zimbo (997) - SCOTLAND - JAN 19, 2014
My condolences to those reviewers who have had bad bottles. I have often been stung when trying to age bottles but this one was perfection. A lucky decision about when to drink it.
Bottled in 2006 from the last batched ever to be bottled under this label (the truly last batch was labelled ’Last Drop’) at the Horndean brewery. Removing the 4cm cork demanded some delicacy so I used a cork screw with a very thin worm (’screw’, yeah, I know it sounds pretentious). Poured slightly below room temperature equally between two ISO glasses. Deep dark shiny mahogany and fruitcake and slight banana on the nose. Likely the richest and most seductive bouquets I have ever inhaled. and that is just the nose.
Seemed thinnish to look at but very full on the tongue. A very slightly acidity at the start which quickly falls away. There is a strong layer of sappiness which is just seamless. Everything is so perfectly integrated. On first sip a very slight woodiness before leaving a chewy element. After this it consistently ends smooth, rich and morish which is full and continues to fill out and out as it disappears.
The beer equivalent of a naked romp with Brigitte Bardot circa 1958. maltydog (14) - Brooklyn, New York, USA - AUG 30, 2001
Not a typical barleywine, this is ligher in body, but has an amazing blend of malty English Barleywine flavors and the cork-aging character now associated with Belgian beers. I have had numerous bottles of various vintages, the oldest being about 18 years old, but proper aging is about 3 or 4 years. OStreetBrewery (120) - Wellington, NEW ZEALAND - AUG 22, 2007
2004 vintage, Big vineous fruit aroma, hints of caramel , and nutty malt. On the palate the vineous notes turn decidedly raisen, with hints of prunes and alcohol warmth, suprisingly the malt weight is relativly low with dry alchol cleaning things up nicly. A trully exceptional beer. aobecksy (700) - Middle of no where, Ohio, USA - JAN 11, 2003
UPDATED: JUN 25, 2007 1996. Pleasing to look at, yet need a whole night to ingest true flavor. Soft undertones makes it irresistable, yet very comfortable. Impossible to stop at one. A drink to stay home for; definately a prize--rerated now that my pallete is use to partaking in better fine beers. I recollect on this one often while tasting, so it must be more memorable than my rating reflected. Ethereal (2471) - Los Angeles, California, USA - JUL 29, 2007
1998 (i think) bottle at the White Horse, Parson’s Green, late 2006. Pours a dark reddish brown with no carbonation. The aroma is fruity and sour, like a lambic beer. The flavour is extremely rich, with resinous woody notes, spicy plums and cherries, raisins, brandy and hints of citrus. It gets better with every mouthful, as it coats your mouth and the warming alcohol takes hold. Well worth seeking out.
Oakes (19686) - Vancouver, British Columbia, CANADA - DEC 8, 2000
Excellent beer. Stylish and complex. Dark fruit flavours, smooth malt palate and a hint of acidity in the finish. I've got some of this in my cellar. Prostman (1077) - Pennsylvania, USA - OCT 23, 2002
This beer poured with a nice reddish brown body, no head whatsoever. Tasted very much like a fine red wine. I liked this beer very much and would recommend it. UnionMade (621) - Connecticut, USA - DEC 28, 2002
I tried a 1998 bottling in early 2002. This is one of the beers that put me onto "big" beers and unusual styles. It looks like very old, used motor oil. Opaque brown, no head to speak of, and not much carbonation. Spectacular flavor, unhindered by effervescence, so smooth everything melds together into an almost wine-like quality. Body is very big, with rich maltiness and a subtle british hopping within. What an amazing beer.