Jokes (1453) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - JUN 12, 2004
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Clear reddish amber with no head. Completely and utterly still. Sweet aroma the has a strong alcoholic presense. Raisins, toffee, bread pudding, aged hops, licorice, apples, oak and myriad other things. The body is full, but not as thick as one might expect. Sticky and sweet with a long, warm and extended stay in the mouth. The sweetness continues in the flavor and the alcohol is subdued, upto the finish. The aged fruits, sticky sweetness and lightly toasted bread come together elegantly and with a subtle conviction. The alcohol warms the finish and completes a well-crafted, tasty sipper of a beer. Perhaps the best English Barley Wine I’ve ever had.
Dalle (1145) - Skørping, DENMARK - APR 27, 2004
2.8 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 10/20
Dark copper colour w. no head. Nose is sweet and alcohol with notes of raisins and perhaps som orange marmelade. Taste is very malty-sweet, alcohol-bitter finish with a dash of pepper. Complex. Full, syrupy mouthfeel. Reminded me of malt whiskey (The Dalmore?). Yes, this is surely well-made but not to my taste yet (should have put it in my cellar for many more years.
ClarkVV (5858) - Boston, Massachusetts, USA - APR 23, 2004
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: SEP 28, 2004 2002 bottle. Pours a golden-yellow raisin color with some copper-oranges and light red tinges. Very unique color. No head, but that was a given. No lacing. Aroma has light sweet raisins, lightly sweet toffee, some caramel, chocolate, hints of white grapes and a bit of yeast. Hops give a touch of bitterness in the aroma. Flavor is immediately salty and musty, becoming quite vinous, muscat grapes, yet sweeter than that with plenty of figs, raisins (I mention raisins alot in this review, but it really reminded me of CA golden raisins), and a good raw grainy taste. There is a lovely sherry quality to the finish which is significantly more dry and complex. Gale's ales really shine on the finish and this one is no exception. Plenty of hops come out and there is a lovely bitterness mixed with light yellow fruits, toffee and a good subtle warming sensation from the alcohol. Moderately acidic, touch of syrupyness, and not nearly as watery textured as usual for this brewery. Medium-full body. A big case of seeing the quality and rating as such, but really not caring for it all that much.
ElJefe (553) - Rochester, New York, USA - APR 19, 2004
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 2/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
I tried the 12% ABV bottled version. A very interesting brew! Pours brown with no carbonation or head. Smells sweet, almost like a red wine. Taste hints of plum wine, with a more traditional beer finish. Very sweet, with a syrupy feel. A unique and enjoyable departure from the norm.
sayravai (4707) - Helsinki, FINLAND - APR 12, 2004
2.9 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 11/20
Dark brown color, no head at all. Very strong, port-wineous rye-pudding aroma with plums and oak barrel. Sweet, wineous, rye-pudding, cellar flavor with no hopping. Full-bodied, oily and syrupy palate with no carbonation. A very strange brew - the tip of the tongue doesn't taste/feel anything from it. Interesting, but not something you'd like to have two bottles of.
mkobes (2142) - paramus, New Jersey, USA - APR 11, 2004
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Very fruity beer. Dark brown in color. Yeasty. Very complex maltiness.
Rich and complex beer. Enjoyable.
MartinT (9411) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - MAR 19, 2004
1.9 AROMA 3/10 APPEARANCE 1/5 TASTE 3/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 9/20
UPDATED: APR 9, 2006 Intense, still cider of multiple fruit…Acid yeast and dusty caramel do not embellish this moment…Chaotic and corky...Am I a victim of Gale’s mini-cork once again?...And again?...And again?...
Rastacouere (6174) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - MAR 15, 2004
2.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 2/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 10/20
Appearance is a boring clear ruby brown color with no head whatsoever. Fruity aroma, complex maltiness: apples, oranges, pears, plums, peaches together with big toffee flavours and some caramel. Taste is surprisingly tart, is this a bad bottle? Red apples, pears, brown sugar, not too well melted together. No balancing bitterness, light medicinal bananas and moisture qualities. Sharp thin body, especially for a barley wine, no carbonation to speak of. Probably another bad bottle due to their silly corks which made it pretty much a "Miss" in the Hit or Miss balance.
austinpowers (2826) - New York, New York, USA - MAR 11, 2004
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Crikey! (as the British say). This beer's quite unusual, which is par for the course when it comes to Gale's Ales. There is a foamy head, that quickly thins. The color is murky, muddy brown, like the Mississippi River. Some small black yeast flecks have just settled at the bottom of my glass. The 12% is extremely well-hidden. Flavorwise, this is a tour-de-force. This is a sweet, very malty brew with lots of bite. It's a touch Belgian Strong Ale with some dried fruit and chocolate present in the background. The English hops are mild and not all that assertive compared to the alcohol and malt. I have no idea how the draft version of this beer could be 4.5% abv without some serious watering down. As for the Queen, given that I've lived in the UK for 5 years, I think I'm entitled to an opinion: I'm ready for her to step down and give her son some time on the throne. I feel she's hogging it.
Eyedrinkale (3213) - Astoria, New York, USA - MAR 2, 2004
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 15/20
Almost brown color with no head. Dried fruits and malt dominate the flavor, like a malty fruitcake. Somewhat chocolate dryness that was also sweet. Rich and complex.