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Wulver - Thirsty Dog Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.

172 Reviews
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 172
Hads: 1,414
Avg: 4.35
pDev: 24.14%
Wants: 268
Gots: 377 | FT: 90
Brewed by:
Thirsty Dog Brewing Company visit their website
Ohio, United States

Style | ABV
Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy |  12.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Spider889 on 12-16-2011

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Wulver Alström Bros
Reviews: 172 | Hads: 1,414
Photo of HipCzech
4.23/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

(From notes, tasted 01-Dec-14):
On tap at Torst (Brooklyn, NY), 5 oz poured into a wine glass. Clear, light cola brown color. Molasses, sweet malty aroma. Big malty, nutty, lightly toasted taste without deeper burnt notes; vanilla, barrel notes. Relatively light bodied given full flavors; low carbonation.

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Photo of Spider889
4.24/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On draft at Bodega. I missed this at the Blues and Brews fest in Akron this sumer. Glad it made another appearance.

Served in the huge Bodega tulip. I'd have much preferred a snifter but, hey, it ain't a pint.

The color is nice and dark - I imagine a dark scotch ale with the added darkness of charred barrel ageing. Head is short lived. Not really getting any lace here.

The aroma is damn inviting friends. Rich caramel and toasted bread wafts up, as does smooth, sweet bourbon. Vanilla and aged, soggy oak. A bit damp and gritty with notions of cocoa powder. Sweet and satisfying.

The flavor lives up to the bar set by the great aroma. Very sweet bourbon is both prominent but never overwhelming or boozy. Toffee and fruity alcohol and yeasty esters add the depth of fig and raisin.

Lower carbonnation. Medium bodied. A sipper with a slight warming effect. Overall a great brew by Thirsty Dog.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
4.24/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a bottle into a snifter, the beer is a deep, vibrant, ruby-tinted caramel coloring with a halo of white head. Aromas of rich caramel, heavy booze overtones, apple, vanilla, molasses, wood spice, and earthy highlights. Flavors are extremely rich and heavy, with a solid dose of caramel, toffee, molasses, smoky highlights, wood spice, heavy booze overtones that build a solid warmth as you drink, and highlights of peat and earth. Very rich and very heavy, with a rich caramel, toffee, and boozy aftertaste. The finish is smooth, slick, and with a lingering booze and rich candy note. This is a good beer, and for all of the big and robust characters, surprisingly drinkable.

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Photo of PittBeerGirl
4.24/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A- Body is a dark cola color. When held up to the light one can see that it is a dark, muddy brown. Pours with a 2-3 finger foamy tan head that slowly fades to a thin collar.

S- Overall nose impression is sweet and boozy. Bourbon, vanilla, oak, molasses, caramel. These notes a very balanced. Definitely a good barrel aged scotch ale nose.

T- Upfront is a dark fruity flavor-plum and raisin perhaps. There is a mild caramel backbone. The finish is much more in line with the style with a lot of bourbon flavor, a hint of oak, a hint of vanilla, and some molasses. A slight alcohol heat lingers on the palate as well as a hint of dark fruit.

M- Heavy body with a sticky/chewy mouthfeel and medium carbonation. Only a mild alcohol astringency is noticable

O- Overall this is a good BA scotch ale. The dark fruit notes are a bit atypical and give this scotch ale hints of Belgian dark ale. This brew doesn't hide the booze-but it certainly isn't off putting either. I'd like the beer to taste more like it smells. On a side note-my husband absolutely thinks this beer is exceptional.

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Photo of stephenjmoore
4.24/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Big thanks to Mportnoy for this extra!

A- Settles into the glass with a very dark brown body and a foamy cream-colored head. Some carbonation bubbles can be seen around the edges of the glass, rising from the body.

S- The nose is fantastic. Oak, coconut, caramel malts, hints of toast, slight hints of vanilla and burnt sugar.

T- Not as sweet as I would have thought. Lots of smooth caramel malt with influences from the bourbon barrel. Some toasted oak, hints of vanilla, a little bit of sugary sweetness towards the end.

M- Very smooth, incredibly easy to drink for the abv. Carbonation is medium, with a full-bodied mouthfeel.

O- A very nice barrel-aged scotch ale. The barrel works really well to add some sweetness and complex flavors to the big maltiness.

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Photo of kylehay2004
4.25/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

No head but bits of lacing on a clear copper with amber hues body. Aroma of oak, wet towels, bourbon, caramel, red wine and molasses. Flavor follows with an excellent complex mixture including notes of vanilla, caramel, bourbon and oak with a nice balance between sweetness and boozy bourbon although not at all overwhelming boozy. The base beer is still well represented it seems. Light carbonation and medium to full, oily body. Very nice beer. Easy to drink for the style. Would love to come across this one again.

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Photo of Beertracker
4.26/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Wulver pours up with ample effervescence creating ample lacing that creates a tightly clustered ring of beigish-white bubbles that manage to hold on above the bright burnt reddish-brown body. Alcohol certainly diminishes the head retention. The aromatics are simply divine with nuances of Four Roses Kentucky Straight Bourbon that show some spicy & sweet notes of rye, cinnamon & sweet molasses which carry a hint of roasted barley, deep caramel, cherry & vanilla. The alcohol is noted and certainly gives hints to the strength contained within. The flavor starts off very cloying at first with big hits of charred brown sugar e.g. Steen's Pure Cane Syrup before the underlying spicy hops & bourbon character help lend balance towards the very warming & slightly stealthy alcohol laded finish. Wulver is really a Werewolf in disguise, as it starts off innocent enough before unleashing the beast. Beware of the full moon or prepare for Wulver's fangs & claws to ripe out your throat!

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Photo of BEERchitect
4.26/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

If rum is too sweet... If scotch is too smoky... If bourbon is too caramelized... If beer is too soft... Then this ale is for you! It hits all the right chords and does so on the back of a surprisingly drinkable finish.

Wulver pours with a medium-dark brown beer. Hazy as it is, the ale allows for ruby, garnet and rust low-lights to penetrate; giving the ale a soft and dim glow. As its initial creamy sand-stained head forms, it swirls into something more akin to coffee creme. Its light trailing lace is kept under wrap by the beer's enormous complexity.

Its aromas and all things of boozy sweetness. Unmistakable bourbon parlays into a rummy, scotch-like scent as its spice and wood character tickle the nose. The peated ale underneath is lightly smoky, densely scented with molasses and burnt toffee, and offering hints of walnut and chocolate. As the beer warms, a light vinous woody scent of sherry pulls forth.

The taste is highly malty as its molasses and toffee seems to fold in a honey character that gives the ale a praline-type sweetness. Nutty with everything from buttery cashews to robust walnuts and pecans and almonds to boot- the earthen taste is greeted with vanilla, caramel and light coffee. A mild chocolate underpinning pulls from the toasted grains and dives right into those booze-soaked tastes of bourbon, scotch, rum, and again... light sherry wine.

Its body is full, rich and round. As the malty sweetness of the beer wraps around the tongue and saturates the taste buds fully, a more dessert-like "sipping" session seems to override the need for drinkability. But the sweetness breaks apart just enough to let the dry toasted malt textures and spicy alcohols dry the beer considerably and seems to lighten the beer in a more friendly manner.

Wulver is a near-perfect wood aged beer. Where the scotch industry has used bourbon barrels for centuries, its no surprise to find all that wood-aged character playing out on a base beer that supports the wood seamlessly.

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Photo of JakerLou
4.28/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a dark brown (like a root beer) with little to no head. Small amount of lacing.

Smells of caramel, coconut, and vanilla. It smells like it will taste sweet.

Taste is caramel, vanilla and some coconut. There is also a hint of dark fruit. I know this is a wee heavy but if I didn't know that I might think it was a Belgian Double or Quad. It doesn't have the bruised banana flavor but the dark fruit and caramel sweetness really reminds me of a Belgian.

Mouthfeel is smooth and silky.

Overall I think this is the best Wee Heavy I've tried. Founders Backwoods Bastard is good but I'd take this beer over BWB every day.

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Photo of jds16
4.29/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured from 12 oz bottle into snifter. Very little tan head which didn't last long and no lacing. Deep reddish color. Smell is bourbon, vanilla, and caramel, very enticing. Taste is caramel, vanilla, bourbon, and wood. In the first few sips bourbon dominated but as it warms up bourbon starts taking a back seat to the other flavors. Sweet, but not cloying. Sticky and chewy with just a prickle of carbonation.

Overall, a great sipper. Not for a long night of drinking, but perfect for staying in on a cold, winter night. I will go out of my way to get more of this beer.

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Photo of jbaker67
4.29/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Brown pour with a tan head. The aroma has some strong bourbon notes with a lot of maple, vanilla and peat malt character. The flavor is similar. The Scotch and peat notes come through up front, but are complimented by a heavy dose of bourbon character. I get a lot of maple, oak, vanilla and whiskey notes that really add to the base beer. Thick mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

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Photo of Bung
4.3/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12 oz. a deep mohoghanny pour, just a ring of off white bubbles.

Aroma, solid malty caramel, vanilla and some bourbon char.

Taste, more raisin and prune to go with the heavy caramel maltyness and vanilla oak barrel. A nice toasted malt with some chocolates in the finish.

Probably mid bodied, coats well enough though with a lower fine carbonation. No alcohol hear anywhere. Almost unbelievable that it is that high an abv.

One of the better brews I've had in a while. Weakness being this slight thinness, but drinks very easy. For the style this is great, For the price probably only a one time try though. Glad I picked this up before the fourth of July going through Ohio.

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Photo of dvmin98
4.3/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Wow, that is one sweet SOB. Barrel is really prevalent, but man, the sweetness takes this b*tch to a whole new level. And the ABV is VERY noticeable. Tasted like liquor at times. Also, it got sweeter as it warmed up. I loved the first few sips, then the sweetness started to get a bit much. Glad I shared it with a buddy because it would have been too much for me.

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Photo of charlzm
4.3/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Consumed January 24th, 2014 from a bottle obtained in Cleveland, Ohio in May, 2013. Poured into a hybrid tulip/goblet.

Beer is a clear dark garnet when held to light. Almost no head from a standard pour: just a little ring of light tan foam that clings to the sides.

Aroma - mild bourbon and sweet, melanoidin maltiness.

Flavor is similar to the aroma: sweet juicy malts up front segue into warming bourbon. Vanilla fills in the cracks. Delicious. Bourbon barrel aging a wee heavy has to be one of the best ideas ever.

Mouthfeel is warming almost to the point of hot. Slightly thick and slightly chewy but the lightness of the beer works very well with what could have been an oppressively heavy flavor. Nicely done.

Best wee heavy I think I've ever had.

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Photo of John_M
4.3/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

The beer pours a fairly dark brown color with light lacing and minimal retention,. This beer has the look of a beer that has seen considerable barrel aging. The nose is pretty glorious, as I pick up considerable bourbon, butterscotch, light toffee and a hint of brown sugar and chocolate. The flavor profile replicates the nose pretty closely in this sweet, rich beer. Mouthfeel is interesting. There's a lightness to this beer on the palate that is surprising, given the abv. The beer delivers plenty of flavor otherwise, and the alcohol is very well integrated into the flavor profile. I noticed the beer's strength mid way through the glass, but you really don't pick up any heat or booziness on the palate.

Delicious beer. One of the best things I can recall having from Thirsty Dog.

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Photo of Slatetank
4.3/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12oz brown bottle with foil wrapped neck poured chilled in a stout glass.

The color is dark cocoa brown with thick rapidly falling head with fine bead with spots of lace that sticks and clarity is translucent. The smell has intense bourbon in the nose with some vanilla elements and light custard-like sweet caramel creamy scent with light toasted grain and yeast with bready quality and mild alcohol and sweet woody accent. The feel has a thick body up front with moderate carbonation and light wooody texture with gentle sweet feel in the middle and gentle alcohol w/ slightly thick body and spice element as it finishes.

The flavor brings a lot of malt with moderately woody flavor and light caramel with buttery toffee-like taste with slight toasted character and mild warming flavor from bourbon in the background. The taste has a good cohesive sweetness with barrel blended well into the base and nicely balanced malt with scotch ale flavor smooth yet still strong as it finishes more on the sweet side. Overall this is a great mix of scotch ale with bourbon in an almost seamless combo -this is like a match made in heaven with malt complexity enhanced nicely by the woody barrel aging.

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Photo of Justin_Neff
4.31/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Dark brown. Fizzy bubbles form up and settle quickly. Leaves small silky ring around outside.

S: Upfront strong bourbon. Vanilla. Caramel. Tons of sweet malt. Almost has a smell of root beer or coca cola.

T: The bourbon is strong upfront. Sweet caramel, vanilla, and hazelnut tones balance wonderfully. A bit of booze.

M: Full body. Nice boozy warmth. Creamy.

O: I was completely surprised by this one. It was my first Thirsty Dog experience, and it was a good one. I'm a pretty harsh critic of this style, as its one of my favs, but this definitely delivered.

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Photo of CFHMagnet
4.32/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A word to those who read reviews before pouring: Pour heavily. I only started pouring aggressively halfway through, and still got less than half a finger of head. This rapidly disappeared, leaving me with a rich ruby-brown body. Lace is absolutely missing.

This beer smells like bourbon. Beneath the bourbon, I get notes of vanilla and wood. I think I'm also getting caramel and malt, but I can't clearly smell it through the bourbon.

Vanilla starts at the beginning. This goes into a maltiness, which breaks through into a woodiness. Molasses comes in with the bourbon, with the vanilla just growing to a crescendo with a strong combined finish with the molasses. As jarring as the bourbon aroma is, that is how smooth the flavor is.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied. It is surprisingly very smooth the whole way through. It leaves just the faintest residue at the back of the throat. Carbonation is just right- subdued.

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Photo of NathanBunn20
4.33/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

A - dark rich brown color, like a stout. S - nutty hint, strong coffee stout aroma. Hint of alcohol. T - tasted like a stout with a smack of yummy bourbon at the end. M - Thick and rich, no complaints. O - about what I expected, not gonna have to drink to many of these to enjoy a good night.

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Photo of KornWallace
4.33/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Date: 4/26/14
Location: Hoptron Brewtique
Glassware: Tulip

Appearance: Black to Brown allowing colors to reach in and illuminate the beer. Some opaqueness. The beer leaves some cascading after pouring a half finger size off white head.
Aromatics: Big Bourbon head with strong, strong flavors of vanilla, toffee, a little oak and decent alcohol. I also get big smells of chocolate sweet and semi sweet.
Flavor: The vanilla explodes on the palate with a menagerie of other sweet notes including caramel toffee a very faint molasses. There is a soft nuttiness to the beer, pecans and walnuts which adds to the just outstanding flavor. The alcohol is available without looking for it isn't "hot", giving the impression that fresh Wulver is the way to go. Such a well balanced beer.
Mouthfeel: Medium bodied. The mouthfeel is very smooth and balanced. The alcohol keeps my mouth nicely warmed as the carbonation bounces the flavors around for a while.

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Photo of dmgeng
4.33/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Again my local liquor store has surprised me; first with Siberian Night Bourbon Barrel and now Wulver!

A - Nice Ruby to brown color that is pretty clear. Bright white head with good lacing.

S - Sweet bourbon smell mixed with strong maltiness and some coconut and chocolate notes as well. Smells like very good bourbon mixed into a wee heavy as you would expect.

T - Initially the bourbon hits your tongue with the traditional vanilla, oak, toasted coconut, and raw bourbon. Then in the middle there is the most pungent caramel flavor that I have ever tasted in a beer. The caramel sweetness is so strong is just sits there and sears into your memory. It is rich and complex but sweet and boozy.

M - Moderate mouth-feel with light carbonation. Overall it is thin for 12% ABV but with the sweetness and the softness of the bourbon it doesn't seem too watered down.

Overall, this is a pretty good beer definitely worth a high mark but not close to some of the better stouts on the market. If you don't like sweet beers or bourbon this one is probably not a good choice. I would recommend it to those who have already tried their Siberian Night Barrel Aged but I don't think this should be Thristy Dog's best beer.

Glass- Snifter

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Photo of Roguer
4.34/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a small but creamy tan head. Retention is fine, settling into a thin topper. Brew is a dirty nut brown, barely allowing light through at all, with purplish-red highlights.

Boozy, port wine-like aroma. Oak features prominently, as does a smooth, vanilla hint of bourbon, all riding a wave of dark fruity malts and grains.

Flavor follows, but it's extremely delicate and balanced. Unbelievably smooth. Bourbon shows up a little up front, but rides heaviest in the back. Prunes and figs, dark bread, vanilla, and a woody, mild oak presence all around. Thick flavors. Actually a nice balancing bitterness that's easy to miss.

Extremely smooth beer, with the tiniest fizz up front, and no sting. Alcohol heat comes pretty strong on the back-end, but it doesn't seem near 12%. Medium to medium-full mouthfeel, with a long, extremely sticky finish.

This is one hell of a beer. It's incredibly dense with flavors, due in no small part, surely, to the masterful incorporation of the barrel.

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Photo of Rutager
4.34/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Buschbeer sent me this one a while back. Cheers, man!

Pours a dark amber-brown with a half finger of khaki head. Big nose of bourbon, vanilla, toffee, coconut, and oak. Taste is pretty amazing. Smooth bourbon, toffee, toasted oak, a touch of coconut, vanilla, and smokey peat. Maybe a bit of chocolate too. As far as the style goes (which isn't one of my favs), this is some really great stuff ...despite the style!

Full body, a little sticky on the lips, medium-low carbonation, nice warming in the throat but none of the boozy astringency. Great stuff!

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Photo of themind
4.34/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This beer is very good. As a comparison to Founders BWB, I have to say it falls short. For me, the bourbon is a little too pronounced in this beer and the mouth feel is a little less creamy then BWB. All in all, this is a fantastic beer that I would buy again. A sipper Wee Heavy with a nice barrel aging touch but when lined up against BWB, my bench mark...it's second best.

Bottom Line: Excellent beer.

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Photo of Cylinsier
4.34/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25


Pours a dark opaque brown, yellowish white lacing head.

Smells of scotch, oak, brown sugar and spice.

Flavor is of scotch and brown sugar over biscuit malt, light grape sweetness, and a rich woody finish.

Full body with tingly carbonation on the roof of the mouth. Warms going down.

Top notch sipper. Drinks slow and with potency. Definitely worth seeking out.

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Wulver from Thirsty Dog Brewing Company
96 out of 100 based on 172 ratings.