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Anchor Old Foghorn - Anchor Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Anchor Old FoghornAnchor Old Foghorn

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

1,043 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,043
Hads: 1,903
Avg: 3.92
pDev: 14.8%
Wants: 81
Gots: 163 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Anchor Brewing Company
California, United States | website

Style | ABV
English Barleywine | 10.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-15-2001

ABV varies slightly over the years.
View: Beers (30) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Anchor Old Foghorn Alström Bros
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Reviews: 1,043 | Hads: 1,903
Photo of mlockman
3.84/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Very solid balance between malt-sweetness and hop bitterness, this beer has a sort-of tangy quality (almost remniscent of an old ale) that begs the palate for more after the initial sip. Nothing overly complex, but very enjoyable.

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Photo of 1000lbgrizzly
3.81/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Very milky deep beige body, velvet off-white head, great lace. Smell is sickly sweet with malt syrup and considerable raw wood notes. Flavor is similar, sickly butterscotch sweetness with a laughable amount of pine bitterness as a futile counterpunch. Faint fruit qualities. Sticky, syrupy, full bodied, thick mouthfeel.
Good goodness is this a sweet beer. Not fruit-saccharine, more like maple syrup. The faint bit of wood and hops kept it from being all sugar, but it should still be accompanied by a shot of insulin.

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Photo of GreatStoutman
3.41/5  rDev -13%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle states 8.8% abv. Which is less than what previous batches contained, but its still pretty boozy in aroma and taste. Light copper color and slightly cloudy, even after warming a little. This barleywine tasted a lot like most of the others I've had, and I'm still looking for an exceptional example of this style.

Overall its malty and pretty drinkable, but nothing I'm getting too excited about.

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Photo of Steve1993
4.38/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Amber with a red hue, quickly dispersing tan head.
Smell is malty, with strong toffee and caramel notes.
Boozy on the aftertaste, smooth mouthfeel, but you know you're having a drink. (10%), typical of a barleywine style ale.
Malty on the palate.
Overall a thoroughly enjoyable barleywine style ale that showcases the style well. Would drink again, definitely.
Think you need to be in the mood however.

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Photo of richj1970
4.04/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured from 12 oz bottle with a date code of 5JW.

A: Cloudy mahogany brown with 2-3 finger toasted marshmellow head. Very long retention and leaving plenty of lacing.

S: Brown sugar, toffee, caramel, and honey mixed with a healthy dose of earthy hops. Light fruity esters in the back.

T: Rich toffee and caramel mixed with a nice hop punch. Dark fruits with plum, raisins, and dates.

M: Full bodied but not thick with a slightly creamy texture. Average carbonation. Finish is a touch bitter and a little sweet.

O: Very nice barleywine. I'm not sure why it took me so long to try this out, but it will not be my last purchase.

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Photo of puck1225
4.24/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a bottle into a snifter. Short lived creamy head with nice lacing. Strong red wine smell, a bit sweet and fruity. The taste is clean and slightly boozy but pleasant. A nice beer at the end of the day.

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Photo of vinicole
3.9/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep auburn in colour with a thin beige head.
Rich caramel and fruit aroma.
Tastes of alcoholic prunes, toffee and mild treacle.
Quite viscous and with a lightly carbonated zing.
A good example of the style.

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Photo of aobrehm
4.16/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured from 12 oz bottle into a tulip glass.

L- Thick moussy beige head that is very well-retained. Reddish-brown color with slight haze.

S- Rich caramel malt aroma. Plenty of fruity esters and resinous American hops in the background.

T- Substantial and complex flavor with rich, layered malt in the forefront (caramel, chocolate, plum). Balanced with resinous hop flavor with substantial bitterness. Some fruity esters. Alcohol is apparent but restrained.

F- Big, chewy full body with residual sweetness.

O- A solid American barleywine. Great rich beer to consume in small doses.

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Photo of HopsAreDaMan
4.21/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12oz, dated '3M7' which translates to March, 27th 2013 (to date, 2.5 years age ); snifter. Pours a dirty brown with an off-white head that lingers; when swirled there is very nice lacing in the glass. Very nice fruity/malty aroma in the glass (fairly typical barleywine aroma), with just a hint of booze. Lots of goodness on the pallet: light tasting, with a nice balance of fruits and malts. medium body, and nice carbonation. There is also a pleasant tingling sensation in my mouth after swallowing.

I was hoping for a lot out of this--one of the classic American barleywines--and it delivered. The bottle states 8.8% ABV, and I think that helps to make this a more easy going beer. Ideally, I would like a bit more pizzazz in the flavor, yet, what's there is very well balanced; this is a nice variation to what I have encountered in the other barleywines, and I look forward to seeing how this continues to age.

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Photo of MartyMaltose
4.24/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2015 vintage, 12 oz bottle. My original entry into the limited but heavenly world of barleywines, about 20 years ago. I had been a little disappointed with the past couple of years but this year's seems back as good as ever. Sweet, malty, syrupy, raisins, esters, dates, blah blah. Now let's get useful: compared to Bigfoot? Much more syrupy, less hoppy. Old Stock Ale? 25% denser, less bite. When you buy it, do you get a sissy 4-pack? No. You get a full 6-pack. Should you buy it? If you "get" barleywines, yes. You'll like it, maybe love it. If you've never had a dark English, German dopplebock, or a sweet, dark Belgian, don't waste your money. It's best left on the shelf for me to buy later...I would appreciate being able to buy this year-round.

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Photo of thepenguin
4.05/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Reviewed 2/15/12

L: Pours a pretty dark reddish-brown with a tannish head.

S: Very malt-forward and sweet. Smells like rum and caramelized candi sugar. Slight booze and some hoppiness to back it up.

T: Malty for sure, but not too sweet with a good deal of hop flavor to offset the sweetness. A little bit of alcohol. The dominant flavor is that of dark malts with some nuttiness and breadyness too.

F: Full-bodied with a thick, chewy mouthfeel—appropriate for the style. Moderate-low carbonation. Some lingering alcoholic warmth, but nowhere near that of stronger examples of the style.

O: A pretty darn good barleywine on the lower end of the strength spectrum. Very nice mouthfeel, British-style maltiness, and its relatively low strength makes it fairly drinkable.

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Photo of infinitebruner
3.96/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

August 30, 2015

12 oz bottle, snifter

A – Pours medium amber with high clarity. Only a thin, light tan head forms and disappears just as quickly. Looks somewhat thin for a barleywine.

S – Brown sugar, caramel, toffee, some golden raisins, and very mild vanilla. Hops are low, but earthy-herbal.

T – Toffee and vanilla, with a slight nuttiness. Brown sugar and raisins round it out. Again, earthy-herbal hops, with moderate to moderate-high bitterness.

M – Moderate carbonation and a medium-full body. Sweet, but enough hop bitterness to balance, leaning actually more towards the bitterness. Not particularly dry.

O – This is one of the least bold versions, in any aspect, of a barleywine I’ve had, definitely in terms of flavor and mouthfeel. I enjoyed it, but I’m looking for a very strong experience across the board when I’m drinking in this style. Good, but not notable.

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Photo of cindyjeffsmith
4.15/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

look: murky copper. Tan head that mostly recedes after the pour.
smell: caramel and malt, some fruitiness.
taste: richer than the nose. It's got the caramel and malt and fruity notes but richer. There's a spicy thing there too that's unusual, mostly perceptible in the finish.
overall: not a top tier imo but that's cool. Nice brew.

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Photo of A_Pint_A_Day
4.47/5  rDev +14%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Appearance – Poured into a little snifter. This beer was a deep mahogany in color and thick. Lightly carbonated.

Smell – Extremely malty (go figure) with notes of toffee. An intense fruitiness could also be found as this beer has smells of prunes, plums, and dates.

Taste – Very sweet maltiness that tasted like caramel and brown sugar. A super fruity finish, fig-like or pear-like.

Mouthfeel – Thick and syrupy as expected with only a slight amount of carbonation. Smooth and velvety

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Photo of dmgeng
4.13/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I've seen this before but never though much of it until I started getting more into barleywines this year.

A - Very nice amber, dark orange color. Slight haze with a ton of fluffy, off-white head and great lacing.

S - Sweet smelling with a rich malt character accompanied by the big fruitiness. The fruits are those of a typical English barleywine with prune, blueberry, and figs. Under the richness there is some herbal hops along with some light alcohol and caramel in the background.

T - The taste is similar but with more of everything hitting the palate. The sweetness is full but after the sweet malt the caramel and dry fruits really drive it home. On the finish there is some of the flatter, English hops to help balance the sweet malt and raisin character. There is a raw hop bitterness that attempts to compliment the sweetness but is still quite sweet.

M - High to medium mouth-feel with medium carbonation. It is definitely a barleywine with that sweet, richness that is always there with the style but this one is not as balanced as some that I've had in the past.

Overall, a delicious beer but I would definitely classify this under the English Barley Wine with the sweet malt, rich fruit, and herbal hops instead of the American hops and more balance that you find in an American BW. I did really enjoy the rich sweetness but I know that it could be a turn-off for many and could be more complex overall. If you like fruit cake then this is the beer for you!

Glass- Tulip

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Photo of sammorito
3.75/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Appearance: finger and a half head that dissipated quickly that was a beige off white color. it was a dark amber color. and almost no lace

Smell: malty and some fruitiness present.

Taste: def taste the malts of the beer also some fruits plums. it has a nice sweetness to it not over powering and balanced well with the alcohol. the flavors kind of dance around on my tounge.

mouth feel is pretty full-bodied with little to no carbonation.

overall- its a good beer well balanced wouldnt drink more than one in a sitting although it is quite enjoyable

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Photo of ordybill
4.36/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 OZ bottle into a pint glass
Aroma- Has a very nice fruit smell
Appearance- Pours a murky brown with a tan colored head
Taste- Fruit is dominant, real good flavor
Palate- A heavy bodied beer with moderate carbonation, has a strong alcohol finish
Overall- A real good barleywine, I would drink this again

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Photo of SafeAtFirst
3.94/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Date code: 3YM which translates to May 2013. Why they can't just put May 2013 on the bottle is beyond me. If you need help decoding check the FAQ on their website.

Tasty. Caramel and ripe fruit. All the good malt flavors. Smooth. Could easily handle some more cellar time. Alcohol is spicy but not biting. Subtle yet nuanced at the same time. I enjoyed it.

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Photo of ClavisAurea
4.22/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

12oz bottle dated from 11/2014 served in a tulip glass. Already six months old per the bottling date. They say that this beer is kept in their cellars till it is ready. Who knows how long that is.

Appearance: deep ruddy brown with a yellowy tan head and wonderful clarity.

Nose: fruity sweetness, prunes, candy shop caramel

Taste: fresh and fruity, candied apples, pears, beautiful mouthfeel but a bit on the thin side to support extended cellaring. Carbonation enough to lift the flavors off your tongue and to the back of your throat.

Overall: I have been looking for this beer for a while since I got into barleywines. It was a bit pricy: $19 for a six pack. I'm still glad I tried it and that it comes in enough quantity to allow for some aging experiments. See you in a few months.

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Photo of moonboogie_n8
3.64/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Not a bad barleywine ale, worth the try.
I've had their steam beer & porter, and loved the porter.
If you've had a barleywine ale before you know what to expect.
pours rusty red/brown with tall tan head.
lots of fruit esters, high alc on the back end. tart. flavorful. kind of delicate?
apples & pears make up the majority of fruits, with some malty sweetness to boot.

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Photo of vette2006c5r
4.19/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Old Foghorn pours a dark reddish brownish color with a long lasting lacing head. There is a sharp and dry fruit aroma. The taste is sharp, good noticeable malt backbone, with dry fruit flavors. Nice body good flavors. Overall its very rich and full.

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Photo of brureview
3.94/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured an attractive caramel color with a 3F head in a Moa snifter.
The head resolved itself within minutes. Nice lacing.

Aroma: not strong, pleasant malt, sweetness, and toffee.

Taste: not heavy, excellent sweetness, toffee, and a bitter
alcoholic finish which overshadows the taste.

With warming: the alcoholic finish diminishes, more floral aroma,

Overall, an easier drinking American Barley-wine.

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Photo of joaopmgoncalves
4.23/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

A: The appearance of this beer is at least interesting. Poured it into a snifter to get a body colored mid-way between brown and copper; gasification is apparently below average and regarding the head, it has no retention nor lacing. Which leads me to say that in terms of foam, this beer is kinda below average.

S: In terms of smell, the aromas you can experience have a very interesting complexity. It combines a citrusy aroma with a touch of red fruits (mostly raisins I guess) perfectly adjusted to the amount of alcohol you get in this beer. For a 8.8% ABV you would thought that this smell would be loaded which alcohol. But surprisingly, it's not.

T: The taste is an extension of the aroma, where you can now find the aroma surrounded by a glorious semi-roasted malt flavor that goes very well with the orangery and raisins that are planted in the bottom of the snifter.

M: The mouthfeel is glorious. The gasification that was below average on the appearance together with the high alcohol levels that make this beer a bit more liquor-y turns this awesome liquid into a velvety thing. It's awesome.

O: In geral, it's pretty good. Anchor is known for having a beer of their own in the top of some categories every once in a while. The Old Foghorn is my favorite English Barleywine to the date.

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Photo of Bockrules
3.84/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Nice smell of brown sugar, raisins, toasted malt and champagnea upon opening the bottle. Pours a deep amber brown with nice clarity. 1-finger, creamy, tan head that dissipates fairly quickly. Leaves behind minimal lacing. Taste is dominated by candied brown sugar with toasted malts playing backup.

It was decent, though I've far better Barley Wines.

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Photo of drmeto
4.69/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

-lemons,orange peel,caramel,raspberry,elderflower,apricot,pine
-Follows the nose plus grapefruit
-hop bitterniss falls somewhere between english and american Barleywine
-low carbonation
-Great barley wine

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Anchor Old Foghorn from Anchor Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 1,043 ratings.