Volgon (2763) - Manchester, New Hampshire, USA - AUG 18, 2010
750ml: Pours a dark ruby with a large tan head, aroma is a complex mixture of cherries, apples, brown sugar, plums, raisins, and alcohol, starts lightly bitter, ends lightly sweet, with some plums. Heavy bodied, mellow carbonation. As much as I would like this to be the greatest beer of all time in a few years, Iím not sure that it is hoppy or carbonated enough to stand the test of time. What else is a beer rater to do but bury a few bottles in the back yard and see what happens when they are dug up in two years? BMan1113VR (7931) - Los Angeles, California, USA - AUG 18, 2010
Bottle. Pours with a medium sized tan head and a pretty dark, not quite black body. Good lace. Aroma of caramel and toffee, a bit of citrus (cascade?) and spicy hops. A little bit of chocolate, earth, brandy and flan. Strawberry (odd flavor to pick up). Taste is earthy, decently bitter, a bit of chocolate, very bitter cocoa, nutty, earthy. Like biting into raw, medium toasted malt. A bit of a vinous character interlaced with the bitter toasted character. Nicely boozy. A bit of fruit from the yeast in the finish. Substantial body, great carbonation for the style (full, but not distracting). Interesting beer, might have a good year or two in it, but I wouldnít lay it down for too long like the description says. Pair with leg of lamb. Maybe a bit too bitter right now. SledgeJr (3577) - Omaha, Nebraska, USA - AUG 18, 2010
On tap at the Crescent Moon. Pours black with a medium thick creamy light beige head. Large roasted and green hop aroma. This tastes much more like a big roasty imperial stout than it does a barleywine. Good, but not a phenom. Perhaps it is a bit brash at this age. We shall give it some bottle time and then revisit. blutt59 (6562) - Dallas, Texas, USA - AUG 18, 2010
bottle, dark brown with reddish highlights, longlasting tan foam, aroma of brown sugar, raisins,prunes,bready malts, flavors of smooth hoppy roast, raisins, bitter chocolate, malty, finish is bitter sweet and could be more refined but a really nice beer still GAManiac (1944) - Atlanta, Georgia, USA - AUG 17, 2010
750mL bottle poured into a tulip.
Pours close to black in the glass though it shows through as a hazy dark brown in the light. The head is huge and fluffy, receding to a thin cap and leaves good lacing.
Roasted black malts, floral and earthy hops, dark chocolate and a bit of citrus. Alcohol burn in the nose and a bit of pine resin.
The taste has a nice citrus bitterness up front with a hefty dark malt backbone. Chocolate, coffee, caramel and a dry, earthy bitterness in the finish.
The mouthfeel is medium bodied and sticky with hops - bitter grapefruit and pine.
I really consider this an amped up black IPA. Thereís plenty of roasted chocolate malts and caramel sweetness underneath but the hops are what jump to the forefront. Very drinkable.
944play (415) - Santa Rosa, California, USA - AUG 17, 2010
Draft at Toad in the Hole. Deep brown with large tan head. Green herbs and some mild tropical fruit aromas. Strikingly varnishy bitterness and chunky dried fruit sweetness. Piercing bubbles cut an otherwise overwhelming palate down to reasonableness. This would be a less bracing after a few months of cellaring. egajdzis (6502) - Pennsburg, Pennsylvania, USA - AUG 16, 2010
[BBD 10] Dark brown mahogany color with a small, light tan head that left nice lacing on the glass. Aroma of dark fruits, some caramel, brown sugar, citrus, and alcohol. Taste of brown sugar, dried fruits, raisins, caramel, vanilla, and light alcohol in the finish. zizzybalubba (1862) - Raleigh, North Carolina, USA - AUG 16, 2010
750 mL bottle from Total Wine in Chesapeake, VA. This is listed as a black barleywine but it actually pours closer to a dark brown and appears like a cola. Still, itís blacker than your average barleywine. The aroma is chocolatey and a bit smoky; very much reminds me of a strong porter more so than a barleywine given the lack of hop aroma. The flavor is certainly smoky upfront but there is a generous hop presence of perhaps spruce and pine. This is really quite interesting and certainly a unique offering. I would expect this to age quite well. tastybeer (1853) - Indiana, USA - AUG 16, 2010
Bottle, thanks tarheels. Pours brown with a tan head. Flavor is caramel, roasted malts, brown sugar, light hoppiness. GT (10000) - San Diego, California, USA - AUG 15, 2010
750mL. Pours a muddy deep ruby to mahogany looking black in the glass with a massive, reverse cascade, billowing creamy tan head that has excellent retention and very good lacing. Cantaloupe, fresh melon nose. As it warms more mint comes through in the nose as well as some licorice. Actually smells a little bit like jagermeister- there is a sense of impending heavy alcohol spiciness. Taste is not too intense though- not a piney hop bomb. It is soft, some coffee coming through, maple syrup, brown sugar, perfectly balanced bitterness. Iím sure it will age well but there is no spicy alcohol here nor a big dry hop presence so itís good to go right now. Very soft and balanced on the palate.