Sierra Nevada “30th Anniversary- Jack And Ken’s Ale” Review (#089)

Sierra Nevada
“30th Anniversary- Jack And Ken’s Ale”

Chico, California

From The Brewery

Jack McAuliffe was the first American “micro” brewer. His tiny New Albion Brewery in Sonoma, CA inspired countless dreamers to start small-scale breweries of their own. Jack agreed to brew this very special ale with us in honor of our 30th anniversary. This Black Barleywine Ale is a nod to the legendary ales of New Albion served at their summer solstice parties. Rich with bittersweet and roasted malt flavors, balanced with whole-cone American hops, this robust ale should age gracefully for years.

ABV: 10.2%


Appearance: I poured this BLACK opaque beer into my Duvel tulip glass, leaving plenty of room for its thick, tan chunky head.

Smell: A rich and potent smelling beer; full of roast – barley and coffee – sweet notes of fruit and molasses, and finished with some heat and esters, all while Cascade hops mingle in and out.

Taste: Full flavored; sweetness up front – figs and molasses – followed by a hop bitterness, leaving your mouth full of bakers chocolate and alcohol. As it warms, it opens up more yeast esters with vanilla and raisins/figs. There is a good amount of floral hops mixed in, especially on the finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and smooth; creamy with nicely carbonated.

Drinkability: Lower to medium; this is a sipping beer. A 750 is a little tough to get through alone, but manageable. In cooler weather, it would have been even easier.

Notes: I bought this the second I saw it was for sale; I enjoyed the 30th Anniversary Bock, and was really looking forward to this beer. It was really good, a classic Sierra Nevada brew. Interesting barleywine; I would love to try this with 1-3 years on it. If I see another bottle for sale, I will have to snag it to age it – at 10.2% alcohol, it can stand up to the test of time. Now if I could just get my hands on their 30th Anniversary Stout…


One comment on “Sierra Nevada “30th Anniversary- Jack And Ken’s Ale” Review (#089)

  1. Jazz1 says:

    This is a fabulous brew. I thought Samuel Smith’s Stingo was good, but I’d put this up against it any day. I’ve got to put a few bottles of this away for the next few winters.

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