Cletus (6250) - Connecticut, USA - JAN 6, 2009
1.6 AROMA 3/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 3/10 PALATE 1/5 OVERALL 6/20
Pours ruby red with a thin tan head. Smells very sweet and resiny. Tastes resiny and bitter with a very cloying finish. I couldn’t bring myself to drink more than an ounce of this one. The weakest of the series.
jbrus (4992) - Delft, NETHERLANDS - NOV 28, 2008
3.5 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle@Home. Not very strong aroma, black currant, wet clothes and some coffee can be found. Dark ruby color, beige fine head, good lace. Very sweet, very bitter, very fruity, licorice wood, quite complex flavours. Full with a dry finish. Nice complexity but lot the balance a bit.
Drake (7123) - Free Union, Virginia, USA - NOV 16, 2008
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
12 ounce bottle shared by cdumler. Thanks! Pours a brownish red with a medium frothy head. Low head retention. Malty brown sugar aroma with citrus hop notes. Taste is brown sugar, toffee, citrus and leafy hop notes and vanilla. Full bodied. Very nice.
Ughsmash (6915) - Pewaukee, Wisconsin, USA - OCT 25, 2008
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottled. Poured deep orangey-brown with a creamy cap of beige head. The aroma picked up a rich array of darker fruits and tosted toffee with notes of caramel and brown sugar as well.. there was also ample and engaging hop presence represented by spicy floral and citrus.. the balance was there, and this was a real treat to smell! The flavor was skewed just slightly toward the hoppage with aged floral notes and citrus strewn throughout.. sweet toffee and caramel for support.. finished spicier with citrus bitterness and raisiny notes. Heavier-bodied with moderate carbonation that moved it well across the palate.. warm at the back and memorable. Great, great brew!
JB175 (1665) - Bucks County, Pennsylvania, USA - OCT 13, 2008
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Finally decided to crack one of these - REally nice looking reddish-amber color with a medium head. Aroma is of orange peels, candy, pine, dark fruits, and a plethora of other scents. Flavor is still quite hoppy with a heavy dose of citrus and pine, some wildflowers, a large sugary-dark fruit bite, and a really nice thickness that is present throughout. Nice feel and finish. I think this one will be awesome for many years to come, and could be one of my favorites in 2012 or so. To the brewers - please, please make this part of the regular rotation as I will be happy to drop lots of cash on cases of this stuff - most of which will be cellared for a long, long time and enjoyed as only a beer this fine can be. Its best days are way ahead of it, but I don’t know if I have the patience to wait for this thing to mature!
oreogobbler (228) - Austin, Texas, USA - SEP 29, 2008
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
Nice hop aroma, not bitter but floral and sweet. Strawberries and pineapple. Pours a reddish brown, thick creamy head. It’s has such and interesting look to it. Black current tartness upfront, with strawberries, and cherry sweetness. It has such a great bitter hop finish. Palate is the most balanced barley wine I’ve consumed so far. The hop bitterness is smooth and tingly on the tongue. Sweet and wonderful.
slimchill (1044) - Austin, Texas, USA - SEP 12, 2008
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bottle. Hops lightly citric and very floral against cherry and strawberry notes. Deeper down there’s a darker muskiness and caramel. Amber-brown, cloudy, and good lacing somehow from nearly no head. Fantastically balanced flavor with loads of depth. Citrus, figs, raisins, caramel, and pine. Bitter and sweet in perfect balance. Mouthfeel is chewy, but gets broken up by a lot of the hop character. An amazing beer, probably at its peak.
thickfreakness (132) - AUSTIN, Texas, USA - AUG 8, 2008
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Thanks to lb4lb for just giving me this bottle to try. Pours a muddy brown with only a slight head that almost instantly left the glass. A little bit of lacing. Smell is huge, sweet caramel. Not entirely complex but quite nice nonetheless. Taste is huge creamy caramel up front with a decent hop bitterness fading into the after taste. Quite viscous. A nice barleywine, I really enjoyed this one.
GAManiac (1944) - Atlanta, Georgia, USA - AUG 3, 2008
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Pours a dark, murky amber with hints of orange. The head is small and short-lived, quickly leaving a collar and traces of lacing.
Smell is big and complex, with citrus hops up front giving way to a sizable caramel malt backbone. There is also a big dose of sugar and toffee in the nose as well.
Like the smell, citrus hops are the first thing I notice. There is an even bigger sugar presence in the taste with dark fruits as well. All of this is on top of the caramel malt backbone.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied and has a slight hop bitterness that tickles the tongue. A little on the thin side, but still nice and creamy.
Drinkability is very good on this one and I’m glad Adam gave me the opportunity to try this one. Very, very good beer.
DragonsHead (140) - Erie, Pennsylvania, USA - AUG 1, 2008
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
I love this beer! I’ve tried a few of the scratch series, after not hearing the best reviews, but this barley wine is wonderful! Hops and sugary malt aroma. The flavor of hops dominates, which I really enjoy in this style. Happy when I see a BW without too much sweetness, but just enough.