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Trader Joe’s Vintage Ale 2010

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


on tap

Regional Distribution

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RATINGS: 185   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.53   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 270   ABV: 9%
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Unique and limited edition, this Belgian style ale is crafted once a year as a special treat for those of you who appreciate flavorful, bottle-conditioned ales with character. This year’s vintage: a rich, dark and full-bodied ale with a fine and generous coffee-colored, beige foam. It’s ready to enjoy right away and you may also wish to cellar a few bottles. It will evolve interestingly well, developing more complex flavors as the years go by. Keep bottle upright in storage. Best before 9-10-2013.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
kennydiaz (352) - Manahawkin, New Mexico, USA - DEC 1, 2010
Pours a dark brown almost black with a thick foamy head. Nice Belgium candied taste with hints of spruce, citrus with a floral after taste. Great for $4.99 a bottle but not as good as past years vintage.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
badlizard (5537) - Berkeley, California, USA - NOV 30, 2010
Black with a big fluffy tan head. Candied dark fruit, Belgian yeast, citrus, and sweet spice aroma and taste.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
IrishBoy (3889) - Bakersfield, California, USA - NOV 29, 2010
750 ml bottle from Trader Joes. Nose is cloves, corriander, caramel, and raisins. Hazy brown with a medium beige, lightly lacing head. Flavor is sweet caramel, spiciness, and prunes. Pretty good tasting brew for $4.99 a 750 bottle.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
hombrepalo (1853) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - NOV 29, 2010
Bottle. Dark brown color with tan head. Aromaof spices and roasted malts. Strong peppery, spicy, nutmeg, and raisin flavored. Nice, but not great.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
marcus (6788) - Sacramento, California, USA - NOV 28, 2010
Bottle from bhensonb. Pours black with a massive tan head and a fruit and treacle aroma. There is a fruity sweet malt flavor with a litlle spice and slightly sour vinous finish.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
mjg74 (2492) - La Mesa, California, USA - NOV 28, 2010
Quite an effort to get the cork off. Very dark in color upon pouring. Dirty brownish foam. Strong aroma of nutmeg and other spices. Prickly carbonation. Strong spice. Some root like flavors. Strong malt roastiness hidden under the ample spices. Solid spiced winter brew.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 15/20
RedSox2004 (1330) - Pacific Palisades, California, USA - NOV 27, 2010
Pours dark brown, almost black, with a thick creamy two-finger beige head that left excellent lace. Sharp dark fruit and yeast aromas featuring dark cherries and plum as well as caramel and bread. Flavors are similar, with the dark fruits most prominent, and a gentle balancing hops bitterness. Medium to full bodied, lively carbonation, creamy smooth mouthfeel, and a warming alcohol flourish. Outstanding - unbelievably good at this price.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 16/20
bhensonb (11534) - Woodland, California, USA - NOV 27, 2010
750 c&c from a Sacramento TJs. Pours dark brown with a 4 finger foamy dirty beige/tan head. Main aroma is a lot of spice. Med body; frothy carb. This stuff is really spiced. I’d almost say there’s sage. Plus maybe coriander and pepper. Maybe ginger. There’s a dark malt underpinning, but the spice is the main thing. This may age interestingly.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
Davetopay (53) - Leesburg, Virginia, USA - NOV 27, 2010
Not as great as other years I have had, it may just be a bit young and need some more time in the bottle. The aroma is spot on, it is gorgeous to look at, and the flavors are there, but I think I may have made an error in drinking at room temp. It comes off as a bit thin and brittle, maybe a tiny bit phenolic. It may mellow and become rounder with age, but it will never gain in body. That may be due to the lack of suspended fermentables present....a problem when you try and push a budget beer to a higher ABV than you should. Good not great. Surely a great deal at 4.99 locally.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
vyvvy (4138) - Florissant, Missouri, USA - NOV 26, 2010
Pours very dark brown with a thick tan head that’s very bubbly on top. Aroma has the typical Unibroue yeast, soda effervescence, light cocoa, berry fruitiness and some spice. Medium bright body with an overabundance of sharp spritzy carbonation. The taste starts with cocoa, red berries, caramel, 7-Up, cinnamon, clove and yeast. The finish adds some peppery spice, licorice and mint to the rest. There is a sourness that comes more prevalent as it warms up. Fair beer overall, but at the price its worth giving a try.

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