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RATINGS: 86   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.6/5   SEASONAL: Special   IBU: 103   EST. CALORIES: 327   ABV: 10.9%
COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
R&D Series. In the Ninkasi tradition, this barley wine is hopped to high heaven –using more than 16 pounds per barrel! Critical Hit’s rich, malty expression is balanced by 16 varieties of hops that linger on the palate. Its high gravity nature warms the cheeks and soul. Critical Hit does maximum damage, so you might have to roll to save if you take this ale for granted!

Massive citrus, earthy, resinous, and grassy hop flavor is balanced with the melanoidin complexity of port and sherry notes, creating a powerful and warming taste experience. Big citrus, earthy, grassy, and pine hop aroma with port and sherry notes mingle in this beer conditioned for over a year. Aggressive bitterness dominates up front with a large array of hop flavor spanning citrus, earthy, resinous, grassy and dank. Subtle caramel and melanoidin compounds oxidize (in a good way) to create the port and sherry notes that are a trademark to these extremely strong beers called barley wine. The bitterness of the beer helps round out the intensity of alcohol and the malt complexity to make a non-cloying and very, very tasty beer. This may be the one beer that you still need to sip rather than quaff but it is deceptive for the style.

Hops: Columbus, Millenium, Northern Brewer, Simcoe, Falconers Flight, Galena, Peerle, Santiam, Ahtanum, Fuggle, Glacier, Hersbrucker, Liberty, Spalt, Hallertau


3.7
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
marcus (8305) - Sacramento, California, USA - FEB 25, 2012
On tap at Toronado SF. Pours reddish copper with a peretty beige head nad a fruity aroma. There is a tangy caramel malt and chocolate flavor with a bitter finish. Well-aged.

3.8
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
bb (7915) - Alamo, California, USA - MAR 2, 2010
Draft. Toffee colored beer with a dark cream colored head. Earthy and light pine aroma. Big caramel flavor with pine and earth. Fuller bodied. caramel and light toffee lingers with pine and light grapefruit.

3.9
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 17/20
douglas88 (7800) - Portland, Oregon, USA - JUL 31, 2013
Bomber. Pours a clear deep copper color with a medium white head. A big dusty fruity nose. The flavor is on the side of fruity and highly hopped BWs with some caramel, biscuit and light toffee. Very nice brew. Clean and easygoing. No sense of 10%.

4.3
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
Ibrew2or3 (7777) - Tempe, Arizona, USA - MAR 19, 2014
22oz bomber share courtesy of dcschiller. It pours with a murky amber body that has some golden hues and supports a tan head of foam. The aroma offers up big musty malt sticky pine hops, a sliver of grapefruit and then some molasses. The taste has a nice mix of resiny pine hop heavy bitterness and then streams of molasses to midway. Malts bubble forward for a moment before the resiny pine hop bitterness and a sliver of sweetened citrus hops take over and bring this to a rich rewarding finish. Solid bold American style Barleywine.

3.7
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
after4ever (7061) - Brier, Washington, USA - JAN 8, 2012
22, capped and waxed. Pours a murky dark amber with a dense and creamy tan head that falls quickly away to a loose rim, leaving dense sheets of sticky lace coming down the sides of the glass. Big sharp grapefruit nose, very pithy, almost to a shampoo level. Sticky thick body; not the stickiest but definitely qualifies. Caramel and grapefruit mid palate, at least while still cool. Seems to be picking up some nuts and a bit of toffee as it warms. Bracingly bitter grapefruit finish that gets firmly into shampoo territory.

3.4
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
5000 (6599) - Hardened Liver, Washington, USA - NOV 19, 2011
Draught @ Brouwer’s Café:   Reddish side of amber, moderate finely bubbled head, nice lacing.   Malty nose, a little caramel and citrusy hops.   A little caustic up front, raw and green.   Seems to have a lot of citric rind bitterness and a bit of astringency.   Its not too strong, but this one says young.   Could stand to be a bit heavier on the tongue.   Wished that it was a bit sweeter too.   Lots of raw rind bitterness on the exit.   This one needs to be a bit maltier to age.   Tiz okay, but it’s a bit brash.


3.2
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
AmEricanbrew (6571) - Same Trailer, Different Park, Louisiana, USA - JAN 28, 2010
@GABBF2010. Clear amber color/ thin tan head. Spicy caramel, sharp pit fruit aromas. medium body. Flavor follows the smell with spicy caramel, sweet tart pit fruits, and a slight metallic off flavor...

3.6
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
Sledutah (6398) - Utah, USA - JAN 27, 2013
GABBF 2013
Appearance: Cloudy golden with a big off-white head and some lacing
Aroma and flavors of toasted malts, caramel and pine
Decent.

4.1
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 15/20
onceblind (6381) - Denver, Colorado, USA - JUN 14, 2015
On nitro, which was a pleasant surprise. Deep dark amber/copper, foamy tight off white head. Lovely nose of candy sugar and earthy Belgian fruitiness. Perhaps a little bourbony booze on the nose as well. Big full flavor with some bourbon notes of oak and booze esters, some earthy caramalt and cherry and other stone fruits, and a bit of earthy booze and bourbon oak to finish. Brash but tasty.

3.1
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
JaBier (6194) - Capital City, Ohio, USA - MAY 24, 2013
Bottle sampled at Kurt’s Blarneywine tasting on 3/16/13. Pours dark amber with a thin beige head. Caramel malt nose with some hop. Malty flavor with grassy hops and some caramel before a bitter, earthy finish.


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