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RATINGS: 344   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.77   SEASONAL: Special   IBU: 85   EST. CALORIES: 450   ABV: 15%
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Made to Celebrate Founders 15th Anniversary, Bolt Cutter Barley Wine is an American barley wine that pours deep copper color and is strong, sweet and malt-forward, with a spicy complexity. Typical of the style, it is very cellarable. The final product is a blend using beer that was aged in Bourbon barrels, some from aged maple syrup Bourbon barrels and some from standard fermentation. After blending, the beer was allowed to mature in bottles and kegs for a few months before releasing.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
ineedbeer (881) - Oakland, California, USA - FEB 7, 2013
Aroma is dominated by caramel malt notes with complimenting vanilla and raisin. As it warms the bourbon and hops become more noticeable. The alcohol also becomes more noticeable as it warms but never reaches a hot level. Esters also become more pronounced. Pours a fairly clear burnt amber with a light tan head that quickly recedes leaving a film in the center and edges. Faint lacing with long legs. Flavor starts with some sweet caramel notes - caramel, burnt sugar, raisins and plums. Mid palate the barrel quality appears, bourbon and vanilla. The finish has some slightly astringent hop bitterness and light hop flavor. The finish has quite a bit of alcohol heat along with some residual sweetness and lingering bitterness. The finish is where this beer currently falls apart. Mouthfeel is full bodied with low carbonation. The astringency is moderate and fairly unpleasant. The alcohol heat is moderately high but fairly clean. For all the complaints this beer gets it is surprisingly good. As it ages the alcohol heat and the astringency should mellow out. The finish is a bit slick as well which will hopefully get a bit better. ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 4/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
VALIS (228) - Nashua, New Hampshire, USA - FEB 6, 2013
UPDATED: FEB 7, 2013 Deep amber color, almost cherry, moist lacing. Sweet brown sugar aroma, also hints of wood and grass. Very sweet taste as well, alcohol warmth on the roof of the mouth, boozy finish, slightly oakey. A well-made beer but not so much in my style. I have another bottle I’ll age for a year or more, hopefully mellow out the sweetness a little? **Update: I slowly sipped at it over the course of the night, unwilling to pour its $23 contents down the drain, and as it warmed towards room temperature it became even sweeter and stickier on the palate, unfortunately. A chore to finish.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
ryecatcher (821) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - FEB 6, 2013
750mL bottle (purchased on Black Friday 2012, drinking on the occasion of National Letter of Intent Day 2013... Go Buckeyes!) Into the snifter we go! Pours a thick and hazy amber-orange with a slight head that dissipated quickly, no lacing to speak of. Nose is heavy on the caramel, some candied orange, hints of vanilla and maple (i.e. smells sweet). Mouth is full-bodied (thick is a good adjective here), with a lot of syrupy sweetness up front mingled with a hoppy bitterness (meaning I’m going to have a headache after finishing this off in the next hour). Getting some peaches, orange, caramel, grass and some maple notes at the very tail end. Finish is still sweet but with a long, lingering bitterness. I’ve grown to appreciate barley wines, butgiven my druthers I still prefer the American variety (drier, hoppier) over the English-styled version (sweeter) which this one is. Still, was worth the wait on that cold-ass Friday morning waiting in line outside South Loop Binny’s... and THE Ohio State Buckeyes had one hell of a recruiting class sign today, so this was a good one to celebrate with! ;-)

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
douglas88 (6306) - Portland, Oregon, USA - FEB 6, 2013
Bottle thanks to Beau. Pours a bright and somewhat cloudy golden/amber color with a small white head. A nice fruity nose with caramel and huge sweet malts. A really nice flavor leaning heavily toward the English super sweet barley wine flavors, caramel, maple syrup, vanilla. The balance is achieved with lots of fresh fruit and hops. Very balanced and not as hot as one might think. Excellent.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
zach8270 (3579) - Henrietta, New York, USA - FEB 4, 2013
(bottle - 750 ml - Night of the Titans 2013) Lightly hazy copper pour with a puffy white head. Sweet aroma. Lots of malt, toffee, caramel and a bit of toasted nuts. Flavor is sweet as well, though not as sweet as I would’ve expected. Sweet malts and toffee at the start gives way to a rather firm bitterness near the end and a mild bitter hop aftertaste that blends with the sweetness. Enjoyable, but could be better with some age.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
MikeJslc (758) - USA - FEB 3, 2013
Copper, slight chill haze, persistent tan head. Aroma of toffee, a little leather, grainy malt. Flavor of toasted malt and toffee, some nutty character, firm bitterness and resiny hop flavor, some leathery age from barrel, very good. ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
drowland (6144) - Valdosta, Georgia, USA - FEB 3, 2013
Rating #4600! Eh, it’s the closest thing to a milestone I have in my backlog. On tap at Rock Island Brewing Company. Amber pour with almost no head. Sweet caramel and molasses on the aroma with plenty of oak, vanilla, bourbon, and more... seems overly sweet. Super sweet flavor with maple, bourbon, caramel, molasses, dark sugars, and more sweetness. Lots of good aspects, but very sweet.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
holdenn (2083) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - FEB 3, 2013
Sampled at FOBAB ’12. Rich caramel mango fruit aroma. Bitter caramel. Rich and bitter. Caramel herbs. Tasty though the alcohol is pretty strong. 8/4/8/4/15

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 13/20
portableparty (1953) - Blaine, Minnesota, USA - FEB 2, 2013
Bottle shared by DalzAle thanks Greg! Pours hazy amber red with a quick soapy off white head that settles to a wispy film and sudsy film. Aroma is sweet bitter sugary resinous citrus hops and caramel. Taste is warming booze and bitter resinous hops with a burning swallow sugary malt. Palate full slick sticky and burning alcohol.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
BigBeer45 (1272) - Michigan, USA - FEB 1, 2013
Bottle, this barley wine had a burnt orange-red pour and made a one finger off-white to light tan colored head that receded to thin cover and ring, the glass had a lots of tiny bubbles flowing slowly in the glass, this drink looked viscous, this drink left lots of small spots of lacing on the sides of the glass, the bottle had a thin layer of sediment with a thicker (darker) ring of sediment at the edges of the bottle, this ale had malty aromas of toasted malt, bready malt, caramel, malt and bread sweetness, fermented fruit that resembled peach and pear fruit with light citrus notes, it had a big bread and malt nose, very little bourbon on the nose, this drink had flavors of bready and toasted malt, caramel, alcohol, fermented fruit that resembled peach and pear fruit with light citrus notes, there was a little lemon, the finish had a alcohol pepper bitterness, there may have been a little hop resin bitterness, little to no bourbon noticed but that is better than too much bourbon, the hop and alcohol bitterness did add a touch of balance to the sweetness but this ale is malty and sweet, the alcohol provided a warm touch on the palate, the mouth feel was medium to thick on the tongue, creamy and had average carbonation, the nose was mostly bread, malt, some caramel, and alcohol that followed, this was nice, especially good for a night like right now, it is 10°F or 11°F outside and I have this nice drink to sip.

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