bfeldmann (1050) - Wilmington, Delaware, USA - FEB 27, 2006
"Hmmm ho hum on this one. Typical barleywine. Poured a brown with red edges little head. Aroma was malty with hops coming in stong. Flavor was a little citrusy maltym Mouthfeel was to think for my licking. " TheEnemy (564) - Chicago, USA - MAR 4, 2006
12oz bottle, 2005 vintage.kylelackner (13) - USA - MAR 15, 2006
Major thanks to JHop for this one via trade. Pours a clear dark ruby-red with thinnish white head that quickly dissipates and leaves little lacing. Aroma of PNW hops clashing with intensely sweet caramel malt. Flavor confirms what the aroma hints at -- acrid hop bitterness that often results when piney PNW hops are combined with a darker, sweeter malt base. Thankfully it’s not as bad as in other PNW-hopped barleywines, as the sugary malt is predominant as it should be with this style. Would have liked more fruity elements in the flavor as well. Nice thick mouthfeel and palate. Pretty good as American barleywines go, pretty average for someone who prefers a more traditional English approach.
A good, but not great barleywine. The sweetness is underbalanced by hops and becomes overwhelming throughout a bottle. I feel like victory almost tried too hard to make this a calm, relaxing beer and forgot to balance out the malts. That being said, it is solid and does a good job of hiding the alcohol. A good beer when placed in the correct context...occassionally enjoyed and in cold weather. beastiefan2k (3981) - HdG (past: NYC, KS, Rain City), Maryland, USA - MAR 15, 2006
UPDATED: AUG 6, 2010 December 05 bottle. This poured with no head. The color is dark copper, cannot see through the beer. The aroma is hop heavy, I’m thinking similar to SN Bigfoot. But the taste is great, awesome, surprising. The hops are present and very noticeable. Surprisingly smooth for 11%. The bitterness of the hops is present at the end of the flavor. The other barely wine flavors are subdued in the alcoholic taste department but the sweetness is there. The body is lighter than expected for a beer like this. The palate is a little lacking, with little texture and no essence of the brew felt. I am enjoying this with a sweet navel orange. This is a young brew and I have another bottle of the same batch, which I will re-rate in later. 7/4/9/3/18=4.1dogfishho (669) - Bloomfield, New Jersey, USA - APR 17, 2006
Same batch, same six pack, a bit more than a year later. Bottle was cellared for about 6 months and closet stored (mostly cooler months) for about 6 months. There is no head and just a bit of lacing. Aroma is still full of hops, of course not as fresh, citrus and heavy sweet berry. Richer and deeper malt flavor seem to come out as well, dark fruits, plums. But also what seems to be DMS is setting, a buttery thick molasses aspect. Taste is very light still in comparison to this big beer. Sweet and bitter hop flavor (think bitter slightly brownish strawberries). Then comes an astringent hop finish. After a year seems to be going way downhill. More ratings to follow. 7/3/7/3/15=3.5
Same batch, same 6 pack, cellared for most of the time (about 31 months). Pours with a large head that fades to a thick, glass sticking, lacing. Aroma is musty fruit and "sitting out too long tea" British maltiness." Taste is lots of English tea with BW-like fruit accents. Well... I am not more impressed than before. 2.5 years old and its just getting worse. Fortunately, it seems the DMS-like aspects have faded and turned into a weird British-tea like aspect. 7/3/7/3/14.
Last bottle from the 6 pack, 4.5 years old. Old fruity hops, still decent and a tea-like malts. No sign of oxidation. All and all decent.
Aroma is of dried fruit and alcohol, primarily. Appearance in my snifter is an unspectacular coudly reddish brown with nearly no head after pouring. Flavor is plentiful and interesting. Vanilla, mixed fruits, and a sweet maple taste. Carbonation is noticeable on the palate and not extremely pleasureable. Moutfeel is syrupy and unpleasant. Overall, the flavor is the saving grace of this beer considering the lack of anything spectacular in the other categories.
blueduk (118) - Eugene, Oregon, USA - MAY 19, 2006
Wow, this has some high ratings. What a surprise, it has over 10% alcohol by volume. This beer is good, and it’s good for its style. Maybe my bottle was too young, but I think we need a reality check.
The beer poured clear amber with a thin tan fizzy head. The first whiff is an assult of fresh fruity citrus hops, orange and lemon. After recovering, malty notes are dectecable, mainly caramel, oak, and vanilla, which are also present in the flavor profile. The mouthfeel is soft and smooth, carrying fruit beneath bitterness of a magnitude I wasn’t expecting. This bitterness lasted long into the finish, forgetting the nice malty underbelly. The alcohol was very noticeable by mid-bottle.
This is a good barleywine, but not the best. I think it’s a step below the examples from Sierra Nevada, AleSmith, and Stone, which are not as rough around the edges. User37895 (3042) - - JUN 3, 2006
Not much different about this one over many other barleywines out there. Rather malty base that was balanced out by a strong hoppy presence. The flavor was accented by somewhat of a grapefruit touch, but the mouthfeel was slippery and thick (oily / syrupy). Not my cup of tea, but suprisingly not overhopped. oldrtybastrd (5002) - Fort Walton Beach, Florida, USA - JUN 8, 2006
Pours a dark amber color, with a off white head that had some lacing power. Aromas of citrus, sweet malts, and some alcohol. Flavor isn’t as sweet as I was led to believe. You can taste the alcohol from the get go, what follows is a nice mellow brown sugar (I Guess) sweetness that finishes with a nice bitter hop. jonas (7581) - Garching b. München, GERMANY - JUL 12, 2006
Sampled at LCRBM 05. Extreme wooden aroma. Cloudy red brown. Wooden cognac flavors, quite sweet. Wooden dusty aftertaste. gnoff (10367) - Mölndal, SWEDEN - OCT 9, 2006
(Bottle 12 Fl oz) Shady red orange color, tan head. Citrus hoppy scent, some butter. Sweet and some alcohol as well. Thick mouthfeel. Alcohol taste, warming. Sweet and malty. Sweet aftertaste. A little bit grainy. Medium bitterness.