TheAlum (6373) - Aurora, Illinois, USA - DEC 30, 2013
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
750ml bottle from Leoís Wine and Spirits (Woodridge, IL). Broke down and dropped the cash for one of these. Pours a murky orange brown hue, lighter hue shows creek water glow, some orange and brown, caramel hued really. Decent carbonation in the body with some gentle orange, frothy offwhite head stays as a mellow full film, laces small. Aromas are potent barrel, showing bourbon, vanilla and spirit warmth. Touches of maple meet coconut, apple elements, Bourbon, bready malts and fruity ester elements a bit more bright as it warms some more. Some toffee, sticky caramel and gentle apple, pear, a dollop of orange preserves and firmer vanilla elements. Sweeter but hot overall. Initial is a bit more palatable than the nose insisted, firmer body shows sweeter malt elements, toffee and caramel meet some fruity melange, touches soft vanilla, maple and woody tannic feel. A bit of warmth starts to grow off the bat, caramel and toffee meet Bourbon spirit and warmth, shaved and toasty coconut, gentle earthy element. Middle is more barrel, gentle body, the barrel letís on with good heat, thinning this beer down a bit (but really, that seems necessary). Tannic and woody, warm ABV led backend with vanilla, gentle caramel and maple elements in jabs. Some more vanilla, toast and wood. Perhaps a bit abrasive at times but as it warms and settles, I get itís vibe a bit more. The wheat element seems to adds some fruity flourishes, flaked wheat but still a decent sticky caramel malt base shows through. The maple kinda ebbs and flows, which is nice instead of just a load of sweetness. Overall, itís better than I thought itíd be, a firm barrel presence that might be a bit overwhelming for some, but overall it still has some body and life from the base. The wheat element ups the complexity, but doesnít take away from itís cause. Solid stuff, giving me memories of fresh Nemesis 2009. Perhaps a bit more dialed in and less barrel driven than that though (Which I scored higher back then at another time, but likely think this is better than it. More reflective of my palate and rating style back then). Solid stuff.
madvike (3105) - Middleton, Wisconsin, USA - DEC 30, 2013
3 AROMA 4/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Bottle - Pours light amber, slightly hazy with no head. Nose is bitter and boozy with bready malt and a bit of maple. Sharp and sweet. Taste is way better, smooth breadiness with maple and a dry dark bread finish. Slick and thin-bodied.
j12601 (8000) - Poughkeepsie, New York, USA - DEC 30, 2013
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle at Blippsmas! Courtesy of Max. Pours a clear gold amber treacle color with a thin white head. Very berry sweet lots of sugar and caramel with a bit of vanilla bourbon and would touch maple syrup. long better finish with a bit of wood and malt and bourbon on the finish sugary and sweet lots of maple syrup. Cloyingly sweet, but in samples of maybe an ounce or two, it was ok.
Alextricity (509) - Michigan, USA - DEC 29, 2013
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Part of a sample at Founders.
Appearance: A hazy golden brown color. No lacing or head to speak of within the sampler.
Smell: Bourbon. Vanilla. Some sort of fruit, but canít pick anything out in particular. Sweet. Maple syrup in there as well.
Taste/feel: Much like the smell... not so much fruitiness in the taste though. Smooth as can be. Mellowed out pretty much perfectly. Silky. Definite warmth throughout the mouth, but I donít taste the alcohol much, if at all. Maple syrup seems to add a nice feel to the beer. The barrel adds the bourbon character and vanilla while toning the beer down. Sweet is in the name, and it is indeed a sweet beer -- but the sweetest Iíd have. Regardless, a bomber of this brew should be split at least three ways. Not so much because of the alcohol, but I feel like itíd be cloying/hard to enjoy after a certain point. This is byfar my favorite Wheatwine, though. Unlike others Iíve had by a longshot, and the barrels seem to work wonders with this.
adnielsen (10138) - Fort Collins, Colorado, USA - DEC 27, 2013
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Bottle in Vail, courtesy of jcnielsen. Thanks bro! Pours a hazy orange appearance with a tan head. Heavy oak and bourbon, vanilla, somewhat citrusy, light white wine, coconut aroma. Somewhat chewy, grainy woody, big cookie, doughy, orange citrusy flavor. Pretty intense oak. Fairly smooth but a touch boozy.
jcnielsen (2691) - Charlotte, North Carolina, USA - DEC 27, 2013
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
Bottle in Vail. Pours a copper color with white head. Oak, bourbon, syrup, chocolate, slight booze flavors.
tectactoe (3122) - Michigan, USA - DEC 27, 2013
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: DEC 28, 2013 Bottle: thanks, Mike! Pretty clear copper amber-copper hybrid color with a nice, foamy eggshell head with nice staying power. Aroma has nice notes of sweet toffee, maple syrup, wet oak, vanilla, & maybe a touch of citric hoppage. Little booze, little bourbon, but balanced nicely by the sweetness. Taste is exceedingly smooth. Lovely toffee, caramel, a touch of vanilla & coconut from the barrel, oak, great maple contribution, a little bit of cocoa, & a tiny bit of smooth, warming bourbon. Very mild citric notes from the hops. This is a very nice wheat wine, & it should hold up well for a few years.
Hopswagger (199) - South Carolina, USA - DEC 26, 2013
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 19/20
P: Clear body with tiny specks floating around in a sea of pale copper amber. Off white cap of airy head that settles to a bubbly ring along the edge.
A: Stout sweet bourbon, inside of a wheat bread bag left out in the sun, fresh coconut, orchard fruit, macaroon cookies, semi sweet maple glaze.
T/M: Wertherís originals, pears, apples, coconut, pecans, maple glaze, earthy hops mellow out the sweet and compliment the bourbon profile. A touch of peppery spice and pears in the finish. A chewy mouthfeel with a delicate dose of carbonation and finishes smooth with a gently building dryness.
O: After much anticipation I can easily say this was an amazing brew. I had high hopes for this and it passed the grade in stellar fashion. Heavy hitting booze tamed by sweet glaze and earthy bitterness. What more could you ask for in a beer. The only downside is that this was my only bottle.
Doghair (295) - Illinois, USA - DEC 26, 2013
3.3 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Clear caramel color with a thin film of foam. I primarily get alcohol in the aroma. After warming there is more malt and caramel but itís rough. Taste is the same as aroma. Lots of alcohol taste along with malty caramel and some coffee. I really wanted to like this but the alcohol is just over powering. Possibly a year or so on the shelf would calm it down a little.
Shaunmaloney (42) - Kasson, Minnesota, USA - DEC 26, 2013
3.9 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle. Pours copper with nice head. The aroma is sweet, great maple! Taste is smooth, medium to heavy with a traditional barleywine finish. A great beer, backstage series continues to impress, not as good as mango magnifico but close. Well done!