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Old Guardian OAK - SMOKED Barleywine - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Old Guardian OAK - SMOKED BarleywineOld Guardian OAK - SMOKED Barleywine

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

692 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 692
Reviews: 155
rAvg: 3.91
pDev: 13.3%
Wants: 6
Gots: 107 | FT: 11
Brewed by:
Stone Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  11.40% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: EgadBananas on 02-18-2013)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Old Guardian OAK - SMOKED Barleywine Alström Bros
Ratings: 692 | Reviews: 155 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Jmamay22
4.23/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a nice cherry amber with a thin head of wheat colored foam. The beer's scent is less intense than expected from Stone Brewing. Faint whips of alcohol and hops. But not over the top hop resin I'm expecting. A light chocolate and smoke malt background with some fruitiness. A little bit of cherry.

The taste Turns up the volume with an initial breadiness that gives way to grassy hops, but followed by the malt and wonderfully integrated smoke. Really well done with the level off smokiness. It blends in rather than screams in your face. Medium bodied with medium level of carbonation. An enjoyable and unique twist on old guardian that I prefer.

Jmamay22, Mar 10, 2013
Photo of JeffSuttonTX
4.5/5  rDev +15.1%

JeffSuttonTX, Mar 10, 2013
Photo of Deltrus
4/5  rDev +2.3%

Deltrus, Mar 10, 2013
Photo of cvm4
3.75/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A - Pours a subdued ruby in color with a light tan head.

S - Smells as though you're a good distance downwind from a slightly wet smoldering campfire with sweet caramel on the background.

T - Burnt sugar, smokey, woody, somewhat bitter, a bit of a candied finish.

M - Creamy texture, carbonation is there but not overwhelming.

O - Oak smoked adds an interesting twist on an already good barleywine.

cvm4, Mar 10, 2013
Photo of Beaver13
3.1/5  rDev -20.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

22 oz bottle. Pours hazy copper red with a big creamy light tan head that retains well and laces the glass.

The aroma is a bit subdued - some peaty smoke with sweet caramel malts in the background.

The flavor is sweet caramel malts and dark fruits with a big bitter smoke finish. The alcohol is noticeable in the finish too. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with low carbonation and is a bit watery.

Overall, the smoke is interesting, but the beer is a bit watery with a lot of harsh bitter alcohol.

Beaver13, Mar 10, 2013
Photo of WankelEngine
4.18/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a snifter

A: Pours a deep but clear ruby-mahogany color. There is a foamy light tan head that slowly fades to a cap of foam. Heavy curtains of lace.

S: A wonderfully smoky aroma, like I'm downwind of someone cooking bacon over a bonfire. Behind this there are sweet notes of maple and toffee.

T: There is an herbal hop flavor on the attach which blends into a smoky bacon flavor. The smoke flavor is prominent and lasts through to the finish. Some toffee, caramel and fig come through in the mid-palate, but they are almost overpowered. The finish is long and consists of smoke which lingers at the back of the mouth. The bitterness is increased by a complementary dry alcohol flavor.

M: Medium bodied for the style, with low but foamy carbonation. A little thick and oily with mild alcohol presence.

O: A great smoked beer. The smoke overwhelms the many of the other flavors but isn't uncomfortably powerful in itself.

WankelEngine, Mar 10, 2013
Photo of CaptDavyJones
4/5  rDev +2.3%

CaptDavyJones, Mar 10, 2013
Photo of kaelingirl
4.25/5  rDev +8.7%

kaelingirl, Mar 10, 2013
Photo of CaptMaelstrom
3.71/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bottle to tulip glass. 2013.

A: Deep Ruby/Burgundy color, poured vigorously so it had a good 2 finger foam. Off-white that dissipated quickly leaving a little sticky lacing down the glass.

S: Maple

T: Burnt sugar, cigar, maple, cherry-flavored Robotussin. The 11.4% actually doesn't jump out at me a whole lot. The flavors mingle nicely except for the Robotussin aftertaste.

M: Syrupy, slick.

O: I like barleywines, but this one is probably on the bottom of the list for me.

CaptMaelstrom, Mar 10, 2013
Photo of djrn2
3.75/5  rDev -4.1%

djrn2, Mar 09, 2013
Photo of MastaShonuf
3.75/5  rDev -4.1%

MastaShonuf, Mar 09, 2013
Photo of mhaugo
4.25/5  rDev +8.7%

mhaugo, Mar 09, 2013
Photo of zestar
4/5  rDev +2.3%

zestar, Mar 09, 2013
Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
3.5/5  rDev -10.5%

westcoastbeerlvr, Mar 09, 2013
Photo of ElSid
3.73/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

The Beers of California


Freshness Date: None

2013 Odd Year Release

A: Amber with a burgundy edge after a brisk pour. The head is khaki with small, effervescent bubbles which fade to a rim.

S: Breeze of brown sugar, caramel, and jackfruit. Earthy bitterness, wood, and burnt maple leaves in the back. Interesting nose.

T: Thick and syrupy sugar mix with a grainy, woody burnt warmth and a strong earthy, piney and spicy bite. Finish is astringent and dry with whiskey-like alcohol turning a bit phenolic in the end.

M: Syrupy and full with coating linger and faint carbonation.

O: I usually enjoy big beers but the alcohol here comes off somewhat medicinal and heavy throwing off the balance of this brew. I enjoyed the sweetness, smoke and wood complexity but would have liked more agreement of the component flavors. Expected a bit more from this.

ElSid, Mar 09, 2013
Photo of TheMultiYeast
3.95/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours rustic brown with a small head and great lacing.

Smoke dominates the nose. Lots of oak, earthy char, burnt sugar, smoked barley, toffee, alcohol.

Less smoke in the taste but more heat. Toffee comes on stronger with subdued piney hop character, burnt sugar, oak, big residual bitterness.

Big, thick feel on this beer. So chewy I can almost eat it. Slightly dry finish and big bitterness.

Interesting spin on a heavy hitter. Try it if you can.

TheMultiYeast, Mar 09, 2013
Photo of jwat
3.5/5  rDev -10.5%

jwat, Mar 09, 2013
Photo of Nugganooch
4.05/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2013 odd year batch

22oz bottle with a Sierra Nevada balloon glass.
*notes from 03/03/13

A: Look is a dark amber with some ruby tones and great clarity for such a big malty brew. Head was minimal in production. Thin khaki color with loose bubbles and low retention. Leaves behind a few light dots of stick with some squeaky runners of lace upon the glass.

S: Campfire smoke dominates the nose and has a nice meaty anchor to it. Like smoked ham with a glazing of sweet caramels. Reminds me more of a wet smoke. There is an earthy wood element as the smoke starts to dissipate and a bit of alcohol presence revealed. Nice overall but pretty smoke laden.

T: Tastes like candied bacon! Yes it’s that delicious...well almost. The smoke malt is much more subtle in flavor than the nose leads on and it really plays well with the other elements. Campfire and meat smoke combine together with the caramel candy sweetness. Hops are a bit understated working with the other flavors here but do offer up some supporting earthy pine and herb notes. The smoke is sharp at times but actual bitterness to the brew seems lower than the base beer. Alcohol disguised incredibly well behind the smoke screen. Vanilla sugar. Oak becomes more prevalent as the beer comes up to room temp. This is pretty nice. Great balance in flavors.

M: Creamy soft texture overall with some moderate to heavy chew there. Carbonation is crisp and frothy with a solid drying effort towards the finish. Touch of tannic smoke derived astringency . Alcohol warmth is pretty minimal. Exits the palate rather clean.

D: I do like the premise of a smoked B-Wine and this one is done pretty well. Really grows on you as you make your way through the smoky start. I thought this is drinking incredibly well fresh and the balance of flavors overall was great for such a big beer. Not hot or boozy in anyway. The sweetness really saves it all for me as it tends to teeter on the smokier side. Recommended and for the price it would be pretty hard to beat.

Nugganooch, Mar 08, 2013
Photo of flayedandskinned
3.31/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Bottled on 1/16/13
Poured into a Duvel tulip.

Appearance: Pours a perfectly clear, deep amber with rich red highlights. A 2 and half finger tall light tan forms quickly with good retention. Lots of thick, meringue-like lacing adheres to the side of the glass. Great looking barleywine.

Aroma: Smoky, caramel laden malt with very light grapefruit and vanilla accents. Astringent alcohol becomes more and more apparent as the beer acclimates to it's room temperature glass. For as big as this beer is, the aroma is quite subdued.

Taste: Juicy caramel, vanilla infused malts right up front with only a mere suggestion of leafy, citrus-y hops before you're hit with a smoky, bitter and astringent off dry finish. As in the nose, the astringent characteristics of the alcohol become more obvious as the brew warms. Luckily, the smokiness grows as well.

Mouthfeel: Viscous and chewy with soft carbonation.

Overall: A decent barleywine that is not overly sweet and is somewhat complex. I truly enjoyed the smoke character of this barleywine, but other than that this beer is rather pedestrian. The strong alcohol flavor component does it no favors in regards to opening it's flavor profile.

flayedandskinned, Mar 08, 2013
Photo of mjtiernan
4.21/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: Pretty standard. Head disappeared quickly. Reddish-brown body. Noticeable alcohol legs.

S: Oh man. The smoked part of this smells pretty good. Honestly, it's mostly smoke, lightly charred oak and alcohol on the nose. Maybe a little dark brown sugar. Where is the usual malty sweetness and hop goodness? Weird.

T: Pretty darn good actually. Some hops up front, then deep wood, smoky-sweet dark sugar and caramel followed by sharp alcohol and pronounced hop bitterness.

M: Full bodied, oily and moderate carbonation. Finishes pretty dry.

O: It's bold, but I like the level of wood and smoke on this. It's a definite departure from the OG that I'm accustomed to, but it's a really nice trip.

mjtiernan, Mar 08, 2013
Photo of Mangstarr
3.75/5  rDev -4.1%

Mangstarr, Mar 08, 2013
Photo of wtkphoto
4/5  rDev +2.3%

wtkphoto, Mar 08, 2013
Photo of Herky21
3/5  rDev -23.3%

Herky21, Mar 07, 2013
Photo of JohnGalt1
3.74/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Picked one of these up at the COOP tonight for $6ish... clear deep amber brew with a long lasting tannish head... good lacing with a firm cap.

The nose is Old Guardian with a little bit of campfire thrown in.... caramel and lesser toasty malt with plenty of pungent hops with the smoke sorta complimenting the sweetness in the aroma.

The flavors mirror the nose with a more pervasive smokiness... standard big bitterness that lingers mid palate through the finish... caramel malts are also very present, a bit of nuttiness also shows up.

Thick and coating on the palate allows the finish to linger forever..

Not sure that I dig this one... I think the bitterness and heavy hop hand clash with the smoked malt.


JohnGalt1, Mar 07, 2013
Photo of random846
2/5  rDev -48.8%

random846, Mar 07, 2013
Old Guardian OAK - SMOKED Barleywine from Stone Brewing Co.
88 out of 100 based on 692 ratings.