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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)

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

880 Ratings
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 880
Reviews: 498
rAvg: 4.01
pDev: 10.47%
Wants: 73
Gots: 103 | FT: 7
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:
Beer added by: BeerTruth on 04-02-2007

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
to view all ratings, reviews and sorting options.
Ratings: 880 | Reviews: 498
Photo of MarcatGSB
3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

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

Appearance – This is a nice, bronzy brown in color with a modest but very stubborn head that left cool-looking pits and a nice film.

Smell – This smells more like an EBW than an ABW. The table sugar is huge at the nose along with a vast collection of light, summertime fruits. I get a beautiful white apricot, a must try if you’ve never had them, with a bit of non-tart apple and maybe white grapes to go along with the barleyWINE moniker. The malts are modest caramel but really they are in the background here.

Taste – The light fruits and table sugar come through at the taste along with the first hint of hops. I guess the hop profile is somewhat complex but they do not dominate this ale like you would think from looking at the impressive list. I get a nice citrus and light pine mix but again nothing heavy. The caramel is a bit bigger in the mouth but nothing off the charts.

Mouthfeel – This is a big medium-bodied and greasy slick in the mouth with little suggestion of the high ABV.

Drinkability – This is the closest thing I’ve found to a session Barley Wine. It is very easy-drinking, not intimidating at all as most ABVs can be, and actually is more Enlgish than American. The light fruity character sets this apart from the rest and makes this mandatory tasting for all the BW lovers.

Photo of FalconA
3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

Photo of dave00100
5/5  rDev +24.7%

Photo of djre4orm
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of mhaugo
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of tat2dhllblly
3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

Photo of casualfan
3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

Photo of SteelCityHops89
5/5  rDev +24.7%

Photo of Discordian
5/5  rDev +24.7%

Photo of ccarney2
3.45/5  rDev -14%
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.

Photo of IrishColonial
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of GrindFatherBob
3.75/5  rDev -6.5%

Photo of mylar
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of Duff27
3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

Photo of djrn2
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of doof116
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of Shango42
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of rab53
5/5  rDev +24.7%

Photo of gwguest
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of pmarlowe
3.35/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

No discernible date on the bottle. Tulip glass.

A: Pours clear dark amber with a ring and some swirls of off-white head.

S: Upfront is toffee malt and vanilla, along with some red fruit (cherry, raspberry) and citrus brightness.

T: Some mild caramel segueing into some hop bitterness, and finishing pretty tasteless and very dry with a little caramel. Kind of one dimensional.

M: Medium-full body and mild carbonation.

O: Smells good, but pretty average taste.

Photo of ROGUE16
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of fergster75
5/5  rDev +24.7%

Photo of climax
4.12/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The cherry wood color gleaming from inside the snifter is bright and vivid. Head formed pretty easy after a gentle pour. Retention isdecent for the ABV, and blobs of bubbles cling together after it's all settled down.

The aroma is as bold and flavorful as it should be. Subtle hints of mint, citrus, and earth bring hop presence to a huge malt bill. Big notes of ripe red grapes, tootsie rolls, and cherries make up the bulk of the nose. Malt backing comes from caramel and graham cracker, while a bit of wood/root flavor adds some aged flavor and sophistication. The alcohol is in there, but adds merely a whisper of warmth.

This one seems much more on the sweet side than a lot of barleywines. It's never cloying, but there's a load of unfermented sugar in here, giving it an almost maraschino cherry character from start to finish. The taste seems a little less complex than the aroma, but it's a tough act to follow.

The body is a bit on the thin side for a barleywine IMO. More viscosity is always a plus for a sipper like this, yet I am enjoying it after a meal and it's quite easy to keep at it. The gentle carbonation adds just a fluff in the beginning and then the dryness keeps things crisp through the finish.

All things considered this baby's got a load of flavor. It's definitely on the sweet side and gets a bit cloying as the bomber wears on, but it never stops being a pleasure to drink.

Photo of JohneHoodlum
4.5/5  rDev +12.2%

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Backburner (Imperial Barley Wine Style Ale) from Southern Tier Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 880 ratings.