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Barleywine Style Ale - Green Flash Brewing Co.

Barleywine Style AleBarleywine Style Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

745 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 745
Reviews: 427
rAvg: 3.88
pDev: 11.86%

Brewed by:
Green Flash Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  10.90% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: scottoale on 11-08-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 745 | Reviews: 427 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of vette2006c5r


3.99/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Barleywine pours a reddish amber color with a very small lacing head. The aroma is is very sharp, with an aged malty undertone. The taste is very sharp as well, noticeable bold malty undertone, with boozy flavors. Good full and bold flavors. Overall its a very nice traditional barleywine.

Serving type: on-tap

11-10-2013 19:22:25 | More by vette2006c5r
Photo of Tone


4.18/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours a cloudy, brown color. 3/4 inch head of an off-white color. Great retention and great lacing. Smells of wet hop, citrus hops, slight floral hops, sweet malt, alcohol, and hop oils. Fits the style of an American Barleywine. Mouth feel is smooth and clean, with a low carbonation level. Tastes of sweet malt, hop oils, hint of roasted malt, alcohol, citrus hops, slight floral hops, hint of wet hop, and a hint of earthy malt. Overall, good appearance, aroma, feel, body, and complexity. My only slight complaint is that I wish is had a little more balance in flavors between the hops and malt/alcohol.

Serving type: on-tap

03-05-2013 18:55:24 | More by Tone
Photo of UCLABrewN84


3.63/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Green Flash Brewing Company in San Diego, CA.

Pours a slightly hazy dark orange with a foamy beige head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Foamy rings of lace line the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, brown sugar, caramel, and citrus zest. Taste is much the same along with a weird celery-like flavor. There is a mild amount of hop bitterness on the palate after each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer but the celery flavor I am picking up is pretty odd.

Serving type: on-tap

08-07-2012 01:19:51 | More by UCLABrewN84
Photo of StonedTrippin


4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

good conventional barleywine. pours a deep ruby brown color, like an overripe apple. small white head, minimal lacing. smells strong, notes of spice and wheat bread are present, as is some darker malt sweetness. flavor is nice, well rounded, this one might age well. toffee and dried fruit mingle in the flavor as well. feel is good too, bubbly and just short of full bodied. i could drink several of these, and the price was fair. overall one of the more enjoyable barleywine's ive had this season.

Serving type: on-tap

03-06-2012 06:18:44 | More by StonedTrippin
Photo of ehammond1

4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On Tap (2009)

Churchill's Pub & Grille
San Marcos

(Aged for 2 years)

Slightly hazy murky brown and auburn with golden edges--very thin off-white head which leaves sheets of lace down the glass.

Sweet aroma of toffee and caramel along with white, sweet fruits. There's a citrus component as well, like many of Green Flash's more hoppy offerings.

The flavor is remarkably well balanced, though still somewhat sweet. The malty toffee and caramel are the stars, and after 2 years, the alcohol burn I'm familiar with from this beer has all but diminished. Very nice.

Medium to full mouthfeel and a bit oily. Appropriate.

A very nice, drinkable, somewhat sweet barleywine. I recommend sitting on this for a couple years after purchasing a bottle. I've had this beer fresh a number of times and this aged version was substantially better than those.

Serving type: on-tap

11-07-2011 02:32:48 | More by ehammond1
Photo of HopHead84


4.1/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


A: Dark amber with a creamy off-white head. Good retention and lots of lacing.

S: Candied caramel and pronounced apple. Grapefruit accompanies date and pine resin. Alcohol is evident. Smells really nice.

T: Sweet caramel with aggressive pine and grapefruit hop notes and an upper moderate bitterness. I get Granny Smith apple and an alcoholic punch. Finishes with caramel, grapefruit, and booze.

M: Medium body with upper moderate carbonation.

Overall: An aggressive but enjoyable American Barleywine. I could see this benefiting from a year of age.

Serving type: on-tap

10-31-2011 02:36:27 | More by HopHead84
Photo of roodie


3.53/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed on tap at The Yardhouse in Long Beach
Served in a 10 oz tulip/goblet

A: poured a dark coffee brown with 1 finger of mocha colored head. Lots of lacing

S: very mild. Malty sweet with a hint of hops. Caramel predominates

T: mild caramel; slightly sweet with a hoppy backbone that has a nice bite

M: malty bitterness lingers on the palate, smooth and easy to drink

O: enjoyable but not my favorite barleywine. Bigfoot and TAPS are more my style.

Serving type: on-tap

07-29-2011 15:44:22 | More by roodie
Photo of badboyrsl84


3.05/5  rDev -21.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a beautiful caramel color with a nice 2 inch head.
Smell- caramel and roasted malt . There is almost a lemon smell. Some alcohol is present as it warms

Taste- a strong bitter/burnt malt that laces the throat like medicine in the mouth. Very over barring and almost too much to drink a whole pint .

Overall- too much for me

Serving type: on-tap

07-24-2011 19:04:20 | More by badboyrsl84
Photo of juhl31


3.85/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

thanks The Linkery for the '09 vintage!

-crimson brown body with a white thin head

-still very hop heavy, not as much has died off as i would have thought. some malt background and a bit of alcohol

-again...very hoppy. there is a good caramel melt towards the middle and a little vanilla in there

-all the hops makes for some bitterness. there is a bit of a carb burn and there's almost a buttery taste in there

-this is a good barleywine, but i remember liking the bottle better which was a surprise. would like to get a couple more years on it

Serving type: on-tap

11-14-2010 09:19:49 | More by juhl31
Photo of charlzm


4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Consumed at Blue Palms, Hollywood, CA on 11/08/08.

Dark but very clear brown liquid. A one-finger tan head quickly settles into a layer of bubbly foam that makes excellent lacing on the glass.

Yeasty bread aroma with a hint of brown sugar.

As it enters the mouth, the beer is somewhat thick and a little astrignent.

On the palate: a heavy malt character is up front, flirting with chocolate before moving to a cinnamon sugar flavor. Bready, like cinnamon raisin. Hot, either from hop spiciness or ABV (or both) I cannot say. Bitter on the finish with lingering oak note.

More complex than this review gets across, and very drinkable despite the bold flavor and relatively high ABV.

Serving type: on-tap

11-15-2008 23:51:02 | More by charlzm
Photo of Floydster


3.8/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Two 5 ounce samples at Naja's Place 1st Barleywine Festival in Redondo Beach both today and yesterday, 2008 vintage that is listed at 10.9% ABV this time around, have also tasted this from the bottle before too

A-Color is a mix between an amber and medium brown, there is a 1/2 inch vanilla colored head that stays around for a little bit. decent retention, some lacing
S-Piney and floral hoppiness, bready and biscuit-like malt, sweet honey, toffee, booze, caramel, esters, lots of citrus, charred scents, and herbs
T-First thing you notice is the potent hops, reminded me a bit of Old Numbskull from Alesmith right off the bat, fades into some citrusy esters in the middle, finish is slightly sweet with caramel but also dry with more piney hops than before, calms down a little as it warms on the bitterness spectrum but it is pretty hoppy all the way through, enjoyed the complexity in this one and it is almost balanced which I tend to see is a rarity in barleywines
M-Low to moderate level of carbonation, medium bodied, mouthfeel ranges from dry to sweet, taste lingers a long time with a noticeable sticky sensation
D-The big hop presence make this one a bit hard to drink, it is also strong and you can taste it, nearly eleven percent could catch up to, little heavy on the stomach, taste is complex and keeps you coming back for more though

Green Flash makes some serious beers and this is no exception, this one changes a lot with age I have noticed too, big hop profile when fresh, then sweet and rounded with a couple years under its belt, will be drinking again, hope to try the brandy barrel version soon, recommended

Serving type: on-tap

11-07-2008 07:39:58 | More by Floydster
Photo of Brianmerrilyn

New York

3.28/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

7oz. goblet, at Hop Devil Grill.

A: Poured a 1.5 finger white puffy head, cloudy light coco on the top and light golden towards the bottom. Few spotches of lace but not much beyond that and average retention.

S: My nose got slippery pine, herbs and lots of wooden overtones. Estery seconds seemed to be peels of grapefruit, overally tarty.

T: Very hoppy, nearing on a bomb initially. Followed the nose in a burnt/charcoal aspect from the hops or perhaps coffee beans. Not very bitter in nature. Malts were second and not providing as much counterbalance to the grapefruit and tart fruit taste. ABV is very subdued.

M: Light to moderate body with a mild citric acidity, softly crisp and creamy but turning to a unimpressive sour at the end.

D: Nothing special to write home about. I had just tried the Rogue Crustacean prior and felt it was almost a different style of beer in body and flavors.

Serving type: on-tap

07-28-2008 16:28:09 | More by Brianmerrilyn
Photo of dac


3.68/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap a Beachwood BBQ.

Copper colored with a slight haze, thin off white head.

Aroma of citrusy hops and caramel malt.

Big malty flavor, sweet carmelized sugary flavors with citrus/pine hop flavors, but hop bitterness is reserved. Sweetness to bitterness ratio is similar to some English barleywines, however the hops used are definately of the American variety and the finish is free of diacetyl and esters typical of English styles.

A rich warming beer, full of calories and alchohol.

With a beer this big I prefer either more background bitterness to balance the sweetness or substantial complexity in the malt/fermentation by-products. This beer lacks that balance.

Serving type: on-tap

02-06-2008 15:05:29 | More by dac
Photo of treehugger02010


3.7/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I got this on tap at Malone's in Lexington, Va.
Appearance: It poured a dark brown body with a light brown head. The head was only about 1 finger high, but still had much retention and ended up leaving tons of lace.
Smell: There wasn't much dancing around what this beer was about. Very strong bitter hops and sweet malts. As it warms, the hops begin to win over the sweet malts.
Taste: THe sweetness was over powering at times, but toward the end, the hops poked their head back in to remind me I was drinking a Barleywine.
Mouthfeel: Very stift and ridgid.
Drinkability: Great as a session beer, but not daily.
Don't drink and review.

Serving type: on-tap

04-15-2007 15:26:35 | More by treehugger02010
Photo of Boto


1.95/5  rDev -49.7%
look: 4 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

On tap at Mad Mex Robinson: I see a commonality to the reviews of this beer from this location. I love barleywines, but this was simply the worst that I have ever had. The color was good, being a dark ruby colored brew, with a small off white head. The smell was something else. It didn’t smell bad, but it did smell like root beer. The taste was predominately of root beer. This was close to undrinkable. Yuk!

Serving type: on-tap

04-14-2007 01:05:56 | More by Boto
Photo of rabsten

West Virginia

4.15/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Fatheads, South Side, Pittsburgh PA

Red-brown, rich colored pour into a 12oz wineglass. Thin head due to pour but some lacing.

Sweet malt with hop backup. Slightly smoky, like an Ilse whiskey.

Caramel malt, with good hops in background again. Anise and whiskey notes. complex. Good flavor experience.

Round and heavy mouthfeel. Very soothing.

Drinkability: sleep inducing, soothing, relaxing. You want to go to sleep after one, so drinkability is somewhat limited.

Bottom Line: Great "22oz and go-to-bed beer." Tasty, soothing, sleep-inducing.

Serving type: on-tap

03-17-2007 21:50:01 | More by rabsten
Photo of Brewji

British Columbia (Canada)

4.9/5  rDev +26.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

On first pour, it glows with a rich, reddish amber colour, and a lacy white head top. I sniffed this beer like some people sniff flowers (I unfortunately am allergic to pollen). I took in a lot of deep malty scents, and hops, and...that's about it. But not in a bad way, this brew smelled righteous, knowing ahead of time that something big was going to happen. It's like a referee calling a penalty shot in overtime, going in for the big sip was the shot, and the overall taste determined whether or not the deke attempt worked.

Taking the first sip, I expected a train wreck of malty hops. However, I was greeted by a strong, pleasant malty tone, followed by a nice transition into an intense malty flavour, and a crisp, clean after taste. I was so impressed by the after taste, the clean-ish feeling that I got, that it made me want more. This is finally a brew over 10% that will leave you wanting more! Imagine Datsyuk with a highlight reel goal on a breakaway...naturally you'd want more (so long as he's not scoring on your team).

The first, middle, and end tastes are phenomenal. There are no complaints, as everything flows together, while still leaving a memorable taste that would definitely make me want to order this again. If you (or your friends) are new to barleywines, this is a definite first step into the world of 10%+ beers.

The Green Flash Brewing Co. BarleyWine gets a phenomenal penalty-shot-goal-in-overtime 9.5 / 10

Serving type: bottle

03-25-2014 22:46:04 | More by Brewji
Photo of cratez

Ontario (Canada)

4.19/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Green Flash Barley Wine Style Ale – 10.2% ABV – 2012 Vintage, consumed March 28, 2013
A: pours a deep and clear ruby red with three fingers of cream coloured froth and big globs of lacing on the tulip glass. Several bubbles in the body. Fantastic look.
S: red grapefruit, caramel-drizzled dates, pine resin, grassy and herbaceous hops, burnt sugar, toasty malt, navel orange, toffee, faint melon, and ethanol. Absolutely gargantuan nose.
T: rich caramel, toffee, and date-like sweetness, mango, toasty-roasted malts, alcohol, pungently citric and lingering resinous hop bitterness, some warmth going down. Tasty overall, but the flavour doesn’t quite live up to the aroma.
M: thick, silky-smooth, and full-bodied, bordering on syrupy, massive tongue-scraping bitterness lingers on the palate with some alcoholic burn in the throat (though not harsh).
O: an excellent, hop-forward U.S. barley wine; one of the better examples that I’ve tried.

Serving type: bottle

03-10-2014 01:13:33 | More by cratez
Photo of ItalianPisces84


4.05/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

First off, let me just say this: not only is this not a barleywine, I'm not even sure I'd go so far as to call it "barleywine-style," whatever that may be. Any "-style" usually raises red flags for me, whether it is for a beer or "beef-style stock" or whatever. That said, I'm glad it didn't, because this is a solid beer. But it isn't a barleywine. If you are a barleywine fan, as I am, and are expecting one, you may be disappointed.

So before tasting this, pretend instead that you're about to taste a malty IPA... because that's what this is. Except of course there's nothing pale about it, owing to the strong malt character.

Anyway, the basic rundown... it poured a medium caramel, almost a deep amber color. Left a decent head which subsided fairly quickly to leave persistent lacing. Hops are the most apparent scent, and similarly are the strongest component in this beer's flavor, although the malt is a close second. There is enough malt to make this beer a little sticky, though it is surprisingly not at all viscous... at least not for a barleywine. As with the flavor, and especially the scent, this beer's viscosity (and overall texture) more closely resembles that of an IPA than a barleywine.

If I were to rate this beer as a barleywine it would get a very low mark, and that shouldn't happen because this is a very good beer. So I will rate it simply as a beer, regardless of label or sub-label.

Serving type: bottle

02-18-2014 04:26:21 | More by ItalianPisces84
Photo of MaillardRx


4.23/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a bottle into an oversized wine glass

A: A rich, auburn color that beautifully demonstrates the character of the malt color, great head and very lacy

S: Hops aplenty and many malts in the nose. It smells like a brew day.

T: It didn't really taste a whole lot like a barleywine, but rather, more like a deep, hoppy IPA. Some notes of fig, the alcohol taste is noticeable, which portrays a slight ammonia taste

M: Very full-bodied, a great mouthfeel

O: A very craftsman beer. It is complex, yet not overbearing. It is drinkable, yet gives you something to consider. I liked it.

Serving type: bottle

01-20-2014 19:44:14 | More by MaillardRx
Photo of chugalug06


3.76/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Murky orange/red brew with creeping growing straw colored head. Lacing is decent.

Nice strong pine aroma. Nicely resinous too. Aromatics are nice and developed.

Strong upfront flavors with faded bitterness. Slightly awkward dryness on the finish. Lots of pine resin. Dank. Strong weird sweetness has yet to fade. Carbonation is high and fits, but isn’t blended overly nice. Drinks harsh and needs to be more.

If this brew went back to the drawing board or maybe a barrel (cough-cough) it may shape into something wonderful. However, as currently sits, it’s forgettable, but at the price point ($6/22oz) it’s worthy.

Serving type: bottle

11-08-2013 05:12:47 | More by chugalug06
Photo of a0lbudman


4.31/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A-dark copper with a large tan head that fades slowly and leave a heavy lacing on the glass
S-good caramel malt and dark fruit with some hops
A-caramel malt and dark fruit hit me at first then the spice flavor took over. The aftertaste was a warming alcohol taste with hops bitterness coming in along with a great caramel finish
M-medium body with good carbonation
O-It was a very complex beer. You get caramel malt to spice then hop bitterness then you get a very good malt finish and every sip gets better

Serving type: bottle

11-03-2013 22:54:46 | More by a0lbudman
Photo of Scrapss


4.43/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bomber into a wide-mouth, large mason jar. 2012 vintage.

A: DEEP amber. Beautiful two finger soapy top/rocky bottom head of off-white color. Persistent head.

S: hoppy and malty. toffee. Alphas, acetyls, rich malt. seems like caramel malt is present. There's even some tart fruit hiding in there. Complex.

T: Very nice smooth hop bitterness after a blast of smooth malt. Very smooth. There's some of the fruit in the nose present. yeast is hiding.

M: big complex finish with the malt and hop playing with each other in a little dance. moderate carbonation stays in solution until the finish, where it presents a creamy hit followed by a slightly metallic upfinish followed by a spicy, boozy ultimate finish. Malt fights back after ultimate finish for the last word.

O: Very nice balanced barleywine worth trying. Green Flash shows extreme competence in this style with this brew.

Serving type: bottle

10-16-2013 21:42:07 | More by Scrapss
Photo of pkalix


4.06/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

deep malted aroma in a very cider-red color with a little bit of foam on top.
some tartness in the taste, related moreso, I believe, to the alcohol content than any hops. but lots of sweetness on the palate first, a kind of bitter and sweetness from the malts. but some hop presence too.
overall, a great high octane brew. I appreciate the taste and like the different variations of barleywines and other high abv brews but I cant help but wonder why those idiots keep drinking that manure 4loco or whatever it is when this is just so much greater when one may want a higher abv-ed beverage....?

Serving type: bottle

09-14-2013 00:38:49 | More by pkalix
Photo of BlackHaddock

United Kingdom (England)

3.46/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Two small tasting cups at Cotteridge Wine during a 6th July Black Country Bus Trip (sorry if I stole someones cup, but I needed two to rate/review it correctly).

Impressed: poured a good clear amber, on top a white crown of uneven foam.

Intense semi-sweet malty aroma: caramel and toffee notes leading the way.

Taste is also semi-sweet (at first) before the hop content kicks in and you finish with a fine bitter and dry mouth.

Nice Barley Wine and thanks to Cotteridge Wine for the free tasting.

Serving type: bottle

07-23-2013 10:08:56 | More by BlackHaddock
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Barleywine Style Ale from Green Flash Brewing Co.
87 out of 100 based on 745 ratings.