changeup45 (1727) - Mount Dora, Florida, USA - OCT 6, 2011
3.4 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
2010 bottle. Pours a deep amberish-brown color with a thin head on top. Not much in the way of lacing. Lots of caramel show in the aroma thatís followed by some raisin and a little bourbon. The bourbon is not as evident as expected. This is very smooth going down with a gentle warmth to it. Thereís a little more bourbon in the flavor but still not a lot with wood, caramel, and plum notes. Perhaps a touch of vanilla too. This really does come across as a very basic barrel-aged barleywine. No thrills here, the bourbon seems diluted to the point it almost seems like a standard non barrel-aged barleywine, but itís still plenty enjoyable.
MacBoost (1587) - Pouring Bus, New York, USA - FEB 22, 2013
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Pours an almost clear amber with a small off white head. Strong aromas of bourbon in the nose, along with some fig. Taste is not overly sweet, but heavy on the bourbon. Not boozy though, just bourbon-y. Alcohol hidden, not hot. Light carbonation. Very nice. Buzzed quick.
harrymel (1551) - Spokane, Washington, USA - DEC 17, 2013
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Moving on from the virgin version, we come to the BBA version. It appears lighter in color than the first and has excellent clarity of a toasted honey graham color. No head to speak of. The nose is not dominated by the bourbon character, and actually takes time for me to find. As it warms this character comes through a bit more, but the base still stands: cocoa, english toffee malts. Simple and satisfying.
The flavor is more bourbon infused than the nose. There is a substantial bourbon flavor, but sans boozy tones. Nice toffee and caramel flavors with a little smidge of prunes in the finish. Nice flavor with medium body and light carb.
A nice beer, but to be honest, if this was more than 10% the cost of the original, I would likely pass it up for the original.
Serving type: bottle
ansermadide (1526) - Kyle, Texas, USA - JAN 27, 2013
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Itís time! Well, it looks just like a barley wine. Thatís a good sign. Thereís a slight release from opacity, with a dark amber colored body and an off-white head. The aroma is not what youíd normally expect form a barley wine, though. It seems very much of dark caramel malts in the aroma Ė so much so that it almost smells like tobacco. The flavor is somewhat syrupy, thick, and herbal. Wow, itís unique. It feels like an imperial IPA in the mouth, but smooth and light from the oak aging. It finishes much stronger than an imperial IPA, though, high in alcohol, slightly malty, and with a definite hop presence thatís well-infused with that alcohol. I love it. The bourbon is gentle, but defines much of the beerís character. Why do I want to watch TrueBlood?
tokyogoat (1503) - San Diego, California, USA - SEP 3, 2010
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Nose is pretty blase standard bourbon barleywine, taste is fantastic, deep caramel base, shit ton of vanilla and oak, hint of sweet bourbon, they really are magicians with barrels.
koleminer20 (1372) - Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA - NOV 25, 2013
3.4 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
22 oz bottle. Part of a tasting 11/24/2013 at Fraserís Pub in Ann Arbor. The pour is a reddish-brown with a thin filmy head and minimal lace. Whoa, the nose on this is pretty much of bourbon. Itís incredibly boozy. There is a hint of caramel on the front, and the bourbon drowns the rest out. The flavor begins with a promise, showing a little roastiness, some light caramel, and then BAM, all bourbon again. There are times where the complexity of the barleywine tries to poke through, but it just os overwhelmed. The mouth feel is pretty solid, and leaves a great coating on the tongue. Just wish it was a bit less boozy
bth122 (1366) - Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA - JUL 13, 2012
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Draft. Bocktown. Mahogony ruby color. I love oak aged beers and this one is up to the task. Beautiful oak aroma with some caramel and slight fruit. Same with the taste. Just beautiful oaked flavors compliment this beer. Complex. Well done.
dlovell2 (1366) - Columbia, Maryland, USA - JUN 1, 2010
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
Brown color with copper tint and tan head. Sweet aroma with caramel and vanilla. Very smooth feel in mouth. Vanilla and caramel flavors. Oak and bourbon appears in finish.
CheersMate (1318) - Fremont (Seattle), Washington, USA - JUN 25, 2010
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
22 oz. bottle from Macís on West Peachtree. Fuck, itís hot outside! This probably isnít what you would drink on a 90+ degree day. Dark brown color with an amber/slightly ruby hue. There is a nice head sitting on top; it has the perfect height to it. Weíre lookiní good here, Chuck. The nose is of strong vanilla and sugar. Bourbon qualities are present and pungent. A slight malt sweetness pops through, but the aroma doesnít have that many dimensions to it. Ah...there seems to a be a bit of a presence from the oak popping through. Fairly nice aroma, but nothing mind shattering. This beer has a nice creamy texture. The creamy texture is great because it allows the beer to roll across the taste buds. Vanilla, sugar, booze, and bourbon are hitting my taste buds. The ethanol is a bit intrusive, and warms the back of the throat a bit too much. It does have a skull and crossbones on the front, so who said this was going to be fucking nice? Not much comes through in terms of beer. Iím getting a slight bitterness, but, for me, this seems like an excuse to get brownie points from us beer enthusiasts by putting a mediocre barley wine in a barrel and calling it a day. I would like to have a barrel-aged beer that provides complimentary flavors i.e., the barley wine compliments the bourbon barrel, and vice-versa. Traces of barley wine flavors poking through, but not enough for me.
radio_nowhere (1257) - Maryland, USA - FEB 15, 2013
3.6 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: FEB 16, 2013 Bomber into snifter glass. deep reddish-brown color with thin white head that disappears into a ring. Aroma of bourbon, oak, caramel, dark fruits and some vanilla. Taste is the aroma, adding some spiciness, chocolate and alcohol. Full body, low carbonation smooth with somewhat boozy finish. Warming and complex. IMHO much better then their regular Barleywine!