kbudd19 (747) - Edmonton, Alberta, CANADA - JAN 12, 2015
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle. 2010 edition. Muddy brown colour with light head. Aroma is graham wafers, vanilla, oak, and rasins. Taste is sweet up front, followed by rasins, vanilla , bourbon, with a sweet velvety finish. Full bodied, with medium carbonation. Seems to be holding up well, very tasty.
PartyFowle (92) - - DEC 24, 2014
3.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
2010 edition, from the bottle. Mostly clear burgundy, with a tight tam head that eventually recedes to nothingness. Nice bourbon and dark fruit blend -- raisins, dates, dark cherries, vanilla, rye whiskey, cocoa. This bottle’s a little old, and there’s a background of old honey, caramel and brandy. The flavor is smoother, showing less alcohol and a balanced blend of fig and roasty bourbon. The oxidation shows in a flash at first, then recedes and gives way to the velvet-smooth booze. Medium body, mild CO2, quite a bit of boozy numbness. Past its prime, but not by much. Still a tasty brew.
jmagnus87 (2742) - Rockford, Illinois, USA - DEC 17, 2014
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Sampled during RBSG. From notes. Caramel, oak, bourbon, dark fermented fruit.
markextrae (1348) - NETHERLANDS - SEP 28, 2014
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle sample 2010 version. Poured dark amber to Brown colour. Caramel, oak, dark fruits, oak, Bourbon, plums, vanilla, Nice big mouthfeel
mcberko (7443) - Vancouver, British Columbia, CANADA - SEP 27, 2014
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
750mL bottle, pours a deep dark mahogany with a small tan head. Nose is divine, with loads of bourbon barrels, brown sugar, vanilla and oak. Flavour is very sweet and complex, with loads of bourbon barrels upfront, followed by vanilla and brown sugar. Very complex, with lots of sweetness, bourbon and vanilla. Somehow this isn’t anywhere close to cloying. Nicely balanced. Wonderful stuff.
slowrunner77 (6160) - Reno, Nevada, USA - SEP 24, 2014
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
This 2010 old ale, which I’ve mistaken added as 2011 for reasons unknown started as a nice malty old ale and got heavy heavy bourbon influence from the long time in a barrel. Loads of vanilla, booze, spice and roasty malts. So smooth n tasty I think it a significant improvement to the base. Maybe even a little fruity."
48FanInCali (752) - California, USA - AUG 25, 2014
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
2010 version - lots of caramel, brown sugar, and vanilla on the nose and taste. Not as sweet as other I have had in this style before but it is holding up well to the aging. The base beer is one of my favorite Old Ales around so I am glad the Alesmith has made it an annual release. That way BA versions of this should be an annual event. Not as good BA4D or the Bruery Anni beers but not far behind that group.
FlacoAlto (3810) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - AUG 9, 2014
2.8 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 10/20
Sampled May 2014; 2010 version
A steady pour into my teku glass produces a fat-one-finger thick, light brown / amber tinged, dark tan colored head. The beer is a concentrated amber / rich brown color that shows a hazy, red tinged, amber hue when held up to the light. The aroma smells of smoky, caramelized malt, musty woody oak notes, lots of Bourbon spice, a significant warming / hot character from the alcohol and barrel. There is perhaps a touch of tartness, and a bit of fruit character here as well; reminds me of dates, perhaps some fig notes, Bourbon contributed melon, as well as some sour apple notes. There is a toasted malt character that has a toasted brown sugar character to it, a rich toasty caramel character, and a rich toasted not-quite-sweet brown bread character.
Thick and viscous as it first hits my palate, the finish is dried out significantly, and the body is burned off by a lingering heat of Alcohol and Bourbon barrel fusels. Up front this has a rich, caramelized, malty, concentrated fruit contributing (raisin and date) character that is more rich than sweet. There are rich nutty notes here brought out by the dark malt character and the barrel aged oxidation character, as well as toasted whole grain, brown bread flavors. There is a hint of barrel induced tartness to the finish that is accentuated by the Bourbon flavors, and there is a significant spicy, peppery wood character here as well as a hint of rounded, toasted oak.
The Bourbon Barrel character is way too heavy in this beer to be remotely balanced. I tend to not like beers that pick up significant heat from spirit barrel aging, and this one certainly has. An interesting experience, but not really something I want to be drinking much of. This reminds me a lot of the 2004 Vintage of the Barrel Aged Old Numbskull, which was another beer ruined by too much barrel character.
Sparky (2243) - Phoenix, Arizona, USA - JUL 31, 2014
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 19/20
Pours cloudy iced tea brown with a thin tan head. The nose is brown sugar, dark fruits, sweet bourbon and oaky vanilla. The taste is molasses, raisins, caramel and bourbon. Medium semi-creamy mouthfeel. Awesome. 4.5
anders37 (17904) - Malmö, SWEDEN - JUL 9, 2014
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle @ RBSG Grand Tasting. Pours a dark amber color with a small off-white head. Has a fruity malty bourbon woody caramel and dark fruit aroma. Fruity malty woody caramel and toffee flavor with hints of bourbon and dark fruit. Has a fruity malty woody toffee and caramel finish.