1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

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

Not Rated.
Sierra Nevada Bigfoot Barleywine Style AleSierra Nevada Bigfoot Barleywine Style Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

6,113 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 6,113
Reviews: 2,805
rAvg: 4.15
pDev: 11.57%
Wants: 248
Gots: 1,051 | FT: 36
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
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Sierra Nevada Bigfoot Barleywine Style Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 6,113 | Reviews: 2,805 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of JerseyKirk

New Jersey

4.18/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Dark brown with a white 1 finger head.

S: Very subtle citrus notes.

T: It's odd to say this but it tastes/smells a little like pot. Idk if people are into that or not but I liked it.

M: Full bodied and alcoholic.

D: Hells yea! I love this beer. This is the first barelywine that I wasn't disgusted by because the alcohol killed all of my senses.

Serving type: bottle

05-18-2011 19:39:25 | More by JerseyKirk
Photo of hotliquor


4.1/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Clear, light tan foam clings to the glass, beautiful mahogany color.

Smell: Rich malt, caramel, toffee, dark crystal, booze and citrus hops. Piney, grapefruit, and floral. Not as fresh tasting as when it was first released, but really good.

Taste: Bittersweet. Big malt and hop flavor, with lingering resin and warming alcohol. This is aggressive, but well done. Nutty dark crystal and explosive hop bitterness and flavor, mostly grapefruit and bitter orange peel. Finishes with sweet malt and tons of hop resins.

Mouthfeel: Sweet but the alcohol and hops make this more drinkable. Nice carbonation. Lingering resin and alcohol cleans the palate.

Overall: This is very good. I buy a six pack or more each year and I always enjoy it.

Serving type: bottle

05-18-2011 07:33:32 | More by hotliquor
Photo of MattyG85


4.48/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12 oz. bottle into a Duvel tulip glass. 2011 bottle.

Appearance: A slightly cloudy dark amber red with a small white head that fades into a white layer. Good lacing around the glass.

Smell: Strong burst of citrus and floral hops followed by sweet caramel malts. Grapefruit, orange peel, lemon, and a bit of spice.

Taste: Citrus and earthy hops up front are followed by sweetness from the caramel malts and fruits. Finishes with some more hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Medium body and carbonation. Chewy and bitter but still smooth and drinkable.

Overall: A very solid brew. I'm not very experienced with barleywines so I don't really have anything to compare it too. It tastes a lot like a DIPA.

Edit: After having several different barleywines both English and American style, I had a fresh 2012 bottle and still think this is the most hop forward take on the style yet. Its like the American style taken to the extreme. I look forward to trying an aged one sometime.

Serving type: bottle

05-18-2011 05:35:18 | More by MattyG85
Photo of FatBoyGotSwagger


3.88/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

2011 batch

appearance-It pours a dark amber body with a I finger head.
smell-Pine Hops.
taste- Bitter hops upfront which leads to a quick hit of alcohol then a sweet crisp lingering on the tongue.

overall- With about 5 months on it Bigfoot still has a proper hop profile and is enjoyable. There is a huge malt backbone to balance the hops but they are still balanced at this point.

Serving type: bottle

05-17-2011 20:58:00 | More by FatBoyGotSwagger
Photo of birdman200

New Jersey

4.22/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Deep mahogany, dark caramel color. 2 finger off white head. Great lacing
S: Bubble gum, alcohol burn, floral hops, grapefruit, pine, green apple.
T: Deep malty backbone, honey, Little oak taste. Noticeable sweetness.
M: Really lingers in mouth for long time.
D: The tits. Amazing beer - 1st barleywine ever, and won't be the last.

Serving type: bottle

05-17-2011 17:46:35 | More by birdman200
Photo of StoutHunter


4.1/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I picked up a bottle of Bigfoot Barleywine Style Ale for $1.99 at The Lager Mill. I have been wanting to try this beer for a while since I heard it was one the better Barleywines available, but every time I thought to pick one up they were sold out for the season, but I am not letting the elusive Bigfoot escape me this time. 2011 Vintage, poured from a short 12oz brown bottle into a mini snifter.

A- I like the label on this beer, it fits the name and isn't as plain as most of Sierra Nevada's labels seem to be, I also like that the year was printed on the cap, very helpful for cellaring. It poured a nice caramel amber color with four fingers worth of fluffy white head that died down to a thick layer that left lots of nice looking lacing.

S- The aroma starts off with some sweet caramel malts, but are quickly overpowered by large amounts of citrus and floral hops that pretty much dominate the aroma and are mostly citrus with some pine thrown in there for good measure. I also pick up the faint aroma of alcohol, which is to be expected from this style. Smells pretty similar to a highly hopped IPA.

T- The taste starts off with a big presence of hops, its like a half and half mixture of citrus and piney hops that make for a pretty big hop profile and pretty hop forward Barleywine. In the middle I pick up the caramel malts that have the right amount of sweetness to it. The finish is moderately bitter with a slight hint of booze at the end.

M- Sticky, Medium bodied and it was pretty carbonated which I wasn't expecting but enjoyed.

Overall I though this was a pretty good barleywine. Pretty much all the Barleywine's I have had have all been heavy on the malts and malt forward, in this brew the malts take a back seat to the hops. I think I like the malts forward Barleywine's better but I can still appreciate the complexity's of this highly hopped Barleywine. I fell like the malt heavy ones are better suited for the colder temperatures of the winter, while this highly hopped one seems better suited for those cooler summer nights around the camp fire, each one has it's own good time and place. I don't know if this beer is that drinkable but since it is not as sweet as some of the other ones I have had I could see cracking another one if I had it. If I can find a 6 pack I think I will buy it, this would make a great summertime Barleywine. If you like your Barleywine's Hop forward then this is the brew for you, hell if you just a fan of Barleywine's in general you should try this. This was a great solid beer from Sierra Nevada, I would like to throw a couple of these in the cellar to see how this brew stacks up once the hops start to fade, I am willing to bet it will taste even better but completely different. This is up their with Torpedo for the best beer I have had from Sierra Nevada. EDIT- The 2012 version is just as good and even more intesence since this one was much fresher the 2011 I had last year, through and through one of the best looking barleywines and a really intense beer.

Serving type: bottle

05-17-2011 04:13:44 | More by StoutHunter
Photo of Cyberkedi


4.33/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Aroma is fruity with an undertone of malt and a firm hint of molasses. It pours a pretty dark brownish amber, almost mahogany, with a thick, fluffy, fairly persistent white head. Luscious flavor is fruity and woody with hints of caramel and brown sugar. Alcohol bite is present and a bit tinny, but not as strong as with most barleywines, which is a plus. Texture is smooth, fizzy and edgy, leaving a tingly and woody finish. I for one recommend this to barleywine lovers.

Serving type: bottle

05-15-2011 03:52:31 | More by Cyberkedi
Photo of beerdrifter


4.22/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep amber pour with a tinge of ruby with an off-white two finger head that has good retention and great lacing. Lots of citrus in the nose, specifically tangerines, with a solid sweet malty backbone and a hint of alcohol. The taste is intense! Huge resiny, tangy, spicy, hop bitterness with a good measure of pine and orange peel and a hint of cinnamon. This is all nicely complemented by a syrupy malt sweetness that tries to tame the intense bitterness. This thing really opens up nicely as it warms. A thick and chewy sipper with a subtle alcohol burn. A classic interpretation of the style. Yet another winner from one of my favorite breweries!

Serving type: bottle

05-13-2011 03:33:35 | More by beerdrifter
Photo of Lauthaha


4.03/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a dinner glass.

Appearance: Beer pours a light-to-medium mahogany color with a little carbonation visible through the glass. Head is the color of well-cooked egg whites, and it recedes into what looks like a mini rice cake/wafer on the surface of the brew. Lots of intricate spiderweb lacing. The only thing that would have made this perfect would have been a bit more head retention; but as it is, it's spectacular.

Smell: Toasty, sweet malt character underscored by some piney/citrusy hops. Lots of ester in the nose, but thankfully it mixes well with the rest of the scents. Well balanced but very strong.

Taste/Mouthfeel: At first sip, lots of citrus and alcohol. Almost no carbonation, but the carbonation that is there lends itself to giving the beer a touch more body. Nicely played. Piney hops dominate the middle-taste, with some of that malt sweetness coming through at the very end of the sip. Aftertaste is toasted oats and pine forest romps.

Overall: A pretty decent brew. It's easily drinkable, but the high ABV is not all that well-hidden, so exercise caution with this guy. I can almost taste the Bigfoot in this beer.

Serving type: bottle

05-12-2011 00:41:08 | More by Lauthaha
Photo of gkunkle


4.45/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a mildly transparent ruddy brown color with a thin off-white head. Retention is typical for a high ABV beer and it leaves a little lacing in my glass. The smell is of sweet malt with hints of grassy and citrus hops. Taste starts with a bit of the complex hops, then it shifts to the malty sweetness. Mouthfeel is just right and carbonation is mild. Overall, this is a great tasting beer, but the price point and availability make it exceptional.

Serving type: bottle

05-11-2011 23:02:21 | More by gkunkle
Photo of patreely12


4.13/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle of the 2011 poured into a snifter.

A - one inch of sudsy off-white head. ruby colored with a moderate cloudiness caused by the carbonation. big clumps of lacing all the way down the glass.

S - big rich malt sweetness. spicy hops. some sweet caramel and brown sugar. there are also hints of toasty bread, some very light citrus and floral pine. very nice aroma.

T/M - after the complexity of the nose I was a bit let down by the flavor. not saying that the flavors are bad or bland but after enjoying such a rich nose I expected the flavor to follow suit. strong punch of bitter, spicy hops up front which are cleaned up with some sweetness from the malts and a hint of caramel. the hops are the dominant flavor and they're stronger than I thought they'd be. finishes slightly bitter and with a bit of the alcohol. mouthfeel is really smooth and creamy. medium bodied. high carbonation.

Overall this is one of the best barleywines that I've had. It's the epitome of the style. very tasty. a little lower in drinkability because of the 9.6% ABV. I'll be picking up a six pack of this next year.

Serving type: bottle

05-11-2011 04:01:32 | More by patreely12
Photo of Docer


4.45/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had a tester from tap at Belmont Station.. but then purchased a 6-pack and brought it home. Cracked a fresh 2009 batch.

- Nice dark and rich caramel color with thick frothy off-white head and loads of lacing. Reminds me much of the Bastard. (4.5)

- Smell is of rich sweet caramel malt.. a bit of bread and rye.. a spicy hopness and rubbing alcohol. (4.0)

- Tastes much the same.. sweet and bold, spicy and sour.. creamy... and a bit too much of a rubbing alcohol flavor for me. But I am sure with age it wouldn't be as noticeable. (3.5)

- Not too dry an aftertaste, and leaves a certain sweetness. A bit chewy. (4.0)

- Quite drinkable, but rich. Definite warming of the stomach. (4.0)

2011 Bottle fresh. 5/10/2011

- Big fluffy head, leaves a goof 1/2 inch of light khaki colored foam.. clear ruby brown brew, looks plenty carbonated as many bubbles slowly carve their way through the malts sugars.

- Big crisp hops.. grassy and herbal, some pine. Sweet burnt caramelized sugars, caramel malt, candies, and earthy fire. Spice and alcohol present.

- Certainly a very hoppy Bigfoot this time around. Very refined and well tuned caramel flavors.. burnt caramel candy, earthy and grassy pine hops, and plenty of brown sugars.. a very well balanced, and hoppy barleywine. To me this one stands out over some of the years past, such as the '09.

- Medium bodied, drying from bitter hops, slightly syrupy and sticky. Afterall, this is a sweet barleywine.

- Overall a big fan of this vintage. The hops are explosive, and yet the super bitterness balances the super sweetness very well.. thus resulting in a huge array of flavors. I will certainly be purchasing many more 6-packs of this as I can.

Updated my score accordingly.

Serving type: bottle

05-11-2011 01:28:27 | More by Docer
Photo of azdback


3.93/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2011 vintage. Poured into a Stone Imperial glass. As it poured I thought it looked a bit thick or syrupy. Clear, dark caramel color. Not a lot of carbonation bubbles but the head is massive. Light brown or tan in color and a giant three fingers. Very frothy and quite sticky looking.

Big malt sweetness in the nose, a bit citrus aroma maybe just a hint of bread. No alcohol is present here.

The taste is a little different than the nose. Still has the huge malt sweetness but there is some bitter hop taste. The yeast is still really there in the nose but not here in the taste, this is a good thing. There is some alcohol here too but not boozy tasting. As it warms a bit I am getting some citrus maybe an orange or maybe it's not citrus more like pineapple Enjoyable!

The mouth is okay for the style. Rich, silky and a bit chewy. It doesn't have the huge mouth that Old Guardian or Old Ruffian have but not bad at all.

Overall I enjoyed this I would like to set this one aside for a while and try it again. It won't matter if the hop flavors fade, I think the rest of it may mesh a bit more. Pick this one up if you get the chance.

Serving type: bottle

05-10-2011 05:02:38 | More by azdback
Photo of richkrull


4.22/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Tried this one on-tap at Alchemy in Madison, WI.

Poured a darker amber brown color with an average head on it and pretty good lacing as well.

Smell is sweet with a bit of citrus and pine as well. Some faint alcohol coming through.

Taste was hoppy up front with some caramel notes coming through. Very good flavor on this beer. Some alcohol in the finish but overall a pleasent taste.

Mouthfeel was light to medium. Went down fairly smooth. Nice after-dinner beer.

Overall a very good barleywine. I can see why people are so crazy about it. I enjoyed it and will definitely look for it in the future.

Serving type: on-tap

05-09-2011 17:49:56 | More by richkrull
Photo of Dan3279


3.9/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I have only had a couple small samples of this beer in the past and I scored a 2010 bottle through a trade last month. I poured the 12oz bottle into a snifter glass to find a deep brown body. The body was on the hazy side and had an one inch head that left very little lacing. The aroma had a sweet caramel malt feel to it. There was a strong, bitter hop presence that hit my pallet right away. The hops presence gives away to a sweet malty flavor. As the beer warmed up the flavors really started to come out more and I enjoyed the beer more with each sip. The carbination is noticable and you notice the alochol as well.

Overall I enjoyed the beer and this beer is worthy of the praise that it gets!

Serving type: bottle

05-09-2011 02:46:40 | More by Dan3279
Photo of LtCracker20


4.58/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A- Pours a nice ruby/amber body with a great 2-finger rocky head that seems to last forever. Laces all the way down.

S- Big piney and citrusy aroma up front, sweet malt smell is there, but relatively a backing role. Just a little alchohol presence in the smell.

T- Just like the flavor, big hop punch up front followed by a little caramel and tobacco flavors. The malt is definately takes the back seat in this one. Slight alchohol warming in the back of the throat after the sip.

MF- Almost a full bodied beer, but falls up just short. The big flavors more than make up for it.

O- This is one amazing beer. Each time I drink this, it just reminds me of how awesome it truly is. In my opinion, the best American barleywine out there.

Serving type: bottle

05-08-2011 21:22:09 | More by LtCracker20
Photo of Fluke828


4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2011 vintage.
12oz. bottle poured into a tulip glass.
Usually there is a julian date on both the bottle and the label however only seem to see one here on the label and it looks like January 11th of this year was when this brew went into the bottle but I digress, it is a barleywine and bigfoot afterall...

A-> Massive head on a relatively gentle pour, as in like at least 3+ fingers worth of slightly offwhite colored head. Deep ruby ambers and copper colors.

S-> Hmmm, nothing really jumped out at me here however I have recently gotten over a mild illness and allergies are in full swoon with all the pollen and shit that has been flying around these days...getting a bit of dark fruits and some serious malt breads/biscuits. Some floral notes as well on the bouquet.

T-> Ah, there she is. Took a bit but finally recognizing that classic bigfoot taste from years past. Sweet malts and dark fruits with sugared plums and figs with some serious caramel notes and toasted grains as well. Getting some herbal flavors as well as a nice crisp and prevalent hop presence.

M-> Nice crsip feeling on the toungue that I attribute to the high (but pleasant) hop presence in this B-wine. Medium-bodied and nice and crisp with great carbonation and the lack of the typical syrup-esque texture/flavor is a welcome respite for the style.

O-> Overall, Bigfoot never dissapoints, and this year is right on point. Really like the fact that this is a hopped up barleywine and doesn't have the aforementioned syrup qualities that most brews of this style typically have. Not that that is a bad thing as a mtter of fact it is a quality I come to expect and love, when I'm in the B-wine kind of mood. That being said, this is a nice refreshing change and I have layed a couple of this year's vintage down in the cellar to see how they develop. Cheers!

Serving type: bottle

05-07-2011 22:24:22 | More by Fluke828
Photo of burkyburk


4.33/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

2010 year.
Huge head, a good inch and a half of beautifully light brownish foam.
Strong smell of hops, with a faint citrus smell.
The taste was very demanding. Very strong hops and bitterness. Light citrus notes.
Pretty bitter on the tongue, definitely a sipping beer.
The alcohol content adds a nice warming affect on the way down.

Serving type: bottle

05-07-2011 04:05:56 | More by burkyburk
Photo of aasher


3.8/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This bottle was the 2008 vintage, and almost three and a half years old.

It poured a cherry brown in color with a nice three finger cream colored head. The foam sat atop the glass for a good three to four minutes before dissipating enough to drink. The aromas are very sweet and full of raisins especially. You also get sweet carmel malts and cherries. Unfortunately the flavors aren't quite as complex. You get a boatload of sweet malts, oak, vanilla, caramel, and candied sugar but it's hard to get past the sweetness. This three year old barleywine drinks a little flatter than I'd like. It's lost considerable carbonation throughout time. Overall this is definitely a solid barleywine, but it's very, very sweet and too sweet for my liking. Tasting verticals of Bigfoot through the years is fun to watch and taste. The change can be pretty considerable.

Serving type: bottle

05-07-2011 02:13:48 | More by aasher
Photo of Puddintane


4.75/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Have had this beer many times and have had many different vintages, both aged and fresh. This rating is from a fresh-ish bottle.

Pours a deep dark amber that only shows through the light with a creamy light tan head that has a great retention. The aroma holds a great deal of caramel malt, some citrus and some dark fruit. The flavor holds a great balance between a grapefruit/grass hop flavor and caramel malt, there’s also elements of plum, brandy, and alcohol. Full bodied and supermalty over the tounge with a bitter finish gives this brew a great bittersweet experience over all. Truly the quintessential American style barleywine.

Serving type: bottle

05-06-2011 15:23:57 | More by Puddintane
Photo of peacebone116


4.43/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Reviewing 12-oz bottle of Big Foot 2011 Vintage, fresh (from notes), enjoyed from tulip glass.

A: Copper, almost brown body.

N: Alcohol and butterscotch with a bit of pine.

T/M: Alcohol is immediately present. Buttery body melds with piny, resinous hop character.

This year's batch seems less yeasty or malt forward than I remember previous versions being...this could be due to its freshness and the fact that a 9.6% ABV just seems so average to my palette now. It is very hoppy fresh, and it is really quite excellent. This is one of my favorite Sierra Nevada beers, seasonal or otherwise.

Serving type: bottle

05-05-2011 17:29:35 | More by peacebone116
Photo of beerandcycling88


3.75/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2011 vintage Poured into a snifter.

A It pours a orangish brown color, with a 1 finger head with pretty good retention, and a nice bit of lacing.

S The nose has some nice citrus, grapefruit, and pine like notes from the hops, and some sweet honey like notes to balance it out.

T Very strong and complex flavor. There is a very potent herbal note present, along with some bitterness from the hops, and a hint of some citrus. This one seems to be dominated by hops with the malts seeming like an after thought.

M This one is surprising in the fact that it is not syrupy like a lot of barley wines I've had. But it is still thick, and to top it off it has some decent carbonation.

Overall I really like this one. I don't think it is as good as some other barley wines out there, but it is definitely a good one. I plan on cellering a few to see how this one turns out.

2002 vintage

Picked up a 2002 and it is different.

A the carbonation has largely vanished and it is kind of flat looking.

S lots of sweet malt, a bit of sweet fruit.No hops at all

T more sweet caramel malt, a bit of leather, some sweet fruits and a bit of sherry. Again no hops

M very thick and syrupy.

Overall this is quite interesting and enjoyable. I'm glad I have 2 more.

Serving type: bottle

05-03-2011 22:40:33 | More by beerandcycling88
Photo of BarryMFBurton


3.98/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Note to self: anything named after Sasquatch will instantly catch my eye. This Sierra Nevada creation is proof of that. I was just introduced to SN with their Torpedo Extra IPA, and, I must say, I was quite impressed. Plus, I’m not too familiar with the barleywine style, so this is new territory for me in many respects.

A: Dark, nearly opaque pumpkin juice orange with a large tan head. It gives the impression of a bold brew, due to the fact that it’s so damn thick. Good lacing all around, although the foam does give way after a rather short period of time.

S: A big burst of hops at first, wheaty goodness following soon after. Spicy booze and honey malts abound. A big nose for Bigfoot.

T: Wow, tons of flavor upfront. Honey/toffee malts are damn sweet, taking an upfront stance at the beginning of the palate. The herbal/phenolic notes come next, but they are easily overtaken by something in the blend that I wasn’t expecting – some sort of tangy tone that sticks with you. It’s a welcome distinction. The hops are sharp and crisp, and provide a strong presence in the aftertaste.

M: The sweetness is a lot to balance, so it should be a sipper for sure. Sometimes, though, the carbonation proves a bit excessive, practically forcing it to go down too quick for its style. Turned me off at times.

O: This beer has a lot of flavor, but at first I didn’t know if I was a fan of the balance. It seemed too heavy on the sweetness for my taste. A few drinks in, though, the flavors expanded a bit and opened up a more enjoyable experience. It’s a beer that grew on me by the end of the bottle; strange but true. Now I’d be perfectly content with a six-pack of these monsters! Funny how it works sometimes…

Serving type: bottle

05-03-2011 03:58:43 | More by BarryMFBurton
Photo of TheBrewo


4.13/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

We pour a brew of glowing red-orange, like the rays of a deep setting sun. It holds a thick, one finger tall head of tan bubbles. It recedes at a medium pace and leaves a single film of big bubbles across the glass, with thick lacing clinging around the sides. Carbonation looks mild, and much sediment is found throughout the glass. The aroma smells sweetly of grain and, of course, dried barley. Sweetness is enhanced by hints of strawberries and honey. A big booze presence is noted, with grassy hops making up the remainder of the nose. As we sip, the first things noted are big waves of warming alcohols and soapy hops. These bitter, biting flavors are cut at the peak of the sip with sweetness of fruit, with apricot and orange being the frontrunners. Malts also cruise in, taking out a bit more of the bittering front flavors. The finish reverts back to the beginning, with bittering citrus rind, big slick hops, and a good deal of booze. All the while a coating of balancing malt flavor is palpable along the entire length of the tongue. The aftertaste breathes bitterly. Here we speak mainly of barley and malt, grassy yet sweetened hops, and fusel alcohols. The body is on the thicker side and the carbonation is light. With each sip comes a nice slurp, made affordable by the syrupy quality of the beer. The mouth is coated nicely, but is ultimately left dried by the bittering hop aftertaste. The abv is within range, and this beer is inherently a sipper.

Overall, the most impressive thing about this brew was the deep, gorgeous coloring. It had the darkness of the style, but a beautiful glowing red to give that extra glam. The aroma was also nice, with a slight fruitiness and spice, amongst the hoppiness and grain. This brew really opened up the more it sat and warmed to the proper temperature, much more so than other beers of this style. What it eventually became was a nice treat with a warming aroma and taste that keeps you wanting more.

Serving type: bottle

05-02-2011 03:48:47 | More by TheBrewo
Photo of Schwarzbart


4.53/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: 2011 Year. A big 2+ finger, off-white, creamy head. As the head settles it gets super thick looking like a fluffy pancake, it looks awesome. Color is a dark chestnut amber. Carbonation is surprising to see and it isn't as thick looking as many barleywines I've had. Great, stippled creamy lacing.

S: To my surprise, the first thing I notice is the piney hops. Also, some citrusy,grassy, piney, grapefruit hops. Fruit notes of tropical fruits, apricot and orange. Some sweet honey, mint and cocoa nibs backed by a sweet maltness.

T: The hop bitterness is high. It's super grassy and has a piney quality to it. The next quality noticed is the sweetness from the malts then the alcohol esters. Cocoa nibs and raw sugar notes also give it sweetness. Candy-like malts, biscuity, caramel notes and mint.

Overall: Medium to full-bodied and leaning on the full-bodied side. Hops are tingly and the aftertaste of the hops last a long time. A very good drinkable barleywine.

Serving type: bottle

05-01-2011 16:52:30 | More by Schwarzbart
Sierra Nevada Bigfoot Barleywine Style Ale from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 6,113 ratings.