Burly Wine - Half Pints Brewing Company
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Ratings: 71 | Reviews: 58 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by cratez:
4.45/5 rDev +6.2%
341ml bottle at Volo poured into an oversized snifter. Murky, dark brown body with amber edges and a sizeable tan cap. Cloudy with quite a bit of sediment. Smell and taste are chocolate, cocoa powder, roasted malt, sticky caramel and pale malts, brown sugar, toffee, dried fruit (plum, black berries), traces of mincemeat, cherries, vanilla, maple syrup, and a resinous, herbal hop finish. Mouthfeel is viscous and lightly gooey. The hops produce a tingly bitterness on the palate with a long, drying finish. More American than English, I'd say. The ABV is undetectable, which is unusual for the style. Hence this is more drinkable than one would expect. I can see why Burly Wine is ranked as one of Canada's top brews. It's a delectable beer that's perfect for sipping on a cold winter evening.
12-31-2009 06:57:07 | More by cratez
More User Reviews:
British Columbia (Canada)
4.28/5 rDev +2.1%
2010 vintage. Pours a dark amber color with some sediment and a modest tan head. Nice aroma, caramel and molasses with a little licorice. Taste has sweet malts, dark fruits and a good balancing bitterness. Average body; the carbonation is quite low. Alcohol is not noticable. Not bad at all, this is a great Canadian Barleywine!
04-18-2011 05:05:37 | More by chickenm
4.15/5 rDev -1%
341ml bottle, red wax, so 2008 version. I know it's summer, but I need a Canadian beer this afternoon, and it is kind of overcast outside and all.
After making my way through the chippy wax covering on the bottle's cap, this beer pours a hazy dark red brick amber hue, with one skinny finger or so of densely bubbly, soapy beige head, which takes a surprisingly long while to recede, leaving dense lacing around the glass.
It smells of musty, almost fermenting black raisins, molasses, caramelized sugar, citrus oil, and a mild, yet threatening warming alcohol. The taste is a rather gargantuan caramelized bready malt, citrus zest, a more sultana-like raisin fruitiness, understated earthy figs, subtle floral hops, and a still as yet unmasked booze warming.
The carbonation is on the low side, but without seeming flat like a lot of older ales, the body a big, slick, and bold medium-heavy weight, smooth, and even creamy at moments. It finishes off-dry, but hardly as much as expected, what with the booze lurking very quietly behind it all, unobtrusive to the end.
A very solid and nicely balanced barleywine, full of fruit, caramel, and an overarching sense of being in a dank, unexplored for generations cellar. Neat, creepy, and tasty, all in one tidy little package.
07-01-2009 22:23:09 | More by biboergosum
3.75/5 rDev -10.5%
A young good drinking barleywine served at Volo. Dark amber, with a whisp of head, and leaving lace, served at room temperature. The aroma is liquid fermented bread, like a kvas, you are in a bakery. I can see this getting interesting as it ages. Sweet in initial tastes, the 75 IBU builds up to the finish. Appropriate carbonation, it is a good supper. An above average mouthfeel, though not creamy. Tingling at first. Bitter aftertaste.
03-29-2009 04:50:30 | More by Sammy
4.25/5 rDev +1.4%
thanks to alpineclimber for this.
im guessing this is a 2010, it has may 10 written on it. green camo light wax top.
pours a deep murky hazy brown and copper. light creamy head that leaves nearly no retention.
very rich and candy like. big sweet malt and toffee. some nice light raisin and dark fruit.
a tad lighter in the flavor. still a solid sweet malt backbone that is quite heavy. light dark fruit and toffee. nice hoppy finish. lots of citrus through out. light grapefruit on the finish. slight faint hint of alcohol
very full bodied, a bit chewy. feels like i am still chewing after i swallow. very nice. bit of the alcohol tingle in the mouth and around the gums.
this was good, a real treat. for being 10.5%, it could not be hidden any better. drinks a lot like a dubbel in a way.
02-05-2011 01:51:49 | More by hooliganlife
4.2/5 rDev +0.2%
reviewed this on july 6th 2011.
Might be first taste of Manitoba. Probably my first waxed bottle as well. Thanks again to Bobsy for this! Not sure how old this is but the wax is blue if that means anything.
341ml bottle opened with Taps magazine bbbarfly opener and poured into Taps magazine snifter.
A- Almost opaque burnt orange/hazelnut. Not very much of the grayish head is left but lots of peculiar speckled lacing.
S- A tiny bit of onion is what strikes me first but it doesn’t bother, there’s lots more good in here. Lots of sweet caramel and even something like almonds or marzipan. Alcohol is present but still a bit discrete. Smells very good. Alcohol creeps out as it warms.
T-Less sweet than I thought. Oxidized maybe? There some sort of red wine tartness. Hops are more present than expected as well. Very woody and robust. A little earthy even. The caramel still makes a notable appearance but instead of the butterscotch found in the smell I get more of a maillard reaction, refined sugar reduction type of taste. Very hoppy after-taste. Alchol tastes is a little bit like cognac.
M- A pretty heavy beer. Body is syrupy, medium carbonation fades fast in the mouth and finish is considerably far from dry. Astringent though. Slow drinking.
O- I think this bottle might be a tad bit oxidized but it still is a great barleywine. Full, quite hoppy without tasting like an IIPA. I want more.
08-14-2011 17:54:02 | More by Yoonisaykul
3.98/5 rDev -5%
Actually a bottle, BUT this is the 2010 and wanted to compare to the 2009 back to back, I hope this is okay....
A - slightly hazy amber orange, one finger of head dissipated to random islands, respectable lacing
S - very nutty and fruity rich, somewhat spicy/peppery with comfortable alcohol
T - strong tartness and alcohol kick up front, rich nutty malt in the middle, and finishes with a strong spicy hop finish
M - highish carbonation, rich flavour with thin feel, finishes puckering tart
D - this definitely ages well, as I found the 2009 to be more rich and woody compared to a more sharp tart 2010, still a very nice high octane brew, well done Half Pints (as usual)!
02-05-2011 03:38:27 | More by joemcgrath27
4.4/5 rDev +5%
A - Reddish, slightly cloudy-looking. A decent head with not much lacing. Love the wax seal, but the wax is dangerously crumbly - take care it doesn't get into the beer!
S - Strong and malty.
T - Sweet and malty as befits the style. A surprisingly rich flavour, reasonably complex but not chaotic like e.g. Brooklyn Monster. Hops light but present in just the right amount to make this more than a dessert beer.
M - Very smooth, medium-bodied and not too syrupy - excellent!
D - I could easily have more than one of these at a sitting. Dangerous.
03-22-2009 23:46:41 | More by stagger
4.18/5 rDev -0.2%
This is the 660ml, red wax 2007 edition of Burly Wine, picked up in a trade with rudge75 at the brewery. Thanks a ton! I never would have thought I'd get to try this. This stuff was brewed a year before I started getting into beer. Consumed December 30, 2009 (aged two years). I've used the scores from this bottle and not the 2009 since this stuff is meant to be aged.
Beautiful dark-orange in colour with tiny bits of suspended solids making the beer cloudy and totally opaque. A thin covering of off-white head and a ring around the glass. Little dots of lacing. 4.5, mostly for the great colour.
Butterscotch, strawberries, caramel malt, floral hops. Smells like a dessert. Awesome.
Not as complex as the 2008 bourbon aged version but much better than the new 2009. The 10.5% ABV shows as maybe 7% usually would, a little hot but still pretty smooth. Nice and buttery (lactic) with quite a lot of both sweetness and bitterness. Very flavourful. Quite similar to the smell actually, with strawberries, caramel and floral hops all obvious in the flavour as well. Hops are much more present here, though, imparting a lingering bitter (pleasant) after taste. There's this peppery/musty quality if you take a big sip. This actually reminds me quite a bit of Gavroche. I'd give this a 4.25 but will have to settle with 4.
Milky full body with a light carbonation. Great feel.
The flavour is too big to want more than one of these 660ml bottles but I'm really enjoying finishing this one. Really smooth for 10.5% but definitely a sipper.
2009 vintage (blue wax) poured into an over-sized wine glass. Beautiful, opaque, dark copper in colour. An initial frothy, two-finger head settles to a thin, milky-white covering over the whole glass. Good lacing. 4
Big smells of floral hops (similar to the hops found in their Humulus Ludicrous and Little Scrapper), caramel and roasted malt. It smells like it could be an IPA, though certainly smells delicious. 4.5
Very smooth for 10.5% but not all that complex yet. This is of course meant to be aged and is so far only a couple weeks removed from its release. It doesn't taste like an IPA but there is a very noticeable hops presence. Roasted malt and caramel round it out, tasting like a subdued translation of the nose. Kind of like a barley wine version of their Humulus. The alcohol is a little hot for now but not at all overwhelming. Bitter hops at the back of the tongue on the finish. 4
The feel is a little thin but has a nice oily quality to it. Low carbonation. 4
The alcohol is still too intense and the finish too bitter to consume much of this but I'm excited about the bottle I've put in the cellar for next year. I'll be updating this review a year from now to see how it's aged. 3.5
12-26-2009 04:15:13 | More by eat
4.03/5 rDev -3.8%
Deep orange, bordering on brown. Quite hazy. A finger of beige head formed.
The smell is a mix of toffee and citrus on top of a faint whiff of alcohol. Inviting.
One of the most balanced barleywines I've had, caramel maltiness versus an orange citrus hop flavour. There is a slight woody flavour that mixes in throughout the mouth. Finish seems a little wet.
A fairly sturdy body with a subtle carbonation that cuts through but isn't coarse. Pretty much what I like in a barleywine.
No big single flavour keeps it from having a defining character, but also makes for an easy drinker.
01-23-2008 17:57:18 | More by elricorico
British Columbia (Canada)
4.33/5 rDev +3.3%
Bottle looks just like the pic, so I'll have to say '10? Thanks Wordemupg!
Appearance. Pours a deep and murky caramel-amber with a thin, off-white head.
Smell. Caramel, raisins and some smooth booze with a little grainy malt.
Taste. Raisins and some nice, not too sweet caramel and some light and dark fruits with a mild tartness. A little bit of an earthy mineral taste along with the raisins in the finish. Nice stuff and gets better with every sip! Alcohol almost non-existant.
Mouthfeel. Medium-full body with below medium carbonation.
Overall. A great tasting barleywine. The high abv that is almost undetectable is amazing and can only be partly attributed to the aging. That gives this beer an extra .5 in the overall as far as I'm concerned. Thanks again, wordemupg!
12-05-2012 03:36:09 | More by Rutager
4/5 rDev -4.5%
Bottle courtesy of Piscator34: Poured a deep copper color ale with a nice foamy head with some good retention. Aroma of toffee and caramel malt is quite interesting. Taste is also a well balance mix between sweet malt with some toffee and caramel notes and light dry hoppy finish. Good carbonation and alcohol wasnt discernable with an almost full body. Very well balance and well done.
09-07-2007 20:05:42 | More by Phyl21ca
4.35/5 rDev +3.8%
Tasting notes from 6/24/11. Thanks to kjyost for this beer.
Poured in to Founder's tulip.
A - Medium amber/copper colour with a half finger of off-white head.
S - Sweet caramel, toffee, dark fruit.
T - Dark fruit, caramel, toffee, some noticeable alcohol and a good overall sweetness with a slight bitterness cutting through.
M - Medium body with a slight chew. Light carbonation.
O - One of the few Barleywines that I have really enjoyed.
06-30-2011 02:25:26 | More by TheSevenDuffs
4.15/5 rDev -1%
This beer was sent to me by Shadman from BA. Cheers!
Got the blue label which makes this one the 2010 vintage (Thanks Dave for correcting me, I thought it was the 2009). The beer color is dark amber. Little head forms up. The aroma is light in intensity, I would have expected more. Get some caramel notes and sugar. When the beer warms a little bit, the aroma gets better and stronger with caramel. Complex on the taste however. Sweet. The finish is dry and slightly bitter. This is a true sipper. I started a little bit too cold, but the end was very good, if not extraordinary.
Truly a very good beer.
08-11-2011 01:30:38 | More by ZorPrime
4.22/5 rDev +0.7%
Big thanks goes out to oakbluff for hooking me up with an 06 and two 07's! Had the 06 and 07 side by side and I preferred the 06, I found it to be aging very nicely. Probably could go another year (or more) and still be in fine shape.
This review is based on the 07. Pours with small white head that holds up well, very nice lacing. Has a clear burnt orange color.
Smells of caramel malt, fruits, a little bit citrus and alcohol.
Great tasting barleywine. Lots of balance between malt and hop here. Notes of caramel, fruits (orange and grapefruit) and a fiery but also gentle alcohol that makes this beer a very drinkable "sipper".
02-26-2008 01:09:48 | More by irishkyle21
4.58/5 rDev +9.3%
The 2008 edition from a 341 ml brown bottle, nice touch with the green wax around the neck and cap as a seal plus aesthetic addition. However on that note allow the bottle to warm up in room temperature to make it easier to peel that wax off from around the cap, and prevent it from falling in the glass during the pour.
A hazed chestnut brown in appearance, one finger of light beige head that slowly settles to a frothy cap.
Aroma starts out malty with bready and toffee notes, then amps up a bit in the middle with spice and alcohol warmth, and continues along that calibre with some carob, brown sugar and faint wet grassy hops near the end. Not overwhelming, but enjoyable and effective.
My first sip of this barleywine was gorgeous.... The following ones were just as good. Rich chewy malt, bready, caramel and chocolate notes. That spicy alcohol warmth pops up in the middle and continues long into the aftertaste along its own seperate tangent. Just a touch of grassy, piney hops on the finish, which lingers on into the aftertaste on its own tragection as well. As the ale warms a burnt woody character emerges, providing a drying character to the aftertaste. This is a barleywine experienced on several different layers.
Mouthfeel is on the fuller end of the spectrum, but not thick, full in the mouth but with enough viscosity that one doesn't have to choke it down, or take deep breaths between each sip.
Kudos to Dave and crew on another masterful rendition, this stuff must be dynamite when it ages more, as it is excellent now while it's still young. I'll definitely be buying more--hell, I'll get a paper route if I have to in order to afford more of this stuff.
04-20-2009 19:44:06 | More by IronDjinn
3.8/5 rDev -9.3%
12oz, 2009 blue wax edition on private order. Thought I'd reviewed this one before but obviously not. LCBO lab testing puts this at 8.6% not the mentioned 10.5%. I understand the costs of lab testing are prohibitive but I wish more brewers had an accurate ABV on the label rather than just an estimate. This one is 2 points off....
Pours a ruddy caramel with hints of amber, pretty hazy. A finger of tight head builds on the pour and leaves some spots of lace down the glass as I drink.
Pleasant nose. Caramel and raisin blend nicely with a fresh citric hop character, I think this is the first time I have had this relatively fresh and the hops come through quite nicely. Nothing overpowering like an American style Bigfoot, but present and adding a nice balance.
Caramel, nuts, raisins, light hop bite. Citric hops again, light bitterness in the finish. Thin, oily body... definitely needs some more heft. Alcohol evident in the back. Pretty rough and hoppy yet, though with the lack of heft I wonder how it ages.... good thing I have some aged ones to try at some point!
A nice drinkable barleywine which is not something you hit on everyday. Wish it was a little more robust and complex.
06-05-2010 23:33:46 | More by ritzkiss
3.6/5 rDev -14.1%
***2009 vintage (blue wax)***
Thanks to kjyost for this one.
Poured from a 341ml. bottle.
Appearance: A nice 3 finger head forms that reduces to 1 and holds. Sticky lacing on the sides. Body is a bit more clear than expected with a reddish tinted body.
Smell: Musty a bit, caramel, lactic a little, plums, old wood.
Taste: A sweet hit upfront and mellows into a herb-like spiciness. Some caramelized sugar and leather.
Mouthfeel: Super smooth, low carbonation but no staying power in the mouth. As soon as the sip is gone, so is the feel. No mouth coating or lingering presence. On the plus side, it has no real alcohol heat.
Overall: A decent barleywine but the body keeps it from being top-tier. Middle of the road for me.
08-25-2011 10:19:04 | More by papat444
3.7/5 rDev -11.7%
Bottles from both wordemupg and kjyost - (blueish?) wax and a 341ml bottle, so this is from 2009 I'll guess. Into a tulip. Side by side with the bourbon barrel aged version.
Mahogany body, with deep ruby red highlights. A ring of bubbles for lace, whisps of retention. Toasty malts on the nose, bread crust, caramel, toffee, brown sugar and some mild hop character. Slight oxidation notes as well. Taste has caramel and toffee up front, very sweet malt, candy, light chocolate near the end with again some mild hop character. Fairly full feel, sweet with almost no bitterness. Sticky. A nice offering, but not completely outstanding.
10-31-2012 03:24:38 | More by liamt07
4.3/5 rDev +2.6%
thanks to demcorhip for this via trade. what a rare chance to try a barleywine so far outside the normal distribution range of this beer.
A - rich reddish brown color, not cloudy but a thick almost opaqueness in the body, nice off white frothy head that lasted an eternity.
S - Rich sweet caramel / toffee malts, dark ripe fruits and spicy hop. The hops were prominent but not almost overwhelmed by the malts. Intriguing!
T- similar to the aroma but with a rich warmth and complimentary intermingling of flavors. A marvel at each sip.
M - Full bodied with a capital F. This one is a thick brew that somehow manages to stay just outside of cloying.
D - for such a full bodied, warmth inducing beer this one makes your taste buds cry out for another sip. Incredibly easy to drink.
Not sure when this was bottled but it's definitely a nice drinking barleywine!
06-20-2007 13:51:05 | More by barleywinebrewer
4.35/5 rDev +3.8%
Pours very dark amber colour with some ruby notes, thin off-white head. Good looking barleywine. Smell - very strong cognac like aroma, some yeast and some sweet fruity flavours, cherry perhaps. Very strong great flavour. Alcohol is noticeable.
Taste - sweet and fruity upfront - plums, hint of cherry, cognac/brendy flavor is still there but a bit faded. Very complex, creamy, chewy, full bodied. Great brew! This is my first half pint brew and I can't wait to try more of their stuff. This is very solid brew. It is drinkable for style and ABV. Delicious sipper.
03-26-2009 05:04:07 | More by Voonder
4.15/5 rDev -1%
A: A nice deep brown hue. The head doesn't linger and mild lacing remains.
S: A rich smell with light raisin caramel undertones.
T: Full flavored barley and a great bittering - no surprise based on the 75 IBU count.
M: Very thick consistency in the mouth and the alcohol is a noticeable tingle.
D: You can have more than one, but your gonna lose the ability to taste this great beer. For me, its a seasonal for a reason, an a one time shot when you want that one desert beer.
03-04-2011 22:43:30 | More by BasementBer
Burly Wine from Half Pints Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 71 ratings.