Hellbender Barleywine - Pisgah Brewing Co.
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Ratings: 93 | Reviews: 59 | Display Reviews Only:
3.76/5 rDev -6%
Bomber poured into a teku. The brew appears a clear mahogany color with really no head formation, just a couple large bubbles hang on the surface. A swirl produces of legs of alcohol clinging to the glass.
The aroma is malty sweet with caramel/molasses before getting fruity in nature from a combination of hops and alcohol. A bit of herbal and earthy feel towards the back of the nose.
The taste is sweet with a grainy aspect like biscuit malt. Contrasting that sweetness is an earthy herbal hop inclusion. It is fruity almost like apple and raison mixing with a mild oxidation aspect towards the finish.
This is a medium bodied brew with a low level of carbonation. It has a creeping alcohol warmth and overall is well made. Not the best nor worst barleywine ive had. Worth trying if you get the chance.
08-07-2014 15:15:31 | More by stakem
4.25/5 rDev +6.3%
2009 bottle (22oz) purchased from City Beverage (Raleigh) .
A: Body is light brown and shows a pretty strawberry hue under the light. Produces a scant white head with decent retention.
S: Caramel, brown sugar, toffee. Also a bit buttery and likely to be very sweet – not expecting much in the way of hops or alcohol at this age.
T: Has become quite fruity at this point – dates, marmalade, lots of brown sugar and a bit of stale bread. Surprisingly, still enough bitterness to cut the sweetness. Finishes with raisin bread, vanilla, pine needle bitterness and has hung onto a slight ethanol bite.
M: Medium body – a bit tannic and dry, and surprisingly, a decent amount of carbonation.
Figured it was getting risky to ignore this any longer, but if you enjoy smooth/sweet aged barleywines, this could have gone longer. Didn’t notice much in the way of oxidation and the carbonation was still adequate. Nice beer.
06-25-2014 02:02:55 | More by GeezLynn
3.81/5 rDev -4.8%
Been holding on to this on advice from the store. Been a year or so and can't wait any longer. So into my snifter it goes.
Pours a deep dark reddish walnut color, almost the shade of my bedroom suite. Decent thumb sized tan head falls fairly fast to ringed scum with some lace here and there.
Aroma is nice sweet brown sugar coated plums, light currants rich sweet sugary caramel malts with toffee hints. Some nice hops to balance out the sweetness mostly herbal/earthy like for me.
Taste is pretty much like the nose sweet malts, not as sweet as the nose brown sugars seem on the low side. Some good dark fruit notes earthy hints toffee notes and some spicy alcohol notes that linger into the finish. Good earthy finish enough hops left to make it not cloying. But to tell the truth for an English Barleywine I could use some more free sugars floating around in this one to make it a little better.
Mouthfeel is nice smooth but adequate amount of carbonation. Body is almost full just seems a touch light for a monster of a brew like this.
Overall not bad just seems to lack a touch of oomph for a big ass malty barleywine.
05-09-2014 21:59:39 | More by mntlover
3.98/5 rDev -0.5%
Fills an Offero glass with a crystal clear, reddish copper (SRM 17-19). A thin, creamy ochre head immediately dissipates while thin legs rise beneath a ring of fine lacing.
Strong caramel counters faint alcohol amidst toasted malt and light candy sugar.
Hellbender is more bitter than expected from an English Barleywine. Black tea is sweet against a background of faint, toasted malt. Caramelized sugar, white bread and raisins fill out the middle before a long mild finish.
This one has a full body and velvety texture with prickly carbonation. Light alcohol warmth is less than expected in this very dry beer.
Good for sipping on a cold winter day, this one warms well while reading. This was my first taste from Pisgah after years of curiosity. I look forward to exploring more beer from this brewery.
03-22-2014 20:09:04 | More by SLeffler27
3.83/5 rDev -4.3%
Appearance: Beautifully red and clear, no head to speak of though.
Aroma: For me, this was the best part. Lots of aromas of dark fruit and molasses.
Flavor: Begins with lots of sweet malt up front (very sweet), but a surprising bitter hop presence quickly follows that is not at all detected in the nose. Upon reading this seems to be expected of an English Barleywine. Also contributing to the finishing bitterness is the alcohol content.
Mouthfeel: Full body, but not too thick. Smooth. Some alcohol heat.
I've had barleywines in the past and decided they weren't really my thing. I chose this one to give the style another go and it's definitely a winner. Good for sipping and savoring.
01-08-2014 03:28:58 | More by thehooksman
4/5 rDev 0%
on-tap at the brewery
I've had this before, but not yet reviewed. This is kind of the prototypical english barleywine - not too flashy - its moderately hoppy with notes of sticky pine resin. Supported by a big caramel malt profile, hellbender remains in balance and hits the style pretty square. It's just not overly exciting in the world of extreme and barrel aged barleywines - this seems like a dying style to me.
12-01-2013 20:16:32 | More by dirtylou
3.91/5 rDev -2.3%
Appearance: a deep reddish brown. Decent clarity. A finger of a stubborn tannish head.
Smell: super resiny hops. Herbal and earthy notes. Malty sweetness is there but hidden under the hops strength
Taste: again a huge hop resin is there and powerful. And the sweet caramels and some toasty flavors break through a little more.
Mouthfeel: lots of lingering bitterness and a nice heavy brew
Overall: a huge hop bomb now. Great malt character that just wants to be age out to the front.
11-30-2013 16:57:28 | More by SportsandJorts
Hellbender Barleywine from Pisgah Brewing Co.
89 out of 100 based on 93 ratings.