BDR (2534) - Roseville, Minnesota, USA - JAN 10, 2010
3.3 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
No head on the dark brown body. Nearly all carbonation has faded from this over 14 month old bottle. The vinous character from the wine barrels is the only thing I can detect on the aroma. The body is slightly tart, with a faint hop and malt character, but mostly wine. I think I get a faint amount of carob on the finish. Very good for a barleywine, but a shadow of the the last bottle of Bran Reserva I tried and now wish Iíd rated instead.
radiomgb (2520) - Peterborough, Ontario, CANADA - MAR 29, 2009
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Very dark brown - nearing black - in colour with a thin but lingering tan head, light lacing. The aroma has some oak, alcohol, lots of dark fruits - black cherries, plums, figs, white sugar. The flavour is very fruity, red grapes, woody, light alcohol, some earth, cherries. Dirty almost gritty mouthfeel, medium/light body, medium carbonation. Finishes long, fruity and sweet.
A very fruity Barley Wine as I didnít get much hop bite from this. Iím sure the barrel had something to do with this. Pretty good.
375ml bottle obtained in a trade with TheCheeseMan, thanks Dan.
Opened on November 7, 2008.
durhambeer (2500) - Durham, North Carolina, USA - NOV 17, 2008
4.1 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: NOV 18, 2008 Bottle from dchmela. Thanks, Dave! Deep dark brown pour pour, letting no light through; reddish in the right light. Minimal tan head. As soon as I started pouring, I thought about wine. Woody aromas of red wine, cherries, sourness,and complex malts... my mind vacillates between thinking sour ale and Baltic porter. Notes of licorice and molasses as well as port, raisins, wood, wine, and chocolate. Surprisingly thin, drinkable palate and a bit tingly, which again reminds me of a strange marriage between a Baltic porter and a sour ale... this is certainly a unique beer, and unlike any other barley wine Iíve had. All I know is that I want more.
drpimento (2498) - La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA - AUG 10, 2010
3.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Opened the interesting bottle cap with a plastic sealing plug mounted inside it with a nice "pop". Poured with at first no head, and then, a very fine light brown, fine foam and no lace. Color is an almost opaque, clear very dark brown with garnet highlights. Aroma is heavy red wine and malt, sour, and a little dark ripe fruit. No hop. Flavor is the same, but in a way kind of two dimensional. Body is ok, but maybe better carbonation could have made this beer a little more interesting. Finish is dominated by the tart wine characteristics. Not a session.
savnac (2391) - Anchorage, Alaska, USA - JUN 18, 2013
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle thanks to Shig. Murky dark brown with a spotty head. Aroma is heavy red wine and oak mostly with some alcohol and dark fruit and lightly musty. Flavor is tanic oak, raisin, red wine and some tartness. Medium body with soft carbonation. Very interesting beer, very wine like all around.
rudolf (2344) - Buffalo, New York, USA - FEB 9, 2009
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle, shared w. Tim & Jacob. Thanks Jacob! Very dark brown, almost purple head. Nose is balsamic, meaty malts, bright pit fruits. Flavor is oakey, rich malt, some acidity & wine-ness. Fruity twang towards the end w. earthy malt. Very nice!
badnewsbeers (2312) - Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA - SEP 23, 2010
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle. Black pour with small off-white head. Aroma of blackberry, oak tannins, sour funk, and yeast. Flavor of black cherry pits, caramel, roasted nuts, and oak. Some citrus as well. More of a sour than a barleywine, though the flavor doesnít quite match or live up to what is expected by its nose
corby112 (2214) - philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA - JAN 14, 2011
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Pours a dark plum/chestnut brown color with a thin beige foam head that had good retention, slowly fading to a lasting ring. Sporadic spots of lacing.
Earthy aroma with lots of oak/wood character as well as plenty of vinous dark fruit, candy sugar and chocolate malt. Hints of grape and other dark berries.
Medium bodied and very well balanced with the dark malt flavor countering the sweet and tart notes. Complex with chocolate malt, vinous dark, oak and vanilla flavors complimenting each other nicely. Hints of grape, currant and other dark berries. A touch too vinous but overall this beer is very flavorful and extremely quaffable.
dcschiller (2207) - Scottsdale, Arizona, USA - NOV 30, 2010
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
(375ml bottle). Pours dark cola color with thin rand head. Aroma of concord grapes mostly. Taste is semi-sweet with some sourness. There is a malty backbone to this, however. This smells like a sour, but the base beer is still noticeable. Medium to full bodied with a silky mouthfeel. Grapes definitely coming through in the end. One of the more unique beers Iíve had lately. I would get this again.
fata2683 (2176) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - DEC 24, 2011
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
bottle pours dark brown with a thin tan head that fades quickly leaving little trace. Aroma is dry red wine, strawberries, big horseblanket notes. Flavor is rich toast and caramel malt notes, mild booze and a big red wine finish of oak, leather and grape tannin. Really nice beer.