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RATINGS: 419   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.65/5   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 342   ABV: 11.4%
Whether you are writing the correct year by now or not, it’s officially 2013. That means a new Stone Brewing Co. Odd Beer for Odd Years release. The first time around, Old Guardian was “Belgianized”. This year is a oak smoked edition. This beer makes uses of the same smoked malt used in recent collaboration The Perfect Crime.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
zickbeer_ye (409) - Virginia, USA - APR 22, 2013
Nice oaky grape smoked scent with smoky malts. Bone colored head with blood amber body. Smokey meaty flavor with a nice dry malty finish. Smoky smooth and dry on the palate. Izzick

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
BOLTZ7555 (2999) - Phoenix, Arizona, USA - APR 22, 2013
Dark murky copper pour with a small eggshell head. Absolutely can distinguish the difference in the malt...slight smokiness but not overwhelming. Adds a unique complexity and intrigue that makes you want to dive into more. Caramel, toffee, brown sugar, toasted marshmallow, charred wood, and vanilla. Nicely balanced...bought more than one!

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
Awktoberfest (347) - Davenport, Iowa, USA - APR 22, 2013
The perfect crime connection is interesting...tastes a little savory.. Like camp fire bacon.. Lots of flavors going on... ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
rickyleepotts (99) - Scottsdale, Arizona, USA - APR 21, 2013
I LOVE the Old Guardian... but this is incredible. Smoked beers are hit or miss for me, but Stone hit this nail on the head. I am VERY impressed with the smokey flavors here, and I am glad that I bought two of them. One to hold, of course. I like smokey beers, but the beer needs to be smooth and subtle at the same time. This one is. It also got better as it warmed up, and seemed thicker as it heated up. It’s not better than the Old Guardian, it’s different. But it’s a killer smoked beer!

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
oc4111 (119) - USA - APR 21, 2013
Pours a dark amber with an nicely formed head. First whiff comes across like the originak. Candied fruits, hops and a slight alcohol burn. One it warms up the oak comes through on noth the aroma and taste. One of the other reviews mentioned whiskey notes and I can see why. A bit on the rough side and should smooth out after about a year.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
BBB63 (6507) - La Porte, Indiana, USA - APR 21, 2013
Barleywine throwdown, all served in Duval snifters: Pipeworks Murderous (PWM) a more English styled vs Widmer Brothers Old Embalmer (WBOE) a more American style with Bravo hops vs Stone Old Guardian Oak-Smoked (SOGOS): Each of these represent different takes on the same style of beer!

Appearance: The PWM is a tad murky light brown with a mostly lasting off white head and spotty lace.(3) The WBOE is a honeyed hued amber with a more fading head and very minimal lace. (3) The SOGOS is a beautiful coppery hue with crimson highlights topp by a lush initial head and very good lace. (5)

Aroma: The PWM has notes of caramel, toffee, roast, dark bread, hint of smoke, floral and resiny hops with a slight citrus and herbal vapour. Some booze but not demanding. (9). The WBOE has light crystal, biscuit, apples, tangerine, some resin and a touch of spent grains. Weaker nose than the other two. (7) The SOGOS has a forceful meaty smoke along with plenty of oak, caramel and toffee too. Very light piney and earthy notes along with a fair amount of booze. (9)

Taste and Palate: The PWM is moderate lush of sweet malt but has a nice twang fruity component and just enough hop bitterness. The alcohol while noticed is not forceful. The finish is slightly minerally and earthy. The mouth feel is lightly sticky, some dry finish and warming (8/4) The WBOE is less malty which allows it to be perceived as more hoppy and citric. A nice earthy midsection before a minerally and herbal finish. The mouth feel is less dense and more lively than the other two but also shows a lack of depth. (7/3) The SOGOS taste is just what you expected, heavy smoke, meaty notes, and oak that is ashy and very earthy. Does make is harder to find the base beer underneath. When you do get to experience the Old Guardian base you find some caramel, bready and prune like undertones. The mouth feel is much more aggressive, ashy from the oak and quite warming. (7/4).

Overall views: The PWM seems to be old school but gives a nod to a touch of new school hops. Sadly however I do not feel this will be one for long term aging in fear of a developing sourness. But for now it delivers and met expectations. (15) The WBOE had lower expectations and met them. This beer does display the Bravo hop nicely but does fall short on the malt front, lesser depth of palate. This could be aged for a year or so but methinks the hops fade without the malt will make this taste very oxidized quickly. (13) The SOGOS is vastly different with the smoke overtones that did disappoint me slightly since it seemed to cover up the base beer too much. That said this is the one I feel is best for long term cellaring. I expect the smoke to subdue allowing better balance. (14)

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
KansaiBeerLvrs (3564) - Kyoto, JAPAN - APR 20, 2013
I had this twice, once on tap at Devil Craft which was somewhat disappointing, it was more ale like than a barley wine with no real smoke flavor. Possibly as it was served too cold...? From a bottle (shared at Qbrick) it was much smokier than on tap, it had a very nice malt character with whiskey notes. Quite good. I think I will grab a bottle to age...

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 10/20
Cbuk1013 (246) - Kalamazoo, Michigan, USA - APR 19, 2013
Bomber bottle 2013 vintage. Pours amber smokey head. Aroma of smoke and caramel malt. Taste is smoke, malt and a hint of campfire hops. Finish is smoke. Aging will help. Going to lay one down for a year. Did I mention it smells and tastes like smoke?

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 16/20
nearbeer (4389) - Knoxville, Tennessee, USA - APR 18, 2013
650 ml. Clear red-copper with a lasting film of cream. Nose of light molasses and lightly smoked bacon. Flavor is chocolate, a nice dose of smoke, toffee and light citrus. Medium-heavy body has some warming alcohol. Sweet but balanced by the nearly too harsh smoke and alcohol, and has a bit too much carbonation. Very good, and may become excellent with some aging.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
maxwelldeux (4219) - Snohomish, Washington, USA - APR 17, 2013
Bottle. Pours a slightly hazy amber color with a moderate pillowy white head. Nose is definitely smokey with just a hint of sweetness coming through underneath. Taste is dry and smokey up front with some definite wine characteristics, and just a hint of sweetness on the back end. Very interesting drink...

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