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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 JAXSON
4/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours chestnut brown with reddish edges and a tan head that fades into nothing. Sweet lacing. Huge aroma of malt and booze, cherries, raisins, dark fruits. Big flavor, just really big sweet English toffee, malt, bourbon. A bit of hops keeps this from being the least bit cloying. A bit hot but balanced. Huge, bold flavors. Really similar to Wooden Hell and Bullfrog Old Toad. An English-style barleywine with heavy bourbon influence that remains balanced but is quite strong and boozy. Good stuff.

Second bottle, opened 7/15/10. Pour is a fairly dark brown, not much head or lacing. Still quite boozy on the nose. Flavor has refined to a pretty nice chocolate liqueur thing going on. Of course it's malty, a bit boozy, but it's more refined now. Doesn't really have the fine pipe tobacco quality of Wooden Hell at this point. A fine beer though, and comparisons between the two are warranted.

Third bottle, from memory, amidst multiple elite barrel aged barley wines. This was also a 2009 bottle. Basically a bit more muddled with age, more chocolate and oxidation going on. Not even in the same ballpark as Wooden Hell, which was also involved. Too much barrel, too muddled, not much intersting nuance anymore. Fine, but not world class.

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Photo of ArrogantB
4/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle courtesy of Jerriko, thanks a million man! I split this with a friend and 11 ounces is too much for me but your mileage may vary. This beer is a monster. Dark brown/black like cola. Smells like whiskey barrels, caramel, pretty good. The flavor is nice but intense whiskey barrel, caramel, barleywine, and then oddly enough a cola flavor. This is a good beer but it is hot and for sipping only.

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Photo of mrandypandy
4/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle purchased at Pelican Pub & Brewery.

A - Pours a clear, deep, mahogany that borders on black. Nice ruby highlights, yet little/no head.
S - Strong bourbon notes, hints of oak and vanilla.
T - Strong bourbon. There's a hop bitterness to the finish that I hope will mellow out with time. A bit of residual malt sweetness as well as some alcohol burn.
M - Medium to full body, heavy and sweet.
D - Good. There's a bit of heat, and it's certainly a sipper, but it improves with a little bit of warmth.

Overall- Good, but a bit one-dimensional to make it elite. Bourbon treatment is well done, but needs a bit more depth. Don't trade your cellar for one, but it's worth getting, especially if you're a bourbon fan.

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Photo of MOVERTON1284
4/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2014 vintage from a large bottle share. I don't like BW in general, but this was one of the best I have had. Very balanced and not as boozy as most. Recommend

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Photo of snaotheus
4.01/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle poured at 41 F into a large chalice. Bottled on date is 12.03.13.

Pours dark brown, but translucent, with little or no head, not much carbonation. Doesn't look cloudy, just dark. Smell is mostly alcohol for me (although my wife can't smell it). I get dark fruit, a little smoke. Yeast. Overripe fruit.

Taste is hella sweet. Some alcohol, masked well by the incredible sweetness. Some smokey flavor. Woody. Something is really nice about this, but I can't nail it down with a descriptor. Maybe some slight vanilla.

Mouthfeel is silky and smooth. Overall, I like this beer, but I still can't describe why.

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Photo of NittanyBeerFan
4.03/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Trey is the hero of barrel-aged beers, as he broke out another one for our epic tasting. This bottle was from 2009, consumed on 3/28/10.

This beer is a beautiful deep ruby brown in color, capped by a dark ring of head and wispy bubbles on the surface. There is no lacing to speak of, but go figure at 13.5%.

The bouquet is characterized by the nutty malt taste that I have grown accustomed to in English barleywines, as well as a huge barrel presence. There is a lot of whiskey in the nose, and it brings with it a big alcohol warmth. The flavor comes right along those same lines. No real surprise here. The whiskey comes right out. If you don't like big whiskey flavors, keep this in the cellar for two more years...at least. The nutty maltiness is phenomenally done, and in a couple of years, the flavor will balance out and be truly amazing.

Warm and almost too boozy, but this is one incredible smooth beer. Not harsh by any stretch of the imagination. I would love to have another shot at this a year or two down the road, because this is filled with potential.

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Photo of kfsv034
4.05/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours brown with mahogany and reddish highlights and a two finger tan head that disappears quickly.

S - Carmel, vanilla, brown sugar, wet wood, caramelized candy and some dark fruits, raisin, prune, fig etc.

T - Taste follows the nose very well. Carmel, vanilla, brown sugar and dark fruits. Also have a boozy finish.

M - Medium Body to syrupy, somewhere in between

D - ive had 2 glasses and although i would like to drink more at 13.50% i probably shouldnt

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Photo of cosmicevan
4.05/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Note's from Captain Lawrence Rosso Batch 3 release / tasting:

2009 perfect storm – really thick looking, almost sludgy, very barleywine like, dark brown, tannish, almost copper in color. Wow, smells of syrupy hops, good malt backbone. that’s a good tasting barleywine though. very balanced hops with good sweetness, nutmeg. It’s good. Mouth is very thick. Seems like the year on it probably did it some good (although I haven’t tried this year’s yet to know for sure). Overall, solid barleywine and I’m VERY happy got to try it. Cheers.

--- -- - -- ---edit 2012 05 28 vintage 2011
revisited this review with the 2011 vintage and was pretty blown away. firing on all cylinders. i envision that my first taste was more in the swarm of a ton of beers, but this is a fantastic barleywine. looks smell taste and feel...probably would give it 4.5s across the board today. great nutmeg caramel malts and the barrel adds a really nice element. just as good as the other big boys. vanilla, toffee, and caramel wonderfulness.

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Photo of NYCWheatFanSC
4.05/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - dark malty brown, fades to blood red around the edges. Has a small off tan/khaki head that fades quickly.

S - Roasted malts, hint of hops but not too much at all. Loads of molasses and candied brown sugar

T - Sweet, cocoa and brown sugar. A bit hot but no particular spirit comes to mind at this point. Should mellow nicely.

M - Near perfect, perhaps could do with a bit more carbonation.

D - Good, but I couldn't drink a whole bottle of this...and I've drank many 22's of Abyss all alone!

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Photo of dbc5
4.06/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bomber poured into Duchesse De Bourgogne stemware.

A: Dark brown pour which allows some light to shine through when held to the light. Half finger, cream head despite a moderate - aggressive pour. Head quickly dissipates, leaving a tiny ring around the edge of the glass.

S: HUGE oak presence, followed by bourbon, vanilla, brown sugar sweetness, and caramel. Really surprised by the amount of oak I am picking up in the nose, almost overpowering.

T: Upfront flavors of booze and bourbon. The oak barrel is apparent here as well. The booze gives way to caramel, toffee, butterscotch, and something like burnt sugar on the back end.

M: Moderate carbonation. This isn't a thin beer by any means, but I was expecting something a bit thicker based on the abv and my experiences with several other recent barrel aged barleywines.

O: I will be honest, I enjoyed this beer but I was slightly underwhelmed by it. Do not read that as this not being a good beer, it absolutely is. I also realize that my excessive expectations are not the fault of the beer, but I feel like this was just a step below some of the other top barrel aged barleywines (e.g., King Henry, BB Monster 29), for my palate at least.

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