hopdog (8444) - Lansdale, Pennsylvania, USA - JAN 19, 2006
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
12oz bottles. Whaleman brought over the ’03 and I popped open an ’05 acquired in trrade with (thanks!). Poured a medium amber (the ’03 was hazy and the ’05 was clear) with a small sized off white head. Aromas of caramel, toffee, citrus, and some dark fruits. The ’03 was definitely more caramelly (is that a word). Tastes of the same with some pine hops noted in the ’05 that was not in the ’03. Light alcohol burn in the finish. The ’03 wins.
daknole (8327) - Scottsdale, Arizona, USA - DEC 9, 2008
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
2007 bottle courtesy of mar. Thanks man. Pours a slightly cloudy amber color. Nose has some honey spices citrus and I detect notes of apple pie. Flavor is sweet with honey apples spices yeast spicy and floral hops and syrup. Mouthfeel is a tad thin, but this is pretty good overall.
NielsenRatings (8096) - Fort Collins, Colorado, USA - NOV 5, 2011
3.3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 11/20
Bottle @ home. 2010 vintage. Cloudy, ruby orange appearance with a light brown head. Very rich, dark fruity, red plum, caramel, toffee, and booze in the nose. Very rich caramel malty, toffee, dark berry, piney hoppy, somewhat boozy flavor. Not bad but very rich and strong.
Sammy (8023) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - MAR 11, 2009
1.9 AROMA 2/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 4/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 7/20
Small bottle, stored many months, gotten in a trade with the tradeable Texans. Barnyard alert! And a superfoamer. After that, medium yellow with white head, and lot of lace. But barnyard smell and somewhat dishrag and hops taste. Understated carbonation. 2007 edition.Drank most of it, for mouthfeel.
Drake (7834) - Free Union, Virginia, USA - JAN 4, 2009
3.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 12/20
2007 12 ounce bottle courtesy of mar. Thanks! Pours a hazy orangish brown color with almost no head. Aroma of toffee, caramel and citrus hop notes. Taste is toffee, big earthy and citrus hops and a cheesy note. Medium bodied.
BMan1113VR (7770) - Los Angeles, California, USA - JAN 27, 2008
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 14/20
2007 Vintage. Aroma is moderate yeast with piney hops and something that smells like rotting oranges. Appearance is a cloudy amber. Extremely sweet throughout. Duration is long and bitter finish. The reported alcohol is well hidden (abv listed on bottle). Syrupy mouthfeel. Quite nice.
3fourths (7767) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - MAR 6, 2005
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
UPDATED: MAR 24, 2005 Poured into a small snifter, this barley wine has a dark cloudy orange and brown appearance. The nose is offered copious amounts of smoky old fruit, sweet pineapple notes popping up sporadically, a surprisingly strong presence of wood, and a sharp burning bite of alcohol, which is pretty screaming at my tongue that this beer is too young to be opening. Sweet on the lips and the front of the tongue, but mildly bitter across the back, with a citric acidity similar to a fresh Bigfoot. At times it is almost meaty in the flavors. Young, hot hops abound in this one.
JorisPPattyn (7674) - Antwerpen, BELGIUM - DEC 31, 2006
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Vertical tasting between 2002 purple and 2003 indigo label
2002 Very smal rim over hazy orange-amber beer. 2003 Small to medium yellow head over brighter orange-amber beer with slight haze. 2002 Rich hopcake nose, fresh US hops, tad of liquorice and sugar syrup 2003 Drier nose, more cake, less hops and certainly less molasses too. A bit of alcohol. 2002 Near harsh bitterish hops taste, hops in a thick cake, marmalade but from something else than oranges. Ends retronasal on a taste that my wife calls smoked, and is more like incense to me. Warming up it gets a moccha character. 2003 Even richer taste, more concentrated cake, vinous, ends harsh too, near metallic, and a retronasal flavour of incense again. 2002 Thick, viscous-slick, pappy. 2003 Generally the same, but even thicker. Maybe alcohol more prominent.
Both very good beers, definitely the same idea, and I’d be hard pressed to say which one I prefer. Marks are an average from both bottles. Thanks for both, Dewberries!
MartinT (7482) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - OCT 12, 2003
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: MAY 29, 2005 (1-year-old, 2002 bottle)
Like a sonic flare, this explosive pine orchestra throbs frenetic, a palpitating hop organ devouring any thought of silence...An eminent cohort of cantaloups dallies forth, circling the growling core of alcoholic indiscipline, enticing the maple syrup bourgeoisie to salute the screaming conscience of pleasure...Triumphant, plurality is invoked by the monster citrus and the forbidden cacophonic tonalities are averted...8/4/9/4 17/20
(2004 vintage in 2005):
Juicy grapefruit and oranges are solidly grounded in the caramel malts and alcohol warmth...Earthy, resinous hop bitterness dance intensely with the orange rinds and fruity caramel...Another beautiful example of the style, if not unrefined at this early point in its life...8/3/8/4 15/20
(2005 vintage in 2005):
Floral, citrus hops proliferate to Double IPA levels, masking the caramel malts a bit too much for now...Resinous bitterness takes over the last half of the sip, treading over bubblegum sweetness...For now, this is a hop monster with a little too much carbonation and not enough sweet malts for my personal tastes in barley wine...8/3/7/3 15/20
DocLock (7421) - Lower Pottsgrove, Pennsylvania, USA - FEB 3, 2005
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Big thanks to fly for this. 2004 bottling. I was impressed by my first Real Ale offering, the rio blanco pale, so I can’t wait to try this one. I must sadly admit to not knowing who Sisyphus was. Beer mail me if you know. Knowledge is power. It pours turbid copper/orange, with a medium white head (certainly a much bigger head than most 11-12% ABV beers). Aroma of huge malt, caramel, tons of dark fruit, cognac, scotch, cabernet, peaches, cheddar cheese. I don’t see how you can give this less than an 8 for aroma. Tastes malty, fruity, with a firm, dense palate. The finish is on the dry side, with a big hop, cognac, and apricot presence. The finish is slightly acrid and dry, but complex. The alcohol definitely appears, but never overshadows the beer. This one is part Impy IPA, part Thomas Hardy, and part Full Sail barleywine. Me likey likey. In my opinion, this is underrated.