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Victory Harvest Ale | Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown

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Victory Harvest AleVictory Harvest Ale

Brewed by:
Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
Highly aromatic and sensual, this novel pale ale delivers a fresh hop flavor like no other brew. Its secret? Fresh hops piled into our boiling kettle just hours after their harvest. With many more of their essential oils intact, these ‘wet’ hops add glorious middle notes of juicy, fruit and tea-like bite to play off of its lightly toasted malt character deliciously.

Added by akorsak on 10-01-2006

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Reviews: 165 | Ratings: 836
Photo of TX-Badger
3.6/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a darker orangish golden color with off-white head. Grass, pine, floral notes and some light fruits on the nose; follows onto the palate. Medium bodied. Finishes very flowery, floral notes mainly, some grass too.

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Photo of TempeBeerMan
4.66/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a nonic pint.

A - Clear copper hue with a fluffy, one-finger, cream colored head. Complete rings of lacing left behind with every sip. Appealing.

S - Powerful aroma of hop flowers, grapefruit, tangerine, spruce, and fresh hay.

T - Man, this IPA is juicy. Big grapefruit/melon fruit flavors forward. Also light pine and a hint of scallion. Toasted bread malts provide a sturdy foundation in the mid-palate. A long finish provides yet more hops in the form of mint and herbal tobacco. Superb.

M - High side of medium carbonation. Body would best be classified as "medium" but with a rounded fullness. Dry finish. A perfect delivery for the flavors.

O - Ok, this pretty much blew me away. While it would be a stretch to call something this hoppy "balanced", the malt and hop bills layer perfectly. Just super solid all around. If I could get this year around it would become my "everyday" IPA. Great job Victory.

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Photo of HamdenHector
4.04/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A: crystal clear; reddish bronze in color; 1 finger off white head that receded slowly to a thin cap; nice lacing;

S: floral and herbal;

T: herbal, floral, and toffee; finish is moderately bitter;

M: medium bodied; moderate carbonation; dry finish;

O: really nice;

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Photo of ZAP
4.55/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

L-Burnt oak colored...minimal head...decent lacing

S-Love how this aroma just bursts out of the glass...blueberries, papaya, strawberries,blackberries, melons, grassy, oily....great aroma.

T-Very pleasant fruit cocktail like flavor.....big on the blueberries as well as strong notes of papaya. Lesser notes of pineapple, strawberries, and melons. Malt never gets in the way but adds a light caramel touch.

O-Great beer. Probably the best fresh hop beer I had this year. Blows Sierra celebration out of the water. Not even close and I like Celebration.

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Photo of breadwinner
3.88/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A tasty, if undestinctive, wet hop ale from the fine folks at Victory. As Lagunitas's Born Yesterday was my most recent wet hop purchase prior to this, I couldn't help but compare the two. For a brew that apparently used Citra and Mosaic as the wet hops, I'm surprised at how un-tropical Harvest is. It's got a lightly floral, very fresh, well, hoppy smell to it. It's really pleasant, but not very indicative of the classic Citra/Mosaic tropical/saturated fruit notes you'd expect. In this way, it differs from the more pungent, hop-forwardness of BY. Deep bronze in the glass with an excellent foamy head that leaves good lacing, the palate is standard IPA fare, prominent malt presence, decent hoppy bite. It's, to use the word again, pleasant. It has a better feel than the hollowness of BY, but it's also a less distinctive brew. Distinction, though, isn't always requisite. To this end, I actually think I prefer Harvest to BY, though I'd probably snag Celebration over both. Still, if you're looking for a solid ale with a nice fresh hop character, Harvest might be your brew.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.75/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

this season was a somewhat disappointing one for wet hopped beers. a lot of good ones no doubt, but a lot that are awfully similar to each other, and this one, at least for me, gets lost in the crowd just a bit. juicy and fresh and as well made as they all are from victory, but it lacks a certain uniqueness to the hop profile or any sort of mouthfeel element that might make it stand out. nice orangey color, lasting white head in the globe, and a lot of bubbles. nose and taste hint at citrus and pineapple, but even that is somewhat generic. its in the feel where i think this one is made, or at least announces itself as excellent if a little forgettable. its got a great oily decadence to it, slick but also sticky, resinous but clean. juxtapositions you can really only find in wet hopped beers, and this one delivers in that regard, although still i dont see it moving beyond the industry standard for the style. starting to fade a little by now though, i should have picked this up a little earlier, but its still really tasty beer and one of the more slammable ones ive encountered this year.

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Photo of SmashAdams
3.5/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer smells lovely. Full of citrus and herbal floral grassiness. The taste is a nice balance of sweet malts and earthy hops followed by some herbal tea-like flavors. The finish is a bit disappointing. Overall my expectations were not met. nb

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Photo of Stevedore
4.11/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Gates and Brovi in Madison, Wisconsin. Served in a beer stein.

Pours a darker copper body, one finger white head, minimal retention, fair amount of lacing. Smells of pine cones, resin, a bit of lemon, citrus, grass, toffee and a bit of caramel. It's got a really nice wet-hopped smell. Flavour is a bit on the sweeter side, caramel and toffee rounds out the pine, citrus and grass. It's solid, very tasty. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, a bit lower in carbonation, moderately bitter. Overall, a very solid wet hopped ale that doesn't really have any off-flavour to it. It's very good wet hopped ale, well-rounded and would be worth picking up a six pack each year.

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Photo of rjd722
4.5/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Look: Pours a relatively clear light amber color, slight copper. Big, foamy white head that leaves significant lacing and a solid white film across the top throughout.

Aroma: A well balanced aroma of juicy citrus and floral notes, definitely get the light grapefruit and grass along with some pine. Everything about this beer is extremely fresh.

Taste: Floral and faint citrus, again those more grassy notes coming through towards the end.

Feel: Crisp and slightly bitter with a mild malt accompaniment, this is an excellent brew overall. Really clean, drinkable, and refreshing, it's easy to see why the label reminds you to DRINK NOW. Victory comes up big yet again.

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Photo of citizencane
4.34/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On draft at The Fridge in Lancaster, PA. Pours gold-brown; doesn't look fantastic but doesn't look bad. Tastes delicious, fresh crisp hop bitterness with a hint of fruit. Mouthfeel is crisp and very refreshing. Overall, I'd get this again in a heartbeat.

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Photo of Wiffler27
4.3/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

deep amber/orange/gold with a thick white head.

smells like grapefruit, very citrus-y yet also producing a lighter undertone.

taste is bitter yet clean. pure bitterness with slight sweetness, finishes very dry and bitter. goes down smooth yet still causes a very dry/bitter finish.

overall a pretty good beer, looks and smells fantastic but the taste is underwhelming compared. taste is good but not as great as i was expecting after i poured it. very fresh smelling and tasting!

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Photo of TheWolf
4.3/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This is delicious. Hazy copper. Smell is great. Big nose of citrus and tropical fruits but there is also layers of earthy hop. Taste combines the tropical juicy feel that is all the ravening the new pale ales and iPas but it balances with hop bitterness and bready malt. Mouthfeel is classic victory chewy and well carbonated. Impressed.

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Photo of ctylinebeer
5/5  rDev +21.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

12 oz. bottle hard-poured into a tulip glass. 2015 edition

L - Medium dark amber color with a hint of pink. Cloudy hue with some light coming through the sides.

S - Strong grapefruit and grass, like smelling fresh produce. Heavy scent of flowers also.

T - Soft grapefruit, tropical taste with a smooth spicy finish. Explosion of juicy hop goodness.

F - Not aggressive at all. Really smooth all the way through. Just about anyone can drink this IPA.

O - This is not just a beer, this is like hop juice. An absolute explosion of juicy hops right off the bine and into the beer. This rightfully has 5 across the board for me. Very good example of a harvest ale.

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Photo of Apellonious
3.94/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle enjoy by march 7, 2016 poured into a tulip glass.

A - Ruby red, mainly clear, with a one finger head that moves to a thin lace.

S - Dank, sea salt/onion, and pine.

T - Interesting. I get the toasted biscuit malt underneath, with herbal/pine layered on top. There is some zing and salt. Resin.

M - Carbonation is medium, with moments of sharpness. While the heft is somewhat smooth and creamy, there are moments when it seems thin and hot.

O - Another harvest ale that is worth a go. I may come to appreciate this more as I move through the 4 pack.

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Photo of emerge077
3.16/5  rDev -23.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

BBD: 3-7-16
Yeah...no. Not good, and not that old either.
Dark amber orange, lasting surface skim. Spotty flecks around the edges.
Initial aroma is rough, burnt rubber, cabbage, onions. Swirling gets rid of some unpleasantness, but it's still there. Malt sweetness starts coming through, tea, greens. Just not that good at all.

Taste is malty and tea-like, lightly piney bitter greens in the aftertaste. Lingering bitterness, somewhat bland, the hops aren't very present. Not something i'd revisit unfortunately.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
4.1/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Seattle Beer Week pint glass. Pours a medium to dark bronze amber with a half finger light khaki head with good retention and lots of lacing. Aroma of tropical and citrus fruit, piney and citrus hops, lightly caramel malt. Flavor is bready malt with hints of caramel and biscuit, piney, somewhat dank hops, light tropical and light stone fruit. Finishes with resinous dank and piney hops. Medium bodied with light creaminess and good mouth feel. A nicely complex wet hopped ale with an interesting hop bill that was robust throughout the taste and left a long lingering resinous bitterness while still retaining great herbal flavors. The malt is also rather multi-layered with the hints of biscuit in a malt body that leaves the flavors to the hops, but adds good support and interest. A great year for wet and fresh hopped ales and this one is right up there with the best. I'll look forward to it next year again.

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Photo of pinyin
4.02/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Purchased in Long Island NY, 4 pack $12.50 in the Union Distribution footprint.

Somewhat disappointing that I was unable to find it anywhere in North Eastern Pennsylvania. Victory has virtually no market share in this section (Monroe County) of their home state.

Served 40F from a 16 bottle into an 18 ounce tulip.

Color is a reddish orange, translucent and clarified. Look is very similar to Sierra Nevada Celebration. Celebration has more of cloudier shade and a better mouthfeel which I tend to prefer, but Victory Harvest ale edges it out slightly in taste and aroma. If you hadn't noticed by now, this is Victory's attempt at the style (Harvest Ale) that Sierra Nevada Celebration originated in the early eighties.

Aroma is a nice balance of sweet dark malt and fresh hops. Very pleasant but also subtle and not too overpowering like many double IPA's.

With the taste you get the familiar Victory house blend yeast up front, bready malts and then the hops kind fall right on top in perfect succession. Now Harvest Ales aren't as pleasing to my palette as a DIPA, but still great when in season and fresh. I do get a slight diacetyl note in the aftertaste, which I can presume came from improper handling during shipping and retail stocking. It's as if the hops are kind of fading away exposing the actual alcohol content of the ale. Coincidentally, I also get this in SN Celebration. Perhaps it is hop blend though, although I have never noticed this in Troeg's Hop Knife, which is the superior product of the three.

Mouthfeel is smooth, very typical Victory state of the art brite tank conditioning. Carbonation is done to perfection as all Victory products are.

Solid seasonal ale from Victory. Certainly not the best, and I think it is definitely overpriced at $12.50 for the 4 pack. Hop Knife is a much better tasting product and is $12.99 for the 6 pack. Yes the ABV% might not be as high, but it is same style and is superior in my opinion, so Victory might want to take that into consideration for next years launch.

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Photo of scottbrew4u
4.3/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours from 12 oz bottle a clear, amber color with an off white head half inch thick. Aroma is dank, fresh as if squeezing a fresh picked hop cone. Light brewed tea aroma and a caramel and toasted grain sweetness underneath all those hops. Sweet taste for a second then waves of glorious dank, herbal, and piney hops close in on the palate. This beer is delicious fresh and not overly bitter but very pleasing for a hop lover!

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Photo of stevoj
4.09/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Damn tasty stuff. Gentle hops dominate aroma and taste. Aroma is more citrus, taste more pine. Light orange copper body with small soapy head. Mild yellow grapefruit finish. Very well done IPA.

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Photo of Kennethzelljr
3.73/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours a deep copper nothing crazy on the appearance.aromatic presence is huge grapefruit,Orange peel,slight dank.taste is bitter fruits and citrus fruits,slight pine and dank resin.dry,refreshing,a lot of aggressive complex flavors in this beer.mouthfeel was pretty average.id give this one a B possibly B+.dont think I'd buy a full four pack but very nice I recommend seeking this out for an enjoyable wet hopped ipa.

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Photo of jopezu
4.5/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

pours a clear amber with a small head. nose; citra hops, light pine, orange zest and syrup. taste; big caramel malt, piney hop, herbal citrus (grapefruit & orange), and melon sweetness in the middle. aftertaste has an almost farmhouse ale peppery bite on the end as well as the advertised tea notes. very nice! medium carbonation and slightly thin mouthfeel. a great example for wet-hopped ipa's!

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Photo of ChrisMon02
4.09/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into a Duvel glass.

Looks nice. Orange in color with a decent fluffy head. Strong smell of fresh Citra hops and maybe a bit of Mosaic. Dank spicy tea, semi-sweet caramel malt and a touch of cat piss. Smooth easy drinker. A well done fresh hop brew from Victory. Not top notch but certainly a worthy offering. Recommending.

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Photo of HattedClassic
4.18/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a nice off-white head that dissipates moderately while the beer itself is a nice clear deep amber with a very nice copper hue, which makes it a very appealing look.

The smell is pretty good and very enticing. The beer has a strong wet hop smell that is mainly resin and a light grapefruit note. The hop note is nicely balanced with a sweet and lightly toasted malt note.

The taste has the same notes with a bitter resin hop note balanced by a sweet and lightly toasted malt note. The difference is that the hop tastes a bit drier than the smell but is still pretty good. There is also a slightly tea like taste as a result from the malt and hop notes.

The feel is medium body but seems to be a bit on the heavier side. The biting carbonation gives some very welcome texture to a smooth beer.

Overall ,a pretty good beer and Harvest Ale. Feel free to go for it.

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Photo of andrewjraab
3.99/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A pours a golden brown with a finger of off white egg shell colored head which sticks all the way down.

S - Citrus hops, piney, oily, weed.

T - Wet hops, citrus, oily and resinous. Medium bodied with a wet mouthfeel, finishes semi sweet.

O - Solid harvest ale that is definitely a worthy brew to try.

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Photo of Beers-es
4.16/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a copper/amber that's very clear. Half-finger of foam that doesn't stick around. Smell is citrus and pine right off the bat, then more of an herbal spice with a bit of malt, with hints of tropical fruit. I don't get a ton of citrus or pine taste, more the herb and spice. Also there's some sweeter malt underlying that provides a nice balance. Feel is a nice medium body that's just a little watery, which slowly resolves into a dry bitter aftertaste that lingers pleasantly. This is a really balanced, well-made, complex beer that's worth checking out if you like harvest ales.

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Victory Harvest Ale from Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
4.11 out of 5 based on 836 ratings.
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