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Anchor Old Foghorn - Anchor Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Anchor Old FoghornAnchor Old Foghorn

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

1,673 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,673
Reviews: 997
rAvg: 3.91
pDev: 11%
Wants: 64
Gots: 82 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Anchor Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
English Barleywine |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
ABV varies slightly over the years.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-15-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,673 | Reviews: 997 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by mobyfann:
Photo of mobyfann


3.75/5  rDev -4.1%

Paid only $4.99 for a 6-pack at Jungle Jim's...

The appearence looks like a beer and a wine mated, so it's a rusty red colored base with a little white head, low retention and no signs of lacing, not impressed... The aroma is pretty good, it speaks of malts and sweets.

The taste is not too shabby, it almost feels like a wine crossbred with a beer, quite unique, but not a real beer in my opinion... It's good in the mouth, not heavy nor strong, I enjoyed it slowly. The 8.8% ABV seems too low with what I am tasting here, I've had imperial stouts with better days than this one (Blackout/Storm King), and they didn't hint this much alcohol.

Final Thought: I'll stick with beer thank you, first barley wine making it want to be the last one, nothing good enough here, porters and specialty stouts wins any day!

Re-Review: Upgraded the Taste and Drinkability up to a 4, the taste was complex of a nice blend of fruit and malt. More drinkable than the last time I had it, maybe my taste is becoming more developed???

07-26-2004 03:17:24 | More by mobyfann
More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon

North Carolina

4.08/5  rDev +4.3%

Pours tawny brown color with a few light highlights with a thin lace,aroma is deeply fruity and a little alcoholic.Taste is rich and warming alot of fruity estures with a hint of molassis with an underlying herbal,grassy flavor in the finish.A nice complex brew but whats up with the tiny bottles?

04-13-2004 02:23:16 | More by oberon
Photo of RoyalT


4/5  rDev +2.3%

Appearance – Clear, orangish-brown body that produced a big head that left quickly, which is very typical of the style.

Smell – This one has the sweet, malty, alcoholic aroma of a good barley wine. There’s also some hop bitterness there for balance, but mostly the smell announces a sugary substance.

Taste – Yes, there’s a big sweetness from this one. The malt is present but clearly in the background. The main thrust of this brew is the sweetness, predominantly alcoholic molasses and brown sugar. There are some dark fruits as well; mostly bloody peaches and plums doused in table sugar, but the molasses and brown sugar are the strongest. Lastly, there’s a slight floral hop balance to round this one out.

Mouthfeel – This one is flat and smooth and full-bodied.

Drinkability – This is a great sipping beer. I had this with a charbroiled tenderloin, and it was heaven.

Update – This is one of the first ales that I rated after joining the site in 2003, so I thought it would be fun to re-rate it with a 2004 vintage. I “ditto” the review from over a year ago. It isn’t as hoppy as some American BWs but goes down quite well.

09-02-2003 03:43:13 | More by RoyalT
Photo of DanGeo


4.25/5  rDev +8.7%

06-24-2013 11:22:41 | More by DanGeo
Photo of TCHopCraver


3.48/5  rDev -11%

A: Pours a rich mahogany into a medium wine glass. Looks ruby-brownish when held to light. Its thin, 1-finger head dissipates quickly. A thin, sticky lacing clings to the glass as the beer goes down my gullet.

S: Caramel-toffee with a big, roasty malt aroma. Also some black currant, anise, and definitely some brown sugar and cinnamon hints. A very sweet, almost port-like aroma.

T: Sweet barley malarmey! Rich malt sweetness dominates this brew. A very liqueur- like quality with heavy brown sugar accents are present. Definitely a dessert-style sipper. Fruit flavors include raisin and fig. I would really appreciate a little more hop bitterness to balance out the huge malt presence, but the lack of hop flavor certainly doesn't ruin the taste. Just a little booziness is detectable near the end of a sip. Medium carbonation.

M: I really enjoy the feel of this beer. It is really creamy with a medium-heavy sweetness that coats the entire palate. Sticky-icky (in a good way).

D: The sweetness of it leads me to not give it a great rating... I really enjoyed about the first 2/3 of the brew, but the last 1/3 was just a little too sweet and sticky. One and done for me, thank you, and I'll probably enjoy another in a couple of months or so.

02-07-2010 21:41:04 | More by TCHopCraver
Photo of MadScientist

New York

4/5  rDev +2.3%

03-27-2013 03:19:21 | More by MadScientist
Photo of brownbeer


3.85/5  rDev -1.5%

A- Deep amber, fluffy off-white head.

S- Classic robust barleywine aroma. Spicy, fruity hops, pine, toffee, doughy, with an alcohol presense.

T- This was a let down for me after the great nose. It kind of fell flat. The hops almost disappeared. Malty caramel, banana, raisin fading to a warm alcohol feel.

M- Medium bodied with light, soft carbonation. Needs more body but it still works for the most part.

D- Well made beer,easy drinking, but I kind of lose my interest after one.

11-05-2009 02:52:30 | More by brownbeer
Photo of kaimcm


3.95/5  rDev +1%

bottle, but not just any bottle, one of those little 7 ounce bastards that I love so much which are now gone. little 7 ounce bastard, I salute you and your achievments. poured into a Caracole snifter.

A: deep brownish/burgundy hue. light sploch on the off white head. disipates quickly but no surprise there.

S: cant decide if its more caramel or brown sugar, vanilla, white grapes, a hint of pear, alcohol.

T: light, sweet but not cloying, and complex sugar profile. very clean malt bill to support the sugars. butter, vinous, grape like aromas translate easily into similar flavors. dries somewhat during the finish which is a nice balance and ends somewhat fruity, apples, pears, barely tart.

M: honestly a little too light for the style. and at what used to be a 7ounce serving, Anchor shouldnt have been that concerned with thinning the viscosity to make it more drinkable. I would like to see a heavier more, viscous mouthfeel.

D: a damn tasty brew. im curious to see how the switch to 12 oz bottles goes over. ill pick some up myself and see how i feel after 12 instead of the 7 im used too.

01-27-2006 04:30:30 | More by kaimcm
Photo of tbryan5


3.5/5  rDev -10.5%

01-20-2013 23:45:35 | More by tbryan5
Photo of JacobMutberg


4/5  rDev +2.3%

10-09-2012 16:43:22 | More by JacobMutberg
Photo of joemetric


3.75/5  rDev -4.1%

07-10-2014 18:38:02 | More by joemetric
Photo of sdsimkins


3.75/5  rDev -4.1%

04-16-2013 15:03:09 | More by sdsimkins
Photo of Dmann


4.53/5  rDev +15.9%

I thought this was a great barleywine. I had this on tap at the San Diego Brewing Co. tonight and it was great! The first thing I noticed was the great smell of spices, plum and a slight scent of alchohol. The taste had a good portion of maltiness with a good balance of hoppiness and a good spice/plum flavor. This was a great beer on tap and much better than out of the bottle.

11-01-2003 09:15:16 | More by Dmann
Photo of BJ1833


4.25/5  rDev +8.7%

Presentation: 7 oz bottle

Appearance: Dark amber color with thin white head

Aroma: Smell of roasted malt and slight nut character. Aroma of plums and raisins.

Taste: Sweet taste of roasted malt and dark fruits. Alcohol taste is present, but not overpowering. Slight spiciness in the finish.

Mouthfeel: Low carbonation with a smooth, almost creamy mouthfeel.

Overall: Good barleywine that would go down great on a winter night. Complex flavors blend well into an extremely enjoyable brew. This is a beer that you want to stop analyzing and just sit back and enjoy.

09-08-2004 00:51:50 | More by BJ1833
Photo of skybluewater


4/5  rDev +2.3%

Pours a lovely deep cherry color. No head, no lace (although I believe that's normal for this style...). Smell is quite nice, with a bit of raisin and cherry poking through. I really like the taste. There's a little raisin, a little cherry, with a nice maltiness (with a bit of caramel) and some hops. The mouthfeel is pretty full, although it gets a little weaker as the beer warms.

This is only my second barleywine, but I'm really developing a liking for this style (along with old and strong ales). This is a nice little beer (that comes in a cute little bottle) to sip on a bitterly cold winter's eve. (Although 7 ounces isn't enough...)

12-24-2004 00:18:23 | More by skybluewater
Photo of orbitalr0x


4.38/5  rDev +12%

Old Foghorn pours from the 12oz bottle into my tulip glass a deep dark reddish brown with a nice creamy khaki head atop. Spotty lacing forms all over the side of the glass as garnet hues shine out when I hold it up to the light. Aroma is rich, sweet caramelly malt, dark fruits, cherries and brown sugar. There's a really nice herbal, green, slightly citric hoppiness throughout. Quite nice.

First sip brings a rich, fruity, caramelly maltiness with hints of cherry, molasses and burnt sugars. This is followed by a nice wave of herbal hoppiness, a touch citrusy, that brings a nice flow of bitterness to the back of the palate. This is a tasty barleywine and I'm glad to see it coming in full 12oz bottles now. Quite refined with a nice malt/hop balance and bold flavor.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with good steady carbonation. A decent bit lighter in body that many other barleywines...but it serves to make it all the more drinkable. I could see sitting down to a few bottles of this with no problem at all. My fiance also enjoyed this with me as she has been getting into barleywines! Definetly a brew that everyone should try at least once.

01-19-2006 02:30:59 | More by orbitalr0x
Photo of bulldogg915


4/5  rDev +2.3%

03-06-2014 21:08:42 | More by bulldogg915
Photo of chOAKbarrell


3.1/5  rDev -20.7%

Pours a murky reddish brown color. Small head. Malty nose. There's a detectable alcohol taste, which I'm not really into. Kind of sweetish too, which I'm also not into. A bit syrupy. Can't say I'm really liked this one. Dont think I'll be getting it again, and certainly not for $12+ a six pack.

11-22-2005 02:02:43 | More by chOAKbarrell
Photo of EastBay_Nick


3/5  rDev -23.3%

07-13-2013 21:22:39 | More by EastBay_Nick
Photo of lordofthewiens


4/5  rDev +2.3%

I enjoyed this beer. Maybe not as aggressive as some American barleywines, but still a good beer. Served in a tulip the beer was a hazy burnt sienna color with a medium tan head. It had a sweet caramel aroma, with some fruit also noticeable. The caramel came through quite well in the taste, as did a little bit of cherry and some late hops. A smooth, enjoyable beer.

07-25-2008 22:18:09 | More by lordofthewiens
Photo of NWer


3.15/5  rDev -19.4%

Poured nice dark amber into a wine snifter. Moderate golden head. Smells nice. The taste is balanced enough to style for an English Barleywine but the maltiness is too milky. The sweetness leaves an unpleasant aftertaste that gets old quickly.
I'm glad I tried it once.

06-10-2011 21:53:28 | More by NWer
Photo of DaftPatrick


3.75/5  rDev -4.1%

03-19-2014 22:15:05 | More by DaftPatrick
Photo of Todd


3.75/5  rDev -4.1%

On tap @ the Sunset Grill in Allston, MA.

A murky deep dark brown with ruby edges ... little to no head.

Esters and a big alcohol nose. Grape, herbal and a bit spicy with some backing soft malts in the aroma.

Smooth, mature and extremely mellow -- medium bodied, and a bit thin for a Barleywine. Big malt flavours, grape, raisin and plenty of complex esters. Nice dose of spicy alcohol and mingling hops.Thin caramel and chocolate -- a bit buttery. Light oxidation in the finish leaves a cardboard/wet paper flavour on the palate.

The 2001 on tap seems to be holding up somewhat. I definately enjoyed this beer, but I recommend letting it warm to near room temperature in order to release more flavours.

09-08-2002 05:58:40 | More by Todd
Photo of grynder33


3.48/5  rDev -11%

I got a amberish brown color pour, a big head for a barleywine, much less of an aroma than I had hoped for, mouthfuls going down were smooth hoppy kind of a cherrish taste with kind of a bitter sweet fruity aftertaste. I found this to be just a little to sweet for my tastes.

10-18-2003 11:34:39 | More by grynder33
Photo of marvin213

North Carolina

3.53/5  rDev -9.7%

I just poured this here Old Foghorn into my Carolina Brewery pint glass in a hurry. This suprisingly dark barleywine came gushing out and topped off the glass with a big, thick head. It quickly dissipated into a thin, topping layer within a minute of the pour. I started sorta squinting my eyes at it wondering why it's so dark. It's almost like an amber red. Is it gonna taste like a barleywine? I bring it to my nose and smell...and smell...and...not much of anything, honestly. I put it down and try again. Nothing.

Time to taste. I'm instantly reminded of Sprite marketing because image is nothing. It definitely tastes better than nothingness; nevertheless, it's nothing special. Old Foghorn definitely seems like a malty-type barleywine to me. Is that supposed to happen? I'm sorta wierded out. I keep looking at it and smelling it, not knowing what to think, but each taste strikes me as suprisingly good--at least relative to how it appears.

I went back to get and read the bottle. Its description is purty accurate--it is indeed a malty "barleywine style." The label says "ideal" for after dinner, though I'd only go so far as "appropriate." The mouthfeel is the best part. The chocolatey malt and the "barleywine style" sit and tingle my whole mouth with yummy sweetness quite well.

I keep looking at it inquisitively. I smell it again. Maybe it smells more like a barleywine as it warms slightly. Still, I judge beer smell more on immediate effect--straight from its home. The beer is good. Its taste, again, is better than its image. Mouthfeel is quite good.

Since thirst is still everything (at least in line with my Sprite motif), I'll say I'd definitely drink another one, maybe even two...but writing home about it, I probably wouldn't do.

02-28-2009 02:54:01 | More by marvin213
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Anchor Old Foghorn from Anchor Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 1,673 ratings.