5000 (6300) - Hardened Liver, Washington, USA - FEB 18, 2004
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle pours a stained cherrywood sorta color. Head is of a fine bubblied off-white variety, kinda small but still nice. Yeasties floating about. Distinct Barleywine aroma, strongly sweet malt. Initial flavor is of cotton candy & taffy. Never had a barleywine quite like this one. Very sweet, and very enjoyable. Slightly bitter on the finish. Overall, very smooth and very sweet. Barleywines aren't my style, but this one I enjoyed. Thanks goes out to ClarkVV for the trade!
whaleman (2178) - North Wales, Pennsylvania, USA - FEB 17, 2004
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: DEC 28, 2004 Deep mahogany body with a slight haze and buffy head with a dense base that built up to a fluffy peak. Appetizing aroma of caramel, toffee, wood, and a hint of cocoa. Fantastic flavor of warm caramel and toasted nuts followed by a firm surge of bitterness. Very long, lingering finish with a terrific range of flavors that graze the palate. A very well-rounded and harmonious barley wine.
JFGrind (1918) - Glenside, Pennsylvania, USA - FEB 9, 2004
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
As soon as this barleywine was poured into the glass I knew I was in for a treat. Dark amber color, strong aroma and full flavor. If you see this barleywine anywhere, make sure you sample it.
JK (5047) - St. Louis Park, Minnesota, USA - JAN 31, 2004
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 15/20
Aromas of malt, vanilla, and butterscotch.Looks like an abbey style. Has some similar characteristics to a dubbel or tripel also. Lots of malt in the flavor, some hops, but this barleywine is dominated by the sweet flavor. some bitter taste from the hops. Rich, thick, and heavy. I think the Bells name has something to do with the high score of this beer, but it is very good. Thanks to ztrvz for teh sample.
ztrvz (218) - st paul, Minnesota, USA - JAN 31, 2004
4.1 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
smells lke butterscotch.
starts with a tinge of caramelly sweetness, then ends with an almost overpowering bitter, chalky dryness. this is good stuff. i can't wait to try it again in a few months or more...
JMerritt (1894) - Macomb, Illinois, USA - JAN 30, 2004
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
2003 vintage sampled young and raw. How surprised I was to find this in Macomb. Murky brown-red with a thick, heavy head with excellent staying power. Fresh caramel aroma is thick and delicious; you can nearly take a bite out of it. An impressive balance of citric hops and sweet, sticky malts. Bitter finish is long lasting. Truly incredible; I can't wait to try this after it's aged for a year or two.
Gromit (479) - Port Orchard, Washington, USA - JAN 26, 2004
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 18/20
Goodness. I didn't know it was this heavy or I would have saved it for a few months. This is my second experience with a Bell product and with this one, anyway, I wish they had them in the PNW.
Pours a dark brown with lots of suspended yeast. Nice head and great lacing.
Smells strong and sweet. Definately alcohol in there. Reminds me of a Jubel or Celebration style. Mmmm.
Tastes, yeah, strong. Nice caramel really hits you. Just the right amount of hops. The alcohol is present but it's not in your face. The flavors are rather complex and well-balanced.
Mouthfeel is full and quite carbonated. Drinkability suffers from the fact that it's still over 75 degrees out and the high alcohol content. For the money I'd still prefer Jubulation or Celebrations, but this is a damn good contender.
kathouse (1294) - Nevada, USA - JAN 20, 2004
3.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 10/20
Had this after a Batch 6000. Aroma of apples and malt was more mild. Pours a reddish brown with a creamy tan head. Good lacing and a slight haze. Tastes like fermenting apples and pears. Noticeable bitterness and warm alcohol. Aftertaste stays around for a while. High alcohol taste and bitterness make this harder to drink than the Batch 6000. One of these is enough.
Pigfoot (2268) - Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA - JAN 18, 2004
4.8 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 20/20
Dark burgundy color, huge foam, a cappucino cap, cast in a light tan hue, beautiful and bubbly, leaving attractive lace.
Aroma: deep and vinous, to put it simply, awash in dark fruits, cherries, berries, plums, brandyish and with potent alcoholic notes, warm and wondrous.
Taste: again, to be simple:transcendent. Warm and fruity, good initial hop play on the palate, settling back soon, and letting the malt, dappled with caramel and fruit, take charge, washes over the palate with every sip, juicy and generous with flavor, and alcohol eventually inches in, 1/3 through. Sublime balance, never too strong, but never, ever flagging in flavor. Full bodied, eternal finish, extreme satisfaction.
This was long-ago decided to be my favorite barleywine, though I've yet to compare it against a new contender, Bell's Batch 6000. Only KBC itslef could give my fave BW a run.
cherr (162) - Rochester, New York, USA - JAN 18, 2004
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
This beer pours a dark amber color with a very slight cream head. The smell is dominated by carmel malt. The taste is full with initially noticeable carmel malt then nice bitter grapefruit hops. Excellent beer.