beerstop (173) - Roanoke, Virginia, USA - JAN 27, 2002
UPDATED: FEB 5, 2003 Strong alcohol presence, nice balance between the malt and bitterness. Worth trying again. unixweb (237) - Sherman, Texas, USA - MAR 21, 2002
Didn't know what to expect from this one at all. Aroma is sweet, almost like molasses. The head is very small, almost nonexistent in my glass, but the color is a nice deep amber. The taste is totally intense---sweet, almost cloying at times, with lots of malt and some hops too, but not as much as I expected. In that respect, this reminds me more of a concentrated Fuller's Vintage rather than something like Old Foghorn. In other words, I wouldn't know this was a barley wine unless someone told me. I expected much more hops here, especially given the commercial description. I love the taste, but yet I don't. To be honest, it reminds me of cough syrup---the strong, alcohol-based kind. I don't mean that in a bad way, believe it or not. In this mixture, it works, at least to a large extent. There isn't any really hoppy bitterness in this except a brief, sharp moment before the alcohol takes over and numbs everything. It only becomes sweeter as it warms, and a bit more viscous. I like it...alot...or maybe it's the alcohol talking from the bottle I just finished, but I definitely have not tasted anything quite like it before. An acquired taste, to be sure. MilkmanDan (1942) - Eagan, Minnesota, USA - OCT 19, 2002
Aroma is sweet and chock full of toffee. Flavor is smooth and rich, though not as vinous as the nose suggests. Lots of maple, sweet malts, and chocolate. Becomes toastier as it warms. Some bitters to balance the malts, but a bit too sweet for my tastes. Also seemed a mite thin in body, unexpected in an ale of this strength. Zach Diesel (905) - Sisters, Oregon, USA - JAN 5, 2003
a 2002 bottle from whole foods in portland, bright ruby color, sticky alcoholic cherry a tad too light in body but nice long lasting hoppiness notalush (5955) - Lakewood, Colorado, USA - JUN 6, 2003
 This is an odd barleywine. It shares a lot of characteristics of a doppelbock - the big maltiness, the caramel flavor - but it also has the fruity esters of a barleywine - I was surprised by the almost total lack of hops considering this is a west coast brew - the alcohol could be masked a little better, but the sweetness is perfect, not even near cloying - this isn't great, but I suspect with some more age it might get close.
stegosaurus (1882) - Levittown, Pennsylvania, USA - JUL 10, 2006
Bottle sampled with Beerded_one. Pours orange\brown with a small off-white head. Aroma of caramel malts, citrus, and fruit. Flavor is smooth, sweet, caramel, fruit, citrus, with a hoppy bitter finish. Good body, damn good brew. RCL (2032) - Waltham, Massachusetts, USA - JUL 17, 2006
Just a small head that quickly vanishes. Looks like iced tea. Smells like dates and flowers. Very smooth for the ABV with just a hint of heat, a well crafted beer. One fine Barley Wine. My only complaint is the not entirely pleasant aftertaste. sliffy (2040) - Columbus, Ohio, USA - JUL 26, 2006
Bottle 2004: Brown pour with minimal head. Aroma was roasty, alcohol, some spice and molassas. Flavor was a lot of sweet malt, some bittering hops, but they were fading. The alcohol was still there, but it was pretty solid. BeerCommonSewr (67) - North Carolina, USA - SEP 18, 2006
12 oz. bottle 2006 version
Aroma: Very malty nose with sugars and alcohol beneath
Appearance: Muddy red brown with a nice head of medium sized tan bubbles and minor lacing
Flavor: Caramel and chocolate malts are pronounced with an alcohol bite
Palate: Malty and dry. The best thing about this beer though is it is not as dry as you would expect with a 13.25% content. I did a double take when I read it on the label as I expected an elevated number but not that high!
Overall: Well done on a finely crafted brew. I enjoyed it much and would like to try it again. I find it very interesting that some people are saying it was clear red when the one I had was very murky which others have stated too. cchubb (74) - Minneola, Florida, USA - OCT 3, 2006
2005 vintage. The aroma on this beer sold me on it’s merits before it even got 1/2 way to my mouth. Strong and warm, with very low phenolics for a beer this young. Good carbonation as well that brings the hop bittering and aroma out as it bubbles. I am going to try this vintage again in a year or two to see how it goes.