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Sierra Nevada Bigfoot Barleywine Style Ale - Whiskey Barrel-Aged - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Sierra Nevada Bigfoot Barleywine Style Ale - Whiskey Barrel-AgedSierra Nevada Bigfoot Barleywine Style Ale - Whiskey Barrel-Aged

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BA SCORE
92
outstanding

540 Ratings
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 540
Reviews: 104
rAvg: 4.15
pDev: 11.57%


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

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  12.20% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Callenak on 12-05-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 540 | Reviews: 104 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of GRG1313
GRG1313

California

2.74/5  rDev -34%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.5

I cannot simply use the "Had" feature for this one. I personally find this beer far different than several reviews and figured I'd put forth a voice with which some others may agree.

Pours a clear brownish red with a khaki head and is nice looking.

Nose is a juxtaposition of fresh "IPA pineapple" hops and malt and burnt sugar. Neither is proper for style - both "mixed together" makes for one of the really few terribly unbalanced noses I've smelled. The hops character is great; the malt/carmel character is great - they do not marry well.

Mouthfeel is creamy, rich and nicely carbonated but relatively meaningless when fighting with the nose, flavor profile and finish.

Flavors are citrus/pine hops overlapping and fighting with burnt-sugar/carmel and malty tones. There is no one following the other; there is no "over tone" or "undertone." These are just two conflicting, unbalanced, disjointed flavor profiles that make for a conflicting and confusing drink. There is a character of "carbonated whiskey," . .strong whiskey, that is pervasive and not appealing. There is such an assertive alcohol presence that some of the sweetness in the nose is clearly the alcohol and the actual taste of the whiskey/alcohol seems much more than 12.2% abv. (Not that 12.2% is low....it just tastes like its about 80 proof! i.e. 40% abv!)

The finish follows the flavor profile - same comments - very confusing.

This one is just not for me. JMO

Serving type: bottle

02-01-2013 06:20:06 | More by GRG1313
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yourefragile

District of Columbia

2.79/5  rDev -32.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

750 mL bottle shared By Banich, thanks!

Pours a clearish ruby amber with a transient light cream head that fades to a thin collar and no lace. Aroma of whiskey and... um, whiskey and pine sap, maple, oak and oppression. Flavor is sweet and oaky. Doesn't really taste like Bigfoot, just straight whiskey and wood. Sweet and syrupy, burnt and toasted, piney hops and awww hell who cares. Very raw, oaky, hoppy and woodsy. Even Oaked Horizontal was more interesting than this. Seriously, what's the point of this mess?

Serving type: bottle

02-23-2013 21:31:09 | More by yourefragile
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maximum12

Minnesota

3/5  rDev -27.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Well, wasn't going to hunt this one down, but went to the store looking for cooking wine & lo! there were a bunch on the shelf. What do you do? You buy one. Well, I buy one. Big 750 ML of glass & liquid shared with my lovely wife.

The pour is dark red, doesn't look to far off of an amber, but I'm betting it doesn't taste like one. Apparent & sufficient carbonation. Nose isn't much to write your mistress about, caramel, whiskey, but both the smoke from a distant fire.

Whiskey Barrel Aged Bigfoot is like an alcohol-tipped boot to the nads. Wow. I like hot beers & rarely notice other beers that people complain about, but this, this is something. Hot Hot Heat. Gives way to some more of that hot caramel, some hot piney hops, & warm whiskey. None of it well integrated. Really kind of bland, there just isn't much to get worked up about in any direction. Heavy. Too heavy. It feels like it might be a chore to get through half of this liver-wringer.

Was really looking forward to this & there's just not really much here. It's a fiery, alcohol laden canvas that hasn't had a bad modern painting splashed on it. Mediocre.

Serving type: bottle

03-17-2013 03:58:12 | More by maximum12
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ArrogantB

Colorado

3.03/5  rDev -27%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

750ml bottle $15. I was excited to get a bottle because I heard only 20 cases came to CO. I also remember liking this when I had a taste at GABF five or six years ago. Unfortunately this one was a real disappointment for me. Appearance was about identical to regular Bigfoot, ruby red but less head than the regular. The aroma was quite nice, good whiskey and barrel coming out of the bottle and my glass. The flavor was just a mess for me. Huge bitter hops conflicted with whiskey flavors and then heavy brown sugar, just messy. I think my real problem was that the beer just had too much bitterness that in my opinion does not work well with the whiskey barrels. I would not purchase this again but if barrel aged Narwhal comes out, whew!

Serving type: bottle

03-23-2013 16:25:20 | More by ArrogantB
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kojevergas

Texas

3.18/5  rDev -23.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

2013 vintage 750ml brown glass bottle with branded black hood-and-wire cap over a branded cork acquired in SoCal earlier this year and served into an EKU 28 stem-snifter in me parents' gaff in high altitude Castle Rock, Colorado. Reviewed live. Expectations are high given its current 93 rating, but I'm not a big fan of the base beer. Reviewed as a barleywine because the label describes it as such.

Served cold - straight from the fridge - and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: No bubble show forms as it's poured.

Pours a half finger wide head of white colour which recedes inside 20 seconds, leaving no lacing.

Body colour is an orange-red of average vibrance. Translucent but nontransparent. No floating yeast particles/sediment is visible.

Overall, it's an appealing if standard appearance for a barleywine (barrel aged or otherwise). I'm optimistic.

Sm: Faint vanilla. Simplistic oak notes (no rich toasted character or the like). Coconut. Marshmallow. Amber malts. Biscuit malt. Tame timid hop character has a light presence. I get more a bourbon than a whiskey character; there's none of the spice or bite of a whiskey. Some burnt sugar. Caramel. Bread crust.

It's a pleasant aroma of mild strength, and hints at some nice complexity. I'm looking forward to trying it. It absolutely has a superior aroma to the base beer.

No yeast character or overt boozy alcohol is detectable.

T: Marshmallow, light graham cracker, bread crust, amber malts, some faint alcohol warmth, light vanilla, light burnt sugar, raisin, buried coconut (when I search for it), and some well-integrated whiskey. Maple syrup. Toffee. Candied sugars. Ample caramel. It's certainly sweet, but not cloying. Flirts with a red port wine character, but never quite commits. Admittedly, the barrel notes are pretty tame, and don't seem to develop the base beer's flavour profile all that much. It isn't all that whiskey-evocative; in fact, it isn't all that evocative in general. I'm a bit underwhelmed.

The highlight for me is the coconut.

Decent balance. The build is cohesive, but not gestalt. Depth of flavour is shockingly low for a barrel aged barleywine. Average duration and intensity of flavour. It's got nice complexity, but little subtlety, nuance, or intricacy. Each note feels very surface. It's not layered, but rather feels pretty flat.

No yeast character comes through.

Mf: Smooth. The wetness/dryness balance is a bit off, with it feeling like stale cardboard at some points in the structure and being perfectly fine in others. Full-bodied and thick. Overcarbonated. Supple. Has a warm presence on the palate. Never feels quite right. The texture suits the taste generally well, but feels far from custom-tailored to it. A biteen syrupy. Sticky.

Not oily, gushed, harsh, or astringent.

Dr: It's a bit too boozy to be as drinkable as it needs to be. It's better than the base beer, but still underwhelms. I continue to be shocked by Sierra Nevada's high reputation given this is the usual level of quality of their beers. I'm shocked by its 93 rating and wouldn't buy it again. I wouldn't recommend it to friends, and while I'll finish the bottle with some effort, it's far from remarkable. It'll get you drunk.

C+

Serving type: bottle

12-30-2013 07:48:59 | More by kojevergas
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JD4Cali

California

3.3/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Maybe it's because I loved another barleywine that bf brought me this as a "hey it's Friday!" gift. I know that's SO sweet but, well, there's a bizzilian gifts that are a guaranteed "OMG" and maybe beer isn't one of them? OK, back story: I love bourbon and adore Manhattans. And recently I really liked a beer that was sweet and rich and layered with toffee character so it isn't really anyone's fault. It would seem natural to think "get the Bourbon loving gf a beer aged in whiskey barrels!"
The problem became that I just didn't like it so much.
Yes moments? It is beautiful and comes in a bottle like champagne (yum!) and looks stunning in a glass. It even smells like whiskey. What went wrong? All that sweetness and whiskeyness don't seem to really work together, like clashing plaids or wearing too many shades of green.
I can't give it a bad review (ugh should anyone's second review be bad??) but simply warn y'all that this isn't a nice, easy to love kind of beer. It has it's challenges.

Serving type: bottle

03-02-2013 12:25:10 | More by JD4Cali
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barleywinefiend

Washington

3.35/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

2007 Bourbon Bigfoot (draft) from the Toronado BWine Festival (A-)

A Poured a nice deep,deep amber as the bourbon pushed through this. You can tell the bourbon influence just by the look.

S: Medium smell of bourbon, not to overbearing and very subtle. It did not overpower the barleywine which was good. They were well balanced.

T: Taste is fully sweet, rounded malty goodness and that smooth bourbon flavor was there throughout.

M: No bite on this one.

O: Like liquid candy and one of my favorite barleywines to date.
///
2013 Bourbon Bigfoot (bottle)

A: Poured clear copper color with bubbles and a short-lived tannish colored cap which leaves behind some faint bubbles but no lacing

S: Pickle juice? Cheap bourbon, old wood, caramel and faded piney hops

T: Initial stinging booze with hop bitterness, pine needles, whiskey and old wood breakthrough as does some Earthiness. Mdway I get a bit of sticky sweetness with a light run at vanilla. The finish is looong with bittering hops a bit sticky at times

M: Medium to full body, a bit overcarbonated and thin,pickle juice comes to mind as a lingering flavor on the palate

O: Not so impressed by the bottle. A but thin, overcarbed, a light astringency and ultimate letdown compared to then draft version. It reminded me of BA Old Ruffian to a deree and thats not a positive.

Serving type: on-tap

02-15-2013 03:32:36 | More by barleywinefiend
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SpeedwayJim

New York

3.36/5  rDev -19%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Sam for this one. 750ml corked and caged 750ml bottle into a Cigar City snifter. Shared with schen9303.

Pours a 1 finger foamy white head with low retention. Beer is a clear, dark, almost opaque amber. Lacing is spotty with little stick and thin legs. Average.

Nose is resiny hop bitterness, caramel, yellow raisin, and sweet booze. Decently aromatic but pretty simple.

Opens sweet red fruit. Notes of plum, molasses, caramel, raisin and prune. Booze comes in towards the middle to balance an aggressive, resiny hop bitterness. End is more sap hop bitterness along with brown sugar, honey and more molasses. Decent but a bit too hoppy for my taste.

Medium to full bodied with low carbonation. Slick and smooth in the mouth and goes down dry and moderately hot. Finishes messy with a sticky aftertaste. Very solid.

Bigfoot is well known as a pretty hopped-up barleywine. However, I thought that with some barrel aging and time, the hop bitterness would mellow out. That's not the case here. If you're into hoppy barleywines, definitely search this one out. If you want something deeper and sweeter, this can certainly be skipped.

Serving type: bottle

12-06-2013 02:18:45 | More by SpeedwayJim
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MickeyD

Kansas

3.53/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I poured this from a 12oz bottle into a clean tulip glass.

Appearance: Nice dark golden reddish brown with a finger width high head and medium carbonation. Good lacing throughout the drink.

Smell: a slight roasted caramel is noted but mostly a piney aroma from the hops is coming through.

Taste: citrus and pine are strong with a bite of carbonation. The hops really come through and a taste of piney spice comes through but the malt is very subtle.

Mouth feel: The feel is a bit heavy but not too much. Carbonation was a bit heavy. Bit of a sweetness left on my lips.

Overall: This style is a good one especially for a hop lover, which I am not necessarily. I would definitely buy again.

Serving type: bottle

03-04-2013 01:29:21 | More by MickeyD
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smakawhat

Maryland

3.54/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into a small snifter glass at Smoke & Barrel DC for the bottle share. From notes.

A real supper clear amber body, just looking crystal with a faint tan collar.

Nose has mild sweet malts, with a sense of toned down hop front. Not much sense of barrel aging bouquet coming off of this beer.

First sip on the palate is wondering how this is different from regular Bigfoot. The hop angle is larger on the nose which is unexpected, hitting at some pine. There's a little bit of toasty oak squeaking out of this with some filling character, maybe a little caramel, but it's really hard to tell. Palate is a bit wet for a barrel aged brew.

The ironic thing is this really doesn't taste much different than regular Bigfoot to me, with perhaps just a hint of slightly more caramel. Otherwise this isn't something that is doing much for me.

Serving type: bottle

03-10-2013 21:22:10 | More by smakawhat
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gillagorilla

Maryland

3.56/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served in a mini snifter out of a bottle at Max's ($7)

A: Deep brown. Minimal head. (not good lighting at Max's)

S: Sweet barley with just hints of pine. Barrel notes on the nose.

T: Sweet. Weird whiskey notes permeate. Odd flavors, which are almost off. Lots of oak. There is a lot of barrel here and not in a good way. The Bigfoot I know and love is lost in there. I was expecting a sublime presentation like they achieved with BA Narwhal (hadn't even had Narwhal before I had it on tap).

M: Thick, almost viscous.

O: I had missed out on buying a bottle of this early on before I had even had Bigfoot (I think) but I wasn't shelling out $16 for a 750 back then. Then, I heard they had a bottle at Frisco's for $25 and on-site consumption. Finally, it just randomly popped up on tap at Max's for a Sierra Nevada Pint Night (score). I'm glad I didn't bounce on the other opportunities because this one did not live up to the hype for me. I had been looking for it for a while, and it was sub-par. My friend had a bottle in his cellar and he said to be wary and that it won't be what you expect and he was right. Save your money and just age a case of regular Bigfoot every year.

Serving type: on-tap

01-27-2014 11:28:10 | More by gillagorilla
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harrymel

Washington

3.58/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.5

Didn't think I'd get any of this - low and behold I scored seven bottles today.

Toasted hazelnut with a light etching of creamy foam. Smells are initially boozy and harsh, allow this one to open for a good 10 minutes. then you'll be rewarded with vanilla, nougat, whiskey barrel, caramel, hops are still in there, but profoundly subdued. Taste ranges from boozy, to sweet to bitter all in the same mouthful. I get lots of sharp alcohol early, then a deep malty character accented with syrup, spiced rum, bitterness, pine sap, toffee and some bits of plum. The body is thinner than I'd prefer, and the carb a little hi with a wet finish.

Make no mistake, the barrel added to the intensity of this beer. The barrel did not, however, tone down the beast, only changed the hairdoo. This beer is fucking hardcore. I am really surprised it was in the barrel for over a year, as the beer still seems a little rough around the edges (something I respect in a fresh Bigfoot) but with the added potential the whiskey barrel added to the overall depth.

Serving type: bottle

02-23-2013 06:43:45 | More by harrymel
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FunkyMacGroovin

California

3.64/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

750mL bottle, bottle states "Aged in oak whiskey casks for over a year." Dark amber in color, with a vigorous pour yielding a 1-finger head that dissipates quickly and leaves little lacing. Surprisingly muted aroma - light woody characteristics, and a hint of fusel alcohol. Flavor is overwhelmingly barrel and booze-dominated; tons of wood and alcoholic heat with sweet malt flavors only making a cursory appearance. No hop flavor to speak of. Mouthfeel is rich and creamy, though there is very little carbonation.

Bottom line: if you like booze-bombs, open one of these ASAP. Otherwise, I'd suggest sitting on this for a while before opening. Definitely has potential.

Serving type: bottle

01-29-2013 23:45:08 | More by FunkyMacGroovin
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tectactoe

Michigan

3.7/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Thanks to Jeff for cracking this one open and sharing, saved me from having to search the city for it. Pours a murky, deep-amber color, nearly copper and almost on the verge of being called raw sienna. The light-tan head settles rather quickly and leaves very spotting lacing on the edges of my glass.

Light whiskey and bourbon on the nose - more standout-ish on its own, rather than integrated into the rest of the aromas. Slight wood and oak with some sweet plums, crispy burnt vanilla, and brown sugar. It's hard to remember how similar this is to the regular Bigfoot, but I believe this one packs a more powerful punch. Of course, that's to be expected, given the whiskey barrel aging and all.

The taste is full of brown sugar and an underlying bourbon heat that starts off on the smaller side, but crescendos throughout the sip and actually becomes quite hot. Sweet figs and dates which tasted like they were soaked in a bourbon bath for years. The malt provides a huge caramel and molasses backbone which becomes washed out a bit by the booze and fruits.

This one is also quite hoppy, and if I recall correctly, the original Bigfoot had a nice hop profile to it as well. They seem even a bit stronger, here. Ashy and leafy, providing a small amount of bitterness to the aftertaste, which is largely dominated by boozy dark fruits and wet wood. Thick body all around with a slick and sticky mouth feel, medium carbonation.

A nice addition to regular Bigfoot, although the whiskey barrel aging made this one quite hot and somewhat difficult to easily drink. Hopefully this one will become more readily available, because I'd like to pick up a few more and age them to see if it blunts the heat a little. Thanks again to Jeff for this one.

Serving type: bottle

02-10-2013 23:52:31 | More by tectactoe
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n2185

North Carolina

3.71/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A: pours a clear dark copper with a finger of beige head that fades into a thin ring with a little lacing.

S: tons of oak with whiskey, vanilla, caramel, and citrus hops dominate the nose with a fair amount of booze.

T: similar to the aroma, tons of oak and woody tanin flavors with whiskey, caramel, and vanilla. There is also a moderate hoppy bitterness with a fair amount of booziness.

M: medium-thick body with medium carbonation, this beer avoids being sticky sweet by being boozy and hoppy.

O: a solid beer overall, but a bit overwhelmingly boozy. Maybe in a year or two it was more balanced.

Serving type: bottle

04-14-2013 00:52:54 | More by n2185
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ShareANevada

Ohio

3.73/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Shocked to see 'Aged Bigfoot' on the tap list at the Beer Engine in cleveland. 5 bucks a snifter. A steal if you ask me.

Talking to the bartender, turns out this 2 year old is barrel aged.
Being a monstrous Bigfoot fan, and especially aged bigfoot, I
obviously could not resist. (Of all nights, I was wearing a bigfoot tee shirt, i was virtually obligated)

The barrel comes off very strong. The beer is incredibly smooth, which has been my experience with older vintage bigfoots. Especially for the alcohol, major smooth here.

The barrel seemed to overpower the beer a bit, to me, and obviously when you're talking barleywine, thats not a minor thing.

Overall the beer was very good, would definitely drink it again, it just was a hair off of what I would have really liked in this beer.

To me, and I love huge, huge flavorful beers, the barrel just needed to be turned down a notch so this exceptional brew gets to show itself off a bit more.

Serving type: on-tap

04-24-2008 15:02:25 | More by ShareANevada
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ThickNStout

Georgia

3.74/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

750mL bottle from Total Wine (Kennesaw, GA). 15.99. Bottled 01/13. Served in an Ommegang tulip.

Pours deep garnet with one and a half finger off white head. Plenty of patchy lacing.

Smells of piney hips, whiskey and toffee.

The hops and whiskey battle for dominance. Pine, whiskey, citrus rind, toffee, oak, burnt caramel and booze infused dark fruits.

Medium full, oily feel with a good bit of carbonation. Long bitter, boozey aftertaste.

A nice new take on Bigfoot. The whiskey compliments as supposed to competes. It's definately worth a try if you can land a bottle.

Serving type: bottle

02-04-2013 01:52:17 | More by ThickNStout
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JohnGalt1

Idaho

3.76/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I have had a few of these now, but wanted to give a bottle a proper review.

Pours with a short lasting khaki head... and only has spotty lacing... the brew is polished deep amber.

Christ it is amazing how hoppy this is... thick resinous pine combines with caramel, lite vanilla and dry toast... pretty damn boozy, not from the barrels but from the 12%.. with warmth, I get something that I associate with coconut.

More barrel presence on the palate helps balance out the hoppiness... again, thicker caramel and vanilla.. hints of dried cherry.. as it warms up, the oak gets a bit drying, almost like a tannic quality... long bitter bite on the finish clashes too much with the barrel presence and the hefty

A lighter than expected carbonation accentuates an already pretty thick brew.

Honestly, a bit of a mess right now, but the bones of a great BA BW are there.. but it is going to take a long sleep in the cellar to round out the flavors/aromas. The hops and the barrel qualities fight each other too much right now.

4/3.75/3.75/3.75/3.75

Serving type: bottle

05-02-2013 03:54:23 | More by JohnGalt1
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jeonseh

Indiana

3.85/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A - Hazy brown with orange hints. Light carbonation sits on the sides of the glass.

S - Light brown sugar, orange zest, malty, light dark fruit, light oak

T - Malty, lots of bourbon, light brown sugar, alcoholic, and oak, A light hop presence on the back end. The booze and the hop presence make it have a lingering bitterness.

M - Medium body with light hoppy bitterness on the backend that gives it a slight astringent bite

T - Tastes like Bigfoot with a bit of barrel to it. I was surprised my how hoppy this still was given the BA timing. It also was still really boozy and could probably use some time to mellow out.

Serving type: bottle

07-16-2013 21:39:01 | More by jeonseh
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cpetrone84

Pennsylvania

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

Pour is transparent ruby red with lots of a tight tan head. Nose has lots of oak and vanilla, notes of caramel and some cooked brown sugar, light berry sweetness behind. Taste has more malt depth, chocolate, caramel, roasted malt and brown sugar, light berry sweetness and a fair bit of bitterness. Body is full with moderate carbonation and a chewy feel.

Serving type: bottle

07-12-2013 16:09:45 | More by cpetrone84
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rlee1390

Indiana

3.91/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

A-Clear ruby, not much carbonation, one finger off white head.

S-Burnt coconut, oak and not much whiskey.

T-Some spiciness, the burnt coconut is a tad too dominate, some bitterness and some molasses.

M-Medium bodied and nicely carbonated.

O-The coconut was too much for me. Wanted more bourbon/oak and caramel. Maybe age will do this some good.

Serving type: bottle

02-28-2013 21:24:46 | More by rlee1390
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Callenak

California

3.95/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sampled at the 10th Annual Pizza Port Strong Ale Fest. More than shocked to see this, never knew SN did barrel aging but boy was I happy to see it. Bigfoot is one of my favorite barleywines, and to have it barrel aged….man I love this place. Is the strong ale fest what dreams are made out of?

Pours a deep amber with a slight head that dissipates quickly. Color, of course, resembles regular Bigfoot.

Smell is all Barleywine. Rich caramel with a hint of roast malts. Hops are a little toned down compared to a newly released Bigfoot, but still present. The three C's (cascade, columbus, centennial) are still in full effect though. A mellow citrus zest associated with such. A solid oak presence but don't pick up to much of the whiskey. Was only my 3rd sample at the fest so my palate and nose was still pretty fresh.

It was served a little on the cold side but the warm SoCal day warmed it up quickly for me to get the full effect. Taste was warm and soothing. The normal Bigfoot properties, hoppiness, toasted malt, caramel. The alcohol is more apparent than the regular BW. It was labeled at 12.3%, which is considerably higher than the standards Bigfoot at 9.6%. I know a slight ABV budge can come the barrel, but not that much. I imagine SN brewed a stronger version of Bigfoot for this, maybe to take the test of time better. 9.6% seems like plenty for that though. It had a strong oak taste but not much of the whiskey. I think the high ABV and full flavor of Bigfoot might have drowned it out a bit. It didn't seem to have been aged for that long though. Maybe a year tops, but who knows.

I was very excited to try this so maybe my expectations were a little high and I'm a little over critical. I always dreamt of what Bigfoot would taste like barrel aged, probably more so than any other beer. I think if it would have stayed closer to the original ABV and maybe a little longer in the barrel it would have reached perfection. As it was though, it was an amazing beer that I was more than glad to have consumed. I hope I get a second chance with this one some day.

Serving type: on-tap

12-05-2006 17:59:22 | More by Callenak
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TheSevenDuffs

Ontario (Canada)

3.98/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Bottle to CBS snifter. Thanks to Adam for this one!

A - Murky dark amber/brown colour with a dark ruby glow along the bottom. A thin layer of dirty white head formed on the pour.

S - Sweet whiskey and vanilla dominate the nose with caramel, toffee, maple syrup and lighter oak notes also present.

T - A huge alcohol presence is noticeable at first but then settles down, while remaining warming throughout. Whiskey, oak and vanilla come through from the barrel and are met with dark caramel, toffee, raisin and maple flavours. Good integration of barrel and base beer.

M - Medium to full body. Creamy. Light carbonation.

Serving type: bottle

04-14-2013 18:12:22 | More by TheSevenDuffs
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stoutman

Michigan

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

Outstanding for the style. Pours a slightly cloudy brownish-red with a small layer of foam with a complex malty aroma with hints of hops as well. Tastes rather astringent with lots of fresh hops and a nice bitter finish. Strong with good carbonation, great body. Hearty and drinkable, great for sippin.

Serving type: bottle

09-15-2008 01:08:46 | More by stoutman
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ms11781

Massachusetts

4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

2013 Expedition marked on bottle. 750ml bottle poured into a snifter.

Pours a deep, murky ruby red color, close to brown but not quite. A decent off white head develops, maybe a half a finger, and settles in as spotty foam cap. There is some wispy lacing left on the glass and there is less of it as the beer disappears.

The appearance might be the Bigfoot we all know but the nose sure isn't. Whiskey and oak dominate the nose. Neither is overpowering but they stand out above all else. To a lesser extent there is some vanilla and a caramel/toffee sweetness. The barrel notes really come through here and make this a completely different beer than it was.

The taste still has a lot of barrel character to it but the hops that pack a punch in fresh Bigfoot are here as well. Caramel, toffee, vanilla, oak, whiskey, some dark fruit and piney hops are all here and mix so well that it's tough to discern where one ends and the other begins. Aside from the unmistakable resiny bitterness from the hop finish each characteristics seem to be present all the way through each sip.

The mouthfeel is big and sticky with a decent but not unwelcome alcohol kick. The carbonation is relatively high for the style, especially a BA version. Lower carbonation would perhaps make the beer a bit smoother and less rough around the edges. Time could work that out as well.

This is definitely a really good beer. The barrel notes already seem to be well integrated already and it compliments the already great base beer nicely. As mentioned, the carbonation is high for the style and it sort of throws the mouthfeel off a bit for me. I'd like to see this beer down the road to see what comes of it.

Serving type: bottle

02-19-2013 02:55:10 | More by ms11781
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Sierra Nevada Bigfoot Barleywine Style Ale - Whiskey Barrel-Aged from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
92 out of 100 based on 540 ratings.