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

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

317 Ratings
THE BROS
81
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 317
Reviews: 202
rAvg: 4.14
pDev: 9.9%


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
Ratings: 317 | Reviews: 202 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of angrybabboon
angrybabboon

Rhode Island

4.05/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Review adapted from notes taken 6/4/11

Appearance: Hazy orange brown/amber color with an off-white head and some lacing - the head is especially nice considering that this beer is about a year old

Smell: Cooked, caramelized malts - smells kind of sweet, but also smells really hoppy - citrus and pine - kind of spicy, unfortunately kind of has that "old hops" smell

Taste: Somewhat sweet, but mostly just a remarkable amount of balance - caramel malts, some dark fruits, sugar - on the earthy side, with some leafy hop flavors - really good, and it gets better and better as it warms

Mouthfeel: Medium body - not as heavy as I would have anticipated, maybe this is partially due to the great level of carbonation - this really works for me

Overall: Great, I need to get this yearly

This is a solid American Barleywine. I'm curious if the hops would have been over-the-top a year ago. It aged well, but it could definitely be better. Next I will review the 2011 BELGO...

Serving type: bottle

08-18-2011 19:22:16 | More by angrybabboon
Photo of jondeelee
jondeelee

Massachusetts

4.45/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Old Guardian has all of the rich, malty aromas one would expect from a high-quality barleywine--deep brown sugars, caramel, vanilla, molasses, chocolate malts and hints of oak--and combines these with a medium-strength blast of hoppy goodness.

On the tongue, the brew provides an immediate sugary blast, but with far darker tones than the nose would imply. Here, the sugars tend more towards the blackness of molasses than the sweetness of sugarcane, and are tinged with chocolate malts, syrupy vanillas, dark chocolates, hints of tobacco, fig, and roasted nuts. A thick layer of hops and hoppy flavors counterbalances this darkness, bringing grapefruits as well as lychee nuts and light rosewater threads. The aftertaste is largely black sugars, and lingers. Mouthfeel is medium to medium-heavy, and carbonation is medium.

Overall, this is an excellent barleywine, and quite refreshing in its depth and complexity. One of the beer's only weaknesses is a strong alcohol tinge that runs throughout the mouthful, obviously the result of the massive ABV (11.3%). I've encountered few beers of this style that so revel in chocolate malts and roasted nuts, and find myself wishing that more did. Well worth trying.

Serving type: bottle

08-03-2011 03:39:04 | More by jondeelee
Photo of beerandcycling88
beerandcycling88

Washington

4.43/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a snifter.

A pours a nice copper color with a thin head that dissipates quickly.

S lots of sugery fruit, with some port wine notes and a hint of caramel.

T lots of caramel malt and sugary sweetness. Along with some slight bitterness and floral notes from the hops and no heat from the alcohol.

M very thick and syrupy. Coats the mouth when you drink it. Follows up with a slight warming feeling.

Overall this is an incredible american barley wine. Espcially with a little age on it. It is amazingly balanced between hops and malt with no alcoholic heat. I wish I had a few more bottles of this one.

Serving type: bottle

06-07-2011 02:16:05 | More by beerandcycling88
Photo of Blanco
Blanco

Pennsylvania

3.88/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours an amber color with tan head. head fizzes out rather quickly. smell is of caramel and a surprising amount of hop presence, though not nearly as much as a fresh bottle. taste is less caramel and bitter upfront. also getting some dark fruit notes. bit of an alcohol burn coming through as well. thicker mouthfeel. overall, decent, though not great American Barleywine. I have another bottle of this vintage that I will let sit for a while and revisit if necessary.

Serving type: bottle

06-06-2011 00:42:47 | More by Blanco
Photo of KomodoDragon
KomodoDragon

Virginia

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!

Serving type: bottle

05-20-2011 02:55:02 | More by KomodoDragon
Photo of Sunnanek
Sunnanek

Sweden

4.05/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours murky deep orange, almost like a sunset in haze. The white head is rather thin and leaves only some lacings.

S: Molasses; sweet caramell malt. Some floral hops gives it a citric tone. Rather surprising since I've stored this bottle for quite some time. Dark dried fruits.

T: Sweet caramell malt. Still hoppy, both floral and bitter. Lots of dark dried fruits. Syrupy.

M: Full thick body, smooth. Carbonation is moderate. Aftertaste is sweet and stays for a little while, some faint bitterness as well. Warming and alcoholic.

O: Since I waited about a year to drink it, I can't say for sure what it was like when it was fresh, but the hops were surprisingly potent, still. A very nice American Barleywine. I kind of regret that I didn't buy more of it and stored a few bottles even longer...

Serving type: bottle

05-13-2011 19:01:29 | More by Sunnanek
Photo of ThePorterSorter
ThePorterSorter

Missouri

3.95/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thought I had gotten lucky and grabbed a brand new 2011 bottle...unfortunately I was getting a year old 2010. We shall see how well it has kept.

Appearance:
Light brown with hues of orange and red. A thin white head blankets the beer and doesn't leave much lacing. The beer may have lost some carbonation sitting for a year, but that's speculation only. The high %abv may also contribute to this beer's lacking head. Everything seems fine so far, I have no major complaints.

Smell:
Caramel maltiness with notes of vanilla and cherries. The alcohol is also quite pungent, almost burns the nostrils. Thankfully the beer doesn't smell infected, so this may actually be a pleasant surprise!

Taste:
I'm very selective for which barley wines I like and this one is pretty damn flavorful. The beer is sweet and smooth, almost reminds me of a beer that spent time in a barrel. A beverage that is good for sipping and easily pleases the palate. I enjoyed this beer with some sausage and pepperoni pizza, but it could easily be paired with a more complex dish.

Mouthfeel:
Sticky sweetness with a noticeable bitterness in its finish. The alcohol works to improve this beer's sweet-bitter balance. Likewise there is a subtle bitterness that works to improve the beer's spice factor and contributes some additional bitterness. Describing this beer's mouthfeel in a few words: resiny, thick, strong, and smooth.

Overall:
Although I thought I had a brand new 2011 in my hands, this wasn't a bad purchase. The beer was fairly priced and lived up to my expectations. Rich sweetness with a little spice, there is a place for a beer like this, but I was unfortunately in the mood for an IPA.
I am looking forward to the 2011, but I may not wait a year just to buy it!

Cheers.

Serving type: bottle

04-18-2011 01:19:30 | More by ThePorterSorter
Photo of buschbeer
buschbeer

Ohio

3.73/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle
Served in a snifter

A - It is dark amber to almost copper in color. I got about an inch of tan head.

S - I get a sweet malty molasses aroma.

T - The taste is malty and sweet. It finishes with an unpleasant bitterness.

M - Medium mouthfeel and oily slick

O - I don't like the hop profile in this one. I love the mouthfeel and the ABV.

Serving type: bottle

04-17-2011 18:37:29 | More by buschbeer
Photo of robbrandes
robbrandes

Oregon

4.25/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

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.

Serving type: bottle

04-12-2011 05:56:06 | More by robbrandes
Photo of joecast
joecast

Australia

4.28/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 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.

Serving type: on-tap

04-09-2011 06:13:58 | More by joecast
Photo of DrJay
DrJay

Massachusetts

4.33/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Clear, deep copper colour with a wisp of fine beige bubbles that formed a thin collar and coated the top of the beer. The foam stuck around for a long time and left a little bit of spotty lacing on the glass. Tons of malt in the aroma, toasted and caramel for the most part, a little biscuity too. Mild alcohol and fruity hops rounded things out with hints of citrus and pine. I really like the flavour of this beer. Alcohol was present, but restrained, and gave a pleasant warming at the end. Bitterness was solid and was backed up by lots of toasted malt, a little caramel sweetness, and citrusy hops that had admittedly faded somewhat. I found it really well rounded and balanced though, compared to its fresher brethren. Full bodied, medium to low carbonation, pleasant texture. What can I say, this is a beer that I really enjoy and I wasn't let down by this year's batch.

Serving type: bottle

04-09-2011 01:45:04 | More by DrJay
Photo of RandyV
RandyV

Arizona

3.85/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Beautiful dark amber color on the pour with a nice two inch head that dissipates quickly with little lacing. The smell is of malt and distinctive Belgian yeast with some tropical fruit. The alcohol is upfront initially with a nice warming finish. The dry finish is a nice balance to the malt presence. I tread lightly when it comes to Belgian ales, but this is a nice job by Stone to bring the style to Cali with a nice offering.

Serving type: bottle

04-09-2011 01:28:38 | More by RandyV
Photo of Snow81
Snow81

Minnesota

4.45/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Light orange haze

Head: Small head that dissipates quickly

Smell: Nice caramel malts with a great citric on the nose

Taste: Sweet dark citric with healthy malt sweetness

Weight: Medium body with low to medium carbonation

Finish: Rich full sweet hops with malts on the back end and subtle heat

Serving type: on-tap

04-06-2011 05:19:24 | More by Snow81
Photo of ColdPoncho
ColdPoncho

Ohio

4.05/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From notes, 7-21-2010

A - somewhat clouded deep copper body, medium taupe head.

S - sweet malts, some hop undertones.

T - full and complex malt sweetness, well balanced with some spicy hops

M - full bodied and creamy

O (D) - goes down easy and smooth, but its pretty strong.

Serving type: bottle

03-27-2011 18:25:40 | More by ColdPoncho
Photo of surprenant1138
surprenant1138

Connecticut

4.55/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into snifter. Pours a hazy dark amber. Small amount of quickly disappearing head. Nice lacing. Aroma is of hops, wet sour smell, wet hay. Mouthfeel is slightly grainy. Taste is of hops, dry, slightly bitter. It stays with you. Flavor makes me picture a hot, sunny day on a midwestern farm. This is my #2 barleywine and one of my favorite Stone brews.

Serving type: bottle

03-26-2011 00:39:19 | More by surprenant1138
Photo of ChugginOil
ChugginOil

Illinois

4.03/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very hazy golden orange with a fingers worth of white head. Nice lacing holding up well.

Sweet bready malt up front dominating the nose for the most part. Smells very inviting.

Sweet malt with bold bitter hops on the back end. There is some biscuit flavors along with the malt upfront. Pretty balanced.

The mouthfeel is smooth and bitter, very well balanced. Its a great mixture. This is a monster ale that sits heavy.

Overall, one of the better barleywines ive had and will revist this. Glad i have another 2010 in the cellar.

Serving type: bottle

03-24-2011 08:18:15 | More by ChugginOil
Photo of jsh420
jsh420

Illinois

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

Serving type: bottle

03-24-2011 03:17:15 | More by jsh420
Photo of whatthehull
whatthehull

California

4.28/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

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

Serving type: bottle

03-20-2011 06:39:50 | More by whatthehull
Photo of Gushue3
Gushue3

Massachusetts

3.7/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I'm pretty new to barleywines so i dont have too much to compare to but here it is.

A- pours deep amber/red/orange. gigantic head that leaves good amount of lacing.

S- strong on the sweetness with a rush of hops and fruit toward the middle and end. medium booze taste at the end. pretty tasty

T- very sweet upfront that turns bitter in the middle that ends with a bitter lingering.

M- small carbonation bubbles feel nice, sweetness/bitterness make me pucker a tiny bit. medium/heavy feel on the tongue.

D- definately drinkable, flavors are good, decent mouthfeel.

Serving type: bottle

03-14-2011 23:51:44 | More by Gushue3
Photo of crossovert
crossovert

Illinois

4.4/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Early 2010 release. 650ml bottle.

It pours a murky, dark orangeish-red with a thick, foamy off-white leaves that leaves ornate, speckled, camouflage-like lacing.

The smell is big and sweet with some interesting hop and yeast notes. It has rip banana, raisin, and citrus fruit notes. There is plenty of caramel in there as well.

The flavor is big and sweet, super sweet. It has a nice hoppy bitterness though. The hops have a herbal, piney, earthy note that blends nice with the thick caramel sweetness. It isn't overly alcohol but certainly the alcohol is not fully cloaked.

The hop bill in this one is intriguing, it comes off as one of the ore bitter barleywines and I like that.

Serving type: bottle

03-12-2011 06:37:05 | More by crossovert
Photo of AdamBear
AdamBear

Pennsylvania

2.6/5  rDev -37.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

A-murky dark amber with a light tan head. good lacing.

S-smells very malty with a lot of barley. it smells a lot like syrup. it smells a bit boozy as well. the smell is very strong.

T-comes in with a very malty blast of caramel and barley. its very striking. it then transforms in to a boozy bitterness that i don't find too desirable. the only part of this barley wine that i enjoy is the after-taste. it has good caramelized sugars that slightly remind me of belgian sugars. they're a bit bitter as well. this beer has a lot of heat to it. i'm not sure i'm a fan

M-has a creamy medium carbonation that is also bitter. the finish is bitter and fairly dry.

D-well i wish i would've saved this bomber for a tasting or something. it sure is a lot of beer. i could've split this four ways. its just not the type of beer i can drink a lot of.

Serving type: bottle

02-23-2011 02:55:48 | More by AdamBear
Photo of grittybrews
grittybrews

Washington

4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

2010 bottled, opened 02/2011.

Poured a murky cider-amber color with a finger of quick-receding eggshell head. Aroma of toffee, boozy heat, biscuit, and orange-dominated citrus.

Carbonation just shy of average and a creamy mouthfeel with just a touch of thinness on the finish. Flavor isn't overly sweet up front with lots of citrusy hops balanced by toast, brown sugar, mild spice. Agressive, hot finish with lots of bitter pine hop presence.

Enjoyable, but I thought this brew was a little two-dimensional compared with some of the other fresher barleywines I've sampled lately. Very malty, very hoppy, but not too much complexity emerging beyond that.

Serving type: bottle

02-22-2011 06:04:10 | More by grittybrews
Photo of Casey10
Casey10

Maine

3.8/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Wow have had this in the cellar for a little while and decided to open it up. This is a very strong beer with lots of malt and a almost syrupy taste to it.

It has a golden hue about and the lacing on the glass is really nice.

This is a very strong brew if you don't take it easy with it.

It has a nice back raison taste as well.

well crafted will see what a couple of years on this might do to turn it down as it is hot.

A must try for the style though.

Serving type: bottle

02-14-2011 23:57:01 | More by Casey10
Photo of deadliest
deadliest

Texas

3.78/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: A foggy copper-amber pour with a nice 2 finger light khaki head leaving a map of lacing down the sides of my Duvel tulip. All Stone products look awesome.
S: Caramel malts, a surprising amount of citrus hops. Brown sugar.
T: Caramel, hops and alcohol battle it out. I'm sure there are other flavors in there somewhere but my palate too busy with these 3 to find out.
M: Full with light carbonation, syrupy more than creamy.
D: It tastes good enough to want to keep drinking, but its a bruiser for sure. Not sure I could handle much more than this bomber.

Wish I could spare the room in my tiny collection to age some.

Serving type: bottle

02-14-2011 01:09:13 | More by deadliest
Photo of cindyjeffsmith
cindyjeffsmith

Georgia

3.53/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

appearance: Reddish-caramel with a pretty substantial off white head.
smell: i drank one a year ago and put this one back. Smells promising. Actually some malt in there. Last year i thought i had a DIPA.
taste: Yikes, the hops just slapped the barleywine out of my mouth. Thought a year might tame it. Even for a DIPA, this would be unbalanced for my taste. Fully understand these hop monsters are just what the Doc ordered for some (many from the reviews). Either my palate is not refined enough or Stone just ain't for me.
And yea, it fits the style of American Barleywine. It is indeed "insanely hopped". Am not getting the complexity though, just the "insanely hopped". Still i do love beer and don't get me wrong...still a fine experience

Serving type: bottle

02-13-2011 21:00:13 | More by cindyjeffsmith
Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2010 from Stone Brewing Co.
92 out of 100 based on 317 ratings.