kkearn (1165) - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA - APR 23, 2008
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
375mL bottle. Pours deep mahogany, nearly opaque, with a moderate sized mocha head. Rich aroma of roasted chocolate malt, vanilla, oak and bourbon. Palate begins on the sweet side, with raisin, vanilla, chocolate, and caramel. Long finish, with raisin, chocolate, oak, and warming alcohol. Velvety smooth mouthfeel. The bourbon is integrated nicely; I enjoyed this more than the brandy version. I’d like to try this side-by-side with the original version in the near future for better comparison.
Numenor (871) - Richmond, Virginia, USA - APR 23, 2008
4.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Sweet oaky burbon aroma, very thick. Black body with a ivory head, nice lacing. Far less bufbon in taste, great. Chocolate, vanilla, some caramel. Sweet ending with a light burbon burn.
argo0 (11181) - Washington DC, USA - APR 22, 2008
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
(375ml bottle, thanks kmweaver) Brown-black body with giant beige head. Aroma is medium sweet, Bourbon, chocolate, plum/raisin. Taste is moderately sweet, raisin, some Bourbon/alcohol, chocolate, caramel. Medium body, some effervescence. The Bourbon is complementary rather than overpowering.
Ratman197 (9034) - Arvada, Colorado, USA - APR 22, 2008
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
375 ml corked and caged bottle poured a cloudy dark brown with a larege lasting tan head. Aromas of bourbon, oak, vanilla, carmel, dates and figs. Palate was medium to full bodied and smooth with a warming finish. Flavors of bourbon, carmel, oak, vanilla, light dates and hints of fig and spice with a smooth warming lingering bittersweet finish.
inkubus27 (269) - highland, Indiana, USA - APR 22, 2008
4.2 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
I was kindof skeptical going into this because it seems like everything that is uber-hyped, I tend to hate. Not this one. This is one of the smoothest, most complex barley wines...no wait, this is THE smoothest and most complex barley wine I’ve ever tasted. Palate is amazing for something this strong. Big thanks to wj94 for this one!
JorisPPattyn (7716) - Antwerpen, BELGIUM - APR 21, 2008
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Black beer, very persistent beige head. Bourbon jumping out of the glass; alcohol, dark malts, brandy and grapes. Very Bourbonflavoured as well, some roasted malts, dark fruit, dark wild mushrooms, fusel alcohols. Not really sweet, but sweet enough. Extremely sticky and viscous, oily, totally full-bodied, notwithstanding that it remains very pleasing. Superb difference, same difference.
hellbilly (3249) - scottsdale über alles, Arizona, USA - APR 21, 2008
4.7 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 19/20
sweet jesus, finally! lovingly shared by bockyhorsey and sparky27 at the PHX tasting. after a struggle with the cork and devastating near-overflow (crisis avoided, though)... this pours very dark reddish brown, nearly black. perched on top is a big light tan head that eventually fades to a film of funny colored foam leaving behind a nice trail of lacing. the aroma is akin to a red wine.... notes of prunes, black raisins, belgian chocolate and wood. the bourbon smell is present and sweet but not overwhelming. (notes get sparse at this point!) as far as the flavor... well, it is more refined and smarter than i. it’s a complex mix of oak, vanilla, dark fruit, a little molasses, chocolate again, wood and a peppery dry woody finish. everything is in perfect balance. the bourbon does nothing to get in the way but rather plays a secondary role to help coalesce an amazing experience. insanely drinkable if it weren’t for the price tag...
ucusty (2691) - raleigh, North Carolina, USA - APR 21, 2008
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: SEP 4, 2009 North Raleigh Tasting! Opened like a Champaign bottle, cork hit the ceiling, leaving a slight scuff. Dark Brown pour with fluffy head a wonderful lace. Bourbon and oak on the nose. Maple syrup, bouubon, oak and caramel malts. Another excellent effort!
BrotherGrendel (787) - San Diego, California, USA - APR 21, 2008
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
First RB rating after 300 on BA (as Stoneman78)! The cork and cage flew off this one, gushing brewing gold all over the floor, yikes. Dense brown hue with huge billowing head that eventually dies down to a thin layer. Smell dominated by oak, vanilla, caramel, sweet malts, and light bourbon. Delicious and rich initial taste profile of molasses, oak, caramel malts, and maple syrup opens up quickly to a whiskey alcohol burn and vanilla. Finishes syrupy sweet and drying. Thick chewy texture and prickly carbonation. Absolutely a top-tier beer with improved balance and drinkability compared to the original AS; however, it lacks some of the punch and range of the brandy AS which I would rate slightly higher on flavor and aroma.
Drake (7945) - Free Union, Virginia, USA - APR 21, 2008
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 18/20
Good lord, the Virginia Tidewater people get their hands on some good shit. This is my fourth consecutive amazing beer from Immy and The_Beer_God, this one courtesy of Immy. You rock, Tim! Strawberry brown color with good head retention. Aroma is strong (but not overly) oak, caramel and other toasty, malty notes. I’ve long said the ultimate meal is beer and waffles. Well, this is a beer that tastes like waffles! Strong maple taste (grade B), caramel, chocolate and nuttiness. Effervescence good. Thick and a little chewy. A little overly sweet, but still a damn fine beer.