He'Brew Jewbelation Sweet 16 Anniversary Ale | Shmaltz Brewing Company

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142 Reviews
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He'Brew Jewbelation Sweet 16 Anniversary AleHe'Brew Jewbelation Sweet 16 Anniversary Ale

Brewed by:
Shmaltz Brewing Company
New York, United States

Style: American Strong Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 16.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Thickfreakness on 10-12-2012

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 142 | Ratings: 529
Photo of jmdrpi
3.44/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

22 oz bottle, 2012

appeared very dark brown, a thin khaki colored head. good head retention. smell is fairly sweet, with fusel alcohol fumes so its a bit harsh, with some licorice and tobacco. the taste starts herbal, slightly roasty, bready, then quite a bit of alcohol burn in the finish. the mouthfeel is medium bodied, fairly low carbonation, which works.

overall - no questioning the strength of this beer. for the first time in the Jewbelation series, the alcohol comes through big time. I guess it was inevitable.
took a long time to drink the whole bottle.

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Photo of BeerLover99
3.45/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: black/deep brown body, khaki finger head,
sexy lacing

S: BIG boozy, ripe fruit, dates, figs, sweet bready malt

T: big sweet ripe fruit, lots of bready malt, HUGE boozy finish

M: med/heavy body, chewy/smooth mouth

O: He'Brew is great beer for the money, but
this one is just way too boozy and probably
needs almost a year or two to settle down.
Far too boozy for my taste.


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Photo of Yojimbo1941
3.46/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Jet black, wispy yet complimentary chocolate mocha head.

S - Molasses, rubbing alcohol, cereals, bitter chocolate, hint of vanilla, karo syrup. Not bad, but the alcoholic sting is a bit more than I was prepared for despite the 16% warning.

T - Sweet giving way quickly to bitter. Chocolate and some malted milk with a bit of hot chocolate thrown in for good measure. Some honey aftertaste with the bitterness. Dark malt and alcoholic bite. Not bad.

M - Syrup-y, not much carbonation hitting me due to the flavor.

O - I like the fact that Shmaltz tries to outdo itself every year by adding ingredients to make the amounts come up the same as the chronology. However, I think this year they may have reached their peak. This beer is decent, but I think it's on the verge of becoming too much. With that being said: I'll still buy a 17 if they make one.

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Photo of rangerred
3.51/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured into a snifter out of a 22oz bottle.

Pours pitch black with no head at all which is to be expected. A thin ring is left around the side of the glass.

Aroma is immediately sweet dark fruits; figs and dates. A little bit of chocolate and licorice in there too. Some alcohol comes through.

Flavor is extremely rich. Tons of dark fruit, wood, and rye bread. A touch of wood and cocoa along with a healthy dose of ethanol. Extremely sweet throughout with very low drinkability. There is a coating in the mouth that really becomes cloying fast.

Overall, a bit of a novelty with the high abv but not that spectacular of a beer. Way too sweet. Not something I will pick up again.

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Photo of Vonerichs
3.53/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Deep espresso colored and opaque body. It has a flat appearance with no head or activity.

Smells like molasses and cough syrup. There's a hint of raisin.

The taste is blackstrap molasses, raisin, cardboard, and extremely boozy. It's very sweet.

The mouthfeel is syrupy, sweet, and hot like NyQuil. It's the consistency of nighttime medication.

This beer was way too hot and syrupy compared to some of their previous anniversary beers. Laying it down for a while could take care if the boozy part, but I don't know about the texture.

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Photo of wordemupg
3.53/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

650ml bomber poured into tulip 1/12/12

A much to my surprise a big dark three finger foam comes off the pour, its gone quickly and leaves no lace but there's some fat legs left behind on the glass, its dark but not quite black

S booze hits the nostrils instantly but I suppose that should be expected at 16%, some molasses, licorice and some coco mix with he booze and some over-ripe dark fruits, took a while to place it but after I found the teriyaki beer jerky I couldn't lose it

T more of the same really, lots of booze but the other aspects try to shine through but don't really get their chance to shine. a little tobacco and chocolate syrup once its warmed up, decent flavors but very boozy

M its silky and thick but the booze heat takes away from what would be a great feel otherwise, you feel the booze deep in your chest after the fact and there's molasses on the finish

O what a monster this one is, needs age and lots of it, I can see potential but today the booze is wrecking what could be an awesome beer. I still like it but at every point the booze overpowers

I think this series might have peaked 3 years ago, not a bad beer by any means but I have a feeling I'd like it much more in 4 or 5 years... OK perhaps a decade

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Photo of cbutova
3.55/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from Black Friday notes, shared with Chico1985 after he generously opened a Firestone Walker 14 (drinks very nicely still).

A- Poured into a pint glass with a black body and a light brown head. One finger cap size and pretty good retention. Nice silky ring and a lack of substantial lacing.

S- A big pile of spicy yeast, raisin and burnt caramel notes. Roasty with some warming as well as alcohol hints later on.

T- Very big and fairly sweet. A caramel and molasses syrup mixture feel. Roast malts do a good job helping to add complexity/balance as well as yeast spice, dark fruits and big raisin hints. Does not feel like 16% but you can tell this is a BIG beer, just a tiny hint of alcohol.

MF- Thick and oily body with a creamy feel and moderate carbonation. Lots of heat in the finish on the palate but it is not over the top.

For 16% this is pretty impressive, I would easily believe someone if they told me it was in the 12% range. Nothing really jumps out as far as a distinct flavor but it is a good mix of sweet caramel, yeast and roast malt influence.

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Photo of Bighead6365
3.56/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.5

Was looking over a ton of beers, saw that this was 16% abv and for 8.99. Figured what the heck.

A: Very dark and unable to see through. When pouring the beer into the sniffer, it had little to no head. Could tell it was very thick. Light amount of lacing on the glass that doesn't actually stick. Could tell it had a lot too it.

S: Plum, Dark Fruit, Prunes. Couldn't really smell much hops. Almost similar to a Belgian Dark Ale.

T: It has a spice to it from the heavy alcohol, heavy malt, grape juice, prune, fig, a tiny bit of bitterness on the tongue after swallowing.

M: To be honest after drinking lots of beers and lots of 11%'s, this one is just too much at 16%. It is so thick and heavy that it isn't the easiest to drink. It's actually a little rough. I did struggle a tiny bit to finish it.

O: I get the impression that they made this beer 16% abv just because they could, not with an actual thought process behind it. There are some good things going on, but it sadly is a case where too much makes something less. I know it's the sweet 16, but why make the quality suffer? I don't think I'd ever buy this again as I'd rather have the ability to drink a imperial without struggling. It's just very syrupy, and too rough to be up there with the best.

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Photo of smcolw
3.57/5  rDev -7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Deep mahogany brown color where light passes only through the glass edge. Starts with a moderate, beige head. Very little lace--just a couple of spots. The head dies to nothing rather quickly.

Dark malts are blended with a strong alcohol warmth. Lots of semi-sweet chocolate.

Very, very rich body but it also has a high carbonation. Strong, brandy-like alcohol presence and warmth. This is an extreme beer with the alcohol burn in the swallow. Plenty of darker malts--crystal and chocolate. Moderate sweetness. No hop.

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Photo of Halcyondays
3.57/5  rDev -7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Beachwood I,

A: Pours black with a medium brown head, good head retention, lots of thick dark lace.

S: Booze centered with some soy and dark chocolate.

T: Definitely better than the nose. Delicious sweet malt flavour, dark chocolate for sure, brown sugar, Rapadura. Some ethanol but well contained. Big flavours for sure.

M: Full-bodied, rich, creamy and decadent.

O: A fun beer, but not something I could really have a ton of. The price is still really good for a beer of this size. Worth a buy.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.57/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

22 ounce bottle - $7.99 at Total Wine & More in Kennesaw, Georgia.

Appearance: Pours out a thick-looking, viscous, black body with a couple inches of dark tan foam.

Smell: Heavy, heady scents of blackstrap molasses, blackened barley grains, black licorice, dark chocolate, oven-roasted prunes, raspberry, leafy, floral hops.

Taste: Molasses, bitter chocolate, heavy roastiness, charred toasted remnants, and even some burnt campfire marshmallows. There's a big sweetness on-hand, but a ramping up over the roastiness, along with the hop bitterness and heated, spirited alcohol qualities. Leafy, resiny, floral hops present. Some of the aforementioned fruitiness present, but it's dampered by the heavy maltiness. Sweet, roasty, boozy finish. Be sure to have a cleansing glass of water at the ready.

Mouthfeel: Full-bodied. Medium-plus carbonation.

Overall: I acquired one of the bottles at 11.8% ABV for the markets that cannot procure the standard 16%. Even still, it's coming across as fairly hot. I thought both Fourteen and Fifteen needed some time to settle and smooth out, and I feel the same way about this year's version. Perhaps the Jewbelation train has passed me by.

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Photo of Samuel906
3.58/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

This beer is all over the place with flavor. Smell and up front flavor reminds me a lot of Scottish heavies that I've had. Very sweet and malty, lots of chocolate and spice. The best thing going for this is the absolutely mastadonic ABV, and how absolutely none of it comes through in the flavor. It is smooth, creamy and black as pitch. Not too expensive, and certainly unique. Make sure you have someone to share it with.

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Photo of ryan1788a5
3.58/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottles poured into a large snifter.

A: Pours a very dark brown with chestnut and ruby hues at the center of the beer. Two inches of sandy colored head dissipate after some time. Spotty lacing.

S: Cocoa and bakers chocolate, French roast coffee. Plums. Very estery with scents of berries and currants. A touch hot on the nose. Fresh, leafy hop scents are barely discernible.

T: Very chocolatey with notes of cocoa, baker's chocolate, and fudge. Hints of black coffee. Molasses. Slightly acrid with a kiss of smoke. Esters kick in with tastes of plum, berries, and currants. Spicy alcohol taste builds, especially as the beer warms. It strays and becomes perhaps a little too boozy. Menthol and mint. Hop tastes are hard to pinpoint, but there is a slight leafy, fresh hop presence far in the background. Finishes with estery fruit, leafy, oily hops, and burnt bread crust.

M: Medium-heavy body. There is some heft and weight in the mouth. Full and slightly sludgy. Moderate carbonation. Smooth enough. Very warming in the swallow, and it puts a fire in your belly like a good whiskey.

O: Sixteen malts, sixteen hop varieties, 16% abv. Yes, it's a bit of a gimmick. Having said that, I do have to admit that I like the direction in which this beer is heading. It's a little too boozy at this point, but given some age I can see this maturing into a very nice beer.

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Photo of ThisWangsChung
3.58/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Portion of a 22 oz bottle poured into a tulip glass.

A: Pours a very dark brown color - one would think it was an imperial stout given the look. The head is a one finger mocha shade. I'm really impressed how well it retains itself for 16%, too. Not much lacing, as expected.

S: There is a lot of chocolate, licorice, and plum qualities exhibited on the nose. In general it's a fruity aroma, perhaps a bit weak (due to the fact I served it relatively cold) yet not remotely boozy.

T: The initial flavor is very plummy. Strong dark fruits and chocolate go into the midtaste, and it finishes with a bit of spicy hoppiness and booze. I'm amazed how boozy this isn't - blindfold me and I'd swear it was around the 9-10% range. Rather, it's the sweetness that becomes a problem. After 10 oz. this one got too cloying for me.

M: It isn't as thick as one would expect, but it certainly lingers on the palate in sweet, syrupy fashion. While I can complain about all the sweetness, I can NOT complain about the prevalence of alcohol; the person I was drinking it with claimed he could honest-to-god chug it.

O: Sure, it gets too cloying after half a bottle. Sure, it's devoid of sophistication, refinement, and elegance. But when you consider that this is an extreme beer that's drinkable, non-boozy, AND inexpensive (for what it is), all those problems kind of fly out the window. I wouldn't have regretted buying a second bottle of this to age for a year of two, either. This one is best shared with 2-3 people.

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Photo of IronDjinn
3.61/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From a 650 ml brown bottle, import sticker on the back states the abv. at only 15.2%. Pours out a dense opaque pitch black hue, with a tight beige head that retains to a thick cap.

Sharp alcohol and intense dark dried fruits in the aroma, cocoa and dry sherry.

Flavour is intense with cocoa, roasted malt and dark dried fruits, while a port-like booziness is omnipresent throughout. Malty sweetness is cut by and almost dominated by the alcohol, giving the overall flavour a dry characteristic.

Mouthfeel is full-bodied and somewhat sticky, carbonation is very low yet overall it all feels heavy across the palate.

Certainly drinkable for such a high abv. beer, yet in the end basically comes down to big sweet malt and big dry boozy alcohol in a never-ending tussle, with no reprieve and no alteration to the mix. Okay on its own, but I still prefer the 13 in comparison to their former line up, He'Brew peaked there and still hasn't surpassed that, it was a world class beer!

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Photo of korguy123
3.61/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

I think the only beer in the Winter release I was actually excited to get. I'll have to pick up another bottle or 2 next pay.

Bottle into snifter.

Well it's a big, thick pouring dark brown/black beer with a finger and a bit creamy tan head. Lacing is minimal considering the abv. This is listed as 16% on the bottle is a LCBO sticker saying 14.5%. Regardless this is sure to be a monster.

Right off the bat is super sweet malts, and than a punch of alcohol in the nostrils. Dark stone fruits, bread pudding, vanilla, brown sugar, rum soaked dates, coffee, chocolate and the list goes on. There really is a lot going on in here. It also has the signature He'Brew aroma that I've come to know from their other big bottle releases in the last while.

Leather, tobacco, than transforming to alcohol, dates and figs, burnt toast and coffee. There is a warmness from the alcohol that is good for the cold snap we've been getting lately. This is a big bold beer but there is a lot more going on in the nose than the taste. Perhaps it isn't warm enough...

Medium body, decent carbonation and a wallop of booze on the middle of the tongue.

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Photo of FanofHefe
3.61/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served on-tap in a Chimay chalice at Global Brew in O'Fallon, IL. Dark body, nearly black and no light penetration. A one-finger dark tan head that doesn't hang around too long and leaves only a bit of lacing.

Not a very complex aroma. Mostly dark fruit with some roasted barley notes.

The flavor is relatively decent. A tasty blend of dark fruit, roasted malt, with a bit of smokiness. Dark chocolate, tobacco, and licorice come through in the background. More complex than I would have expected from the aroma.

Quite a bit more notice of the alcohol than I would normally like, which detracts. Overall, a decent brew.

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Photo of emyers
3.62/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a thick dark brown with a one finger beige head dissipating quickly into lacing.
Smell is a very nice blend of dark fruit, sweet caramel malt, bourbon, and oak. Strong, complex, appealing aroma. The taste contains similar elements to the smell, with caramel, oak, and dark fruit. The flavor profile is dominated by the oak and a fairly strong alcohol presence. Still very flavorful and complex, but comes off just a bit harsh. Actually more than a bit harsh. Mouthfeel is thick with a medium carbonation level. Ultimately, this beer teases at greatness with a very complex flavor profile, but is a bit too heavy on the oak and alcohol heat. I feel a bit of age woul benefit this beer greatly.

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Photo of jbphoto88
3.63/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

A strong ale? This beer pours like an imperial stout! Thick, burnt molasses brown and opaque. The head is an oak yellow brown that starts out thick but fades to a rainbow oil slicked cluster of bubbles. For sure a worthy looking beer for a 16th anniversary.

Deep rich nose of dark fruits and heavily roasted grains with hints of coconut. Again the nose is stout-ish and as it warms the scents get more complex. This is becoming a more and more impressive beer.

The taste is the first point where the sweet 16 jives from the stout formula. Instead of chocolate and coffee roasted malts this brew is more dark fruit, hops and sweet cereal. There is an overall boozy undertone that is masked nicely by the dark fruit flavors but still there. This one for sure is a sipper.

I feel this beer slips in the mouthfeel department. It's very thick and sweet that leaves you with an overly coated mouth. I do like how the grain notes and boozy burn lingers but I've had better strong ales and for sure better stouts. All in all, this is a solid beer. I can feel it coming on and I like most of its angles. Well done shmaltz brewing, I'm glad I've got two of these bombers.

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Photo of ummswimmin
3.63/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

I poured this beer into my tulip glass and I immediately smelled a strong dose of alcohol off the top.

This is a very dark beer. The black beer doesn't let any light through.

Off the top of this one is so much alcohol that my eyes water.

This is a challenging sipper. You get a decent amount of coffee and dark fruit. I can really feel the warmth at the back of my throat.

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Photo of Brandywine
3.65/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Two and a half fingers of a gorgeous mocha brown head. Black as pitch. Epic alcohol legs don't even slide down the glass.

Smell: Molasses, dark sweet chocolate, bourbon, burnt sugar, booze.

Taste: Bitter dark chocolate, booze, roasted notes, sweet malt, maybe some dark fruit like a fig or raisin.

Mouthfeel: Full and syrupy without being cloying. Carbonation isn't super noticeable but that's not surprising.

Overall: The nose and the mouth get partially over run by the booze in this brew. The other flavors are great but its hard to appreciate them. With a year of age on this, I believe it'll be freaking fantastic but it needs time to mellow.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.65/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours an opaque black with a foamy super dark khaki head that settles to a film on top of the beer. A foamy latticework of lace coats the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, toasted malt, caramel, toffee, brown sugar, and slight cocoa. Taste is much the same with an alcohol kick and a mild amount of roasty and hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and full bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer that has a good smell but the taste is pretty boozy and strong.

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Photo of brewcrew76
3.7/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Deep brown with a fizzy soda head in both sound and appearance that disappears immediately.

S - Chocolate covered caramel, dark fruits, toffee. This is a dessert lovers dream. All kinds of toffee, butterscotch and chocolate covered candy. Light grassy hops.

T - Sweet caramel and toffee, chocolate, raisins, prunes, brown sugar, some fruity and grassy hops, molasses. Similar to aroma. Tastes like every piece of chocolate, toffee, caramel candy wrapped into one.

M - Medium to full and slightly sticky. Low carbonation with a good amount of alcohol warming.

D - Very complex in a sweet candy type of way. A little too sweet for my tastes but interesting.

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Photo of billab914
3.7/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle poured into my CBS snifter. Dark brown in color with thick, frothy head to it. Pretty nice lacing on it as I drank it.

Aroma is very rich with notes of dark fruits and sweet brown sugar. The alcohol is surprisingly not bad for being 16%. I'm really liking the cherry notes I'm getting out of it. I get a some of the citrus hops to it, but they are surprisingly reserved for all the varieties in there.

The taste follows with more of the rich malts. It's got more of the sweet brown sugar and dark fruits up front, while the finish adds in some darker malts and chocolate flavors. The hops give it some much needed bitterness in the finish, but the sweetness is still a little much.

The mouthfeel is thick and syrupy with low carbonation. The mouthfeel is very fitting for it. Overall, it was a pretty solid beer and much better then I anticipated. It had some really nice malty flavors to it and the alcohol wasn't bad at all. Pretty nice overall.

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Photo of Sammy
3.72/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

A big beer which revels in its bigness. LCBO acquisition, who promptly gave a lab evaluation of only 14.5% abv - whatever, it is only to be supped. Big chocolate and roasted malt, and heavy anise finish. Black and bubbly head is attractive. Booze in the finish. Its hidden but its instantly apparent. Sweet stout bias. Above average mouthfeel.

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He'Brew Jewbelation Sweet 16 Anniversary Ale from Shmaltz Brewing Company
3.84 out of 5 based on 529 ratings.
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