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Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2004 - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2004Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2004

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

138 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 138
Reviews: 121
rAvg: 4.22
pDev: 9.48%
Wants: 5
Gots: 4 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Stone Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  10.06% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: xlperro on 02-12-2004)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 138 | Reviews: 121 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Beersnake1
4.25/5  rDev +0.7%

Beersnake1, Oct 29, 2013
Photo of RedDiamond
4.25/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

The color is warm gold. It is clear though a swarm of yeast particles will emerge from bottle's bottom. The aroma is honeysuckle and dark fruit, complex, tropic, and soothing. Mouthfeel is brighter than I would have expected, but leaves a slightly gritty film on the teeth. This is a concern, but not a problem.

The taste is relaxed and unhurried, sweet but not overpowering. The taste is not nearly as complex or abundant as the smell and alcohol does not feature much part in it. I must admit I had higher expectations from Stone but this is still a mellow and refined barleywine that is easily appreciated.

RedDiamond, Mar 13, 2004
Photo of t0rin0
4.25/5  rDev +0.7%

t0rin0, Feb 25, 2013
Photo of WOLFGANG
4.25/5  rDev +0.7%

WOLFGANG, Jul 08, 2013
Photo of Padron4KM
4.28/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

pour was a burnt orange, with a thick orange/white head. Heavy lacing left on the glass.
Initial aromas were predominatly floral, hoppy, with a little maltiness in the background.
as it sat in the glass, the hops toned down a bit to reveal some sweet candied fruit. That weird stuff you put in fruit cake :P.


flavor was much sweeter than I anticipated, almost velvety mouthfeel with a nice lingering, mildly bitter finish.


I plan on buying a few and stting them down for a while

Padron4KM, Sep 05, 2004
Photo of cbl2
4.28/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance:

Crystal clear light brown/gold with an inch of foamy white head that laces nicely as it settles slowly.

Smell:

Ingredients promise a whole buncha barley, and tons 'o hops. The barley is present as a carmelized odor, but the hops overpower this slightly.

Taste/Mouthfeel:

Bitter at first due to the hops. At first swallow, the alcohol hits you right in the back of the throat, but if you let it warm in the mouth a sweet feeling takes over (through the finish). Improves as you quaff. Very good for the style.

cbl2, Jun 16, 2004
Photo of Bierman9
4.28/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Clear, rich copper is the color of this years version, with a light tan, creamy, fine head topping things off. The head thins rapidly, leaving a ring of foam at the perimeter, with a bit of lacing left behind. Nose is lightly toasty, with a fruity hop essence playing a large role, along with "hot" suggestions of alcohol. Great mouthfeel, with better than medium body followed up by a silky smoothness upon the tongue. This years seems to be a tad more balanced than the older ones, with more malt coming into play. The malt is bready and chewy, with a nice level of caramel sweetness. The hop aspect is a fruity one, with some light grapefruit making itself known. Then a bunch of piney, resiny notes coat the tongue and throat, and will just not go away! The ABV is fairly easily detected, with a distinct warmth hitting the palate and stomach. As always, a solid offering from the gang of Stone. Prosit!!

overall: 4.25
appearance: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | mouthfeel: 4.5 | drinkability: 4

700

Bierman9, Apr 04, 2004
Photo of BierReise
4.28/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Deep golden with an orange hue and a thick head of foam that slowly developed as I poured. This is one heavy looking brew. Aroma is exploding with hops and sweet malt. Tropical fruit and citrus come to mind also with a bit of doughiness in the background. Hops are really out front here. Body is ultra smooth and full with low carbonation. The flavor here is really fantastic and I wouldn't expect anything less from one of the best breweries anywhere.(God how do they continue to do it?) Lots of fruit in the flavor and bittering hops with a huge malt base that blends everything together. There's also something spicy in there that I can not define yet adds to the enjoyment. Overall one I could drink often as with anything by Stone. Nice going guys!

BierReise, Feb 28, 2004
Photo of meathookjones
4.3/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle with the standard stone look and gargoyle to ward off all the impurities. Pours a thick and hazy darker orange color with a good sized off white head that almost flowed out of the glass. The head retention was surprisingly good as it stayed about half an inch high through the consumption of this beer and left a nice lacing that slowly fades as you drink it. The nose had sweet malts mingling with citrus hops to form a well-balanced and appetizing aroma. A touch of alcohol comes out as it warms as well. Malty sweetness starts the taste off before the hops takeover to give it a kick. The finish is dry, with a slight hint of warming alcohol and a nice bitterness as well. Very thick mouthfeel that is rich warming and lasting. For a high alcohol beer this is very drinkable remind me of old horizontal how easy it goes down. Excellent stuff defiantly recommended, another top notch brew from stone.

meathookjones, Jul 08, 2004
Photo of Foxman
4.33/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It pours a glimmering clear copper with flecks of amber. Two fingers of off-white head swell then ebb quickly to islets of fine foam. Curlicues of lacing lie plastered to the side of the glass.

The aroma brings the dense air of toasted malt to the fore, accompanied by a note of toffee. A dry citrus aura partners with an almost minty floral perfume. The estery vapor of alcohol makes itself well known throughout.

In the flavor, a well-developed caramel malt character delivers a restrained sweetness. A mildly fruity strain of currants slips along the tongue, then is trailed into the middle ground by dry grapefruit and floral notes of hops. A gregarious, warming river of alcohol raises its voice well and loudly. A biscuity malt presence steps toward the exit, followed by a hoppy dry bitterness at the finish. It's big and thick, but the basic flavors wraps its beefy arms around you and warms the cockles of your heart.

Medium to heavy bodied, the palate is lubricated and coated by the full components that are in play. A dry hops glow rings the back of the mouth and fades slowly.

This beer is about big heaps of malt, a lot of hops, and has a warm, happy soul. The balance impresses because the elements are so dense and weighty. But as much of it as there is, there doesn't seem to be too much of anything. The ABV is as substantial as the rest of the beer, not only warming the gullet, but also plying its trade on one's head as well, so that certainly bears watching. Yet the flavor makes any reasonable quantity a truly worthwhile pleasure. Once again, Stone steps out larger than life in a big, good way. And another bottle is cellared for a chilly March evening a year from now.

Foxman, Apr 01, 2004
Photo of CoolJosh
4.33/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks a ton Matt for the Growler fill of a lifetime. Great trading with you and I hope to do it again soon.

Pours a really nice glowing amber orange haze. Light yellow head that dissipates pretty fast but considering the age and style I didn't expect much in this department of looks. Very still beer but after 4 years I'd hope that be the case.

As I stick my nose into the glass I get a very milky scent with some good smooth caramel and toffee. Wow does this smell great, I can't get over how pronounced these two elements of the smell are. Some light Peach and possibly even apricot come through as well. Not overly sweet, but really pleasant smell that is hard to look past.

WOW, this one really plays with your taste buds. An initially very tangy bite on the tongue sends warning signals that this is going to be an interesting ride. I thought it was going to be a little bit smoother, but nonetheless, this beer glides down your palate, through your throat, and into yo' bellayyyy. Really nice and not over the top oak components. Died down hops add some flair, and tons of caramel. Touches of honey. Slight heat on the tail but my taste buds have been rather sensitive to this lately. Really well done, I can't wait to see how the other years turn out.

CoolJosh, Feb 04, 2009
Photo of beertaster13
4.35/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Top notch and potent. Pours a amber orange red with off white head that is excellent, lacing is great. The smell is strong of pine and citrus hops. A semi molasses sweet malt is pleasant as well. The taste is over the top hoppiness witch a west coast BA like myselft loves. A pine citrus taste is great to the tongue. A medium bodied Barley wine that is both smooth and goes down easy, great for this style. Damn good.

beertaster13, Aug 19, 2004
Photo of Vancer
4.35/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Old bottle of well aged BW, yum. Clear and clean amber, frothy tan head. Juicy aroma of citrus and caramel, then a smooth classic BW quaff. Gooey caramel, but finishing with a nice dose of hop pop. More citrus bubblegum than in a “normal” BW.

A nice Sunday afternoon sipper, no hint of a double digit alcohol dragon lurking underneath. Quite a treat.

Vancer, Jan 06, 2008
Photo of francisweizen
4.35/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Ah, the 2004 old guardian in it's normal red and gold 22oz bomber bottle. Let's see what this years has in stall for us.

Appearance: This stuff glugs out of the bottle and into my pint glass with a bloody red colour with a slightly tan head that lasts for quite a bit.

Smell: The aromas on this puppy are very good. I can smell sweet malts, booze, strong hops, and a candy-like sweetness as well.

Taste: The taste here is classic stone. This is very malty up front, with a candy-like sweetness. The hops move in for the kill in the middle and the finish is dry, boozy, and a bit intense.

Mouthfeel: This stuff is thick, rich, and warming, just like a good barleywine should be.

Drinkability: Very good, as always. This is an awesome barleywine that drinks easily.

Notes: Buy some of this now, before it is gone until next year!

francisweizen, Jun 22, 2004
Photo of WVbeergeek
4.38/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Copper amber hue with an off white frothy cream head lacing is fine and spread evenly. Aroma: Ctrus bursts of hops with a piney hop tone blend caramel and molasses tinged with alcohol with orange peels evident in the nose. Taste: Wonderful blend of hops and malts caramel citrus with a deep malty layer of hops excellent complex big ol' barleywine. Deep alcohol infused fruit notes make each sip more enticing. Mouthfeel: Full to medium bodied sryupy texture, wow. Drinkability: Excellent complex watchout for the abv this one will get you. I definitely look forward to the release of this Stone product every year, damn good barleywine from Stone in your face like most of their beers.

WVbeergeek, Apr 25, 2004
Photo of TheLongBeachBum
4.38/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: No surprises for Stone Fans, this comes in the usual gold and red screen printed Stone Old Guardian Bottle that has been around for several years now. The only changes to the presentation, are little alterations here and there. It reveals its heritage with a ‘Limited Winter ’04 Release’ date in a starburst at the top left corner on the front of the bottle. Stronger than previous years I note, the strength is listed at 10.06% in the bottom left of the obverse label. I see that Greg has still not lost his knack for the entertaining diatribes that decorate the reverse of the label. I read it twice and still had no fucking idea what the hell was going on. Apart from the fact that a lot of “screwing around” appears to take place at Stone, I always love the way that they poke fun at themselves, and the serious amongst us, as well enforcing my hatred for the trend towards beer with no carbs, no sugar, no calories, and erm….no taste. “Guarding against all things lifeless, lackluster and lo-carb”. Gotta love the Stone ethos!!!

Appearance: The first surprise was the color, unless I am very much mistaken, I think that this is much lighter than previous years. Without previous years to compare to that’s hard to qualify right now though. Perfectly lucid, it pours with a dark copper color, the head is off-white and it is supported by immense levels of dissolved carbonation, yet it is released in a controlled manner and helps to maintain a nice thick looking ¼” head when swirled. Minimal lacing is easily removed when I swirl the beer.

Nose: Strong alcohol acts like a solvent and dissolves malts and some light sugary caramel together with a strong whiff of freshly harvested hops mixed with some tropical fruits. Juicy and fresh, the hops really come through in the nose when deeply inhaled.

Taste: This has some tastes that I find I cannot explain. I will do my best. Suffice to say there is a “strong ale” flavor, rather than a Barleywine feel to this youngster. It reminds me of a few strong bitters that I drank in the UK around winter time, in particular it reminded me of Burton Bridge Old Expensive Ale that I tried on Cask many years ago in the UK. A strong bitter-sweet taste that is neither overwhelmingly bitter, nor sweet, if that makes sense. Big Malts and Hops, yet it’s almost as if the bitterness cuts right through the heavy malts and edges it at this moment in time. Some fruitiness mingles here and there. Time may well alter the balance. Lingering bitterness on the cheeks does not come through on the tongue until long after the beer is swallowed. Powerful.

Mouthfeel: Finishes with a very light alcoholic kick at the end that really does feel as though it will get warmer, but somehow never does, well not until it hits the stomach at least. I had a strong home made Curry tonight, but even so, the burps this induces (no doubt from the carbonation) really take the edge off of my Beef Madras with their juicy hop oils. Quite something.

Drinkability: It went down with no struggles whatsoever! I even considered cracking open a second but it’s getting late. Very drinkable. But I’m biased, I love Stone and I love Old Guardian.

Overall: Still a little raw, but no surprises there. I’m lucky, I managed to get a case of this, and I feel that the journey though the Box at 2 to 3 monthly intervals will certainly be a fascinating one. Maybe it needs time to reach its Zenith. Still, I can’t wait to update this Review!

Buy a Case of this and take the journey with me!

No disappointments, not your usual Barleywine, just another quality offering from Stone.

TheLongBeachBum, Feb 17, 2004
Photo of guinness9880
4.38/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer pours a deep carmel (almost burnt orange) with half finger head and little lacing. Smell is a bouquet of ripe fruits and spiciness a real thick and rich smell. The tast simply reaffirms the smell of ripe citrus fruits along with spices balanced by a smooth maltiness and great aftertaste. This is a special beer that should be cherished.

guinness9880, May 05, 2005
Photo of BigMcLargeHuge
4.38/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On Tap @ O'Brien's. 2004 vintage. Consumed summer 2006 Clear orange color with chunks of creamy tan head floating along the viscous barrier between air and elixir. Sweet malt and dark fruit aroma punctuated by some hop nose. Full Barleywine malt and fruitiness with thick smooth peanut butter mouthfeel. The hops have really evened out. Delicious. Had this side by side with the 2005 vintage (on tap too).

BigMcLargeHuge, Nov 17, 2008
Photo of feloniousmonk
4.38/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Gorgeous hazy peachy appearance, with a slimmish layer of foam on top.
Exhilirating nose...yeasty and citric at first, toasty and potent, from the top of it...wide open citric fruit character, not what I'd expected...serious smell, leaking in the alcoholic content, slowly, tingling with further fruitiness, begging me to finally taste...
mmmm...this is a new kind of yumminess, one I don't remember from other versions...citric sweetness, a delicious oxymoron, is chief among the flavor contributions..peach and apricot, mix with honey and spice, while the booze facts stands tall above it all, as well. Very happy, humming, brilliant brew, this is...lands gladly on the palate, too, though it makes no considerable impact. Sits there comfortably, imparting juicy, jubilant flavor ...very interesting, and not what I expected, less like a typical American barleywine, and more like some English old ales, or even like certain Belgian brews, certainly in an exclusive class...this is a tangy thing, a powerfully flavored ale, confident and kind,it delivers it's goodness, assured in it's mission, it drops this delicacy and moves on, like all good soldiers should...

much thanks to the Bum of the Beach for this!

feloniousmonk, Dec 23, 2004
Photo of RockyTopHeel
4.4/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A cloudy, burnt orange brew with a thin head that quickly dissipates until barely a wisp of white remains.

Overall, this is a very nice, even outstanding blend of hops flavor, malt backbone and subtle but noticeable alcohol kick.

Very well rounded, and one of my favorite barley wines to date.

RockyTopHeel, Jul 05, 2004
Photo of Westsidethreat
4.4/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Stone Winter Storm

A: A dull cloudy tangering copperish color with almost no head. A fine ring of beige surrounds the glass adding an amusing contrast. Little agitation to the beer causes the bubbles to come forth from the depths.

S: Orange, toffee, grapefruit rind and raisin.

T: Begins with a healthy mix of caramel, cherry and bubblegum. There is a transition happening with the malt and sugars in this brew...Its in the beginning stages of converting to outrageous toffee flavors...but its not there yet. Marshmallow, apricot and mellon add a nice fruity component. Bitterness remains but its controlled and not too overpowering. Finishes sweet with honey, yellow fruit and a friendly kick of alcohol.

M: Full bodied with a syrupy mouthfeel.

D: This barleywine is getting close the perfect age IMO. Its could still use another 16 months or so to get it perfect. I'm certainly thankful to have had the opportunity to try this on tap.

Westsidethreat, Jan 01, 2007
Photo of Gusler
4.43/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

One of my favorite beers that I look for each year, and one I get by the case. The beer as it renounces the 22 ounce bottle in favor of my beer glass is a tralucent deep copper color, the head is behemothic in size and spumous in texture, after it dissolves, the lace forms a thick blanket to cover the glass. The aroma of hops, fusel alcohol, fresh pineapple also sweet cotton candy like tones, a real treat for the schnozzle and the peepers, start is ambrosial, rich in malt, the top middling in its feel to the palate. Finish is controlled in its acidity, the hops unyielding in their spiciness with the aftertaste bone-dry, and long lasting, the 10.6% ABV produces a nice touch of alcohol bitterness and a definite belly warming sensation, a “Hoot” as it is every year, and it only gets better with age just like “Old Gusler”?

"bonum beer laetificat cor hominis"

Gusler, Feb 25, 2004
Photo of joecast
4.43/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

ok, that back label. what's THAT all about?

deep copper shade with a full creamy beige head leaving a nice lacing on the glass.
aroma of just mashed grains after the sparge, with a hint of honey sweetness. not like any i have smelled before. very distinctive.

after one sip, the alcohol is already making its presence felt. this is not a beer to be taken lightly. at first, the flavor starts like any other strong ale. but the finish deffinitely has a kick to it. bitterness, and the warmness of the alcohol really show through, though not so much that they take over the beer. sorry, barley wine.

as the temp rises, the flavor and mouthfeel smooth remarkably gaining an almost creamy consistency. this just feels great, begging you to gulp it down, but i know better.

well, after meeting my first Stone, i see what all the hype is about. Old Guardian, the pleasure was mine.

joecast, May 25, 2004
Photo of Dogbrick
4.43/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Not quite as good as last year’s version but I liked it well enough. Pours golden orange with a thick off-white head. Nice lacing through the entire glass. The aroma is big on malt, along with some hops, butter and alcohol. Rich-bodied and smooth despite the bitter hops and borderline harsh alcohol. There are also malt and grapefuit flavors in the mix. Despite being a little rough this is a good Barley Wine.

Dogbrick, Jun 28, 2004
Photo of mntlover
4.45/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a beautiful red color with small off white head that disappears quickly, very few stray bubbles rising. Aroma caramel, malt with light fruity hints and a citrusy, floral hop aroma. Tastes great malt sweet malt caramel with fruit flavors rising here and there along with a good hop flavor and bitter bite. Taste is smooth complex and enjoyable hard to believe its over 10% abv. Drinkability is great finished bomber no problem at all in less then hour wanting to open another I have hiding downstairs, must resist the temptation. Mouthfeel is little light compared to others I have had kind of strange but who really cares just makes it that much more drinkable. Think I will buy few more for safe keeping. Want to thank Stone for finally letting us in Tenn. try this great beer please let our Distributers have all your beers and I will be one happy man!

mntlover, Aug 28, 2004
Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2004 from Stone Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 138 ratings.