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Gratitude - East End Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.

531 Ratings
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(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 531
Reviews: 228
rAvg: 4.29
pDev: 9.32%
Wants: 788
Gots: 132 | FT: 13
Brewed by:
East End Brewing Company visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  11.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: beergeek279 on 12-23-2005

A limited edition Barleywine Style Ale, brewed in November in the American tradition and hand packaged to specially commemorate the anniversary of the brewery each year.

Gratitude Wax Colors:

2005-Red Wax
2006-Orange Wax
2007-Yellow Wax
2008-Green Wax
2009-Blue Wax
2010-Indigo Wax
2011-no wax, blank cap (Flatitude)
2012-no wax, "12" on cap (Flatitude)
2013-Violet Wax
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 531 | Reviews: 228 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of shuggy
5/5  rDev +16.6%

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5/5  rDev +16.6%

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4/5  rDev -6.8%

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5/5  rDev +16.6%

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4.5/5  rDev +4.9%

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5/5  rDev +16.6%

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4/5  rDev -6.8%

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4.5/5  rDev +4.9%

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4.5/5  rDev +4.9%

Photo of afksports
5/5  rDev +16.6%

Photo of bsuedekum
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%

Photo of woosterbill
4.51/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

'08 bottle into a tulip. Major gratitude (get it?) is due to Tony for sharing this, a long-time want of mine. Thanks!

A: Murky reddish-brown body with a film of tan bubbles. Nice legs. Standard Barleywine appearance, although earlier pours might have fared better.

S: Rich, deep, and sweet. Brown sugar, toffee, rum-soaked raisins, and lovely sherry. Terrific.

T: Vanilla, toffee, brown sugar, raisins, tobacco, leather, deep maltiness and just pure deliciousness. So, so smooth. Velvet in liquid form.

M: Still, slick, and a little sticky. Ok.

O: I've been wanting to try this one for a long time now, and it absolutely surpassed even my most wishful expectations. I've never had a smoother Barleywine in my life; I still can't believe how free of alcohol flavor this one was, nor how well-integrated all of its complex components were. Superb.


Photo of biegaman
4.72/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

2007 (Yellow Wax) - bottle 713/1500. Sampled October 31, 2011.

Gratitude might just as well be called 'Determination' because that's what's required to actually get that cap open. That crown is sufficiently insulated to withstand a category five hurricane. Buried under all that yellow wax is a smoky rosewood coloured beer. Maintaining a big foamy head is for 11.5% beer what running a half-marathon is for a linebacker. But East End shows us it's not impossible.

The abundance of sticky, gooey hop resins in this bouquet have me preemptively licking my lips already. The beer is ripe with a Madeira-like complexity and some of the ripe fruity sweetness too. It has hints of smoke and peat and enough maltiness that you could wrap yourself in it to stay warm on a cold fall evening.

I'd be happy to just smell the beer all night - it has an incredible sensual, calming effect - but tasting it provides an equally special sensation. Gratitude may be the most seamless of barleywines, by which I mean it has a rich, succulent flavour that is more than the mere sum of its parts. It is difficult to name specific flavours.

...but if I had to, I'd say it resembles dried fruits coated in tree resin. Or maybe a chocolate ganache that was infused with port wine. Or caramel coated figs. The hops still provide such pineapple and pine features that I can only imagine how blaring they must have been four years ago. Same goes for the malt, which remains impressively gooey and thick.

Despite their strength, some barleywines age no better than Nick Nolte has. But this bottle of Gratitude has held up better than the pyramids at Giza. It is still strong yet soft, without any oxidation (no surprise there) and both hops and malts are still in yoga instructor-like shape. If I had a fantasy beer cellar league, Gratitude would be my first round pick.

I don't think East End Brewing could offer a more suitable beer to show their gratitude for their loyal customers. Every bit the effort and attention to detail that was put into the presentation was clearly also put into the beer. This is, for my money, one of the most bewitching barleywines out there and is a must-buy no matter the cost.

Photo of amphion1065
4.05/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Bottle #1050 from 2010, poured into a Duvel tulip. I believe this bottle came courtesy of GabrielM. Reviewed from notes

Pours a really deep maroon with beautiful clarity. A very frothy, two-finger head with super tight bubbles and great retention leaves gorgeous, spotty lacing around the glass. Even a slight swirl of my tulip left cascading waves of lace all around. This is a stunner.

A huge, deep, complex aroma. A heavy dose of dark fruit, namely plums. There is a lot of vanilla in the mix, moreso than any other barleywine I've had before.The hops are definitely still present, and there is a fairly robust citrus component as well as some pine. Not even a hint of alcohol in the nose, which is impressive and really adds to the balance of the aroma.

The taste is, at first, rich with dark fruits. It's a sticky sort of sweetness, redolent of juicy apricots and plums. Lots of sweet toffee in the finish, with some caramel and butterscotch. As the aroma suggests, there is still a slight hop bite left in this beer, with a lingering residual bitterness. There's also a sort of old leather-esque element that mostly just detracts from the other enticing components of the taste.

Sadly, the mouthfeel does not befit the overall quality of this beer. Gorgeous, billowing head aside, this is undercarbonated and feels almost dead. The body is still full and rich, but added carbonation would really help the flavors open up.

Though the mouthfeel is a disappointment, this is still a really excellent barleywine. I'd actually love to try an older bottle, as I'd imagine this would only get better as the hops mellow out more. That said, the 2010 vintage is drinking quite well right now.

Photo of DarthKostrizer
4.02/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Thanks to that bad ass motherfucker Beerness for this tasty little morsal definitely worth the wait and glad I could share it with some good friends. Bottle #1410/1500 Version 2010

Look: Caramel in color with almost no head and obviously no retention

Smell: At first the smell really reminded me of caramel apples very nice and just a touch of toffee on the backend

Taste: As to be expected the beer is quite malty and carries large notes of toffee and caramel not much else

Mouthfeel: Full body with no carbonation and a bit silky

Overall: Not the best barleywine I have ever had but it is damn good. This is my first time trying the beer so not sure if the no carbonation is standard with this one but that definitely played a part in the lower score

Photo of ehammond1
3.89/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle (2010)

(Aged for 1 year)

Thanks for sharing, DarthKostrizer!

Copper and glowing dark orange with very little visible carbonation and very little, if any, head--surprising. Leaves the glass nearly clean and a bit oily.

Lovely aroma consisting of subtle citrus, sweet caramel and toffee, and a bit of earthy, rich vanilla. While what's here is extremely nice, I'm surprised at how far away the aroma seems. I wish everything in here was more magnified and more "in your face." Though, there isn't a hint of alcohol heat, which is incredible.

The taste follows the aroma: sweet citrus, sticky caramel and toffee, and a bit of earthy vanilla. Delicious, though uncomplicated--simple. No alcohol heat--impressive.

Thin to medium mouthfeel with very low carbonation.

I feel like this barleywine quite didn't reach it's potential. Perhaps with better carbonation, the flavors could have shined more.

Photo of MrVonzipper
4.06/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to DarthKostrizer for this bottleshare. 2010 bottle number 1410of1500
Deep caramel color. Surprisingly no carbonation/head. For a year old beer that's odd. Poorly conditioned?

Smells is fantastic. Rich sweet caramel.  Touch of orange zest. Candy. Screams orange caramel candy. Love this. 

Flavor is very nice and pleasant but not as spectacular as anticipated. Nice caramel apple like flavor along other rich fruit, but not the deep and dark fruit like most barleywines. Nice sweetness but not too rich and sweet.

Smooth creamy viscous. Very low carbonation, But really nice for this beer.

Overall it's a real nice beer but not what I was expecting. I was expecting a little more depth in character for the limited 1500 bottle release. Also, Top 3 coolest bottles ever produced.

Photo of waltersrj
4.2/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 Vintage (thanks Mages64).

Pour: Hazy, dark orange/amber, cloudy, and with an initially bubbly, carbonated tanned head which turns into a loose film around the glass' edge.

Nose: Marmalade, caramel, muted citrusy hops, figs, toffee and slight sherry like oxidation.

Taste: Figs, rich sherry, slight cardboard oxidation, toffee, muted citrus hops, rich caramel malt, slight alcohol and slight hints of orange marmalade.

Mouthfeel: Slightly oily, moderately carbonated, and lightly velvet like.

Overall: Great barleywine. I'd love to compare to a fresh one but this is fantastic. Great lacing, great taste and nose. Overall a fantastic brew.

Photo of rudzud
3.91/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled at a private tasting.

*2009 Blue Wax Vintage*

A - Nice creamy head sitting atop a good clear burnt orange hue.

S - Nose somewhat faded, little carmel malts, little vanilla, also some light spice.

T - Nice dark fruits and more of those sweeter carmel malts. Some slight bready malts, not getting much hops.

M - Nice and creamy, the big ABV is hidden nicely!

O - Overall this was a pretty good beer. I just think it lost a little with this year. Perhaps this is when its in its delicious transition phase.

Photo of Brez07
4.05/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle split last week. 2009 vintage via Davolebomb (Stanley Cup BIF)

A: After some discussion, landed on the color of this being burnt sienna. Pour left a 1 finger cream head that slowly receded. Good lacing on the parts of the glass where I drank

S: Lots of breaded malt. Some light spice late. Also some phelonic notes but not bad considering the age already on this. Sublte vanilla and caramel

T: Sweet dark fruit, fig/prune and raisins. As I drink, it becomes more of a citrusy fruit while still maintaining some of the fig flavor. Good balance of bready malt but fruit is the prominent aspect. Some caramel. Brief lingering hop bitterness after each sip. Hint of sweet chocolate in the finish

M: Medium bodied, but very close to full. Carbonation was enough to notice, very appropriate. Overall rather smooth with a very slight dryness

D: This is my first time having this beer, however based on reviews I'd say another year would have been the time to open it. This would give a little more time for the hops to dissappear completely and to get more continuity from the fruit and malt. That being said, glad to finally land this one as it is a very enjoyable barleywine

Photo of mulder1010
4.7/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Biglite351 for the bottle
2009 Vintage

A-- Poured a thick reddish orange color with a hue to it. At best a half finger of off white head and settled to film through drinking. Lots of spotty lacking through drinking. Minimal carbonation showing. Excellent packaging.

S-- Orange marmalade and fresh strawberry jam. No hop presence in this at all, as the malts have totally taken over on this. Good nose. Sweet and sticky.

T-- Strawberry jam, Carmel, orange marmalade, and a bit of bread. Sweet and sticky taste but not over the top in either area.

M-- Smooth, coating, sticky, and long lasting flavor. Scary how balanced this was and that the 11.2% was very well hidden. Started getting flavors of apricot jam towards the end.

O-- Brilliant! From packaging to the end this rocked. Reminded me a lot of some of the better desert wines available here and the flavor characters. Well hidden ABV, easy to drink and full of thick jammy flavors. Going to have to trade for more of this.

Photo of MrKennedy
4.38/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle thanks to mulder1010 for cracking open this 2009, blue-wax bottle. Certainly the best packaged beer i have come across!

Appearance of the liquid itself, lives up to expectations. A creamy head of off-white foam craters on top of a base beer that has a amber-red appearance with some glow to it. Very impressed with this!

Smell is of sweet malt, some strawberry jam and marmalade. Complex, not overbearing, yet distinct, this is quite good at bringing out its key components.

Taste is jammy and has a touch of the marmalade to it. Nice and clean and drinkable even for the size of the beer. Sweet malt comes forth later on as well.

Mouthfeel is quite good, filling, big and a touch creamy as well. Body well suited to the style.

Overall a very good barleywine and one that i'd seek out more often. Thanks to mulder1010 for opening this equivalent of beer porn. Lovely bottle, lovely contents a nice, warming, rich and flavoursome barleywine.

Photo of levifunk
4.18/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle graciously shared by seeswo during an evening of greats. unfortunately i didn't seem to write down much.

a - caramel brown pour. tan head.

s - fig and caramel. smells like a well aged barleywine.

t - very mellow flavor. slight note of hops remains. brown-sugar sweetness and dark fruits

m - not syrupy at all, but very thick and sweet.

overall - obviously it was quite a treat and a good beer. however, for what i imagine it would require to obtain, I'm not sure i'd go for it again.

Photo of homebrew311
4.1/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Sampled an '08,'09, and '10 at a tasting. The following review is of the '09 since I feel this was the best vintage of the three.

Bottle 184/1500

A: pours a deep ruby red, nice clarity, nice velvety head with good retention

S: huge sweet and fruity notes come first- dark cherries, grape, follwed by more rustic notes of leather and earthiness

T: the taste begins very sweet with notes of caramel and molasses , cherry and candied fruit comes in the middle followed by herbal notes and notes of wildflower honey. There's a ton going on here, very interesting.

MF: full body leaning towards the sticky side of things

O: All three vintages of this brew are delicious. This beer seems to be the type that will bring out different flavors at different points of aging.

Photo of ShanePB
4.37/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A vertical of Gratitude graciously shared by Al aka petesuphi at the Inaugural "Imminent Liquidation Bottle Share" event. I was fortunate enough to try samples of each vintage present, poured into a sampler glass.

Red waxed vintage 2005.

A: A hazy body glistens in the glass, displaying it's deep orange and copper colored body. Very minor off white head is present that is gone rather quickly and leaves some slick residue in and on the glass.

S: Full of sugary sweetness. Figs, caramel corn, toasted toffee and a very strong malt base. It's overwhelmingly caramel in flavor, extremely bold and pronounced. It sort of smells like a sweet liquor rather than a beer.

T: As with the nose, this beer is damn sweet but insanely balanced. Sugary dark fruits, raisins and fig are easily detected but swiftly balanced by a sweet caramel malt base. The inherit sweetness to the beer never really goes away; instead seems to change throughout the tasting. The finish turns into a smooth butterscotch flavor with some residual sweetness lingering around for a bit.

M: Modest carbonation, medium to full bodied for being so mellowed out in the bottle. It's slick and smooth across the palate, and doesn't leave much dryness at all.

I really can't thank Al enough for breaking out the '05 to '09 vertical at the event. It was wonderful to get to sample all the vintages that I otherwise would have never been able to try. Easily one off the best Barleywines I've ever sampled. In complete disclosure, the '05 was my favorite followed by '07. An outstanding series from East End.

Gratitude from East End Brewing Company
95 out of 100 based on 531 ratings.