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

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Sierra Nevada Bigfoot Barleywine Style AleSierra Nevada Bigfoot Barleywine Style Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

6,947 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 6,947
Reviews: 2,954
rAvg: 4.14
pDev: 11.35%
Wants: 353
Gots: 1,503 | FT: 67
Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  9.60% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: kbub6f on 02-06-1998

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 6,947 | Reviews: 2,954
Photo of BrownAleBollocks
3.55/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a somewhat hazy brown-orange color with a white head. Nose is toffee, hops and alcohol. Taste follows with toffee, hops, alcohoL. A bittersweet flavor really. Mouthfeel is medium. Overall a nice barleywine, my favorite so far, especially for a style I'm still getting used to.

Photo of moundbz
4.33/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

smokey and bitter, taste the alcohol

Photo of iTunesUpdates
5/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is good good good

Photo of Tuck_leepulin
4.42/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

12oz bottle, 2014 expedition bottled on 1/09/2014 and poured into a snifter.

Appearance: Pours a ruby-amber with a slight haze and 1 finger of head

Smell: Toffee, raison, and dark fruit with with baked bread

Taste: Malt flavors of the nose combined with an earthy hop flavor that crescendos into the finish

Mouthfeel: Full-bodied and slightly sticky in the finish

Overall: Such a easily attainable world class Barleywine. I really appreciate how hop-forward it is and leads to great changes with age.

Photo of Jonada
3.85/5  rDev -7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

2013 vintage. 12 oz bottle poured into a snifter

Appearance: Pours a dark amber color with 3 fingers of a creamy light tan head with good retention and lacing. Body is hazy, but translucent, with some visible sediment and mild carbonation.

Smell: Caramel, spicy hops, sweet tropical fruit and an almost iced tea like character.

Taste: Sweet malt, raisins, slight roast, and again a tea like character.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with a slightly sticky mouthfeel and medium carbonation. Finishes sweet with a medium lingering bitterness.

Overall: Still quite a bit of hop character and bitterness despite 2 years of age. Nice example of the style.

Photo of BenwayPHD
4.31/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Pours an amber honey color with a thin, one finger head. It smells sweet like toffee and honey. There is a strong hop presence on the nose as well. The flavor is heavy. Similar to the nose but with a smokiness and a heavy bitterness at the end. My favorite part if this beer is the mouthfeel. It's Very Thick and creamy.

Photo of neurobot01
4.43/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2015 12oz into an IPA glass.

Look: beautiful amber caramel with a decent head.

Smell: pine, caramel, something almost lime-like.

Taste: wowza. Big, sweet malts reminiscent of an amped up marzen or something, but with a huge splash of juicy piney hops. Alcohol is present, but I think it adds rather than detracts.

Feel: fluffy, medium-thick, and dry. Quite good.

Overall: had this for the first time last year and didn't know quite what to make of it. Suffice to say, my palate has developed, and I think this is a damn fine brew. I'd put it alongside Lukcy Basartd in sheer kickassery, though this is a bit tamer.

Photo of jwwjd
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2014 bottle poured Into a 14 oz. snifter

Photo of ZebraCakez
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours a hazy deep red color with a light head that dissipates slowly. 

S: The aroma is that of sweet caramel and fresh hops.

T: An exceptionally smooth and tasty example of a barleywine, it's bitter and hoppy upfront then subsides to a sweet toffee caramel finish. Complex, but well balanced and delicious. 

F: Medium body and pleasant carbonation lead to an enjoyable mouthfeel.

O: A fantastic example of a barleywine with a touch of that signature SN hoppyness. Very glad to have found a few four packs of this, it's extremely enjoyable and certainly worthy of a spot in the fridge.

Photo of maedhros09
4.72/5  rDev +14%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Look: Transluscent Ruby-amber with big frothy tan head, lingering lacing and bubbles. Smell: sweet-sour breadiness with fresh hops noticeable upon pouring Taste: Big moderately sweet roasted caramel malt dominates, transistioning to tart fruit (nectarine?) with strong hops counterbalance. Finish is a roasty tartness. A bit of rough alcohol flavor. Thick mouthfeel producing fine carbonation in the mouth. A multitude of delicious flavors, aromas, and textures are exquisitely balanced. Also, drinks a lot easier than the ABV suggests.

Photo of colingaiser
3.86/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Slowly poured from 12 oz bottle into a nonic pint glass, after being removed from fridge for 15 minutes.

L: Beautiful amber verging on caramel brown. It's quite hazy and mostly opaque, and there's a nice, frothy two-finger head that doesn't want to disappear.

S: Surprisingly unassertive. A little fruity, with some nice malty caramel and toffee notes.

T: Very complex. Immediately I pick up on delectable caramel, toffee, butterscotch, and even some woodiness. The sweetness is perfectly balanced with a floral bitterness and grapefruit tartness. There are notes of pear, apple, peach, and maybe papaya, but they're just supporting roles here.

F: Medium-to-heavy, with a creamy frothiness that complements the sweeter side of the beer.

O: This is a fantastic example of the exciting and complex drinking experience a barleywine can offer!

Photo of Beer-Revelry
4.8/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.75

A - Pours a two finger honey yellow head which dissipates down to a film. Extremely pretty rich ruby mahogany.
S - Mangos and peaches, hops and sweet honey, one of the most interesting aromas I've smelt from a beer.
T - One of the most complex and constantly developing tasting beers I've ever had. Immediate sweet malts, such as a strong stout, this is immediately followed by lightly sweet and syrupy peaches and mangos, this is followed by an intense hoppy bitterness, perfectly rounding off the initial sweetness. Strangely enough, after swallowing, seconds later a welcome smokiness develops.
O - One of the absolute most complex, interesting and tasty beers I've ever drank. An absolute must if you can get your hands on it.
V - Worth it at any price if you can acquire this sought after delicacy.

Photo of Coopaloop2112
4.91/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

I love this beer, Every thing about it just works for me.

Photo of jooler
3.47/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Nice hoppy aroma. Very dark malt flavor with a nice hint of chocolate. Not too overwhelming with the alcohol content

Photo of allforbetterbeer
4.23/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2010 Vintage (12 oz bottle) poured on 01/06/2015 into a Goblet. Certainly not my first experience with this beer. I have tasted it fresh, and with 3,5, and 6 years of age. All were excellent, but I think I prefer it with 4-5 years of age. Although I would never turn down a fresh bottle.

Ruby red and crystal clear body under a thick and creamy off-white head. Impressive after almost 5 years.

The nose is full of sherry and sugar coated hops. Like warm Ponderosa sap running down the outside of the fragrant bark in summer.

The taste is a happy marriage of hops (with sturdy bitterness) and sherry/oxidized malt. Wonderful. A tiny bit of cardboard hidden under all the excellent flavors, which is very easily overlooked.

The feel is thick and moderately sweet, but is nicely balanced because of the high bitterness.

Conclusion: An excellent beer at any age from 0-5 years, and at any time of the year.

Photo of KevChiTown
4.79/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Fantastic. A friend recommended this also, as an intro to American Barleywine and it did not disappoint. My first and it will not be my last!

Photo of gobuccos
4.69/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Vertical tasting 2011-2014. Great vertical. Can really taste the difference the aging makes. 2011 is very smooth.

Photo of chrisjws
3.92/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Purchased from my local liquor store as a single. Bottled date is 2/27/14. Consumed 12/30/14. Poured into a snifter glass.

A: Dark red/brown, slightly cloudy. 1-2 finger head that dissipated quickly. Lacing down the glass throughout my session. Slight bits of sediment settling on the bottom of the glass.

S: Bright, piney nose upfront. Little bit of malt sweetness with caramel, but the hops dominate. Similar to what you’d expect from a barley wine, with a bit extra on the hops, as you’d expect from an american style version. Not picking up any alcohol.

T: Strong bitterness upfront, slight bitter in the aftertaste. Hoppy and piney flavors in the middle mouth. Some sweetness in the middle mouth and resin flavors.

M: Vicious yet smooth. The carbonation is present but does not press your tongue. The carbonation bites and is sustained by hoppy bitterness that lingers

O: Nice, smooth and enjoyable. Strong pronounced flavors you’d expect from an american style barley wine

Photo of Johnquisssssssy
4.02/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Decent head, which dissipated pretty quick. Colour is a gorgeous red/brown. Smell is nicely aromatic of piney hops which I assume will fade with years. It's a nice drinkable mix of syrupy prune/plum with a hop bite. There is a dry finish and the alcohol isn't evident beyond the body, and the sweetness. It's not fair to compare this to aged/ other barley wines; some of said its a good "intro to barley wines" and I wouldn't disagree; but that should not under cut how enjoyable it is as a fine balanced beer.

Photo of KarmicSkrambl8
4.54/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

my first real "craft beer" least what got me hooked in this realm...back in 2002/2003

slightly below Old Rasputin in taste and impact

excellent hoppiness...rare for a barleywine, but oh so preferred

Photo of lilsmizzul1225
4.29/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

2014 release, bottled about 13 months ago and cellared since purchase in March/April. Perhaps not the best thing to try and to savor after a day of Christmas "celebrating". Great beer but nothing too special. I think I would definitely prefer the barrel aged version better; since I generally like my barleywines to be a bit on the higher gravity side.

Still, a very solid beer, always a pleasure from Sierra Nevada.

Photo of CraigP83
4.46/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Rich red, sweet , light piney hops, mulled wine aftertaste beneath the bitterness

Photo of getatmeimevil
4.39/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

First barley wine.

Exactly what I was hoping for, strong, fruity and enough hoppy bite to even out the fruit. Wonderful beer, all around.

Photo of dsnyder61
4.5/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

one of my favorite barleywines

Photo of PatGreer
4.3/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

2009 vintage at an old beer tasting.

Sierra Nevada Bigfoot Barleywine Style Ale from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
92 out of 100 based on 6,947 ratings.