ThisWangsChung (747) - Leonardtown, Maryland, USA - MAY 24, 2013
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Portion of a 22 oz bottle poured into a tulip glass.
A: Pours a very dark brown color - one would think it was an imperial stout given the look. The head is a one finger mocha shade. I’m really impressed how well it retains itself for 16%, too. Not much lacing, as expected.
S: There is a lot of chocolate, licorice, and plum qualities exhibited on the nose. In general it’s a fruity aroma, perhaps a bit weak (due to the fact I served it relatively cold) yet not remotely boozy.
T: The initial flavor is very plummy. Strong dark fruits and chocolate go into the midtaste, and it finishes with a bit of spicy hoppiness and booze. I’m amazed how boozy this isn’t - blindfold me and I’d swear it was around the 9-10% range. Rather, it’s the sweetness that becomes a problem. After 10 oz. this one got too cloying for me.
M: It isn’t as thick as one would expect, but it certainly lingers on the palate in sweet, syrupy fashion. While I can complain about all the sweetness, I can NOT complain about the prevalence of alcohol; the person I was drinking it with claimed he could honest-to-god chug it.
O: Sure, it gets too cloying after half a bottle. Sure, it’s devoid of sophistication, refinement, and elegance. But when you consider that this is an extreme beer that’s drinkable, non-boozy, AND inexpensive (for what it is), all those problems kind of fly out the window. I wouldn’t have regretted buying a second bottle of this to age for a year of two, either. This one is best shared with 2-3 people.
dfearnley (1046) - Alberta, CANADA - NOV 14, 2014
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 2/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle to snifter
Black currant, plum liqueur, resin, light coffee notes, treacle, oats, booze. Silky black, thin bubbly tan head that disappears in 5 seconds, a little effervescence. Taste is coffee, semi-sweet chocolate, loads of malt, plum, and a satisfying bitterness. It’s light bodied and a little thin and the alcohol really boosts my salivary glands to make it feel even thinner.
cyrenaica (1031) - Milton, Ontario, CANADA - NOV 13, 2014
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 14/20
14.5% ABV (as marked on bottle)
RBC Plaza LCBO Outlet (Toronto, Ontario, Canada)
February 26, 2013
The beer pours a solid dark brown, syrupy in nature with a creamy light brown head. Aroma is alcohol, caramel, and molasses. Mouthfeel is full bodied with mild carbonation. Flavour is over the top sweet and the alcohol is definitely noticeable. Dark fruit and roasted malt round out the flavour. Definitely a beer for sharing.
jtclockwork (8759) - , New Jersey, USA - NOV 5, 2014
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle. Pours dark brown tan head. Nose/taste of raisin, dark fruit, molasses, cocoa and deep roasted oats. Full body. Sweet as expected.
Chad9976 (1223) - Albany, New York, USA - NOV 1, 2014
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
When a beer’s ABV is in double digits it can be a little intimidating to drink, especially when that beer comes in a 22oz bottle. Shmaltz Brewing is known for making huge beers for their anniversary every fall and they always play a numbers game, so it’s not surprising that their 16th Anniversary ale would be made from 16 different malts, 16 different hops and weigh in at 16% ABV. I’m just glad I waited until their 18th anniversary to try it.
I split a 22oz bottle with three friends. We each poured it into tulip glasses. (I cannot remember how, where or when I got this bottle, though!).
Appearance: Opaque, stout-like black. Pours to an amazingly large, dark brown, frothy head which retains and laces pretty well.
Smell: Pungent aroma of black licorice, chocolate syrup, sour grape, and some alcohol.
Taste: A beer this strong blurs the styles lines for sure. He’Brew Jewbelation Sweet Sixteen could be considered an imperial stout as it has most of the qualities usually found in the style: almost sickly sweet amount of black licorice and chocolate, along with confectionery notes of raw toffee and caramel syrups. There’s a distinct sour grape as well, which is often found in many of my favorite imperial stouts. What it lacks, however, is a presence of roasted malt and coffee. Perhaps that’s due to the fact this bottle was two years old at the time and they had faded. The hops have also faded a bit as this beer is not especially bitter, though there is subtle dryness at the crest of the swig. The finish is equally sweet, almost sickly sweet with a slightly cloying aftertaste. Personally, I think it’s delicious, but then again I have a predilection towards sweet brews. The alcohol is quite mellow, which is nice, though there’s just a faint hint of vanilla character akin to bourbon or rum. I don’t see much more to be gained by aging this any longer, so if you have one stashed now would be a good time to break it out.
Drinkability: I was fully expecting He’Brew Jewbelation Sweet Sixteen to be flavored rubbing alcohol, but it drinks like any other imperial stout. The mouthfeel is, not surprisingly, thick and viscous, though calm with a smooth texture. It definitely leaves a sticky sensation on the tongue that’s a little cloying. However, there’s no raw booziness for a 16% ABV brew, which is nice. An experienced drinker could probably handle an entire bottle himself, though I’d recommend sharing with friends since a short pour is satisfying enough.
GG (2323) - NorCal, California, USA - OCT 31, 2014
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
22oz bottle -
Everything plus the kitchen sink and it definitely could have been a train wreck. Lots of alcohol in the aroma, figs/dates, dark chocolate, and raisins. Flavor is SWEET! Roasted malts, dark chocolate, molasses-like bitterness, brown-sugar mixed with alcohol. Pretty heavy!
shigadeyo (3049) - Harrison, Ohio, USA - OCT 10, 2014
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
10/10/2014: He’Brew Sweet Sixteen... Really deep amber-brown color that’s opaque with a non-existent head. Aroma is boozy with prune, caramel, and more alcohol. Flavor is amazingly good; it’s rich, malty and somewhat sweet, but not cloying. there’s a sneaky hint of dark chocolate in the finish along with some char. Medium-full body, milky texture, smooth and slightly creamy. This beer is so amazing good. I’ve been wanting to drink this for a long time and I’m happy that that time has finally come. This is a great beer to share and enjoy. 22 fl. oz. bottle.
slowrunner77 (6019) - Reno, Nevada, USA - SEP 22, 2014
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
Looks darker than expected...brown side of black. Very complex aroma of licorice, chocolate, burnt malts, caramel. A little mocha and bitter hops in the flavor as well. Nice sipper. For the ridiculously high abv, this is really smooth and while pleasantly warming, not hot til it reaches room temp. I’m surprised...these seem to keep getting better. I’ll be searching out another."
Oly (42) - Crawfordsville, Indiana, USA - AUG 12, 2014
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Aroma is sweet raisin and toffee. The taste is much the same, but with some coffee bitterness and a lot of booze. It’s much less boozy than you’d expect for a 16% beer (tipping my hat to the brewers for pulling off a good beer at that ABV), but still more boozy than I’d like. This tastes much more like an imperial stout than a strong ale to me. If it was a strong ale, I’d probably give it a 16, but as an imperial stout I’d give it a 14 given the great stouts out there. I split the difference at 15/20.
SDalkoholic (2168) - Linda Vista, California, USA - JUN 30, 2014
4.5 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bottle from Pacific Liquor: Poured a dark blackish brown color with a thick formation of foam head which stuck around for few minutes before eventually dying down. Aroma is deep with a boozy whiff of alcohol that has minor traces of cognac or bourbon whiskey. The drink delivers a lethal dosage of boozy alcohol yet has been gracefully matched with a heaping serving of sweet syrupy malts so that this doesn’t take like hard liquor. Extremely smooth considering the high ABV, I just don’t foresee how HeBrew will be able to keep this anniversary series up?
TXBadger (1477) - Dallas, Texas, USA - JUN 21, 2014
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Pours a brownish color with off-white head. Boozy! Even on the nose, there is booze, and malts. Follows onto the palate. Finishes with more booze.