Brad (364) - Berkley, Michigan, USA - MAR 28, 2005
Transparent deep orange/red, slight head white in color. Seemed to have good carbonation flowing up through the beer. Aromas of caramel, brown sugar, sour fruit, earthiness, and pine trees. Flavor is begins with bitter hops which fades into a sour biting alcohol taste. Alchohol is poorly hidden. Cornfield (5569) - Oak Forest, Illinois, USA - MAR 27, 2005
Very nice. It actually is a garnet color, as advertised, with a whisp of a white head. I thought I’d poured myself an IIPA at first, the hop aroma being that intense. But the strong floral/grapefruit/herbal /piney scents couldn’t completely cover the sweet caramel aroma. The two tastes battle it out to create a strong but well balanced barley wine, the alcohol telling your throat that it’s there. Sticky, bittersweet finish. Nice. thegreenrooster (4483) - St.louis, Missouri, USA - MAR 25, 2005
Pour is a deep red with almost no head. Aroma is of faint hops. Flavor is of faint hops and faint malts. Pretty weak overall. So many people rated this 4+ but I don’t get it. I guess cellering this many bring out more to this brew but i found it average at best. BBB63 (6557) - La Porte, Indiana, USA - MAR 23, 2005
Bottle, bought in 2003, Duval snifter: Beautiful ruby hue topped by an initial big frothy head which fades but never dies and outstanding lacing. The aroma has a large piney and grapefruit character with additional caramelized malt and woody notes. The taste starts with a slap of hop bitterness and citric twang followed by sweet malting. I get a bit of virgin oak taste and dryness on the finish. The feel is sharp, biting and finishes dry. I can’t believe this is still hop dominated after all this aging. It could have gone another year or more easily. Crockett (1120) - Southampton, Ontario, CANADA - MAR 22, 2005
Light red amber pour with a little sudsy beige head. A bit of a hop bomb, not entirely ready to drink. Plenty of dry hops. Lots of carbonation. Body is thin for the style, but not effectively improper; It’s simply a little too lively. Caramel and candy sugar in the nose and crossing over to the palate. Almonds, burnt green hops, butter, dried apricots. Some Grapefruit and pith. I would say that this ’04 vintage would be great in ’07. My crystal ball is a little cloudy. Avery makes some great beers. This one should wait.
Dickinsonbeer (5074) - Hoboken, New Jersey, USA - MAR 19, 2005
Pours deep amber, slight haze with a nice beige head that lasts. Moderate carbonation. Aroma is freakin awesome. Lots and lots of citrus with hints of herbs, grapefruit and pine. I think someone said they use a crapload of columbus hops in here. If that is the case- then columbus are my favorite hop again. Flavor is rediculously hoppy but backed up with a lot of crystal and dark crystal malts. This is now my new favorite barleywine. A lot more body and complexity than OH, and with less alcohol. I would have thought this one would be way over 10%, but the relatively low abv works beautifully in this beer. SuIIy (1983) - Burlington, Vermont, USA - MAR 14, 2005
First aroma is very citrusy.Lemons and oranges. Pours red with a light white head. Taste is very bitter, with a sweey aftertaste, then a very bitter tongue. Very drinkable as described before. JCapriotti (1379) - Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA - MAR 13, 2005
ruby red w/ amber hue. soapy off-white head w/ excellent lacing. Sweet caramelly hops, stemmy hops, cherries make up the aroma. Also sugary alcohol with perfume. Not quite as hoppy as expected in either taste or aroma. I had it on tap last year and remember more hops. Pretty good flavor, but nothing too complex. Caramelly perfumey hops again in flavor. Reminds me of Avery Ten, with a touch of Eleven. Very drinkable and balanced, yet like I said, nothing complex. aspidites (1272) - manteca, California, USA - MAR 9, 2005
Big mosster hop nose witha burnt rubber quality. Caramel and sherry notes are very prominent but still pale in comparison to the hops. Not balanced well young. Would be much better with a few years age to let the hops drop out. temporrari (397) - Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA - MAR 8, 2005
UPDATED: AUG 17, 2014 Bottle. Pours a dark orange amber with a medium white head. Aroma is great, sweet malts with hidden floral hops. Aroma outdoes the flavor slightly, the taste is sweet, malty, almost candy like the desription says. Unique. Good, not great. Try it. (7/4/7/4/13)
On tap @ Peach’s in Yellow Spings, OH. This was obviously fresher than the bottles I’ve tasted. Lots of fresh hop aroma and flavor. Clearly, more of a double IPA than a barley wine.