1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

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.
very good

1,429 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,429
Reviews: 209
rAvg: 3.99
pDev: 11.78%
Wants: 42
Gots: 306 | FT: 21
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
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,429 | Reviews: 209 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of russpowell


4.38/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours amber with 2+ fingers of tan head. Much sticky lacing, good lacing

S: Pine & grapefruit & much booze

T: Follows the nose, some pineapple, rich breadyness & dryness up front. Herbal hops, a touch of caramel & much dryness, plus grapefruit by the truckload & pinesap, plus a touch of booze warmth. Finishes piney with some herbal & woody hops

MF: Chewy as all get out, skews hoppy, but there's plenty of malt body there too, subtle moderate carbonation

Full fledged hop assault, this would be a great one to take the winter chill off, but is going down great on a spring evening. The ABV is fairly well hidden. A great American Barleywine for hopheads & the rest of us too!

Serving type: bottle

05-09-2012 01:41:55 | More by russpowell
Photo of RollBeerTide


4.25/5  rDev +6.5%

05-09-2012 00:12:34 | More by RollBeerTide
Photo of BentLegBrewer


4/5  rDev +0.3%

05-08-2012 16:36:31 | More by BentLegBrewer
Photo of ChopsMeister


4/5  rDev +0.3%

05-07-2012 01:00:18 | More by ChopsMeister
Photo of StonedTrippin


4.05/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

this is pretty much everything i like in a barleywine. pours clear dark red with a tall off white head that hangs around a bit before fading out. smells like caramel, sweet desserty malts, and an uncommonly hoppy character. flavor is huge, sweet up front like molasses and brown sugar, hoppy like a big ipa on the back end, bitter and resinous. flavors of vanilla, candied orange peel, and alcohol dance in between. feel is great, full bodied and very strong, especially when it warms up. mild carbonation, but not too little. this is a great evening sipper. overall an excellent barleywine, complicated but approachable. i would highly recommend this to any lover of strong ales.

Serving type: bottle

05-06-2012 21:41:49 | More by StonedTrippin


3/5  rDev -24.8%

05-06-2012 03:54:15 | More by CORKSCREWFISH
Photo of mjgarrett2


4.25/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2012 edition Old Guardian

A-Translucent copper color, delicate head like with most barleywines.

S-Extraordinarily enticing: not sure if it is the spices or the malts but a very elegant aroma.

T-Well spiced and a bit tart. Excellent balance (no bite from the alcohol) if a bit bitter on the back end.

M-Great, nothing to complain about.

O-Nothing in particular jumps out at you but I couldn't be happier sipping and enjoying this. Seems a little unremarkable yet I would judge all other barleywines by how well they compare to this one.

Serving type: bottle

05-06-2012 00:34:02 | More by mjgarrett2
Photo of edwardprung


3.5/5  rDev -12.3%

05-05-2012 05:20:04 | More by edwardprung
Photo of strongaf


3.75/5  rDev -6%

05-05-2012 05:16:55 | More by strongaf
Photo of Beermazter310


4/5  rDev +0.3%

05-03-2012 17:20:25 | More by Beermazter310
Photo of Jose2412


4/5  rDev +0.3%

05-03-2012 09:05:46 | More by Jose2412
Photo of MSandahl23


3.75/5  rDev -6%

05-02-2012 13:46:25 | More by MSandahl23
Photo of vonnegut21

New York

4.25/5  rDev +6.5%

05-02-2012 13:36:15 | More by vonnegut21
Photo of JohnnyBarman

Ontario (Canada)

3.83/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

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!

Serving type: bottle

05-02-2012 03:17:29 | More by JohnnyBarman
Photo of davewlfpckfan29


4.28/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Old Guardian 2012!

This is the second Old Guardian that I have tried. I had an aged 2010 Old Guardian on tap a couple weeks ago.

This seems to be a great example of a barley wine. Stone does it very well (as they do with any beer they make).

Barley wine really has a unique taste that is hard for me to describe. The tastes I can identify are fruits, lots of them:
Raisins, citrus too. And a brown sugar kind of taste.

My cousin and I agree that this is very comparable to Bigfoot.

Serving type: bottle

05-01-2012 17:59:37 | More by davewlfpckfan29
Photo of SHODriver


4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: pours a light brown that is slightly red with a dense two finger off white head
S: smells of toffee and caramel along with some herbal and slightly citrusy hops
T: hops on the front with that herbal flavor followed by some caramel and toffee noes. A little back and forth takes place between the two sides. there is the occasional burst of citrus flavor and the swallow brings a bit of alcohol, more resinous earthy hops and a bit of sweetness to finish things off as it all fades away
M: medium bodied with adequate carbonation, a little viscous but not overly so
O: it's good but it needs some time to mellow. Nothing extraordinary but another well crafted beer from Stone. I might have to buy another couple bottles to cellar. I have one put away right now but it seems lonely.

Serving type: bottle

04-30-2012 10:36:30 | More by SHODriver
Photo of Amp


4/5  rDev +0.3%

04-29-2012 05:18:50 | More by Amp
Photo of Stumpy29er

New York

4/5  rDev +0.3%

04-29-2012 03:42:41 | More by Stumpy29er
Photo of yamar68


3.95/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a crisp copper without a bit of beading. Soft, loose, sticky head. Perfect lacing.

Strong nose - caramel, toffee, raisin, booze, candied sugar, molasses, complex. Translates well to the tongue.

Bitter, boozy start on the tongue which then moves through numerous waves of goodness. Quite nice. Everything in the nose finds a home somewhere in the taste.

Not too easy going down, but it's lovely to sip slowly and savor.

Good stuff.

Serving type: bottle

04-29-2012 01:14:58 | More by yamar68
Photo of BigTrubble

North Carolina

3.75/5  rDev -6%

04-29-2012 00:59:02 | More by BigTrubble
Photo of ArrogantB


4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had been anticipating this one for a while. It pours a nice ruddy orange color with a really good head (maybe I poured too fast). The smell is not very strong. The taste is average barleywine and alcohol. This is the first Stone beer that has ever disappointed me. it wasn’t bad but I always expect to be blown away by Stone seasonal beers (I usually am). The alcohol was pretty noticeable but I think in a year or two this one will be awesome. I plan on picking up a case for aging purposes. Update: 06/2007: This tastes much, much better after having six months behind it. I have to adjust my review accordingly because the flavors really made me smile this time.

Serving type: bottle Reviewed on: 01-29-2007 23:16:39

Serving type: bottle

04-29-2012 00:32:19 | More by ArrogantB
Photo of setexascustoms


4.25/5  rDev +6.5%

04-28-2012 13:56:59 | More by setexascustoms
Photo of Hyhat


3.25/5  rDev -18.5%

04-27-2012 13:29:17 | More by Hyhat
Photo of ObeMaltKinobee


3.75/5  rDev -6%

04-27-2012 02:43:18 | More by ObeMaltKinobee
Photo of Hoptometrist


3.3/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served from the bottle into a tulip glass

A- Poured a very clear and dark ruby/mahogany color with a three finger soapy head that left some minimal lace

S- Big sweet sweet caramel, grapefruit, big breadiness, pungent aroma, molasses, and some hay funk

T- Big sweet breadiness, caramel, molasses, and raisin notes. Grapefruit, hay funk, and lots of alcohol

M- Quite sticky, syrupy, low carbonation, big alcohol warming

O- This is a super sweet beer, a little over the top for me. I think 10 oz. of this beer would have been fine, but a bomber of this was too much for me. I don't have a ton of experience with barleywines and it is not a favorite style of mine, I did like this beer more at first but after a while it became cloying sweet.

Serving type: bottle

04-27-2012 02:26:44 | More by Hoptometrist
Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
89 out of 100 based on 1,429 ratings.