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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: 85 | 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: 327 | Reviews: 201 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Vengeance526
4.18/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark orange amber color with a thick tan head that has great retention and leaves light lacing.

Nice aroma that starts off very malty with brown sugar and caramel but soon shows a hoppier side with clear hints of citrus and pine. A little alcohol is detected.

Taste again starts off with sweet caramel and follows with grapefruit and lemony notes along with some spicy and piney hops. Alcohol is a little more prevalent in the taste but isn't overwhelming.

Smooth mouthfeel with a slightly sticky finish. A great barleywine. Alcohol becomes an issue after a while but this is flavorful enough that you don't pay much attention to its strength.

Vengeance526, Jun 29, 2010
Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.45/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap 6/19/10 at Track 84 in Warwick, RI, served in a tulip glass.

A: The beer is a deep reddish brown color, with a large light tan head that fades very slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of caramelized malts, brown sugar, dark fruit and a good amount of hops.

T: The taste starts out sweet with flavors of caramel, brown sugar and dark fruits. Then a strong but not over-powering hops presence comes in along with a significant alcohol sting. The malt character is hearty and creates a good balance. The after-taste is sweet.

M: Crisp and very smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is sticky.

D: Very tasty, goes down dangerously easy, slightly filling, strong kick, very good representation of style, with each year's release this beer continues to be a very good high-octane beer to drink for as long as you handle it.

TheManiacalOne, Jun 21, 2010
Photo of thain709
4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Served with an orange-amber body...a very thin head to begin and spotty retention...not much lacing

S - The nose was nice...sweet aromas with a syrupy texture to it...the hops, as in most Stone beers, were very pronounced and had citrus and pine aromas going on

T - This barleywine was very well balanced...the sweetness dominated in the beginning with lots of caramel malts...the hops show up at the end for a long, bitter finish...but the two of them join in the middle and play off of each other nicely...alcohol provides a warming finish when swallowed

M - Medium bodied...syrupy, smooth, nice push from the nitro

D - This was a decent barleywine...the alcohol was very evident which hinders a little but I think the balance of the flavors make up for it

thain709, Jun 19, 2010
Photo of beerdrifter
3.88/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked this up at a great beer store, Tops Liquor, while at a conference in Phoenix. Clear copper pour with a big caramel colored head and nice lacing. Malty caramel, toffee and brown sugar in the nose with a bit of orange and hints of dark fruit. Nice spicy, bitter hop bite right off the bat. Sweet candy, dark fruit and some tangerine add to the balance. I'm also getting a touch of soap aftertaste. The alcolhol is pretty well hidden for a barleywine. Chewy mouthfeel is nice which adds to its drinkability, if there's such a thing as drinkability for a barleywine. One bomber is more than enough for me. A bit disappointing seeing that I'm such a huge Stone fan. But still a nice barleywine.

beerdrifter, Jun 18, 2010
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.

hoplover82, Jun 15, 2010
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

hdofu, Jun 11, 2010
Photo of Mebuzzard
4.2/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

ok, so the Old Guardian is not new to me..it's darn good. This is the 2010 early release..aged about 3 months in my...uh...cellar. I have 2 more aging.

Looks damn fine. Deep amber, solid. Creamy, off white/light ruby head. Man...bee-ute-if-full. Lacing is thin...so no 5. Oh well.

Aroma is a nice balance of sweet caramel and malt, pine and citrus zest and alcohol. It's powerful. At 11%, the alcohol isn't hidden, but it's well incorporated.

Taste follows the nose. Caramel up front, sweet malt comes into play to introduce the pine and zest. It's a bit slick or syrupy in the feel. The alcohol provides a nice bit, in addition to the hops, at the end. This is nice. Perhaps a bit rough and early for this one....can't wait until the first snow of the winter.

Mebuzzard, Jun 09, 2010
Photo of Wasatch
4.33/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks goes out to ybnorml for this brew.

22oz. Bomber

Pours a nice dark copper color, nice carbonation, nice creamy one-finger tan head, with some nice small islands and sticky lacing left behind. The nose is malty, with a good dose of hops, slight citrus, and some spice notes. The taste is sweet malts, hoppy, slight caramel, citrusy. Medium body, this is a pretty complex barleywine. Very drinkable, glad to get this one. Thanks Wayne.

Wasatch, Jun 09, 2010
Photo of Bfarr
4.43/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear red amber with full tan head. Aromas of floral, tea and barley aroma with a little alcohol note. A whole range of flavors from tea and brown sugar to sweet barley, hazlenuts and chocolate. A nice scotch-like finish with a good mouth coating that doesn't build up the more you drink.

Stone is able to make their barleywine smooth and drinkable but still have the bite and feel of a good barleywine. The flavors blend together so well and leave with just a hint of alcohol which is quite good considering the ABV. A very fine sipping beer.

Bfarr, Jun 06, 2010
Photo of obywan59
4.88/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

THANK GOD! My Kroger store got some Old Guardian in. None at all last year, and that was after I'd purchased an Old Guardian glass. Now, I can give my glass a proper christening.

Pours a deep amber, but mahogany against a dark background, and more like fruit juice (cherry) when held up to the light. Almost transparent. Towering light-tannish head from a pour into the bottom of the glass. Almost no lacing.

BIG aroma of syrupy malt and flowery hops. Some wonderful caramel, dark fruits, and citrus as well.

Sweet malt up front with some light bitterness that quickly grows and becomes stronger and more floral before settling down to a nice laaastiiing bitterness in the end. A bit of heartburn (and gutburn) from the ABV.

The brew clings nicely to the tongue enhancing the flavor retention. Syrupy, but not overly sticky.

I suppose the drinkability is hampered by the 11.3% ABV, but then, who can really complain about that?

I know this is rated on the high side, but I really love this beer! The '08 version (not reviewed) was my favorite beer of all time (for nearly 2 years) until I sampled Firestone 13, but this one equals the Firestone in my estimation. The only beer I've rated higher is DFH The Flying Mouflan. Perhaps that was a mistake.

obywan59, Jun 05, 2010
Photo of BigMike
4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into my trusty tulip glass. Aa dark brown with lots of cranberry like redness throughout. About a 1/2 inch worth of creamy tan head.
Smell is big on everything. Huge malts,huge hops. Lots of citrus, pine,caramel, darks figs and prunes.

On the mouth you're first hit with the citrusy hops and then the spice kicks in followed but a ton of sweet caramel and dark sticky fruits.Alcohol is definitely in forefront on this badboy. It's hard to mask the heat from 11.10% abv. I would imagine a few years in the cellar would mellow this out but then the hoppy goodness i love about it would also be faded.

Mouthfeel is full bodied for sure. Thick, creamy,smooth and pretty well balanced as far as bitterness and sweetness goes.

Overall a tasty Barleywine. I had no trouble finishing the bomber but i did feel the effects. Could probably stand a little aging. This is a pretty young bottle.

Notes: Review taken from notes written on 5-25-10

BigMike, Jun 01, 2010
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.

jt31914, Jun 01, 2010
Photo of ajbick
4.47/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours copper with white fluffy head.

Smells of citrus and earthy hops. Slight malt aroma.

Taste has a nice balance of malt and hoppiness. Malt up front with bitter hop finish.

Good mouthfeel. Carbonated, but not too much.

Drinkability is great. Very easy to drink. Big beer, but not too heavy.

Overall, a great beer. Great hop and malt balance. Somewhat deceptive in the alcohol content - doesn't seem like a 11% abv beer.

I highly recommend this beer.

ajbick, May 31, 2010
Photo of berpwillie
4.55/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a cloudy copper orange color with spare white head and spare lacing. soft carbonation. very sweet and tart, citrus hints in the flavor, seems to be very sugary. medium body and long flavor duration. tart chalky and bitter finish. absolutley fantatsic brew. stone definitely knows how to make a fine brew. highly recommend.

berpwillie, May 26, 2010
Photo of NahpunGnome
4.45/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Early 2010 Release bottle poured into a Chimay goblet.

A - Light brown/copper with no head.

S - I get peaches, dried apricots, and prunes.

T - Prunes, some citrus, and hops. It's pretty sweet and the hop bitterness balances the sweet pretty well. Not much alcohol taste at all.

M - It's a bit thick, which I would expect given that the alcohol is so well hidden and it's a bit sweet.

D - Sipped or gulped, it's pretty easy to drink. With that said, I doubt I can gulp this one down for long only because it is a little thick.

Summary - This is my first barleywine style beer and I'm glad I chose a Stone product. I've yet to be disappointed by any of their beers. I didn't feel the 11.1% abv while drinking it, but it definitely creeps in and you feel the warmth in your gut. Old Guardian is able to balance the sweetness and the hop bitterness VERY well. Great job!

NahpunGnome, May 23, 2010
Photo of Pahn
4.33/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle into a Duvel tulip. Obviously, early 2010 release.

Appearance: Rather aggressive pour yields a half inch, fluffy white head that dissipates very slowly leaving little lacing. Pours a hazy reddish amber, has good legs, and leaves occasional swoops of thin lacing that usually disappear after a minute or so.

Smell: From the bottle: piny hops, some sugary malt in the background. In the glass: Citrus, floral, and piny hops, and a really deep caramel note (in general, when I smell or taste an American barleywine, I want some form of a caramel note like this to be there). Lots going on; raisin, cherry, a hint of fig. Hard to pin down sweet notes that could be several different, unexpected fruits, or types of fresh bread or cake.

As the beer warms, a vodka-like alcohol smell swallows up almost everything in the aroma. It still smells decent, but that alcohol note is huge (significantly bigger than in the taste). The pre-vodka nose is pretty much a 5, and the post-vodka nose somewhere between a 3 and a 4.

Taste: First sip: wow, lots going on; more than I can keep track of. At first there's a thick, chewy caramel flavor that quickly (but smoothly) develops into other sweet malty notes, then a big hit of piny hop bitterness, then a very warming finish.

In subsequent sips, a very interesting mix of solvent-like, pine, and sugary pastry flavor pops up in the middle (it tastes like it's high in my mouth, up to my nose). Deeper into the bottle, the flavor really fills up with various fruit notes, and the finish takes on a spiciness along with the alcohol. The malt stays very deep and strong up front, tasting like toffee and other sweet, usually chocolaty flavors.

Mouthfeel: Creamy and medium bodied. Finishes very hot, but the bitterness is not as influential on the feel as with, say, a strong (D)IPA.

Drinkability: I love barleywines, and I love this barleywine. More than one bomber would surely put me in a place beyond the ability to type beer reviews (or do much besides embarrass myself), but it's a great sipper. I want an American barleywine to be aggressive and full-flavored, with each sip giving me something different than the last. As long as I keep receiving that, its drinkability is high, and Old Guardian doesn't stop delivering.

As expected, another stellar "big beer" from Stone. Old Guardian provides delicious, complex, diverse, but still stylistically consistent American barleywine flavors, in abundance. Further, I'd be shocked if two to three years in the cellar don't bump the smell and taste score of this beer up to 5.

Pahn, May 21, 2010
Photo of Haybeerman
4.35/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Purple color with a copper hue; color changed drastically in varied light - it was kinda cool. Poured a light yellowish head that dissipated qujickly to a ring around the edge of the glass. Lace washed in streaks.

S: Very sweet and musty. Sharp alcohol and hop aroma.

T: Really sweet boozy flavor up front with the taste of alcohol lingering. Crisp, hoppy finish.

M: Light body. Low carbonation. Resiny, hot and dry.

D: This is a sipper, but a big barleywine. Glad I had a Ommegang cork stopper to save some.

Haybeerman, May 15, 2010
Photo of homebrew311
4.35/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: pours a clear deep red with a foamy 1 finger head, sticky lacing, good retention

S: huge sweet malts with notes of caramel, pine, molasses, and bread followed by a very earthy hop character. Very in your face and aromatic. Lots of alcohol on the end.

T: the malts are spicy, a bit of sweetness which is nicely balanced by earthy hops, every things seems to be in sync, nice long finish with notes of caramel

MF: thick body, medium carbonation, slightly sticky

D: this is a well put together barley wine, huge maltiness with a nice earthy and spicy hop profile, the alcohol is well hidden and overall everything is balanced

homebrew311, May 15, 2010
Photo of 3HovsepiansBrews
4.03/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I am not always the biggest fan of Stone's brews but this one was really great.

The appearance of the beer was a beautiful copper that was clean and crisp to look through.

The smell was syrupy sweet with a pungent aroma of hops and alcohol.

A syrupy sweetness hits you in the front, and the taste of alcohol really lingers with this one. Really got to sip this one because those fresh west coast hops extenuates the alcohol even more

The beer has some good body to it , and ends with a crisp hoppy finish

The alcohol really brings down the drinkabilty I have had a lot of beers with higher ABV's that went down a lot easier than this one. If you are planning on sitting back and just enjoy one glass, it is perfect though.

3HovsepiansBrews, May 12, 2010
Photo of MarkFy
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Clear copper color

S: Really nice, sweet and hoppy

T: nice malt upfront, the sweetness is nicely balanced and lingers throughout, definate hop on the end.

M: a very nice sharp, yet creamy start followed by a dryer finish.

D: A few of these are just perfect for me in a session.

Overall, an excellent beer by Stone, great for the price as well. Will definitely pick up more to keep on hand.

MarkFy, May 06, 2010
Photo of NefariousR
4.18/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz. glass bottle into a pint glass. Labeled as "Limited Early 2010 Release."

A - Deep orange amber with a slightly yellowish head that dissipated fairly quickly. Fairly hazy.

S - Malt, sweetness, with some light fruity notes, mostly citrus (Grapefruit). "Bright" aromas.

T - The maltiness hits right upfront, then fades to a sharp hop note, followed by light citrus and warming alcohol.

M - Thick and sticky with little carbonation. Of all the barleywines I have had, this is probably the closet to an actual wine consistency in the mouthfeel.

D - A solid barleywine, deep and complex. I would be interested to try a slightly older bottle to see how this ages.

NefariousR, May 05, 2010
Photo of GDBEERMAN
4.7/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a globe glass, little by little.
Listening to Grateful Dead, Peggy-O; Attics of My Life; Ramble on Rose, Ripple

A: The appearance of the 2010 is a copperish amber, with a thick haziness. Good head retention with mediocre lacing.

S: The aroma of this barleywine is fresh, bitter hops with a touch of malt sweetness.

T: The taste is one that lingers, a nice warming finish. Bright spice of hops with a smooth malt character. As the ale warms, it shows a blend of caramel sweetness.

M: Creamy with a pepper beer like off taste. Full bodied and brings different flavors to the palate as it releases.

D: Ah. . . a slow sipper, my type of beer to drink on special occasions. A beer that has you coming back for small sips, to savor the flavors, but not only that but the off tastes as well.

Notes: The Stone OG 2010 is a great ale, not only for the stellar style, but the balance of this barleywine is perfect. Great hops, malt and overall craving for more. Great to sit down and give this barleywine the attention it deserves on BA. Because if you are ever wondering to try this brew, go for it . A co-worker at the liquor I work at, and I were talking and he said he felt like beer, but thought he would just go and get a bottle of wine. This is when I recommended the OG 2010. I said thats who I am taking home and he joined another bottle with his wine, we will see how it plays out.

GDBEERMAN, May 01, 2010
Photo of burnerfinger
3.1/5  rDev -25.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

poured from the bonber into my new belgium goblet

I am anticipating a LOT from this one....

A caramel coored, single finger head settles to a very thin film that left very little lacing.
this brew is opaque - oragne/honey colored.

S almost a sweet wine aroma SWEET to the nose, malty with no trace of hops

T: OK here goes: alcohol hits up front. really no hops AZt all.

M really the alcohooll overwhelmes.

dotn liek this

D

burnerfinger, Apr 25, 2010
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.

msimmons32, Apr 22, 2010
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.

TCHopCraver, Apr 20, 2010
Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2010 from Stone Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 327 ratings.