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Kuhnhenn Bourbon Barrel Barley Wine - Kuhnhenn Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Kuhnhenn Bourbon Barrel Barley WineKuhnhenn Bourbon Barrel Barley Wine

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
98
world-class

470 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 470
Reviews: 178
rAvg: 4.44
pDev: 8.78%
Wants: 1,144
Gots: 99 | FT: 10
Brewed by:
Kuhnhenn Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
English Barleywine |  14.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-17-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 470 | Reviews: 178 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of JAHMUR
JAHMUR

Connecticut

5/5  rDev +12.6%

11-15-2011 03:43:33 | More by JAHMUR
Photo of pzymali
pzymali

Illinois

5/5  rDev +12.6%

11-15-2011 02:12:09 | More by pzymali
Photo of Photekut
Photekut

Tennessee

5/5  rDev +12.6%

11-14-2011 23:19:25 | More by Photekut
Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
westcoastbeerlvr

California

4.25/5  rDev -4.3%

11-14-2011 21:46:11 | More by westcoastbeerlvr
Photo of surlytheduff
surlytheduff

Michigan

4.75/5  rDev +7%

11-14-2011 18:17:55 | More by surlytheduff
Photo of beerwolf77
beerwolf77

Wisconsin

3/5  rDev -32.4%

11-14-2011 18:08:02 | More by beerwolf77
Photo of Exiled
Exiled

Texas

4.5/5  rDev +1.4%

11-14-2011 17:42:18 | More by Exiled
Photo of jh1982
jh1982

Nevada

5/5  rDev +12.6%

11-14-2011 17:41:57 | More by jh1982
Photo of writerLJBerg
writerLJBerg

Oregon

4.5/5  rDev +1.4%

11-14-2011 17:35:10 | More by writerLJBerg
Photo of hu5om
hu5om

Wisconsin

5/5  rDev +12.6%

11-14-2011 15:08:15 | More by hu5om
Photo of flexabull
flexabull

California

4.22/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2010 Winter Solstice Bourbon Barrel Barley Wine courtesy of jrallen34, thanks again!

This bottle says it is 15.1% ABV.

Pours a dark amber color with a pretty nice head that faded away pretty quickly, decent lacing.

Aromas are of roasted nuts, mocoa, dark fruits, caramel, dustiness and booze.

Taste is boozy, but not overly so. Notes of roasted coconut, caramel, dark fruits, and brown sugars. Finish is warm with a nice bourbon barrel booziness.

Mouthfeel is good, surprisingly smooth, with a lighter body than I expected.

Overall this is a very good bourbon barrel barley wine. The taste is quite good, but the dustiness on the nose is a bit odd though.

Serving type: bottle

10-17-2011 03:45:38 | More by flexabull
Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
4DAloveofSTOUT

Illinois

4.08/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

recieved via trade with mrandypandy! Thanks Andy!

Vintage 2010.

poured into a tulip.

Appearance: A glowing brownish amber colored body with no head at all; a very small ring of white head around the glass is hardly noticable.

Smell: This beer smells really sweat! Malt bomb for sure! Caramel, brown sugar, dark fruits, toffee, vanilla, and of course oak!

Taste: Moderate sweetness, this beers nose follows the taste. Vanilla and barrel notes hit strong right away. The malty backbone is quite noticable too. The caramel and brown sugar are really hard to miss and make there presence known! Dark fruit linger in the background with the wood notes of the barrel. It gets boozey quick and stays boozey through the aftertaste. The booze tends to mute most of the flavors.

Mouthfeel: full bodied beer with low...virtually no carbonation. This beer is syrupy and heavy.

Overall: This is another great Kuhnhenn offering, but it needs more time in the cellar. When the heat dies it will be out of this world! Its a great nightcap for a cool night just like this evening in Illinois.

Serving type: bottle

10-08-2011 02:03:43 | More by 4DAloveofSTOUT
Photo of Reagan1984
Reagan1984

Massachusetts

4.47/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Special thanks to Jrallen34 for this one.

Even with an aggressive pour there is no head on this beer. Slight haze and a deep amber color with ruby highlights. No lace.

Aroma is very nice and a nice blend of vanilla, bourbon, alcohol and caramel. A touch of stone fruit as well.

I really enjoy almost everything I’ve tried from Kuhnhenn and this is no exception. Chewy caramel, lots of bourbon and vanilla. A touch of cherry. Lots of layers to the malt. Really nice.

Warming alcohol fairly bold body and slick.

Very nice. In the mood for a barleywine tonight and this really fit the bill.

Serving type: bottle

10-01-2011 00:16:47 | More by Reagan1984
Photo of liamt07
liamt07

Ontario (Canada)

4.5/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottle shared by Peter of Flying Monkeys. 355ml bottle into some tulips, from the 2010 Winter Solstice release. Civic day tasting, long time want - thanks a TON Peter!

Low carbonation evident on the initial pour, leaves nothing more than some bubbles as a collar. Moderate legs on this, but pretty close to still nonetheless. Body is burgundy in colour, with some light brown sugar-like highlights. Nose is bourbon, caramel, molasses - sweet and sugary all around, not overpoweringly so. Some brown sugar like notes as well. Taste showcases more bourbon, brown sugar, caramel and booze. Sticky, and sweet and a medium mouthfeel - not as thick or syrupy as I thought it would be. Great flavour and a really nice BBBW, exactly the kind of barrel treatment I enjoy from the style. 35/45/4/45/45

Had on draught at the 2012 Winter Solstice, they were pouring the 2011 vintage.

Fantastic barrel integration here, fantastic sweet malt interplay with the barrel and borubon character. Absolute magic, phenomenal when it hits room temperature. 45/4/45/45/5

Serving type: bottle

09-07-2011 16:05:33 | More by liamt07
Photo of pwoods
pwoods

Ohio

3.55/5  rDev -20%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz. brown bottle poured into a Russian River tulip.

A: Pours a ruby garnet with decent clarity considering the barrel aging. Moderate head on the pour with a bit of retention and not much lacing.

S: Under a decent amount of bourbon and barrel, molasses and toffee... I get a faint but distinct aroma of my grandmas and mothers Christmas cookies. Butter cookies with home made icing. Doesn't smell overly sweet, either. Maybe some oatmeal cookies and walnuts, too. Bizarre.

T/M: The bourbon is there and not as over powering as I was expecting, but it's not quite melding with the BW like I did expect. Plenty of barrel, vanilla. A bit more sweetness than the nose implied. Alcohol heats up quite a bit as it warms. Maybe the slightest hint of the Christmas cookies, but I might be reaching. Body is only about medium and the carbonation is mild to medium.

D: After the aroma I was expecting great things, and I've rarely been let down by Kuhnhenn... but things just didn't quite add up. A decent beer but I was expecting more.

Serving type: bottle

08-29-2011 04:53:41 | More by pwoods
Photo of pmarlowe
pmarlowe

District of Columbia

4/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 vintage. Tulip glass.

A cloudy reddish copper color with only a wisp of light stone colored film which mostly fizzles out by the time you've set the bottle down. Apple and caramel are at the forefront of the nose, along with sweet malt, nuttiness, cherry vanilla, whipped cream, but finally a slightly harsh solvent and alcohol aroma at the end. The smell is wonderfully complex but the alcohol harshness definitely detracts from it for me. Tastes like caramel malt and cherry, with some dry oakiness and a dry finish which again features alcohol prominently and a slightly off flavor that I can't place. I'm not picking up any of the bourbon flavors here or on the nose. Carbonation is pretty low but supports the surprisingly medium-light body just fine. Slightly tannic. Overall, this smells quite good, tastes pretty good, but the alcohol presence is a little much and unfortunately the bourbon is MIA. It tasted good enough but I'm not sure I'd reach for it regularly.

Serving type: bottle

07-08-2011 06:27:57 | More by pmarlowe
Photo of Phyl21ca
Phyl21ca

Quebec (Canada)

4.4/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle: Poured a deep amber color ale with a very small foamy head with minimal retention and lacing. Aroma of bourbon with distinctive vanilla notes is quite powerful with some deep caramelized sugar notes and lingering sweetness. Taste is also a very interesting mix between some deep bourbon notes with some balanced vanilla and sweet malt notes. Body is quite full with medium to low carbonation and no apparent alcohol. This one is a sipper and I could not consume vast quantities at the same time.

Serving type: bottle

06-17-2011 19:10:19 | More by Phyl21ca
Photo of yeahnatenelson
yeahnatenelson

Illinois

3.75/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

2010 Vintage

Appearance -- Pours a claret hue with a mild haze that catches light beautifully. Slim sudsy beige head quickly fades to a purity ring. Nice.

Smell -- Caramel buns, toffee, dark fruit, vanillin, bourbon, and some alcohol harshness. The aroma makes me think this is a bit rough around the edges, but still pretty good. Nice malt complexity.

Taste -- Again, a bit rough. The bourbon is a bit tart/harsh and the perceived alcohol is high. That said, the base flavors are great: dark fruit, toffee, vanilla/caramel, and with mild earthy hops to stop this from seeming cloying. Well-balance in terms of maltiness. Lingering flavors of bourbon and sugar cookie.

Mouthfeel -- Medium-full in body with milder carbonation. Nowhere near still, but pleasantly smooth. If the body was slightly fuller this would've been perfect.

Overall -- Honestly, this didn't live up to my hopes/expectations. This one definitely needs time to mellow. I love how the base beer hits all of my favorite barleywine/strong ale sweet spots, but the alcohol needs to soften before this is can be considered exceptional.

Serving type: bottle

06-10-2011 01:42:12 | More by yeahnatenelson
Photo of waltersrj
waltersrj

Washington

4.1/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 bottle from splax23 (thanks buddy)!

Pour: Reddish brown hue when held up to the light. The off white head is sparkling like a champagne but quickly disappears. Fine bubbles are left around the edge of the glass.

Nose: Molasses, brown sugar, toffee, slight caramel, vanilla (more as it warms), slight oak, toasted coconut and sweet remnants of bourbon. The alcohol is also quite prevalent in the nose which I've found in every Khunhenn beer I've tried.

Taste: Slightly oxidized malt, brown sugar, toffee, vanilla, toasted coconut, sweet bourbon and oak.

Mouthfeel: Slightly drying with an initial alcohol burn. This is between oily and watery, pretty nice actually.

Overall: This beer is pretty fantastic and gets better as it warms. I think the alcohol is over bearing at first but the taste gets better as it warms. The slight oxidation is moderately off putting but that's the only real strike against this beer.

Serving type: bottle

06-07-2011 03:37:48 | More by waltersrj
Photo of Kkottonmouthkngz
Kkottonmouthkngz

Massachusetts

4.38/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Winter Solstice 2010

Pours a light burnt brown, red hues when held up to the light. No head at all with the exception of the initial explosion of fine bubbles.
Strong, raw bourbon with an ever waming alcohol heat intertwined. This type of brute strength, such a strong, full nose is exactly what im looking for in a barleywine. Nice layer of vanilla.
Once this beer warms up, i just love it more and more. The alcohol heat in the back of my throat is actually inviting for 15%.
The initial carbonation dies down fairly quickly and really lets the vanilla and bourbon bounce off of eachother. Nicely complex, warming, and aggressively flavored. Would love to have a few to sit on for a while longer.

Serving type: bottle

05-25-2011 23:44:20 | More by Kkottonmouthkngz
Photo of dougofthefuture
dougofthefuture

Minnesota

3.7/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed blind as part of Blind BIF #5.

A - This pours a muddy brown/red that is hazy under the light. Just the smallest bit of head.

S - As soon as I popped the cap I'm thinking barrel aged barleywine. Central Waters perhaps? It smells of sweet bourbon, warm alcohol, and dark fruity malts. This is going to be a nice afternoon...

T&M - TONS of alcohol here. Maybe it is just because it is the first beer of the day, but this hits hard. I feel it in my nose. The carbonation is low and body is a bit weak, so not much of the complexity I thought I could smell really comes out in the flavor. It finishes much more harsh than warming. It is barely afternoon - is that throwing me off, or is this beer really 15%? As it warms, I pick up a bit more of the malty depth, but this seems over-attenuated for a barleywine. I like a bit more thickness.

O - Wow, that's a big glass. I'm warming up to it as it warms, but this is just too overpowering without enough complexity to match the booze. This would definitely be a better beer at the end of the night, but I guess I'll enjoy an afternoon nap instead...

Serving type: bottle

05-20-2011 18:20:35 | More by dougofthefuture
Photo of Spider889
Spider889

Ohio

3.9/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Per the bottle: Winter Solstice 2010. 15.1% abv.
Thanks to iceicebaby for this bottle.

Live review.

Beer is a hazed ruddy orange color with hints of aged wood. The carbonation is low, but I was able to produce a small head that was relatively short lived.

Smells of bourbon alright. Lots of wet oak and vanilla as well as some citrus notes. Heavy caramel malt flavors, quite sweet smelling. Doesn't smell really hot or astringent as some higher abv beers can sometimes be.

The flavor is much more alcohol forward, though I still am surprised at the 15.1% abv listing. Seems much less boozy than, say, BCBS. Bitter hops push through to mid palate. Meanwhile dry grainy oak and caramel apple are also quite potent. The bourbon is well integrated but also liquor-heavy.

The mouthfeel is extremely dry. Dry, dry, dry.

Overall an excellent beer. I'd be happy to drink this again.

Serving type: bottle

05-17-2011 06:53:30 | More by Spider889
Photo of Urbancaver
Urbancaver

Ohio

3.93/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very pretty reddish maroon. A bit of white head around the edges. Very good looking beer. Smells a bit oxidied but very nice. A touch of bourbon on the nose but the oxidized aromas. Tastes sweet but dry. Roasty and bourbon heavy. The malts are oxidized but still nice. Overall solid but disappointing with regards to the oxidation

Serving type: bottle

05-12-2011 01:56:41 | More by Urbancaver
Photo of ChadQuest
ChadQuest

Illinois

4.6/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2010-label says 15.1%
Clear with a brownish amber color, finger of head, looks great.
The aroma has prominant but not hot alcohol, it really is a full strong bourbon but not fusel at all, fantastic. Light vanilla with some earthy molasses. Just great aroma, this is awesome stuff.
Ah, take a sip and you will want to sip this every night, it's like a very refined and gentle bourbon, so gentle with alot of warmth. notes of brown sugar incorporate with the bourbon and vanilla and create the best 15%+ beer i think i have ever had.

Serving type: bottle

05-08-2011 05:36:20 | More by ChadQuest
Photo of Vdubb86
Vdubb86

Illinois

4.43/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in a snifter

Thanks to TMoney2591 for sharing this rare find

Holy crap this is really really good stuff. This pours a nice amber color with an off-white foam that was coarse and probably not meant to really be there. I'm trying to figure out what best describes ambrosia, but I can't do it justice, but that's close to what this beer smells like. There is rich caramel and figs and raisin. Oh so good. This might have been the best thing if we'd cracked it out at our b-wine tasting. For a 2010 vintage this could still use some time to mellow out the high amount of alcohol (which actually doesn't come across too strongly). I really enjoyed this beer and wish to bathe in it in the future.

Serving type: bottle

05-06-2011 17:53:04 | More by Vdubb86
Kuhnhenn Bourbon Barrel Barley Wine from Kuhnhenn Brewing Company
98 out of 100 based on 470 ratings.