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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

852 Ratings
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 852
Reviews: 496
rAvg: 4.01
pDev: 10.47%
Wants: 62
Gots: 96 | FT: 6
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:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Backburner (Imperial Barley Wine Style Ale) Alström Bros
Ratings: 852 | Reviews: 496 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of kzoobrew
kzoobrew

Michigan

4/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep caramelly amber color. Three finger cinnamon colored head sits atop. The head works its way back at a casual pace leaving behind heavy moth eaten lacing. A nice cap remains on top for the duration.

Warm toast malt and caramel aroma are surprisingly dominant off the bat. Bright pineapple and citrus hop scents fill in behind. The aroma displays an impressive balance. Not the aroma I expect from an American Barleywine but it is enjoyed non the less.

Candied pineapple and caramel flavor lay heavy on the tongue out of the glass. A bright bitterness picks up as the flavor transitions to the midpalate before a heavy caramel flavor emerges. Deep flavors develop on the back of the palate, heavily caramelized sugar and raisins mainly. The darker flavors become very strong on the back end drowning out the lighter flavors from up front.

Backburner comes in just under full bodied. The carbonation is a bit higher than expected, delivering a bit of a lighter body than I would prefer. The finish is long as the dark sugar and fruit flavors dig into the tongue refusing to budge.

Backburner is a solid beer, enjoyable but fails to reach the top tier of the style. Easy to drink and enjoyable. This is one I will pick up a s a change in pace Barleywine but will not be on the top of my list.

Serving type: bottle

09-13-2011 17:48:53 | More by kzoobrew
Photo of ColSanders123
ColSanders123

Georgia

3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

12-20-2012 17:55:34 | More by ColSanders123
Photo of loren01
loren01

Oregon

4.83/5  rDev +20.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: Pours a reddish brown color, good head and good lace down the glass
S: Smells of lots of malt and dark fruit.
T: Taste is mostly malt and dark fruits with a hint of hops at the end.
M: Mouthfeel is medium to full bodied.
D: My kind of barleywine, I loved this one. Was very drinkable for something with an ABV of 10%.

Serving type: bottle

04-19-2010 15:08:04 | More by loren01
Photo of jayhawk73
jayhawk73

Maryland

3.98/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Pours a bronze/red color w/ a beautiful two finger cocoa head. Decent carbonation and good lacing. Great looking, and perfect for the style.

S- Caramel, hops, malt, very sweet smelling... almost more than I'd like. Rum tinge to the fruit smell as well. Nice, although I'd like the hops to be more forward.

T- Big taste on this beer. A little on the sugar/sweet side, still nice. I'd like the hops to be predominant rather than the sweetness, but it's still good. A little short of great.

M- Very smooth, with a sweet aftertaste. No way this beer feels like 10%, it goes down too easily. A little on the dry side, and a tad thin. More malt in the taste would help the feel I think.

O- Nice Barleywine, and another solid beer from Southern Tier. If you like Barleywines, this is a good one to try- although the sweetness may turn off some people.

Serving type: bottle

07-02-2011 02:28:11 | More by jayhawk73
Photo of BlindPig
BlindPig

Pennsylvania

4.55/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A- About a 1" tan head on a kind of clear dark brown and amber body. Great head retention and thin lacing covers the top with a nice collar and sticks to side of glass.
S- Huge hop aroma along with a bunch of sweet caramel and toffee malt, alcohol comes through nice and big too, some pine and light citrus, some breads also.
T- Sweet caramel malt back bone with a ton of hops that are holding on to the malts. Pine and some grapefruit make up the hop profile and leave a nice big bitterness on mid of tongue. Breads, and alcohol come through very nicley. Nothing over powers the other even though they are all big flavors.
M- Full body with low carbonation that tickles the tongue.
D- It is a very nice barley wine and refreshing to have one after not have one or a good one in about 7 months. I would get this again and can only OAT can be as good as this.

Serving type: bottle

10-11-2007 06:00:08 | More by BlindPig
Photo of nick76
nick76

Florida

3.88/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The aroma is very rich with caramel, toffee, grass, butter, nuts, and toasted malt. The appearance is deep amber with a head that is appropriate for the style. The flavor is like the aroma with a bitter and malty finish. The palate is smooth and thick. Overall this is just what you are looking for when you want a Barley Wine.

Serving type: bottle

09-29-2009 00:39:59 | More by nick76
Photo of dsshuck
dsshuck

Delaware

4/5  rDev -0.2%

07-21-2014 19:05:22 | More by dsshuck
Photo of Wetpaperbag
Wetpaperbag

Washington

3.58/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A- A dark burnt copper red color. The head is tick fluffy and very very light tan, but vanishes quickly leaving great lacing.

S- The smell is very true to form of an American Barleywine. The Hops are present along with sweet malt smells and nice dark fruits are also very much there.

T- There is a bread taste that mixes with the dark fruits giving a granola type of taste. The hop taste is there and provides a bitter taste.

M- Feels good on the mouth, the Alcohol creates a spiciness on the tongue.

D- Easy to drink.

Serving type: bottle

07-29-2008 19:56:57 | More by Wetpaperbag
Photo of cavedave
cavedave

New York

4.22/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A thin beige head gives way to a lasting skim atop a boldly cloudy, dark bronze beauty of a barley wine.

The nose is full of alcohol spice/warm, fig, some caramelish sweet, stone fruit, alcohol, hints of tart yeast, light hoppy floral/bitter, and alcohol. My nose just caught a buzz.

At a cool temp. this beer is a nice blend of sweet, some fruity notes, and a bit of alcohol. As it warms the component flavors come out to play, and they play well. Warming vapors spread a wonderfully thick mix of sweet caramel, peach, bread dough, nice floral notes that hang in to crest with a very tasty herbal bitter into a finish that may not be epic for style, but is clean, tasty, and interesting. At room temp. the alcohol comes back to master the sip, but it is now a beast, and the master's whip yields a complex and brilliant sip.

Mouthfeel is suitably viscous, acceptably low carb., and provides a nice taste platform and quite good finish.

Can I think of five other barley wines I would prefer to sip? Yes. Ten? Perhaps. Quite drinkable, though alcohol is hardly hidden.

Impression: With a couple years on it this may be exceptional. Now it is a bit hot. Lotta good flavor here, I recommend this one, and will certainly buy more for the cellar.

Serving type: bottle

05-22-2010 02:17:12 | More by cavedave
Photo of errantnight
errantnight

California

4.13/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Joe1510

Big citrus hop bomb at the moment... quite tasty young and fresh, but this really really really tastes like it needs a few years on it.

Pours a brilliant ruby red, perfectly carbonated with lasting head, lacing, and initial finger and a half of creamy head that disappears, as per the style, rather quickly.

Hops all over the nose, peaking around some sweet, malty notes. A slightly maltier, slightly less aggressive hop presence than a DIPA, but it's in the realm.

Taste has some awesome, incredibly well balanced hop flavor, a dry finish after a rounded, malty sweet middle, with golden raisin notes in particular coming through. It just tastes... simple. Malt flavor lacks complexity, it's perhaps a little spritzy.

Seems like a fine candidate to see what some aging does. The hops will of course drop out a bit, but there's a lot here. Some oxidative notes might help round things out.... or it might just get syrupy. Who knows?

Certainly worth the try, I'd gladly drink another.

Serving type: bottle

04-14-2008 01:37:05 | More by errantnight
Photo of ant880
ant880

New York

3.75/5  rDev -6.5%

01-19-2013 19:01:26 | More by ant880
Photo of GuttaMane138
GuttaMane138

Florida

4/5  rDev -0.2%

05-28-2013 09:04:04 | More by GuttaMane138
Photo of hoppymeal
hoppymeal

Michigan

4.03/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours dark amber to brown, clear, with a small light cream head that slowly recedes. Aroma is strong on the citrusy hops, grapefruit, some tropical fruit nots, pineapple and mango. A sweet malty backbone is evident but is definitely overpowered by the fruity hoppiness. Taste is quite similar with large tropical fruit and citrus notes as well as a bit of caramel and pruney breadiness. Soft and sugary mouthfeel with a bit of peppery tingling in the background, finishes with a nice citrusy dry hoppiness. Alcohol is very well hidden for the strength. This beer is quite tasty, but seems to be one of those dipa/bw hybrid/crossover beers. Very strong dipa charcateristics with a large sugary and malty backbone that accentuates the fruitiness. Very good and quite easy to drink, will look forward to seeing what a little cellaring time produces.

Serving type: bottle

05-20-2007 18:44:27 | More by hoppymeal
Photo of HumphreyLee
HumphreyLee

Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev -0.2%

05-06-2012 06:26:28 | More by HumphreyLee
Photo of EPICAC
EPICAC

Massachusetts

3.88/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Burp Castle in NYC.

Pours a clear, deep amber. Topped by a beige head that fades to a patchy film leaving spotty lace. The aroma is malty and very fruity with notes of caramel and cherries. Swirling brings out hints of hops.

Malty: caramel and a bit of chocolate. Toasty with a bit of citrusy hops and a nice bitter finish. Full-bodied, moderate to low carbonation and smooth.

Serving type: on-tap

07-16-2008 19:10:56 | More by EPICAC
Photo of mikepcarney
mikepcarney

Ohio

4.5/5  rDev +12.2%

03-31-2013 15:06:21 | More by mikepcarney
Photo of tripledbrew
tripledbrew

Kentucky

4/5  rDev -0.2%

12-02-2011 06:02:48 | More by tripledbrew
Photo of webmanspidey
webmanspidey

Michigan

3.63/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Bomber poured into a Chimay chalice. A dark caramel/amber color with a slight head. Smells sweet and rich.. taste is much of the same. Full bodied, very rich, heavy, and malty with a mild hoppy bitterness in the background. Alcohol is present but not overwhelming, yet the overall characteristics of this make it a very slow sipper.

For this most part, I think this beer is pretty par for the course for the style. A solid offering.

Serving type: bottle

10-03-2009 01:53:46 | More by webmanspidey
Photo of SaxmanRick
SaxmanRick

Minnesota

3.75/5  rDev -6.5%

11-16-2013 23:46:20 | More by SaxmanRick
Photo of BostonPhilly
BostonPhilly

Massachusetts

3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

06-24-2013 16:50:08 | More by BostonPhilly
Photo of IrishGermanAmerican
IrishGermanAmerican

Texas

4.5/5  rDev +12.2%

05-24-2013 18:21:58 | More by IrishGermanAmerican
Photo of BurgeoningBrewhead
BurgeoningBrewhead

Pennsylvania

4.58/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured bomber into 34oz mug. Clear orange/red with a moderate white head that sticks. Smells mostly of hops, but with a strong malt presence providing some bready scents. Taste is all over the place; smooth clean malt sweetness at first, then slightly minty hops, warming alcohol, and finally a slightly yeasty finish. This is a big beer; just what I'd expect a barleywine to be. Mouthfeel is full and a bit creamy, moderately carbonated.

Serving type: bottle

05-01-2013 04:43:10 | More by BurgeoningBrewhead
Photo of Pellinore1
Pellinore1

Illinois

4.15/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep, cloudy amber, leaving about an inch of light tan head. This fades slowly, leaving some lacing.

The smell is primarily nice, mellow malt. Caramel and vanilla notes are there, with just a hint of hops and alcohol in the background.

This beer begins with sweet malt, dark fruit, and caramel, then comes through with a bit of hops and bitterness for the finish.

Ridiculously smooth and thick, with light carbonation.

The ABV is almost undetectable, making for a very drinkable barleywine.

Serving type: bottle

12-16-2010 03:12:48 | More by Pellinore1
Photo of DruC4
DruC4

Michigan

4.5/5  rDev +12.2%

06-18-2012 19:17:36 | More by DruC4
Photo of brbrocc
brbrocc

New York

4.25/5  rDev +6%

08-09-2012 02:48:34 | More by brbrocc
Backburner (Imperial Barley Wine Style Ale) from Southern Tier Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 852 ratings.