magdalar (516) - Zurich, SWITZERLAND - JAN 5, 2012
Bottle, 2011. Pours a dark clear brown with a thin offwhite head. Smells phenomenal. Brandy. Lots of malt. Dried dark fruits. Cream. Vanilla. Wood. Sweet something I cannot identify. Cotton candy?. All very mellowed and insanely drinkable. Tastes very sweet, b t tempered with some balanced bitterness and Bourbon smokiness. Full bodied. Soft to flat carbonation. Finishes cloyingly sweet. A very interesting beer, and one I’d happily drink again. palmtreefrb (12) - - DEC 31, 2011
Aroma coffee, roasty. Appearance brown/black, tan foam. Taste heavy bourbon sweetness. Palate full body, soft carbonation. Blairgus (4613) - California, USA - DEC 30, 2011
UPDATED: JUL 26, 2013 26 July 2013, tap at Firestone Walker Barrelworks in Buelton, CA. (2013 variety) brown and clear at the edges. Nose is granola, faint syrup, slight tartness, mild alcohol. Thin, syrupy body and moderately fizzy. Crime brûlée, milk chocolate, some bitter chocolate notes, syrup, moderate alcohol, very smooth.
(Original rating 8 3 8 3 16 = 3.8) 30 dec 2011, bottle. Cloudy but brown. Nose is neat; Oaked Whisky, coca-cola, spiced malt. Med body and almost flat. Rich, oaky raisin malt. Really neat. Rough but rich. I like it. VsXsV (4442) - Stockholm, SWEDEN - DEC 28, 2011
Bomber. Deep amber/brown liquid with small off-white head. Aroma of vanilla, wood, bourbon, caramel, toffee, chocolate and biscuity malt. Taste is light to medium sweet, medium bitter and malty. Very oaky. Notes of caramel, wood, vanilla and coconut. Full bodied with OK carbonation. Delicious BW, lots of character from the barrel aging and the malt. omhper (25162) - Tyresö, SWEDEN - DEC 28, 2011
Bottled, thanks baggio! Hazy mahogany colour. Oaky caramel aroma. Sweet and massively full bodied. Sweet and intense with oak and vanilla on caramel. Warming and soothing. A big beer for slow sipping.
bittermestupid (247) - Canton, Ohio, USA - DEC 24, 2011
Pours dark brown with a ruby tint and just small amount of tan head. Smell: A huge malt profile, toffee, chocolate, some cherry, vanilla, caramel and booze. Caramel, chocolate, toffee, vanilla with a touch cherry. Palate is thick and coating with a long malty booze and cherry finish. davey101 (751) - Connecticut, USA - DEC 22, 2011
UPDATED: SEP 1, 2012 2011 Abacus, batch 1 served in a brandy snifter. From 11/18/2011 notes, reviewed 12-23-2011.
A - Deep red/brown body. Small white head which quickly dissipates to a still body. Legs, but there is minimal lacing or retention.
S - The bourbon and oak are very dominant. The finish is fruity. Caramelized figs and plums and sweet malts.
T - Alcohol is dominant but smooth and not overpowering. Taste is heavy on the bourbon and dark fruits. Medium carbonation and body. Maybe lighter than I would have liked.
O - A very delicious barrel aged barleywine. The only fault I found was that I wished the body was a bit heavier to support the flavors.
2012 §ucaba (the beer formerly known as Abacus), Batch 2. Poured into a tulip glass and reviewed on 09-01-2012.
A - Same as the 2011 but with a longer lasting head.
S - So chewy and toffee heavy. Smell is just very much in the english style with some fantastic barrel notes of bourbon heavy vanilla. Finishes with an alcohol warmth and some caramelized fruits and some spice.
T - Chewy toffee, burnt caramel, vanilla, oak, dark fruits. Still just as tasty as the first batch. Mouth feel is also still a tad on the light size.
O - This beer is very much a booze bomb. Its one of the hottest beers I’ve ever had, but it works the same that a fine bourbon or scotch works. You just sip and enjoy the deep complexity. Its very english with a strong and chewy toffee aroma and flavor that seems to meld right into strong bourbon barrel notes. This remains to be a top three barleywine for me. drewbeerme (3920) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - DEC 17, 2011
bottle. pours dark brown off white head, nose maple syrup vanilla, booze. flavors are loaded with maple syrupy goodness, charred bourbon barrel, oak, vanilla popping, cocoa nibs, long booze finish but it’s rather mellow, yummy stuff blutt59 (6564) - Dallas, Texas, USA - DEC 17, 2011
bottled, thanks to SS, dense walnut color with some thin foam ring, looks very big and boozy, great aroma of maple syrup, waffle malts, hot alcohol, flavor is oaky malt , whiskey cake, lots of brown sugar, slight cherry finish with more alcohol, another nice FW smith4498 (3647) - Winter Springs, Florida, USA - DEC 11, 2011
Bottle from a trade with cbkschubert. Pours dark brown with thin tan head that dissipates quickly. Sweet toffee and bourbon aroma with some chocolate, oak and a hint of coconut. Sweet toffee and lots of bourbon flavor with vanilla, chocolate, oak and coconut. Full body with minimal carbonation and a slick mouthfeel. Awsome beer! Thanks Craig.