baobubba (454) - Starkville, Mississippi, USA - JUN 24, 2003
3.9 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Red amber with a white head. Sweet bready aroma. Touches of raoast, grapes, and cotton candy. Sweet ice tea like flavor with some caramel in the quick-underwhelming finish of grass. Relatively light palate.
TheRimmer (483) - Florida, USA - JUN 22, 2003
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
I didnt let mine age at all. Shoot me. anyway, the nose was just like a regular english ale: like a molasses or light smoke , mixxed with sweetness. the body was full and intense. everything was like a regular english ale except MORE of it and far more in your face. I tasted like smoked fruits or a candyness thats been burnt. very enjoyable.
Silphium (3191) - East Lansing, Michigan, USA - JUN 18, 2003
3.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 13/20
(Bottle # 40697) I had high hopes for my first Fullers Vintage Ale, but was profoundly disappointed. Everything started nicely; the beer poured a rich amber color with a creamy tan head, and the aroma was of bready malts, caramel, and a hint of cider. Flavor was initially light candied fruit, caramel, and light alcohol notes. Over time, the alcohol became very strong, to the point that this beer would have been better served in a shotglass. A very bitter, astringent, throat-burning alcohol aftertaste dominated the palate after a few ounces. I am surprised to see this is only 8.5% ABV, as Vintage 2000 became very difficult to drink. By far the most poorly masked alcohol in a beer I've ever tasted.
CaptainCougar (7133) - Columbia, Maryland, USA - JUN 15, 2003
4.1 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle #38931: Pours a copper amber color with a one inch off-white, lightly lacing head. Nose is strong, fruity and complex, erupting with berries. Body is lightly bitter and full of malty sweetness. Alcohol is evident, but not overpowering. Finishes dry and honey-like and well-balanced. A great English strong ale that has aged well and still has a few good years in it.
aracauna (3495) - Georgia, USA - JUN 4, 2003
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
This is the best of the three vintages I've had of Fuller's Vintage Ale. The 1999 may have been past it's peak perhaps and the 2001 struck me as too bitter and alcoholic for a good balance. This however, was excellent. Very fruity and malty body balances the alcholic flavors and aroma and the bittering hops peak through only enough to prevent the malts from running away with the flavor. Considering the 1999, this beer has perhaps peaked and probably should be consumed soon. The appearance could use a more lively head, but who cares when the flavor is this good.
GermanBrews76 (680) - Richmond, Virginia, USA - MAY 7, 2003
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Improper glassware, I'm so soory, but we were simply victims of circumstance, I was at the mercy of Wisconsinites (thanks John). A hazy orange/amber body, a rich and thick tan head, very dense. Ripe fruits, rich & full, berries and subdued alcohol with some spices as well. Tastes of woody hints among a BIG lightly roasted barley flavor. Full mouthfeel, creamy and smooth all the way through, carbonation is perfect. So complex, a dry finish, well drawn out and very deep. Yeast, hops and alcohol are in perfect synchrony, a bit more malt character and whammo! I'd be knocked on my ass, GREAT BEER!!
Cobra (1100) - - MAY 1, 2003
4.6 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bottle # 38477. Packaged in a burgundy box, packed with excelsior. Pours out a deep red-mahogany color, with a buff
colored head that fades to edge lacing. Aromas are of fresh grains, caramel, candy, dried apricots, and strawberries. Very
aromatic. Tastes of caramel, slight maltiness, and a slight hops bitterness. Very smooth on the palate. Coats the tongue like a
syrup. Hides the alcohol very well. Warming to the stomach upon impact. A very well balanced beer. Almost too easy to drink.
I'm glad I found a case (12 bottles) of this to hide away for awhile.
Dogbrick (11323) - Columbus, Ohio, USA - MAR 31, 2003
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle #38294. Thanks to Indra for the trade. I liked this a little less than the '99, if only because it seemed a little less subdued. Pours a dark amber/brown color with a thick sand-colored head. Mild lacing. Strong aroma of malt and alcohol. Robust body with flavors of malt, caramel, vanilla and plum. Finish is syrupy-sweet and lasting. Good stuff.
Gunshy (479) - Ohio, USA - MAR 29, 2003
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
No. 73559: This beer is my first try at Fuller's Vintage. This beer poured a reddish orange color and formed an off white bubbly head that left circular lace when it subsided. Some carbonation was also present. An aroma of malt, caramel, plums and a slight hint of the alcohol. The flavor was of malt, caramel, a touch of grain with a lingering presence of wood. The finish was astrigent and carried a touch of the alcohol in it. A very good barley wine and well worth the wait.
daboskabouter (1470) - Fergus, Ontario, CANADA - MAR 28, 2003
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
2003: Cloudy dark brown color. Fruity nose with a nice mellow maltiness and just a touch of alcohol. Body is heavy with malt and more hops than the 2001 but less alcohol presence and more balanced. Very nice, the best of 99, 00 and 01.