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Barley Wine - Epic Brewing Company

Barley WineBarley Wine

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
83
good

87 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 87
Reviews: 35
rAvg: 3.69
pDev: 11.11%


Brewed by:
Epic Brewing Company visit their website
Utah, United States

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  10.10% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
The first sip of this brilliant, red-brown beer reveals a robust mouth feel and complex flavors including raisin, dark bread, some sherry flavors sure to increase with age. With the finish comes the flavor of Columbus hops followed by the alcohol warmth that can be felt down your throat.

(Beer added by: BigMcLargeHuge on 02-23-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 87 | Reviews: 35 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of BeerKangaroo
BeerKangaroo

Alaska

3.99/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tonight's dessert at Noble Hops. Hmm...incorrect glassware. So I picked up a bottle to have some more at home/mother-in-law.

Not gonna let an Epic beer go as the last time I had one their brews, I also missed out on the review due to wrong glassware.

Into a chalice for review (at restaurant in a flared pilsner), appearance seems fairly different.

A: light somewhat clear brown color. bar pour leads to a half finger white foamy head, adequate light foamy lacing

S: light caramel maltiness leading into an inviting raisinous and also bitter citrusy hoppiness

T: bitter and sweet at different times through the caramel malts and raisins to mix with the bitter citrusy hops. not much of an aftertaste, in fact I really don't get anything, sweet dry finish

M: sits about a medium on the palate. not really sessionable, but its a barleywine so whaddaya expect. carbonation is good for the style and for me.

O: good barleywine that I would have again, slightly hoppier than some so that makes me think its an American one

Serving type: bottle

04-09-2014 00:22:15 | More by BeerKangaroo
Photo of BeerFMAndy
BeerFMAndy

Wisconsin

4.54/5  rDev +23%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bottle poured into an Epic tulip.
10.4% ABV, Release #14

A - It's hard to see the haze through the deep tarnished copper color, but Epic's Barley Wine definitely isn't clear. It does have a fantastic head though! The ivory foam tickles the glass with wisps of lace before settling to a halo of loose bubbles.

S - Rich and complex maltiness captivates the nostrils, drawing the olfactory in for closer inspection. What's found are plump sherry-soaked raisins swimming in melted caramel cube and toffee sweetness basking under the light shade of earthy hop pedals.

T - The complexity continues as Epic's Barley Wine tastes undeniably malt-forward with silky smooth caramel and toffee sweetness dribbling over the crusts of thickly sliced, freshly baked bread. Subtle notes of toast on the verge of roast make their way into the background with a light kiss of earthy hops that signal resiny pine flavors.

M - With it's medium-full body and exceptionally smooth feel finishing with sweetness, Epic's Barley Wine only offers a slight kiss of hops for balance and a faint trace of bitterness behind the warming alcohol.

O - If I didn't know any better I might forgo the fact this is billed as an "American Barleywine" and accept it as the malty English style with open arms. Malt-forward through and through, the subtle offerings of earthy, almost piney American hops are miniscule in comparison to the rich and forthright malt complexities contained in this beer. It's alcohol presence certainly isn't disguised but it's also not in any way a focal point of the beer, which makes it a bit dangerous on the drinkability scale.

Serving type: bottle

03-12-2014 01:32:22 | More by BeerFMAndy
Photo of StonedTrippin
StonedTrippin

Colorado

3.75/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

a good barleywine, squarely in the middle of english and american convention. its a deep copper color, lazy tan head on top, and an aroma of burning sugars, caramel sauce from the can, raisins, and pine hops. an odd arrangement where the malt and all its layers of sugars and grain character comes on the front end, and all of the hops, primarily the bitterness, comes on the back end, the finish, and the swallow. its a dichotomy so pronounced that the beer lacks cohesion, unity, and flow. still, i like the robustness of it all, the no holds barred approach, not afraid to chuck a bunch of hops in a traditionally sweet brew. it makes me happy in some ways, and even though the alcohol is very well hidden for such a colossal beer, this is a bomber to share. intimidating even at 11 ounces, its surprisingly light in body for how big it is, and its full of flavor. not passive beer at all, thats for sure. not my favorite example of the style out there, but a well made one.

Serving type: bottle

03-09-2014 16:41:38 | More by StonedTrippin
Photo of beergoot
beergoot

Colorado

3.75/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Deep copper-red colored body with a rich, soft and creamy thick head; globs of foam and lacing sticking to the glass. Rich caramel aroma; pecan note teaser; warm bread. Honey and warm whole grain bread flavors; fruity esters; soothing hop bitterness. Medium bodied with an airy softness and delicate smoothness; semi-dry finish.

A very pleasing Scotch ale that packs a lot of pleasing surprises in its deep and complex persona. Light and airy yet exuding a deeply satisfying malt grain and nutty flavor profile.

Serving type: bottle

01-27-2014 01:11:49 | More by beergoot
Photo of Zorro
Zorro

California

4/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Clear reddish brown colored beer with a tall tan colored head.

Smell is strong with the hops. Strong NW style hops mostly pine with some cedar and cinnamon scent. Scents of brown sugar and caramel. Black pepper and apple skin in the ethanol fraction. Slight chocolate aroma.

Starts out sweet and woody with a big caramel taste. Bittersweet taste with a significant amount of sweetness. Butterscotch taste with a significant ethanol flavor. Bitterness is medium. Brown sugar is present. Tasty but not quite among the best.

Mouthfeel is thick.

Overall a tasty beer but not quite world class. Worth a try.

Serving type: bottle

01-19-2014 01:47:28 | More by Zorro
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AgentMunky

California

3.38/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 ounce bottle into a Rochefort chalice. Batch #4. At least a couple of years old.

A: No head. Light tracing. Murky dark-tan muddy. Good lacing.

S: Carmelized sugar. Distant, earthy hops are perhaps only wishful thinking. Smells sticky and strong.

T: I think I cellared this too long. Dull and boring. Flat, if chewy. English malts, English hops, English Barleywine.

M: Kinda meh. But sternish and solid enough.

O: I like it, but it was a bit of a letdown after this long.

Serving type: bottle

12-26-2013 05:21:58 | More by AgentMunky
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barleywinefiend

Washington

3.43/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured a burgundy color with good carbonation leaving a nice frothy, dirty white cap. The head retention is pretty good leaving behind some spotty lacing and a light ring clinging to the sides of the glass

S: My first whiff immediately after pour it smelled like dirt and caramel, definitely Earthy. However, as it warmed and settled a touch of bread, dark fruits, pine and citrus arise

T: Initial wallop of toasted bread, caramel, and brown sugar with a pungent bitterness. Some fruits and more bittering hops with a lingering, hop bittering, sweet bready finish and some heat on the end which is pretty stinging

M: Medium bodied, well carbonated, bit sticky and feels warm

O: A pretty decent, safe and common example of the style.

Serving type: bottle

12-12-2013 20:10:26 | More by barleywinefiend
Photo of Gueuzedude
Gueuzedude

Arizona

3.46/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Release #5, October 2011; Sampled April 2012
A healthy pour into my Lost Abbey Teku glass produces a three finger thick, nicely amber tinged, full tan colored head. The beer is a concentrated red / amber color that shows a brilliantly clear, paler version when held up to the light. The aroma smells of pine and citrusy hops, concentrates caramelized malt, nutty, slightly toasted whole grain bread, and fruity notes of berries, raisins and perhaps even some cherry notes. The fruitiness can be the dominant note at times, especially as you really dig into the aroma, but there is also clearly a hop character and a concentrated malt character to the nose.

Thick and viscous as it first hits the palate, there is a big burst of bitter, herbal hop character up front that is offset by a rich, caramelized malt character that then comes to the for, but the bitterness again blossoms in the finish as it lingers on the palate. The beer is not nearly as sweet as I might have expected, instead it has a rich, caramelized, concentrated malt character that has a nicely nutty, toasted quality to it that lingers on the palate for quite some time. The hop character has an herbal, somewhat menthol like character to it for the most part. As the beer warms up it becomes quite a bit more fruit focused with notes of berries, perhaps a touch of cherry, and even some candied citrus. The crystal malt character also starts to become more noticeable, contributing a touch of sweet tea like character, a hint of spicy whole grain character and a bit whole grain cracker like note that expresses itself prominently in the oral nasal interface. Interesting notes of licorice somehow get infused along with the herbal / hoppy / piney hop character. The alcohol becomes a bit more noticeable with time as well, at times it can get a little hot even, but overall it remains fairly balanced; Actually it seems that the sediment kicked up into subsequent pours has somehow accentuated the alcohol, so I would recommend pouring this cleanly in one go if you can.

I like that this beer has a fairly big malt presence; the hop character is perhaps a touch more dominant, but this beer is actually pretty well balanced between the malt & hop character. This should age quite well for at least a couple years. This is nicely enjoyable, even pleasantly surprising.

Serving type: bottle

09-30-2013 02:26:27 | More by Gueuzedude
Photo of drrone
drrone

Utah

4.2/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Batch 12

A - pours a dark amber, with light head that faded quickly and left small patches if residual lace.
S- great caramel, malt, bread/biscuit and a great hop presence.
T- Really great taste, more of the nose, but a great hop resin profile. Very impressed.
M-very easy to drink with very light carbonation. Hides the abv very well.
O- fanastic taste, very smooth. This is probably my new go to barley wine. Epic rarely disappoints. Well done.

Serving type: bottle

08-01-2013 00:04:25 | More by drrone
Photo of kawilliams81
kawilliams81

Yukon (Canada)

4/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- pours a dark copper with 1 finger tan head. Tons of spotting and lacing remains on the glass.

S- caramel, brown sugar, vanilla.

T- sweet toasted malts, caramel, and brown sugar.

M- medium body and carbonation. Very smooth.

O- good barleywine. Well balanced, sweet and smooth.

Serving type: bottle

01-05-2013 02:59:06 | More by kawilliams81
Photo of kagent777
kagent777

Utah

4.1/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bomber poured into a CCB snifter maybe a little too cold. Batch number 1 (brewed September of 2010) has 10.1 ABV. This one has been stored cool since purchase. First beer of 2013, over 2.5 yrs old.

Appearance: A gorgeous red brown with a fluffy white head about one finger tall. The head is cool looking with a few large bubbles but mostly smaller bubbles.

Smell: Pungent hops as soon as the bottle is opened, even at 2.5 yrs old. Nice dark dried fruity notes, black cherry, raisin, and dark spicy bread. Malt smell is rich and a little sweet.

Taste: The dark fruit is most evident with some toffee and caramel. A little sweetness mingling with the smooth booze of 10.1 ABV. Even a touch of cocoa. There is a little barrel woodiness that is lurking in the background. The hops bitterness is also hiding in the background, and not as forward as I imagine it was at bottling. Moderate strength for a BW, but also balanced. One of the most interesting Barleywines that I have had.

Mouthfeel: Very thick and clingy body, with correspondingly low carbonation. Right where it should be.

Overall: A very interesting barleywine, I really enjoyed the flavor. I wonder how much the newer releases of this beer compare? The price is a bit stiff at about 8 or so per bomber, but I could drink this once a winter or so. Marked a 3.5 only for price.

Serving type: bottle

01-02-2013 02:51:07 | More by kagent777
Photo of corby112
corby112

Pennsylvania

3.6/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Release #3

Pours a cloudy, dark golden copper color with ruby red edges and a one finger frothy white head that slowly settles into a lasting ring. Streaks of soapy lacing left behind.

Earthy aroma with sweet and leathery malt notes countered by grassy hops, dark fruit and alcohol. Hints of toffee, biscuit, hazelnut and rye as well as some earthy, floral hops, cherry, currant and other dark berries.

Medium bodied with a sticky hop presence that provides a dry, bitter counterpoint to the sweet and earthy malt notes. Earthy, grassy hops up front followed by hints of rye, toffee, hazelnut dark frut sweetness and alcohol. Hints of plum, raisin and dark cherry provides some needed sweetness toward the finish. Decent amount of alcohol flavor but the high ABV is well masked making it pretty easy to drink. One of the better beers that I've had from Epic.

Serving type: bottle

12-16-2012 09:39:31 | More by corby112
Photo of tdm168
tdm168

North Carolina

4/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to jtd1969 for bringing this to the Barleywine tasting.

A - dark orangish amber with a short-lived head with little retention

S - caramel, candy sugar, bread, dark fruit

T - caramel, bread, sugary, alcohol, faint bitter hops, citrusy

M - full bodied, well carbonated, smooth, warming alcohol

This is a dangerously drinkable, complex beer that has great balance and hops character. The malts are forward and it's a bit sticky. On the whole this is a delicious example of the style.

Serving type: bottle

10-20-2012 15:30:23 | More by tdm168
Photo of andrenaline
andrenaline

Ontario (Canada)

3.63/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Release #6

A - Pours a slightly hazy copper colour, thumb of head with solid retention and solid sheeting lacing.

S - Heavy citrus hops and earthy pine, hints of cedar, and a touch of toffee on the finish.

T - The flavour is surprisingly mild, given the heavy nose. A muddled earthy pine hop flavour comes through alongside boozy toffee and some salted roasted almonds. The ABV could be better hidden, but the flavour profile is tasty nonetheless.

M - Medium bodied, smooth and dry on the finish.

O - A tasty Barley Wine and worth a try, but the ABV could be a bit more subtle. Decent flavour profile but could use a bit fine tuning to make it world class.

Serving type: bottle

10-14-2012 03:23:41 | More by andrenaline
Photo of RblWthACoz
RblWthACoz

Pennsylvania

3.8/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Beer #66 in my great Utah Brew Hunt.

At first, there was something really not working about this beer. That quickly faded away. Thankfully.

Overall, this strikes me as an "everyday" barleywine. It's mellow and smooth and carries a nice flavor profile. There could be a more lingering flavor to it all, but it isn't bad or anything. A little bit too malty sweet. Nice to drink, if not uninspiring and uneventful.

Serving type: bottle

10-10-2012 00:56:36 | More by RblWthACoz
Photo of joemcgrath27
joemcgrath27

Alberta (Canada)

3.5/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

props to andrenaline for including this treat in our latest trade
A - hazy copper, tight creamy head retained outstanding with lots of wispy lacing all around
S - big piney hops and booze, some grain and candy sweetness, with a bit of a harshness to it
T - starts with a nutty and pine mix, touch of caramel and booze, finishes with a mild mineral quality
M - medium and creamy, just a touch of boozy heat, finishes full
O - the harsh aroma was a bit off putting but the flavour and feel redeemed it, not great but definitely a good barleywine

Serving type: bottle

10-08-2012 03:02:59 | More by joemcgrath27
Photo of liamt07
liamt07

Ontario (Canada)

3.55/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle shared by Steve, Release #5. 650ml into a tulip.

Dark brown with OK lacing and light retention. Great toffee and caramel right off the bat, light fruitiness and some relatively generic sweet malt character. Taste is about the same, caramel, bitter citrus, dark breads and alcohol. Heavy feel, fairly dense and relatively intense bitterness. Good but not great, pretty average for the style I thought.

Serving type: bottle

09-08-2012 16:12:54 | More by liamt07
Photo of ngeunit1
ngeunit1

California

4.33/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a cloudy amber-brown color with a finger of frothy white head. The head fades down at a normal pace leaving behind some lacing.

S - Aroma is a mix of sweet caramel and caramelized malts with some brown sugar with a bit of booze.

T - Starts off with a mix of sweet caramel malts and caramelized sugars with some brown sugar. Through the middle, some grapefruit and pineapple hops come through with some bitterness. The finish is a mix of sweet caramel malts and grapefruit hops and bitterness with some brown sugar and a bit of booze.

M - Medium-plus bodied with moderate carbonation. Feels smooth with a sweet, bitter, and warming finish.

D - Very drinkable. Nice malt and hop balance with good hop bitterness and body to balance.

Serving type: bottle

08-27-2012 02:26:57 | More by ngeunit1
Photo of aasher
aasher

Indiana

3.55/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle batch #3.

This beer pours a medium bodied dirty, creek water brown in color with amber hues and a one finger beige, soapy head. The nose consists of slight dry hoppiness, toffee, and raisins. It's not very aromatic and is pretty muted. The flavors are initially dry and bitter. It has moderate hop character initially. It then falls into deep malt of toffee and caramel. It's ok. It's pretty standard for the style, nothing special. It drinks full in body and is surprisingly dry for the style. This is a decent barleywine overall but nothing over the top. If you like traditional American barleywines this one could be up your alley.

Serving type: bottle

07-08-2012 23:23:50 | More by aasher
Photo of yamar68
yamar68

Minnesota

3.18/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark and dim amber/copper. Swelling off-white head, good looking lacing right off the bat.

I smell all sorts of OG... big sweetness. Some booze surfaces immediately, huge malts dominate this thing. Some honey notes, but the aroma doesn't stray far from the massive malt presence.

For how imposing the nose is, the taste is actually pretty dull, and I poured it room temp. It reminds me of a good barleywine on mute. The booze is still full strength though, leaving this one a bit out of whack.

I probably won't revisit this one. Not a fail by any means, they just need to beef this one up a bit.

Serving type: bottle

05-05-2012 01:55:33 | More by yamar68
Photo of Metalmonk
Metalmonk

North Carolina

4.15/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Glassy bronze/maple syrup brown, with a bountiful head that thins to skim and crown in a minute or so. Small dots of lace on glass.

One of those super-caramel-y, candy-like BWs, a bit Bigfoot-ish, less hoppy though, with hints of vanilla, mineral, and root beer, and not much alcohol, surprisingly.

Like the nose, there's caramel, vanilla, mineral, root beer, but also showing the hops, and also a bit of a bitter herbal flair, a bit roasty, and somewhat bitter. Alcohol doesn't intrude at all, although there's just a sweet touch of warmth here. True to style, yet also throws a few tolerable curveballs in.

Slightly sticky and thick-ish, yet with plenty of smoothness and bounce.

If not spectacular then quite solid. Very American take on the style, and that's how it's meant to be. Perhaps a bit on the sweeter side, but there's enough depth here to offer a contemplative sipper for all but the most picky-ass barleywine fan.

Serving type: bottle

04-09-2012 00:17:28 | More by Metalmonk
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UCLABrewN84

California

3.58/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Release # 5.

Pours a murky dark brown with a 2 inch foamy tan head that settles to a small cap on top of the beer. Thin foamy rings of lace form around the glass on the drink down. There is some floating sediment in the glass after the pour. Smell is of malt, brown sugar, caramel/toffee, and some herbal and citrus zest hops. Taste is the same with some somewhat strong alcohol flavors on the finish. There is also a medium amount of bitterness on the palate after each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slight level of carbonation and a medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good barleywine with a solid set of aromas and flavors. The alcohol is a bit jarring but nothing too bad.

Serving type: bottle

03-31-2012 03:36:35 | More by UCLABrewN84
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ForWhatAlesYou

Minnesota

3.38/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

22 oz bomber bottle pours correctly into a snifter.

A: Pale tawny brown. Drab. Frothy head fades but leaves a little spotty lace.

S: Very hoppy with some tawny aromas. Hops like fuggles. Wood, big alcohol.

T: Very bitter. Woody, strong. Very astringent. Some banana and apricot in the alcohol warmth.

M: Slight oiliness with overwhelming dryness. Med-low carbonation.

O: Actually a little unenjoyable. Not quite to my interpretation of the style.

Serving type: bottle

03-03-2012 15:36:29 | More by ForWhatAlesYou
Photo of JohnGalt1
JohnGalt1

Idaho

3.53/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked this one up tonight at Bier Thirty over in Bown... Damn ... $10!! The boys at Epic are growing very proud of their beers. :-) Batch #3.

Pours with a 1" tannish head that leaves tons of lacing atop a slightly hazed amber red brew.

Nose is toasty malts with some hints of citrus hops... caramel and a bit of something that I associate with old malt extract... Does not seem that "American" to me, but what do I know.

Flavor is again very malty with just a touch more than enough bitterness to balance... Hop flavors are again slightly pithy orange zest and move back into the bitterness then lingers for a while after the finish... In between the front and back, a pretty heavy maltiness shoulders the load... dark toast, malty caramel and some toffee essence.. Nothing outstanding, just a pretty okay example of the style.

The body is a touch thick, but a light/medium carbonation is ever present that makes me remember that we are in BW territory... Maybe a bit boozy with warmth, but no nail polish or jet fuel ever shows.

Overall, this is a nice brew right out of the gate... I don't know how well it would age... I doubt for more than a year or so. I still get bits of oxidation... There are hints for sure in the nose and aroma of unfermented malt extract mixed in water.

I guess I dig it... I may buy another just to cellar and try again in 9-12 months.. but I say drink it fresh.

4/3.5/3.5/3.5/3.5

Serving type: bottle

02-09-2012 05:48:19 | More by JohnGalt1
Photo of oberon
oberon

North Carolina

4.47/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I gotta say that I have been really impressed with some of Epic's wares, this is one of them.Poured into an over sized wine glass a deep copper color with a thinner but well retained head atop,a great mix of deep caramel malts and resiny hops,I was surprised at such a hop punch this beer gave off,pleasantly surprised at that.Sweetish upfront with caramel malts and boozy alcohol but it melds nicely into a leafy hoppy lingering finish,there is a bit of leather that comes into play adding to the complexity.To me this is a top notch American barleywine its's big and brash with a healthy dose of hops,I loved it.

Serving type: bottle

01-18-2012 22:11:07 | More by oberon
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Barley Wine from Epic Brewing Company
83 out of 100 based on 87 ratings.