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Trader Joe’s Vintage Ale 2012

 (RETIRED)
overall
94
89
style
Formerly brewed at Unibroue (Sapporo)
Style: Belgian Strong Ale
Chambly, Canada

bottled
available

on tap
unknown

Regional Distribution

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RATINGS: 165   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.55   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 270   ABV: 9%
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No commercial description


3.9
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
superspak (2778) - Michigan, USA - NOV 2, 2013
750 ml bottle into signature tulip glass, best before 7/6/2015. Pours clear nearly opaque reddish brown color with a 1-2 finger fairly dense light khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Spotty foamy lacing clings on the glass, with a lot of streaming carbonation retaining the head. Aromas of raisin, pear, apple, grape, clove, peppercorn, cardamom, coriander, orange peel, caramel, molasses, herbal, brown bread, toast, and yeast earthiness. Nice and pleasant aromas with good balance and complexity of malt, spice, and yeast ester notes; with solid strength. Taste of raisin, pear, apple, grape, caramel, clove, coriander, orange peel, peppercorn, cardamom, molasses, toast, brown bread, herbal, and yeast earthiness. Lingering notes of light fruits, caramel, toast, clove, peppercorn, cardamom, coriander, orange peel, herbal, brown bread, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Very nice balance and complexity of malt, spice, and yeast ester flavors; with good flavor robustness and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a fairly slick, smooth, and lightly syrupy mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a slight warming present after the finish. Overall this is a very nice spiced Belgian dark ale. All around good balance and complexity of malt, spice, and yeast ester flavors; and very smooth to sip on for the ABV. A very enjoyable offering.

3.7
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Tmoney99 (10986) - Cincinnati, Ohio, USA - OCT 27, 2013
Bottle shared by Dr Silverworm. Poured reddish brown color with an average frothy head that lasted with good lacing. Complex dark fruit, spice and yeast aroma. Medium to abundant body with a smooth texture and soft carbonation. Medium to heavy complex sweet flavor with a medium to heavy sweet finish of moderate to long duration. This is a good beer.

3.7
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
DrSilverworm (6818) - Cincinnati, Ohio, USA - OCT 26, 2013
750ml bottle, shared with local raters. Purchased from my local Trader Joe’s. Really interesting big dark spice and herb aroma in the nose. Cinnamon sticks, saigon cinnamon? Dark fruit shows up in the flavor. Mostly clear brown / red color. Thin, sort of bubbly khaki head, no lace sticks. Bigger body. More soft texture, but carbonation is in check. Easy-drinking. More dry finish. Moderate bitter, lightly spicy. Light sweet. Tasty stuff. Hides alcohol well. Good long dark spice aftertaste. Love the cinnamon, nutmeg type flavors, here.

3.5
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
b3shine (5743) - Indiana, USA - OCT 24, 2013
750 ml bottle to taster (shared by DrSilverworm). Looks good; cola with foamy light beige head. Smells Belgian yeast, dark fruit, and spices. Tastes like it smells with a solid mouthfeel. Solid beer.

2.8
   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 11/20
wisdomsolo (466) - St Petersburg, Florida, USA - OCT 14, 2013
This was a gift so its hard to complain about it. Dark, fruity, had just a bit of heat.

2.7
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 8/20
fluffy (1752) - St Petersburg, Florida, USA - OCT 13, 2013
a solid unibroue offering, if not particularly exciting. typical dark belgian ale, lots of prune, dates, raisin alcohol. certainly could do worse for the money.

3.5
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
marcus (6704) - Sacramento, California, USA - SEP 6, 2013
Pours near black with a huge tan head and an earthy dark fruit aroma. There is a slightly harsh fruity malt flavor with lots of spice and a bit of candi sugar. This one is a bit stranger than in the series.

3.4
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
JK (4587) - St. Louis Park, Minnesota, USA - AUG 29, 2013
I have had this several times, and I am rating it from a bottle kept refrigerated and consumed on August 29, 2013. Still very well carbonated. Dark brown. The Unibroue house character is very strong in the aroma and flavor to the point it takes away from the other qualities of the beer. Rich and sweet with some spices, maybe clove and cardamom.

3
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 1/5   OVERALL 13/20
Suttree (5231) - Knoxville, Tennessee, USA - JUL 27, 2013
This is a case of a beer not being horrible, but just not my style. Too heavy, the flavors are too muddled, and too boozy. I got some molasses, some pine, and some peppery, but mostly just a lot of jumbled spicy notes and nothing rally stood out. At least it was cheap.

3
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 12/20
foyle (246) - Wyoming, USA - JUL 21, 2013
Appearance: dark reddish brown, 1" off white head, very light lacing Aroma: strong fruit and clove/cinnamon spice aromas along with distinctive Belgian yeast. There is a also a somewhat medicinal alcohol smell. Mouthfeel: medium bodied with a mostly wet finish. Flavor: spices dominate (cinnamon and clove) along with some raisin and citrus rind flavors. The middle and finish feature cocoa, some earthy hops, and a warming alcohol presence.


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