1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Barrel Aged Hibernation Ale - Great Divide Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Barrel Aged Hibernation AleBarrel Aged Hibernation Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

154 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 154
Reviews: 52
rAvg: 4.04
pDev: 11.39%
Wants: 166
Gots: 48 | FT: 6
Brewed by:
Great Divide Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
Old Ale |  12.40% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: waltonc on 11-17-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Ratings: 154 | Reviews: 52 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of cfh64
1.5/5  rDev -62.9%

cfh64, Oct 06, 2013
Photo of rand
2.7/5  rDev -33.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

Picked up a 2011 bottle from KnB, decided it was aged long enough so I'm pouring it the next day into a snifter

A: An opaque mahogony in appearance, it's complexion seems light and effervescent for the style and ABV. A good amount of suspended yeast floats around the glass.

S: Strong, powerful aromas. Lots of burnt sugar, oak and caramel, driven by hot volatiles of alcohol. Vinous, hop essence around the edges gives the bouquet an earthy aspect. Notes of ripe cherry linger as well, perhaps some phenols.

T: A little more hop-forward than the nose, and boozy as all hell. Splashy flavor profile, with sugary, almost cloying malts driving ripe past the astringent and boozy aspects. The oak notes reflect distinct cherry phenols, a little too medicinal in tone. Alcohol is at the forefront throughout the sip, and carries to a long, sweet finish.

M: Strangely light in its feel, can't tell if it's the carbonation or lack of oily complexion.

This doesn't work on any level. Way too boozy, way to sweet. Flavor profile is disjointed and splashy. Hibernation is a decent winter sipper, nothing to get excited about but satisfying if you're in the mood for such a brew. Barrel-aging renders it almost undrinkable.

rand, May 05, 2014
Photo of pattermj
2.9/5  rDev -28.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

So I grabbed this even knowing the price as I love standard hibernation. Grabbed a bottle at the brewery, 2011 at $27 +tax + tip so not a cheap beer.

It pours a very nice hazy beer, not dark but definitely a beer which should have flavor. Noticed the same color with other barrel aged beers, not quite the color of unfiltered beers but close. The smell was of oak, bourbon, and dark fruits. I was somewhat hopeful but wondering where the malt and spice had disappeared to from the original hibernation. Some bourbon but honestly not huge compared to the strait barrel. The flavor to me was just flat, very little from the olfactory sense and nothing from the original beer. I was hoping for more and sadly disappointed. Barrel, bourbon, small dark fruits, and nothing else, Mouth feel, it had a little carbonation. Upon pouring a slight head appears but nothing stuck. Could feel it in mouth which was nice but didn't help with the lack of depth in the taste.

Overall I am disappointed. I love hibernation and plan on buying another case when it comes out. Price to flavor I would say this falls flat and I would recommend against it. Maybe with just 1 year on it, it would maintain but not what I had.

pattermj, Sep 16, 2013
Photo of Tittles
3/5  rDev -25.7%

Tittles, Jan 15, 2013
Photo of drummermattie02
3/5  rDev -25.7%

drummermattie02, Jun 23, 2013
Photo of 4thelvofbeer
3.08/5  rDev -23.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to my friend for sharing and going out of his way to get this beer, which I am told is somewhat hard to acquire. Popped this bottle on Dec 3, 2012.

I love barrel aged beers. I really expected a lot more from the beer..expectations were high, but at best, this was maybe slightly above average and needs some work by Great Divide. A: cloudy dirt brown. S: nothing special. T: tastes were muted and bland, very average...I really really wished and hoped there were more, but it just was not there...it seems the barrel aging gave this beer a kinda musty taste. M: somewhat weird combined with the off tastes, not that enjoyable. O: a let down...

4thelvofbeer, Dec 06, 2012
Photo of Beaver13
3.23/5  rDev -20%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

750 ml bottle. Pours a murky brown with almost no head (a vigorous pour produced a little frothiness that quickly went to a thin collar).

The aroma is chocolate and bourbon with dark fruit and molasses. Smells a bit like a decadent rum cake / fruitcake. There is a touch of fusel alcohol. I can smell the original Hibernation but it's been bourbonized.

The flavor is surprisingly subdued. There's some chocolatey bourbon and dark fruits leading to a bitter alcohol finish. As it warms, a bit more flavor comes out - but it still tastes like watered down Hibernation with a splash of whiskey. The mouthfeel is full with very little carbonation and is a bit watery.

Overall, this is not overdone with the alcohol like the bourbon yeti was. Both barrel versions I've had have been very lightly carbonated. I'm surprised by how subdued the flavors were for me, given how complex original Hibernation is. It's interesting to try, but regular Hibernation is better, and this is not worth $25 a bottle.

Beaver13, Nov 25, 2009
Photo of GRG1313
3.25/5  rDev -19.6%

GRG1313, Oct 31, 2013
Photo of Tash2360
3.25/5  rDev -19.6%

Tash2360, May 27, 2012
Photo of Lob
3.25/5  rDev -19.6%

Lob, Jan 13, 2013
Photo of mulder1010
3.38/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle 128/492 Poured into a Great Divide Globe ( Just had to)

Thanks to Rake for the In person trade

A-- Poured a deep, dark mahogany color. Just touches of ruby at the bottom of the glass. Very little carbonation showing. Light brown head that went to film and stayed at film through drinking. Lots of spotty lacing on the sides of the glass.

S-- Rich and full smell. Buttery vanilla, rum, molasses,
brown sugar, and dates. Just slight bits of oak in this.

T-- Warm, melted brown sugar, butter, vanilla, rum, and dark fruits.

M-- Mid palate is very thin. Kind of sad really. Get just short bursts of what it was. A bit slick and sweet and and a rum spice finish but just lacking zest and too many gaping holes in this. Not much of the barrel though.

O-- Knocking off one of my biggest wants and realize I am getting to this about a year late. Flashes of how good this was does make this worth it for me though.

Edit: Really picked up with a lot of air. Thin gaps disappeared more but still evident, so a slight correction in rating.

mulder1010, Aug 18, 2011
Photo of ArrogantB
3.4/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle #376/492 $25. I am a big fan of the regular version so I gave up the $25 for this one which I will say is not as good as the regular version unless you really like whiskey. It might be a shade darker than the standard version or maybe its just hazier. It smells like whiskey, alcohol, really an interesting smell. The flavor is really overwhelmed by the barrel-aging to the point that I can barely tell its Hibernation any more. Whiskey, wood, alcohol, vanilla, intense but just doesn't do it for me.

ArrogantB, Nov 22, 2009
Photo of Gueuzedude
3.43/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle 190 of 492, 2009 bottling; sampled October 2011
A solid pour into my Lost Abbey Teku glass produces a one-finger thick, amber tinged, tan colored head that disappears down to a thin ring fairly quickly. The beer is a murky, concentrated amber color, that shows more of the same just lighter in hue when held up to the light. The aroma smells of sweet, toasted coconut and raisins, and perhaps a touch of sherry at the first. A second pas reveals smooth whiskey aromatics, smoothly spicy oak that gets a touch more spicy once I move away from the kitchen were some food is braising. This beer is clearly dominated by the barrel influence, there are touches of caramel, which mix well with the ample barrel vanillin notes, there is a slight savory maltiness here, as well as touches of toasted whole grain character and even some grassiness / herbal character somehow; though this last seems mainly to be contributed by the whiskey barrel and actually becomes quite prominent after some time (though it also has an ample green, pepper like note)

Up front flavors of caramelized crystal malt, vanillin, toasted coconut, toasted whole grain, touches of toffee and caramel mix together on the palate. The finish is quite spicy, very woody, and even sort of has a green grassy or spicy herbal note to it; this morphs into a green peppery note as well as a lingering tannic bite.. The beer is fairly light bodied for its strength, though I am not overly surprised as that often happens with beers like this that get aged in barrels; there is some viscous character to this beer, and it even manages to linger a bit on the palate, but the spicy oak character ends up wiping the palate clean. After some time, the finish really starts to taste like a whiskey, spicy, somewhat hot from the alcohol, and it even has that sort of fruitiness that I get in a whiskey or bourbon.

Not bad, but I was expecting a bit more; the barrel character runs a bit roughshod over the base beer. If this had a lot more caramelized maltiness and quite a bit of a richer, hell even sweeter, body that could stand up to the barrel influence, this would be a much better experience. The beer actually seems to do well in very small amounts; if I come back to it after a while I can take a small sip or two that maintains a balance to it, but it ends up getting thin, somewhat too spicy, and a bit too hot after any more than this.

Gueuzedude, Feb 15, 2012
Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.5/5  rDev -13.4%

TheSevenDuffs, Mar 15, 2014
Photo of ygtbsm94
3.5/5  rDev -13.4%

ygtbsm94, Jan 13, 2012
Photo of dkw0063
3.5/5  rDev -13.4%

dkw0063, Feb 03, 2014
Photo of xnicknj
3.5/5  rDev -13.4%

xnicknj, Sep 23, 2013
Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
3.5/5  rDev -13.4%

westcoastbeerlvr, Nov 25, 2013
Photo of kylehay2004
3.5/5  rDev -13.4%

kylehay2004, Apr 27, 2014
Photo of thegerm87
3.5/5  rDev -13.4%

thegerm87, May 03, 2014
Photo of RWNay
3.5/5  rDev -13.4%

RWNay, Sep 21, 2013
Photo of KVNBGRY
3.5/5  rDev -13.4%

KVNBGRY, Apr 28, 2014
Photo of Rutager
3.66/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

2011 bottle, thanks willandperry!

Appearance. Pours a hazy chestnut brown with half a finger of off white head that doesn't last long.

Smell. Whiskey, dark fruits, brown sugar, caramel, molasses, tobacco, chocolate.

Taste. Brown sugar, whiskey barrel, caramel, light and dark fruits with a slight tangyness.

Mouthfeel. Medium-full body, below medium carbonation.

Overall. A good big beer. Nothing amazing going on, but solid and drinkable.

Rutager, Aug 13, 2013
Photo of Thorpe429
3.73/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Big thanks to Lunch for bringing this to last night's tasting. I have now completed the GD BA trifecta, mostly thanks to Paul. Served in a Bruery tulip.

Pours a moderate brown color and is slightly murky. Nose contained a good amount of toffee as well as some light caramel. Some brown sugar and light barrel character there as well. Not super complex, but the barrel character was seriously nice, coming through particularly well in the finish, which was exquisite. Taste was caramel and bourbon. Nice. Mouthfeel was ridiculously smooth and lacked nearly any alcohol presence. Low carbonation and a medium body. A nice offering, and the mouthfeel was really killer. Big highlight for me.

Thorpe429, Mar 21, 2011
Photo of bulldogg915
3.75/5  rDev -7.2%

bulldogg915, Apr 02, 2013
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Barrel Aged Hibernation Ale from Great Divide Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 154 ratings.