BMMillsy (1788) - Florida, USA - JUN 4, 2013
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: JUN 9, 2014 Rate #700! 2012 Bottle from trade with dak. Thanks! Pours a murky brownish with some ruby reddish purple at the edges. Small brownish yellow head that recedes quickly. Aroma if huge vanilla and. Aramel biscuits, sweet brown sugar, molasses, and bourbon. Awesome! Flavor is caramel vanilla up front, bready malts, molasses, more vanilla and a bit of licorice, and ending with hot bourbon notes. Lingering dry oak and bourbon on the palate. Finishes surprisingly smooth and easy. A great balance of sweet and oakiness. Plenty of rich hearty body to handle the barrels. Low to medium carbonation. A sipper and oh so yum. Glad I got some of this for the 700 milestone!
Trying a relatively fresh 2014 bottle on 6/9/14 courtesy of Doug. Amazing lasting vanilla finish on this with more dark fruit than I remember from the last time, less caramel and more bready toffee. Still as yummy as before. Mmmm.
popery (1781) - San Francisco, California, USA - MAY 22, 2010
4.2 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
City Beer Store. This was my third time drinking Abacus (past two at Toronado). Iím not the biggest fan of bourbon barrel-aged barleywines, but this is an awesome beer. It pours a deep brownish purplish murk. Virtually no head. Somewhat ominous. The aroma is strong on wonderful bourbon. Itís a much more delicate and complex bourbon aroma than most bourbon barrel-aged beers. Bourbon and oak dominate a bit - not that Iím complaining in this particular case - but there are some wonderful malty fruit flavors lurking beneath and even some chocolate and vanilla. The fruit notes come out even more in the flavor. Itís sweet but not cloying. It tastes of malt sugars refined by barrel-aging. The beer is thick and warming. Abacus is probably the best barrel-aged barleywine that Iíve come across. Delicious stuff.
GranvilleTim (1778) - Granville, Illinois, USA - MAR 20, 2012
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Reddish-brown pour with a tan head. Aroma was sweet molasses, oak and fruity. Taste was so awesome. Fruity, woody, a little dry, sweet molasses. I drank this at cellar temp/55. The aroma and taste made you want to drink it slow so it wouldnít end. The foam clung to the side of the glass.
jcos (1778) - Maryland, USA - JAN 22, 2013
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
Location/Date:Bottle split with Dave on January 22nd, 2012.
Appearance: Pours a opaque maroon brown.
Aroma: Aroma of oak, cherry, boozy faint chocolate.
Taste: Oak, cherry, caramel malt, chocolate overtones.
Palate:Medium body, lingering aftertaste, covers 12.5% well.
Summary: Pretty impressive stuff. Definitely a sipper, with complex flavors that are more than most beers. A great treat, not an everyday thing.
BRW (1752) - Barcelona, SPAIN - MAY 9, 2013
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle at CBC. Dark reddish colour with small white head. Sweet, oak aromas, also malts and vanilla. Sweet and vanilla taste, with some malt and acidic aftertaste.
zathrus13 (1749) - Mount Laurel, New Jersey, USA - AUG 28, 2011
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Pours brown, with a tan head. Aroma is bourbon, malt, and fruit. Flavor is bourbon, malt, alcohol, fruit, brown sugar, and vanilla. Fairly on the heavy side.
DavoleBomb (1744) - Pennsylvania, USA - SEP 9, 2011
3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 11/20
Poured into a snifter. 2011 vintage. Thanks to psiweaver for this.
3.5 A: Clear (I think) deep brown, nearly black color. One finger of fizzy head falls quickly and leaves no lacing.
4.5 S: This nose has it all and by that I mean it has a big hit of bourbon AND a very respectable beer underneath. The bourbon is lightly leathery with perhaps a touch of peat. Also included is a moderate fruitiness that borders on the floral, good bit of vanilla, and nearly as much oak. Lots of caramel and toffee with plum, prune, date, and fig fruitiness. Brown sugar and a very reasonable booze level for the ABV. Really complex and pleasant. Borderline 5.0.
3.0 T: I canít believe what Iím tasting. This beer has such a nice nose, but the taste is straight up boring. Boozy bourbon with a light charred, peaty flavor. Still a decent amount of vanilla and oak. The beer itself is the problem with the taste. The taste follows the nose for the most part, but all the dials are turned down to a three from what were eights. All subtlety is lost behind the booze. Really disappointing and certainly not better than average.
3.5 M: The mouthfeel is indicative of what is problematic with this brew. A 13% barleywine had me thinking thick, velvety, and rich. Having had Parabola a few times, I figured that was the route this would go as well. Instead, this has a medium body and a moderate creaminess. Seems like the potential malt flavor went away with the potential heavy body. Not bad, but not what I was expecting.
3.5 D: Totally disappointed. I loved the hell out of Parabola and thought this would be the barleywine version of that. It isnít. Not quite sure how this is getting the scores it does. Maybe bottle variation. Who knows? Not confident this will age well, but I have another bottle and Iím going to give it a go.
Serving type: bottle
Reviewed on: 07-12-2011 01:48:32
VictorStr (1740) - Helsingborg, SWEDEN - JUL 9, 2014
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
@ Mikkeller and Friends. Hel del choklad och en del kokos. Lite vanilj och kokos i smaken.
zizzybalubba (1736) - Raleigh, North Carolina, USA - SEP 17, 2011
4.7 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 19/20
22 oz. bottle from Grape & Gourmet (purchased in April 2011). Pours a cola-like brown with a thin layer of quickly fading bubbles. Incredible aroma of bourbon, vanilla, oak, dark chocolate, coconut cake, dark fruit, and probably some other aromas I have missed. Incredibly smooth flavor showcasing the bourbon, vanilla, and coconut and with layers of chocolate and smoke underneath. Every bit of the 13% alcohol is felt in the warmth yet this is a surprisingly thinner offering than you would expect from a beer with this complexity and depth. As it warms the background flavors find their way to the front just a bit more. This is an outstanding offering from an outstanding brewery.
kevinator (1730) - The Colony, Texas, USA - OCT 29, 2014
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Well done. Aroma of oak, molasses and bourbon. Dark brown color with a thin head. Smooth brandy-like palate with light carbonation. A blend of strong flavors from caramel to vanilla to burn sugar with sweet finish and bourbon burn.