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J.W. Lees Harvest Ale (Lagavulin)

 
overall
97
92
style
Formerly brewed at J.W. Lees
Style: Barley Wine
Middleton, England
Serve in Snifter

bottled
available

on tap
unknown

Regional Distribution

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RATINGS: 503   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.75/5   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 345   ABV: 11.5%
COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
Only available filtered and pasteurised in bottles.
Matured in wooden casks of Lagavulin Malt Whiskey, one of the most distinctive malt whisky from the island of Islay, characterized by the strong peaty notes which should blend with the Harvest Ale to give an explosion of flavors.
This fully fermented ale has been brewed by JW Lees as a celebration of the brewers’ art. Harvest Ale can be enjoyed now or laid down like a fine wine for enjoyment to come.


3.3
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 12/20
yemenmocha (659) - Glendale, Arizona, USA - SEP 18, 2009
gavulin cask bottling, vintage 2004. Tasted July 2006. Pours a slightly hazy amber orange. Minimal head that dissipated quickly. Nose is very lambic like with wild fruity aromas. Almost raspberryish. On the palate I find the distinctive smoky/peatyness that is no doubt from the Islay malt casks, however they do not define the beer exclusively. There’s a pleasant maple syrup sweetness and thickness of body that is noticed at the same time. Late palate into the finish is very malty sweet, some honey as well, with some tartness/bitterness that balances well. For me this is a dessert beer and unfortunately it’s my first pour of the evening. When the lambic mood strikes, reach for a curious alternative.

3.6
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
bdigital (658) - Ft Wayne, Indiana, USA - OCT 28, 2007
’06 Vintage: Bronze pour with no head whatsoever. Massive woodsy aroma with notes of honey, malt and a bit of whiskey soaked candy. Over-the-top whiskey-wood taste that overpowers anything else. Very dry finish with a subtle honey malt essence. Didn’t enjoy this one as much as the Calvados.

4.2
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
paultheguru (644) - Parker, Colorado, USA - AUG 21, 2010
Brewed in 2004. Consumed 2009. A: pours a dark, rich mahogany with some wonderful ruby notes. very faint khaki colored head, really faint. practically no head retention. subtle ringlike lacing. S: huge aromas of whiskey..shocker. wonderful english barleywine aromas, tons of apples, solid spices, yet indescribable. good hop characteristic, subtle, but providing some nice orange aromas. T: big time whiskey flavors off the bat. i am getting a lot of artificial grape flavors, like grape soda. really sweet malts. moderate hop essence. nice chocolate notes. tons of caramel. M: its confusing. Full bodied, yet thin bodied. very nice beer and ages well. a little flat, but 5 years would do that. very smooth, slightly creamy.

4.2
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
EKGoldings (634) - Radford, Virginia, USA - OCT 30, 2011
UPDATED: NOV 13, 2011 Purchased on recommendation: 2005 consumed 10/2011. Huge, massive beer that is stunningly complex and incredibly sweet. Dominated by sweet malt and peaty smoke but without the iodine I expect from Islay, hops are decidedly in the background. As others point out, really a sipping beer that would do well in a brandy snifter.

3.5
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
CpyNPrnT (616) - Indiana, USA - JUN 28, 2015
Aroma of barbeque, taste is lays barbeque potato chips, some alcohol. Did not expect that. bottle 2012

3.9
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
jeffin7 (613) - Silver Spring, Maryland, USA - MAY 25, 2004
Pours with a thin white head that fades. Aroma is of dough, alcohol, and a hint of smoke. The flavor is of heavy smoke and leather with a sweet honey-biscuit maltyness. The smoke and leather calm down a bit as the beer warms. I really did not like this one much at all until the beer hit room tempature when the malt backing becomes noticable enough to balance the smoke making a pretty interesting beer. If I was more of a whiskey lover I think I would like this one a lot.

4.3
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
joebrew (608) - Farewell Minny; Hello Puyallup, Washington, USA - JAN 25, 2008
Pours a super cloudy burnt amber orangish. I can smell it as I am typing, so nice. Lots of creamy sweet malt, caramel, toffee, light smoky peatiness, and a very light brown sugar. Very thick mouthfeel with a good dose of ripe fruits, caramel, smoky toffee peatiness, brown sugar, and a light piny floral hoppiness. The alcohol warms the finish very nicely, and it lingers with that light peaty smokiness.

3
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 11/20
Miked1687 (608) - Buffalo, New York, USA - MAR 30, 2013
On tap at blue monk. Pours a hazy orange with little to no head. Smells heavy on peat,berries, fruit. A little sour? Tastes smooth. Sweet, smokey peaty, sweet. Very sweet. Interesting idea. I love lagavulin, but it should probably stay away from beer. Beef jerky beer. Good idea, poor execution

4.3
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 16/20
emerica56 (600) - Bristol, Rhode Island, USA - JAN 30, 2008
Another amazing barley wine. The color is a nice golden cider like brown no head though. The aroma is also great and fulfilling with some hints of earth hops and a sweet caramel malt. You can also really smell that whiskey. I was really pleased with the flavor it is sweet and the booze is well hidden for 11.5%. Also i like the smooth creamy caramel with that nice hop bitterness followed by that whiskey woodyness. I like how the flavor is very complex and it all explodes in your mouth.

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
henry3r (586) - Wichita, Kansas, USA - SEP 24, 2007
The 275ml bottle poured a hazy reddish orange colored beverage with a thin off-white fizzy head that was completely gone in 2 minutes and left no lacing. This is no doubt due to the high alcohol content. The aroma was typical of the style with great cloying sweet notes of port wine or sherry. Lurking at the edge of perception was a hint of oak and smoked peat as well. The body was quite full with almost no carbonation and an oily, smooth texture. The flavor starts out very sweet and stays that way through to the end of the long finish. There is significant but smooth alcohol warmth in the chest. This one is best consumed around a warm fire on a cold blustery evening.


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