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Hog Heaven Barley Wine - Avery Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Hog Heaven Barley WineHog Heaven Barley Wine

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

1,795 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,795
Reviews: 884
rAvg: 3.96
pDev: 11.36%
Wants: 53
Gots: 159 | 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:
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 added by: BeerAdvocate on 01-05-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,795 | Reviews: 884 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of GClarkage
4.47/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

01/24/06- Purchased at Ledger's Liquors in Berkeley, CA.

Presentation- 22oz bomber with no freshness info. Poured into my Duvel tulip.

Appearance- Dark amber colored pour. Nice streaming carbonation. 3/4 inch white head with average lace left behind.

Smell- A fairly overwhelming hop scent hits you at first. After you get past that, a sweet malt scent comes into play. Hops are very grapefruit in nature with some lemon aspects as well. The malt has a lightly roasted nose to it.

Taste- Is this Bigfoot Jr? Really reminds me of Bigfoot, except maybe a touch smoother. Gobs and gobs of grapefruit and pine resin flavored hops. A truly lovely sweet malt backbone as well. They play off each other very well. Maybe even a few dark fruits floating around also. Alcohol is present and makes itself known in a hurry.

Mouthfeel- Lighty creamy with an average carbonation for a barleywine. Super warming and hits you harder than you would expect as I am finding out this morning.

Drinkability- In the mold of Bigfoot, I find this beer to be one of the better barleywines out there. That is, if you don't mind a truckload of hops.

GClarkage, Jan 25, 2006
Photo of kingjames1
4.22/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark amber, with a beautiful white, fluffy head settling to a very satisfying lace. The smell is grapefruit citrus mixed with caramel, rum and honey. Very nice. The taste a little disappointing, but only a little. I wish the malts came through a little more potently. THe bitter hops definitely dominates the palate. But I likes it.

Solid carbonaiton and mouthfeel, and very drinkable for a strong barelywine. Worth checking out imo.

kingjames1, Jan 25, 2006
Photo of nvsblman
3.93/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Amber colored with minimal head and a little light lacing. Aroma is of sweet caramel malt with piney hops and a slight hint of vanilla. It is an interesting aroma, although it's a little on the light side. The taste echoes the sweet malt and piney hops, but the vanilla and a little oak is also more present. The hops are strong but not overpowering. This was a little thinner than I expected, but not too thin. Pretty drinkable, but it seems a little more like a DIPA than a barleywine.

nvsblman, Jan 25, 2006
Photo of ChainGangGuy
2.45/5  rDev -38.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Pours out with a deep red hue, capped by an ivory head with moderate retention, though no lacing.

Smell: Grapefruit amidst a surging scent of hops and alcohol.

Taste: Astringent bitterness (without ever being flavorful) from start to finish, even harshly so, and with little to no malt base to balance it back out. The finish is caustically acidic and develops into a rather stinging aftertaste. I did not detect the "explosion of sweet malts" mentioned on the label. This brew is simply *crawling* with bitterness.

Listen, the denizens of the beer world won't beg for balance, we're above that. But look at what's happening here, folks! I, for one, long for the Salad Days that balanced beers provided.

Hint: this beer is really a Double IPA.

Avery Brewing Co. thought they could pull the wool over my eyes by calling this a barleywine, but I've shown them that they need to get up a *little* earlier in the morning if they wanna think about tricking me!

Mouthfeel: Medium, though a tad bit thin for a barleywine. Low carbonation.

Drinkability: Somewhere, one of the multitude of hopheads out there is nodding with satisfaction. "A job well done!" they may say.

However, I found this singularly one-dimensional beer to be unpleasantly unbalanced and disappointing for a barleywine (which I feel should display at least a modicum of balance and harmony within the fabulous potency of it's flavors).

This beer is a step in the wrong direction for Avery Brewing Co.

ChainGangGuy, Jan 22, 2006
Photo of nickss
4.13/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice copper-orange hue with a sizeable cream colored rocky head. Huge chunky lace clings to the side of the glass throughout the drink.

Huge hoppy aroma.... like a DIPA, except with some rich malt backbone... however the aroma is definitely overwhelmed by hops... a telling sign of an imbalanced brew, as the 100 UBUs would suggest. A certain amount of caramel and bourbon is present as well.

Crushing hop profile.... I LOVE IT!... this brew is unabashedly unbalanced.... aggressively hopped, and wonderfully bitter, while still maintaining a certain depth and richness one would expect from a barleywine. However, definitely of the American variety. Not quite as well done as Great Divide's brew in my mind, but still quite a satisfying barleywine. A certain amount of bourbon is present in the flavor as well... quite nice.

The mouthfeel is dominated by the hoppy bite, yet maintains the consistency of a DIPA... I would like it to be a bit thicker, but a small complaint.

Quite drinkable for me considering the 9.2 abv... but I could imagine many others finding this one difficult to drink. I, however, find the overwhelming hoppines to be a welcome respite from other boring barleywines I have tried of late. Nice.... and while not a session beer, I find myself having to force myself to slow down. Definitely worth a try at a very reasonable price tag. Enjoy!

nickss, Jan 20, 2006
Photo of plaztikjezuz
3.83/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I will first note that this tasting was done at a club meeting and it was barley wine night so this did tatse a little "watery".

poured a copper with a off white head that fell into a buitiful lace.
the aroma was citrus, malty, hopsack.
the flavor was malt, hopsack, carmel, bitter.
the mouthfeel was as described before watery, but i have had this before and i remember it having a to style mouthfeel. on the light end of the style.

plaztikjezuz, Jan 18, 2006
Photo of nlmartin
4.22/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bomber into a wide mouthed pub glass.

Appearance: The beer pours a very pleasing murky amber / ruby coloration. The head was an off white coloration and was two fingers thick. Sparse lacing lines the glass.

Smell: The beer has a very nice spicy berry combination.

Taste: The beer leads in with a taste of berries going over into citrus and pine combination. The hop assault is very pleasing in its bitterness.

Mouthfeel / Drinkability: The beer is meduim to full bodied. There is an unbalanced quality to the beer that is not unpleasant. The 100 IBUs dont really taste all that bitter. The alcohol is definately present but I think this adds to the flavor. Over all a good strong ale; however, I am not certain about calling this a barley wine.

nlmartin, Jan 16, 2006
Photo of growler
3.9/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours from the bottle the color of rust with a 1 finger head that disappeared quickly, but nice lacing stuck around even before I took my first sip.

S - nice full aroma sweetness, mollases and a hint of fruit (pear, apple?) with a nice hop kick to balance it out.

T - caramel, fruit, piney hops, some malt

M - smooth with a sweetness that offsets the hops. A mellow aftertaste, which is nice in a barleywine.

D - A very tasty barleywine, not the best but it will keep you warm on a cold winter day (like today). If this was on tap, I could probably handle 2 snifters, but in a bomber, much nicer to share.

growler, Jan 15, 2006
Photo of Terp96
4.38/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

As I slowly work my way into more barley wines and being the hophead that I am, I am drawn to anything that says hops and claims more than 100 IBUs. This one was all of that and more.

Appearance was a hazy, deep amber with a huge 1.5 finger thick head that never seemed to quit.

Smell is exceptional. Sweet and hoppy. You know it is a barleywine but then you are hit with the hops. Very floral, piney and pungent. Excellent

Taste is equally as good. Initially you taste the barleywine. Huge malty goodness but the hop follow-up is mind blowing. This beer is so complex and changes as you get further in. I swear the back end of every sip was the exact same hop profile you get from the Sam Adams Imperial Pilsner. Weird.

Mouthfeel is strong too. Alcohol is warming but this beer is thick. Syrupy, malty sweet and drying as you go along. Exceptional.

The alcohol is not overwhelming which keeps me wanting more but my better judgement tells me not to attempt to make this a session beer. Therefore, this beer rate too high on the drinkability scale but it is well worth a try.

Terp96, Jan 14, 2006
Photo of MaltyGoodness
3.53/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22oz. bomber

Pours a hazy dark orange-amber with a thin cream colored head that fades. Mild lacing on the glass.

Very rich aroma of piney hops and a slight aroma of caramel maltiness trying to make a stand.

Flavor is a boatload of hops followed by a slight hint of malt that's quickly whisked away by more hops. I like to see a bit more maltiness shine through in an American barleywine. Tastes more like Maharaja on steroids.

Big, full body on this brew but nothing out of the ordinary. I feel slightly unsatisfied somewhere between the taste and the body.

This is pretty drinkable, but just misses the mark for me. I'd like to see more balance. This is supposed to be a barleywine, but seems more like a "triple IPA". Call me crazy, but I happen to like a little barley flavor in my barleywine.

MaltyGoodness, Jan 11, 2006
Photo of hustlemuscle
4.1/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I shared my first bottle of this with my wife, and when she finished she came after my glassfull. Tried it with the second glass as well.

A good looking amber, crystal clear with not much head. Good lace as the level of liquid receeds. Smells and tastes like an IPA, mostly pine hops, slightly fruity. Very smooth, slightly oily with hop oil, full bodied. I enjoyed this one even more the second time around.

hustlemuscle, Dec 21, 2005
Photo of taez555
4.47/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer poured a dark mahogany body with a mild off-white head.

Nose has a thick and rich malt smell. Alcohol, caramel, hints of pepper, rotting citrus and fruit. A classic barleywine.

Taste was BIG and very thick. Rich thick malt with a strong undertone of hops. It ends with a strong citrus clearing. Very bitter and very hoppy. There’s a mild toasted malt accompanying the caramel. The alcohol really comes through as this beer warms.

A delicious barelywine.

taez555, Dec 16, 2005
Photo of goochpunch
2.78/5  rDev -29.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Pours out a crystal clear rusty amber with an off-white head that settles quickly, leaving behind tight sheets of white lace. Aroma is mostly hoppy: citrusy and resinous. Some alcohol and fruit juice in the nose. The flavor profile of this barleywine is awfully simple when it comes to the malts. Mostly I just get some vague malt sweetness followed by mildly bittering piney hops (note: for a 100 IBU beer, this is surprisingly tame). The mouthfeel...what the hell? This is so thin for a barleywine. Add to this a slightly prickly carbonation and I'm starting to think this is basically just a higher ABV IPA. I will admit that it thickens up SLIGHTLY as it warms and I allowed it to get "flatter." I have no problem finishing a bomber of this, but I would not ask for seconds.

goochpunch, Dec 16, 2005
Photo of objectivemonkey
3.45/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I like the label design. Pours an amber gold, with frothy head and ok retention, with good lacing.

A rich and floral hop smell up front, citrussy.

Starts with a medium hop front, then hits the back of the tongue with a sour something, a hoppy and malty double whammy. The alcohol is actually masked pretty well with the loads of hop/malt expolsion. But the alcohol comes through in the mouthfeel, very agressive action through and down the throat.

Do'nt really know about this beer. Kind of like it, but not so much.

objectivemonkey, Dec 12, 2005
Photo of ChiSox05
4.08/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Strong but balanced, chewy malt with a 9.2% kick
Tall, effervescent 1 1/2" head quickly dissipated to long lasting slowly thinning 1/3" head, cappucino foam, on pour carbonation bounces off surface down back into the malt packed brew, then heads back up. Brilliant cherry wood amber color. Orange peel smells, room filling hops and walnuts in the background. Malty cake with black cherries. All with the presence of great green rich hops. infused simple syrup. estery. Raisens, currant. Chewy and good. Malt paves the tongue, coats it then the hops tear over it. Just short of thick with a mouthfell that is huge, constantly noticeable. Alcohol warms the entire stomach, and adds to the esters. Whatever the hell it is, barleywine, souped IPA, I'm buying more.

ChiSox05, Dec 09, 2005
Photo of walleye
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

from the bottle. poured a deep mahogany with a big off white head. aroma wow the graefruit just jumps out there than a nice caramel maltness comes thru. flavor the grapefruit is not as strong as in the aroma but it is there up front than the malt and alcohol. got to get more of this

walleye, Dec 08, 2005
Photo of Sammy
3.63/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Another Avery hopped-up beer. Piney aroma. Good retaining head and lace. Looks like an IPA. Citrus, carmel malted down bitterness, easy drink. More IPA than barleywine but a forced marriage of the two, that allows one to consume the 100 IBUs. Thanks Tupalev.

Sammy, Dec 06, 2005
Photo of Lnedrive14
3.65/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I am trying to decide how to approach this. Many people have said it is really more of a DIPA than a barleywine. I think for me it is too warming of a beer to be a DIPA, and too hoppy for a barleywine. So i guess it doesn't fit neatly into either category. In any sense, it is an insanely hopped, high alcohol, fruity beer that is just perfect for the first snow of the year (like today).

A: Beautiful brew. Medium brown with a 1/2" head that quickly dissipates, leaving a small ring around my Corsendonk glass. Lacing is incredible. The beer residue stays on the side of the glass through the session, which was quite drawn out.

S: Floral hops and citrus.

T: Very very fruity. It's unfortunate, however, that the fruitiness and the hops don't offset each other. They seem to be mutually exclusive. I think if the two disparate flavors somehow penetrated into one another, this would be a tremendous brew.

M: Nothing special here. Light and warming.

D: I killed the bomber pretty easily (well, aside from getting a bit drunk).

Lnedrive14, Dec 04, 2005
Photo of benito
3.88/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This is a beautiful beer. It pours a clear tangerine and ruby with good head and lacing. The bouquet is filled with hints of raisin, cotton candy, and citrus.

What I like best about this barleywine is the hop presence. The initial taste of dry bitterness caught me off guard though it was a wonderful set up for the malty, sweet finish, with its taste of prune and chocolate. I especially like this balance given that beers in this style so often take on the texture of cough syrup. The hops also help to hide the alcohol, making this rather (dangerously) drinkable.

A nice treat. I plan on buying at least two bottles for my cellar; at roughly five bucks a bomber, this is very well-priced for the quality of barleywine!

benito, Dec 04, 2005
Photo of 3Vandoo
4.3/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Ruby Amber with a nice deep head.

Smell is very floral of hops, even to the point of ressembling dandilions.
Big hoppy smell I must say to my rejoince like Goldorak said in his review.

Appearance: Translucent ruby amber, with a nice long head.

Smell: A big bag of grapefruits, with a touch of smokyness and sweet like strawberries.

Very unbalanced for a "Barley wine" very hoppy, very malty, a bomb of every ingredient, of course the hops takes over the whole. The beer is followed by malt, fruityness.

This beer taste more like an Imperial Pale Ale than a BW!

3Vandoo, Nov 25, 2005
Photo of blackie
4.1/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

appearance: The white head is thin and short lived, only a thin sheet of bubbles on the surface of the beer remain. A head is easily roused by swirling the snifter. The beer is a very clear copper in color.

smell: Big hop aromas here. Wonderful, green, piney, grapefruit-y, fresh hops...and just the right amount. Notes of tropical fruits abound, over the underlying dark, sweet fruitiness provided by the malt. Imperial IPA meets barleywine here. Maybe some peach flavors. Wonderfully complex, sweet, and hoppy.

mouthfeel: Carbonation is on the higher end of the low range, and the body is medium.

taste: Wonderful hop/malt balance going on. Beautiful, sweet fruitiness tempered by a fresh, green hop bitterness. Plenty of hop flavor, too. Not cloying in any respect. I don't want to say too much, just try it.

drinkability: A bomber is enough, but shouldn't it be?

This beer was just awesome at cellar temperature on this 47 degree, rainy late-November night. The ethanol was wonderfully hidden. Probably a slight departure from the style constraints. Purchased at Whole Foods as one of the first barleywines available in NC.

blackie, Nov 22, 2005
Photo of tatterdash
4.1/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Pours a burnt orange with a tan head which is quite bubbly and lively. Aroma was quit vineous and musty, with very strong malt character. Taste was highly hopped (of course), and bittersweet, with a one two punch of malt and hop, and a long finish. This is very smooth and velvety, definitely the barleywine's strong point. This a very drinkable barleywine and highly enjoyable. I could drink this all day.

tatterdash, Nov 17, 2005
Photo of Goldorak
3.58/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Translucent ruby amber, with a nice long head.

Smell: A big bag of grapefruits, with a touch of smokyness and sweet like strawberries.

Taste: Plenty of malt and hops, giving it a bittersweet flavor. The booze is quite well hidden behing that bitchslap of hops, making it pretty unbalanced. Hop fans sharing this one with me rejoiced, those who look for equanimity and harmony winced. We did all agree however that this one was more IIPA than Barleywine.

Goldorak, Nov 15, 2005
Photo of jhscarborough
2.83/5  rDev -28.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured this garnet colored beverage at 50 F into a 20 oz tumbler fully expecting a barleywine. What I got was an Imperial IPA. In fact it was entered in the GABF as such and got a silver medal for it in 2004. I doubt they would have gotten a medal had it been entered as a barleywine. FYI: Imperial and Double IPAs are one and the same in the mouths of a certified judge. Soooo... as a barleywine I was not impressed with the taste or the mouthfeel. As a double or imperial IPA this is one fine example.

The aroma first strikes me as the citrusy character of Cascade hops but the flavor has the more subtle characteristics of Columbus hops. Mouthfeel is a little thin for the barleywine style but there again this is more appropriately an IPA and from a marketing standpoint might better be labeled as the Imperial IPA it is.

If you are looking for a barleywine look elsewhere. If you want an Double IPA this would be a 'good' choice.

I gave it high marks in appearance because of the clarity, and in drinkability because if I didn't know it was a barleywine I would have been content believing it was an IPA. My lower scores in the other categories were because it failed to meet the style standards.

jhscarborough, Nov 15, 2005
Photo of Bitterbill
3.9/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle a nice medium gold with a decent head that faded quickly into a fine layer with some lacing.

The smell is of sweet carmel but some hoppiness was also present.

The taste is a good mix of malt and hops with the malt being big and bold(lots of caramel) up front and the hops takes over in the middle and dominates the finish to give it a bitterness that I liked.The alcohol is pretty well hidden but at +9%, I don't get that warming feeling that I'm used to in this style.

Overall, it's not the smoothest barleywine style ale I've tried but it's a good one that I'd buy again.

Bitterbill, Nov 11, 2005
Hog Heaven Barley Wine from Avery Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 1,795 ratings.