skisangelo (60) - Collingswood, New Jersey, USA - FEB 17, 2005
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Deep red, moderate carbonation, thick head. Intensely hoppy, intensely caramel-malty, even warming aroma. Big body, LOTS of complex malt flavor. Generously hoppy and bitter in the finish. Very well-balanced tasty beer.
lamas (1494) - Washington DC, USA - FEB 17, 2005
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
2005 bottle. Pour is a light red with thick tan head. Rich, floral aroma. Hops, fruit and a touch of alcohol also in the nose. Begins super-malty and finishes super-hoppy. Noticed some pine and strawberries in the taste. BIG and rich. Nice warming alcohol finish.
TerryR (388) - Oswego, Illinois, USA - FEB 16, 2005
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
2005 bottle. Mahogany color with a thick tan head. Aroma is mostly hops with a bit of sweet malt and alcohol. Medium bodied. Some maltiness in the flavor that is quickly overtaken by a long bitter hop finish. Alcohol fairly subdued for the strength. Great beer, but largely dominated by hops. More like an Imperial IPA, but I am not complaining.
IMtheOptimator (1164) - Bethel, Connecticut, USA - FEB 16, 2005
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
2004 bottle. Poured amber with a somewhat fizzy off-white head. Rich barleywine aroma, dominated by hops. The taste is strongly of cascade hops, giving it an almost ipa character. Perhaps this would mellow out with age, as this bottle is fairly young, but it seems from the deScription that this "bittersweet" taste is what the brewer was trying to accomplish. (Then again, this is Sierra Nevada, and their specialty is hoppy beers.) There is some malt backbone, though not much. Dry hoppy finish. Alcohol well hidden. Not as balanced as I would like in a barleywine, but a good drink.
wxman (1613) - OíFallon, Illinois, USA - FEB 16, 2005
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Beautiful amber color, rocky head that stays. Fairly strong floral hop aroma. For you homebrewers, the smell is just like when you open a package of hops. This has an even stronger hop dominance in the taste. Thereís plenty of sweet malt flavor to enjoy, but itís almost masked by the hops. I have been loving this brew for 18 years but even today the hops still smack me. The 9.6% ABV is well hidden in the taste by the, all together now, -- hops!
jmuhops (669) - Winchester, Virginia, USA - FEB 15, 2005
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
2005 bottle. Pours beautifully--deep red with a one-finger white head. Aroma reminiscent of dishsoap and alcohol, but strangely appetizing. Flavor is a little harsh, but with age I could see this being top-notch. Still, nice and hoppy, with a slight alcohol burn. Medium-full body. Good stuff.
valejo (81) - Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA - FEB 15, 2005
3.7 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
2003 Draft. This is my first barleywine. Wow! If this is what they are all like, put me in line. I like the balanced taste of this brew. Whatís the taste in this beer I canít identify? Maybe it is just the citrus, but one of these flavors is new to me.
jackamackson (127) - USA - FEB 14, 2005
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
2003 bottle. pours nice red brown with a 1 inch off-whtie head that stays awhile. aroma is sweet, fruity, alcohol, a little hoppy. flavor is similar. nice barleywine flavor with caramel, citrus, alcohol, nice sweetness- nice bitter finish as well. . very drinkable at 2 years old.
redave (165) - squaw valley, California, USA - FEB 14, 2005
4.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
2005 Bottling.. Wish i had kept at least two bottles (or better yet a 6-pak) of each year as i bought them... maybe with this batch as i bought a case this time. Iím not sure how long they age this, but it is VERY right now! Aging will mellow and smooth out the few (very) rough edges it has now. Very rich, not really overpowering in any area. Sure itís a litle strong, but its A Barley Wine. Much more drinkable than some others iíve had that are too sweet (cloying?) or not nearly as balanced. Great!
dwyerpg (4918) - Las Vegas, Nevada, USA - FEB 14, 2005
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
You can definitely taste the alcohol, and the hops are nearly over-powering; this is probably the hoppiest beer iíve ever had. It has faint berry flavors, blackberry and blueberry maybe. Great stuff.