Our Finest Regards - Pretty Things Beer & Ale Project

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Our Finest RegardsOur Finest Regards

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530 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 530
Reviews: 200
rAvg: 4.05
pDev: 11.11%
Wants: 158
Gots: 123 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Pretty Things Beer & Ale Project visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
English Barleywine |  12.10% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: jamie2dope on 12-03-2010

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (18) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 530 | Reviews: 200
Reviews by Etan:
Photo of Etan
4.28/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Nov. 2011 bottle, I think from my first trade with valdieu2 a while back. Thanks!

A: Pours a woody amber with some ruby hues. Small off-white head.

S: Heavy vinous and dark fruit notes - grape, cooked prune, light caramel, slight solvent character underneath.

T: Notes of crushed grapes, drying alcohol, slightly sweet bready malt, candied plum, slight brown sugar, banana, slight floral bitterness. The booze makes its presence known without overpowering the beer.

M: Thick-bodied with slight carbonation.

O: This is a powerful and smooth barleywine, and damn delicious. I shudder to think what a solid 8-12 months in a bourbon barrel could do to this thing.

More User Reviews:
Photo of Doomcifer
4.36/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a deep ruby color with a nice frothy head that retains very well. Great lacing. Not usually something you see from such a high ABV beer in my experiences. Aroma is of cherries, bubble gum, laffy taffy, apples, smells like candy...raisins, tons of character and very inviting, with a touch of alcohol presence. Taste if of sweet malts, taffy, cherries, vanilla extract, figs, not very hoppy at all....dont look for balance here. Gets a little cloying after half the bomber is gone. This is definitely a beer with a high potential for aging.

Photo of Jason
3.97/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz brown bomber, vintage date on the next label.

LOOK: Hazed tawny amber.

SMELL: Taffy, caramel, toasted pecans, ripe pear, golden raisins, leafy, herbal tea, yeast, candied orange, alcohol.

TASTE: Toasted malt, big warming alcohol, nougat, ripe exotic fruit, figgy, yeast, nutty.

Super tasty, well balanced and a sipper clearly from its size. A massive beer that opens up a little bit more with every sip.

Photo of Billolick
4.01/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A treat to enjoy via a growler (32 ouncer) filled at Brouwerij Lane in Brooklyn, NY (what a cool little place BTW)

Pours dark honey amber, near clear, under a truly impressive (especially for a 13.5% beer) medium khaki head. Its tightly knit, stays on and on...and on...and.. leaves gobs of thick sheeting and clouds of lace. Nice look to this one.

Nose is the expected waft of malty goodness, not much else.

Large, smooth, somewhat sweet and mostly tasty brew. Layers and waves of honey sweet malts, some vanilla...Alcohol surely present... notes of lime, mouthwash, candied fruits, candy, peppermint.

Heady stuff, righteous night capper....way to go large Pretty Things....gaining major respect for the stones shown on this undertaking..

Photo of warriorsoul
4.22/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Grabbed one on my travels back to MA.
Pours a cherry amber color with a thin layer of off-white head. Minimal lacing as this one is swirled around a standard snifter.
Digging the aroma. Dried fruits (cherries mainly) invade the nostrils....the alcohol is there, but what do you expect for 13 plus percent abv.
Flavor is lovely. The same fruity quality is making its way to the taste after the first swig. Much more mellow that I was anticipating with the malty backbone keeping things true to style with this English Barleywine.
Love the mouthfeel. Low carbonation, but by no means flat. Clean in the finish. A sipper for sure, but draining a bomber solo with an hour to kill is not a problem.
Probably my second favorite PT beer, after their Mild.

Photo of tigg924
3.5/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: minimal head, hazy, brown in color

Smell: toasted malt and cinnamon

Taste: toasted malt, cinnamon,fig, bread, and caramel

Mouthfeel: medium bodied, medium carbonation, very sweet and spicy

Drinkability: A tasty barleywine that really hides the abv. I do want this sipper again. The spices are present but not overly done.

Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Exiled for sharing this bottle.

The beer pours an amber color with a white head. The aroma is sweet malt with some toffee mixed in. I don't really get any hop or alcohol notes in the aroma. The flavor is heavy on the brown sugar, alcohol, molasses and toffee. The alcohol is definitely present but is not overpowering. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

Photo of jondeelee
4.47/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Our Finest Regards opens to a rich, warm, malty aroma, full of milk chocolate, creamed coffee, coffee grounds, and an excellent set of fruit esters (fig, date, plum, prune), with molasses, brown sugar, vanilla bean, caramel, and touches of tobacco and ash adding further earthiness and smoke. Hops add a rim of pine resin and very light grapefruit rind. A thick layer of rich brown bread, toast crust, and biscuit brings more complexity. As a whole, the nose is excellent, and even more so because it smells far more like a good porter or stout than a Barleywine. There are obviously a lot of sugars in here, but they tend toward the darker fruits and molasses-type sugars, and it’s fairly easy to compare the aromas here to a cup of rich, creamy gourmet hot chocolate, into which a hint of espresso and a dash of Bailey’s, or perhaps bourbon has been stirred.

On the tongue, the beer begins with a sweet, smoky, ashy, and incredibly complex flavor. Tobacco, milk chocolate, creamed coffee, and ash mix with dates, plums, figs, and prunes, the sweetness bolstered by brown sugar, caramel, vanilla bean, and light molasses. The balance between sweet chocolate and tobacco ash is excellent, the notes presenting fabulous interplay and complexity. In subsequent sips some of this complexity is lost, but a good bit does remain, joined by a larger sense of hops, which bring pine resin and grapefruit rind. Rich brown breads, toast crust, and biscuit underlie everything. The aftertaste is a continuation of the sweet chocolate and tobacco ash notes, lingering on the tongue for a good while. The alcohol is most noticeable here in the aftertaste, as alcoholic vapors creep up the nose. Mouthfeel is medium to medium-heavy, and carbonation is medium.

Overall, this is one of the finest Barleywines I’ve had the pleasure to try, and a welcome break from many of its peers, which come across as overly sweet and alcoholic. Here, the sweetness is tempered wonderfully by bitterness and ash, and the high 13.5% ABV goes largely unnoticed in taste, making itself known mainly in the aftertaste, as well as in a continuous burning on the tongue and soft palate. Fantastic brew; would drink this regularly.

Photo of ehammond1
4.48/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle (2011)

The Bruery Provisions
Orange, CA

(Aged for 6 months)

Dark brown in color, though a clear, dark orange at the edges with a moderately sized light khaki head that sticks around for a while. This leaves messy spiderwebs of lace all the way down the glass. An absolutely gorgeous beer.

Complex, interesting, and divine aroma of caramel, maple syrup, plum, and chocolate. Excellent.

The flavor is similarly good to the aroma, with lots of decadent caramel and maple syrup flavors, some dark fruits, moderate bitterness, a little bit of candy bar, and some earth and wood. Balanced, drinkable, delicious.

Medium bodied with moderate carbonation.

I thought this was fantastic. I'd like to buy a couple more of these: have another fresh and another a few years down the road.

Photo of glid02
4.05/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle shared by Joe - much obliged!

Pours a slightly hazy chestnut brown color with a half-finger tan head. The head recedes into a thin layer on top leaving decent lacing.

Smells of moderately sweet caramel malts with hints of nuttiness and dark fruits - plums with small amounts of figs.

Tastes similar to how it smells, though a bit sweeter. Smooth caramel malt flavors kick things off and are joined quickly by hints of toastiness. Midway through the sip solid amounts of medium and dark fruits - plums mostly with hints of figs and green apples - work their way into things. Slight amounts of molasses come into play near the end of the sip before fading out into a mildly bitter ending.

Mouthfeel is very good. It's got a smooth thickness with grainy carbonation.

Drinkability is good. I didn't have a problem finishing my glass and could have another.

Overall this was a nice beer for the style that managed to not overdo it on the sweetness. Nice, balanced, and well worth a shot.

Photo of pwoods
4.05/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks to jmu500 for the great extra.

22oz. Brown bottle poured into a Russian River tulip.

A: Pours a lightish brown with copper hues. Decent head on the pour with some retention and little lacing.

S: Sweet caramel and toffee with plenty of dark fruits. Much more of the fruit from the big yeasty esters. Some hop aroma to balance... Almost seems like American hops with the fruits going around.

T/M: Dark fruits are still big with plenty of the caramel and toffee with a touch of molasses. Some hop bitterness and flavor to balance a touch. Alcohol is pleasant and soothing, though I'd never guess 13.5. Carbonation is mild and body is medium full to full.

D: Pretty damn tasty beer. One of the few pretty things beers that I've had but another tasty one.

Photo of KingHenry
4.65/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Don't claim to be an expert reviewer but just had to support what Pretty Things did with one.

Had on tap at Track 84, RI.

One of the best barleywines I have ever had. Very well balanced, you would never guess this one comes in at 13.5%. Very nice mouth feel and extremely smooth. If you still see any of this around I would def reccommend snagging as many as you can.

Photo of augustgarage
4.23/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

My finest regards to ShogoKawada for sending this along. Winter 2010/2011 vintage, consumed fireside on a rainy night; poured from a 22oz bomber into my Spirit Sippers snifter.

Wine colored body which glows chestnut and cardinal when held to the light. A large buff head recedes to a lasting skin, with a slightly raised collar. A swirl brings it back up to a half finger for a time. Shards of tears form small pools stuck against the glass, breaking up the lacing into many smaller dots which fall back into the liquid with cinematic grace.

Dark fruit, cherries, leather, sherry, some oxidative notes, sweet malt, big esters from alcohol, and a slight medicinal note in the nose.

Immense malty palate entry, bready and vast, spreading out all over the palate. Dark fruit continues along with a moderate spicy bitterness of (English?) hops. Long long medium-dry estery finish - serene and powerful. Aftertaste of shortbread.

Well carbonated, full-bodied, a touch hot (though the alcohol exudes flavor).

I expect this will age well given the decent level of hops and effervesence, perhaps the subtleties will come out more over time - that said, this is a solid, traditional, powerhouse of a barleywine and quite drinkable now.

Photo of hreb
4.11/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.1.1. 22oz bottle labeled Winter 2010/11 served in wide-mouth Chimay glass. Beer is a rich raisiny amber brown with a red background and a medium chestnut head. Nutty/toffee aroma with a hint of floral hops.

The beer presents a whirlwind of flavors: significant alpha acid bitterness up front, then toasty and grainy, followed by some brighter flavors of fruit and citrus, then a sugary sweet note (not quite caramel, and certainly no diacetyl), and finally lives only the faint tingling of very fine carbonation. Very heavy body.

I previously tried this at redbones on draught (it comes in pints!). Without introduction it seemed like a strong brown ale. But the heavy malt bill is not merely the exclusion of hops. There's no hiding the alcohol in this beer, but at thirteen and a half percent the balance is actually quite good.

Cellaring would only mellow out the flavors and mature the nose. Definitely could improve it, but this beer doesn't need it.

13.12.3 Update: Tried the Nov 2011 bottling again after cellaring for over two years. Indeed, cellaring has mellowed this beast out, and it is now extremely smooth, fruity, and delicious. Unquestionably a barley wine, and a great one at that. Immediately upon opening the bottle the aroma smacked me in the face with an entire fruit cake. Raisins and plums, but also over-ripe pears, apricots, dates, and a hint of treacle. Heavy as fuck, but mellowed the fuck out.

Photo of mikey711
4.12/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Deep caramel color with a fluffy off white head that holds pretty well and leaves nice lace.

S: Heavy toffee and caramel notes with a bit of earthy hoppiness. there is even some roastiness and almost a coffee like note.

T: Big caramel note upfront with hints of vanilla and even some roastiness. the hoppiness is earthy and quite enjoyable.

M: Nice creamy feel with a surprisingly not all that much heat. much mellower than i expected

D: Really nice sipper for a barley wine and the abv is deceiving, this may be my favorite brew from pretty things to date.

Photo of Hopdaemon39
4.13/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 oz bottle into an oversized wine glass- pours a mahogany color, somewhat transparent, with a decent head for a barleywine. The head dissipates pretty quickly and leaves little foam except a few spots of lacing.

Smells very strongly of alcohol also and also pretty strongly of yeast. There is a little bit of malty sweetness but mostly covered by the alcohol.

Taste is not like the smell- big malt flavor all over, some fruitiness (maybe apricot) with a swirl of yeast. Of course there is a taste of alcohol and it is noticeably present but its an enjoyable alcohol taste.

Mouthfeel is pretty good- not too thick with a little carbonation. Of course this is a pretty pricey brew but one worth getting if you like barleywine.

Photo of Alieniloquium
2.99/5  rDev -26.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

650 mL bottle poured into a snifter. Bottled November 2011.

Appearance - Deep brown body. A little reddish. Sizable khaki head. Retains a few swirls of lace and a thin collar.

Smell - Sweet caramel malt. Slightly phenolic. Fruity esters. Has a Belgian sweetness to it.

Taste - Very sweet. Bananas. Dark fruits. A little bit medicinal in the back. Slightly bitter, but not enough to overcome any sugars.

Mouthfeel - Heavy and sweet. Well carbonated.

Overall - This is too sweet for anything besides a small serving size. Even then, I'm not sure about it. The medicinal flavor doesn't really overwhelm, but it isn't pleasant.

Photo of russpowell
4.24/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got this from indiapaleale, cheers russ!

Winter 10/11 bottle pours an effervescent brown/chestnut with 34+ fingers of tan head. nice oily sheen to this; some head retention & above average lacing

S: Plums & other dark fruit, a bit of leafy hops

T: Boozey plums, dark cherry, woody hops, dryness & a bit of cakeyness up front. Plums & dark cherries, plus a touch of Madeira as this warms. Finishes plummy, dry, woody with a kiss of booze soaked cherries & a little bit of brown sugar & leafy hops

MF: Chewy, fairly assertive carbonation, nice balance

Drinks very easy, the ABV is well hidden. This spot on in style & is going down easy as cold weather has returned. I'm gonna finish this bottle with some hard salami & Blue Stilton, I am confident this will pair well

Photo of Kinsman
4.46/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

From the bottle poured into my "balloon" glass, this beer shows off with a beautiful dark blood red body with lighter crimson highlights capped by a creamy looking tannish head that initially rises to just shy of 3 fingers thickness.

Aroma is sweet and gloriously malty with lots of caramel and toffee sweetness. Hops linger a bit in the background but seem very faded.

Flavor like this shows us that we don't need boat loads of hops or tons of roasted barley and coffee additives to make a flavorful beer. Lots of carmel, toffee, and some juicy fruitiness. Hops give a little bit of a floral flavor but and some bitterness but really play second fiddle to the malts in this.

Mouthfeel is surprisingly light for 13.5% ABV and it goes down with a velvety smoothness. Overall, this probably one of the most drinkable high ABV beers I've come across and can only imagine how well this will age.

Photo of bum732
4.08/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

S: Tons of floral and stone fruit, pear and melon mostly, some coffee.

L: Dark brown with a tan head. Great retention and amazing lacing.

T: Grassy and earthy hops up front with some faint fruitiness. This leads to a moderate earthy bitterness. Not much sweetness at all. Lots of earthy and charred roastiness in the finish. Fairly dry finish.

M: Creamy mouthfeel, light carbonation.

Pretty solid, just enough sweetness to keep it together. Great esters present.

Photo of trappistlover
3.3/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

(sampled at Dak’s memorial day tasting. Courtesy of beerbastard!!). Pours a hazy mahogany with a khaki head. Aroma has some caramel and grains. Taste is sweet with some bitterness. Medium bodied with a slick texture. Finish is slightly bitter. Pretty nice beer but not a tradition barleywine. Glad to have tried this one.

Photo of Brutaltruth
4.18/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Enjoyed from the bomber in a Duinen snifter, this most excellent barley wine pours a hazy brown with a light off white head that dies down to a thin ring and light lacing. Nose of plums, raisins, light chocolate,a light brandy aroma, strong alcohol, and brown sugar. Flavors are up front sweet and mildly coating with dark raisins and brown sugars to the fore, chocolate flavors mildly come in the back with a strong alcohol burn to the aftertaste. Great carbonation, great dark fruit flavors blending in merrily with brown sugar. An excellent example of an English barley wine with decent carbonation that gives it a slick yet effervescent finish. Very nice.


Photo of hippityhops85
4.45/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bomber into a snifter.

Pours a cloudy, murky brown with a finger of eggshell head that leaves spotty lacing.

The aroma is malt heavy with muted hop notes to it. Lots of biscuity, breadiness going on here along with caramel.

The taste has lots of the caramel malt notes to it, alcohol, slight dark fruits, heavy tobacco, mild hop bitterness. Exceedingly balanced and really enjoyable. The alcohol notes are mild for the actual abv. Really, really good.

Mouthfeel is on the heavy side with solid carbonation to lift the flavors off the tongue.

Highly recommended. I wish it were a little easier to obtain but for ~$10 a bomber I'd definitely pick this up again.

Photo of bluejacket74
4.21/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

22 ounce bottle, no date on it so I have no idea what vintage this is. Served in a snifter, the beer pours a dark reddish/brown color with about an inch light tan head. The head sticks around a little while, and there's a decent amount of lacing. The brew smells like dark fruit, caramel, apples, dark bread and some booze. It tastes like caramel, toffee, dark bread, dark fruit, wood, and some brandy. It's a nice, sweet malty brew. Mouthfeel/body is medium/full, it's a bit slick and has moderate carbonation. I like this brew a lot, but then I've liked everything I've tried from Pretty Things so far. $10.99 a bottle.

Photo of Rutager
3.59/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

November 2011 bottle, thanks mrbubbler!

Appearance. Pours a rich and hazy rusty-brown with almost two fingers of thick off-white head that leaves some thick lacing.

Smell. Loads of dark fruits; plums, raisins, and dark cherries with some caramel, sherry, and just a bit of orange citrus.

Taste. Lots of dark fruits again and a little sherry, nearly-burnt caramel and brown sugar, booze (maybe rum?), some bitter earthy and floral hops, and a little smokey wood.

Mouthfeel. Full body and a bit warming, smooth medium carbonation.

Overall. A complex barleywine with lots of fruit flavours that I personally didn't dig in a big way. Pretty boozy still too. Maybe not bad, just not my thing.

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Our Finest Regards from Pretty Things Beer & Ale Project
90 out of 100 based on 530 ratings.