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Blithering Idiot - Weyerbacher Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Blithering IdiotBlithering Idiot

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
82
good

1,729 Ratings
THE BROS
65
poor

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,729
Reviews: 823
rAvg: 3.64
pDev: 15.11%
Wants: 45
Gots: 161 | FT: 6
Brewed by:
Weyerbacher Brewing Co. visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
English Barleywine |  11.10% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-20-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,729 | Reviews: 823 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of maximum12
4.33/5  rDev +19%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to AdamB84 for sending this Idiot as an extra in a trade.

Pours with little head & only mild carbonation, as most barleywines I've had to date. It's kind of a dirty orange color, almost appeared unfiltered. Smells holy-bat-guano good, malty & hoppy & nectar fruit sweet.

Tastes the same. Very sweet on the top of the tongue, a little tart on the back of the throat, with the well-masked alcohol not making its presence known until warming the lining of my little tummy. My wife poured a Bigfoot at the same time & is now regretting her decision. That's good. This is much better.

A little sweet to drink too much of, & the ABV is enough to scare me into just one glass (OK, that's all I have). In fact, it's the highest ABV of a beer I've reviewed to date. Good thing I only have one. I'd be tempted to have another.

Bless Weyerbacher. One of my favorite breweries.

maximum12, Jul 13, 2008
Photo of gonzo46and2
3.53/5  rDev -3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy amber brown. Barely any head. Not very lively.

Aroma is mostly brown sugar, molasses, hops, and other malt flavors

Taste is very sweet. A teensy bit of bitterness (not enough). Pretty sugary.

Mouthfeel is heavy with very litle carbonation.

Easy to drink despite the high abv. Overall this is a sweet beer with big alchohol.

gonzo46and2, Jul 04, 2008
Photo of cjgator3
2.85/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

12oz bottle poured into a snifter. Pours a dark reddish amber with a nice off-white head. The aroma is malt with dark fruits, spice and alcohol. The taste starts out sweet and malty with dark fruits and a long warming finish from the high ABV. As sweet as this beer is from all the malt, I feel that it could use some more hops to help balance things out. I find that the high ABV and the cloying taste limits the drinkability quite a bit. Worth a shot, but I am not a huge fan of Blithering Idiot and would not likely purchase again. This one definitely needs a couple years of aging to mellow out a bit.

cjgator3, Jul 03, 2008
Photo of Dodo2step
3.83/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

P- Market Cross Pub in Carlisle

A-Pours a crips cold red amber in color with orange sparsed throughout. A half finger head comes up and laces the glass but quickly fades.

S- a malty start to the nose but has some good spices for added smell. raisins and maybe toffee if im not mistaken.

T- strong on the alcohol and spices. figs, cinnamon hints and the raisins of course. Very strong.

M- full of alcohol and a searing warmth on the way down the gullet. Thick and spicy.

D- This one will kick your ass if you try to drink 3. This is just a sipping beer and not to be guzzled, but meant to be enjoyed.

Dodo2step, Jun 28, 2008
Photo of paulthebeerguru
3.3/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: snifter. nice clear mahogany color. Tan head, really good head retention. Mild lacing.

S: thick malty aroma. solid fig, raisins, and plums. good spice characteristics.

T: raisins, cinnamon, clove, pears, apples, figs, and plums.

M: not as thick as expected. mild carbonation. very bold and sticky.

D: at 11% one is my limit on this one, but a very nice barleywine.

paulthebeerguru, Jun 22, 2008
Photo of FleeVT
3.55/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz. brown bottle with no dates, poured into a snifter.

A: Pours a beautiful copper amber ale with light carbonation action. Very little head to speak of, but the color is inviting.

S: Sweet fruits and alcohol. This reminds me of my dorm days in Virginia when the agriculture students from the hills would bring in the pear and apple moonshine. Well, maybe not that strong.

T/M: Lots of sugary malts in the form of apples and raisins. Huge warming alcohol backbone is present throughtout the entire drink, but I have to admit, I began to look forward to it with each sip. This is a pretty complex beer, with a tiny dose of hops to try and dampen the sweet malts and stringent alcohol. Mouthfeel is full with light carbonation and a silky texture.

D: This is a sipper, and not something I want a lot of in one night. But I'd buy it again and share.

FleeVT, Jun 10, 2008
Photo of SLeffler27
4.1/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a cloudy, brownish orange with a big frothy manila head - quick to bloom and slow to dissipate in my oversize wine glass.

Strong, fruity nose led by grape and plum and followed by freshly-baked banana bread.

This idiot mellowed pleasantly for 18 months in the bottle, yet retained enough of its bitter soul to keep things interesting. Black licorice becomes pronounced with the smooth finish. The complexity opens nicely as this one warms in the glass.

A medium body is punctuated with tingly carbonation and finishes with all the glory of a warm 11% alcohol.

This one was smooth going down and easy drinking, but, at 11% ABV, too strong for an immediate second. Definitely worth returning to another time.

SLeffler27, Jun 08, 2008
Photo of mattcrill
4.5/5  rDev +23.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Aroma: Big fruity esters-dried cherries, plums, dates and some low, light fusels. No hop aroma and a little carmel sweetness.

Appearance: Brilliant ruby colored pour with a low tan head. Legs coat the snifter.

Flavor: Follows the aroma. More dark fruit esters with a hidden and complex alcohol backbone. It's present but blended well. This has layers of complexity that are malt and alcohol driven. Wonderful sipping. Finish is clean and dry.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with low carbonation. Definite warming on the palate due to the alcohol presence.

Overall impression: Nicely done. This reminds me of a "poor man's Thomas Hardy". Lovely balance of malt and alcohol. It's dangerously hidden. This would make for a great reduction sauce to put over some free-range duck. Probably not the best choice for a Memorial Day cookout but I could see sipping this by the fireside in about 5 months. Nice job here.

mattcrill, May 25, 2008
Photo of johnnnniee
3.2/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a nice looking medium to deep copper with a fluffy off white head. Aroma is of dried fruits, some caramel and a hint of alcohol. Taste is sweet, fruity, more malty than hoppy. Some alcohol is definitely present in the taste. Mouthfeel is thick, sweet, and a bit sticky. Carbonation is low, but adequate. Not my favorite barleywine, definitely could benefit from a bit of hop presence.

johnnnniee, May 21, 2008
Photo of Jmamay22
3.58/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear maple syrup colored amber. The beige colored head slowly dissipates to a thick collar. A small amount of bubbles rise slowly to the top.

Extremely fruity smelling. Mostly cherry and maybe some hint of raspberry. Very sweet smelling and clearly English. The booze comes off as fruity rather than abrasive, but it is a significant part of the beer.

In short the taste is sweet and fruity. Almost cloyingly sweet. Cherry is very pleasant. Alcohol comes off hot on the back of my throat. I can't make up my mind if the alcohol is playing tricks on me or if there are some spices going on.

Mouthfeel is somewhat syrupy. Carbonation is light and adds some interest keeping the feel from being too sticky. Not what I would call drinkable, but its an enjoyable single bottle. The oak aged version, Insanity, is a completely different animal.

Jmamay22, May 17, 2008
Photo of objectivemonkey
3.85/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice burgundy color with a little head to begin with but then none, some lacing in strings now and then. The aroma isn't the least bit shy, nor the alcohol, which seems to seep into everything. There are figs and raisins and plums here, as with the taste, and some faint toffee. The mouth is kinda hot, not exactly smooth but good enough, almost puckers up from bittering toward the end and a dry finish. Pretty good English style barley wine I must say. I can appreciate this beer, its actually pretty good, but in the end I just don't exactly like it.

objectivemonkey, Apr 29, 2008
Photo of BeerSox
3.05/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz bottle into 8oz snifter.

Slightly hazy ruby red color with a tan one finger head that settles to a thin cap.

Sweet candy like aromas with some of the alcohol coming through.

Light malts and somewhat tame hops in this one. The alcohol shines through, masking the flavor within. Medium bodied with low carbonation. The feel is a little watery for the style.

This one could use some time in the cellar but I don't know how much that will help. It's a popular beer but I just can't get behind this one. Try it for yourself and see what you find.

BeerSox, Apr 27, 2008
Photo of Proteus93
3.35/5  rDev -8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: A slightly reddish-golden pour. Head is a bit fizzy, but falls back to all but nothing quite quickly.

S: A kinda hot, boozy spice scent. A slightly dark fruit, and even not-so-dark fruit yesast ester aroma joins it.

T: Some similarities to the aroma... some sugar flavours come through, and again, a little hot. Some raisin flavours, slightly caramalized.

M: A rather thick body, expected in the style. Maybe a bit syrupy, but not too shabby. A mild carbonation, which provides a little liveliness.

D: Heftier ABV, again, as per the norm. Might become a bit heavy, almost even cloying towards the end of the bottle. One at a time for me, I'd say.

Proteus93, Apr 18, 2008
Photo of mhewes
4/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to IBUnit63 for this one

A : Pours a nice copper color with a good head that slowly fades away

S : Has a sweet, malty smell. You can definitely notice the alcohol

T : Has a nice strong malty flavor to it that makes it go down easily. I really couldn't taste the alcohol.

M : Smooth

D : Real easy to drink. Not as hoppy as most American barleywines which I really enjoy

mhewes, Apr 15, 2008
Photo of IBUnit63
3.78/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle into BMS mug...

Perfect 2-finger light, maple walnut ice cream-colored head with decent lacing. Nice copper color.

Aroma is rather sweet - almost like muscat grapes found in an Aussie dessert wine or "sticky." Some caramel apple in there too. Alcohol comes through in strength.

At first there's a slightly sour off-taste; this dissipates with warmth. Big malt and alcohol presence. Bountiful, grassy/citrus hops are present on the palate if not on the aroma.

Very powerful mouthfeel - heaviness balanced by tanginess of citrus tones that provides the pucker element.

Definitely a good one to sip.

IBUnit63, Apr 11, 2008
Photo of TheBlackMallard
4/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice orangeish with a decent two inch head.

Smell: Brown sugar, raisins, dark fruit, and caramel.

Taste: Sweet caramel, figs, and brown sugar that gives way to grainy alcohol. Malty and tasty.

Well carbonated, medium bodied.

Pretty good and my favorite Weyerbacher offering so far.

TheBlackMallard, Apr 11, 2008
Photo of tgbljb
4.13/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served as a depp mahagony colored beer with sparse off-white head,

Smell is loaded with dark fruity malt.

Taste is an intoxicating (in more ways than one) example of a strong dark fruity barleywine. The maltiness reaklly stands out and makes this beer so smoooth to drnk that it is truly scary.

Alcohol is completely hidden in the finish, and if it would not be for the sensory feeling it is difficult to believe the alcohol content of this beer.

A much better beer on-tap than in the bottle.

tgbljb, Apr 06, 2008
Photo of cvstrickland
3.63/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 ounce bottle poured into a seidel yields a hazy apple cider-colored dark amber body with 3 copius fingers of eggshell-beige head that recedes to a fine-bubbled, rocky sheet, leaving significant and sticky lacing.

Smell is sweet; brown malt, citrus-fruity, lightly spicy with a whiff of alcohol.

Taste is sweet and fruity; malt, molasses, bread, bitter orange, caramel... with a mysteriously spicy character, a fleeting hint of Everclear, and a slightly bitter finish.

Smooth and oily texture, broken up and made more palatable by a fine tingle of carbonation; abv limits how many of these one can drink, but the character of the brew is neither heavy nor over the top. Not my favorite, but certainly not at all bad.

cvstrickland, Apr 05, 2008
Photo of Strix
3.83/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a murky orange with little head that quickly fades to zero head. Wonder if it's just this bottle?

Smells of apricots, raisins, grains, and alcohol.

Tastes include apricots, caramel, raisins, vanilla, liquor, and a sharp warming alcohol. Hops are present somewhere but muted. I personally think the hops could be used to more effect, but appreciate the complex mix of flavors.

Mouthfeel fine.

An interesting beer. Worth a try. Less of a hop kick than an American Barleywine, but some interesting flavors nevertheless.

Strix, Apr 01, 2008
Photo of Pencible
3.98/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This poured a hazy brown with very little head. It smelled of malt and fall spices, like pumpkin, with a bit of hops. It had a spicy malt flavor with a heavy taste like a brown ale. It wasn't very bitter, and the aftertaste was smooth, making the beer easy to drink. The texture was nice too, but not very carbonated. Overall this was an enjoyable drink, but nothing unique for a barleywine.

Pencible, Mar 31, 2008
Photo of MrMonkey
4.08/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark amber with a one-finger off-white head that fades rather quickly to a thin cap. No lacing

Smells really sweet: toffee and caramel dominate, with some apples and other fruits as well. There's a strong alcohol presence, though not overpowering, and just a bit of floral hops in the back.

Taste is very sweet up front, again with toffee and caramel malts dominating. There is some citrus and dark fruit flavors as well. The alcohol is noticeable and definitely warming, but it isn't too hot. Definitely doesn't seem to be an 11% beer.

Smooth, full-bodied mouthfeel.

Almost too easy to drink, but one is enough since the ABV does sneak up on you.

MrMonkey, Mar 30, 2008
Photo of marcpal
3.75/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into snifter after todays Weyerbacher open house- aptly named beer. Packs a punch.

A: Light caramel color. Doughy khaki head- one good looking beer.

S: Sweet toffee and malts. The alcohol is apparent.

T: A whole lot of toffee, as well as a quite a burn. Lots of alcohol and lots of sweetness. I do think it tasted better out of the sixtel than it did the bottle, Im sure age would help out quite a bit.

M: Smooth burn. Definitely a sipper.

D: Alcohol catches up in this one, definitely a sipper. Sweetness is a bit much and time on the shelf would probably tie up the loose ends some.

This one typifies the Weyerbacher attempts at attacking beers. You get what you come for.

marcpal, Mar 29, 2008
Photo of clayrock81
3.88/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a snifter right up to lip w/ very little head on a thickish body that was a very dark amber that couldn't be seen thru.
I picked up several smells taking a whiff, including caramel, cinnamon, honey, something like liquor (bourbon?), pepper and some mild citric notes. A great tasting beer that was a little spicy yet also sugary and went down very smooth. Bubblegum and honey are in the taste, but caramel came through the most in this full-bodied brew, and maybe that's why this beer has a little stickiness to it. Though the ABV is hidden well, still a sipping beer because of the sweetness. And with those two reasons I could see having one of these at a time, but I couldn't have a couple in one sitting.

clayrock81, Mar 28, 2008
Photo of JDV
2.9/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Bottle shared by MiguelMandingo on BA. Thanks!

Pours a light transluscent amber color with a moderatly lasting beige head. Smell is light, and fruity with notes of peaches, apricot and lemon. Taste is a tingly, prickly, sweet and mainly alcoholic flavor much like vodka. Light bodied for the style, I thought, and definitely a bit hotter and thinner flavored than I like my barley wines.

JDV, Mar 26, 2008
Photo of prototypic
3.9/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: It's transparent and dark amber in color. Head is off-white and an impressive three fingers deep. Retention and lacing were very solid.

Smell: Very sweet and sugary smelling. Caramel malts are strong and the primary feature. There's mix of light citrus and dark fruit (raisin and plum). Dark fruit scents are certainly stronger. Slight alcohol presence.

Taste: Caramel malts are sweet up front and blend very well with raisin and plum flavors. Hops are notable, but not strong. Alcohol comes through in taste, but is far from offensive. This is a really well balanced barlewine and the flavors complement one another very well.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability: It's full bodied. Definitely a sipping beer. Carbonation is good. It's definitely strong at 11.1%. It goes down easy, but I wouldn't drink more than one personally. Overall, this is a pretty impressive barleywine.

prototypic, Mar 21, 2008
Blithering Idiot from Weyerbacher Brewing Co.
82 out of 100 based on 1,729 ratings.