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Big Worse - Mikkeller ApS

Big WorseBig Worse

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

350 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 350
Reviews: 237
rAvg: 3.77
pDev: 15.92%

Brewed by:
Mikkeller ApS visit their website

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  12.00% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
Brewed at De Proefbrouwerij.

Ingredients: Water, malt (pils and caramunich), candy sugar, hops (nugget, cascade and centennial) and ale yeast.

(Beer added by: Viggo on 11-25-2007)
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Ratings: 350 | Reviews: 237 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of dcloeren


1.45/5  rDev -61.5%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

This was the worst beer I ever had hands down. I honestly have nothing positive to say about it. Poured a murky brown/rust color. Smelled of sweet malt and tart fruits. I thought maybe the name "Big Worse" was them being ironic or clever but apparently they were just being up front with everyone. This beer is the WORST beer ever. I almost felt bad for my sink for pouring it in there. I would have dumped it outside but I didnt have any weeds in my yard to kill at the time.


Serving type: bottle

06-17-2011 19:36:44 | More by dcloeren
Photo of WVbeergeek


1.7/5  rDev -54.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

Appears a deep murky blood orange red brown in color with a large beige head dwindles down to fine even lacing. Aroma is tart with ripened fruit soaked in raw fusel alcohol. Abundant hop notes intertwined in the luscious malt character brings the aromatics around full character. Flavor is unsynchronized with raw hop bitterness, astringent alcohol, and overly sweet candy sugar additions might as well package this one in forties and sell in the 7/11 down the street. This is extreme beer at it's worse, might as well call this one the skullsplitter. After a half glass my eyes are blurring and my temples are buzzing, I feel like I just got done reinsulating my attic as my skin becomes warm and flush and my nose burns from the alcohol fumes. As you can see I'm not going to add to the hype of this brewery, I will give their other brews a shot. Mouthfeel is astringent in every aspect coats the palate with earthy hop oils, hot alcohol, and overtly sweet sugars in the malt profile causing me to want to go scrape my tongue. Literally causes my gag reflex to work, so let's motion to kick this one out of the UN of beers. Drinkability is shite the worst beer I've had in a long time, by the way nice synthetic cork maybe those brewers can use this one as a substitute butt plug, because this beer tastes like ass.

Serving type: bottle

03-06-2008 04:11:16 | More by WVbeergeek
Photo of champ103


1.78/5  rDev -52.8%
look: 1.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 1 | overall: 1.5

A: Pours a murky brown color. No head, and no lace.
S: Very sweet malt in the nose. Smoke and moldy dry wood and ash aromas. Vinegar and alcohol. Unimpressive.
T: Cloyingly sweet malt. Some dry dark fruits. Moldy wood, rubber, and ask. Lots of vinegar and alcohol again.
M/D: A medium body with a dead a lifeless carbonation. The sweetness, lack of carbonation, and alcohol makes this very hard to drink.

Avoid. I did not enjoy this. Very unpleasant. I have had this twice (I bought it only once). Both times have been drain pours.

Serving type: bottle

05-30-2009 03:42:30 | More by champ103
Photo of ArrogantB


2.05/5  rDev -45.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

I had been eyeing this beer for awhile so when I saw it on sale for $6 I snatched it. Big mistake. Reddish-brown cor with no head and no carbonation whatsoever. Smells oxidized, old, like really old cake or something. The taste is cardboard, sugar, just not good at all. Mikkeller is just too hit or miss for me with the misses outweighing the hits by far.

Serving type: bottle

08-24-2011 16:21:13 | More by ArrogantB
Photo of CommanderOfAwesome


2.23/5  rDev -40.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.5

2009 vintage poured into a snifter.

A: Pours flat, with a dark caramel with a red hue. Literally no carbonation.

S: Oxidation reigns supreme, with strong fuselage notes. Getting some bad church wine, grapes on this.

T: Strong red grapes, tastes more like a wine than a beer. Grainy texture to it. Bleh, oh man this is bad.

M: Medium mouthfeel, alcohol is prevalent. Strong sweet finish that coats the mouth.

O: Total bummer. I found this "gem" in the back of a cooler at Ledgers with the price tag showing that they recieved it in Feb of 2009. I knew this was an old beer when I got into it, but figured if it's sitting back in the fridge it would be worth a shot. Man was I wrong. Got about 2 sips in before I drain poured it. All well, live and learn. Worth the risk.

Serving type: bottle

05-12-2013 05:45:19 | More by CommanderOfAwesome
Photo of Squelch

United Kingdom (England)

2.3/5  rDev -39%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

appearance: opaque, purple hue. no head, no lacing.

Smell: sweet sweet smell. No hops.

Taste: tastes like I'm drinking grain. super sweet. No hops to balance out the sweetness. not to my liking

Mouthfeel: heavy. Hot from the alcohol. Thick and syrupy

Drinkability: a sipper. I didn't like it

Serving type: bottle

01-28-2010 02:05:32 | More by Squelch
Photo of Arbitrator


2.33/5  rDev -38.2%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Chilled bottle into a glass. Thanks, Craig.

A: Pours a nearly still, clear amber-ruby body.

S: Strong oxidation (sherry and cardboard), pine, earth, toffee.

T: Tastes much the same: here, sherry dominates and melds with toffee against a strong, clashing bitterness of pine and earth. There's a mild flavor of orange rind.

M: This is heavy and mildly boozy.

O: I'm always happy when someone brings a Mikkeller beer to a tasting. I can't think of a more consistently awful brewery, and I feel I don't rate harshly enough most of the time. This brewery is a good way to bring that average town. Usually $15 a pop for bottled garbage. Still, this one is unpleasant but not totally irredeemable. For Mikkeller, it's even good.

Serving type: bottle

09-24-2011 06:07:59 | More by Arbitrator
Photo of BMMillsy


2.41/5  rDev -36.1%
look: 1.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.75 | overall: 2.25

Bottle courtesy of beastmaster. Pours cloudy opaque brown with no head. Aroma of biscuits, toffee, malt, brown sugar, molasses, hints of vanilla and bourbon even though not bourbon barrel aged. Taste is watery big bready malt and booze. Turpentiney, and thinner than expected. Lots of chewey sediment. No carbonation. Vodka burn. Was not ready for this after Chocolate Rain and some other beers tonight.

Serving type: bottle

06-21-2013 01:02:49 | More by BMMillsy
Photo of phishgator


2.42/5  rDev -35.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Poured into a small whiskey glass. Small head with a hazey, ruby coloreed body. No light permitted to make it through. The aroma is of unferemented sugars and plum fruit. The taste is complete unferemented sugars they overpower everything. It tastes like someone tried to add as much ferementables into this brew, but didn't have enough fire power with the yeast to get the finish. This is the first I have tried from Mikkeller and I'm not looking to try anything else from him soon.

Serving type: bottle

07-28-2010 16:48:04 | More by phishgator
Photo of mrandypandy


2.42/5  rDev -35.8%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

375ml caged and corked bottle. Purchased at Green's in Atlanta and cellared for a few years.

A- Pours a MURKY brown/ruby. No head, no carbonation, nothing.
S- Malty sweetness, figs, rum-soaked raisins. Some fusel alcohol.
T- Booze. Some faint residual malt sweetness, but all alcohol.
M- Thin, weak, watery. No carbonation.
D- None. This has become an alcohol bomb and drinking is a chore. Drain-pour.

Overall - Age has not been kind to this brew. It gets slightly bearable as it warms, but not enough to even think about finishing my glass. Too much heat.

Serving type: bottle

12-06-2010 00:30:47 | More by mrandypandy
Photo of cvfish


2.5/5  rDev -33.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Poured into a glass from a bottle

A - Settled to a reddish brown color with a white solid head that dissappears quickly

S - Strong scent of alcohol with some fruity overtones

T - Strong bitter tastes, not much else

M - Dry, full bodied mouth that didn't agree with me

D - Wasn't impressed with this barley wine, there were others that I liked better

Serving type: bottle

11-17-2008 23:44:43 | More by cvfish
Photo of Jablonski


2.5/5  rDev -33.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Pours a copper color into a pint glass. Small head, but good lacing. The first thing I notice about the smell is that it's a bit boozy, but it's not that strong. There is also some caramel and pear (?) as well. The candy sugar is strong in the taste, but there is an alcohol taste that begins to dominate as the beer warms. Initially I thought I could get used to it, but about halfway through I still wasn't enjoying this beer. The mouthfeel is good, but the taste just make this not that drinkable of a beer. It's not worth the price in my book.

Serving type: bottle

05-04-2009 03:29:23 | More by Jablonski
Photo of brentk56

North Carolina

2.53/5  rDev -32.9%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Pours a cola brown color without a head; no carbonation means no lacing

Smell: Prunes, leather, some earthy funk

Taste: Brown bread devolving into a pruney funk; a bit of tartness builds, after the swallow and leaves a tannic leathery character in the aftertaste

Mouthfeel: Moderate body, rather flabby, with no carbonation

Overall: Not sure of the age of this bottle as I got it as an extra in a recent trade (cannot remember who sent it) but am rather disappointed in this beer, regardless of bottling date as a Barleywine should hold up better than this one has

Serving type: bottle

06-24-2012 00:47:29 | More by brentk56
Photo of AndoBrew


2.55/5  rDev -32.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

* i did not like this beer, and would never buy it*

app: copper amber, not mythical

Smell: smells like an average bw. nothing bad, nothing exciting.

taste: not good, it is thin and weak then iffy hops, then candy "i spiked the abv with sugar" type taste.

mf: fine

drinkable?: a bit, but not worth the fight to keep it down

Serving type: bottle

01-12-2008 05:24:11 | More by AndoBrew
Photo of fostachild

Ontario (Canada)

2.73/5  rDev -27.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

best before 02/07/12

pours a dark burgundy/brown colour with absolutely zero head.

smells sweet, has some fruit, molasses, and alcohol aromas.

taste is okay with some similar characteristics as the smell. didn't find this to have the best balance, with each sip being either too sweet or too boozy. overall kinda disappointed, it was sort of drinkable but not that enjoyable.

Serving type: bottle

12-08-2011 01:48:51 | More by fostachild
Photo of SammyDavisJrJrJr


2.75/5  rDev -27.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

A little something to help get over my Cubs going down 0-2 in the NLDS. Into a KBS snifter.

A - Dark amber body with one finger of rock head.

S - A bit yeasty, a lot of black current, and a boatload of alcohol in the nose.

T - Fruit sweetness and tartness (blackberry, pear) are very predominate in the entry, with some drier malt to balence it out. Hops are present, but the alcohol seems to trash my mouth so much that it dominates any hops. I was left with a citrus aftertaste that did not go away, and did not compliment the beer at all.

M - Silky body, that becomes prickly with the alcohol.

D - I love Barleywines, the bigger the better... That being said, this lacked many qualities I like in the style. The malt was to dominated by fruits, and everything was blown away by the alcohol, which to me felt much higher than 12%. Can't say this is an brew I would reach for again.

Serving type: bottle

10-03-2008 04:58:33 | More by SammyDavisJrJrJr
Photo of OBeerMeGreatOne


2.78/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

From Notes:
Pours a hazy red/brown but more on the brown side. Small half inch head with moderate lace.
There are hints of plums and earth in the smell but not much more. Not much going on.
The taste starts with dark malts, fruit, alcohol and some earth. Better than I expected after the smell but not great. A little fizzy in the mouth. Doesn't hide the alcohol too well.
Not on the top of my great barleywines list. I'm not sure what is going on here but this one was a miss.

Serving type: bottle

12-18-2010 19:54:18 | More by OBeerMeGreatOne
Photo of corby112


2.8/5  rDev -25.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

From notes:

Pours a very dark, hazy chestnut brown color with slight mahogany edges when held to a light source and a thin yellowish beige head that quickly dissipates without leaving much lacing.

Earthy, leathery malt aroma with subtle earthy hops and faint chocolate but it mostly just smells like sweet booze.

Medium bodied and nicely balanced with a prominent earthy leathery malt character. There are some silky chocolate and toffee notes up front that are countered by a subtle hop bitterness and a very strong hot, boozy alcohol flavor. Sweet with hints of chocolate, toffee, biscuit and caramel but again the alcohol is the prominent flavor and is way too overpowering.

Serving type: bottle

01-06-2011 19:00:04 | More by corby112
Photo of kingcrowing


2.9/5  rDev -23.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

375ml corked & caged bottle poured into an Allagsh tulip.

Pours a dark muddy brown with no head at all - I'm really hoping this isn't flat. Nose is Very booze and sweet/malty. Slight raisin and toffee.

Has a very light carbonation, slightly watery on the finish but still a decent body. It's quite sharp and boozy with a noticeable warming sensation. Taste is a bit unpleasant, more like a wine or something than most barleywines. It's ok but I wouldn't seek it out.

Serving type: bottle

12-22-2009 00:08:47 | More by kingcrowing
Photo of billshmeinke


2.93/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a Duvel tulip.

Pours an incredibly dark brown color with lots of big bubbles from a hard pour that become a ring of foam around the edge of the glass.

Smell is incredibly malt forward with hints of caramel and toffee. There's also a sort of musty cheese like old ale scent in there as well. As I am not a fan of that sort of super old ale scent, and it is not typical in a barleywine I'm gonna have to give some minus points.

The taste is better. There is caramel/toffee, apple, and raisin intense malt sweetness. Then herbal/leafy hops add a bit of bitterness. That musty/cheese old ale flavor is there too. Furthermore, some cork and earthy flavors, but the bottle has a fake cork so I don't know why a cork flavor would be in there. Overall taste is a bit overly syrupy sweet.

Thick, full bodied, syrupy and coating with very low carbonation.

Very much a sipper. I wish I had a friend here to help me polish this off, because it's really not doing it for me. It seriously has much more in common with an English Old Ale than an American Barleywine. I probably would have given it higher marks if it were classified as an old ale.

Serving type: bottle

05-25-2010 05:04:33 | More by billshmeinke
Photo of CuriousMonk


2.98/5  rDev -21%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

On tap at ChurchKey in Washington, DC. Poured into a snifter glass. Served beer near room temperature which is the norm at ChurchKey. Pours an opaque caramel brown with a surprisingly big beige head that recedes slowly, leaving streaks of lacing and legs after each swirl. The aroma has heavy alcoholic hops than I was expecting with a biting citrus zing and plenty of underlying caramel malts. Maybe even some caramelized esters (apples) as well. The taste is hefty with more alcohol burn even more so than the aroma suggests. The citrus hops are there but give way to the massive sugary sweetness of the malt backbone. The finish has a serious alcohol burn and a scathing bitterness, both of which limit the drinkability. The mouthfeel is sticky and thick, almost syrupy but with a ton of alcohol. This is a massively sweet and boozy barleywine that is definitely not the most drinkable I've had in the style. Abrasive but tasty stuff. This barleywine is definitely not for the faint of heart...

Serving type: bottle

02-24-2011 21:56:48 | More by CuriousMonk
Photo of mcallister


3.03/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Ruby red in color with a bit of a sparkle. An off white flimsy head of small stature retents nicely with a foam quilt top.

Lots of fussel in the nose. Dark sugary malts with a large amount of hops. Somewhat thin in overall aroma. A spicey quality from the alocohol really shines through.

This beer needs much more time in the bottle. Alocohol burns big in the mouth, throat and chest. A bit discombobulated with a lacking of balance. Not to say it isn't good but I can only see this getting better, if not it's too bad. Datey raisiny characteristics with only a hint of brown sugar. The bitterness of the hops and alcohol hurt this for me. Mouth is prickly and lively another characteristic I'm not crazy about in a barley wine. Again I really do think this will be a very good beer with at least a year or more in the bottle.

Serving type: bottle

12-09-2007 22:22:54 | More by mcallister
Photo of LilBeerDoctor

New York

3.03/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Reviewed on 7/29/08. Bottle. Pours a murky medium-dark brown with no real head. Aroma of raisin and dark fruits. Flavor of raisins, alcohol, acidity, sweet apple skins. Heavy and sweet, tough to drink. I'm not quite a fan of these aged barleywines. This was better than some, but I still didn't enjoy it.
6/3/7/3/13 (3.2/5)

Serving type: bottle

12-23-2008 14:30:31 | More by LilBeerDoctor
Photo of mjd83goblue


3.03/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Sampled from a bottle. Can't remember what I paid, but I'm guessing at least 7-8 bucks for the 12+ ozs.

Pours a murky and cloudy brown. Kind of looks like sewer water.

Smell is booze at the forefront. Can tell this is going to be sweet and malty already.

Quite fruity, with berries, raisins, and the like. Sweet and malty. Warming from the booze. Hops are certainly not overpowering like some American style BW's. Not overly complex though.

Mouthful is full but not cloying at all. Perhaps the best attribute of this beer.

Overall, decent but nothing special. Borders on being a boozy mess, but doesn't quite sink that far. So far, not seeing what the Mikeller hype is all about, especially at the prices they charge.

Serving type: bottle

02-11-2009 04:22:03 | More by mjd83goblue
Photo of jnezda


3.03/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

This was one of the few barley wines that I have tried and also only my second Mikkeller. I was not overly impressed but did enjoy the drink but perhaps not for the price. 12.7oz corked bottle opened with almost no discernible pop. I shared with a girlfriend who has a lessor appreciation of beer than me so I may not have taken good enough notes but did notice this beer was very murky dark brown and poured with almost no head. For such a small amount of there was a touch of lacing. The smell was sort of similar to a dubbel with some tone of sugar and fruit and a certain background of alcohol. The barley wine made no effort to hide the high ABV and the lack of carbonation was apparent. The taste was surprisingly mild despite the alcohol and the fruit and sweet tones came out. There is certainly a time and paring for this beer and I look forward to trying it again pared well with dinner.

Serving type: bottle

09-27-2009 06:31:24 | More by jnezda
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Big Worse from Mikkeller ApS
85 out of 100 based on 350 ratings.