Fuller's Vintage Ale | Fuller Smith & Turner PLC

Fuller's Vintage AleFuller's Vintage Ale
BA SCORE
88.2%
Liked This Beer
4.19 w/ 1,283 ratings
Fuller's Vintage AleFuller's Vintage Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Fuller Smith & Turner PLC
England, United Kingdom
fullers.co.uk

Style: Old Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.50%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
First released in 1997, Fuller's Vintage Ale is brewed in limited batches with each bottle being numbered. It can be enjoyed immediately, or Fuller's recommends laying the beer down to enjoy when it peaks in 3 to 4 years and consume at cellar temperature. And though it's released each year as a separate vintage, BA has been informed that the recipe is only slightly tweaked from year to year, while the ABV remains at 8.5%.

Added by Murph on 02-20-2002

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#1,178
Reviews:
678
Ratings:
1,283
Liked:
1,132
Avg:
4.19/5
pDev:
10.74%
Alströms:
4.32
 
 
Wants:
119
Gots:
307
Trade:
10
View: Beers | Events
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,283 |  Reviews: 678
Photo of matthewrdale
4.52/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of samEBC
4.04/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Mbbc
3.9/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Nichols33
3/5  rDev -28.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Photo of Andy_Luft
3.56/5  rDev -15%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of Waggman
3.9/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of BlueSpader
4.09/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of 1000lbgrizzly
4.58/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

2014 Vintage, bottle 145698.

Very milky (but no colloid sediment!) caramel-like brown-orange body, fine bubbles rise everywhere to support a velvety, cream-colored head that eventually fades to streaks of thin clouds, evidence of the chemistry of yeast taking place in my glass. Nose seduces me with rich buttery caramel, raisin, apricot, faint heat, mild citrus zip, and a bit of mineral-yeastiness. On the palette is butterscotch, mild bitterness to counter formidable sweetness, a zip of tropical fruits, woodiness like whiskey barrel. and some chalky yeast that is welcome. Body is full, but could still be heavier, and, dare i say it, more highly carbonated?? It felt a tad flat to me, but still completely acceptable.
What a treat to sip this one. Everything about it was warm, relaxing, and decadent. I wish I had a few more bottles to compare it to later on in its development. Pick these up if you see them!

 917 characters

Photo of OompaMentor
4.52/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of shagal
4.34/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of akk14
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of FlaviusG
4.27/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2013 Release, tasted on 12/25/2016.

35 characters

Photo of stephenlee
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of sweemzander
4.28/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of LiquidAmber
4.21/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Fremont small snifter. 2015 vintage. Pours a medium orange amber with a thin, off-white head that dissipates to a thick ring around the glass, with light lacing. Aroma of caramel malt, raisins, plums, a light tea component. Flavor of caramel malt, toffee, orange, light stone fruit, surprising light tartness in the finish with light grassy hops, a bit dry. Medium bodied with light creaminess. The profile really is like a boosted up / imperial ESB, rather than an old ale. This has more light fruit and a mellower, caramel malt body than a typical old ale. Interesting that the aroma had dark fruit elements, but the flavor is more orange citrus and light stone fruit. A complex ale that does seem to be fitting for some cellaring. I bought a second bottle to try in three years.

 796 characters

Photo of Schimms
4.93/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

2015 Bottle
No. 132876

L: Into a tulip glass: pours a reddish orange with big frothy white head close to an inch and a half. Great lacing up front - gone by the end.

S: Sweet malt, caramel, minimal hops.

T: Sweet, as promised. Juicy raisin up front. Mmmm...Fuller's biscuit flavor - subtle - makes an appearance at the end of the taste; liquid bread. God, I love Fuller's biscuity flavor.

F: Light carbonation. Smooth. Medium to full body. Leaves my tongue slightly dry.

O: A superb ale. I could drink this every day for the rest of my life.

 554 characters

Photo of stakem
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Vintage 2005 - procured from a store shelf circa 2008 at clearance discount price of $3.

500ml bottle into a thistle appears a perfectly polished mahogany color with rich khaki head 2 fingers tall that slowly fades leaving a curtain of webby lace.

Aroma is bready with caramel, raison, dates, slight herbs, apple, pear and trace minerals.

Taste is bready layers of malt sweetness - caramel, toast, vanilla, slight leafy oxidation, raison, molasses and fruity alcohol.

Medium in body, modestly carbonated and very pleasant/easy drinking. For only having 8.5% abv, it held up nicely for 11 years. Worth seeking out. Id love to know how the other vintages of this are and how they taste fresh. I am surprised more people dont talk about this as a cellar candidate as it has held up exceptionally well. Id clear shelves at $3 per bottle if the opportunity presented itself again.

 879 characters

Photo of Prost76
4.23/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of BKotch
4.44/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2000 vintage, no.44,400. Amazing. A 16-year-old beer, admittedly cellared under less than ideal conditions, pours a clear dark amber with a fluffy white head. Nose of sweet malt. Flavor, just a trace of cardboard (discounted because of the age) and otherwise sweet and fruity. Mouthfeel ridiculously creamy with good effervescence. I can't believe how good this is given its age. So well done.

 394 characters

Photo of MaltyPythonsHopCircus
4.34/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2015 Vintage Bottle 032514
All British ingredients in celebration of the 50th anniversary of Maris Otter. Love this beer. Caramel and dried fruit. Herbal hops with a woodsy note. Finishes slightly sweet with orange rind, marmalade kind of finish. Excellent

 256 characters

Photo of mcrawford
4.35/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Phoodcritic
4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of keithmurray
4.3/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2013 vintage
Bottle number 115886

Appearance - body is reddish orange with tan head

Smell - toffee, caramel, orange peel, raisin, dates, prunes, grapes

Taste - caramel, toffee, prune, raisin, date, orange peel

Mouthfeel - medium bodied, lower level of carbonation, caramel sweetness upfront, followed by candied orange peel, in the end is a fruity blast

Overall - a nice beverage that drinks like an imperial bitter. Steep asking price, but worth trying at least once

Price Point - $9.99/ 16.9 oz bottle

 509 characters

Photo of nullbort
4.27/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of DutchcdnTEXAN
4.33/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Fuller's Vintage Ale from Fuller Smith & Turner PLC
Beer rating: 88.2% out of 100 with 1,283 ratings
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.