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London Balling - Against The Grain Brewery & Smokehouse

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London Balling
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82 Ratings
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(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 82
Reviews: 16
rAvg: 4.21
pDev: 6.65%
Wants: 18
Gots: 2 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Against The Grain Brewery & Smokehouse visit their website
Kentucky, United States

Style | ABV
English Barleywine |  12.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
English style barleywine brewed with Maris Otter pale, Aromatic and caramel malts, then balanced with English Nugget and Kent Goldings hops. Aged in Angel's Envy bourbon barrels for nearly 3 months.

(Beer added by: JDizzle on 03-01-2012)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 82 | Reviews: 16 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Braden
5/5  rDev +18.8%

Braden, Monday at 12:58 AM
Photo of IMFletcher
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

From a 12 oz bottle (the first-ever bottle release of this beer) at Bo & Luke Day. Really sweet aroma, and all of the wonderful range of flavors in a barleywine without being so sweet it feels like your teeth are rotting. If this gets out for distribution, don't miss it.

IMFletcher, Sunday at 09:02 PM
Photo of starshark
5/5  rDev +18.8%

starshark, Sunday at 11:39 AM
Photo of sourman
5/5  rDev +18.8%

sourman, Sunday at 11:37 AM
Photo of PBRmeasap1980
4.25/5  rDev +1%

12 oz bottle ( I think...small and fat) into snifter

A- Dark brown, but still able to see through it... a bit like dark iced tea. No head
S- Big bourbon nose. Like smelling a shot of bourbon or a fresh barrel. Oak, booze, smoke
T - A lot like it smells. Sweet malts that work with the sweetness of the bourbon. Oakiness is great. Nice finish
M- Medium.

O- Nice suprise on this one. Picked it up at Bo & Luke day 2014 from AtG.

PBRmeasap1980, Sunday at 02:08 AM
Photo of JohnnyK
4.25/5  rDev +1%

JohnnyK, Aug 25, 2014
Photo of Ncpogs
4/5  rDev -5%

Ncpogs, Aug 14, 2014
Photo of Hopmarc
4.25/5  rDev +1%

Hopmarc, Jul 27, 2014
Photo of jbriggs7
4.25/5  rDev +1%

jbriggs7, Jul 14, 2014
Photo of DanGeo
4/5  rDev -5%

DanGeo, Jun 26, 2014
Photo of Holland
4/5  rDev -5%

Holland, Jun 24, 2014
Photo of JamesStreet
4/5  rDev -5%

JamesStreet, Jun 14, 2014
Photo of ncstateplaya
4/5  rDev -5%

ncstateplaya, Jun 12, 2014
Photo of LambicPentameter
4.35/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Enjoyed on tap at Bier Station in Kansas City. Poured into a small round tulip glass with no flaring on the lip.

Appearance - Pours a ruddy brown that gives the impression of red clay and is hard to see through due to some murkiness. Atop the body sits a small half finger of beige colored head that dissipates pretty quickly to a ringlet of foam around the edge of the glass, with just a smattering of soapy bubbles on one side of the glass. Lacing is pretty nonexistent.

Smell - Lots of notes of sweetness and grain, with contributions of rich caramel, light molasses, vanilla, and even some syrupy characteristics, like sweet sorghum. There is also a bready presence beneath the sweetness, but it's not savory enough to overtake the dominant notes of sweet. The bourbon and wood components are faint, with just a hint of heat and a touch of oak from the barrel.

Taste - The overarching sweetness from the aroma continues along through the taste, with more syrup, caramel and vanilla on the tongue. Brown sugar and toffee come through on the aftertaste a little more, with a slight bitterness like burnt sugar providing some depth of flavor alongside hazelnut and almond notes. The grain is aggressive enough to be present, but not overpowering, with undertones of toasted barley and rye bread. Please to say that there is a bit more mustiness from the oak, riding on a breeze of vanilla and tannins, with just a touch of boozy heat on the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel - Medium-bodied with moderate to low carbonation and a sticky mouthfeel, but not unpleasant. Lingering sweetness and some viscosity.

Overall, a very good take on the style. There is just enough barrel aging to impart the vanilla and bourbon characteristics, but without drowning out the base barleywine. The sweetness is pleasant and not cloying, enticing swallow after swallow. I will say that the 80 IBUs surprises me on this one, but perhaps that's the key to preventing a sweet beer from becoming overly so.

LambicPentameter, Jun 10, 2014
Photo of Davepoolesque
4/5  rDev -5%

Davepoolesque, Jun 05, 2014
Photo of szmnnl99
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

szmnnl99, May 23, 2014
Photo of nicole309
4.25/5  rDev +1%

nicole309, May 18, 2014
Photo of CDCNAM
4/5  rDev -5%

CDCNAM, May 13, 2014
Photo of moarmare
4/5  rDev -5%

moarmare, Apr 30, 2014
Photo of phishbfm
4.25/5  rDev +1%

phishbfm, Apr 29, 2014
Photo of Kmlund
4/5  rDev -5%

Kmlund, Apr 29, 2014
Photo of threedaggers
4.25/5  rDev +1%

threedaggers, Apr 28, 2014
Photo of ralerwen
4.25/5  rDev +1%

ralerwen, Apr 24, 2014
Photo of gillagorilla
4.01/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sample had at Max's during their Rare & Obscure Festival (from notes, 4/17/14)

A: Dark amber copper brown. Consistent head and lacing that is quite thick.

S: Sweet with some light roasts.

T: Nice even barrel flavors here. Prevalent whiskey but melds well with the rest of the beer. Quite warming. Light roast and slightly sweet with lots of barrel.

M: Smooth.

O: This was some good stuff and my first beer of the festival. Very good use of the barrel and not overpowering.

gillagorilla, Apr 21, 2014
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London Balling from Against The Grain Brewery & Smokehouse
93 out of 100 based on 82 ratings.