Home >

Trader Joe’s Vintage Ale 2009

Formerly brewed at Unibroue (Sapporo)
Style: Belgian Strong Ale
Chambly, Canada


on tap


Add Distribution Data
RATINGS: 178   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.63   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 270   ABV: 9%
Share this beer with friends!
Trader Joe’s 2009 Vintage Ale
You might be used to seeing vintages on wine; not so much on beer. And that’s what makes this ale so special. Trader Joe’s Vintage Ales were developed, crafted, brewed and bottled for us in limited quantities this year. Its flavor, color, texture and overall character are different from our Vintage Ale of 2008, and in 2010 it will be different once again.

The 2009 Vintage Ale
It is an opaque black color and features an impressive coffee-colored foam. In a glass, it boasts cocoa and malt aromas, with a subtle hint of lemon and ginger. A sip from that glass really brings out the best in this ale - malty and mildly sweet, with hints of cocoa, citrus and spices.

Trader Joe’s Vintage Ale is ready to enjoy right away, chilled but not ice cold. Unlike many beers, though, this one will age for a few years, and its flavors will become more complex and interesting as time goes by.

What’s that? You’re a beer geek? We love that. You’ll love this. And we assume you’ll want to know this is a dark ale on lees, 9% ABV (that’s Alcohol by Volume, for the non-beer geeks). Oh, and it’s brewed exclusively for Trader Joe’s, of course.

Best Before 09-12-2012

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
JohnnyJ (4358) - San Diego, California, USA - SEP 19, 2011
Bottle. Dark rudy brown, foamy light tan head. Dark fruits, spice, nutmeg, light chocolate, and light roast. Plenty of the unibroue yeast. Overly carbonated. A basic dark belgian spiced christmas beer from unibroue, which isn’t such a bad thing.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 9/20
bsp77 (724) - Minnesota, USA - SEP 6, 2011
Brewed by Unibroue and described as a (Belgian) Dark Ale Brewed on Lees, and certainly not a Dubbel. Serving glass: Poured from bomber into Snifter. Appearance: Extremely dark opaque brown with a billowing cappuccino head that quickly disappears, leaving nothing behind. Aroma: Dry musty malts, wood, cocoa, Belgian yeast, lemon and ginger. Taste: Earthy, musty and woody with cloves, lemon and cocoa. Way too musty for my liking, like sucking the liquid from the wooden walls of a dank cellar. Palate: Moderate carbonation, medium body, dry but still seems cloying. Overall: While not a bad beer, I don’t particularly like it.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
weaselkenievil (1608) - Cheshire, ENGLAND - JUL 12, 2011
Thanks to Leighton for bringing this to MesandSim’s tasting to celebrate my 1000th. Pretty much opaque black with a nice beige head. Lots of great aromas, smells like a Mongolian barbie. Cake, lots of ginger in aroma and flavour, sherry and red wine, ribena, meat, red black and green fruit pastilles, christmas type spices, hints of chocolate. Complex and different. Very drinkable and tasty.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
jcwattsrugger (11083) - Florida and, New Jersey, USA - JUN 23, 2011
750 bottle-thanks Brent-distiller for sharing-pours a foamy tan head and brown/copper color. Aroma is medium malt-caramel. Taste is medium malt-caramel, spice hops. Effervescence on ther front of tongue.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 15/20
hbmason (1087) - Shoreline, Washington, USA - JUN 2, 2011
750 ml bottle. A nice begian taste. Chocolate and nutmeg come through nice. Nice and drinkable just a tad thin.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 11/20
Nikiel (877) - Portland, Oregon, USA - JUN 1, 2011
Bottle with Andrew, Carla and Nathan. Pours a dark brown with dark tan foam. Smells sweet with hints of saparilla and chocolate. Tastes oaky with hints of vanilla, nutmeg and vinigar with surprisingly little roastiness. Feels very thin.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
marcus (6497) - Sacramento, California, USA - JUN 1, 2011
Bottle from bhensonb. Pours dark murky brown with a massive tan head and a slightly smoky chocolate aroma. There is a spicy chocolate and plum flavor with a dry citrus finish.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
FROTHINGSLOSH (4918) - GREENSBURG, Pennsylvania, USA - APR 9, 2011
My friend Matt brought this one up from Virginia. Sampled from a 750 ml corked brown bottle this beer poured a very dark brown color with a huge foamy tan head that lingered and produced good lacing. The aroma was tart and yeasty with notes of cherry, nut, maple, malted milk and nutmeg. The flavor was dryish and yeasty with notes of vanilla, malted milk, cherry, faint vague spices, cocoa and nutmeg. The finish was medium length vanilla, yeast and cocoa. Medium body. Nice.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 14/20
Nellie (349) - Dallas, Texas, USA - APR 1, 2011
Pine, caramel, minor honey smell but not much carbonation. almost tastes like a barleywine.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Thorpe429 (5012) - , Illinois, USA - MAR 23, 2011
Bottle picked up at Trader Joe’s in Alexandria - Winter 2009. Reviewed from notes. Pours a nice dark mahogany-brown with a thick off white head with a bunch of lacing as it goes down. Smells like dark fruits and some mild caramel along with a bit of creamy alcohol. Taste brings dark fruits, dates, and dark cherries along with a bit of alcohol and dark, sweet malt flavors. Good creamy mouthfeel with a bit of alcohol. Drinks quite well at a really tremendous price. Serving type: bottle Reviewed on: 10-24-2010

We Want To Hear From You

Join us! RateBeer is made by beer enthusiasts for the craft beer community. Your basic membership is free and allows you to read all beer ratings. Click here to create your account... and give your opinion!

Join Us »

Page  1 2 3  4  5 6 7 » 18

Tick this beer

for your profile
  • Currently 0/5 Stars.
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Copyright © 2000-2014,
RateBeer LLC. All rights
about us
About RateBeer
New Beers
Advanced Search
Add A Beer
Add A Brewer
Add A Place
Log In
Edit Personal Info
Buy Premium Membership
Your Messages
the best
RateBeer Best
100 Beer Club
The Top 50