Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2004 - Stone Brewing Co.
Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
Ratings: 138 | Reviews: 121 | Display Reviews Only:
4.83/5 rDev +14.5%
The much anticipated OG from Stone...good times are ahead! Anyways this beer poured quite a bit lighter than previous years with a medium copper color and a very thick white head that would not leave till the last drop. This beer smelled wonderful with a great citrus smell and the smell of some kind of tropical friut, maybe mango or pinnaple with a hint of malt thrown in there as well. The flavor was completly different than years past with an increased citrus bite and a great dry hoppy finnish. This one does not hide the alchohol as good as the 02 and 03 did but I think a big reason for that is the early stage that the beer is currently in. In the end this is an exceptional Barleywine and another classic offering from Stone.
02-14-2004 11:38:26 | More by Dmann
3.83/5 rDev -9.2%
A nice golden pale ale color, thin foam, little or no lacing. Aroma of malt and caramel, good hopping. Slightly sweet, but not at all an unpleasant experience. Alcohol is present, but not over the top. As with most Stone offerings, plenty of hop flavor! But neatly balanced with the malt. Dry, prickly aftertaste. Might improve with aging - but goood now!
03-29-2004 03:27:57 | More by palliko
4.4/5 rDev +4.3%
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.
07-05-2004 01:40:33 | More by RockyTopHeel
3.88/5 rDev -8.1%
22 oz bomber imprinted with the stone brewing gargoyle to scare away any impurity.
Pours a red orange with a nice tan head. A little bit of a hard pour was needed to get the small head. While the head subsided quite quickly, a nice lacing was left behind.
Big malty aromas, lots of hops (as is to be expected from the fellows at Stone), and alcohol solvents dominate the nose.
Sweet malt and hops are up front in this one. Very citrusy for a barley wine in my opinion, but very warming nonetheless.
While I enjoy all of the other Stone products I have tried, I must admit, I am a little disappointed with this brew. When I think of a barley wine, I think of a dark ale, not something that for all intents and purposes could be passed off as a darkish IPA on looks alone. This said, I did enjoy this beer, but I think that the coloring and overwhelming hops detracted from the style it is supposed to represent.
04-27-2004 02:41:38 | More by LuckySevens82
4.22/5 rDev 0%
with one hell of a rough pour it ends up a hazy deep orange with a small yet nice off white bubbly head that slowly subsides into a patchy, sticky lace. lovely aroma of bready malt, orange cake, sweet bread and a lovely light hop aroma lingering. superb! thick in the mouth, heavy and filling. coates like no other. sweet biscuity/bread like malts, hearty and satisfying. light orange hints (think orange sweet rolls) and pineapple with a balancing hop bite. also as it warms the alcohol fumes become more apparent. well thought out and welcoming, very drinkable for a barley wine. tastey and not overpowering. a hell of a barley wine that flexes its muscles, but in a nice way. (like a bear hug)
paid $3.99 for a bomber
03-29-2004 07:03:24 | More by DESTRO
4.9/5 rDev +16.1%
My second bite at this apple as I wanted a taste that wasnt on a palate corrupted by Ruination.
Pours a apricot orange amber colour with a one finger dence white head. The aroma will knock you back its so good.. Candied fruit, citrus hops, toffee, in doses so powerful they should be illegal. Taste follows.. Its sweet with out cloying, hoppy without bitter.. Its curacao orange peels soaked in caramel with a splash of rich brandy. Its kinda like a beery Grand Marnier. Absolutely delicious. Hops are there but not as ballsy as other stone brews, this one has understated grace, more English in style than typical West Coast Hopparific Barleywine. Mouthfeel is outstanding, smooth as the silk on a designer skirt. Drinkability is roof high.. This is and the Imperial Stout are the class of Stones efforts. Not that any of them are weak, but this is World Class.
Also went amazing well listening to Johnny Cash's American III- solitary man-- especially during the Nice Cave Cover - the Mercy Seat..
01-14-2005 04:38:54 | More by TinusTime
4.38/5 rDev +3.8%
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).
11-17-2008 02:54:28 | More by BigMcLargeHuge
4/5 rDev -5.2%
Pours an amber-brown with a small bubbly head that dissapates quickly.
Strong bitter and floral hops, alcohol, spice and dark fruits all come together in a delicious aroma, with a touch of sweetness.
Full bodied and very smooth. Bitter hops up front blend with caramel sweetness and fruits. The alcohol starts warming you immediately and a brief alcohol flavor flashes. Finishes with a sweet alcohol flavor and leaves a bitter aftertaste.
A fine barley wine, more "English" than others but the bitter hop burps start coming quickly. Very drinkable.
09-11-2004 03:36:02 | More by Southernbrew
4.13/5 rDev -2.1%
Appearance: The body is a clear light copper color, with noticable carbonation and a head of about an inch that fades to a clumpy lace.
Smell: Sweet hops mix nicely with the malted barley to make a full nose. Not much else to say except that this is very nice. Ok; light vanilla, oak, raisin and fermented banana.
Taste: nowhere near as heavy as I would have expected. Super thin; weak malt profile doesn't lend much to the tastebuds. This is light and also deadly. It really doesn't impress very much in the way of extremist flavor like every other Stone beer does. It's actually noicely balanced, haps a bit waek on the hops, and definitely too much on the rambling (apologies, but I've barfed more meaningful sentences than this year's 'description') Anywhooo, it's not bad.. it's definitely the Bud Light of Barleywine. Wimpy malt plays second fiddle to wimpy hops and everyone walks out shaking their head.
Mouthfeeel: Too thin for a real barleywine. There's nothing wrong with this, it just doesn't have the malt profile of something like Old Ho. I try to taste every Stone I come across, and it's not fair to expect them to be the best at every style, just because they make some great brews. I still like this one though.
Drinkability: Perfectly light while still retaining an aspect of richness. Way too easy to drink. Five.
07-21-2004 19:08:22 | More by 99bottles
3.88/5 rDev -8.1%
22 oz. bottle pours an amber color with a white head that quickly fades to a sheen. Has a strong alcohol smell with breads, caramels, and a whiff of floral hops. The smell of this brew alone is intoxicating.
Full bodied with a creamy mouthfeel. Strong, bittersweet taste of sweet plums and caramels folowed by a bitter hop and warming, raw alcohol finish.
A great west coast Barleywine that should only get better with time.
10-17-2004 18:15:28 | More by beerceller99
4.18/5 rDev -0.9%
I pour this into a tulip, as usual. It is lighter than the 05 that I had last night. This one is orange with a beige head. The nose is pretty much all alcohol. I detect faint malt beneath it.
The taste is good. The hops are still juicy, but not bitter. There are ripe fruits and a long caramel malty finish. The taste is very smooth. Mouthfeel is good. It has probably thinned a little bit, but is still thick and chewy. The drinkability is good, but I am starting to realize that I could drink anything that I like for a session.
07-13-2005 00:17:03 | More by Sephiroth
4.33/5 rDev +2.6%
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.
02-04-2009 06:57:09 | More by CoolJosh
4.13/5 rDev -2.1%
Nice looking deep dark golden color with a small foamy white head. Though the aroma isn't too strong it has that distinctive "Stone" smell to it. Very pleasant. I get a faint scent of some malt too. First taste was not in the least bit surprising even though this was my first Old Guardian. Loads of hops intially but quickly a truckload of malt took over lending a sweet finish taste. I wouldn't mind cellaring a couple of these to see if that initial hop bite mellows out a little bit. This could be an even better beer a few years down the road from now, although it's quite good right now. Great brewery.
04-16-2004 01:09:31 | More by soper2000
3.95/5 rDev -6.4%
Beautiful medium copper with a substantial light tan head. Very inviting.
Wow, a myriad of aromas. Lots of hops and generous malt, with a mild sweetness.
Quite young and rough. Good hop bitterness, some malt richness and sweetness, with a slight medicinal character. Needs some time to smooth out.
Rich flavorful, and coating. Not too heavy. Long, lingering bitter finish.
Much different than the 03, with the recipe change. The balance isn't there yet. Good for being young and rough around the edges. Can't wait to see how this one ages. Grab some of this one while it is still available.
02-19-2004 20:16:58 | More by winomark
4.47/5 rDev +5.9%
This was my first ever taste of Sone Old Guardian Barley Wine. I have not had the other years. I was looking forward to trying it.
Served around 55 Degrees
Appearance: A very rocky head made it look beautiful to me. This was a head like no other with many peaks and vallies. The beer itself was clean as a whistle, very clear as is with most Stone beers.
Smell: Very big aroma with sweetness being first then hops coming up quick with just a short but sharp hop aroma and alcohol even warms you at the end of the smell.
Taste: A huge beer. Huge malt presence, not sweet but huge and malty. Hops are there but are mellow compared to what I expected from this beer. Alcohol is very spicy at the end which really warmed me. MMmmmm
Mouthfeel: Excellent full bodied chewy meaty eat it with a fork and knife beer. Just the kind of body I look for in a barley wine.
Not very drinkable only because of the alcohol. I would want to drink this one till I die though.... so good.
02-21-2004 16:48:31 | More by Ellbert
4.58/5 rDev +8.5%
I'm giving this beer a 4.5 for appearance despite its complete lack of head, because of the amazing color. It glows as if with an inner light, as though it could fill a dark room with sunset! An unreal color like the skin of a ripe peach. I've never seen anything like it before, and it's extremely inviting.
The smell fills out with the typical barleywine odor that I have a hard time describing - steamed asparagus drizzled with molasses, perhaps? Itr's the kind of smell that makes me go 'yep - barleywine', but I can't quite figure it out.
Ironic that the color reminds me of peaches and apricots, because I get extremely strong hints of those squishy fruits in the flavor of this very finely aged beer. It's got that steamed-grass smell, and a distinct caramel flavor - and in this beer, I can taste the hops, a bittering, floral addition. Wow, this is a really good barleywine, the best I've tried so far. The others I've tried have finished harshly, but this tumbles the alcohol into its flavors, then finishes with caramel and hop bitters, instead of ending up with nothing but alcohol.
The mouthfeel is awesome, it's like melted butter. Creamy, soft, smooth, and it gets into every crevice of the mouth, flowing voluptously.
Wow - so far my experiences with barleywine have been lackluster, but this aged '04 Stone version is outta control. I love it, plain and simple!
02-10-2006 02:01:20 | More by Tupperwolf
4.78/5 rDev +13.3%
Purchased a bomber at the North Coast Co-op in Arcata, California. Lucky to snag one before they were all gone.
Pours bright orange-edged amber with a buttery head that quickly dissipates and leaves a few thin blankets of lace on the glass.
The nose makes itself evident immediately upon evacuation from the bottle. Sharply sweet malts and a peppery fruitiness, like cherries and orange peels that have been soaked in brown sugar and rum, fills my nose.
The taste opens with a distinct jolt of hop bitterness, sweet fruity malts follow and rapidly lead into alcohol heat and an even more pronounced hop bitterness. The aftertaste lingers long -- burnt lemony and peppery hops encrusted with a fragile malt sweetness. Alcohol warmth floats around my nose, throat, and stomach; and would be over-powering if not for the intensity of the other flavors.
Mouthfeel is mildly creamy.
This beer is a big clash of big flavors that come very close to finding synchronicity. It's like three bulls (hops, malt, and alcohol) attempting to break dance in a China closet -- they almost pull it off, but beware the damage!
02-22-2004 01:45:34 | More by RootedFool
3.6/5 rDev -14.7%
Make no mistake, this beer is HEAVY. Pours a cider golden orange, with little lacy head. Smell is powerful with aromas of alcohol and sweetness. Almost hard to swallow, this beer is big and bold. Heavy on the alcohol flavor, this is also big on malt profile. Drinkability is low because of the punch this beer carries. Enjoy!
06-27-2004 01:47:58 | More by RocketWidget
3.93/5 rDev -6.9%
Pours a slightly hazy amber color with a nice crisp off-white head. The bottom of the glass is a light golden color, transistioning to a dark orange color near the top. A constant flow of tiny bubbles from the bottom of the glass can be seen, keeping the head from disappearing altogether. The smell is a pleasant estery bouquet. A citrous aroma is present, I'm thinking oranges. Very crisp taste up front tingling the tongue. A good malt taste follows, a full bodied mouthfeel. Here is the citrous the smell hinted at. The malty taste is quickly followed by a pronounced alcohol presence. The alcohol produces a nice warming effect, although it hampers the drinkability. A pretty tasty beer, very good for sipping and enjoying slowly.
01-25-2005 01:59:49 | More by BeerFink
4.88/5 rDev +15.6%
Reviewing this one poured from a 22oz bomber. Hopefully will get to try this one on cask in a few days... will submit a 2nd review if that is the case =D
Pours a nice light amber into my pint glass. Creates a very thick off white head.
The smell is very spicy, those hops are definitely in there. Thick and floral, estery. I can already tell this one is going to be huge.
Taste is exceptional for this style. The flavor is rich and sweet, spicy and strong. I can't recall a barley wine to date that compares.
Mouthfeel is very thick, syrupy and alcoholic.. the kind that sits in the throat long after you've swallowed. It is warm and welcome.
I could drink a lot of this one, however I think that it would bring me to an early slumber. Ah hell, I'll drink it as long as I can stay awake. This is a great strong brew.
Overall, I think Stone has outdone themselves. I was a bit skeptical after reading that they had changed the recipe for this one since last year's (or at least the malt profile), but this batch is awesome. I really love barley wines and I think this one has to be my favorite to date!
02-17-2004 07:01:23 | More by kmcnair
4.72/5 rDev +11.8%
I picked up my local store's last pair of 2004s this summer, and tried them this fall, after a few months in the cellar.
Holy. Freaking. Crap. Magic.
Pours a cloudy amber with deep golden highlights, thick bubbly head. Very clear. Almost a ruby color.
Fruity hoppy bready intrigue greet the nose.
Fruity hoppy smooth, almost creamy, a touch of alchohol warms. My notes start to ramble, this is so good. The hops and fruit and alchohol create a smooth, tart, and yet somehow creamy mouthfeel.
God, I can't wait to get some 2005 and let it sit. Just super stuff.
12-21-2005 04:21:39 | More by hustlemuscle
4.22/5 rDev 0%
orange/copper color, clear not hazy, nice white soapy head disipates fairly quickly. Pine/citrus/slight alcohol aroma. Nice mouthfeel, just enoogh carbonation. For a 10% beer, flavor not as malty as you would think. Spicy/hops flavor. Very slight alcohol feel on back of mouth This is a very drinkable barley wine.
04-30-2004 01:05:02 | More by kennyo
4.83/5 rDev +14.5%
--04 edition consumed Sept 04
Traditional Stone 22oz bomber brought to me by a friend on a road trip. There is a long rambling editorial on the back of the bottle, skip it and drink.
The appearance is an orangey amber, and surprisingly translucent. Not much of a head to speak of but that is typical for the style, a thin filmy looking layer on top. Some carbonation is visible in the body and is composed of streams of extremely small bubbles.
The smell is thick and lovely. The malts are definitely thick in the nose, and bitter, bitter earthy hops. A sweet bubblegum type scent also comes through.
The taste is a really intense experience. The beer actually starts out a little lighter on the palette with a slight crisp apple flavor. Then it seems the Malts and Hops begin their knock-down drag-out through your mouth. I do catch a hint of that bubblegum sweetness in the middle suprisingly. Earthen hop bitterness stomps arrogantly on the back of your tongue as the beer goes down. Alcohol is hinted at in the aftertaste but overall eclipsed by the bold, intense flavors of this brew. I do however feel the trail of alcohol down my throat and into my stomach, it is nicely warming as well.
I have really grown fond of this style, and I would never expect Stone to let me down. This beer is a bit more consumable compared to other barleywines I have had, and dropping these 22oz should be no problem at all.
Thanks again John!
09-07-2004 20:52:15 | More by FormatKid
4.72/5 rDev +11.8%
I enjoyed this Barley Wine very much.
Poured out a nice amber color with a small off-white head that goes away moderately.
smelled of malt maybe some honey in there and there was a definite west coast hoppiness
taste was surprisingly smooth based off the hop i smelled. Very nice blend of the sweet and hop on this one This one was an almost perfect blend and not overpowering with hops. Quite smooth and very pleasant beer to drink.
06-10-2004 15:40:28 | More by kegerator
Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2004 from Stone Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 138 ratings.