bytemesis (5187) - Sunnyvale, California, USA - NOV 11, 2014
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle. Pours hazy reddish hazel, large creamy beige head, dissipates slowly, nice lacing. ARoma is light overall, some dark sugars but nothing special. Flavor is light sweet, medium bitter, smoky but not overpowering. Toffee, some pine. Medium body, high carbonation, some acidity from the smoke or oak, not sure. Decent.
GarrettB (1280) - San Diego, California, USA - OCT 31, 2014
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
March 21st, 2013 - Here’s my favorite Stone beer to date, hands down. Stone has an iconic flavor and brand, but I tend to favor their brews as back-ups when other beers aren’t available. The Oak-Smoked Old Guardian appears much like the non-smoking Old Guardian, a deep and murky auburn soup with a pillowy cap. The smell hits me in the fake like an oak door, leaving vapor trails of piñon wood, cinnamon, yeast, cinnamon bark. and the indelible smell of camp fires and beef jerky. The flavor is much the same, with a thorny, spiky palate and a heavy dose of booze. It’s sweet, too, with lots of sharp woody flavors and even a touch of brandy. Deep, sultry, sweet and sharp all at once, add in some clove, all spice, cinnamon and molasses and you get a brew that makes your eyebrows sizzle and smoke.
Heathen (1500) - Wilmington, Delaware, USA - OCT 22, 2014
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
THOUGHTS: Way more smoke than oak, especially in the nose. It didn’t hide the alcohol very well but it wasn’t bad in this instance. The warming the alcohol brings was pleasant. Not a ton of that barley wine aroma and flavor. Way more smokey than I was expecting.
TECHNICAL: Drank 4/14/2013. Bottle. Poured a clear, medium to dark, slightly orangey red with a small tan head that mostly diminished. The aroma had heavy caramel and candy; light to moderate orange and other citrus hops; light pine hops; apple; cherry; light wood; smoke; slight alcohol; smoked fish; slight barley wine smell; bacon; and something bourbon-like even though I don’t think bourbon barrels were used. The initial flavor was heavily sweet and lightly bitter; while the finish was heavily sweet and moderately bitter with a long duration. There was caramel, molasses, burnt caramel, maple syrup, smoked malt, brown sugar, citrus and pine hops, apple, cherry, bacon, smoke meat and fish, wood, alcohol, orange rind hops, candy, bacon, wood-smoked bacon, and a fruitiness. The medium to full body was oily and a bit syrupy with soft but lightly tingly carbonation and a moderately alcoholic finish.
Johnsense (1077) - - OCT 14, 2014
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
copper pour with a baby finger of head. smoke, caramel, fruit in the aroma. taste of smoke, oak, bread, caramel, citrus fruit, candy. medium body.
AWISLguy (1971) - Wisconsin, USA - OCT 5, 2014
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
1/16/13 bottle date from La Primera. Cellared for 11 months, served at cellar temp. Pours reddish orange with a cream colored head leaving coats of lace. Continual bubbling from the bottom of the glass. Aroma immediately kicks in with rich meat smoke. Also some caramel malt. Later in the glass, pine and sweet fruit shows through. Taste has sweet fruits, tangy pine, some alcohol and phenols. Down in the glass, some of that "gratzer-ish" sour wheat comes through. Along with the alcohol. Medium to full bodied, and syrupy. Finishes long and alcoholly sweet with a lot of tang and burn down the throat. Reasonable version of the solid base, perhaps overkilled by the aging. 13.8
Darkmagus82 (2091) - - SEP 19, 2014
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Transfer from BA review on 8-4-13-
Served on tap in a chalice glass
Appearance – The beer is served a murky and hazy golden bronze color with a small white head. The head fades quite fast, but leaves a fantastic level of lace on the sides of the glass.
Smell – The aroma is sweet and smoky. The sweet is a mix of lighter fruity aromas of citrus and banana as well as a sweet caramel and sweet bready smell. Along these aromas is a whole lot of a smoky smell. The smoke brings with it some smells of bacon and a decent showing of an oaky smell. Along with these smells is a little bit of an earthy and pine smell rounding out the aroma quite nicely.
Taste – The taste begins with a sweetness of lighter fruits and a nice bready and biscuit base. Upfront the smoke is already present with it growing stronger and stronger in nature as the flavor advances. While the smoke grows stronger, some notes of oak develop more toward the middle of the taste being joined by some flavors of alcohol and caramel as well. In the end, notes of pine and earthy hops arrive on the scene as the alcohol and smoke flavors become quite a bit stronger in nature. These flavors when all combined leave a lightly bitter sweet and oaky smoke flavor to linger on the tongue.
Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is very thick and chewy with a carbonation level that is on the lower side. The thick and chewy body are great for all the sweet, boozy, smoky and oaky flavors of the brew making this one a rather slow sipper as it should be.
Overall – A slow sipping, moderately sweet but smoky, oaky and nicely bittered barleywine. A nice brew to sit down and sip from time to time.
slowrunner77 (7873) - Reno, Nevada, USA - SEP 13, 2014
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
"A beautiful beer to look at. Cold, the smoke is nearly undetectable in the aroma, as is the usual hoppiness of the base beer. The smoke comes out as it warms, though it was present in the flavor right from the get go. I miss the hops but the malt carmel backbone of this huge beer combined with the smoke is really nice, as is the oak presence. Dare I say it’s a little harsh at room temp, but damn, it IS 11.4%. One of my favorite american smoked beers."
kevinator (1548) - The Colony, Texas, USA - SEP 6, 2014
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 18/20
Fairly well-rounded beer. Oak, smoke and hops are the aroma. Cloudy brandy color with a thin head. It looks heavy. This was an older bottle so there was a decent amount of sediment. Medium weight palate with strong carbonation. Smooth. Big flavors as to be expected with most Stone products. Bitterness up front with a sweetness from toffee and oak. Smokiness was subtle and at the end. A big beer.
Kevin (2159) - New Mexico, USA - SEP 5, 2014
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 2/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
remember drinking this at freshcraft a while back, well not really remember, but i recall it on the menu, eating an awesome steak with a sherry peppercorn sauce...then something about brown bags... then something about leopold brothers... then something about somebody going in the wrong bathroom...then something about we have to leave and stating fuck y’all i did nothing wrong i’m going to sip a barleywinre and you drunk ass fucks get leave if you can’t behave. so not much about the beer- but i do recall my feet hurt after i woke up the next day and when i checked back a few days later they said our bill was paid and there were no hard feelings.
So on to the beer. found this in a local bottle shop tonight. pour is a murky maroon. minimal yellow white head. smells faintly of smoke and a bit of vanilla and paint thinner. flavor is nice sweet with a lingering smoke. apricot, strawberry, brisket, and pine. that is a good combination somehow. the high alcohol is very evident with each sip and sniff. i like it. takes some of the candy note out of a fresh old guardian and dulls the hops just enough.
rollsrace (71) - - AUG 30, 2014
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Tasted on 11/15/2013. Got 1 pint for $8.31. It had a red brown color. Like cinder bock, but with more of a bitter finish. Can taste the alcohol, the smoke isn’t overpowering.