msante79 (2187) - Mount Prospect, Illinois, USA - AUG 29, 2009
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
12oz bottle from my summer secret santa who I still cannot figure who it is. Pours lightly hazed orangish amber with very thin off-white head. Aroma is heavy with sweet malt, booze, oak, light vanilla, hops, dark fruits and caramel. Flavor is mostly sweet malt, booze and oak with some light vanilla, dark fruit and caramel. Flavor is really onesided and little underwhelming. Mostly just sweet malt and booze with some oak and caramel. Mouthfeel is thin and carbonation is very light but that probably due to high ABV and the barrel. Have been wanting to try this for a long time and am a little disappointed but this is still a good beer. I was just hoping for greatness.
corby112 (2214) - philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA - AUG 25, 2009
4.1 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Pours a cloudy dark amber color with a thin white head that quickly settles into a thin lace. Pleasant aroma of bourbon, earthy oak, vanilla, hops and alcohol. Well balanced with lots of bourbon vanilla oakiness, malt backbone, sweet alcohol and strong hop presence.
TheEnemy (562) - Chicago, USA - AUG 8, 2009
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
12oz bottle, courtesy of TheBeerLover. Per the label, bottled in 2005.
Pours a nice red-brown mahogany with modest head that quickly settles down to a ring around the rim of the glass. Aroma is a little weak but eventually gives up rich notes of vanilla, bourbon, raisin and alcohol. Flavor is a strong yet pleasantly subtle burst of standard "bourbon-barrel" flavors of bourbon, vanilla, oak and a bit of charcoal. It almost, but not quite, overwhelms the malty, vinous qualities of the base barleywine. Warming alcohol creeps up on you after a few sips. Thinnish, clunky palate is the only letdown here. Otherwise, this is a really solid, well-balanced, and very approachable, drinkable bourbon-barrel beer.
I should note that this bottle aged for 4 years. I donít know how different it tastes today versus 4 years ago, or if there would be any difference at all. But at any rate, it held up extremely well despite not always being stored in optimal conditions.
BuckeyeSammy (527) - Palo Alto, Ohio, USA - JUL 29, 2009
3.5 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
2007. A little sweet and realatively thick. Nicely balanced carbonation profile. Sweet malt a little overwhelming on the back end of my palate, some caramel and bourbon.
SuzyGreenberg (1603) - Seattle, Washington, USA - JUN 7, 2009
3.3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 16/20
12 oz. bottle - props to riversideak; no bottle date in my notes; pours clear, dark orange and flat with no trace of head; scattered aromas of sugar, alcohol, oak; drinks with some noticeable heat; thin texture, seems aged a little too long maybe; pretty blah overall
Ughsmash (6915) - Pewaukee, Wisconsin, USA - MAY 9, 2009
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottled on 11/20/06. Poured hazy, peachy amber with a short, well-retained off-white head. The aroma was strong with light fruit skins paired with plums, raisins, and aged caramel.. accents of brown sugar, fresh oak, and vanilla.. smelled like it was going to be sour. The flavor did indeed have tangy sourness laced throughout with light fruit skins and oak being the major players.. brown sugar and aged caramel provided the base.. darker fruits and vanilla rode out the edges.. bitterness was mostly oaky.. finished with a fine balance between the sweetness and the barrel. Medium-plus bodied with low-ish carbonation on the palate.. warm, but never too much so.. well-balanced and aged. Iíd gladly have another.
JK (4157) - Uptown, Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA - MAY 4, 2009
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Like the standard version, but even sweeter with a thicker, heavier palate. Molasses. Malt, moderate hops, and a plain, brown color. Quite sweet, lots of oak, but no bourbon, I am happy to report.
durhambeer (2500) - Durham, North Carolina, USA - MAY 3, 2009
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle from Raleigh WBF. Clear amber pour and not much head. Big oaky nose. Lotes of vanilla and sweet as hell. Syrupy. Too much for me. I donít dig this.
yobdoog (1888) - Woodridge NY, New York, USA - APR 8, 2009
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
5 year old keg on draft at Capones. Man was this good. So smooth and rich. Nice and sweet with hints of bourbon and oak. Aroma and taste of vanilla, oak and cream. Some milk chocolate rounds this out. Really good.
fredandboboflo (1570) - East Setauket, New York, USA - APR 5, 2009
3.9 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
5-year-old on tap at Caponeís a week ago. Aroma of vanilla, oak, sweet fruits, particularly boysenberry, mildly bourbony. Flavor more vanilla and oak with very rich, toffee and cake malt. Coffee in the finish. Just a touch cloying with some overbearing sugariness, but otherwise very enjoyable.