SrSilliGose (3328) - pouring bus, New Brunswick, CANADA - MAR 13, 2013
3.3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Big sweet warming brown sugar. Toasted caramel. Bit of a boozy bourbon bite. Okay in very small doses.
keanex (1751) - Atco, New Jersey, USA - MAR 13, 2013
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: FEB 19, 2014 Three Part Cellar Review
Sucaba bottle, bottled January 3, 2013.
Appearance: The body is clear with a great ruby to mahogany hue. The head is thin with poor retention that settles into a thin ring.
Aroma: On the pour the nose is nicely balanced with coconut, oak and bourbon coming through. After it’s sat for a moment the coconut is dominate with dark fruits and toffee backing it.
Taste: Sweet malts on the intro with a strong mid-taste of bourbon, oak, coconut and brown sugar. This is a bit hot at the moment, but very drinkable.
Palate: Thick with a syrupy texture and moderate carbonation.
Overall: This is great, there’s no doubting that, but after my vertical it seems that Sucaba is best with a few years on it. This is very drinkable fresh, but it certainly benefits from a year or more on it.
Sucaba bottle, bottled January 5, 2012. ~1 year old.
Appearance: The body is clear and a deep mahogany with garnet hues, a beautiful color. A thin tan head foams up briefly, but settles quickly into a thin foamy coating.
Aroma: The aroma is strong on the oak at first with a touch of bourbon on the first smell. Upon swirling I smell some booze, vanilla, and faint coconut coming off a bit musky.
Taste: This is very sweet and syrupy right away with a strong toffee flavor intertwining with dark fruits. The oak and bourbon are very light, only appearing on the finish that lingers a bit after the sip coming off a bit hot.
Palate: Thick and syrupy with slightly sharp carbonation.
Overall: This comes off a bit too oaky and unbalanced on the nose than the 2 year old one and a bit unrefined in the flavor. It’s great, but it isn’t as good as the 2 year old one.
Rating: 7, 5, 7, 5, 15
Abacus bottle, bottled February 18, 2011. ~2 years old.
Appearance: The body has good clarity and a beautiful garnet/mahogany hue. Little lights comes through the body, it’s very dark. A short tan head escapes the body but quickly settles into a foamy ring.
Aroma:The aroma is sweet, a touch musky even. Brown sugar and toffee dominate the nose with dark fruits. The barrel notes are subdued providing a light vanilla and a touch of oak, very little bourbon is noted.
Taste: Very sweet, this drinks like a cognac. Lots of caramel and brown sugar with medicinal dark fruits overlying the sweet syrupy thickness. The finish has a bit of alcohol, hinting at the bourbon, but very mellow with a lingering syrupy fruit finish with a strong coconut presence.
Palate: Thick and syrupy, light carbonation.
Overall: I had this fresh once and from memory I think fresh is better. This is excellent though and has certainly aged very nicely. I think of this as sipping on a nice cognac rather than a beer. Well done.
Rating: 8, 4, 8, 5, 16
Minderbinder (3232) - Québec, Quebec, CANADA - MAR 12, 2013
4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle 650ml. [Abacus]
Pours very dark brown, with pretty low beige head (almost none). Aroma is of bourbon, malt, fruits, caramel, alcohol. Taste is of bourbon, malt, alcohol. Palate: Medium-full bodied. Overall: Alcohol not well hidden. A good, serious sipper.
czar (7484) - Québec, Quebec, CANADA - MAR 12, 2013
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
(abacus version) bottle shared by tom10101, thanks! pours hazy brown with a small light beige head, little retention. big bourbon and chocolate notes, spices, toasted and almost burnt coconut. average to soft carbonation, medium to full body - syrupy, cloying lightly resinous finish. indeed complex and a nice sipper!
vvesside (256) - California, USA - MAR 11, 2013
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
This is a killer beer! Tons of complexity with cherry, oak, and chocolate flavors.
tom10101 (5083) - Quebec, CANADA - MAR 10, 2013
4.1 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: MAY 12, 2013 Bottle (22 oz) Abacus version. Traded by pushkinwow, thanks! Amber brown with a small tan head. Aroma of bourbon, vanilla, malt, caramel and slight fruity notes. Taste is moderately sweet with caramel, bourbon, vanilla, wood, chocolate and slight fruits. Alcohol is well hidden. Heavy body, but not too heavy for a 13% abv Barley Wine. Good complexity and nice balance. Very good Barley Wine, enjoyable. I would be curious to taste a fresh bottle of this.
Edited with 2013 bottle (tasted in 05-2013). Bourbon is way more present and the beer is more complex. I recommend drinking this one as fresh as possible.
trumpetskid (106) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - MAR 10, 2013
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Pours a dark mahogany with an off-white head. Aroma-burned caramel, oak, dark fruit, semi-sweet chocolate alcohol. Taste, burned caramel, vanilla, dark fruit, oak and alcohol. This beer is a bit too hot for my taste. Without the alcohol astringency, this beer would have been kicked up a few more notches for me. This is still a very tasty beer, and worth picking up.
ajnepple (4897) - Denver, Colorado, USA - MAR 7, 2013
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: APR 22, 2015 On tap at Choice City. Lighter brown appearance with a light tan head. The aroma is chocolate, vanilla, sweet malts, dark fruit, wood and alcohol. Pretty full body, almost chewy with a silky smooth feel. A complex blend of sweet malt flavors hides the alcohol well. Finishes sweet. A fantastic sipper and a must try. Update: Ho Lee Fuk, this is good! On tap at Freshcraft.
Ferris (12154) - Burnaby, British Columbia, CANADA - MAR 7, 2013
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: JAN 1, 2014 Draft - 2012 Dark fruit, molasses. Mahogany almost opaque with a thin white head. Dark fruits, oaky vanilla sweetness some alcohol burn but fairly light in body. Quite complex. Bottle 2011 Big caramel notes, dark fruit and booze. Clear dark mahogany with a thin white head. Chocolate and caramel, candy like sweetness with some vanilla. Great brew.
jcweaver (768) - VA Beach, Virginia, USA - MAR 7, 2013
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 19/20
Bottle. Pours dark brown with a small, tan head. Great aroma of coconut, caramel, charred wood, dark fruit and light whiskey. Flavors of coconut, dark fruit, wood, char, caramel, whiskey and light tobacco. Thick and a little sweet but tempered by a light bitterness. Similar finish with stronger wood and booze notes. Awesome barley wine.