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Brakspear Vintage Ale 1999 | W.H. Brakspear & Sons plc

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Brakspear Vintage Ale 1999Brakspear Vintage Ale 1999
5 Ratings
Brakspear Vintage Ale 1999Brakspear Vintage Ale 1999

Brewed by:
W.H. Brakspear & Sons plc
England, United Kingdom

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.50%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by UnionMade on 06-20-2002

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
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Ratings: 5 |  Reviews: 5
Photo of cubedbee
4.18/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I had my doubts about a 6 year old low alcohol porter, but I figured I'd give this a try anyway. Bottle #5614. As soon as I flip the swingtop, the pressure pops the whole thing off, flying across the room. No gushing though. Beer pours a deep murky brown with ruby red edges and flecks of sediment floating around. Gigantic coffee colored cap of head that disipates over a couple minutes. Nose is slightly winelike, but with nice bitter chocolate, raisin, and licorice notes and a slight hint of hops. Taste is a nice roasted malt, with cocoa, vanilla, a slight port, and a slightly lingering roasted bitterness. Very nice silky smooth mouthfeel with a nice soft carbonation. This was surprisingly a very nice beer, maybe a little past it's prime, but still very good tasting.

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Photo of UnionMade
4.32/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

The beer is packaged in a very classy brown earthenware crock, complete with a swingtop and a screened Brakspear logo. Admirable presentation. The beer was sampled some time ago, and the notes magically appeared as I was cleaning receipts out of my wallet. Go figure.
The beer itself pours from the vessel a muddy mahogany brown. Some flecks of clumpy sediment. Almost no head, just a thin ring of taupe lace, which dies away after a sip or two.
The aroma is very smooth and aged, with a slightly vinous feel. Very soft roasted malt, with some chocolate coming through. Very slight hops, just a brief waft of herbal softness. Pleasant fruity aroma, with hints of plum, pear, fig and currant. A bit of coffee and alcohol. Impressively smooth, only vaguely like any porter I've sampled.
The sip starts off with very soft roasted maltiness. Some coffee is present. The flavor is strong, yet subdued. The beer just glides across your tongue, neither chewy nor thin, with incredibly soft, light carbonation. Faint vanilla comes across towards the middle, clearing the path for a sweet estery fruitiness. Hints of plum, currant and fig. Very nice. The hops are rather diminished, but retain an earthy herbal flavor. Most likely goldings. The finish reveals a rather surprising alcohol presence, with a warmth going down the throat. Some burnt maltiness and chocolate remain in the aftertaste.
I was very impressed with this brew. Very distinct flavor reminiscent of what I imagine beers from olden days tasting like. Very flavorful, but masked with a silky smoothness that's extremely enjoyable. I'd get it again if i could find it, although I can't imagine this beer keeping forever, despite the lightless vessel containing it.

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Photo of jcalabre
2.95/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I originally sampled this beer on 4 December 2002. I am writing this review from my notes.
bottle #2931: This is a medium bodied porter w/ a large head. Aroma of light chocolate. Has a bit of sourness on the tongue. It is nice but it is not outstanding.

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Photo of TXHops
2.08/5  rDev -42.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Bottle # 7056. DEFINITELY past it's prime. Fizzy, quikly dissipating head atop a clear, garnet body. Tastes stale and slightly sour. It appears that there used to be some wonderful chocolate flavors buried in that extravagent crockery, but now it's just not very good. Here's the dillema: this beer is vintage dated and is intended to age for at least a while. My bottle is more than 3 years old and might be 4 years. It's over the hill now: should I review it on it's current merits? If so, it's lousy: sub 3. Oxidized and papery in addition to musty, stale and starting to taste slightly like vinegar. Should I skip it? I think, that because this beer is still out there available for sale, I'll post the review with the caveat that drinkers should read Gusler's and Venom's reviews to get a better idea of what this beer USED to taste like...

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Photo of Gusler
4.4/5  rDev +22.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Release 1999 Bottle #3051: The beer pours a very deep garnet color the head Bunyanesque in size, the texture frothy, and the color a winsome light tan, as it dissipates, it leaves a thick sticky sheet of lace to hide the glass. The nose is a bit sweet with the aroma of lightly toasted grain also a bit musty and a pleasant sniff to be sure. Start is slightly sweet, nicely malted, the top svelte, the finish minimally carbonated, the hops scrumptious in their spicy bite, droughty aftertaste, maybe even a bit vinous, a quite pleasant beer, different from most porters, and a real treat.

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Brakspear Vintage Ale 1999 from W.H. Brakspear & Sons plc
Beer rating: 3.59 out of 5 with 5 ratings
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