Olde GnarlyWine - Lagunitas Brewing Company

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Olde GnarlyWineOlde GnarlyWine

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1,430 Ratings
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Ratings: 1,430
Reviews: 725
rAvg: 4.08
pDev: 9.56%
Wants: 124
Gots: 247 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
Lagunitas Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  10.60% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Todd on 09-22-2001

2011: 10.6% ABV, 69 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,430 | Reviews: 725
Reviews by iskeptopotamus:
More User Reviews:
Photo of mothmanscott
4.28/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a clear deep amber or pale reddish brown producing 1.5 fingers of somewhat lasting, frothy, tan head that leaves strings & motes of lace. A second pour after warming produces a full 3+ fingers of moderately lasting head that leaves a chunky wash of webby, streaky lace. Aroma caramel malt, pine resin & citrus, toffee, a candied fruit note of pineapple & apple, floral hints with more than a hint of alcohol. Taste is dark malt, brown sugar, caramel, raisin & alcohol booziness, tropical fruits, orange & leafy floral hops. Some grass & pine. Sweet throughout the sip but with an alcohol bitter finish & spice which linger in the aftertaste & there become increasingly drier, hoppy & bitter. Mouthfeel is heavy bodied with low-moderate carbonation, syrupy, chewy, wet, juicy,with a spicy prickle throughout, drying & drawing in the aftertaste.

Photo of Roguer
3.9/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Beautiful clear ruby red brew. Hop forward aroma; syrupy sweet on the palate, accompanied by juicy hops. Almost herbal and minty.

Photo of Mongrel
4.02/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beautiful looking red-hued beer with big, creamy head.

This is like Lagunitas' take on SN Bigfoot, just with less hop bite and a little more of a candied flavor. Nice creamy/slick mouthfeel with a moderately long finish. Not terribly complex, but wayyy drinkable (read: dangerous).

Photo of BB1313
4.16/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

2015 vintage. 22oz bottle poured into a snifter. Pours copper with a fluffy khaki head that leaves nice lacing and retention. The aromas are pretty tropical. Tons of pineapple. This has a great hop profile, but it's not Lagunitas' traditional hop profile. Feels like I'm picking up galaxy hops. Sweet candy malts are there, but the hops still shine. The flavors are bittersweet. More tropical notes with a touch of citrus. Pineapple is the star, followed by grapefruit. Subtle hints of pine needles. Some sweet caramel. Some raisins and dark fruits. Once again, the malts are there, but the hops shine. Bitterness is there. Some heat, but not boozy. It's just a nice warmth in the finish. Slightly syrupy and spicy. Mouthfeel is on the lighter side of full-bodied. Somewhat thin, but it's still fluffy. Active carbonation. Very smooth and easy to drink. Clean brew. Well crafted.

It's great to see this one back on shelves. It's a hoppy barleywine that borderlines being a DIPA, but what else would you expect from Lagunitas? They still stay true to style. Recommended.

Photo of stoutmasterjames
4.19/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- deep amber, not much of a head, but I carefully poured to fit into 22 oz. glass (I wasn't planning on a review until I took the first sip).
S- caramel, brown sugar (or shugga), some faint tropical fruits
T- notes of caramel, and faint tropical fruits, maybe some cherries or dates. Some sweetness here, but it evaporates into the hop by the finish. But the finish is by no means dry... some sweetness lingers
M- this beer is rich, full-bodied and complex Certainly one to sip.
O- another solid brew from Lagunitas! Are these guys mad scientists or what?

Photo of BEERchitect
3.89/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

As the Spring season invites the best of both beer worlds: A fresh hoppy taste that welcomes warmer weather, but a hearty malt backbone and a strong-arm of alcohol to contend with those chilly evenings; it seems that the American Barleywine straddles that fence as well as any beer can.

And Lagunitas' Old Gnarleywine kicks off with a deep but brilliant amber glow. Its creamy khaki head unloads upon the nose both the juicy caramelized malts and the dry citrus hops that overwhelm the senses with superior balance. And its first sip resonates with sweeter caramel, toffee and honey just ahead of the hop onslaught to come.

Sharp white grapefruit, deeply resinous pine and finesse orange, herb and grass gain brevity and slowly but surely begin to balance the malty-sweet taste. Where one finds balance, the other finds conflict as the bigness of both malt and hops go beyond what's expected in complement and begin to fight each other.

Yet, its full and malty-dry body struggle deeper and deeper in finish, the sweetness is able to scrub out the tinny, briny and piquant character of hops. With extensions of citrus peel and crushed pinecone, the beer lingers on and on, begging for a pairing of the sharpest blue cheese possible.

Photo of Bone53
4.25/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

22 oz bomber

Appearance: Light brown pour with a orange tent when put up to the light, and a finger or two of beige head

Smell: Caramel, toffee, dank, spicy, and slightly citrusy (orange?) hops, and maybe the slightest hint of dark fruits. I think the hop and malt balance is spot on

Taste: Caramel and toffee balance well with the dank and citrus hops. The malt sweetness notes are upfront then the hops finish it off. Perhaps slight dark fruit if you search for it, but i pick up more of that on the nose

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body; Kind of a sticky feel but goes down great, especially for the abv. Slight dry and bitter finish yet the sweetness still lingers

Overall: Lagunitas has absolutely perfected the art of producing simple and straightforward yet extremely tasty beers, and this is another example of that. Its not going to blow your mind, but its a very tasty barleywine. And for under $5, this is yet another Lagunitas offering that would be perfect for that go-to seasonal. Cheers!

Photo of oberon
4.3/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

To me there are not to many things better (beer speaking) than a real hopped up American Barleywine,this fit the bill for me.Poured into a imperial nonic a hazed amber/bronze with a thinner off white head atop.Pine resin in the nose lets you know where this comes from and what brewer its from,dark fruit and some brown sugar go along nicel with the hefty hop profile.Complex and immensley flavorful,big fruity malt with some brown sugar flavors meld into big pine and citrus in the finish.Man its juicy and dangerously drinkable,another gem from Lagunitas.

Photo of RoyalT
4.3/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance – Beautiful, thick orange body with a modest head.

Smell – Lots of hops in this one. The citrus and piney hops almost take over the nose, but the malt base it still detectable. There’s some light, fruity sweetness to the aroma but mostly the hops dominate.

Taste – The grapes and malts come out more in the taste, offering a terrific balance to the hops (that stepped back from the nose). There’s also some sugary sweetness to this one that is quite unique.

Nothing fancy here, just a great tasting, well-balanced, hoppy-type of Barley Wine that seems to be all the rage these days. This one has everything except the kitchen sink.

Mouthfeel – Full-bodied and quite chewy. This BW is refreshing and satisfying.

Drinkability – If you like the hoppy type of Barley Wine and want something very unique, give this one a try.

Update – I had this again with a year-old aged bottle and boy was it tasty. The sugars came up big and the hops took a step back, making it more like an English-style BW than an American. It was mighty good though, and I think as much as I enjoy this fresh I actually prefer it cellared and a little “sugared up”.

Photo of hopsleeroy
4.08/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Shared with a friend from 22 oz bomber.

A-Copper/brownish metallic with 1 inch head in oversized wine glass. Looks very nice.
S-Sweet caramel, Toffee, slight grassy
T-Very similiar to smell, caramel, toffee, with hop bitterness on the finish. Alcohol present but taste good. As it warms more floral and citrus/orange flavor. Very nice balance of sweet malt and hops.
M-Creamy in mouth but carbonated enough for some scrubbing action which was surprising for this beer.
D-Alcohol would keep this from being a session ale and could become too sweet but very drinkable.

Very good barleywine. Tastes like it has already been aged somewhat even though it's fresh.

Photo of ArrogantDeadGuy
3.97/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Auburn pour with a scant head that falls
almost immediately.

S: Robust aromas of sweet malt and fruit.
The alcohol scents are obvious from afar.

T: Great malt sweetness that works in unison
with the alcohol. There are great accents
of hop bitterness, and apricot.

M: Great body and character, being smooth and
not slick while holdng such a sweet flavor.

D: Very drinkable gnarley wine both with a meal
or as an after dinner treat.

Photo of lordofthewiens
4.32/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had already picked up a couple barley wines at the Spec's Warehouse, but couldn't resist this at $3.29. Served in a snifter, the beer was a dark amber color with a small head that left a little bit of lacing. It had a sweet malt aroma, along with a little bit of floral hops. Fairly big sweet malt taste, with some hop bitterness showing up later. I would call it assertive, but smooth, in the mouth. Good beer.

Photo of 3HovsepiansBrews
4.02/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Orange rust with an off-white head.
S - Apricots, prunes, raisins, toffee, caramel, and alcohol.
T - Alcohol, prunes, molasses, toffee.
M - Heavy/chewy body with mild carbonation.
O - Great aroma, mouthfeel and taste. Alcohol comes thru nicely and adds a warmth, which is great in the winter, but limits the amount you can drink.

Photo of shapudding
4.77/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Nice light amber color with a bit of white head made of tiny bubbles that reduced down to a tiny ring on the sides, leaving the center clear. Nice malty aroma with oaky hints. Smooth and creamy, yet not heavy. Oaky, casky tasting, yum!. Hoppy, bitey. Honey and vanilla. Not too heavy or intense, just so very good and flavorful. Easy drinking, could easily sit back and enjoy a few of these puppies! -pun intended!

p.s. no matter what Brian says, the label is freakin cute!

Photo of nelsonhf
4.28/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Look: Beautiful dark amber color with thick amber foam that stays there forever; smell: abit of hops and sweet, very subtle; taste: starts almost sweet then progresses to slightly bitter and ends with a bit of alcohol; fell: smooth and balanced. It's hard to tell exactly what it tastes like: it feels like the tastes are dancing in your mouth

Photo of bishopdc0
4.18/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

At novare res was given a glass....the color is classic barley wine buy the glass and how it was served, free, definitely. Knock it up. The aroma is sweet caremel toffee butter delicious. The taste matches swwleet up front bit the carel and slight and I men slickeryfht roast come in to smooth the tongue. The finish is slightly ddru but beautiful. The eas a 2011 and is drinking perfect...stupid phone

Photo of oaktown
4.36/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

22 -- Twenty Aught Eight

I don't really buy this as an American Barleywine... but that's no knock. It was just a little less hoppy and a little more balanced that other American Barleywines that I've tried. More in the spirit of an English.

A: Beautiful Amber. I'm partial to this particular color, so I won't claim to be unbiased.

S: Sweet, malty goodness. Just a bit of alcohol, but at 9.6 that is bound to happen.

T: It took a few sips to adjust (I don't make a habit of drinking Barleywine in July so it was a bit of an adjustment from a steady diet of Pils.) but once I got into it this was a great Barleywine. Like I said, more balanced than a traditional American, but this was smooth, really malty and sweet.

M: This was the real highlight for me. Very, very smooth, especially for a Barleywine.

D: Very drinkable for a Barleywine... but I take this as "session beer ability" and at 9.6 a 22 was plenty.

Photo of Billolick
4.03/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

on tap at the Blind Tiger Ale House in NYC. Pours cloudy soft medium almond, with a slight tan head. This one leaves a world class sheet of very fine lacing. Mild malty nose. This is a tasty barleywine, on the malty side of the beer spectrum. Soft and smooth. Dangerously drinkable. Sweet late. Simply a tasty, sweet and drinkable Bwine.

Photo of warriorsoul
4.08/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Redbones for offering this beauty on tap today.
Served in a 10.5oz. tulip glass a bit too chilled for my liking.
Very attractive 1/4 finger of off-white head on top of a ruby cloudy brew.
The aroma is ruled by the hops, as this is almost all I detect at this moment. A hint of cherries and tropical fruits as well with absolutely no alcohol in the nose.
The taste, again is very much controlled by the hops...this I do not mind. It is somewhat similar to SN Bigfoot, but a bit sweeter...a nice blend of oranges and cherries w/ a slight malt flavor to it.
Alcohol taste does appear as this one works its way to room temperature, but does not effect its drinkability one bit.
Mouthfeel is a nice syrupy texture and the carbonation is just right.
I would rate this "unaged" beer in my top 5 of the ones I have tried to date, which is, by no means extensive.
Good thing Nick at Bauer Wine & Spirits has a couple of these on hold for me...can't wait to try after they sit in my cellar for a year or so.

Photo of Nolang84
3.99/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Can't beat good tasting beer with a high Abv at a reasonable price gotta love Lagunitas!

Photo of jakester
4.72/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I got this bomber at Union Jack's on the Manatawny. Has "Twenty 'aught-4" on the label. (2004-get it?) I drank this in a leaded wine glass.

Pours a beautiful clear reddish amber with orang tints. A beige colored 1/2 finger head of small bubbles forms on top. This quickly fades to a ring. No real lacing observed. That is the only slightly disappointing thing about this whole beer.

Smells like super strong toffee apples, big estery fruitiness, and starting to spoil grapefruits and lemons. A huge caramel smell is there also. In other words, smells fantastic!!! Alcohol rears it's head late.

The first flavor is dark gin soaked raisins, followed by very sweet plums and prunes. A pretty big hop bitterness and flavor is present, as well. The hop flavors are citrusy and spicy, like black pepper. For as big as this is, it's very well balanced. The aftertaste is dominated by sweet fruit and heat. Very nice representation of the style.

Mouthfeel is a mouthfull. Lip smackingly sweet, smooth and creamy, with a soft carbonation rolling across the tongue. A nice grab at the back of your throat from hop bitterness, and a warm, soothing hot flash from alcohol. I think I'm in love!

This is a fantastic representation of the style. It's tough to rate drinkability for barley wines, because they knock your dick in the dirt, but this one is really good!

Photo of bsp77
4.38/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Serving glass: Poured from bomber into snifter.

Appearance: Clear, rich mahogany with pretty good head retention for a Barleywine and nice lacing.

Smell: Orange and grapefruit hop aroma that screams Lagunitas. Light caramel and toffee and a huge blast of booze.

Taste: The standard Lagunitas hops are in effect here: sticky and sweet grapefruit, orange, pine. Strong undercurrent of caramel and toffee announces that this is a Barleywine and not just Maximus or Hop Stoopid. Something about the mix here just really gels for me.

Feel: Moderately low carbonation, with a sticky body that is actually a little light and refreshing for a Barleywine. Just a semi-dry finish.

Drinkability: Despite having the predictable Lagunitas hop aroma and taste, this is a surprisingly easy drinking and tasty Barleywine. Nice stuff, especially for $5 a bomber.

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

Appearance: Lovely dark red with a good head and lacing.

Smell: Standard barleywine, strong on the figs with a touch of chocolate.

Taste and Mouthfeel: All chocolate and figs with enough hops on the back end, a very balanced beer. One of my top barleywines.

Mouthfeel: Creamy and delicious.

Drinkability: Dangerously drinkable at 9.7 abv.

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

Bomber. Pours clear, but dark copper, almost brown. No real head to speak of, mostly a ring of off-white bubbles. Strong barley malt, alcohol, maple, hops, and cherry candy. Big, bold taste. Lots more hops than expected, balanced with a sweeter caramel malt. They typical Lagunitas sugar is there, but far less than usual. Sticky finish. Loved it.

Photo of pat61
4.5/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Brilliant copper tinted amber wit a 1” lacy but quickly dissipating off white head.
S: fairly clean nose with some grass and malt, spice.
T: Starts spicy and malty with big citrusy hops providng a bitter citrus rind finish. A touch of dried fruit sweetness up front with a drying, warming finish.
M: Very creamy medium full body and medium carbonation. The carbonation is soft and not harsh.
O: An outstanding barleywine with a good balance of bitter and sweet.

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Olde GnarlyWine from Lagunitas Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 1,430 ratings.