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Sierra Nevada Bigfoot Barleywine Style Ale - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Sierra Nevada Bigfoot Barleywine Style AleSierra Nevada Bigfoot Barleywine Style Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

5,779 Ratings
THE BROS
98
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5779
Reviews: 2784
rAvg: 4.15
pDev: 11.57%


Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  9.60% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: kbub6f on 02-06-1998)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,779 | Reviews: 2,784 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of FtownThrowDown
FtownThrowDown

Ohio

1.45/5  rDev -65.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

I keep trying to like this beer. It’s just not going to happen.
Pours a reddish amber color with a slight head that recedes quickly. Smell is bittering hops. Strong and dominating. Taste is more the same. Can’t even tell if the underlying barleywine is any good, because the hops are all that’s there. I just don’t get the fascination with this beer. I guess it can’t be for everyone. I feel this is just a highly over-rated beer that I just can’t figure out.

Serving type: bottle

05-04-2007 22:37:33 | More by FtownThrowDown
Photo of Contagion
Contagion

Illinois

1.6/5  rDev -61.4%
look: 4 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1.5

It's dark brown in color with a nice rich ruby highlights. It poured a thin tan head that faded quickly to a film on the top of the beer. It is cloudy, light passes through easily enough, but you can't see any clear images. There was some lacing.

The smell is of dark fruit with a hint of vanilla. The scent of bourbon from being aged in a bourbon barrel. The bitter scent of hops is present, almost overpowering. The taste is a mixture of roasted malts, vanilla bean and hops. The bitterness from the hops overpowers the scent and the taste of the beer, and leaves a very IPA like aftertaste to it. I'm not sure if this beer is just a little skunky or if it should taste like this as it doesn't taste like any other barleywine style ale that I've ever tasted. Although I will say that you can't taste the alcohol in this 9.6% Alcohol by Volume beer.

This is medium bodied beer that is light on the carbonation. There is some coating to it, which may be why the aftertaste sticks around for a long time.

This beer was given to me back in June and had been lost in the back of the fridge since. It may have gone skunky in that time so I'm thinking of getting another one to re-review it at another time.

Serving type: bottle

09-26-2008 02:07:21 | More by Contagion
Photo of Das_Reh
Das_Reh

Florida

1.6/5  rDev -61.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 1.75 | taste: 1 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 1.75

2013 bottle poured into a snifter.

Aggressive pour produces minimal head, about a half finger thick, before dissipating into a thin white film. The beer is a striking mahogany color and looks wonderful in the glass.

Oh my... BIG hop presence on the nose, very potent and piney. I've had IPA's that didn't smell this hoppy. I'm worried... I've never had the barleywine style before, but I was assuming it would have the dark fruit/caramel/brown sugar aromas of other dark, high alcohol beers.

Holy crap, that's hoppy! Big smack of pine resin and grapefruit rind to the face, a bitterness that dominates and completely overpowers the bourbon-like sweetness that is barely discernible in this brew. There is a bit of warming heat from the alcohol, but again, hops overshadow everything. Each sip makes me grimace; this is far from drinkable...

The mouthfeel is medium bodied and slick, with oily hop bitterness coating your tongue.

After a few sips, I had to pour this down the sink, much to my dismay. This is the last time I base my beer purchases on reviews from BA, as my past 4-5 purchases have left me disappointed and wishing I had my money back. This beer was all bitterness and no flavor, a hop bomb. They should have called this a DIPA instead of a barleywine. I've heard that you can mellow this thing out by cellaring it for a year or so, but this is the last Bigfoot I will ever have.

NOTE: Although I stand by my review scores and consider this undrinkable, I should have realized it actually does fit within the style of being very hoppy, as it is an American styled barleywine. American styled barleywines have a more aggressive hop profile than their English counterparts, and I failed to realize that at the time.

Serving type: bottle

11-18-2013 00:00:39 | More by Das_Reh
Photo of champ103
champ103

Texas

1.65/5  rDev -60.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

A: A slightly cloudy amber red color. A nice head forms, but fades to a ring. This has a good coat of lace.
S: A hoppy grapefruit, orange, and citrus fruity aromas overpower any malt present in this beer.
T: An extreme sweet bitterness overpowers everything again. Lots of grapefruit. The taste lingers for a long time, but not much else comes through. No maltiness to speak of. I have not had very many barleywine's, but from what I have tasted this does not follow the style.
D: Very hard to drink. The alcohol does not come through all that much, but I don't like overly bitter beers like this. This is just way over hopped, and I have to force myself to choke down the rest of the bottle. I do not enjoy this at all, and don't know how I can bring myself to finish the rest of the sixer.

SN does not know how to make a good malty beer in my opinion. The stout and potter are overly hopped for the style, and this is just bitter hops as well. I was looking forward to trying this, but as a malt head I was disappointed. The many hops heads out there might like this though.

Serving type: bottle

02-06-2008 19:59:45 | More by champ103
Photo of PorterLambic
PorterLambic

Florida

1.7/5  rDev -59%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

Wow. This was quite an experience, sadly not a good one.
Reddish brown with a coarse 1" head, decent lacing.
Smells of spice, alcohol, malt and fruit.
Taste is spice, fruit, malt, alcohol. Starts a little rough, way too hoppy. Finishes with a extremely noticeable and harsh piney, almost turpentine, aftertaste that get horrendously rough, very bitter.
Mouthfeel was medium-bodied, but not smooth.

Definitely a beer I will NEVER drink again, barely able to choke this one down, and it wasn't because of the alcohol. It did not improve as the temperature came up, quite the opposite. One was definitely enough. If you want a barleywine style ale, I would suggest Anchor's Old Foghorn instead, or any other.

Serving type: bottle

06-15-2004 06:24:08 | More by PorterLambic
Photo of ChrisBuster
ChrisBuster

Kentucky

1.75/5  rDev -57.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

07' Bigfoot

So I think I must have stumbled on a bottle that had somehow soured in one way or another. The color was excellent however a nice amber red, bright yet opaque. But a very small head that dissipated in an instant. Smell was hard to explain yet very pleasing...everything else was just bad. Strong alcohol taste that gave me no room to even really taste anything else...in all honesty tasted like cheep booze to me. Also everyone is raging about the hops yet i didn't smell or taste even a hint.Something had to be wrong with this brew...

Serving type: bottle

01-30-2008 15:03:41 | More by ChrisBuster
Photo of jamie2dope
jamie2dope

Massachusetts

1.75/5  rDev -57.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

From what I understand, this years vintage has received a large amount of criticism and praise at the same time. Lets see how it turns out. Poured in to my Westmalle chalice a nice looking cherry color. Besides the color, it looks slightly dull, with not much head save for a tiny ring around the glass. Aroma is a slight improvement, with some great berry and cream characters backed by a heavy perfume of booze. Taste begins with a huge assault of hops, a bit of juicy dark fruit, then leaves on an intensely bitter note that reminds me of cheap tobacco. Aftertaste is rather unpleasant. Reminds me of the taste in my mouth after a harsh night of drinking mixed with bad cigarettes. Mouthfeel is heavy on the palate, and drinkability is lessened quite a bit by the rough aftertaste. Quite a disappointment in my book, as other years of this brew have been very enjoyable. I suspected maybe I had a poor bottle, but found the same flaws present in the second bottle I cracked open. I don't think I will be drinking the rest of my six pack at this point, so maybe I will lay a few down to see if they mature well. Simply a mess of a beer IMO. Avoid.

Serving type: bottle

02-20-2008 03:12:57 | More by jamie2dope
Photo of mayorwalda
mayorwalda

New York

1.83/5  rDev -55.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

I review this the way I have because I have a number of expectations when cracking open a "barley wine" and this brew fulfilled almost none of them.

Sierra Nevada’s Bigfoot Barley Wine Style Ale
Man, I love Sierra Nevada! Let’s pry the cap off this thang (12 fl oz bottle).

Here comes the aroma! More like “ah-ro…what?” Do I smell hops? Weird. I really do, I smell hops; and basically no malt. Smells can be deceiving sometimes, I guess.

Let’s move on.

On the pour, Sierra Nevada’s barley wine looks like a barley wine, at least. It has got that dark red, unfiltered beauty which signifies to me, visually, “Hey, man, good job picking that barley wine.” But my nose is calling the bluff here, “Hey, guys, I smell hops. Just hops.” We’ll let senior Palaté (I have no clue how that would be pronounced) mediate this discussion.

And, so, on the first sip, well, my nose had this brew’s number from the start.

Holy hell, are there hops in here! There are really, really a lot of hops in here. So much so, that I am not getting any sense of maltiness at all—certainly nothing from our subtle, sweet, amazing friend, barley. No malt/barley sweetness frolicking across my tongue this time around. What a bummer.

Instead of the smooth, round tastes I’m used to, I’m getting the taste of something a lot more hop-centric. Something like an imperial IPA. I know Sierra Nevada loves their line of pale ales, but it still surprises me that they’d overwhelm this style with the tank full of hops they must have used to make this. I find that it’s a strange decision as a person smitten with this style of beer.

All the things I love about barley wine seem to go ignored in this. The sweetness is not there. While on your tongue, this brew drinks like an IPA. Very green, resinous and slightly floral. After gulping it down a bit you get that typical IPA trail of bitterness on your tongue which waits eagerly for you to reinforce it. There isn’t a moment in the process of enjoying this brew that you do not taste hops.

Word on the street, though, is that this thing perks up—or rather mellows the ‘eff’ out—with age. This is the 2012 release I’m drinking, so, if this thing needs age, well, I haven’t given it that. To be honest, I’ll have no trouble shelving two or three of these for a year or two. I would like this beer to really live up to the sweet mellowness “barley wine” signifies to me. If it takes a year or two, I guess it’s an investment I’m willing to make.

At any rate, the skinny is like this. (I promise from here on out I’ll be less whiny.)

A(ppearance): Well, Sierra Nevada’s got the barley wine style down in this department. This brew most certainly has the dark, red, copper color of the beloved barley wine. The head gathers tightly and eagerly. This brew’s head has a piney, resin texture.

S(mell): This is where things seem to deviate from expectation. The bouquet from this beer is completely composed of hops

T(aste): As far as taste is concerned, this beer is green and hoppy. There is little in the way of malt taste. I mean to say that it must be there, but it is completely overwhelmed by the hop intensity that it’s not present in a way that can be appreciated. It’s probably only serving, at this point, to keep us from going cross-eyed from bitterness. I will say one positive thing about this brew, though. This beer comes with an ABV of 9.6. That will serve as a surprise to anyone who doesn’t do their homework before cracking this thing open. The booziness of a 9.6 ABV is totally hidden in this brew. Kudos for that, Sierra Nevada.

M(outhfeel): The mouthfeel is a bit tacky, with lasting bitterness that asks to be endlessly refreshed. A great quality for an IPA; not, in my opinion, a good quality for a barley wine.

O(verall): Well, as this review is part of my ongoing Quest for the Best Barley Wine Under $14.99, well, I have to totally fail Sierra Nevada’s offering. As a beer in general it’s nice. I’d like to see it called something different because I don’t think it lives up to the qualifications they put to it… At any rate it’s a quality, high ABV ale and deserves a lick. You should try it if for no other reason than, it’s another good hop-centric beer from Sierra Nevada. But, again, it doesn’t even qualify for a rank in my quest…

Serving type: bottle

04-10-2012 23:35:40 | More by mayorwalda
Photo of SoupKitchenBeerSnob
SoupKitchenBeerSnob

Florida

1.9/5  rDev -54.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

I told myself I'd never drink another Sierra Nevada beer, but saw this and thought, ok, they're doing a barley wine-- maybe this one will be different. Nope. Just more hops than ever before. I mean really... Sierra Nevada takes the IPA model and makes every damn thing they brew taste like just another version of an IPA. Did I happen to mention that I detest IPA's? Cramming a brew full of hops does not equal a great brew-- it just shows a profound lack of imagination. But for all you hop-heads out there, you'll love this stuff. Personally, I'll pass, and thank you very little.

Serving type: bottle

01-13-2014 01:49:44 | More by SoupKitchenBeerSnob
Photo of ralree
ralree

Maryland

1.98/5  rDev -52.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

A: Head is a little weak, but that's almost expected from this style. 1/2 finger at best. Color is reddish-orange and murky. Laces nicely.

S: Grainy and pretty fruity. Will probably be good.

T: REALLY bitter. I wasn't expecting this level of bite. It's not my style, so I'm going to give it a lower rating than some others might. The alcohol is very evident as well. Has a bready finish.

M: A little thick - a little astringent.

D: Had to pour it all out. Completely undrinkable.

Serving type: bottle

10-01-2007 23:54:50 | More by ralree
Photo of sugit
sugit

California

1.98/5  rDev -52.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

2010 Bigfoot.

A: Cooper color pour with big long last head. Great lacing.

S: Some hops, but mostly a nice carmel malt aroma. Faint raisins and other dark fruit. Damn, this is going to be good.

T: Bamboozled!! Man, nothing like the nose. A hops assult on the palate. I really don't like this beer. I love good hoopy beers, but this one has a way of jut blasting you in not a good way.

I get very very little of sweet malts from the nose. The aftertaste is like waking up after a night of beer and cigars. Terrible.

M: Full bodied. Feels like gritty hops stuck to my teeth and tongue.

D: Drain pour. Such a harsh tasting beer I couldn't even finish a serving.

This is the second time I've tried 2010 BF and it just does not do it for me. I'm coming to realize I like English Barleywine, but don't like American Barleywine at all.

I'll leave the rest of my 6-pack in the cellar for another year and see what happens.

So far, I equate BF to a hot stupid blond. Got the looks and smell, but everything else that counts is terrible.

Serving type: bottle

12-10-2010 04:26:59 | More by sugit
Photo of NODAK
NODAK

Tennessee

2.03/5  rDev -51.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

Nose has an assault of piney, floral hops upfront. Very potent. But after that subsides, a very boozy quality comes out...hints of sherry and raisins are present. It leaves me wondering which of these two sides are going to dominate the taste.

The taste leaves no confusion about that. It has abrasive bitterness from the start on through the finish, increasing in intensity and lasting well on into the aftertaste with stinging astringency. It's one of the most bitter beers I have ever had. Yes, there's some raisin, toffee, and booze on the taste as an undercurrent that shows through on the finish pretty well....but absolutely nothing approaches the hoppiness here. It left me grimacing after each swallow. I know I'm not the biggest hophead on the planet, but the lack of balance here just turned me off.

In the end, it's just not my type of beer I suppose. More balance would have been appreciated...as it is, it's just too strong and one-sided for me.

Serving type: bottle

12-14-2010 02:52:58 | More by NODAK
Photo of voraciousalky
voraciousalky

Mississippi

2.05/5  rDev -50.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

I just bought a four-pack of 2013 Bigfoot at a nearby beer shop. I tried this ale several years ago and didn't really like it. I thought maybe I would appreciate it a little more now that I'm older and more experienced. I was wrong.

This beer doesn't taste good, and taking a big swig is a wholly unpleasant experience. Some folks pick up the taste of fruit; I pick up the flavor of OTC cough syrup. I know good and bad are subjective when it comes to beer, but I can't figure out why everyone thinks Bigfoot is worthy of a score in the nineties. Am I just unsophisticated? Maybe. But then again, there might be a lot of groupthink supporting Bigfoot's high average rating. For the record, Busch, Budweiser, Miller High-Life, etc. are all better than this beer. (Yes, I said it.)

Now that all that's out of the way...

This is certainly an interesting brew, despite the off-putting taste. A lot of reviewers note the strong bitterness and hop aroma, but I was surprised that a beer with an IBU of 90 was so well-balanced. When I drink Bigfoot, I'm not overwhelmed at all by the smell or bitter taste of the hops at all. It is truly well-balanced.

Then there's the alcohol. Bigfoot does a far better job of masking the taste of alcohol than other brews, such as Hoptimum, with similar ABVs. I don't know how they did it, but I've had beers with substantially lower levels of alcohol that were far more "boozy" tasting than Bigfoot.

Serving type: bottle

12-15-2013 15:45:07 | More by voraciousalky
Photo of PatYoda
PatYoda

Colorado

2.13/5  rDev -48.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 1

2005 Version

Appearance is perfect. Nice clear mahogany with a perfect 1 finger creamy head of miniscule bubbles. Leaves lacing all the way down the glass, which is very unexpected for the style. Smell is almost all hops, and I'm not talking the nice citrusy hops that I love. Pure pine needles. There is actually some caramel malt smell underneath everything, just barely. Unfortunately it doesn't show up in the taste. At first the hops bite hard. Like eating pine needles. Then you wait for the initial hop bite to subside and for the malt to smooth things over...and you can wait all day if you want, but it never happens. The finish is even worse - it's pure bitterness. There is absolutely no flavor that lingers in the mouth, just bitterness, and linger it does! Mouthfeel is actually pretty good. Nice and thick and creamy like I like my barleywines. Right now I don't care how good this will taste in 10 years, it's nearly undrinkable at the moment.

Serving type: bottle

09-24-2005 15:51:36 | More by PatYoda
Photo of nicnut45
nicnut45

Illinois

2.17/5  rDev -47.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Presentation: 12 oz bottle poured into Chimay chalice/2011

A- Deep red brown color, slightly hazy with sediment swirling around. Superfine off white head.

S- Smell is very muted upon a vigourours pour, perhaps it needs to warm up a bit. Upon warming up there is very little scent to this beer. What is there, smells like fruitiness from the yeast with a slight rubbing alcohol scent.

T&MF- This is just plain bitter without the finer qualities of hops. Malts are underwhelming and over attuenated resulting in hot rubbing alcohol flavors. This overly overly dry in my opinion. There is a faint glimmer of sweetness to this beer and it reminds me of burnt sugar but it is soon overpowered by alcohol and bitter hops.

O- I will be laying down at least one of these bottles in hopes that it gets better with age. The others will go to enemies.

Serving type: bottle

03-27-2011 20:36:01 | More by nicnut45
Photo of mnstorm99
mnstorm99

Minnesota

2.2/5  rDev -47%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

12 oz. bottle poured into a 22 oz. globe wine glass.
Oh Boy, I hope this one ages well (I guess I have wasted $10 on worse things).
Good looking copper beer with a nice JUST off white 1 finger head that sticks well, and laces better.
Aroma is a very nice strong fruity and spicy hops, quite a bit of promise here, reminds me of something from when I was a child I just can't place it.
Taste, Ouch nice flash of hops and fruits, but before they even make much of an appearance the alchohol burn just won't go away. I was guessing this beer to be around 12%, but then I come here to see it is only 9.6% with that kind of burn, this is poor craftsmanship IMHO.
Mouthfeel is burning overly carbonated and thin. I could hardly finish one of these, not going to have another until after a few months downstairs.

Serving type: bottle

02-21-2008 14:33:03 | More by mnstorm99
Photo of Jdecarol
Jdecarol

Florida

2.2/5  rDev -47%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

I love hops in my beers but this thing is not balanced at all. I is nothing but bitter kicking in the back of your throat. Moon shine goes down smoother.

Looks great though but that doesn't make it easier to drink. I'm going to sit on it for a few months and revisit it after it mellows. Hopefully the aging doesn't destroy the hop flavor and just mellows the bitterness.

I had this last year but it was bought around june, maybe the extra months sitting on a shelf made it more palatable or they just hop bombed it this year.

Serving type: bottle

02-24-2009 21:40:50 | More by Jdecarol
Photo of bobhits
bobhits

Kentucky

2.2/5  rDev -47%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 2

Pours a decent head given the abv and the style but it quickly dissipates. The body is a deep ruby color with a huge amount of clarity. There is still enough density here to remind me that yes it is a deep big barely wine.

The nose is a blast of hops, biting the nose and quickly mellowing to a huge thick powerful caramel malt. The best barely wines I've had carried tone more complexity and depth. This reminds me of a slightly higher malt double IPA.

Alcohol, and some kind of dying funk to finish this one off. Amazingly dry and lacking any real sweetness that the nose indicates should be here. Finishes with a huge amount of dry bitterness. As I'm drinking this that finishes that put me off earlier has dissipated a great deal, but still this is absurdly over powering without the flavor to back it.

My mouth has been dried out, burned, and overwhelmed by intense flavors, yet not in the way I'm used to seeing.

Will this age? Certainly! That said this is just awful for a fresh barely wine from anywhere. I haven't had any since 08 and before that 06 and I recall both being a good bit better. That said I never have and certainly don't know understand the hype surrounding this beer. Completely unbalanced and underwhelming.

Serving type: bottle

03-17-2011 23:29:18 | More by bobhits
Photo of RJLarse
RJLarse

Washington

2.3/5  rDev -44.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

I went to a local craft beer shop and picked up two of these for tasting. I’ve never had a barley wine before so I wanted to give it a try. This one comes highly recommended. I poured this beer in to a pint tumbler.

A medium dark copper color in the glass, with a creamy off-white head. The head is resilient, and left a medium to heavy lacing on the side of the glass while drinking.

The smell is strong, fruity and hoppy. I also think it smells a little like bourbon or whiskey.

The taste is fairly neutral at first, a little sweet and malty, but once you allow air to join the brew in your mouth it turns quite bitter. The taste of alcohol is present, which gets back to the bourbon/whiskey aroma. The aftertaste is quite strong and bitter as well. The aftertaste lingers for quite a while, and seems to be revived from to time in the mouth even without drinking more of the beer.

The mouth feel of this beer is sharp and biting.

This beer is not particularly drinkable. I found myself drinking this one slowly, and frankly not enjoying it very much. It might go well paired with some sort of robust food to quell the aftertaste. I can’t see myself drinking more than one of these in a blue moon. Perhaps barley wine is an acquired taste? It was better at the end of the glass than the beginning, but I’ll put the other one away for a while.

Serving type: bottle

02-11-2006 05:37:02 | More by RJLarse
Photo of Jwaks
Jwaks

Connecticut

2.3/5  rDev -44.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Serving : 12oz bottle with 2007 on the cap, no freshness date.

Significant effort is required on the pour to squeeze a finger thick head from this vibrant orange tinted amber brew. Spirited very fine bubbles sprint up through the low viscosity body to meet a scant white frothy cap ringed by a thin sticky white lace.

Overwhelmingly pungeant, bitter hop aromas assult the nose quickly followed by odors of ripe viney fruit and strong solvents. Subtle aromas of malt and bread break free from the overpowering and dominant hoppy and solvent character.

Young, rough and raucous, this beer thrashes the palate with intense, unrelenting bitter hops and unripe vinous fruits that just won't give up even in the aftertaste. Green, leafy hops, lots of lemon zest, and a healthy dose of warming, peppery alcohol hit the tongue on the dry, long-lasting finish. Wow, this beer's bitter, vinous character hits you like a ton of bricks, it has the finesse and grace of a 40 ton truck. It is entirely unbalanced leaning heavily toward hops and bitterness, where are the malts and barely?

Very tough and chewy in the mouth, it is medium to full bodied with a great ability to coat the palate. With so much bitterness, leafy hops and slightly sour viney fruit this one is far from smooth and creamy.

Wow. This was a surprise after reading all the sterling reviews of this brew. I have a feeling this one will require at least six months to a year of cellar age to shed its youthful vibrance and begin to be drinkable.

Cheers!

Serving type: bottle

02-06-2007 05:26:43 | More by Jwaks
Photo of adamette
adamette

Ohio

2.3/5  rDev -44.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

Served in bottle proclaiming that it is the 25th adventure, 2008 version with clean, clear ale glass at Winking Lizard in Mentor, Ohio. I appreciated the fact that I was able to pour it for myself.

A I cm light brown head over a caramel brown, cloudy, opaque body. Very pleasing, inviting.

S Barley and alcohol to the nose. There is a strong grain smell.

T Hops. This was a suprise since I really did not smell that (I smelled it again to see what I had missed and indeed, did not really smell predominate hops like the taste). It reminds me of Great Lakes Brewing Company's Noferastu which I tasted and reviewed this week (I gave it a 2.0 overall) in that it is way too bitter with hops. I really did not like this going in or going down.

M Full, acidic, repulsive.

D Poor due to high ABV, acidic taste, bitter, bitter.

Notes: I respect that Barleywine is supposed to be bitter, hoppy but I just don't like that taste in beer. It is too bitter.

Serving type: bottle

10-07-2008 01:28:58 | More by adamette
Photo of VMWhelan
VMWhelan

Pennsylvania

2.3/5  rDev -44.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

2011 12oz bottle into Sierra Nevada tumbler.

Pours a reddish copper with a two finger off white head.

Smell is very floral with some piney hops and just a bit of malt sweetness. Getting a potpourri of sorts.

Taste is very bitter. Getting a lot of the same potpourri that I got in the scent, as well as some very piney hops. Alcohol is very noticeable.

Mouthfeel is medium with high carbonation.

Drinkability is low. This may be better with age, but it's way too harsh fresh. I'm going to age the other one that I bought for a year or two before I try this one again.

Serving type: bottle

02-25-2011 03:41:25 | More by VMWhelan
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FreightTrain

California

2.35/5  rDev -43.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

A- Dark, brown beer with rapidly dissipating white head.

S- Grapey smell.

T- Taste was like grape drink. Not grape juice; grape drink. Intensely so. Lots of hop bitterness, which is welcome since it cuts through the artificial grape flavor a bit.

M- Mouthfeel was thick and creamy, as you'd expect from a barleywine, nice carbonation.

D- I couldn't finish my pint. The grape/fruitloop flavor was unbearable. It was so bad that at first I thought it had to be the cold (tap) temperature, but it improved only slightly once it reached cellar and then room temperature.

Serving type: on-tap

01-30-2009 04:45:41 | More by FreightTrain
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Devi0us

California

2.38/5  rDev -42.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

2011 vintage

A- Poured a deep copper color with a thick 2 finger off-white head that had a prolonged stay.

S- Massive hop aroma, somewhat piney. Nothing else going on here.

T- This badboy is bitter as fuck. All I can taste is hoppy bitterness with a bitter beer face. Taste more like an IPA  with 300 IBU than a Barley Wine to me.

M- Medium bodied with moderate carbonation.

O- This was hyped up big time by a friend of mine. I should smack him silly. This was a rather unpleasant experience that I wish to NOT ever experience again.

Serving type: bottle

06-25-2011 18:06:16 | More by Devi0us
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TheycallmeTim

New York

2.4/5  rDev -42.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

2009 vintage poured from a 12 oz. bottle into an Ommegang chalice.

A--Pours up an auburn-like reddish brown with a thin fingernail of creme colored head that dies quickly to skim. Nice spidwereb, though, on the surface that does lace a bit.

S--Umm, like an IPA? Orange, grapefruit, and pine. Maybe some candied cherries wafting up from the malt but the sweeter notes that should be rising and making for a fruit cocktail in my nostrils just aren't there. This may just be too young.

T--Umm, again--like an IPA with too much malt in it? Sorry to be repetitive,, but this is kinda boring. It's just hops, hops, hops, tons of bitter resinous pine and citrus in the beginning, middle, and end of the flavor profile. Some malt does sneak into the middle in the form of cognac-soaked raisins, which is nice, but why should the malt have to go creepin? This is a barleywine, fer Chrissakes. Just an overload of hops IMO, without anything earthy, medicinal, or a variety of dark fruits to open up on the palate. Instead you gotta dig for complexity, and not much turns up, at least fresh.

M&D--Sierra Nevada never disappoints me on the mouthfeel, and this one is no exception, as it's pure creamy heaven. The drinkability in my eyes is terrible, however, as this to me tastes like liquid heartburn.

Hopheads rejoice! Anyone who thinks MORE MORE MORE doesn't equal better better better, well....you might want to lay off this one. Or lay it down for a year or two. Lemme know how it goes, as I won't be buying any more of this.

Serving type: bottle

02-23-2009 22:32:00 | More by TheycallmeTim
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Sierra Nevada Bigfoot Barleywine Style Ale from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 5,779 ratings.