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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
93
outstanding

327 Ratings
THE BROS
82
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 327
Reviews: 201
rAvg: 4.14
pDev: 9.9%
Wants: 11
Gots: 84 | 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:  Recent | Likes | 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: 327 | Reviews: 201 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of xanok
4.05/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

22oz bottle into my Stone RIS tulip

A-Body is somewhere between an orangish-amber and a brick red. Unusual and pleasing actually. The just-off white head sticks around for quite a while.

S-Sooo..complex. Dried fruit, hops, citrus fruits. There's also some caramel malt here as well.

T-Sweeter than expected, the maltiness takes a front seat to everything. Piney hops come through along with the aforementioned fruit notes.

M-Carbonation borders on heavy with a thick, but smooth body. Aftertaste is strong and lingers. Very small sips needed!

D-Low drinkability, even for the style. Absolute flavor explosion combined with the high ABV make even just the one bomber a lot to tackle.

Photo of jsh420
4.08/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

pours murky reddish amber orange with a 2 finger off white head that had good retention and coated the glass with lacing

smells of sweet caramel malt and a good amount of citrus hops

taste is just like the nose but the malts are a bit too sugary sweet - the hops do save it and give it the bitter juicy fruity hop flavors

mouthfeel is great - just what i want in a 11% Bwine - full body with ample carbonation and gives it a little zip but still very creamy

overall this is another solid hoppy malty brew from stone

Photo of ebrauser
4.08/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dull pale amber with lots of creamy tan foam on top. The speed at which the carbonation bubbles are passing through the beer does not reveal the syrupy thickness of this one.

Pineapple dominates the nose with touches of wood as well as other fruit sweetness. The flavor matches the smell perfectly, with lots of intensely sweet pineapple and light, maybe Galaxy, hops. Oak and molasses deaden the fruit sweetness before a very bitter finish drives home.

Photo of pnkRed
4.08/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured this into the Old Guardian Barley Wine Glasss I got from the brewery.

A-This poured a rich deep amber color with a one finger head that stays relatively long.

S- You can smell this bad boy from a mile away. The hops are very apparant. Citrus and pine. Some sweetness on the back end.

T- Sweetness hits you up front quickly followed by some hops with some alcohol on the finish. I can taste some raisins and fig and piney hops.

M- The alcohol lingers and so do the oils from the hops.

D- The alcohol is hidden for an 11% but it's still apparent. Definitely a sipper. As you drink on it actually feels a bit lighter and it seems to mellow out the warmer it gets.

Photo of flagmantho
4.08/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 22oz bottle into a tulip. This is the "limited early 2010 release" according to the bottle.

Appearance: rich, cloudy, tawny-orange hue with one thick finger of frothy tan foam. A superb looking beer, indeed.

Smell: rich, sweet malt aroma. It's not bursting with fruit or yeast character or even hops; it's simply a strong but even-handed aroma. It's balanced and I like it.

Taste: big, in-your-face malt hits you right up front; there's a big sweetness with some piney hop characteristics. It is only at the end that a huge bitterness hits you. Stone really knows their strong ales, and this beer is no exception; though, I will say this beer lacks a lot of complexity (at least at this age). It's good, it's smooth and it's strong, but I feel like it could be a whole lot more.

Mouthfeel: thick, roamy body with plenty of well-integrated carbonation. This bad boy is silky, creamy and ambrosial when it comes to texture. Love it.

Drinkability: a tasty beer which is quite drinkable at the 11.1% ABV level. The alcohol is definitely there, but with the flavor and body to back it up. Good stuff.

Photo of cpetrone84
4.08/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A-pours a clear ruby red color with hints of orange shinning through. The head is off white, almost a light yellow, thick and tight. An aggressive pour produces ample head that has very good retention. A thick lacing sticks to the side of the glass.

S-the nose is quite hoppy, not big, but balanced. The citrussy hops really hit you up front with notes of grapefruit. Oily piney hops set in with an underlying caramel malt backbone that adds some balance.

T-much maltier than the nose but still hoppy. Oily pine resign and caramel malts combine in the front. Grapefruit taste and bitterness compliment the onslaught of bitter malts up front to balance this out. Notes of rum soaked plums seem to be present at the very back with hints of alcohol warming

M-this is extremely smooth and slightly dry at the finish. It brings a medium to full body and is somewhat syrupy. Enough carbonation to finish somewhat crisp and hold the body throughout

D-this is somewhat boozy and brings a good bit of hops. Definitely a tasty brew, even fresh. Looks like this could really change with age and I can't wait to crack an 07! Much like Sierra Bigfoot with the big hop presence, not quite as hoppy as bigfoot but definitely a solid hop presence

Photo of PaulStoneAnchor
4.08/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: It pours with a beautiful golden caramel color with a head that last a couple minutes but leaves a great lacing.

S: Burnt, caramel, malts, ginger, apricot, toffee, bready malts

T: Burnt Citrus, piney hops, bready malt, toffee, and some caramel

M: It has a great carbonation that helps build the body of this beer. It has a full, rich, feel to it that also helps it glide over the palate.

O: I am impressed. Almost two years later it still has a great hoppiness, and yet a complex maltiness which has aged gracefully. With age it seems the hoppiness has only barely faded. This is probably one of the top Barleywines I have had to date.

Photo of Alf7247
4.08/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I've read many were disappointed with the 2009. The only one I've had of this was back in 2008 with a virgin palate, and I don't remember much from it. I've also been on a barley wine binge this past month and I was quite let down by comparison of others.

Served in a 22oz snifter

A- Reddish/orange, tan and creamy head that left quickly leaving a ring of thick bubble around the edge of the glass. Little lacing.

S- Hoppy at first, well balanced with malts. Very fruity. It became more malty and fruity as it warmed; the hops became faint in the background. It even showed some nuts. Alcohol remained well hidden, even as it warmed.

T- Very hoppy and bitter at first; loved it. Malts were present, providing nice balance. Fruits. Raisins poked through, with very faint molasses. Malty/fruity finish, which was unfortunately short. Alcohol made its presence known as it warmed.

M- I'm coming from a biased love for barley wines with some good viscosity. This was too thin for me; good carbonation though.

D- Very drinkable at 11%.

I love Stone. I guess I was expecting to be blown away. I felt like a teenager again waiting and calling the local bevmo if they had received it yet. I'm sad with the disappointment. Oh well. I hope it gets better with age; got two for the future.

Photo of SkeeterHawk
4.08/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a mostly clear burnt-orange color with a small 1/8" head of off-white bubbles after a pretty aggressive pour. There are quite a few bubbles slowly making their way to the top of this obviously viscous liquid. They don't maintain the head, though there are quite a few rising. Just from swirling and the head falling, there is a decent amount of lace on the glass already. There is some pretty significant lacing left after drinking the beer and the head never completely disappears, so this is nice for a Barley Wine.

Aroma: I initially got a healthy dose of clean and slightly toasty malts to go along with the generous citrusy hops. The hops are the predominant force in the aroma, but the malt and some mild peppery spice from the alcohol are definitely a player. As the beer warms, the alcohol and spice are coming out a bit more, but really the volume is just getting turned up on the overall aroma profile.

Taste: The flavor is full of hops, so much that they are leaving a bit of a chalky impression on the top of my palate all the way to the belly. The alcohol is definitely big in this one, and this is my first beer of the night, so it is quite noticeably warming. Though the hops are such a huge player in the flavor, they don't completely dominate the finish. There is some malt and warming to notice in the finish as well as a substantial bitterness. The balance is definitely toward the bitter, but it isn't tipped so hard that this beer is hard to drink. The mouthfeel is actually quite pleasant for a Barley Wine. It is well carbonated, so this keeps the slightly high TG from saturating your palate. Big surprise, as I am about half-way through the beer, it is getting MUCH easier to drink.

Opinion: I typically like to let a Barley Wine sit for at least two years before drinking it as I am more fond of the malt than the hops and I like to let them settle down a bit...but I didn't do that with this beer so I could try it as Stone intended it. I must say that I am impressed. This is a well-crafted Barley Wine. I don't find that this is the easiest style to drink when you first open it up, but this one never gets too sweet, or bitter, or hot from the alcohol. I would definitely try this beer again and I would recommend it if you are in pursuit of the ultimate Barley Wine (as I know MANY that are)...this just may be the one for you.

Photo of hdofu
4.1/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Not at all what I expected from barleywine... maltier... hoppy as all heck... but very very enjoyable. Smell is somewhat piney. Sweet with an intense bitter finish. color purple reddish with a thin pillowy head. It tastes quite drinkable though the alcohol burn is quite noticeble

Photo of WildTurkey
4.1/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bomber to snifter.

A: Dark bronze w/ amber color. Thin head.

S: Big bready malts. Maybe some dark fruit. Noticeable hops.

T: Malt tastes like bread, some carmel, some raisins. Big hop kick for a barley wine - it kind of overpowers any sweetness coming through on the malts. Tart, bitter, a little piney. Some alcohol is also coming through.

M: Fuller body. Pretty dry.

D: Big flavor. Strong alcohol flavor. I couldn't slug this one back, I needed to take my time with this one.

Photo of Arenbeer
4.1/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz Bottle Into a Snifter Glass

Pours a hazy dark orange with a nice 2 finger yellowish off white head.

S- Sweet barley and malts hit you up front with a great citrus earthy hop background. Also getting hints of yeast and caramel or toffee.

T- Pretty harsh up front, the alcohol is alittle overpowering. Probably should let this one age a bit. After the sting fades your greeted by a sweet malt base and a nice strong hop finish.

M- Full bodied with moderate carbonation and a strong bitter finish.

Overall I think they could have blended this brew alot better. The flavors there but I think it needs some maturing to bring out the real life of this beer.

SkÅl!

Photo of champ103
4.1/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a slightly hazy dark garnet color. A two finger beige head forms with excellent retention. The wispy foam gently recedes after several minutes and leaves some sticky lace behind.
S: I don't get much in the nose. At first a light soapy and oily citrus hop aroma. Followed by some toasted caramel malt. Just not big enough.
T: Surprisingly balanced for a Stone Barleywine. Toasted caramel malt up front. Some chocolate and dark fruits. Plenty of citrus and piny hops linger on for a great balance.
M/D: A medium body and carbonation. Syrupy, sticky, soapy, and oily. There is some hot alcohol, but a great beer to sip on.

This years Old Guardian is much more balance than years past. This is very complex, and I have several bottles to cellar. I can't wait to see how this develops over the next few years. Recommend.

Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.1/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a murky honey orange with a 2 inch puffy orange-white head that settles to a thin cap. Chunky rings of lace line the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, brown sugar, caramel, and lots of citrus zest hops. Taste is of malt, caramel, brown sugar, grapefruit, citrus zest, and an herbal and almost medicinal hop flavor. Very alcohol forward too even after 1.5 years or so of age on it. Mild hop bitterness after each sip that lingers on the palate. This beer has a crisp level of carbonation with a slightly sticky mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good barleywine but this one has a better smell than taste. The alcohol seems to be pretty potent in this year's vintage as well which takes a bit away from the enjoyability of this one.

Photo of jt31914
4.1/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This is a very good barleywine, perhaps not quite as good as last years or as my other favorite barleywines (ie behemoth and gnarlywine). The color is a very nice amber with a small amount of nice head and great lacing. Smell is wonderful barley sweetness and some hop balance. taste was also good barley sweetness, the main problem i have is the funky aftertaste and that i thought there was a little more heat than i would've liked on the finish (i prefer my barleywines more smooth i suppose). Very good brew though.

Photo of AnswerInQuestion
4.1/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured into a Chimay glass; dark brown with a hint of red, less than 1 cm of head fizzling out to bareley any, very faint lacing.

S: Fresh and crisp piney hops with a relatively faint sweet raisiny malt, especially for a barleywine.

T: Bitterness from Stone's signature hop profile, mixed with the barleywine sweetness of caramel and woody notes. Definitely more bitter than I usually like my barleywines, but the hops give way to more sweetness as the beer warms.

M: Lightly carbonated, but adequately for the style. Clean finish, with a slight hoppiness pushing aside the threat of an alcoholic sting.

D: Although this beer is not as sweet as I usually enjoy in a barleywine, it strikes me as a very accurate representation of stone's beer esthetic: cascade hops are stone's duct tape (in the best way, the ultimate tool), layered over the classic deep sweetness and high alcohol of the beer style. The crisp finish makes this beer taste more like their usual offerings, which are not quite as high in alcohol, but, having finished too much of a 22oz too fast, I can tell you that the alcohol sneaks up on you in a way that usualy barleywines are more obvious.

Photo of msimmons32
4.1/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

One of my buddies picked this up for me from stone in a growler about 3 weeks ago. It has been sitting in my fridge waiting to be drank.

The first pour was good but the alcohol was quite overwhelming. I let it sit for about 30 mins and the taste was quite citrusie. Over the couse of an hour or so the hops and barley really came out. The beer really started to shine after this and was quite drinkable.

The mouthfeel was very heavy malt backbone, and biscuit. It also was quite floural and fluffy on the palte. As the beer warmed up and began to breathe I got notes of vanilla, oak, taosted nuts, pine (due to the hops).

This beer is great young but i would recommend this beer several years down the road. I am aging a bomber to compare to this atleat 2 years down the road.

Photo of KomodoDragon
4.1/5  rDev -1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured a hazy copper with a one inch light tan head with terrific lacing.

S - The smell hints at what is in store. Floral wine, fruity, sugar.

T - Malty caramel sweetness. Alcohol warmth is balanced by the bitter taste of american hops.
This is one to sip (and enjoy)

M - In a word, chewy. I would add spicy and malty.

This is a barleywine that changes as you age it. Not quite sure how I'll come up with the patience to test that theory. Delicious!

Photo of Mosley1212
4.13/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A--Dark, vibrant orange with a cloudy, brown tint. It poured with a 1 1/2 inch white head that stayed around for a while before leaving. It was beautiful.

S--Wonderful. It has a heavy scent of alcohol for sure, but behind that you have fruit, fruit, and more fruit. Dark grape fruits, raisins, maybe cinnamon. This is probably the best barley wine I have ever smelled.

T--First off, it's hard to ignore the alcohol flavor. It's there from the beginning til the end. You also get a lot of the fruit notes with each sip. Tastes like cinnamon, figs, almost a rum flavor. It really tastes like a nice spiced rum. I liked it.

M--Heavy feel in the mouth. Burn from the alcohol exists for sure.

D--Not very high. It's a good sipper beer, but if you try to drink a lot of this, the 11.00% is going to catch up to you quickly.

Photo of mjaskula
4.13/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Early 2010, served in a tulip glass. The beer is a nice clear dark copper reddish color. The head is moderately thick and tan. It thins and leaves some thick lacing.

The aroma is thick and syrupy sweet with carmel and dark fruits. It is backed with bitter pine hop aroma. The flavor follows the nose, starting off sweet and smooth. The carmel and fruit are still there, and the bitter finish is aggressive.

Mouthfeel is thick, but not as syrupy as I expected. Overall I really like this one. I have a second bottle to age. I'm looking forward to seeing how the hops will mellow out over the next year.

Photo of BEERMILER12
4.13/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Early 2010 vintage

A: Pours a nice cloudy copper color with a nice head that leaves good lacing

S: Fruity malts and some hops in the background. Some bready yeast also comes through. Surprisingly no alcohol in the smell, which is impressive for an 11.1% brew

T: Some nice dark fruits up front with definite malts, followed by a pleasant hop bitterness and some alcohol burn

M: Medium body with light carbonation. Fairly prickly from the alcohol despite the low carbonation

D: This one is a sipper for sure, and a pretty damn good one at that. More and more complexities come out when it warms up, which is very nice. I'd say it could use some more age, but it is still drinking well after almost a year

Photo of larryi86
4.13/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bottle poured into a snifter

A- A clear deep ruby red with a two finger off-white head.

S- Dark fruits, cherries, figs, syrup, caramel malts, some alcohol, faded hops, sweet.

T- Piney hops are big and bitter, brunt aftertaste, syrup and dark fruits up front, very little alcohol. The burnt aftertaste is less off putting the more I drink this.

M- Medium body, little syrupy.

O- I did not try this fresh, but I still feel this is a solid beer at two years old. I am surprised how much hop bitterness is still in this beer. 11.1% ABV is not noticeable.

Photo of hoplover82
4.13/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear amber color with a medium off white creamy head that has very good retention and lacing.

The aroma is strong with caramel and toffee at the forfront and some resinus hops in the back. Slightly on the dark fruits side as well.

The flavor is much like the smell with lots of caramel and toffee and some resinous piney hops in the back with some alcohol bite.

The mouthfeel is huge and sliky on this one. Sweet but not cloying due to the huge hop bitterness. Finishes very smooth.

Drinks very well with a nice hoppy aftertaste that lingers forever. I would buy this again.

Photo of drabmuh
4.13/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2010 beer. Beer is amber, dark, with a haze and a medium head of small and medium bubbles that leaves a lot of lacing on the glass. The bubbles are yellowing and fluffy. The carbonation is moderate and steady.

Mild pine hops with a thick malt aroma.

Beer is medium bodied and has a definite sweetness in the front with a strong bitterness in the back. It finishes slightly dry. The overall connectivity is pretty good, its a little hot on the front end but not too bad. I wish it wasn't so dry but I understand that's what they want. I've had a lot of these over the years and mostly haven't bothered to review them, this one is about like the rest. A vertical (with probably 4 other people) would be fun to do to see how they change from year to year or over time, but that will have to wait.

Photo of TCHopCraver
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours golden-amber with a 2-finger beige head into a standard pint glass. The beer is see-through and seems to be running pretty low on carbonation. The lacing left behind is pretty sticky and thick.

S: First whiff is of piney and slightly citrus hops. This is overcome by a slightly honeydew melon, pear, and hop blend as the beer sits for a few minutes. The aroma is just a little thin and watery, but otherwise has a good balance between sweet malt and bitter hop smells. The more I bring this into my nostrils, it becomes very similar to a Pinot Grigio scent.

T: Bittering hops are ever-present throughout the sip and lend a nice balance to the abundant sweet malts. This is a pretty well balanced American Barleywine and might be the most hop forward of an A.B. that I've tried. It definitely does not tread into the syrup soup category that some others of the style do. A candied fruit flavor is a dominant taste on my palate, as well, with a creeping taste of alcohol as the beer warms a bit.

M: I am really enjoying the contrast between a creamy feel on the back and sides of my palate and the puckering hop collision with my tongue. It is a bruising hop oil presence, but I commend Stone for juicing this up so heavily with the humulus lupulus.

D: Good for the style. The malt/hop balance makes it more drinkable than other malt syrup bombs that I've encountered in other barleywines.

Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2010 from Stone Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 327 ratings.