beerking99 (199) - Virginia, USA - JAN 29, 2008
Pours very dark for style, deep mahogany with a dense of-white head. Very clear, with ruby notes. Aroma is wonderful Northwest hops upfront, very fresh (dry hopped?), followed closely by dark malts, producing some chocolate and hints of coffee aromas. Flavor follows through after aroma, with more NW hops, and a great dark chocolate character. Aftertaste is more dark chocolate, backed by more NW hops. Body is pleasantly full. Great American-style Barleywine! One of the best! craftbeerdesign (2254) - Fort Collins, Colorado, USA - DEC 17, 2008
UPDATED: AUG 2, 2009 2008 bomber thanks to TheBeerSommelier!!! deep red color with small white head. thick aromas of hops, caramelized malts and spice. this carries through the full body. plenty of dark fruit, apple and sugar are also noticeable... wonderful spicy, bitter strong finish.... overall this is a very well balanced barley wine that would age extremely well in addition to being stellar fresh. CapnCascade (116) - Vancouver, British Columbia, CANADA - APR 16, 2009
2008 edition in a bomber from Whole Foods Seattle South Lake Union. Pours rich, dark ruby, bordering on dark brown or black, moderate beige head with some retention and good lacing. Aromas of brown and caramelized sugar, citrus rind, figs, plums, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves. Flavour develops dark fruit, sweet spice, piney hops, some tree fruit right at the beginning and a long, warm, boozy finish dried out with bittering hops. Fairly creamy mouthfeel with balanced carbo. Excellent. beerbaaron (2046) - Arizona, USA - MAR 3, 2013
2011 vintage. Deep dark walnut. Small off-white head. Aroma is rich, very malty, carmely, a little dark fruity, a little boozy. First sip..wow, excellent. Big, full body, sweet, some roastiness, syrupy. Flavor is malty, caramel, dark fruit. Balanced, Well done. CaptainCougar (7634) - Columbia, Maryland, USA - OCT 10, 2004
UPDATED: APR 4, 2008 Bottle from the first bottled release: Pours a transparent mahogany amber with a well-lacing tan head. Aroma of rich sweet caramel malt, light fruity esters and a fresh piny hoppy presence. Body is full, sweet and caramely with a nice resiny hop balance. A very tasty barleywine.
Odeed (1806) - Bakersfield, California, USA - JAN 30, 2008
GABF 2004: Pours a clear copper brown with a creamy white head. Amazingly boisterous fresh piney hoppy and full sweet caramel aroma. Body is overflowing with sweet thick malty goodness and plenty of well-balanced citrusy pine hops. Finishes semi-bitter and sticky without any traces of alcohol. This is a really good barleywine. I wish they’d bottle this stuff and send it to the lower 48.
rusty brownish red with a small light brown head that fades fast.nice aroma of cotton candy,smoke,pine hops,and alcohol.the flavor is a mix of the aroma.very nice and pretty balanced considering how young it is.i think some time would mellow out the alcohol,although it would do the same to the hops which really give it a nice flavor now. kramer (6905) - Sunbury, Pennsylvania, USA - APR 7, 2008
22 oz bottle, via 5000. Pours a beautiful garnet red body with a great tight bubbled beige head. Very light lazy carbonation. Nice big full nose of juicy citrus hops and heavy toasted and caramel malt. Super well balanced, smells like a great candidate for aging. Wow, the flavor is just as well balanced. Big but not overpowering hops, full thick caramel malt without being sticky. A little retro-nasal alcohol fumes, but not a whole lot of alcohol flavor. This might be the best West Coast Barley Wine ever. Never crosses the line into Double IPA, just an aggressively hoppy Barley Wine. Mouthfeel is just about perfect, full bodied but not cloying or sweet. Perfect soft super-fine carbonation, just enough to keep it lively but not fizzy or thinning. Overall, this was just a dream for me, tailored just to my tastes . Delicious stuff! jrob21 (3810) - Atlanta, Georgia, USA - MAY 11, 2008
Deep opaque purple almost black. Big port wine and plum flavors with a full bodied and sweet finish. Finally got a chance to try this one and am really glad I did. This is one of the smoothest, most well rounded and balanced bw I think I’ve ever had. Complexity was a little lacking but as far as straight bw’s go, this one was it. Anybody want to send me anymore? BückDich (5477) - McCall, Idaho, USA - DEC 2, 2008
Bottle: Pours a ruby red color with a nice light head and good lacing. The nose is very bready with lots of nuts and fruit, sweet maple and caramel with vanilla, peat, and light bourbon notes. Spicy subtle herbal hops as well. The flavor is sublime, so balanced with a full bodied malty mouthfeel, nice sweet syruppy notes but not cloying. Very balanced. Low alcohol notes up front, a touch more in the back. Excellent fruity bread note. Amazing balance and quaffability. BeerBunker (966) - Burbank, Illinois, USA - APR 16, 2009
22oz bottle. Pours mahogany with a small tan ring ring of lacing. Aroma is of hops, caramel, cough syrup, sugar, and malt. Taste has a big hop bite. It’s always nice to have a barley wine with a nice, big oily hop presence. Has a delicious caramel malt backbone with lots of sugar, grass, chocolate, and cough syrup. Could do without the medicinal taste. Mouthfeel is medium and very sticky. Goes down easy to the carbonation. Finish is insanely hot, almost peppery. I don’t normally expect so much hop character, cough syrup, and grass from a barley wine, but it was different and that’s what made it so damned good.