Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale - Stone Brewing Co.
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Ratings: 1,415 | Reviews: 208 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by damndirtyape:
4.41/5 rDev +10.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5
Review #500! 22oz bottle poured into a snifter. 2013 release.
Appearance: Hazy dark amber. Light tan thin head. Lots and lots of persistent fine strand lacing all over the glass.
Smell: Orange citrus, alcohol notes, fruity esters, roasted malts, caramel.
Taste: Citrus hops right up front, the moving into a wide range of flavors: toffee, roasted malts, pine. Some alcohol heat noted. Lingering bitter finish with some malt sweetness thrown in. The finish had notes of pine and lemon, with the lemon being sharp as the beer warmed up.
Mouthfeel: Pleasantly thick, sticky, with just right carbonation under it all.
Overall / Drinkability: Overall, I think this needs to be paired with the right meal, which I didn't hit tonight, which was a barley, potato, and ditilini + vegetable broth soup. But, it's pretty damn good sipping slowly all by itself. I think this would pair better with beef and roasted vegetables. Despite the food mismatch this was quite tasty and dangerously drinkable. I knew it was 11.2% ABV going in, but one large snifter later I'm feeling the effects, and yet I want some more sips. The hoppiness of this Barleywine is just right - it's strong enough for a hophead, but not overpowering; it allows the malt to shine and compliment all the hop flavors. The lemon note was a nice touch with this one. This beer sat and aged for about ~8 months (or whenever it was bottled at the start of 2013), and I wonder how it would be with another 9-12 months but maybe the hop flavors would get too muted. In any case, I very good choice for my 500th beer review and I may pick up another version of this and let it sit longer next time.
Serving type: bottle
09-28-2013 23:25:09 | More by damndirtyape
More User Reviews:
3.79/5 rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75
$7 pint at Boat Works in St. Clair Shores, Michigan.
Seeing this on-tap and loving Stone, I knew I had to try it. I'm not the hugest fan of American Barleywines, but I enjoy them time-to-time. The last one I really liked was Crunkle Sam from Clown Shoes, so this unfortunately gets compared to that.
When I first got it no doubt at a temperature far colder than the recommended temperature, I just zeroed in on the intense bitterness that would be off-putting to many. As it warmed up, it changed a lot, as I expected it to. The rich, plentiful malt character shined through, although there wasn't much sweetness, given this particular style. Massive hop bitterness with a lot of citrus rind characteristics in this one. Lacking on flavor depth, though -- a nice Barleywine-y malt quality that I expect, then the fruitiness from the hops, but nothing too new or original. I really enjoyed, for instance, Crunkle Sam because it offers a distinct orange sort of flavor.
Old Guardian is a very good American Barleywine that certainly doesn't skimp on the hops. The alcohol is reasonably hidden when it's cold, but as it approaches room temperature, you REALLY know what you're getting into. A nice beer -- not a great one, but one worth trying if you like the style, no doubt.
Serving type: on-tap
07-19-2014 02:59:27 | More by Alextricity
Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
89 out of 100 based on 1,415 ratings.