douglas88 (9569) - Portland, Oregon, USA - JUN 18, 2010
Awesome brew thanks to FlandersNed.December 2009 edition. Pours a medium brown copper color with a very small bubbly head. An amazing nose, it scream take notice, this is an awesome aroma; sweet bourbon, caramel and sweet candies, nutty and huge oak. A hot full flavor; sweet caramel and dry candies, oak, loads of vanilla and bourbon, even a bit of sweet hops. A wonderful hot barley wine. A very thin body. scrizzz (2223) - Bothell, Washington, USA - JUN 12, 2010
Thanks marcnolan! little sweat sock aroma, some plum and cinnamon. low fill down to where the neck meets the bottle. pours flat and caramel tawny, no head. sharp chlorine and hot alder. little cherry, chewy barrel, hot throughout. get a hint of cheese here and there too. xmarcnolanx (940) - Kirkwood, Missouri, USA - MAY 20, 2010
UPDATED: JUL 3, 2012 Aroma is very barreled, almost vegetal. Lots of vanilla, oak, caramel, and bourbon. Wow! Aroma is a lot of new oak, higher alcohols. Very unusual.
Taste is sweet bourbon, lighter alcohols, vanilla, caramel, sweet maltiness, more alcohol. Not tannic, not charred, just strange! Lots of vanilla, Kuhnhenn yeast profile, and strangeness. It’s this ineffable strangeness. I can’t explain it, but it is really good.
Finish is sweet, slightly alcoholic and dry, and just, I don’t know!
This beer is a mystery. Luckily I still have another 09, which this is (consumed 15510), and an 05 brewery aged, and an 05 bottle.
2010 bottle: Same as above but much, much more heat all over this beer. Damn!
Hophead22 (2879) - Redlands, by way of Wisconsin,, California, USA - MAY 15, 2010
12oz bottle from George. Bright orange pour with not much of a head. Caramel and a little cardboard in the aroma. Light hops and some fruitiness, but pretty nice overall. (1250) nickd717 (4818) - San Francisco, California, USA - MAY 9, 2010
Rating #1800! Hell yeah - I have really wasted a lot of time on this site!
Huge thanks to bring on BA, who was generous enough to share 12oz bottles of the 2005 and 2009 vintages for a vertical tasting. This’ll be big review #800 for me, and I’m pretty sure I’m the only person who cares about that.
2005 pours hazy dark amber with minimal head. 2009 pours hazy medium amber with a minimal head.
Both have an excellent aroma - sweet malt, caramel, toffee, oak, bourbon, and vanilla. More oxidative notes in the 2005 and some leather and sherry.
Both flavors are intense. Sweet caramel and toffee, bourbon, and lots of -bal notes of oak and vanilla. 2005 has some leather, molasses, and sherry oxidation notes as well. More barrel and vanilla too. 2009 has more alcohol, as the 2005 has almost no booze to it.
Just a tad boozy on the palate, less so with the 2005. Medium-bodied and smooth with appropriately low carbonation.
Overall both were great, but the aged version was really special. Extremely drinkable for the ABV. Really enjoyed this one (or these ones).
ucusty (2691) - raleigh, North Carolina, USA - MAY 2, 2010
Thanks to Stopbarking for this one! Hazy copper pour with a thin tan head. Aroma is creamy, vanilla, bourbon and toffee. Caramel, toffee, chocolate, vanilla, bourbon, and dates. Nice warming finish! fata2683 (2176) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - APR 27, 2010
bottle shared at RBWG, pours murky brown. Aroma is vanilla some bourbon and wood tones. Flavor is more of the same. Very mellow bourbon and vanilla with a strong caramel malt flavor. Very good. decaturstevo (6343) - decatur, Tennessee, USA - APR 18, 2010
Hazed orange/brown pour with tan head and lace. Bourbon, dried dates on the aroma. Dried fruit, and bourbon barrel dominate the flavor. A tad thin and watery. A very nice beer. JK (6249) - St. Louis Park, Minnesota, USA - APR 17, 2010
Thanks to Dalzale for sharing this one. Lots of caramel and toffee in the aroma. Alcohol is present in the flavor and on the palate, but I didn’t realize it is quite as strong as it is. Some vanilla. While the alcohol is present throughout, I don’t pick up the bourbon. Overall a sweet, alcohol-laden barleywine. Not a bad bourbon aged beer, perhaps because I don’t taste the bourbon. nimbleprop (8708) - SouthWest, Washington, Washington DC, USA - APR 9, 2010
12oz bottle pours a watery, opaque brown with zero head. Aroma is apples, brandy, wood pulp. Flavor is sweet, chocolate, caramel, brown sugar, slightly pulpy. Finish is a little hot and boozy.