chanokokoro (138) - Illinois, USA - JUL 4, 2012
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
2011 vintage, fairly hard poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a snifter.
Pours a dark amber with golden hues and a two finger off-white head. Delicious aroma of caramel and toffee, perhaps a bit of brown sugar and booze. Opens with the smooth taste of caramel, honey, sherry joined by ripe, dark fruit and biscuity tones and finishes ultra-smooth. Pleasant boozy warmth is present throughout. On the lighter side of full-bodied, syrupy with enough carbonation to make itself known with an occasional tickle of the tongue, extremely smooth and silky. Highly enjoyable and a fantastic example of an American-brewed old ale.
movezig (137) - Pensacola, Florida, USA - FEB 2, 2009
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
88 in catigory, who the hell rates this? Sounds like someone needs to let their brew warm a bit. This stuff is just wonderful. Lots of roast, dark fruit, some wood. This balances the overwhelming heavy dark fruit character in most barley wines very well. It stands out from the crowd. A very underrated prefected brew from a very underated brewery.
lweiberg (137) - Omaha, Nebraska, USA - MAY 4, 2009
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Pretty excellent, hints of bourbon and packs plenty o’ buzz. Quite different from the Victory and Sierra Nevada barleywines. Feels a tad hollow but satisfying nonetheless.
jcc83 (137) - Athens, Georgia, USA - NOV 20, 2004
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
2003 bottle. Pours a dark ruby red with a thin tan head. Aroma is a very fruity scent of red wine, grapes, plums, a bit of spicyness, and light alcohol. The ensuing flavor is sensational: sweet and fruity up front (grape, plum, black cherry), leading to a bit of roasted bitterness, finally giving way to a delicate whiskey finish. The whole flavor had an unidentifiable spicyness to it that I really enjoyed. And I liked the fact that the complex flavors of this barleywine were not masked by the enormous bitterness that I’ve experienced in others. Wonderful stuff, and I can’t wait to try another bottle after a few years of cellaring.
oldno7 (137) - Spokane, Washington, USA - JAN 18, 2006
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: NOV 24, 2009 2004: Pours a dark copper with no head. Has a strong aroma of maple, brown sugar, malts and fruit. Flavor is rich in caramel, malts apple, bourbon and fig. Very smooth and extremely well balanced with much complexity. One of my favorite BW’s.
Pedro_Pinho (136) - Stockholm, SWEDEN - APR 22, 2016
3.3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Brown, slightly redish liquid with off white head. Aroma is mainly bread to me. Smooth, but rather anonimous taste. Not bad, but definitely overrated.
jackson220 (136) - new lenox, Illinois, USA - NOV 11, 2005
4.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
This poured out with a mahogany body with a tall light tan head that peaked from the top of the glass. The head stays around for a while and leaves lace that slowly slides back down to its creator. Lovely aroma of figs, lots of sweetness, dried dark fruits, some melon.After being poured a light sweet fruity smell comes from the glass being accompanied by caramel a slight alcohol scent. Caramel covered fruity sweetness meets your lips with the first sip. A bit of hop bittering provides a nice balance as the finish is quite warming with a slight alcohol sting on the tip on the tongue. Some chocolate notes were also detected as this warmed as was a stronger alcohol presence. Smooth..lasting mounthfeel..I loved this beer and love the Brewy.One of the best. !!!!!
cvillebeer (134) - Charlottesville, Virginia, USA - MAY 7, 2005
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
2004 bottle: sizeable head when poured that quickly fades to a thin bead. This beer is a deep amber/red and clear. Aromas of malt, yeast, alcohol and some restrained hops. The flavor is a little hot with alcohol and seems a bit unbalanced. Perhaps I will get a couple to cellar and see what happens. This was straight from a cold fridge so the aromas and flavors will improve as it warms, but initially it tastes a little rough: strongly malty with a sweetish, sticky mouthfeel. There is a noticable malty, alcohol, yeasty flavor in the finish which is interesting. This beer needs some time to smooth out. I think it has potential however.
NayTron (133) - Kalamazoo, Michigan, USA - SEP 26, 2010
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
2010 bottle.Pours a dark amber. Aroma of caramel, dark rich plums,brown sugar notes,butterscotch and alcohol. Palate follows the nose with a medium bodied mouthfeel that finishes with sugar and alcohol. Just a hint of bitter to finish.
thickfreakness (132) - AUSTIN, Texas, USA - AUG 18, 2008
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
This was a 2000 vintage received in a trade from greger on BA
Impressively this still popped open with a nice pfft. Wow this one still poured with the regular 1 inch caramel colored Old Stock head that I have come to know and love. it fades quickly though to a thin layer of foam. I poured this at a pretty cold temperature because I like to see how a beer this old progresses over temperatures from 45 to room temp. Its got a murky, dark ruby brown color that I cannot see through. I think some of the murkiness is from immediately throwing this in the fridge to drink and not letting the bottle settle, but I just had to dig in to this one. Little in the way of lacing.
Tons of vanilla, deep caramel malts, nuttiness and cherries dominate the nose with some brandy like alcohol sneaking through. There is also plenty of wood, rum soaked raisin and slight oxidated richness adding to the nose. I can stick my nose in this for hours. Delicious.
Taste follows suit from the smell. lots of vanilla, caramel, cherry and nuttiness up front. Some of those aforementioned rum soaked raisins and overall very brandy like. Very dry wine like finish and it leaves a lingering sweet brandy and fruit taste on the tongue. As it warmed all the way to room temperature I got a slight bit of chocolate and grape as well. This is one complex mother of a beer with this much age on it.
Nice and syrupy sweet with just a hint of prickly carbonation left, but it felt a little watery at times.
Warming alcohol burn in my stomach that is reminiscent of a fine after dinner drink which is exactly what this is. Definitely a sipper. One I will enjoy for hours to come. Soo sweet but this is an unbelievable beer with this much age on it. I feel like I am never going to drink this fresh again. It just keeps getting better and better and better with time.