devman171 (1047) - Annapolis, Maryland, USA - DEC 8, 2014
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
2011 vintage, pours a murky brown with almost no head. Aroma is rich sweet malt and oak and bourbon. taste is big bourbon barrel presence with tons of toasted malts, really big beer, tons of booze
jsnicholas (239) - Woodinville, Washington, USA - DEC 7, 2014
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle (22oz $22). 2014 vintage. Dark ruby brown. One finger tan head which quickly disappears. Taste is quite sweet with bourbon. Too sweet for my liking.
ineedbeer (881) - Oakland, California, USA - DEC 6, 2014
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
Poured from a 2012 vintage 22 oz bottle.
Aroma had a medium light bourbon character. Moderate raisin and dark fruit notes with lighter toffee and caramel notes. Light toast character with hints of smoke. Light alcohol spice and light cardboard oxidation. Hints of soy sauce.
Pours a dark, murky, brown with some amber hues and a moderately sized, somewhat thin, mocha head with average retention that lingers on the edges. Light lacing and moderate legs.
Flavor has a light sweetness with moderate toffee and caramel notes. Lighter roast and faint smoke with light chocolate. Moderate to moderately strong raisin, prune and dark fruit. Light bourbon and alcohol spice. Medium cardboard oxidation with light soy sauce.
Mouthfeel is medium full bodied with medium low carbonation. Low astringency and medium low also warmth.
Overall, this beer has not aged well. The dark fruit and oxidation are showing through and not helping this beer at all. Nice dark fruit and bourbon notes though.
luttonm (2419) - Seattle, Washington, USA - DEC 6, 2014
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Draft at Big Wood 2014 at Brouwer’s. Jet black, small gorgeous white ring. soft oaky chocolate, subdued hops. Rich deep chocolate, some espresso. Crisp and clean, all told. Toasty grain, oatmeal. Really tasty, I’d love to try this again soon.
gad905 (161) - London, Greater London, ENGLAND - DEC 3, 2014
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
2012 vintage bottle shared at RichTheVillan’s, 27/11/13. Clear ruby amber brown, cream to tan head that dies. Massive toffee caramel bourbon nose, loads of figs and dates, plus some hot booze. Starts hugely sweet, layers of caramel and toffee and more rich fruit, then dries out a bit with oak, tobacco, spice, and some hop bitterness. Sticky and thick, soft carb. Very nice, though I think another year or 2 to dry it out and it would’ve been better.
csbosox (1224) - Prairie Village, Kansas, USA - NOV 30, 2014
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
2013 bottle, cellared for a year at ambient basement temps. Served chilled in a Spiegelau snifter. Dark reddish, nearly brown with a one fingered head that dissipates quickly. Aroma is dark caramel, toffee and booze. Taste is caramelized turbinado sugar, non-distinct booze, subtle prunes, maybe a touch of oak. There doesn’t seem to be an excess of bourbon notes, but a general booziness that could detract from the other flavors. A bit too sweet. Quite honestly, I could see this being a much more interesting beer after 5 years, the oxidation will hopefully add some depth to the flavor, tame the booziness (which is not over the top by any means) and unaccentuate the sweetness. Right now it is just not that interesting. I would like to try the un-BA version, Stormwatchers Winterfest.
SpringsLicker (3169) - Tennessee, USA - NOV 14, 2014
3.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
2012 bottle purchased from Let’s Pour.
Dark brown body with almost a head, but not quite.
Rich, complex aroma. Alcohol, cognac, maple sugar, raisins.
Very sweet and syrupy. Flavor otherwise matches the aroma. Gotta sip this one slow like an Avery.
ciocanelu (101) - Timisoara, ROMANIA - NOV 3, 2014
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Dark ruby color when looking into the light. Very nice aroma: toffee, caramel, dark malts, bourbon. Taste starts sweet with dark sugar and molasses and finishes more balanced with caramel and toffee. Mouthfeel is syrupy with just a bit of carbonation to make it easily drinkable. One of the best English style barleywines I had.
wilnatp (622) - Minnesota, USA - OCT 27, 2014
4.8 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 20/20
Bottle. Surly Darkness Eve 2014. Perfect balance of sweet and tart and booze and malt. So good!
Fritz123 (1110) - Boca Raton, Florida, USA - OCT 25, 2014
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bottle from Darrel in a trade. Thanks!! Shared with Peter and Gail. Snifter pour was deep dark cherry wood with a small mocha head. No real lacing. The aroma was divine with toffee, caramel, vanilla, oak barrel, bourbon, booze, and a hint of tobacco. The taste was just as pleasant with the caramel and toffee malts hitting first and then the barrel aged oak and bourbon at the end. Also it almost had a brandy flavor. Serious smoothness and delicate on the palate. Full body, full flavors. Damn fine beer.