XS Old Crustacean - Rogue Ales

Not Rated.
XS Old CrustaceanXS Old Crustacean

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

698 Reviews
THE BROS
98
world-class

(Read More)
Reviews: 698
Hads: 1,229
rAvg: 4
pDev: 10%
Wants: 99
Gots: 134 | FT: 8
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.

25º PLATO
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
Reviews: 698 | Hads: 1,229
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.

(2,282 characters)

Photo of davey101
3.76/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

1997 vintage. 7 oz bottle into a taster glass. From a vertical purchased from Bottleworks and muled thanks to FalconA. This vintage is 26º plato, 120 IBU, 38º L, and 73.1 AA with a different ingredient list than listed. Opens with a faint fizz. Best after one year, this has 16...

A - Pours a surprisingly clear burnt red body. The bottom of the bottle has a 1-2mm layer of sediment which I avoided. No head or lacing to speak of. Swirling leaves behind a faint alcoholic trace.

S - The aroma is fantastic. Rich caramel, roasted malts, raisins, and just a faint nod of oxidation. Sort of a sweet raisin soda like smell. Light fusel heat. This honestly does not smell like a 16 year old beer. I've had 1-2 year old beers in the style that were less composed.

T - Starts off well with muted caramel, toffee, burnt sugar and raisins. Some alcohol heat mixes with a high level bitterness.Things take a turn for the worse on the aftertaste with an odd mineral water flavor. Decent given its age, but 7 oz feels like overkill here. Mouth feel is obviously flat but still drinks pretty well.

O - For a 16 year old barleywine I don't see it faring any better. Short of the mineral water bitterness this was a really impressive science experiment in aging. Me thinks the absurd IBU level does not help after all of the hop flavors have faded away. (1,345 characters)

Photo of powerss13
4.48/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

ST: Bottle into a glass

A: Dark hazy brown; with some head. Nice lacing on glass.

S: Small hints of hop aroma, with a nice malty smell. Has a good bread smell to it.

T: Definitely get a good hop taste to it that you don't get in the smell. Get a good doughy yeast taste.

MF: Nice slight heavy body, but not overbearing to the mouth giving it a nice finish

O: Exceptional beer. This would be a wonderful beer to age. If you find this, get it. (446 characters)

Photo of sommersb
3.91/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Tasted On: 05-07-2013
Freshness: Not indicated
Packaging: 750ml colored bottle, swing-top
Glassware: Signature glass
Purchased: Single from The Bottle Shop, Franklin

I like the format on this beer, a ceramic-feeling bottle with a swing-top lid.

A: The hazy, orange-brown beer starts of with big off-white bubbles in the head, probably from the glugging of the first pour due to the narrow neck opening.

S: Aromas have a fruit sweetness, as in dark fruits first off, followed by pine and evergreen hops. Very clean and pleasant smelling.

T: The taste starts off with hop bitterness, in a way I can't easily classify, which is then followed by malty and fruity notes, making a nice contrast between the bitter and sweet. However there is some sort of unpleasant taste I can't put my finger on.

M: Full-bodied brew, with carbonation in the medium to high range. The finish is bitter and has some astringency to it.

O: Overall a good beer, but it seemed to be lacking in terms of others I've had in the style. It smelled better than it tasted... (1,047 characters)

Photo of snaotheus
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml ceramic bottle poured into a large snifter. This is a 2012 bottle, opened 6 April 2013.

Pours ruby brown, very little head (probably because I poured very gently). Slow carbonation makes this look thick and viscous. Smell is rich, musty, vaguely sweet, fairly muted (might be too cold). Dark fruit -- I think I smell dates. A little bit of grapefruit rind.

Taste is grapefruit rind bitterness, some floral sweetness, a little bit of smokiness. Lots of bitterness. A little bit of the dates or plums.

Mouthfeel is thick and rich and pleasant. Overall, this is a very solid beer. I like it. (597 characters)

Photo of BeardedBoffin
3.89/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served from a 7 ounce bottle, the beer pours a dark amber color with very little foam. The aroma is strong with candy sugar and laced with dark fruit overtones. Smooth and slightly carbonated on the palate. It starts sweet, offering a few tobacco notes as it glides back. Bitterness rises at the end to finish it off. Overall this is a good beer. I would appreciate more depth, perhaps more age, for Barleywine. (411 characters)

Photo of jrenihan
3.99/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2012 vintage, on-tap at Bar Hop.

Dark amber in colour. Small white head, nice lacing. Fades quickly.

Smell is not particularly strong. Bready malt, caramel, some grassy notes.

Sweet caramel malt flavour-wise, along with toffee. Decently hopped, some pine and slight citrus. Well balanced with a slightly bitter finish.

Medium to full bodied, moderately carbonated. Oily. Surprisingly light bodied given the ABV.

Overall, pretty good. (438 characters)

Photo of Ascender
4.48/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This was a gift from my bro-in-law and I'm thankful for it!

A cloudy burnt umber pour with a one finger head and medium lacing afterwards.

The nose has plum, pine and a bit of wood, or almost bark in it.

The taste is cinnamon, allspice, hops, pine and a high sweetness where the alcohol comes through. It's really tasty but it's clearly a high alcohol beer, that taste is unmistakable.

That said, I really enjoyed this. Great beer. (435 characters)

Photo of Bung
3.86/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Been a long time since I've had an old style Rogue for various reasons.
Draft at Grapevine.  Dark amber pour, just a ring of white.

Aroma,  mostly hops, citrus and pine.  There is an exteamly faint caramel malt.

Taste,  a sweet caramel up front, then fruitcake.  Then dominated by the bitter hops, pine and some grapefruit.  A little unpleasant alcohol.  Kind of a toasted malt with slight anise finish.  

Pretty big and sticky.  Carbonation keeps it from being too sticky.  Definetely some warmth, can see this should get less abrasive with some age.

An old standard.  Probably a good starting place for those new to the style. Yet another reminder of why I prefer a good English Barleywine though. (714 characters)

Photo of Kromes
4.3/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A hazy dark amber color with a thin tan colored head.

Toasted malt, caramel, and grassy hop. A little bit of earthy hop or peat in there also.

Initial flavor is of sweet toasted grain and caramel malt. The earthy and grassy hops then kick in to cut through the sweetness and give it a peppery spice and bitterness. These are strong flavors that complement and balance each other very well.

Good carbonation makes it smooth. A little bit oily.

Very nice beer here. There's no doubt that this is a sipper. The flavors are very strong yet blend together very well. (566 characters)

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. (829 characters)

Photo of DocZygote
4.35/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I like Barleywines, unless they are too sweet. Like many good Rogue beers the flavor of the Old Crustacean was never lacking, and for a high gravity beer that is important. One of the best Barleywines I have had.

Brewed 2004
Bottled 2004
Drank 2012 in a beer snifter. (269 characters)

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

I was given a bottle from 1998 that an uncle had cellared. I cracked it open on a damp, cool September night. I enjoyed it but wasn't blown away. I'm thinking it might have been slightly past its prime (14 years is quite a long time I know) but it was enjoyable. The alcohol had all but vanished but there was some subtle bitterness that felt out of place. It was definitely better when it was closed (cold) then after I had let it sit. The warmer it got the worse I felt it got. I have another bottle that was cellared in 2010 so I think I'll try that shortly and compare the two. I have no doubt about it's legendary status but, for me, this wasn't spectacular, just merely good. (681 characters)

Photo of lovindahops
3.8/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This cold and rainy September night calls for this crustacean to make an appearance

A- a dark orange and copper body fills the glass with ruby hue on the edges of the glass. A good looking barley wine appearance

S- good caramel and toffee scent is completely surrounded by dark fruit and raisin scents. Some sweet sugar and mollases are in the background as well

T- very heavy handed syrupy caramel flavor with dark fruit flavor all over. Alcohol is very evident but also invited. Really a full bodied barleywine

M- syrupy full flavor that is smooth

O- crustacean is a powerful barleywine that is smooth but does pack a powerful punch. Good enjoyable flavor (662 characters)

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

Poured from the bottle into a snifter glass. Unsure of vintage or dating here.

Muddy murky orange and light brown body, with a faint tan head that falls to a good collar, but a bit of a hazy top.

Nose is warm, inviting. Boozy malt and alcohol, figgy, warm pleasant spices of nutmeg slightly. Good dark sugars hide, not too cloying or syrupy, but big.

A good hop kick to this barleywine on the palate. Bitter mellow astringent hop, hits in the mid palate with a good thick warming malt body. Not much fruit like undertones to this, but a good solid malt backbone provides a good canvas. Mouthfeel is light, but full of flavor. Carries the flavors real nicely. Hints of pine and earth finish on the swallow, with a light bodied malt density. Seems like a contradictory statement, but it works.

Overall quite a good and very different from most barleywines. Nice to grab this one for a change. (894 characters)

Photo of ediaz
4.09/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 vintage (7oz) into a glass

A: Warm deep apple cider color with warm red notes. thin white lacing.

S: Sweet caramel and dark fruit notes with vanilla and a little booze.

T: Bright dark fruit taste that finishes with the other tastes noted in the smell.

M: Medium with a light amount of carbonation.

O: I would have this again but I wouldn't search very hard for it. Nonetheless, a very decent beer. (410 characters)

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. (676 characters)

Photo of Hopswagger
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

P:  Pours a murky dark apple cider appearance with minimal tan head the leaves thin spotty lacing. 

S:  Huge roasted caramel aroma, luscious berry wheat bread, coriander, dry dog food, soy sauce, burnt toffee, musky yeast. Once swirled the sweet aroma of alcohol stings the nose. 

T/M:  Taste follows the nose bready, loaded with sweetness and roasted caramel. The taste opens up the palate to bitter citrus and pine resin. Decently thick and silky mouthfeel that has subtle carbonation. Finish is dry with bitter fruity and grassy hops. 

O:  This beer is huge on the sweetness, bready malts and the bitterness is there but not truly pronounced.   I think this has faded somewhat but is still good regardless. The flavors really playoff each other a develop a complex and balanced beer.  Bottled in 2010 I can tell that the hops have faded quite a bit. I was expecting to have a big robust hop palate but I will have to find a fresh bottle to get the real flare of this beast. That being said it has aged very well.  (1,030 characters)

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

Reviewed from notes. Had on-tap at Mr. Dunderbak's. Served in a goblet.

A: Dark amber with some haziness and an off-white head that settles to a ring of foam. Minimal visible carbonation.

S: Sweet malty caramel on the nose. Also some alcohol heat to the nose.

T: Follows the nose with some coriander, dark spice, dark fruitiness. Ends with some boozy alcohol burn with the sticky sweetness.

M: Nice thickness to mouthfeel. Not a whole lot of carbonation but not unexpected with style.

O: This one is tasty, and I went into it with no expectations. There are barleywines I prefer to this one, but I would drink this again. (626 characters)

Photo of johnnnniee
3.45/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

7oz bottled in 2000 Sampled in 2012 so it's got a bit of age on it. Pours a mostly clear dark brown with ruby highlights when held to light. The aroma is filled with caramel dark sugar and lots of dark fruit with some alcohol and a bit of wet cardboard. The flavor is dark sugars and cherries and raisins with a healthy dose of warming alcohol. There's an earthy herbal component in there as well. Medium to thin body with a light level of carbonation and a sweet harsh alcohol type mouthfeel. Its nice to be able to try a 12 year old bottle of barleywine. I've had fresher bottles of this and felt the alcohol was a bit too present, and this proves that age won't fix that. The twist off cap probably didn't help much, but there was still a little bit of carbonation. Nice to try. (781 characters)

Photo of VncentLIFE
3.17/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Thanks to David Rosen for bringing over the 2 small bottles (Flying Dog and Rogen)!

Maybe the age has killed the carbonation, but very undercarbonated.

For its age, the dryness isnt as strong as id expect. Which kind of scares me because usually sweetness turns to dryness with age. Lots of very sweet toffee and even more caramel. Im thinking its soooo sweet that its almost dry.

i so wish it tasted like it smelled, but nope. Its kind of bland actually. Its sweet, but not as sweet as it smells. Its like an overly dry, almost off tasting sweetness that turns me off. I think it may have oxidized. I think I want dry sweetness, but I get some dryness, but the grains feel dry (and they dont work with the sweeter notes at all). (732 characters)

Photo of Darkmagus82
3.9/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured from 7 oz bottle dated 2010 into snifter

Appearance – Pours a hazy orange- copper color with a huge yellowish tinted head. The head had giant carbonation bubbles that slowly popped over time to leave a wonderful level of lacing.

Smell – The smell is sweet and malty. The sweet aromas are of fruit and sugar with the malty aromas of biscuit and sweet bread. There are lighter notes of alcohol mixed within, which when mixed with the rest of the aromas makes a very pleasant smell.

Taste – The flavor is big of chewy bread up front with a light, almost orange, citrus like flavor. The citrus leaves with an even maltier presence coming into the taste as a big biscuit flavor meets the chewy bread. At along this same time an alcohol flavor enters the taste. It gets stronger and stronger toward the end leaving a somewhat mediciney burn on the tongue in the end.

Mouthfeel – Insanely thick. It is like a thick syrupy-decongestant thickness. It coats the mouth thoroughly letting all the flavors really penetrate the tongue. This with a lower level of carbonation and a the burn create a rather unique mouthfeel.

Overall – Big and potent with a heavy boozy flavor and a wonderful thickness. (1,210 characters)

Photo of endovelico
3.23/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Taken from notes. Reviewed under medium low artificial light.

Appearance: Murky amber stroke mahogany brew with almost no head (effectively snitching on the alcohol level) and medium perceived effervescence. Upon some swirling, a beautiful tan head emerges. The color is very inviting.

Aroma: Medium in intensity. On a first sniff: Cloying melanoidin with alcohol up front. Grainy and caramel on the back, but all in all very muffled aroma as i can't really put my finger on what i'm getting. Paradoxically a great descriptor, for me, would be piña colada and yougurt.

Taste: Intense flavour. Ash, melanoidin, alcohol, yeast slurry and caramel. Strong minty / vegetable hops reminiscent of Northern brewer hops. Very muddy as opposed to complex.

Palate: Medium low to low carbonation. Medium high body. Coating finish. Medium high bitterness. Some yeast bite. Alcohol apparent but it's really not supposed to be any other way at 11.5% and 110 IBUs. Soapy texture.

Overall: This beer is all over the place for me. Some things i like, some things are off, some things i hate. It's not an amateurish or badly made beer, it's just badly designed in my opinion, it doesn't really work as a whole. I almost feel guilty giving it such a low score but i expect a re-taste in the future to correct or confirm my suspicions. (1,321 characters)

Photo of ckollias
4.42/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed this 750ml bottle out of a large snifter glass.

A: Pours a cloudy brown hue with orange highlights. Small, white, head that quickly dissipates into a wispy lace.

S: Strong malty aroma with a good caramel background and a decent hop presence.

T: Robust malt flavor that is slightly sweet. Caramel and slight hop background.

M: Very big, strong and boozy. Heavy body and medium carbonation.

O: Love, love, love this big ass barleywine. Total worth the money. Great flavor and huge amount of alcohol. (510 characters)

Photo of StoneTSR
3.72/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

APPEARANCE: The bottle is absolutely gorgeous, which is a good start. The beer itself isn't bad either. A few shades lighter than Mahogany, burnt orange I guess with a thick head that faded fast.

SMELL: Great smell with a ton of bread in this thing. Banana, clove and brown sugar are all there as well.

TASTE: This smelled like a malty beer, but it tastes like a hoppy one. The finish is exceptionally bitter while the front is loaded with bread from the nose. A bit of sweet maltiness manages to sneak in between the two, but only a tiny bit.

MOUTHFEEL: Medium bodied, dry and palate-cleansing.

OVERALL: Not great, but not bad either. The look and smell are great, but the taste and the feel are only slightly above average. All of this adds up to a good beer, but it probably isn't worth paying $17.99 for a bomber. (822 characters)

XS Old Crustacean from Rogue Ales
90 out of 100 based on 698 ratings.