FatPhil (12725) - Tallinn, ESTONIA - SEP 6, 2007
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: DEC 31, 2014 250ml bottle (Kuikka/Kaisla/Alko)
Rich red, no head. Port and dark berries literally climb out the glass and up your nose. Very rich sweet malty body, with a pile of plums and raisins, a smattering of rich dark sultry bitter hoppiness, and just a hint of marmite (yes, I was very careful about the sediment). Wonderfully mellow - nothing harsh at all, just comforting and warming, and flavours and feelings that feel so familiar even if they are quite rare! Leaves the bitterness and malt for a very long finish. Wow! Best of all - I know that when I have another in subsequent years they will be even better.
Rerate: Stunning. Sweeter, mellow. Wow. Moved 1 from overall to palate.
Rerate: 2005 drunk 2010 - touch disappointing, a little dirty and yeasty.
Rerate: 2005 drunk 2011 - Wow, porty, raisins, lots of toffee. Shines more in taste than aroma.
Rerate: 2005 drunk 2013 - Raisins and toffee on pouring. Sweet in the mouth, some cherry, nice toastiness, but on swallowing itís utterly heavenly. 849517=4.3
Rerate: 2005 drunk 2014 - Heavier, oilier aroma, some marmite. Wow, superb taste, but more treacle toffee. Later aroma has some almost whisky-like woodiness. Perhaps a bit heavier than previosu ones, and heavier than Iím used to, but not bad. Still love the taste. 749415=3.9
HenrikSoegaard (12653) - Randers, DENMARK - MAR 22, 2010
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle. Creamy off-white good mostly lasting head. Amber colour. Heavy malty and moderate hoppy aroma. Very vinius. Perfect sweet/biter flavor balance. NIce honey notes. Long fantastic finish. Creamy palate. Excellent BW.
imdownthepub (12590) - Banbury, Oxfordshire, ENGLAND - APR 2, 2013
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bottle conditioned, 250ml, 2003 edition No. 02269 from Abbey Stores, Salisbury (now closed). Chestnut to auburn with short lived head. Super rich palate, full on with a barley sugar fruitiness, some treacle, some sherry flavours. The alcohol is present even with 10 years of ageing, but this gives it the required depth of flavour rather than burning the palate. Plums and sultanas are all amalgamated in to the mix. A beautiful beer.
Ratman197 (12556) - Arvada, Colorado, USA - DEC 25, 2007
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
250 ml bottle (2006 vintage) poured a clear dark copper brown with a small lingering amber head into my new Thomas Hardy snifter. Aromas of dark fruit, toffee, carmel, light molasses and hints of maple smoke and vanilla greeted my olfactory senses. The palate was full bodied smooth and warming. Flavors of prunes, figs, raisins, dates, toffee, carmel, light molasses and hints of smoke and wood with a smooth warming lingering semi sweet finish.
A very complex and enjoyable beer. Great on a cool Christmas Eve!
bu11zeye (12527) - Frisco (Dallas), Texas, USA - JUL 7, 2005
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
(Bottle, 2003 vintage, bottle No. 17137) Pours a murky burnt orange body with a spare white head. Aroma of toffee, taoasted malt, and raisins. Flavor of toffee and malt. A little chewy. An excellent vintage English ale!
Christian (12303) - Odense, DENMARK - SEP 18, 2005
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: JUN 30, 2009 2004 bottle in September 2005: Dark red/brown with no head. Complex aroma with dates, plums, cherry, malt, port and cognac. Overwhelming flavour initially: Sweet, fruity and port-like at first, then the alcohol hits and finally a strong hop bitterness with a bit of tobacco. Itís very full bodied, but it feels odd that there is no carbonation at all.
2003 bottle in May 2008: Aroma even better. The alcohol has mellowed to more port and red wine, and the hops have mellowed a lot. Rated 4.3
2005 bottle in 2009: Aroma slightly more orgasmic, vineous. Outstanding flavour, whoa, plus woww! Caramel, vineous, milk chocolate....
Lubiere (12285) - Ottawa, Ontario, CANADA - FEB 20, 2008
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
2007 bottle Q11560 from LCBO. A dark reddish brown ale with almost no head, off white, light carbonation. Aroma is pungent, caramel, molasses, with light licorice and cognac. In mouth, a sweet burned caramel with light lactic points, woody, chocolate and licorice. Warming alcohol warms you up. Very rich and heavy. A classic BW. Room temperature in chalice.
Benzai (12192) - Oirschot, THE NETHERLANDS, NETHERLANDS - DEC 29, 2011
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle @ home, 2007 edition, No. Q 46192. Hazy ruby red color, small off-white head. Smell sweetness, fruits, alcohol. Taste ripe fruits, sweet, some alcohol though not dominantly, some wood. Pretty nice combination actually. Soft carbonation, medium to full body.
mcberko (11940) - Vancouver, British Columbia, CANADA - APR 18, 2010
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
250mL bottle, pours cloudy brown with no head. Aroma of toffee, caramel, raisins and other dark fruits, brown sugar and lots of sweetness. Flavour of raisins, black currant, toffee, caramel and a lots of alcohol. Remarkable barley wine.
bierkoning (11870) - La Tropica, NETHERLANDS - JUL 6, 2006
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: JUL 7, 2014 2004 version. Sugary aroma with plums, just a touch of oak and hops. Very sweet, sugary flavor with pepper, grassy hops and burning alcohol, though partly hidden by the sweetness. Hint of oak. Thick and oily mouthfeel. Tasty beer, with a complex aroma. Has potential, but need further cellaring. This sample was too young.
2007 bottle, tasted July 2014. Dark brown color, no head. Malty biscuity sherry aroma. Still hints of hops present. Syrupy flavor, almost without carbon. Alcohol, malt and floral notes. Sherry. oak. Very nice.