ineedbeer (1100) - Oakland, California, USA - AUG 11, 2014
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
12 oz bottle from 2013 Winter Solstice coming in at 14.0% ABV.
Aroma is failry rich and malty with lots of dark caramel and toffee with some lighter roast and medium light chocolate to balance the caramel. Some medium light bourbon notes with some light alcohol spice. Medium light raisins, figs and prunes. Faint hop notes.
Pours dark brown with some lighter brown and amber hues on the edges. Small, somewhat thin, tan head recedes fairly quickly to the edges where it lingers for a bit. Medium light lacing and fairly long legs.
Flavor has a light sweetness with some moderate dark caramel and toffee notes; not as super sweet as a lot of barley wines which is nice. Some light roast and medium light chocolate notes. Medium bitterness with faint pine hop notes. Medium bourbon character with light oak and medium light alcohol spice.
Mouthfeel is medium to medium full bodied with medium carbonation. Low astringency and medium alcohol warmth.
Overall a really nice barley wine; I really enjoy that it has a slightly darker malt profile and avoids the overly strong burnt sugar note that lots of barley wines have to them. Well balanced bitterness with faint hop character. A nice balanced beer with a lot of malt complexity.
ICEatALAMO (1099) - Troy, Michigan, USA - DEC 29, 2011
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
2011 vintage. Pours tan with little to no head. The aroma is great, if you like bourbon. The taste is smooth, but you can for sure taste the alcohol. Kinda reminds me of the BB4D, which is a good thing. It should age well.
boboski (1095) - Alabama, USA - MAY 15, 2007
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bright copper pour. Small off-white head, rapid dissipation, speckled minor lacing. The coloration of the body is a most marvelously captivating shade, invoking memories of travels through Egypt; it looks like melted metal you’d find encased in a pharoah’s tomb. Raisins mingle with a full, gentle bourbon and vanilla liqueur composite in a soft, well-rounded nose. This shrouds roasted caramel and just a touch of alcohol. A vinous dark fruit quality speaks volumes about the quantities of malts and sugars employed in the brewing process, of their quality as well. It really seems like the ideal marriage of malt and extracted bourbon and barrel character was reached. Flavor is very sweet, woody and whisky enhanced. Is this what bourbon barrel J.W. Lee’s Harvest Ale might taste like? Ample alcohol provides a strong bitterness that seems as if it’s a strurdy mold for the other flavors to frolic in. Hops are discernible but don’t really make a resounding difference in the whole of the flavor. The finish is delicate and very warming with lingering toasted grains and vanilla. Mouthfeel is light bodied for a beer of this magnitude, medium overall, with high viscosity and very little carbonation fizz.
This recipe is scripted well, it gets right to the point.
MaltOMeal (1092) - Land of Sugar, Texas, USA - JUL 17, 2010
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
12oz bottle. 2005 vintage. Pours a dark brown with a thin tan head which dissipated quickly. Nose is of rich, dark fruit and bourbon. The bourbon is not overpowering, but complimentary in this. Taste is of dark fruits and bourbon. Very complex. Mouthfeel started off medium-thin, but progressed to chewy and dry. Hmmm. Interesting. Some alcohol noticeable. Very nice.
Experiment_Ale (1083) - Dallas, Texas, USA - MAR 29, 2014
4.1 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
At Stephens House with Stephen, Aaron, and Dave. Pours dark murky bronze. Aroma is huge pungent awesome caramel fig raison, old malt. Taste is rounded caramel malt, nice old musky notes, burnt sugars.
NeoHippie2 (1074) - Louisville, Kentucky, USA - AUG 14, 2013
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Dark brown pour with almost no head. Aromas of dark fruit, oak, cocoa, bourbon, and some yeast notes. Initial flavor is of raisin with notes of cocoa and dark fruit. Finishes with the oak and bourbon character. Very complex. Abv is well-hidden, barely noticeable in the finish but even then in that nice warming way. Truly a great beer.
walleye (1073) - Sterling Heights, Michigan, USA - NOV 28, 2004
5 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 20/20
UPDATED: AUG 27, 2006 Going to rerate this beer. Was at the brewery a couple of weeks ago with Artusory, Pailhead, and punkrkr27 sharing some good beers with each other and the Kuhnhenn brothers. When Eric went to the back room and brought this out. This was the best bourbon barrel what ever I have had. It was well balanced the borbon flavor didn’t over power the other flavor, It didn’t seem like I had a glass of Jack in front of me. I just hope they will make this more often and it could rival the Raspberry Eisbock. Thank you Brett and Eric. This is my second 5 from my favorite brewery. from the tap.poured a dark brown with hints of mahogany around the edges nice tan head. aroma, plums, raisins, toffee, chocolate, malts, hints of wood, cherries, alcohol red wine flavors . flavor, licorice, honey, chocolate, toffee, malts, alcohol a nice blend of sweetness and bitterness. a nice smooth mouth feel. this is a kicken beer. WOW
ksurkin (1021) - Norfolk, Virginia, USA - JUN 20, 2011
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
12oz bottle, 2010 edition, courtesy of ibrew2or3. thanks, dave! pours a beautiful, russet/burgandy brown with a thin, whispy, light khaki head leaving slivers of white lace. aroma is fantastic with huge notes of buttery toffee, praline candies, and light maple syrup backed by rich, intense woody bourbon, spice, and light vanilla with subtle notes of raisin, dates, and earthy hops. flavor is absolutely delicious with bold, woody, slightly smokey bourbon and light spice notes layered atop sweet toffee, molasses, and light maple with rich, slightly tart, dark fruit notes of berry, fig, and yellow raisin on the back end. palate is rich, full bodied, and lightly carbonated with an intense yet smooth, woody, bourbon finish. overall, and outstanding barrely aged barleywine.
hapjydeuce (970) - Carlsbad, California, USA - JUL 10, 2009
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
Bottle brought by jarspag to the 6/27/09 D-METAL in Del Mar. Shared with Katie and Simon as well. Thanks for the chance to try this kickass rarity J. Not much on the appearance, clear burgundy color that is still and coats the snifter with legs. F*cking epic aroma! Fills the room with notes of cherry, oak wood, cinnamon and brown sugar with toffee. The nose changes from good to great as it warms. Flavor is a beautiful medley of cherry, plum, cocoa, wood barrel and light bourbon tones underneath some green apple. The bourbon complements everything very well, but is never too hot or overdone. Hellishly smooth palate with a warming finish, like a fine cognac that nearly numbs the roof of the mouth. F*ck me this is good.
detroiter (958) - Euphoria, Minnesota, USA - JAN 17, 2007
4.6 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Pours an opaque dark brown, with deep auburn tones. Almost no head, but somehow it maintains decent lacing throughout the glass. With an aroma full of sweet dark malt, molasses, vanilla, and bourbon, this just may be the best smelling beer ever. Seriously. Although I was very eager to drink it, I really was content just to sit there and sniff it. And every time I did, I just smiled and smiled. And I wasn’t even lit. Yet.
The flavor is full of caramel, sweet toffee, bitter oak, vanilla, and a huge raisin presence. And of course, bourbon. The bourbon flavor is oaky and almost cherry like straight into the finish, where it gives way to a straight mild bourbon aftertaste.
Nice full body, gently carbonated, and emminently deceptive in its masking of the alcohol presence. By far the best bourbon beer I have ever had.
This beer is changing the way I think of bourbon barrel beers. Although I do like them, my appreciation for them has always been along the lines of "interesting, tasty, but let’s move on to something else." I think for the first time I am experiencing the bourbon flavor as such an integral component of the overall character, rather than just a tasty ’added extra.’
This beer might even teach me to like bourbon. Uh oh