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RATINGS: 92   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.61/5   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


3.8
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
neepsntatties (1632) - Portland, Oregon, USA - FEB 3, 2010
Had this on tap at the Great Alaskan Beer and Barley Wine Fest in Anchorage (Jan. 2010). Colour... cloudy-amber with a thick head. Nose... hoppy with some malt character. Palate... very hoppy and piney with a sugared grapefruit wedge flavour, bitter edging, and a lengthy, resinous, bitter finish.

3.8
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
bb (7986) - 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.

3.8
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
benjaminbier (45) - Oregon, USA - MAY 12, 2011
Tap at Sasquatch brew fest. Bright and clear, caramel amber color with no foam at all, difficult to smell the aromas in here, malt and hop very well balanced. going to have to try more of this tomorrow.

3.8
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Dogbrick (10740) - Columbus, Ohio, USA - MAR 22, 2013
Sample from 2011 bottle #4547/6000 at the Blarney Wine tasting on 03/16/2013: The beer pours a hazy orange-amber color with a medium thin and foamy light beige head that diminishes slowly to a film. Partial rings of lacing. Aroma of hops, malt and citrus. Full-bodied with flavors of hops, grapefruit and grainy malt. The finish is resiny hops and malt. Couldn’t pass up the impulse buy for the label alone, but it turned out to be pretty good overall.

3.8
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
Ferris (10570) - Burnaby, British Columbia, CANADA - JUN 5, 2013
UPDATED: JUN 10, 2013 Draft - Vintage 2010 - Sweet fruit, strawberry and hoppy floral notes. Cloudy orange with a thin head. Sweet pine and some of those sweet fruit. Booze on the finish, but overall pretty drinkable for a barley wine. ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone

3.8
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
palner (17) - - JUN 28, 2013
2011 Reserve bottle 2847/6200. Amber red to caramel in color with nice airy foam. 11.7abv but quite drinkable. Can feel the alcohol after first glas. Taste is sweet but with a bitterness from hops. My first barley wine.

3.8
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
jake65 (3236) - Meridian, Idaho, USA - JAN 6, 2014
2011 Bottle, #4272/6200. Dark amber pour with a creamy finger of beige head. Intense nose of faded citrus, floral, caramel, and hints of the 11.7% ABV. Age has smoothed out any bite this may have had; it sure is smooth. Caramel and toffee flavor, along with the faded citrus and florals. Finish is soft and leaves a lingering bit of toffee behind. Reminds me of Old Boardhead. Probably not much value in aging this any longer… good stuff, but I’d like another to try fresh. A good experience and seemingly a bit dangerous at this point; I feel like I could throw this back like a session ale on a hot day!

3.8
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
arminjewell (9207) - East Lansing, Michigan, USA - FEB 18, 2014
Pour out of 22 oz bottle,slightly off white head, aroma brought notes of nice caramel, toffee, dark sugars into a bit of vanilla, oaky like notes, slight fruit in there, touch of spice, yeasty notes, hints of grass as well from residual hops. Taste is a mix of caramel, toffee, vanilla, hints of dark fruit, red fruit, slight grass, finishing sweet. Tasty with the age on it for sure.

3.8
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
commonshawn (921) - Minnesota, USA - AUG 29, 2015
Bomber from Portland with commonmac on his bday kinda. Light amber mahogany with small white head. Very strong alcohol nose you can smell from feet away. Smell a bit soapy. Some candy sweetness. Sweet and approachably complex. Solid alcohol and tartness burn. Drying at the finish with long lasting taste. Smooth but This beer packs a punch . Finish him!

3.7
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Beardface (1517) - Eugene, Oregon, USA - MAR 26, 2011
Tap at Lucky Lab Fest. Medium brown pour, mild tan head with sticky lacing. Big aroma of citrus and pine hops, toffee, caramel, light earthen hops. Taste was also very hop forward with mostly the pine and earthen flavors taking top billing along with a lot of caramel which I guess qualifies it as a barleywine instead of an IIPA. Pretty solid brew, though I feel it’s miscategorized.


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