SnobbyBeer (1) - - FEB 21, 2012
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Served in a Belgian tulip. Enjoyed on 2-21-12.
This beer pours a slightly hazy orange-yellow-honey color. Itís fairly light compared to other barleywines Iíve had, and it looks very much like an IPA or double IPA. The head was massive, about 3 fingers, and just the slightest bit off-white. It leaves some nice lacing along the side of the glass, and after the initial pour there is almost no carbonation bubbles to speak of.
This is a citrus bomb! Tons and tons of fresh hoppy aroma come out, bringing grapefruit, tangerine, and fresh orange zest. Some slight alcohol follows. I tend to enjoy the hop/alcohol combination, so it definitely works. There is a slight malt smell after the hop barrage. Like the bottle says, there is a bit of graham cracker detectible. Overall, WOW this brew smells fantastic.
Could it be? Is that MALT I taste?! Indeed it is! And plenty of it - I was worried that this was going to be like an IPA in terms of bitterness, but to my surprise there is a lot of sweet malt in this bad boy. It brings notes of caramel-covered graham crackers and toffee. The hops bring a wonderful complexity, bringing some old familiar favorites: citrus, tangerine, tropical fruits, mango, and everyoneís favorite "cat piss". Yum. The booze is definitely evident. This beer drinks like a 12% ABV brew, which I think holds it back slightly. The flavor is wonderfully complex and intense, I very much dig.
For as big of a beer as this is, itís no struggle to drink. It drinks more like an imperial IPA than a barleywine, which can be a dangerous thing! Itís not as thick as one would imagine, and it has a (dare I say it?) DRY finish! What a mindf**k. Thereís a medium-low amount of carbonation - perfect for this particular beer.
I usually donít like hoppy, American barley wines, but New Glarus just canít seem to get a bad beer past me. I was worried about this beer being too bitter, but the bitterness and hop character are just about perfect. Iím glad to taste the sugary-sweet malt mess that I like in barley wines. Iím also glad they made a BIG barleywine, not a casual 8-9% ABV barleywine. I can only imagine what this beer tastes like after a year or two of age on it.
VERY special thanks to Duff27 for sending me a whole 4 pack of this delicious brew.
slowrunner77 (5804) - Reno, Nevada, USA - SEP 26, 2014
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
"rarely do I keep a beer Iíve had (and that is not available in the local market) on my wishlist, but this is a keeper. Thanks Lou! I couldnít imagine that this would match, or perhaps even top, the Unpugged Iced Barleywine, but it did. Itís like a Sam Adams Griffins Bow (unique in itís lighter color and palate, while still being hefty, and full flavored) perfected. Citrus hops and vanilla!! I had to read the label to see if this was oaked (it was not) but damn was it delicious. One of my favorite NG beers...ridiculously drinkable for a 12% brew. I dreamt this was a bomber last night. 6/12 - oddly showing more heat with more time in the bottle, still awesome,
DrSilverworm (6571) - Cincinnati, Ohio, USA - JUL 1, 2014
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
12oz bottle, shared by alexsdad06. He says itís 2011 vintage. Totally hazy orange color. Thin off-white head. Some loose dots of lace. In the nose up front... A little oxidization, dark fruit, musty. Flavor is nicer than the nose. Light spice, some hop resiny hop notes. Medium to bigger body. Smooth, kind of creamy lighter carbonation. Light dry finish. Pretty nice, a lot better than expected. Some DIPA type notes in this, orange citrus hops. Moderate bitter taste, light to moderate sweet, no cloy at all. One of the better aged barley wines Iíve tried.
b3shine (5558) - Indiana, USA - JUL 1, 2014
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle to snifter (shared by alexsdad06). Looks good; a hazy dark apricot with off-white head that steadily dissipate into lacing. Smells solid; some orange citrus from the hops with a semi-sweet, malty backbone. Tastes like it smells with a solid mouthfeel thatís medium to full-bodied. Enjoyable.
JK (4520) - St. Louis Park, Minnesota, USA - MAR 16, 2014
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle, about 9 months old. Orange, brown color. Sweet with brown sugar. Moderately hopped, and a dry, bitter hop finish. Very smooth palate and it straddles that line between sweet or hoppy barleywine.
beechner224 (685) - Melbourne, Florida, USA - FEB 22, 2014
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
Bottle share thanks to drew cat. Pours orange with white head. Paler than I expected. Not much aroma, some sweetness. Taste us a bit light. Sweet. Not bad.
Homer321 (1961) - Rock Ridge, Florida, USA - FEB 22, 2014
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle thanks to drewcat90210. Nose full of fruit and spice. Very pepper. Lots if booze but very soiled.
DrewFace (799) - Melbourne, Florida, USA - FEB 22, 2014
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Pours a murky very orange color. Sweet light hop character , light hop aroma, citrus, more malt. Sweet, malty. Very sweet , malty, light hop character, light bitterness. Goooood.
changeup45 (1717) - Mount Dora, Florida, USA - FEB 14, 2014
3.3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
I got a bottle of this from the recent Secret Santa. Thanks! Reddish-orange with a loose white bubbly head. A ring of roam lasts around the edges to produce some spotty lacing on the glass. Candied orange and cranberry in the aroma, with toffee malt, and whiffs of alcohol toward the tail end of the scent. The flavors are smooth, for the most part, consisting of orange peel and a lot of candied mixed fruit. Thereís plenty of malt here but itís not thick and syrupy, which is a good thing. This is 12%? It seems lighter than that but thereís still a gentle warmth to each sip. Sweetness and a toasty character are noted in the body with gentle citrus hop bitterness in the back end. It starts to dry out some in the finish but never really gets "dry". If Iím being honest, this is pretty mediocre. Sure itís a solid drink but thereís nothing here to set it apart from your run-of-the-mill Barley Wine. The Iced Barley Wine he made a while back was much better.
jgb9348 (4770) - Arlington (Pentagon City), Virginia, USA - JAN 7, 2014
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Crisp clear ruby and beautiful amber and copper tinted body with a thinnish, fast-dying off-white head that leaves large bubbles. Aroma of alcohol, whiskey, grain, oak, hops, citrus and even a bit of hops! Full-bodied; Deep pit fruit sweetness up front with a large brandy and alcohol burn afterwards, all showing some dry oak, vanilla and piney hop finish at the end. Aftertaste shows a nice complexity with the alcohol, cognac and oak flavours dominating. Then some pit fruits hit with raisins and figs the strongest, all with a pungent oak and piney hop finish. Overall, a very strong and deep beer that is still quite rough around the edges, with some good flavours and a nice complexity - just a bit too harsh, still. Great to try, but I wish I would have aged this for another 4 or 5 years, then enjoyed it. I sampled this twelve ounce bottle purchased from Discount Liqour in Milwaukee, Wisconsin on 05-September-2012 for US$2.99 sampled at home in Washington on a chilly evening on 07-January-2014.
2012 Bottle // Purchased September 2012 // Sampled January 2014
jcnielsen (2187) - Charlotte, North Carolina, USA - DEC 25, 2013
2.8 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 10/20
Bottle in Vail. Thanks to adnielsen for sharing. Pours a cloudy orange color with white head. Malty, boozy, slight fruity flavors. Not a great barley wine.