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Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2005 - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2005Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2005

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

119 Ratings
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 119
Reviews: 103
rAvg: 4.25
pDev: 9.18%
Wants: 10
Gots: 3 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Stone Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  11.26% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

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

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Todd on 01-26-2005)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2005 Alström Bros
Ratings: 119 | Reviews: 103 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of rajendra82
4.18/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is my second year of trying the locally unavailable Stone barleywine, and having gotten through several more beers of this style over the past year, I feel much more qualified this year.

The 22 oz. brown bomber looks identical to the 2004 version, except it has Winter 2005 release in the painted on artwork, and the musings on the back seem even longer. The beer pored out deep reddish amber and clear, with a cascade of bubbles making up a half inch thick foamy head which does not last long. The aroma seems muted at first with a hint of citric hops, but a deep inhalation reveals more of a malty sweet aroma and some pine resin.

The taste is sweet and malty up front, with a prickly, peppery hop presence that becomes more prominent towards the end of the swallow. The beer is syrupy thick on the tongue, but carbonation lightens that effect somewhat. The beer feels somewhat abrasive as a solitary sipper, but accompanied by Vermont extra sharp while cheddar cheese, the harshness disappears.

I still think it feels young in the year of its release. My 2004 bottle in the cellar should be probably at a mellow prime next year.

rajendra82, Jul 11, 2005
Photo of MuddyFeet
4.88/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Bought a year ago and aged since. This beer rocks.

Poured a vibrant orange-tarnish in color. Kind of like an old piece of rock candy you find under the bed after it has aged. Slight scuzzy head that dissolved into a almost invisible film. Nose is maple sugar candies, hops and apricots. Very sweet.

Chewy and hoppy. All sots of sweetness up front, in the middle and up from behind. And on top if it all were such chewy, juicy hops. This beer has not faded at all in a year and has improved in my opinion. Candd sugar, sugared raisins and dried apricots. Quite a bit of heat from the alcohol and it even burned a bit on top of the bitterness. Kind of a smack. Full body and expressive flavors. Thick and just almost syrupy. Such a nice slow-sipping, enjoyable beer. Wish I had another bottler downstairs.

MuddyFeet, Mar 16, 2006
Photo of Wildman
4.33/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Finally received this year's version of Guardian. It poured a clear dark amber color and formed a nice light tan bubbly head that left circular lace as it subsided. An aroma of heavy on the malt, hops, caramel and citrus. The flavor was of malt, caramel and some pine. The finish was a touch astrigent. Usually Stone's barley wines taste a bit raw and need some aging to mellow them out. While this is true of this year's as well, it seems more drinkable young than previous years.

Wildman, Feb 11, 2005
Photo of Hibernator
4.2/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine
Winter 2005 Release
22 oz brown bomber
Snifter serving glass. I let the Old Guardian sit for about 10 minutes before tasting

This beer pours a beautiful amber copper color with a thin, oily top lacing. A fluffy head can easily be developed with a nice pour, but it settles quickly. Spotted sticky lacings cling all over the glass.

Aroma of black pepper spice, prunes and hop snappage.

Very syrupy sweetness attacks the palate with a super citrus hop bite on the finish. Caramel sweetness, rubbing alcohol warmth and floral hops blend at the perfect levels to create one nasty ass Barley Wine. At 11.26% ABV, you better appreciate this beer for all its worth.

Enjoy.

The perfect nightcap to an absolutely incredible weeked with a great friend.

Hibernator, Apr 18, 2005
Photo of taez555
4/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer poured a clear opaque, reddish hue with tiny white tan head that died quickly.

Nose was a mix of rich malt, all malt, a little more malt, with a very mild, almost German bock smelling hop touch.

Taste was big and very thick. Barley, barley, barley and some alcohol make up the taste of this baby. A surprisingly subdued hop taste. There is however a decent sized hop bitterness that balances well against the big malt taste. More of an English style barley wine, with just faint hints of a spicy/pine hop flavor.

Not your normal Stone Hop attack of a beer, just a classic style barley wine. Went well with some stilton and sharp cheddar.

taez555, Aug 31, 2005
Photo of AlexJ
4.38/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Warm copper with a brilliant crimson cast and thin head of wheat-hued froth that has moderate retention and very light lace.

Aroma is deeply caramelized malt and rich toffee, it's almost creamy like creme brule'. There are layers of warm fruit cobbler and honeyed peaches offset by rustic hop notes of pine and earthy dried greens.

Flavor starts with chewy caramel and scorched toffee, vanilla, and golden raisins. It's hoppier than I anticipated, pine and cedar flooowed by grassy hay and light candied citrus. Balanced and complex, alcohol kick is warming, but not tasted.

Body is just below big, mildly carbonated and has a very creamy, soft texture. A classic and sophisticated example of the style, I really can't wait to try my 04 next!

AlexJ, Apr 10, 2007
Photo of mmmbeer
4.35/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

I found this on the release date but waited until now to consume. 22 oz. served slightly chilled. Pours a reddish amber with a light tan, 1 finger head that leaves slight lacing and reduces to nothing by the end of the bomber (granted it did take almost 3 hours to finish). There is a slight cloudiness in the second pour. Smell is of malts - sweetness, bubblegum, diacetyl, with a bit of piney/perfumy hops and alcohol. Ridiculous amounts of malts on the palate, contributing notes of dark fruits, caramel, diacetyl, chocolate, and molasses. Hops (piney/perfumy/some citric) keep trying to overtake the malts but fail. However, the bitterness of the hops is substantial and lingers forever, reminding you of the "tons of hops" they used to balance the "whole buncha barley" the label touts. Mouthfeel is perfect. The beer is so chewy I feel like I'm not taking sips, but bites from the glass. The alcohol content is bittersweet - one bomber gets you nice and buzzed but because of this the drinkability is reduced. I need to age a bottle or two to see what happens.

mmmbeer, Feb 20, 2005
Photo of asabreed
4.38/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bomber into a Brooklyn tulip.

Appearance: Cloudy and very hazy. Lighter from the bottom to the darker top. Darker brown top and a lighter copper orange at the bottom. Pretty color overall, but little lacing and only a few thick drops cling to the bulb part of the glass. The color and depth save this one on the eyes.

Smell: Orange peel soaked in honey and drizzled caramel. There's also some leafy citrus hop presence, orange marmalade, and a lot of raisins. In addition, there's a nice peppery and spicy presence from the hops.

Taste: Chocolate nibs soaked in orange marmalade and drizzled with honey. Can't believe it's held up this well, especially considering the spicy and pungent hop presence. Fruit esters are mostly citrus, and there's some raisins and possibly figs in the mix. As it warms, the hop presence is still, seemingly miraculously, extremely strong and lingering, especially for this being five years old.

Mouthfeel: Surprisingly rich and creamy, with good full and prickly carbonation, which was completely unexpected. Doesn't remain cloying at all, which is also surprising.

Drinkability: I wonder how long this could hold up. I'd say for at least a few more years, and that's what bumps this up from my originally planned half-lower rating. A pretty awesome brew overall, and I hope to try more vintages in the future. I'm sure they all bring some great characteristics to the table.

asabreed, Jan 15, 2010
Photo of DeanMoriarty
4/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2005 Vintage Old Guardian

Had this out of a snifter at Holiday Wine Cellar's special event for San Diego Beer Week 2010: "Stone Vintage Archives & Decadent Chocolate Pairings" hosted by Dr. Bill Sysack of Stone Brewing. Paired with North Park's Eclipse Chocolat - Pumpkin Muscavado Truffle.

A: Pours a reddish/copper hue with a decent head and tons of thick lace from start to finish.

S: Earthy fruit, sweet and malty, finishing a bit boozy.

T: Booze up front that is balanced quickly by sweet malt, the hop that was missing in the nose comes through in the flavor nicely with the booziness mellowing as it warmed up a bit.

M: Medium to full-bodied, sticky but not syrupy at all with mellow carbonation giving it an overall smooth mouthfeel.

D: Wow - enjoyed this one a lot, but man it's only tolerable in small amounts. Heavy duty sh*t here! My wife had a sip of hers and passed it my way, which I appreciated, but I was good after her and my tastings...granted this is not my preferred style.

DeanMoriarty, Nov 27, 2010
Photo of bruachan
4.2/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

bought 'er at arrowine in arlington, but for some reason never tasted of the fruit

at first i thought the head was going to be a total dud but a little aggression in the pour and we've got a nice bone-colored fluff up there. underneath, however, is the gods' work. the beer is a brilliant deep ruby with an ever-so-slight amber tint. the head dimishes but never leaves the room

i think if i were to choose a color to fit the aroma it would be the one that sits in my glass. rich malt aromas: butterscotch, caramel, sweet bread

and then the can of kickass opens. it's huge! peach (peach!?), butterscotch. i would have expected hops to have more of a role—the bitterness is nothing to scoff at, but at the same time it's not all that intense—but malt is mos def the focus here. fruity, caramelly, cranberry (without the natural tartness)

it's complex, yet so simple

bruachan, Apr 06, 2006
Photo of mattcrill
3.88/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Presentation: Limited winter 2005 release marked on the front of the bottle. Also, an insanely long and somewhat irrelevant story about the brewer's trip to Turkey in October of 2004. Usually, I get a kick out of reading Stone's bottles but this one was lost on me. On to the important stuff...

Appearance: Pours syrupy like and deep red-orange in color. Clear in the glass with a white head that quickly dissappears and rings the outside of the glass.

Smell: Some alcohol and sweet dark fruit scents are quickly noted. Definitely picking up some raisin and plum notes with an alcohol backbone noted.

Taste: Sweetness that gets noted first and foremost! I'm picking up things like pears, some raisins, and plums. That's followed up by a soft but firm alcohol punch. Finishes dry and the alcohol coats the palate and warms the throat on the way down.

Mouthfeel: Medium to full and slightly slick. The alcohol definitely coats and warms everything in it's path.

Drinkability: Wew! I can't imagine having more than one of these.

Notes: I really enjoyed this one but it's almost too much for one sitting. Another fantastic beer by Stone but take your time savoring this one.

mattcrill, Feb 13, 2005
Photo of meathookjones
4.15/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Slightly different look to the bottle this year. There appears to be almost a complete novel etched in the back of the bottle. Good reading while you are sipping this down though. Appears a crystal clear black cherry juice color with a light tan head. The head disappears rapidly leaving streaks of lace around the glass. Huge aroma. Tons of malt, big fruit notes and a large amount of alcohol as well. Very strong cherry scent is what really stood out even over the big boozy notes. Taste starts of with strong cherry flavors and a smack of alcohol. Sweet caramel malts meld with fruits and molasses to try and tame the alcohol. The alcohol stands out in a big way all throughout this but for some reason it works quite well. Mouthfeel is thick and syrupy. Ridiculous drinkability, I would only call this a sipper because of the strength. This was surprisingly easy to get through even with the alcohol. Tasty and powerful treat that I would definitely have again. I would love to see what a year or so does to this one.

meathookjones, Apr 15, 2005
Photo of ommegangpbr
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Very, very smooth, especially for a brew that's so young and begs for aging.
Somewhere between a sipper and a guzzler.
The sweetness here flirts with being too much but holds on to being tasty.
A luxurious experience all around; I intend to cellar some, assuming I can resist the urge to open the bottles.
The alcohol is well used.
Not as hoppy as the 2004 Old Guardian... maltier in flavor profile.
Impressive all around.
Classier than it is badass.
Still pretty badass.

ommegangpbr, Oct 07, 2005
Photo of Tballz420
4.43/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This brew is a hazy, dark orange/brown color, huge cream colored head that lasts throughout the drink. Great lacing left behind. Caramel malts, hops, hint of alcohol spice in the nose. The taste is dominated by think malts, and finished with a smack of bitter hops. The alcohol warms the belly. The mouth is thick and syrupy. Outstanding.

Tballz420, Jun 22, 2005
Photo of cbl2
4.2/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

7/25/2005 $4.99 22 oz. 11.26% No best by date, and none required!

Appearance:

Beautiful is not a nice enough word to describe this. Glowing a vibrant orange from beneath, this mostly still ale is an amber brown towards the top, with a viscous appearance.

Aroma:

Caramel, figs, smooth malt characteristics, a hint of alcohol coupled with tropical fruit aroma. Reminds me of a carnival, and beckons to be tasted.

Taste/Mouthfeel:

Smooth and viscous with a huge alcohol presence coupled with a tantalizing dark fruit presence. Caramel sweet as it warms in the mouth with some subtle hop hints.

Purchased at Whole Foods 28th & 7th Ave, NYC for $5!!! This is nice and bready. Very drinkable even with the high ABV, which makes this one dangerous, but worth getting your hands on.

cbl2, Aug 02, 2006
Photo of crookedhalo
3.7/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a clear copper color with a very thin beige colored head. Aromas of caramelly and toffeeish malts with a strong hop prenence. More subtle notes of chocolate, berry/black currant and leafy hops. Very sticky and sweet with a decent bittering from the hops in the finish. I don't like this year's version as much as previous versions. Too sweet cloyingly alcoholic. I'll give it another whirl at a later date.

crookedhalo, Feb 24, 2005
Photo of kmo1030
4.38/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

poured in my snifter slightly hazy ruby brown with a tan head.
the smell consists of brown sugar, molasses, dark ripe fruits some, pears, strawberry, apple blossom, with some caramel behind it all.
the taste is hugely complex with a nutty caramel molasses flavor, with light ripe pear, apple and berries. has a little bit of a baked apple pie effect. herbal hop bitterness shows ups strong with some lighter citrus hops. a little later on i find a soft tea flavor coming out along with a good dose of bitter baking chocolate. the bitterness at the back of the palate is just right lending a lot to this beer.
very full bodied with light carbonation. very, very nice. good drinkability, but more than one bottle could definitely be a bit much for the palate.

kmo1030, Jul 04, 2005
Photo of OStrungT
3.83/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This beer pours a deep golden brown, with a white head. The head fades quickly, leaving a good amount of laces. This beer has a strong malty sweet aroma. I can definately detect an alcohol aroma. It has a very caramel like aroma also. It has a very subtle fruit aroma also. I can not detect much hop aroma at all. This beer has a big malty sweet flavor. It has a good caramel like taste. The alcohol content is very present in the flavor. It warms as it goes down. As with the aroma, there in not much hop flavor, although I do taste a slight piney flavor. This beer is full bodied. It leaves an alcohol, sweet malt aftertaste. This beer is not a good session beer at all. The flavor is verry aggressive, and the alcohol content is high. I think it is a very god beer, but just not one that I want to have all the time.

OStrungT, Nov 29, 2005
Photo of klewis
4.13/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: dark orange hue, almost no head, moderate lacing, carbonation briefly collected on the glass and disappeared shortly after I began to drink.

Smell: Dark fruits, mostly raisins, and traces of alcohol

Taste: Very strong cherry flavor, slightly sweet, that is balanced very nicely on the finish with prominent alcohol flavors.

Mouthfeel: Medium to full-bodied, just the right amount of carbonation.

Drinkability: I'm not sure if I would drink a lot of this in one sitting, but I would definitely purchase this again.

klewis, Jun 20, 2005
Photo of chilidog
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The Guardian is perhaps one of my favorite in the Stone line-up. I look forward every year for thisone and the 05 was & is a real treat.
It poured really sharp as I used just one of my Stone pint glasses. Its clean, clear, bright reddish/copper color shined through as a nice two finger, creamy off-white head formed. The head maintained well and the lace was sticky, almost ring like. The aroma was sweet, dark fruits with malts & alcohol. The taste was sharp, crisp and sweet, but in a pleasing manner. Dark fruits, malts that are caramelized with hints of toffee are balanced well with hops that are still on the grean side backed by a wooded or pine favor.
This beer is aggressive yes, with all that flavor an overhanging alcohol spices things up while the mouthfeel remains mild and the drinkability, very very smooth.
A great "05" for now { I think its ready } or later.

chilidog, Apr 02, 2005
Photo of nanobrew
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

nanobrew, Nov 18, 2011
Photo of warriorsoul
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had on tap on this fine Presidents Day at Redbones in Davis Square, MA.
Pours an incredible ruby color w/ a full finger of tan, creamy head, which lasts longer than I was expecting.
I have only two words to describe the aroma....cotton candy.
Taste is to die for....delightfully sweet, but not overbearing. Hints of cherries and sweet malts dance w/ my tastebuds, drawing me back again and again. The alcohol is so well hidden in this puppy, it is blowing me away....not even aged and so mellow.
The perfect amount of carbonation makes this brew very drinkable for the ABV%. I am now on a mission to hunt this down at the local stores...a must try in my opinion.

warriorsoul, Feb 21, 2005
Photo of karst
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Ripe pears, watermellon and other fruits, pine and hops, sweet caramel thick feeling malts and dominate alcohol aromas predict similar tastes. Balanced. A mighty11.26 abv that will lay you out for the remains of the day.
Respect it or expect to pay the price of its big number.

karst, Mar 01, 2005
Photo of PhineasGage
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

PhineasGage, Jan 27, 2012
Photo of BlindPig
4.85/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A- 1/4" light tan/off white head on a really clear deep orange amber body. Decent collar (compared to other years). Sticks to side of glass a bit and have a thin lacing covering about half top.
S- Alcohol and malts come through big. Some citrus hops and yeast smell. Bit bready. Some grapefruit and other fruits.
T- Nice big bitterness with big toffee malts. Grapefruit and a bit of orange. Alcohol comes through big also. All flavors very big and standing alone but still manage to blend just enough. Bits of bread come through also. The caramel malts also in there with the toffee. Very sweet.
M-Medium body with medium carbonation
D- It is a excellent beer and still young. Can't wait to try this about 5 years later (if I would have one).

BlindPig, Dec 12, 2006
Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2005 from Stone Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 119 ratings.