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James Squire Australian Strong Ale

Formerly brewed at Malt Shovel Brewery (Lion Co.)
Style: English Strong Ale
Sydney, Australia


on tap


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RATINGS: 79   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.24/5   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 204   ABV: 6.8%
James Squire Australian Strong Ale is a no-expense-spared beer, brewed to the glowing russet colour of autumn leaves. Crystal wheat and several malted barleys produce deep toasted flavours with a rich toffee edge. Lifted floral hop notes of rare Australian hops complement the profoundly malty, biscuity flavours and the apricot/fig esters created by wild ale fermentation.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Betty (236) - Walgett, NSW, AUSTRALIA - AUG 6, 2003
I like this one quite a lot. It's a shame it's all over now (according to my buddy at Camperdown cellars). The malt is way fresh and a little burnt with milo and crumbled coffee beans. The strength is perfect cause you can swig it walking along King street with your buds. I'll miss you (you too King St).

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Gusler (2653) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - OCT 10, 2003
Upon pouring the beer a crystalline burnished copper color with a majestic light tan head and creamy texture. As the head dissolves a fine sheet of lace forms and seals the glass nicely. Nose sweet malt, fresh and clean with a slight hint of caramel, quite pleasant to the olfactory and ocular senses, start is sweet malt, the top middling in feel. Finish has a mild carbonation with the hops persistent in their spicy bite, quite dry aftertaste that also hints of the high ABV, by leaving a slight but enjoyable alcohol bitterness on the palate, all in all a darn good beer.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
1FastSTi (3360) - Glendale, Wisconsin, USA - JUL 1, 2005
Bottle says "Best Ale", not "Strong Ale", but the brewer’s website doesn’t show it. The ABV matches. I suspect that this is a really old or a really new label. I don’t know where I got this beer. The aroma is dark fruits, raspberries, floral, toffee. The appearance is a hazy reddish brown with a thin circle of a tan head. The flavor doesn’t match the aroma at all. I get a roasted barley, caramel, nutty malts, earthy chocolate. The palate is smooth and is quite appealing. This is a strange but pretty good beer.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Bokeroo (16) - Sydney, AUSTRALIA - DEC 25, 2005
I still have quite a few bottles left of the first batch of the James Squire Strong Ale. The beer is only now hitting its straps (after 2 or 3 years). Due to its age a different beer from the ratings below. Malty aroma with strong coffee overtones.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Trogdor (197) - Cairns, AUSTRALIA - APR 17, 2004
dark chocolate and dark stonefruit aromas dominant. dark, deep ruby colouration with rocky head. dark chocolate and dark stonefruit flavours with hints of bitter floral hop. a little watery, lightly roasted bitterness. not a bad beer, dark plums and chocolate are dominant.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
omhper (23725) - Tyresö, SWEDEN - MAY 26, 2004
UPDATED: JUN 10, 2004 Bottled, thanks duff! Dark ruby, rich dense head. Aroma of chocolate and "punsch" (sweet arrack liquor) Sweet and soft. the alcohol is present, along with the fruitiness and a lot of toffee/chocolate. Solidly malty and flavourful. Interesting and unusual, but perhaps not very complex.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
DrBeer (862) - Solna Stockholm, SWEDEN - JUN 26, 2004
Dark red with brown tones and beige head. Fruity toasted aroma with alcoholic tones. Sweet and fruity flavor with buttery tones. Firm bitterness.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
voota (765) - Melbourne, AUSTRALIA - AUG 23, 2004
Bottled - - Pours a dark amber with a poor lasting head, quite a fruity aroma. Fruit and caramel taste, with a mild alcoholic aftertaste and a nice hoppy bitterenss. A very nice beer, not quite a Coopers vintage, but well worth the $52 a slab I paid. One of the best Australian beers, would go nicely with a Sunday roast.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
Pigfoot (2268) - Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA - NOV 18, 2004
Clear, dark garnet color, with an average-sized, spotty, cream-colored head. Aroma: Heavy on fruit (grape, berry, raisin), sweet, but otherwise calm and airy. Big hop arrival here, that lingers and sizzles through the finish. Mellow otherwise, but fruity flavor is full and continual. Body is medium, taste resounds, though, and makes every sip a treat. Bright cherryish sensation dominates the flavor, and alcohol doesn’t feel strong for a "Strong Ale". Maybe I’ve been conditioned by over-the-top American versions, that hit you with the booze unrelentingly...but this is a nice, little tasty treat, a fine replacement for the brandy in the snifter while leaning back and contemplating on the mysteries of life...

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
highlandlad (1477) - Blue Mountains, AUSTRALIA - FEB 15, 2005
Probably the best beer in the James Squire range. Strong ales are few and far between in Australia, so the brewer is to be commended. However, this doesn’t have enough character to stand comparison with the best of the Belgians. It poured a toffee colour with a fine tan head. The rich nose has dark raisiny fruit and peppery alcohol. Medium body, with lots of fruit in the middle and sweet toffee notes. Some toasted malt. Good strong winter drinking. (Bottle, 2003 release)

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