gorditoabd (615) - San Diego, California, USA - FEB 21, 2012
4.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bomber shared by Justin in DC. Pours dark like it was an imperial stout. Almost no foam, just a lacing around the edges of the glass. Aroma is like a rum cake, loads of bread and booze, but not overwhelming. Taste is shockingly smooth. There’s a definite ABV burn, but it is so well blended with the rest that it is only a strong suit. This is truly the BEST barley wine I’ve ever had. Amazing.
PhillyCraft (2847) - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA - FEB 21, 2012
4.9 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
UPDATED: APR 12, 2012 Bottle, thanks again to Brad for hooking this up. Pours a deep, and dark brown shade. Head was small to medium with a decent amt of lacing. Lightly carbonated and velvety in texture. Aromas are circus peanuts(bannana sweetness), vanilla, oak, bourbon, cloves, caramel, cinnamon, blueberries, and other sugary goodness. Flavor is similiar with vanilla bean, bannana, buttery oak, toffee, cheesecake. Pleasantly warming, and perfectly balanced for a 13.4% beer. I think this is what the Rare will be more like after another year or two of aging. Rare was way too hot but this is easily the best goose island beer I have tried. Cheers.
xpimptastikx (103) - Austin, Texas, USA - FEB 21, 2012
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
A - Dark mahogony, opaque in glass, decent legs.
S - Graham crackers, molasses, vanilla, oak, toffee, and light alcohol. This is what a BA barleywine should smell like.
T - Burnt brown sugar, vanilla, oak. Less barrel than the nose and pretty sweet, but that’s how I like my BA barleywines.
M - medium to full body with creamy carb.
O - An outstanding beer from GI. I’d really like to have this next to MoaS, but this already has an edge for price point and availability.
properhops (88) - - FEB 20, 2012
5 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 20/20
Appearance: Opaque mahogany w/ red transparencies, minimal head, average lacing
Aroma: Vanilla, oak, bourbon, bleach/chlorine, lavandar, maple syrup, powdered cinnamon, thick musky aroma
Taste: Full body, bitter chocolate, vanilla bean, bourbon, oak, butteriness, walnut, maple syrup, coca-cola sweetness, cake batter on finish, cheesecake/cream cheese residual, viscous mouthfeel, gentle warming, mild/medium carbonation, rich + complex
Pairings: Lamb, falafel, Mediterranean, Greek, Indian, Pizza, Smoked gouda + bread, anything cause this brew is awesome
Beerlando (3342) - Orlando, Florida, USA - FEB 19, 2012
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
2011 bomber, courtesy pantanap. The pour yields a clear, deep, copper-mahogany body with very little head or lacing. The aroma is flat-out amazing, loaded with layer after layer of luscious caramel and toffee, with a bit of fudgy chocolate and a kiss of roast on the edge. Maple glazed pralines lend a distinct nuttiness, nodding to the English roots of the recipe. Dark fruits like fig and raisin add sweet, fruity depth. Complex and inviting. The flavor is largely the same, though just a hair more boozy. Burnt caramel and English toffee show plenty of sweetness, but also some nicely roasted, sharp edges. Vanilla and maple seep in from the barrel and permeate everything, while dark fruit again adds plenty of caramelized depth. As expected, the palate is lush and full, nicely carbonated, but lumbering at time due to the high residual sugar. The finish is long and sticky, but delicious. Overall, it’s a damn nice beer. Probably the best barley wine I’ve had in the last year.
illinismitty (2270) - Nashville, Tennessee, USA - FEB 19, 2012
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Sampled at Winter Warmer and Yazoo Fortuitous release. Pours brown with a tan head. Aroma of sugary malts and fruity ale easters. Medium to full bodied with a slight oily texture. Flavor of dark carmelized sugars, chocolate, hint of toasted malts, and lots of vanilla. Fairly sweet for a barleywine, but works well. Moderately spicy and oaky finish. Excellent if you like sweeter beers.
IrishBoy (3752) - Bakersfield, California, USA - FEB 18, 2012
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bomber from pepsiedcan. Thanks a bunch Andy!! Nose is prunes, toffee, some oak, small amounts of vanilla, and a hint of bourbon. Clear rust brown with a very small beige head. Flavor is raisin pie, light sweetness, nice mild amounts of oak, vanilla, and bourbon. Nicely balanced and super smooth drinking.
BrewDad (4632) - Olympia, USA - FEB 18, 2012
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Dark amber in color clear with little to no head. Strong alcohol aroma with tons of sweet malt following right behind. Light fruit aromas and flavors linger. Oak, bourbon and a superb dry finish.
jlruthven (533) - Madison, Wisconsin, USA - FEB 17, 2012
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bomber, courtesy of rschnake. Pours murky brown with russet hints, small tan head that reduces to swirls of foam. Huge bourbon on the nose, along with sweet, dark fruit, big caramel and a light herbal undercurrent. More (I cannot stress this enough) bourbon on the tongue, huge caramel and toffee malt profile, slight burnt notes. Long finish, slick mouthfeel. This thing is a monster. It’s a bit hot right now, but great for sharing.
madvike (2582) - Middleton, Wisconsin, USA - FEB 16, 2012
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle shared by rschnake...thanks Rob! - Mahogany pour with next to no head at all. Smells pretty hot--sharp alcohol with lots of caramel and brown sugar. Vanilla. Really smooth caramel and bourbon with nice oak, vanilla, and big sweet malt on the finish. Wow...really sweet and big, but not cloying and the 13.4% is pretty well hidden. Very nice stuff.