DocLock (11189) - Lower Pottsgrove, Pennsylvania, USA - AUG 23, 2007
Bottle from Capone’s. The pour was deep brownsih ruby with 2-fingers of khaki head that stayed around for a long time and reappeared with each repour (and it took me 3 or 4 repours to get through this due to the lively head retention), forming odd head shapes and leaving a solid amount of lacing for such a massive brew. The aroma was intense, initially very Dreadnaughty, with tons of caramel malt, hops, tropical fruit, figgy fruit, raisins, berries, and slight funky and spicy notes. As it warmed, the aroma subdued on the hops and acquired a greater malt presence, showing scotch aley wafts of aroma, with the figgy fruit and berries emerging as the hops took a back seat. The flavors were caramel malt up front, with a solid hop bill that paired well with the massive malt bill. As it warmed, I also noted brown sugary figgy fruit and black raspberry, followed by the hops hitting your throat like a ton of bricks, leading to a scotchy malty finish that never lost the tropical and figgy fruit flavor. The palate was very complex, very hefty, with equally massive parts of hops, malt, and fruitiness, and the malt and hops were perfectly in balance throughout. At 13% ABV, this beer is gigantic, but I never tasted any alcohol burn at all, and I sat with this one over an hour on my porch while savoring a Rocky Patel vintage 1990 cigar. I love this beer. This is another great brew from Founders, and a great way to brew a beer for your 10th anniversary. bdigital (659) - Ft Wayne, Indiana, USA - AUG 29, 2007
Draft at the brewery: Pours a deep burgundy color with a shimmering white, fog-like head that just drifted around the halo. Big mixed berry, apple, light malt, candied sugar nose on this BAMF. The taste of this was phenomenal. Very silky, vinous taste with some lovely maltiness, caramel, and a floral hop finish. Alcohol was very well hidden and I believe Founders has made their finest brew in Deca. Simply amazing. RyanMM (416) - Ferndale, Michigan, USA - DEC 6, 2010
Wow. Nose is toffee and brown sugar. Hazy amber pour. Slightly spicy on the finish. Wondeful. Burnt caramel, toffee, cocoa, great complexity and balance on the tongue. Sweet with a nice slight bittering. This stuff should be an annual.daknole (11048) - Scottsdale, Arizona, USA - MAR 26, 2009
From sample pour at local December 2010 tasting.
22 oz bomber. Pours a nice chestnut color with hardly any head. Damn this is a great, great beer. Closer to a barleywine than the spice herb veggie beer. Aroma is complex and full of caramel, brown sugar, dark agave nectar, and a very slight hint of hops. Flavor is sweet with tons of toffee, caramel, some fruit, full mouthfeel and a very tiny hit of hops as the end. Man I want more of this and NOW!! punkrkr27 (903) - Berkley, Michigan, USA - SEP 4, 2009
Dark copper color pour with bright ruby highlights and little head. Lots of sweet dark fruit with healthy notes of toffee, cardamom, anise, leather, tobacco and alcohol. Super rich decadent malty dark fruit flavor with lots of caramel, brandy, cinnamon, anise, and a hint of leather. Sticky, full body with low carbonation. If I didn’t know better I’d swear this was a nice 4 or 5 year Thomas Hardy’s. Fantastic stuff.
WakeandBake (549) - Greenville, Michigan, USA - OCT 3, 2009
22oz Bottle .A hazy , cloudy amber to brown color pour , with a thin off white head , thick jagged lacing , light carbonation . Aroma is slightly boozy with tuns of caramel and toffee sweetness coming through , rasins and faint dark cherries , with hints of spicy hops . Flavor is huge , loads of sweet malt , caramel , toffee , rasins ,dates, honey , brown bread ,nuts,cinnamon and a nice light alcohol finish . very complex , very thick mouthfeel and a ultra heavy body . boozy sweet darkfruit aftertaste with hop flavored burps . Very , very good .
Nice job Founders
madvike (3305) - Middleton, Wisconsin, USA - JUN 18, 2010
Bottle from Silphium...thanks Brad! - Pours mahogany with a small tan head. The aroma is tons of caramel, toffee, a hint of mint and menthol, and butterscotch. Taste is vanilla, butterscotch, and dark malt, with a bit of rast and a light, grassy hop finish. There’s some milk chocolate and dark fruit, and a touch of bitterness. My guess is a lot of the hops and spice has receded from when this was new, but it’s been replaced by rich, sweet, decadent flavors. What can I say, I’m a sucker for a brew like this. Just...wow. brewblackhole (1587) - Muskego, Wisconsin, USA - JUL 22, 2007
Fresh,tantalizing malts erupt from the glass,molasses, raisins,and other dark fruits hinted at, followed by soothing alcohol,a wonderful sniffer.Looks dark,murky and dangerous. Wow, hugely malty,carmelly, toffee,honey, and touches of raisin tang, the alcohol is evident,but remarkably subtle, smooth,creamy, slightly sweet finish, its a mouthful alright,as big a carmellytoffee taste as I’ve ever experienced. Hmm,by the third sip my ears are starting to ring,looks like I’ll be going to my happy place,one of the best12+ABV’s I’ve ever had VikingHammer (506) - Lynnfield, Massachusetts, USA - AUG 3, 2007
Pours a murky brown with a thin light brown head. Roasted malt aroma. Roasted malt at first that ends with some spices, chocolate and caramel. Alcohol is not apparent at all. Nice Velvety mouth feel. Very nice beer. AllAboutStout (605) - Cincinnati, Ohio, USA - DEC 17, 2008
Pours dark ruby brown in color. There is a bit of a frothy ring of head around the perimeter of the glass. Smell is huge and robust. Plenty of toffee and caramel malts. Just the way a barleywine should be. Taste is more of the abundance of toffee and malt. Just a hint of hops in the end. Perfect balance to round out the beer. Huge and viscous mouthfeel. This has all the qualities of a world class barleywine. Everything that I look for in a barleywine. The ABV is so well hidden that I can not believe it.
My only complaint is that this was an anniversary beer and not a regular offering. Founders seriously needs to consider making this at least as a seasonal.