1. American Craft Beer Fest returns to Boston on May 29 & 30, featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers. Tickets are on sale now.

Heretic - The Alchemist

Not Rated.
HereticHeretic

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

73 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 73
Reviews: 38
rAvg: 4.09
pDev: 10.76%
Wants: 109
Gots: 12 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
The Alchemist visit their website
Vermont, United States

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  9.99% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: UA8 on 10-22-2009

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

The first Barleywine brewed at The Alchemist. This is currently aging in the brewery, and will be introduced on 9/9/09.

99.9 IBU
View: Beers (14) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Ratings: 73 | Reviews: 38 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ChrisPro
3/5  rDev -26.7%

Photo of JebediahScooter
3/5  rDev -26.7%

Photo of Mrpickles
3/5  rDev -26.7%

Photo of CypherEnigma
3/5  rDev -26.7%

Photo of mnbearsfan
3/5  rDev -26.7%

Photo of klipper
3.5/5  rDev -14.4%

Photo of Dreadnaught33
3.5/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle shared by yourefragile, thanks Michael.

The caramel to toffee color with a ring of white head. Sort of lighter in color than normal barleywine color, but not quite a DIPA color either.

S: Almost like a little old DIPA, reminds me of old Dreadnaught. Nice vegetable and plant notes with some old school hard candy, toffee and brown sugar.

T: Not bad, not great. Some hops of dry lemongrass and some malts of a caramel variety, it's just not super complex and it lacks a lot in the mid palate flavor. Decent. Some spice and yeasty-ness.

M: Thinner than I like but nice and slick over the palate.

O: Overall this is ok, but nothing special.

Photo of Thorpe429
3.7/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the brewpub on November 4, 2010.

Pours a really nice copper color with a two-finger light tan head and just bunches and bunches of lacing. The nose brings some strong citrus hops with a bit of pine as well. A slight malt component.

The feel and flavor are dominated by the bruising bitterness of this one. There are some citrus and pine notes plus a bit of malt that doesn't bring much flavor. A bit body and not too dry. This was a good brew, but the flavor didn't quite live up to the nose.

Photo of spycow
3.75/5  rDev -8.3%

Photo of Roze
3.75/5  rDev -8.3%

Photo of rowingbrewer
3.75/5  rDev -8.3%

Photo of Kelp
3.75/5  rDev -8.3%

Photo of Sean9689
3.78/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Alex for this one. 22oz bomber into Narke tulip.

A - Pours a mirky copper color, spotty lace, thin collar, no cap.

S - Really dank-forward, lots of bitter hops, touch of sugary sweetness, slight pine. Very big dank nose that is very powerful.

T - Dank bitter hops, resin, slight malty sweetness, slight detectible booze. Again, lots of dank hoppy notes with a decent amount of detectible alcohol and light malty sweetness.

M - Light to medium, good carbonation, oily finish.

O - This was good, but not as high as I would have thought after drinking can after can of Heady Topper. A decent DIPA, but not as mind-blowing as Heady is to the DIPA category.

Photo of Kegatron
3.85/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle into a tulip glasses. Thanks go to funkel81 for these two Hell or High Water Alchemist beers in a recent trade.

Pours a beautiful looking clear coppery amber, with 1 ½ fingers of rich and slightly off-white looking head. This readily maintains a frothy ½ finger, throwing up a robust cascade of lacing that settles into sticky swathes down the sides of the glass. The aroma is quite beefy feeling in the nose, with fresh pine, dankness, leafy notes, and peppery spice, which all combines to give this a bit of a wet tobacco feel at times. Some sweetness is present here in the form of some softer tropical fruit character that mingles with the malt on the edges of the profile but there is no doubt that the hops and alcohol control this, as a steady stiff warmth emerges to add some extra boldness in the nostrils.

The taste is bold and resinous in the mouth, with a blast of zesty grapefruit bitterness. This is surrounded by a flush of slightly danky feeling herbal character and then ripe tropical fruit flavors that adheres to the sticky sweetness of the malt. There is maybe a touch of darker toastiness present to the malts but this is mostly exhibiting more of sweet caramel character with some light doughy sugars mixed in. The alcohol also adds a touch of extra boozy sweetness to this and some spiciness that hangs hard in the finish along with sticky notes of pine and grapefruit pith. The mouthfeel is fuller bodied, with crispness on the tongue that is surrounded by a slick creaminess that fills out the rest of the mouth. As I mentioned in the taste profile, the alcohol is here, and not only adds some beefy sweetness to the flavors that while not overly stinging, does put a bit of intense heat on the finish.

This is definitely more of a hefty DIPA than it is an American Barleywine but I just I wish that I could have gotten to this one sooner, as I felt the fading brightness of those citric hop flavors that I’m pretty sure were probably pretty vibrant about a month ago or so ago when this was released. I mean don’t get me wrong. This is still has a FEROCIOUS hop presence to it but it lacked just enough of a full-on brightness that would have helped balance and cover up a bit of that alcohol presence. As this stands now, it’s got an overly warm sweetness to it that clashes a bit with the assertive hop flavors that are still left. If you like alcoholic hop-bombs, I’d say this one is still worth seeking out but this full bomber was just a bit too much for me.

Photo of SpeedwayJim
3.9/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

As stated, this is actually a double IPA so I'm reviewing it as such. 22oz bomber poured into Lost Abbey stemware.

Pours a .5 finger coarse white head with moderate to low retention. Beer is a clear rusty copper. Lacing is patchy and stringy with nice stick. Average for the style.

Nose is tree sap and resin hoppiness with a mellow backbone of dried tea leaves. Some light cane sugar and citrus pushed far into the background. Nicely aromatic with aromas that are very on point.

Opens caramel and brown sugar. Citrus and sap hop bitterness combine with a wave of creamy dark malt flavors. Dried leaves and cane sugar with a slight booziness right at the end. Finishes spicy and sweet with a sticky, lingering resin hop sweetness. Definitely an east coast style offering. Robust and very full flavored.

Light bodied with ample carbonation. Smooth in the mouth and goes down with some warmth. Finish is messy with a long, lingering aftertaste. Nothing special. Very smooth though.

A very solid offering from the Alchemist. What else could be expected from the makers of Heady Topper? Definitely worth a try if you're into the IIPAs with a pronounced malt bill.

Photo of Arenbeer
3.9/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle into a Tulip Glass

Drank at last tasting. Thanks to my good buddy Finewinemike and oline73 for bringing this bottle.

A- Pours a cloudy golden honey orange with a thin 1 finger head.

S- Lots of caramel malts, piney hops, citrus, spicy hops, and a touch of alcohol.

T- Bready yet caramel malts up front with a nice spicy earth hop presence that's pretty dank.

M- Medium bodied with moderate carbonation and a nice bitter hop finish.

SkÅL!

Photo of jmarsh123
3.95/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a cloudy light brown with a 1 finger white bubbly head.

Pleasant citrus hops along with a little caramel/toffee malt backbone and some pine as well. Smells very nice.

An onslaught of citrus and pine hops hits the palate up front. There is still a lot of malt in this one though. Rich caramel malts blend with the hops. Finishes with a resiny dry flavor.

Decently thick mouthfeel with good carbonation. Slight alcohol burn, but for the most part hidden well.

Definitely a thicker beer than most DIPA which is what it says on the label even though the bw description on here isn't exactly wrong either. Reminds me a bit of the Stone Bastard series as there are loads of both hops and malts that tend to balance in the end. Dinged a bit for drinkability. I tend to like most of the flavors, but they became too much toward the end of the glass along with the alcohol burn.

Photo of WanderingFool
3.98/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I was lucky enough to be in VT the weekend Heretic was released. Great coincidence for me!

Heretic pours a hazy dark amber color, with a small white head. The foam dissolves quickly to a ring around the surface leaving behind a few spots of lace on glass.

The aroma is very hoppy with strong notes of orange and pine citrus. Hints of caramel malt and alcohol are also present.

Each sip of this medium boded beer is dry, slightly syrupy with mild carbonation. The flavor is loaded with hops. Strong notes of pine, orange and lemon citrus with a balancing malt flavor of caramel malt. There's a touch of garlic and pepper in there too. It finishes bitter with a linger citrus hop flavor.

I'm glad I was able to try this beer. It's very tasty, but no Heady Topper. It hides it's 10% abv very well.

Photo of Bendurgin
3.98/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on tap at the Alchemist yesterday during my day trip to Vermont. Sweet. This one is reviewed from my notes. The pour delivers a finger of off white head that sits on top of a hazy copper body with thin lacing. The smell is full of bitter hops, oak and orange zest. The smell is very rich, certainly reminds me of Autumn. The taste is piney hops, light orange zest with earthy and woody undertones. The body is medium and the carbonation is pretty light, this had a really clean bitter finish. I think this one is a little boozey but it sure didn't stop me from finish this one in no time.

Photo of doughanson78
3.98/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle poured into a snifter. Huge thanks to kingcrowing for sharing this one of a kind beer. Contrary to BA's style listing the bottle actually says this is a Double IPA.

A: Dark amber/brown with lots of floating sediment. One finger tan head with good retention and lacing.

S: Citrus and earthy hops, pineapple, grapefruit, earth, and grass. Light caramel backbone.

T: Touch of caramel upfront taken over by the earthy hops with nice citrus notes. Decent bitterness in the middle mellowed towards the end by malts. Very earthy and grassy finish.

M: Medium bodied. Medium carbonation. Crisp, refreshing and dry.

O: A very good DIPA or Barleywine, however you want to classify it. Great story of what happened at the brewery with the tropical storm, told from the beers perspective.

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Auburn colored beer, darker than your average dipa, standard sized head. Aroma was plenty fruity, hid the alcohol nice, decent hoppy presence, wasn't all bitterness, a substantial caramel presence as well.

Laying an ode to the American barleywine style just as much as a west coast dipa, this one is right down the middle. Big malt presence, but not heavy on the roasting, lots of caramel cover substantial alcohol that just isn't apparent. Passion fruitishness as well, this is like a bigger version of Sculpin I was thinking. A little sweeter.

The hops are somewhat suffocated in the mouthfeel, the malt and caramel presence really win the war of attrition, the fruity presence is still around. Some pine for good measure.

Photo of RBassSFHOPit2ME
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bigger version of Heady Topper with less juicy fruit to it.

Extremely bitter...if tropical or citrus fruit was bigger here, the bitterness would have been better accepted.

Very drinkable...not near barleywine territory as some before have mentioned...malt non-existent until warms up.

So -so beer big DIPA here. Vermont has impressed me so far with Ephraim, Heady Topper and this one but not sure if worth all the latest hype surrounding them. Very fortunate to have experienced and thankful. Would have again but not go out of my way for...

Photo of sfr26
4/5  rDev -2.2%

Photo of angrybabboon
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review adapted from notes taken 11/13/11

Appearance: Dark orange, starts off with a nice big off-white head, keeps a nice cap, nice lacing

Smell: Citrus, grapefruit rind, grapefruit flesh, cooked biscuits, very hoppy but also very malty, pretty intense

Taste: Cooked, toasted biscuits, with a blast of grapefruit - grapefruit, orange, pretty aggressive - zest, pith - a lot of grassy, herbalness - definitely some mint in here, like peppermint, or spearmint - oily pine - bitterness builds, becomes borderline brutal - malts hold things together, kind of sweet

Mouthfeel: Medium, very sticky, oily, yet dry, nicely carbonated

Overall: A quality palate destroyer

Simply put, this is a malty, herbal, grassy, minty, mouth-wrecker. It's not really balanced in any way, and it is one of the few beers I've ever had that I almost found too aggressive. Regardless, I'm glad I was in VT to pick up these Hell or High Water beers.

Photo of aasher
4/5  rDev -2.2%

« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Heretic from The Alchemist
90 out of 100 based on 73 ratings.