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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.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

6,138 Ratings
THE BROS
98
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 6,138
Reviews: 2,806
rAvg: 4.15
pDev: 11.57%
Wants: 246
Gots: 1,059 | 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: 6,138 | Reviews: 2,806 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of rhoadsrage
rhoadsrage

Illinois

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

2011 Update
S- The dark pine hops take on a tropical fruit quality as the beer opens up. Followed by some green mango hops in the finish.

T- The big pungent bitten hops have a strong bitterness that really lingers.

2005

( Served in a medium brandy snifter)

A- reddish brown somewhat opaque body with tiny bubble gently rising to the surface. The head is a thin white ring around the edge of the glass.

S-The aroma is malty sweet with a hint of citrus hops.

T- Nice big maltyness with hints of caramel and sweet malts. There is also a nice strong hop bitterness and a floral/citrus hop flavor aswell. It finishes with a nice alcohol warmth.

M-Nice full body but not syrupy. Nice alcohol warmth but not hot.

D- This has a nice depth of hops but the malt is right there standing out. It is well balanced and I think this would stand up to aging aswell. The alcohol is nice but not overpowering in this beer. It has a lot of big flavors but they all work well together.

Serving type: bottle

04-21-2005 03:58:07 | More by rhoadsrage
Photo of gentlebubbles
gentlebubbles

Massachusetts

3.43/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

2005 edition

Light toasty brown with vigorous bubbles. No head, of course.

Distinct grapefruit aroma.

Mild toffee sweetness is beaten about the head and shouders by the grapefruit tang, which turns into an astringent rind in the finish.

What could be a nice syrupy body is quickly dispelled by coarse bubbles.

The overall effect is too raw. Maybe a year or two in the cellar would help, but I think it's still overcarbonated.

Serving type: bottle

04-20-2005 20:07:55 | More by gentlebubbles
Photo of maek228
maek228

Pennsylvania

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

2005 bottling

Appearance: Dark murky amber...almost leaning towards a copper brown. Poured with a monstorous two finger head. The head had huge bubbles. The foam clung to the glass like frosted snow on a windsheild.

Smell: Ah...pungent fruit smell? Smelled good but was tough to get the smell.

Taste: Malty with bitter fruits abounding all over the place. Definitly a big fruity taste, but not a sweet fruity taste...kinda the exact opposite, which is fitting for a barley wine. Has an earthy hop kick. The alcohol is quite apparent in this one. Gives you that "gasoline" breath that you get from like drinking a St. Ides 40. Pretty sweet in my opinon.

Mouthfeel: Malty and thick. Chewy as all get out.

Drinkability: For a barleywine ale...good.

Serving type: bottle

04-17-2005 03:51:09 | More by maek228
Photo of Star80
Star80

Illinois

4.5/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

2005. Pours a dark reddish amber with a quickly dissipating head. Not much lace in this dishwasher washed beer glass. The smell is pine and citrus hops, some sweet malts and ALCOHOL. Does have a dirty old sock funkyness that doesn't help anything. BUT, one sip crushes those impressions with a big blast of grapefruit and towering northwest hop bitterness followed by some sweet malt. Very rich and full in the mouth. The guy at the beer store remarked this years batch has less a.b.v. than last and I'm not sure if that is true or if it changes anything!

Serving type: bottle

04-15-2005 01:06:01 | More by Star80
Photo of kegerator
kegerator

Maryland

5/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I just love Bigfoot.
pours out deep bronze/brown color with a big 2 inch head that is sticky and leaves great lace throughout. Smell is a nice caramel.brown sugar malt up front with a huge earthy spicy hop.
Taste was huge hops up front that were countered very nicely with the malt profile. Smoky earthiness in the hops with a finish of caramel malt and an alcohol warmth at the back of the throat. full bodied and finishes off fairly crisp and slightly dry. A Top notch Barley Wine that I buy every year.

Serving type: bottle

04-13-2005 18:24:18 | More by kegerator
Photo of pikemark
pikemark

Pennsylvania

4.58/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This is my first review and im psyched about it!

Right away reminded me of a stronger IPA, this just may remian my favorite style of brew. Bought a six pack after reading a bunch of helpful reviews.

Appearance is an orange brown, with tints of red and the mug smells of alcohol (almost too much for me.) I picked up a lot of hops right a way which surprised me, having never had a barleywine before. Definitely doesnt remind me of wine.

Tastes unbelievable, very bitter with hints of citrus, great blend of hops and malt. Again, I really enjoyed the hop flavor in this. Also strong caramel flavor, however very refreshing.

The drinkabilty is incredible, everytime i went to take a whiff I ended up taking a sip. Has that creamy, milky character that all beers should strive for.

An awesome one, got me buzzed.

Serving type: bottle

04-11-2005 01:39:03 | More by pikemark
Photo of sweethome
sweethome

Illinois

4.28/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2005 Bigfoot

Pours burnt orange with a white head. Big cascade nose. Fantastic mouthfeel - full and sweet but backed by massive amounts of NW hops. The malts provide a carmel flavor. The hops are pine and citrus. Gentle warming from the alcohol.

American barleywine delivered in the typical SIerra Nevada fashion. A standrd setter.

Serving type: bottle

04-09-2005 18:46:09 | More by sweethome
Photo of Shultzerdugen
Shultzerdugen

Missouri

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

10 oz. in a Maredsous glass at Patton Alley Pub, Springfield, Mo.

Hazed dark copper with off white head.

Serious hops in the nose, of course. Pine and grapefruit. Just a hint of malt, gone as soon as it's noticed.

Hops in your face! Pine and grapefruit, just like the smell. I wonder why they don't call this an imperial IPA? The malt is so hard to nail down. The hops do a nice job of hiding the high ABV, until you finish the glass and realize what you drank. Super astringent.

Compared to the bottle this was substantially cloudier and darker. Aromas, flavors, and mouthfeel seemed toned down just a touch. It didn't seem to have the complete over the top hop vibe going I get from the bottle. That said it was still very effin' good!

Serving type: on-tap

04-05-2005 01:39:11 | More by Shultzerdugen
Photo of studentofbeer
studentofbeer

California

4.5/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2005:

beautifully rich red, with a khaki head that drops away. looking through light, this beer is amazingly clear and a glowing, bright mahogany. looks like my gibson sg all polished up.

aroma has raisins and vanilla with some pine coming through from hops. very ripe fruit, close to overripe. a bit boozy, almost like rum in some ways. as it warms hops really come out, with lots of pine and earthiness.

taste: strong, pungent fruit, very ripe and dark. raisin, but also a spiced fruit, a touch of tropical fruit, leather, and bitter citrus and pine from the hops. some breadiness and biscuit comes through as it warms, as does alcohol.

awesome carbonation for a barleywine, really helps balance things out and not get too syrupy or cloying. incredibly bitter finish where the hops assert themselves and don't let go, lasting almost forever in the mouth. burns a bit when you swallow from the strong hop presence and the alcohol starting to peak through. excellent finish overall.

Serving type: bottle

04-02-2005 22:33:03 | More by studentofbeer
Photo of Gagnonsux
Gagnonsux

Texas

4.08/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2005 vintage. Bigfoot is a deep copper color with a large (very large for a barleywine) head. The head is tan and frothy with nice retention. Citrusy hops have a strong presence in the aroma, light caramel malt smell is also noted. Taste starts off very hoppy in a west coast citrusy sort of way. The hops are soon joined by a slick malty taste which give way to more hops in the finish. Fruity ale flavors also run throughout the sip. This is definently a west coast interpretation of the style, normally I like my barleywines a little less hoppy, but this is a damn fine beer.

Serving type: bottle

03-29-2005 02:15:14 | More by Gagnonsux
Photo of GolgiIPAratus
GolgiIPAratus

Massachusetts

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

2005 Edition
12 oz Bottle

Sampled: 3.6.05

Poured like thinned caramel, producing a bubble pocked foam head that faded quickly in the wide snifter. Little to no lacing resulted while drinking.

The nose is rich. A satisfying composite of caramel malts, anise, rye and barley. Some hops jump up to mingle with the alcohol. This bottle's aroma is not as sweet as past years' offerings, but I've also enjoyed 2003 & 2004 later in the cycle of their vintage. I consider that to be a significant detail to point out when it comes to commenting on this year's brew. That goes equal in smell and in…

…the taste is (( BITTER )). Whoa. I don't know if when I see this beer referred to as “green” in other reviews (that are specifically sampled early after bottling) that this is what people are talking about, but I assume so, and I concur. Now, with that said, the beer is still delicious. I mean, heck, I LIKE bitter. I've laid down a few from this same six pack, so we'll see in 6mos/1yr/2yrs what may come when the hops mellow and time works its magic. Anyway…the bitterness is rounded off with some sweet malts in the middle of your sip, but the end is bitter again. I think some age will add the complexity I've been used to when drinking this beer so late after brewing. The mouth is well carbonated and coated with hop oil bitterness.

Drinking this beer is warming. Warm belly, warm face. Heaviness slowed me down and I drank two over the course of an hour & a half or so.

I wish I had reviewed bottles I've drunk in the past as they were much more “ready” than this bottle. However, I've made it a mission for myself to never just review something from memory alone, so this beer gets its honest shot from this year's batch in it's current state. That's how it goes...

I will definitely check back in 6 to give a half year review though!


===
===

*UPDATE*

10.25.05 - So, I cracked a bottle from this same 6 pack this past weekend (10.23.05) and man has it mellowed out on the bitterness. MUCH, much better and more to what I expected. I updated the taste rating to reflect this change. I'd have given this a 4.5 if it tasted like this the first time around, so I averaged the previous rating 3.5 and the 4.5, and gave it a 4 since i'm lead to believe aged beers shouldn't really be reviewd. I figure inside a year is enough leeway...

Serving type: bottle

03-28-2005 16:32:58 | More by GolgiIPAratus
Photo of sinistermadman
sinistermadman

Oregon

4.28/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The '05 version from Sierra Nevada.

The brew pours a deep copper-brown which emanates a healthy, cakey head. The foams subsides rather quickly, but stays with the pint almost to the end. Leaves a slight lace on the glass. Smell is solid, but not spectacular. Alcohol is very evident in the aroma.

Taste is very good. Bitter intense hop flavor is at forefront. The brew tingles the palate on all sides. You can feel the alcohol warming the body. Good choice for a cold rainy night like tonight.

Althought I wouldn't consider this a session brew, it is still quite drinkable considering the barley wine style. All in all a solid barley wine. If I had a cellar I definitely would age this stuff for a year or so to mellow it our a bit.

Serving type: bottle

03-27-2005 02:14:03 | More by sinistermadman
Photo of kmpitz2
kmpitz2

Tennessee

4.5/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

We did a small vertical here a week or so ago. We sampled 03 04 05 versions side by side. Here's what I got:

03 - Brown color with a ring of head over top, kind of dirty looking. The nose was raisiney with a slifht chocolate sweetness as well. The flavor still had some of the hop present. I really enjoyed the maltyness and dark fruit tones that came out from the age of this one. The feel was moderate to thick with a light carbonation. Three years did this beer good. I really enjoyed it.

04 - Poured an ambered brown color with a finger of head that stayed nicely. The nose was crisp, with a nice dose of hop and a slight roasted character alongside some dark fruityness. The flavor was mellowed a bit, but there was a sweet citrusy and a slight piney hop and a deep dark caramel malt. The feel was thick and great. Very good brew. I liked the residual bitter left on my tongue a lot.

5 - Poured a copper color with a 2 finger head that fell to coat the beer. The nose was nice and piney, kind of like being in a pine forest. Very strong and woodsey. The flavor was sweet sweet hop. Very brilliant hops over a deep caramel malt. The feel was thick, slightly syrupy. Great. Overall, I think this was my favorite of the vintages. Everything was in tune with each other.

Ratings will reflect the 05 beer.

Serving type: bottle

03-26-2005 04:38:08 | More by kmpitz2
Photo of mbarn59
mbarn59

New Jersey

4.8/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A very hoppy barley wine...hides the alcohol, well. very sweet on first sip but the aftertaste is to die for. You never want this flavor to leave you mouth.

The aroma is fantastic...floral but not like a flower shop...more forestral.

Just got a case of the 2005 for 32 bucks...a steal considering Old Horizontal is made right around the corner and is 12 bucks a six. Gonna cellar half the case at least and try again next year.

Serving type: bottle

03-25-2005 23:46:24 | More by mbarn59
Photo of mynie
mynie

Indiana

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

Dark amber. So pretty and hazy. Nice head.

Smells like bigtime hops. So much hops, so many hops. Flowers and grains and sunshine. Really one of the most wonderful hop smells I ever hope to come across.

Huge Hop flavor. I meant to capitalize the H in "Hop." Floral and grainy. Too strong at first to really analyze, but after a while you find the floral-ness upfront, followed by a roasted, slightly malty flavor, ending with more sour hops. Wonderful.

What's the most surprising is how easy this beer is to drink. No, It's not like you're able to slam it, but it goes down pretty goddamn smooth for a Barleywine. Really a fantastic example of the style.

Serving type: bottle

03-25-2005 06:24:44 | More by mynie
Photo of droomyster
droomyster

Virginia

4.3/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Cloudy deep amber, with slow carbonation working its way slowly up toward the the two finger frumpy tan head. Strong smell of cherries and apples, sweet carmel and citrus notes. Chewy taste of cherries, berries and dark fruits and honey. Orange peel hops come out in the end. A lot of alcohol on the finish, and lingering bitterness. Very heavy brew, filling as they come.

Serving type: bottle

03-24-2005 05:24:36 | More by droomyster
Photo of Litterbean
Litterbean

New York

3.65/5  rDev -12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Is $13.34 a lot for a six of this? Not that I mind, just seems a little pricey.

Anyways, it pours a really gorgeous deep red, with hints of golden brown around the edges. The head is off-white, fluffy, and leaves a thick trace down the side of my pint glass.

It smells absolutely wonderful. Sweet, malty aromas with a hint of herbal hops. It's hard to tell exactly what odors are present, but the overall smell is powerful and is almost overwhelming.

It's a good tasting beer, I'm not going to lie. It starts off sweet, then the hops kick in and it is rather bitter. So bitter in fact that it burnt my throat. The alcohol in this one is all over. You can't get around it, it is a strong beer. I noticed caramel flavors and oily hops. It left my tongue feeling numb after two.

The fact that this is so high in alcohol, so bitter, and such a pungent beer makes this less than totally drinkable. A good beer to sip on a brisk afternoon, but nothing I'd bring to a get together. It's pretty harsh, but it is rather delicious in small doses.

Serving type: bottle

03-22-2005 04:44:07 | More by Litterbean
Photo of mgdeth
mgdeth

Montana

4.25/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - 2005 batch, Deep amber color. Good off-white head, decent head rentention and beer lace. Light to medium carbonation.

Smell - Fruity esters are prominent. There is a pine and citrus aroma present. Malt aroma serves as a background. Hops aroma is subtle. Alcohol smell is also in there, and is easier to detect as the beer warms.

Taste - This one is a taste explosion. Really bitter, so hop heads should enjoy it. Malt/hop balance is pretty good for the American style. Alcoholic heat sits in the background.

Mouthfeel - Thick. The hop bitterness clings for a long time, adding to the overall big empression.

Drinkability - Well, this is a loaded question... It tastes great, but it is so heavy and filling. This might do well with some aging.

Comments - This beer makes me think of SIerra Nevda Pale Ale raised to a higher power. In years past, I was not a big fan of Bigfoot, but 2005 holds a lot of promise.

Serving type: bottle

03-11-2005 03:40:28 | More by mgdeth
Photo of Chadbrew
Chadbrew

Delaware

4.35/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2005
Nice tan yellow head that reduces to a fuzzy film across the top that remains there throughout the entire drink. Oh yeah, I'm in such a hurry to taste it I almost forgot to take a look at the color - deep amber hue. I set it down on the counter and took a step back. I like the way this looks, it looks like a meal.
Definitely some alcohol in the smell of this, some grapefruit..? maybe some undertones of banana. Great hoppy smell but not overwhelming to me at all.
The taste is citric, again the grapefruit. Good bitter from the Chinook and Centennial hops. The alcohol sort of slams you at the end. I'm tasting this for a while after I'm done, nice!
Mouthfeel is medium with a crisp feel and a dry finish.
I found this remarkably easy to drink considering the 9.6 ABV. I'm looking forward to re-visiting this again after it cellars for a while, plus at like $9 a sixer the beer/buck ratio is pretty sweet.

Serving type: bottle

03-06-2005 21:31:50 | More by Chadbrew
Photo of RushLimbmalt
RushLimbmalt

Minnesota

4.78/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

I braved the 2005 expedition. And a expedition it is... This barleywine is young, but I braved it anyway. It pours a cloudy amber color and has a nice tan head that leaves thick sticky lace on my glass. The aroma is a wall of hops... so much so that you can barely detect any of the malt and there is definitely a lot of malt in this beer. The taste is a immediate assault of hops on the tongue, backed up by a thick malty body. I can't wait to try it again after it ages a year or two... If I can wait that long. Lastly it is lacking in drinkability simply because it has a high enough ABV to smack you down if you get careless, but then it is so good it is best savored not swilled down like an American piss beer.

Serving type: bottle

03-03-2005 08:53:23 | More by RushLimbmalt
Photo of deejaydan
deejaydan

Michigan

3.38/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Edition 2005.
Hazy appearance that clears as it warms a bit. Nice amber color, unreal head retention and lacing given the ABV. Aroma is all hops. I don't get any malt character showing through on this. Borderline Imperial IPA. Tastes follows aroma, all hops. Resiny citrusy hops. They have their place, just not at this level in a barleywine in my opinion. Mouthfeel is thick and chewy, hard to get past the hop bite in this one.

Serving type: bottle

03-01-2005 23:48:29 | More by deejaydan
Photo of malty
malty

Michigan

4.53/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2008 vintage. Always best FRESH imho.

Pours a brilliantly clear russet color with a blossoming light beige loose 2 1/2" head. Slow upward moving visible carbonation confirms this is a dense ale. The best head retention I've witnessed in any domestically brewed (non-Belgian style) beer that I can remember. SICK amounts of fluffy & globular lace regions all the way down my nonic pint glass.

Booming hop barrage in the nose quilted by a sturdy and sweet malt base. There's some burnt caramel and tropical fruits entwined somewhere in this bittersweet bouquet.

Ahhh...there we go. The hops are here with my full attention. Bitter, rindy, resiny, prickly, gritty, dry and GLORIOUS. A true homage to the wonderful hop. The malt foundation doesn't let this crazy S.O.B. get too far off track though. The track has been laid by the sweet and thorough malts and the crazy hop train is speeding ahead at full steam. All aboooaaarrrd!!!

Mouthfeel is very nice. Well carbonated and playful keeps this full bodied brute on its best behavior. Dry and bittersweet long flavorful finish.

Drinkability is great also. Warming and restorative for a Super Bowl Sunday Winter evening.

Overall a tame yet bustling beast that I look forward to encountering every New Year. This is the 25th anniversary of this perennial favorite, and it's a grand offering indeed. Long live Bigfoot!!! I absolutely adore this creature!!!
___
Poured from a 3 liter magnum - just kidding! From the usual stubby 12 oz. brown bottle '2005' edition.

Brilliant clear russet-crimson color with a wonderous fluffy light beige head that clings and stands tall.

Scent of citrus floral hops all up in your grill with a fresh malted butter cookie smell. Fruity & doughy all at once.

Powdered sugary sweey malt flavor supported by sturdy blossoming orchestra of glorious hops. So many flavors: dark fruit, grapefruit and cinnamon - can't nail them all, but spectacular. Warming alcohol, though it's well masked with the hearty ingredients.

Mouthfeel is splendidly smooth and slippery (oily). Full bodied and just the right amount of carbonation to keep it from clinging to the inside of your mouth. Juicy beginning & middle with a firm dry, long finish.

Drinkability is surprisingly high due to it almost 10% abv. Be careful!

This is a superb vintage with everything in the right place - beautifully balanced. I'd love to try this side-by-side with Great Lakes Brewing's 'Nosferatu' - but I think Bigfoot will reign for now.

Serving type: bottle

03-01-2005 02:04:42 | More by malty
Photo of Citadel82
Citadel82

New Jersey

4.3/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This was a pleasant surprise.

Pours a hazy burnished ruby-copper with a long lasting, creamy, tan head. Lots of very fine carbonation and thick sheats of clingy lace.

Aromas of vanilla, caramel with a powerful dose of floral hops. . This hopped up aroma was my first tip that this brew was not your average malt-heavy Barley-Wine.

There is definite strong malty background and caamel in the middle but for me this was more grapefruity cascade type hoppy brew. A long dry finish with no noticeable alcohol.

Medium bodied, actually rather light considering the gravity of this aptly named brew.

Very drinkable, not the heavy, syrupy brew that I was expecting. This is a great beer.

Serving type: bottle

02-25-2005 02:50:42 | More by Citadel82
Photo of dippy
dippy

Massachusetts

4.7/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Wow...2005 is my first intro to Bigfoot and let me just say that the bigger the foot, the harder it kicks your ass.

I was impressed by the head first and foremost, a light tan/brown and standing about 2-3 fingers. The head stuck around for almost the whole duration of the brew leaving some beautiful lacing on the side of the glass.

My friend actually smelled this beer from around the corner as it is quite aromatic.

The brew itselfwas a bit floral at first,more hops than expected for a barley wine, but considering the aroma I knew it was coming. The carmelly sweet malt of this beverage made it go down so smooth.

This beer was awesome, I could've drank 20 of them if I didn't start to get drunk off just three of them. THe alcohol is well masked. Great beer. Everyone should try one or two or three of them.

Serving type: bottle

02-24-2005 16:07:21 | More by dippy
Photo of ypsifly
ypsifly

Michigan

4.88/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle dated 2005.

DEEP amber with lots of bubbles and a 2" off-white head that leaves a coating of fine bubbles down the glass.

Smells strongly of piney citrusy hops and lots of 'em. Really gets the saliva going in my mouth. No alcohol detected.

As expected, lots of hops upfront, then a taste of malt, then its back to the hops. This one was designed for hop heads. Long dry finish with some warming, but that's all the alcohol that registers.

The mouthfeel is thick and almost oily, but that's a good thing. A person who craves hops and loves a full profile in the body will have no problem drinking a few more until the abv gets on top of them.

I have enjoyed this barleywine for 11 years and always look forward to late winter when it becomes available. This year it took a while for the Sierra Nevada truck to make it to SE Michigan, and I was growing apprehensive. This afternoon I stopped at Bello Vino in Ann Arbor and found cases stacked as high as I am tall. I just about fell over and prceeded to drain my wallet. It would be nice to cellar some of this, and I have tried, but once its out of season that becomes very difficult.

2004 12oz sampled on 3/13/05

Same deep amber color with a smaller head, a bit less lacing but still a damn fine looking brew.

There's not as much hop in the nose as its now paired with a creamy malt. Still pretty strong overall, but more mellow and balanced than the younger bottles that are available now.

Upon tasting, the hops don't come on near as strong, neither does the malt. Its amazing what a year can do. So much smoother and balanced. No where near as dry in the finish.

I was lucky to find an '04 sixer that was kept in a cooler at a store I frequent. I've always wanted to let this stuff chill for a year to see how far it can mellow. The results so far have been impressive. Now if I can just hold on to the other five long enough to see what this brew can do over a couple more years...

Serving type: bottle

02-24-2005 05:05:07 | More by ypsifly
Sierra Nevada Bigfoot Barleywine Style Ale from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 6,138 ratings.