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Stormwatcher's Winterfest - Pelican Pub & Brewery

Not Rated.
Stormwatcher's WinterfestStormwatcher's Winterfest

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

158 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 158
Reviews: 83
rAvg: 4.15
pDev: 8.67%
Wants: 124
Gots: 45 | FT: 4
Brewed by:
Pelican Pub & Brewery visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
English Barleywine |  13.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Shaw on 10-12-2003

32.1 degrees Plato
Alcohol: 13.0% by volume
Bitterness: 31 IBU
Color: 54 SRM
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 158 | Reviews: 83
Reviews by GClarkage:
Photo of GClarkage
4.47/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

06/07/09- Shared at a recent tasting.

Presentation- 22oz bottle, not sure of the release date. Poured into my Orval chalice.

Appearance- Cola-like deep brown colored pour. About a 3/4 inch head on the pour with a large bubbled head. Leaves some light chunks of lace and other markings behind.

Smell- A good amount of tart grapefruit pith and pine hop aromas. A bit of toffee caramel as well as a decent hit of alcohol.

Taste- Hopped up pretty well. Caramel malt is pretty deep and roasted with a toffee flavor. Alcohol can be detected, but works pretty good with the mix of flavors. Also a bit of dark fruit notes as well.

Mouthfeel- Pretty heavily carbonated with some burnt malt and hops in the aftertaste.

Drinkability- Not a bad barleywine, but not really English style IMO. Worth trying though...interesting mix of flavors.

More User Reviews:
Photo of ehammond1
4.27/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle (2011)

Acquired via online purchase

(Aged for 1 year)

Dark brown and dark amber in color with very little visible carbonation. This is darker than most barleywines and leaves very little, almost zero, stick down the glass. Still, a pretty color.

Good amounts of dark fruit character in the aroma--lots of fig and chocolate-covered raisins. There's some sweetness, caramel and toffee, along with some bread and alcohol.

A delicious barleywine. The amount of dark fruit character present in this beer is quite astounding and surprising, along with some moderate chocolate notes, bread, and booze. Complete. While clearly a big, high-ABV, this is incredibly drinkable.

Medium bodied with moderate carbonation.

One of my absolutely favorite (non barrel-aged) barleywines.

Photo of Thrasher
3.35/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Sampled at the 2003 Holiday Ale Festival, Portland, OR. A dark reddish cider color, hardly-there head. Lots of malts but hops are there from the beginning. Supposedly this beer employed 2 kinds of unusual hopping techniques: mash hopping and first wort hopping. This creates a subtle yet indelible hop flavor that is there from the very beginning. Some smokiness, and a smooth non-carbonated mouthfeel. This beer is pretty good but in the end it's a bit flat and cloying.

Photo of Metalmonk
4.47/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy (stormy?) dark brown with an amber/ruby hue, lots of bubbles swirling up to the light tan head that retains incredibly well, considering the high ABV.

The aroma, or, should I say THE AROMA, is exactly what I want in a barleywine. Big bold maltiness, hyper-graham cracker, ultra-juicy plum, lots of caramel/toffee, big vanilla, and curiously, a kind of peaty edge that I'd expect in a hi-test Scotch Ale.

Flavor offers as much depth as the aroma, with a chocolatey sweetness peeking through. Dark fruit notes are smacked around by a soothing alcohol warmth, tons of toffee and vanilla extract. The alcohol is felt but doesn't overstay its welcome...an achievement at 13+ %. If I have only one criticism, it's a tiny one: flavor tilts slightly toward some badass Scotch Ale as much as it does a barleywine. Maybe that's because this isn't an overhopped/ultra-hopped barleywine. Big as it is, the hops are kept in the background. Very interesting.

The mouth is big, thick and chewy...slightly sticky too. This was already a sipper, but the bigness and thickness of the body make it even more so. Never thought I'd say it, but this could've probably been an even better beer if the mouth were a little less like pure melted chocolate.

On par with most of the Pelican beers I've tried (most of them on tap at the brewpub), and that means it's a superb bit of craftsmanship. It's survived a year in the bottle quite well. Could use even more aging, no doubt. So I'm sipping this on a brisk, sunny, beautiful autumn afternoon, with nothing but fall's colors around...and I'm wishing I were standing on the beach in a mighty wind watching a storm off the pacific coast in Pacific City. It happens. Wish I could find this beer without travelling cross-country to get it.

Photo of Sammy
3.53/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thank you for bringing to our barleywine night, Derek. 2006 is entered on the label. Big off-white head with a cheese appearance and bubbles. Some lace seen. The smell is sour and barleywine. The taste is considerably on the sour side, it is intentional. Primarily it tastes like an average barleywine.Somewhat disapointing for a barleywine with some ageing. Mt. Hood hops. 31 IBU.

Photo of augustgarage
4.42/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2010 vintage. Poured from a 22oz bomber into my Spirit Sippers snifter.

Very dark carmine body with faint crimson highlights and a lasting earth yellow collar and surface slick. Rich sandy lacing and fast running legs.

Immense yet subtle aromatics suffused with dark fruit, leather, tobacco, toffee, brown sugar, leaves, loam, and light (English?) hops. Deep multi-layered malty skeleton.

Intense black bread, char, plums, prunes, apricots, figs, demerara rum, clove, violets, and more. Hefty alcohol kick and mild bitterness offset the roasty astringency and sweetness. Bitter chocolate, burnt sugar, and plenty of toast in the finish. Remarkable depth.

Medium-full bodied, slick, and faintly oily with mild carbonation.

One of the best domestic examples of the style...happy to sample this first before cracking one of barrel aged versions. Perfectly suited for the environment it was produced in...takes me right back to the Oregon coast.

Photo of dirtylou
3.95/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz bomber, split

appearance: served in my great lakes chalice - dark muddy garnet, cream mocha head

smell: rich and decadent - heavy english malt, leather, tobacco, brown sugar and dark fruit

taste: a prototypical english barleywine - syrupy caramel malt, caramelized brown sugar, pipe tobacco, fresh leather, booze, toffee, some earth english hops in the finish

mouthfeel: rich and sweet, full-bodied with a flat finish

overall: an english barleywine for the sipping - worth a try if you stumble across it

Photo of cjacobsen
4.32/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(A) Really dark. Ruby when held up to the light. No head. Slightly carbed and produces head when stirred up.

(S) Very sweet. Plum. Fig. Booze. Medium and light malts. Some dark cherry.

(T) Sweet. Plums and dark fruits hit up front. Some hops after the middle of the taste. Somewhat bitter but not as much booze and I would have thought.

(M) Oily but dry. Medium body. Ends dry.

(O) Very nicely done barleywine. I can definitely see this being a great base for Mother of All Storms....which I want to try.

Photo of nickd717
4.19/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle of the 2008 vintage (or "maltage" seems more appropriate - wine sucks).

Pours a somewhat cloudy reddish-amber-brown color with a small light tan head sitting on top.

The aroma is excellent, with big-time caramel and toffee malt evident, along with a considerable dark fruit presence, toasty biscuit, and some oak despite the non-bal aging of this beer.

The flavor is very complex and well-done. It has the same oakiness as Perfect Storm, albeit to a lesser extent. Seems this beer has inherent oakiness in it even without being -bal aged. The malts are very toffeeish, not too sweet, with fig, prune, and date notes.

Medium-full bodied with a smooth mouthfeel despite mild tannins.

Great barleywine overall. Had this side-by-side with Perfect Storm '09 and it was tough to pick a winner.

Photo of Alieniloquium
3.9/5  rDev -6%
look: 2 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle poured into a Swamp Head snifter. 2011 bottle courtesy of a very generous Hopsbreath.

Appearance - Deep garnet body with barely any bubbles. No lacing and just a couple of wisps of life atop the beer. Tough to produce a quality looking barleywine at 13.5%.

Smell - Wonderful aroma. Caramel, raisins, plums. Huge dark fruit presence. There's quite a bit of alcohol burn in it also. Great complex aroma.

Taste - Maybe not as good, but still delicious. More caramel and toffee than the nose. The fruits are a bit lost. Boozy in the finish with an earthy hop bitterness. I think it's hops. Tough to tell.

Mouthfeel - It isn't the booze that makes this a bit sluggish to drink, it's the bitter finish. Very earthy and grassy in the end and it seems a bit out of place. That isn't to say it isn't boozy. It certainly has a bite, but not a 13.5% bite.

Overall - A really nice barleywine in terms of flavor. Just the finish that makes it a bit harsh. I've been waiting to drink this before I tried MoAS. If a bit of barreling can chip away at that finish, I would be most pleased.

Photo of richj1970
4.21/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from 22 oz bomber into snifter. Bottle dated 11/29/2013.

A: Deep mahogany brown with crimson undertones. Two finger dense tan head that settled to a thin ring leaving virtually no lacing.

S: Raisins, plum, caramel, cherries, brandy.

T: Raisins, dates, caramel and toffee. Nice combination of fruit and malt sweetness.

M: Medium body with mild carbonation. Sweet finish.

O: Very nice barleywine. Maybe one day I will get a chance to try MOAS, but this was a solid brew.

Photo of jellikit
4.15/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: dark. Brownish small head. Small bubbles. Cola colored.
S: prunes? Molasses.
T: same as aroma. Prunes, molasses. Sweet. Alcohol. Low on the hops.
M: thick. Low carbonation. Big body.
O: great. Big. Barleywine. Solid. Strong. It's a sipper. Will buy again.

Photo of Docer
2.93/5  rDev -29.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Snagged up a 2009 release at The BeerMongers...

- Rich dark black... thin bubbly mocha head... dissipated quickly to a few stray islands.... thin ring.... viscous...

- Smells of molasses, honey.... sweet sugars... light grain and citrus hops.... like a sweet syrup.

- Flavor is much the same... like molasses and honey fermented with some water and a bit of grain and roasty barley... citrus and bitter pine hops and more syrup. I am shocked at the huge 'A' level reviews... this isn't a barleywine at all... and its a syrupy mess of a beer. Overly sweet....

- Sticky and thick... heavy bodied... sticky..

- Overall it's heavy. Super sweet... sticky... and a mess. It's really not that good... and I'd take a real barleywine over this molasses and honey mess any day. I honestly can't see and taste what people are thinking here with this brew..

Photo of SPLITGRIN
4.11/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

This is a very unique brew. Pours to a deep mahogany brown body. Head is biscuity khaki in color. The nose is very odd but attractive. The first thought that comes to mind is a fresh opened box of cheese-it crackers. I know this sounds off putting but it is very inviting and really makes you anticipate the first sip. The flavor is big and bold with tons of cracker like toasted grain tones. The hops that are usually so prevalent in a Barley wine ale play only as a balancer here. Rich and spicy on the palate and it reminds me a bit of a old ale. I had this beer on my wants list for a long time. It was a real pleasure to enjoy this spectacular brew.

Photo of Brandywine
3.95/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

2012

Appearance: Deep ruby red poured a fingers worth of a burnt sugar colored head. Big sticky alcohol legs. Tight lacing.

Smell: Cherries, dates, figs, caramel toffee sweetness, little bit of booze, raisins at the end.

Taste: Toffee sweetness with a kind of bready grain flavor. Dark fruits lie underneath. Booze here is acting as a flavor component. Dark fruits become more dominant as the beer warms. It's definitely sweet but there's an off sweet flavor that comes at the end of the tongue that's hard to identify. Raspberries, sour cherries. You can taste the toasted barley, where the sweet runs into an almost sour bitter character.

Mouthfeel: On the full side of medium. Very little carbonation.

Overall: The parts of this beer that I liked, I really liked, but the oddly sour/bitter flavor was off putting. The beer is also much thinner than I would have liked, especially for the style.

Photo of JohnGalt1
4.05/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

We opened '08 and '09 side by side with an '09 Perfect Storm a while back... reviewed from pretty good paper notes. Thanks Jeremy and Sammy.

Deep amber with a yellow head that drops leaving good sheets of lacing... nose shows quite a bit of raisin and lesser caramel... toasty elements seem to help dry it out a bit.

Flavor is nice and rich... fruity esters make me think dried cherries and prunes... a bit boozy... sorta spicy.. tobacco shows with warmth.. pretty chewy body with small bubble carbonation.

I think we all agreed the '08 was better but only by a bit... not sure on the aging potential with most English style BW's ... but I believe this one has some legs.

Thanks again buddies.

4/4/4/4.5/4

Photo of LiquidAmber
4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Gulden Draak tulip. Pours a very dark red brown amber, almost black, no head and light carbonation. Aroma of sweet and caramel malt, faint dark fruits. Fortunately, the flavor is richer, sweet, caramel and toasted malt, dark fruits. Finishes somewhat dry and quickly, with a bit of a hops kick. Medium body with some creaminess. The high ABV makes it a bit hot. A satisfactory Engilsh barleywine, but the lack of carbonation detracts from the drinking experience. Other reviews seem to have good carbonation, so I'll try this again.

Photo of spicelab
3.9/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

2011. Big thanks to MrKennedy for opening. Reviewed from notes.

Deep, rich burgundy with a rapidly dissipating saffron head that reforms nicely on swirling.

Baked toffee, brandy snap, molasses, treacle and caramelised figs.

Follows the nose but there's even less in the sweetness department which was minimal to begin with. Burnt toffee, scorched molasses, prunes, rum 'n' raisin. Unrelenting.

Quite aggressive, almost scratchy carbonation that slices through the big body but seems out of place for the style, which needs something more silky and carressing.

Awesome in its stature alone. Somewhat one-dimensional owing to the minimal sweeteness. Never thought I'd be wishing for a Barleywine to be sweeter.

Photo of claspada
3.9/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2007 Edition; once again thanks to HimerMan for offering this rarity for trade.
Pours a deep amber-red color, really dark ruby red. Small 1 finger cream head which dissipates quite rapidly.
Aromas of bready and toasted, almost roasted maltiness, with a boat ton of toffee and caramels. The bottle says there should be some floral highlights from the hops, but after 4 years I am not getting any here. Slight cocoa and alcohol emerges slightly as it warms to room temperature.
The tastes begin with full-bodied, malty, bready flavors that lead to a smooth, soft and warming finish. It has a toasted malt sweetness balanced by a mild, subtle floral/earthy bitterness in the finish, which was lacking in the aroma but emerges here. As it warms you get the same alcohol and cocoa flavors you got in the nose.
The mouthfeel is big, rich and full with medium to medium-low carbonation which is perfect for the style. There is an alcohol bite on the finish here (which I actually enjoy) that helps to dry out and balance the sweet toffee and caramel flavors and stops it from being cloying.
Overall a top top notch English style barleywine. I had really really high expectations for this based on this being the backbone for their Barrel-Aged Mother of All Storms, so I was mildly disappointed by the outcome. It was very very good don't get me wrong, but for a 4 year old barleywine their is still some alcohol heat which is surprising (but I guess it is 13% ABV) and although the flavor profile is very good, it's not mind-blowing or complex (really just caramel and toffee with no supporting dark fruitiness). Maybe it is deteriorating as well... Unfortunately, I am going to compare this and all Barleywines going forward to the Arctic Devil that I had a couple weeks back. I can see how this will be a good canvas for the MaoS that I have yet to sample (but I have a couple cellaring).

Photo of alcstradamus
4.45/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a nice ruby/brown with a small head

Aroma is light, but still has a nice caramel and nutty character

The flavor is absolutely incredible. Rich maltiness, mostly caramel and raisin. Lots of subtle flavors that blend together into a perfect melange of flavor.

The body is on the full side of medium and carbonation is perfectly low.

Overall this is one of the best barleywines I've drank, it is no surprise that this holds up so well to barrel aging and morphs into the perfect storm.

Photo of kdahnke123
3.82/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

11/29/13 Bottling poured into a snifter at cellar temperature.
A - Pours a dark amber color with a minimal amount of a reddish brown head. The head very quickly dissipated, leaving little behind.
S - Smells very malty with hints of dried fruits and a slight bourbon smell.
T - Rich malty flavor with a long rich middle and a slight tang on the finish. There is a slightly off aspect to the flavor that is hard to place
M - Very thick and mouth coating with minimal carbonation.
O - I am a big fan of English style barley wines. This one could have used a little more integration of the flavors. It was good to try but will not be repeated.

Photo of jakon
4.45/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

22oz. bottle purchased for $12.99 on 7-15-7 at Tanasbourne Haggen.
(2006)

I thought about saving this one for awhile but decided to try it and see how many I might want now that I know there's plenty on the shelf.

Pours a very dark burgundy/mahogany color with an adequate roasted marshmallow head that recedes steadily while leaving zero lacing. And yes, this glass is beer clean. The yulesmith I just drank out of one of it's kin left a nice thick layer. Anyway, the aroma is malty. Kinda bready and nutty at the same time. The taste reveals more depth. I get hints of caramel, alcohol, butterscotch, various nuts, fig and other flavors I'm unable to identify. Upon warming, the alcohol really comes out. First sip was at proper serving temp, but the alcohol was almost non-existent. I wondered if this was really as big as advertised. But now I know. It definitely is. I initially criticized the mouthfeel for a lack of carbonation, but soon became aware of the thick syrupy body that I love so much with these huge barley wines. This is well-crafted and all the components seem to be enjoying a nice harmony. I can't knock it. It got better with each sip until I realized I now need to go purchase a few more before the shelf is empty. Considering its strength, this brew is off the charts as far as drinkability is concerned. This beer should be spectacular for years.

Photo of jlindros
4.22/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

New Year's Eve, and just after a couple decent sized snow storms blew past. Here is the 2010 vintage thanks to oregone for this beer. Absolutely loved MoaS, and usually a big fan of aged Englaish barleywines, so hope this is good.

Pours a light fizzy 1/3 finger head that fades fairly quickly as the big bubbles pop but normal for a 13% abv beer, over a dark molasses colored beer, very little mahogany light streaming through, and despite not enough head for lacing there are some nice legs running down the sides.

Nose is very powerful, and I could smell it on the pour. Lots of dark malts, an aged malt goodness almost like a well done old ale, caramel, molasses, little syrupy, etc. Quite nutty, and plenty of toffee, like a nut covered toffee candy. Quite toasty as well, a little bready and chewy with the toastiness, and an overall deep malt sweetness and just that nice aged malt aroma.

Taste is similar to the nose, tons of malts, and various malts. Starts with a toasty malt, light bready and reddish like malts, leading into plenty of caramel and molasses flavors again. Then the dominant big time nutty and toffee flavors, so much of the two, and a little biscotti. Sweetness is quite a bit but not over sweet, even for me, which is also fairly syrupy and rich. This also leads into the booze, warming and slightly tingly booze, but doesn't feel nearly like 13% as it's balanced well by the sweet malts. It also brings light aged malt flavors, again like an old ale, as well as just hints of earthy hops and some light bitterness. Finish is where the bitterness comes out a bit but still light, with lots of lingering sweeteners, starting with an interesting coffee syrup flavor, tons more toffee and nutty flavors, molasses, caramel, and candy biscotti all lingering on the sticky semi sweet finish.

Mouth is full bodied, rich, syrupy, surprising fluffy carbonation, and some warming booze that doesn't nearly hit the 13%, until it's on the way down my throat (and after I'm feeling it halfway through the beer).

Overall quite a nice beer. I'm a fan of English Barleywines, especially when aged a couple years, so this should have been pretty good unless they screwed it up, and they didn't. Lots of malts that are nice, mostly toffee and nutty flavors, nice caramel and toasted malts as well, and a molasses and biscotti like flavors in there too. Nice light bitterness mostly on the back end, and soft aged malts. Booze is hidden fairly well, and it will get me buzzed quickly.

Photo of vkv822
4.18/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

22oz : Teku
2010 vintage.

Pours a very dark brown with a yellowy, toffee colored head.

Has a rich aroma of dark fruits and leather. There are notes of boozy, dark fruit, leather, slight caramel malts with a nice warming alcohol finish.

Medium body, with mild, foamy carbonation.

An extremely well done English Barleywine. It's been a long time sense I've visited this one and it definitely motivates me to pick up a few more bottles.

Photo of AgentZero
4.1/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2007 vintage shared by Alex.

A - Amber colored beer with a bit of off-white head that left some decent lace and stick on the sides of my plastic cup. Booo, plastic.

S - Smells somewhat sweet, with some brown sugar and toffee and a little bit of resin to balance it out. Some decent earth tones.

T - I actually liked this one better than the Arctic Devil we drank. Toffee, brown sugar, mild dark fruit, slight bit of booze, a little bit of bitterness on the end. Very smooth, not too sweet.

M - Medium bodied, little sticky, solid carbonation.

O - A good beer, I suspect the age has smoothed it out a little bit as this was very good and easy to drink.

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Stormwatcher's Winterfest from Pelican Pub & Brewery
92 out of 100 based on 158 ratings.