Pours with a nice head that fades slowly, dark amber with a hint of haze.... nose of toffee, prunes, old oak, old yeast, maybe some Chinese spice or pepper? He says apples and black cherries, and mint..... no alcohol content listed on bottle or box. Bottle back label, hidden by box, says "Best Before End 2001"--oh, fine time to tell us that!
Fullers website says 8.5%. Also says:
The beer has a great depth to its color, deep amber with a slight orangey-brown note.
On the aroma, spices, cloves and floral, grassy notes come through all deriving from the hops. The malt character has a rich caramel flavor. The citrus fruit of this beer is like the peel of an orange. The Vintage Ale is like an orange liqueur and these warming alcoholic notes provide syrup like sweetness to the beer.
Upon tasting, the beer feels full in the mouth. The fruit notes come through onto the palate with cherries and pineapples noticeable. The hop notes found on the nose appear on the palate to give a spicy element to the beer. The citrus notes are present accompanied by caramel, coffee and biscuit notes from the malts.
Vintage Ale is smooth in texture and in flavor. The balance of caramel, spicy and citrus hop flavors and the mellow warming effect of the alcohol help this beer to linger on the palate long after it has been savoured."