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Backburner (Imperial Barley Wine Style Ale) - Southern Tier Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Backburner (Imperial Barley Wine Style Ale)Backburner (Imperial Barley Wine Style Ale)

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

864 Ratings
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 864
Reviews: 497
rAvg: 4.01
pDev: 10.47%
Wants: 68
Gots: 102 | FT: 8
Brewed by:
Southern Tier Brewing Company visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  9.60% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerTruth on 04-02-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Backburner (Imperial Barley Wine Style Ale) Alström Bros
Ratings: 864 | Reviews: 497 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of silentjay
3.38/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

nice dark mahogany with a decent sized light khaki head that dissipates quick, but leaves intricate lacing on the glass. a beautiful pour.

aroma is very malty and fruity. raisins, and other dried, sweetened dark fruits like plums. alcoholic as well.

taste is very malty sweet. lots of caramel, some dark fruit, and a bit of floral and piney hops try to balance the sweetness. They fail, as this one is a bit too sweet and alcoholic for my liking.

Can't knock the body, as it suits the style being heavy-medium bodied with just enough carbonation and a lot of sticky, syrupy residue.

Very sweet and with burning alcohol prevalent throughout, this is one to nurse, but lacks the complexity I would want in a sipper. Not bad for the price, but not my favorite of the style, nor my favorite of ST's portfolio.

silentjay, Jul 16, 2010
Photo of ccarney2
3.4/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Darkish deep amber orange color that is very cloudy. Pours about an inch of off white head when poured violently. Head quickly dissipates into a thin film that leaves hardly any lacing. Not too unexpected with the style and gravity.

Smell - Dark fruits with lots of cherry and plum to start. Alcohol is definitely evident, but so are a moderate amount of sweeter hops. Maybe a bit of caramel/vanilla scent, something sweet.

Taste - There is a big sweetness off the bat with this barleywine, that doesn't really fade too much. Alcohol flavor lasts throughout also, with the same characteristics of the smell here as well. Cherry, plum, and raisin dominate the palate. Kind of one dimensional in terms of flavors.

Mouthfeel - Moderate to high carbonation, with a pretty viscous and thick coat left on the tongue.

Overall - I feel like this is a slightly better than average beer. I don't have too much to compare it to stylewise, but I will say that you know how much alcohol you're taking in while drinking this. Southern Tier does not normally disappoint, and they didn't necessarily here either, but they also didn't really excite me either.

ccarney2, Dec 15, 2011
Photo of Kadonny
3.43/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a bomber bottle into a tulip glass.

A: A dark reddish orange color with a thin off white head. Nice glass lacing.

S: Dark fruits, sweetness and floral herby hops.

T: First hint is dark fruits with some floral herby spicy hops, then the malt honey caramel sweetness flows in. A bit spicy but the sweetness overtakes the hops to the point of being cloying IMO. Finish is sweet and really over the top. Where are all the dark dried fruit flavors I love in my barleywines?

M: Medium with a coating prickly mouthfeel. Some bitterness but sweetness is lingering.

D: Low, this wore on me at the end of the bomber.

Overall this barleywine just didn't do it for me. Too honey sweet and not enough dark fruit flavors. I'll take an Old Guardian, Bigfoot, Old Ho or Old Ruff over this any day. Sorry, misses the mark for me.

Kadonny, Jun 29, 2009
Photo of jjanega08
3.43/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A= Pours a viscous looking amberish brown color with a small half centimeter head that's a cream color but lasts a long time leaving decent spotty lacing.
S= Pretty pungent pine and grapefruit hops in it but there is a very noticeable alcohol odor as well as some darker sweet malts in it.
T= The hops come through up front but are gone quickly by thick syrupy malt. The malts are very sweet and not quite stout tasting but more of a thick brown ale kinda malt taste. There's a slight alcohol touch as well.
M= Thick and syrupy with a dry finish
D= Decent. This is prolly the first big beer I've had in a while where you could notice the alcohol so that's a little disappointing but it's still an ok beer. Not the best barleywine I've had but I suppose it was worth trying.

jjanega08, May 05, 2009
Photo of charlzm
3.45/5  rDev -14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Consumed April 22nd, 2012 at Hopjacks, Ensley Florida.

Color is a clear, deep amber with a minimal off-white head. Some slight sheeting.

Aroma: resiny alcohol and a whiff of vanilla.

Almost a lacquer flavor at first. Sweet. Caramelized malt, vanilla, wood and alcohol heat. Some pepper. Not very bitter.

Thick in the mouth. Some carbonation prickle. Dry on the finish.

Easy to drink but oddly not super tasty. Considering I got this for $2.50 during happy hour, I'm not looking this gift horse in the mouth. Worthwhile, if not especially outstanding.

charlzm, Jun 23, 2012
Photo of sacrelicio
3.45/5  rDev -14%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Decent barleywine, but not a favorite. A little let down. Fruity pineapple and honey and cherry syrup smell. Taste is somewhat savory and sweet, with bitter pine hops and chewy malt. Solid bitterness on the finish. Mouthfeel is full but flat. Fairly drinkable, but nothing special.

sacrelicio, Feb 26, 2011
Photo of Yagman3000
3.48/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bomber into a pint glass. Creamy head appears with a slow pour and a finger remains.

Appears brown with a bit of an orange glow.

Smells of figs and prunes with a touch of molasses.

Tastes similar to smell but a touch of toffee and over-ripe fruit comes through as well.

Mouthfeel is thinner than I'd expect. I actually wish there was more thickness to this... A bit more syrupy perhaps.

Overall this was good but I wouldn't run to get it again for a while. Maybe it would be better served warm in the winter.

Yagman3000, Jun 13, 2011
Photo of PittBeerGirl
3.48/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

One of my last ST brews to review-thanks chris for sharing!

A- Body is a translucent red/brown hue with dynamic cloudiness. Pours with a thin fizzy one finger head that has little retention.

S-alcohol, spice, barley, caramel, and a candy sugar sweetness. Sweet, spicy, and boozy.

T- Sweet malt upfront with caramel and barley being the most prominent characters and a hint of plum in the background. A slight alcohol heat lingers.

M- Full medium weight body with soft carbonation and slight alcohol astringency.

D- This is a good barleywine overall. Very sweet and boozy-which can get a bit cloying after awhile.

PittBeerGirl, Jul 07, 2010
Photo of MisterE
3.48/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

bought this 22 oz. bomber at Ward's earlier this week

A: pours a murky rusty brown with almost no head

S: sweet malt, citrusy hops, and alcohol

T: more like an English Barleywine in my opinion, with a boozy bite as it warms

M: smooth but rather thin, very little carbonation

O: after reading previous reviews, this beer was a disappointment, but solid all the same

Perhaps it's hard for me to get excited by a beer in this category that costs more than Bigfoot but delivers less of the pleasure.

MisterE, Feb 01, 2013
Photo of dgilks
3.48/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Cloudy dark red colour with a tiny head. Poor head retention but that's not what the beer is about.

Massive caramel malt on the nose with hints of grain. Some earthy and almost floral hops. Quite fruity.

Rich, silky malt with more fruit and earthy hops. Interesting combination. Pretty tasty.

Full body with moderate carbonation. Good.

I really like the combination of intensely rich malt and earthy hops here but it is a little cloying. Good but not great.

dgilks, May 07, 2012
Photo of sabitu
3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

sabitu, Sep 29, 2012
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3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

Mugenlude, Jan 28, 2014
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3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

acurtis, Jan 03, 2014
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3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

FalconA, Dec 23, 2011
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3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

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3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

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3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

BostonPhilly, Jun 24, 2013
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3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

jaidenjb, Feb 19, 2012
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3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

chefduff2, Jan 07, 2013
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3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

1koolspud, Feb 20, 2012
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3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

YeastEnthusiast, Jan 29, 2014
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3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

Gotti311, May 11, 2013
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3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

NateMac13, Mar 30, 2013
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3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

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3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

Duff27, Dec 13, 2011
Backburner (Imperial Barley Wine Style Ale) from Southern Tier Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 864 ratings.