Hog Heaven Barley Wine - Avery Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Hog Heaven Barley WineHog Heaven Barley Wine

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very good

1,926 Ratings
no score

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Ratings: 1,926
Reviews: 901
rAvg: 3.95
pDev: 11.39%
Wants: 62
Gots: 206 | FT: 7
Brewed by:
Avery Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  9.20% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 01-05-2002

This dangerously drinkable garnet beauty is a hop lover’s delight. The intense dry-hop nose and the alcohol content are perfectly balanced for a caramel candy-like malt finish. This is a serious beer for serious beer afficianados and it only gets better with age. Cellarable for 3 years.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,926 | Reviews: 901
Reviews by seanbhudson:
Photo of seanbhudson
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a cloudy amber copper color with a medium off-white head. Lots of sticky lacing.
Big aroma of caramel, pineapple, citrus and hint of spicy pepper.
Caramel malt, candied fruit cake and grapefruit like bitterness. Earthy hops keep it from tasting too sweet.
Full bodied with a slightly syrupy chewy texture. Definite alcohol presence.
I understand why some people consider this more of a double IPA than a barleywine but the spice/fruitcake flavors distinguish it a bit. Comes off a bit too bitter to get a really high rating for drinkabilty but this is still a quality a beer.
NOTES: Style Example for American Barleywine

More User Reviews:
Photo of Greywulfken
4/5  rDev +1.3%

A: dark amber and clear, thick head as big as you want of tan foam

S: piney and bright hops percolate through rich caramel malts

T: following the nose, the hops are aggressive and keep things crisp, bringing pine and resin bitterness to the malty toffees and barley grain

M: medium-full bodied feel, ample carbonation; chewy but tight - nice balance to the feel

O: an American barleywine that borders on the DIPA - hop action is strong enough to meet the malts midway - some chew, but mostly on the finish - otherwise maintains a nice bitterness that cuts through the sugars of the malts. I really dug it. Think of it as a malty DIPA or a hoppy American barleywine. Real nice drinking.

Photo of DKMII
3.5/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: copper color very clear. Lacking a full head. Head diminished quickly. Great lacing. Smell: bitter. Almost a not so good burnt oil smell. Slightly floral but overpowering bitterness. Taste: too bitter for a barley wine. Similar to Sierra Nevada hop hunter. Floral hoppy finish but bitterness, even for a high ibu lover, was unpleasant. Feel: very light not typical of barley wine. Too much carbonation. Overall: not great. Not impressed.

Photo of oberon
3.53/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Poured a deep red/brown color with light but rocky head,the aroma was suprisingly hoppy.The head was pretty creamy and sticky.This is a uncompromising beer here,nutty and somewhat medicinal with a hugely dry finish.Quite a beer here maybe a little overwhelming.Never heard of Avery even when living in Denver for awhile had never seen it,man this is a big beer.

Photo of RoyalT
4.18/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance – Nice, clear, orangish-brown body with a gigantic head that somehow laced the glass with a 9.2 ABV. The head pitted well, leaving an artful display on my Ruination glass.

Smell – This one is big on the hops. There seems to be a complex mix, which lots of pine, rind, and grass aromas. I can pick up a little malt for balanced (lightly-toasted) but the hop mix carries the day here.

Taste – All of the scents blend quite well at the tongue. The hops lose their edge and mix well with a light sugar sweetness. This is terrific.

Mouthfeel – Flat and to the point. Full-bodied and very dry. Not a hint of the astronomical ABV.

Drinkability – I’m embarrassed to say how quickly I drained this bottle. This is a personal favorite of mine.

Photo of boston2bburg
3.85/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Mostly clear ruby orange with a light, creamy khaki head. Three fingers that settles to a modest cover. A couple big patches of lacing. Served at about 60 degrees.

There's a healthy nose of citrus hops (apparently all Columbus) balanced with sweet apricot, orange marmalade and candied malts. Fresh smelling and very pleasant. Even with the relatively warm pour temperature the aroma grows

This is a very well-balanced barleywine. For 100 IBUs, there isn't an overpowering bitterness. The hops provide a subtle citrus flavor, while plenty of candied caramel malts make the finish smooth and creamy.

Personally I prefer full-bodied, thick, syrupy barleywines but this one sacrifices some body for drinkability. The alcohol is mostly unnoticeable anywhere except in my body, and if I stand up now I'm probably in danger of falling over. As long as I'm sitting I think I could drink these all night.

Photo of jcruiser
4.58/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From a cask at the Avery Tap Room in late January

I had not been to the brewery in about 3 years and decided to make the trip out to Boulder after skiing in Breckenridge. First I had to take the wife to see the millions of prarie dogs that are all over the eastern part of town.

This is by far the best beer I have tasted over the last 12 months.

A-hazy orange juice

S-hop bomb

T-a total hop bomb with a great malt backbone. This one could be a DIPA just as easily as a Barleywine

M-the malts give this a great mouthfeel

D-I had a couple of these and I could have had a couple more without any palate fatigue. I even followed it up with a Dugana and was still impressed with the cask freshness.

OK-now the review of the Hog Heaven in a bomber from 2005

Appearance-truly a ruby dark barleywine with blackened yeast sediment


Taste-vinous with a little malt backbone. After tasting this I took an inventory of all the old barleywines I had on hand. i think I need to drink up everything that is more than 2 years old. I don't think I'm a big fan of the wine aspects of older barleywines

Mouthfeel-thin, hot

Drinkability-a little goes a long way

Photo of SIRIUS2
4.12/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750 ml bottle into a chalice style glass.

A: Mostly clear coppery color with an excellent frothy white head. Head retention throughout the experience with white lacing down the glass.

S: Mostly malty on the nose but a noticeable presence of mild hops as well.

T: Complex medium-toast malt flavors well matched with hop bitterness - but not balanced. Although a touch sweet with malt, the flavors a bit more dry compared to other barley wine styles previously sampled but is a compliment to the overall taste. The finish is long and malty with a bit of warming.

M&D: Mouthfeel is heavy, smooth, and complex and has the effect of a creaminess as it rolls over the tongue. Carbonation only enhances everything else and helps to bring everything together nicely. Fantastic example of the style.

Photo of Dmann
4.6/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I really dug this brew from Avery. It porued a medium amber color with a very thick frothy head that left nice lacing down the glass. The smell was very nice and sweet with alot of malt, citrus and woody scents. The flavor was quite nice with a touch of malt sweetness in the beginning, then it opened up with a nice hop bitterness followed by a fruity finnish and aftertaste that tasted like alchoholic pinapple. This was a very enjoyable beer and one I would definantly buy again.

Photo of skybluewater
4.25/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a light amber color. Smells of grapefruit, along with pine sap. Very hoppy, but with quite bit of malt. Mouthfeel is full, but not syrupy so. I find this to be a very drinkable barleywine.

Certainly this isn't a beer you'd slam in 20 minutes after just getting home after a long day at work. Rather, I'm savoring it at 3 AM, long after getting home from a long day at work. I think Iike this one the most out of Avery's lineup.

Photo of JasonA
3.53/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bomber from my new packy in MA.

Pours a tranparent reddish carmel. Nice BW head with impressive lacing. Nice overall carbonation.

Smells a delicious American style BW. Something I would love to brew myself. Very slight hop character, can smell the booze but its more interesting that alcoholic. There is something floral in there, but I cannot place it.

Hmmm, not what I expected. Close to perfection on the appearance and smell, but the taste is not living up to those expectations. More hoppy than malty. Well, more hoppy than I would like in a BW. I think the ABV might be masking some flabor here. I dont like the body, all I get is hops. Finish is nice.

Sits well, carbonation lights up the mouf well. After feel is nice, above average.

I dont like how the ABV seems to overwhelm this brew. Needless to say I am very overwhelmed by the high marks for this BW. Most likely not one I will return to unless it is noticed on tap.

I do have 1 more which I will age. Though judging by the current ABV and no feeling of a body, I dont expect much. Might just have to trade it away ;)

Photo of lordofthewiens
3.82/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A 22oz bomber poured into a snifter. It was a hazy brown color, not particulary attractive, with a thin head. It had a sweet malt aroma, along with some floral aroma. The taste was mostly reminiscent of caramel, with a little hops presence. I thought the beer was a little on the mild side, but still pretty good.

Photo of warnerry
4.03/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled purchased in June 2010; into a tulip

A - Pours a hazed amber with two fingers of creamy looking tan head. Head has nice retention and leaves spots of lacing all the way down the glass.

S - Caramel and toffee. Some citrus hops are still noticeable, despite the age.

T - Lots of caramel and toffee, and some dark fruits coming through. Similar to the nose, there are still some citrus hops present, and a decent bitterness throughout, but probably nothing like it was fresh. I don't like really hoppy barleywines (though I love DIPAs) so I let this one sit intentionally. Two years on this is definitely tasty and still has a surprisingly nice bitterness throughout the taste.

M - Medium-full mouthfeel with a nice balance of sweet and bitter. Finish is dry with a lingering bitterness. Some numbing alcohol noticeable on the finish.

O - Pretty tasty barleywine, and I am pretty sure that I enoyed this more with the age than I would have fresh, but I would still like to try this fresh, or with less time on it, to compare. While I prefer English style barleywines, if I am looking for an American style, this is a tasty one at a great price.

Photo of Beaver13
4.27/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle. Pours a copper-orange with a good sized rocky off-white head that stays creamy the whole way down and leaves a wall of lacing.

The aroma is sweet malts and grapefruits and earthy spicy piney hops with some sour woody and leather notes.

The flavor is sweet and fruity (melon) caramel malts with a decent bitter hop finish that lingers in the aftertaste. I remember this being more bitter, but my palate has probably changed quite a bit since I last has this. As is, I find it very nicely balanced. The alcohol is dangerously well hidden. It's medium bodied, a little on the watery side, yet still smooth.

Overall, an excellent brew! I would say it's more of an American Strong (like Arrogant Bastard) than Barleywine. But however it's classified, it is yummy! I'll be coming back to this in the future.

Photo of merlin48
4.27/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bomber pours a slightly hazy apricot color with no head. Patchy, beige colored lace leaves a collar and patching on the glass.
Lovely aromas delight the nose with apples, sweet caramel, smoked walnuts, and an odd, but interesting, Scottish style malt, all on a backbone of piney hops.
Mouthfeel reveals a strong hops presence and plenty of carbonation.
Taste is complex. Granny Smith apples dipped in caramel, some vinous alcohol presence, tangerine and citrus hoppiness, and a delighful, smoky, nutty, bitterness.
Very tasty, with an interesting array of complex flavors. This is what I think a good barleywine should be.

Photo of Billolick
4.32/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Blind Tiger, NYC. Poured dark almond and cloudy, ruby notes. Nice lacing, hoppy nose. Medium bodied. Hops are up front, grainy and resiny and rich. Malt backbone comes onto palate later for balance. This is a very drinkable BWine, Very tasy and enjoyable . Wish we could get this much more often on the east coast. Seek this one out and enjoy.

Photo of warriorsoul
3.63/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Downtown Wine & Spirits in Somerville for keeping these on hand.

Pours a copper color w/ a pillowy tan head that fades quickly.
First smell is all hop...a fruity scent w/ orange and grapefruit mixed in. Reminds me more of an IPA at this point...the taste better change my mind real quick.

Nope...the taste is real hoppy too, but I have to admit...I like it alot.
I may have to dock it a half a point in taste because it is not hitting me like a Barleywine...we'll see once it warms up a bit.

The mouthfeel is pleasant and I am now getting a bit of the alcohol...warming me up nicely. It becomes fairly bitter in its aftertaste, but again...at this point, it is not what I expected.

I could have two of these 22oz. bombers tops...drinkability is a bit low at this point.

This is my first experience w/ Avery...a bit of a surprise, but I will buy this and their others in the future.

Photo of tigg924
3.58/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had on tap @ Driftwood, Plymouth. Poured into a tulip glass

Appearance: red-brown in color, 1/2 inch head, clear, moderate carbonation

Smell: piney and citrus hops, toffee and earth

Taste: Follows the nose piney and citrus hops, toffee, earth, with caramel

Mouthfeel: medium bodied for the style, low carbonation, sweet start with bitter middle and dry bitter end

Overall: An enjoyable American barleywine. Plenty of hop flavor to go around with some stick sweet malts. Not the first American barleywine I would reach for but it is pretty tasty.

Photo of badbeer
4.87/5  rDev +23.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a murky amber color with an off-white head leaving sticky lacing all around the glass. The smell of this one is awesome, it has some caramel in the background, but mostly consists of citrus fruits, and a very strong smell of pineapple. Taste starts out hoppy with combinations of pine and citrus fruits, then hits you with a subtle maltiness, finished with pineapple. Mouthfeel is full bodied and just the right amount of carbonation, truly feels wonderful on the palate. Would I have another, oh hell yes. Definately worth picking up, I will be getting more as soon as I can.

Photo of Mora2000
4.2/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

No date, but this is the old label.

The beer pours a hazy brownish-amber color with a white head. This is a beer with a huge aroma. I get a lot of piney hops as well as some brown sugar and some alcohol. All of the things you expect in a big, American barleywine are present and stand out.

The flavor is also as expected. I get a lot of bitter pine with some brown sugar and alcohol mixed in. The bitterness is medium to high and is complimented by a lot of hop flavor.

Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

Photo of mattster
4.07/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz. Bottle was a gift. Thanks!

Poured into Snifter. Nice dark brown almost chocolate color. Amazing Bubbles and good 3/4 inch head that dies down to light lacy layer over top of brew. Somewhat hazy.

Very nice aroma. Not like hogs, hopefully like Heaven. I get hints of copper, dark fruit and barley. Suddenly, I want breakfast.

Taste is probably one of the best barley wines I've had. Not so bitter that it drinks slow. A good balance of sweetness that made it quite palatable.. Taste buds kind of off tonight, but in general, a good is earned after some lesser barleywines earlier in the week. Actually, I tried to streach this one out over a movie, and it just didn't happen. It was that good. The 9.2% is not detectable, but I know its there.

Right now, I wish I had a good steak to go with this brew. Maybe some spicy fajitas would be a good choice because of the slight yet present sweetness. I did try a tad of well aged sharp cheddar, but I think it was to late into the beer to have a noticable effect.

I have had Avery selections before, and this makes me wonder why I don't try them more often.

Thank you much to the friend who turned me on to this brew.

Photo of Byeast
4.12/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: mainly deep ruby , slightly brownish orange , with a thick , small offwhite head that quickly dissipates to a lace leaving ring.

Smell: deep and lightly red-fruit accented malt , a definate earthy undertone, and a good dose of hops.

Taste: quick bitter hop flash , then lots of full , rich , sweet malt fills the mouth. The malt flavors of bisquit etc. mingle very nice with the hops , grapefruit , slight red fruit/ berry , nice lingering hoppiness in the finish.

Mouthfeel: full bodied , slick

Drinkability: A very nice barley wine indeed. Great aroma , pleasant high hoppiness and balance. I had a chance to try a 2004 and 2000 vintage this year (06) , it ages quite nicely.

Photo of SkinnyElvis
4.12/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Vancer for a bottle from the BA Anny Club. Pours with a bit of foam that settles down. Smells very sweet. Listed at 100 IBUs but the beer is not really hoppy in taste but is close to the DIPA/barley wine border. It tastes almost like an aged DIPA. Mouthfeel is smooth & the ABV is not noticed. A good brew.


Photo of Stonebreaker
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Decent, amber with a good head and lacing.

Smell: Good actually, a rum raisiny, typical barleywine sort of thing.

Taste: Lots of sweet fig and raisin malt upfront with a surprising amount of hop flavor in the back, good hops too, noble hops perhaps? The finish however leaves a film, like the tannins from wine and it...well it's no good, anyone else notice this?

Mouthfeel: Thick and rich, creamy as a barleywine should be.

Drinkability: Due to the tannins I had to rate it only a four though I must say I like this beer and barleywines in general.

Photo of magictrokini
3.83/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Very hoppy barleywine. Caramel-brown color with a strong head. Taste is obviously hoppy, with a heaping of resin and grapefruit, but also has solid malt and earthy tastes. Almost a woody character comes through. A bitter barleywine, and a very good one.

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Hog Heaven Barley Wine from Avery Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 1,926 ratings.