Sammy (8033) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - NOV 26, 2005
3.7 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
2004 edition. A very well done barleywine, nicely hopped and malted. Cloudy peach to amber with pretty head. A great complement to the food and very quaffable. Noted caramel, citrus juice, fruit, slight licorice, candy, bittersweet great combination. Wonder how it would be aged.
Drake (7850) - Free Union, Virginia, USA - SEP 19, 2008
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
2007 22 oz. bottle from the most generous stefanje. Thank you Stefan! Clear dark red color with a sizeable head and good lacing. Prickly pine hops are assertive int he aroma with notes of brown sugar, cream, citrus. Taste is very strong and very dry hops, lemon, other citrus and pine. Some subtle fruitiness supports the hoppiness. Nice creamy texture and taste througout. Normally I like a nice maltiness to balance the hops, which this one lacks, but for some reason it works very well.
BMan1113VR (7773) - Los Angeles, California, USA - OCT 14, 2008
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
2007 Bottle. Pours a murky plum color with a large off-white head that leaves good lacing. Gorgeous hued beer. Aroma of dark fruits, honey, flowery. Taste is sweet, and bozzy, with dark fruits and brandy. Nothing special. Mouthfeel is syrupy, with light carbonation. English Style, malty barelywine....I like the West Coast Style Stuff Better...
3fourths (7772) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - SEP 4, 2003
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
UPDATED: JUL 26, 2012 2002: Medium orange and red appearance. Smells a bit fishy, with some strong alcohol and hop characteristics. A bit sour and tasting like leaves and fruit. Light to medium bodied, quite crisp, with some light and subtle hop flavors. I had this after tasting Double Bastard, so I probably am missing something. Overall, quite sweet orange and lemon, with some mixed grapefruit as well. Very acidic and abrasive. Sampled the 1999 at 5 years old and it really wasn’t much different. Not a top 50.
JorisPPattyn (7682) - Antwerpen, BELGIUM - APR 20, 2003
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
(2001) Chestnut; brown-yellow head, not very ample. Nose gives preserved fruit (confits), ginger, "Grand Marnier". Some hops seem to struggle to come trough. Taste: sweet-sourish-bitter. WOW! Some balance, some impression. A bit harsh, resiny finish, though. very chewy mouthfeel. Slight alcohol impression, very masked. In the aftertaste, the taste of confited orange or Gr. Marnier (much less sweet) reappears, to stay long. A better-than-average, very American Barley Wine.
MartinT (7482) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - MAY 31, 2004
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: JAN 17, 2005 2 2003 bottles proved to be vastly different experiences. The first was :
Hot citrus sunshine on a pregnant earthy knoll...Abundant fruitiness dallying in warming but well-hidden alcohol...It seems intensity and equality can be achieved all at once...Inspiring...8/4/9/4 17/20
The other was less hoppy, sweet fruitiness was somewhat slightly tart and reminiscent of papaya juice, and overall a white wine character was trying to unite all of the flavors. Definitely not up to par with the other bottle. 7/4/7/3 15/20
DocLock (7445) - Lower Pottsgrove, Pennsylvania, USA - JAN 28, 2005
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
03 Reserve. Big thanks to Brock_Landers. Brock sent me 3 or 4 top 100 beers. This one is turbid deep copper with minimal head (no deductions due to high ABV). Aroma of malt, dark fruit, cognac, hops, gingerbread, black pepper. Not as intense as the HOTD Doggie Claws aroma, but I give both 9s. Tastes very malty, fruity, with hops, dark fruit, some toffee, cognac. This one is a bit more refined and balanced than the Doggie Claws, but not as "in your face" intense. Dense finishing palate, with a somewhat krieky finish, and also a hit of rauch. I can’t decide whether this or Doggie Claws is better. They are both great. This one is a tuxedoed, smooth, finessed barleywine, while the Doggie Claws is a rough around the edges, long haired hippie. Both have their purpose, and as far as I’m concerned, they are both at the top of the genre. My 2nd 4.5 rating for a Barleywine tonight. Dare I try the Avery The Beast next!!!?? Stay tuned, fans. I may need a Goddamn stretcher! Yeah man!
chriso (7344) - London, Greater London, ENGLAND - JUL 2, 2004
3.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 13/20
Beer #18 at Spiesy’s. The final beer in our run of strong Americans. I must admit I am more used to nip bottles for barley wines than 750ml ones. Red colour. Sweet candy sugar aroma, with some hop too. Raisins and resin in the flavour. Rich and opulent, but sticky and cloying. No doubt well made, just too sweet and sickly for me. Bottled.
jercraigs (7319) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - APR 23, 2006
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
UPDATED: DEC 22, 2006 2005 Vintage Rated December 2006. Red-amber body with a smallish tan head. Slightly perfumey floral hops up front are overtaken by alcohol as it warms. Rough bitter hops turn astringent in the finish as it joins with the alcohol. Average palate. Not unpleasant but a fairly roughly hewn barleywine. 7+/3/7/3/14 - 3.4 <P>
Reserve 1999 100799 bottle rated April 2006. Amber body with a smallish head. Interesting aroma is tough to decipher, light caramel and muted hops. Light bitterness is a bit rough, pleasant grainy malt in the middle. Less hoppy than expected, but that could partly be the age. Medium palate has lost some carbonation. Not quite what I was expecting, less intensely hoppy than I thought it would be. Curious to compare it to a younger version now. Thanks to the trader who I have forgotten! 6/2/7/4/15 - 3.4
CaptainCougar (7129) - Columbia, Maryland, USA - JUN 3, 2003
3.3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
UPDATED: MAY 25, 2004 Reserve '03 sampled on 5/25/2004: I rerated this, because I thought I had a bad bottle the first time. I was mistaken. This has a certain sourness to it that does not belong in a barleywine. Nice hop presence and caramel malty sweetness, but the acidity is very off-putting. Perhaps I've just been unlucky enough to run across two soured bottles. I wish I could find a good bottle, but for now I won't be spending any more money on this one.
Reserve '01 sampled on 6/3/2003: Pours a light brown with ruby red hues and a thin coating of small-bubbled head. Complex sweet caramel malty aroma with some floral hoppy notes abounds. Some sweet malt and cherry flavor is almost immediately covered by an oily sourness. Sadly, this bottle may have passed its prime. Smooth oily and viscous mouthfeel hides the alcohol very well. Finished sticky, dry, oaky, and tart. I only wish I had tried this sooner. It shows great potential.