Oak-Aged Backburner (Imperial Barley Wine Style Ale) - Southern Tier Brewing Company
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Ratings: 279 | Reviews: 78 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by weeheavybutdieting:
4.38/5 rDev +8.1%
22 oz Bomber from Ale Yeah, Roswell GA.
Quick disclaimer: I am a softee for Quads, Tripels and Barleywines. Yes totally different, but that is my deal...
A: Got all of the skills needed for a good BW. Has a nice dark yet golden look, enough not to see through but transparent enough to not scare you away. Surprisingly carbonated along the lines of a champagne. Very light lacing left over.
S: You know it is a sweet barley wine. Nice caramel notes with just a hint of that oak aged differentiator.
T: Yes. No really. It is exactly what I want out of a barley wine. The front end has the caramelicious taste and coating of the tongue. Then comes just enough hops to wipe the palate. Lastly I am left with just the right amount of sweet and sticky requiring me to take yet another sip.
M: Again, just what the style asked for. Deep enough to coat but not so heavy to cover up the nuances of the barrel aged notes.
O: I am a big Southern Tier fan, they just do it right. I am a big Barley Wine fan. This is a beer that meets the style and lives up to the Southern Tier level of quality and uniqueness.
11-04-2012 01:46:09 | More by weeheavybutdieting
More User Reviews:
4.05/5 rDev 0%
Pours a rich amber tinged deep brown with a billowing one and a half finger off white creamy head that takes forever to settle,just great clarity and a great head.Toasty oak and alcohol soaked dark fruit in the nose,as it warms a real alcohol zip comes into play.A full creamy feel with low carbonation.Flavors are lightly toasted with a shot of vanilla and raisin,it's not overly sweet though as there is a earthy more toasted finish.I like this better than the standard version,it doesn't seem to be as sweet,the oak is not overbearing.another great one from ST.
06-16-2013 23:09:05 | More by oberon
4.14/5 rDev +2.2%
A: Medium copper with a slight haze, I'm pretty sure this was dry hoped hence the haze. The head doesn't get very big but last for a long time with the foam being made of a mix of mostly cream bubbles with some large soapy bubbles that are tan in color. The crown has small blisters indicating that it is not a fresh bottle, have just bought it last week I'm guessing it's a bottle from last year.
S: A moderately-strong, rich malt aroma that has malt sweetness, some ripe cherries, a bit of and caramel. The oak notes are moderate bringing some cinnamon to nose. There is a bit of dark stone fruit at moderately light levels. Maybe this is last years bottle as the hops aroma is pretty low, just a faint citrus. A reasonable amount of floral alcohol aroma as well.
T: The malt flavor is strong and up front bringing a fair amount of sweetness but it is quickly balanced by a strong hops bitterness. The malt bring flavors of caramel, plums and nectarines with a moderately-light cocoa showing up mid-way into the flavor. The hops are again on the low side with a nondescript citrus hops flavor like an aged beer. Light citrus hops flavor but a moderately strong hops bitterness. Having a moderate oak flavor that only underlines the Barleywine flavor with some cinnamon and a faint coconut flavor. The balance of the beer is somewhat bitter while the finish is medium. The aftertaste is of hops bitterness, some caramel malt sweetness and the oak showing a bit more as the other flavors fade.
M: Medium-full bodied with a moderate level of carbonation. This one reminds you that it a sipping beer from the good amount of warmth from the alcohol from the palate to throat to the belly.
O: A fairly sweet beer that's got a good amount of hops bitterness with a moderate amount of oak character. I didn't get much in the way of an other barrel character like like it was a wine or whiskey barrel that it was aged in and overall I'd like a bit more oak character in there. I'd had this fresh before, like out bright tank 13 day after brewing fresh along with from the store where it's had a solid amount of hops flavor and aroma which is awesome if not a bit agressive. Aged this beer has mellowed but I don't see it become an elegant after dinner beer like other Barleywine. Personally I prefer this one young and full of hops character but this still help ease the pain of a long work week just fine.
02-23-2013 00:27:30 | More by MadScientist
3.4/5 rDev -16%
I've been in love with the Backburner, and when the base beer is as good as it is I believe you shouldn't mess with it. However, there's exceptions to that just looka at what Founders does with variations of Breakfast Stout. Pours a deep ruby red mahogany brown hue with a cream colored khaki head with fine speckled laicng forming on the sides of my glass. Aroma has oak and vanilla with hints of booze, caramelized sugars with a rolling breadiness. Also in addition there's a subdued earth, citrus pith, and herbaceous flavor combination that gets a bit jaded by the loads of vanilla and charred oak flavors, making the beer a bit dysmal for me. I like Unearthly but not a fan of Oak Aged Unearthly, this is basically the same type of oak flavor, it just doesn't do anything for me that the base beer meant so much. Mouthfeel burns a bit a, quite booze ridden with dry oak chip finish going on, cloyingly sweet at the same time not enough hops balance things out. Overall I don't like the booze level and the overt sweetness found in this beer.
03-04-2012 21:16:12 | More by WVbeergeek
4.1/5 rDev +1.2%
(Served in a snifter)
A- The slightly dense deep aged copper body has a sticky light beige film on top that last a bit.
S- The soft rich buttery toffee aroma has papery oak notes and some cream and dry hops notes in the finish. There is some raw oak aromas with green raisins and vanilla that come through as it opens.
T- The pine wood pungent hop flavor dominates the slightly sweet malt notes that follow in the finish. There is a soft raw oak, paper straws and green raisin hint that comes through in the finish.
M- This beer has a medium mouthfeel with no alcohol heat noticed.
O- This beer is a bit dry and most of the flavors are very soft but the big pungent hops seem to dominate everything. The raw oak notes do add a nice character to the beer.
08-20-2012 15:59:28 | More by rhoadsrage
3.86/5 rDev -4.7%
The initial smell that sways my sinuses is one of raisin and a bit of toast. A few more inhales and I also notice a little bit of citrus, I suspect from the Willamette hops. Its color appears as a deep, and slightly cloudy mahogany. Backlit by the sun, it gives off a small red flare midst the brown. My first sip includes roasted malt, a tinge of hops, and more raisins from the nose. Midway through, I also detect vanilla and a little bourbon. It lingers, joined by big wood. [rim shot] No, really, the finish really leaves you with the oak-aged portion of the process. Great sipper. Tiny bubbles and mist-droplet like lacing. I’ve had the regular version of this. I much prefer this one, as it reminds me of Widdershins, but with less oak. Good take on barleywine, without being from across the pond.
07-27-2014 23:08:51 | More by JMS1512
4.23/5 rDev +4.4%
22oz bottle poured into a snifter. Bottled 02/15/12.
A: Pours a ruby copperish-red with a puffy 1.5 finger slightly yellowed head. Beer is fairly clear with a small amount of visible carbonation. A little lacing after the 2nd pour from the bottle.
S: At first I got hop but there is a lot of carmely malt in there as well. Hints of oak come through. Lots of dark fruits like fig, raisin and plum make an appearance. Alcohol is fairly hidden behind the fruit and oak.
T: Smooth flavor of dark fruits and hop with an oak backing. Pretty mild flavors that collaborate well together. Hops are bold but don't overpower, malt is sweet but not overly. Oak kicks in to mild out the booze.
M: Fairly thick on the palate, low carbonation. Nice and warming in the stomach. Real easy drinking for 9.6%
Overall a fantastic barley wine made better with some oak additions. A must for anyone who likes barley wines or for those who dont think they like the style.
05-13-2012 21:44:12 | More by CloudStrife
4.1/5 rDev +1.2%
Last of my Syracuse trip purchases.
Poured into a pint glass an hour after removal from fridge. Poured
a deep clear amber with a pretty tall off white head that receded to a cover.
The worlds weakest beak is picking up some ripe fruit aromas.
Right up front this may be one of the most flavor intense beers I've had in quite a while..a mouthful netted a nice hit of ripe plums and dark cherries followed by a caramel sweetness in the middle. Finish is showing a slight hop presence with more lingering sweetness.
Viscous, malty mouthfeel with gentle carbonation.
This is good...REALLY good.
11-10-2013 22:39:22 | More by BrewMaven
4.23/5 rDev +4.4%
Dark nut brown appearance, cloudy. Minimal cream head.
Heavy oak and vanilla on the nose; heavy malts, but nothing stands out; slight booziness.
Extremely smooth and very tasty. Vanilla, oak, and caramel stand out. Whatever edge the beer may have had has definitely been smoothed by age.
Not a thick feel - about medium - but complex and sweet. Makes this beer a sipper.
I'm surprised to like this beer so much. It reminds me quite a big of Burton Baton. Definitely recommended.
Bottled Feb 2012; 23 months old.
01-05-2014 21:49:24 | More by Roguer
4/5 rDev -1.2%
Oak Aged Backburner pours a darker copper color. It’s clear for the most part. Looks a little red when held to light. An off-white head tops it. It rises to about a finger and a half in height before falling back to a surface covering. Held there for a bit. Lacing was on the lighter side.
The nose is good. It features a pretty sweet caramel malt scent up front. There might be a hint of chocolate there, as well. Oak is very much in the mix. One whiff reveals it adds a lot of character. Dark fruit notes of raisin and plum are apparent. There’s a hint of a spirit, but it’s tough to tell what it is exactly. Hops are noted. Grapefruit is the most notable hop scent. Alcohol is held in check for the most part. It’s not all that noticeable. Smells good.
The flavor is likewise good. I like it. The malt base is mostly caramel. It’s sweet. Chocolate malts are also noted. Tastes like cocoa. Dark fruit flavors of plum and raisin are easily noted. The work very well with the malt base. Oak definitely adds character and quality depth. The oak flavor is quite good. Hop flavors of grapefruit, pineapple, and pine are all noted. It tastes a little bitter, but it’s negated quite a bit by the strong malt presence. Alcohol is blended pretty well. Doesn’t seem like 10% territory. Finishes sweet and oaky with a touch of citric hop flavor.
Oak Aged Backburner has a medium body that is definitely smooth. Carbonation is light and restrained. For a big Barleywine, this is surprisingly easy drinking. I’ll polish off this bomber with ease.
I’ve always been a big fan of Backburner. Needless to say, an oak aged version was very intriguing to me. It definitely delivers, but it isn’t quite as good as Backburner. I think the oak flavor tends to mask some of its dark fruit and hop flavor. It’s still very good though. Definitely a worthy endeavor. Check it out.
04-15-2012 04:30:01 | More by prototypic
4.1/5 rDev +1.2%
A: Reddish caramel brown hue with a big thick light brown head and fantastic lacing
S: Amazing sweet roasty caramel malts playing off the dark fruits and cherries; the oak aromas bring it all together--God, this smells good
T: Roasted toasty malts up front followed by some subtle sweet fruitiness--cherries, raisins; the oak character dries the finish
F: Full bodied and fairly chewy though a touch too dry on the finish because of the wood aging
O: This is a damn nice barley wine and the year I let it age has done some nice things to mellow it out a bit
10-03-2013 00:49:21 | More by dbossman
Oak-Aged Backburner (Imperial Barley Wine Style Ale) from Southern Tier Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 279 ratings.