burg326 (2769) - Florida, USA - MAR 1, 2013
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Growler shared at RBWG, poured an amberish red color with aromas of toffee, caramel, vanilla, light oak, and some nuts. Flavors follow suit, not overly boozy. Thanks to the person who brought this gem.
polomagnifico (1160) - Saginaw, Michigan, USA - DEC 14, 2013
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Howler from RobertDale, thanks Bob!! Aroma has fantastic notes of caramel, dark dried fruits like raisins and prunes, vanilla, Porto and faded floral and citrus hops. Very nice! Keeps getting better as it warms. Murky medium/dark rusty amber with a small fully diminishing off-white head that left little lace. Flavor is very sweet and bitter. Palate is very full bodied and oily with soft carbonation and a nice long finish. Overall a fantastic Barley Wine. Very complex nose and velvety palate with everything coming together and being well balanced. Bravo Free State!
bytemesis (2172) - Sunnyvale, California, USA - NOV 2, 2013
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Howler. Bob, you rock for this! Pours cloudy chestnut, medium fizzy tan head, dissipates quickly, residual laces well. Aroma is malty, lots of dried fruits, toffee, burned sugars, oak, vanilla. Flavor is the same, sweet and complex with light bitterness, some zest, pine resin on the finish. Full body, creamy mouthfeel. Nice effort. Edit, the more i drink, the better or gets. Nearly perfect for the style
rxeight (806) - Illinois, USA - NOV 1, 2013
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Massive thanks to Bob for hooking me up with a howler. Very much an english style barleywine. Carmel apple, brown sugar, reminds me of an imperial ESB a little bit, very thick, completly transparent. One of the better non ba barleywines ive had. Very good stuff.
BOSSbrewer (1036) - Arkansas, USA - SEP 5, 2013
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
This is a decent barleywine. But was Somewhat alcoholic. Good caramel flavor. Had in their tap room.
decaturstevo (4416) - decatur, Tennessee, USA - JUN 24, 2013
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Deep copper pour with watery head. Nice dried fruit, a bito abv. Sweet malt start, dried fruit and a nice bitter finish. Medium bodied with smooth carbonation.
notalush (4464) - Denver, Colorado, USA - MAY 31, 2013
3.8 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Huge thanks to peteinSD for the handbottle - traditional british barleywine with a slight american twist - nose of treacle, fig, raisin, whiskey, prune, licorice - smells pretty awesome, actually - mouthfeel is slick, but the body just a touch thin for the abv - flavor is not quite as complex as the aroma - it still has a lot of raisin, treacle, fig - light oxidation and a sherry-like quality - finish has a fair amount of hop bitterness (the american twist), despite the fact that this seems to have some age on it, so I can only imagine how bitter it is when fresh - I probably wouldn’t like it as much - this, however, is quite nice.
peteinSD (1183) - San Diego, California, USA - MAY 26, 2013
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
’10 growler from Bob - I sat on this growler for months and was shocked to hear a hiss upon its opening and see a lively pour with a nice head of foam. Aroma is sharp, chunky raisin with sweet malt, thick caramel. light tartness, and faded hops. Taste is heavy caramel/raisin with some darker tobacco and an assetive hop bitterness on the finish. Definitely a fruity barley wine. Clean, almost aereated mouthfeel. Very nice barley wine.
markwise (4098) - North of Tampa, Florida, USA - MAY 11, 2013
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Huge thanks to beastiefan2k for opening this one at RBWG. Pours a hazy caramel brown with an off-white head. Nose is caramel, plum, dates, figs, toffee, some booze. Flavor is similar- some toffee, caramel, plum, dates, figs, toffee, and some boozy notes. Medium in body and very nice sipper.
mbsmith (72) - Missouri, USA - APR 16, 2013
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
2003 edition poured from a growler that was filled 2-3 years ago. Still decent carbonation rush after unscrewing the lid. I don’t think they used as many hops in 2003. I had some from the tap when the growler was filled and it seemed to be more of an English style than the more recent version(s) of Backus(es) that i had tried. It has definitely mellowed over the years as well and is even an easy drinker- i’m gonna have to watch myself. Dark fruits and malts dominate a complex blend with barely a hint of alcohol. Hops are present in a bittering way that balances the barleywine sweetness (this is definitely not overly sweet) but not piney like a more recent version. If this was ever 150 IBU like in the description, i’d be shocked. Finishes smooth. Solid beer. When you take into account how old it is and the fact that it has been growlered for years it is an AMAZING beer. Will re-rate when i have a fresher one in my hand from the tap and it will score higher.