Brewed by Mill Street Brewery (AB InBev)
Style: Barley Wine
Toronto, Canada
Serve in Snifter


on tap

Local Distribution

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RATINGS: 199   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.45/5   SEASONAL: Winter   IBU: 52   EST. CALORIES: 306   ABV: 10.2%
2004 was 10%
2005 was 11%
2011 was 11.5%

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GregClow's rating

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
GregClow (3403) - Toronto, Ontario, - DEC 25, 2004
UPDATED: DEC 9, 2007 2004 vintage (numbers are based on this rating): Hazy golden-amber with a fluffy white head that leaves some nice lacing. Aroma of sweet malt and butterscotch with some alcohol warmth. Perfect amount of carbonation in the body. Flavour is initially boozy, with a sweet caramel middle, and dry, lingering hoppiness in the finish. Very good stuff! I really want to set aside a bottle or two to see how it ages, but it’s going to be hard to resist the temptation to drink them...

2005 vintage: Bottle - shared with DougShoemaker, tupalev & mds. Striking dark copper colour with a wispy head. Rich aroma of warm whisky, butterscotch & fruity malts. Flavour is big and warming, with lots of caramel/butterscotch and some dark fruit, and a bit of nuttiness. The alcohol is a little harsh in the finish, but I think some aging would take care of that nicely. I’ll need to get a couple of bottles to lay down for a while...

2007 vintage: 500 ml ceramic bottle - nice package, but too bad it means the beer has to sell for 10 bucks. Clear golden-orange with a good sized white head. I’ve got a bit of a cold, so I’m not getting as much aroma as I should, but what I can sense seems pretty nice - a lot more orange/citrus than in the previous versions, with a strong maltiness. Flavour is very sweet off the top, with some spice/pepper in the middle, and strong orange peel in the finish. A bit of whisky warmth in there as well, especially once it warms up. Like the 2005, I’m finding this a bit prickly around the edges, but at least it’s helping clear my sinuses. Who needs cold medicine when you’ve got strong beer?

Raistlin (611) - London, Ontario, CANADA - MAR 23, 2018
Pours clear brown with a quickly-fading head. The aroma is sweet and boozy, with raisin, molasses, roasted fruit and toast. The taste is really sweet up front. There is some complexity there, more of the fruit and raisins, lots of malt, a tinge of hops. Medium-heavy body, medium-low carbonation.

talisencrw (81) - Windsor, Ontario, CANADA - JAN 4, 2018
As a first-time try with the product, as I enjoy Mill Street's lower-alcohol (ie., around 5%) brews, and enjoy both barley and either dry or very dry red wine, I figured I would test it out. It was ok, but as I don't have a sweet-tooth, it was a tad too sweet for me, and I think I'll return to their regular range of products. This was the 2017 vintage; 11% and IBU 50.

AleRider78 (1881) - Winchester, Ontario, CANADA - AUG 10, 2017
Batch no.13-331-4. Pours a small amount of foamy head and has a hazy amber appearance. Aromas of yeast, barley malts, fairly strong spices and alcohol is noticeable. Flavours of citrus and earthy hops, mangoes, barley and bready malts. Some hints of cinnamon in the finish. Mild warming sensation, slick and astringent mouthfeel. Goes down pretty easily for a barley wine. Not as strong or bitter as expected, which is a good thing.

azzurro (721) - Ottawa, Ontario, CANADA - APR 12, 2017
UPDATED: FEB 25, 2018 I truly discovered barley wine thanks to Mill St. and their old-fashioned growler. The story behind the inspiration of this beer is priceless. The 2016 was excellent, and bought few extra ones just for my old days with my better half by a cozy fire in a cold Cdn winter night. Got my second one at family poker game, this is the 2016 aged kept for year, deducted one full point from initial score.

ChadPoole (478) - Ontario, CANADA - APR 24, 2016
A bottle of 2015 version. Pours cloudy yellow/orange with a small white head. Dark fruits and barley aroma. Taste of barely and sweet syrup with a bit of bitter. Medium body with low carbination.

KoNrRiI (1881) - Århus, DENMARK - NOV 22, 2015
0.5 stone bottle. Very hazy, dense honey color and a small, off-white head. Aroma is sweet, resemblant of mead, delicately vinous, some caramel, and a delicate hop presence. Taste is malty, sweet, toffee, a tad vinous again, delicately sour as in dark fruits sour, and subtly hoppy with that zesty touch. Almost full body, slick texture, and soft carbonation. Finish is sourer, fruitier, but also rather spicy - it even irritates the palate a bit. Overall a marvelous beer, worth all the recommendation.

Reimer96 (1743) - Alberta, CANADA - OCT 11, 2015
Opened up a 2008 vintage that I’ve been cellaring for 7 years. Main reason was to celebrate their demise to the dark side of being purchased by Labatt. This barleywine pours a thick golden orange with no head. Aroma of sweet toffee, caramel, bready malts and a light hop presence but mainly the toffee making up most of the nose and flavor. Taste is toffee, Caramel, bready malts and light toast with a touch of hops for balance but really that toffee backbone throughout. Great way to celebrate thanksgiving and once great breweries!

lesifflebiere (1927) - Gatineau, Quebec, CANADA - FEB 28, 2015
La bière est plutôt épaisse, couleur cuivre avec une petite mousse, arômes dans les tons de caramel et de prunes, ainsi que d’autres fruits foncés. Les saveurs touchent le sucre d’orge, on retrouve encore des prunes, un peu d’alcool parvient à percer, le tout est très doucereux et surtout très sucré, comme un sirop légèrement dilué. Un bon vin d’orge, mais qui tend à taper fort un peu sur tous les plans, qui manque de subtilité. Acceptable, mais le contenu est moins impressionnant que le contenant.

Franckg (2213) - Trois-Rivieres, Quebec, CANADA - DEC 20, 2014
UPDATED: JUN 8, 2017 Vintage 2013, vieillit un an. Arômes de canne à sucre, carmel, érable, dattes, alcool. Ces arômes se perdent un peu en bouche, marqué par un léger manque de saveur. Tout tourne autour d’un goût de caramel grillé et de houblon. Manque de rondeur. Amertume assez amère et légèrement sucrée. Bon barleywine dans l’ensemble mais manque un peu de complexité.

Même millésime mais vieilli 4 ans. Arômes qui se ressemblent, l’alcool en moins. Plus sucré avec un début de madère mais très subtil. On se rapproche beaucoup du vin d’orge anglais. En bouche, les saveurs se sont développées. Goût de canne à sucre, miel liquoreux, malt caramélisé. Par contre, le côté grillé/herbacé (dattes, feuillage, caramel flambé...) est encore présent en fin de gorgée et fait disparaitre la rondeur des saveurs initiales. Texture à cheval entre le huileux et liquoreux, corps moyen qui tend vers le haut.

Gluepot (849) - Ottawa, Ontario, CANADA - JUN 18, 2014
Tapped into a 2013 version of this Ontario BW. The nose is soft toffee and that is also the dominant element of the taste profile. The toffee element is delicious, with some balance from bready malt and some hop presence. The texture is a bit thin for a 11.5% barleywine and I would love to get a little more punch from the malt to set off the sweetness.

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