Barleywine Style Ale - Green Flash Brewing Co.

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Barleywine Style AleBarleywine Style Ale

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BA SCORE
87
very good

432 Reviews
THE BROS
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no score

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Reviews: 432
Hads: 811
rAvg: 3.88
pDev: 11.6%
Wants: 43
Gots: 81 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Green Flash Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  10.90% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: scottoale on 11-08-2006

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 432 | Hads: 811
Photo of Tone
4.19/5  rDev +8%
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. (606 characters)

Photo of kylehay2004
4.1/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Single finger thick off white head with little retention on a murky amber and crimson body with excellent lacing. Nice rich aroma of mostly citrus fruit but also some dark fruits and fig on a caramel malt background. Well balanced flavor with toasted caramel malts and earthy and fruity hops with notes of toffee and pine resin. Not overly sour or bitter. Alcohol is a little strong but not too bad for the ABV. Sooth, medium body and moderate carbonation. (456 characters)

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

Pours a dark red/amber body with an off-white creamy head sticking nicely to the glass. Big floral hoppiness in the noze with a nice layer of malt. Hop is really present in the taste with a lot of floral/piney/citrusy notes an a purgent bitterness. Big malty sweetness that gives a full body which balances the hop with raisins/figs aroma. Alcohol at the end gently tickles the throat. Really good barley wine! One of the american examples that is close to an imperial IPA in terms of IBU and hoppy notes. I really love that one, recommended! (542 characters)

Photo of SerialHiker
4.08/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a caramel mahogany color…some very light khaki colored head formed and a thin layer remains…though it’s dark, it’s fairly transparent and I don’t see too many bubbles happening…honestly, there’s not much life here, kinda looks like an average beer…(3.25/5)

Smell: It’s sweet, but not overly candy sweet…I’m getting that dark cherry/strawberry sweetness aroma, but it’s not as strong as other barleywines I’ve had…I’m also picking up some toffee, caramel, spices, pepper, piney hops, earthiness…light dark fruit, a touch of brown sugar and some alcohol heat…I definitely get a little more amber malt than I normally do as well…it’s nice, but not overly aromatic…though as it warms, there is a stronger aroma that highlights more pepper and spices…(4/5)

Taste: Yum! Sweet malts, I’m getting that dark cherry/strawberry sweetness and much like the nose, it’s not candy sweet…it’s more just like sweet caramel amber malts…there’s a good amount of piney, resinous hops flavor there as well balancing and adding to the overall package…it’s almost equal parts sweet amber malts and piney hops…I’m getting some of that brown sugar, fig, spices and booze…I can definitely taste the booze which adds more than subtracts to the flavor...the spices are warming my belly…real good flavor, it’s just a little different from other barleywines I’ve had…it’s got a little bit more of an amber malt flavor than I’m used to…(4.25/5)

Mouthfeel: Medium body, with tons of carbonation…it fluffs up nice bringing more candy sweetness than just in a basic sip, but still it’s not overly candy sweet…it’s mildly chewy, there is some bitterness that hits the outside of my tongue and it ends rather wet with touch of alcohol…(4.25/5)

Overall: I’m quickly finding another style of beer that I’m liking…this barleywine is not as sweet as some I’ve had and while that’s not a bad thing, it just makes it different…the malt flavor is a little too amber malt for me, but that’s the only “knock” I’ve got and that’s probably just be a personal preference…the piney resinous hop flavor is strong and complimentary…this is a solid brew that doesn’t take long to be effective but isn’t too strong to cloud my judgment either…very drinkable and easily recommendable…I definitely want to get at least one more for the future…it’s got a vintage date which usually means it can survive in a cellar for at least a couple of years and I mind as well test that…if you just want a beer to sit back and relax with, this is a great choice…shoot, this is a great choice for disc golfing with and that’s my highest honor! I have to say, the more I drink, the more I like this brew…(4/5) (2,795 characters)

Photo of brewskis
3.53/5  rDev -9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a dark brownish ruby red color with a finger and a half dark tan head that dissipates somewhat slowly and leaves a thick ring of lacing. Smells of lots of carmel and toffee, lots of bready notes from the malt, some brown sugar, raisins, a little dankness from the hops, as well as some grapefruit and pine. Thought there would be more hops on the nose. Taste starts with some resinous hop qualities such as grapefruit, pine, and orange rind. Then in the middle the hop qualities take a back seat to the malts. Lots of carmel, toffee, breadiness, some molasses or brown sugar. Then the finish is more of the heavy malt presence: lots of sweetness and breadiness, as well as some raisins, but more of the resinous hops show through as well. More complex hops flavors show through on the end such as floral, grass, and resin. Some booze on the finish that provides a warming sensation on the way down. Tastes very much like Bells This One Goes to 11 when it warms, as the hops show through much more. A pretty full body with a thick, creamy, and oily mouthfeel. Have had better American barleywines, but still decent. (1,120 characters)

Photo of flydudehsv
4.38/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bomber served in a snifter, purchased from Yosemite Valley's Village Store. Deep amber red/brown with a big, thick head. Oily texture. Aroma is hoppy and honey smell. Taste is mostly caramel and honey but still retains a citrus peel, pine; finishing grassy. Good Barleywine worth getting again! (300 characters)

Photo of Immortale25
4.35/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Due South Brewing Co. snifter. No freshness date.

A- Pours a rubyish light brown color with a 3/4 inch light tan head that retains well before slowly disintegrating to a 1/4 inch head. Sticky lacing that adheres to the glass and then parts down leaving streaks behind.

S- Malty sweetness with a considerable hop sharpness in the back. They mesh together well, creating a citrus/cereal grain hybrid.

T- The bitterness mostly dominates in the flavor with the caramel-like malt trailing behind it. Certainly a hop-forward barleywine with more citrus notes and that signature west coast grassy flavor. The sweetness from the malt is still there but only as a moderator to tip the scale from the hop intensity. I must say though, the alcohol is fairly subdued resulting in high drinkability.

M- Sharp with a lingering hop bite, yet somehow has a soft, slick feel. Medium carbonation.

O- I can't tell if aging would make this one any better due to the fact that the hops are so enjoyable. Either way, I also enjoyed its mild sweetness and would definitely have it again. (1,084 characters)

Photo of martyl1000
4.5/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I guess I have to talk a little more to get to the minimum number of words for this review to register. on speech to text. We'll see how well it transcribes my voice.
I guess I have to talk a little more to get to the minimum number of words for this review to register. (271 characters)

Photo of BeerDawgs
4.39/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A 220z bomber picked up in Asheville, NC

A - A deep mahogany/reddish amber. Lots of cloudiness, tons of head and sticky lace left all over the glass. Impressive

S - Very sweet aroma, toffee, caramel, brown sugar. The sweetness is typical of such a high ABV barleywine. Nice hop kick at the back. Well balanced. Tasty!

M - Medium bodied, fairly light on the tongue. High carbonation

O - Green Flash impresses yet again. They have not let me down in a long time. Well done Barleywine! Perfect for a Thursday night work week wind down... (538 characters)

Photo of ElSid
3.7/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

The Beers of California

#52

Bottle Date: None

A: Deep amber brown with a nice head of stone wash khaki head that simmers to a sheet that wraps around the edges of this beer.

S: Syrupy sweet, caramel, and breadiness along with a wininess and leather earthiness.

T: Leather and earth comes through with tinges of wine grapes and thick berry syrup sweetness. There is a nice leafy bitterness and hop spice, which adds to the moderate alcohol warmth.

M: Medium body and built with a moderate amount of carbonation. The linger is long and lace ample.

O: As straight forward as the name, this is a no-frills barleywine that is solid but lacks enthuiasiasm. Strong but without complexity and interest. A good introduction to the style and a worthy stepping stone to greater brews. (782 characters)

Photo of smakawhat
4.2/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bomber bottle into a large snifter glass. Vintage 2012.

A real creamy light tan head emerges, whipped and thicked up with very tiny bubbles, almost like mattress foam. Body color is a dark burnt orange, with hints of red, quite dark. Up to a bright light it has a real nice peach hue, and is a bit transparent.

Nose is real nice and fruity. Big grapefruit mush with lots of juicy zest sensations. Slightly toned down brown sugars, but some noticeable heat that is tolerable.

Palate coats nicely. A good sense of caramel, with the hop forward grapefruit action lingering. Nice mellow bitterness and chewy. Very coating mouthfeel with just the right amount of depth. Surprisingly not as sugar and sweet forward hinted on the nose, almost even dry.

Overall a real pleasant straightforward barleywine, very good. (828 characters)

Photo of JohnnyMc
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Another great offering from Green Flash!

Pours out a deep mahogany with ruby red highlights and 2 fingers of off-white head.

The aroma has a lot of citrus hop notes, dark fruit like plum and fig and toffee and caramel malt notes.

The taste is mainly dominated by the dark fruit notes, but the citrusy hops are prominent too. There are a decent amount of sweeter malt flavors like toffee and caramel. Balanced between bitter and sweet.

The body is medium-full and it has a rich mouthfeel. There is not taste or smell of alcohol, but a strong warming affect.

This is a really tasty Barleywine and very easy to drink considering the high ABV, but not the best I've ever had. Worthy trying especially for the price. (720 characters)

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

A finely balanced beer here, well-executed and smooth as silk, in traditional Green Flash style. Utilizes their signature malt base with some very fruity hops to set off the balance. Definitely leans more towards the fruity style of barleywines, a' la Founders Bolt Cutter, but I prefer the sharp Simcoe flavor in the Bigfoot / Old Guardian vein. Green Flash has definitely produced a fine brew here, but a bit on the mild side for me. I'll give this a B+/A-. (459 characters)

Photo of mvanaskie13
3.5/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into straight tulip glass, color is amber to light brown, head presents about 1/4 inch thick.

Smell maple sugar, light fig, caramel and some moderate bitter notes.

Taste is pretty solid, not overly sweet nice flavor presence in the maple, caramel type with some very strong bitterness.

Mouthfeel is a little cloying, but expected from a brew like this. Paired well with the leftover desserts.

Overall solid bwine, a little bitter than most but not too cliying, nice mix of flavors (493 characters)

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

Ba Review #231
Served On: 10/26/2012
Glassware: Duvel Glass
Labeled ABV: 10.9%
Date/ Code: 2011 Vintage

This was a 22oz. bomber from Ye Old Spirit Shop in Frederick.

Look: This heavy brew poured a rich clear copper color - bordering on ruby red. The head was a sandy tan color of froth - was an initial 2 fingers that dissipated to a thin patchy film. The lacing was incredible and very sticky looking on the glass.

Smell: This one had a very robust hop aroma. Huge onionskin notes with some pine. The malt sweetness was also very pronounced - all within a very resiny character.

Taste: First up was a malt sweetness that lead into a charge of pungent hops. A harsh hop bitterness hit with some hints of floral and onion trailing behind. A warming sensation appeared on the back-end. Then the huge malt bill made itself know with an almost cloying sweetness that cleared away the hop profile and created a lingering sweet aftertaste.

I enjoyed this brew. It was a very well hopped interpretation of a Barleywine that seemed like a SN Bigfoot that was taken to the next level. (1,080 characters)

Photo of stlunatic15
3.73/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Bomber to a Tulip.

A - Dark mahogany with a 1/2 inch head. Standard lacing.

S - Molasses, maple syrup, caramel, and a light hint of chocolate.

T - Definitely a deep, malty flavor. Slightly boozy at the end, but that's a given since it's still young (2012). Also getting some dark berry notes - almost tastes like chocolate covered cherries, with a hint of raisin.

M - Very well carbonated, medium-bodied, but the thickness is still there. Still a slight burn at the back of the throat due to the booziness and its young age.

O - A very dense, complex barley wine with lots of noticeable flavors occurring. I am trying it fresh for the first time, and now I'm thinking about picking up another bottle to lay down, because I believe this beer has great potential for aging well. Will report back in a year or two. (816 characters)

Photo of BeerNinja007
3.77/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber purchased from Smiley's in Dover NH before they closed this past spring. Green label, Vintage 2011. Served cold in a chilled pint glass.

A: Cloudy brew the color of apple cider. A moderate pour generates 1/2" of dense rocky foam, very creamy-looking, surprisingly good retention given the high ABV. Tons of lace, impressive!

S: This might seem odd, but my first impression is GIN. A distinctive spicy juniper aroma. This fades as it airs, but I still get it lingering behind other things. Aroma is a super thick sweet malty body, full and rounded, covers all the malty sweet spots in the nose. It smells like something you'd have to eat with a spoon. The OG must be absolutely massive. A distinct caramel/ toffee note leads the charge. Also smelling some green apple, of all things.

T/M: Significantly less complex than the smell. Less of a clean malt sweetness, more of a muddy caramel struggling to keep peppery alcohol under wraps. The high ABV was well-hidden in the smell but definitely makes itself known in the taste. Feel is a tight balance between thick malt body and thin sharp alcohol, again with the alcohol winning out.

D: Not the best drinker, largely due to difficulties in keeping the high ABV under control in the taste. I've had other brews just as strong that do a better job at that task. (1,324 characters)

Photo of tdm168
4.03/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to jtd1969 for bringing this to the Barleywine tasting.

A - dark, murky amber with a thick, huge, brownish, foamy head

S - candy sugar, tropical fruit, faint medicine

T - mango, bread, alcohol, caramel, faint dark fruit, faintly bitter

M - full bodied, well carbonated, warm

This is a solid, hoppybeer that has a great flavor and good complexity. The balance is there and it has scary drinkability. It's a borderline DIPA with the tropical fruit notes from the hops, but it packs a nice barleywine-like malt character. This was a nice all around. It's definitely worth a try. (587 characters)

Photo of deadonhisfeet
3.73/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2011 vintage reviewed in October of 2012. Poured from a bomber into a Brooklyn Brewery snifter. Pours out slightly murky, reddish-brown, tawny liquid with a nice one finger of khaki head. The nose definitely says Barleywine. I get sweet, medicinal notes of toffee, sweet malt, and cherries.

Full body and very smooth, velvety mouthfeel. Very sweet throughout the palate with little resistance from the hops. Intense malt flavors of sweet cherries, orange, toast, and holiday cookies. Warming bit of alcohol on the finish and lingering flavors of baking spice and orange rind.

This beer was a bargain at 4.99 per bomber. Plus, it's bottle conditioned and should continue to evolve over time. I realize my bottle was about a year old. I must try a fresh bottle some time to see if it has a bit more hop presence. (812 characters)

Photo of ncfranklin
3.76/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle into a tulip. 2012 Vintage.

A: Dark toffey brown. Hazy throughout with a finger tan head that laces well.

S: Nose is Malty sweet and feint. Light resiny pine.

T: Straight after the now. Big malty here with caramel and candy, some hops of pine give a resiny bite. Light alcohol mingles in.

M: Big and chewy as expected. A light bite from the hops leaves a slight tingle to the mouth.

D: A no-frills staple west coast American barleywine. (458 characters)

Photo of mountdew1
4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into an imperial pint glass. Color was a nice dark caramel, with a very light brown foamy head. Head lasted a few minutes, but left nice lacing on the sides, and the remainder clung a fair amount. Aroma was floral sweet, a hint of spicy sugar, but you could also smell the alcohol. Flavor was a well balanced sweet, with a bit of hoppy after taste. Coated very well in the mouth. Nice thick and chewy, with a little bit of carbonation in the mouth. Overall a good barleywine. Perhaps just a smidgen oversweet, but outside of that it was delicious.

Bottle said 2011 Vintage (580 characters)

Photo of Slatetank
3.98/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I picked this up at Wegman's - good deal for a bomber- under $8. Enjoyed chilled in a tumbler.

The color is deep caramel amber with ruddy hues and thick frothy 3 finger puffy cream of light beige. The lace sticks in a thick lace pattern. The smell is a mix of pine and floral hop notes with a sweet and slightly alcohol influenced aroma with mild hint of toffee and citrus with a mild herbal perfume type hop scent. The feel is good, very rich and bitter with a warming alcohol finish and moderately full body with slight acicidty balanced by a moderately high sweetness anchoring the intense hop element, very complex and spicy.

This Barleywine has everything for Fans of the West coast style wrapped up in the flavor. There is a blast of pine with slight fusel alcohol in the taste and hint of spice with a light caramel dose of malt in the deep lasting middle which leads to a bitter and slightly warm finish. The taste has slight citrus/grapefruit tinges but mainly pine oriented hops and gentle caramel from the malt combine with a strong taste of alcohol but not overboard as it mainly comes through in the finish. I enjoyed this one a lot, a pretty solid example of an American Style barlewine -very fresh and full of hops, but not really trying to be an Imperial Ipa in disguise -it has the malt backbone you expect in a Barleywine. (1,346 characters)

Photo of MadScientist
3.88/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Medium copper with excellent clarity. The persistent tan head of creamy mousse-like bubbles leave a fine lacing on the glass.

S: The light malt aromas of caramel with some bread notes increases as it warms. There is a light citrus and floral hop aroma with some light fruit esters. No diacetyl, no DMS. The moderately strong alcohol aroma is slightly hot.

T: There is an intense hops bitterness and a prominent almost equal malt flavor of caramel, toffee and slight notes of crusty bread. The moderate hops flavor is mostly citrus and resinous pine. The flavor balance is fairly bitter with a strong malt close behind. The finish is medium dry with a an aggressive bitterness and grainy malt flavor.

M: A smooth medium-full bodied beer with a moderately-low carbonation. There is a substantial alcohol warmth and a light creaminess.

O: A West Coast styled American Barleywine that features substantial hops bitterness, alcohol and a surprisingly high amount of malts flavors. It's a great beer to sip on a cool Autumn night. (1,032 characters)

Photo of jera1350
4.23/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Vintage 2009.

Amber colored, sticky head of tan foam that generates some nice lacing.

The smell is nice, but a bit light. Dark Jamaican spiced rum, hops and sweet toffee malt. Mostly dark rum though.

Dark spiced rum dominates the flavor here. Spicy, mellow booze, toasted nuts and spicy and earthy hops. Lingering spice and hops in the aftertaste.

Very smooth, full bodied and dry on the finish.

Very nice barleywine that has done well with age. I think this would have been a hot mess fresh. Very pleasant drinker with a unique spice component for the style. (569 characters)

Photo of lurpy1
3.31/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

First impression...I really like Green Flash, consider them underrated, but they don't grab your attention with the bland, lifeless labels. If you took off the wording, I'd guess it was the label from a bag of organic tortilla chips. Anyhoo. Green Flash. Liked the stout. LOVED the IPAs. Here goes the Barleywine. And how bout you Green Flash people have some fun and name the beer?

Pour is nice, deep amber with a mushy finger of head. Smell is good too. caramel, toffee, oaty, with a challenging amount of hops.

On the tongue, this beer is probably a victim of my expectations, as all the recent BWs I've had are barrel-aged, so my palate is wondering where the bourbon is. After shaking off that downer, I find the cascade hops too present. The sweet notes are very subtle initially and gone in the finish, leaving a watered down version of the West Coast IPA. Not bad. But much room for improvement. I get that Green Flash knows its hops, but they seem to not be able to get out of their own way in turning this into another hop attack. Must be a California thing, Lagunitas does the same thing, make EVERYTHING hoppy.

Nice thick mouthfeel, not as sugary as a barleywine should be, and it is dragged down a bit by the wateriness.

One of the hoppier barleywines I've ever had. Not a miss per se, but probably below average in the barleywine patheon and the weakest of many great beers I've had from Green Flash. Extremely marginal recommendation on this one. (1,466 characters)

Barleywine Style Ale from Green Flash Brewing Co.
87 out of 100 based on 432 ratings.