Cigar City / Swamp Head Church On A Hill - Cognac Barrel Aged - Cigar City Brewing
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Ratings: 157 | Reviews: 25 | Display Reviews Only:
4.28/5 rDev -4.3%
Pours a murky brown with no head. Smell is almost all barrel. Tons of brandy, oak, toffee, chocolate, and vanilla. Mild booziness and lots of dark fruits. Flavor is super sweet, brown sugar, caramel, barrel, brandy, and vanilla. A bit of dark fruit sweetness, alcohol heat, and toast.
08-07-2012 18:41:56 | More by womencantsail
4.43/5 rDev -0.9%
Bottle generously shared by ChrisPro. Served in a Russian River tulip.
A - Tan foam settles to a thick collar, a few wisps, and a few spots of lace. Very dark brown body with some lighter shades at the edges of the glass.
S - Great barrel presence here, with nice sweet cognac, vanilla and oak flavors complementing a backdrop of brown sugar, caramel, and milled grains. Reminds me of early vintages of Angel's Share.
T - Great molasses and raisin flavors, with notes of brown sugar, treacle, and caramel as well. Oak presence is initially light, but fills in as the beer warms up. The cognac imparts a mild spirit alcohol flavor, but not in a boozy or off-putting way.
M - Medium-full body, with some dry oak, a hint of grain to the texture, and a sticky finish. A touch of warming alcohol, but nothing untoward for 13%.
D - Really excellent stuff, and surprisingly easy to drink. I found this to be much superior to the base beer, and I think Chris and I could have gotten through the entire 750ml bottle if the rest of the bros hadn't shown up. A very pleasant way to get drunk.
07-27-2012 20:49:38 | More by MasterSki
4.45/5 rDev -0.4%
12 oz bottle into snifter. Huge thanks go to Stakem for hand bottling this off of a recent bottle that he drank.
Pours a ruddy brown in the glass with a thin sudsy head of light mocha foam. This leaves back just a smattering of light spotty lace and some gooey brown oils. The aroma smells WOW! This is just rich in the nose with notes of molasses, brown sugar, chocolate, a touch of vanilla, green tannic oak, and just a smidge of wet leather. This is REALLY full feeling in the nostrils. I love it!
This awesomeness carries over to the taste with cocoa, burnt molasses, brown sugars, vanilla, and a green tannic feel on the edges. This just coats the palate with a rich stickiness upon each sip, before finishing with a dry, oaky, and burnt feel that lingers. The mouthfeel is full bodied with a thick and chewy feel in the mouth. That 13% is just fantastically hid, mainly adding spice and sweetness to the profile but never getting overly hot feeling. This just has an overall excellent smoothness to it.
I’m not sure how the base Barleywine of this is but that Cognac barrel definitely seemed to take this to the next level. Just decadent flavors here, that are all well balanced and smooth on the palate and I can’t stress enough how much of a steady sipper this is for the size. Thanks again for sharing this Adam! I enjoyed it immensely!
07-18-2012 14:25:43 | More by Kegatron
4.25/5 rDev -4.9%
This has been a big want of mine for a while, cracked at the CCB share night, thanks again to rudzud.
Light fizzy head, no retention, super dark murky molasses color.
Nose dark malts brown sugar, toffee, caramel, etc, little brandy soaked raisin and fig, candy, etc, with light cognac fruity booze, little dark brown malt,
Taste is very sweet, candy malt, caramel, toffee and lots of toffee, into big cognac barrel, sweet fruity candy cognac, into mild brandy raisin and fruit, fig, arc, great cognac fruity booz. Fair hot booze, sift aged malt too, nice raisin and fig paste really come through, with a candied fruit too. Finish is sweet and sticky, more booze, cognac, candied fruits, etc.
Mouth is sticky sweet, lighter but decent carb, mild warming booze, little underwhelming mouth feel.
Overall great but too sweet, nice cognac and booze fruits, tasty, quite nice.
04-04-2014 00:52:35 | More by jlindros
4.23/5 rDev -5.4%
Poured from the bottle into a tasting snifter. We had this one as part of a blind BA Barleywine tasting.
Initially this is a really sweet and smooth beer. There is some hop bitterness, but it's only there to compliment the other flavors. I'm getting some caramel and dark fruit notes. The cognac barrel notes build towards the finish, which is a bit hot. Overall this beer is sweet like candy, but not as much as the Bligh's or King Henry. The body is really thick with tingly carbonation and a dry finish.
01-28-2013 14:06:40 | More by oline73
4.48/5 rDev +0.2%
750ml bottle into a matching Cigar City snifter. A massive amount of thanks go to Sendsilk for hooking me up with this. I missed the release of this brew by visiting the brewery a day too early and Matt hooked me up. Thanks man! The brew pours a muddy looking dark brown. When held to the light, it has some lighter mahogany look to it around the edges. A finger of tan froth surges to the surface and quickly fades to a ring around the perimeter of the glass.
The aroma of this brew is sweet smelling. Quite dark and malty with chocolate suggestions coupled with vanilla. At times, it comes across somewhat similar to belgian candy sugar but maybe with a bit more focus towards toffee, caramel and toasty burnt sugar. The alcohol is noticed with a bit of vinous appeal as the brew warms up that mixes with some oak quality. This is a pretty fine smelling brew that is well rounded and blended.
The taste is just as you would expect based of the aroma. Flavors of chocolate and vanilla fill the mouth mixing with a bit of vinous character. Initially the alcohol is masterfully hidden but as the experience continues it warms up the back of the throat and makes itself known. The aftertaste is caught between fruity hops, vinous notes and a bit of leathery earth. The oak flavor really comes out as the brew warms up along with a flavor of dark molasses and toasty barrel presence.
This is a medium to full bodied brew with a moderate amount of carbonation. It is overall well rounded and a solid take on the style. For being just released last week, this brew is graceful. It carries with it a lot of quality I find similar to a well aged bottle of jw lees or thomas hardy. If you enjoy english barleywine examples that are sweet but not too sweet with a solid alcohol inclusion, you are going to fall in love this brew. After the fact side-note: after reviewing this brew, I thought about it and this is only the 4th or 5th brew that I can recall trying that was aged in a cognac barrel. Without a doubt this one captures the vinous notes of the barrel better than any other one I have tried to date.
07-13-2012 02:59:58 | More by stakem
3.75/5 rDev -16.1%
A 750 ML bottle split with Alan and a group of people into a 4oz glass. Never heard of this beer before.
Cigar City / Swamp Head Church On A Hill - Cognac Barrel Aged beer pours out a very dark brown bordering on black color. A fair amount of dark brown foam rises up and dies off just as quick. The shear viscosity of the beer coat the side of the glass with no foam. Smell is very boozy, it's up there. Some warming brings out oak, raisins, deep toasted malt, Cognac and other scents. Smelling this reminds me of JW lees. Taste is deep with big caramel, raisin, chocolate, cognac, oak, vanilla and a bunch of booze. Very english in nature, but the booze is just large and kinda killing this for me. Feel is big in the body with a burn going down the gullet, overall this is a sweet and boozy beer with a lot of character that needs some time to calm down. A sipper and a sharer as even a half a bottle would be a difficult chore for even the fattest beer geek with diabetes.
08-13-2012 16:41:31 | More by BARFLYB
District of Columbia
4.48/5 rDev +0.2%
Bottle shared by yourefragile. Thanks Michael. What a pleasant surprise.
The beer is dark brown with a thin, tan head. The aroma offers oak, toffee, booze, caramels, and lovely cognac. There's just something about a well executed cognac barrel-aged beer. This one hits the mark. Everything is well balanced and integrated. Cognac character sits atop the flavor profile, yet doesn't dominate. Simply outstanding feel on the palate. A delightful beer to sip and savor. Fantastic.
08-24-2013 04:55:39 | More by Huhzubendah
Cigar City / Swamp Head Church On A Hill - Cognac Barrel Aged from Cigar City Brewing
98 out of 100 based on 157 ratings.