overall
99
97
style
Serve in Snifter

bottled
available

on tap
available

Broad Distribution

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RATINGS: 1960   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.85/5   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 338   ABV: 11.26%
COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
A beautiful bold barley wine. Massive malt and hop notes. Silver Medal winner at the 2000 Great American Beer Festival in the Barley Wine category. Gold Medal winner at the 2002 World Beer Championships in the Barley Wine Category. Look for it in the first quarter of each new year. Can be cellared or enjoyed upon its release.

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3.8
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
rosenbergh (11042) - Tampere, FINLAND - FEB 9, 2013
UPDATED: AUG 10, 2013 650 ml bottle. 2012 release. Thanks Jukka! HHOK XIII.
Clear reddish golden colour with a small off-white head. Sweet and dark American hops and malt in the aroma. The flavour is alcohol. Theres some sweet cookies and dark Stone hops that were recognisable even in the blind tasting. Too much alcohol in the flavour for me. It could be much more enjoyable when aged a little more.

650 ml bottle. 2010 Release. 11.1%. From bierkompass.de.
Murky reddish brown colour with a small light tan head. Mild sourness, malt, hops, bitterness and cookie dough in the aroma. The flavour is resiny hops, strong bitterness, sweet maltiness, warming (or even burning) alcohol and mild berry notes. Very much Barley Wine but with strong American hoppiness. Tasty and satisfying. Much better experience than the first one. This one is 2 years more aged.

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
shrubber85 (10959) - Greenville, Indiana, USA - APR 7, 2015
Bottle. Earthy caramel malt, light sour milk, and hay aroma. Amber with small head. Sweet berry/apple, caramel malt, and moderately bitter herbal alcohol flavor. Nice body. Excellent.

4.2
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
daknole (10920) - Scottsdale, Arizona, USA - SEP 9, 2008
Bottle from my Vermont trip. Pours a hazy orange color. Aroma is sweet malt with some fruit, and some very floral hops. Flavor is malty, sweet and a friggin perfect hops balance. Easily one of the best barley wines I have ever had. Wonderful. MMMMMMM.

3.5
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
Camons (10908) - Hasselager, DENMARK - MAR 2, 2011
Bottle @ Hotelroom, Denver. 2011 classic release. Pours dark / burned orange with creamy white head. Aroma of caramel, bisquet, resin, grapefruit, citruss. Taste is starting of sweet with caramel, sweet malt, toast, but is soon overtaken with bitter hops, resin, grapefruit, pine, bit of a alchohol burn. Medium body, soft carbonation, lasting bitter finish. Good beer, but more like a IIPA the a BW. 030311

4.2
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
kp (10883) - Woodstock, Georgia, USA - SEP 1, 2007
UPDATED: DEC 31, 2012
Name: Old Guardian
Date: April 19, 2004
Mode: Bottle
Source: Whole Foods Market, DC
Vintage: 2004
Appearance: clear dark amber, fine white head
Aroma: nice floral and citrus aroma
Body: incredable soft and creamy body
Flavor: big hop flavor well balanced on a nice sweet carmel base, long esb bitter finish
Overall: like a really big really nice esb

Name: Old Guardian
Date: April 17, 2005
Mode: bottle
Vintage: 2004
Appearance: big strong earthy hop aroma with lots of sweet fruity essence
Aroma: lots of sweet fruity malt flavor, nice bitterness, the fruity character is coming out really nice after only one year, the hops have backed off to aroma and nice bitterness
Overall: still a very nice creamy esb, but now with added fruity character

Name: Old Guardian
Date: January 06, 2007
Mode: bottle
Source: blind tasting
Vintage: 2004
Score: 3.2
Appearance: muddy orange, wispy white head
Aroma: sweet fruity bitter malt aroma
Flavor: nice fruity malt flavor balanced by earthy hops, light alcohol essence

Name: Old Guardian
Date: February 01, 2007
Mode: bottle
Source: Ale Atlanta
Vintage: 2004
Body: body is thining out
Flavor: picking up some oxidation in the malt flavor

Name: Old Guardian
Date: September 06, 2008
Mode: bottle
Source: vertical tasting
Vintage: 2004
Appearance: hazy amber, wispy beige head
Aroma: sweet caramel and crystal aroma
Flavor: sweet caramel and crystal flavor, touch of fruityness, plenty of balancing low earthy bitterness, evident oxidation is stronger than the 2003, touch of grainy sugar grows to distraction as it warms
Overall: may be too old yet the 2003 is showing better, the change in recipe is better while younger but does not age as well

Name: Old Guardian
Date: July 01, 2012
Mode: bottle
Source: cellar stock
Vintage: 2004
Aroma: caramel and sherry aroma, fruity, brown sugar
Flavor: sweet caramel and brown sugar flavor, light fruityness

Name: Old Guardian
Date: December 02, 2012
Mode: bottle
Source: tasting
Vintage: 2004
Aroma: sweet fruity caramel aroma, light earthyness, no oxidation
Flavor: sweet fruity flavor, caramel sweetness, touch of sherry
Overall: fruityness continues to emerge

Aroma: 9/10; Appearance: 8/10; Flavor: 8/10; Palate: 7/10; Overall: 17/20
Rating: 4.2/5.0
Score: **** /4

Name: Old Guardian
Date: April 16, 2005
Mode: Bottle
Source: Bacchus, Chattanooga
Vintage: 2005
Appearance: clear dark amber, thin whispy head
Aroma: strong earthy hop aroma on top of a rich sweet carmel malt base
Body: creamy body
Flavor: rich carmel malt flavor that warms into a fruity delight, a long bitter finish
Overall: eventually mellows out into a big creamy esb with a wonderful finish

Name: Old Guardian
Date: April 05, 2006
Mode: bottle
Vintage: 2005
still the esb character but the fruity character is getting stronger, still very creamy and long bitter finish,

Name: Old Guardian
Date: February 01, 2007
Mode: bottle
Source: Ale Atlanta
Vintage: 2005
not much change, sweet and light fruity and a long bitter finish, still drinking very nice

Name: Old Guardian
Date: March 29, 2008
Mode: bottle
Source: tasting
Vintage: 2005
still a lot of hot caramel, fruityness and earthy bitterness in good balance,

Name: Old Guardian
Date: September 06, 2008
Mode: bottle
Source: vertical tasting
Vintage: 2005
Appearance: hazy amber, wispy beige head
Aroma: rich caramel aroma is richer and drier than the 2004, earthy and floral
Flavor: still the hot caramel flavor, growing earthy bitterness, big fruity character is stronger than the 2004
Overall: its a crapshoot at this point that the hot caramel may develop further or the fruityness may just fade away like the 2004

Name: Old Guardian
Date: December 02, 2012
Mode: bottle
Source: tasting
Vintage: 2005
Aroma: sweet and fruity aroma, light earthyness
Flavor: rich fruity flavor, just a touch of earthyness, light bitter finish

Aroma: 9/10; Appearance: 5/10; Flavor: 8/10; Palate: 7/10; Overall: 17/20
Rating: 4.1/5.0
Score: **** /4

Name: Old Guardian
Date: March 23, 2006
Mode: Bottle
Source: Trade
Vintage: 2006
Appearance: clear blood red, thin fine beige head that quickly disappates but can easily be roused back
Aroma: light sweet fruity malt aroma
Body: creamy body
Flavor: thin and slightly alcoholic at first but thickens as it warms and developes a great sweet carmel flavor, nice fruity character, light bitterness, mellows into a fine drinking old ale with a nice fruity character and a light balancing bitterness

Name: Old Guardian
Date: July 15, 2007
Mode: bottle
Source: tasting
Vintage: 2006
Aroma: slightly hot dark caramel aroma
Flavor: lots of fruity caramel flavor but it appears to be allowing the biterness balance it too much leaving it a bit dry

Name: Old Guardian
Date: March 11, 2008
Mode: bottle
Source: cellar stock
Vintage: 2006
Score: 3.6 to 3.8
Aroma: rich caramel malt aroma with a light sweetness balanced by lots of earthyness, touch of hot alcohol appears and grows
Body: body is creamier than ever
Flavor: rich caramel malt flavor, the earthy dryness continues to take initial control but a bit of the caramel sweetness still comes through, a nice fruityness makes the return appearance
Overall: aging very nicely

Name: Old Guardian
Date: September 06, 2008
Mode: bottle
Source: vertical tasting
Vintage: 2006
Appearance: hazy amber, wispy beige head
Aroma: dry yet rich caramel and crystal aroma with lots of earthyness
Flavor: well balanced flavor between the the sweet caramel and the earthy hops, sweetness comes through the finish, eventually a fruity character blooms, alcohol shows upon warming
Overall: is this the peak for this vintage?, it is showing better than prior years

Name: Old Guardian
Date: December 02, 2012
Mode: bottle
Source: tasting
Vintage: 2006
Aroma: earthty caramel aroma
Flavor: sweet caramel flavor, just a touch of the fruityness, light earthyness

Aroma: 7/10; Appearance: 8/10; Flavor: 7/10; Palate: 9/10; Overall: 15/20
Rating: 3.8/5.0
Drinkability: 7/10
Score: *** /4

Name: Old Guardian
Date: February 07, 2007
Mode: Bottle
Source: Bacchus, Chattanooga
Vintage: 2007
Appearance: dark clear amber, fine beige head, short lived drippy lace
Aroma: light sweet caramel malt aroma with earthy hops
Body: creamy body
Flavor: rich caramel malt flavor, a fair amount of alcohol, long bitter finish, well balanced between the rich caramel and earthy hops
Overall: the alcohol needs to fade to become more drinkable

Name: Old Guardian
Date: September 06, 2008
Mode: bottle
Source: vertical tasting
Vintage: 2007
Appearance: hazy amber, wispy beige head
Aroma: sweet caramel and crystal aroma is stronger that prior vintages
Flavor: flavor has a big earthy bitterness backing the caramel sweetness, long bitter finish, fruityness blooms upon warming
Overall: the only vintage in the 2002-2007 vertical that could use more time

Name: Old Guardian
Date: October 05, 2008
Mode: draft
Source: taco mac midtown
Vintage: 2007
Aroma: aroma has a lot of earthy hops and peppery alcohol, sweet caramel backbone almost lost under the earthy hops
Flavor: sweet crystal malt flavor, plenty of balancing earthyness, alcohol adds a sweetness and a peppery character, long lasting bitter finish
Overall: aging well but still needs more time

Name: Old Guardian
Date: December 02, 2012
Mode: bottle
Source: tasting
Vintage: 2007
Aroma: sweet caramel aroma, light fruityness, touch of sherry, showing more oxidation than younger years
Flavor: sweet fruity flavor, caramel and crystal sweetness, touch of the brown sugar
Overall: a bright spot in the vertical flavor wise

Aroma: 6/10; Appearance: 7/10; Flavor: 7/10; Palate: 6/10; Overall: 13/20
Rating: 3.3/5.0
Drinkability: 5/10
Score: **+ /4

Name: Old Guardian
Date: March 11, 2008
Mode: Bottle
Source: Trade
Vintage: 2008
Appearance: clear dark copper, fine beige head, drippy streaks of lace
Aroma: sweet malty aroma with a crystalized caramel candy sweetness and a combination of earthy and floral hops
Body: creamy body with a slight styckyness
Flavor: rich caramel malt flavor with lots of fruity sweetness, plenty of earthy hops add balance but allows the fruity malt to stay in control, light bitter finish
Overall: ooey gooey, sweet and fruity, inside, best new release in a few years

Name: Old Guardian
Date: December 02, 2012
Mode: bottle
Source: tasting
Vintage: 2008
Aroma: sweet ad fruity aroma, light earthyness
Flavor: rich fruity flavor, lots of caramel sweetness, very light balancing earthyness
Overall: not really showing any age but drinking verry well

Aroma: 7/10; Appearance: 7/10; Flavor: 7/10; Palate: 7/10; Overall: 15/20
Rating: 3.7/5.0
Drinkability: 8/10
Score: *** /4

Name: Old Guardian
Date: February 12, 2009
Mode: Bottle
Source: Greens, Atlanta
Vintage: 2009
Appearance: hazy copper, fine off white head, streaks of lace
Aroma: sweet crystal malt aroma with fruity and citrus hops
Flavor: sweet and fruity flavor, lots of balancing bitterness, hot spicy alcohol, sticky caramel
Overall: a hot, bitter, and alcohoholic double IPA

Name: Old Guardian
Date: January 14, 2012
Mode: bottle
Source: cellar stock
Vintage: 2009
after a few years it has turned into a barleywine lite, earthyness and rich caramel, brown sugar sweetness,

Name: Old Guardian
Date: December 02, 2012
Mode: bottle
Source: tasting
Vintage: 2009
Aroma: sweet earthy caramel aroma, light fruityness
Flavor: sweet and fruity flavor, brown sugar sweetness, light earthyness
Overall: still appears a bit on the light side yet rich and flavorful

Aroma: 7/10; Appearance: 7/10; Flavor: 7/10; Palate: 7/10; Overall: 13/20
Rating: 3.5/5.0
Drinkability: 6/10
Score: **+ /4

Name: Old Guardian
Date: March 05, 2010
Mode: Bottle
Source: Sherlocks, GA
Vintage: 2010
Appearance: clear dark amber, fine off white head, streaks of drippy lace
Aroma: sweet and fruity aroma, caramel sweetness, lots of earthyness, light peppery alcohol
Flavor: sweet and fruity flavor, lots of earthyness leads to a long bitter finish, peppery alcohol
Overall: very hot again this year, still very bitter, lay it down for the long haul

Name: Old Guardian
Date: December 02, 2012
Mode: bottle
Source: tasting
Vintage: 2010
Aroma: sweet caramel aroma, fruity
Flavor: sweet caramel flavor, fruity, light bitterness
Overall: already drinking great after just a couple of years, showing benefits of age sooner than younger years

Aroma: 7/10; Appearance: 7/10; Flavor: 7/10; Palate: 6/10; Overall: 13/20
Rating: 3.4/5.0
Drinkability: 7/10
Score: **+ /4

Name: Old Guardian
Date: March 25, 2011
Mode: Bottle
Source: Crabapple Bottle Shop
Vintage: 2011
Appearance: clear dark amber, fine beige head
Aroma: dark caramel aroma, lots of earthyness balancing a light caramel sweetness
Flavor: rich dark caramel flavor, lots of earthy bitterness, touch of fruityness, long bitter finish

Aroma: 7/10; Appearance: 7/10; Flavor: 7/10; Palate: 6/10; Overall: 15/20
Rating: 3.6/5.0
Drinkability: 7/10
Score: *** /4

4.5
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
slowrunner77 (10785) - Reno, Nevada, USA - FEB 27, 2009
UPDATED: AUG 27, 2010 "is it possible for a beer to punch you in the face (twice-first a malt jolt, then tremendous hops), and yet still leave you wanting to drink another right away. that was my first experience with this massive-in-every-way beer, and I havent changed my mind. BEST BARLEYWINE EVER!!! the only thing preventing this from being a 5 is that it was better fresh...it didnt age as well as a Barleywine should."

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
hopscotch (10768) - Vero Beach, Florida, USA - MAR 26, 2005
UPDATED: APR 3, 2007 Bottle... This beer rocks!... Crystal clear, orange ale with a fruity and malty nose with notes of butterscotch, toffee and caramelized pineapple. The flavor is mostly the same with additional undertones of alcohol and orange peel. Full-bodied and oily with lively carbonation. Lengthy, lightly bitter, sweet finish. Top notch brew!

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
adnielsen (10573) - Fort Collins, Colorado, USA - MAR 4, 2011
Bottle @ home. Purple maroon body with a two finger light brown head. Sweet, caramel malty nose with an earthy hoppy nose. Bitter hoppy flavor with a caramel malty body. Some booze in the flavor but its actually masked incredibly well. Overall more of an IPA barleywine than most sweet malty barleywines. Quite good.

3.7
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
KimJohansen (10450) - Frederiksberg C, Dnemark, DENMARK - SEP 19, 2008
Clear amber with large beige head. Sweet aroma with notes of toffee, caramel, toasted malt and hops. Sweet flavour with alcohol, caramel, citric hops and toasted malt. Bitter finish with warming alcohol.

3.6
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
mR_fr0g (10403) - Hertfordshire, ENGLAND - AUG 7, 2014
Keg at Brewdog Shepards bush. Aroma is heavy cinnamon nutmeg spices with toast and sweet unrefined sugars and earthy notes. Clouded caramel brown with a lasting thin cream head. Flavour is sweet brown sugars, cinnamon spices. Some earth. Hides the alcohol pretty well. Palate is viscous. Sweet and lowish carbonation. A bit sweet for me.


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