mesperon (205) - Hillsdale, New Jersey, USA - JUN 26, 2010
There’s so much going on with this beer, it’s going to be tough to nail down. Pours hazy rusty brown with nice thick head. Aroma of woodsy hop, roast, sweet malt....dried fruit...and something more savory, like salami. Slightly sweet to start, then a wallop of woodsy, resiny and slightly herby hops. All with an undertone of light roast and a little candy sweetness. Little bit of peppery alcohol on the finish. Very nice, really interesting. Definitely a winner. surffisher (198) - Raleigh, North Carolina, USA - OCT 29, 2009
Original Scratch 4-2007, 12 oz. bottle. Pours cloudy amber brown with a lot of small floaters and a decent tan head that subsides to a ring that leaves some spotty lace. Aroma is oaky and woody with dark fruits and citrus hops. Flavor is hop dominated with still lots of citrus character. The woody, bourbony vibe comes through as well, along with some sweet fruity malts in the background, somewhat overshadowed by the other, more prominent flavors. Medium-full bodied and smooth with a bitter hoppy finish. Some alcohol presence in both the nose and palate. Good and unique hop-forward barleywine. Surprised the hops held up so well after 2+ years of aging and that the alcohol is still noticeable. ManvsCity (183) - Austin, Texas, USA - JUN 28, 2009
UPDATED: JUN 29, 2009 Bomber from Chuck’s in Bowling Green. Half inch quickly dissipating head, off white, with a hint of greenish brown, solid lacing as it fades. Body is a dark brown, growing cloudy at bottom of the bottle. Dark cocoa, almost bitter chocolate dances through the floral hops and rich maltiness. At first, it feels lighter than most barleywine, but the alcohol heat catches up with you quickly. Really a unique beer. Wish I could have cellared a couple of bottles to compare next year. Not quite as mellow as it warms. thebusstop (178) - Rochester, New York, USA - SEP 16, 2011
This is what you call a bouquet. There’s syrup and molasses and citrus and honey and just a whole mish mosh of all sorts of fruits and sugars. The flavor is just as colorful with a strong initial punch of sweet followed by a bitter bite. The palate is wonderfully smooth. You think it will finish harshly, but it doesn’t. Looks great too! kmyers8807 (176) - Ohio, USA - FEB 10, 2011
Bottle. 2010. lots of sweet grapefruit and darker caramel malt. being relatively fresh, the hops are still there which leaves quite a bitter finish. Slightly messy, over a year or two i expect this to really come together.
lebshiff21 (174) - Skippack, Pennsylvania, USA - SEP 1, 2010
A barleywine? Drinks a little "easier" than you’d expect. Tons of hops, nice malt character. Seems like an imperial IPA with some dark crystal malts. Pours deep deep amber with a nice white to off white head.
22 oz bottle
rags2rags (149) - Columbus, Ohio, USA - AUG 15, 2010
Bottle from Kenny Road Market. Pours a ruby-brown with a finger of off-white head that laced well. The nose was hoppy with citrus, caramel, and hand fruit. The flavor is similar but with a noticeable heat from the booze. Pretty good. DragonsHead (142) - Morgantown, West Virginia, USA - AUG 1, 2008
I love this beer! I’ve tried a few of the scratch series, after not hearing the best reviews, but this barley wine is wonderful! Hops and sugary malt aroma. The flavor of hops dominates, which I really enjoy in this style. Happy when I see a BW without too much sweetness, but just enough. djaquay (138) - Ephrata, Pennsylvania, USA - MAY 27, 2012
Malty like a stout, beautiful black pour, mild hint of the warmth of the alcohol behind, also nice little bitter finish. Very respectable. thickfreakness (132) - AUSTIN, Texas, USA - AUG 8, 2008
Thanks to lb4lb for just giving me this bottle to try. Pours a muddy brown with only a slight head that almost instantly left the glass. A little bit of lacing. Smell is huge, sweet caramel. Not entirely complex but quite nice nonetheless. Taste is huge creamy caramel up front with a decent hop bitterness fading into the after taste. Quite viscous. A nice barleywine, I really enjoyed this one.