel and brown sugar, figs, alcohol, touch of floral hopping, decent balance but a touch on the sweet side.

Mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with low carbonation, a bit chalky in the finish. ABV is decently hidden, not a bad beer at all. Thanks Rob!

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Photo of homebrew311
4.09/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured into a snifter at Durty Nellies.

A: Dark black/brown, nice brown head on pour which sticks around, no light passes through this one

S: rich malts, sweet molasses, chocolate, reminds of the aroma of a nice big malty imperial stout.

T: tastes follows the nose closely, but is a little more complex. The richness is instantly noticeable with a intense malty sweetness. Hints of chocolate, vanilla, dark cherries all come through with a bit of heat on the tail end.

MF: Creamy, thick, syrupy, chewy

D: This beer is big and bold which take away from its drinkability. It tastes great, but the flavor get a tad overwhelming at the end of this beer.

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Photo of kegger22
4.15/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a deep brow with a moderate head that reduced to a collar. The aroma was malty sweet chocolate. The taste was a match to the aroma with some toffee added in. The feel was full bodied with adequate carbonation. Drinkability was good. This is the best brown ale I have had. Look, aroma, taste, feel and drinkability are all similar to the good stouts, which is probably why I liked it so much.

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Photo of webmanspidey
3.7/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A bomber poured into a large Duvel chalice. Dark brown/black color with a solid couple inches of fluffy tan head. Smell combines sweet alcohol, raisins, rum, chocolate, brown sugar, and dark fruits. The taste is very sweet and medicinal with a pretty heavy alcohol presence. More dark chocolate and raisins abound. Mouthfeel is medium and not too heavy for a beer of this potency. Drinkablity is okay, but it is hard to call any 12%ABV beer "drinkable".

A strong slow sipping ale good for enjoying slowly. When enjoying this, had no idea this was an "American Brown Ale". Definitely a strong ale to me.

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Photo of katan
3.96/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bomber into a pint

A - Dark brown color - almost black. Some amber hues around the outside. Not seeing much hazing on the edges - carbonation isn't apparently strong.

S - Strong sweet malty backbone - hits you right in the nostrils. Has some peat malt notes which are very reminiscent of a scotch ale. Phenolic tones are well hidden, which is a surprise to me considering the ABV.

T - Malty sweet, chocolate, toffee, and vanilla notes. Hopping is just about impossible to discern due to this super sweet profile. Bitterness tries to show up mid-stream, but it just can't stand up. Finishes with a very strong peat malt, smoked flavor. The warming malt/alcohol sticks around your palette for some time.

M - Thick, creamy, clinging, cloying - everything that you would think mollasses would be like. Really grabs the tongue. Some oily sensations are present in the aftertaste.

D - Extremely deceiving ABV - watch out. Very potent makes it a solo beer. Not filling. Flavors are just interesting enough that I might call this a dessert beer.

I'm not sure this is an american brown ale - I might call this an english barleywine instead.

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Photo of tavernjef
4.66/5  rDev +18%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

If this really is suppose to be a brown ale its the darkest, blackest one ever...inky black in the glass and quite thickly on the pour. A nice dallop of tanned foam sits about a finger high in a firm stand before fading to a light skimming and collar. A few specks and thin threads of lace glaze the glass.

Aroma is clean and malty with a dark fruity tang of prune, date, and raisin with a rounded in chocolateyness. Quite Baltic Porter-esk.

Taste is heavenly thick, lush, and creamy with a certain chocolate fluff and silky cakeish filled tone that has all sorts of dark malty fruity things emerging in each wonderful sip of yummyness. A Baltic Porter would be proud to call this its twin brother as a Brown Ale. Tamed, but forward and lofty dark fruity tang of date and raisin is drenched in a lovely dark chocolate goo with slices of vanilla pods adding some slight twinge in the finish as it calmly bitters off into more chocolatey warmth. In a word I just made up, fuckingyum!

The mouthfeel is quite full, thick, lush, creamy, and bold with a nice touch of fluff in the middle and finish, like that of a cream filled truffle, cake, or cookie. The finish has a wonderful touch of dark chocolate bittering and feathery dryness as warmth creeps up way late like a really good port. Watch out for that 12%, its there in a simple touch within its yummyness.

Happy 12th Shmaltz! This stuff rocks!

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He'Brew Jewbelation 12 from Shmaltz Brewing Company
3.95 out of 5 based on 265 ratings.
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