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J.W. Lees Harvest Ale (Port)

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


on tap

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RATINGS: 406   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.72   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 345   ABV: 11.5%
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Only available filtered and pasteurised in bottles.
Matured in wooden casks of Willoughbys Crusted Port to impart sweetness and a heavy vinous characteristic. The tradition of port is very English and many of the port houses proudly trace their ancestry back to the U.K. Portuguese wines were fortified with brandy to improve their keeping properties during shipment.
This fully fermented ale has been brewed by JW Lees as a celebration of the brewersí art. Harvest Ale can be enjoyed now or laid down like a fine wine for enjoyment to come.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
Frank (3299) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - SEP 4, 2004
My third of these barrel aged Leeís Harvest Ales and a good one. Like the others this pours a very pale golden color. This is a good one to give to people who erroneously believe that dark beers are stronger than pale beers. The head on this sucker is big and frothy, mostly large bubbles that stick to the side of the glass in a pattern that I would describe as highly unusual. Really, Iíve never seen lacing that looks quite like this. Itís a serious anomaly that Iím going to have to look into... The nose is like honey sweet, maybe a slight floral note, very rustic. Tonguefeel is thick and luscious, very smooth but lacking just a tad in carbonation--Iíd like a little more bite, be it from carbonation, hops, acidity or whatever. There are definitely some port flavors that I can pick up and a bit of vinousity. I dig it. A bit of bitterness in the finish rounds things out. I could drink this all night and be very, very drunk.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
CaptainCougar (7133) - Columbia, Maryland, USA - SEP 1, 2004
Pours a dark golden with a frothy white head that leaves a fine lace behind as it subsides. Aroma is full of sweet caramel malt, clover honey and sugary toffee with some subtle hints of port and fruit. Starts with a nice sweet and syrupy texture and pleasant carbonation. Thereís a good amount of floral hoppy bitterness in the finish that not only balances the sweetness, but helps to mask the alcohol. The port flavors need some time to mellow and mesh with the rest, but I think this is an enjoyable English barleywine.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
Ernest (6699) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - AUG 26, 2004
Head is initially small, frothy, off-white, mostly diminishing. Body is dark yellow. Aroma is lightly malty (bread, molasses, caramel), lightly hoppy (flowers), with light notes of cask wood, butterscotch, and alcohol. Flavor is heavily sweet, lightly acidic, lightly bitter. Finish is moderately sweet, lightly acidic, lightly bitter. Full body, creamy/velvety texture, soft carbonation, moderately alcoholic. Probably the least interesting of the three barrel-aged Harvests Iíve had.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 12/20
jimmack (1223) - Nutley, New Jersey, USA - AUG 16, 2004
Orange/amber with a small white head that quickly dissipated. Sweet malt aroma with a bit of wine-like sourness. Extremely sweet taste of malt and dark fruit. Very full bodied. Bottled in í03. Will probably mellow nicely in a couple of years but for now it is much too sweet for my taste.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
AceOfHearts (1374) - Mountain View, California, USA - AUG 11, 2004
Bottle. Seems highly underrated. Innocent looking orange, nice white head. Knockout aroma, nice mellow hops with a very thick mouthfeel. Sort of coats your palate in the finish. Itís almost like a tamer version of Jadwiga mead - like a cross between it and a good APA. Little bit of sourness.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
notalush (5328) - Denver, Colorado, USA - AUG 9, 2004
Copper to strawberry blonde in color, with a heavy nose of syrup, caramel and a hint of the port - thick mouthfeel feels slick on the tongue - lots of cherry and strawberry - caramel and an alcohol burn that is pleasant, not overwhelming - I donít sense much of an impact on the flavor from the port barrel aging - there is a slight vinous character, but it is far in the background, and I would hardly call it port-like in quality - grapes and slight bitterness in the finish - overall quite nice, but not as good as regular old JW Lees.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
Aubrey (3482) - Bellingham, Washington, USA - JUL 12, 2004
Really nice color, kind of copper-orange. Headless though. Mouthfeel was weighty and full; mild carbonation enough to play a significant role. Complex malts. Notes of maple syrup, honey, raisins, brown sugar, and apricot. Mild bitterness seems to blend with a dried fruit quality in the finish (and slightly tannic grape skins). Somewhat vinous. Sweetness is heavy (and kind of mead-like), but not as overwhelming as a couple of other J.W.s Iíve had. Overall, pleasant to drink.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
egajdzis (5551) - Pennsburg, Pennsylvania, USA - JUL 12, 2004
Poured a bubbly orange golden color with no head or lacing. Very sweet aroma, included dry, dark fruits, green grapes, melon and possibly a little alcohol too? Super sweet malt, some port, caramel, and burning alcohol. Another sticky sweet JW Lees vintage. I think these really need time to dry out, and that is what I will attempt to do with the rest that I have.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 9/20
beerslayer (753) - New Jersey, USA - JUL 11, 2004
This is a ok Barley Wine. Sweet, fruity, and malt flavors. Finishes thick, syrupy, and creamy.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
MilkmanDan (1943) - Eagan, Minnesota, USA - JUL 10, 2004
Pretty, shimmering orange-gold, very slight line of bubbles rise up from the middle of the glass. Nose much more restrained than most of the Lees Iíve had, bit sweet and sugary, just not much there. Strange flavor, no real toffee or butterscotch depth, just very sweet and sugary, mild maltiness on the backside. Sticky palate. Not nearly as good as the sherry version.

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