Mill Street Barley Wine (2007-2011) - Mill Street Brew Pub
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Ratings: 58 | Reviews: 44 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by schopenhauerale:
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3.63/5 rDev 0%
2011 edition from the lovely earthenware swing-top bottle. Poured into an over-sized wine glass, and shared with my wife (the giver of this particular Christmas present!)
Pours a clear, caramel colour, looking every inch like a glass of very dark honey. Leaves a decent head for a barleywine - a bit of lacing, and a thin ring survive the pour.
Nose is caramel, booze, a bit of toffee, strawberry, sugar and mild leafy hops.
This was my first barleywine a few years ago (2008 I think) and I couldn't stand it then, but after a few years of palate-strengthening, barleywines have become one of my favorite styles. With this in mind, I have to say I have a much greater respect for what the Mill Street folks have done here. This is an enjoyable barleywine, slightly above average for the style, and worth trying - though at 12 bucks, one should be sufficient. Nice caramel sweetness at the front, a bit of fruit and earth, followed by a leafy hop finish that is dry on the palate. Decent carbonation keeps the dangerous cloying effect at bay. Not as remarkable as some of the other great barleywines I've had recently, but still quite nice. Booze could be checked a little better - were the price a little lower I'd have a bottle to age for next Christmas.
My suggestion to Mill Street - bring down the price a little! If it means offering this in bottled form outside of the earthenware jug, so be it. Or better yet, offer both the stylish jug (for gifts and keepsakes, etc.) and a regular glass bomber for those of us who are looking for some in the cellar without killing our wallets!
12-29-2011 01:35:38 | More by JohnnyBarman
3.9/5 rDev +7.4%
2007 version. Ceramic swing-top bottle that looks good as it sweats when pulled from the fridge to sit for a spell before being cracked...
This beer pours a hazy dark orange-apricot colour, with a single finger of thin foamy light beige head, which dissipates rather quickly, leaving no lace in its wake. It smells initially, from a distance, of alcohol, like fermenting fruit. Up close, essences of candy sugar, dark fruit, caramel malt, and more alcohol are evident. The taste is sweet bready, caramel malt, tangy ripe dark fruit, a bit of woody alcohol, and some floral, earthy hops. The carbonation is quite tame, the body big, chewy, and syrupy, and it finishes warm, just a wee burn amongst the lingering sugary sweetness. A pretty decent hop-restrained malt bomb in the English style.
07-22-2009 23:38:30 | More by biboergosum
2.85/5 rDev -21.5%
2008/2009 blend dry hopped at Cask at Volo Grapefruit colour with soapy head. Very cloying taste, not so drinkable. 50 IBU and there are hops there but not balanced. Mild barleywine aroma. Average mouthfeel. I do not know what blend did, but dry hopping added some hop flavour to an English style.
11-01-2009 14:10:19 | More by Sammy
3.08/5 rDev -15.2%
Purchased the 2011 edition 1 year ago.
Poured a copper, clear with a thin head.
Nose is very fruity with a subtle mineral-like aroma. Citrus, pineapple.
Taste...weird. Starts off with a huge belgian yeast flavor, spicey, cloves and then quickly turns into an all out attack of orange and pineapple..too much. Then quickly, a strong hop bitterness takes over and lingers far too long into the next sit. Not as much malt as I was expecting. Very medicinal, i sense a tough of good ol green cough syrup.
I dont like this at all, the tastes just dont work. ITs very odd for the style, The citrus is just far too overpowering and the hops just dont work.
Wow, i'm surprised how bad this is. I'll stick to the American, Belgian and Quebec breweries....
Not a fan,
04-07-2012 00:29:36 | More by jbonapar
4/5 rDev +10.2%
Orange brown in colour, with a thin beige head that leaves a little lacing. Hazy, with visible carbonation.
Candy sweetness and mandarin orange come to mind from the smell. A fairly fresh aroma, with the alcohol notable but not harsh to the nose.
This is a very sweet barleywine. Sweet fruitiness and a bit of molasses. Something makes me think of orange marmalade. Hops almost absent to the taste, alcohol makes up the bulk of the finish.
The beer is syrupy, with a dull carbonation. Not bad but not great in the mouthfeel department.
While I like the sweeter barleywines, this one could do with a little more balance. Worth checking out for fans of the style.
03-14-2008 18:49:04 | More by elricorico
2.4/5 rDev -33.9%
Pretty pale, very low carbonation/head but, ah, beautiful and sticky lacing helps make up for some of that. And, hey, this is a really cool bottle - sure it has the flip top (like many others) but also has a little handle you can use to carry it around built in to the flip top mechanism.
Doesn't have that English smell - you know, the sweet prune one? It's more light and grassy. Hints of sweet caramels malts.
Tastes, well, shucks. How could I possibly have had two completely different barleywines from completely different parts of the world - completely random choices - that had the same off flavor? And this, one right after the other. Really really weird. Anyway, tastes to me like T-58 yeast. Like a little strange and a little infected and a little bubblegum, you know? Other than that it is pleasant enough while not being enough of anything to be English or American or whatever.
The alcohol is well-hidden. The mouth is pretty close for the 'merican style but there's no hop backbone. It's kind of close for English style but on the light side and certainly not sweet enough.
I suppose that since I've gone crazy getting and reviewing all of these barleywines, and aside from the Andygator, this is the one I've had that is the least like a barleywine.
12-22-2008 01:19:58 | More by charlesw
3.9/5 rDev +7.4%
Pours with a fluffy head, good retention and lacing. Looks good in my snifter. Has a light brownish color.
This barleywine is pretty much all malt in the nose and taste. Nothing wrong with that, its good switch things up. The nose has lots of caramel/toffee, alcohol, licorice and a bit metallic.
Tastes of caramel malt, shy herbal hops, faint fruitiness and a warming alcohol to ward of those cold winter nights. A little time wont hurt this one.
01-03-2008 07:59:29 | More by irishkyle21
4/5 rDev +10.2%
2010 Batch. I dig the bottle!
pours a hazy dark amber colour. Not much head.
Smell is intense! Alcohol is strong off the bat. It gives way to some dried fruit and nutty notes.
Tastes very nice! Alcohol is very present here, but it goes away quickly. It's quite sweet to start, and followed by some nutty/toffee flavours and some slight bitterness. The aftertaste is sweet and pleasant.
The mouthfeel is heavy with fine carbonation tickling the tongue.
Overall, this is only the second barleywine I've had. I didn't really enjoy the first one, so was a bit hesitant with this one. I'm pleasantly surprised! It's a nice beer.
03-28-2011 02:36:55 | More by evlu1441
3.68/5 rDev +1.4%
Nice packaging on this one, a 500 ml rustic cream coloured ceramic flip top bottle. 2007 edition, batch #07-557-560 (geez, pretty much got one of the last ones here).
Pours out a hazy bright marmalade hue, tall puffy cream coloured head (it actually matches the colour of the ceramic bottle quite well, I have them sitting side-by-side at the moment!).
A good dose of citrus, as well as butterscotch malt on the nose, light spices, as well as a sharp dose of yeast.
Hope you brought your drinkin' cap, because this one delivers and will take a while to work through. Mouthfeel is thick and full, sticky and chewy. Both yeast and bready caramel malt greets the palate upon first sip. Doughy texture, with almost a peanut brittle-like flavour building up in the middle, and the alcohol also ascends with a warming presence. Alcohol builds in the finish, the grassy and herbal hops can do nothing to overpower or block out the strong savoury current of the malt, they just get swept up and washed away with it all, blending in but not really leaving much of a trace. The aftertaste slowly subsides with the warming of the alcohol and mild spice, with lingering traces of butterscotch sticking to the palate long afterwards.
Sampled at the beginning of March '08 this still seems fairly young, yet enjoyable in its present incarnation all the same. A good year or two to refine and I feel everything will smooth and even out all the more. The bottle is gone, yet I'm still enjoying that lingering butterscotch stuck to my palate. Diacetyls anyone? Mmmm, utilized properly in this case.
03-05-2008 23:42:06 | More by IronDjinn
2.63/5 rDev -27.5%
2010 vintage. 500ml ceramic swingtop bottle poured into a snifter.
A: Pours a clear dark ruby with a small white head.
S: Smells of alcohol, figs and cherries.
T: Tastes of alcohol and candied fruit. There is some bitterness in the finish. Overall, this has a cough syrup aftertaste.
M: I'm not well versed in the style of this beer but the mouthfeel is what I'd expect: a little syrupy with fairly low carbonation.
D: This is pretty hot and the aftertaste lowers the drinkability further.
The bottle is pretty unique but sadly what's inside does not measure up. Also much too expensive: $12 for this when Fuller's Vintage Ale is $7? No way.
11-07-2010 02:56:55 | More by mrnobody
3.55/5 rDev -2.2%
***2009 Vintage (Batch 09-669-673)***
Thanks to TheSevenDuffs for this one.
Poured from a 500ml. swingtop ceramic bottle.
Appearance: Only 1 thick finger of foam above an apple cider colored body. A bit of swirling reveals some lacing.
Smell: Strong caramel, malt, peaches and/or nectarines, specifically the pits.
Taste: Overripe pitted fruit mixed with a sweet touch of caramel, some sugar and a good dose of spiciness.
Mouthfeel: Sweet bite but lacks a lot of fullness in the middle through the end.
Overall: Expected a richer texture for the style and ABV. The taste is good but overall i don't think i'll revisit.
04-23-2012 11:41:02 | More by papat444
3.58/5 rDev -1.4%
A - Deep ruby colour with decent transparency. Head is quite minimal while being poured and dissipates quickly into a ring. Quite a bit of carbonation.
S - Sweet. The main flavours to show through are apple and other fruits with caramel coming through afterward. Slight hint of booziness without much of anything in the way of bitterness.
T - Mirrors the smell. The initial flavour is of apples and other fruits, then the caramel malts and a very faint trace of alcohol and bitterness from the hops finishes it.
In my opinion this drink gets a lot better at room temperature. The flavours get thicker and the bitterness and booziness comes through a lot more pronounced at this temperature, the sweetness dies down a bit. Still though, this is a sweet drink with a fairly solid malt backbone and the bitterness and alcohol are very contained.
M/D - Heavy mouthfeel that leaves a sweet coating for a long time after. Going down the smoothness becomes a little harsh from the alcohol and hops which is a welcome change from the otherwise uniformity of the mouthfeel.
All around it's a pretty good barleywine. The taste could have been more complex and it's a little sweet for my taste, but it's still a good drink.
That being said, it's too much money for what you get. The packaging is nice but unnecessary, and the flavour doesn't justify an $11 price tag.
11-10-2010 01:58:22 | More by StarshipPoopers
2.93/5 rDev -19.3%
Pours dark orange in colour with thin white head which stayed for a while. Nice sweet and citrusy smell, also yeasty smell is noticable there. You can taste the alcohol, but it doesn't feel out of balance. Mouthfeel is really thick and sticky.
Well, it's my first barley wine, it's really interesting, and I kinda like it, but if you're talking about drinkability, well I'm having troubles finishing that bottle:) It doesn't mean I won't have another one next time.
09-23-2008 03:49:25 | More by Voonder
3.75/5 rDev +3.3%
thanks to grub for being able to sample this beer.
pours brilliant reddish copper with a white head the raises and falls with every slosh of the glass.
the aroma is malty with whiffs of toffee and unidentified spices.
the flavor is very malty, toffee, hop spice, caramelized malt coats your tongue, warming effects of high alcohol.
12-26-2007 04:34:05 | More by plaztikjezuz
3.5/5 rDev -3.6%
500ml ceramic swingtop bottle. batch no 07-557-560. sampled dec 24/07.
pours crystal clear orangey amber colour with a small dense white head. no lace.
aroma is nice. light caramel and toffee. alcohol. bread and cracker malt. light earthy and floral hops.
taste is good. alcohol. bread and cracker malt. drying floral hop character. hint of grapefruit. light caramel. low bitterness level.
mouthfeel is ok. medium-low carbonation level. medium body with a fairly dry finish.
drinkability is nice, but not nearly as good as the 2005 vintage i sampled before it. this one is mostly balanced, with the hops a bit low and the alcohol a bit warm. a bit one-dimensional right now, but it will be nice to check out with age.
01-03-2008 19:21:33 | More by grub
3.9/5 rDev +7.4%
I am sampling a bottle from 2009, marked "Batch No. 09-669-673". It has been aged in my cellar since that time.
Appearance: Pours out a burnt orange colour. A head takes a while to form, eventually forming a soapy, craggy, slightly off white foam that quickly dissipates. Very little lacing.
Smell: Interesting. Molasses, dark fruit (plums I believe), bready malts, a lot of sweet caramel, clove. Very little alcohol, no detectable hops.
Taste: A small honey-like sweetness, a nice spiciness on the finish. Big flavour of molasses, underscored by the aforementioned dark fruits, very little bitterness. The 11% alcohol has either mellowed out to near nonexistence due to aging or was very well hidden by the brewer.
Mouthfeel: Unexpectedly thin. I prefer barley wines to be thicker with a warming stickiness.
Overall: A very nice barley wine from Ontario, but it is a second class citizen compared to the heavyweights of the style.
04-13-2011 04:19:21 | More by dragonofblood
3.98/5 rDev +9.6%
2011 edition purchased in November, served at 45-50 in a wine glass. Listed at 11.5%.
Deep caramel-amber color, almost no head aside from a thin white collar.
Extremely pungent aroma. Sweet caramel, overripe fruits (plum, raisin), alcohol.
So much caramel/toffee taste it’s like sucking on a hard candy, yet I don’t find it too sweet. Very nice, bright berry flavour serves as an accent, along with a light biscuit-like one. The finish is sweet and syrupy at first, then surprisingly bitter with a hint of citrus.
Thick, heavy and full-bodied with very little carbonation. Oily and syrupy on the tongue. Aftertaste is buttery and fruity, with a lingering oiliness.
Not sure what I was expecting, but it wasn’t this. It was smooth, surprisingly drinkable and full of flavour. Have one aging now and will be sure to pick it up again when/if they brew it.
03-16-2012 18:51:40 | More by bryehn
British Columbia (Canada)
3.08/5 rDev -15.2%
Batch No 07-557-560.
A: Wonderful ceramic bottle with a fiip top; Copper-bronze with a white head, no retention, slight leg from the residual sweetness.
S: Earthy-minerals, caramel, toffee & hints of cotton-candy fruity esters. Certainly some alcohol here.
T: Caramel, earthy-orange zest, minerals, toffee; plenty of residual sweetness, but there's some good bitterness for balance. Alcohol is slightly warming.
M: Not very well-attenuated, so it's a little syrupy. Moderate carbonation, slight hop acidity.
D: Very approachable, but the sweet booze really limits the intake.
02-03-2008 22:58:09 | More by Derek
Mill Street Barley Wine (2007-2011) from Mill Street Brew Pub
82 out of 100 based on 58 ratings.