overall
93
75
style
Serve in Snifter

bottled
available

on tap
unknown

Regional Distribution

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RATINGS: 100   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.61/5   SEASONAL: Special   IBU: 117   EST. CALORIES: 327   ABV: 10.9%
COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
R&D Series. In the Ninkasi tradition, this barley wine is hopped to high heaven using more than 16 pounds per barrel! Critical Hits rich, malty expression is balanced by 16 varieties of hops that linger on the palate. Its high gravity nature warms the cheeks and soul. Critical Hit does maximum damage, so you might have to roll to save if you take this ale for granted!

Massive citrus, earthy, resinous, and grassy hop flavor is balanced with the melanoidin complexity of port and sherry notes, creating a powerful and warming taste experience. Big citrus, earthy, grassy, and pine hop aroma with port and sherry notes mingle in this beer conditioned for over a year. Aggressive bitterness dominates up front with a large array of hop flavor spanning citrus, earthy, resinous, grassy and dank. Subtle caramel and melanoidin compounds oxidize (in a good way) to create the port and sherry notes that are a trademark to these extremely strong beers called barley wine. The bitterness of the beer helps round out the intensity of alcohol and the malt complexity to make a non-cloying and very, very tasty beer. This may be the one beer that you still need to sip rather than quaff but it is deceptive for the style.

Hops: Columbus, Millenium, Northern Brewer, Simcoe, Falconers Flight, Galena, Peerle, Santiam, Ahtanum, Fuggle, Glacier, Hersbrucker, Liberty, Spalt, Hallertau

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Zymurgeist2's rating

3.8
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Zymurgeist2 (2166) - Redwood City, California, USA - FEB 17, 2013
On tap at Toronado for Barley Wine Fest. Pours and orange-amber of slight haze with off-white head. Aroma of hops and sweet grain. Lots of hops and bitterness on the palate leading to a fresh clean beer at this alcohol level.


2.3
   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 3/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 7/20
bytemesis (8124) - Sunnyvale, California, USA - APR 14, 2017
Bottle, vintage 2014. Pours clear amber, medium beige head, dissipates fairly quickly, some lacing. Aroma is pine, caramel, oranges. Flavor is fully sweet, hugely punishingly bitter, Eww. Medium body. Ouch. This one hurts

4
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 16/20
rosskyle (646) - Denver, Colorado, USA - MAR 19, 2017
Big bottle. Dark amber color with an off white head. Sweet alcohol with a lot of hops aroma. Sweet plum malt up front with a hops finish that lingers. Heavy body. Nice balance of malt hops that disguise the alcohol content. Not a traditional barley wine but is very good. ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone

3.5
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
tightslice (1204) - Redwood City, California, USA - MAR 12, 2017
Bottle from BevMo! in Redwood City, CA. Aroma is earthy, vegetal hops. Taste is medicinal / herbal. Lots of earthy hops with a malt backbone. Not my favorite Barley Wine.

4.2
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
bulldogops (2490) - Edmonton, Alberta, CANADA - FEB 12, 2017
Rating #2437 - 2016.04.11 - Draught @alibiroom - Copper&Theory TT. Golden pour with a bubbly tan head, decent retention. Aroma is soft fruits, vanilla,cracked wheat, vanilla, powdered sugar, wildflower honey. Low-medium carbonation, explosive alcohol warmth and depth. Palate is a whirlwind of malty sweet, and alcoholic, earthy dry tones. A phenomenal beer.

2.9
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 12/20
kathouse (1858) - LAS VEGAS, Nevada, USA - AUG 4, 2016
Deep amber with red highlights. Burnt toffee aroma. Dark caramel and alcohol heat. Finish is dry and vegetal from dry hopping.

3.9
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 17/20
Blairgus (4478) - California, USA - JUL 31, 2016
31 July 2016, tap. Pink/brown. Nose is booze, nail polish, dried grass hops. Med body and moderately fizzy. Bitter grass hops, some booze, bitter throughout, mildly sweet. Good.

3.9
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
reebtogi (6205) - Edmonton, Alberta, CANADA - JUL 14, 2016
650ml bomber pours amber in color with a 2 finger white head that leaves some decent lacing on the glass. Aroma is citrus and caramel with some earthy and grainy notes. Taste is a citrus and earthy hop bitterness with a fruit and caramel malty sweetness with a light alcohol burn in the finish. Medium to full bodied with good carbonation for the style. Overall, a very nicely done barley wine that is hoppier than most beers of this style, but still balanced and not too over the top. Highly recommended.

4
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 16/20
stantheman (1015) - British Columbia, CANADA - MAY 7, 2016
On tap at Alibi Room in Vancouver. A very dark copper color beer with minimal beige head and tart vinous nose. A big load of bitter hops nicely balanced with sweet malts. Well done! 4

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
beerplace (1532) - Vancouver, British Columbia, CANADA - MAY 3, 2016
On tap at Alibi Room. Vintage 2014. Pours a dark amber with a white head. Aroma is sweet, with caramel and dried fruits notes. Taste is complex with tropical fruits and piney bitterness, caramel, roasted malt. Hoppy bitterness aftertaste. Very good!

3.6
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
Oakes (17166) - Vancouver, British Columbia, CANADA - APR 26, 2016
Brown amber, thin head. Lots of bitterness, hop earthy foresty notes. Sweeter caramelly malts. Has light fruits. Decent bw


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