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Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2006 - Stone Brewing Co.

Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2006Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2006

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

186 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 186
Reviews: 161
rAvg: 4.14
pDev: 9.18%


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

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  11.20% ABV

Availability: Spring

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

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: WebmasterMike on 03-02-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 186 | Reviews: 161 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of hophead247
hophead247

California

4.35/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy dark amber with a thin off-white head. Very nice malty aroma with some sweetness and orange peel noted as well. The flavor, in a word, is luscious. Superbly well balanced malt and hops with caramel and cognac also in the background. Wonderful, full mouthfeel with just the right viscocity. I did not find this beer aggressive in the least and the alcohol was incredibly well hidden. This is a finely crafted barley wine.

Serving type: bottle

02-15-2010 00:46:46 | More by hophead247
Photo of mrmanning
mrmanning

Ontario (Canada)

3.48/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2006 bottle courtesy of HogtownHarry. This BW is a deep and hazy caramel colour, topped with a frothy beige cap. The nose is huge on this one. Massive caramel and piney hops meet citric notes, some apricot, bread crust too. Tastes of big complex malts, caramel and butterscotch, piney, citric hops, some apricot. Quite bitter and malty on the finish, massive lingering hoppiness. A slight metallic twang at the end. Good stuff. Thanks Harry!

Serving type: bottle

08-01-2009 12:15:25 | More by mrmanning
Photo of flexabull
flexabull

California

4.25/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle courtesy of BeerBeing from way back when, thanks again! (wherever you are...)

Have been thinking of drinking something from the cellar, figured this one would be prime for the drinking now that it's 3+ years old. Let's see...

Pours a bright and dark orange color, a little cloudy, with a nice off white head.

Aromas are quite grainy, like sweet grape nuts, a little bit of hard candies, and with some earthy hops on the nose. Very complex and nice.

Taste has some definite boozy flavors, but it doesn't totally kick you in the teeth with all the alcohol. Up front, there are light malts, a little creaminess, easy and sweet cereal grains, and some bright stewed fruit flavors. Finish has a mineral hop bite, a light bourbon flavor, and some alcohol warmth. As mentioned before, there is plenty of alcohol here, but it manages to not overwhelm.

Mouthfeel is nice, and this beer manages to be smooth and full, without being to heavy on the mouth. Manages to go down and feel easy on the mouth.

Drinkability is quite good. This beer is drinking quite nicely. Goes down very easy for such a huge beer, and is light years from the big beast that Old Guardian tends to be when released. If you have one in the cellar, it wouldn't be a bad idea to crack one open, and see what you think.

Serving type: bottle

06-12-2009 03:15:54 | More by flexabull
Photo of frothyhead
frothyhead

New Jersey

3.78/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

After a year and a half or so stored in a closet I decided to pour this one before it got too old.

Pours a cloudy amber/brown/red into a snifter with not much head to speak of. A little off-white ring around the glass. No lacing.

Nose is malty and boosy. Bready yeast, caramel, some apricot, a hint of chocolate. Smells more like an old ale than a barleywine.

Mouth is full bodied with minimal carbonation. Thick and velvety with an alcohol burn and dryness in the finish.

Taste is malty and straight up alcoholic. This one has a pretty rough burn. Some caramel, chocolate. Bready. Some bitter and citrusy hops in there, but I think they've faded quite a bit at this point or are at least overshadowed by the alcohol bite.

Drinkability takes a big hit as this is a serious sipper - the alcohol bite and lingering dry, bitter finish slow this one down quite a bit.

Overall I'm enjoying this but not as much as some nice fresh, hoppy barleywines I've had recently. This is my first Old Gaurdian, so I'll be interested in looking back on this when I crack a bottle of the 2008 I have in the fridge. There is something rather intangible about this 2006, though, that is going to make me inflate the scores ever so slightly. As it warms, the flavors are melding a bit and, even with all the strong flavors bursting about, it is balancing out in a way that makes it an enjoyable beer to drink.

Serving type: bottle

04-17-2009 01:24:32 | More by frothyhead
Photo of woemad
woemad

Washington

4.38/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Review # 666!
I decided for such a review I'd better not tempt fate in light of my usual luck, so I went for the protection that only a Stone gargoyle could provide from such potential bad mojo.

Big-ass silkscreened bomber that states it was an early 2006 release. Purchased for $4.99 at Daanen's in Hayden, Idaho (I think) around the time it was brand new.

Poured a hazy dark amber color that takes on a slightly brighter hue when held up to light. ¾ of an inch of bubbly beige foam sits on top initially, but rapidly recedes to a sudsy collar. Spotty lace.

Caramel tinged malts and spicy hops greet the nostrils. There's some citrusy and raisiny scents floating around as well.

Caramel sweetness is what first greets the tastebuds, but it's almost immediately paired with a spicy hop blast. I've heard that this is something of a hop monster when fresh. Over three years of aging has no doubt decreased the hop impact, but it's still present to a degree that melds well with the malts. There's some toasted malts and a mild flavor of dark fruit as well. A big dry note smacks the palate at the swallow. As this beer warms up, the belly finds itself being increasingly warmed by the growing booziness of the beer.

Relatively full bodied, with a sticky, resiny mouthfeel. The carbonation correctly keeps things from seeming too leaden.

A great nightcap beer to the point where I wished I'd saved it for such a use. It worked out well as a beer for post-work mellowing, however. I'll just have to put off making dinner until the buzz decreases!

Serving type: bottle

04-06-2009 00:26:33 | More by woemad
Photo of Vancer
Vancer

Illinois

4.45/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Holy moly, look what I found in the back of the closet cellar! Cool!

Oh yeah, pours a cascading hazy amber with a cascading tan head, plenty foamy even after 3 years and a whopping 11%+ Oily sheets of lace ripple around the Corsendonk tulip.

Classic, pure classic Barleywine aroma - sweet caramel malts back with the orange liquor. Progresses into the quaff nicely, add a bit of stinging alcohol and hop bite for an enjoyable Barleywine afternoon while March madness prevails. Finish has plenty of hops to balance with the initial sweetness.

A full bodied beer, to say the least. A true sipper, the hot alcohol is still there and biting me in the arse.

Serving type: bottle

03-21-2009 19:51:52 | More by Vancer
Photo of seaoflament
seaoflament

California

3.93/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I bought this one sometime in 2007.

Pours an amber color with ruby sides, very little foam. Maybe this was a little too cold when I poured it so let's see how the second pour presents itself. A swirl does seem to make the beer more active and attractive. The second pour was pretty much the same.

Deep caramel, brown sugar, cherry, toast, and faint orange and grapefruit hops in the background. Ripe fig and prunes as the beer opens up, some nutty malts as well. I thought it would be more intense in the aroma but it doesn't seem to be that malty sweet or complex.

Now that's better. Toast, brown sugar, caramel, toffee, cocoa, raisins, figs, cherry, strawberry, and ale yeast fruitiness. Low bitterness in the finish but enough to balance out the malt and the alcohol. Subtle citrus flavors in the background, lemon, sweet orange, grapefruit, and tangerine. Hop like resin flavor in the finish/aftertaste. A little more toffee and malt character and I would have been sold on this one. Still quite tasty.

A little syrupy up front but the carbonation lifts up the beer and guides it nicely though the palate. Very nice mouth-feel.

Serving type: bottle

02-13-2009 05:02:22 | More by seaoflament
Photo of brentk56
brentk56

North Carolina

4.38/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a hazy amber with a thick head that retains nicely and leaves a nice pattern of lace

Smell: Rich caramel aroma, with figs and vague hints of citrus fruit, much of which have long since faded

Taste: Rich caramel and fig spice cake flavor, with some developing bitterness that arrives by mid-palate; still the profile is dominated by the sweet elements; after the swallow, the bitter flavors become more balanced, with considerable citrusy bitterness, although there is plenty of residual caramel/fig sweetness on the tip of the tongue

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with moderate carbonation; some warmth after the swallow

Drinkability: For those who like a balanced barleywine, as I do, this is drinking very nicely right now; a couple of years of aging have taken the edge off the hops but there is still aplenty to go around to balance the flavor profile

Serving type: bottle

12-28-2008 14:46:16 | More by brentk56
Photo of dirtylou
dirtylou

Washington

3.88/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

limited early 2006 release...i believe i have only had the 04 release prior to this

enjoyed during bears-titans with a funky bleu mont dairy reserve cheese

appearance: served in a hopleaf tulip, bright amber body, autumnal highlights...light beige ring with very light lacing. Its not as aggressive on the eyes as i would have imagined

smell: sweet malty nectar, notes of a once-bitter hop profile come through after the brown sugar and alcohol whiffs fade...2 years out from the release of this and the aroma is a bit messy

taste: This Stone release has a big malty center and heavy notes of nut and fig...brown sugar, alcohol, and a fading bitter hop profile make this a very powerful ale. This is good, but not great....i much preferred the 04 version and hope the 05 i have will be drinking nicely

mouthfeel: creamy and full, very high bitterness

drinkability: rough stuff for sure

Serving type: bottle

11-09-2008 20:06:46 | More by dirtylou
Photo of kinger
kinger

Ohio

4.8/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Limited early 2006 release, 11.26% abv with a long story on the back in print that is way too small. WoW this beer knocked my socks off in every aspect. Poured a subtle golden amber color with pencil thin head and no lacing, random bubbles float to the surface - cool. Sitting next to me my wife suddenly said "your beer smells like wine" exactly, the aroma is a floral bouquet of super sweet malts complimented by citrus and sweet hops. Overpowering and aggressive the sweet scent invites you to sample the precious nectar that awaits. Flavor is extremely intense melding loads of malts, sweet and bitter with a dry hoppiness that shouldn't work but it does all too well. The alcohol walks through the door and shakes your hand but you are still thinking about the malts. The flavor lends itself to a smooth mouthfeel that finishes slightly bitter, the perfect ending to a wonderful story. Overall this is intense and beautiful, truly another fantastic effort created by Stone. Cudos

Serving type: bottle

08-01-2008 12:46:32 | More by kinger
Photo of beerthulhu
beerthulhu

New Jersey

4.33/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a dark mahogany red with a big 2+ finger rocky tan head that was moderately lasting.

S: malty and dry with pine and dried grapefruit.

T: some dark caramel and dried fruit with some toffee sweetness. There was only slight alcohol hints and otherwise was hidden nicely. There was some dark molasses, rum raisin and a soothing dark roasted nature.

M: creamy and smooth with a full body. There is a slight stickiness from the sweet malt and hop resins.

D: An easy drinking and very enjoyable barley with a good complexity of dried fruit and Chinook hopping.

Serving type: bottle

07-02-2008 00:03:14 | More by beerthulhu
Photo of BuckeyeNation
BuckeyeNation

Iowa

3.85/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Glazed dark apricot with a subtle cherry blush. A vigorous pour produced a thickly creamy crown the color of orange-brown sugar mousse. I'm surprised at the amount of sea foam lace given the ABV. There must be plenty of hop resins still hanging around. Good.

The malt portion of the nose smells like primarily pale with an assist from something slightly darker. Typical Old Guardian BWSA. Other aromas include orange liqueur and... not much else. Unless things open up with warming... not impressed.

This bottle of OG is about two years of age. In that time, the hops have faded significantly and the alcohol is still on the rambunctious side. I have always thought that more caramel malt would result in a better beer that would age more gracefully. Midnight Sun Arctic Devil is a prime example.

Perhaps the key is to drink Old Guardian super-fresh. Maybe then the alpha acids put a major smackdown on the ethanol and neutralize it more effectively. In spite of a flavor profile that is less than complex, this is good beer. It has the orange peel macerated in triple sec and Irish whiskey vibe that a lot of pale malt-dominant barleywines possess.

Even though hop flavor is no longer intense, hop bitterness does a bang-up job countering the prodigious, sugar cookie-like malt backbone. The contrast between the drying qualities of the hops and the alcohol on the one hand, and the stickiness of the malt sugars on the other hand, makes for an interesting tug-of-war on the tongue.

Now matter how the brewery changes this ale from year to year (hop bill only, I think), it always has a wonderfully full mouthfeel. This edition seems more firm than creamy, but that isn't a problem at all.

It's too bad that Stone (Greg) doesn't seem to be open to a major overhaul of the 'always dependable, but seldom outstanding' Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale. Tradition is all well and good, but sometimes thinking outside the box is the best way to go. There's no reason why this barleywine can't be as fantastic as most of the rest of their lineup.

Serving type: bottle

03-04-2008 22:36:09 | More by BuckeyeNation
Photo of Med
Med

Pennsylvania

4.6/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Color is very good. Caramel and very uniform. The only disappointment is the almost non-existent head (off-white) that disappeared quickly and no lacing.

S - Clean with no hint at the high alcohol.

T - Layers of flavor with an initial hoppiness quickly turning into a balanced sweetness hinting caramel. Fantastic.

M - Disappointing lack of bubbles, but a nice texture

D - This is an amazingly smooth beer, especially for the strength. I can't wait to see what more time will do to it!

Serving type: bottle

02-24-2008 22:10:11 | More by Med
Photo of FtownThrowDown
FtownThrowDown

Ohio

2.78/5  rDev -32.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

2006 vintage. Pours a light ruby brown in color. Smell is hops, alcohol and some malt. The hops are still shining through in the taste even after more than a year in the cellar. Nice huge mouthfeel. This one will definitely hurt you at over 11%. A decent warmer on a cold winters night.

Serving type: bottle

02-07-2008 16:04:09 | More by FtownThrowDown
Photo of williamherbert
williamherbert

New York

3.3/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The beer is the color of a light blush. White finger of foamy head. Tony upswimming bubbles. Very hazy.

Pungent, smoky barley aroma. Heavy deep grape with notes of bitter cherry. Barley and alcohol are dominant. A bit too grainy an aroma for me.

The barley taste is big and grainy, with sweet and bitter cherry and grape flavors. Very harsh with alcohol and thick barley. Less brutal as it warms up.

Feels fizzy like a Belgian ale, but thicker and more chewy. Not my favorite of the Stone brews (although to be fair, barleywines are not my forte). Drinkable, though.

Serving type: bottle

01-13-2008 19:12:49 | More by williamherbert
Photo of brewcrew76
brewcrew76

Wisconsin

3.53/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Spring 2006

A - Pours murky amber copper with 2 fingers of head and a touch of lacing.

S - Very malty with caramel and apricot. Some raisin, tropical fruit and alcohol is also present.

T - Malty with caramel and toffee. Malt forward with citrus grapefruit hoppyness.

M - Medium to thick with sticky almost syrupy mouthfeel. Light carbonation.

D - Very drinkable for the abv but I was expectingmore from Stone.

Serving type: bottle

12-31-2007 03:15:05 | More by brewcrew76
Photo of ThatWineGuy
ThatWineGuy

Ontario (Canada)

4.05/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I feel the need to start with a disclaimer: my beer bud and I opened this to celebrate a moment recently, a clearly compulsive act since the beer was not refrigerated and came out of the cellar at about 20 degrees celsius * groan *.

A brown head that dissipated too early with not a lot of carbonation gave way to a ruby colour. Given better lighting, there were lots of well-spaced miniscule bubbles that revealed a fullness of life. Cherry on the nose with malty baguette suggestions. This barley wine offering was loaded with hops and very full in the mouth, reminescent of a port or sherry, giving way to an over ripe mango in the finish. The combination of big alcohol and warm serving temperature threatened to knock me out with an intoxicating finish.

As I said in the disclaimer, there's a reason why the scoring here is not higher - where it deserves to be. Clearly another sampling - a proper one - is necessary to give this product the recognition it deserves. Now, I need to find one of these, or drive to the States at my first good opportunity...

Serving type: bottle

08-10-2007 18:24:28 | More by ThatWineGuy
Photo of lackenhauser
lackenhauser

Maryland

4.3/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep, somewhat cloudy orange in color. Huge nose of dried fruit-apricots and figs come to mind. Very malty up front. Slick and viscous flavors of fruit, malt and alcohol. Very heavily hopped. Big, wet, slick grapefruit flavors. Loose some of the alcohol to round it off a bit more-aging would do that I am sure. Good body-pleasant tongue stripping quality to it. Very drinakble and enjoyable barleywine. It has been a year-a few more would calm this down into a real gem. Get some/horde some.

Serving type: bottle

07-28-2007 02:55:39 | More by lackenhauser
Photo of objectivemonkey
objectivemonkey

Minnesota

4.22/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Early spring release, 2006. Into a chalice, pours a deep orange color with a small whitish head, but little lacing to speak of. A swift swirl yields a falling sheet of lacing that doesn't stick. The aroma is well tempered by now, the malts well developed, lots of caramels and a hint of citric fruit, the hops a little more laid back from the aging, and the alcohol probably a little more assertive. True to Stone form, the taste is much more hoppier than the nose, even at this age. They lend a oily orange to a thick, sweet, juicy malt base, and then, more subtly than should be legal, the alcohol creeps in, warming, soft even, a very well crafted sucker this is. The mouth is smooth, sticky and sweet, slightly carbonated still and very much warming. Overall, I was hoping for more, but perhaps thats just because I expect the best from Stone.

Serving type: bottle

06-19-2007 02:45:28 | More by objectivemonkey
Photo of mdm46410
mdm46410

Indiana

4.1/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a pint glass. Pours a deep golden/amber with a small foamy tan head. Aroma is hops, grapefruit, caramel and alcohol. Beautiful aroma. Flavor is that of fruits, sweet malts and a hint of alcohol with an upfront hop bitterness. Full bodied with a decent amount of carbonation. The alcohol is very well hidden and not overpowering on your tounge. Nice, warming, creamy mouthfeel. Very well done.

Serving type: bottle

05-29-2007 23:32:58 | More by mdm46410
Photo of jackorain
jackorain

Pennsylvania

3.83/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- Dark amber copper, a little cloudy. Big white head, very good retention and fantastic lace.
S- Carmel malt, biscuit malt. Alcohol carries a raisony smell and tripical fruit, nothing earth shattering here.
T-Great big malts, carmel, mollasses. After the swallow a great big dose of green hop bite comes through. The bitterness lingers quite long.
M-Creamy medium to fill body, mild nice carbonation
D-Drinkable for such a high ABV, but this is still the limiting factor.

Serving type: bottle

05-14-2007 16:57:52 | More by jackorain
Photo of RedHaze
RedHaze

Nebraska

4.05/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle purchased at Jim's Homebrew in Spokane, WA

Pours a murky rusty brown, with a one finger head that settles quickly to a thin soapy cap. There's really no lacing to speak of at all with this one, but that's not very surprising considering to alcohol content.

Smell; lots of brown sugar and toffee with some biscuity malts, and dark cherries. There's also a fair amount of piney hops in the nose along with a little alcohol.

Taste; lots of sweet malts upfront, with toffee, brown sugar and some faint hints of maple syrup. Mildly fruity with some dark cherries and and rum soaked raisins. The finish is piney hops and spicy alcohol, with a definite warming in the belly. The alcohol presence is not as you would pronounced in the flavor as you would expect with this being 11.2%.

Mouthfeel is very full bodied, and comes of a sticky and syrupy. The drinkability is pretty decent, and would be much better if the alcohol were not so high and the palate were not so sticky.

Serving type: bottle

04-22-2007 02:07:38 | More by RedHaze
Photo of dickieb
dickieb

Rhode Island

4.38/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poors a nice amber, with a finger of quickly dispating head. Smell is very sweet, with a good hint alcohol, and a good amount of maltyness. Comes on with a strong sweet and almost fruity taste, which leads to a realy piny/citrusy hopyness. Pretty smooth and drinkable for a fairly fresh and green barleywine. Im overall very happy with this, and the other stone beers i now have avalible to me now that i work in Mass.

Serving type: bottle

04-17-2007 23:17:28 | More by dickieb
Photo of tonistruth
tonistruth

Nevada

3.8/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- clear copper, oddly similar to color of empty bottle little retent on a 1/4" white head, leaving little signs of its existence.

S- overload on malts, syrupy sweet, citrus tang, bready, caramel

T- heavy on malt sweetness, fruit(date, raisin), alcohol heat at finish, piney and grassy hop toward finish, citrus

M- medium body, surprisingly smooth, higher carbonation level than expected, coats palate

D- not the best barley wine but very enjoyable, recommended, its good

Serving type: bottle

03-17-2007 01:10:20 | More by tonistruth
Photo of bkett01
bkett01

Massachusetts

3.93/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Managed to hold onto this one for a year without drinking it somehow. It pours with a healthy tan head over a highly carbonated reddish/orange brew. It leaves a sticky lacing behind on the glass as it settles down.
Smell is a complex sweet aroma containing hints of dark fruits and alcohol. Taste is very sweet, and while the hop character has faded away over the year, we're still left with a very enjoyable well rounded barley wine. The sweetness is balanced out with a mild warming finish. Glad I held onto a couple of these, and looking forward to seeing how another 6 months changes my other one.

Serving type: bottle

02-10-2007 03:07:46 | More by bkett01
Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2006 from Stone Brewing Co.
92 out of 100 based on 186 ratings.