hopscotch (9161) - Vero Beach, Florida, USA - DEC 2, 2002
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
This beer rocks.
The aroma is malty and sticky sweet. Notes of black pepper and basement musty. There is a definite hop presence but, címon. Although itís brewed by Victory with their hoppy, Left Coast leanings, this barley wine has to be all about the malt, right?
This is a very dark, crystal clear amber beer. The head is medium-sized and off-white. Frothy head that is mostly diminishing with excellent lacing.
The flavor? I was right.. Malt!! Sweet, sticky, thick Malt!!
Malt, Malt, Malt!!!... and guess what! Thatís just the flavor on the frontside. Hops galore disguise the huge malt presence on the backside. Warm alcohol throughout. Clover honey in there too.
Full-bodied with a syrupy mouthfeel. Softly carbonated. A long, dry woodsy, bitter finish with a burst of clover at the wee end of the finish. Excellent barleywine!
jcalbi (378) - New Jersey, USA - NOV 29, 2002
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottled 11/13/2002: Crisp claret color with a sandy colored head that wasnít long for this world. Strong hop aromas bringing pine and a mixture of spices to the nose. A wisp of alcohol as well. Tooth tingling alcohol feel that eventually warms the body. Amazingly well balanced between the strong hop presence and the caramel malt flavor, especially for such a young beer.
cb (810) - Roeland Park, Kansas, USA - NOV 27, 2002
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 19/20
UPDATED: JAN 13, 2003 Damn good stuff. The oh-so-seductive part is very true. Old Horizontal had me from first sip.
grant (842) - Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA - NOV 27, 2002
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Wow! Much better than my first barley wine experience. Delicate lacing with a beautiful amber color. Not too sweet and exploding with flavor. Mostly berry flavors accented with a hefty hops presence.
DaSilky1 (2606) - San Diego, California, USA - NOV 22, 2002
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
transparent marroon..living froth..creamed berries and buttery toffee...Holy Shizznit melting cherry twizzlers..creamy cherry soda pop fizznicity..warming alcohol shivvers..good stuff...I was too drunk when I
jbrus (4992) - Delft, NETHERLANDS - OCT 26, 2002
4.1 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Wow! I didnít expect to get this much beer when I poured it in although Victory was already famous over here (to me). Flowers, raisin and caramel aroma. Red-brown colour, light brown head, very good lace thatís slow like oil. Very full, syrupy, sweet, light acidic, raisin, little port. Long lasting hopbitter finish.
Kevbo99 (149) - Dunmore, Pennsylvania, USA - OCT 23, 2002
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Hoppy, malty and pretty damn tasty!!! My favorite barley wine next to immort ale.
Prostman (1077) - Pennsylvania, USA - OCT 21, 2002
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
This is a very good barleywine. The taste is similar to a cross between a Bigfoot Ale and an Immort Ale. Very enjoyable
jazz88 (2556) - San Francisco, California, USA - SEP 27, 2002
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: JUL 10, 2008 Rating #1 9/27/02 Bottle (9 4 8 5 18). A rich red-brown color. The aroma invites you in deeper and deeper, but too strong of a whiff will burn your nose like alcohol laced with pepper. Malt, hops, alcohol, and dark sweet fruits dominate the aroma. The flavor is intense and bites the sides of my tongue, yet it lacks some degree of complexity and depth of flavor. Maybe this needs to age longer. The flavor is sweet, malty, earthy, and full of fruit and hops. Rating #2 7/9/08 that was bottled on 12/17/2002 (8 4 8 3 18). A dark murky brown color with a laced tan head. A rich fruity, maple, fig, and raisin aroma. Cherry, caramel, and light berries at the finish of the flavor. This one aged well over 5+ years. Hats off to Victory.
heykevin (1276) - Decorah, Iowa, USA - SEP 18, 2002
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
I waited for 2 months with this in my beer refigerator before the time was right to sample it. Deep sweet rich malty aroma, faint whiff of hops. Good malt flavor, with dark fruit and some nuttiness, but it lacks the depth of flavor I expect from barleywines. A very solid barleywine with no major defects, is reasonably balanced, but does not wow me and my rating reflects that.