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Arctic Devil Barley Wine - Midnight Sun Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Arctic Devil Barley WineArctic Devil Barley Wine

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
97
world-class

964 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 964
Reviews: 335
rAvg: 4.38
pDev: 8.22%
Wants: 936
Gots: 256 | FT: 36
Brewed by:
Midnight Sun Brewing Co. visit their website
Alaska, United States

Style | ABV
English Barleywine |  13.20% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
Arctic Devil Barley Wine, aptly named after the ferocious wolverine of the north, is an English-style (meaning malt-inclined) barley wine. Though the recipe and process for Arctic Devil have evolved over the years, it is brewed once a year then aged in oak barrels for several months before the entire batch is blended, bottled and released.

In its youth, Arctic Devil gnarls and snarls its way across the palate. Containing this beast of a beer for long periods in oak barrels--some having previously aged port, wine or whiskey--tames the unleashed malt and fierce hop flavors, melding and mellowing this powerful liquid into an incredible elixir worthy of a brewer's table.

Each annual batch of Arctic Devil Barley Wine represents the brewers' resolve to create an intriguing and sought-after barley wine by precisely brewing to well-designed specifications, carefully selecting the type and combination of barrels to use for aging, and meticulously checking the beer as it ages. Distinct nuance and complexity are contributed by the wood's previous tenants, resulting in unique flavor profiles in each batch that continue to change over time. We invite you to savor Arctic Devil Barley Wine upon its release then cellar some for future enjoyment.

20 IBU

(Beer added by: Todd on 03-24-2005)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 964 | Reviews: 335 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of akorsak
4.4/5  rDev +0.5%

Thanks to beerbeing for this 650 mL bomber (a long ago trade).

A: The barleywine is a dark red-brown collaboration, murky with ruddy creek water hues. Of course it is opaque. A small head, never more than a 1/3 of a finger, left a pretty impressive patch of lace behind.

S: Crazy malty! This one just smells thick. A delicious blend of bread and dark fruits. There is some evidence of a barrel, a touch of oak and vanilla. Stunning aroma.

T: Oak is lingering around the front of each sip, sturdy and woody. Behind it, the barleywine comes through with a vengeance. Hints of cinnamon mix with an excess of booze, a sweet nightcap. The barleywine is malt-driven but a heavy dose of hops and the barrel aging really take the edge off. Yeah, this is really, really good.

M: The mouthfeel is full, starting off with the oak and finishing with the super malts. The barrel especially stands out for the smoothness that it adds.

D: At 10% (or thereabouts), this is a sipping beer at best. One and done for this sleepytime cowboy.

akorsak, Jan 04, 2010
Photo of sisuspeed
4.4/5  rDev +0.5%

2007 Vintage, 10% ABV

I've been sitting on two of these beers for awhile now and finally decided to crack one open. Poured into a snifter.

The body on this barleywine is a deep amber brown with a creamy tan head that mostly clings to the sides of the glass, but swirls out across the top of the beer with each sip.

I love the aroma of English barleywines and this one is no exception. Lots of bourbon notes up front, mixed with oak, cherries and candied figs. A little bit of alcohol comes up from the glass as well. Bready malts linger beneath.

The first sip is super mellow. I was expecting this to be a bit hot, must be the 3 years on this beer. Bready, creamy malts mingle with wood and vanilla notes. Dark, ripe, candied fruits add a nice level of complexity. Warming alcohol holds everything together and is slightly more pronounced on the finish, but does not interfere with the rest of the flavor.

Mouthfeel, is slick, smooth and almost syrupy. Carbonation is just about spot on and adds just enough tingle to the body to make it interesting.

Drinkability is pretty good. However, I'm glad I'm splitting a bomber of this. The beer is excellent, but there is no way I could drink the whole bottle.

Overall, this is a great English barleywine. Lots of smooth malts, fruits and some nice wood character. Midnight Sun has really done a fantastic job with this beer. The only one that I've had that tops this is a 1999 J.W. Lees Harvest Ale. With that being said, I think I'll put another 3-5 years on the next bottle I have in the cellar. Really glad I got to try this. It should be a very enjoyable winter's night tonight.

sisuspeed, Jan 03, 2010
Photo of abuliarose
4.25/5  rDev -3%

Pours a dark ruby body with thin creamy head that devolves into a ring fed by lacy bubbles. Enjoying this one out of my Rock Art tulip. Smells like candied fig (fig molasses, anyone?) with a little burnt caramel and some decent alcohol presence. In effect, smells like dessert!

Tastes sweet and smooth with fine, tingly carbonation. Medium to heavy-bodied in a grade B maple syrup way. Lots of dried dark fruit presence. Caramel malts come out nicely. A lot of sherry likeness, maybe even a little bourbon. I guess that's the aging process coming through. Some wine character in the aftertaste. Many flavors; this brew has a nice depth to it. Very slippery on the tongue. Quite warming. Not what I would consider to be highly drinkable... though I find it highly sip-able. Carbonation lightens it a fair amount, but not enough to cut through the syrupiness. Would like to try this on french toast.

My only wish: for it to come in smaller bottles. Or with a hinge cap. Otherwise, it's quite yummy.

abuliarose, Jan 03, 2010
Photo of Pencible
4.15/5  rDev -5.3%

2008 vintage. This poured a slightly hazy ruby color with some tan head. It smelled like raisin and honey wheat and brown sugar, with a bit of copper hops and creamy yeast and alcohol. It tasted like toffee and brown sugar and alcohol, with some raisin and honey wheat. It was oily with a bit of carbonation, and had a bitter metallic aftertaste. Overall this was a solid English barleywine, with nice malty scent and taste and good body. It was still pretty potent even after a year of aging, so this is definitely a sipping beer. Whisky and oak flavors weren't very apparent, which was somewhat disappointing. But this is still a great brew and very enjoyable.

Pencible, Dec 31, 2009
Photo of alcstradamus
4.08/5  rDev -6.8%

Cola brown pour with a nice cascade effect that formed two fingers of head. Settles to a nice collar of bubbles after a couple of minutes.

Holy cow the nose on this one is in-your-face. Huge caramel malts, wood, and complex bourbon aromas. I had to go read up on this beer and see if it ever hit bourbon barrels. Apparently every batch is different in terms of what type of oak barrels it sits in. Interesting.

The taste is good, but not quite on par with the nose. I think this one still needs to age some more even though it is a year old...the oak character is somewhat harsh at this point and it definitely needs to round out a bit more. Still though, what an impressive beer. Not as sweet as most English Barleywines, but definitely as flavorful.

The body is on the full side of medium. There is definitely a big alcohol presence, so if you are drinking this one with a year or less on it I would definitely recommend splitting it with 2 or 3 other people. A very fine sipping beer, but one that I will age for a few years before cracking again.

alcstradamus, Dec 07, 2009
Photo of ajs4bd
4.78/5  rDev +9.1%

2008 Vintage, into a snifter

A - Dark reddish amber, with a very soft, thin head and small, smooth bubbles.

S - Heavy malty aroma, strong sweet cherry aromas, with hints of molasses, caramel, and prunes.

T - As much as or more than the aroma! This beer is very sweet, with definite hints of sweet cherry. The molasses and caramel also come through, as well as other dried fruits.

M - Very soft, low and small carbonation. A great feeling for a barleywine, nearly ideal. Coats the mouth completely. I can't believe this is only a year old. As full and flavorful as a 10 year old JW Lees.

D - A definite cool weather beer, but not too sweet or overwhelming that it would only be a nightcap. Easy to drink a bottle without completely blowing out the palate.

ajs4bd, Nov 23, 2009
Photo of mjl21
4.35/5  rDev -0.7%

Acquired via trade...thanks Ryan. 22 ounce bottle poured into a snifter. Comes in at 10%. Unsure on vintage, but based on comments from others on BA it is an older bottle as it features www.wildales.com on the bottle. The month and week bottling code on the side has the J notched and the 1 and 5 are notched.

A-Pours a muddy dark brown with a tiny sandy head that ceases within 10 seconds. There is visible yeast in the glass. Some random specs of lace are left every few sips. The booze in this one gives it some "legs".

S-Smells like a big beer. Lots of toffee sweetness is apparent. Oak and vanilla notes are strong. Also pick up on rum soaked stone fruit.

T-Lots of caramel and toffee are upfront. Midpalate is quite oily and this feeling is apparent in every sip. The rum soaked fruits also appear midpalate. There is some visible alcohol that warmed me up, in a good way of course. The oak and vanilla are also strong. It has a toffee and chocolate aftertaste and also has a little spice.

M-Thick, oily, and smooth. The carbonation level is minimal. I found it to be a tad too oily.

D-Definitely a sweet sipper and a good bottle to split.

This was my first MS beer and I was impressed. This one tasted fantastic and still could go for a few more years. It was the perfect beer to have on the stormiest October day in SF in 47 years.

mjl21, Oct 20, 2009
Photo of carps12
4.05/5  rDev -7.5%

Thanks to Beerworld-Alex for this generous extra. Poured into my duck rabbit snifter. 2007 Vintage. Pours a murky cherry brown with a thin lacing of head around the edges. Loads of sweet malt, toffee, caramel. Also notice some spice. Awesomely smooth on the tongue with a touch of carbonation. Just a slight bitterness on the finsih which is perfect. Toffee, caramel and mild oak, nutmeg, light cherries on taste. This will warm you up.

carps12, Oct 08, 2009
Photo of tjthresh
3.68/5  rDev -16%

The beer pours dark clear brown without much head. Buckets of hops in the nose with chocolate covered caramels. Some nice cherry as well. This thing has tons of hot alcohol, but there's still plenty of malt and hops. Good stuff, but I'd hoped for better.

tjthresh, Oct 08, 2009
Photo of kegger22
4.22/5  rDev -3.7%

Poured a reddish brown with an modest head that faded to a collar. The aroma was maple syrupy sweet. I loved the smell. The taste was molasses, alcohol and dark fruit (prunes mostly). Feel was heavy bodied, thick, chewy and oily smooth. Drinkability was only above average due to the high ABV and extreme sweetness. I liked A Devil a lot, but 3F Behemoth still my favorite barley wine.

kegger22, Oct 01, 2009
Photo of TexIndy
4.1/5  rDev -6.4%

Got from Liquids Solutions last month but this seems to be an older vintage which suits me fine. This is no date on the label but the web address is wildales.com which they no longer use and the 2008 version had a date on the label, also this one says 10% and current version is 13.2% - so guessing 2007 at least if not older. Poured from a 22oz bomber into a Duvel tulip. Was a dark, dark reddish brown color. It had an average sized brown head that settled into a nice collar. Plenty of center carb from the laser etching. Quick sliding lace that doesn't stick.

The aroma was amazing and seems to have aged very nicely. Caramel and toffee dominant with dark fruits, oak and alcohol along for the ride. Very complex combination's that I found myself sniffing over and over. The taste followed the aroma but the alcohol jumped from the front to the back. Wish it was a little more toned down but still good and what you'd expect in a barleywine. Very sweet from start to the finish which ended up being just on the wrong side of cloyingly sweet. The mouthfeel is creamy but feels a little overcarbonated as it stings the tonuge at the end.

Overall, an excellent beer worthy of the praise. It's my first Midnight Sun and won't be the last if they are all this good. Would love to try this on tap. Very highly recommend. Rotation: not avail here and had to get thru mail order so this might be my only try of it for awhile. If here, I'd like a bottle a year.

TexIndy, Oct 01, 2009
Photo of ffejherb
4.58/5  rDev +4.6%

22oz. bomber into snifter on 8/31/09. Thanks to FooFaa for sharing!

A - Poured a really dark mahogany with burgundy hues and a thin beige ring that reduced to a patchy film. Pretty muddy-looking with lots of yeast chunks collecting at the bottom of the glass.

S - Initial aroma opens with a huge waft of alcohol and some caramel and toffee sweetness as well as hints of real licorice and tangy dark fruit akin to raisins, prunes and dried apricots. Nose is quite boozy and chock full of sharp alcohol notes.

T - Where to begin? This complex barleywine begins with plenty of chocolate and toffee sweetness with a tangy pitted fruit character reminiscent of plums, black cherries and raisins, the latter of which is most apparent. Some warm alcohol notes emerge in the wake of the huge malt presence. Hop bitterness is surprisingly scant overall. Chocolate character really opens up in the finish.

M - Full bodied with a syrupy texture and somewhat prickly mouthfeel. Warm and boozy on the palate, which really gives this barleywine a thick, beefy character. Finishes quite sweet on the palate.

D - Hot damn! This is without a doubt one of the tastiest, most complex barleywines I've ever had. I was indeed stunned. Simply put, Arctic Devil is a fantastic traditional English style barleywine to say the least. I would even go so far as saying this is the finest of its kind available anywhere.

ffejherb, Sep 10, 2009
Photo of coldmeat23
4.83/5  rDev +10.3%

GLASS: Snifter
TEMP: Cellared @ approx 45 degrees

Pours a very dark amber color with brown tinting and deep ruby highlights. A two-finger head of dark tan colored foam sits on top. This recedes to a thin, filmy, surface covering. Lacing is in thick ropes and very sticky.

Huge malt presence which is sweet, yet delicate, and extremely deep. An underlying smell which is not unlike maple syrup combined with a good, high-end, whiskey. Mild oak notes. An extremely small presence of citrus hop notes. It just smells butterey, rich and decadent.
This is an excellent smelling barleywine and pretty much what I look for, from the style.

Good lord, that's good.
A massively deep and rich malt profile stands, boldly, front and center. Big notes of rich, butterey, milk caramels. Huge presence of figs and raisins. A nice level of lightly burnt sugars. Butterey oak notes. Smooth vanilla presence. Toasted hazelnuts. A very light kiss of hop bitterness, on the finish, keeps it from becoming cloying.
This is very possibly the best barleywine that I've ever had. I hate cold weather, but I'd almost move to Alaska to have better access to this.

Very full-bodied brew. This one is thick, viscous and oily, just the way I like 'em to be. The lower-medium level of carbonation is perfect. This one is super smooth and even has a light touch of creaminess to it.

The high abv content would definitely relegate this one to 'sipper' category, although it's very nicely hidden. I'd love to have two or three of these, though, so as to 'sip' on this lovely brew all night long.
This is an excellent barleywine and one hell of an introduction for me to Midnight Sun Brewerey. I must find more....

coldmeat23, Sep 03, 2009
Photo of Floydster
4.05/5  rDev -7.5%

22 ounce bottle acquired in a trade as an extra from urwatuh8, thanks again Richard, drank with Chelsea and Drake last night, poured into my Dogfish Head snifter, color is a dark brown with some dark reddish edges, two inch foamy beige head that stays around about five minutes, some lacing at first, aroma consists of dark fruits, sweet malts, caramel, toffee, sweet brown sugar, booze and very light hops, flavor starts off with a big caramel flavor with some sweetness, some dark ripened fruits in the middle that were mostly berries, pretty big alcohol burn in the finish, more sweet malts and lots of toffee come out towards the end but there is still a good amount of alcohol present, sweet, boozy, malty, and fruity mouthfeel, medium bodied, moderate carbonation for the style, taste lingers pretty well, could drink this bomber probably but alcohol is there, not too sweet or heavy considering though, my bottles said 10% ABV, so it seems this particular year is lighter than past years, believe this was the 2008 vintage, could probably use more age regardless, taste is still a bit hot but it seems like the cellar will really make this a world class barleywine, it is already well on its way, would drink again, recommended

Floydster, Aug 09, 2009
Photo of 0110x011
4.55/5  rDev +3.9%

Sampled on Good Mojo Day. Reviewed from my (backlogged) notes.

A - Dark, ruddy red brown. Ruby red highlights when held to the light. Thick, tight mother of pearl head. Thick, chunky lacing all the way down.

S - Insanely pungent nose. Fig and prune fruits combine with leathery earth. Huge barrel influence; major wood and vanilla. Hazelnut and walnut. Some minor noble hop grassyness is barely perceptible, but there.

T - This is a malt bomb like I have never had. Dark figgy fruits & brown sugar sweetness. Oaky vanilla. Hazelnut, walnut and almond. Leather. Spiciness and booze combine for a brandy-like character. ABV shows, but not overtly. According to my notes, "kicks like a mule."

M - Thick & syrupy. "Coats like lacquer." Fine carbonation keeps it from getting too heavy.

D - A sipper, to say the least.

A unique and spectacular take on the style. A beer to be sought out by any barleywine lover.

0110x011, Aug 08, 2009
Photo of jjayjaye
4.7/5  rDev +7.3%

Pours a hazy translucent empty beer bottle color with a full finger frosted tan collar that fades fairly quickly to surface, leaving negligible spotty patterns of Belgian lacing behind. The smell is amazing and classic. The aroma is HUGE and rich; sweet caramel and butterscotch. Lightly carbonated, the mouth feel is full bodied and has a tangy character from the alcohol and salty notes that compliment the flavors extremely well and linger nicely. Full flavored, the taste mirrors the nose...the caramel character is deep and slightly roasted, but the butterscotch note has the leading role in this play. An AMAZING drinker!! The 13.2% ABV is really well integrated...but be advised...this one needs to be savored...or you'll get stupid!! HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!! Many thanks to koopa for this opportunity.

jjayjaye, Jul 28, 2009
Photo of bunnyhustle
3.58/5  rDev -18.3%

I'm very confused first of all because my bottle says its 10% abv and here its 13%. Probably just different years I'm guessing. Pours virtually black but upon closer inspection its more of a deep, deep, deep mahogany color. Light tan head, 2 finger, with good retention and lacing. Smell is rich of caramel, vanilla, sweet syrup and cream. A bit of booze too. Taste is similar. Very rich flavors of cream, caramel, sweet syrup, vanilla, some light coffee. Very thick and full, you could probably use a spoon with this stuff. Velvety and creamy as it goes down, strong warming sensation too. Overalll a good and complex beer. A little sweeter than I prefer. I think if there were a little more hops present, which I detected none of, this would be a great beer. But for now I'll just say its good.

bunnyhustle, Jul 19, 2009
Photo of randawakes
4.63/5  rDev +5.7%

After trying a few 6 oz samplers up on the Loft on opening night at the new location of the Midnight Sun brewery, I decided to take a few 22's home..including this one. Not a bad choice. Favorite barley wine to date.

Appearance: primarily golden with ruby red and golden elexir with rose reflection.

Smell: Toasty caramel with brown sugar notes. If there was anything I wished to be more pronounced in this beer it would be this.

Taste: Perfectly described below in its resemblance to creme brulee. Sweet syrupy tones with raison flavor. Sugary caramels with very slight hints of plane nuts.

Mouthfeel: soothing with very light carbonation. Goes down smoother with each sip and maintains its sweetness on the edges of the upper mouth.

Drinkability: exceptional, deserty feel that says drink me faster and faster.

randawakes, Jul 02, 2009
Photo of tai4ji2x
3.1/5  rDev -29.2%

from liquidsolutions or bottletrek (i forget), by way of stevemcqueenjr.

22oz bomber. there is a notching scheme, marked for january, but is also double-notched for both the 2nd and 5th weeks. no year?

tasted in late april/early may 2009. poured into tulip.

dark brown amber. nearly clear, ruby tones under the light. large, yellowish tan head soon fades to wisps and ring. lacing never sticks.

aroma: caramel, apple and dates, w rum and brandy tones, but also fusels and alcohol. some earthy, faintly fruity hop. diacetyl? more fusel?

taste: rich caramel maltiness with again apple, fig and brandy tones. moderate english hopping with moderate bitterness. but that fusel/diacetyl/whatever note, along with booziness, really cuts into you...

almost viscous and syrupy, with light astringency towards the end. again that weird fusel/chemical/whatever character juts in and distracts. mild to moderate carbonation is neutral in effect.

huh? what is this doing in the top 100, let alone the #1 english BW? or maybe i got a bad bottle?

tai4ji2x, Jun 27, 2009
Photo of slaintemhor
4.75/5  rDev +8.4%

Tried an '08 of this last night, that i had been sitting on since January '09. The color was a garnet brown with just a smidge of head. The nose was sweet with burnt caramel and dark amber syrup. On the palate, a small burst of carbonation followed by sweetness, caramel, burnt toffee, dark fruits, Christmas pudding, treacle, unsulphured molasses, brown sugar and gently cloying long finish. This is a delightful English style barley wine that I look forward to every year!

slaintemhor, Jun 15, 2009
Photo of juzy
4.43/5  rDev +1.1%

6 oz. pour at "The Loft" (Midnight Sun's new location offers a tasting area where you can purchase up to 36 oz. of whatever they have on tap, in 6 or 12 oz. pours)

2008 vintage

Apperance: deep and dark with ruby highlights when held up to a light. Small, just off-white creamy head.

Smell: vanilla, heavy, deep caramel on the nose, like smelling creme brulee as you are torching the sugar, but just before the sugar scorches. Brown sugar and dark dried fruits.

Taste: Pretty much tastes like it smells. like biting into a piece of rich, boozy, dark, dried fruit fruit-cake (think figs, prunes, raisins, sour cherries, then top it off with molasses, vanilla and brown sugar)

Mouthfeel: the body is rich and full with just the right amount of carbonation to help the flavors dance on your tongue.

Drinkability: This always stumps me, I could drink lots of this just for taste and aroma alone, but at 13% I really wouldn't want to.

Awesome beer, fresh or aged.

juzy, Jun 06, 2009
Photo of scottoale
4.72/5  rDev +7.8%

22oz. bomber with month & week bottled: J 2&5 notched on the label. I'm pretty sure this is the latest vintage in any case. It pours a dark mahogany (brown coppery-red) with decent viscosity and ample carbonation. The head rises up to almost 1/2" in a Duvel tulip with an orange tint of beige and good retention, but no clingy lace.

The aroma is of sweet and rich caramel maltiness. Dark caramel, toffee, shortbread, brown sugar, plum, hazelnut and vanilla for the most part. It smells malty and oak mellowed with a bit of alcohol as it warms.

The taste is just that much better, with loads of the afore mentioned and more. Rich and chewy kind of flavor if you will, filled with toffee and caramel, butterscotch, brown sugar and molasses, oak, vanilla, fig, plum and hazelnut. The flavor is divine and really reminds me alot of the Angel's Share. Truly awesome flavor that I can't get enough of.

Good full body with ideal carbonation that's silky smooth and creamish. Good dose of alcohol that never gets in the way and really adds to the delivery of the flavor. This is one barleywine that is as drinkable as they come...it's great now and becomes even greater with some age on it, a must try if you love B-wines!

scottoale, Jun 01, 2009
Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.3/5  rDev -1.8%

Okay, so I was a bit hasty. I was just so eager to finally crack open the bottle of Arctic Devil that I made no note of its production year. Now, this beer was received in a trade waaay back in early 2008 (mid-February, IIRC). So, if we suppose it was, at the time, a current bottle, it was from the November 2007 release, making it a 2007 vintage. Let's roll with that!

2007 Vintage.

Appearance: Pours a delicately hazy, deep, russet-hued body with a thin, wispy, ecru-colored head.

Smell: Strong, sweet-smelling malt aroma with plenty of dark caramel, toasted toffee, and brown sugar. While there is a ripe plum and dried fig fruit character, it's simply bursting at the seems with a rich cherry fruitiness. There's even room enough for vanilla, damp oaken barrels, and some nose-tingling alcoholic wafts.

Taste: Thickly sweet and oh-so delectable dark caramel ice cream topping flavor garnished with a pinch of hearty cinnamon and brown sugar. Plenty of fruitiness, and, as with the nose, it's big on the cherries! Drizzle of Grade A maple syrup straight from Vermont. Touches of vanilla and lightly tannic oak wood. An earthy bitterness melds in well with the rest of the brew. Now, mind you, there's an ample amount of alcohol warmth coursing through this brew, but, thanks to the assertive maltiness, it prevents it from coming across as overly hot. Finishes long with plenty of drying alcohol and an enduring maltiness.

Mouthfeel: Medium-full body. Medium carbonation. The mouthfeel is both silky and smooth.

Drinkability: Another skillful release from Midnight Sun. Barleywines are addicting enough on their own, but Arctic Devil takes it to a whole new level of hedonistic indulgence. Overall, an exemplary brew!

ChainGangGuy, May 30, 2009
Photo of younger35
4.72/5  rDev +7.8%

Received this brew from gclarkage in a recent trade for a bunch of goodies. I've been looking to land this brew for quite some time but didn't want to pay the shipping costs to Alaska. Glad it's in the lower 48 now. Drank from my Ithaca Excelsior tulip.

Appearance- Pours a hazy reddish orange with a soft dirty tan foamy head that dissipates fairly slowly. When it's gone though, it's gone basically leaving no cap and a ultra thin collar.
Smell- The nose is slightly sweet with a big burst of toffee that could be the most intense I've smelled in a Barleywine. Some woody oak and plenty of vanilla mix well with the sweetness and the occasional waft of alcohol. Some light over ripened raisin adds a bit of fruitiness but this one tends to stick toward the brown sugar side of things. The hops are lightly fruity and vibrant but the nose is dominated by the malt and wood.
Taste- Not as sweet as the nose led me to believe but a nice bit of brown sugar and light molasses shine. Some light wood and vanilla really come out strong once the beer warms as does a bit of fruit. Prunes, raisins and dark cherries all are fairly prevalent as is a bit of alcohol. For 10% though it's hidden extremely well. Finishes with a bit of lingering cherry and toffee.
Mouthfeel- Thick and rich with a super creamy feel and ultra light carbonation.
Drinkability- Reminds me of homemade grain alcohol cut with burnt sugar and cherries that I had at a bachelor party one time (170 proof and tasted like cherry syrup, dangerous stuff). Except this actually tastes good. Extremely smooth, extremely drinkable and probably the best Barleywine I've had since Old Ruffian. Crazy good stuff, mucho recommended. Thanks Chris!

younger35, May 29, 2009
Photo of Bung
4.58/5  rDev +4.6%

22 oz. Cloudy orange/amber pour. Nearly no head, just some swirling cream bubbles. Sticks to the glass. Just looking at this one you know it's going to be full of malty goodness. Brown sugar, malt, toffee, raisin and a fair amount of booze in the aroma. Also hints of piney hops. Taste has an abundance of malt, caramel, vanilla, yellow raisins. Little hop presence, but it is faintly there. Solid sticky body. Gets a little warm as it warms, but the flavors also pop as it warms. This is a meal, not sure how much of this I want to drink, but you could polish off the bomber before you realize it. Top notch Barleywine that has some hints of Old Ale. Unfortunate that so many are going to the hop bomb American style, this is a must try for those who like a barleywine the old English way.

Bung, May 24, 2009
Arctic Devil Barley Wine from Midnight Sun Brewing Co.
97 out of 100 based on 964 ratings.