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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
92
outstanding

323 Ratings
THE BROS
81
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 323
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: 323 | Reviews: 201 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of vickersspitfire
3.98/5  rDev -3.9%

Poured out a beautiful semi dark amber color with copper tone when help up the light. It had some good carbonation and was topped with a thick and bubbly light tan head. This is one beautiful ale to look at! I t has that awesome hops aroma, some malts, sweet fruity aromas mixed in a good alcohol smell. There are hints of malts, grapefruit (as you swallow), a slight pepper flavor and herbs as well. It's mildly bitter toward the back of the mouth, but very pleasing when you first get it on your tongue and full of carbonation, it has a semi-dry aftertaste with a mild caramel presence.

vickersspitfire, Apr 11, 2010
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 Flashsp2
3.88/5  rDev -6.3%

Stone Old Guardian 2010 into snifter

Pours deeply blood red with perfect clarity, golden and orange highlights, and a dense foamy beige head with caramel tinting. Looks classic barleywine. Even manages some beautiful little lacing, something that Stone and only a small handful of other brewers could pull off with an 11.1% beer.

Nose is powerfully boozy, sweet malty, dessert breads, caramel, herbs and piney hops, yeasty fruitiness. Smells balanced and inviting, surprisingly mellow for such a hefty beer at a young age.

The palette is a little less refined than the nose. Herbs, pine, grainy caramel, booze, bready malt, chewy toffee. Fades from herbal to sweet with a prickly bitter finish.

Mouthfeel is heavy and soft with residual sugars with a low carbonation.

Pretty drinkable when it warms a bit. Not my favorite barleywine, but I do really enjoy the nose. Another bottle is in order for a much later date.

Flashsp2, Apr 07, 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 WVbeergeek
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%

Stone has been good to the state of Ohio, it's a pretty good day when you can buy 22 ounces of Barleywine for 6.99. This one pours a deep ruby amber hue with a large off white khaki cream head forming thick with fine even lacing forming as the head dwindles. Big deep dark fruit notes soaked in alcohol, a nice raisin, plum, fig fruitiness going on with big rounded booziness. Pine and earthy grapefruit ridden hops blends in aggressively, definitely a welcomed aspect in a young American barleywine. Almost a cedar or charred oak with a bit of vanilla a very interesting humidor or oak barrel hints, although I know this one hasn't touched the wood. Perfect serving temp adds to the experience don't serve this one too cold. Big bold layered flavors, rough and aggressive hop bitterness that tends to soften with some age. Juicy citrus grapefuit rinds, with pine/earthy hop flavors colliding. Big caramel and dark fruit infused malt layers, toffee nearly burn flavors...booze blends with vanilla, charred oak and plum and fig brandy blends. Mouthfeel is full bodied carbonation is mellow and easy going, heavy abrasive waves of hop bitterness are left behind with each sip. Drinkability overall this one has huge potential with more aging much like most barleywines, a nice heavy brooding hoppy b-wine that will get better and better.

WVbeergeek, Apr 05, 2010
Photo of augustgarage
3.95/5  rDev -4.6%

Poured from a 22oz bomber into a snifter. Long-winded blurbs excerpted from a journal entry written during a trip to India on the back - seemingly little to no connection to the contents within.

Glassy raspberry and alizarin body with a large array of tiny bubbles rushing to the surface. Heavy isabelline head recedes to a large collar and a thin peninsula leading to a quarter sized hill of bubbles in the center of the glass. A swirl reactivates the crown while leaving a stippling of lace around the sides. Viscous legs drag down the sandy lacing when you take a sip.

Punishing malt aromatics with an unconcealed dose of alcohol. Stewed nectarines, leather, lanolin, dark cherry, and maple syrup with a hint of blueberries. Hops are grassy and earthy, but can't cut through the rest of the aromatics.

Malt base delivers a tsunami of carmel-dipped bread, which becomes crustier as it approaches the finish. The hops assert themselves mid-palate, with a biting pine bitterness and a touch of grapefruit. The finish shovels on licorice, more earth, and a hint of pepper. Low dried fruit notes throughout as well. Actually has much in common with Arrogant Bastard, though this dials up the malt and alcohol quite a bit.

Medium, almost medium-heavy bodied, with good carbonation. A bit slick, and a little hot.

Distinctively Stone - and a pretty good example of the style. Curious to try an older vintage.

augustgarage, Apr 05, 2010
Photo of jettjon
4.03/5  rDev -2.7%

Into a glass, clear amber with very few tiny bubbles. Pour yields a towering light tan head which fades away slowly leaving heavy clinging lace. Nice looking brew. On the nose is a faint boozy alcohol and sweet floral malt with hints of honey. On the tongue, the honey-sweet flavor asserts itself again, followed by a moderate alcohol burn. Hops are there as well, grapefruit-like sour biting toward the middle and taking over from the sweet malt. It ends on a slightly dry bitter note. Mouthfeel is good; it's slightly thin with low viscosity and quite smooth. Drinkability is good, but of course with all such high ABV brews, moderation is a must. It's deceptively smooth and tasty, and can easily sneak up on you.

Overall: A tasty but not spectacular barley wine. Cellaring would probably help with smoothing out some of the rough edges.

jettjon, Apr 04, 2010
Photo of KickInTheChalice
4/5  rDev -3.4%

On tap in a snifter.

Appearance: Deep amber / burgundy color with a small white head around the edge. No lace.

Smell: A strong malt nose, with caramel, some spices. A hop presence is mostly citrus, with some floral notes as well.

Taste: The toffee and caramel malt barely appears before the hops sink their teeth in. A strong grapefruit and apricot flavor, with a resonating bitterness in the aftertaste. I think I would like this a little better if it aged a bit, fading out some of the hop presence to give it more depth and balance.

Mouthfeel: Slightly coarse in my mouth with a bubbly carbonation.

Drinkability: The ABV is clearly present throughout each sip. Combined with a strong aftertaste, I am less than inclined to really get into these regularly. Still impressive for 11%.

KickInTheChalice, Apr 04, 2010
Photo of Lunch
4.03/5  rDev -2.7%

Served on-tap at Victoria Gastro Pub in Columbia, MD into a 12oz.snifter at the appropriate temperature (03/26/10).

A: Pours a brilliant shade of dark copper, with a rich ruby hue capped with one finger of an almost white head. Decent retention and some patchy lace.

S: Strong and powerful aroma of pine, caramel malt, along with quite a bit of alcohol. Notes of citrus and hints of toffee and burnt malt are there as well.

T: The flavor profile mirrors the aroma with layers of pine, caramel malt, alcohol, burnt malt, and some citrus. Not as complex as I remember, but I could be wrong.

M: Medium to full-bodied with smooth carbonation and a pleasant tinge of alcohol.

D: For a 11% American Barleywine, this one has good drinkability.

Overall this was nice American Barleywine, but I was less impressed with this year's version compared to last year's.

Lunch, Apr 01, 2010
Photo of Arbitrator
4.18/5  rDev +1%

Chilled bottle into a glass (2010). I'm working backwards through my Stone stash to kill bottles one by one.

A: Pours a chill-hazed burnt amber body with a beautiful fluffy 1.5 fingers of off-white head. Retention is excellent (2+ minutes) for a beer of this gravity. It maintains a thick collar of large bubbles with some thin, broken film on top.

S: Kind of a mild nose. Citrus hops and some pine. The hop profile immediately made me recall Double Bastard, for some reason. Butterscotch, toffee, almond brittle, caramel, brown sugar.

T: Hoppy up front, but in a flavorful citrus manner, with light wet pine needles. The bitterness is noticed but not fully appreciated, due to the strong malt presence of butterscotch, toffee, and nuts (as in the aroma, I liken it to almond brittle). Caramel is pretty strong, of course, and so is a general brown sugar sweetness. There's a medicinal bitterness in the aftertaste that I find off-putting, but otherwise, I find this is hitting a lot of right notes for me. It's very aggressive, but still enjoyable.

M: Chewy, full-bodied. Swirls in the mouth with a very viscous resistance. Carbonation is spot-on. It's definitely warming, but not hot.

D: It'll get ya drunk! You'll be f***ing fat chicks in no time! This is a surprisingly drinkable big boy. I haven't been able to finish a lot of bombers on my own lately, but I had no trouble with this one. I'm definitely a fan and will buy them again, at least fresh. I have a few vintage bottles to evaluate as to whether aging this one is worth it.

Arbitrator, Apr 01, 2010
Photo of daledeee
3.9/5  rDev -5.8%

Picked up a bottle while in Wisconsin.

Pours a dark walnut brown and off white head. Thin head stayed for a while.

Nose is not real strong but nice. Mild citrus and roasted malt with hints of caramel

Taste is IPA-like. Good dose of hops is predominant. Quite a bit of malt and a slightly sweet undertone. Finish is also pretty hoppy with lots of carbonation, mostly foamy feel in the mouth. Overall, except for the hops, taste is not over the top like other barley wine I have had.

Not hard to drink, alcohol is hidden. A pretty good barleywine.

daledeee, Mar 30, 2010
Photo of womencantsail
4.35/5  rDev +5.1%

On-tap on Stone

A: The pour is a dark amber color with a fluffy cream colored head.

S: The nose is full of bitter, piney, and grapefruit hops. There's plenty of sweet caramel and brown sugar behind that.

T: The flavor features more of the traditional barleywine qualities. The caramel, toffee, and brown sugar provide the usual sweetness and they are balanced nicely by the bitter hoppiness.

M: The body is quite full with a fairly abundant carbonation, eliminating the potential syrupy feel of many big beers.

D: This is quite drinkable, even for its young age. I enjoy the bitterness that Old Guardian has when it's fresh, but look forward to aging a few of these.

womencantsail, Mar 29, 2010
Photo of kiddynamite920
4.33/5  rDev +4.6%

Early 2010 release, figured I'd review this one fresh.

A: Very interesting head, small and large bubbles mingling to form a very thin and white layer. Small bubbles are gone now, head is retaining quite like a barleywine should. A murky copper color with some orange highlights. Looks very traditional.

S: Nice malt profile for how hoppy this beer is supposed to be. It has a firm malt backbone for the hops to rest on. The hops are quite nice, citrusy and aromatic. Some apricot and peach in here. Also get a banana aroma, sweet fruits for sure. Very nice smell. No alcohol burn or hop bitterness.

T: Big butterscotch/caramel/vanilla hits the tongue right away. A bit of oakiness or burnt wood character. Has a flavor of sugar that has been just barely over caramelized. Nice subtle fruitiness, apricots and peaches. Really doesn't strike me as a barleywine type of flavor. Almost like a well made DIPA with a big malt bill. I am very impressed.

M: Not thick and syrupy, not thin and wispy. Very well balanced and feels like it has been aged. If I can grab another I'll put it away for a bit.

D: Very, very drinkable BW. Very well crafted, cheers to Greg on a fantastic brew!

kiddynamite920, Mar 28, 2010
Photo of Norfawkers
4.45/5  rDev +7.5%

Recommend drinking this one when it's fresh if you're into that big hoppy flavor. Overall, this is a highly drinkable barley wine and another excellent Stone issue.

Appearance: Cloudy amber with little head

Smell: Floral and hoppy, sweetness, rich

Taste: Hops up front with a strong malt back; spices

Mouthfeel: Bitterness throughout with slight CO2

Drinkability: Definately a sipping beer with its complexity and fullness. Let it warm up if stored in the fridge to bring out more flavor.

Norfawkers, Mar 24, 2010
Photo of bonsreeb85
4.55/5  rDev +9.9%

Pours a burgundy(still see through) with a healthy head and okay retention.

The smell unfolds with a ton of hop resins, very dank to say the least. ALso in the mix is a trace of alcohol and lots of malt sweetness and boozey fruits.

The hop resins play against a super-sweet balancing act. This flavor is a beast! the hop presence is very strong, and there is some definate warmth on the alcohol laced follow through.

This brew has a medium full body with ample carbonationn. THe hop oils make the feel a bit slippery.

Goes down nicely despite the high alcohol content. THis one is still very young though, and I imagine it will only improve and mellow with time. I suppose I should lay a few down seeing as though Stone is supposedly changeing the recipe after this year.

bonsreeb85, Mar 22, 2010
Photo of ChadQuest
3.98/5  rDev -3.9%

very grateful to Townhag for this surprise gift. I had honestly wanted this BW for quite a time.

This beer reminds me that a barley wine is really basically a pale ale but twice the...everything. the hops,malt, and alcohol are all balanced very well and this doesn't get so thick and syrupy that drinking it becomes a chore, which is even surprising considering the 11%. This is a nice change from all the Resin hop bomb american barley wines i have had recently, and this bomber was just as enjoyable to the end as it was at first pour. once stone comes to chicago in the future i can see myself having a bomber of this storing at all times.

ChadQuest, Mar 21, 2010
Photo of EthersTragic
3.9/5  rDev -5.8%

A - Dark amber color with a 1/2 head that dissipates quickly, but leaves a nice lacing around the glass.

S - malty & hoppy goodness with a bit of grassy extracts.

T - Piney, woodsy with a nice alcohol bite at the end. Some hoppy bitterness. I was pretty scared because this was my first time trying the style, but it was not at all what I expected.

M - Has a lingering bitter aftertaste, but not too bad. Carbonation is ok, not too much.

D - Not sure I'd drink more than one of these, but at 11% abv, pretty darn drinkable!

EthersTragic, Mar 21, 2010
Photo of Halcyondays
3.98/5  rDev -3.9%

From a 22 oz. bottle,

A: Pours a nice relatively clear amber, with a soft white head, fair lace.

S: The difference in hop character is clearly from the 1 year old '09, grapefruit, orange and pine - classic San Diego.

T: Similar hop character to the nose, with that big biscuity hop note I always find in Old Guardian, another well made effort.

M: Solid again, medium/full mouthfeel with a nice creamy carbonation.

D: The '10 really brings this back to where it is suppossed to be. I wasn't a huge fan of the '09 fresh and aged, but this is really good, I'll love to see where this goes.

Halcyondays, Mar 21, 2010
Photo of dionisio
3.88/5  rDev -6.3%

"This is gonna be hard to drink, isn't it?"
*takes a sip*
"Oh, no it's not." :)

On first sniff, I was a little overwhelmed. On first taste... mmm. Mouthfeel is a little bit sticky, though.

Good beer. Probably one of the better American barleywines I've had. But I can't say I recall what the other ones tasted like, as it's been awhile. This one tastes rather similar to a lot of APAs, as it has that typical super-hoppy taste.

dionisio, Mar 21, 2010
Photo of azdback
4.4/5  rDev +6.3%

Poured a beautiful burnt orange. Head maybe a finger and a half, but after warmed the second half of the bottle had a much larger head but the same great lace retention.
Smell was earthy, with citrus and boozyness.
Outstanding!!!! Hops bitterness with caramel sweetness
Mouthfeel was great. Full bodied and even though I let this warm a bit is stayed carbonated and full.
Drinkability!?!?!? This brew is over 11% abv but without even trying I finished it in less than an hour. Very drunkable!!!
Did I say that out loud?

azdback, Mar 19, 2010
Photo of muskabeatz
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%

A- Clear, burnt amber in color with a creamy toasted white head. Good lacing and head retention.

S- Lots of floral hops are the first thing to hit the nose, combined with herbal, spicy, grassy and bready notes. Slightly fruity as well. Citrus aroma is blended in as well with just a touch of booziness. Maybe I'm pulling this out of my ass, but I want to say I get a bit of banana.

T- Sweet malty backbone, with hints of caramel. Fair amount of hops blended in, although not overwhelming. Drying, bittering finish

M- Subdued, lingering carbonation, maybe would expect slightly more with it being this fresh. I would like just a bit more body as well.

D- Despite a few minor shortcomings, I find this to be a very drinkable beer. Only slightly boozy for it's 11% abv

muskabeatz, Mar 19, 2010
Photo of avalon07
4.43/5  rDev +7%

A: Poured from a pint bottle to an imperial pint glass. Had a reddish/gold color and a slightly hazy texture. There was a quarter inch of foamy head and very good lacing.

S: Surprisingly underplayed aroma of hops, caramel, and a bit of malt.

T: Tasted of pine hops, caramel, and a bit of hops in the finish. Gets better as it goes along. Very bitter, but definitely flavorful.

M: A highly carbonated beer with a slightly slick finish. Medium- to full-bodied.

D: An extremely drinkable, if potent, barleywine.

avalon07, Mar 18, 2010
Photo of cpetrone84
4.08/5  rDev -1.4%

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

cpetrone84, Mar 17, 2010
Photo of goldbot
4/5  rDev -3.4%

Coppery-red color with medium, off-white head that reduces quickly to a surface haze. Spotty lacing.

Up front, the nose is citrusy with some planty, herbal hop aromas as well. Notes of grapefruit and orange along with tropical fruit such as mango and pineapple. Some alcohol is detectable towards the end, particulary as it warms. The malt is definitely in the back seat on this one right now.

Fruity flavors of citrus and pineapple with an intense bitter throughout. Malt notes of caramel and dough, but these are again in the background compared with the substantial hoppiness.

Big bodied with a chewy and somewhat viscous mouthfeel. For a barleywine, this is all hops at this point; the malts are very subdued. Intensely bitter, slightly sweet at the finish, with a great hop profile. This could be an interesting beer for aging if the hops fade to reveal a good malt backbone.

goldbot, Mar 16, 2010
Photo of CampusCrew
4.18/5  rDev +1%

appearance: copper garnett, almost brown

smell: large hop presence, some citrus and pine aroma

taste: very hoppy anf I'm drinking this freash vs lst years at 6 months. This beer probably benfits alot from aging. slightly uncormfortably bitterness and not a very balanced BW

mouthfeel: medium bodied

drinkability: Nice beer, but probably better if aged.

CampusCrew, Mar 14, 2010
Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2010 from Stone Brewing Co.
92 out of 100 based on 323 ratings.