J.W. Lees Harvest Ale (Calvados)

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


on tap

Regional Distribution

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RATINGS: 479   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.78/5   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 345   ABV: 11.5%
Only available filtered and pasteurised in bottles.
Matured in wooden Etienne Dupont Calvados casks from the end of October until mid March.
This fully fermented ale has been brewed by JW Lees as a celebration of the brewers’ art. Harvest Ale can be enjoyed now or laid down like a fine wine for enjoyment to come.

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mastabass666's rating

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 19/20
mastabass666 (277) - California, USA - DEC 22, 2009
Aroma- barley, apple pie, cinnamon, earth, green apple, honey. Flavor- difficult to nail down; like a malty brew and apple brandy got into some furious mating and spawned this; dates, apple, honey, sherry, old wood. Very complex. Woody, bittersweet lingering finish. Pretty awesome. v.2006

Bule (2311) - California, USA - JAN 12, 2018
275ml bottle of 2012 Release. Pours a brown color without much head. Sweet maltiness. A lot of peaty flavor.

stevoj (5881) - Boise, Idaho, USA - JAN 6, 2018
2009 vintage at tasting. Dark-ish, kind of flat. Sweet malt, some of the apples coming through. Taste is sweet malt, apples, brown sugar. Warmth comes late. Pleasant and worth the wait.

koleminer20 (4176) - Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA - DEC 7, 2017
From notes. Gus opened this one at the hotel before we left for Side Project on November 24. 275 mL bottle. Says it was brewed in 2012. The pour is a thinner bright golden amber color with a thin ring of light tan colored head and no lace as it falls away to nothing. The aroma is something else. There is a ton of apple brandy barrel. It’s got an overly sweet toffee and caramel with a hint of growing alcohol. There is a banana Laffy Taffy thing going on that I’m not too keen on. There is a light oxidation on the back of this one. The flavor is equally interesting. There is a light malt up front with a sharper toffee that leads back into a light booziness. The oxidation presents itself in the form of a metallic banana Laffy Taffy which is a little strange. The mouth feel is light and clean, but a bit watery, with a light carbonation and a lingering aftertaste of sharp barrel and banana extract. This one is strange from front to back. 7 4 6 3 13

weihenweizen (4211) - Charleston, West Virginia, USA - SEP 12, 2017
Refrigerated brown 2012 nip. Opaque burnt orange with small white head which dissipated quickly. Aroma is rich caramel malt, medium body, low carbonation, and no lacing. Taste is calvados, oak, and some caramel malt. Prefer the regular and port version to this.

fischersfriend (35) - Statesville, North Carolina, USA - SEP 3, 2017
A classic barley wine full of flavor. The one downfall is its very sweet. Possibly due to its 2011 vintage. A very special brew for sure.

MetalNHopHead (2277) - Lincoln, Nebraska, USA - AUG 16, 2017
English Barleywines are the road less traveled for me. I usually go for the hopped-up varieties. Still, this trip into lesser known territory was a lot of fun. I tasted the 2014 vintage of the Calvados Harvest Ale. It appeared to have kept nicely at the back of my nearby bottle shop. Dark orange color with minimal head. Surprisingly boozy and starchy flavors, even for a Barleywine. Toffee, molasses, caramel, vanilla, chocolate, toasted apple, and dark fruit. There’s just a hint of vinous tartness at the finish - easy to miss. A gorgeous brew that I can probably only justify getting once, though I sure as hell wouldn’t mind one with a cigar.

mar (5458) - Dallas, Texas, USA - JUN 4, 2017
Murky deep amber with a thin ring of cream head. Dough, caramel, chewy malts, light barrel notes. Chewy on the palate, caramel, toffee, light alcohol, hint of apple in the finish.

wombat23 (2149) - Texas, USA - MAY 19, 2017
9.3 oz. bottle. 2012 edition. Pours clear copper with a minimal white head. Aroma of sweet malt and brown sugar. Taste is malty, sweet, caramel, brown sugar, booze, almonds, green vegetable notes. Overrated. Did not finish.

onceblind (10897) - Denver, Colorado, USA - MAY 17, 2017
Slightly hazy dark copper with a thin foamy white top. Big sugary dark Brandy nose. Big brash flavor that’s sweet and wheaty but also caramelly and loaded with cognac/Brandy/dark rum with a very full palate and malty toffee wheaty base with a warm finish.

HuskerTan (2454) - Ravenna, Nebraska, USA - APR 30, 2017
Bottle. A- Bread dough, wine grapes, molasses, subtle iron. A- Mahogany color, clear liquid, minimal head. T- Burnt sugar, medium sweetness, baked apples, grapes, slightly boozy. P- Full body, average texture, average carbonation, boozy finish. O- Bottle from 2013. Okay, but definitely heavy on the apple brandy. A bit sweet too. I can’t decide if I like it or not. It’s also got a odd tangy booziness to it. Definitely not worth the price at $12 for a 9 oz bottle. Not sure if I want to try other variants now or not...

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