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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

874 Ratings
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 874
Reviews: 497
rAvg: 4.01
pDev: 10.47%
Wants: 70
Gots: 105 | 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:
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:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Backburner (Imperial Barley Wine Style Ale) Alström Bros
Ratings: 874 | Reviews: 497 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ajs4bd
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of Smurf2055
3.25/5  rDev -19%

Photo of MarvinSnyder
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of rapidsequence
3.55/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle. I bought it at Total Wine in northern VA in November. Since its a February release, I'm assuming its from 2/10.

Appearance: An attractive clear red-brown color and an off white head with good retention. Webs of lacing.

Smell: A nosefull of caramel malt, ripe fruit, and citrus hops. Less hoppy than I hoped, but it is a year old or so. There's an earthy, slightly vegetal aroma in the background that I often find in ST beers and do not enjoy.

Taste: Very much what I expected from the smell. The vegetal aroma is really not tasted much. Caramel and fruit. A little toast. A nice amount of hops bitterness, but again the flavor is subdued. Alcohol is barely detected.

Mouthfeel: Very little bad to say about the mouthfeel. Big and sticky with soft carbonation.

Drinkability: Without that slight earthy/vegetal smell/taste, this would be excellent. As it is, for me, its pretty good.

Photo of richbrew
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of BostonPhilly
3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

Photo of LoganMc
4.48/5  rDev +11.7%

Photo of SpAiReArGsEonNE
3.25/5  rDev -19%

Photo of aorloski
3.75/5  rDev -6.5%

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.

Photo of BlackBelt5112203
4/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle poured into a pint glass at cellar temperature.

L – Amber-brown color with a 2-finger cream-colored head. Nice retention but not much lacing. Clear with a good amount of bubbles. A little bit lighter than expected, but still fits the style.

S – Mostly caramel malts and citrus hops with some dark fruits mixed in. Alcohol is definitely apparent in the nose.

T – Follows the nose with a little more depth in the malt department. Starts off sweet with caramel, rich malts, molasses, and dark fruits like plums and figs. Bitter citrus hops creep in mid-taste and build toward the finish.

F – Medium-bodied with good carbonation, a sticky and mouth-coating feel, and a dry and bitter finish. Sweet caramel and bitter citrus hops linger. Lots of alcohol warmth is apparent at the finish.

O – This is a pretty solid American barleywine. It comes exactly as advertised with sweet caramel balanced with bitter citrus hops. The heat detracts a little from the drinkability, but it seems like that’s to be expected in beers that are this big. I haven’t had many barleywines so it’s tough to judge, but this one is pretty tasty. Another good beer from Southern Tier.

Photo of Boilerfood
4.25/5  rDev +6%

Photo of brbrocc
4.25/5  rDev +6%

Photo of Imstillthegman
3.85/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks go to nlmartin for throwing this in as an extra on a recent trade.

Backburner comes out of the bottle looking like cola. I thought for a moment I had opened a Coke. It had a finger and a half of light tan head that remains a constant sheet on top of the liquid. There is some craggy lacing ringing the glass.

The aroma is where this one is lacking a bit, IMO. When I first poured it into my glass I could smell it three feet away...but now I have to shove my nose in there to get a whiff of it. There is some caramel, brown sugar, pine, black cherries, and a stem-like floral scent if ya know what I mean.

The flavor is a good blend of malt and hops. Spicy, yet sweet. Dark caramels, spicy florals, pine resin, brown sugar, dark fruits. The abv is noticed a little at the end.

Solid medium bodied brew that's nicely carbonated. Some burn from the alcohol in the aftertaste that overrides the bitterness...I knocked it down from 4.0 to 3.5 as this grew stronger. Overall, a good barleywine that is easy to enjoy. Might be a good idea to share it with a friend, though.

Photo of BrazilianAussie
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of dtivp
4.25/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a medium copper brown with a nice white head, dissipated into a collar with moderate lacing.

Very nice sweet aroma of toffee, sugar and a hint of malt.

The taste is sweet with, toffee, vanilla , brown sugar and figs, however, the sweetness is not over powering, it is tamed with a hint of malt and bitter hops. The alcohol is well masked and only slightly detectable.

Medium body with light carbonation, very creamy with a slight bitter finish.

This is a very nice drinkable barleywine, and look forward to purchasing again.

Photo of BurgeoningBrewhead
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.

Photo of DruC4
4.5/5  rDev +12.2%

Photo of magine
4.33/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a becker glass.

Pours a cloudy dark amber caramel color. Has a cream colored head; head is about a finger width thick initially. Head then settles to a patchy lace head, nice lacing along the sides of the glass. Good looking brew.

Brew has a big barley malt nose. Caramel and sweet bready notes. Very good smell.

Brew is smooth, velvety, full and creamy. Big barley flavors, malty caramel notes as well. Sweet bready malts in the end. Finishes slightly dry and alcohol is masked pretty well. Can taste a nice hop oily resin in there as well, maybe some fruit based hops. Good drinkable brew... nice warming effect. Very good stuff here.

Now this is a damn tasty barleywine; malty, big barley, caramel, sweet bready taste as well. Excellent stuff here. One of the best barleywines I have had.

Photo of IrishGermanAmerican
4.5/5  rDev +12.2%

Photo of aubuc1
4.33/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle poured in to a goblet.

Pours a hazy dark amber with a thinning tan head.

Big smell of citrus y hops and a big biscuit.

Taste is a nice balance of huge hops and biscuit malt. Sweet, bitter and yet slightly sour.

Mouthfeel is very smooth and creamy.

Nice huge balance makes this very drinkable.

A truly great beer.

Photo of kzoobrew
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.

Photo of loren01
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%.

Photo of cavedave
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.

Photo of webmanspidey
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.

Backburner (Imperial Barley Wine Style Ale) from Southern Tier Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 874 ratings.