MissouriBrent (122) - Missouri, USA - MAY 27, 2010
5 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 20/20
2007 750ml Bottle
Incredible malt aroma. Hints of cherry and maple syrup. I get a faint hint of the wood in the aroma. Lots of alcohol. You could get a buzz just by smelling this beer. Beautiful deep mahogany color. Head poured full and really hangs around and never fully dissipates. Rich and smooth flavor. Nothing is overpowering, everything is just silky smooth. Rich malt flavor that is not cloying at all. Very well balanced. Hop bitterness very apparent and some hop flavor lingers. Flavor tastes of caramelized sugars. Alcohol is not dominant in the flavor, but its effects are very apparent. It is not a "hot" or fusel alcohol, but it is very warming. I can feel my face getting flush. Amazingly intoxicating for a 10.2% beer. Nicely carbonated with a steady stream of tiny bubbles. This is an incredible beer and very definitely a good example of a barley wine. A 750ml bottle is a giant size for a beer like this, and I should never have tried to sit down to this bottle by myself. After thinking about what I want to see in a barley wine, and where this beer could use improvement, I find myself coming to the conclusion that this is everything I want in the style and I really don’t know where to suggest improvement. So I am going to give this beer a perfect score. The only thing that might improve it would be further aging, but this is not something that should detract from the score, and this bottle was already 3 years old. Buy as much of this as you can find, cellar it for a few years, and open it with a friend when you have the time and atmosphere to enjoy every drop.
lemasney (398) - Trenton, New Jersey, USA - JAN 30, 2009
4.7 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
Style and Glass: Barley Wine Style Ale, Snifter
ABV, Volume & Calories: 10.2% in 25.4 fl oz. estimated at 400C
Purchased at: Canal’s Hamilton for $11.99
Aroma: Oak, whiskey, alcohol, heartburn, smoke, and tobacco. An exhilarating aroma, and just being around it seems a little bit like a spicy barbecue is nearby.
Visuals: Packaging is a bit precious, but well done, and meets the need for specialty presentation. Body is an angry deep hazy red under an almost white long lasting head. Freshness and quality are evident from the way the body acts. Lacing is sticky and thick. Beautiful.
Taste: licorice, smoke, spices, and oak meld at the front, the middle has a deep slow burn, and the finish is almost all hops with a sweet malty undertone. An amazing brew. The oak really gives this BWSA a depth and flavor that I find pretty unique. Barbeque sweetness and smoke is welcome. This should be had with some blackened chicken and spicy curried potatoes. This would be great with Indian cuisine.
Palate: Smoother than you’d expect by far. Very oaky, woody, and crisp. A bit sour, puckers after a moment. Finish is warm, delicious, and strong
Overall: I love this, but I’d love it more playing against some savory and spicy flavors. Delicious.
originally posted at: <a href="http://beercritic.wordpress.com/"&
matt7215 (2151) - Cambridge, Ontario, CANADA - AUG 9, 2009
4.7 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
750 ml bottle from a trade with xmarcnolanx. 2007 vintage. pours amber with minimal carb and little head. aroma of caramel, toffee, vanilla, wood, booze, and spice. the flavour is huge and starts with cara malt, the middle is wood with vanilla and spice, the finish is a slight hops bitterness and long booziniess. unreal progression across the palate. ive never seen wood integrated into a barleywine this well. deep, hard hitting and complex. what a beer, thx marc!!
zizzybalubba (1380) - Elizabeth City, North Carolina, USA - JAN 30, 2011
4.5 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
750 mL bottle from Grape & Gourmet (2007 bottle). Pours brownish-orange with a thin off-white head. The aroma features candy-like sweetness, caramel, apricot, peach syrup, oak, and vanilla. Simply fantastic aroma. The flavor blends everything beautifully with vanilla giving equal time to the sweet caramel and toffee and the citrusy hops. On the finish the wood gives great character and a bit of booze and tobacco help to round out this beer. The overall mouthfeel is less sticky than you would estimate. This is an outstanding barley wine.
manuchampions (1235) - Vancouver, British Columbia, CANADA - APR 2, 2011
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
750ml bottle from Bottleworks in Seattle. Pours a orangey brown with a thick pillow of smooth tan head. Aroma is hoppy, caramel, vanilla and a touch of roasted coconut. Taste is really wonderful. Some sharp hop notes, more sweet caramel, a slight nuttiness...as that flavour lingers the wood and the alcohol sweep in but not in an overpowering way. Both are quite delicate. Some really nice toffee notes in there too. A slight sherry finish with some aged fruit. Truly sublime, aged to perfection and a great example of style without being too boozy.
SPDickerman (913) - Texas, USA - DEC 20, 2011
4.5 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
2010 vintage. Pours reddish amber with a large, fluffy tan head. Smells really malty, hints of caramel and vanilla with some hoppy, resin-like, floral notes. Tastes sweet and a bit nutty up front and then moves to bitterness along the back end. Full-bodied with a slick texture and mild mouth-carbonation, Schlafly Reserve Barleywine Style Ale Aged on Oak finishes with a bit of oaky harshness and a slight alcohol burn.
freeofthoughts (646) - Raytown, Missouri, USA - FEB 5, 2012
4.5 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: MAR 13, 2012 2009 bottle pours amber brown with off white head. Aroma is booze and oak scented vanilla. The taste is similar with less booze, an almost velvety grain with oak and booze lingering. The beer isn’t crazy on the grain bill or hops but everything is in great proportions and makes for a great beer. The 2008 was great as well but it had started to loose something after 3 years sitting.
KAggie97 (3529) - Ugly, Hot, and Humid Spring, Texas, USA - SEP 26, 2008
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
2007 Vintage, bottle.
Pours a deep, inviting amber with single bubble streamers slowly rising from the bottom of the Duvel tulip glass along the curved side, finally settling in amongst earlier arriving friends that are congregating in a massive off-white head. An aroma of malted dark peach dominates the nose, with a hint of plumb cheddar cheese and sage. Flavor is a syrupy blend of sugar-coated malt, dark berries, mild cheddar, and a touch of wood in the finish. The alcohol makes its presence known throughout the sip, travelling quickly along the tongue, up the trachea, and into the nose. Good sinus clearer, if nothing else. Spikey, biting mouthfeel that acts as a jackhammer on the tongue so the flavors can settle in comfortably. An extremely well-made barleywine that I wish I had more of to see how it holds up over time.
cking (1175) - North Canton, Ohio, USA - JUN 26, 2009
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Cherry-amber body with a brown tint, vanishing, filmy head and a few spots of lace. At over 10% I wasn’t expecting more than was shown. Inviting aroma of plain cereal, figs, nuts and brown sugar. Filling and mildly sweet, very robust and satisfying. The mouth feel screams big beer, but the oak aging as well as some cellar time seems to have really smoothed this out and brought about a good creaminess. Woody taste with a mix of fermented, dark fruits and hearty cereal. Nutty with a big malt body.
craftbeerdesign (2160) - Fort Collins, Colorado, USA - NOV 6, 2009
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
tasting sample on 11/5/09... 2007 bottle. pours a deep amber color... big oak/whiskey, vanilla and bitter nose... medium body with a wonderful balance between the malts and hops. more oak makes its way through the mouth followed by some caramel. really nice finish leaves you wanting more.