Mother Of All Storms - Pelican Pub & Brewery
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Ratings: 1,360 | Reviews: 399 | Display Reviews Only:
4.83/5 rDev +8.3%
This is my third bottle, decided it was finally time to put down a review.
Looks quite good -- dark brown that glows red when held up to the light. Very thin head quickly dissipates leaving a few large bubbles clinging to the sides of the glass. Smell is huge, tons of caramel and vanilla, touches of bourbon, burnt sugar and soy sauce -- taste is somehow even bigger, lots of grain to go with the caramel and toffee, more soy sauce and the slight sour tinge that comes from a old ale that's been left alone for long enough. Mouthfeel is creamy/silky with a slight slickness. Carbonation is slight but detectable.
This... tastes like an incredibly well-aged beer. I would love to know how they got this perfect oxidization in a beer that's a year old (brewed winter '09). Only concern I have is that bottle-to-bottle has slight variations -- my guess is that it's in-the-bottle stable, but the level of dissolved oxygen in the blend is tweaking the flavor.
Going to hold on to my last couple until I know whether or not I can get more next year...
02-16-2010 03:08:16 | More by jedwards
4.5/5 rDev +0.9%
Struck by a nectar dark and ruby red.
Little head, but better can be said.
Delicous aromas of alcohol and bread.
In the mouth nothing can be said.
I'd like to drink more of this before that I am dead.
Thanks be to my Oregon friend Fred.
02-14-2010 04:31:47 | More by francisweizen
3.93/5 rDev -11.9%
Thanks to Chris for hooking this bottle up, this has been sitting in my dark basement cellar since probably November.
A: Poured into the closest thing I could find to a snifter, a stemless wine glass that is pretty close in shape. The color is kind of a dark raison and the head is rather subdued. This does not come to much of a surprise considering the high ABV. A nice burnt mocha ring persists on the outside of the glass. Lacing is subpar and an almost saliva like half moon
S: The barrel-aging is real apparent in this one, bourbon, dry oak, vanilla, sweetness, and alcohol.
T: This is one big beer, the ABV is more noticeable in the back of the throat than on the tongue. The beer has a lot of flavor to it: bourbon, coffee, cocoa, old grapes...all intense and richly complex. A highy intoxicating brew that benefits from barrel aging. However, despite it's complexity the alcohol is pretty in your face and it's certainly far from graceful.
M: The mouthfeel is great, maximum alcohol delivery in the smoothest of fashion. Carbonation is just right and pretty silky.
D: Whew. The alcohol bit is big, but so is the flavor.
02-13-2010 01:35:13 | More by MPLS
4.6/5 rDev +3.1%
big thanks go out to OHLRangers for hooking me up with this one as part of the '09 secret santa. thanks ed!
22oz bottle topped with gold foil. sampled feb 6/2010.
pours deep brown. at first it appears opaque, but when held to the light you can see that it's crystal clear and has a bit of reddish highlights. the small dense dark tan head drops fairly fast and leaves a bit of spotty lace.
aroma is great. vanilla. bourbon and raw oak. rich caramel and toffee. earthy. light alcohol, but not 13.5% worth.
woah, taste is excellent. bourbon and vanilla. bit of raw oak. slightly earthy. caramel and buttery toffee. light alcohol. biscuit and lightly toasted whole wheat bread. bit of cracker. dark chocolate. hints of coffee and anise. light herbal and spicy notes, but they've been mostly subdued by the time in the barrel.
mouthfeel is great. nice big body. silky smooth medium carbonation level.
drinkability is great. nicely balanced, hiding much of its 13.5% abv. great depth. excellent complexity. the barrel is perhaps a little more heavy-handed than i would like, but it works pretty well.
02-07-2010 02:50:29 | More by grub
4.35/5 rDev -2.5%
Vintage 2008 22oz bottle.
Pours dark mahogany with amber highlights and a ruby tinge. Sparkling clarity with a quarter inch head of tan. A partial skim coat remained for the duration as well as some errant lacing.
Aromatics lead off with a blast of bourbon, toffee, and malt. Vanilla, brown sugar, and plenty of caramel quickly follow through.
Full bodied with a creamy, chewy mouthfeel. Viscous and dense.
A massive, boozy bourbon character leaps onto the palate with loads of toffee, raisins, figs, and caramel stepping forward. Hints of charred oak, cocoa, and nougat follow through. Minimal hopping other than some bitterness to balance.
Finishes with lots of building warmth, chewy caramel, bourbon, and rich malt.
Wowza, what a massive Barleywine. The barrels must have been very wet for this one. Loads of bourbon and very strong in nature. Truly a boozy, chewy winter sipper if there ever was one.
02-04-2010 00:36:19 | More by brewandbbq
3.85/5 rDev -13.7%
Pours dark toffee brown with a paltry sized head with no retention noted. Aromas of brown sugar, cat food, maple, and bourbon booziness dominate. Did I just say cat food? Yes, yes I did and apparently I am the only one to pick up on this but I don't get much enjoyment out of the aroma. The taste loads up on sugary sweets, treacle, toffee, with a maple and earthiness to it, and a big bourbon bite that I enjoy. I do like this, though as far as bourbon barrel barleywines go, this is fairly typical in taste. The thick body and properly light carbonation for the style, are, however, spot on, and this is a nice beer. I would recommend this, however, no more than any other bourbon barleywine I have enjoyed.
02-03-2010 03:32:12 | More by vacax
4.9/5 rDev +9.9%
Received this brew from the MEGA generous Cedromar. This guy made me look retarded with the amazing box he sent. I've had a few different brews from Pelican from back in the day and they were tasty. Super excited to try this one. Drank from my Ithaca Excelsior tulip while watching the National Championship (Texas vs. Alabama).
Appearance- Pours a dark brownish ruby with a decent one finger sand colored head. After a few minutes the head dissipates leaving a decent collar and no lacing
Smell- This baby is just oozing with big boozy bourbon and oak. Smells very candy like with tons of toffee and peanut brittle. The bourbon is very pronounced and the woody goodness really shines. Loads of vanilla and red licorice along with some darker fruits (raisins and dates maybe). Whiffs of milk chocolate that mix with the toffee for a Milky Way type of smell. Awesome nose.
Taste- Starts slightly sweet with a big rush of lightly tannic woody goodness. The caramel and toffee are off the charts as they are malty and boldly aggressive. Tons of whiskey as it's lightly warming but mixed with the oak and malt it's merely an afterthought. Vanilla is abundant as well and mixed with the somewhat Tootsie Roll aspect this beer is everything I was hoping for. The finish is warming with a sort of light bitter char and a touch of red licorice.
Mouthfeel- Despite the barrel aging and high alcohol of the beer it still maintains a nice full body. It's somewhat creamy and very rich with a slight bit of warming.
Drinkability- This is just a solid f'n beer. SO much bourbon and wood. I'd say this is the biggest, tastiest barrel aged beer that I've had since Wooden Hell. It doesn't quite have the oak that WH had and it's a tad warmer but I think it may be slightly less sweet. In a year or two this thing is going to come together nicely and be absolutely amazing-er. Thanks much Tyler you generous son-of-a-gun!
02-01-2010 03:15:11 | More by younger35
4.78/5 rDev +7.2%
Big thanks to Scott for hosting a brew day and sharing this brew with me.
A - Poured a deep mahogany with even more mahogany highlights in the glass. Left about a finger of head, which retained nicely. Left some lacing.
S - Caramel, some smokiness, vanilla and oak. Light notes of alcohol. Hops were barely noticeable in the smell. Smelled good.
T - Roasted caramel, vanilla, and oak. Fruity esters (nectarine or ambrosia?) and grassy/fruity hops as well. Alcohol was barely apparent. Great overall.
M - Medium-full-bodied, malt dominated. Very smooth. Alcohol barely there.
D - Fantastic. Wished I had more. This is by far the best English style barleywine I've had. Not a pretender, definitely a top beer.
01-31-2010 16:26:11 | More by MisterClean
4.18/5 rDev -6.3%
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.
01-25-2010 01:51:27 | More by ThreeWiseMen
4.8/5 rDev +7.6%
Reviewed at hoppymcgee's tasting 1/16. '09 vintage. 3oz. pour into a 8oz. pint glass. Reviewed from notes.
A: Pours no head and leaves no lacing but on-par with the style. Almost seemed flat as a pancake... beer is a deep, stunning, almost opaque amber.
S: Cherry, oak notes, a bit boozy, vanilla, and a strong shot of sherry. Caramel and brown sugar are also present, this one is an assault on the senses.
T: Opens sweet and boozy. A very deep malt backbone is apparent. A bit spicy, quite hot, with a touch of sweet soy sauce. This drinks like an imperial stout... also a bit pruny and the oaky sherry presence dominates towards the end.
M: Medium to full bodied, spicy and hot. This one is slightly coarse in thew mouth but smoothes out over time. More carbonated than I expected. Finish is sweet and sticky, leaving a lasting impression.
D: This is the king of barleywines. Incredibly balanced with a mouthfeel to match and integrate the complexity that is this beer. Seek it out. The hype is well-deserved here. A joy to have and one I'll definitely be seeking out in the future.
01-17-2010 15:26:37 | More by SpeedwayJim
3.38/5 rDev -24.2%
Pours a deep dark mahogony with amber hues and very little to no head. Not a great looking barleywine, but a decent looking beer. The smell is fantastic. super complex with vanilla, bourbon, toffee, caramel, brown sugar, and sweet dark fruit.
The taste of this beer was a big disappointment, given the high overall BA rating and the aromas eminating from my glass. There are still the toffee, caramel, bourbon and brown sugar flavors, but none of them blend very well. The alcohol is SUPER-hot, and the barrel aging has not done well for this beer. Again, super-hot alcohol throughout, and a dry, bitter aftertaste that does not compel you to drink more. 3+ years would do wonders for this beer.
The mouthfeel is nice and thick, but there is very little carbonation and it is way too hot all around. I'm glad I split this, because it would have taken me a few hours to finish a bottle by myself.
Give this one at least three years and maybe it will be worthy of its BA rating.
01-12-2010 07:29:14 | More by jdklks
3.6/5 rDev -19.3%
The bourbon barrel scars this brew with a brownish hue. The barley wine looks like it started off with a great dark golden color, but the bourbon stains the color to make the finish with a hazy brown heart and darker golden edges. Has a bit of white head, but it leaves pretty fast. Alcoholic legs are fairly thick.
The smell has sweet malt sugars and bourbon. Oak, and cherries with vanilla. Oak and bourbon are very strong, giving the overall smell a 'hot' aspect.
The taste has characters of vanilla, cherries and dark fruits, with oak and bourbon. Lots of malt sugars that make it sweet, tastes like this is already aged over a year. The beer and the barrel come together very well, with the barrel being a bit of a larger character. It did not start off for me very ABV strong, but towards the end of the bottle it was a bit rough. I was picking up the oak and bourbon more and more and the balance was starting to fade. Very enjoyable, but maybe aged in oak a bit too long?
The mouthfeel was good, but towards the end started to get very hot. This damaged the drinkability a great deal, and made the last glass full a challenge. Maybe a 8 oz pour into a brandy snifter would be perfect for me. A full 22oz bomber, even shared, was a bit much.
01-10-2010 23:04:52 | More by Jmoore50
4.33/5 rDev -2.9%
Shared by jedwards and served in my 25cl Allagash tulip. Poured a deep brown with red highlights that were revealed from each angle and rotation of the glass. Loose, white head quickly dissipates into barely a swirl. Incredible nose - malty, sugary sweet, toffee, butterscotch, a little booze, molasses, prunes and perhaps a little breadiness. Taste follows nose - sugary sweet with the addition of some caramel, vanilla and coconut. Mouthfeel is medium with a lively carbonation. Definitely a little booziness in this, but a big, bold and delicious beer. However, closer to an American Strong than an English barleywine in my humble opinion.
01-10-2010 17:21:00 | More by Jwale73
4.38/5 rDev -1.8%
2009 bottle. Deep mahogany pour with bright ruby highlights and no head. The aroma is Musty bourbon and caramelized dates rounded out with a hint of vanilla and charred oak. The flavor is awesome rich, buttery caramel with notes of fig, vanilla, an accent of char and smoke, and milk chocolate. It finishes with a nice little alcohol kick. The body is sticky and full with low carbonation.
01-07-2010 17:07:09 | More by punkrkr27
4.38/5 rDev -1.8%
I had the opportunity to sit down and drink this exceptional brew with one of the Pelican's brewers. As a deschutes loyalist from Bend, Oregon, I had lowered expectations going in from the beginning (abyss or bust). When the gentleman first explained the process of brewing The Perfect storm, I was very intrigued.
I wanted to see the color first, though. It was absolutely beautiful. Even more so then The Abyss.
This elegant, yet slightly scary beer poured beautifully. Right out of the bottle, Chilled to perfection, I will admit to anyone that the beer was one of the best tasting brews I have ever had. But as time passed, mind you this beer is to be drunken slowly, it began to warm up slightly. and as it happened, i could definitely taste the strong alcohol nodes. This was, other than the price, the beers only turn off.
Given time, I know this beer will mature into something amazing. but for now, it is only exceptional.
01-06-2010 04:00:05 | More by iheartpnwbrew
4.6/5 rDev +3.1%
22 oz bottle, foiled top, 09 release. HUGE thanks to MasterSki for breaking this one out a few weeks back, huge want.
Pours a clear dark ruby red, some brown, very thick tan head forms, huge and chunky, settles down to a thick ring, some lace spots stick, legs on the glass, looks great.
Smell is insane, tons of oak and vanilla, bourbon, brandy, huge toffee notes, butterscotch, coconut, lots of raisin and dark fruit, lightly spicy, alcohol, this is intense.
Taste is similar, huge toffee and brown sugar sweetness, vanilla, bourbon and brandy, alcohol, dark fruit, raisin, butterscotch, more vanilla, more bourbon and alcohol in the finish, supremely malty.
Mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with low carbonation, some big warmth going down but I would expect no less. This stuff is serious, huge rich malts in the one, amazing. Thanks Alex!
01-04-2010 15:03:59 | More by Viggo
4.78/5 rDev +7.2%
Big thanks goes out to my boy in Washington for getting to try this. This has been a want of mine for a loooong time now, and finally I got to try the new batch. Split this with my girlfriend and roommate. Drumroll...here goes...
A: Opens with a nice muffled hiss and the ghostly smoke climbs out of the bottle. Pours a nice, deep mahagony brown with a khaki head. The head is, I would say, half a finger and recedes to a ring. Slightly sticky and creamy. Georgous.
S: Whoa. Bourbon hits you hard, but in a very good way. Nice spicy bourbon, caramel, toffee, and chocolate rise nicely. There are also hints of fruits (raisins?) perhaps, but the bourbon, caramel and toffee are the majority.
T: This is great. Smooth bourbon and caramel with bittersweet toffee and melted bitter chocolate. The caramel blends so great with the fresh bourbon. There is a slight heat that warms you, but nothing distracting at all.
M/D: Creamy, smooth, warming, delicious. Just great.
I am glad I got to try this beer and am lucky I have a good WA BA friend who gave me another to age. Thanks!
01-04-2010 01:40:12 | More by treyrab
4.33/5 rDev -2.9%
Pours a sinister black color with orange highlights; nice color. Just a smattering of brown head fizzes and then dies atop a half glass of Perfect Storm, as expected. Taking an initial whiff from the bottle, I'm already struck by a powerful blast of bourbon, oak, chocolate, and dead leaves, aromas that I continue to smell after I pour out a few ounces. The aroma is everything I want from a barleywine, with the unique, brawny booze and oak presence lurking at the edges. After a while, the smell becomes a little port-like-- very sweet and a little grapey
Sipping amplifies the bourbon, chocolate, and caramel notes, and vanilla and fruit (cherry, orange peel) flavors are added. Some hot alcohol washes in at mid-sip and brings a segue to a rather spicy finish. It's taking me a while to process everything I taste, perhaps because of the sheer intensity of all aspects of Perfect Storm. I don't taste as much oak, but bourbon is pretty upfront.
Mouthfeel is medium-full in body with a syrup-like consistency. My mouth is left tingling after each sip, and now and then the alcohol threatens to become overwhelming after a sip. This is a slow drinker, and I can see I'll be taking a couple hours to polish off the bomber. I guess I can't complain too much about drinkability, even given the sometimes intense aspects-- it's a bourbon barrel-aged English barleywine, after all, and it is what it is.
All told, Perfect Storm is a really great barleywine, perhaps near Midnight Sun Arctic Devil for among the best I've tried. I think some age would have bumped it to #1, as about all I can ding the beer for is a little harshness in taste and feel from the alcohol/bourbon flavors.
01-03-2010 22:29:04 | More by Riccymon
4.63/5 rDev +3.8%
Bottle courtesy of thirdeye11.
2009 vintage. Pours brown with a very small tan head. Aroma is strong oak and bourbon. The flavor is complex, with vanilla, bourbon, chocolate and roasted malt. Medium mouthfeel and very drinkable. This beer didn't disappoint.
12-31-2009 22:50:36 | More by Mora2000
4.63/5 rDev +3.8%
On tap at the brewpub today.
Like the bottled version, PS pours a dark brown color, but with fair at best head retention and a decent amount of sticky lacing all around. The nose on this BW is really impressive, with a considerable amount of brown sugar, toffee, chocolate, milk duds and vanilla. As good as this beer smells, it tastes even better. If anything, the flavor profile is more intense then the aroma profile, and this beer has almost a gooey sweet, soft creamy mouthfeel. This is like eating/drinking the essense of BW nougat. Also, there are some wonderful dark fruits in the flavor profile, something I don't recall being all that prevelant in the bottled version. Otherwise, the beer is exceptionally soft, plush and creamy... yummm! This beer does seem a bit boozy, but at 13.5%, that's hardly a surprise. Like the sweetness in this beer, it's not at all intrusive, and is something that I suspect will dissipate over time (and as I have another 3 bottles, I'll get to find out!). Drinkability is pretty good considering the abv., though needless to say, a little bit goes a long way. Also, although this beer is pretty sweet, it's not over the top and is, I think, perfect for the style.
One of the best young BW's I've ever had the pleasure of tasting. The draft version seemed a bit more mature then the bottled version, though I'm sure it will improve over time as well. Otherwise, I can't say I found all that much difference between the draft version and the bottled version. In any event, very, very impressive.
12-29-2009 04:55:41 | More by John_M
4.68/5 rDev +4.9%
Pour an oxidized/rust brown, but perfectly translucent. Smells of Werther's caramel, a touch of Werther's chocolate, toasted pecans, a touch of bourbon and wood, perhaps lightly roasted coffee... list could go on and on. Basically, it was like smelling an exceptional sherry that changed in the glass over time. Phenomenal.
A bit of heat and tannic wood, which gives taste and drinkability as the only small knocks I gave this beer. Perfectly carbonated upon opening--but even after letting it run still in my glass over a couple hours, I continue to be fascinated by this one. Truly an exceptional beer that I can't wait to try again a few years down the road.
Worth seeking out for fans of English barleywines.
12-28-2009 03:36:36 | More by jwjon1
4.5/5 rDev +0.9%
They don't ever let you go. Crawling
through your mind and holding on to every bit of you, the blood
looks black in the glass, black in the glass, but red
oh so ruby red, so beautiful a red
and a cap, a froth, the boiling of those that cannot forget their anger
their pain, the clear, perfect clear, boiling, black ruby red blood.
And mahogany. And legs. A lot of legs.
The reeling, reeling through your brain, of oak and of bourbon...
the nightmare. the nightmare of darkness, of forgetting who you are, losing yourself,
of endless nights filled with bourbon, the wood, oak-tree, white pepper.
searing alcohol, the bourbon, fire-water, reeling firewater, complexities.
almond, almond, burnt sugar, and the hazelnuts of last year, in the cold
with a hammer.
sugar cookies. the sugar cookies of yesteryear, and the dark firewater
I wish he hadn't, but it tastes so good
the bourbon, the bourbon, drink it down, and bitter
and candied, caramelized sugar, and hot alcohol
the nuttiness, I've forgotten, I forgot...what was it?
syrup. there it was. my head...
they're coming. it never lets you go. never. the bourbon will kill you,
the fire-water, they're running...
thick. syrup. warm. hot. the bourbon. my head.
light carbonation, and hazelnut. yes.
12-22-2009 02:59:14 | More by khiasmus
4.25/5 rDev -4.7%
Bottle of the '09 release generously shared by bmanning at a tasting in November 2009.
A: Pours a dark caramel with nice light tan head and lacing.
S: The initial whiff brings forward quite a bit of bourbon and alcohol. Underneath there is caramel, wood, vanilla, toffee, and a bit of dark fruits.
T: Again, the first taste brings forward tons of hot bourbon. The underlying flavors are all quite nice and complex, but it takes a while to sort through the hotness of it all. This is what keeps it down at a 4.0, although I could see an aged version of this absolutely creeping up to a 4.5 or even a 5.0, depending on how the heat recedes.
M: Even though this is fairly hot, the complexity is outstanding, begging me to slowly chew every sip of the beer.
D: This was a hard one to put down; sip after sip news things are developing. Would love to try this down the line with some more age on it.
12-21-2009 13:06:29 | More by Thorpe429
4.63/5 rDev +3.8%
A big thanks to t0rin0 for sharing a bottle of this with me.
A: The pour is a dark, dark brown with some nice reddish highlights. The head is mild in volume and tan in color.
S: There is a surprising amount of chocolate (oxidation) in the aroma, but it works quite well. The usual suspects of caramel, toffee, vanilla, and dark fruit are there as well, along with some oak.
T: Like the aroma, there is a ton of chocolate to this beer--something I don't normally expect from a barleywine. The sweet, malty flavors, dark fruits, and barrel contributions (vanilla and a nice oaky flavor) make this amazingly complex. I just had to give it a 5.
M: Very nice and smooth. The carbonation is quite low, and the body is incredibly full.
D: The only place that this beer takes a bit of a hit. This shouldn't be surprising, however. But despite being 13.5% alcohol, it is surprisingly drinkable.
I've not been the hugest barleywine fan in the past, but this beer has changed my perception of the style. Absolutely fantastic.
12-21-2009 08:21:17 | More by womencantsail
United Kingdom (Wales)
4.53/5 rDev +1.6%
Poured into Carolous chalice.
Pours a layer of tan head. Fades to a ring around the edge of the glass fast. Color is a dark ruby hued chocolate brown.
Aroma: vanilla, oak, bourbon, chocolate, caramel, earthy hops, very complex. Amazing.
Taste: Bourbon, vanilla, and oak up front. A nice amount of hops to balance it out. Caramel with light chocolate. Dark fruit notes. A fantastic b-wine.
Mouthfeel: creamy, smooth, but a little too hot. Pretty full bodied with a lower amount of carbonation. Ends malty and hot with dark fruit flavors.
Overall, a fantastic b-wine. One of the best in the style. A little hot. I think this one will get better with age on it and then I will reevaluate the score. I can't wait to try it again
12-21-2009 03:41:28 | More by mothman
Mother Of All Storms from Pelican Pub & Brewery
99 out of 100 based on 1,360 ratings.