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Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Old Guardian Barley Wine Style AleOld Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
89
very good

1,501 Ratings
THE BROS
91
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,501
Reviews: 213
rAvg: 3.99
pDev: 11.78%
Wants: 42
Gots: 331 | FT: 24
Brewed by:
Stone Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: smerrell on 02-18-2012)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,501 | Reviews: 213 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of sammo
4/5  rDev +0.3%

sammo, Jun 29, 2012
Photo of Massbmx
4/5  rDev +0.3%

Massbmx, Jun 29, 2012
Photo of SaxmanRick
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%

SaxmanRick, Jun 26, 2012
Photo of Bottlebomber
2.98/5  rDev -25.3%

Picked up a bomber of this from the liquor store, poured into a wine glass.

A: A dark burnished copper. Pours a nice head, then BAM! Gone. Left spotty lacing. Unfortunately this is probably the highlight of this beer.

S: Bread, buttered biscuits, caramel, and some citrusy hops. With the amount of malt and hops that can potentially go into this style, I was underwhelmed.

T: Tasted quite like the smell - biscuity malt, some caramel, some citrusy hops. One thing I will have to give it was the bitterness was just right. Some people go really nuts bittering these ABW's, and I think a Barleywine should be more about the malt. Still, not enough going on to impress.

M: Semi-full. Really not as voluptuous as a Barleywine should be. This is supposed to be a sipper, I wasn't planning on finishing the bomber but it is drinking like an IIPA.

O: Meh!! An unexpected meh! I am really surprised that with all of Stone's over the top offering that they put so little into this beer. I should have listened to the other reviews :(

Bottlebomber, Jun 26, 2012
Photo of 77bronco
4/5  rDev +0.3%

77bronco, Jun 25, 2012
Photo of obywan59
4.28/5  rDev +7.3%

Pours a crystal clear orange/amber with a 4 finger, thick and chunky, light tan head.

Rich sweet malt, alcohol, and tart to over-ripe citrus in the aroma. A bit of pineyness as well.

Sweet malts and alcohol dominate the taste. Tart citrus contributes in a big way. Bitter hops finish it off. The flavor seems to be in much better balance after the beer warms.

Fairly heavilly-bodied with a light prickle of catbonation and the sting of alcohol. Creamy and syrupy.

I sampled this with some Hersheys Bliss rich and creamy dark chocolate. I'd say that the chocolate moderated the sweetness of the beer, bringing out the beers tart citric character, but the beer moderated the bitterness of the chocalate. This beer is well balanced, especialloy after it warms. Not as good as as I rememvber the previous versions to be, but still worthy.

obywan59, Jun 25, 2012
Photo of wvsabbath
3.75/5  rDev -6%

wvsabbath, Jun 24, 2012
Photo of Czar_chasm
3.5/5  rDev -12.3%

Czar_chasm, Jun 22, 2012
Photo of CWhite
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%

CWhite, Jun 22, 2012
Photo of acevenom
4.85/5  rDev +21.6%

2012 Release.

Poured into a large brandy snifter. Pours dark caramel brown with a tall, biege head that dissipates very slowly. A moderate quantity of tiny bubbles can be seen rising from the bottom of the glass. Some lacing is left on the side of the glass as the head dissipates. Plenty of lacing is left on the side of the glass during consumption.

The aroma is sweet and malty with some citrus hop aromas. There is a dark fruit smell as well. There smell is mostly sweet and bready. The big, sweet malts are very forward in this beer. The sweetness is akin to caramel. The hops provide a nice balancing bitterness for this malt bomb, also adding to the bitter aftertaste. The alcohol is also detectable in the taste.

The body is medium with adequate carbonation. The beer is smooth with excellent drinkability for a sipper. You definitely want to sip this beer and savor it. This is an excellent barleywine and a fine example of the American take on this style.

acevenom, Jun 21, 2012
Photo of Focusf111
3.5/5  rDev -12.3%

Focusf111, Jun 21, 2012
Photo of gustogasmic
3.88/5  rDev -2.8%

pours straight copper with a large head, 2 inches at least. smells like pruney alchohol blended with bourbon old ale. good stuff, could use more age. comes across boozy and sweet. very nice vsnills/ bourbon to carry the dark prune-rum notes. works well and is perfectly balanced. old hop dryness, alcohol warming.

gustogasmic, Jun 20, 2012
Photo of hiphopj5
4.5/5  rDev +12.8%

hiphopj5, Jun 19, 2012
Photo of kjkinsey
4/5  rDev +0.3%

kjkinsey, Jun 19, 2012
Photo of kenmyers70
4/5  rDev +0.3%

kenmyers70, Jun 19, 2012
Photo of brandon911
4/5  rDev +0.3%

Poured into a beer chalice

It poured a tan, one-fingered fairly dense head that dissipated quite quickly. The beer itself is reddish amber and quite opaque. On the noise it's got barley, some faint roast malts, some grassiness,cotton candy, hops, a little booze, and some citrus. It tastes fairly similar to the nose, less so on the malts, but with addition of caramel, raisins and bread. The mouth is quite nice, bitter with some bite-y carbonation, just enough to keep one from drinking it too quickly. It's also pretty smooth going down. Overall it's a great beer, not as good as the other barleywines I've had, but still very good. I'd suggest getting it, but not going out of your way for it.

brandon911, Jun 19, 2012
Photo of SeriousALEment
3.75/5  rDev -6%

SeriousALEment, Jun 19, 2012
Photo of George2744
4.5/5  rDev +12.8%

George2744, Jun 18, 2012
Photo of carteravebrew
4.5/5  rDev +12.8%

carteravebrew, Jun 18, 2012
Photo of BeerTaster727
4/5  rDev +0.3%

BeerTaster727, Jun 18, 2012
Photo of ADZA
3.53/5  rDev -11.5%

This is the 2012 edtion and thanks to my favourite bottleshop for this and it pours a hazy light amber hue which leaves a two finger creamy head and lacing everywhere,the smell is very barley and malt orientated with aromas of obviously barley,caramel fudge,toffee treacle,butterscotch and also Xmas cake,the mouthfeel is medium bodied and could be thicker for my liking of the style and the taste is nice but doesnt leave you gobsmacked like other big American Barleywines and the taste is very sweet with hints of marzipan,toffee treacle,butterscotch candy,raisins soaked in brandy,fruit cake and finished with a touch of bitter herbal hops to take a little edge off the sweetness first encountered and overall its not bad and could age a little bit but not too long as the malt profile is dominant and if left for a while could be even more sweeter and theres definately better Barleywines out there cheers.

ADZA, Jun 17, 2012
Photo of KingPuuChuu
4.08/5  rDev +2.3%

Pours a crystal red from the bottle. A large head dies down, and leaves elegant lacing on the glass.

The aroma is huge. Roasted, sweet malt, and a strong hop scent are the biggest parts of this beer. The flavor is at first surprising for the amount of hops and 11% alcohol. Heavy roasted raisin and carmel. But, as the beer warms, a warmer smoothness comes through, and tones down the extreme flavors.

Mouthfeel is good. While it's bubbly, I wish it wasn't so. That being said, it prevents you from drinking the bottle too fast.

A word of caution though: Drink this beer over time, as it will hit you.

Overall, it's a great beer.

KingPuuChuu, Jun 14, 2012
Photo of BdubleEdubleRUN
4/5  rDev +0.3%

BdubleEdubleRUN, Jun 12, 2012
Photo of FlemingVSKing
2.65/5  rDev -33.6%

I had a lot of expectations. I love Stone. And I'd loved my only other Barley Wine experience with Sam Adam's Griffin's Bow.

Old Guardian is probably made well, but it tastes like pure alcohol. I could seriously describe it as tasting like a rather subpar jello shot.

Now at 11% it is one of the very strongest beers I've had, and that's part of the taste, but I just don't pick up anything else of value in the flavor profile. The alcohol taste just sits right on top of what comes off of an amber ale background. Not fruit tones, no hop or spice notes.

Generally I'm not terribly concerned with the pour, but it is worth noting that after dumping this one straight down a pint mug like a Pepsi, it formed no head. A slight head emerged only after sitting for a few moments, and it was about 1/4 inch, fairly thin, and dissipated soon after.

I just don't see anything really special going on here.

Frankly I'd rather have some stock beer than this.

FlemingVSKing, Jun 11, 2012
Photo of EzraAtom
4/5  rDev +0.3%

EzraAtom, Jun 11, 2012
Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
89 out of 100 based on 1,501 ratings.