hophead75 (2010) - Largo, Florida, USA - JAN 14, 2007
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
22 oz bottle. Deep amber in appearance. Aroma is sweet malt, and some fruit, plums, raisins. Faint hops in the aroma also. Taste is sweet caramel, some brown sugar, toasted malts, fruit, with some citrus. Very full bodied. light hop bitterness and a medium amount of alcohol burn in the finish.
zach8270 (3625) - Henrietta, New York, USA - JAN 14, 2007
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
(bottle - 12 oz) Clear but dark copper pour with a thick and lasting tan head and good carbonation. Aroma is sweet and thick with some citrus, hops, caramel, and some floral notes. Flavor is very sweet and big at the beginning with a smooth malt middle with some hops and citrus in it. Finish is very sweet and warming. Lots of alcohol and a slightly bitter aftertaste. Very chewy.
kujo9 (1093) - North Ridgeville, Ohio, USA - JAN 12, 2007
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
12 oz bottle: Pours aged coppery brown w/a lasting cream colored fluffy head. Initial aromas of piney and lightly grapefruity hops, but as it warms it becomes lightly floral and sugary. Toasty malt w/ hint of caramel, and a hit of light brown sugar at the end of the sniff. Also a bit of alcohol vapor that is spicy, and a lightly toasted nut character, like pine nuts. Flavor is very well balanced and finishes semi dry. Hop flavors w/ floral and piney are mild and not overpowering. Pretty well attenuated, and has a bit of toasty malt flavor w/ a hint of caramel. The brown sugar addition is almost absent in the flavor. The finish is piney hop flavored and it lasts into the aftertaste with a good balance of hop and toasted malt flavor. Medium bodied, lower medium carbonation, warming, but mostly well hidden alcohol, but lightly dry in the mouth, not sticky! This could be a very dangerous beer! Nicely balanced to semi dry and not sticky at all. Great balance of hop and malt flavors keep it from being a hop bomb! Should also age well!
kmweaver (3207) - Petaluma, California, USA - JAN 11, 2007
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
UPDATED: OCT 25, 2012 Rerate: 2012 Sweet Release, courtesy of Lagunitas. Thanks, folks! Very similar sensory notes to earlier batch: on the sweet side, but that alcohol and assertive citrus and herbal bitterness keep things afloat nicely. Definitely off the barley wine spectrum as I know it, but one of Lagunitas’ more successful American strong ale-ish renditions. Assaultingly bitter and sweet, unabashed in that tenuous balance, and in a category all its own.
Lagunitas event at the Brickskeller. 2005 bottle. Clear, reddish appearance; chunky, light tan head with great retention and lacing. Huge, candy sugar aroma: sweet, maple syrup and brown sugar. Full, sweet mouthfeel: maple syrup, candy sugar, very similar malt background to (aged) 120-minute IPA. Long, sweet finish, showing citrus hops.
GuilTTy (728) - Cherry Hill, New Jersey, USA - JAN 11, 2007
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
Copper pour under a thin dark tan head with very little lacing. Strong Belgian candy sugar aroma with hints of caramel, molasses, milk chocolate and dates. Very sweet flavor with plenty of dried fruits, orange peel, cherry cordial and vanilla. Rich and warming texture with a smooth finish.
tbookman (618) - Ephrata, Pennsylvania, USA - JAN 11, 2007
3.5 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Deep copper color - thin head. Aroma is sweet - sort of like a caramel apple. Flavor is fairly smooth, not cloying, and not potent or alcoholic. Doesn’t really remind me of a standard barelywine. Still, quite quaffable, especially as it warms.
matta (1140) - Tampa, Florida, USA - JAN 10, 2007
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Thanks to some kind RateBeerian for sending me this beer well over a year ago.
Shugga pours a deep amber body and a short-lived head. There is a large amount of what truly appears to be “un-dissolved brown sugar” settling out within the glass of brew. The aroma is largely sweet, although a hint of tart fruit in the finish. The flavor holds a plethora of fruits like plum, apple, raisin, nectarine and pear. Some heat from the ABV shows on the sticky finish but overall… this beer is Damn Good and has aged like a well pampered heiress!
Hangover (1076) - Atlanta, Alabama, USA - JAN 9, 2007
3.4 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Copper red pour with a thin brown head. Sweet malty aroma with some cherry and dried fruit. Medium bodied. Initial reaction is more dried fruit and a bit of sugar, some vanilla. Then the middle explodes with alcoholic warmth. Piney and resious hop finish. It’s all over the place, but it’s pretty good regardless.
TomDecapolis (4568) - Milton, Delaware, USA - JAN 9, 2007
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
2006 Bottle. Pours a translucent orange amber with hints of gold. Head was average size, foamy and kind of off white/orange in color. Laced and sustained. Aroma of floral and citrus hops, dark fruits, caramel, hints of vanilla and brown sugar. Flavor was very smooth and creamy. Lots of hop flavor, but toned down hop bitterness due to the malt sweetness...without being overly sweet. Slight hints of bitterness towards the back of the mouth as this one sits there. Alcohol well hidden overall. Flavors of dark fruits and brown sugar also. Nice Barley Wine.
BuckeyeBoy (2894) - Boise, Idaho, USA - JAN 7, 2007
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
12 oz Bottle pours out a clear amber topped with a light tan head. A very nice aroma of hops. A great sweat tast. I will have to pick up a few more of them for another time. Very good.