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RATINGS: 153   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.59/5   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 270   ABV: 9%
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 ale 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 the bottle upright in storage. Brewed with a delicate balance of noble hops, roasted malts and spices, this is a remarkably smooth ale with a wonderfully complex finish. It is best served slightly shilled, around 53 degrees Fahrenheit and pairs exceptionally well with grilled salmon steaks, curried lamb, beef or tuna au poivre. Crafted and bottled exclusively for Trader Joe’s

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
SudsMcDuff (8084) - .....Manchester United.........., Texas, USA - MAR 7, 2013
thank god, judy is sleeping .. . pours a mild brown bruise .. . medium head, lacing is like a pillow exploded .. . yeast, prune, spruce, and barnyard .. . light mouth .. . like the ’12, needs time .. . . yeah! he ruined nap time and quiet time!

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
jbruner (3987) - Marietta, Georgia, USA - MAR 1, 2013
Bottle shared at RBWG! Pours a deep hazy brown with thin tan head and light lacing. Aroma of belgian yeasty esters that lead to a deep dark fruit nose. Taste follows, a nice deep flavor that is well balanced. This is perhaps of the best of the Trader Joe’s vintage ales.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Sledutah (7019) - Utah, USA - FEB 27, 2013
Bottle shared by SpringsLicker at the RBWG grand tasting
Appearance: Clear dark brown with a small beige head
Aroma: Raisins and plums
Taste: Roasted malts and dark pit fruit
Decent, some hot alcohols

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
burg326 (5368) - Florida, USA - FEB 25, 2013
Bottle shared at RBWG, poured a hazy murky brown coloe with aromas of brown sugar and syrup. Flavors are the same, malt and candi sugar. Ok beer overall thanks dor the share whoever brought it.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
ngeunit1 (1555) - Waltham, Massachusetts, USA - FEB 23, 2013
A - Dark black with a finger of frothy tan-khaki head. Fades very slowly. S - Dark caramel malts, raisin, plums, and other dark fruits, Belgian yeast, clove, pepper, other spices, a touch of sourness, and a touch of booze. T - Dark caramel malts with raisin, plum, dates, and other dark fruits, Belgian yeast, clove, pepper, and other spices, a bit of residual sugars, a touch of sourness, and a bit of booze. M - Medium-full bodied with moderate carbonation. Smooth with a sweet and warming finish. D - Nice BSDA. Good Belgian character and spices.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
thedm (5668) - Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA - FEB 23, 2013
This bottled brew from a rating party poured a head of foamy finely sized bubbles that were mostly lasting and left behind a uncarbonated semi-hazy brown colored body and a good lacing. The mild aroma was brown malt. The mouth feel was tingly at the start and at the finish. The nice flavor contained notes of brown malt and hops. A decent one that I would consider drinking again.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
decaturstevo (5779) - decatur, Tennessee, USA - FEB 23, 2013
Brown pour with tan head and lace. Aroma is dark brown sugar cough syrup and sweet malt. Sweet brown sugar, sour malt and earthy bitter. Medium bodied but fizzy.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
mcberko (14361) - Vancouver, British Columbia, CANADA - FEB 8, 2013
750mL bottle, pours a deep dark brown / black with a medium beige head. Aroma is very spicy, with cardamom, coriander (almost curried spices), and Belgian yeast. Flavour is extremely spicy, with loads of coriander and cardamom, Belgian yeast, and some mild dark fruits. This one is dominated by the spices though, too much so. Probably my least favourite of the Trader Joe’s Vintage ales.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
RSRIZZO (1949) - Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA - JAN 16, 2013
750ml cork & cage bottle (courtesy of Headbanger) poured into a Trappist glass at 40°. Color is near black with mellow carbonation and a small tight head. Aroma is light on malt with some spices showing. It has a medium body with a crisp mouth feel. Flavor comes in with a bit of malt and caramel then it hits you with Christmas like spices. After taste lets the spice come up a little more. Overall I am a little disappointed, this has always been a good brew but this year they added a bunch of spice that killed it.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
alexsdad06 (9005) - Ohio, USA - DEC 26, 2012
750 ml bottle shared by shigadeyo. Pours dark brown with reddish highlights. A large fluffy rapidly diminishing beige head. The aroma is sweet malty, herbal and fresh spices with the characteristic Unibroue yeastiness. The flavor is sweet caramel malts, allspice, herbal with yeast. These are usually clean and tasty, yet nothing really stands out. Good for what it is and the price point.

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