SweetWater 15 Years Of Heady Beers - SweetWater Brewing Company

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SweetWater 15 Years Of Heady BeersSweetWater 15 Years Of Heady Beers

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BA SCORE
85
very good

98 Ratings
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 98
Reviews: 44
rAvg: 3.77
pDev: 13.53%
Wants: 5
Gots: 19 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
SweetWater Brewing Company visit their website
Georgia, United States

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Kromes on 02-11-2012

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 98 | Reviews: 44
Photo of AlCzerik
3.08/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I just expected a lot more out of this beer. I liked it, but for their 15th anniversary edition. I was hoping for something as good as one of their dank tanks and I was left disappointed. It poured a golden brown but didnt produce a good foam. Just all in all a little disappointed.

Photo of andrewinski1
2.41/5  rDev -36.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Thanks to Bendurgin for this one. Poured into a tulip. There is a nice quarter inch tan head that shrinks to a thin ring. The color is slightly hazy amber, not quite brown.

The aroma is burnt sugar and some kind of odd hop aroma. This doesn't quite blend well together. There is also a bit of a swampiness to the aroma.

The taste is malty and full of caramel flavor. There is some brown sugar in the taste, with a bit of a vegetal hop finish. This is okay at best.

The body is medium-full. The carbonation is very soft.

This seems purposely thrown together as if the ingredients were just doubled (I have no idea if that's the case or not).

Photo of Bendurgin
2.27/5  rDev -39.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

A nice extra from Grant. Thanks a lot homey. Poured into a tulip. Pours a nice clear reddish homey amber color with a small white head that settles down quickly.

I'm not to sure what I"m getting out of the aroma but I'm sure it's not pleasant. I suppose earthy would be my best reach, but kind of like a compost kind of earthy. Not so good here. Boozey grassy flavors with some hints of sweet caramel. Earthy grass flavors with a pungent must.

The body is full good carbonation.

This one is (from what I understand) an imperial ESB Really doesn't come together. Nice idea but it just doesn't working for me.

Photo of Callaghan
3.5/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22oz bottle, into a pint glass. I noticed the head built slowly...

A: It pours a nice amber, orange-brown color, though not completely clear. Little, tiny bubbles slowly rise from the bottom of the glass, keeping the beige, two finger head alive for a little while. After 10 minutes or so, the head deflates to a thin film. A little stir of the glass brings back some.

S: Sweet and alcohol. Straight up, like a shot. A little earth element there too, but weak.

T: Almost like someone poured a couple of different beers into one glass. This doesn't remind me of an ESB. Lots of malts and hops. First the malts and then hops on the finish. Caramel, brown sugar, and general sweetness, and as it rolls over the tongue, the hops become more apparent. Pine and citrus stand out to me. There is a lot going on at one time, and it is fast. After the initial hit, a sweeter aftertaste lingers for a little while, and begs for another sip.

M: Thick and sticky. On the lips it get sticky, leading me to believe there is a lot of sugar in this. It is bitter as well, which is a nice contrast, being a bit dry on the tongue.

O: I like it, but have had better. It has a lot going on and through the entire session. From the pour to the last sip, it is different than just about any other beer. Good, but not the best. For a limited, anniversary brew, celebrating 15 years, I would have thought Sweetwater could put out something a little better than this.

Photo of jsanford
3.53/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle poured into a SweetWater Snifter

A - Pours a dark copper with a dense ivory head that settles to a wispy haze and moderate ring.
S - Big, sweet aromas of caramel, candied apple, toffee, and bready malt with some resinous orange peel and pine hop notes. Definitely smells like an "Imperial ESB".
T - Similarly sweet, lots of malty flavors of caramel, baked bread, brown sugar, and toffee with resinous hops that linger on the palate for some time and a solid dose of warming alcohol. Nice, but definitely not a balanced beer, this is all about the extremes.
M - medium-full bodied, with a fairly sticky mouthfeel and lowish carbonation.
O - Certainly an interesting beer, but not my favorite SweetWater release of late. Still, congrats on 15 years, maybe I'll grab a bottle or two and hold on to them until the next milestone!

Photo of Georgiabeer
3.5/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours an orange amber with a sticky look against the glass, and a fairly short head that fades away to a thin ring. Smells sweet, like taffy, with lots of residual sugar and a hint of spiciness, as well as a light toffee or molasses note. A little spicier and dryer in the taste, but there is an almost fruit juice-after-toothpaste note here that is a bit jarring. Not that well integrated, but some interesting flavors do poke through from time to time. Some fruity notes, a bit of bubble gum, and an underlying bready layer are present in the mix. A bit watery on the edges, and a bit too sweet at the core, this is a bit of an odd duck. I usually enjoy strong ales, but I could have given this a miss. I would have liked to have seen something a little more special for the 15th anniversary.

Photo of superdedooperboy
3.83/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22-ounce brown glass bottle poured into a SweetWater 15th Anniversary tulip. Served at approximately 45 degrees F.

Deep copper hue with a twinge of gold, showing off a thick, creamy head of beige froth that hangs determinedly to the walls of the glass, and a sparkling clarity. The appearance certainly hearkens back to this heady brew’s ESB roots.

The nose is full of piney, resinous hop notes, with a touch of earthiness, a slight hint of booze, and a whole boatload of malt character – sweet pan-caramelized brown sugar combines with medium-toasted bread and even a bit of cashew-like nuttiness. All together, the mélange of malt and hops is more than inviting – time to dig in and see what lies underneath.

Up front, the malts lay down a big ol’ base upon which to layer the hops. Sweet caramel-drizzled biscuit is overtaken in the middle by a huge dose of earthy, herbaceous, piney hop character with some grapefruit peel and orange zest; the bitterness is dry and intense, but not overwhelming, as the malt backbone keeps things in check. Toward the back and edges of the palate, the malt picks up momentum again, with rich toffee and bread pudding enveloping the palate before the bitterness kicks back in, finishing with a very dry, toffee-resin character and a bit of light boozy alcohol that all lingers long afterward and screams for a palate cleanser – be it another quaff or something altogether different.

Body is full and heavy, but the mild-to-medium level of carbonation, combined with the fairly high bitterness leaves the brew feeling sprightlier than it really is. Alcohol is, as stated, somewhat present on the palate, and leaves a bit of a slickness in the mouthfeel, but as far as headiness goes – well, this one is really much bigger than it lets on is all I can say. Be aware!

This is one brew that could use some age, no doubt – I’d wager that it could make it at least until the brewery’s 20th birthday, which, at the rate their going, is undoubtedly going to arrive. And I can’t wait to see that party! Cheers to fifteen years of heady beers, SweetWater!

Photo of Merkur
3.6/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Beer pours a nice dark copper color with a slight amount of tan head.

Beer smells very sweet. Malt is present along with some floral hops.

Beer tastes extremely sweet. Very malty and almost caramel like with some slight hops bitterness at the end. Not as hoppy as the nose.

Mouthfeel is a bit syruppy and thick.

Photo of Heavenisbeer
3.68/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Copper red in color, with a one-finger bleach white head, and wonderful, coating lacing.

S: Muted malts and fluffy floral hop tones. I was expecting more in the nose.

T: Fruity (tropical mainly) and floral hops lead off and continue through, as sweet malts (caramel and toffee) make a brief appearance midway, followed by more bitter hop tones, and a grassy/hay finish.

M: Great feel. Puffy and feathery but with a solid body and a dry, boozy finish.

Photo of BeerDawgs
3.7/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A 220z bomber pored into a Sweetwater tulip glass

A - A clear red/amber, with a touch of head and not much lace

S - Citrus hops up front. Earthy aromas

T - A double hoppy ESB. Alcohol kicks in the aftertate

M - Medium bodied. Pretty smooth

O - I feel like Sweetwater's other Dank Tanks are much better. It is very strong, but not worth the huge buzz the beer is giving me for the taste.

Photo of rmccomas
3/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from bomber into a stemless wine glass, perfect for splitting beers for tasting in my opinion.

A: pours a hazy amber color
S: smell is an earthy bitterness, not like hops, more of a tea type bitter aroma
T: follows the nose to a tee, it doesnt taste like hops to me, just an earthy generic bitterness going on. not bad at all.
M: par for the style, medium to light, with good carbonation
O; overall this beer is just average all the way. nothing stands out as excellent about it, but its a good rep of the style

Photo of Swim424
3.35/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

poured from bomber into sweetwater pint glass

A-pours a clear red orange with a small head with a thin layer retaining on top. appears a nice ruby red up to a light.

S-smells of floral hops and malts. smells crisp. a bit weak, but good.

T-very strong. sort of a powerful alcohol/hop bitterness up front, with a sweet maltiness in the middle going back to the same hoppy alcohol bitterness on the finish. Can definitely taste the alcohol in this one.

MF-medium body with a little hoppy coating in the mouth. definitely some carbonation.

O-This is good. If you dont like hops it definitely is not for you. very strong. Needs a bit more malt balance to it. Pretty good throughout but the finish doesn't taste right to me. Love the hops, just think it could use a bit more malt.

Photo of brentk56
3.76/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a clear copper with a magnificent, rocky cap that leaves a nice pattern behind

Smell: Intense caramel and stone fruit elements; vague earthy hop tones

Taste: Caramel and stone fruit flavors, up front, with a growing brown sugar element; some earthy hops add another dimension by mid-palate but the finish has a lot of sweet/fruit flavors

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with moderate carbonation; a bit thick and syrupy

Overall: Clearly influenced by the ESB style, this beer is just a bit too thick and sweet for my palate; not a bad beer and many will like it for what it is

Photo of jchoffman
4.55/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A - pours a nice copper into the pint glass with a full finger of light cream colored head, great retention and lacing
S - Sweet crisp malt profile, citrus hops smell

T - pretty seriously sweet malts up front along with a nice blast of citrus and sweet fruit hops. Fairly bitter before transitioning to sweet and fruity. Dry alcohol finish when cold.
M - medium bodied, well carbonated, very refreshing.

O - Excellent brew, a little sweet for me, but excellent qualities to compliment a nice bitter and sweet malty brew
serving type: bottle

Photo of MacQ32
4.33/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - pours a nice copper into my tulip glass with a full finger of light cream colored head, good retention and excellent lacing

S - Sweet crisp malt profile, sweet sweet fruits (peach like), citrusy hops

T - pretty seriously sweet malts up front along with a nice blast of citrusy and sweet fruit hops. Pretty bitter before transitioning to sweet and fruity. Dry alcoholy finish when cold. The warmer it gets the less bitter and more sweet, pretty big difference

M - medium bodied, well carbonated, very refreshing.

O - Good brew lots of sweet fruit qualities to compliment a nice bitter and sweet malty brew drinkability is phenomenal

Photo of FATC1TY
4.58/5  rDev +21.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Fresh Bomber 1 mile from the source!

A: Pours a golden copper color, with a 1/2 finger head on it. Decent lacing on the glass, and a fair bit of bubbles from the bottom coming up. Keeps a thin line of the head till I drink it all.

S: Sweet, maybe a little peach, pear, and citrus in there. Not a ton of smell, but it's sweet, and you know there is some hops in it.

T: Sweet and malty up front, a bit of fruit in there, brown sugar and bready. Malt moves out and then the hops hits you in the mouth and says WHATS UP!. Finishes crisp and da bit of booze on the end. As it warms, it gets a bit stronger tasting, and everything comes out ten fold.

M: Good carbonation, I like it a fair bit. Bit thick and sticky I guess? Coats the mouth, and a lets you savor it all. Smooth though.

Overall: I like this beer! I'll admit, I'm from ATL, and I'm not a massive fan of Sweetwater. Good beer, I'll support them all day long, but it all tastes the same to me. However, this one is different. Packs a punch, it's a big boy brew. I'll also admit, that I planned to share my bomber with a friend, and instead just finished the whole thing tonight. I really like this beer, and makes me really appreciate SW brews more. Very balanced beer in my opionion. Has it all here, and really jumps around to balance it out. Alcohol is there, but at the end, and it's moderate. KUDOS on 15 years SW. This was one big surprise for me in 2012.

Photo of babaracas
4.35/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A doubled/"bumped" ESB.

Pours a slightly hazy orange-red with one finger of dense cream colored foam, settles to a thin layer with sparse blobs on the glass. Smell: caramel, date, evergreen, leafy, candied citrus peel. Taste: lots of toffee, spruce, orange, lemon peel, date bread note and another citrus and earthy hop blast in the finish. Exceptionally creamy feel. Alcohol is hidden in all the right places. Very tasty and also pretty well balanced. Congrats to Sweetwater on 15 years!

Photo of elgiacomo
3.05/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

22oz bottle, very fresh release. Served at around 45F.

Pours lightly cloudy copper/amber with a nice two finger off-white light beige head that leaves really nice sticky bubbles of drippy lacing and recedes to a foamy island and ring. Before long, all head and lacing disappear for a flat appearance. Starts pretty, ends ugly.

Aroma is caramel, toffee, grassy and earthy hops, fairly fruity, bread. Pretty sweet, some alcohol. Decent strength.

Flavor starts with some sweet malt, toffee, caramel, some fruit, some bread, molasses, finishes with a decent hop punch featuring some pine, grass and citrus, good bitterness on the finish at first. Quite a bit of candy sweetness throughout (akin to the recent Dank Tank 420). Sweetness picks up steam as it warms. Decent bit of alcohol at the end as well. Gets messy after a while and I found myself pouring out the last few ounces.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, oily, a bit sticky, moderate carbonation.

Initially I was rather meh on this, but let it warm up a bit and it starts to open up. Let it warm too much and it heads south quick. Sweeter than I like for my tastes, and IMHO a style that doesn’t really need to be jacked up to 10% ABV. To be honest I would’ve liked to seen a little more from a big anniversary brew.

Photo of Kromes
4.34/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

3.5 A: A slightly hazy copper color with a thin tan colored head that leaves a little lacing on the glass and dies down to a thin line of bubbles.

4.0 S: Fruit aromas, peach, pear, grapefruit along with slight caramel and alcohol.

3.5 T: The initial flavor is of grassy and citrus hop and that is quickly overtaken by a rather strong alcohol flavor. I'm not getting too much more than that since the alcohol and hop both have a really sharp bite. Maybe a slight peach and toasted malt in the background. The finish is warm and bitter.

3.0 M: Medium-heavy feel with low carbonation.

3.5 O: An interesting beer. Definitely not for the faint of heart. This one packs quite a punch.

---
Update....This review is of a bottle that has been cellared for 8 months.

A hazy amber color with a thin line of soapy bubbles and lacing down the glass. There is a very nice sweet roasted grain aroma with some caramel, oak and a touch of hop in the background.

Initial flavor is of sweet toasted grain and caramel. Then there is some cherry fruit and a touch of alcohol. The beer finishes very smooth with a sweet, oak and smoky caramel flavor and a touch of warmth and bitterness from the alcohol.

Full bodied with smooth, low carbonation.

Much better with age. This beer has matured nicely and is much better this time around.

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SweetWater 15 Years Of Heady Beers from SweetWater Brewing Company
85 out of 100 based on 98 ratings.