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Portland Brewing Benchmark Old Ale

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RATINGS: 153   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.69   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 297   ABV: 9.9%
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COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
The Benchmark is our limited-edition, annual release. It is a pale old ale,with a great malt palate, subtle hop presence, and a high gravity (9.9% alc/vol). We brew it once a year, fermenting half with ale yeast and the other with lager yeast. When itís ready, we blend the two and finish it with Champagne yeast and age it for many months.


3.7
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Ungstrup (28448) - Citizen of the universe, DENMARK - JUL 12, 2005
A red beer with a huge beige head. The aroma is sweet with primariry notes of coriander, while the flavor is sweet with loads of alcohol, as well as lesser notes of caramel and spices. The spices gives it a very dry end.

3.6
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Papsoe (25094) - Frederiksberg, DENMARK - APR 14, 2006
(Bottle 65 cl) Pours a very pretty, warm amber with a small, rough head. Sweetish, caramelish nose. Full-bodied with lots of sweet caramel and some nutty accents. This is really closer to a Barley Wine in style. Tasted at the Oklahoma Beer tasting March 06 hosted by mjames and lilannie. 250306

3.5
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
argo0 (11181) - Washington DC, USA - NOV 28, 2003
(2003) Clear amber body with medium off-white head. Aroma is sweet, caramel, floral, pine. Taste is candy sugar sweet, melon, caramel, floral/pine, finishing champagne. Fairly dry finish with alcohol warming. Medium-light body, surprising for a beer of such alcohol.

3.3
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
kp (10886) - Woodstock, Georgia, USA - SEP 1, 2007
UPDATED: JAN 17, 2009
Date: April 21, 2001
Mode: Bottle
Source: Belmont Station, Portland
Appearance: clear amber, thin white head
Aroma: strong hop aroma
Flavor: rich malt with lots of hop flavor, very well balanced, no aparent alcohol for its 9.9%
Overall: a nw barley wine thatís not over the top

Date: November 06, 2008
Mode: bottle
Source: Ale Atlanta
Vintage: 2000
hop character has all but died, caramel malt character is mostly dry, just slight sweetness comes in with a bit of stickyness,

Aroma: 6/10; Appearance: 6/10; Flavor: 7/10; Palate: 6/10; Overall: 14/20
Rating: 3.3/5.0
Drinkability: 7/10
Score: **4

3.8
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
hopscotch (8529) - Vero Beach, Florida, USA - NOV 22, 2003
MMIII Sparkling clear amber ale with a small, fizzy, off-white head. The aroma is of caramel, orange blossom honey, fir and fresh rubber. Nicely balanced flavor. The alcohol is decently concealed. Full-bodied with a thick, creamy mouthfeel and fizzy carbonation. Lengthy, sweet, then astringent and dry finish. Very nice!

3.6
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
hopdog (8521) - Lansdale, Pennsylvania, USA - JUN 14, 2008
22oz bottle. 2003 Vintage. Poured a medium orangish color with a larger sized off white head. Initial pours were clear and became hazy and cloudy as I got towards the bottom. Aromas of toasted nuts, wood, caramel, and some dark fruits. Very light oxidation but not detracting. Tastes of caramel, oranges, and some dark fruits. Tastes on the softer side. Alcohol well hidden with the body on the thinner side.

3.4
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
3fourths (7797) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - JUL 12, 2003
UPDATED: APR 5, 2013 Ruby red hue. Mig malty nose. Smooth and syrupy on the tongue. Has a strong honey flavor, complimented by a slight apple/alcohol bite mid-drink. Finish is sticky, flavored like honey and lemom.

3
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
MartinT (7523) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - MAR 12, 2006
Any first impressions?
-A foam circle looks down on the glowing maple gold.
-Fruity caramel and earthiness may have merged once, but are distant at this point.
-Overall flavors are mild, low in complexity, and sweetness is perhaps the only attainable pleasure for now.
-Mouthfeel is complacent, another sign of its unceremonious aging.

What if you dig deeper?
-Aroma and flavor are fragile, and donít last long.
-Fruitiness reaches red currants, mild cherries, but cannot gather enough bulk to titillate.
-Alcohol is nicely hidden, barely heating the back of the mouthful.
-A wilted flower still draws emotion, but certainly not one near well-being.

Bottle; 2003 vintage.

3.3
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 14/20
chriso (7344) - London, Greater London, ENGLAND - SEP 18, 2004
Reddish colour. Distinct grainy cereal aroma, with plenty of hops too. Malt and raisins in the flavour, with some hop. The mouthfeel is rather sweet and sticky, with a hint of hop. Powerful, but not very subtle. Not really an old ale, but not a particularly typical barley wine either. Whatever it is, all in all I quite liked it. Cask (gravity) at GBBF 2004.

3.3
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
CaptainCougar (7129) - Columbia, Maryland, USA - DEC 22, 2003
2003: Pours a clear copper golden with a thin whispy white head. Malt sugar aroma with a strong lager yeast presence. Body is sugary sweet with some caramel maltiness. Finishes with a candy sweetness and the faintest hint of hops. Hides its alcohol very well, but doesn't have nearly the complexity or balance I would have expected. I'd say this is definitely more of an Old Ale than a Barley Wine, but nothing special at that.


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