Wheatsheaf (104) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - JAN 29, 2004
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
2003 edition. Rich mahogany with a small, off-white head, mostly diminishing but leaving some nice lacing. Aroma of cherries and some alcohol, yielding more citrus and pine notes as it warms. There’s a hint of sweetness up front, but the highlight of the medium-full body is the hop character. Grapefruity and moderately astringent, with some initial pepperiness that quickly mellows. Nice, long, hoppy finish. Quite enjoyable.
ztrvz (218) - st paul, Minnesota, USA - JAN 29, 2004
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: FEB 9, 2004 1999 sampled 1/29/04. medium brown amber color. there's plenty o carbonation in this bottle. smells like a hoppy barleywine. nice and sweet... very well balanced with a dry bitter finish that lingers forever. tastes like caramel, nuts, tree bark. this is a very enjoyable beer. especially after being out in -10F weather for the past 6 hours. after half of this beer my face became RED HOT.
1998 sampled 2/9/04. holy monkey! i notice quite a difference beteweent the 98 and the 99. this is much smoother, sweeter. almost silky. is there alcohol in this? this beer tastes great... the bitterness has been toned down a bit.. the sugars saturate my mouth and leave it watering between sips.
AleDrinker (1089) - Sunnyvale, California, USA - JAN 27, 2004
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Lost of hops, lots of malt, lots of alcohol. Lot's of everything. This beers a bit over the top.
jsquire (4148) - St. Marys, Ohio, USA - JAN 25, 2004
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 18/20
On tap at the 2004 Great Alaska Beer and Barley Wine Festival. I have had many vintages of this and it is always good, but it is even better in a keg. Murky orange with a blooming hop nose. Great balance to this beer with very citrus hop notes jumping off a strong malt foundation. Probably the easist barley wine to get and a good representation of the style.
SledgeJr (3577) - Omaha, Nebraska, USA - JAN 24, 2004
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: APR 6, 2010 Had this on tap tonight at the local alehouse. Big frothy head with a downright dark red glow. Alcohol burns the esophagus all the way down. Excellent!
UPDATE 2/11/6: On tap. The 2006 vintage seems to be quite mellow this year. Lacks the burning hop bite and the glucose tolerance test of previous years. Historically, the aging flight of bottles in my basement still perform, so the score does not change from me. 2005 was strongly bitter and possibly one of the best. 2004 had a great explosion of fruitiness. What will aging do to 2006?
UPDATE: In the bottle at my 2006 Barleywine tasting. 2004 vintage. Moderating. Buttery palate and rich caramel. The hops are retreating leaving this beer very smooth.
UPDATE 4/2010: Is it just me or is this the WORST BIGFOOT EVER? Right out of the gate this beer seems to be closer to Celebration than to Bigfoot. Definitely a toned-down barleywine with much less malt and only the hop punch leaving it suggestive of DIPA, not BW. Big disappointment.
bitter (1136) - Henderson, Nevada, USA - JAN 22, 2004
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
bottle in pint glass: i dont drink alot of barley wines but this one is good. dark ruby brown color with a nice firm head. alot of hop character!!! and of course alcohol...a little bit of sweet alcohol taste, but not too much. a buddy gave me a six pack because he owed me....i wasnt disappointed.
Alcoholist (570) - Peoria, Illinois, USA - JAN 21, 2004
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Cloudy dark reddish-brown with a thick head.
Nose is citrus, with caramel and earth. Flavor is a cacophony of malt hops and other flavours a real assault on the tastebuds.
mutant (854) - Melbourne, AUSTRALIA - JAN 20, 2004
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
2001: Lovely ruby colour with strong beige head. Huge malty, vinuous rum and raisin aroma. I got tipsy just from the vapours. Highly roasted, but not burnt malt flavour which brings its own bitterness. Long finish great stuff.
vwsteggie (684) - Paxton, Massachusetts, USA - JAN 19, 2004
2.5 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 4/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 10/20
Extreme Beer Fest Boston 2004: 2002 edition. Has a reddish brown color and an alcohol smell. Taste is strong alohol/malts and finishes with a hop bitterness. Overall this was pretty harsh, the barley wines were not treating me right that day.
Pigfoot (2268) - Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA - JAN 19, 2004
4.7 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
Appearance: gorgeous deep crimson hue, with tawny edges, solid creamy tan foam, well-retained.
Aroma: glorious! Hugely vinous, strong grape, cherries, berries, potent alcohol already peeking through the nose, full caramel tones as well.
Taste: lovely fruit factor, thick, full body, lingering finish, malt is magnificent here, and hops have thoroughly laid back in the course of the past year. Great cognac-y feel, brandy tones lay thickly on the palate, flavor is absolutely sublime. I can't think of any flaw or any problem in the brew, it's as magical and impressionable as any other, in a class of it's own. Mind you, I've been a fan for many, many years, and have yet to be let down.
Drinking further in, the taste is sweeter, candyish, but still mixed with large, boozy content. Fruit is complex and when mixed with lush malt and alky-hol, this is one excellent comfort against this incredible January cold.
I hope to save more, and build my cellar better. Perhaps I need to buy a case, when the '04 shows up!