beerslayer (753) - New Jersey, USA - FEB 23, 2004
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
This is a decent Barley Wine. Hoppy, fruity, and sweet flavors. Finishes Bitter, crisp, and dry.
Silphium (3179) - East Lansing, Michigan, USA - FEB 22, 2004
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Stone done remodeled my precious! Rather than tossing Precious into the hot liquid magma, they reforged it in the name of change. Well, I am forced to reckon that change isn't always for the better. Pours orange-copper and leaves plenty of lacing on my St. Bernardus glass. Alcohol and lots of citrus in the nose. Citrusy body with a touch of caramel and a rather strong alcohol presence enhanced by bittering hops. The candied fruit (good wording, Drew) is still present, but overall this is thinner-bodied than the earlier "make." Not a big winner, but not a loser either.
jeffc666 (1984) - Fairfax, Virginia, USA - FEB 21, 2004
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Pours a clear sparkling deep amber with definite orange hues. The head is a frothy light tan consisting of small particles. Glass lacing is acceptable. The aroma is a quite pleasing: sweet licorice, floral and fruity. Alcohol is also noticeable, especially as it warms. The flavor is sweet and malty up front then a wallop of bitter hops socks your mouth. The finish has a good bit of alcohol burn to it, but the palate itself is not too thick and creamy, it is actually kind of light. Overall it needs to age and mellow. This could develop into a real wonder in 6-12 months.
EddieG (169) - Palos Heights, Illinois, USA - FEB 21, 2004
3.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Its hard to dis' a nice beer because it clearly misses its style. So I didn't. The beer is good, hoppy with decent malt body, good aroma and fairly complex with tobacco and citrus notes. However, it anin't a barleywine per se. I also don't want to fall into the trap of calling it a "disguised" IPA which is IMHO a bullshit way of lumping a beer into a category based upon one inability to critically differentiate between a beer and proper style. However, the beer is missing the residual sweetness from the typical crystal, Special B (or whatever its replacement is called) biscuit and other malts which typically lend a BW its charater and complexity. With thta said, I still enjoed this beer.
egajdzis (5401) - Spring Mount, Pennsylvania, USA - FEB 21, 2004
4.1 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: JUN 3, 2004 Poured a dark copper color with a yellowish, off white head and nice lacing. Sweet citrusy fruit, watermelon, berries? and bubblegum aroma. Bitter fruit taste with a lingering aftertaste. Citrus and hops all over this one, though balanced nicely with malt, burning alcohol feeling on the way down.
MAP (1133) - Lakewood, Ohio, USA - FEB 20, 2004
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Not a lot of barley in the aroma, very very sweet, citrus and a smell you might expect form an american strong ale. Color is a copper orange with a lacking head. Now as far as the flavor, It doesnt fit too well for a barley wine for me. The barley could perhaps be a little more robust at first, but it does leave with an interesting mouthfeel that isnt quite what you would expect from the intial meeting.
Drew (2411) - Kent, Ohio, USA - FEB 18, 2004
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Sweet flowers and hops in the aroma - mouthwatering. All malt tastes are up at the front of the tongue - sweet candied fruit. A peppery hop comes in at the middle and obliterates all sugar (yeah, i like that!). After awhile, the palate gets rough - a little too much alcohol burn. I do like the lighter palate - keeps it from getting cloying. One to age and try again in 6 months.
Gromit (479) - Port Orchard, Washington, USA - FEB 18, 2004
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
This beer truly rocks, but like many Stone offerings, it's not exactly to style. Not that this is inherently a bad thing, it's just hard to compare it to most others fairly and give it numerical scores.
I've been cramming Tax II all night (section 304 for anyone who cares) and I'm on call tomorrow, so I wanted something that would not only reward my time spent studying but also knock me out so I could get some sleep since I'm on call for class here in a few hours. This definately does the trick.
Pours an orangish amber (not quite copper, but damn close) with a huge head that leaves a nice lace down the glass.
The aroma first noticed is alcohol, almost to a fault. The second pour from the bomber mellowed quite a bit and it smelled more like a Barleywine, with hops and malt. But I'm noticing a candy smell, almost like gumballs.
Taste is astringent and too strong of alcohol. I'm sure it'll mellow with age and it wasn't as apparent when cold. Aside from that, complex malts with a definate citrus-hop bite are predominant with caramel and apricot presence.
Mouthfeel is nice and thick with a cleansing carbonation and hop bite. Overall this is very nice and will only get better with age. I hope I can make it back to the store to pick up a few more of these before they run out.
papajohn (1249) - San Diego (Mira Mesa), California, USA - FEB 17, 2004
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: JAN 27, 2007 My 100th Palestrong: Rich amber color with a fast fading off white head. Aroma is sweet (apricot) and lightly citrus hoppy. Flavor starts rich and candy sweet with over ripe fruit (apricot and mandarin orange) balanced nicely with a light hop bitterness and finishing with a light orangy tang. Smooth texture. 11% ABV well hidden in the taste, but brings a little warmth to the face.
unclebleen (620) - California, USA - FEB 16, 2004
4.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: FEB 24, 2004 Pours a crystal clear orange color with rosy and orange hues when held to a light. Small frothy light brown head with minimal but beautiful lacing. Carbonation is light but adequate. Aroma is hops, bubblegum, fruit, floral, citrus and some light malt notes. Flavor is very nice which mirrors the aroma characteristics, which is sweet fruit intermingled with floral hops. Also detected a nice sourness to the beer, like the tartness of a green apple candy. This is one of the more bitter barleywine I've tasted. Nice syrupy body with a perfect dry alcohol finish. I really enjoyed this beer. Very unique. Need to buy more of this one. Good beer that kept me guessing.