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Hog Heaven Barley Wine - Avery Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Hog Heaven Barley WineHog Heaven Barley Wine

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

1,861 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,861
Reviews: 891
rAvg: 3.95
pDev: 11.39%
Wants: 55
Gots: 173 | FT: 4
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: 1,861 | Reviews: 891 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of wingman14
4.12/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark ruby brown with an off white head that fades fast but leaves lacing. The smell is very sweet with some subtle hop notes. The taste is sweet with some nice malt, finishes with a strong flavor. The mouthfeel is very smooth, a nice balance of flavors, not a very power ABV feel for such a high content. This is a nice drinker, not too overpowering, very enjoyable, a great barleywine worth checking out.

Photo of brandoneast
3.28/5  rDev -17%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Pours garnet with dark brown hues and a frothy crown of ecru foam. Fragrances of grapefruit, spearmint, caramel, woody spice, dried orange peel, and juniper berry round the aroma. As the brew warms it releases pungent aroma of orange hand soap (GOJO and Fast Orange come to mind), quite awkward and unpleasant.

A surprisingly flat taste hits the palate with not much more than light caramel, and a nice balanced hop bitterness, and soy sauce in the far depths. This finishes thin, watery and almost bone dry, the fine carbonation holds it together.

At times, this brew can be dangerously drinkable because the alcohol sits in the back, undetected. Not quite what I expected from one of my favorite Colorado brewers.

Photo of SShelly
4.15/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured in a fizzy yellow beer is for wussies glass.

Thick white head on top of a crystal clear medium copperish beer, LOTS of retention.

Smells of C hops and malt, very pleasant aroma

Fairly bitter bite upfront, backed by citrus with a strong malt flavor at the end, leaves a resinous bitterness on the tongue.
Medium-Light bodied, this is fairly lively in the mouth.

A barley-wine with the emphasis on the "american"...I like it, though I wish the malt was a little larger to help with some of the bitter bite, oh also some decent alcohol warming in the mouth and chest with this.

Photo of CHSLBrew
3.76/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bomber shared with a friend, poured into a stemless wine glass.

A-Dark tan head, frothy and sustaining with a splash of lacing. Beer is a clear dark amber/red.

S-Resiny hops, thick and dank, with something of a grapefruit aroma, as well. Toasty malts appear with a slight smooth alcohol.

T-Resiny hops, along with an herbal character, alongsie a bit of citrusy hop. Under all this, a biscuity malt sits, slightly toasty. Quite a bit of bitterness, which is actually able to balance (maybe even overwhelm, at times) the huge malt foundation of this brew.

M-Appropriately medium-low carbonation. The medium-full body almost seems a bit light at times, but upon further examination, I know better. This is a nice and heavy beer.

D-At times this seemed to be an easy-drinking barleywine, but then I'd sense the immense bitterness of this brew and realize that it's a wallop of a beer. Enjoyable to drink, I'd love it again, but wow, is it big!

Photo of mothman
4.15/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into New Belgium Globe Glass. No freshness date on bottle. 22 oz bomber.

Pours a 2 finger head. Slightly tan. Leaves splattered lace as well as some lace rings. Color is a copper orange/carmel.

Aroma is of heavy floral hops. Carmel suttleties for the malts. Some raisin smell as well. Taste has a lot going on. Very complex. Reminds me a lot of an ipa. Heavy floral hops, carmel malts. Grapefruit, citrus, and some zest. Alcohol is also present.

Mouthfeel is very bitter, after awhile it gets a touch smoother, but goes down very bitter. Alcohol is heavily present. Well carbonated. Leaves a sticky aftertaste.

Overall, I really enjoyed all the hops in this barlywine. The appearance was great and it had an awesome overall taste. Highly recommended.

Photo of biegaman
3.97/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I'd say red cedar wood but the beer is so turbulent and murky that discerning its true colour is difficult. To the light reveals a shot of grenadine and some luster left unscathed. Despite nine something percent and an estimated two years in the bottle, its carbonation is still very much functioning; it silhouettes the beer and skims the top with a thin lily-pad over center.

Some barleywines will whisper - Hog Heaven screams. Your nose won't even reach the glass before encountering notes of caramel lathered grapefruit and candy-coated mandarins. It is somewhat fruity, somewhat bitter, somewhat sweet, but utmost bold and entirely forward. Note to any brewers: Columbus hops make for an awesome smelling barleywine.

The beer uses a very simplistic malt bill (just two-row barley and caramel malt) which results in an equally simplistic and straight forward flavour. Sweet, sugary malts combine forces with cookies and are then stirred into a big cauldron of hot, gooey caramel and floating chunks of grapefruit. It tastes good but doesn't offer the same complexity of others within the style.

And despite a whopping 100+ IBU's it doesn't pack the same punch either. Granted, I'm sure a lot of that has only come with age. The hops are still very prominent in smell and taste so it stands to reason they shouldn't be much more subdued in mouthfeel. I'd also question their claim on the alcohol as well - there is no way something with those specs drinks this easily.

It might not be the best barleywine but if you love candied fruits and the thought of caramel-lathered citrus than invest in a bottle of Avery's Hog Heaven. If not to have now then to have any time in the next 3 years (its lifespan according to the brewery) for when the mood strikes. I'm glad it struck me tonight and I'm even more happy I've still got half a bottle left!

Photo of StrangeBrewer76
2.91/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

The color is orange-brown, huge foamy head that leaves tons of sticky lacing.

I smelled bread, raisins and banana. The taste was a real disappointment. There is a cloying sweetness that I can't really put my finger on but I'm really struggling to finish this one.

I have yet to have a drain pour and have never had a bad Avery but this one just misses the mark.

The mouthfeel is ok but I just cant get past the taste so the drinkability is low. I hope for the sake of Avery's reputation in my eyes that this one improves with age. Perhaps I got a young one but I've personally brewed a better barleywine than this. Disappointing.

Photo of dotsonjamesg
4.33/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a chilled 12 oz stemless wine glass

A: Virtually no carbonation. Rich deep brown, coppery color with a thick haze(unfiltered).

S: Might sound weird, but it smells like soy sauce with hoppy, pine, and malted notes; its very interesting.

T: The flavor was not expected at all. Earthy tones with deep complexity leaning towards fermented soy beans, hops, and rich malts. Also has a fair amount of bitterness and alcohol, which brings a nice touch and balance. The brew also had a pine-like after taste.

M: The carbonation is light and tingles the tongue.

D: Its thick and filling, so its more of the beer that you drink to enjoy, not to get drunk off of.

Right off the bat, its very different. I was expecting spiced, fruity alcohol and with rich malts and hops(typical barley wine) but this brew is far from you average barley wine. While this brew is vastly different from the rest, it is extremely refreshing. Barley wine, over the years, has come to bore me. Its all become so boring and bland and has started to kill my longing for more. This brew renewed my love for barley wine and it is a must try if you, like me, have grown out of the run-of-the-mill-same-old-boring barley wine.


Photo of Rayek
3.83/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: Deep copper with very good clarity. Big and rocky cream colored head has very nice retention and leaves a heavy lace.

S: Reminds me a lot of Ale to the Chief, only stronger. Kind of like stepping into a forest. Pine and oak scents dominate the experience, plus a hint of grapefruit citrus. Alcohol is very much there and adds an extra tingle to the nose.

T: Pine forest flavors dominate, and those 100 IBU's listed on the bottle make themselves known in a big way. Almost too bitter for my tastes, but seems true to the style. Toffee flavored malts are there if you seek them out. Finishes with a strong lingering bitterness, and an intense alcohol warmth that adds an extra bitter bite.

M: Medium-heavy body is somewhat oily and slick. Carbonation level feels about right.

D: There's no way I was going to down a bomber of this in one sitting. After reading the thread on recapping beer, I popped a stopper in this, stuck it in the fridge and am hoping for the best. Overall, this beer felt a little young and rough. I think getting a bottle to cellar is in order.

Photo of tmoneyba
4.1/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured dark amber hue with large rocky head that diminished very slowly with good lacing.

Complex sweet malt and hops aroma.

Medium to full body with a alcohol tone.

Good complex malt, caramel and hop flavor with a small alcohol bite.

Very good brew.

Photo of illidurit
4.3/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours dark amber with a nice thick beige head. Aroma is completely hop forward, in a good way. There are also some caramel and slightly spicy alcohol. Sweet doughy flavors are outshined by the citrus and pine hops. Almost an east coast DIPA really. Even has a nice bitterness on the finish. Great chewy body with high drinkability.

Photo of turamarth
3.62/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

served in a la chouffe tulip at flying saucer.

appearance: dark red amber color. had a nice head, that receded slowly leaving lots of lacing.

nose: upfront is hops. followed by some candied fruits; sugary malts.

taste: very hoppy. more so than i thought with a barleywine. some earthiness. again sweet malts. and a bit of alcohol. a little unbalanced imo.

mouth: feels pretty light. smooth.

drink: asides from the abv and hops, mildly drinkable.

Photo of AdmiralDiaz
4.28/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Deep opaque brown with a yellowish-brown two-finger head with good retention and some lacing.

S: Malts, hops, grapes, earth, and yeast.

T: Fairly complex. Sweet malts with strong hops, there's a very earthy taste, along with yeast. The alcohol doesn't come through much.

Overall: I can see why people claim that this could be a DIPA, its very strongly hopped and quite bitter.

Photo of farrago
4.34/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Deep billowing bubbles below the surface during the pour translate into a frothy head of huge bubbles and lots of lacing. Dark copper to brick red in color, about as opaque as this sort of coloration gets. Very sweet nose of dark plum and cherry fruit, honey and molasses, candied oranges, pine needles, coriander, yet for all that about as hoppy as malty. Full-bodied, density effects its pacing, moves quite slowly. More orange, pink grapefruit citrus alongside cherry, melon, peach fruit with sweet tea notes to boot. Sure it ends with increasing hoppiness but not sure why it's considered to be hoppy per se by some. Minimal bitterness while, conversely, not much chocolate nor cocoa flourishes. Pine, clove and a light moment of tar complete the finish. Maintains body throughout with long aftertaste.

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

Poured a clear deep orange with dense 2 finger eggshell colored head. Smell: upfront citrus and earthy hops, grapefruit and piney, beneath the hops, sweet, caramel and vaguely fruity. Taste: caramel, toffee (and ever so slightly buttery), again the hops are in the forefront - lemony, white grapefruit, candied pineapple, piney and earthy but still sweet at the end of the sip. Soft and creamy, medium-bodied with barely a hint of the abv. Tasty, if not particularly involved. DIPA-esque, I like it.

Photo of aeminter
4.17/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Nice caramel color with a good three fingers of rocky, foamy, light tan head. Slight effervescence.

Aroma is intensely floral hop with a little dank skunkiness.

At the front of the mouth the taste is very well rounded and even a little sweet, but as you swallow the bitter goodness of the hops announce their presence.

Mmm, daddy like....

Photo of EnojysAnyBeer
4.48/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5


A- Nice big off-white head on top of a hazy translucent copper-color body. Nice head retention and rings of lace adorn the cervoise when I am finished. It just doesn't get any better than this

S- Smell is like an Imperial IPA.(yay! I love Imperial IPA) Reminds me of 90 Minute IPA from Dogfish Head. Potent, resiny hops

T- Taste is like a sweeter, fruitier American DIPA. I am glad as this is one of my favorite styles and the only barleywine I've had didn't wow me(Flying Dog Horndog). Loads of hops create a hop-resin flavor in the mouth that is all-together piney, citrusy, earthy, and woody. Also has some raison-bread flavors more typical of a barleywine

M- Slick and oily body with smooth carbonation

D- If this were a barleywine it would be the most drinkable I've ever had. Unfortunately, simply naming a product "Hog Heaven Barley Wine"(great name, I know) does not make it so.


4.31/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottled yesterday (01/06/2009) Fresh as they come.

A: Nice clear amber colored body. They is a little white head that transforms to a solid ring at the edge of the glass. Lacing sits is spots atop the body holding together with strength of little children in elementary school holding hands in line. Purity.

S: Bitter hops hold the front lines down while an array of citrus infused marijuana, sugary sweetness and earthy undertones attack.

T: Milder than expected. Slightly sweet creme brule taste on the beginning that floats away into the shadows of bitter hops and citrus acidity. Mild I say for the fact the the balance of malt and hops is wonderful. While the bittering does linger for some time the malt backbone shows you who is holding this damn beer together. Masterful.

M: Nice and hefty on the tongue. A big beer to say the least. Carbonation adds a zip to the tongue but gives in to the body of the beer.

D: Fresh - give me more. I might pass out hammered but with a smile on my face. Aged - Give me no more and I still will pass out with a smile on my face. 9.2%ABV says it all.

Photo of MrMcGibblets
4.05/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

color is a glowing, slightly hazy orange-ish light amber. creamy off-white head persists w/really nice lacing. toffee and caramel dominate the aroma with candied fruit, resiny pine, and a hint of rum-like alcohol. big sweet toffeed malts are well-balanced by the prominent but smooth underlying hop bitterness. perfect level of carbonation for my taste in this. full-bodied with a long complex finish. one of the best barleywines i've had, right up there with great divide's.

Photo of GilGarp
4.35/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a bomber from the brewery after having a small sample in their tasting room.

Pours into a pint glass a redish copper orange color with great clarity and a good inch of head. The head is gone soon after but leaves thick rings of lace around the glass.

Aroma is super hoppy and sweet.

Taste is huge. Lots of malt but tons of great hops too. The sweetness from the malt is really well balanced by the citrus hops. Grapefruit, lemon, and orange all bring the sweetness in check. This beer has it all with sweet, a little sour, tart, and of course, bitter.

Mouthfeel is good for the style but still high in alcohol and bitterness as expected. Drinkability suffers for the same reasons.

Overall a great hop-forward barleywine.

Photo of corey0212
4.34/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours reddish/browinsh iced-tea color, foamy beige head fades slow, and leaves spotty & webbed lacing in its path. Massive aromas of caramel, and big grapefruit-on-steroids hoppiness...nice. Taste follows right along, with a richness/robustness to the malt that's outstanding, and little, if any alcohol flavors...this is just tasty. Full-bodied, lingering bitterness, but incredibly smooth, and nothing that overwhelms the palate. One of the most drinkable Barleywines I've ever had.

Photo of nd5282
3.65/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Sweet and smooth all the way around. This beer is great with fried chicken or something sweet. Definitely one of my more favorite from the people at Avery. This beer was available at Barney's Beanery in Santa Monica. The service from the waitresses was horrible. The waitresses, although cute, were lacking in most if not any beer knowledge and were equally incompetent when it came to food services.

Photo of chuckd123
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very good Barleywine. Poured from a bomber into a snifter, head is about 1.5 fingers and very thick. Laced up nicely and lasted.
Took in the smell before the first sip -- typical of the style, and very good. Hints of thick hoppy citrus hit you right away.
Taste is very good, a somewhat thick, citrus & malt combo on the tongue.
Drinkability is obviously affected by the abv%, but otherwise a drinkable beer for sure.
Very good offering from Avery.

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

The beer was delivered from the bartender in a shaker pint glass. The color was a dark amber-brown. The liquid was topped with 1/4 inch of thick tan head. The foam stayed there for essentially the whole time it took to consume the beverage. Some sticky lace was left in sheets down the glass after each sip.

The aroma is of big malts. Raisins are prominent, prunes are here as well. There is also a hint of caramel and toasted bread. Hop aroma comes on strong with each successive deep inhale. There is pine and greens, predominantly, with grapefruit coming through in the end.

The flavor profile is as complex as the nose. All the malt aspects from the nose are present and more, there is also some cooked stone fruit, like peach and plum, like from a cobbler or pie. The hops are pine and green although in the beginning but there is significnat grapefruit zest and ruby ref grapefrui flavor poking through in the finish. Speaking of the finish, it is more quite bitter and lingering. Having said that, this beer is very well balanced indeed.

As the liquid mingles with the taste buds and the crosses the various areas of the pallet, a very viscous, full body is apparent. There is a creaminess that is very welcome and is also cut by the fizzy, vibrant carbonation. Both the creaminess and the fizz help carry the flavors around the mouth.

This is quite easy to drink for 9+%. The alcohol is not readily apparent as it is in many other American Barleywines. Overall, this is a very nice beer.

Thanks For Reading

Photo of MTNboy
3.3/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

It has rich very deep copper/bronze body. This beer's head is average height and has a golden color. It has a malty aroma at first but has it sit it becomes more hoppy and floral. It has a wonderful lace that sticks around forever. It has a bitter fruity taste with some tar like tones. You definitely get some of the bitterness from the 100 IBU's. It has a pollen and grapefruit style of bitterness. It gives off some alcohol warmth but not much. It has average carbonation to the mouthfeel. It is not as heavy in the body as many might think. I would go the higher end of medium. Overall I know that barley wine should be bitter but the was something in the bitterness I did not care for.

Hog Heaven Barley Wine from Avery Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 1,861 ratings.