BeerLimey (2154) - California, USA - MAY 7, 2002
2001: Not too lively on the pour, scarlet red color. One quick whiff tells me this is a barley wine with lots of malt oozing from the bottle, plum/ raisin fruitiness and no real hoppiness. Relatively light but oily palate slips through pretty easily. Sweet red apple flavors, a little white wine-ish. Slight woody notes towards the end while a little hop bitterness just sours lightly in the finish. Rounds out a little syrupy and fruity. Not crazy about this one but I have 3 more and will check it out again in a few months. urbnhautebourg (997) - Annapolis, Maryland, USA - DEC 23, 2002
UPDATED: MAR 13, 2003 2001 bottling. My intial impression of this one is not terribly favorable. The malt is tremendously complex: caramel, wine, pineapple and smoke. Unfortunately, it is not contained. Call in the hall monitor. Smack the children with the hop ruler. Still, rather memorable.
Update: Was soundly defeated in a head-to-head with Heavyweight Old Salty 2002. Schroppfy (2360) - Łódż, Warsaw, Poland; Michigan, Ohio, USA - JAN 6, 2003
UPDATED: AUG 16, 2003 Brandy city...sweet, highly alcoholic malt presence, some Scottish feel in there (a bit smoky). Vanilla rising...then potent! Whew! Pretty tough for me to figure out past the high gravity, but it is good. Merci beaucoups, u-frere. redlem (1306) - Ohio, USA - MAR 19, 2003
Medium amber color with a fizzy medium off white head. Crisp with fruit(apples) and malt aroma. Sweet bread taste with a considerable wine like qualities. This is alot like Gales prize old ale in its port like taste. The 11.4% is well hidden but you will feel the warmth after the first sip. This was the 2001 version. adwoan99 (305) - Ft. Worth, Texas, USA - FEB 27, 2004
Cherry, sweet aroma. Honey aftertaste. It seems like it can't make up its mind whether or not it wants to be a christmas ale, or a stout.
SubstanceT (1092) - Saint Louis, Missouri, USA - APR 14, 2004
Dark amber with a medium brown head that is medium lasting. The nose is sweet but some lager funk in the nose. The taste is very rusty up front and very malty. So sweet and great, however the rust is too much for me. finish is acidic and metallic. Gazza (726) - Worcester, Worcestershire, ENGLAND - APR 29, 2004
Russet coloured with a complex aroma of toffee, butterscotch, vanilla and alcohol. Very sweet taste and lots of alcohol, quite a lot of balancing bitterness with some leathery caramel notes but too much tongue-burning alcohol and a strange flabby caramel sweetness. If this was 8% it would be very good indeed, but there’s just too much alcohol for the beer to carry it off. (Bottle from Alex Hall, NYC) woodduck (5) - Acworth, Georgia, USA - AUG 16, 2004 does not count
Mild aroma. Small quickly disappearing head. Deep red-amber color. Flavor is very much like sherry and oak. Moderate carbonation. Noticeable alcohol warmth. TheBeerCollector (633) - Woodstock, Georgia, USA - AUG 24, 2004
2003 vintage: Pours a dark brown with ruby highlights. Aroma reminds me of port wine. Moderate alcohol warmth lingers on the tongue. A spicy hoppiness rounds out the finish. Suttree (6466) - Knoxville, Tennessee, USA - AUG 29, 2004
2K3 Release. Clear brownish bronze. Cognac and vanilla aroma, plus some alcohol. Thick palate. Liqeurish flavorsweet, like a jam or something. Some hop flavors and a bit alcohol burn. Fuity flavors mix with medicinal hints. A bit "off kilter", I think it needs a little age on it to really reach its potential.