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King Henry - Goose Island Beer Co.

Not Rated.
King HenryKing Henry

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,370 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,370
Reviews: 317
rAvg: 4.71
pDev: 8.92%
Wants: 1,728
Gots: 503 | FT: 23
Brewed by:
Goose Island Beer Co. visit their website
Illinois, United States

Style | ABV
English Barleywine |  13.40% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Kegatron on 08-16-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Brewer's notes:
Aged in Pappy Van Winkle 23 bourbon barrels, previously used to age Rare Bourbon County Brand Stout. King Henry is a burgundy hued English-style barleywine with aromas of vanilla, oak, and dark fruit. Caramel and toffee flavors blend together with bold notes of bourbon delivered in a smooth body followed by a malty finish. No matter the occasion, King Henry promises a regal drinking experience.
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Ratings: 1,370 | Reviews: 317 | Display Reviews Only:
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Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.25/5  rDev -31%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Brown liquid, some dark red edges throughout it, almost nothing in the way of head, a very small ring of tan head, but literally less than 1/16". Aroma was massive alcohol heat, for being a high end Pappy Van Winkle barrel, I found the aroma to be indistinguishable from some vagrant's choice plastic bottle purchased behind the counter at a quickie mart. Not so much an off-aroma type thing, just harsh. Wet barrel notes as well, not the dry, crisp type of wood, this was like a soggy piece in the wet rained out PacNW.

Taste, damn, if the heat just isn't all over this one as its number one flavor component. Search for it, you can pull out toffee, caramel, vanilla, but you're gonna have to wade through the massive amount of whiskey. Toffee just doens't seem to absorb 13% alcohol as much as high srm malts. Even though these barrels are on their second use, it really seems like the heat is more noticeable and heavier, perhaps because of the difference between the massive malt used in bourbon county the regular, and the base that has just as much in common with a belgian strong dark ale as it does an English barleywine at times (given the figgy presence, raisins, dark sugar, toffee, there was nothing approaching belgian yeast about it).

Ultimately, this beer was like drinking a boilermaker. None of the undercarraige flavors were off, they were just all subtle compared to the domineering presence of the alcohol.

Photo of mulder1010
3.25/5  rDev -31%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

bomber poured into a tulip
Thanks to MrKennedy for supplying the bottle
Hype train comes to Sydney

A-- Poured a deep dark burgundy, nice ruby tints to this. Basically an off white film, when swirled got half a finger of head. Went back to film pretty quickly. Obvious alcohol legs to this and no lacing at all.

S-- Carmel, bourbon, brown sugar, butter, alcohol and dark fruits. Improved as it warmed but a very underwhelming smell and honestly quite disappointing.

T-- Carmel, brown sugar, oak, vanilla, stewed dark fruits, and alcohol. Nice taste to this but nothing mind blowing at all. Not in the class of Rare and how that was.

M-- Slick and rich. Lots of bourbon and the pappy barrel notes. Nice carmel, vanilla finish. Once again it is nice but not crazy good at all.

O-- Utterly overhyped. Would take a few other barleywines over this in a minute. Barrel dominates this and it shows. Good barleywine but would take ABACUS, Arctic Devil, MOAS or a few others before this. Needs more of the base beer. Finished the beer feeling unfilled and disappointed with the hype.

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Photo of fiver29
3.62/5  rDev -23.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle shared by Mike. Thanks! Pours a ruddy brownish color with little head. Aroma is sweet vanilla, barrel, booze, and some grain. Heavy mouthfeel. Tastes like it smells. Its just really sweet. If I had to guess this could be Dark Lords cousin its so sweet. So time should do this beer some good.

Photo of kscaldef
3.66/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Very very dark for a barleywine. Head ranges from small in a HOTD tulip to non-existent in a Bourbon County snifter, with minimal retention and no lacing.

S: Rich chocolate-caramel-bourbon.

T: The taste is not bad, but definitely doesn't deliver here on the promise of the aroma. Some light oxidation, raisin and date notes, but still dominated by a mildly boozy molten chocolate cake profile.

M: Low carbonation. Rich & smooth mouthfeel that pleasantly coats the tongue.

O: Probably not what it once was. (It's not rising to my memories of smaller pours I've had in the past). But, still quite good and unique.

Photo of trxxpaxxs
3.68/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into my Goose Island Chalice... My 200th review.

A: Pours an elegant deep dark brown, with thin hues of reds around the edges. It's not completely opaque, but darn close. There is a thin khaki colored head that appears from the pour, but it fades into the tiniest of halos along the top of the beer.

S: I'm picking up scents of roasted chestnuts, caramel, soy sauce, seaweed, stone fruits (plums and raisins), and some smooth barrel aged heat.

T: The initial blast is a bit of burnt wood mixed with soy sauce. But as that fades, this beer really starts to develop. I get a good amount of alcohol, sweet caramel, vanilla, and roasted nuts. The finish is a bit stinging and boozy.

M: Full bodied beer. This beer coats the palate and lingers for quite awhile. The flavor transitions are nice, and this beer gets way more complicated as I drink it.

O: I don't see what the big deal is for this beer. The soy/seaweed are a detriment to this beer. I can feel the barrel aging, but It's not as smooth and rounded as I would have expected from a Pappy barrel. Honestly... I think Pelican's Mother of All Storms and Hoppin' Frog's BA Naked Evil are better barleywines. Just my opinion.

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King Henry from Goose Island Beer Co.
100 out of 100 based on 1,370 ratings.