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Strong Ale - English
Ranked #2
Ranked #3,129
4.13 | pDev: 9.69%
England, United Kingdom
Notes: Matured for 100 days

First brewed in 1995 to commemorate the 150th anniversary of Fuller, Smith & Turner, this bottle conditioned recipe is inspired by the original Fuller's brewing books. The Amber malt and Goldings hops combine to create a delicious fruitcake aroma. As this beer is bottle conditioned, we recommend it is stored upright and poured carefully.
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Reviews: 715 | Ratings: 1,161 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of Spike
Spike from England

4.27/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

500ml bottle conditioned.
L: Clear, mahogany colour with an off-white head that collapses slowly to a generous cap, leaving arcs of lacing. Stunning.
S: Treacle and tobacco. Rich and heady.
T: Follows the nose plus brown bread, dried fruit, wood smoke and a touch of citrus. Solid bitterness.
F: Mouthfeel is smooth like velvet. Finish is very dry with some hop sharpness. Alcohol is evident and warming.
O: A gorgeous English strong ale. Amber malt is doing the hard yards, while earthy hops maintain an edge and prevent everything getting too sweet and soupy. An excellent winter warmer.

Jan 29, 2021
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milkshakebeersucks from Maryland

4.13/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Average size tan head atop a garnet body that leaves nice lacing. Aroma of soft fruit, bready malts and yeast. Earthy taste, some sweetness, mild nuttiness, but well balanced by fragrant, floral hops. Very smooth mouthfeel, gently carbonated, with a dry, long lasting finish. Complex, but extremely drinkable.

Dec 10, 2020
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Hat_Fulla_Beer from Canada (AB)

4.01/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

500ml bottle poured into tulip.

Pours a dull, hazy deep brown with a thin cap of beige head that leaves scattered bubbles on the side of the glass.

Smells of toffee pudding, honeyed bread crust, marmalade, pecan pie, sultana raisin and some soft earthy hops.

Tastes of honeyed biscuit, subdued marmalade and pecan pie sweetness, baked nuts, cold coffee, candied raisin and more faint hops.

Feels mild and British. Full bodied with gentle carbonation. Finishes dry.

Verdict, Highly recommended. A nice solid warmer.

Dec 14, 2019
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mothmanscott from Georgia

4.1/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From notes 4/23/12: Pours a reddish brown with a thick tan/deep beige head that leaves decent lacing as it recedes. Aroma is malty bread, caramel, figs and prunes; floral hop hint. The taste is caramel, molasses, dried fig and prune, hints of butterscotch and smoke; some bread and thin roasted nuts with earthy and floral hop hints. It finishes clean and dry. As promised it is fruitcake-like. Mouthfeel is medium-full bodied with medium carbonation, smooth with a dry finish. Very drinkable.

Oct 23, 2019
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bmaslakov from Russian Federation

4.53/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bought this bottle in October last year and opened this August, which added about ten months to the initial 100 day maturing period. Poured in a glass smells honey and banana bread; tastes honey, treacle, orange jam, and tropical fruit. Rich and intense, well-rounded cognac finish and very little hoppy aftertaste. This is a bottle-conditioned beer, so it produces a generous amount of steady, white foam, and has high carbonation. An excellent beer and I can definitely recommend.

Aug 11, 2019
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TooManyGlasses from Canada (AB)

4.15/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Slightly aged murky reddish brown pour with cream coloured head. Smells of sweet caramel malt, toffee, brown sugar and dark fruits, hints of nutmeg, clove. Taste is malty - caramel sweetness, brown sugar, date, with spicy hop bitterness t finish. Mouthfeel is interestingly creamy with muted but present carbonation that washes across palate. Ends with nice malty bittersweetness.

Apr 13, 2019
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JonnoWillsteed from England

4.32/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

L- Very deep chestnut. Pours with 5mm white head that holds well. Clear as a bell. Note carefully this is bottle-conditioned, so store upright and pour carefully.
S- Toasted grains is prominent.
T- Mmmm roasty, coffee, toasty, malty richness, puddingy, lovely!
F- It feels like a 6.3% should, it has a solid presence. Actually in a blind-test I might guess this as around 8.0% it has a slight bitter tang on the tongue that might be mimicking a higher ABV%. It's superbly balanced. To me this is squarely in the realm of what a 'winter warmer' should be. Would be perfect to enjoy with an Xmas meal.
O- Absolutely superb. The Smell was rather underwhelming to me but I do have some congestion. Wow, what a gem. I have to keep re-checking the lable after a gulp to re-confirm that this IS only 6.3%. One to sup slowly and savour.
Ale fans need to do themselves a favour and try and seek this brew out. It's my 260th rating and I hope this ends up scoring in my top 10% brews ever (and that includes having lived in Germany for 3 years, and enjoying 100+ brews there...)

Unfortunately I don't recall where I bought this, as it's a real gem, and a bargain at at £1.80/500ml.

edit/ps. I bought it from Waitrose, and have since built up a stock of 50 bottles to see me through 2019, as a weekly treat. They currently have it on a special offer across the Fullers range of bottled beers at '4 for £6'; runs through end of Dec-18. I find that irresistible for a beer of this quality, so I've focused solely on buying this one. Even at full price of £1.80/500ml I'll continue to buy it if my current stock ever runs out...

Nov 17, 2018
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gutbucket2 from England

4.41/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

500ml, bottle-conditioned. Pours copper with thick, lasting head. Aroma berries, spicy hop. Taste syrupy, alcohol, goldings hops. Aftertaste: caramel. Overall: worthy strong beer with strong flavour and alcohol warming.

May 04, 2018
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monkist from Hungary

4.69/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Brewed to commemorate the 150th Anniversary of Fullers, this is a special brew indeed. Matured for 100 days, bottle conditioned.
Hard to sum it all up in words: there is a remarkable (hop) bitterness to it along with caramellized malts that give it a round body and somehow in the end you are left with a slightly sour aftertaste. It is a little similar to the Hobgoblin but much more refined and its taste is much more pleasant and round malty.
I love Fullers and I am glad for this special brew, although I just had one of their Past Masters yesterday and that was unbeatable indeed. This is great too, but that was truly exceptional. What should I say, Fullers is the best brewery in the UK, maybe in the whole Europe. Congratulations to their 150th anniversary!

Mar 10, 2018
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CLSimps from Arizona

4.48/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A bomber poured into a nonic pint. A hazy brown (maybe mahogany?) color with a nice thick head that yielded persistent lacing throughout. Typical malty nose with a hint of dried fruit (raisins?) and very, very drinkable. Layers and layers of malt and toffee throughout with a hint of cocoa. Wow

Dec 09, 2017
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josanguapo from Spain

4.52/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From Saveur Biere. In Teku glass. Really, and dangerously drinkable. Superb feel and a nice brown sugar and toffee profile in both nose and mouth, with strong bitterness at end

Oct 09, 2017
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Everydayoff from Thailand

4.29/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

500ml bottle poured into a pint glass.

Hazy mahogany yet tawny brown in color, it tops with very thick fluffy khaki head that withstands with great retention before slowly subsiding to an everlasting foamy layer atop and leaving lots of sticky lacing patch and spot here and there.

The aroma is so well mellow. It kick offs with sweet fruitcake and dried-fruit like a raisin. Beneath those aromas, there are also the layers of malty paradise that play the symphony of caramel, toffee, sugar, honey bread, biscuit, nut, and some toasted. Hop nicely joins in with its earthy spice together with a touch of crisp fruity yeast.

The wave of malt sweeps through the palate sensation without mercy. Fruitcake, caramel, toffee, sugar, honey bread, biscuit, nut, and some toasted just like the aroma together with yeasty ester of dried-fruit and crisp raisin. Hop provides its suggestion of earthy spice and some bitterness at the end together with some bitterness too from toasted malt and sweet caramel yet some residual fruitiness.

Full body with smooth mouthfeel and mild carbonation that is enough to carry all the things well, the feeling is well-rounded with a pleasantly dry finish. Please let it warm a bit to enjoy a full range of character.

Intense and complex old-school English Ale, malt takes the lead all along with its wide varieties of fruitcake, caramel, toffee, sugar, honey bread, biscuit, nut, and toasted. Hop and yeast also play an important role bringing big earthy spice and fruity dryness.

Aug 15, 2017
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LiquidAmber from Washington

4.21/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Samuel Smith pint glass. Pours a slightly hazy medium to dark orange brown with a thin, light khaki head that dissipates to a thin cap with light lacing. Aroma of biscuit and dry caramel malt, figs, raisins and brown bread. Flavor is deep biscuit and caramel malt, brown bread, dates, toffee and a hint of rye. Finishes with some slight rye tartness and nice lingering dark, biscuity malt. Medium bodied with light creaminess. A great, malty English style strong ale, leaning towards an old ale, but more dark fruit notes and a little lighter body. The fresh brown bread character fits in great with the maltiness. A full bodied, malty pleasure from a great English brewery.

Aug 13, 2017
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LampertLand from Canada (BC)

4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Fullers '1845' @ 6.3% , served from a 500 ml bottle purchased for $4.50
A-pour is amber from the bottle to a dark amber in the glass with a medium beige head leaving a streaky lace along the pint
S-caramel & toffee , roasted malts
T-smooth with a strong swallow
MF-decent carbonation , full bodied
Ov-good beer
prost LampertLand

Jul 16, 2017
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Bombelsky from Poland

4.41/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark amber, clear. Mousse like off-white, 2 fingers foam, persisting. Fantastic lacing.
High malty-caramel aroma. Moderate fruity esters, raisins. Malty moderate-high sweet, rich, toffee, chocolate flavor. Moderate earthy, spicy hops flavor. Moderate bitterness.
Full body, oily, chewy, soft carbonation. Long lasting, medium dry finish.


Jun 15, 2017
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OlaB from Norway

3.89/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

L: gives a deep bronze color. A medium top of creamy head that disolves quickly but leaves a small top. Nice sticky lacings on the glass.

S: roasted malts, caramel, tofee,bread, dried fruits,honey and some slight coffee notes.

T&F: starts of with a creamy and smooth mouthfeel with a high carbonation. Some dried dark fruits upfront with strong malt presence in the background.the finish gets more hoppy with a long bitterness in the aftertaste. Gives a bit of a warming feel after some sips.

O: a good and enjoyable beer from a brewery that almost always deliver decent beers. Nice to have tried it, but this is not really my type of beer so I probably would not buy it again.

Feb 05, 2017
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StJamesGate from New York

3.96/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Glowing dark cherry amber with crusty steady sandstone cap that doesn’t move. 4.25
Dark honey, butter, golden raisins and maybe some candied orange. 3.75
Golden biscuit, butterscotch, peachy esters, thin toffee, peanuts, tannic tea bag and some spicy hops that numb as they linger. 4
Almost medium, fizzy, some chew, smooth. 4

What to make of this… It’s understrength and lightweight for what I’d consider the style (though I’m not sure I could parse English Strong from English Barleywine blindfolded - hops, I guess?) There’s plenty of malt depth + ale esters going on, but it’s also a touch thin, which makes me want to gulp, not sip - the hops finish clean a bit too well - when it’s not really meant for that. At 9 months cellared it’s not getting any better, so left wanting somehow, in the end. 4

Jan 20, 2017
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stevoj from Idaho

3.78/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Bottle At Heathrow. Dark amber, slight haze, small bubbly head. Woody, malty aroma, fruitcake. Taste gets a bit tangy and spicy, caramel, brown bread. A bit of warmth from the ABV, quite evident here after a week of gentle bitters.

Dec 12, 2016
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acmurphy696 from Georgia

4.65/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This is a delicious beer. It reminds me of a good porter with is strong, distinct flavor alongsides its alluring aroma. I basically picked it up on a whim with other Fullers, yet it turned out to be my favorite from the bunch. I will definitely revisit this brew.

Nov 20, 2016
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Chessmaster from Maryland

3.9/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

T: Pleasant, toasty, bready/biscuity, pale + crystal malt, no discernible hop taste or aroma (beyond bittering)

A: Copper/bronze color with average head which dissipated fast into thin crown

M: Average mouthfeel, average carbonation

S: Toasty malt, mild smell, nothing memorable

O: Overall a drinkable and enjoyable beer. Wouldn't turn one down, wouldn't go out of my way to buy.

Jul 03, 2016
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rodbeermunch from Nevada

3.02/5  rDev -26.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Comes in light auburn, a little bit of haze to it, but the lace formation at 3/4" and retention were impressive. So basically what it lacks in color/clarity it makes up for on top. Aroma, . . . what hops?

This has got to be the weakest strong ale of all time. Comes off more like an English pale ale. Has some of those mild brown malt notes, Burton type yeast, old earthy noble hops, wood, toffee & tea stuff going on.

Expensive format, would not repeat.

Apr 28, 2016
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Beginner2 from Illinois

4.12/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A delicious, balanced ale.
Looks are OK, but do not convey what is to come. Smells do, mostly malt, some dried dark and citrusy fruits.
Tastes have no surprises, just richer than expected. Feel has sufficient bubbles and fills the mouth.
Overall, probably is entering the stratosphere of a classic.
Reviewed in Roger Protz' "300 More Beers To Try Before You Die", a sequel to his CAMRA classic.
MJ's 1999 "Guide" gave it 3 of 4 stars and called it "toasty and lemony." Enough said.

Apr 28, 2016
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Raime from Greenland

3.51/5  rDev -15%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Fuller's 1845.

I've only had a handful of beers outta these lovely Brits but only because I don't see many of them around here. This is my introduction to the English style of Strong Ale and I trust in these guys to lead me correctly. No big intro here, let's drink it.

Look - From an odd shaped bomber hard poured into a pint glass. This brew pours a deep,deeeeeeeep amber/ruby/ garnet hue with an initial two finger off white head that is exceptionally thick and pilowy in consistency. Depth of the coloration ensures only a faint amount of light can penetrate. The carbonation appears to be about moderate. Head leaves immediate pillowy stick amongst a slow descent into the swill. Head retained well throughout the drink and left a ton if sticky lace.

Smell - The bottle is more than correct when it states there will be notes of fruit cake. That is basically the entirety of the nose, along with some nutty factors as well. No point in going on a drivel here, it smells how the bottle says it will smell. However, now that the beer has warmed there is a nice dark baked bread aspect as well.

Taste - The flavor profile on this beer is almost dubbel like minus the HUGE cherry flavor I tend to get from those beer. Dark baked bread though with a bit of the cherry though it doesn't dominate. Minimal hop level. Sweetness is on the lower end of medium. Not a massive profile, but it is pleasant.

Feel - The feel on this brew is very creamy due to the retention and thickness of the remaining pillow of froth, however the overall body is pretty watery with quite a bit or carbonation. Flavors turn sweeter as it sits. Swallows quite sweet with dominating fruit cake.

Overall - This was an alright beer but to be quite honest my overall enjoyment of it was about average. Was a lot like a toned down dubbel and that isn't a style I particularly care for. I guess it would be nice on a cool fall night around a fire, but too little for the dead of Winter up North. I doubt I'd buy again, but would drink it if handed to me. Completely different than the American counterparts..

Jan 13, 2016
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freneticamnesic from Netherlands

4.15/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Fuller's pint glass.

A - pours deep mahogany with a thin off-white head
S - Smells of caramel malts and fresh toast
T - Brown bread, toffee, cascade hoppy finish with bright golden notes and boozy overtones. Leaves a bit of a coppery aftertaste
M - Smooth, with quite a bit of carbonation
O - The flavour is quite different than what I am used to and was even a bit difficult to identify at first. However, it is quite nice and really grows on you.

Jan 06, 2016
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Bruno74200 from France

4.2/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

L - dark brown colour filled with tiny bubbles going up and with almost no head

S - caramelized malts and floral hops

T - great taste, a big roasted malt flavor then hop bitterness with a grassy taste then wooden taste. The malts and hops make it like a thing between the gingerbread and the fruitcake

F - Really smooth feel with perfect carbonation

O - a great beer quite nice for the season. Really balanced and enjoyable! I really like the hop presence between the malts. That's what I like about english ales!

Dec 26, 2015
1845 from Fuller's
Beer rating: 92 out of 100 with 1161 ratings