Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale - Stone Brewing Co.
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Ratings: 1,472 | Reviews: 212 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by kojevergas:
2.45/5 rDev -38.6%
1 pint 6 fl oz brown glass bottle (2012 release) with standard pressure cap served into a Guinness goblet in me gaff in low altitude Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are above average; I remember enjoying the 2011 release.
Served refrigerator cold and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.
A: Pours a half finger head of fair cream, decent thickness, and average (~one minute) retention for the style. Colour is a clear dark copper-gold. No floating yeast particles are visible.
Sm: Hops - both floral and bittering, but more towards the bittering end. Malts. Barley. Cream. Not a particularly appealing aroma. There's nothing unique or special about it, and it doesn't get me excited to taste it. Moderate in strength. I'm hoping it's not as hoppy as it tastes.
T: It is. Entirely too hoppy for the style, ruining the balance with wretched bitterness that doesn't at all belong. Clean malts are there alongside simple barley, but no yeast comes through. Some alcohol does. Horribly balanced. Poorly built for a barleywine. I'd vastly prefer complex malt layering with some subtle hop notes and maybe biscuity yeast, but none of that is here. The finish is okay, with some vague fruit hints coming through - but the hops still overwhelm everything.
Mf: Too thick. Wet and smooth, with some coarseness from the hops, lending it an awkward texture that feels somehow hazy. Doesn't complement the flavours well. Adequately carbonated. Weak. A touch watery on the finish.
Dr: A barleywine that demands aging to mellow out its harsh hop notes. I wouldn't have this again unless it was free and had a few years on it. I don't understand hoppy barleywines and I don't know that I ever will. A major disappointment from Stone. Age your bottles if you buy this. Hides its ABV decently. Difficult to drink on account of its severely limited quality.
Wouldn't pair well with food. Doesn't even do well on its own.
I don't know how it would age, but it can only get better. Pray for early hop death.
03-28-2012 00:30:24 | More by kojevergas
More User Reviews:
4.1/5 rDev +2.8%
After taking a one year hiatus from Old Guardian I decided to pick up the 2012 today,glad I did.Poured into in impy nonic a rich deep amber with a creamy slight off white one finger head,great rich clarity to the color.Yeast and brown sugar in the nose mainly,some stinging alcohol also as it warms,not much hop presence.Brown sugar and cakey flavors at the start with underlying alcohol notes,now the resiny hops come in and make for a dry even a litle raw finish.This is brash and big it's boozy with a big hop presence like I would think an OG would be,Iam gonna cellar one and see in six months how it is,as for this "young" one, I loved it.
03-05-2012 21:55:38 | More by oberon
4.13/5 rDev +3.5%
A 2010 release
A: A hazy medium copper with deep orange and red hues. The head is short, cream and a little rocky off-white; it leaves a little lacing on the glass. The hazy clears as it warms.
S: Rich moderate malt aromas of caramel and toffee with a faint citrus hops aroma. A moderate perfumey alcohol aroma. Moderate fruit esters of figs and orange.
T: A smooth, rich caramel malt flavor with a moderately-strong hops bitterness and some alcohol sweetness on the back end. Not surprising that there is little citrus hops flavor left after aging. There is some moderate dark fruit flavors. The balance is bitter and alcohol but there is a good backbone of malt sweetness as well giving an moderately dry finish.
M: Medium-full bodied with moderately-low carbonation. Lot of alcohol warmth
O: A very smooth, potent beer with a decent amount of hops bitterness.
11-02-2012 22:40:44 | More by MadScientist
2.68/5 rDev -32.8%
Ruby-copper in appearance. Pretty transparent. About a finger and a half of off-white head. Lacing is semi-tight with minimal retention. Not the strongest nose. A bit of smoke, some dark fruit. Smelling a sort of candied fruit, not quite caramel. Not much there. Thick apricoty-toffee in front, not overly strong. That shifts to again a smokey sort of bitterness, which is not the best. Tastes like more of a DIPA than a barleywine. I'm getting a lot of pine in the back end and a lot of bitter. That's fine, I guess, but it's not what I want from a barley wine. Probably much better with a few years under its belt.
Like It? Not Really
02-28-2012 01:45:48 | More by wrycon
4.13/5 rDev +3.5%
A - Dark amber, large off white head, a good bit of carbonation for a barley wine keep the head tall for awhile.
S - Lots of malt in this bad boy, you get hints of toffee, but the aroma is about the hops...earthy and citrus.
T - Starts off with a lot of malt, sweet toffee and some slightly toasted malts. The resinous hop character then comes on with citrus quickly followed by a good bit of alcohol flavor. This barelywine is young and does not come close to hiding the fact that it is 11%...some more age would help smooth it out. End with a bitter bang of hops.
M - Full bodied beer, the alcohol and carbonation help keep it from being overbearing, but this is a sipper regardless. Ends with quite a bit of alcohol warmth.
O - This is good American Barleywine that would certainly improve with some aging. Lots of good flavors and qualities that would meld together and round out over time.
04-15-2012 21:50:45 | More by steelerguy
4.04/5 rDev +1.3%
22oz 2013 bottle aged 6 months. Pored a brandy color with yellow undertones.. off white- tannish head pours a 1/4" head that stays around for a few.not too much stickiness, lacing on the glass. Lots of malt and yeast on the nose.. Smell is malt heavy followed by candied "stone-fruit", peach and plum on the nose, caramel, toffee, and a little orange zest. Taste is mellow and balanced: white grape, plum, pear, yeasty hop profile in the finish. Carbonation is slightly crisp which is mildly dry and approachable. Mouthfeel is medium body with the ever slightest bight from the hops. Mildly acidic for the style, but that is to my liking. Overall a memorable beer from a respected brewery..would order on tap to compare.. Age has proved well on this 1. Would like to see this one aged for 2 years and the paired with goat cheese, cinammon and spiced desserts, or any fowl.
12-18-2013 05:09:07 | More by Beerswag
4.09/5 rDev +2.5%
22oz brown bomber with a vintage date.
Deep reddish amber, epic lacing. Minty spicy hops, ripe melon, caramel, broth and esters permeate the nose. Creamy, smooth, boozy and full bodied. Intense, bitter, bready, toasted grain, caramel, ripe fruit, hay and tangerines on the tongue. Finishes bitter and semi-dry.
Powerful and bold and very enjoyable to sip.
03-06-2013 05:05:42 | More by Jason
3.9/5 rDev -2.3%
Poured from a 22oz bomber into a pint glass. 2014 Classic release.
A - Pours a dark amber, almost brown, with a very small head that dissipates quickly.
S - Mostly malt, I can pick up a hint of the grains in the background. I don't get much from the hops.
T - The toasted malts come through strong, but not in a bad way. Very drinkable.
M - Medium bodied that feels good going down.
A very drinkable barley wine ale. The high alcohol content is hidden well. Another well done beer by Stone.
09-19-2013 02:07:45 | More by aquazr1
3.83/5 rDev -4%
2012 edition, picked up in Knightly Spirits Orlando, and survived the trip back to Canada.
Poured into a Chimay goblet. Nice deep copper ruby hue, with about a half inch head from the pour. Settles into a thick ring.
Nose is classic barleywine: malt heavy, good sweetness, a bit of bread, fruit and light citric hops.
Good take on the style: sweet malt, bread, fruit, grape a dry boozy finish. This brew felt a bit hot - a few months of cellaring would have done well, but it is certainly quite enjoyable as is. Carbonation is sharp, mouthfeel is medium bodied and slightly sticky.
Nice barleywine, though nothing to stop the presses over. Worth holding on to if you can pick up one or two at any rate!
05-02-2012 03:17:29 | More by JohnnyBarman
4.03/5 rDev +1%
Serving glass: Poured from bottle into Snifter.
Appearance: Beautiful mahogany which glows nicely in the light. Decent sized light tan cap with good lacing.
Smell: Toffee, caramel, plum, booze and some citrusy hops.
Taste: Malty core of toffee, caramel and plum. Pretty spicy, and somewhat bitter, hops at the finish with some citrus. Some alcohol taste.
Feel: Thick, full body with moderately low carbonation. Smooth, but some definite alcohol burn.
Overall: Surprisingly standard Barleywine from Stone. Hoppy, but not as much as expected. Ultimately, this is nicely balanced, but too boozy.
03-18-2012 01:28:56 | More by bsp77
Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
89 out of 100 based on 1,472 ratings.