Vac (2445) - San Diego, California, USA - OCT 10, 2004
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
This barley wine pours with a slightly cloudy, brown body topped by a thick head with lots of lacing. The aroma is sweet and fruity with loads of caramel and a little grapefruity hoppiness with slight alcohol esters. The flavor is sweet and full of caramel with a slight bitterness and a little alcohol. Full bodied, smooth and a touch dry.
Eyedrinkale (3213) - Astoria, New York, USA - JAN 3, 2004
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Nice amber color with minimal head. Aroma of sweet malt. Excellent balance with a nice, warm finish.
DarkElf (3038) - La Jolla, California, USA - OCT 21, 2004
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
(Draft: Oggi’s in Vista, CA) Mmm, a barleywine to sip and appreciate how well it’s made; The balanced flavor is malty and sweet like most barleywines, but also very bitter, especially in the finish, so the sweetness is balanced out; It’s kind of tealike too; Hoppy bitterness keeps the finish crisp and balanced, and prevents the sweetness of this beer from being cloying; The nose is very sweet, malty, quite hoppy and alcoholic, and as the beer warms up, a mild early and mushroom aroma develops; Medium brown in color; Large light tan head on the pour is big for a barleywine, but eventually settles to a sheen, leaving some patchy lacing
aspidites (1272) - manteca, California, USA - MAR 9, 2005
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Very nice big beer. Good amlt and hops balance with some residual sweetnes. Raisins and molasses with a somewhat herbal character. Caramel andtoasted almonds on a citrus hop background, Simcoe maybe.
On tap 01 at the Boonville beer fest, and many times since in bottles and on draught. I know they do not bottle But I get a few anyway.
cquiroga (371) - Tujunga, California, USA - AUG 15, 2004
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
4/26/04. On draft at Lucky Baldwin’s in Pasadena, CA 4/26/04. Pours a very dark brown, slightly murky with a reddish glow. Head is slight, tan-grey with a very thin, lingering sheath. Lacing is superb, ashen and sticky, somewhat blotchy. Aroma is surprisingly fruity for as dark as the beer is. I thought it was going to be dirty and twiggy. Almost vinous and woody. Hops are there, and slight caramel malts to go with sweet and light fruit. Initial taste is a creamy, luscious and vinous experience. Lovely hum of alcohol chases the swallow. Caramel malts, twiggy hop/malt interplay (there it is!), and a hop glow with apparent alcohol. Nice tease between sweet and dry, but it’s a tad bland and overly alcoholic. Medium-full, wonderful body. Finish is extremely bitter, dirty malt with lingering caramel and some bread. Very long and pleasant, forging a nice middle ground between kick-your-ass and soothing. A little bit too simple to be mind-blowing. It coats part of your mouth, but doesn’t take over your body and mind. Sticky on the lips, a slight taste of wax way down deep. Goes down very nice and smooth but punishes afterwards. Quite nice overall.
willblake (2654) - Bel Air, Maryland, USA - FEB 26, 2005
3.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
02.20.05 Tap at Toronado BWF Muddied brown, much lace. Malty and savory/herbal. Soft. Hops bitterness but not flavor, is that Centennial? Very dry finish. Hot.
jazz88 (2579) - San Francisco, California, USA - JUN 19, 2005
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: NOV 14, 2006 Rating #1 Tap @ 2004 Toronado Barley Wine Festival (6 4 6 3 15). Dark brown color with a dark tan head. Vinous dark fruits and chocolate in the flavor. Not as robust as I would have expected. Rating #2 Tap @ Toronado 2005 barley wine festival (7 3 7 3 16). Deep reddish color. Dark fruits, caramel, roses, cardboard, not sweet.
omhper (20452) - Tyresö, SWEDEN - OCT 18, 2004
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: DEC 28, 2004 Sampled draught at Oggi’s, Vista.
Muddy brownish amber, creamy lasting head. The nose is caramel - loads of caramel! It is soft and sweet, very malty with beautifully balanced hop bitter finish. (And even more caramel...)
DrunkAsASkunk (847) - Lynnwood, Washington, USA - NOV 7, 2004
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
This beer was had at the Oggi’s in Vista location. It pours a clear red and slight mahogany color with a moderate white creamy head and very good lacing on the glass. The nose is totally caramel and sweet malt with sugar candy, nuts and molasses being the other possible notes. The flavor is all heavy caramel and candy sugar with serious nutty and toasty qualities mixed in with a serious dose of carbonation. Some viscous caramel and syrupy sweetness in the finish...heavily cloying and one-dimensional in its sweetness. Pleasant because I enjoy sweets, but really nothing all too exciting because of that sweetness and lack of hoppy bitterness.
argo0 (11868) - Washington DC, USA - NOV 16, 2004
3.4 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Clear, dark-copper body topped by an off-white head. Aroma is medium sweet, caramel, grapefruit. Taste is moderately sweet, caramel, grapefruit, fruity, syrup. Alcohol reasonably well concealed, considering how strong it is. Full, sticky body.