Bourbon Barrel Warmer - Upland Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Bourbon Barrel WarmerBourbon Barrel Warmer

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BA SCORE
87
very good

117 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 117
Reviews: 37
rAvg: 3.89
pDev: 12.08%
Wants: 21
Gots: 16 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Upland Brewing Company visit their website
Indiana, United States

Style | ABV
English Barleywine |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
Aged for 6-8 months in bourbon/whiskey barrels

2009: Pappy Van Winkle barrels
2010: Buffalo Trace barrels
2011: Wild Turkey barrels
2013: Willet barrels

(Beer added by: SirSketch on 05-02-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 117 | Reviews: 37 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of t0rin0
3.5/5  rDev -10%

Photo of zestar
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of Thorpe429
3.5/5  rDev -10%

Photo of nmann08
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of brentk56
3.96/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2013 bottling

Appearance: Pours a hazy mahogany color with a frothy tan head that leaves a nice trail of lacing all around the glass

Smell: Caramel and Bourbon dominate the aroma, with vanilla and fig underneath

Taste: Caramel and Bourbon also dominate the front-end, with the fig and vanilla building, in the middle; vanilla flavors round out the finish with the Bourbon adding a boozy touch to the aftertaste

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation and considerable warmth down the gullet

Overall: I suspect that this beer will improve with age, though right now it is a bit raw in the Bourbon-dominated booziness that masks any Winter warmer spicing subtlety

Thanks, fredmugs, for the opportunity

Photo of kylehay2004
4.54/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

I had-ed this initially but after having it felt it was worth a review. Single finger off white head with decent retention although greater than most barrel aged beer though on a relatively clear amber body. Aroma is very full on the nose with vanilla, bourbon, oak, caramel and brown sugar. Flavor is similar and complex with vanilla and caramel dominating. The sweetness is very well balanced by earthy oaks and flavors. The flavor takes a few sips to get used too. The initial sample was very metallic in the finish. Medium to full body, coats the palate a bit with light to moderate carbonation. Very good beer, wish I could try previous years in succession to see how they change.

Photo of ygtbsm94
2.75/5  rDev -29.3%

Photo of mikesgroove
4.55/5  rDev +17%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

another night of epic tastings before i have to take a forced long break. i decided to go with six more new beers last night and had a really fun time with them. served in pint glass and consumed on 11/05/2010.

really enjoyed this one as it was not at all what i was expecting as it pours a wonderfully clear ruby color with a nice head of about an inch in height that settled down slowly and left a decent amount of lacing all along the sides of the glass.

aroma of deep vanilla and coconut, a rich balance of oak and warming alcohol notes welcomes me into its wonderful grip. really a wonderfully complex and sublime mixture of scents here. light feel was a little bit of a distraction as opposed to the big barrel aged beers i am used to. moving along though the sweet vanilla, coconut, maple flavors set this apart from anything else i have had in a long time! smooth and warming only evens it out even more, it was just sublimely drinkable and really just a wonderful way to end a night.

overall near perfection and a great offering overall.

Photo of womencantsail
3.48/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks for this one, Mark. Shared at the BABATT.

A: The pour is surprisingly clear amber/copper color with a short lived off-white head.

S: The nose certainly lets you know this one is barrel aged. Bourbon and vanilla start things off. Caramel, toffee, and brown sugar follow. There's a bit of cardboard/oxidation going on too.

T: Surprisingly light in flavor for a -bal aged barleywine. Again, sweet vanilla and bourbon along with the typical brown sugar and caramel flavors of the style. A bit of warming alcohol is present as well.

M: The body is certainly on the thin side with a fairly lively carbonation to it.

D: Not at all bad, but not a homerun either (maybe a long single). I didn't find it bad, just sort of uninteresting.

Photo of largadeer
3.4/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Womencantsail shared this one. Thanks, Andrew.

Hazy light amber with a reddish hue. A finger of foam rises and quickly recedes.

Caramel and brown sugar are evident on the nose. Integrated bourbon, light alcohol, berry preserves. It's pretty light for the style, and there isn't much to it.

Toasted malt, brown sugar, berry-like fruitiness. Grainy, a little alcohol, though it's mellow overall. The body is pretty thin, and the flavor profile a bit simplistic, though it does nail the key notes of the style.

Photo of Kegatron
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of drabmuh
3.4/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Beer shared at a tasting, not a very good beer. Beer is brown and hazy with a thin tan head, low retention.

Aroma is bourbon and malt, smells fine.

Beer is sort of a mess, it is malty and sweet with an odd finish, not much going on worth mentioning though. An interesting beer I suppose but not a repeat for me.

Photo of Mora2000
4.33/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to thirdeye11 for sharing this bottle.

The beer pours a brownish-orange color with a white head. The aroma is bourbon, brown sugar and oak. The flavor is dark fruit - mainly cherries - as well as toasted coconut, toffee, brown sugar, bourbon and alcohol. Medium mouthfeel and low carbonation. Very nice.

Photo of Gonzoillini
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of chippo33
2.5/5  rDev -35.7%

Photo of drummermattie02
3.25/5  rDev -16.5%

Photo of bluejacket74
4.01/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle, bottled in December 2013. Served in a DFH snifter, the beer pours dark brown with an inch tan head light tan head that stays around for a while. There's also a lot of lacing. The brew smells like bourbon, vanilla, molasses, and dark fruit. Taste is similar to the aroma, but there's the addition of some caramel, nuts, brown sugar, bready malt and a bit of booze. Mouthfeel/body is medium/full, it's a bit slick and creamy with moderate carbonation. Overall I liked this brew, and it's certainly worth a try at $6.99 a bomber.

Photo of aasher
4.33/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2009 vintage. This offering from Upland poured a very smooth and murky, muddied cloudy medium to dark brown. It's almost caramel in color. It had a slight white head to it, which laced the glass. The smell was a very intricate collaboration of bourbon, malty sweetness, alcohol, and candied fruit. The taste echoed the aromas. It was very sweet with hints of vanilla and featured a moderate amount of bourbon barrel at the same time. It left a bready taste in my mouth, almost like a raisin bread or perhaps something with figs. It was well carbonated and crisp. It was delicious. I can't wait to see what this one matures into in a couple years. I'd recommend trying it.

Photo of thagr81us
4.1/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks goes out to my boy aasher for handing this one off in our massive in-person trade last year! Thanks buddy! 2010 Vintage (Buffalo Trace)! Served from bottle into a Green Man snifter. Poured a deep brownish red-orange with a one finger off-white head that subsided to a minimal amount very slowly. Maintained nice lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, citrus, citrus hop, wood, vanilla, sweet alcohol, and dark fruit. The flavor was of sweet malt, citrus, dark fruit, vanilla, sweet alcohol, wood, dark chocolate, dark fruit, and raisin. It had a medium feel on the palate with mild carbonation. Overall this was a pretty good brew. Upon first pouring it into my glass and taking the first hit of aroma I knew I was in for a treat here. Loads of complexity and a very nice balanced bouquet going on. The Buffalo Trace barrel is definitely still shining on this bottle just as you would hope. The flavor was more of the same with a nice balance that made it rather easy to drink and quite enjoyable. I really love how the citrus aspect on this one mixes so well with everything else going on in this massively complex brew. An absolute must try if you have not done so before especially if you get the chance to try the Buffalo Trace version!

Photo of smartassboiler
3/5  rDev -22.9%

Photo of MSandahl23
4.75/5  rDev +22.1%

Photo of Holland
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of scottfrie
4.22/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle into Delirium Tremens glass. Thanks to HosP for this generous extra!

A: Pours a clear dark ruby with a thick light brown head that faded rather quickly into a fuzzy film leaving a sheet of very sticky lacing down the glass.
S: Smells of rich dark fruits, black cherries, vanilla, coconut and musty wood. Whiffs of bourbon and maybe currants and bready dough come through on the back end. Rich fruity vanilla and coconut dominate. Very good smelling.
T: Follows the nose with delicious flavors of vanilla, oak and dark cherries. A bit more bourbon comes through, especially in the finish and aftertaste. The aftertaste is sweet with just enough spicy hops to make things interesting. Very caramely and fruity, almost vinous.
M: Silky smooth with a medium-full body and slightly sticky mouthfeel. Alcohol and bourbon are very well integrated and never hot or overpowering.
D: Extremely easy and dangerous to drink. My two friends and I were very impressed with this bottle. I love the coconut-vanilla scents and flavors that are soaked into this one. Thanks again Mark for the great brew!

Photo of ehammond1
3.53/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle (2011)

Acquired via trade
Thanks, barkingelectron!

Murky, cloudy dark brown with a small half-finger's worth of dark brown bubbles. This leaves small ribbons and dots of stick down the glass.

Caramel, toffee, some chocolate, well-integrated bourbon, and definite oxidation make up the aroma. Pleasant, though less complex and interesting in practice than it sounds in theory.

The chocolate flavors are more pronounced in the flavor than they are in the aroma, combining nicely with caramels, raisin, toffee, just a tiny bit of char, bourbon, and lots of oak. All the usual characters are here, and this is certainly very flavorful (and the alcohol's hidden well), but the oxidation acts as a definite intrusion on the integration.

Medium bodied with moderate, somewhat prickly, carbonation.

Good, but not great.

Photo of ADTaber
3.5/5  rDev -10%

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Bourbon Barrel Warmer from Upland Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 117 ratings.