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Shipyard Double Old Thumper Ale - Shipyard Brewing Co.

Shipyard Double Old Thumper AleShipyard Double Old Thumper Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

187 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 187
Reviews: 92
rAvg: 3.55
pDev: 16.9%

Brewed by:
Shipyard Brewing Co. visit their website
Maine, United States

Style | ABV
English Barleywine |  11.20% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: chrisgn on 02-02-2011)
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Ratings: 187 | Reviews: 92 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of Mr-Cyphyr

New Hampshire

4.61/5  rDev +29.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pour into wide mouth clear pint beer glass ... nice color, great aroma, nice small bubble head .. first taste .. OMGosh, one word: Freak'n Awesome .. continued sipping, enjoying the aroma, the bitter but smooth hoppiness .. reminded me of a Barley Wine. I let it sit for a while, and warm up .. and it just got better, topping in flavor well into the high 50's, low 60's .. never got bad.. good from the 1st sip to the last. Now on my top 10, no, top 5!

Serving type: bottle

02-27-2014 16:22:55 | More by Mr-Cyphyr
Photo of mychalg9


4.45/5  rDev +25.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Full review on this one because I feel like a small injustice has been done with some of these low reviews.

Bought a bomber on a whim because I'd never heard of this one. Pours a dirty brownish red with a nice whitish-tan head that recedes fast but leaves decent lacing.
Smells like a barleywine should: leathery dark fruits with some booziness. Taste is more of the same, sweet dark fruits throughout, mellows out at the end which I usually take as a sign of weakness, though in this one it feels right. Mouthfeel is great, perfect amount of carbonation with a medium to full body.

Hot damn this is a great, full flavored sipping barleywine. I will certainly look for this again, as I feel like I paid ~$8 for the 22 oz bottle. I would recommend this to anyone looking for a new barleywine to try.

Serving type: bottle

09-22-2013 05:17:38 | More by mychalg9
Photo of Offa


4.43/5  rDev +24.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is an excellent bareywine.

Deep copper brown, it has a small pale tan head slowly shrinking to a thin lasting foamy top, veneer, with rich foamy ring.

Aroma is candied wood, caramelised bread crust and dried fruits, hint of sherry.

Taste is rich, full of brandied, candied fruits, caramelised bread, spicy raisiny character, some woody-peppery bitterness & bite supporting a rich sweetness. Feel is full, not too oily or thick, a bit lively, lots of rich toast in aftertaste.

Serving type: bottle

02-17-2014 05:50:02 | More by Offa
Photo of BradC


4.43/5  rDev +24.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz bomber into a tulip, dark hazy amber color with a thin head and nice lacing.

Smells of buttery toffee, vanilla, caramel, not much hop aroma.

Taste of sweet caramel, toffee, some vanilla and fruitiness with firm hop bitterness in the finish. Alcohol is there but not overbearing.

Full bodies mouthfeel, low carbonation. Heavy but not cloying.

Overall, a nice barleywine. Don't have a ton of experience with the style but this has a great sweet malt backbone, just enough hops and alcohol. I'd hunt this one down again.

NOTE: bottle was from 2012, aged about 16 months.

Serving type: bottle

02-21-2014 01:08:19 | More by BradC
Photo of Skarod


4.4/5  rDev +23.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I'm not quiet sure why this reviews so low. I really enjoyed this beer
malty caramel smell with a bit of a bourbon on the back of the taste
just a bit of bitter but the malt and the booze balances very nicely
bottle went down dangerously easy
not a huge fan of regular old thumper but this I will buy again

Serving type: bottle

04-13-2013 23:36:31 | More by Skarod
Photo of TPONY51


4.33/5  rDev +22%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Been in the cellar for about 8 months and I wish I had tried it sooner because I love it. Beautiful orange and amber color. The smell is sweet and boozey with some biscuit and sweet fruit. The taste is by no way balanced yet flows pretty well and is interesting. It goes from quick biscuit to fruit with a (in my opinion) smooth hop and a nice boozey finish. The mouth feel is slick and comforting and the finish lingers long enough but doesn't over stay its welcome. Over all if i saw it on a menu or in a store I would make the purchase without hesitation.

Serving type: bottle

03-12-2012 09:47:11 | More by TPONY51
Photo of MoreThanWine


4.28/5  rDev +20.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I find it hard to believe this beer scored so low in other's ratings. It's both beautiful and scrumptious. It poured like a thick barley wine with a slow to emerge beige 1" head. In masstone it's a burnt sienna brown but held to the light there's a pretty hazy reddish tint. Smell is great with rich malt, caramel, and hops but not a slap in the face amount of them. Taste is delicious, kind of like candied hops. Rich, sweet, with caramel, toffee, and barley wine attributes. I don't always drink sweet or bold beers but I find this Old Thumper very appealing. And the 11.2% alcohol is well hidden, not a boozy burning mess in my opinion. I say nice job Shipyard.

Serving type: bottle

08-17-2011 12:20:18 | More by MoreThanWine
Photo of GratefulBeerGuy

New Hampshire

4.25/5  rDev +19.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

"Old thumper goes back to the roots and genesis of my beer geekdom back in the mid-late 90's. So the DT is pretty interesting to me.

A clear, dark-brown amber and a heady off-white foam that goes down slow.

A nice, spicey herbal hop aroma that is very nice along with a slight tang, butery caramel malt and buzzy heat tingle in the nose.

Earthy, spicey and dry hop flavor comes on first. complex slightly bitter effect and a dry bite and then medium-bodied maltiness takes over with leather and tobacco flavor's, only slightly sweet with a layer of smoke and caramel as the bold, earthy hop flavor's come and go. The complexity is very high with multi layers of malt and hop flavor's all in good balance. The flavor's morph and mutate and then an assertive heat rides in but it falls into the mix as the taste slowly changes.

This one is a beastie beer that is WAY to easy to drink !

Serving type: bottle

04-26-2011 23:05:15 | More by GratefulBeerGuy
Photo of brureview


4.24/5  rDev +19.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This beer is highly underrated. It's an excellent beer served warm in a snifter.

The beer poured a nice copper color into a snifter. Served warm at about 50F.
1/2F head.

Immediate wafting of stone fruit, apricot, and raisin. There are American and British hops in this beer, so it has somewhat of a British beer consistency and aroma.

Mouth feel- very carbonated-perhaps too much.

Taste is heavy fruit-raisin, apricots, stone fruits finished with a heavy alcoholic finish.

In general an excellent beer. Perhaps other reviewers served it too cold or in a glass which doesn't enhance the English Barley Wine consistency.

Serving type: bottle

08-22-2013 02:39:10 | More by brureview
Photo of chrisgn


4.22/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Brilliant amber color with a thin head the reduces almost nothing. Not much lacing left on the glass.

S- The aroma is coming from a great deal of malt sweetness. Some alcohol is also present.

T- For such a huge beer this is really well balanced. Sweet and hoppy with some residual alcohol burn. Not overly sticky sweet IMO. It is pretty dry on the back end.

M- Full bodied and rich. Very little carbonation.

D- Scary drinkable at 11.2%. Wish I was trying it with food. The label says it pairs well with ribs, lamb, hearty stews and casseroles. Would probably be great to cook with as well.

Serving type: bottle

02-02-2011 02:09:58 | More by chrisgn
Photo of cpolking


4.22/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours copper colored with brown and ruby. There is a quarter inch of creamy off-white head that leaves light lacing down the glass.

The aroma is very fruity, lots of jammy apricot and some aromatic and tropical fruit notes. The taste is sweet, but not cloyingly so, there is a good balancing bitterness on the finish.

This is a slightly sweet, dense scone slathered in a sweet, but tangy apricot jam. This is delicious and exceeds my expectations, especially for its high ABV, it is immensely drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

05-30-2011 00:25:43 | More by cpolking
Photo of Boppar

New Hampshire

4.22/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 oz bottle (at 11.2% ABV, this truly is a "bomber") into a red wine glass, and for a refill, a pint glass.

A: Pours cloudy red brown with a finger or so of foamy off-white head a with soap bubbles. Solid head retention and good lacing once the foaminess has subsided.

S: Sweet malts, earthy hops, a faint alcohol spice.

T: Raisins, vanilla, and rum lead the charge. Mid-palate is a tad more subdued with notes of toffee and sweet bread. The finish is quite dry with a healthy dose of bittering hops and a sustained oakiness. That oak just won't quit. At no point in time does the 11.2% ABV present itself. This is the sort of beer that could easily lead to trouble, especially given the overly generous 22 oz serving size. The one factor that limits this to a "one and done" beer is the oaked-out bitterness.

M: The mouthfeel is rich, foamy, and slick.

O: Overall, this is a nice beer and one that would work nicely both for fans of barleywine, and those who favor bitters, ESB's, and brown ales but want something a little bigger.

Serving type: bottle

09-07-2011 00:56:02 | More by Boppar
Photo of Darkmagus82


4.19/5  rDev +18%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into a snifter

Appearance- Pours a deep amber-orange color with a small white head. The head fades very fast leaving a light level of lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell – The aroma was very sweet and bready. The sweet is of toffee and caramel with a whole lot of a candied sugar. The bready smell is doughy and biscuity with a little bit of roastiness. Along with these is a big boozy smell of bourbon creating a sweet warming smell overall.

Taste – The taste begins very sweet and thick with lots of caramel and toffee upfront. Some orange flavors come toward the tongue soon after the initial taste as well as sweet bready taste. The orange citrus is later joined by some lemon which bitter the brew lightly. An alcohol taste comes to the tongue along with time as well bringing a lighter bourbon taste to the brew. The bourbon grows stronger being joined by a little bit of hop. When these are mixed with the thick sweeter and sugary tastes, a warming boozy taste is left on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is super creamy and thick with a carbonation level that is very low. This is quite appropriate for the sweeter flavors of the brew as well as for making a nice slow sipper in light of all the booziness in the brew.

Overall – A sweet but enjoyable barley wine. A nice slow sipper and worth a try.

Serving type: bottle

07-20-2013 02:17:12 | More by Darkmagus82
Photo of Damiengagnon

New Hampshire

4.15/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

i found it very strong starting in my mouth but finished smooth in down the throat.at first i was a little nervous thiking that it might be to powering but was surprised how is it ws to drink. its something i would drink slow to savory the taste.i would drink it again

Serving type: bottle

02-16-2011 13:21:49 | More by Damiengagnon
Photo of morimech


4.15/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours slightly hazy, dark amber color with one finger of head that had good retention. The head settles to a thick cap. A lot of lacing is left down the glass.

Lovely aroma of herbal/floral hops complimented by rich malt aromas of caramel, toffee, brown bread, and butterscotch. No sign of alcohol. Smells very British.

The hops and malt hold their own against the alcohol for the most part. Nice hop flavors that are herbal, floral, and earthy. Plenty of malt sweetness with caramel and bready notes. Bitterness is moderate. Alcohol makes its appearance in the finish with flavor and warmth as it is a little boozy at the end.

Rich and smooth body. Nice carbonation that lends a smooth texture. Good big beer feel.

This beer excels at maintaning its British roots while taking on American boldness. A very good strong ale.

Serving type: bottle

10-30-2012 22:09:25 | More by morimech
Photo of Brad007


4.08/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

DOUBLE Old Thumper? Hmm. Wonder what that will taste like?

Pours a beautiful amber color with a thick white head into my glass. Looks a lot like the style.

Lots of sweet, buttery/bready malt to greet the nose. It's a bit too sweet for my liking. Must be the source of all of that extra alcohol.

Taste is more well thought out than I expected. Buttery malt with just the right amount of hops greets the taste buds. Think of an ESB ramped up and you'll end up with this.

Mouthfeel is a jumbled mess with enough alcohol lingering to cause perception issues. Is it buttery? Is it bready? Is it alcoholic? I DON'T KNOW!

Worth a try if you liked the other imperial offerings from Shipyard. I enjoyed Smashed Pumpkin and ditto on this offering.

Serving type: bottle

03-06-2011 03:03:40 | More by Brad007
Photo of danmcg62


4.05/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A-Poured into a pint glass. Pours an orangey brown color with a smallish white head. Good looking brew.

S-Very biscuity. There's also figs, raisins. Mild spice hop aroma, mild malt as well. I like this.

T-Very spicy hops, finishes rather malty like the label says. Like the smell there is figs and raisins.

M-Thick and chewy. Spicy and malty.

O-Overall this a very good brew. I dig the smell and taste of the beer. I know this is an amped up version of the Old Thumper Ale, but I thought this was more close to the Export Ale. I think this would pair well with some BBQ.

Serving type: bottle

11-18-2011 03:52:33 | More by danmcg62
Photo of jzeilinger


4/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Looks pretty inviting as it sits in my Thistle glass.

A - Pours a deep, clear, transparent dark copper color with a thick white, creamy head. There's also a very nice amount of carbonation.

S - The nose is dominated by pungent butter toffee, butterscotch, and mild spices. There's a small amount of sharpness from the hops.

T - Tastes much different than what the nose first tells you. The buttery, toffee-like flavor zings the tongue upfront but then gets knocked down by a generous amount of hops (namely Challenger, Progress, Goldings, and Simcoe). The booze effervesence is very noticeable, and surprisingly, the balance is very, very good. The inside of your mouth after the sip feels like it was smeared with a coating of butterscotch, and then a layer of hops were immediately painted over the top. The long, lingering bitterness leaves a somewhat metallic bitter red grapefruit coating and man, does it stick around for a LONG time! The buttery malt characteristic is something I've experienced quite often with the beers from Shipyard, nothing negative, just a unique personality of their beers.

M - Very full bodied, slick, viscous-like, mildly gentle on the tongue, and a generous amount of warming in the throat as it travels south.

D - Very good, but because of the high octane, I'd be pressed to attempt another bomber. I think the biggest downfall is the big, boozy nature of this beer. The alcohol is NOT well hidden, by any means. It definitely lets you know it's a beer to be treated with respect.

All this being said, I think Shipyard slugged a homerun with this one. My wife loves the Smashed Pumpkin and hated this one. Me, I really loved this one and while I still enjoy the Smashed Pumpkin, I'd much rather be sipping this mac daddy. I picked up a bottle this past week (at Shipyard) while on business in Maine because I really wanted to try this one. I'm back up there in a few weeks and I'll be stopping by again to get more bottles and cellar a few to see where they go. Big beers like this often get better with age and this one is already good when it's young. A very interesting observation is the bottled version seems to be far hoppier than the tap version. Definitely prefer the bottle which I can't say about very many beers.

Serving type: bottle

02-19-2011 03:50:17 | More by jzeilinger
Photo of Murchmac


4/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very solid beer. Has the malt ive been looking for and with the increase in everything this yeast strain really takes on a different character. This beer does not drink like an 11 percent beer. Dangerously quaffable and enjoyable. Someone else said more like an barleywine and would like to see how it ages. I would too, I dont think it will get too much better but why the hell not?

Serving type: bottle

03-27-2011 04:08:35 | More by Murchmac
Photo of DrinkingDrake


4/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Split a bottle with some friends into a couple snifters.
Poured a clear amber, faintly reddish with about an inch and a half of head. The aroma has a dark sweetness. An earthy must with some prunes and red grapes. The taste has a lot of dark fruity malts a large amount of sweetness and an alcohol bite on the finish. Dry and slightly sour for the finish but overall very sweet and dark.

Serving type: bottle

05-22-2011 22:05:44 | More by DrinkingDrake
Photo of Cyberkedi


4/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an attractive clear coppery red-brown with a fairly thick and somewhat persistent pale coppery-tan head that leaves a bit of lacing. Strong aroma is malty and a little yeasty with a firm overtone of apple brandy. Sharp, malty flavor has a strong brandy tang and hints of hoppy bitterness and caramel, with just a whisper of fruity sweetness. Ragged texture is fairly fizzy and leaves behind a mild but persistent tingle.

Serving type: bottle

06-22-2011 02:20:34 | More by Cyberkedi
Photo of Nerudamann


4/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

Look – dark red/medium brown in color, maybe a little hazy, with about a finger and a half’s worth of frothy khaki-colored foam that dissipates slowly.

Smell – dark and roasted, malty, almost with a whisky-like edge to it.

Taste – dark and strong. There’s a heavy mix of hop and malt at first, but then you’re blown away by abv, and that’s just in the beginning. It melds next into a whisky-like quality and finishes bittersweet, with a tinsy bit of a bitter aftertaste.

Mouthfeel – pretty well balanced, not leaning too heavily toward the watery or creamy sides.

Overall – interesting brew. Tastes a bit like a strong beer mixed with scotch or whisky. It’s a good mix though. Good-tasting and interesting to think about.

Serving type: bottle

04-12-2012 03:16:43 | More by Nerudamann
Photo of bluejacket74


4/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle. I know I've had this beer a little while, but I just don't remember exactly how long so I have no idea how old it is (no date on the bottle). Served in a snifter, the beer pours a hazy dark copper color with an inch tan head. Head retention is decent, and there's a lot of lacing left behind on the glass. Aroma is nice and malty, the brew smells like caramel, toffee, butterscotch, dark fruit and some bready malt. The taste is similar to the aroma, but there's also the addition of some booze, nuts, and a bit of spice. Mouthfeel/body is medium/full, it's creamy and slick with a good amount of carbonation. I think it's a good overall brew. I'd like to try this fresher in the future, but I definitely liked this beer with some age on it.

Serving type: bottle

09-14-2012 23:23:35 | More by bluejacket74
Photo of Chaz


3.98/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a near-brilliant chestnut-amber in color, topped with a pale tan head which exhibits average duration and better-than-average lacing.

On the nose, Holy Ringwood, Batman! Butterscotch and loads of booze, spice, and phenols. Impressive in its own right, but I imagine it might not appeal to very many people. Nose is also fruity in general, with strawberry notes and vague pineapple-ish notes swimming in the booze-y heat.

Taste is much better than I'd expected for this strength. But an ESB? Nah, more like an Strong/Old Ale, but that's splitting hairs with the style purists at any rate. Banana and clove (!) notes here are playing with my mind a bit: is there a portion of wheat malt in the grain bill? No matter, it's almost tropical when weighed with the strawberry and pineapple notes -- a beer Daiquiri? I can only imagine what devilry might ensue were this one to see a Whiskey barrel . . .

Full-bodied, even viscous across the tongue and palate, but it works here and even adds to the drinkability Id think: too many strong beers these days are merely thin-bodied booze-y messes, but this one holds its own.

I can imagine that this one will age well, and even at $9.99 retail I'd consider this worth a second (or third) visit, especially a bottle with some age -- at 11.2% it's not gonna lose any oomph any time soon!

Note: Bonus points in that this is highly reminiscent of the original Old Thumper, which is an old favorite of mine from when I lived in Beantown : )

Serving type: bottle

02-18-2011 03:34:51 | More by Chaz
Photo of puboflyons

New Hampshire

3.95/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From the 22 fl. oz. bottle. It pours a nice handsome copper-amber with a nice inch or so head. Good clarity. The aroma is malty with noticeable Ringwood yeasts. The body comes in at about medium. Unlike the original Old Thumper the Ringwood yeasts are not quite as obvious but they do touch the nose. The taste has a nice malty characteristic with a muted hoppy ending. The double-digit ABV is barely noticeable.

Serving type: bottle

02-06-2011 03:59:12 | More by puboflyons
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Shipyard Double Old Thumper Ale from Shipyard Brewing Co.
81 out of 100 based on 187 ratings.