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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
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Reviews: 239 | Hads: 289
Photo of bbothen
3.9/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A -Orangish amber & copper color with a nice bubbly tan head.

S - Smells of sweet caramel & toffee with some fruity hop character as well. Oh, and a big booze presence as well.

T - This is a huge beer. Assertive hop presence balaned out by the sweet malty caramel sweetness. Lingering alcohol & bitter finish.

M - Thick & sticky with a nice level of carbonation.

D - This will get to you. It is huge on all levels.

This is a great representation of a US barleywine. Stone really flex their brewing muscles on this one. God bless them.

I wish it came in 12oz bottles as a bomber is a bit much for one person. Although I did finish it off. Happily. (652 characters)

Photo of irishkyle21
4.37/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Nothing like a hoppy Barleywine. Old Guardian has a nice hazy orange color. Off white head, pretty good retention and nice lacing.

Smells of caramel malts, grapefruits, pine and traces of alcohol.

Lots going on taste wise, big hop bitterness, sweet mats and a comforting alcohol edge. (286 characters)

Photo of Wasatch
4.3/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Been sitting on this one well over a year. When I first popped the cap I could smell the sweet malts. Pours a nice orange golden amber color, nice creamy tan head, nice lacing/puddles throughout the drink. Scents of sweet malts, citrus, hops, spices, caramel, yeast, and slight alcohol. The taste is amazing, sweet malts, hoppy, slight caramel, and slight alcohol, nice dry finish. Medium body, pretty complex barleywine. Very drinkable, another awesome brew from Stone to say the least. (487 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 GClarkage
4.33/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

04/30/08- Purchased at Beverages and More in San Mateo, CA.

Presentation- 22oz bottle poured into my Old Guardian glass.

Appearance- Brandy red colored pour. Very lucid. About a 3/4 to and inch larger bubbled head. Leaves a nice semi-creamy rim. Excellent sticky patchy lace.

Smell- More subdued than normal years, but still a very nice caramel malt and fruity hop aroma. About equal and nothing really trumps the other. Just a bit of a sniffer.

Taste- A year plus worth of aging has done well for this one, just as it usually does. Flavors meld very well. Sweet caramel goodness, maybe a touch of fusel alcohol as well. Sharp grapefruit and lemon hops pass up the malt by just a bit. Well balanced for Stone.

Mouthfeel- Chewy and a higher carbonation level. As always a nice bitter ass whooping on the tongue.

Drinkability- Another 2 thumbs up for Old Guardian. It appears aging is your best bet unless you like scorching hops burning a hole through your stomach. (970 characters)

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

The beer pours much lighter than i expected, considering the high abv.... Nice, slightly cloudy appearance, not too clear... giving the beer a nice glow.

The scent speaks of rich caramel accented with white cherries and and perhaps melon? A very full scent... with hops dancing around the edges.

The taste is exquisite... So smooth. Whenever I try a barleywine I wince, expecting tons of flavor, but a slap in the face from the abv.... but as i sat with my friends, I quickly realized that this beer is very drinkable and flavorful.... dangerously so. Feels thick on the tongue, but finishes clean, with a nice lingering caramel-grain aftertaste...

A great example of the complexity and balance available in beer . (717 characters)

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

22oz bomb, split in preparation for a man man/yeasayer show

appearance: poured into a 42nd street oyster bar pint glass, hazy orange-amber body with a beige froth cap

smell: smells like danger - big citrus hops as expected, big caramel malts, noticeable booze presence which prompted the recipient of the 2nd half of the bottle to ponder the abv %

taste: big and bold on all fronts...huge citrus hop bite, lush pine, thick caramel malts and strong booze undertones. grapefruit and syrupy maple balance this one out...easily could age a few more years at least, but i was thirsty

mouthfeel: syrupy and smooth, hop bite, hot alcohol

drinkability: good (654 characters)

Photo of yemenmocha
4.23/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours between gold and orange color, medium white head at first pour but dissipates to a thin but well-retained head.

Nose is has a sweet melon citrusy component, and a suggestion of fruity desserts.

On the palate is a candied sweet maltiness with spicy hops that are assertive at first presence but then mellow into a smooth mix of flavors towards the finish.

Aged 1yr prior to consumption. (394 characters)

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

It was hard to hold on to this one for a year, but I am pleased with the results.

Poured part of a bomber into a snifter.

Appearance - It has a hazy translucent peach copper color. It produced a 1 finger off white head that slowly dissipated to a thin crown. It left behind a decent amount of lacing. This is a damn fine looking beer.

Smell - The scent of this one has really changed from what I remember it smelling like. There is a huge booze presence as well as some fruit scents like grape, sweet orange and cherry.

Taste - It doesn't quite taste as good as it smells. There are some signs of oxidation, but that goes well with barleywines. The booze scent is huge. There is a nice caramel flavor that rounds everything out. It still maintains a large hop presence despite being over a year old. The fruit flavors of cherry, grape, and orange make an appearance, but the lingering booze finish quickly wipes them out. The finish slightly bitter, with the booze and the hops battling for supremacy - which detracts from the overall flavor.

Mouthfeel - The mouthfeel on this one is impressive. It is medium/full bodied, and has a good level of carbonation - nothing too lively, but keeps it interesting nonetheless. It is both slightly oily and slightly sticky at the same time.

Drinkability - Overall I enjoyed this beer. It is pretty easy drinking and tastes good, but the overwhelming booze in the flavor and the nose is too apparent. (1,446 characters)

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

22 oz. bottle poured into a la fin du monde glass.

appearance: amber with peach hues, high clarity and a thick foamy white head that quickly dies down, however leaves fine lacing.

Smell: Smells very sweet and a little fruity. Molasses, cherry, pecan, peach, pear and various other aromas. Needless to say, this beer has a very complex aroma and the aging has certainly changed it.

Taste: Obviously the first sensation is that of sweetness with raw sugar flavors that are akin to sugar cane. A little bit of plum as wel l and some other fruity flavors. This beer is still damn bitter and hoppy after all of this dame and tastes well... like a beer from stone. Strong bitterness in the middle and lingering as well that leaves you wanting more. Seriously dries the mouth out with not just the a/c but also the bitterness.

Overall: Biggest baddest barleywine of them all. Stone doesn't mess around and this beer is another testament to that fact. Even after over a year of aging this beer is still aggressive and bold. Will it mellow out over time... you be the judge if you have a bottle of this sit on it. (1,109 characters)

Photo of Hokies
2.78/5  rDev -31.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A: Clear red color with dense lasing.

S: Boozy, sweet, malty with decent hop hints.

T: Strong booze taste to it with some malt and citrus flavor.

M: Light with a strong alcohol taste that takes over.

D: Is decent but will not go out of my way to get another one. (266 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 maybrick
4.1/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy amber color with a sizable off white head. As it warmed, it poured clear. Great head retention. Nose is definitely malty and the alcohol is definitley detectable. nicely balanced between malt and hop. Finishes with the warming of a higher alcohol brew yet the hops crisoness is noticable. I purchased this last week and assume it was made in 2007. (360 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 smcolw
4.1/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Clear and light amber in appearance. Good initial head with decent lace considering the style.

Malty, which is not surprising given the ABV (11.3%!). This is not an extreme smell; it seems well-balanced without distinct classical aromas of hops or alcoholic warmth.

Very full body...the swallow is almost hot with its alcohol warmth. A bit strong on the tongue making me swallow it rapidly. The aftertaste is all hop which is completely unexpected.

This is an extreme beer that does not have any typical one-sided flavors or smells (except maybe the alcohol warmth). It's incredibly flavorful and easy to sip, swallow and consume. Perhaps too easy!? (652 characters)

Photo of umustdrink
4.47/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Received from the generous BA BeerTruth last summer

A - Reddish dark orange color, opaque. Offwhite head fades to a film and a ring. Lacing sticks in small dots.

S - Rich brown sugary bready malts with the dark fruit and all, a slight roastiness, a little bitterness, detectable alcohol. A big smell with lots of dark fruitiness.

T - Starts out with an immediate pungent fruitiness, not dark fruits at all, light and sweet...äußerst merkwürdig... Bready biscuity soaked in brandy maltiness takes over along with the darker fruitier flavors. Bready fruitiness peaks (tons of flavor) and mellows out for a sweet malty fruity finish. Alcohol hides itself relatively well.

M - A good hearty medium to thick consistency with a fair amount of carbonation.

D - A very nice barleywine with some unique flavors on top of the basic barleywine characteristics. A sipper indeed but the high alcohol is masked pretty well. (918 characters)

Photo of CAMRAhardliner
4.53/5  rDev +11%
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. (650 characters)

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

2007 spring vintage. Pours from the bomber a slightly hazy copper-bronze color under a creamy beige 1" head. Admirable head retention throughout the snifter with just some spotty lacing coating the sides.

Aromas are nicely balanced with notes of dark caramel candies, toasted malts, toffee and honey initially coming to the forefront with supporting background notes of citrus, oak and herbs.

Palate was quite full, round, creamy and slightly oily. Just a touch of fine carbonation to tinlge the tongue.

Flavor profile was expertly balanced between the malts and hops. Sugar Daddy candy, toffee, caramel are perfectly balanced with moderate tones of citrus, pine, spice and oak.

No gettin' away from the 11.26% abv. It makes its muscular presence well known in the finish, but is just right for a relaxed sippin' big ole' Barley Wine. (842 characters)

Photo of Tolann
4.3/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Orange in color and hazy. Not too much head. Dense, white head that fades quickly.

S - the smell hit me before I was even looking for it. Kinda fruity and hoppy. Not a boozy smell. Bigger smell than other beers I've had, but it's not offensive or too over powering.

T - lots of citrus hop taste. Bitterness is strong but balanced and not offensive.

M - can feel the alcohol warm you after the sip. Taste lingers some and keeps you from drinking too fast. Probably a good thing. Bitterness really sits on your tongue. Some carbonation can be felt in the sip. The bitterness comes out as you burp it. Not exactly a 'wine' like quality like in the style name may suggest. It's a medium/light body.

D - Good to have another, but I don't want a lot at one sitting. I'm glad I have another in the fridge, but it will be enjoyed a later date. (844 characters)

Photo of FlyFisher2782
3.98/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Decided to review this one after exactly one year aging after picking up a few bottles of the '08 version

Color is a deep and tawny bronze with a great amount of creamy wheat colored head.

Smell is very pleasant but not overpowering with some sweet overtones of sugar or honey followed by floral hops and a hint of alcohol on the nose.

Big caramel palate with a sweet dry (tad bit grain husk) finish giving way to a big alcohol presence. Surprised this hasn't mellowed a bit since last year but the alcohol certainly leaves this one feeling a bit "hot." Hop balance on this has certainly mellowed and rounds it out beautifully with some pine notes and a smooth lingering bitterness does battle with the alcohol.

Mouthfeel is enveloping, full and wonderful with a perfect amount of carbonation.

Overall great, but a little "hotter" than I was expecting after cellaring for a year. (886 characters)

Photo of mrasskicktastic
4.68/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

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. (1,165 characters)

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

Stone really does their big efforts well, I think. The barleywine is to barleywine what Stone's RIS is to RIS. It's big and complex, and does not hide the alcohol, but in a good way: it's factored into the equation.

On the other hand, I wish it had a bit less alcohol to allow the piney hops to rise up. It works in the aftertaste, but the nose hit is abrupt and there's no way around it. (389 characters)

Photo of Progenitor
4.15/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Old Gaurdian is one cool Bastards brother. Like all the best brews this one is best enjoyed slowly. Sup accordingly.

A: Pours a perfectly balanced dark amber leaving a two fingered bone head that displays nearly uniform bubbles through out, which disipates to a thin four to five layers of oily bubbles fairly rapidly. Lacing is very quick to slide down the glass due to the slick nature of it's texture.

S: The first word to come to mind was grape folowed by pronounced vegetal aromas marked by fresh tomatoes, also there are russet potatoes, turnips and beets and behind that though faint some strange sour citrus hints of lemon and lime maybe grapefruit. This brew would be beautiful to use for a deep fried beer battered beet recipe. Barley pronounces itself boldly and towards the end gorgeous hops jump right off the top.

T: Remaining consistent with the aromas, this fine libation continues with the earth notes, adding a kind twist of fine pungent blue and limburger chesses and just the right amount of a hoppy kick to balance the brew. In fact my favorite part of the drink is letting it rest on the tounge for a few seconds and allowing the alcohol to do it's work on the sides of the member kicking and screaming its bitters along the way.

M: For an 11% + ABV it is suprisingly smooth. Truly perfecting the balance between the hops and the alcohol which can both be fairly harsh in the hands of the wrong brewmaster. The maker of this libation is definatley not the wrong brewmaster.

D: Yes. (1,508 characters)

Photo of Tdizzle
4.23/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I cellared this on 2/11/07 and I drank this on 2/12/08.

A- Poured into a snifter, this beer pours a clear orangish-amber color with an off-white head that settles to a thin layer. The head leaves some thick lacing at first. Very nice to look at.

S- Sugary sweet with a strong alcohol backing. Some carmel too. Not as much citrus from the hops.

T- Sweet, malty, and carmely. The bitterness has faded but it still lingers on the finish. Very boozy as well. The alcohol has melded with the other flavors nicely but this is still pretty hot.

M- Creamy and smooth. Very little carbonation.

D- This is a huge beer, so it's hard to finish a bomber by myself, but it sure is tasty. The drinkability has increased after a year. (724 characters)

Photo of Ryanbob
4.25/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer appears cloudy orange with a tiny head. It smells yeasty, sweet, and alcoholic. The taste is complex. Some floral, piney hops, some alchoholic burn, some fruity, rindy flavors, , some dried fruit, some earthy bitterness. The mouthfeel is smooth, soft, bubbly, not to much burn from the alcohol.

I'm not the world's biggest barleywine fan, but I really enjoyed this one. Keeps you guessing, not too dirty, not too alcoholic, overall a very enjoyable ride. Thanks Dave at Zeno's for this tasty brew! (508 characters)

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