1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

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

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

287 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 287
Reviews: 239
rAvg: 4.13
pDev: 9.93%
Wants: 5
Gots: 13 | 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: Wildman on 01-25-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 287 | Reviews: 239 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of BretSikkink
4.35/5  rDev +5.3%
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.

BretSikkink, Mar 01, 2008
Photo of rye726
4.18/5  rDev +1.2%
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.

rye726, Dec 25, 2007
Photo of JohneHoodlum
5/5  rDev +21.1%

JohneHoodlum, Dec 05, 2011
Photo of armock
4.22/5  rDev +2.2%
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

armock, May 05, 2011
Photo of mikeincharleston
4.25/5  rDev +2.9%

mikeincharleston, May 13, 2013
Photo of Bierguy5
4.03/5  rDev -2.4%
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.

Bierguy5, Apr 09, 2007
Photo of GrindFatherBob
5/5  rDev +21.1%

GrindFatherBob, Dec 14, 2011
Photo of aerozeppl
3.73/5  rDev -9.7%
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.

aerozeppl, Jan 27, 2008
Photo of david131
2.9/5  rDev -29.8%
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.

david131, Mar 12, 2008
Photo of Kendo
3.7/5  rDev -10.4%
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.

Kendo, Apr 26, 2007
Photo of djaeon
5/5  rDev +21.1%

djaeon, Jan 22, 2012
Photo of DogFood11
4/5  rDev -3.1%
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.

DogFood11, May 19, 2007
Photo of WeisGuy
4.15/5  rDev +0.5%
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.

WeisGuy, Mar 31, 2007
Photo of alleykatking
4.45/5  rDev +7.7%
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.

alleykatking, May 20, 2009
Photo of BeerSox
4.33/5  rDev +4.8%
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.

BeerSox, May 04, 2008
Photo of jvillefan
4.25/5  rDev +2.9%

jvillefan, Aug 18, 2013
Photo of NEhophead
4.3/5  rDev +4.1%
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.

NEhophead, Aug 30, 2007
Photo of Cresant
3.68/5  rDev -10.9%
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.

Cresant, Apr 13, 2007
Photo of cadaugherty
4.5/5  rDev +9%

cadaugherty, May 08, 2013
Photo of ricecracker420
4.5/5  rDev +9%

ricecracker420, Jan 31, 2014
Photo of kingcrowing
4.18/5  rDev +1.2%
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!

kingcrowing, Dec 15, 2011
Photo of EyePeeAyBryan
4.5/5  rDev +9%

EyePeeAyBryan, Mar 05, 2013
Photo of ElGordo
4.38/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the 22oz bottle into a Chouffe tulip glass. Body is a radiant deep orange color, topped by a large, creamy white head that slowly descends to a small, creamy ring. Decent lacing on the glass.
Aroma of sweet, bready malt, tons of spicy, floral hops, and more than a little alcohol. Palate is an almost-perfect blend of huge hop flavor and assertively sweet malt. Notes of biscuit, sweet fruit, and a touch of pine are detectable, although this beer isn't exactly huge on nuance. Finishes surprisingly smooth, with little heat from the alcohol.
Body is rich and at times a bit creamy, at others a bit sticky. Dangerously drinkable, so be careful. At 11+%, this could create some havoc if you're not prepared.

ElGordo, Mar 04, 2007
Photo of CAMRAhardliner
4.53/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a bright glowing orange with only a hint of haze. A busy stream of carbonation makes it strangely reminiscent of champagne. The patchy smallish head sticks around forever and musters up a plenty of lace on the glass. The aroma is equal parts pine tar and honeysuckle, biscuity malt. Pralines, honey soaked crackers, apricot, pine bitterness and alcohol heat fill the taste. The mouthfeel is on the syrupy side with a pleasant, active carbonation. The finish is nice and bitter, lasting for a long time.

This is a kick ass America Barley Wine. One of my favorite examples of this great style. It strikes a perfect balance between hops and malt.

CAMRAhardliner, Feb 25, 2008
Photo of DCon
4.5/5  rDev +9%

DCon, Jan 08, 2012
Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2007 from Stone Brewing Co.
92 out of 100 based on 287 ratings.