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Mother Of All Storms - Pelican Pub & Brewery

Not Rated.
Mother Of All StormsMother Of All Storms

Educational use only; do not reuse.

435 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 435
Hads: 1,740
Avg: 4.42
pDev: 9.05%
Wants: 1,528
Gots: 597 | FT: 72
Brewed by:
Pelican Pub & Brewery visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
English Barleywine |  14.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-25-2008

First Release - November 2008 'The Perfect Storm'
2007 Stormwatcher's Winterfest Barleywine, aged in 1998 Evan Williams Bourbon Barrels.

Second Release - October 2009 'The Perfect Storm'
2008 Stormwatcher's Winterfest Barleywine, aged in 1998 Evan Williams Bourbon Barrels.

***NOTE - Third Release - November 2010 The name was changed to 'Mother of All Storms' for trademark reasons.***

Fourth Release - November 2011

31.7 degrees Plato
Alcohol: 13.5% by volume
Bitterness: 40 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Mother Of All Storms Alström Bros
Reviews: 435 | Hads: 1,740
Photo of AKBelgianBeast
4.18/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to Alex (Masterski) for schlepping this one up from chi-town. Haven't had a bottle of this in a year or so, so it will be nice to see how it is doing.

2009 bottling.

Pours a deep mahogany color with ruby highlights, a little cloudy. Carbonation seems fine.

Nose is still quite boozy, but not as bad as it was a year ago. Also getting big dark fruit notes, a little woodiness, and some sweet caramel/toffee flavors.

Taste follows with huge caramely flavors, big dark fruit and a nice booziness that compliments the flavors and the mouthfeel. Not picking up that much wood, but a nice subtle vanilla note that i didn't pick up in the nose as well. Finish is clean, next to no bitterness, as the style calls for. Booze and thick caramel linger in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is damn close to perfect. A great chewy viscosity and ideal carbonation for the style.

"overall" uh...good? Really alot like Arctic Devil.

Really enjoyed drinking this, just like the first time around. Thanks again for packing this one up with you Alex, a shame we didn't get to it while you were still here. Great beer.

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Photo of zhanson88
4.18/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Vintage 2010.

Appearance: Pours a clear auburn color, with 1/2" of light khaki colored head. pretty nice retention time, and ultimately reduced down to a thin ring around the edges of the glass. minimal lacing.

Smell: Rich, sticky toffee, vanilla, hints of wood, medium amount of oxidation, which does not retract too much, and is reasonable considering this is 4 years old.

Taste: Toffee, caramel, sherry, wood, vanilla, and hints of oxidation, although not as prevalent as the nose. Sweet, but not too much so especially for this style.

Mouthfeel: Medium-full mouthfeel, appropriate carbonation, sticky with residual sugars. Again, good. Overall, this probably would have been better a year ago, but still has retained much of its quality. A bit oxidized, but does not affect the beer too much overall. I have a 2011 that I will open very soon and hope it has faded a bit less than this.

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Photo of Chico1985
4.17/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2011 vintage shared at a tasting, much thanks to ArchEnemyBrew for trading this. Had right before King Henry, an English Barleywine showdown!

Pours dark reddish-brown, mostly translucent. Tan head quickly turns to a ring, understandable for the beer.

Nice scent, lots of dark fruit (cherries, red grapes), bourbon, caramel. Lots of goodness without being too bourbon heavy.

Taste is actually an improvement over the smell. Big dark fruits, flavorful+mellow bourbon, caramel, brown sugar, toffee, decent hop presence, a bit of vanilla and alcohol. Standout balance with a perfect amount of bourbon vs. barleywine.

Nicely hidden ABV, carbonation is a bit high, maybe a bit thin, but not bad.

Great beer, but not mind-blowing for me. Really nice level of bourbon presence, lets the barleywine really shine through.

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Photo of gkunkle
4.17/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served in a snifter glass at the pelican feb 2012. Pours a transparent hazel color, only a slight bit of foam exists in the glass as it is brought to me, but I don't there was much to begin with considering the 13.5% ABV. Smell is of raisins, dark fruit, alcohol, smooth vanilla and caramel smell. The smell is really potent, I didn't really swirl the beer at first, and it didn't have much head but it was still very aeromatic. The taste resides in the same vein as
The smell, once again one of the most potent flavor was that of raisins/dark fruit. I let my glass warm for a good bit before I drank it, so it may have different notes when onsumes colder. I also get some notes of bourbon. This was still really hot, I'd like to get a bottle of this age for a while then try it in two years once it has mellowed. While it was very aggressive when I tried it, I thing it would come out very smoothly with some age. Mouthfeel id relatively thick, with mild carbonation. If you enjoy a boozy beer and you like those sweet dark fruit notes, give this a try.

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Photo of Treebs
4.17/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz gold foil capped bottle served in a Jacobin tulip. Split three ways. 2011 vintage.

A: Pours a dark brown, almost black with a once finger, light tan head forming on the pour. It recedes to a thin collar and doesn't really leave on lace, just some brown stick.

S: Dark fruits and malts with some burnt sugar, light barrel presence (Oak and bourbon. The barrel isn't as pronounced as I anticipated.

T: Well this took a big, complex jump. The barrel really shines here. Caramel and oak with nice sweet bourbon undertone is up front. Burnt sugars and booze soaked fruits start to mix with a mild leather and tobacco. There is slightest piney hop presence on the back end.

M: Smooth and creamy. This is heavy bodied. Slightly warming in nature with a medium to low carbonation.

O: Very delicious. One of the heavier English barleywines out there, it was very complex and the ABV was pretty well hidden save for a slight throat warming that was more than welcome. A must try for any English Barleywine fan.

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Photo of grittybrews
4.17/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2011 bottle, opened 01/2012. From South Sound tasting notes:

Poured a deep brown with a thin film of eggshell head. Big aroma with bourbon, vanilla, sugar cookie, and caramel.

Moderate-to-high carbonation and a full, creamy mouthfeel. On the sweeter side with lots of toffee up front, but there's a nice balance with notes of bourbon, vanilla, dark fruit, and boozy warmth. The finish seemed a little "off" with a vague chalky quality or something else that I couldn't pin down.

This was really tasty and I'm glad I got to try it, but it didn't quite live up to the hype.

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Photo of Dreadnaught33
4.17/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This one didn;t live up to the hype so much, but was solid...

Had a dark crimson color with a small ring of head thats a little tan tinged. The lacing didn't really stay so much.

The smell has definite leather qualities you find on many barleywines with notes of dark fruit, prunes and cereal-bran malts. I don't get a lot of bourbon character in the smell.

The taste is nice. Raisin and rum notes prevail with banana, slight bourbon sweetness + alcohol sweetness; Prunes and some dried berries as well.

Smooth feel but a little hot for me.

Drinkable for a barleywine for sure.

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Photo of pmlondrigan
4.16/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a 2012 vintage I'm drinking. Very deep brown and when the light hits it a deep red garnet color created. Initially a reddish deep brown head is formed and fades away, a thin ring remains around the class. Not surprising given the alcohol content. Aroma is jammy, with raisins. Alcohol is rather present even after two years. Some barrel presence remains. Port like. Flavor is heavy on the booze, port and sherry like flavors waft in and become heavy and prominant. Burnt caramel, raisins, and toffee mingle with the sherry and port flavors. Complex flavor, really it is, way beyond a barrel bomb. Slick, oily mouthfeel. Thick. Not cloying however. The alcohol creates a sharp and clearly burn like quality. There is no doubt this is an exceptional ale. Downsides, the alcohol keeps coming back and reminding me it is there, the burnt caramel flavor is rather strong and can be off putting, the palate is left muddy.

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Photo of emerge077
4.15/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Eric for sharing this one! Been wanting to try it for awhile...

Glisteningly clear, sanguine ruby liquid, a frothy layer of tan foam across the top, leaving plenty of spotty lacing all around the edges. A lasting skim swirls on the surface like cirrus clouds.

Pleasant aroma of dried dark fruits, vanilla, and brown sugar. Nutty and rich with some barrel traces around the edges, though fairly sweet like cotton candy.

Rich coating feel, viscous yet dry and not overly sweet. Big bourbon notes of brown sugar and vanilla, nutty malts, toffee, and spun sugar. Finish is pretty dry, and the abv is felt but doesn't seem close to what it is in reality. Masterfully aged, though a bit more depth would be nice.

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Photo of ThreeWiseMen
4.15/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Sampled this courtesy of bret27 at the central coast BA gathering last night. Thanks a lot Bret!

Poured into a snifter.

Appearance: A very small pile of khaki foam is all I got for head off the pour. It quickly dissipated to a thin halo. Body is clear, but very dark: deep reddish brown with shades of ruby. Looks very syrupy. I don't see any carbonation.

Smell: Cereal, toasted grains, caramel, bourbon, oak syrup, and brown sugar. Very sweet and sugary, but the light toastiness and hints of bourbon do a lot for this smell. Not as deep or complex as I had hoped, but unique.

Taste: Brown sugar, caramel, sweet oak and bourbon, a touch of pine, and even... roasted malt? Lots of residual sugars in here, but it's less sweet than all other English barleywines I've had (many of which I find to be unbearably sweet). Once again, unique. More complex than the aroma. I dig.

Mouthfeel: Oily, full, gritty, and awesome! Not too hot, not too dry. Lightly carbonated, syrupy, and rich.

Drinkability: English barleywine is certainly not my favorite style, but I can see why this one stands out. I think the sweetness would overwhelm me after a while, but as ~4oz. sample this was great.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
4.14/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

650 mL bottle poured into an Eclipse snifter/taster. Awesome little glass. 2012 bottle.

Appearance - Deep brown with some reddish notes. Khaki head retains nicely and settles to an island of foam and naught else.

Smell - Lots of bourbon goodness. Oak and vanilla. Deep brown sugar and caramel. Everything you'd like in a BA barleywine. Maybe some hops come through as well.

Taste - Everything the nose belies, with an intense boozy and strange aftertaste. Bourbon up front, but it doesn't linger. Lots of caramel and dark brown sugar. Hop bite in the back with an intense nutty/oaky flavor. It's kind of unpleasant and I don't get it out of other BA barleywines.

Mouthfeel - It's quite boozy and that aftertaste is harsh. Not really sure what it is.

Overall - I have had different vintages of this beer from 2010 to 2012 and all of them have had the same off-putting aftertaste. It's not awful, but it could be so much better. Not sure if it's a nutty malt or an oaky flavor, but it keeps this from being the perfect BA barleywine. That said, it's still incredible.

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Photo of spicelab
4.14/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2012. Thanks to MrKennedy for sharing. Reviewed from notes.

Brooding blood-mahogany with an airy saffron head that falls summarily to zip.

Nicely fortified notes of rum 'n' raisin, prunes, caramel, liquorice, sour cherry, cola and mild plastic.

Barrel rises to the fore in the flavours, which are impressively rich. Sticky date pudding, muscatels, toffee apple, muscovado sugar.

Full and syrupy, but in keeping with the ABV. Similarly there's decent booze heat but it's welcome.

Immense barleywine that is easier to drink than the 2011 Stormwatchers that preceded it on the evening, but also lacks a bit of complexity. Would be interested to see whether it opens up with 5+ years of age.

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Photo of Hophead717
4.14/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A 2011 bomber, split with a friend and poured into CBS snifters.

A: Dark ruby, with a thin fizzy head that dissipates instantly.

S: Molasses, bourbon, and dark fruits. Very sweet, some alcohol noticeable.

T: Upfront, dark sweet fruits attack, with a very deep flavor. Mid-sip, strong bourbon overwhelms. The finish is of a dark fruit--barely good.

M: Medium bodied, with medium-high carbonation. Works well.

O: Rough, but the composite parts are excellent. The bourbon is a little too overwhelming. I hope with some age, the flavors will mellow slightly and come together. I'll save my second bomber for a year or two and re-review!

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Photo of kjyost
4.14/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bomber shared at a recent bottle share. Poured at ~4C into 5 oz glasses. From notes.

Pours with ruby red edges and head that fluffs up and drops quickly. A smooth body with some heat. Lots of malt, dates & figs. Lighter than expected body. Minimal bourbon notes. Nice, though nothing super special & not worth the hype.

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Photo of mtomlins
4.13/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

2012 Vintage poured in Feb 2015

Pours a deep mahogany color with a thin fizzy head that dissipated immediately; no lacing. The nose was so complex, big grain nose, toasted malt, brown sugar and dried dark fruit (plums, raisins), molasses. The taste seemed to be falling apart for me, maybe a sign of the again and reminded me mostly of overripe fruits, maybe even rotting a bit. with lots of plums, brown bread dough, molasses, treacle. Lots of boozy bourbon but smooth with almost no alcohol. I would like to try this beer fresh.

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Photo of hopdog
4.12/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle acquired in trade with bitbucket (thanks!). I needed something strong to figure out Eric's bike!

2007 Vintage.

Poured a deeper brown color with a small sized off white head. Aromas of caramel, dark fruits (raisins), and toffee. Tastes of dark fruits, caramel, nutty, and toffee. Some alcohol in the finish (but not 13%).

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Photo of ChaseT
4.12/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a Riedel Vinum XL Pinot Noir glass.

Appearance: Light head that quickly fades and leaves a light ring of tan around the edge of the glass.

Smell: Molasses followed by bourbon, hints of vanilla, and smooth maltiness. Amazing.

Taste: Sweet molasses with a slightly spicy finish.

Mouthfeel: Lack of carbonation leaves something to be desired.

Overall: An excellent barleywine. There are only two slight disappointments. The first is the lack of carbonation. The second is that the taste isn't quite as good as the incredible aroma.

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Photo of BigMcLargeHuge
4.12/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This luscious brew was served up by none other than Gillard! Thanks Ryan. Pours clear deep mahogany with thin tan head. The aroma is full of dark fruitiness heading into solid boozy nose searing heat at the end of the draw. The taste is smooth and sweet with prunes, ripe plums and raisins. By midway solid heat like booze tries to take over the flavor right into the finish. Very nice stuff that could use a few years of aging to bring it into perfection.

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Photo of oline73
4.09/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a Chimay goblet. I had this at a tasting with finewinemike and Arenbeer. Was super excited to get to try this.

Appearance: Pours a mahogany color with hardly any head at all. The head goes away completely almost right away.

Smell: Very sweet with vanilla, toffee, dark fruit and some warm booze.

Taste: This is a really nice and complex barleywine. Sweet toffee, bourbon, vanilla, and dark fruit all show up. The finish has a slight bitterness to it along with some warm alcohol.

Mouthfeel: The body is on the thicker side and mildly sticky. The carbonation is mild and the finish is a bit slick.

Overall: A very tasty beer, but I wasn't as blown away as I expected to be. Great depth of flavors and I will seek it out again, but I do think I have had some barleywines I enjoy just a bit more.

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Photo of Swimsum
4.09/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this in a trade with largadeer. Thanks again. Split with a buddy and poured into a NB Globe. 2010 vintage of Mother of All Storms.

Pours out a murky medium brown. Settles into glass a murky dark brown and a very thin bubbly head emerges. The head doesn't even stay around long enough for me to pour the second glass for my buddy. A ring around the glass is the only thing that stays. Head is medium tan in color, swirling doesn't even bring a much head. No lacing is produced.

The nose certainly lets you know that this sat in bourbon barrels. Sweet bourbon, vanilla, oak, brown sugar and caramel. There is a lot of caramel in this. At times I get some dark fruit smells but can't really decide what specifically those fruits are. Very sweet smelling overall.

Much like the smell but much more of the dark fruits come through. First taste a very sweet but by the end of each sip the alcohol harshness becomes very present. The bourbon flavor itself is very pleasant and I think is done really well because it's not overpowering all the other flavors. The alcohol heat however, makes this a bit rough at times.

Medium bodied and slightly slick feeling. There is a sugary stickiness that is left on the lips after each sip. The alcohol burn is not very easy to try to ignore. Warming on the way down.

Overall this is a great tasting beer but it is a bit hot and harsh. If I had another bottle I would hold on to it for at least a full year before opening it. If you decide to open one, this is still pretty young so be prepared to taste the alcohol heat. All that said, my friend and I finished our glasses very easily and enjoyed it all the way.

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Photo of ptykozoon
4.09/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

Auburn with a red hue. No lacing, no head.

Burnt chocolate, caramilized sugar, brownie, grape, raspberry. Distinct, unique and intriguing.

Chocolate fudge, vanilla, caramel - was this brewed with hops? Cant taste them - which is fine by me.

Thick, sexy mouthfeel. Not overly dense.

Quite an amazing barleywine. Decadent, balanced and incredibly tasty - great to sit down with and slowly enjoy (but I won't do that).

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Photo of alpineclimber
4.09/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Rutager for this bottle!

Vintage 2011 served up at cellar temp.

A dark mahogany brew with a small tan head

The nose is of sweet caramelized sugar, not much else on the nose.

The taste is of bourbon, vanilla and caramelized sugar. This brew is on the sweeter side, not surprising considering the ABV is 14%. The mouthfeel is full and vinous.

Not bad when a sweeter and bigger brew is called for.

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Photo of Phelps
4.07/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into a tulip.

Pours a mostly clear, dusky burgundy, the stuff behind obscured by the darkness. Cranberry highlights. A one-finger head of tightly packed light khaki foam quickly dissipates to a thin, persistent ring leaving horizontal lines of lace.

Smells like an old ale. Cranberry, plums, leather, substantial oak, tons of vanilla, caramel, overripe oranges, earthy English hops, toffee. Well-integrated bourbon. Very smooth.

The flavor is similar: plum sauce, quickly ripening oranges, earthy hops, vanilla ice cream, caramel, oodles of toffee, some light leather. Interestingly dry finish. There's also a hefty amount of ethanol. This needs to lay down for a year or two.

Light massaging carbonation, very light fizziness. Medium-full body, nice creaminess. Heavy alcohol warmth in the throat, tongue-numbing and chest-warming. The booziness is unavoidable, but I don't mind it too much.

Mother of All Storms packs incredible flavors into an alcohol-soaked whole. It's great for how fresh it is, but a year in the cellar will make this beer phenomenal.

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Photo of steve8robin
4.07/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Got this bottle in a trade a while ago. Been away aging since. Opening this for my 300th review. Been waiting to try this one for a while now. 22oz bottle, 2009 vintage...

A: Super deep dark ruby red with an interesting mocha and blood red blend colore head that fades quickly to a lace atop the brew. Good.

S: Not hard to get good scents on this one. I get sugary malt which blends into almost a grape juice scent. Quickly following comes some breadiness and booziness with some caramel on the backend. I get some port, faints hints of cocao and chocolate, some faint butterscotch and hints of raisin. Very good.

T: Hmm, a very unique blend of flavors on this one. Very syrupy at first bringing forth flavors of some toffee, caramel, followed by a tight booze bite. I get dark fruit and hints of port in the middle with almost a cranberry breadiness on the backend. Super thick brew. It's very sweet and sticky with a warming booze bite, but not overwhelmingly sweet. The sweetness is quickly dulled by the carbonation burn. Good.

M: Full bodied and very syrupy with a thick carbonation feel. Leaves some awesome flavors on your palate. Very good.

D: Drinkability is not as good as you would've liked due to the heavy booze bite. Decent.

All in all, this brew is good, but did not blow me away. I would definitely try it again if I got the chance, but I have to say, from the hype, I am a little disappointed. Definitely try this if you like your beers boozy, BIG, and sweet, but if you don't like that, then don't worry about this one. I'm definitely a BIG beer person, so I do definitely think this is solid, but not mind blowing.

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Photo of Vdubb86
4.07/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served in a snifter

Thanks to TMoney2591 for this hard to get beer

Finally an English Barleywine comes to the party. It only took us the whole time. This pours a beautiful dark golden color with a nice head to garnish. The aroma is beautiful. A mix of golden raisin and vanilla, that I would love to spritz on my girlfriend so I could smell it all night long. The taste has that dark fruit flavor too it. There is a butterscotch, vanilla, raisin and fig flavor that can typically be found in all good barleywines. The mouthfeel actually felt a bit rough to me. As if it wasn't finished. The palate has a almost a barley husked tannin-like quality to the finish that is slightly undesireable. Overall this is still a very good beer and I would probably never turn it down.

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Mother Of All Storms from Pelican Pub & Brewery
98 out of 100 based on 435 ratings.