keanex (1629) - 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 itís 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, thereís 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. Itís great, but it isnít 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, itís 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
popery (1627) - 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.
zizzybalubba (1604) - Elizabeth City, 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.
SuzyGreenberg (1603) - Seattle, Washington, USA - APR 9, 2009
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
draft @ hard liver í09 - dark brown with spotty white head; thick, woody aromas of sugar, molasses, vanilla; thin, strong and silky smooth; not as full bodied as i like, but overall a pretty dope BW that lived up to my excitement when this was spotted on the menu
Mittenator (1593) - Michigan, USA - MAY 15, 2015
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Draft at tap n handle. Garnet with a small head. Deep toffee and vanilla. Candi and sticky. Delicious.
Dazz3 (1589) - Hšllefors, SWEDEN - OCT 20, 2012
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Sampled at UCTS testing. Pours brown with a small Brown head. Smells and tastes nutty, abit coffee and alot of candy malty, abit figs and sadly to much alcohol.
porterhouse (1580) - Boothbay, Maine, USA - JUL 4, 2011
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
(22 oz. bottle via trade with IrishBoy, thanks Richard!) Pours dark ruby with a small beige head. Aroma of bourbon, wood, caramel, coconut, vanilla, chocolate and a trace of molasses. Would love to keep smelling but I couldnít wait. Mouthfeel is smooth, soft, buttery, silky, slightly sticky. Fine syrupy film and light traces of lacing briefly coat the inside of the snifter. Flavor of bourbon, wood and warm coconut. Warm, smooth chocolate, caramel and bit of molasses. Massive ABV is well-integrated and warming. The warm bourbon and coconut combo is really the killer here. Outstanding in every way.
bleeng (1576) - Houston nowhere near Beersel, Texas, USA - JUN 3, 2011
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bottle shared at the May 2011 Houston RB tasting-thanks to me. Dark brown but clear. Nose is chocolate with hints of barrel and alcohol upfront. Taste is chewy, fluffy, chocolate, barrel, vanilla with alcohol almost too hot. This one was difficult to get my hands around-I could not figure out this beer but I really enjoyed this as a scotch/brandy type sipper. Seems a bit young. Iíll let the other bottle age for a year or so and then return to it.
Dixonian (1562) - Plano, Texas, USA - APR 11, 2012
4.1 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Deep amber pour with some off-white head. Aromas of vanilla, toffee, caramel, bourbon, oak, and coconut. Flavors of dark fruit, vanilla, bits of chocolate, lots of wood and bourbon. Crazy good!
ngeunit1 (1555) - San Francisco, California, USA - AUG 10, 2012
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
A - Pours a dark ruby-brown with a finger of frothy khaki-chocolate head. The head fades down fairly quickly leaving behind some light lacing.
S - Aroma is a mix of caramel malts and sweet caramelized sugars, with some plum and other dark fruit, vanilla, oak, toasted coconut, and a bit of booze.
T - Starts off with some sweet caramel malts and caramelized sugars with some raisin, plum, and other dark fruits, and some vanilla and toasted coconut. Through the middle, the oak and Bourbon comes through with some light chocolate and roast. The finish is a mix of sweet caramelized sugars, vanilla, oak, Bourbon, dark fruit, English yeast, and a bit of booze.
M - Medium-full bodied with light carbonation. Feels smooth and a touch syrupy with a sweet and warming finish.
D - Very drinkable. Great barleywine with really nice Bourbon coming through. Amazing overall balance.