SDbruboy (1864) - San Diego, California, USA - AUG 3, 2004
Bottle. Garnet bronze color with no head. Sour fruit aroma, lots of wood and tart-bitter hop notes as well. Flavor is somewhat malty, sour fruits, oaky and vinous. Smooth and full body with no carbonation.. DarkElf (3062) - La Jolla, California, USA - AUG 2, 2004
(9.3 oz bottle: ScottVacula’s Barleywine Party ’04) Look! Another sour, uncarbonated beer from George Gale! Say it isn’t so! Sarcasm aside, this beer is sweet, moderately malty, mildly bitter and somewhat sour; Medium to full bodied with minimally carbonated mouthfeel; Mild nose is sweet, malty, sugary and a bit sour too, but overall isn’t all that great; Light amber color; Very little head and no carbonation bubbles Bov (12636) - Bienne, SWITZERLAND - AUG 1, 2004
clear dark amber colour with no foam, strong aroma of salty cheese, very oily and sweet, full-bodied, dry bitter finish with notes of alcohol and fruits - very unusual, unbalanced and hard to evaluate Hansen (8587) - Assentoft, DENMARK - JUL 18, 2004
Corked bottle. One would expect something more than this. Cheasy aroma, bad, low head, woody flavor. Lots of unpleasent alcohol. cquiroga (371) - Tujunga, California, USA - JUL 17, 2004
2/11/04. Poured out of 9.3 oz. bottle, bought at Stuffed Sandwich in San Gabriel, CA 2/11/04. Pours a medium brown with no head at all, no lacing at all, and a sort of cognac-like appearance. Aroma is nice and nutty, jumping out of the snifter to stab my nostrils with its song. Sweet, rich, and strong oak-brandy flavor. Walnut, pecan, glowing burn of alcohol and deep malt, very rich and wonderful, but intense and a bit harsh. This beast is very strong up front. Body is medium-full, and the finish goes long and once again very rich. Still nutty and a hint of wood, dark malt like rotten apples if they could possibly taste good. Because this stuff is delicious. I’d bet it’ll age tremendously well too, and I’d love to try a bottle in 4 or 5 years. I can’t believe this isn’t rated higher.
henrik (48) - Århus, DENMARK - JUL 14, 2004
Bottle. No head. Colour like polished amber. Smells and tastes like port wine, but with a nice long aftertaste of malt and fruit (plums?). Unable to taste the 12%. Very interesting - one of my first barley wines - won’t be the last. Jokes (1453) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - JUN 12, 2004
Clear reddish amber with no head. Completely and utterly still. Sweet aroma the has a strong alcoholic presense. Raisins, toffee, bread pudding, aged hops, licorice, apples, oak and myriad other things. The body is full, but not as thick as one might expect. Sticky and sweet with a long, warm and extended stay in the mouth. The sweetness continues in the flavor and the alcohol is subdued, upto the finish. The aged fruits, sticky sweetness and lightly toasted bread come together elegantly and with a subtle conviction. The alcohol warms the finish and completes a well-crafted, tasty sipper of a beer. Perhaps the best English Barley Wine I’ve ever had. Dalle (1145) - Skørping, DENMARK - APR 27, 2004
Dark copper colour w. no head. Nose is sweet and alcohol with notes of raisins and perhaps som orange marmelade. Taste is very malty-sweet, alcohol-bitter finish with a dash of pepper. Complex. Full, syrupy mouthfeel. Reminded me of malt whiskey (The Dalmore?). Yes, this is surely well-made but not to my taste yet (should have put it in my cellar for many more years. ClarkVV (6642) - Boston, Massachusetts, USA - APR 23, 2004
UPDATED: SEP 28, 2004 2002 bottle. Pours a golden-yellow raisin color with some copper-oranges and light red tinges. Very unique color. No head, but that was a given. No lacing. Aroma has light sweet raisins, lightly sweet toffee, some caramel, chocolate, hints of white grapes and a bit of yeast. Hops give a touch of bitterness in the aroma. Flavor is immediately salty and musty, becoming quite vinous, muscat grapes, yet sweeter than that with plenty of figs, raisins (I mention raisins alot in this review, but it really reminded me of CA golden raisins), and a good raw grainy taste. There is a lovely sherry quality to the finish which is significantly more dry and complex. Gale's ales really shine on the finish and this one is no exception. Plenty of hops come out and there is a lovely bitterness mixed with light yellow fruits, toffee and a good subtle warming sensation from the alcohol. Moderately acidic, touch of syrupyness, and not nearly as watery textured as usual for this brewery. Medium-full body. A big case of seeing the quality and rating as such, but really not caring for it all that much. ElJefe (553) - Rochester, New York, USA - APR 19, 2004
I tried the 12% ABV bottled version. A very interesting brew! Pours brown with no carbonation or head. Smells sweet, almost like a red wine. Taste hints of plum wine, with a more traditional beer finish. Very sweet, with a syrupy feel. A unique and enjoyable departure from the norm.