badgerben (4323) - Blaine, Minnesota, USA - APR 6, 2010
4.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
I had no idea this was coming back on tap. Kinda curious if this is the very original batch or a new brewing of. On the other hand, I don’t give a rip. It’s glorious either way. Deep brown, ruby color. Aroma of caramel and molasses. Slightly vinous. Outrageous flavors. Raisins, dates, figs, dark cherries. After a little warming, turns more like port. Grapey and vinous. Notes of candied orange peel and marmalade. Good lord this is nectar in a glass. The only downside was a rather light aroma, even after half the completely filled wine glass was drank. I could die on this beer.
BDR (2534) - Roseville, Minnesota, USA - APR 5, 2010
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Draft @ Winterfest and @ Barley Johns. Minuscule head on this dark brown pour. Smooth but with a warming heat; flavors of dark pitted fruits and brown sugar. Caramel malts and some chocolate on the aroma. Hot damn
jazz88 (2509) - San Francisco, California, USA - MAY 14, 2005
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Tap @ Brewery in March 2005 when I was back in Minnesota. I had the Barrel Aged version of this last Christmas, so I was anxious to try the standard version. It did not disapoint. A hazy ruby color with a laced diminished light brown head. Cherry aroma, wood, alcohol (slightly burning), dry, and fully coating.
Pigfoot (2268) - Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA - APR 13, 2004
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
I had a couple beers before this one, during dinner at the pub, for I wasn't going to just leap into the strongest friggin' beer in the world, and the waitress wasn't helping any, with all the little sample snits, unbidden and utterly appreciated.
Then, she finally arrived with these tiny snifter glasses, filled with a dark magneta brew, nearly opaque, but for the sliver of bright crimson at the sides. Only a slim, tight tan cap on this pour, and when I noted that my friend's serving had a larger head, just saying is all, she said, "oh, that was to get more in the glass for you!"
Aroma is flush with dark fruits, cherry, dates, prunes, backed with a distinctive whiskeyish character, like a mellow cognac with an extra spicy kick. I wished I'd asked for a larger glass, to see if the aroma might come out more, from a wider opening, but, alas. Not a very forward smell, either, rather cool and approachable.
Taste: a lush charge on the palate at first, velvety smooth, warm, toasty, the senses immediately sink into the effects of a certain sublimity. Something very good is happening on the tongue, and it's complexity takes time to unwind and work it's magic. Hops make a distinct impression on the taste, but there's hardly any bitterness, flavor is bright, fruity, and rings the palate happily. A medicinal feel comes forward in the taste, but an altogether pleasant one, like cherry cough syrup, but better tasting. Malt is thick here, as you'd guess, but doesn't insinuate itself too much in the profile, either.
The more Rosie's Ale gets at home in my mouth, the more it strikes me as a thoroughly amazing creation. Somehow, they've concocted a barleywine that has a rich cognac,/port/madeira character and a freakishly huge alcohol content, but it's put together so well that it's remarkably easy to put past the lips, and the body is supple and sweet, but never too much so. You know you've got an alcoholic beverage in you, and it slowly slinks into the system, but it never stings you, never knocks you about, as I remember other high ABV brews doing.
I had a pitcher of water brought out to keep me hydrated through this expedition, and when the waitress heard me request it, she nearly choked, thinking I'd asked for a pitcher of Rosie's! No, this tiny, 5 or 6 ounce snifter was enough ($7.25 per!), but it was so good, I'll be back for more. They ought to bottle this stuff and give Remy Martin a run for his money.
"It's what the blood of Christ would taste like," spouted my cheeky, blaspheming dinner partner. I had to quote him on that one. It was divine, and I'm anticipating how this tastes next year. Yep, the brewer, who named the brew after his daughter, is keeping a batch in an oak barrell for a year!
Amazing, that a tiny little box off the freeway in New Brighton is crafting such gigantic beer!
jmagnus87 (2029) - Rockford, Illinois, USA - AUG 31, 2013
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 19/20
Draft at the source during rbsg. Wow, awesome beer. Dark fermented fruits, caramel and brown sugar. Alcohol is totally hidden. Great!
portableparty (1874) - Blaine, Minnesota, USA - AUG 16, 2013
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
On tap at Barley Johns brew pub RBSG 2013. Pours murky rust amber with a thin creamy film. Aroma sweet caramel raisin and tootsie roll, toffee and dark fruit. Taste is sweet bitter caramel tootsie roll toffee subtle wood dark fruit raisins and a little spice. Palate is full sticky chalky and finishes very warming.
beermatrix (1497) - Twin Cities, Minnesota, USA - MAR 20, 2004
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Triple fermented? 28% ABV? Whoa and wow! A nice little sipper we have here...Everything about this beer is everchanging!
Color starts out a dark coffee brown with this beautifully soft rosey caramel glow within the heart of the snifter. Capped with a soft, firm, cream colored froth just over a 1/4 inch high which fades slow to keep a nice collar around the edge and intricately placed spots and random looking sprayed lace sticks well. As mentioned, the color changes as we go into it sip after sip, the dark brown color it starts with turns to a soild golden caramel brown as it gets closer to be finished.
Aroma is all warming and soft with a great reach of oaky sweetness and scotch/whisky-like alcoholic warmth at first. But it changes again and again as we go. Swirling brings out an incredibly deep, dark, old, oak barrel character, as if you were right inside the barrel. As it warms more of the maltier things with dark fruits begin wafting with dry figs, nectarine, tangerine, and smokey cherry. Closer to finished its more like the barleywine that it is with some solid toffee and caramel with little twinges of alcoholic warmth.
Taste is more of this everchanging character from one warm thing to the next. Oaky sweet, dulled dark fruits, semi-juicy, favorably chewy and thick in the malts where tangy toffee, caramel, cherry, rum soaked figs and raisins all meld together over the top of a pleasant warming from sip to sip. Slight citric pineyness for bittering notes. Smooth and velvety slick, nice depth and length, with an alcohol burn and spice sticking late right in the back of the throat were most any high ABV brews will do. It sits there and relaxes all through your senses. Quite a treat and quite a sipper.
It continuely changes all the time, quite remarkable really. It starts out like a big boozy strong/old ale but developes into a barleywine as you go. The drinkability is actually very smooth and easy with a weighty malt laden girth and just the right kick of alcohol which comes and goes and is masked well. Which makes me question whether or not it's truly 28%. And from what I've been told the owner doesn't know for sure and doesn't want to know, but I'm sure the folks at Guiness World records would come out for free to see if it is in fact the highest ABV beer in the world.
Thoroughly enjoyable either/or and will be quite a treat once it ages more in the saved batch.
tyler_mn (1475) - SLP, Minnesota, USA - FEB 5, 2010
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Draft Winterfest. A perfectly attenuated domestic Barley Wine. I have a touch time enjoying BW’s these days. They tend to be too sweet, too hoppy, too malty... Just really out of balance. Rosies solves this problem. Little to no apparent carbonation in a ruby/amber pour. Aroma is clean, malted barley, very mild citrus and earthy hops. Toasty caramel and light creme brulee. Flavor is toward the dry side (but not overly so). Very crisp, snappy and clean, especially for how big of a beer this is. Alcohol doesn’t show until the finish where it gently warms the throat. Well done Colin!
TheHOFF43 (1429) - Bloomington, Minnesota, USA - AUG 18, 2013
4.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Tap at brewery for RBSG 2013. This is the best barley wine I have ever had. The alcohol is very well hidden, wow. Pour is a hazy amber, dark red hues. Aroma is malts, caramel but no booze. Incredible flavor of malts and caramel, it is almost sweet.
kbutler1 (1324) - Minnesota, USA - AUG 16, 2013
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Draft! Serves for RBSG. Pours a cloudy caramel brown color with a light tan head. Sweet aroma of caramel, raisin, and plum. Medium/heavy mouthfeel. Very sweet, caramel, as it warns a nice woody character develops. Pear and apple notes as well. Very rich and very good. Unique. The alcohol hides behind the sweetness.