egajdzis (5336) - Spring Mount, Pennsylvania, USA - JUL 11, 2010
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Red brown color with a small, light tan head that left nice lacing on the glass. Aroma of vanilla, dried fruits, caramel malts, smoke, leather, cocoa, and wine notes. Taste of pine, tobacco, caramel malts, dark fruits, light wildness, and a sweeter finish with some alcohol as well.
Thorpe429 (5012) - , Illinois, USA - DEC 1, 2010
3.3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Thanks to psiweaver and hopsbreath for getting me out bottles of this.
A: Pours a moderate mahogany with a nice tan head and very minimal lacing.
S: Not too much going on here considering how much really should be going on here. A bit of the Brett comes through along with a bit of malt, but not much bourbon.
T: Brett comes in a bit, as does the malt. Again, not too much--if any--bourbon character. Not sure if this just isnít well balanced in general, or if itís at that point of limbo where the Brett is starting but hasnít brought through enough character to really carry the beer.
M: A bit dry and a bit hot. Fairly thick.
D: Fairly low. I just canít figure out where this one is going. Luckily Iíve got more to cellar, so Iím thinking (or maybe hoping) that Iím just getting to this one at the wrong time in itís development. Looking forward to revisiting this.
Serving type: bottle
Reviewed on: 09-05-2010
nimbleprop (4869) - SouthWest, Washington, Washington DC, USA - JAN 18, 2012
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
22oz bottle pours a hazy, caramel brown with some cloudy off white head. Nose has caramel, red wine vinegar, sour cherries, ketchup, light wood, some vanilla. Sweet caramel flavor, cereal, vanilla, cherries, coconut, some strawberry, cake icing, brown sugar, wood pulp, toasted oak, some rum. Medium bodied, smooth, sweet, tart finish. Really good.
TomDecapolis (4477) - Milton, Delaware, USA - JUL 9, 2010
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Thanks to Josh for sharing. Pours a deep reddish brown with a small head. Aroma of tart cherries, brett, dark fruits and toffee. Flavor of toasted malt, dark fruits, oak, earthy, brett and tart cherries.
IrishBoy (3836) - Bakersfield, California, USA - JUN 16, 2012
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bomber from iowaherkeye. Nose is berries, bretty funk, toffee, and bourbon. Clear very dark brown with a medium tan head. Flavor is toffee, fruity, light sweetness, only a slight bit of brett, and candisugar.
FlacoAlto (3800) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - AUG 27, 2010
3.2 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
A solid pour into my 25cl tulip glass produces a two-finger thick, nicely amber tinged, dark tan colored head. The beer is a dark, concentrated amber color that shows brighter red with flashes of ruby when held up to the light (it also seems to have a touch of haze to it too). Buttery oak aromas mix with mellow funkiness to produce a note reminiscent of overly ripe cheese. Aromas of up front vanillin meld into notes of tart fruit towards the finish; reminds me somewhat of plums and red grapes, or really more of a current like note; if you really dig for it a sort of overly ripe fruit character is noticeable at times, at others I get hints of star-fruit. Big rich aromas of toasted coconut add a sort of candy / dessert like quality to the middle and mixes in seamlessly with the vanillin notes. It is interesting how the varies between smelling of light tart fruit and like very well integrated Bourbon character. The base beer really plays a secondary role in the nose; really only the malt is subtly noticeable with a rich caramel character and some accentuating toasted malt character.
My first sip is sweetish tasting, but quite a bit lighter bodied and drying than the base beer is. The Bourbon barrel at first provides flavors of toasted coconut and vanilling, but finishes with a woody spiciness as well as some oak character that accentuates a warming in the finish. Other flavors of brown sugar baked nuts. Hmm, the finish just had a very strong, really funky Brettanomyces induced flavor that reminded me of a cross between rotting fruit and cheese that is way past its prime; this really dirty foot like note sort of snuck up on me and, completely unprepared for it, it actually had me shudder in revulsion a bit (mostly because it was so out of place with the Bourbon and Barleywine flavors). Fruit flavors of not quite raisins, perhaps some rustic fig notes, tart reduced plum compote and perhaps even some notes similar to quince paste are each subtly noticeable underneath the more dominant Barrel character. The beer has a herbaceous bitterness to it in the finish that was not at first noticed as it was hiding underneath the spicy oak and alcohol notes. Perhaps a touch of cocoa character is contributed by the malt as well as some concentrated brown sugar crustiness and dark, whole grain, molasses influenced bread character.
This is definitely an interesting and complex beer. It is not as Brettanomyces influenced as I was expecting, and even the tartness is a by-product of the Bourbon barrel more than it is from a wild influence. To be honest there isnít enough different from a beer that just didnít age all that well during its time in the barrel; the Brett character really needs to be a lot more distinct and interesting before I would consider this a unique experience. Not bad, but just doesnít resonate; the flavors are actually fairly nice, it just seems to lack a bit in the richness department that it needs to stand up to the barrel influence.
jkwalking05 (3753) - Arlington, Texas, USA - JUL 9, 2013
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Rated in 2010 (Backlog) - Deep ruby brown color with a small beige head. Aroma is of toffee, bourbon, caramel. prune and a light lemon tartness. Taste is of brett, caramel, bourbon, and oak.
GeneralGao (3614) - Iowa City, Iowa, USA - NOV 26, 2011
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle shared by iowaherkeye. Thanks. Poured a clear dark orange-brown color with an off white head. Smelled of raisin, toffee, and booze with a fruity Brett note. Medium bodied and slightly sweet. Bourbon, vanilla, caramel, and subdued lemon Pez flavors.
djd07 (3565) - Houston, Texas, USA - MAR 6, 2012
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle. Pours a very dark brown with a small tan head. The aroma is brett and bourbon. Medium mouthfeel with caramel and fruity malt. Easy to drink a very complex Barleywine from Marin.
nickd717 (3483) - San Francisco, California, USA - JUL 16, 2010
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bomber from City Beer in SF. Hmm so this beer was "intentionally" infected, was it? Interesting...
A fairly nice pour, this beer has. The color is a deep translucent reddish-amber-brown, and a light beige head sticks around atop the beer for some time.
Aroma is interesting. Your usual notes of caramel malt, toffee, bourbon, -bal, and vanilla are all there. Some hops as well. Then you get a slight bretty aspect that really isnít too disconcerting at all. Iíll be damned.
Flavor is mostly sweet, but there is just the slightest hint of cherry-like tartness. Huge caramel malts and toffee, smooth bourbon, oak, and vanilla. Very slight funk from the ímyces.
Surprisingly smooth and slick on the ífeel given the brett presence. Feels for the most part like the usual version. Medium-full body with good carbonation level for the style.
Fairly drinkable. Iím surprised to have really enjoyed this beer after expecting it to be a train wreck.