Brewed at Hepworth

Style: Barley Wine
South Stoke, England
Serve in Snifter


on tap


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RATINGS: 448   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.12/5   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 315   ABV: 10.5%
"It turned out to be a case of mistaken identity, of course - wrong place at the wrong time...but Claus was soon back on the street with the polite apologies of the authorities - no questions asked. Alls well that ends well, surely, but still, the reporters wanted to know...it takes its toll, doesntt it? "Indeed" sighed Claus, "my elf is going crazy, and I fear I shall soon go crazy as well" And with that he hoisted a great flagon of his favorite barleywine-style ale, silently contemplating the future and straining to remember why he got into this particular line of work in the first place. Peter Scholey, Brewer.

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   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 19/20
ronaldtheriot (1843) - Laplace, Louisiana, USA - DEC 21, 2013
Ridgeway Criminally Bad Elf has a very thick, frothy, cream-colored head, a somewhat hazy, yet brilliant, orange-amber appearance, and fairly significant lacing left on the glass. The aroma is strong, and I could smell it from a considerable distance. One will pick up a pungent, very sweet, syrupy, sugary, fruity, caramel. Taste is of rich, sweet, caramel, black pepper, unusual fruit components, bread, bread crust, celery, peanut butter, and even a shade of nuts. Mouthfeel is fairly light, and Ridgeway Criminally Bad Elf finishes wet, rich, sweet, and delicious. I recommend this in the strongest way! RJT

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
tysongillmore (362) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - NOV 21, 2015
I didn't take any extra notes when I tried this beer for the first time but I'm gonna try it again and update my comments. ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
beer_queue (94) - California, USA - NOV 4, 2016
Appearance: Transparent, medium brown/amber; thick, rich head with medium lacing. Nose: Light fruits, caramel, wheat bread, bitter honey, a little bit of hops & booze in the background. Taste: Very sweet on arrival, the booze comes through during the development, but quickly finishes with a balanced hoppy bitterness & honey sweetness. The hops at the end arent too overwhelming either. Once warm, though, the malts are more apparent, but the alcohol is greatly intensified and stays all the way through the finish. The sweetness is also transformed into a more citrus sweetness. Mouthfeel: Full body, medium carbonation, very dry finish. Overall: Its good, thats for sure, but this isnt a light beer.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
frankenkitty (2007) - Oak Lawn, Illinois, USA - DEC 24, 2006
Enjoyed side by side with Ridgeways other three Elves in a horizontal tasting.

This... THIS is where "Bad Elf" wanted to be!!! Same damn copper color (maybe a TAD darker than the rest) with that same, incessant, creamy off-white head! There is still a slight annoyance of metallics in the aroma, but the hops and malts are bumped up to a level of "juiciness". Hops linger loudly on the tongue while strong, sweet malts follow in the guise of bakery-quality grains... all washing away to a resurgence of hops and alcohol (although the 10.5% here doesnt seem as strong as the previous 9% nor 7.5% brews). In a word, "delicious". If anyone decides to experiment with these brews and have a tasting of their own, I would suggest to skip "Very" and "Seriously" and jump straight from "Bad" to "Criminally".

Merry Christmas, everyone!

<font size=-4>Pint bottle from <a href=http://www.ratebeer.com/Place/illinois/highla Wine & Spirits, Highland Park, Illinois 60035</font>

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
danrcook (25) - California, USA - FEB 10, 2013
Smooth pour with minimal head. Taste of hops, caramel, and malts. Carbonation is stready, but minimal as well. It is a unique ale with a malty aftertaste. Truly enjoyed this and I am a real barleywine snob.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
imzugzug (103) - Bechtelsville, Pennsylvania, USA - APR 8, 2007
I cant believe the low rating on this one. Maybe its beecause its actually a drinkable barly wine {my first}. I guess it doesnt hold true to the style. Super sweet, makes your lips sticky. In my opinion it would make a great dessert beer. Lots of orangy ond citrus aromas and flavors. Near the end of the bottle it became almost undrinkable because of the sweetness. Id surely order this again, but share it next time.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
edmajorjoe (80) - Vail, Arizona, USA - AUG 14, 2009
Nice taste, barley-wine flavored explosion in a bottle. It has a 11.5% AC and is worth every penny.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 15/20
obguthr (5942) - Staunton, Virginia, USA - DEC 23, 2009
Complex aroma of toffee, cinnamon, and elderberries, with a coppery tinge to it. Clear copper with constant streams of carbonation, medium tan head, nice lacing. Figs and cherries dance on the tongue. Delicious plum and vanilla finish. Full bodied, but not thick, and relatively easy on the palate. Alcohol present but tastefully downplayed. There is an apparent attempt to balance the sweetness that has come to dominate this style with bitterness. I really appreciate this, especially during a season when some of us are sessioning multiple barleywines and strong ales. I must give credit to the Brits, they do a fine barleywine.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 16/20
DroolYeast (1259) - Aalborg, DENMARK - NOV 30, 2015
From tap @ Basement Beer Bar Julelsmagning. Sweet malty aroma, light hoppy, vinous. Clear amber colour, white head, not lasting. Heavy sweetness, alcohol sweetness. Full body, oily texture, avg. carb., sweet finish, moderate alcoholic feel.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 17/20
rajendra82 (1065) - Alpharetta, Georgia, USA - DEC 1, 2006
The beer came in a light brown bottle that proudly exhibited the bad elf behind bars. The generous 50 cl. size and the 10.5% ABV meant a serious session ahead for this solo drinker. As I cracked it open and poured into an oversized wine glass, the clarity of the pale amber body surprised me. The beer also looked thinner and more fluid than a typical barleywine. The aroma, although mild, was distinctive with a balance between spicy hops and orange marmalade like malt sweetness. The taste was well crafted with neither of the bitter, spicy, and sweet flavors dominating the others. The finish was dry and dusty, and the alcohol was notably absent throughout. The only fault I could find is the lack of richness in the thin body. But considering the drinkability of the concoction, this was but a minor quibble.

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