Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2007 - Stone Brewing Co.
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Ratings: 286 | Reviews: 239 | Display Reviews Only:
5/5 rDev +20.8%
Beautiful cloudy orange body, orange tinted head, great retention that leaves clumpy lace.
The smell is caramel, hops and alcohol in perfect balance with some grass and bread.
Perfect caramel spiced hop goodness. Mild toffee and mouthwatering strong brown sugar and burnt pine resin. The aftertaste lasts forever and is beyond excellent.
Full thick body, good coating and slick.
So delicious and drinkable, just take it slow or the Old Guardian will get up and kick your ass.
04-07-2007 20:59:23 | More by oelergud
4.9/5 rDev +18.4%
Well I'd been sitting on these bottles for a few months, and tonight I decided to crack my first one. And from the first sip, I thought WOW, this is the best BW I've ever had! And, between 2 BW fests this winter, my own homebrews, as well as a bunch of well regarded bombers in the fridge, I've had quite a few! My running favorite was a tie between my own and Midnight Sun's Arctic Devil...but until I can do a taste off, this is clearly the one.
Poured into a bomber, Old Gaurdian is a clear tawny amber, with a thin egg shell head and relatively active carbonation, leaving a moderate foamy lace. I dig it, on the lighter side, but quite nice.
The nose is pleasantly sweet, lots of cinammon and caramel, with a nutty, grape malt punch and a touch of booze. It's not as robust as some, but I really dig the cinnamon, it plays right into my sweet tooth, beer wise!
While the nose was tantalizing, the taste is where this really rises above, and to my palate, boarders on sublime - I give it a 5! So fruity and rich, caramel and vanilla, barely discernible alcohol, and a fairly clean, bitter finish, it's pretty much my ideal take on the style. In regards to hype, I hadn't yet been been blown away by Stone's brews before, which is why I sat on these for 3 or 4 months, but damn - this is the shit! I'm getting a case next year, and if I had more money and time, I'd get more! Fuckin incredible! I'd be curious to taste it fresh at their pub, and I can't wait to have my other bottle, for which I hope I can hold off for at least 9-12 months!
Like the color, the mouthfeel's on the lighter side, pretty smooth with a touch of creamy carbonation. Maybe a little cloying, I'd have to have this in a barleywine off to give it a 5. But since I don't have that luxury tonight, trust that it's nice and light for the style.
Watch out, this is one crazy dangerous BW! If I had more of these to drink tonight, which I wish I did, I can see myself really getting into trouble. I see the ABV on the label, but aside from the ruddy glow in my cheeks, it's nothing but butter. And my difficulty focusing on the proofread! Wow, I'm really surprised how much this Old Guardian has blown me away! The only negative is that, in spite as how smooth it tastes, I can really taste the hobo breath. But if your kissing someone drinking vodka, you're covered...If you see them, buy a few, drink some now and cellar the rest.
06-09-2007 08:06:31 | More by ccrida
4.83/5 rDev +16.7%
A- Thick light tan head in my Old Guardian tulip. Crystal clear light amber, dark orange body. Almost a copper.
S- Big citrus and pine hops. Grapefruit comes through quite a bit too. Some alcohol is found in there also. Hints of bread and light yeast. Very faint hints of caramel too.
T- Citrus and light pine flavors come out first. Grapefruit is in there with that. Caramel and toffee malt body come in soon after. Alcohol throws itself in there to be tasted with the malt body. It then fades to something I can't quite put my finger on. Almost like a light bread? The alcohol gives a nice harsh warming through the big bitterness that is lingering on the tongue from the very first sip. I don't think the alcohol warming is as bad as everyone has made it out to be. It is there but it isn't a LOT! There are a lot worse beers. There is a grapefruit undertone to all of this also.
M- Full body with low carbonation.
D- It is really good. I do prefer these than bigfoot (both being fresh). I think it has a nice warming to it and just a very good complex beer and great example of the style.
Note: I would want to give it a 4.75 on the taste and a 4.75 on the drainkability, but I can't. I don't think though that it should just get a 4.5 and that is why I chose to round up.
02-04-2007 05:56:55 | More by BlindPig
4.78/5 rDev +15.5%
filled a growler at stone last saturday night. pours beautifully, with a murky dark orange body and an orange-ish white head. smells of everything you want a barleywine to smell like, though the scent is not as strong as one would want it to be. very sweet and citrus fruity. great.
wow. the flavor is truly exceptional. all of the flavors have developed into a mellow complexity that just works. the over-bearing hoppiness characteristic of fresh old guardian has finally settled into its place among the other flavors. fruity (oranges, apricots, grapes) and sugary, which adds up to a great sweetness that is put in check by what is left of the bitter hops. all of this is complemented by a perfect alcohol presence that is as subtle as the rest of the beer, and only adds to its greatness.
mouthfeel is a little lighter than i would like it to be, and it has lost perhaps a little too much carbonation. the drinkability is scary, especially at 11.26%
09-23-2009 02:19:40 | More by jdklks
4.78/5 rDev +15.5%
Stone Old Guardian
Limited Early 2007 Release
Served in an Allagash tulip glass
Pours an amber brown with a hazy burnt orange tint. A rocky head with great sustain appears. Spotted trails of sticky lacings form complex patterns on the side of the glassware.
Yowza...intense nose with whiffs of sweetness, possibly tropical fruits. Major hop bombs in the nose lending comparisons to balsam fur and a freshly peeled clementine orange.
Toasted grains with a juicy caramel malt backing. Syrupy, but not overwhelming like other American barley wines. Hints of dark fruits with a sweet and spicy citrus contrast. This beer is hot with a touch of rubbing alcohol sharpness due to its infancy. Raisins soaked in Caribbean rum with a black pepper bite. Crazy hop delight with a resiny feel that makes the tastebuds pucker with delight.
11.26% ABV = no joke. A sipper for sure.
No doubt I ripped into this beer too early in the season. I couldn't contain my excitement once I spotted this gem on the shelves. This will age with pure grace. That's why I tucked one away for down the road. Yet another excellent offering from Stone.
I love this brewery.
02-09-2007 01:42:05 | More by Hibernator
4.72/5 rDev +14%
Appearance: Reddish glow
Head: no head, just a small runner on the sides of the glass
Smell: Dark citrus with a big maltyness no heat
Taste: Sweet malts with a dark light citric hop and subtle warmth
Weight: Heavy body
Finish: Light biter citric with lots of stickiness on the lips
If you ask me for another I would say, yes!
04-06-2011 04:48:04 | More by Snow81
4.72/5 rDev +14%
Poured from the 22oz bottle into a pint glass.
Appearance is clear with just a slight haze. Color is a glowing golden amber with red hues. Off-white head is minimal with no real retention but decent lace. Loads of hop oil floating up top.
Aroma is mild and floral. Orange blossoms and a fresh, woodsy, beach. Cherries and some spiceyness, along with a fresh-cut grassy hop and candy sugar.
The taste starts with a bitter hop and quickly eases into a decadently sweet and sugary malt, then returns to a bitter pine aftertaste. Flavors are complex and extremely well rounded...so much so that it's hard to distinguish them all....plus they seem to "dance": just when I focus on the malt, the hop comes into play, and vice-versa.
A malt backbone of butter, honey, caramel and toffee combines with an Angelfood Candy quality, and plays off subtle esters- apple, orange rind, lemon juice, hints of strawberry, and a resiny hemp. The floral bouquet is subtle but definitely notable, lending a delicate orange and cherry blossom, along with a nosey potpourri. Very complex, very difficult to do it justice.
All in all a very enjoyable and extremely drinkable brew. Oh, and you can't taste the alcohol. At all. Very impressive for such a potent beer. I nearly downed the entire bomber just to get at the taste. The only downfall is the appearance...the head sucks. But, head is highly variable. This is a great brew.
03-17-2007 06:53:04 | More by uberabr
4.72/5 rDev +14%
A lovely light ruby/gold color that seems to glow. A nice tan head to complement.
Hoppy and sweet smelling with notes of citrus and candy.
Big time sweetness along with citrusy hops that are so well integrated together. Alcohol is nowhere to be found. Such a treat on the palate.
Big body, slick and smooth. A very clean feel as well.
This is one of the best Barleywines I have ever had. The aging seems to have allowed the flavors to marry perfectly. Awesome, awesome beer!
03-31-2011 19:09:02 | More by jera1350
4.72/5 rDev +14%
A - A hazy copper brew with a medium sized head with impressive retention. Thin intricate webs of lacing cling indefinitely to the glass. Tiny bubbles move as if through molasses.
S - Caramel malt with a hint of honey and maple syrup. Hints of licorice as well. A peppery alcohol flirts with piney and floral hops. All vie for dominance of the nose and seem to oscillate their control. It is great, but too mild.
T - Calling this flavor complex would be like calling , it simply misses the gravity of the scenario. Initially, there is a malty caramel infused with honey and licorice while a strange (yet delightful) fruity alcohol dances on the back of the tongue. This fruity abv lingers through into the aftertaste where it is slowly joined by a peppery hop bitterness as the sweetness fades. Te alcohol then fades as this delightful bitterness comes to the foreground with a touch of honey lingering to smooth it out. Amazing.
M - Thick, smooth and refreshing.
D - Awesome. I want more bottles. This is the perfect brew to end a rough day. Stone has both disappointed and impressed me in the past - but this monster simply blew me away. I need more bottles.
02-18-2008 05:54:57 | More by mrasskicktastic
4.68/5 rDev +13%
Oh yeah, an early release of a fine, young barley wine that just gets better...year after year!
From the 22oz. brown bomber with silk-screened label, pours a deep coppery orange with a stiff and creamy beige head with a slight orange tint. Good head retension with ample carbonation and plenty of lace left as consumed...nice.
Sweet, floral and fruity in the nose, very much the scent of honeysuckle. The maltyness dominates with sweet and fusel alcohols running down deep and a grassy hop note past that. The smell is sweet and tantilizing with lots going on in it's young stages...fairly complex, yet well balanced.
Sweet, malty intro with a fruity and alcoholic punch, fusel and billowy through the middle and ending cleanly sahweet. Light bitter aftermath.
Plenty viscous in body, loads of alcohol ta-boot...take it easy on this one if your not used to the big beers exceeding 11% ABV. Very enjoyable now, but will age beautifully like a fine wine, no doubt! Cheers to a brew of my favorite style!
01-26-2007 04:44:24 | More by scottoale
4.68/5 rDev +13%
Coppery amber beauty with a two finger head that after about 15 minutes fades to a ring around the top with some willowy clouds in the middle. The smell is not incredibly descriptive, but good nontheless. Raisiny and sweet, and doesn't attempt to hide it's high ABV. The taste is a sheer knockout. Hot with alcohol, and similar to my favorite dessert, creme brulee and Disaronno. Nice hop presence, high for the style, but it's Stone. Besides, that's nothing a little time in the ol' cellar won't tone down. My mouth was delighted by this heavenly brew, as it is as smooth as can be. Drinkability is marred only by the massive alcohol content. Not for use with the lawn mower. Extraordinary.
02-21-2007 23:20:34 | More by jeffjfindley
4.64/5 rDev +12.1%
Fortunate to grab a growler and a glass at the company store. Served in a 10oz. Glass.
A: A golden copper color. Very cloudy/opaque, such that I cannot see through the glass. Thin white head retention.
S: Very malty and strong flavors of carmel. A beautiful and complex aroma. you can tell its aged well. Reminds me a little of a dry 18-year old scotch.
T: immediately, the sweet carmel and toffee hits me. Next, is a nice, smooth malt backbone, followed by a bitter, hoppy finish that lingers. I feel like I'm going to taste this for hours (but in a good way). It's amazing how the flavors are so bold after almost six years. It's definitely one of the best barleywines I've had.
M: Definitely thick and chewy. It completely coats my mouth.
Overall, fantastic! 'Nuff said.
07-22-2011 21:47:43 | More by akorsak
04-09-2013 18:31:01 | More by thetastywort
Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2007 from Stone Brewing Co.
92 out of 100 based on 286 ratings.