Archive for the ‘J.W. Lees & Co Ltd’ Category

Tonight’s selection is a beer that I picked up awhile back that I wanted to give a try. Let’s see how it was.

leesharvestwhisky

ABV: 11.5%

Style: English Barleywine

Trivia: According to the brewery website, “In 2015 we have found another year’s harvest really worth celebrating and brewed a phenomenal Harvest Ale. Darker and richer than the many that have come before, the 2015 edition will surprise and delight. To look at, the beer is slightly darker than previous vintages, with flavours of toffee and sherry. But as with all JW Lees Harvest Ale, these flavours will develop in the bottle as the beer ages. Harvest Ale is a limited edition vintage barley wine, made once and once only from the first hops of the year and the very finest British malt. The beer quickly gained a cult following of ale enthusiasts who recognised its quality and relish in the different flavours each vintage brings and the evolution that comes with ageing over time. In the past 29 years, the beer has grown in popularity and in some bars around the world it has gained legendary status, with older vintages being highly sought after and changing hands for up to $60 per bottle.”

Random: I think I have a cold again. I hate getting sick.

This beer poured with almost no head. What was there was cream-colored and dissipated quickly. It left no lacing on the glass. The body was murky and brown with no carbonation visible. On the nose, I picked up a lot of sweetness with brown sugar. There was also a significant booze note with oak and whiskey. The taste had a lot of leather upfront with caramel sweetness. Tobacco was next and was quickly followed up with brown sugar. It was really earthy. The body was thick and syrupy with light carbonation. The finish was lengthy with leather and whiskey. A bottle of this was $8.99, which came to $1 per ounce (the bottle was only 9 ounces). This was a great beer for a cold night and incredibly flavorful. I would definitely have this one again.

Untappd Rating: 4.0/5.0

Tonight’s selection is a real treat. I picked this up in New York and aged it for a while. Let’s see if this warms me up tonight.

harvestcalvados2009

ABV: 11.5%

Style: English Barleywine

Trivia: According to the brewery website, “Harvest Ale is a limited edition vintage barley wine, made once and once only from the first hops of the year and the very finest British malt. The beer quickly gained a cult following of ale enthusiasts who recognised its quality and relish in the different flavours each vintage brings and the evolution that comes with ageing over time. In the past 29 years, the beer has grown in popularity and in some bars around the world it has gained legendary status, with older vintages being highly sought after and changing hands for up to $60 per bottle.”

Random: I’ve never had Calvados. I’m curious to see what it tastes like.

This beer poured with absolutely no head on top of a dark and cloudy deep mahogany body. Since the beer was so dark, I couldn’t see any carbonation. The nose reminded me more of a sherry or a brandy than a beer. It had a lot of sweetness along with dark fruit, specifically raisins. There was a significant alcohol note that I picked up too. As it warmed, there was also oak and vanilla. On first sip, I picked up a lot of sweetness with raisins and dates that was quickly followed with alcohol. The oak and vanilla came next with some blackstrap molasses and dark brown sugar. The body was sticky and thick with no carbonation. The finish lasted forever and was sweet with vanilla and molasses. I don’t recall how much I paid for this beer since I’ve aged it for awhile, but this was really a treat, no matter what the price. This is a beer for a cold night by a fire and I think it would even pair well with a cigar. If I see any more of these, I’ll be aging them for a good amount of time.

Untappd Rating: 4.0/5.0

It’s the best time of the year…baseball season! The season has finally started, which always makes me incredibly happy. What better than a beer to go with baseball? This is a beer that I stuck in the cellar for a bit after picking it up from Half Time. Since it was from my first trip there, I don’t remember how much I paid for it. Let’s see how it was.

IMG_3262

ABV: 11.5%

Style: English Barleywine

Trivia: According to bunitedint.com, “J.W.Lees Vintage Harvest Ale is only brewed once a year for release on December 1 of each year. It is a Limited Edition Vintage to celebrate the first brew from each year’s harvest of barley and hops. Only the first delivery of the year’s classic barley malt ‘Maris Otter’ and the classic hop variety ‘Goldings’ from East Kent is therefore used. Fermentation is induced by J.W.Lees distinctive three-strain top-fermenting yeast. J.W.Lees Vintage Harvest Ale reaches 11.5 % alc./vol. once completely attenuated with a natural fermentation in open copper lined fermenting vessels that were commissioned in 1876 when the brew house was refurbished.”

Random: As usual, the Phils lost on Opening Day. I have a feeling it’s going to be a very long season.

This beer poured with a huge, four finger, cream-colored head that was thin and dissipated slowly and left no lacing on the glass. The body was a hazy mahogany color with light carbonation visible. The nose had notes of raisins and booze with vanilla too. The taste had decent amount of booze and transitioned into extremely sweet caramel and raisin. After it warmed, some oak and vanilla were present as well. It had a thick body with light carbonation. The finish was long with sticky, sweet caramel finish. This beer was a really nice sipper and one I would definitely have again.

Untappd Rating: 4.0/5.0