corby112 (2813) - philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA - NOV 19, 2015
Pours a hazy dark golden amber color with copper/mahogany edges and a half finger off-white head that immediately settles into a thin ring. Minimal spotty lacing left behind. Nice color but could use more better retention and lacing.
The aroma of this beer has a nice barrel presence that’s nicely integrated into the base beer without coming across as overly boozy. Decent amount of spirit but not too bourbon heavy. There’s some subtle charred oak along with silky vanilla bean, marshmallow and toasted coconut. Good barrel character but the bourbon is a bit weak for my preference. Underneath, there is some leathery malt, resinous hops and vinous fruit. Earthy and leathery malts stand out as it warms along with hints of toffee and caramel followed by raisin and fig sweetness. Overall, the nose is pretty nice with good balance and decent barrel integration, but the bourbon quality could be stronger.
Full body with a stronger barrel character that dominates the flavor. Not as complex or well balanced as the nose suggests with a really strong toothpick/charred wood flavor that overpowers the other notes. Some generic spirit and boozy heat but again, the bourbon quality is lackluster with bland flavor. Also, the smoother vanilla and coconut barrel notes found in the aroma are completely missing. Underneath, there is a nice leathery malt flavor countered by sweeter hints of toffee, caramel, burnt sugar and vinous fruit. After the palate adjusts these flavors stand out a tad more but unfortunately, the one dimensional barrel flavor overwhelm the barley wine characteristics. LinusStick (3532) - Moon Twp, suburb of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA - JUL 23, 2015
Wow! A delicious barley wine. This is one of the best barrel aged barley wines I’ve ever had. Aroma was big and full. Strong vanilla, coconut and milk chocolate. My mouth watered with every whiff. Pour was nice hazy dark brown with a thin film for a head. Taste was delicious. Toasted coconut, vanilla and bourbon are big and full with a nice chewy caramel finish. Medium carbonation. Toffee and burnt caramel emerged as the beer warmed. Vaiz (4460) - Den Haag, NETHERLANDS - JUN 13, 2015
Tap @ Frisco’s, Columbia. Aroma is full of Bourbon, leather, vanilla, oak, fruity malts. Flavor is sweet, vanilla and somewhat alcoholic. Lovely balance. Great bourbon barrel. FROTHINGSLOSH (8291) - GREENSBURG, Pennsylvania, USA - MAY 24, 2015
Sampled on draft at Hou Thou this beer poured a red-brown color with a small white head that faded and left no lacing. The aroma was tangy caramel, toasty, wood, bourbon and faint fruits. The flavor was strong coconut, bourbon, oak, toasted caramel, golden fruits, almost smoke and a strong boozy presence. Very long complex finish. Full body. The booziness works with this one. Quite nice. jgb9348 (6588) - Arlington (Pentagon City), Virginia, USA - MAY 16, 2015
Beer #4 of my 5000 Beer Celebration (Barley Wine):
Deep dark brown and copper coloured body with a ruby and rose glow and a thinnish, nicely laced tan head. Aroma of cedar, oak, vanilla, bourbon, alcohol, rye, grain, peat, apricots and somehow even more alcohol. Full-bodied; Assertive effervescence; Strong oak and cedar flavour at first with a large alcohol warmth and a big hit of pear, apple, apricot and fig sweetness with a big hit of rye and grain finishing strong and pungent. Aftertaste shows a lot of the alcohol warmth with whiskey and grain flavours throughout along with plenty of sweetness to finish it out. Overall, a nicely layered barley wine with a lot of cedar and oak components with some vanilla and sweetness right behind, all with the expected boozy and alcohol kick that lasts for a while. I typically don’t drink ’fresh’ barley wines, but I went out of my way to drink this new, and I will try to find another bottle of this and keep it for at least five years - it still needs aging, as this is rough around the edges, but shows character and promise for sure. I sampled this twelve ounce bottle purchased from Total Wine in Chantilly, Virginia on 31-January-2015 for US$3,49 sampled just three and a half months later on 16-May-2015.
katrinaez (2358) - norristown, Pennsylvania, USA - APR 18, 2015
Amber coloring. Ale and barrel flavor is heavy and good. Not over powering. High hitting abv. Tap deyholla (12589) - Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA - APR 5, 2015
Bottle thanks to a trade! Pours a hazy amber orange with a white head that dissipates to the edges. Aroma has a big bourbon note with some vanilla, sweet grains and a hint of caramel. Flavor is big in bourbon and vanilla as well with caramel and a growing sweet grain note. Duchammer (186) - Eagle river, Alaska, USA - MAR 21, 2015
Bottle poured black with a tan head. Aroma had nice aged bourbon with nice milk chocolate little to no roast. This beer was silk smooth with nice intertwined notes of bourbon and chocolate. Awesome beer! Bricks (1160) - Delaware, USA - MAR 7, 2015
Appearance nothing special... hazy muddy brown. Aroma of barrel, malt, dark fruit. Taste is like malt, vanilla, bourbon. horto008 (188) - Alabama, USA - FEB 26, 2015
Outstanding barleywine style beer. it had the ABV, the sweetness, the bourbon, but it also had a champagne quality that balanced the often overwhelming sweetness of the style. one of the most balanced barleywines i’ve ever tasted.