brewandbbq (269) - Manchester, New Hampshire, USA - JAN 16, 2009
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
A vertical tasting of vintages 2003, 2004, 2006, and 2008.
The 2003 and 2008 were sampled together, and the 2004 and 2006 were sampled the following evenings.
Vintage 2008 bottled on on 9/12/08.
Pours dark amber with a ruby hue. Clear body with a half inch head of off white. Some light rings of lacework after the short head fell, and a partial skim coat remained on the surface for the duration.
Aromatics lead off with jammy malt, red and tropical fruits, and warming alcohol.
Peaches, apricots and melons lead the way for shadows of red grapes, cherries, and bourbon-spiked honey.
Sweetish and quite juicy.
On the thick side of medium bodied. Sticky and chewy mouthfeel. A bit light on the carbonation.
Sweet crystle malt, ripe fruit, fresh caramel, and a resinous bitterness start the palate. Warming alcohol steps forward as well as hints of caramel-candied apple, spruce dew, and candied figs.
Finishes with a lingering warmth, sustaining bitterness, and drawn-out sweet fruit.
A classic American strong ale that dances along the lines of a Barleywine.
Next up, a mini vertical with an aged example.
Pours cloudy, dark amber, with a half inch head of off white. A slow retreat revealed some spongy lacework and a few whisps on the placid surface.
Aromatics are heavy on the malt, with lots of wet leather, rotting cedar, wet paper, and Sherry. Very earthy and oxidized. Hops are not to be found, and the nose rounds out with hints of cocoa, cardboard, and dried earth.
Medium bodied, but very syrupy and chewy. A slick, tacky mouthfeel with subdued carbonation.
Stale malt, wet and dusty boards, worn leather, and earth-dusted chipped toffee start the palate. Oxidized Sherry steps forward as well as a warming boozy note and tannic caramel.
Finishes with a lingering dried earth note, dusty leather, stale malt, and old wood tinders.
Not a fan of the five year old DB.
Side by side with the 2008 freshie:
Wow, I wouldn’t believe that they were the same beer unless I poured it myself. The freshie is cleaner, infinately hoppier all around, and much brighter. The peaches and apricots really shine though when sided with the oldster DB.
Pours clear, dark amber with a two inch head of off white. Retention is moderate and theres some decent lacing after the fall.
Aromatics lead off with ripe, red fruits, sweet malt, and alcohol. Significantly more boozy than the 2003 or 2008.
Slightly vineous with hints of bourbon fusels, cherries, figs, and sherry.
On the thick side of medium bodied. Slightly syrupy and plenty slick.
Dark fruits, cherry-infused malt, and bourbon-spiked toffee start the palate. A mild throat burn quickly steps forward as well as a peppery warmth.
Finishes with lingering alcohol, sweet malt, and fading red fruits.
Hardly a trace of oxidation in the 2004, which makes it pretty amazing how quickly this beer goes off the deep end. Looks like four years in the cellar is the max for a Double Bastard.
Pours murky dark amber, with a one inch head of off white. A partial skim coat remained on the surface for the duration, along with some spotty lacework.
Aromatics lead off with dry, papery malt, caramel, toffee, earthy cedar, and a trace of cocoa. Warming alcohol follows through along with wet cardboard.
On the thick side of medium bodied and chewy. A creamy and somewhat syrupy mouthfeel.
Drying malt, caramel dust, and hints of cocoa, nougat, and wet boards start the palate.
Dark fruits, warming alcohol, and an approachable biterness follow through.
Finishes with lingering cardboard-infused malt, stale chocolate, and a drying bitterness.
The 2004 was remarkable and somehow far superior to the 2006. Zero oxidation and was clearer in the glass.
I’d like to think that the perfect amount of time for DB in the cellar is four years if you use the 2004 as a benchmark. The 2006 disproves this though.
Vintages in order of best to worst:
Note: All were stored in the cellar on thier sides for the duration, and the 2006 was very close to the 2003 in last place.
alkolas510 (800) - SWEDEN - MAR 27, 2015
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Kopparfärgad klar med ljusbrunt skum. Doftar och smakar mycket karamellmalt, lite humle och ganska mycket beska på slutet med lite alkoholsmak. Som en riktig bra barleywine
nauc (3) - New York, USA - MAR 24, 2015 does not count
4.7 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
one of the best ive had. very sick appearance... looks like pure camel. yum!
Fredd_an (128) - Borlänge, SWEDEN - MAR 16, 2015
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Karamellfärgad. Doft av karamell & torkad frukt såsom aprikos. Fantastisk sötig karamellhet, torkad frukt, balanserad, fyllig med en fantastisk bitter slät avslutning.
---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone
Bork (383) - Rosewood, Georgia, USA - MAR 14, 2015
4.8 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 20/20
Glory be to the bastard king. While not a beer in the regular sense of the word, this is pure liquid gold. Fruity without being sweet, heavily bitter without the soap and perfume, pleasantly chest warming without the residual taste of alcohol. If it just looked a wee bit better in the glass this would be close to the perfect beverage.
CacheManyHose (310) - HONG KONG - MAR 13, 2015
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 2/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Quite cloudy dark red-brown, beige sudsy head. Smells of black treacle, brown/candied sugar, roasted malt, pine needles, musty grassy almost herbal hop bitterness. Tastes of toffee, nuts, resinous hop, pine, finishes with light spice, malt, maple syrup. Body is very smooth, creamy and lightly spicy. Flavours are big and complex but somehow the beer isn't overwhelming or too sweet. Good beer - doesn't taste like much else - though I think I like the original Bastard ever so slightly more.
HKdIPA (364) - HONG KONG - MAR 13, 2015
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 2/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle from QClub at home. Deep deep copper brown pour - hazy to the point of opacity. Thin foamy head. Aroma is similar to the others in the bastard series - very dank and hoppy with a pronounced bready maltiness. Taste is similar. Huge flavor of bitter resinous hops balanced by lots of caramel bread malt flavors. Big booziness too, the warmth and bite of which last for quite a while. Really good - maybe the best of the bastard series, though the original is great too. Would definitely get again.
vadie (908) - Vancouver, British Columbia, CANADA - MAR 8, 2015
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Wow, un grande bière! L’arôme fort du caramel, sucre brun, et l’alcool. Le goût est des fruits séchés, caramel, sucre brun avec une finition amer bien équilibré pour une bière tellement forte. Très puissante, une excellent bière d’hiver.
Fritz123 (1227) - Boca Raton, Florida, USA - MAR 4, 2015
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle from Total Wine. Home snifter pour is dark orange brown and murky. Small head and no lacing. The aroma is serious heavy malts, leather, burnt caramel, kind of a swampy aroma as well. Taste is big malt bomb, dark fruits, dark breads, pine, wood, and earth.. Bitter pine finish. Thick oily mouth and an almost sticky finish.
axl (87) - Lund, SWEDEN - MAR 4, 2015
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
650ml bottle of 2014 edition. Dark brown with one finger tan white head. Initial deep aroma of dried fruits, raisins and dates, and sweet syrup followed by increasing tones of piny hops. Sweet taste of dried fruits and sweet black bread (sirapslimpa) followed by bitter piny hops and then finishing sweet again with an almost desert wine character as well as some almost burnt roasted flavors. Probably medium thickness to the mouthfeel and medium carbonation with very well hidden alcohol.
NBird (455) - Perth, West Australia, AUSTRALIA - MAR 3, 2015
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Growler 2L btl.
Looks..Rick dark mahogany, med head.
Smells.. Big sticky boozy stonefruits, thigh rich caramel, sweet.
Tastes..chewy thick booze soaked hoppy stonefruits, liqueur-esque caramel.. definite alcohol, some warming heat and real bitterness muscle.