scraff (2121) - Baltimore, Maryland, USA - FEB 18, 2008
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Deep brown, thick and clingy light tan head. Aromas burst forth with brown sugar and black tea notes riding currents of sharp pine and grapefruit zest. Room temperature brings out soft wafts of dark fruit as well. Moderate earthy pine and citric bitterness balance on touches of chocolate and dark fruit from start to finish. Full bodied, soft carbonation, bitter warming finish. Call it whatever style you want, it’s choice no matter….
pnista (1007) - Bloomington, Indiana, USA - FEB 16, 2008
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Huh, IIPA? This isn’t a standard barleywine, but it seems even further from IIPA... I say American strong ale, but eh! Dark brown with a big tan head. Kind of looks like Angel’s Share. Sweet dark malt. Fruity prunes. A bit of astringency? Slightly vegetal. A thicker viscous or creamy body. Sweet astringency to a stronger dark malt character. Some alcohol. Amarillo? Darkfruit. Some might do this beer some good.
JCB (3999) - Durham, North Carolina, USA - FEB 14, 2008
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle from tytoanderso - thanks, Tyler! Wow, this is a really impressive beer. A surprising dark brown pour (having read that it was a hoppy BW I’d expected something amber-ish, whereas this looks like a grand cru) with a substantial head, this one has some sweet malts in the nose that just barely hold off the hops. The mouthfeel is very smooth and creamy, and quite nice. And while the beer’s still a bit hot - like a Stone XI with a bit of habanero kick - it’s really very satisfying. I need some more of this.
KateO (6) - Holiday, Florida, USA - FEB 13, 2008 does not count
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Tasted with BigMilly : Thick cream colored head with lacing. Dark brown, almost black in color. Smells of hops and nail polish, with a little bit of chocolate. Tastes of Hersheys and alcohol, with a medium body. It tastes the best when its really cold.
BigMilly8 (389) - Wesley Chapel, Florida, USA - FEB 13, 2008
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
From bottle : Pours very dark, i cant seem to find any light from the other side of the glass. A nice half finger of dirty white head forms, and sticks there for awhile. Nose is a mix of the barley wine style that it says it is on the bottle, and a ipa, that the site says it is, Hops and a bit alcohol presents in the smell. Ok, this is truly a odd beer. The taste is much the same way. Im getting hops up front, then lots of warming alcohol like a BW towards the end. The aftertaste is somewhat alcohol, but with a hoppness hanging around. Medium body with a light feel in the mouth, goes down pretty smooth. A good and very different beer.
JoeinDahlem (1449) - Berlin, Berlin, GERMANY - FEB 13, 2008
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Thanks for bringing this over, Tim... I found it had less aggression and better balance than the American takes we tried. Enjoyed it more as a result. Pours dark brown with amber highlights, off-gray head. Malty, hoppy nose is sweet and chocolatey... caramel-roasty. Light sweetness in flavor, reasonable bitterness, some porter-like roasted traits. Wet, soft carbonation. Mostly it just flat-out tastes good.
jarspag (601) - San Francisco, California, USA - FEB 11, 2008
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle in a trade with Ugh!!! Sampled with Pete on 2/8/08 at his pad. Aromas and flavors lean slightly toward a big IPA - malts play the secondary roll here. Very rich and mouth coating palate... really shines through with a unique recipe and vision for shattering most style molds. TASTY!!!!
acearl (492) - The Ham, Pennsylvania, USA - FEB 10, 2008
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Amber hue, start by saying I like hoppy ales but this was a little bit much, it tasted like a Nøgne Ø brew which is excellent when they stick to what they do best wih darker ones, I think they are an excellent brewery, this has their ususal characteristics but added a very dry hoppy tecture, it didn’t seem like the hops were indigenous to the brewing location at all , maybe IPAs are better when from America.
porterhouse (1580) - Boothbay, Maine, USA - FEB 9, 2008
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 18/20
(500 ml bottle via trade with <A HREF=http://www.ratebeer.com/ViewUser.asp?UserID=3 target=blank>TheCheeseMan, thanks Daniel!) Pours very dark tobacco brown with almost three fingers of tan head that recedes to a thin cap that stays. Very nice appearance. Aroma of slightly sweet candyish malt (but different than most barleywines), chocolate and coffee (but different than a stout, not roasty) and cinnamon I think. Mouthfeel medium-full, slightly heavy but soft, fairly smooth. Broken, weepy lacing. Flavor is quite hop-forward, surprising because aroma was not hoppy. Bitter grapefruit. Chocolate - light milk chocolate and some rock candy but sweetness actually quite reserved. Has chocolate and coffee in the taste but not roasty. Interesting - looks more like a barleywine than a big IPA, and tastewise it could go either way. Moderate alcohol apparency.
hapjydeuce (996) - Carlsbad, California, USA - FEB 9, 2008
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottled, from Holiday Wine Cellars. I had to give this beer a 5 on appearance...awesome beige head that caps off the nearly black, mahogany colored liquid. Continuous spotty lacing throughout the snifter. The nose is mostly sweet dark malts and raisin fruit with some chocolate and honey notes, improving with warmth. Chocolate and vanilla extract is more present in the flavor, with caramel toffee, burnt sugar and a grapefruit punch coupled well with the bitter hops. Doesn’t really look like an imperial IPA but more like a barley wine, but the sappy tongue-biting bitterness at the end of each sip stays true. Interesting and enjoyable, I’ll bet it ages nicely.