1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Bligh's Barleywine Ale - Dry Dock Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Bligh's Barleywine AleBligh's Barleywine Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
97
world-class

422 Ratings
THE BROS
95
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 422
Reviews: 108
rAvg: 4.38
pDev: 10.05%
Wants: 548
Gots: 131 | FT: 15
Brewed by:
Dry Dock Brewing Co. visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
English Barleywine |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: waltonc on 10-08-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Bligh's Barleywine Ale Alström Bros
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Ratings: 422 | Reviews: 108 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of kidlowell
1.75/5  rDev -60%

kidlowell, Mar 13, 2014
Photo of atomictyler
2/5  rDev -54.3%

atomictyler, Jan 13, 2012
Photo of CityofBals
2.25/5  rDev -48.6%

CityofBals, Sep 12, 2013
Photo of ygtbsm94
3/5  rDev -31.5%

ygtbsm94, Dec 09, 2013
Photo of cadaugherty
3/5  rDev -31.5%

cadaugherty, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of drydockmatt
3/5  rDev -31.5%

drydockmatt, Jan 29, 2012
Photo of TheDudeRules
3/5  rDev -31.5%

TheDudeRules, Dec 21, 2011
Photo of Gonzoillini
3.25/5  rDev -25.8%

Gonzoillini, Feb 16, 2013
Photo of RodneyX
3.25/5  rDev -25.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours nicely with a good head and some lace. Smell is like bread, kind of strange. There is too much heat on this one at 10% and the wood is harsh, makes it hard to drink a lot of it. This was okay but I don't know why it is getting the ratings it is.

RodneyX, Jan 03, 2012
Photo of jrallen34
3.43/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

bottle... once again, hopefully the hype train stops in Chicago for another pretty average beer... dark caramel with a whispy tan head, nice coloring... the aroma is pretty good but too much oak dominates, some really nice sweet malt but has a wort or bready character to it, a bit of molasses as well... the taste is all over the place, and just weird, very syrupy, lots of oak and alcohol, ok for a 3-4 ounces but after that tough to drink... might be great in time, now its merely a slightly above average ba bw

jrallen34, Nov 27, 2011
Photo of DenverHopHead
3.47/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap; poured into a snifter.
Appearance - a caramel brown, little to no head and that leads to no lacing.
Smell - some sweetness, spice, a tangy alcohol.
Taste - sweet bourbon, some cognac, a hint of brown sugar, cinnamon and spice.
Feel - this is a sweet, smooth barley wine. The ABV is present, but very welcomed!
Overall - an excellent brew, but certainly overrated, especially considering the price point.

DenverHopHead, Mar 20, 2014
Photo of GRG1313
3.5/5  rDev -20.1%

GRG1313, Dec 20, 2013
Photo of rmalinowski4
3.5/5  rDev -20.1%

rmalinowski4, Jan 15, 2012
Photo of BDeibs
3.5/5  rDev -20.1%

BDeibs, Dec 18, 2013
Photo of illidurit
3.5/5  rDev -20.1%

illidurit, Jun 25, 2013
Photo of ericchalifour
3.5/5  rDev -20.1%

ericchalifour, Aug 03, 2014
Photo of Jones153
3.5/5  rDev -20.1%

Jones153, Jul 28, 2014
Photo of doughanson78
3.5/5  rDev -20.1%

doughanson78, Mar 03, 2012
Photo of CruisaC
3.53/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to arrogantB for this trade. 2012 release

Pours standard deep caramel barleywine-ish color; unfortunately nary a head of foam forms

Smell is malt heavy with a touch of whiskey/oak coming through.

Taste is very biscuit malty. I was hoping for something more complex. Very one dimensional to me. Very little barrel coming through.

Mouthfeel has more carbonation than the initial pour clued me in on, but still left me wanting a bit more.

Overall a letdown, glad to have tried it on a random Sunday night watching the Walking Dead with my brother; otherwise I'd have been more disappointed. Still glad to tick it off the list of BA barleywines.

CruisaC, Feb 18, 2013
Photo of zhanson88
3.56/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Bligh's pours out a moderately viscous murky auburn color. Not much in the way of carbonation it appears, as very little head forms on the pour, which is remedied by vigorous swirling of the glass. So there is a bit of carbonation, if not much.

Smell: Toasted caramel, coconut, dark fruits, vanilla, and a hint of whiskey. Seems to be nicely integrated, and certainly complex. While it's complex, it does seem to be lacking a certain richness that the best English Barleywines I've sampled have had. But still, good.

Taste: Toffee, toasted coconut, hints of whiskey soaked raisin, and vanilla. Again, nicely complex, but really lacking a certain something to push it over the top. Flavors are a bit muted for me.

Mouthfeel/Overall: Medium mouthfeel, which seems about right, but almost devoid of carbonation. Certainly a miss there. Overall, some very nice flavors and a good base beer, but for me the lack of carbonation really retracts from most of the other aspects. Add a bit of carbonation and I like it a lot more.

zhanson88, Jan 03, 2014
Photo of mulder1010
3.63/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bomber poured into a Great Divide tulip (blatant homerism)

Thanks to Phillyswear for the bottle

A-- Poured and settled a dark cola color. Lots of ruby tints when shown to light. Active carbonation on pouring but not much in the head department. Decent ringed light brown collar, but really at best a short lived light brown film. Not much more really on swirling the beer.

S-- Fig, Carmel, Oak, Vanilla, Coconut and slight bits of alcohol. Reminds me a bit of a dessert here in Australia called sticky date pudding. Just softer in the nose than I expected, or hoped.

T-- Rich Carmel, Fig, Vanilla, and coconut. Alcohol much more noticeable in the taste.

M-- Slightly higher carbed than I would want but it does work. Higher medium bodied. Flavors stay pretty consistent all the way through on this. Just slight bits of tannins here and there but this also a bit boozy in the finish. Drinks bigger than what is is.

O-- Good beer. Not great. A little hot and much preferred the taste and feel as opposed to the soft nose with this. Reminds me a lot of a sherry and this this will develop into something really good as it feels bigger than what it currently is.

mulder1010, Nov 30, 2011
Photo of kojevergas
3.64/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

2012 vintage. Acquired a few weeks ago at a liquor store in Parker, Colorado. Reviewed live. 10% ABV confirmed. 1 pint 6 fl oz brown glass bottle with an elegant label and a foilved over pressure cap served into an EKU 28 snifter in me gaff in high altitude Castle Rock, Colorado. Expectations are high given its current rating.

Served after a brief period of rest following its removal from the refrigerator, and allowed to warm further over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

Paired with honey pretzel braids.

A: Pours a half finger beige colour head of fair cream, decent thickness, and bad retention (~40 seconds) - though it's excusable for the 10% ABV. A ring floater remains for about a minute after the head fully recedes. Body colour is a very dark caramel-brown; it's understated but I wouldn't call it dull. Its lack of transparency coupled with its opaqueness prevents it from being vibrant. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. Overall a spot-on appearance for the style.

Sm: Whiskey is definitely the first thing I get, followed by oak. Caramel and toffee make an appearance. Hints of vanilla lend it more of a bourbon feel than a whiskey. Toffee. Biscuit malts. It's actually surprisingly restrained in terms of its malt character for a barleywine. Buried fruit. I search for coconut but don't find it. Rich in fermented sugars. I don't detect any substantial hop character - a positive attribute in terms of my personal preferences for the style. An understated, subtle aroma of above average strength. No real yeasty character is detectable, but there may be a hint of alcohol heat.

T: Oak and coconut hit me first and last throughout. Some bourbon-esque vanilla, again feeling more like bourbon than whiskey. Caramelized malts comprise the unobtrusive foundation, but never feel out of place. Subtle hints of toffee throughout. Some dark fruit on the climax combines with the vanilla for a satisfying effect. A bit of alcohol heat right on the finish, to its detriment. No yeast character at all. A bit imbalanced, but well put together for the most part. It's certainly a sipper. A good build for a barleywine. The taste is certainly more rich and malty than the aroma. I like it, but admittedly I expected better.

Mf: Undercarbonated, bordering on flat. Smooth and wet. Good thickness. Lacks sufficient palate presence to adequately support the flavour profile. A beer this refined in taste demands a better executed mouthfeel.

Dr: She's a sipper, alright. I'll have trouble killing this bottle by myself, but I reckon I'll enjoy doing so for the most part. Still, I do wish I had a friend about to help me put her down. The ABV needs to be hidden far better than this. Overall, it's a solid barleywine from one of Colorado's best breweries, but I expected far better given its current ratings. I'm hoping this will pick up with age, and I'm not unhappy to have a couple more bottles on hand, but I have to admit I'm disappointed. Worth picking up if you haven't tried it, but I won't be grabbing any in future years unless I hear it's gotten better.

High B

It does pick up slightly as it warms, but not substantially. I recommend serving it slightly chilled.

I wouldn't pair this with anything fancy. Pretzels did me just fine.

Seems like a good candidate for aging.

*I had to tweak the appearance rating to give this the letter grade I needed to. This helps keep my reviews fair and consistent. Please see my profile page for more information.

---
2013 vintage. Truncated notes. Reviewed side by side with a King Henry.

Deep dark red body with a plump khaki colour head. Poor (~1 minute) retention. Looking pretty good for a barleywine. I'd say it looks about as good as the King Henry.

More overtly fruity than King Henry. Otherwise, it's more reticent. Seems too sweet judging from the aroma alone. It seems like it's built from a weird mixture of amber malts and English malts. There's some marshmallow, but I remember there being more in the 2012 vintage.

Marshmallow, caramel, amber malts, English malts. I really crave a good toffee presence. Any barrel notes are quite reticent; where's the whiskey? I like that there's no whiskey spice, but I'd like some oak or vanilla or something.

Bar none, King Henry is a vastly superior barleywine, but I'm glad I did this side by side. I'll probably revisit Bligh's in the future, but I'm unconvinced it's world class. She's a sipper, but she's enjoyable.

Low B

kojevergas, Dec 26, 2012
Photo of maximum12
3.65/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Blakelive784 for sending this much-anticipated bottle along a bit ago. I've only sampled this next to a bevy of the world's best barleywines, so I was eager to take a swing at it solo. 22 oz. bottle with a minimalist, retro label & gold foil split with my wife.

Pour is a dull, lifeless brown, like a clay tennis court after a five-hour match split in half by a thunderstorm. The smell brings me close to nirvana: some of the biggest caramel noodles I've experienced, dipped in vanilla & painted with seventeen layers of bourbon. A dose of brown sugar completes the aromatic masterpiece.

Bligh's Barleywine is liquified caramel with a base of bourbon. Almost literally. Caramel melts the top layer off my palate's face, backed up by lick after lick of bourbon. Booze, sweetness, brown sugar course through mid-palate; then the alcohol really kicks in & alcoholic caramel squares dominate the end. Lack of carbonation weights this one down & hurts the drinkability. A bit of spritz would have been nice.

Now I understand why this beer underwhelmed against the likes of Mother of All Storms, King Henry, & other heavyweights: a pretty good barrel-aged barleywine, but just not in the same weight class.

maximum12, Jul 27, 2013
Photo of womencantsail
3.68/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks for sharing this, Javi.

Pours a dark amber/copper color with a fairly sizable off-white head. Smells overwhelmingly of dark fruits such as prunes, plums, and raisins. There is a bit of whiskey and vanilla on the back end. Sweet caramel and brown sugar add to the cloyingness. The flavor is also intensely sweet. Heavy on the brown sugar, caramel, and toffee notes. Lots of dark fruit flavors with only minimal whiskey/barrel notes. Medium bodied with surprising carbonation for the style.

womencantsail, Dec 08, 2011
Photo of tectactoe
3.75/5  rDev -14.4%

tectactoe, Mar 31, 2014
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Bligh's Barleywine Ale from Dry Dock Brewing Co.
97 out of 100 based on 422 ratings.