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RATINGS: 296   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.94   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 381   ABV: 12.7%
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Barrel Aged Old Ruffian Barley Wine was aged for 20 months in Stranahan’s barrels. As it does for Yeti, the aging process mellows Old Ruffian’s edge while adding gentle notes of oak, whiskey and vanilla to the 12.7% ABV and 85 IBUs beer. (The original Old Ruffian won a Gold medal at the 2006 Great American Beer Festival and a Silver medal at the 2007 GABF.)

“Our intent,” says Great Divide founder Brian Dunn, “was to age each beer in the barrels for 9 months. But we got busy with other projects, primarily the addition of a new bottling line, and the beers ended up aging for more than a year and half.” While the labels on the bottles state that the beers were aged 9 months in barrels, both beers were in fact aged 20 months in barrels.

Release limited to 470 bottles.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
michael-pollack (4960) - King of Prussia, Pennsylvania, USA - OCT 10, 2008
Bottle # 223: Aroma of bourbon, oak, and a bit of caramel. Poured copper/amber in color with a large, creamy, dense, beige head that lasted throughout. Hazy. Sparkling. Flavor is medium sweet. Tastes of bourbon, oak, vanilla, light caramel, tar, light smoke, and some tobacco. No hops. Light to medium body. Smooth, creamy texture. Soft carbonation. Alcohol, bourbon, vanilla and and oak finish.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
lilannie (384) - Adamstown, Maryland, USA - OCT 10, 2008
Aroma: barrels, oak, vanilla, whiskey, some minerals
Appearance: reddish-brown, creamy colored head, some lacing
Flavor: minerals, whiskey, vanilla, oak barrels, alcohol-y
Palate: smooth and creamy, strong alcohol and light vanilla aftertaste

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 15/20
3fourths (8038) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - OCT 10, 2008
UPDATED: JUN 14, 2012 Cloudy and muddy dark tawny brown. Creamy tan head sitting 1/2 inch tall in one glass, while the other has only a 1/8 inch film. Nose is creamed vanilla, oak, and overripe fruit - plum, apricot, oranges. Creamy and full up front, rich sticky plum, tobacco, vanilla, amaretto... more of this creamed orange and creamed plum flavor, a little of the fruity sweetness from the regular Ruffian shining through. The whiskey character is thankfully not overdone - primarily vanilla and toffee notes compliment the rich creamed plum and nectarine fruit flavors. A little hot in the back, creamy and frothy throughout, the extended finish really the only spot where it seems to thin out as the alcohol becomes strong. Overall, really delicious and warming. A subdued and quiet aged barley wine complimented by a mild bourbon presence and without an overbearing barrel character.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
waolsen (1358) - Littleton, Colorado, USA - OCT 9, 2008
bottle. dark woody pour with thin head. lacing. nice aroma woody and whisky, rich malts. rich. whisky very well placed. smooth. floral hops subdued. great job.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
BrockLanders (772) - Panama City, Florida, USA - OCT 7, 2008
Picked up a couple of these last night...big thanks to Kevin for the heads-up. Pours nicely, translucent red-brown color. Big barrel in the nose...very oaky, nice whiskey notes...sweetish caramel too. Flavor is superb....no surprises. Full bodied with great vanilla and whiskey flavors. A great effort.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Crosling (1863) - Loveland, Colorado, USA - OCT 6, 2008
Great looking brew, a deep burgundy color that has lasted the entire session so far, at least 30 minutes. Fairly nice nose has some complexity from the barrel (vanilla, whiskey, newer oak) as well as some notes from the original beer (caramel, fruit.) Flavor is nicely balanced between original beer and oak elements. Bold flavors of whiskey, caramel, toffee and vanilla. Very tasty and impressive in every way. A good beer now, but being that it is properly bottle conditioned, this ale has excellent potential.

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