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Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2007 - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2007Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2007

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
91
outstanding

239 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 239
Hads: 289
rAvg: 4.08
pDev: 8.33%
Wants: 4
Gots: 14 | 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:
Beer added by: Wildman on 01-25-2007

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 239 | Hads: 289
Photo of Floydster
3.53/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

22 ounce bottle from Hollymain Liquor in El Segundo

Poured into a Stone pint glass

Very, very strong tasting barleywine with a fairly thick head

Least favorite beer from Stone Brewing

Too sweet for my liking, probably would not drink this again, being that I could barley get through 16 ounces of the bottle (311 characters)

Photo of NJpadreFan
3.45/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Stone- Old Guardian

Limited Early 2007 release

Appearance- Golden copper brown with a thick, creamy, sticky head. Thick lacing down the glass.
Smell- Oily green hops with grape/ plum notes. Alcohol is also present.
Taste- A quick dose of pungent hops followed with a sweet hit of fruits, raisin, prune, and cherry. Alcohol shows up in the end.
Mouthfeel- Sweet and cough medicine like from beginning to end. Slighty thick with a big hit of alcohol in the end.

Overall- This is 11.26% alc, so this is slighty potent beer here. I aged it for 4-5 months but feel that had probably little effect on it.
A good sipper for a relaxing evening or in place of wine. (671 characters)

Photo of DIM
4.27/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

a: This is lighter than the average barleywine, looks a bit like an amber ale. Pours with a medium sized white head.

s: It's been less than a year, but the change is pronounced. The piny hop has ebbed a bit to let the malts through.The malts are now big and sweet with hints of chocolate and cherries. Alcohol blankets everything.

t: Some changes for the better here as well. The piny hop still dominates and is still a bit too rough and agressive. The balance from the malt is coming along nicely, however. Some mild chocolate and moderate amounts of brown sugar. Still a bit too hot on the finish.

m: For a hoppy as hell barleywine the carbonation is perfect, foamy rather than fizzy. Thick and very sticky.

d: I might try to find some more 07s for aging. (761 characters)

Photo of Overlord
4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had a chance to try this on New Years Eve. Yey.

Pours a reddish amber, with not much of a head. Maybe a thin crust of carbonation throughout.

Taste is aggressively hoppy; startling so, in fact. Not a bad taste, mind you, just not what I was expecting. Pine needles, grapefruit, and a gargantuan alcohol bite. Maybe a bit more caramel malt to balance it out than would expected from a DIPA/IPA, but I would scarcely have guessed this was a barleywine.

Still, very quaffable. (477 characters)

Photo of mcallister
3.6/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Looks like Old Gaurdian. Nice and burnt orange with ruby red hints abound. Big off white head lasted fairly long considering the ABV. Nice fluffy lacing slides down the glass.

Dried fruity, with big toffee and caramel malt components. A lovely floral hop brings it all together. Raisin, fig, brown sugar, hints of maple, sweetly complex, and very enticing. Now too wait for this beast too warm up.

A little hot and slightly out of whack. May need a little more time too mature. Hops are bitter and in your face. Very floral with hints of pine. Hop actually drowns out the sweet toffee, and caramel notes. Dried viognier grapes seem too be hidden in the back. Fig is delicate and somewhat lost, brown sugar does add a little depth too the mid-palate.

Mouth is medium and bruatally bitter. A year in bottle (or keg for this matter) should help bring those unto themselves and tame this beast. (900 characters)

Photo of grub
4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Viggo was nice enough to share this one. he bought us each one to age, and brought this one over to share. thanks eric!

22oz bottle.

pours a great red colour with a small fine yellow head. the first two glasses were crystal clear, but the bottom of the bottle came a little cloudy.

aroma is great. tons of caramel. alcohol. pine and grapefruit hops. big biscuit and bread malt base. bit of yeast in the last glass.

taste is good. great caramel sweetness. big bread and biscuit malts. grapefruit and orange. bit of pine. medium bitterness level - a little lower than i expected in a fresh sample. the alcohol is there, but seems deceptively light.

mouthfeel is good. silky smooth well integrated medium-low carbonation level. medium-large body.

drinkability is great. well balanced and very nice, but nearly as good as the 2005 i had earlier this year. looking forward to trying this one with some age. (907 characters)

Photo of JayQue
4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A good solid barleywine. Pours a orange/amber color with an off white head. Head retention less than average . some lacing.

Strong Malty and spicy aroma. Good strong caramel malty and spicy taste. The beer I drank was a year old. I woud have wanted to see if there was a more hoppy presence in a fresh beer.

Mouthfeel is rich and inviting/ Drinkability is good, knowing that 24 oz is all you can handle/

A very nice beer!! (426 characters)

Photo of RonfromJersey
4.55/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Red orange body, clear but thick. Some fine carbonation. Off white head drops from one finger to table top to oil slick but clings desparately to the edges.

Rich sweet aroma. Heavy with candy and light fruits.

Taste starts rich, powerfully sweet. Might be sweet but this is no pixie stick. Rich toffee. Apricots. Sudden burst of hops explodes across the tongue and balances the sweetness like a lightning bolt. Hop tingle rides through the finish on into the sunset. Warming glow in the belly.

Smoot, slick, rich mouthfeel.

Dangerous and surprising drinkability considering the size of the elements here.

A superb afterdinner/nightcap barleywine. Great now and probably great with age. (700 characters)

Photo of atsprings
4.35/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Get to have this one on-tap at Flying Saucer as part of a 4 year vertical tasting. Served a crisp orange with a thin diminishing head. Aroma was a nice amount of burnt caramel hops, mild citrus hops and a trace of alcohol. The taste is a nice balance of sweet caramel malts with a mild hop backbone. The beer is clearly the smoothest of the four with the alcohol having become very well hidden. This one has aged out very nicely to a truly enjoyable Barleywine. (461 characters)

Photo of ClockworkOrange
4.17/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 22 ounce bomber bottle. Out of the cellar and into my nonic pint glass. Appears a hazy golden amber color with about a finger of quickly fading off white foam. Nose and flavors consist of sweet caramelized malt, prunes, plums, a bit of alcohol in the aroma, brown sugar, apricots, citrus such as perfume-y orange peel, still some noticeable bitter hops hanging on. Body falls somewhere between medium and full with adequate carbonation. Some alcohol heat in the back of the throat with each swallow. This barleywine is drinking nicely now, but some more time in the cellar wouldn't hurt it either. (599 characters)

Photo of BretSikkink
4.35/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Wow. This is a good one. Tasted early '08; this ale has aged to become a jolly fine drink.

Orange-brown body, lovely highlights and a picture perfect head.

Smooth and creamy mouthfeel, traces of a ridiculous amount of hopping still present but nicely subdued. Sharp, almost sweet but not quite, the hopping is mellow but packs a punch of peppery citrus. The pine character is not as prominent as the '08; a sure sign of mellowing.

All outstanding characteristics; this is a well put together ale that would please any lover of big flavors in their beer. (559 characters)

Photo of rye726
4.18/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

'07 vintage 22oz bottle poured at 50F into a snifter.

Clear orange/amber brown color. Tan head that subsides to a thin cover.

Sweet caramel malts with some floral hops. Sweet alcohol character as well with vanilla and honey.

Nice malts structure balanced by citrusy hops. The finish is a blend or sweet alcohol and tart ripe fruits.

Full body with a creamy and delicate feel. Good amount of carbonation.

Very well balnced with a subtle sherry presence. Alcohol masked under layers of barley and hops.

Good blend between an American and English barley wine. Has aged well over the last year, and will continue to do so for at least another few. (650 characters)

Photo of Kendo
3.73/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22 oz bomber into my new Stone Old Guardian glass.

A: Given the high ABV, a surprisingly big, 2-finger tannish, cream-colored head settles over a clear, bright, copper-orange body. A very, VERY slow stream of bubbles rises and the head leaves some rings of lacing.

S: Milder than expected for some reason; usually I drink barleywines out of an oversized wine glass and I thought maybe (1) the narrow glass trapped the nose, thereby diminishing it; or (2) it was too cold . . . . Anyhow, the nose was malty -- sweet and bready -- but with a hint of citrusy hops and a waft of alcohol. Sweet malt nose becomes stronger as it warms.

T: Initial impression is of alcohol -- it's hot in the finish and aftertaste and you can feel the warmth on the way down to the belly and when it settles there. Beyond that, there's the sweet malt -- like the nose, it becomes sweeter as it warms -- and some dark fruit or berries peaking through the alcohol. It does finish, however, with a dry, bitter twang to it. I wrote down "almost lemony bitterness." But the alcohol is noted throughout.

M: Medium-heavy, somewhat oily in texture, but still the most obvious thing is the heat left from the alcohol.

D: Not bad, I suppose, for a beer with an ABV of 11.28%, but that alcohol will definitely slow you down.

Notes: I was warned that this would likely benefit from some aging, and given the dominance of the alcohol, I tend to agree. I'm glad I bought a couple of bottles of this, as I'd like to see if it mellows over time. The underlying flavors were solid, with a decent blend of fruity and sweet malt and hop bitterness for balance, but everything was overshadowed by the alcohol. (1,697 characters)

Photo of WeisGuy
4.13/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Big thanks to the superior trader that is metallitone1 for this bottle. Limited Early 2007 Release.

a - deep burnt orange color, big off-white head, nice retention and great lacing

s - big piney hops and alcohol dominate the nose, not much hint of malt

t - big piney hops up front, body is more hoppy bitterness with a subdued malty backbone, finish is very bitter with a noticeable alcohol component

m - medium-to-full bodied, moderate carbonation, quite dry finish

d - alcohol and intense bitterness limits drinkability somewhat, but I could drink this beer until I fell over and my palate was destroyed

Another great beer from Stone. Big, hoppy, aggressive, everything I expect from Mr. Koch. I imagine this would be very good aged for awhile, but I like it now. (783 characters)

Photo of armock
4.2/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Craft & Commerce in San Diego CA

A - Poured a copper color with a tan head that leaves lacing behind

S - Lots of sweet malt with some citrus hops

T - Starts off with the sweet malt then the citrus hops come out more so now than the smell

M - This beer has a medium body with medium carbonation to it

O - Whats already a very good beer has been made even better with a few years on it makes me want to put a few bottles away age (442 characters)

Photo of david131
2.98/5  rDev -27%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

From the 2007 bottling. Has been cellared for a year.

A- A very clear orange/red liquid with a lot of streams of rising carbonation. The head is thin, but creamy and dense.

S- Carmey malt, vegetably hops, lots of cotton candy. Very aromatic with a good amount of Alcohol shining through.

T- BOOZE with carmely malt, vegetably hops and a lot of cotton candy. Has a lot going for it, but the alcohol presence kills it.

M- Thin, alcoholic, and harsh. Still, it is somewhat sticky.

D- The booze is killer. Otherwise it would have been great. (542 characters)

Photo of Bierguy5
4.03/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle, 11.26% ABV. Pours a clear reddish copper color. Thick off-white foamy head holds together very well, especially considering how big this beer is.

Candied fruit, caramel, floral and citrusy aroma. A bit of fig as well. A hint of booze in the aroma, but not too much.

Huge candy sweet malt character. Figs, fruits, candy covered hops. Nice amount of alcohol warming. Raw piney, floral and citrusy bitterness.

Full body, with just enough carbonation. Big, young and raw. Surely this will age well, but I like it now. (538 characters)

Photo of aerozeppl
3.75/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Nice clear copper color with no head.

S:Malt with some mustiness. Raisins as well.

T:Tons of malt and a faint hop smell in the back.

T: Medium syrupy body. Very smooth though.

D: Fresh this beer "Rips your throat out" but given some time it really mellows out and becomes quite drinkable. Also it ends up being one of the more traditional barley wines we had the other night. (382 characters)

Photo of DogFood11
4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

My second year of sampling the old guardian series. I admit it the barley wine style has me perplexed as it has such WIDE ranging characteristics. I just had one that was very malt based and now the old guardian wich leans towards hops although it holds a sturdy body as well.

This brew sports an offwhite head that leaves spider web lace all the way down. Copper body just like the 2006 version. I'm not even really sure this should have seperate years as they seem to be a clone in my opinion. Hop bitterness spikes towards the end to steal the show. Malts tend to be slightly syrupy and built full of caramel and dark rich frutis. A large beer that will warm you up instantly and a beer I will purchase year after year case after case.

I would say that this leans toward the balanced side of the wide ranging style. Mouthfeel is a bit on the syrupy, rich side as well. Cellarability is good but I found the 2006 better fresh so I'm only going to hold a couple bottles for shits and giggles, the rest is going down the hatch soon. (1,039 characters)

Photo of alleykatking
4.43/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Had this at HopCat. Reviewing from notes.

A- Poured into a sample glass. Good clear amber color. Little quater inch head that went away. Left little lacing on the sides as I sipped on this. Nice steady bubbles the entire time. More so I think than most beers I have seen with this kind of age on them.

S- Not what I expected at first. I smelled a boat load of floral hops still. To be honest I expected more malt to be the forefront but this was not the case. The floral hops give way to a malty backbone which has a slight biscut smell to it. Maybe a little caramel or something along those lines of sweetness go with the malts. Also, the alcohol is present but is put into check with all the other smells going on.

T- Still a nice Stone quality hop taste to it. The hops have done some fading over time but still a nice floral/bitter taste. The malts come through almost right away after the hop taste. Sweet/bready/brown sugar(?) are all along the malts with the alcohol bringing up the tail end of this beauty. The alcohol is not really hidden toward the end but it doesn't stop you from wanting more.

M- Nice clean mouthfeel. It coats the palate in a bittersweet taste that lingers for a short period. It's a heavy feeling beer with a little chew to it. THe carbonation is still amazing and near perfect I think. Helps the beer glide and dance over the tounge.

D- I wish I would have kept some of these around when they first came out. This is an amazing drinkable barleywine that everyone should try. I like the age on it and think it made it into what it is. (1,571 characters)

Photo of BeerSox
4.32/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bomber into 8oz snifter. Early 2007 vintage, purchased April '08.

Nearly opaque burnt orange hue with a foamy head that slowly fizzes to a thin rim. Strings of lace are placed randomly. Just after finishing each pour the bubbles are lively, but quickly fade to nothing. The beeris almost static once the bubbles finish combining to make the head.

Crisp malts along with some age-tamed hops that still have some of their spice left. The cirtus aromas seem to have been preserved well. The alcohol is well hidden, but this could be due to the beer sitting for a year.

The malts are clean, meaning they show up a little at first then fade away to never return. The hops quickly take over as a shadow of their former selves. Bitter and citrusy but not overwhelming. The alcohol is somewhat well perceived, although it doesn't lower the drinkability. There is a slight thinness to the overall feel of the beer. The carbonation is there, but the flavor (again, this is aged) is a little stunned. The hops like to linger for a while after each sip. The alcohol comes out more and more as it warms. There is just a hint of the ground coffee that, to me, separates the Barleywine from a DIPA.

OG seems to be a very durable beer, as generally beers that are a year old that haven't been stored in a cellar turn out to be unenjoyable. This one has stood up. It's solid, but it's still a shell of what it was when it was bottled. This one aged well, but I'm thinking isn't as well-rounded as it was fresh. Though, that's subjective and a matter of opinion. Generally hoppy beers should be enjoyed fresh since the hops are the main focus of the flavor, although Barleywines are the exception. The American versions, such as OG, have a bigger emphasis on the hops. What I may very well be reviewing is a American Barleywine that has transformed into an English Barleywine. Even after sitting on the shelf for over a year, this is still one good beer. Recommended. (1,959 characters)

Photo of NEhophead
4.28/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

1 pt 6 fl oz brown bottle; served in a snifter.
Limited early 2007 release.

Crisp auburn in color with light shades of oak. Creamy, dense off-white head that sits up without budging. Thin and spotted lacing around the entire snifter with tremendous strength.

Slick, sweet maltiness: cream and moderate honey aromas. Aged vinous fruit with notes of tartness. Complex whaffs of intense alcohol. Touches of lingering oak.

Bold, yet short-lived citrus: pineapple, lemon, orange, and green apple met with a brash, pine-hop character. Creamy, vanilla and honey malt undertones adding a moderate level of sweetness to the bold hops. Smooth in the finish with an intense, but warming alcohol presence.

A full, medium in body; smooth and creamy with a slow-building slickness accompanying the alcohol character.

A bold, flavorful, and balanced Barleywine. Quite tasty and can only improve with age. A stellar offering, but beware the 11.26% abv. (941 characters)

Photo of Cresant
3.72/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured this 22 oz. brown bottle into a nonic glass. 2007 vintage. One finger of off-white head sat atop a clear, light amber colored body. The second pour created a larger head that left some lace.

Smell was soapy hops. Sweetness was in the background. Earthy and floral. Clean grains. Perfumy and later, leafy. This one opened up significantly as it warmed. Eventually this one smelled like I stuck my nose into a freshly opened plastic wrapper of Roman Meal bread.

Taste was first of rowdy hops, then muted sweetness. Tropical fruit. The flavors became more intense as it warmed. The scorching hops, the sweet malts and the pleasant alcohol flavors formed a trinity of balanced and highly drinkable barleywine. There was a lingering, mild bitterness in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel was zesty and creamy with an alcohol prickle. Medium to full bodied. Usually barleywines are too sweet and boozy for me, this one was not (I am an admitted hophead). This one was very drinkable. (985 characters)

Photo of Damian
4.57/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Drank from a 1 pt. 6 fl. oz. bottle purchased at Cambridge Wine & Spirits, Cambridge, MA
Bottle label read: "Limited Early 2007 release"

Poured a deep, dark, glowing, copper-amber with no head but rather a bubbly white film of lace.

Aroma was sweet and quite fruity. (Initially, there was a slight metallic tinge, but this completely faded as the beer warmed.) A nice blend of robust malts and zesty hops, along with some alcohol. By mid-bottle, the alcohol became sweeter and more apparent. Strong notes of orange peel, candi sugar and buttery toffee were also detectable.

Taste was similar to the nose. Both the malts and the hops stood their ground yet they managed to balance each other amazingly well. Super malty rich and sweet up front before the zesty, citrusy hops kicked in mid-palate. Nice, brandy-like alcohol warming in the back of the mouth. The finish was crisply hoppy (but never biting or bitter) and dry with some lingering, sticky, pine sap and grapefruit notes.

Mouthfeel was super frothy, rich, smooth and rather thick for the style.

At 11.26% ABV, this barley wine was amazingly drinkable. Neither the alcohol nor the hops were in the least bit overwhelming. This beer is so well rounded in all aspects and truly sets the mark for the style.

I would highly recommend pairing it with a desert plate of blue cheese and anjou pears. (1,357 characters)

Photo of kingcrowing
4.14/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

64oz Growler poured into a hill farmstead tulip, found at Pearl Street Beverage in Burlington! Huge thanks for them putting this on the Growler bar!

Pours a fairly unfortunate hazy, muddy amber brown wig a small light yellow head that settles quickly. Nose is really malty and rich - caramel and an almost honey and oats note that's really nice.

Taste is simply fantastic, no surprise but age has done this beer a lot of good! Not hot at all, rich and mellow with that honey and oat finish that was on the nose. Light carbonation and a dry finish. Very good beer! (565 characters)

Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2007 from Stone Brewing Co.
91 out of 100 based on 239 ratings.