1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2010 - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2010Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2010

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

324 Ratings
THE BROS
81
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 324
Reviews: 201
rAvg: 4.14
pDev: 9.9%
Wants: 11
Gots: 86 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Stone Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  11.10% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

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

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: northaustin on 02-13-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2010 Alström Bros
Ratings: 324 | Reviews: 201 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of BigJim5021
4.28/5  rDev +3.4%

I was a huge fan of the 2009 vintage of Old Guardian, so I was incredibly excited to crack open of the 2010 model.

The beer is identical to the 2009 in appearance. It pours a gorgeous, deep amber with a beige head that leaves copious lacing.

The aroma is heavier on sweet caramel malts this year. I'm not complaining, just pointing it out. That's not to say that you don't get some hops in the nose, just not as much as last year.

The flavor is also sweeter and more malty than last year. The 2009 -- when fresh -- was essentially the hoppiest beer I've ever had. The piny, resinous hops immediately kicked you in the teeth. This year, they've upped the malt and produced a somewhat more balanced barleywine. Again, I'm not gonna sit here and say that this little momma isn't hoppy. She is. She's just added some more malt to the repertoire.

Mouthfeel is just as thick and creamy as last year. It just feels great in your mouth. (That's what she said.)

Drinkability is as high as it comes at 11.1%. This beer is a guaranteed ass kicker. No doubt about it. Treat it with respect and it might just see fit to let you survive.

BigJim5021, Mar 12, 2010
Photo of joecast
4.28/5  rDev +3.4%

On tap at Hollingsheads deli.

Fairly light color. Clear deep amber / mahogany. Thin frothy tan head. Actually impressed it has such a stable head considering the age and abv.

Seriously complex stone fruit and heavy malt aroma. The type of beer you could easily sit back and sniff for a good while before drinking. Alcohol weighs in a bit as a warning of it's strength.

Big, no, huge malt bomb. Amazing how this beer, and obviously a good example of the style, can be so forthright in it's robustness. It seems to push everything else out of it's way. Don't let it fool you, hop bitterness, even after a year, creeps up on you in the finish.

Not something I would look to sip everyday, but this makes a fantastic night cap on those special occasions. More than a glass and you better phone a friend.

joecast, Apr 09, 2011
Photo of godless1one
4.28/5  rDev +3.4%

appearance - dark tan with some red/amber, bubbles along the side of the glass, minimal white/cream head which dissipates

smell - a sweet fruitiness and a bit of spice

taste - citrus, slightly sweet, with a bitter finish, that alcohol can be tasted but is more felt

mouthfeel - decently thick (not like a stout tho) and dry, fairly decently carbonated

drinkability - good with a meal definitely not a quick drink unless you want to feel it, it's got a strong flavor which i enjoyed but my gf did not

godless1one, Dec 01, 2010
Photo of jdklks
4.28/5  rDev +3.4%

Thank god Old Guardian not only came back, but that it is much much better than last year's batch. Pours a burnt dark orange that is absolutely stunning. This is accompanied by a soft, off white, almost tan head that lingers awhile and laces the glass wonderfully. The smell is of hops and citrusy fruits; more like a DIPA but not as strong, and not as good. Some peach, lots of figs, and tangerine.

The flavor this year is much less hoppy than last year's version was fresh. This version in three years will taste like the 07 does now: incredible. Definitely my favorite batch since 07. Starts off with its usual hoppy character, but it is neither over-done, nor does it linger for too long. Instead, it gives way to an alcoholic orange flavor that is quite pleasing, and perfectly sweet. Other flavors include a hint of figs, red apple, and a very subtle maltiness that develops so well in this beer over a few years. This years version is leaps and bounds better than last. Mouthfeel is too light, but well carbonated nonetheless.

jdklks, Feb 28, 2010
Photo of BeerLover99
4.28/5  rDev +3.4%

A: deep cloudy orange, brown. fluffy oatmeal/tan head. detailed, splendid lacing.

S: barley, pine, citrus and subtle earthy quality.

T/M: sweet, barley, pine, spices, hint of citrus, dancing on the tongue prickle from the carbonation, good amount of carbonation, med/heavy body, hint of tackiness in the finish. goes very down smooth for such big ABV.

D: This is rather good Barley wine. I discovered this style a few years ago and always love trying new offerings. This is to be shared and sipped with purpose. I should be sipping it more, but it is just such a fresh and delicious brew. Well done, STONE!

BeerLover99, Dec 29, 2010
Photo of whatthehull
4.28/5  rDev +3.4%

A - pours a brown/orange super opaque almost swamp water look, no head and no lacing

S - orange, toasted malt, barley and oak. Really sweet end of the smell, a bit of hops, floral and citrus and huge alcohol. There is one other note, I can't quite describe but it is very much there. Earthy, sappy, fresh cut tree like quality

T - Very nice. Lots of citrus and floral hops. A lovely bitterness that turns sweet. Orange flavored liqueur. Toasted everything. Malt, barley, wheat. Maybe some wine notes or wine barrel? The yeast note is very nice

M - a bit sticky, but well carbonated, leaves a bitter sweet citrus flavor that last for sometime. Really nice.

D - For $6 and 11.2% abv. This beer has great drinkability. Flavor is awesome when really cold and when it cools down it's flavors change nicely. Stone has done it again

Final thought - Love this beer

whatthehull, Mar 20, 2011
Photo of alamode
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

alamode, Dec 11, 2011
Photo of civicm87
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

civicm87, Jan 02, 2014
Photo of calcnerd
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

calcnerd, Feb 04, 2013
Photo of beyah
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

Somewhere between amber and red, starts off witha bout 1/2 finger of head,some lacing.

Nice full malty flavor, with a bitter hops finish. Touch of alcohol to finish.

Any enjoyable barely wine, a 11% beer, hard to belive. It didn't have that wine like flavor that many Barley wines have, you can tell that it's a relative of Arrogant Bastard, but that's ok since Arogant Bastard is my go to beer, when I want a pleasent bomber of a fine ale.

beyah, Oct 03, 2010
Photo of trancesk8er
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

trancesk8er, Jun 09, 2012
Photo of DerekMorgan
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

DerekMorgan, Jan 24, 2013
Photo of Megan1937
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

Megan1937, May 12, 2013
Photo of MaseFace
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

MaseFace, Mar 29, 2013
Photo of jaxon53
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

jaxon53, Jul 07, 2013
Photo of Spineypanda
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

Has a nice amber almost brown color and a large frothy head.
Smells of straight up barley. A bit of sweets because of the large amount of malt.
Tastes a lot less strong than I expected which is great! I don't like my barleywines to be exceptionally sweet.
Has a nice barley taste and some bitterness.
I love this beer! Better than the many before.

Spineypanda, Mar 05, 2010
Photo of mikeincharleston
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

mikeincharleston, May 13, 2013
Photo of MordorMongo
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

MordorMongo, Jan 13, 2013
Photo of robbrandes
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

poured from a 22oz bomber.

pours a deep, slightly hazy copper. minimal head, but superior retention.

the nose is a nice mix of maltiness, caramel and a faint bit of alcohol and that unmistakable 'stone' fruity-earthyness.

huge, huge, huge malt bomb on the palate. and an aggressive 1-2 punch of alcohol and hop bitterness, as it makes it way down your throat. nice warmth in the belly after a glass or two.

exceptional mouthfeel. carbonation isn't huge, but the slippery quality to this barleywine is awesome. leaves you certainly wanting another drink.

robbrandes, Apr 12, 2011
Photo of misinformed
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

22 oz. bottle poured in my good old pint glass.
A- Clear, medium red/brown. Poured with thick, tan 1/2 finger head that left some lacing.

S- Sweet and fruity with strong pine hops as well.

T- Starts off with piney hops followed by sweet dark fruits, and caramely goodness. Finishes with hops again for a mildly spicy finish. Very nicely balanced, the flavors are in perfect harmony. I didn't detect the alcohol more than once or twice and very, very faintly when I did.

M- Medium bodied with a faint bit of carbonation. Pleasant dryness that leaves the mouth coated for a long finish. Some warmness for the alcohol, but it didn't feel hot at all.

D- Incredibly drinkable, but works well as a sipper for a cool evening. I finished off my bottle fairly quickly on a rainy evening and could have had another. I didn't try this fresh, but it tastes like it has mellowed out some.

misinformed, Oct 07, 2010
Photo of TonyTalon
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

TonyTalon, Jul 24, 2012
Photo of Cyberkedi
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

Pours a beautiful, appetizing, dark honey-golden copper with a thick, fluffy, orangy-beige head. Aroma is strong, fruity and a little yeasty and malty. Fruity, brandy-like flavor has a strong alcohol bite just like a good barleywine. It has hints of malt, hops and even caramel. Texture is lively and fizzy, and the alcohol bite is fierce!

Cyberkedi, Apr 09, 2010
Photo of Loot
4.22/5  rDev +1.9%

A- it pours a burnt orangey, golden yellow color, think unfiltered apple juice. Minimal head, and carbination, what i'd expect from the style.

S- the smell is really complex, but mellow from what i was expecting, think DIPA, but aged the hops have fallen out just a bit but matured, into spicy, herbal, earthy tones. It smells sweet, like fresh wort. a cereal sweetness that really comes through, the smell to me is almost malt forward. earthy, sweet, and spicy. like in other reviews, has that stone character. i don't know what it is. Great.

T- sweet, almost smokey flavor, spicy and earth malt character, the bitterness builds, and leaves resiny hoppy, tingly and coating your mouth. Finishes with alcohol vapors, but not too distracting, gets more noticiable as it warms. apricots and caramel.

M- thinner than expected, but sill admirable, coats the mouth with sweetness, and maltiness, finishing with a hoppy resin, not overly bitter.

D- pretty drinkable, from what i was expecting, over 11%, and not that filling, two pints for sure, but by then, might have to tap out...too much sweetness to have more...great journey while it lasted. alcohol, starts getting to you. great sipping beer.

*this was my first venture into barley wines and no doubts i will be back for more!

Loot, Nov 03, 2010
Photo of n0rc41
4.22/5  rDev +1.9%

Got this beer in a 22oz bottle. poured into a pint glass

A: Deep red, amber dark wood color. Head was cream color off white, 1.5 fingers thick, good lacing as it went down.

S: strong hop, pine bitter smell.

T: Malts, pine(reminds me of SN celebration ale) bitterness is good, small caramel smell maybe? wood? good smell

M: suprisingly good! nice and almost syrupy thick cream feel, bitter taste, pine, malts what you would expect from this barley wine. oily, goes down great!

D: Its good drink-ability, sipper, I wouldnt though a party with it thats for sure! I could go for another thats for sure! cuz I am already feeling great!

Overall I would say this is a very good, barley wine. I havent had to many barley wines. I got a few more I am getting ready to try this week. So I dont want to say too much. but I like most all stones brews. Cheers!

n0rc41, Apr 06, 2010
Photo of SuperSpy
4.22/5  rDev +1.9%

A - Very cloudy copper. If not for the small head that quickly dies down to a nice foam cap I would say that this almost looks like apple cider.

S - Very fruity, sweet and malty. Some dark fruits but also hints of tropicals like starfruit and guava. There is a heavy malty aroma that lets you know this is going to be a BIG beer.

T/M - Very rich deep flavor. A bit of caramel, a woodsy flavor that is reminiscent of the smell of the air in a humid forest. Bits of dark fruits. Cured hickory, but not at all smoky, more like the aroma of the cured wood. Warm alcohol and a dry finish. heavy bodied and almost chewy.

D - An excellent barley wine. I will be cellaring a few bottles of this and revisiting every 6-12 months.

SuperSpy, Nov 14, 2010
Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2010 from Stone Brewing Co.
92 out of 100 based on 324 ratings.