axilla (962) - New Providence, Pennsylvania, USA - APR 14, 2005
03 bottle-Pours a hazy orange/brown color body with a small white head. Aroma i very sugary. The favor is a lot like an apricot with sweet carmel drizzled on it. A ittle alcohol in the finish but it’s very well hidden for 15%. A bit better than I expected. Aged very well. Gorbalev (3000) - Ontario, CANADA - APR 12, 2005
2003 Vintage, Bottle, Beer Bistro. Tried this one along with a 1997 Rogue Old Crustacean. This poured lighter in the glass than the rogue, almost an apricot orange with an orange tinted small head. Aroma was interesting - alcohol, sweetness with fruity notes and even a little spice. Initial taste was a little bottle - tinged I found. After that faded though, the taste was very strong with more bitterness than the rogue, and also more sweetness. The big difference for me was the earthy quality this beer had - there was something almost organic tasting about the whole package which was quite nice. I still think this had some rough edges to it, and the bottle taste was unfortunate (especially when the 97 rogue didn’t have any at all) but overall, this was a fine sipping Barleywine. paul9639 (116) - New Hampshire, USA - APR 10, 2005
My least favorite offering from Dogfish. The pour was thick and had very little head.The aroma was of alcohol and carmel, with a hint of dried fruit. The taste was sickly sweet with a strong alcohol overtone. If you let this beer get to room temperature, and you can distinguish it from turpentine, you are a better man than me. I will probably truy again to confirm my dislike. frankenkitty (2012) - Oak Lawn, Illinois, USA - APR 4, 2005
12 oz. bottle poured a medium honey-orange body with a small, off-white head. Dried fruit in the aroma along with alcohol and banana. Potent sour apple flavor, with a sweetly malted end. Syrupy, clingy aftertaste that held a caramel fruitiness... and a bit more of that tongue-warming alochol.
Boutip (6374) - Gatineau, Quebec, CANADA - APR 4, 2005
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UPDATED: MAR 10, 2008 Bottle: Poured a light brown color ale with a medium head with medium retention. Carbonation is above average for a barley wine and body is a bit thin for the style. Aroma consisted of dates and figs with strong malt. Taste is quite enjoyable with some sweetness (but not too much) balance well against the malt and hops. Finish is slightly dry with some subtle water, which did disappoint me. Alcohol is not really discernable. Overall, I guess this is a good barley wine but I had some better one.
Re-rate 2008 (fresh bottle 2007): A bit more complex (dry fruits) then last time around but some alcohol phenols were discernable which I didn’t appreciate.
ElJefe (553) - Rochester, New York, USA - APR 1, 2005
Hazy amber with a white head. They aren’t kidding about the dayes and figs - they are all over the aroma and flavor of this brew. Earthy, slightly yeasty finish. Very sweet. Great for in front of a fire on a cold winter day. drismyhero (815) - Tacoma, Washington, USA - MAR 29, 2005
I was not quite as blown away with this barley wine as many others here. The malt is clearly top notch, a definite trait of the brewery, but the alchohol here is the most prominent flavor, giving the caramel in the alcohol a heated edge that makes it slightly unpleasant and dulls to the senses. Some mild hops provide some contrast, but once the sweetness from the malt subsides, your left with varnish and bourbon. Now once you can zero out the beer at the high ABV, it is possible to enjoy the bready yeast and doughy grains, but it takes perseverance and a clear head. Lumpy (1802) - Carrollton, Texas, USA - MAR 28, 2005
UPDATED: JUN 8, 2006 Bottle. Nice yellow body with a ring of bubbles. Nose is all barleywine-sweet, earthey, caramel. Taste is sweet with notes of hay, cramel, low-medium hops bitterness. Sweetness is just slightly unbalanced by under hopping. Nuffield (4171) - Roseville, Minnesota, USA - MAR 28, 2005
Bright golden yellow/amber color, no floaties in my glass but in Kevin’s at the bottom. Big time sweetness and beautiful barleywine complexity. Candy, chocolate, rum, alcohol. The flavor has some obvious alcohol early on but it pulls out into a really nice sticky mix of malts and hops. I had no idea this was 15.5% abv. Really impressive barleywine. Thanks to Kevin42 for sharing. Hopgeek (90) - San Diego, California, USA - MAR 27, 2005
Pours a light copper to golden, rather light for a barley wine. Creates thousands of bubbles that cling to the sides of my snifter as I give it a swirl. Looks quite thick. Smells of sweet, sweet apricots. Flavor is also sweet and the alcohol is very present here. There are some citrus notes and apricot is found again. This is thick and sticky, leaves a coat on the palate as it goes down, pleasantly warming. Wow, this beer is freaking huge, I can drink one and its enjoyable... but thats about as far as I’d go.