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Single Batch Series - Barleywine | Sebago Brewing Company

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
93
outstanding
70 Reviews
THE BROS
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BEER STATS
Reviews:
70
Ratings:
153
Avg:
4.26
pDev:
11.74%
 
 
Wants:
96
Gots:
33
For Trade:
3
Single Batch Series - BarleywineSingle Batch Series - Barleywine
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Sebago Brewing Company
United States | website

Style: American Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.20%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
This beer is a blend of Old World influence and modern day ingredients and technique. Domestic malt and distinctly American hops produce this rich, full bodied ale. On top of it all, this beer was barrel-aged in charred oak bourbon barrels for over eight months. The end result is an unfiltered dark ruby colored ale with very intense aromatics.

60 IBU

Added by barleywinebrewer on 05-01-2008

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 70 | Ratings: 153
Photo of Flounder57
4.39/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Served in a snifter at the Union Brewhouse in Weymouth.

Appearance: A one finger head was poured that reduced to a thin layer. It is a dark crimson color with no vision of anything.

Smell: Caramel, toffee, toasted, roasted, dark fruits, molasses, vanilla, herbal, and warm boozy alcohol.

Taste: Awesome barleywine flavor and bourbon barrel characteristics too. Light bitterness and super smooth warm alcohol.

Mouthfeel: Silky smooth, medium to full bodied, warm alcohol, medium carbonation, and light tingly bitterness.

Overall: Have to admit that this beer has aged well out back at the bar plus bourbon barrel flavor on top of that. Delicious stuff. I look forward to the next glass if it lasts.

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Photo of Davepoolesque
4.18/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2014 Bottle. Toffee, caramel, brown sugar, dark fruits, vanilla and oak. Smooth. Lower carbination. On the thin side. Dry. Not too sweet. Pretty good.

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Photo of Hoppy_Time
4.21/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

2015 series, 11.8% ABV, Bourbon Barrel Aged
Look: Pours a nice dark copper color with a finger of tan head, lacing is good.
Smell: Smells highly of bourbon and alcohol.
Taste: Starts off with bourbon and alcohol following the nose, then mellows into rich chocolate and caramel notes with a hint of toasted oak.
Feel: Light body for a barrel aged beer, medium carbonation, some alcohol burn, a little dry.
Overall: High bourbon character from the barrel aging, alcohol diminishes over the first few sips, complexities develop as you drink, a fine barleywine.

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Photo of bishopdc0
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This is a very nice barleywine.

On draft at the Portland pub a nice tulip, the beer is deep ruby in the low light almost looks black. The head remains but on the glasses edge pretty good at almost 12%.

The nose is sweet malts bourbon and an almost gram cracker maltyNess very nice.

The taste matches the nose, malt is forward sweet and caremel, a nice sweetNess reveals the oak and vanilla boutbon, very nice. Aso it warms the bourbon better meldd. This is world class

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Photo of Boccu
4.13/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours nice rich dark Amber color. Great aroma. Very nice barley wine with a light bourbon throughout it.has an oily feel. Not as complex as most other barley wines.

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Photo of SomethingClever
4.56/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

2014 bottle poured into snifter

A: fairly good clarity, brownish red tint not much head but soapy quality to it

S: butterscotch, toffee, vanilla

T: very similar to the nose you can get a rush of hops but it is crushed by the vanilla, toffee quite quickly can taste the alcohol decent amount of heat a little nutty on the end and a little bit of a sourish aftertaste

M: tingly lays on the tongue a bit but not syrupy

O: interesting and impressive the look with that amazing clarity had me thinking this was going to be tasteless but it's amazing love it with the toffee and vanilla the hops are very dialed down or the barrel has overwhelmed them quite impressively except for the little bit of heat this beer is amazing

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Photo of Oldejoe
4.22/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

So what lackluster look, maybe too cold
Earthy, spicy smell
Bittersweet,spicey, bourbony, alcoholy taste
Dense, oily mouthfeel
Bold in every way, but not my favorite barley wine, prefer more to the malty side

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Photo of maximum12
4.24/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Many thanks to mjg0725 for sending me this beer; I had to wipe off the drool as I watched it crawl closer on FedEx tracking. 22 oz. bottle split with my wife, who forced me to have one more beer tonight. If I never review again, you'll know I cracked open my head falling up the stairs.

The pour is old brick red, minimal carbonation befitting its status as liver-bruiser. The nose causes just a little pre-cum. Good lord. Loads of bourbon, caramel, brown sugar, sweet malt with the depth of a Coyote Ugly cameo. I didn't mean that. Fantastic.

Sebago Barleywine - Bourbon Barrel Aged should be sued for false nose advertising. Huge drop from aroma to taste. The barrel dominates, subjugates, overrides the delicate beauty flowing from aroma, as efficiently numbing as a novacaine needle to the gums. Caramel plays hide & seek, badly. Significant oak/wood emerges in the middle, tangled up with toffee, vanilla, & moonshine. Slick as butter. Thought at first this might be a chore to wade through, now I'm thinking I might need more.

This one needs warmth & love to reach its full potential. Not sure if it's the alcohol, late hour, or bad TV, but this is really growing on me. Excellent beer.

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Photo of homebrew311
4.23/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a deep amber with some clarity and no head. Nose is oak forward with some tannins, vanilla, dark fruit, caramel, and plenty of bourbon. Taste is very robust with plenty of dark fruit and caramel with heavy vanilla. Medium body with low carbonation. Nice balance, mild burn, quite tasty.

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Photo of Florida9
4.21/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Dirty light brown color. Forms just a minimal light tan head that doesn't bother sticking around long. No lacing. Very aromatic. Lots of barrel. Lots of vanilla and oak. Sweet notes. Caramel. Brown sugar. Taste is similar. Quite sweet. Caramel, brown sugar, vanilla, oak, and a light pepper quality. Okay caramel and vanilla. Smooth mouthfeel lower carbonation. Minimal bitterness. A very nice BW.

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Photo of abriggs1
4.48/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

When I put this beer down three years ago in 2010, I knew it would turn into something special. I've never been so happy to be so right! I loved this beer fresh, but three years in Sebago's bourbon barrel aged barley wine is easily the best barrel aged barley wine I've ever had.

Deep rich toffee with a vanilla and burnt caramel finish. The bourbon barrel aging really comes out in force here. Even my belches have hits of awesomeness. Fresh, this beer tasted like a barley wine. Aged three years, it's just like an old ale.

Sebago has outdone itself with this fabulous offering. I hope they decide to brew it again because they've hit the nail on the head with this one.

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Photo of dpianka
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

date of tasting: 4/2/2013
place of tasting: Barley Vine - Bristol, CT
beer: 2011 Barleywine limted release
brewery: Sebago
brewery location: Gorham, Maine
type: ale
style: barleywine
abv: 12.5%
ibu: 60
glass: mug w/appearance test in tasting glass
temperature of beer: 55F

Appearance: rich copper, quite opaque. Head pours rich and heavy

Smell: first hit: coconut and rum, not to be confused with cloyingly sweet coconut rum but like someone took some really good white rum and poured it into a coconut (kind of like the vodka and watermelon everyone used to do back in college) and let it sit for a few days. Then I get a little shot of pineapple and vanilla, the vanilla hits you like a brick once you notice it. Very faint oaky/charred wood. Butterscotch maltiness is also there in every whiff.

Taste: oh-my butterscotch, almost marshmallow-like vanilla, hops are ever so slight they just kind of dance in the background reminding you that they are there. There is a hint of fresh cut grass that kind of just lies back like it’s all lazy and whatnot.

Mouthfeel: creamy, chewy, smooth, moderately heavy bodied.

Overall Impression: So happy I got to try this beer. The bourbon barrels really add some beautiful vanilla and smoothness that is really just wonderful. The beer itself is sweet as I would expect a barleywine would be, yet its not over the top, I can have a beer or two and not feel like I just stumbled out of Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory (though I may still be stumbling with the 12.5%abv). So this was a 2011 vintage. We are now well into 2013. I am sure it has rounded itself out and become even smoother than it was originally. I would love to have tried this when it was released just to see the difference. I am curious what flavors have changed since then. Is the butterscotch now more pronounced? Were the hops more pronounced originally? The alcohol isn’t even a little perceivable, it just kind of hits you, as Martha Stewart always says “It’s a good thing”.

Food Pairings: steak, like a ribeye charred hard with an olive oil herb dressing. Blue cheese crackers and sopprassata. strawberry shortcake with an orange bourbon cream.

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Photo of Hugonaut13
4.63/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

Bomber served in a snifter. Big thanks to Davey101 for this hidden gem!

A - Pours a deep, murky reddish brown. Minimal head. Looks like a BA Barleywine ;)

S - Immediately hit with a faint smell of bourbon which dissipates into loads of caramel and brown sugar. Smells excellent!

T - Up front the bourbon barrel comes through, but in the mid and back the sweet dark fruits, caramel, and toffee take over. No bitterness to be found. Your taste buds beg you to take another sip. Outstanding stuff!

M - Moderate carbonation. No heat to be found. If I didn't know better, I would have been shocked it was 12.5%. Very drinkable.

O - This is an outstanding BA Barleywine. Probably the most underrated beer I've ever had.

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Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
4.47/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

thanks to surge1311 for trading me a bottle!

poured into tulip glass.

bottle date 10/20/2011.

Appearance: copper bodied beer with a light reddish hue. Almost 2 fingers of light tan head that leaves a nice sticky lace on the glass just a little better than spotty lace.

Smell: dark fruits, caramel, toffee, and brown sugar. It smells a little bit boozey, tannic, and vinious.

Taste: dark fruits(mostly figs and dates), dry and woody oak, vanilla, toasty coconut, caramel, toffee, brown sugar, toffee, mild leather and tobacco notes. The bourbon is well integrated into the malt profile. Such nice balance and complexity!

Mouthfeel: medium bodied beer with low end of moderate carbonation. This beer is super smooth mellow, and creamy. I think that this vintage has an ABV of 12.5% and it drinks like its 8 to 9%. Not a hint of booze!

Overall: This is a really great beer. Its doesnt happen too often that you find a really awesome shelf beer that has both quality and a great price point. This beer really evolved as it got warmer. Honestly, this beer is at its best once its above cellar temperature, dont even bother putting this beer in the fridge. A real class act beer here, just a showstopper!

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Photo of xanok
5/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This bottle was a late 2011/early 2012 I think

Bomber poured into my Smuttynose tulip.

A-Light brown, hazy body with moderate, off-white, bubbly head with moderate lacing

S-Lots of bourbony deliciousness. Vanilla and oak and caramel and booze. Hoppiness is existent, but I think a year in the cellar has tamed that a bit. Quite sweet smelling as well.

T-Fairly bourbon forward, despite the year on it. This is a good thing though. This beer is mega-smooth and balanced. The American hops have toned down a bit. The bourbon gives way to a vanilla, toffee, and caramel (among other things) taste that is just fantastic.

M- Medium to low carbonation. Aftertaste dissipates fairly quickly. Smooth as hell though.

O-Just outstanding. Truly a standout beer from an underrated brewery. This barley wine is up there with the Sucabas and the CW BBBWs of the world, probably even better. The next bottle is going to get drank side by side to a Sucaba. I think this one will win out. I hope Sebago makes this one again soon. I can't praise this beer enough.

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Photo of Beerandboards
3.96/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

22oz bomber into a snifter. Bottled on date is unreadable, but I assume its a 2012.

A - kind of a light brown sugar type brown. Minimal white/tan head that revives with a swirl. Leaves slight to moderate lacing.

S - lots of vanilla, caramel, sweet smelling toasty notes.

T - Starts out a little hot. Loads of toasted marshmallow type tastes, vanilla and caramel. Hop bitterness at the end. Not terribly complex, but tasty nonetheless. As it warms, the flavors open up and mellow out the heat.

M - A little too thin for me. Carbonation is a little above medium, and maybe a little prickly.

O - My original plan had been to age this one. Then I decided to go by the rule of, if you only have one, taste it fresh. At first, my thought was I should have let it sit for a while, the heat and the bitterness seemed like it could use some age. However, I think this may be a good one to do fresh. Its not real complex, so I think age might make it a little thin. Plus, overall, its a pretty tasty beverage. Not quite top notch, but thoroughly enjoyed.

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Photo of oline73
3.85/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured from the bottle into a tasting snifter. This was opened at a BA Barleywine tasting.

The beer pours a cloudy red amber color. This one is sweet enough with a hint of hops. This was one of the better balanced beers we had that night. There is a slight tart note in the mix as well. I'm getting some caramel and a grapefruit peel bitterness.

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Photo of johnnnniee
3.82/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Shared tonight by Mike, I think, Thanks for the opportunity.
Pours a slightly hazy deep golden/amber color with a smallish off white head that slowly dissipates to a cap. Smells really sweet with lots of caramel and brown sugar, a fair amount of light sweet fruit, a bit of ethanol, and hints of oak and bourbon. The flavor is quite sweet with sugary caramel and light sweet fruits along with a solid shot of vanilla oak and bourbon. Medium body with a light level of carbonation and a sweet almost syrupy mouthfeel. Nice barleywine, if not a bit on the sweet side. Some age should do wonders for this brew.

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Photo of HuskyinPDX
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle opened on 10.18.12.

A - Pours a dark, cloudy and fizzy brown with a very thin light tan head that moves to the edges quickly.

S - Sweet dark fruit, carmel, and some booze.

T - Toffee, carmel, vanilla, coconut. Amazing.

D - Decent carbonation with a medium body. A nice sweet finish.

O - Great layers and falvors. Really enjoyed this one.

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Photo of warnerry
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle received via trade with woosterbill. Thanks Will!

A - Pours a beautiful clear deep amber with a half finger of tan head. Not much head retention, and only small spots of lacing.

S - Smell is a harmonious blend of caramel, toffee, vanilla, oak and some dark fruits. A bit of noticeable alcohol in the aroma, but not distracting.

T - Again, lots of caramel and toffee, with some dark dried fruits, faint hop bitterness, some vanilla and oak. Finshes with a pretty significant oak component that is quite drying. Very nice.

M - Medium/full mouthfeel starts off slightly sweet, but oak tannins soon dominate and lead to a very dry finish.

O - This is an excellent barrel-aged barleywine and the first offering I have had from Sebago. It isn't quite in the class of King Henry, but easily one of the most enjoyable barleywines I've had. Over time, the barrel taste gets a bit too strong, but I would love to have this again.

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Photo of davey101
4.59/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bomber into a tulip glass. 2011 vintage. I grabbed a few more bottles. One of them was legible enough on the printed neck date to read "Bottled 10 28 11"

A - Very clear dark red body. Pour yields a dirty and creamy khaki head with large bubbles. Light lacing, but thick alcohol legs.

S - Candied raisins, toffee, brown sugar, oak, and some light vanilla. Very smooth and warming, The bourbon presence is rather light but provides a very subtle contribution to some solid english style barley wine notes, No hop presence what so ever.

T - Rich dark fruits, caramel and toffee, brown sugar and very light piney hops. This is amazingly delicious. The bourbon is again rather light but present in some faint oak and vanilla notes.

M - Medium bodied with a low level of carbonation. Lets talk about the alcohol content. 12.5%...I had no idea. Its just so smooth, there is literally no alcohol presence.

O - This beer is beyond impressive. Zero hype, reasonable price, and a shelf beer. I honestly think it can go head to head against the titans of barrel aged barley-wines (King Henry, Abacus, Naked Evil, etc). It probably wouldn't beat them out, but it sure as hell would give them a scare. Furthermore, its refreshing to see a beer sit in a barrel for only three months versus a year or so. The bourbon notes are balanced and subtle. Perfection, honestly.

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Photo of alexgash
4.47/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz. bottle.

Clear, sparkling crimson-garnet body. Finger of semi-thick, dirty beige head. Some lacing. Rich, malty notes of caramel, toffee, tobacco, and rummy fruits. Woody, bourbony notes of vanilla and oak. Big and decadent and very inviting.

Toasted malt and herbal, woody hop bitterness up front. Big fruit and caramel and toffee malt sweetness balloons and takes over. Rummy fruit sweetness slowly melds with woody, tannic, vanilla, and coconut bourbon flavors near the finish. Woody, herbal hop bitterness in the finish, along with lots of lingering fruit malt, bourbon, and coconut. Warming, quite, but not hot. Full bodied with a thick, creamy feel. Very nicely done and dangerously drinkable.

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Photo of Jwale73
4.3/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours an amber/mahogany hue with no head, just a thin band around the shoulders. Clarity falls somewhere between translucent and murky. Nose is buttery and expresses booze, bourbon and cotton candy. Taste follows nose; however, the bourbon barrel is much more prominent. Finish is slightly bitter and somewhat caustic, but not in a bad way. Mouthfeel is medium-light, perhaps a little thin for the style, with a slighty oily texture and a mild, prickly carbonation. Finishes with some residual heat. Overall, this is a really fantastic barleywine. I'm psyched I was able to score some more bottles to cellar as I can only see this beer improving with time.

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Photo of ShogoKawada
4.77/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

this is my 6th or 7th bottle of this... 9 left in the cellar, a few going out to friends, so my stock is dwindling. I looorve this beer.

pours an amber color with a sandy tan head... one or two fingers, minimal lacing. good legs.

nose is sweet caramel/toffee. Delightful. About 6 months after bottling and we've mellowed in the nose a bit.

the taste is splendid. Candied figs, bourbon, vanilla and caramel taffy. This has mellowed a bit, although it was never too hot. Hops have vanished, although I don't remember them being too strong... this is a beer I want to drizzle on vanilla bean ice cream.

No way this feels like 12.5%. 10, tops. Smooth is an understatement. Ok, maybe a bit of heat, but it works with the flavors as an accent, not a detractor. I could drink this fast, but I want to savor every drop.

Sleeper beer of the year, 2012. This one kicks fucking ass. Sebago, brew more, or else. Or else.

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Photo of jmarsh123
3.86/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to jamesb7 for the bottle!

Pours murky mahogany with a finger of beige head fading into a wisp leaving excellent legs down the glass.

Smells of sweet toffee with some mild hoppiness. Not a whole lot of bourbon on the nose.

Straight malty. Loads of sweet toffee and caramel. Again a little less hoppy than the typical American Barleywine. Closer akin to the English style. Finishes a little boozy and hot with the bourbon.

Pretty thick mouthfeel and mild carbonation.

Fairly solid beer, but the bourbon comes out a bit hot near the end. Good flavors and a good beer, but I think some time may do this well.

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Single Batch Series - Barleywine from Sebago Brewing Company
93 out of 100 based on 70 ratings.