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Xyauyù Etichetta Rame (Copper) - Birrificio Le Baladin

Not Rated.
Xyauyù Etichetta Rame (Copper)Xyauyù Etichetta Rame (Copper)

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

97 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 97
Reviews: 66
rAvg: 4.32
pDev: 10.42%
Wants: 74
Gots: 13 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Birrificio Le Baladin visit their website

Style | ABV
English Barleywine |  12.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-26-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 97 | Reviews: 66 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Knapp85
4.88/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I had reviewed this a while ago and for some reason the review is now missing. This beer much like it's sister beers is excellent. I really enjoy these with every sip. This one specifically had a red color with no head on top. The smell is very sweet but not in a sickening way. The taste is over the top and almost unexplainable. The mouthfeel is sort of like a sweet wine, it's very soft and very easy to drink for a brew with such a high ABV. Overall I wish these beers were cheaper... I'd love to drink these over and over again. They are masterpieces in my eyes. Well worth trying at least once!

Thanks, MasterSki

So different, it's got a Kool-Aid sweetness to it. No alcohol burn at all. Not even like a wine sometimes has. This is something that I've never experienced before. Very pricey and not for regular basis drinking, although I wish it was. It's got a ruby red color fantastic sweet aromas and just perfect for sipping over a long period of time. I love these releases and I will be getting them whenever I can without a doubt.

Knapp85, Nov 16, 2011
Photo of JAHMUR
4.5/5  rDev +4.2%

JAHMUR, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of HopHead84
4.72/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5


2005 vintage (13% ABV) in a snifter. There's a soft pop when the cork is removed.

A: Pours a very attractive reddish brown. There are a few small bubbles resulting from the force of the pour, but there is no apparent carbonation. A gentle swirl of the glass brings the liquid up the sides, leaving a clear collar that cascades down in small beads.

S: Oxidation is redolent of leather and sherry with nutty notes. Notes of brown sugar and maple are pronounced, blending wonderfully with date, prune, plum, and grape. There's a good deal of caramel and there's an aspect that reminds me of Grand Marnier.

T: Maple, brown sugar, and caramel combine harmoniously with leather and sherry-like oxidation. Dark fruit pervades the flavor, imparting plum and grape. There's also notes of orange liqueur and date, as well as earth and a hint of tobacco. Very nice.

M: Lower full in body and completely still. The mouthfeel is sticky and smooth with ample alcohol warming on the palate.

Overall: I originally thought I liked this less than gold and silver, but after pulling the wine stopper out of the bottle and enjoying 5 ounces a few days later, I'm not so sure anymore. Fantastic.

HopHead84, Nov 12, 2011
Photo of rhoadsrage
3.9/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

(Served in a snifter)
teo musso 2006

A- This beer pours a hazy slight dense antique dark copper body with no head and no carbonation but some nice legs when swirled.

S- The notes of rich woody sherry have an aged fruity alcohol in the finish and a touch of graham. There are qualities of golden raisins, honey, dates and dark grape skins all blended in the nose.

T- There is some malt sweetness blended with an old barrel flavor and some sherry fruit notes that turns into a soft lingering dried fruit alcohol. There are some light caramel and toffee notes that come through when the beer opens.

M- The light mouthfeel has a mellow warming alcohol heat.

O- This lacks the richness and depth I hope to find in a barleywine and it is a bit thin due to the lack of carbonation. It is very well blended but the sweet and alcohol balance really leans toward the big sweetness as it opens up.

rhoadsrage, Sep 08, 2011
Photo of rtepiak
4.53/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

looked this over the internet... i have a copper with 13%abv... not 12%abv

when there was no pop which automatically get a bit pensive. the beer although is very mildly carbonated. as it sit bubbles collect on the glass. pour is copper with the first distinction as closer to a mild cloudy tawny. nose is almond, pollen honey and Porto. the feel regardless of no carbonation is excellent and creamy. the sweetness reminds me most of vanilla and almond macaroons. the bittering is immaculate. a hint of thistle grass... this was a moment though where there was some robust notes that quickly faded. braggot souring fruit notes. hint of Calvados fortified cider. walnut mineral tannin hint in the finish. can be had in portions and resealed... and absolutely worth its weight in Porto... smoother and just as warm. a treat.

rtepiak, Aug 16, 2011
Photo of Thorpe429
4.25/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Huge thanks to bucketboy for opening this bottle at Barrel Aged Sexual Chocolate. Served in a Deschutes tulip, courtesy of Lunch, who was sleeping in his car at that point.

2005 vintage.

Pours a moderate copper-bronze color with a very thin head of bubbles that quickly receded. The nose brings forward a really nice balance between caramel and dark fruits along with some sherry in the background. The flavor melds everything together really well, and the oxidation process has really done wonders to this beer. Beautiful sherry-like flavor along with some caramelization and just a touch of alcohol. Light to medium body and very smooth. Low carbonation. Really a delight all around. Thanks again, Joe.

Thorpe429, Jul 19, 2011
Photo of thagr81us
4.53/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Big thanks to BucketBoy for sharing this one at BASC! 2005 Vintage! Served from bottle into a Duck-Rabbit snifter. Pours amber with an extremely minimal off-white head. There was no lacing evident throughout. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, cherry, fruit, figs, caramel, brown sugar, wood, molasses, and massively sweet alcohol. The flavor was of sweet malt, caramel, brown sugar, peat, dark fruit, and very subtle alcohol. It has a medium feel on the palate with low carbonation. Overall this brew was quite excellent. The aroma was a little misleading as I thought it was going to be massively alcohol forward, but the flavor was very sweet and nice. The mouthfeel on this one could use a little work but still decent. A definite must try, that I was really happy to get the chance to try it.

thagr81us, Jul 16, 2011
Photo of BEERchitect
4.55/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Xyauyu, Reserva Teo Musso, Brewed in 2005, 13% abv. (copper etching).

Simply put, barleywines just don't get better. If the aura of a sipping beer conjures up dreams of cognac, port, or brandy, then this savory desert beer will change your notion of how good beer can be. The review posted by StephenRich below is spot on.

The still chestnut-brown concoction pours with an oily and viscous crawl into the snifter. A mystic glow of rust, amber, golden, and ruby colors carry a diffused look- the beer seems ideally of port wine-at least to the eye. With the absence of foam or lace, the beer subs in a lightly inky legging that clings to the glass, providing a clean gloss.

Succulent and savory aromas of warm alcohol oils, stone and dehydrated fruit, deep molasass and brown sugars all meld into the most wonderful of blends. Delicate earthiness of peat, raw tobacco, and fresh leather further support the growing complexity of the nose.

Sweet toffee, brittle, black-strap molasass, maple syrups, and buckwheat honey surely satisfy the sweetooth as very few deserts can. Plumbs, dates, figs, raisons, prunes, and grapes all give roundness and variety to the sweetness, absorbing some of the heavy-sweet brunt. Added sherry and soy sauce oxidation contributes many more savory flavors than subtract. Again, the herbal tobacco, leather, and peat flavors piggyback on the fruits and give a glimps into the fading hop contributions. Tawny flavors of rum-soakes sandalwood with a musty taste of rustic, weathered oak. Flavor descriptions of this beer are infinate.

Silky, velvety, and cloying sweetness are all welcomed in a very decadent mouthfeel. The sweetness and alcohol coats the mouth and seemingly melts into the soft tissues of the mouth for a long and savory sweet feel that lingers well into the next sip.

Every once in a while, an epiphany in beer appreciation happens. This is how Xyauyu presents itself. Masculine. Refined. Endearing. It transcends the tired notion of what beers should be and truely exhibits promise for the beers of tomorrow.

BEERchitect, Apr 28, 2011
Photo of PGHeppJr
4.3/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Taken from notes : 07JUN2009

2004 Vintage

An expected flatter-than-piss-on-a-plate head.

Color is enchanting and more akin to something from a bottle in the Jerez region.

Nose is filled with with rich dried fruit notes followed by nutty nuances. With enough spice aroma to keep one guessing what Tunisian fair they just walked through.

Mouthfeel of pure velvet and again, this radical brew is reminiscent of Amantillado. Rich clover honey and plump turkish figs are what stand out most to me.

In all, a bottle of barley-sherry to rub in the face of your wine-geek/snob's faces. Followed by something mature like, " I told you"

Paired with Neal's Yard Dairy Colston Bassett Stilton

PGHeppJr, Apr 08, 2011
Photo of jedwards
3.93/5  rDev -9%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This was the 2005-labeled Copper (Etichetta Rame) vintage.

Pour is a deep caramel garnet, unfortunately marred by a host of tiny black flecks floating in the liquid -- fortunately they are undetectable in the mouth. The smell is rich fruit, caramel, honey and a hint of harsh fusels -- the taste is stewed plums, cherry, leather, wine, raisins, and tobacco. Alcohol is extremely well hidden behind an mouth-coating sweetness. Texture is thick and port-like... in fact, everything is very port-like. Not a bad thing, and really remarkable for a product made without grapes. I love the showcasing of the qualities of slow oxidization.

Eventually I will have to try the silver and gold variations.

jedwards, Mar 22, 2011
Photo of ferrari29
4.38/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Beer poured from bottle into Snifter glass

A - Barrel aging helped create a nice liquor-syrup look; thick body; no foam formed

S - You can smell the high ABV, that's the first smell to come up; followed by sweet and deep bourbon oak smell; yeast - earthy tones

T - Smooth oak taste, with vanilla and fig taste; wine-port taste (probably form high ABV); grape

M - Thin liquor feel; flat but goes down very smooth

D - Great drink; I was really impressed with this English Barleywine; this makes for a fantastic after dinner drink; sweet fig and dates taste makes this a unique brew; great stuff

ferrari29, Feb 15, 2011
Photo of ccrida
4.75/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Popped this bad boy for my b-day, which is also thanksgiving this year. Picked it up at Belmont a few years ago, on clearance no less, but still crazy expensive.

Poured into my Delirium snifter, Xyauyu is still and syrupy, a ruddy chestnut. There's a wisp of carbonation, but it's fleeting. I'm gonna rate this one basically as a desert drink rather then any type of normal beer.

Smell is extreme, I really don't know where to begin, absolutely unlike any other beer I've ever had, and I thought I've pretty much had them all, at least stylistically. Most like brandy, but more of a honeyed vibe, like fortified wine. Big time cured fruit, some alcohol vapors.

Taste is similarly desert wine like, but way more honey then the prune, and exceptionally smooth, save for a slight burn of the belly. It's really exceptional, like what I assume most people that have never had mead would expect honey wine to taste like. I wouldn't be surprised if they added a lot of honey or some other sugar after the primary fermentation and cold crashed it to keep the dangerously high residual sugars - I can taste the diabetes and can't feel my feet!

Mouthfeel is pretty slick, not nearly as heavy as it looks, actually very light on it's feet, perhaps a bit unctuous.

Drinkability is tough. This is a super intense drink, with a formidable strength. On the other hand, it's incredibility good. Then again, it's super expensive and a (now 6 year old) one-off. I'm calling it good. Absolutely memorable, one of the best beer experiences I've had, ever.

ccrida, Nov 27, 2010
Photo of WorldWideStout
4.25/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Brought back home for me by my friend who is temporarily living in Italia. Salute Daniele!

A: A murky, red copper. Pretty purdy. No head.

S: Lots of wine, grape-like smells. Also apples, but not really dark fruit. Very sweet.

T: Sweet wine and apple liquer, which I imagine exists or has existed at some point. Reminds me of my mother's mincemeat pie, which does not have actual meat, but apples soaked in brandy. Very sweet.

M: As I had heard, this beer is without carbonation. Feels more like an after-dinner liquer than a beer. This makes it nice and rich, but does negatively impact the

Drinkability: fairly low. I split this with two friends, and though we had a few other beers we wanted to get to, the 5 or 6 ounces we each drank took the better part of an hour to get through. Trying to drink it all by myself would have been very foolish. The sweetness started to become rather cloying as well, and I have quite the sweet tooth.

Certainly a unique beer. Quite tasty in small doses. I would really treat this like a liquer. Have a few ounces after dinner, and then seal it for the next night, or the next week. I don't think it could get any sweeter, so even a little oxidation wouldn't hurt it.

WorldWideStout, Nov 06, 2010
Photo of fear025
4.72/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 1.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

2005 vintage.

Aroma:Smells like a brandy, also smells like samichlaus. Lots of malty flavors, dates, raisins, plums. Hot alcohol.

Appearance:Dark burgundy in color. Lots of sediment floating around.

Taste:This is hugely sweet. Hazelnuts, raisins, dates, and maple syrup.

Mouthfeel:Hugely viscous and syrupy, very smooth.

Drinkability:This is a very unique beer, reminiscent of samichlaus and utopias, but smoother. It's a quite delicious sipper.

fear025, Oct 25, 2010
Photo of PeprSprYoFace
3.75/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Very interesting about how this beer is brewed in the review below. Some techniques I've never heard of. Any way.

This is a 2005 vintage. I've been sitting on this bottle for about a year and a half not wanting to open it because it is one of the most expensive bottles I have bought. Read below about the vintage.

Pours a completely flat dark caramel color. More like a light brown maple syrup. The bottle is awesome though and it makes you feel like your opening something revolutionary.

Aroma is tons of dark fruits. I have never had a beer with more dark fruit aroma. Mostly rasin. Tons of toasted sugars and caramel. Very complex.

Wow. Taste. I don't know what to say. It's like sucking on a part maple part simple syrup solution. Sooo sweet. It's amazing that there is no alcohol burn. Absolutly zero. And my bottle is 13%. ABV. It's way too sweet though. But the flavors are nice.

Mouthfeel is actually not as thick as I was expecting. The non existent carbonation actually probably helps out the mouthfeel because it would probably taste too thick if there was some carb.

Overall it is way too sweet and is gunna be hard to finish. I should have brought this to a tasting and not split it with a buddy. Would have felt better to split a $50 bottle of beer with more people and we probably would have enjoyed it more since a couple sips and you have had enough.

PeprSprYoFace, Oct 17, 2010
Photo of StephenRich
4.88/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This beer was brewed in 2003, but the vintage date on the bottle lists 2005. Heres why. Musso boils his wort (water and sugar extracted from malted barley) for a very long period of time to create a very sweet and dense liquid. It is then inoculated with a yeast from an Islay Distillery and laid to rest for a long, and difficult 40 days primary fermentation (primary would normally be 4 to 7 days). From there the temperature is lowered to 0C (32F) and kept there for a further 3 months. The beer is then filtered and left in an open tank in a sterilized room for 18 months - then finally it will be bottled where it rests for another 6 before it is sent away.

While I greatly enjoyed this beer, the rich, robust, uncarbonated and port-like style of beer is not for everyone. But what you have to do is rid yourself of any silly preconceptions of what beer is. I think we should all know by now that beer doesn't exist merely as a weak fizzy yellow drink - it can be so much more, and a beer like this proves that. So before you open it, clear your mind, and prepare for flavor, and nothing else.

I opened the Xyauyu up around cellar temperature around 14C (57F), just slightly chilled, but far from cold. I poured it into a stemmed tulip glass gently and a thick, silky, oil-like amber brown beer slid out and crashed heavily into the bottom of the glass. Instantly you could tell that this beer was richly viscous, very oily, and in that Madeira realm. The beer rested in the glass with absolutely no head, and only a couple bubbles along the sides of the glass that should not be confused for carbonation; so few I can count them (24...). Totally calm and peaceful, the Xyauyu chilled in my glass glowing a muted burgundy brown with deep shades of golden mahogany, copper, dark purples and shades of black. It was very pretty, and unsuspecting - especially if you still think beer should be yellow and fizzy.

The nose is tawny and sweet with thick malt sensations, sugary fruits, and an earthy must. Getting my nose right into the glass opened me up to raisins, dates, figs, prunes, syrup, brown sugar, caramelized malts, brandy, strawberry jam, and sweet molasses. It is big and malty rich right away but shows traces of balance by way of sweet leather, earth and tobacco. This beer pours flavor out to you right from the get go.

A gentle tilt of the glass to bring some of this richly golden brown beer onto my palate lit up my face and warmed my soul. The beer so gently glides over your tongue and falls heavily onto your cheeks with a sublimely silky and oily texture that wraps your mouth in a velvety blanket of flavor. All the sweetness of the malts, the ageing, and the hard work burst out at you in a smooth and refined manner.

A honey like stew of dried fruits and fresh jam caress my tongue first and open up to figs, dates, caramel and stewed pears. A syrup like malty sweetness is built into the center of this beer and brings hints of brandy and Orloso sherry. It is smooth and warming and goes down with a silky, boozy touch. Take sips, not gulps. This beer was meant to be savored.

As your palate warms to the sweet malts, ranges of herbs and leather begin to show added complexity, and I swear that I taste tobacco. Its a sweet and gooey earthiness that I can recognize from some of my favorite ripe cigars. Touches of warm nut and back to figs and dates remain powerful in the beer's body, and I am amazed at its construction and overall presence. This really should be considered an Italian-Style Barleywine.

No carbonation, intensely malty sweet, hints of jam, orange zest, berries, stewed figs, port and brandy all come together to form a remarkable beer which should be enjoyed on its own with friends. You would have a tough time drinking an entire bottle to yourself in less than 8 hours. I sipped on my 5 or 6 ounces for probably 40 minutes, and enjoyed every second of it. The refined, but malty sweet flavor and silky and warming finish crate a masterpiece. I can't wait to try the 2010 vintage. This is a beer for the ages.

Pics at: http://wp.me/pNKWo-1eE

StephenRich, Sep 21, 2010
Photo of StevenBilodeau
4.78/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is possibly one of the best Barley Wines I have ever had.

Imported through B United, this Italian Beast comes from Birrificio Baladin. And is one of the best and rarest Barley Wines out there period.

It pours into a glass nice copper color alcohol. The smell is sweet of some sort of high end port or sherry, and some what like cognac.

For a beverage which is very similar to the Sam Adams Utopias, this is excellent, and only a fourth of the price.

Most places are selling this awesome barley wine around $45 to $50, and Sam Utopias goes from $160 to $500 depending if your buying it online or not, and during it's season.

Xyauyu is simply one of the best alcoholic beverages I have ever had.

Leave it to the Italians to kick ass at Beer too. Watch out Belgium, your not the only ones who produce excellent products.

StevenBilodeau, Jul 15, 2010
Photo of rfgetz
4.22/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served as part of a pairing with a meal at Vetri in Philly... 2005 Vintage paired with dessert.

Pours a shimmering, clean and clear copper color, sticking to the sides of the glass like maple syrup. No carbonation to speak of. Scent in a wonderus malted barley that brings forth whiffs of sherry, port, orange liqour, toffee and nuts. Taste is a sticky sweet, yet wonderosly blended combination of all the above mentioned components of smell. Excellent after dinner, dessert accompanyment, a whole bottle in itself would be a challenge to get down due to the syrupy sweetness, but a delight none the less.

rfgetz, Jan 22, 2010
Photo of HeyItsChili
4.47/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Silver text on black label 2006 reserve. Purchased at Birrotto in Genoa, Italy near Piazza Ferrari.

A - Perfectly clear, reddish sunset to golden highlights.

S - Spices, tons of toffee, lots of alcohol fumage. Overwhelmingly sweet.

T - Honeydew and watermelon rind sweetness with a strong alcohol finish. Coppery essences in there. Burns the back of the tongue as it goes down.

M - Absolutely no carbonation to speak of. Flat. Smooth, slightly less than medium bodied and that lends itself well to the flavor and strength of the beer. If it were syrupy, the combination of sticky sweet and thick might be a little too much.

HeyItsChili, Dec 04, 2009
Photo of davod23
3.53/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

Bronze version, brewed in 2005. 500mL bottle, poured into my Stone Old Guardian glass. Thanks, Blake.

Dead still pour. Absolutely no carbonation evident whatsoever. It's an interesting pour nonetheless, thick and syrupy. Dark, clear, brownish color with ruby highlights. Quite pretty.

Aroma... holy crap. Massive hit of sweetness, toffee, a bit of spice, and booze. Weird that it seems to calm down after a few minutes in the glass - maybe I was just taken by surprise.

Taste is quite nice, though far from my favorite barleywine. It's a honey bomb. The girlfriend likened it to plum wine, which I can see too - it has almost a Kool-Aid type sweetness to it. Which isn't necessarily a bad thing. Maybe some raisins? A hint of spice on the finish, which is interesting for the style. Not as complex as I have found in other examples of English barleywines, but still enjoyable enough.

Mouthfeel is probably the best part of this beer. Sticky, syrupy, and thick, this is a good example of what a barleywine ought to be.

Drinkability suffers. It's just so damn sweet! I'm a third of my way through my half of the bottle, and I've got to take it real slow-like. Enjoyable, but I can't imagine wanting more than a single pour of this stuff. Get a bottle and find four friends to split it with.

This is a good brew, definitely interesting, but it will be a once-in-a-while thing for me.

davod23, Nov 12, 2009
Photo of wnh
4.33/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a wine glass.

Pours a bright, clear bronze, with absolutely no head, but beautiful to look at nonetheless.

Aromas of sweet caramel and lightly oxidized apple and pear dominate the nose. Sweet and appealing. Tastes of sweet apple, refined sugar (though not cheap), and light spice. Very saturated flavor, almost syrup-like, but medium bodied yet thick. Sweet, but not cloying, which in my opinion is the single most interesting aspect of this beer. The various components could very well have added up to a super-sweet, undrinkable brew, but they managed to toe the line without stepping over, and the result is a fantastic flavorful beer, one which I'd be happy to sip over a few hours.

Worth the price tag? Difficult to say. But this is a darn fine beer.

wnh, Aug 24, 2009
Photo of Patrick999
3.43/5  rDev -20.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Another bottle opened up at a recent tasting.

Pours a ruddy brown, minimal head.

Aroma is mostly Good N Plenty, red licorice, bourbon vanilla - a very candy-like nose.

Very, very sweet on the palate. Amaretto-like sweetness - in fact, this really could almost pass as an amaretto substitute. Really tasty, but can get sickeningly sweet.

It smells like a cordial, tastes like a cordial, and feels like a cordial.

I think this is a sweet after-dinner cordial trying to masquerade as a beer. Whatever it is, you only need a little of it, preferably at dessert.

Patrick999, Jul 27, 2009
Photo of KCHopHead
3.8/5  rDev -12%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Cousin brought from STL. Expensive bottle to buy in the states, but I had to try. Poured into a stemless wine glass.

A - Great copper golden color. Poured thick so I knew I was in for some syrup Barleywine.

S - The alcohol smell come into play as well as grape/wine like features. Complex to the nose for a beer.

T - Green grape taste, bourbon flavors hit the tounge.

M - Very flat with no carbonation which is somehwat common with this style, but I think to balance this syrupy/alchoholic brew you need something to get a little hop flavor.

D - Rough to get down. I am not a scotch sipper, but if you're into that thing then this might appeal more to you. Definitely sip this and savor small wine glass full.

KCHopHead, Jul 15, 2009
Photo of mikeyv35
4.6/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Sampled on 04/23/09 @ The Beer Table (Brooklyn, NYC).

Served out of a questionably marked, and elegant 750ml. bottle into a snifter glass. I say questionable because after we finished this unbelievable rarity we tested the volume and it is actually a 500ml. bottle.

2006 Gold label vintage.

This rarity pours mahogany in color with ruby red accents. Absolutely no head and no lacing to speak of, and appearance is very sherry like. The nose is of port wine, sherry, with a touch of nuttiness and booze. Taste is malt dominated fruitiness up front with a finish of sherry, alcohol, and lingering burnt toffee. Mouthfeel is silky and clean. This brew is dangerously drinkable due to the 13% ABV being slightly present, but still well masked. The only aspect of this beverage that takes away from the drinkability is the lack of availability, and expensive price tag which ranges from $38-$65/bottle. On a side note, IMO this brew should age wonderfully and hold up for years to come.

Overall, this is one amazing brew that was an absolute pleasure to sample and review! If I lived in Italy this would without a doubt be my everyday drinker if I could afford it. A perfect Italian interpretation of an English Barleywine.

mikeyv35, Apr 23, 2009
Photo of ricke
4.75/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Gold version. Vintage 2005. Serving date 2009-02-14. Served in medium sized wine glass.

Presentation: 500 ml sturdy bottle with golden letters on the label. Presented in a black cardboard box without any inscriptions whatsoever. Comes with a small leaflet with some short notes of which I can only understand fragments (it's written in Italian, which I don't speak). The bottle is sealed using a regular wine cork (not a champagne cork), and I think it's authentic cork, not synthetic. I couldn't find any freshness date on the bottle, but I wouldn't worry to much about that with this one.

I've tried to gather some information about this beer and its production procedures, but I have only been able to find small parts of info. Apparently, the Xyauyù is made in three versions, copper (might be bronze, not really sure), silver and gold. After primary fermentation it matures using a method originally used in the production of sherry and port wine. During the maturation, that lasts for about 2,5 years, the beer is exposed to oxygen, causing oxidation. The three versions differ in the degree of oxidation - the gold version is the most oxidized one. I'm not sure if the vintage year on the label indicates brewing year or bottling year, but I think it's brewing year, which means this one's been bottled for about 1,5 - 2 years. The ABV in the gold version is 13,5%.

Appearance: The cork comes off with a minimal pop, indicating low levels of carbonation. The cork really smells more of wine than beer. When poured, the beer has a very nice, glowing amber color with red hues, and is a bit hazy as a result of big amounts of very small, almost microscopic, floaties. The first pour results in a minimal amount of bubbles on top of the liquid, around the edges of the glass. However, this is no head, not even foam-like. Rather, it's the kind of bubbles you sometimes get from pouring fruit juice or some wines. The second pour creates no bubbles at all. Actually, I didn't get the beer to produce any bubbles, no matter how hard I swirled my glass. However, when it's swirled it clings onto the glass like a cognac or a wine - a great visual quality.

Smell: An intense smell of sweet fruits, raisins, and caramel hits the noose, accompanied by a sharp alcoholic twang. Notes of wood (perhaps oak) are there as well. The smell of this one is really heavy, dense and sweet. It's actually more reminiscent of a strong dessert wine, like sherry or port, than beer.

Taste: More sweetness: Fruits, mostly overripe plums, raisins, molasses and perhaps some brown sugar and honey-like sweetness as well. There's is also a flavor I have a hard time identifying; the best I can do is describing it as a general candy-like flavor. These massive sweet flavors are balanced by some spices, oak and a more nutty earth flavor. The alcohol is rather prominent and provides a pleasant warmth. In the finish there's more sweet fruits and raisins, but also a gentle but distinct bitterness. Hot alcohol finishes things off. All in all, this one is very reminiscent of a sherry or a port, with big and bold strong vinous flavors, but there is still something about it that is characteristically beer-like, and I must say that I have a hard time depicting how great it actually tastes. The sheer uniqueness of it is worth a top grade, but since it's not only interesting and unique, but also tastes incredibly good, I think awarding it with 5 for taste is motivated.

Mouthfeel: It has basically no carbonation, and thus it's really smooth. Medium body, very viscous and slightly chewy.

Drinkability: This one really pushes the boundaries for beer, and for what beer can be, almost transcending them occupying parts of the realm previously solely reserved for strong and sweet fortified wines. And I would say it could go head to head with any high quality dessert wine - and come out on top - when it comes to food pairings most often associated with sherry, port wines or Madeira - or as an aperitif for that matter. It's really that unique and amazing. Everything about it really breathes of luxury and delicacy; from its elegant presentation, and glowing appearance, to its vinous aromas and flavors and its distinct and bold taste character in general. Although, I constantly compare this with wine and use wine as a measure to describe it, I must say it's still a beer with some characteristics you probably wouldn't find in a wine. I would say that this only makes it better, but considering how far away this is from your average ale, or barleywine for that matter, I don't think I can see my self being in the mood for this one that often. I guess it's for that "special occasion" or when you're in the mood for something out of the ordinary.

Lastly, I shared a 500 ml bottle with my girlfriend and both of us actually felt it was a bit too much. So I would recommend having it in small amounts - it's a great sipper.

ricke, Feb 16, 2009
Xyauyù Etichetta Rame (Copper) from Birrificio Le Baladin
95 out of 100 based on 97 ratings.