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King Henry - Goose Island Beer Co.

Not Rated.
King HenryKing Henry

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,373 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,373
Reviews: 317
rAvg: 4.71
pDev: 8.92%
Wants: 1,731
Gots: 504 | 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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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,373 | Reviews: 317 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of RSchaeffer
5/5  rDev +6.2%

Photo of bertram
5/5  rDev +6.2%

Photo of TJBurgess
4.5/5  rDev -4.5%

Photo of Scoot1969
5/5  rDev +6.2%

Photo of KickInTheChalice
4.22/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a pint glass at Monk's Pub. Shared with my boys readbaron and RC0032 on a cold afternoon. 2011 bottle.

Appearance: A relatively small tan froth is touched with a few large rocky bubbles. The beer itself has a full brown color with some ruby edges. Mostly opaque with just a few transparent edges, this looks like a good barleywine.

Smell: The aroma is full of vanilla, oak, caramel, brown sugar, milk chocolate, figs, dates, and a large dose of bourbon for good measure.

Taste: There is a great bit of vanilla in the flavor. Vanilla sticks to the gooey caramel malt and brown sugar, coats the figs and dates, and leaves a good bit of residual flavor. Some cocoa adds a bit of further sweetness with a toasted bready malt before a strong bourbon and oak presence almost overwhelms my palate. I enjoy this flavor, but I was not quite as excited about it as the other two I shared the bottle with.

Mouthfeel: There is a fairly strong sweetness up front that rests on the tongue and adds a sticky feel, but this sensation is more than balanced out by the dry bourbon and oak toward the end. The carbonation is about 75% smooth and creamy and 25% adding a bit of bubbly crispness.

Overall: This beer has quickly gained a name for itself, from festivals last year and FOBAB this year. The bottles drink very well, and I imagine this will get even better as some of the flavors blend together over time.

Photo of brentk56
4.22/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

2011 release

Appearance: A small head caps the fudge colored liquid and quickly becomes a ringlet without leaving much lace behind

Smell: Caramel, figs, dates and chocolate

Taste: Caramel and chocolate, up front, with both citrus and bourbon elements arriving by mid-palate; the bourbon dominates the finish, though there is plenty of caramel to go around

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with moderate carbonation; a bit of heat in the gullet

Overall: This beer packs a wallop of flavor but at this stage of its development, it is rather hot; I imagine this will improve dramatically over the next year or so

Photo of matthewalee
4.77/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

22oz of King Henry

poured into a Deschutes snifter

A - nice dark brown pour with good lacing.

S - lots of bourbon. cherries, fruit, some oak.

T - certainly the best Barleywine I've had. no question about it. Had some good ones and living in Munster I think BA Behemoth is a nice sipper when poured at the brewpub. The first sip of this is overwhelming with TONS of flavor going on. It tastes like a sweet, candied, melted bomb!! Not a lot of alcohol burn at all....very mellow right now which makes it that much better. be careful with this one. And someone please tell me that the last drink of this beer at perfect temp doesn't taste like a chocolate covered pretzel....because it does. awesome!

M - great mouthfeel. done

O - an outstanding beer made by a craft brewery that I remember well learning about craft beer! I think this may be a statement that they are (and haven't lost anything) still pretty damn good at what they do and using barrels is a very very strong suit of theirs. Nice drink right here kids...seek one out at all costs!

Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
4.46/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle served in a snifter.

L - pretty much black with a vigorous pour I got a thin beige head that hung around as a ring for a little while before just going away.

S - vanilla bean, bourbon and a whiff of cocoa powder.

T - sweet vanilla upfront with mellow bourbon smoothing things out, there's a light touch of cocoa before the smooth bourbon flavor finishes things off.

F - medium/full bodied beer that's creamy smooth for sipping.

O - it's a fine barleywine.

Photo of HopStoopid120
5/5  rDev +6.2%

Photo of mmcnaughton
5/5  rDev +6.2%

Photo of millertime416
5/5  rDev +6.2%

Photo of Gmann
4.47/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a ruby brown color with a airy khaki head that settled into nothingness, no head.

The aroma is of sweet bourbon. Vanilla and caramel are forefront with light oak. Candied malt body with some berry fruitiness. Very smooth aroma.

The taste is extremely smooth. Velvety caramel with perfect hints of vanilla. The bourbon is flavorful and not hot. Some subtle milk chocolate notes. There is some toffee as well as a candied sweetness.

Incrediably smooth, not much smoother than this. Feels like you are drinking caramel ice cream it is so smooth. The body is moderate to full with soft carbonation. It is sweet on the palate and sticky on the finish. There is a bit of a ABV presence but it is light.

Super tastey sipper, very smooth. Great barelywine

Photo of emdawg
4.5/5  rDev -4.5%

Photo of awdturboiv
5/5  rDev +6.2%

Photo of j1knapp
5/5  rDev +6.2%

Photo of Manoftyr
3/5  rDev -36.3%

Photo of Nitrogenx
5/5  rDev +6.2%

Photo of KGarrett
5/5  rDev +6.2%

Photo of jdhende
4.5/5  rDev -4.5%

Photo of thetomG
5/5  rDev +6.2%

Photo of theCoder
4.92/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Oh boy was this a treat when my buddy surprised me with this after me telling him to pass on it when he called me with the price. He felt it necessary as a pseudo Xmas gift/him wanting to see what kind of a beer could net $28 a bottle (see end of review as to why I'll never share a fancy beer that I pay for with him...).

Pours a beautiful dark almost syrupy mahogany color with a small maybe fingerish head that quickly vanishes.

The aroma slams your nose with wonderful bits of oak, strong bourbon, vanilla and bits of brown sugar.

Initial taste overflows the taste buds with wonderous flavors of oak up front which quickly dives into some Vanilla, brown sugar, bits of molasses, some raisins and toffee. Sweet finish but not too sweet in my mind but I've had some serious English Barlywines that were overpoweringly sweet.

Totally a medium to big body with very little to no carbonation which is perfect for this beast. The alcohol is present but man it does not take away from this one.

Overall - do it, get it, drink it, enjoy it with friends. Boy this was a treat I loved it. I'd love to thank my friend for bringing this over.

Followup why I won't buy fancy beer to share with this guy (EX: not sharing my Kate the Great with him). BUT this dude I poured all into a snifter (quarterish full so we could all three of us enjoy it) this dude powered it down, holy cow I think my heart skipped a beat seeing him tip his head back and pour it all down... OH it hurt me bad, so thanks dude but yea I'll keep that 6-er of Schell's on hand for you next time.

Photo of joefuzz
4.88/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours deep brown with a very small white head. Smells very english in a sence, big malt upfront with a smooth almost candy like bourbon scent on the end no hops to speak of. Tastes of raisins with sweet brown sugar vanilla and oak coming through. Mouthfeel and carbonation for a great barleywine, thick and low carbonation. Overall amazing, more than likely my favorite beer.

Photo of pgaveau
5/5  rDev +6.2%

Photo of discord257
5/5  rDev +6.2%

Photo of Azurescens
4.55/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle with bottled on date 10/08/11 poured into snifter reviewed on 12/14/11.

A: Pours a dark amber brown, clear when held to light with thin tan head that disappears about as fast as it appears. No lacing to speak of.

S: Aromas of dark fruit, toffee, oak and vanilla with a fair amount of alcohol which is no surprise here. Alcohol really stands out once it has warmed up a bit.

T: Quite sweet with tons of dark fruit, caramel, oak and alcohol. A fair amount of bourbon, vanilla and brown sugar in there as well. Well balanced and packed with flavor.

M: Medium-full bodied with low-moderate carbonation and sweet finish.

O: Up there with the best barleywines that I have had. Great sipping beer and amazingly easy drinking for how big it is.

King Henry from Goose Island Beer Co.
100 out of 100 based on 1,373 ratings.