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Pompier - Pennichuck Brewing Company, Inc.

Not Rated.
PompierPompier

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
81
good

31 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 31
Reviews: 29
rAvg: 3.5
pDev: 28.57%
Wants: 3
Gots: 2 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Pennichuck Brewing Company, Inc.
New Hampshire, United States

Style | ABV
English Barleywine |  12.10% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

English Style Barleywine Ale aged in oak whiskey barrels.

(Beer added by: johnnnniee on 01-13-2008)
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Ratings: 31 | Reviews: 29 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by WesWes:
Photo of WesWes
WesWes

New York

3.58/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a dark amber/brown color with a thick frothy offwhite head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is decent. It has a strong whiskey barrel aroma. It covers up most of the malt scent except for some light burnt toffee aroma. The taste is decent as well. It has a smooth flavor that's not too sweet. It warms all the way down and finishes bitter from the oak. The oak works well with the malts, but the whiskey element is a little much. I prefer whiskey barrels with imperial stouts. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is an interesting beer, but not one I'd seek out again. Thanks to jjayjaye for the opportunity to try this one.

Serving type: bottle

03-31-2008 01:26:32 | More by WesWes
More User Reviews:
Photo of jophish17
jophish17

Georgia

1.5/5  rDev -57.1%

03-01-2012 21:29:01 | More by jophish17
Photo of whartontallboy
whartontallboy

New York

1/5  rDev -71.4%

01-14-2012 06:06:24 | More by whartontallboy
Photo of woosterbill
woosterbill

Connecticut

1.93/5  rDev -44.9%
look: 5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

1 liter swingtop, 2008 vintage, into a Duvel tulip.

A: Pours a deep, hazy plum body that resides beneath a three-finger head of creamy pinkish-tan foam; good retention and tons of lace. Probably the best-looking barleywine I've seen. Beautiful.

S: Sweet + sour aroma of ripe fruit (cherries, apples, etc), as well as a bit of funky tartness - yeah, I'm pretty sure it's infected. Interesting, though.

T: Yeah, heavy lactic sourness on top of tart fruit. Intriguing but not at all well balanced, and it becomes more unbearable with every sip. Very disappointing.

M: Medium body + carbonation.

D: At first I thought that by splitting this with a couple friends I'd be able to make it though my glass - I was wrong. Less than a quarter of the way through my 1/3 liter I just had to give up and declare this a drainpour. My friends concurred.

Notes: I went out on a limb with this one, well aware of its potential for infection (which is why I chose the one bottle without any apparent leakage from the swingtop - lot of good that did). My gamble didn't pay off, but it helped explain why Pennichuck went under. Having this beer on the shelf for $14 is a crime.

Cheers!

Serving type: bottle

01-25-2010 02:18:38 | More by woosterbill
Photo of everetends
everetends

Alabama

3.95/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

16 oz pour into a clear plastic cup thanks to Heroes lack of glassware on busy nights. Ah well, we will make it work.

A: Pours a dark brown with some rich red undertones to it. Stays pretty much the same when held to the light due to the milkiness of the clear plastic cup. Can't see all the way through the body, pretty rich. Pour got about a finger of head and actually retained nicely throughout the experience. No lace sticking to the plastic. Still a good looking beer and I will give it the benefit of the doubt due to the glassware.

S: Has a very nice caramel nose to it. Pretty rich. Nice and buttery, but in a toffee type sense. Alcohol is light but there. A really nice nutty aroma is coming out as well. Not really getting any fruity or hops notes out of the nose. Just a sweet treat. Little bit of grain comes out as it warms.

T: Simple but nice for sure. A nice, creamy and buttery toffee mingles well with a good caramel presence. Hops cut down the sweetness a bit with some pepper and touch of pine I think. Getting a little bit of some fruity notes, maybe fig. This has a good earthy, naturalness to it. Nice amount of wood seems to be in here, that dusty attic type feel. Roasted nuts seem to round it all out. Not bad all.

M: This falls on the very light side of full bodied. May even fall more into a medium class. I can't believe how well the alcohol is hidden. No heat, no warmth, just easy drinking. Very well crafted with the huge alcohol that is in here. Pretty slick on the palate. Aftertaste is all roasted nuts and caramel.

D: Put down two of these in a couple hour period. Although the alcohol isn't huge on the feel, it does give you the impression this should be sipped and enjoyed. Probably a good thing since you could be in trouble otherwise. Glad to have had it for sure and sorry to see Pennichuck is no more.

Serving type: on-tap

01-17-2010 23:46:32 | More by everetends
Photo of Wespatrick
Wespatrick

South Carolina

2.48/5  rDev -29.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

poured from a 1L swingtop into a chalice
wrapper indicates 2008 vintage
Pours burnt sienna with very little carbonation.
A small ring of bubbles lines the outside edge of the glass after a few minutes of sitting. Nose is mainly malty sweetness, some dark fruits and a faint offering of alcohol. There is a very odd flavor in the finish of this beer; maybe from the French hops, maybe some funk from the wood? Bottle says whiskey barrel aged, but I am getting nothing. I would believe oak aged, but there is zero whiskey present. I am barely 6 oz in and I am already regretting my decision to go this alone. I was excited when I found a barrel aged barleywine for $10, but I guess it was too good to be true. Major disappointment!

Serving type: bottle

01-03-2010 05:10:07 | More by Wespatrick
Photo of Sammy
Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

3.4/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Brown body with big soapy head. lace is observed later. Some sounress in aroma, not an english barleywine. Stout, sourish, lactic, not too drinkable. The oak whisky has absorbed some wild elements, or we can say infection problem. here ia also some sweetness, lactose, coconut.

Serving type: bottle

12-29-2009 00:59:50 | More by Sammy
Photo of alpinebryant
alpinebryant

Connecticut

4.3/5  rDev +22.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I have copied my Tap review but am updating it to reflect the differences I saw in bottled form just popped.

Poured a dark ruby amber color with a very thick cream white head with heavy lacing.

Smelled a bit of barrel oak funk, slight wine aroma, sweet malt backbone

Huge sour bite from the start, I would say that this is a great sour beer in addition to it being a Barleywine. I had a coworker take a sip who immediately puckered up which I got a kick out of(on tap). A nice wine flavor , more oak presence in bottles IMO , some funky sour and what I thought to be the best barleywine I have had in this style.

Bottle had a little bit of bubbling at the top of the rubber gasket which worried me after having a Thomas Hooker Imperial Porter that was vinegar. Sure enough though, this Pompier tasted great and I was lucky to find it .

Drinkability is I think the only thing I think is less in bottled form because of the very strong oak flavor.

Serving type: bottle

12-24-2009 00:37:19 | More by alpinebryant
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TheManiacalOne

Rhode Island

3.63/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 1-Liter swing-top bottle into an imperial pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep brown color, with a short off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma has that unmistakable scent that comes from oak barrel aging along with caramel, whiskey, alcohol, brown sugar, dark fruit and a touch of hops.

T: The taste starts with sweet flavors of caramel, brown sugar, whiskey and a little fruit. The oak barrel aging comes though quite strongly and there's a significant alcohol sting that comes in. The malt character is hearty and the hops presence is mild but complementary. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: A little tasty, goes down pretty easily for a beer with 12.10% ABV, not too filling, strong kick, good representation of style, I had sampled this beer at a tasting shortly after its original release and did not like it very much. It tasted a lot better this time around and even though I've had better beers in the style, this is a decent high-octane beer that would appeal to those that like the oak aging.

Serving type: bottle

11-05-2009 04:23:04 | More by TheManiacalOne
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ericmunley

Pennsylvania

3.7/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Got a 1L swing top bottle from Jessup Beverage (highly recommended) here in Northeast Pennsylvania. Wanted to deviate from my usual stouts and porters, so I went with this oak aged English Barleywine.

A: Poured into a Chimay glass. Color is a deep brownish red with a quickly dissipating head. Didn't expect much in the head department, but I like the color.

S: Smells boozy and oaky. Seeing as this beer is an oak aged English Barleywine, there wasn't much of a surprise there. Faint hints of bourbon and fruit as well.

T: First thing that hit me as far as the taste of this beer goes is the oakiness. It reminds me a lot of Southern Tier's Cuvee #2 as far as oak is concerned. Right after the oak taste backs off, an abrupt, sweet alcohol taste warms the back of your throat. This was very pleasant on a cold, fall day here in PA!

M: This beer definitely has body, and the mouthfeel certainly complimented this beer's complexity.

D: Coming in right over 12% ABV, this is no session beer! However, I did enjoy two goblets with no complaints. Very suitable beer for cold nights in front of a fireplace!

Overall, I would recommend Pennichuck Pompier for those looking for a different, complex drinking experience. Fans of Belgian beers and oak ages beers alike will appreciate this beer. If you can get it for $11 like I did, jump at the chance!

Serving type: bottle

10-16-2009 01:59:04 | More by ericmunley
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BigMcLargeHuge

Arizona

3.8/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Courtesy of RB's own jcwattsrugger. Liter swing top pours clear copper with nice tan head. The mild aroma brings up notes of douglas fir mixing with medium to pale colored fruitiness and a bit of mustiness. The taste is interesting to say the least. I get sweet prunes and apricots before it becomes more berry like and tart. It seems a bit like a barleywine that blends into a berry like sour beer. Very interesting. I think it works well.

Serving type: bottle

10-07-2009 15:33:54 | More by BigMcLargeHuge
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Yetiman420

Ohio

4.2/5  rDev +20%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Prime16 in New Haven CT. Bartender confirmed it was 2009.

12 oz. Sniffer.

Ruby brown - not too dark. Thin quarter finger head.

Aroma is very malty sweet.

Poured 10 minutes in advance to warm.

Creamy mouthfeel. Very enjoyable and drinkable for an 09 barleywine.

Serving type: on-tap

06-14-2009 01:47:36 | More by Yetiman420
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Amalak

New York

3.9/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Normally, these are the kinds of beers I really don't care for. But while extremely sweet, this beer is quite smooth. I think it definitely benefited from coming off the tap into a nice cold mug, as well.

This very, very sweet beer had a wine and sourish aftertaste. It was also quite expensive, $10. I don't know if it's a good thing that I like this barleywine beer, or bad, because I usually don't like them.

Serving type: on-tap

05-08-2009 17:13:19 | More by Amalak
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BeerNinja007

New Hampshire

1/5  rDev -71.4%
look: 1 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Absolutely horrible. Nothing but acrid sour cherry *vomit*. Like a lambic that someone poured battery acid into. No barleywine character discernable. 100% undrinkable. Down the sink it goes.

I really hope I got a bad bottle, because if someone thinks I'm gonna drink this, they're gonna get a punch in the nose.

I want my $14 back.

Serving type: bottle

04-09-2009 00:03:57 | More by BeerNinja007
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zeff80

Missouri

3.9/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured out a clear, dark copper color with a thin, small, off-white head. It left some soapy residue on the glass.

S - It smelled very malty sweet and sugary.

T - It tasted of maple syrup, sweet caramel malt, licorice and some subtle fruity flavors.

M - It was soft and smooth. A full-bodied beer with a warm alcohol presence.

D - This tasted great, but is a lot to drink (both in quantity and potency).

Serving type: bottle

01-21-2009 02:19:17 | More by zeff80
Photo of meday
meday

New Hampshire

4.5/5  rDev +28.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the 1L swingtop (with "2008" covering) into two snifter chalices.

Beautiful dark mahogany color with tan head

Sweet, maple sugar aroma.

Beautiful, deep, rich flavor, filled with sweetness, caramel, rum-raisin, and possibly a bit of caramelized onion. The depth of the flavor changed quite a bit during my taste and would also changed with the food pairings.

Although sweet and alcohol, the mouthfeel is good. This beer has a body to it.

I was worried that my wife and I would not be able to finish this beer in one sitting (possibly the reason for the swingtop?), but it was very drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

12-20-2008 03:14:29 | More by meday
Photo of Brad007
Brad007

Vermont

4.88/5  rDev +39.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The swing top on the bottle gives a reassuring pop.

Pours a reddish-brown color with a nice one-finger head into my chalice.

Aroma is full of raisins, currants and mild alcohol warmth.

Taste is full of raisins, brown sugar and a mild alcohol warmth. As it warms up, I notice oak and whiskey from aging in oak whiskey bottles. It adds another dimension to this barleywine.

Mouthfeel is pretty easygoing and it goes down very smooth. The oak and whiskey lingers at the back of the throat followed by raisin.

A very nice, very easygoing barleywine that despite the ABV, is quite drinkable. With aging, this will be a killer barleywine to savor down the road. Well worth the price to me as I enjoy English barleywines more than their American counterparts.

Serving type: bottle

12-20-2008 01:36:05 | More by Brad007
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DIM

Pennsylvania

4.18/5  rDev +19.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

a: This was a pretty, slightly hazy, dark coppery ruby color. It poured with a huge, sticky, fluffy, off-white head.

s: Fruity aromas of apples, pears, and plums that have a syrupy sweetness to them take center stage. There is also some tobacco and a yeasty aroma that has an alluring musky quality. The gentle warmth radiating from this one does not suggest an abv of 12.1%.

t: This is drier and not as sweet as the smell would suggest. This tastes of of faint malty, smoky toffee and oaky tobacco. The finish brings a juicy, sweet, candied fruit flavor that is soon blunted by a very dry and bitter herbal hop note that seems a little out of place.

m: Full bodied with long lasting, gently creamy carbonation.

d: I liked the oaking and the yeast choice, but the French hops don't add much. Still, this was unique, interesting, and delicious. That works for me.

Serving type: bottle

12-17-2008 11:41:25 | More by DIM
Photo of MrHurmateeowish
MrHurmateeowish

New Hampshire

4.53/5  rDev +29.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

1 liter swing-top bottle purchased at the liquor store in Tyngsborro, Mass. Pours a murky, virtually opaque copper colored body with a good inch of off-white head that slowly dissipates leaving some spectacular lacing. Smells fruity, woody, alcoholic, with definite bourbon notes. Tastes fruity, vinous, with caramel and toffee notes and wood and bourbon character. Aftertaste has a woody toffee character. Just a tinge of alcohol warming, though alcohol isn't nearly as present as expected. Full-bodied but stopping short of viscosity, with moderate carbonation. Much more drinkable than it should be for such a big beer, though still a bit of a sipper. Complex, balanced, and unique. Perfect for sipping on a frigid New Hampshire night like tonight. One of the finest barleywines I've had. This is a slam-dunk for Pennichuck and well worth the price-tag.

Serving type: bottle

11-20-2008 01:12:54 | More by MrHurmateeowish
Photo of drseamus
drseamus

New York

2.63/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

A: Dark red with a thin white head.

S: Very weird smell. It's really strong oak and nothing else really. There is a touch of sourness.

T: Straight oak initially and then a touch of bitterness comes through. I'm not crazy about it.

M: Medium bodied and pretty smooth in general.

D: Ultimately this is not a great beer.

Serving type: bottle

11-19-2008 05:13:49 | More by drseamus
Photo of kirok1999
kirok1999

Ohio

3.48/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Love the bottle, hope the beer is as good.
Pours a murky, dark amber with a wisp of lacing.
Smells mildly sweet, just a hint of dark sugar, molassas, some faint notes of citrus and pepper.
Taste is smooth and mild, very mild carbonation. Hints of caramel, dark sugar, and a lot of hops in the finish. I think my bottle was slightly oxidized, when I picked it up there was a slight fizz from the cap. This might have led to the slight wet cardboard taste.
Felt very smooth and creamy and yet a little thin. Easy enough to drink but there are way more tasty English Barleywines out there.

Serving type: bottle

10-13-2008 22:48:41 | More by kirok1999
Photo of hoppymeal
hoppymeal

Michigan

4/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Massive 1L bottle picked up recently on an east coast vacation, on sale for 14.99, heck of a deal for this behemoth of a bottle. Love the swing top closure as well, have the feeling I'll be working on this one for a night or two. On to the review. Pours a hazy and murky dark amber in color with a decent sized cream head. Aroma is a soft lilac and floral perfuminess, some sweet powdered sugar candy, orange citrus, and sweet caramel maltiness. Taste follows this well with a clean soapy floral perfuminess, some fruity pebble like sweetness and some peppery hoppiness. Just a small hint of vanilla in the finish. Medium to heavy body is broken up by the bite of peppery hops on the tongue. Alcohol is only slightly noticeable and fairly well balanced. Very good barleywine, the barrel ageing played a smaller role than many ba beers out there right now, which was rather nice tonight.

Serving type: bottle

09-04-2008 01:28:32 | More by hoppymeal
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GratefulBeerGuy

New Hampshire

4.03/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

1 liter swing-top and very hefty bottle > Snifter/Chimay Glass

Oh Yeah, Ruby red, and it's vibrant. A loose, lacy, mocha froth colored head with a totally smooth and even crown is very lively and dissipates slow as molasses.

The nose has a rich caramel and maple syrup in the malt, brown sugar, vanilla from the Whiskey barrel's coupled with fresh herbs and spices from the hops. Heat tingle's the nose, but you can really smell the vanilla and mellow woodiness. The hops add a very unique earthiness...mild chocolate as the temp goes up.

The flavor with this one is as good as I would hope, light brown sugar, not super heavy thick malt but it is smooth and full bodied, just not as hefty feeling as some. The Whiskey Barrel aging brings out the most dominant flavor's of mild, earthy woods and big-time Vanilla, like fresh Vanilla bean...purhaps a bit too much Vanilla. The heat is very warming but not sharp in the least. Very mellow heat flavor and feel. These French Hops add the most interesting part of the flavor spectrum, with a balance of rich, earthy, tangy, musty and spicey effects. The hops end with a nice smokey bitterness. The flavor's overall are very nice, they will in time, blend and mature. The balance is a bit wild, but has the potential to become very good together.

This is full bodied but it's also very crisp, not as slick and smooth as some but my lips are sticky.

I shared this bottle with my fiance, who is a big beer lover in her own right and found it very easy to drink for such a big ABV %. I think it needs cellar time, but was enjoyable as is.

Serving type: bottle

08-28-2008 21:41:30 | More by GratefulBeerGuy
Photo of NeroFiddled
NeroFiddled

Pennsylvania

3.7/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

$14.99 at Charles Street Liquors in Boston, MA.

Pours a deep mahogany body with ruby-orange accents beneath a limited head of bone-white. Minor lacing... just tiny spots. Alcohol, however, limits head retention, and at 12.1% I guess that's understandable.

The nose is malty and fruity with notes of caramel, apple and berries - as well as a little spice (alcohol?) and even a hint of coconut.

In the mouth it's medium bodied with a gently bristling carbonation and moderate heat from the alcohol.

The flavor is as the nose suggests with a good blend of berry-like fruitiness and caramel maltiness, but there's also a very solid backing bitterness (that steps right up to the edge but doesn't over-step it) and some grassy and leafy hop flavors. Spice enters mid-palate and continues through the swallow and into the finish, leaving it spicy and dry on the palate except for a mild residual not of caramel.

Similar to an English style Barleywine in flavor and aroma, but pumped up in alcohol, this is kind of an American-British hybrid. Its saving grace is that its alcohol is not overly hot, yet at the same time it's the alcohol that brings it down. A higher mash temperature could easily soften this beer and leave it a little bit more rounded, but as-is it's simply average.

Serving type: bottle

06-21-2008 16:56:17 | More by NeroFiddled
Photo of Wasatch
Wasatch

Utah

4.03/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks goes out to ybnorml for this brew.

750ml Swing Top

Poured into a tulip a very nice dark amber color, very nice carbonation, very nice two-finger creamy off-white head, which did leave some nice sticky lacing a small islands. The nose is malty, nice little touch of whiskey, slight figs, plums, raisins, maybe some vanilla, and some caramel. The taste is big and malty, very nice touch of whiskey, dark fruits, some nice sweetness (vanilla), and caramel. Medium body. The alcohol is hidden pretty well though, but the whiskey does sneek through. Very drinkable though. This is my first from Pennichuck, and it is pretty tasty. Thanks Wayne.

Serving type: bottle

05-14-2008 01:36:03 | More by Wasatch
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Pompier from Pennichuck Brewing Company, Inc.
81 out of 100 based on 31 ratings.