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XS Old Crustacean - Rogue Ales

Not Rated.
XS Old CrustaceanXS Old Crustacean

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,116 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,116
Reviews: 688
rAvg: 4
pDev: 14%
Wants: 84
Gots: 108 | FT: 7
Brewed by:
Rogue Ales visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  11.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
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 added by: BeerAdvocate on 01-03-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of XS Old Crustacean Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,116 | Reviews: 688 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of 99bottles


4.75/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2001 Vintage. Props where Props is due: KClinger’s Publik House had some of these bottles in storage and nicely kept were they.

Appearance: 12 ounce bottle. Into a tulip, this beer has a rich ruby auburn color and a half inch of head that settles to a persistent off white head. Gorgeous. In the bottom of the bottle lies nearly a half inch of deep brown yeasties, sediment and secrets of the past 3 years. I’m all for the vitamins and nutrients, but I believe that scuzz might just kill a man.

Smell: A very full and sweet malt nose melds nicely with a sharp pine bitterness. Very decadent and heavy on the malt, I see it uses five different types.

Taste: The most full beer I’ve ever tasted. Full of flavor, complexity, body, malts and hops. Outstanding. Some of the many intricate flavors after 3 years of aging are pine, oak, rum, cocoa, bourbon, cedar wood. The alcohol is very much a prescence in this, and with the age the beer has taken on spirit qualities. The 120 IBUs are still very much alive, though the hops have settled into place behind the luscious malts. The bitterness exists in the aftertaste and in any burps one might have. An almost saponic quality is present in the aftertaste. Maybe 120 IBUs is approaching the limit of my tastebuds. One of the most complex beers I’ve ever tried. For this, it gets a 5.

Mouthfeel: Velvety smooth, and immensely rich. At times almost cloying, but never out of place. The malts don’t hide the alcohol, but do a good job supporting it. I think it fits the style and this particular beer very well.

Drinkability: I wouldn’t recommend that anyone ever have more than one of these in a sitting. Dangerously alcoholic but also dangerously alluring, I kept sipping trying to taste new complexities and pinpoint old ones; I kept admiring the outlandish flavors and sanity defying nuances. If the threat of a serious hangover is the only thing keeping me from drinking many more of these, I’d say it’s pretty darn drinkable. This barley wine is an excellent example of the style and one that ages magnificently.

Serving type: bottle

10-01-2004 16:58:38 | More by 99bottles
Photo of pheurton


4.38/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

2002 vintage: cloudy and intimidating color of fire glazed mud bricks. cream soda colored head bubbles forth from the viscous liquid and subsequently retreats into the murkiness. dark caribbean rum soaked fruitcake aroma with an underlying nostril-searing pine resin hopiness. minimal carbonation...maybe from sitting in my cloeset for 2 1/2 years? ultra full bodied, smooth and deliciously creamy. heapings of caramel malt flavor with notes of green apples and over-ripened plums. hops come in at the end with an uppercut of viscous pine resin bitterness and flavor. the bitterness shows up late and can be rather shocking. alcoholic heat in the belly. still plenty of hop muscle, even after sitting for a few years. goes down well enough though the sheer size and booziness of this brew limits this mere mortal to one in a sitting. totally over the top but executed well. rogue crafts stellar big brews. they ain't classics for nothing.

Serving type: bottle

09-27-2004 23:03:04 | More by pheurton
Photo of altctrlsdelete

North Carolina

4.35/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled in 2002.

Pours an interesting maroon that doesn't change much when held to the light. No head to speak of after a fairly light pour into my snifter.

A sweet malt smell dominates the nose with lots of fruit and sugars up front and a subtle hint of the 120 IBUs that are to come.

The first sip is delectably bitter, with the hops really coming out to party and putting the sweetness in its place. 120 IBUs indeed, and the hop bitterness stays through the finish. The malts are there and command some attention, but the hops are front and center, pounding your tongue. The alcohol is remarkably well masked for the strength.

A heavy feel in the mouth, as a barleywine should be. Nearly perfect.

Delightfully (or dangerously?) drinkable for the alcohol content. The only American barleywine I've had that I prefer to this is Dominion's Millennium. This is a hophead's barleywine.

Serving type: bottle

09-18-2004 05:38:52 | More by altctrlsdelete
Photo of Guinness4me


1.4/5  rDev -65%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

The taste comes from the flavor reached by soaking the socks worn by sea captains, or Oregon fishermen, in tepid seawater. This is not a beer for the faint-hearted.

It poured nice enough with a slight head with wispy lace. From there, things went terribly wrong.

The smell was musty and sweet. Ick.

Once the first sip hit the back of my tongue, I swear that all the air was sucked out of my lungs. Maybe it was my body's defense mechanism to keep from breathing-in the fumes. It was an acrid, bitter taste that left an aftertaste like that of coffee with too much chicory, or is it bile?

Taste at your own risk. I'm determined to choke down the last 1/2 of this pint.

Serving type: bottle

09-13-2004 03:18:35 | More by Guinness4me
Photo of mntlover


3.58/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a dark brown with redish hints small brown head. Aroma is sweet caramel malts with fruit hints in nose grapefruit hints expecting more hop aromas but not bad smelling. Taste is thick chewy caramel malt really sweet then the bitter hops kick in and coat your tounge with oily hops. This beer has alot of hops atleast in the alpha acid dept but not much in way of aroma or flavor or its overpowered by the bitterness. I was wanting to like this beer but couldn't talk myself into thought about rating taste average but this beer is anything but average its just not for me. Mouthfeel is big and full a beer that means business. Drinkability for me average I guess, would have it again if offered but wouldn't look for it.

Serving type: bottle

09-01-2004 12:36:32 | More by mntlover
Photo of pezoids


1.75/5  rDev -56.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1

Bottled in 2001.

Poured a murky and mysterious burgundy brown color. A thin filmy head of tan cream topped the beer off. The aroma is strong with sticky fruit and heavy with malt sweetness. The heavy and rich aromas that emanate from this beer almost come full circle and almost cabbage-like. The taste – well now, how to say this… it’s like chewing on a grapefruit seed. Intensely bitter throughout and seems highly unbalanced, even with the heavy malt. I know this is an “American Style” barleywine, and it is from the West Coast, but Jesus! Gimme a break here! This might be just the thing if you want to strip the paint off dads’ old Studebaker. A few more sips and I’m breathing fire. It’s like sucking on a green acorn. Tannic, acidic and bitter as hell. Body of malt is heavy, but gets completely overwhelmed by the bitter qualities. It reminds me of accidentally drinking seawater, and it back washes up through your sinus cavity. It stings and numbs. I really can’t see anyone enjoying this… I did manage to finish it, but just barely. Maybe this is just too young... but, until it (or my palate) matures - Gag…

This is just craft beer gone wrong, IMHO.

Serving type: bottle

08-22-2004 02:11:16 | More by pezoids
Photo of MrNuggets


3.55/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Last time I had an old crusty it was a harsh, hoppy, palate devastating beer. Nothing like what is in my glass this time. Where are my beloved hops? Carmel dominates the flavor here. the beer seems to have turned from a hop fed beast to a malt monster. Burnt flavors come threw, certainly some interesting stuff going on here in this finely structured mass of malt. The beer enters and leaves the mouth with out any notice of the high alcohol content.
I'll need to rereview a newer bottle.

Serving type: bottle

08-17-2004 08:12:54 | More by MrNuggets
Photo of Popsinc

Ontario (Canada)

4.3/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appeaarnce: 2002 Vintage. a clear but dark amber pour. minimal head, fades down to a mere ring quite fast.

Smell: fruity sweetness. molasses & caramel stickiness. underlying chocolate notes. a borbon like woodiness in there as well. big hops.

Taste/Mouthfeel: wow! overwhelming to say the least! hops galore and alcohol pow is right up front and throughout. the sweetness seems to come from raisin & fig. a wallop of black licorice is also in the mix. hop bitterness is huge on this brew and extends itself well after you complete your sip. very long & lingering characteristics. burried beneath all the mayhem there is a pinch of a nutty port-lke quality. the hop kick goes on forever post sip, it's crazy!

Drinkability: as far as barley wine goes this is great example. the big IBUs and alcohol kick may offend some and make the drinkability questionable. this one is a definte late nite sipper or even better if shared between 2.

Serving type: bottle

08-13-2004 19:11:35 | More by Popsinc
Photo of imblane


4.8/5  rDev +20%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

WOW! I am not a huge fan of Barley Wines, I do like Stone Old Guardian on occasion, but during a recent trip to Vegas, I dropped into my favorite watering hole there, The Freakin Frog. I found, quite by accident, they had tapped a keg of 1996 Vintage Old Crustacean, a week or so prior and there was still some left. I decided to give it a shot, and boy what an unbelievable beer this is!! No head to speak of, but a beautiful dark amber color, no carbonation to speak of either. Strong malty backbone, very strong on carmel, but before it got "sweet", the hops took over and finished smooth as velvet with a warm alcohol bite. I would love to have some of this for winter, it is truly a belly warmer. I immediately ceased any thoughts of drinking anything other than this for the remainder of the evening, which was not too awful long, considering the high ABV of 11% + who knows what has happened over the last 8 years. I will go buy some of the current release at my local liquor store; however, I am afraid I may be disappointed in a newer offering. Get to the Frog in Vegas and get some quick!!!

Serving type: bottle

08-05-2004 06:13:35 | More by imblane
Photo of Hibernator


4.33/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2002 Rogue Old Crustacean Barleywine.

I had this out of a 12 oz brown bottle served in a goblet at slightly above room tempature. Very nice looking bottle, very typical for Rogue. 8 ingredients in total used in this beer.

The appearance was absoutely incredible. Nice shade of brown, almost a warm red color. I was surprised at the over 1 inch head and amazing lacings on the sides of the glass with each sip. Sticky and thick lacings were all over the glass.

Smell is sweet with a mocha aroma and slightly fruity.

This is one robust and complex barleywine. Very rich in malt flavor with a serious mouthfeell. Syrupy with a bitter finish. A warming and intense brew. One of the best of this style that I have sampled. Recommended.

Serving type: bottle

08-01-2004 00:44:35 | More by Hibernator
Photo of HiroProtagonist


3.83/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Old Crustacean was served from a silkscreened 12 oz bottle dated 2002 (aged 2 years). In a pint glass, the beer was a rich and very deep and attractive mahogany brown, and was topped by a thin light brown head. The nose was extremely complex and wonderful with exploding textured roasty, mushroomy, spouted-grain, woody maltiness. Irratic plumes of varnish-like alchohl caught my nose from time to time. Sweet notes are present but stuggle to escape. On the palate, a big roasty, peaty malt profile with some nice cocoa nuances reared back to release searing scotch-like alcohol flavors that warmed the throat on the way down. A huge complementing bitterness came through this in the finish leaving lingering roasty, lightly astringent nutty notes. The medium body felt good for the flavors and character of the beer. As for drinkability, it suffers considerably due to the completely detached alcohol thoughout....I sipped it like as if it were scotch, and I barely got through the bottle. Despite this harshness, the nose was amazingly developed and good flavors made it enjoyable for a while. This aged barleywine was quite intense.

Serving type: bottle

07-30-2004 05:34:54 | More by HiroProtagonist
Photo of FormatKid


4.83/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

--12oz RogueXS bottle – Bottled in 2004

I poured this one out into a goblet. The shade is a nice burnished mahogany, when compared to light it is an almost perfect brown-tinged shade of ruby. A nice respectable head rolls up but eventually recedes to a thin layer on top that does manage to linger.

Smell is rich with dark caramelly malts, and jagged with hops the scent of grape-fruit rinds, with maybe a floral touch. A teeny-tiny whiff of alcohol is apparent as well.

The flavor on this one is really intense, light notes of apple at the start. The middle consists of a brief peep of those burnt caramel tasting malts, which are quickly engulfed and abused by HUGE earthy bitter hops, almost strong enough to make me shudder. The after-taste is strong and doesn’t let you forget what you’re drinking at all. The alcohol barely registers to me, not at all in taste in fact, more of like a back-draft of alcohol from my palette to the inside of my nose. I do however feel warmth in my stomach as it gathers. The mouthfeel is perfectly medium.

Wow! One of the most intense beers I have ever tried. Don’t have a whole lot of experience with Barleywines but I think I could even tell this one was a bit green.I'm laying down another bottle for as long as I can stand and will try it again later. Still an awesome beer!, I just think it could have more potential with age.

Thank you Rajendra82!

Serving type: bottle

07-25-2004 04:04:36 | More by FormatKid
Photo of jlervine


4.08/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a somewhat translucent hazel brown color. Off-white head forms and fades before waving "hello". Smell is an elegant mixture of sticky caramel malt, fragrant alcohol, and grapefruity citrusy hops. Taste is quick and to the point. Hop bitterness followed by a cleansing alcohol bath, a touch of malt, and palate stripping fruity hops leaving the mouth wanting more. It's not completely unbalanced, but it wants you to think that it is. The dry mouthfeel coupled with the mouth-watering hop bitterness attempts to balance it all out, but falls just a bit short. I think more residual sweetness would make this a killer barleywine. Very drinkable, but the flavor is in that grey area between American double IPA and barleywine. Expecting one or the other may skew your results.

Serving type: bottle

07-25-2004 02:53:08 | More by jlervine
Photo of rajendra82


4.55/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Blood red, cloudy pour with a head that was a couple of inches thick. The aroma was sweet hazelnuts, flowery hops, and a musty leathery funk. The taste is very powerful with a malty and hoppy punch to your face that makes you sit up and take notice. A very complex series of flavors is found here, as each sip starts off as an innocent mixture of sweet dark skinned fruits, and ends up as a roasty peppery tobacco juice that makes your head spin. Just an incredible beer that shows what we had been missing for nearly 70 years in Georgia.

Serving type: bottle

07-10-2004 04:13:28 | More by rajendra82
Photo of connecticutpoet


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

This was a good barleywine, better than several I have had. And I have had a few. as barleywine is my second favorite style.

It poured a cloudy brown color with no head to speak of. A little darker than I had expected. Somewhat syrupy in its consistency.

The aroma was of strong musty malt, with very potent, almost stinging alcohol in the background. It was quite nice for a barleywine... and as I was drinking it chilled, I was interested in seeing how it would taste as it warmed.

The taste was of strong musty malt, and reminded me almost of hopped whisky. Quite interesting. As it warmed, the alcohol became more prominent. This was definitely a sipping beer. But a good one and worth having again, especially with different vintages.

Serving type: bottle

07-06-2004 02:42:10 | More by connecticutpoet
Photo of joecast


3.05/5  rDev -23.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

deep burgandy color with a small head of fine tan bubbles.
bitter floral aroma with strong hints of citrus and alcohol.
huge bitterness mixes with alcohol leaving the malt to make up what is left. the alcohol is just about overpowering in the flavor. only traces of dark chocolate manage to peek out from behind.
mouthfeel is effervescent leaving a tingling sensation.
flavor mellows slightly as it warms.
well, what can i say. its the first beer to make me feel unworthy, though not through superiority, through sheer intimidation. a real bully of a beer. 'tis a barleywine that demands respect.
leaves with a feeling of warmth not only in the belly but in the back of the mouth as well.

Serving type: bottle

07-02-2004 12:21:56 | More by joecast
Photo of meathookjones


4.13/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This 12oz was bottled in 2002. Pours a deep reddish brown color with a tan head that leaves a little bit of nice looking lace around the glass as it is consumed. Aroma smell of sweet fruits, citrus hops with a bit of alcohol. The taste is very sharp at first with a big bitterness followed sweet malt flavors and alcohol. This was a bit rough on the first sip but got better as it was consumed. Mouthfeel is full and creamy and it goes down fairly easily considering the bitterness and alcohol tastes. Overall a great barley wine that could probably stand to age another year or so.

Serving type: bottle

06-17-2004 18:41:59 | More by meathookjones
Photo of cbl2

New York

3.68/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5


An opaque brownish orange with a faint tan head.


I've tried and tried, but for some reason I'm not getting a lot of odor from this one. Some faint citrus fruit, but nothing jumps out.


This is a big beer, and the first sip announces that. Loads of alcohol and crazy hop levels lead me to dislike this at first, but some caramel sweet aspects peek in towards the end to bring it back more into my realm. That sweetness is replaced again by the hops for a slightly bitter finish, but overall this is an excellent Barley wine once you let it warm slightly.

Serving type: bottle

06-17-2004 18:34:37 | More by cbl2
Photo of PSUDREW


4.1/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

come on everyone, time to sing...

(orangy) red, red (barley) wiiinnnneee, sooo goood to meee, (orangy) red red (barley) wine...

sigh. 2002 XS version is what I am reviewing. Very interesting beer, IMO. Has a dark, deep orangy-red color. Not very see-though, as it were. Has a foamy, thick lightly orange head. Loads of sediment are in my glass, and it gives it an interesting visual.

Smells bready-sweet. Very rich and deeply so. Nice nose, and, gives it s nice aspect when drinking it down. The taste...well, that is an interesting mix too. Sweet maly taste is the 1st thing that hits you, albeit briefly. Then the alchohol mixes in. so then you have a warm tingly feeling and a sweetness behind it, pushing it's way through. Finished with a distinct, bitter, hoppy aftertaste. But, IMO it all mixes, almost indistinguishably. It mixes so nicely too. Mmmm

Thick mouhtfeel, but still highly drinkable. Wow, this brew really impressed me!

Serving type: bottle

06-16-2004 03:25:19 | More by PSUDREW
Photo of Zorro


3.73/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

2003 Vintage.

Pours a cloudy deep red brew.

Smell is of nice herbal hops and malt; the alcohol brings up a faint scent of whiskey. Raisin and prune scents are the dominant sweet scents in this.

Taste is sweet and quite bitter. Brash hops hit your tongue and slap the sweetness down. The bottle says it is 120 IBU and I can believe that. The bitterness kills all the subtle flavors.

Mouthfeel is quite good.

Not a super drinkable brew makes a good one to shock your taste buds.

Serving type: bottle

06-15-2004 05:20:44 | More by Zorro
Photo of travolta


3.48/5  rDev -13%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Lacing was good, head was tan. The beer was amber.

Grapes, malt, hops, molasses, applecider, roasted cofee.

Bitter at first, tastes like a barley wine should only a little hoppier. It was very light and smooth on the tounge at the begining of the taste. Ethanol alcohol a bit at the end. Creamy mouthfeel.

Notes: Not blown away, but a good drink.

Serving type: bottle

06-08-2004 20:18:21 | More by travolta
Photo of watermelonman


4.33/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This poured to a very dark brown with a really thin but dark head. There's not too much lace but it looks nice.

Its taste is sharp and abrupt up front, with lingering hints of malts and alcohol.

The mouthfeel is sharp and potent, like any other good barleywine. All things considered, it's pretty drinkable too.

Serving type: bottle

06-03-2004 06:58:43 | More by watermelonman
Photo of Billolick

New York

4.13/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle, brewed in 2002. Pours darkest amber, minimal carbonation and head, Tiny bubles, leaves some lacing. Not much nose detected. Mouthfel is smooth, rich and lucious. Vinious, strong alcohol presence. Lovely malt backbone. Hops more subtle, but grainyness is evident. Very strong BW, well crafted, this is a nice sipper, excellent night capper.

Serving type: bottle

05-22-2004 02:26:51 | More by Billolick
Photo of sulldaddy


3.85/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This was my second beer of the nite at Delaney's.
2002 vintage on tap!! Sampling was 5/15/04 (my birthday!)

The beer is served in a flute glass and is a very dark mahogany color on the pour. I get a small beige creamy head as well.
The aroma is very mild with some malty toffee and caramel, not really any hop scents which surprises me a little.
First sip, big thick body with nearly no carbonation. I get a huge hit of alcohol up front and then flavors of prunes, ripe pears and some toffee too. Not really a strong hop presence in taste but perhaps some piney hops mixed in on the finish. I think the alcohol really dominates and warms me as I drink it.
The hops have definitely faded a little on this one. This is a real treat and I would try it again, just be ready for a big beer!

Serving type: on-tap

05-16-2004 14:04:09 | More by sulldaddy
Photo of Tballz420


4.3/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

2002 reviewed in 2004

This beer has a dark purple/brown colored body, small khaki colored head on top. Big mnalt scent, chocolate and syrup. The taste has an intense malt character, with a bitter hop backbone. Chewy mouthfeel, sticks to the throat as well. The alcohol becomes evident as the beer warms. This beer is not for pussies, and will leave you feeling old and crusty when youre done.

Serving type: bottle

05-08-2004 20:14:58 | More by Tballz420
XS Old Crustacean from Rogue Ales
90 out of 100 based on 1,116 ratings.