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Fathead Barleywine - Reserve Series Aged In Whiskey Barrels - Nebraska Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Fathead Barleywine - Reserve Series Aged In Whiskey BarrelsFathead Barleywine - Reserve Series Aged In Whiskey Barrels

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

36 Reviews
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(Read More)
Reviews: 36
Hads: 92
rAvg: 3.95
pDev: 6.84%
Wants: 45
Gots: 26 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Nebraska Brewing Company visit their website
Nebraska, United States

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  12.10% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: mikedashg on 12-06-2009

A rich, full bodied Barley Wine with a wonderfully warming character from the malts & dark brown sugars. Held to the light, its burgundy color is fitting for a bigger beer that has aromatics that hint of the oak, the whiskey, the somewhat sweet nature, and molasses that makes this beer truly unique. The non-barrel-aged version of this beer took Silver in the 2009 US Open Beer Championships. Using Stranahan’s Whiskey barrels, we aged this beer for 6 months to impart a small amount of oak tannins and the whiskey character that combine to elevate this beer beyond its original entry into this world. Excellent to enjoy now and cellerable for years.

34 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 36 | Hads: 92
Photo of Juuroumaru
4.87/5  rDev +23.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

A- pours a nice brown/caramel color with a solid tan head.
S- I get the whiskey barrel on the nose along with caramel notes.
T- Caramel greatness with a touch of whiskey and maybe a hint of vanilla.
M- Very smooth coasting across the tongue
O- a very well balanced malty barleywine with a nice hint of whiskey. Wish i had another one of these to age. (350 characters)

Photo of joefuzz
4.7/5  rDev +19%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

09 vintage poured into oversized snifter

Pours lighter brown with a thin off white head that quickly fades to a nice collar of very small bubbles

Smells is extremely fruity (apples, figs, black cherries and some slight coconut) with a slight sense of alcohol.

Taste is an amazing blend of fruity and sweet. Coconut comes to mind immediately and pretty much dominates on the first sip giving way to a mouth coating molasses taste as it goes down and some slight alcohol burn.

Mouthfeel is fairly light and carbonation pretty low.

Overall I wasn't expecting much going into this but it was amazing in every way. It is also a very nice change of pace to see a beer that was aged in something in something a little different than what has been flooding the shelves in my area lately. If you have one of these and have yet to try it, open it. (842 characters)

Photo of pat61
4.61/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Fresh and over ripe fruit, dark sugars, spice, vanilla and light whiskey on the nose. It pours clean, bright dark amber to light brown under a 2” light tan tinted foam cap that rapidly dissipates to a thick film that leaves gothic window lace on the glass. Enters very creamy on the palate with a blend of dried fruit – predominantly fig and pitted fruit – plum and big malt flavors blending in with whiskey. Gets a little grainy on the finish but the hops and alcohol combine to balance the big malts. Has a very Belgian texture – light for its size and above average carbonation that is is fine and soft suggesting a very light mousse. (645 characters)

Photo of OWSLEY069
4.42/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy orange-ish to brown in color with a light tan head. In the aroma, dry whiskey, small dark fruit and a small alcohol note. In the taste, dry whiskey, brown sugar, and notes of vanilla. A smooth and medium to bigger bodied mouthfeel, with a small dry brown sugar and whiskey in the aftertaste. Not overbearing whiskey at all, and a nice brown sugar flavor to round it all out. (387 characters)

Photo of Greywulfken
4.35/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: medium translucent brown with a thin pale head; motes of lace

S: malt, vanilla, molasses

T: brown sugar, vanilla caramel, sweet fruits like dates and figs, toffee, subtle traces of whiskey

M: warming, smooth, creamy

O: these guys are good; their Hop God Belgian IPA-style was one of the best pale ales I've had, and this barleywine is among the best barleywines I've had - gotta try their stout if I see it... Bold, expensive, and brilliantly crafted, a sure treat for the taste buds. As this warmed, the whiskey really came out and created such an excellent taste. At this point in my drinking career, my favorite American Barleywine (right up there with $ucaba and King Henry, considered English barleywines). (718 characters)

Photo of tdm168
4.3/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Dunn for bringing this to the Barleywine tasting.

A - dark brownish amber with a shrt, brown head that has little retention

S - candy sugar, alcohol, whiskey, bread, caramel, apple

T - caramel, bread, apples, alcohol, faintly bitter, faint citrus, dark fruit, faint whiskey notes

M - full bodied, well carbonated, warm

This is a great beer. it's complex, but a bit fruit forward. The malt and hops are greatly balanced. The whiskey adds some comlexity. This is definitely worth a try. (499 characters)

Photo of Wasatch
4.3/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks goes out to RedHaze for this brew.

750ml Bottle
Capped

Poured into a chalice a nice cloudy brownish color, nice carbonation, nice little fizzy off-white head, with some big oil slicks and sticky lacing left behind. The nose is malty, big whiskey note, slight dark fruits. The taste is slightly sweet, malty, very nice whiskey note up front, some figs, raisins, plums. Medium body, the ABV is hidden pretty well, a nice sipper. Drinkable, WOW! this one surprised me, glad to have a chance trying it out. Thanks Chris. (525 characters)

Photo of StonedTrippin
4.22/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

alright, not seeing anyone else here with these comments, but my bottle was undoubtedly bretted, i mean, no denying that it was brett in here, supper funked out and really dry and bubbly, i loved it, despite the fact that it doesnt seem to be intentional. the bourbon aroma with the brett is cool, and the whole thing seems awfully light for a barleywine of any kind. not acidic or tangy at all, less mature brett than that, that zone where its saison and cereals and just horsey funk. it really does a good job eating up whatever sweetness was in here, this has to be one of the more dry versions of they style i have had. nowhere does it say wild ale or brett conditioned or anything, but this absolutely is. uncommon, and i like that. i disagree strongly with some of the negative reviews here, this beer is so much better than that. drinkable because its light, because the alcohol is well hidden, and because its just so darn intriguing. i have been really impressed with these guys, especially the big bottle stuff, and while this may be an unintentional infection, it tastes incredible and i like it that much more as a result! (1,134 characters)

Photo of LiquidAmber
4.2/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Fremont small snifter. Pours a medium to dark reddish orange with a very thin ring of foam and not much visible active carbonation. Aroma dominated by whiskey, with quite mild dark stone fruit, apple and oak vanilla; still inviting. Flavor is caramel malt, whiskey, earthy and woody barrel influence, fresh and dried dark fruit; finishes with more woody vanilla and whiskey. Medium bodied with slight carbonation. This was a very interesting barleywine; the initial impression is that the malt body is lighter than normal, but as the flavor develops, more complex components become clear and work very well with the whiskey barrel. The barreling woodiness is more pronounced in this than usual, and the flavors were quite good and interesting. Although this is listed as an American barleywine, the malt and fruit components are much closer to an English barleywine, although this is not as thick and malt influenced as most in that style. Although it’s a bit off from style, I really liked this barleywine a lot and loved the woody barrel notes. Offerings from this brewery are quite rare in this area, but I would buy this again in a heartbeat. I've been very impressed by Nebraska's bigger beers and look forward to seeing more from them. I also think this would be quite interesting to cellar. (1,313 characters)

Photo of sholland119
4.12/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A-Amber mixed with iced tea brown, a small creamy off white head leaves nice sticky lacing.

S-Dried fruit, caramel, brown sugar.

T-Figgy, with the expected cornucopia of dried fruits. Plums, raisins, some brown sugar and some very light boozy warmth.

M-Very smooth, creamy and almost light, which I would have thought inconceivable in a beer this size.

D-Slides right down. Remarkably dangerous drinkability for the style.

Probably the least good beer I have had from Nebraska, but still pretty good.

HV (511 characters)

Photo of Gobzilla
4.1/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Good lookin out drew for sharing this brew.

A: poured brown in color with yellow highlights on the edges and had a thin bubbly head leaving a little lacing sticking to the glass.

S: lots of whiskey character upfront on the nose with caramel, toffee, booze, brown sugar popping out and hints of molasses as well.

T: the caramel and toffee flavors were more apparent on the taste with whiskey barrel, booze, molasses, dark fruit accents and a touch of cherries.

M: the brew was medium in body with a low amount of carbonation which had a sweet, whiskey boozy, mild fruity, and creamy finish.

D: a sipper for sure but was tasty and glad to see that the state of nebraska has some decent BA aged brews. (703 characters)

Photo of brentk56
4.05/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a tawny amber color with a finger's worth of head that leaves many traces behind

Smell: Sure, it's a bit boozy, but there are a lot of interesting elements underneath, ranging from piney hops to caramel, brown sugar and figgy malts; the whiskey barrel wafts in the background

Taste: The malts command center stage, bringing caramel, figs, dates and golden raisins; by mid-palate, however, the piney hops take over along with the whiskey barrel; hops and whiskey are both prominent in the finish

Mouthfeel: Full-bodied with low to moderate carbonation

Overall: There is a lot to like in this barleywine; it is very well-balanced with a lot of flavors coming together; still, I can't help but say that something is missing that would take it into the top echelon and I think it has to do with the the malt bill (830 characters)

Photo of BeerImmediately
4.05/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Looks rather thin coming out of the bottle. Pours with about 2F worth of egg-nog-colored head over a deep amber body, with no apparent carbonation flowing up. Head fades to creamy film, with decent lacing.

Aromas are fairly light. Barley, whiskey, and white wine-like aromas. The alcohol comes thru much stronger as it warmed.

Creamy on the palate. Flavors have a nice, thick citrusy quality at first, coupled with cherry, chardonnay, and floral hops. Mouthfeel is spectacularly smooth for a barleywine at this strength.

Drinkability is way above average for the style - no real alchoholic heat, pleasant flavors, and great creaminess. This pup is overpriced, but I'll actually be getting a couple more to cellar for the next few years.

p.s. This would be amazing with some peppermint ice cream. Now I just need to find peppermint ice cream. (848 characters)

Photo of mikedashg
4.03/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Much thanks to @ArtofBeer for opening this at our little going away party at Stone for @MartinEmde and @TheKewe

A - golden orange amber with a fairy small head

S - Whiskey, light pear, nothing too overpowering

T - Whiskey forward, slight bitter hops and a great malt caramel backbone. Whiskey after taste as well. Pretty smooth.

M - low to moderate carb full body but a little thin

D - ABV is pretty hidden, even though there is a good amount of whiskey barrel flavor boozyness going on. Not too complex because of it I think. (533 characters)

Photo of oline73
4.03/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a snifter.

Appearance: Pours a clear dark red amber with a finger of fluffy, light tan head that fades to a ring around the edge of the glass.

Smell: Whiskey and sweet brown sugar, vanilla, and dark fruit.

Taste: Follows from the smell. Strong whiskey presence, but it was smooth. Hints of vanilla, oak, and brown sugar. The finish is bitter and warm from the alcohol.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with mild carbonation and a dry finish.

Overall: This was a sipper, but I was surprised how easy it was to drink after smelling it. A nice after dinner drink. (581 characters)

Photo of ryan1788a5
4.03/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

750ml bottle poured into a large snifter.

A: Brown/caramel colored with a mild haze. Cream colored head settles to a thin cap. Spotty lacing.

S: Light runny caramel, treacle, bread pudding, crust. Booze soaked golden raisins. Baked apples. Brown sugar. Vague tropical fruit for an instant. Whiff of alcohol. Fragrant oak and woody vanilla hints of whiskey. Subdued peppery note. Very good.

T: Bread pudding, treacle, light runny caramel, dash of cocoa, walnuts. Cherries and booze soaked golden raisins. Barrel flavors form an anchor- caramel, woody vanilla, oak, and whiskey. Bourbon-esque whiskey and a dose of brown sugar become the predominant flavors toward the end and finish things off, along with drying oak.

M: Medium-thick with a slight viscosity and a moderately chewy texture. Oak tannins are smooth and drying. Low carbonation. Warming alcohol slowly seeps into the soul. Great velvety texture.

O: Not the big, bruising, rib-sticking barleywine I expected. This is a more sophisticated beverage. Flavors mesh well and blend into each other, making for a smooth and easy drink. It tastes far more mature than it is. (1,134 characters)

Photo of Bouleboubier
4.01/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A: burgundy - swirls of fine sediment within - fairly large, surprisingly bright-white head - keeps a collar and leaves some snotty lace - didn't dump much sediment into the glass, however, the beer appears quite hazy

S: obvious whiskey-barrel aging - vanilla? yes! - little bit of vinyl or paint-like alcohol - bubblegum, circus peanut (banana ester)

T: whiskey-barrel-aged barleywine, of course! - toasted wood, vanilla - kind of a boozy, extra malty brown ale flavor - some signs of depth (booze, raisin/fig, honeysuckle) - is that some hop bitterness? or is it a little alcohol burn? - alcohol may be a little too forward - overall, not bad but arguably muted by the barrel-derived elements and lees that slipped in

M: fairly smooth - what you'd expect from a barrel-aged barleywine - a mild nectar-y or syrupy consistency, nicely attenuated by the alcohol, adding some body complexity - moderately dry finish

O: nice body, perhaps marginally too fruity, great flavor balance, but not enough depth - the barrel aging added some nice flavors but maybe messed up what would've been a fine barleywine on its own (1,116 characters)

Photo of BeerAdvocate
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from BeerAdvocate Magazine Issue #37 (Feb 2010):

Dull copper color; suds reach two fingers in height. Massive aromatic waft of whiskey, lots of wood with char and vanilla, brown sugar and ripe fruit. Somewhat smooth and extra creamy. Big boozy flavor slams the palate and then lifts it up for a shock of sweet- ness before the warmth sets in. Nutty maltiness tangles with some brown sugar notes; figgy fruitiness in the middle gets a little juicy. Mild barrel char. Whiskey, whiskey, whiskey ... taste like a first use on the barrel, wakes up the palate for sure. Semisweet finish with some faint ester and solvent alcohol residuals.

The beer got a full dose of flavor from the barrel yet does not put it in a stranglehold. A big, beautiful sipper. (757 characters)

Photo of Ristaccia
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 vintage. Despite the age, still pretty rough around the edges. Overall, tasty, but not something I'd want more than the 8 ounces I had of nor something I'd consider worth the effort to age. (194 characters)

Photo of THECPJ
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes:

appearance: dark brown with a orange hue 1 finger off white head

smell: vanilla, whiskey, sweet, caramel sugar

taste: sweet, caramel, malts, alcohol

mouthfeel: mild carbonation, medium body

overall: I'm usually not a fan of american barleywine's but this was tasty and I think it's do to the whiskey barrel aging.

Cheers,
The CPJ (357 characters)

Photo of Reagan1984
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Been on a Barrel Aged Barley wine kick lately. Picked this up at Berman’s a couple weeks ago.

Quite a creamy and substantive head forms on top this beer and stays for quite a long time. Eventually gravity wins the battle and a ¼ inch of tight foam caps the beer. Fairly classic beep amber color with just a slight hint of maroon. Good clarity and color.

Whiskey wins the day in the aroma. Some raw wood, coconut and the whiskey itself. A touch of malt sweetness, but very mild.

It bores me to say the flavor follows the aroma and I usually try to avoid that. Can’t here as they are so in sync. Everything mentioned above is there in almost the same ratio. The coconut and raw wood are on stage here. I am more of a fan of bourbon with the vanilla flavors. There is a touch of musty malt at the end here as well.

Not quite as bold of body as I had anticipated.

A decent beer, but not among my favorite. (911 characters)

Photo of zeff80
3.97/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured out a hazy, dirty burgundy color with a one-finger, off-white head of thick foam. Pretty good head retention and some soapy trails of foam were left behind.

S - It smelled of oak, vanilla and some whiskey. Some boozy heat in the nose.

T - Some dried dark fruit flavors - plum, maybe. Vanilla, caramel some oak. Whiskey flavor is muted but present.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A medium to full bodied ale with a very dry finish.

D - This is a very good barrel aged barleywine. I enjoyed it. (512 characters)

Photo of mdaschaf
3.92/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

2010 Vintage, Black Label

A: Poured a very dark brown with a decent one finger head. Retention was minimal, reducing to some bubbles on top. Not much lacing.

S: The whiskey definitely shines through on the aroma, hard to say if it had died down after a few months in the the bottle. There was also some oak and vanilla as well as a little bit of molasses and brown sugar.

T: The whiskey was not as heavy in the flavor profile, but certainly present. There is some fig and raison and the malts yield molasses and caramelized sugar. The booze is there, but is not overpowering.

M: Medium bodied, but slightly lighter than I would have expected. Low carbonation with a creamy feel. The whiskey/booze comes through a little bit as well.

O: Quite impressed. For a style that I typically don’t love, this beer was very enjoyable. The barrels added some nice flavors and while the alcohol shows up, it adds more than it takes away. (934 characters)

Photo of russpowell
3.92/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 2 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours an effervescent orange/caramel with a pinky of tan head. Clouds up a bit, some head retention & no lacing

S: Fruittyness & port, a touch of butterscotch, finally whiskey

T: Follows the nose, dryness, loads of figs & some raisin & oaky dryness up front. Whiskey notes, figs, peatyness & pear brandy as this warms, some caramel . Woody dryness, booze bite, pears & figs in the finish

MF: Fairly chewy, light carbonation. Becomes sticky over time, starts thinning out a bit as it warms

This seems awfully subdued on hops for an American Barleywine. Not a bad offering, but now that I've had a few, I'd have have to say these guys are good but way over priced. I will probably be more cautious on future purchases of their product; ABV is well hidden for the most part (776 characters)

Photo of SawDog505
3.9/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a 16 oz snifter. Pours a ruby red with a 2 inch off white head, that leaves lace everywhere. Smell is huge whiskey, vanilla, smoke, peat, and booze. Taste is a liitle more mello, but still huge whiskey, burnt vanilla, caramel apple, prune, brown sugar, and charcoal. Body is medium, enough life, dry, and definitely a sipper. Solid Barleywine, will let it age for awhile and try again. (397 characters)

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Fathead Barleywine - Reserve Series Aged In Whiskey Barrels from Nebraska Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 36 ratings.