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XS Old Crustacean - Rogue Ales

Not Rated.
XS Old CrustaceanXS Old Crustacean

Educational use only; do not reuse.

701 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 701
Hads: 1,240
Avg: 4
pDev: 17.75%
Wants: 107
Gots: 139 | FT: 6
Brewed by:
Rogue Ales visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  11.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 01-03-2001

Formerly "Old Crustacean"

8 Ingredients:
Hugh Baird Carastan and Rogue Micro Barley Farm DareTM & RiskTM Malts; Chinook and Rogue Micro Hopyard Revolution & Freedom Hops, Pacman Yeast & Free Range Coastal Water.

110 IBU
83 AA
57º Lovibond
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of XS Old Crustacean Alström Bros
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Reviews: 701 | Hads: 1,240
Photo of Sammy
3.9/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had the 97 and the 2003 at Beer Bistro Winter Fest. 2003 was nice and drinkable, hoppy. the 97 was rich and smoke. 97 some smoke. Crisp bitterness but also malt sweetness there so it is an awakening of the palate. 3.5 years later on tap but nowhere as good, age this one.
5.5 years later, Aged somewhat.big off-white head on medium brown. Some medicinal and peppermint aromas. Some licorice in taste.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.97/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle pour at the bottle share hosted by Adam Fine Wine & Liquor held at Sophie’s Place in Redondo Beach, CA.

2008 vintage.

Pours a hazy dark orange with a foamy beige head that settles to an oily film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, caramel, toffee, citrus fruit, and citrus zest. Taste is much the same with a sweet flavor and an herbal hop flavor on the finish. There is a medium amount of hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a very good beer that is tasty and easy to drink with some nice aromas and flavors.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.63/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

gnarly beer. pours a hazy golden amber color and looks thick and sticky. like the texture of marshmallow fluff. smells mildly hoppy and just super strong. was told by the barkeep it was 121 IBUs, which would make this the most bitter beer i have ever consumed, but it didnt feel bitter, or certainly not 121 units bitter. did little to mask the alcohol in any event, this was just brimming with boozey punch. a pint of this could kill a casual beer drinker. overall just a huge beer, not for the faint of heart, and even gnarly for a barleywine, which tend to be burley to begin with. cool to try around the holidays for sure.

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Photo of Knapp85
3.68/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dove deep into my wallet for this one. I ordered a vintage bottle from 1994 at the Farmhouse in Emmaus. This beer was brought out with the old design that's shown here on BA. The Beer was poured out into a wine glass. The beer had a few bubbles left but not nearly as much as any fresh brew. The color of the beer was a reddish brown color with some sediment floating around in it. The smell of the beer was pretty boozy, with some wine like aromas coming off of it. The taste of the beer has some malty fermented fruit flavors in there. There is also a heat in there coming from the ABV. The mouthfeel of this beer was pretty thin now and flat. Overall it was a lot of fun having a beer this old. I wouldn't pay for one of these again though.

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Photo of BEERchitect
3.9/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Rich O's Gravity Head '08:

The tap didn't do much to soften the carbonation, alcohol strength of hop agression. Certainly the kitchen sink of barley wines, but a lot of age will do this beer a lot of good. Can't deny the complexity or depth of flavors though.

August 10, 2005: Bottle:

Not for the timmid. Yep, I'm apparently timmid. Looks somewhere from brown to ruby red in color. Not quite clear, but pours a thick tan head and laced well. Smells like everything: malt, molassas, hops, grapes, prunes, raisons, chocolate, toffee, berries...the list goes on. Tastes like (see smells like...) with emphasis on the dark fruits; add dates, figs, almonds, and red wine. Very agressive with the flavoring and bittering hops: no punches pulled here. Strong body, thick and a bit oily. Quite chewy and almost nausiating (in a good way if there is such a thing.) Finishes anything but dry. Flavors fade slowly. I opened one three days ago and I'm still sipping on it. All in all, a good complex Barley Wine. Too abrupt now, but is certain to meld and mature with time. Buy now, but drink next year.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3/5  rDev -25%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle (courtesy of Okbeer): Poured a cloudy orange/reddish color ale with a medium head with pretty good retention. Aroma of sweet malt and floral/bitter hops mix. Taste is a mix of sweet malt and an incredible amount of bitter hops. In fact, there is just too much hops in this to make it truly enjoyable for me. Body is full and alcohol is also present and provides an enjoyable warming feeling. But in the end, I guess this is just too one-dimensional.

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Photo of biboergosum
4.08/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml black-painted clay bottle. It's American Repeal Day, so it's time to break out the biggest, baddest Yankee brew in my fridge...this is the 2008 edition. Nice name - even if it conjures up images of spoiled seafood, when you really think about it.

This beer pours a hazy, muddled orange brick amber hue, with three fingers of puffy, bubbly, and lazily foamy beige head, which renders some spooky layered horror story webbed lace around the glass as it slowly bleeds away.

It smells strongly of stewed black fruits - prunes, raisins, and dried cherries - a stoic caramel/toffee malt, pungent citrus rind oil and pine needle hops, and a bristling, mildly metallic alcohol warming. The taste conversely leads with the big and bitter pine resin and citrus flesh hoppiness, followed up tightly by the caramel, butterscotch, and toffee malt, a bit of singed camping toast, addled, indistinct dark fruit, just a touch (or is it a nod?) of cellar mustiness, and a pleasantly plump, well-rounded alcohol heat.

The carbonation is fairly soft, a mere frothiness lulling me as I merrily trod on, the body an even medium weight, mostly smooth, a bit thick at times, and creamy in the airy citrus sense. It finishes quite robustly sweet and malty, until those hops come crashing back down for another devastating round on yer palate.

As much as I like a hoppy full-frontal, this seems a tad out of balance for a barleywine, but let's face it, I was duly suckered in after that first gulp of 110 IBU insanity. The difference between this, and the biggest DIPAs out there is negligible, at best. Overall, as the tablewine-esque booze level is basically thoroughly integrated, imma just gonna sit back, and enjoy this heady mutha of a beer, until it slowly creeps up on me. Repeal this, those who had/have/would have the temerity to deprive us all of such well-made craft.

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Photo of emerge077
3.95/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Big thanks to brandoman63 for this one out of the blue!
2004 vintage, brewed and bottled same year.

Pours out a deep dark russet color. Thin cap of khaki head, about a quarter inch, which dissipates in a couple minutes. Slightly reddish around the edges, but almost opaque otherwise. Foam returns with a moderate swirl.

Aroma is woody with dry pine needles on the forest floor, oxidized malts, and some minor toffee sweetness in the back. Reminding me of the Hardy's I had a few days ago, but it's not that similar. Alcohol is pretty well hidden though it surfaces after about 15 minutes in the glass.

Rich malt complexity, sandalwood, tea, pine, and toffee. Long finish with a good dose of residual bitterness. The enduring hop content tends to distract from any oxidation, though it's present, and not unpleasant. Almost a minty note from the hops, certainly numbing. Low to medium carbonation, very suited to the barleywine. A very slow sipper, I look forward to finishing this over an hour or so. Probably a nice cigar beer...

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Photo of zeff80
3.97/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2008 bottle

A - Poured out a somewhat cloudy, copper color with a small, bubbly, off-white head. It left minimal lace.

S - It smelled syrupy sweet with some subtle floral notes.

T - It tasted of very sweet malt and actually brought some bitter hops.

M - It was fairly sharp and crisp. A medium to full-bodied beer.

D - This was pretty good. I'd like to see how it would taste after a couple years. Maybe the hops would mellow out.

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Photo of oberon
4.23/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Real nice pour,pours a chesnut brown with a slight orange hue with a nice creamy almond colored head.Aroma is fruity and sweet,a very chewy beer nice and fruity with a definent hop profile in the finish.This beer is an American classic to some and it is a very nice beer.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.1/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The pour was nice enough. Rich dark amber in color with a smooth look to it. Nice cloudiness to it. Some carbonation could be seen streaming up from the bottom of the glass, with a nice amount odd white head sitting on top of it. Smooth settle, left behind only trace amounts of side lacing. The aroma was rich, light notes of alcohol and a ton of bready malts. Hints of pine resin hops and a nice, touch of grain mingling in throughout the profile. The flavor was smooth as could be, a very mellow barley wine with hints of caramel and a muted hop note. Interesting balance here, with the alcohol mostly hidden in amongst the profile. Easy to sip, the carbonation was spot on.

Overall an enjoyable barley wine that I am glad I had the chance to try. I would say this would be worth another look.

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Photo of nickfl
4.32/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2008 vintage.

A - Poured with a small, light brown head on top of a somewhat hazy, dark brown body. The foam settles quickly and leaves only minor lace.

S - Aromas of figs and pine hops with some spicy alcohol notes. Complex malt character of caramel and toffee with some molasses.

T - Sweet caramel up front with velvety hop flavors of pine. Rich malt flavors of molasses and toffee mix with the hops and yeast to produce flavors of rum and chocolate covered cherries. The flavors darken in the finish with notes of burnt caramel that are balanced by strong bitterness and mustardy hop flavors. Lingering spicy alcohol notes along with molasses and tobacco.

M - Medium-thick body, moderate carbonation, and a somewhat sweet finish.

D - Nice, complex malt character with very complex dark sugars. I have had fresh bottles of this beer before, when it tastes like acetone and vomit, and the two years that were supposedly on this keg improved it vastly. Both the hops and alcohol have mellowed significantly and the malt character has become darker and more complex. There is still enough of the resinous hops and sharp alcohol left to keep the beer intense and lend it a boozy quality. This was quite good, but I suspect that there is still room for improvement. I can't wait to crack open the five year old bottle that I have in my cellar.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.75/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

2004 vintage.

Appearance: Pours a hazy, medium brown body with, well, no head, but what do you expect with such a punchy ABV.

Smell: Full maltiness and a strong alcohol presence, it seems a bit like a brown sugar liqueur. Even four years later, there's still a deep, resinous hop character smelling of orangey citrus and pine with a slight grassiness.

Taste: Dry, restrained maltiness with only a minor brown sugar and dark caramel flavor with far less sweetness than I was expecting from the nose. Still well-hopped for being near the half a decade mark, though it's also less than the nose led me to believe. Flavors of oranges and tangerines with a twist of pine. Some grassiness. Warming alcohol presence throughout. Bitterish finish with a long, lingering aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Medium-full body. Low carbonation. Thick, creamy mouthfeel.

Drinkability: Years later and the hops are still very much prevalent. I had hoped for a deeper maltiness to have emerged, but I can be tough to satisfy in the malt department.

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Photo of jlindros
3.41/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Very old bottle, no date.

Very little head, dark murky brown color.

Nose oxidation, aged malts, brown malts and wet paper, candy thing.

Taste sweet syrupy, little hop note, bitter notes, candy syrupy, bitter spicy hops, mild oxidation cardboard, candy toffee.

Mouth is med bod, decent carb.

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Photo of Kegatron
4.15/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap @ the Rogue Brewer's on the Bay (Newport, OR) on 8/29/11. Served in a goblet.

Pours a deep clear ruby (with some coppery edges) and topped with a thin frothy covering of off-white head. This sticks around with a nice creaminess to the look, leaving back a good bit of spotty lacing down the sides of the glass. The aroma smell quite bold in the nose, with a warm stickiness of caramel, toasted grains, green fruit, pine, spice, and alcohol sweetness. This definitely has some strength in the nostrils.

The taste has a big mouth filling combo of sticky caramel and grainy sweetness. Green citrus and sharp resinous character really helps add some assertiveness to the profile, as this finishes very piney and bitter with a sweet kiss of warm spicy alcohol on the tail-end. The hops and grains feel at even strength here. The mouthfeel is full bodied and large and in charge with a LOT of presence in the mouth. The ABV is well done here for an 11-12% beer, never being stinging on the palate but definitely giving this a hefty warming nature and there were plenty of extra flavors of sweetness and spice being thrown off by the ABV. Well done.

For a fresh American Barleywine, I thought that this one got it about right. Although the complexity wasn’t quite here, the base ingredients were definitely in place for more to develop as this ages and while there is a pretty hefty hop presence, I was pleased to find that it didn’t beat you over the head like some of these one that are borderline DIPAs. Bitter and sticky wrapped up in an easy sipping warming package about sums this one up. It had been a while since I’ve had this and I couldn’t think of a better beer to have during our chilly late afternoon visit to the brewery.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.89/5  rDev +22.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

2001 Vintage: Pours a hazy, reddish body that appears dark brown when sitting upon the bar. The head is densely creamy and holds well, but it leaves only minor lace. Rich notes of fruity, deep caramel malt and piney hops rush forth to assault the nose. Astounding! The bouquet is almost good enough to simply enjoy on it's own. As I make my way through the serving, between sips I will often simply lift the glass to my nose and breathe in it's resiny goodness. Lingering over it's caramel sweetness and thin sharp fruit, one glass could easily be enjoyed for well over an hour (and I credit that towards its drinkability). But onward... it's full bodied with a very fine, gentle carbonation that leaves it quite creamy in the mouth. The flavor starts with rich caramel maltiness, followed quickly by a tour du force of hop flavor that's almost minty! It's intensely rich with notes of licorice and toffee at first, but the sweetness and berry-like fruitiness begin to ooze out as it warms. This is a potion that's best enjoyed slightly warm! Alcohol isn't really noticeable on the palate, although it's clearly there somewhere. It finishes dry with loads of hop flavor (pine, spruce, citrus) and bitterness, but some residual malt sweetness as well. It really coats the mouth and throat with hoppiness that's almost spicy and has the drying feel of smoke. That, coupled with what dark malt is there, teeters on appearing roasty. Although it's all right-there in front of you and easy to see, this beer is actually quite complex! It changes as it warms, and as your palate becomes overwhelmed. There's just no keeping up with it's brutal hop assault! And that's one of the reasons that Crusty is just as good whithin the year of it's release as it is with several years time. Well worth putting a case away to cellar!

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Photo of kojevergas
1.47/5  rDev -63.3%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

2000 vintage. "Unfiltered and unfined." 26 plato. 120 IBU. "Best when aged for 1 year." Oops. Cute little 7 fl oz brown glass bottle with printed-on clear label and branded pressure cap acquired at a local bottle shop for around $10.00 USD and served into a Mitchells of Lancaster flared stem-tulip in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. Expectations are low; I've never had a beer this old that was good.

Served cold and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with as much vigor as possible as major carbonation issues are anticipated.

No hiss or signs of carbonation upon removing the cap. Uh-oh...

A: Pours no head whatsoever. I swirl the glass to try to get a floater or something, but I can't. There are some bubbles on the surface, so maybe there's still some co2 in there. Body colour is a murky dull opaque brown with reddish hues. Yeast particles are abundant and chunky, visible plainly at the bottom of the glass.

Admittedly, it's not much to look at.

Sm: Obvious oxidation - wet cardboard comes to mind. Raisin, sherry. Caramalt and biscuit malt. No hop character is present here. Caramel, toffee. Some faded fruity notes. Raisin is dominant, followed closely by oxidation. Touches of alcohol. Dead yeast.

Time doesn't seem to have been good to this beer based on the aroma. Mild in strength. I'd safely call it unappealing.

T/Mf: Ugh. Ugh, ugh, ugh. Raisin and wet cardboard. Dull vague malts. Some prune juice. Luckily, there's no booze. But it does have a sticky old feel to it which is rather unpleasant. Dead yeast. Hints of sherry, but not enough to save it. Acrid overall.

Viscous and musty. Sludgy and thick. Bleh. Flat. Vinous. Some acidity. Syrupy.

No hop character comes through at all.

Dr: Not drinkable at all. The tiny 7 oz bottle may be 6 oz too much for me. I'll struggle to get through it, but I may have to just cook with it or mix it with another beer at the very least. Really terrible with 13 years on it; I'll have to revisit it with one year of age to really give it a fair shake, but this experience was consistent with the other bad aged beers I've had. Note to self: don't buy any beer with more than five years of age on it. Definitely the worst beer I've had in a long time.


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Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.65/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2006 release poured from a 750ml bottle into a snifter glass.

A: The beer is a deep dark brown color, with a short off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains caramelized malts, brown sugar, bourbon, some fruit and a good amount of hops.

T: The taste starts out sweet with flavors of bourbon, caramel, brown sugar and a little fruit. Then a hearty malt character comes in along with a touch of an alcohol sting. The hops presence is strong considering the age of the beer and brings a decent balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and a little smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

O: Tasty, goes down ok, not too filling, very strong kick, good representation of style, it’s a solid beer but there are better beers in the style.

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Photo of Jason
4.79/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

1999 Vintage: Close to heavenly, the hops are still running wild even after three years of aging. Touch of estery alcohol and a dollop of fruitiness partially from the hops.

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Photo of Rifugium
3.7/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

First had: bottle at Eulogy, Philly, PA

Poured from a corked 750 into a stem glass, a dark, hazy amber with little to no head; a bubble here and there. Sugar and malts in the aroma, boozy, resinous. Toffee and brown sugar in the taste, alcohol bite, piney and resinous, and a bit medicinal, but mostly due to the alcohol. Heavy-medium body, good, but I think a 750 was a bit much, even though I split the bottle with my girlfriend--who became my fiancé that night. (She hated it.)

(The beer that is.)

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Photo of superspak
4.2/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle into snifter; 2013 vintage bottling, 10.75%. Pours hazy deep ruby red color with a 1-2 finger dense light khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Light spotty soapy lacing clings around the glass, with a moderate amount of streaming carbonation. Aromas of grapefruit, lemon zest, orange peel, raisin, plum, fig, caramel, brown sugar, toffee, toast, herbal, floral, grass, pine, and herbal/toasted earthiness. Damn nice aromas with good balance and complexity of citrus/earthy hops, dark/bready malt, and dark fruit notes; with great strength. Taste of big grapefruit, lemon zest, orange peel, citrus rind, pine, raisin, plum, fig, caramel, brown sugar, toffee, toast, herbal, floral, grass, and herbal/toasted earthiness. Good amount of pine/citrus rind bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of grapefruit, orange peel, citrus rind, pine, raisin, plum, fig, caramel, brown sugar, toffee, toast, herbal, floral, grass, and herbal/toasted earthiness on the finish for a while. Awesome complexity and balance of citrus/earthy hops, dark/bready malt, and dark fruit flavors; with a great malt/bitterness balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Light carbonation and fairly full bodied; with a smooth, creamy, and fairly slick/sticky mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is well hidden with a small warming present after the finish. Overall this is an awesome American barleywine. All around great complexity and balance of citrus/earthy hops, dark/bready malt, and dark fruit flavors; and very smooth to sip on for the big ABV. A highly enjoyable offering.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
4.02/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very deep amber brown hue with a tan off white head, just from the texture of the pour I can tell this is a very big beer. Well here we go aroma from the beginning I am getting notes of plum buried deep inside a garden of overzealous vinous hops of pine cone slash grapefruit west coast variety but with the deep overly ripened fruit tones this is a definite monster barley wine great. The forefront of the flavor gives an eye-opening rush of hop bitterness mixed with some joyous malt and fruit undertones, just a huge beer from Rogue I admire a brewery willing to go over the top but still create an outstanding example of a barley wine. With deep tones of alcohol and slightly salty sweet shimmering notes of malt this beer is quite an experience bottled in 2002, just amazing. Mouthfeel is thick and syrupy without being cloying in my opinion. Drinkability is well try one and leave it at that what an experience a must try west coast barley wine, let's put it this way Bigfoot is tame compared to this.

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Photo of mdfb79
3.92/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From 07/03/11 notes. 2002 vintage. Poured from a 12 oz, glass into a snifter.

a - Pours a mahogany brown color with one inch of tan head and moderate carbonation evident. Still looks pretty good.

s - Smells of caramel malts, dark fruits, molasses, toffee, and bready malts. No real booze, this smells really good and has held up wonderfully.

t - Tastes of caramel malts, musty notes, bready malts, light sweet fruit and molasses, and very light alcohol. Not quite as good as the nose, as it was slightly musty, but still in good shape.

m - Medium to full body and moderate carbonation. Not much alcohol warmth, the time has really mellowed this one out.

o - Overall a very good barleywine that definitely holds up. Not too much alcohol considering the ABV, I'm guessing because of the age, and it smells amazing. Would like to have it again sometime.

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Photo of feloniousmonk
4.38/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2 1/2 years later, it's time for a new review with a new package style. the 26 ounce, swingtop ceramic type. The kind I hate, but went ahead and spent $13.45 on anyway...slap some celophane on me, and call me a sucker. At least I know it's good beer in here.

It poured flame -red, but is a dark mahogany in the glass, capped with a warm, cocoå-toned head, creamy and inviting.

Classy aroma. Cognac, well-tempered, ...strength doesn't scream, and flavor is subtle compared to the dragon's-breath of other, bolder barleywines. Dark fruit and leather, hints of chocolate, a mess of malt, with a friendly fleet of hops.

Taste: big, rich, and bitter are the main traits that jump on the palate and overtake the mouth, but in spite of it's bigness, this is actually a mellow, relaxing affair. Not too hot, not too alcoholic, not too punishing, juuust right.
Burnished brandy meets cocoa and cherries, in a sophisticated blend.

Long finish, very complex flavors, hangs definitely in the mouth, thoroughly full-bodied.

I'm going to run out for some seafood, to match curstacean for crustacean.
But, my, this is a nice reunion!
Truly a standard for the style.

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Photo of MasterSki
3.89/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

1998 7oz bottle - an extra from tthomas in a recent trade. Served in my Foothills taster glass (also from a recent trade with Wespatrick).

A - Poured totally flat, although that's not totally unexpected for such an old brew, seeing as it isn't very frothy even when fresh. Murky raisin color with elements of orange and brown. I'd normally be harder on a brew that looked like this, but since it's over 10 years old and from such a high-gravity style I'll cut it a little slack.

S - Tons of caramel, toffee, apple, brown sugar, and dried fruits (raisins, prunes, etc.). The smell is huge and you can even get a sense that there was once a ton of hops in this brew with a few hints of pine and citrus. It smells utterly delicious.

T - Unfortunately, the taste seems a bit muted. There's still lots of caramel, brown sugar, apple, and rumcake, but you can tell that some oxidization has occurred. There's also an odd woody aftertaste that isn't overwhelming, but isn't all that pleasant either.

M - For the style the minimal carbonation isn't offensive, and the texture is silky smooth with a bit of alcohol warmth. There's lots of residual stickiness as well.

D - The 7oz bottle is definitely appropriate for the style, and I had no difficulty drinking the whole thing. I'd even consider having a second one - if I had access to one that is. Obviously the high ABV prevents this from being a session brew.

I think 1998 Old Crusty might be past its prime - it's nowhere as tasty as the '98 J.W. Lees or the 1996 Westy 8 that I've tried. I'd be interested in checking out something from the early aughts to see if that is peaking right now. Still, I was very glad that I got to try this bottle.

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XS Old Crustacean from Rogue Ales
90 out of 100 based on 701 ratings.