1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Blithering Idiot - Weyerbacher Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Blithering IdiotBlithering Idiot

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,678 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,678
Reviews: 821
rAvg: 3.65
pDev: 15.07%
Wants: 40
Gots: 134 | 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
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Blithering Idiot Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,678 | Reviews: 821 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of scooter231

New York

4/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Interesting looking beer. Deep brownish red, almost murky, muddy. Barely there tan head with lacing- not much, but it sticks around very stubbornly. Smells very fruity- deep, rich, dark fruits. Hints of chocolate, and you definitely get an alcoholic kick. Sweet.

Alcohol certainly hits you pretty fast after the first sip, but it doesn't knock you senseless. It's controlled. And, not realizing it was 11 percent until a moment ago... well, putting it in that perspective, it barely even slaps you. That aside, fruity flavors, coffee, bittersweet chocolate. Loads of malt all over the place. Bitter near the end. Really quite flavorful.

Mouthfeel is creamy and smooth, very nice. Overall a very drinkable beer considering alcohol content- I'd get it again.

Serving type: bottle

10-28-2005 04:59:45 | More by scooter231
Photo of FLAbeergutinMASS


3.78/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Overall not a bad beer for the price. I was hesitant at close to 15 bucks a sixer, but I've found a place that doesn't mind breaking them up

Deep orange and red. No lacing, tons of yeast floating around. Very little carbonation, almost flat.

Tastes very fuity, peaches, apricots and of course loaded with alocohol. This beer also has a slight cinammon finishes. A major drawback is a strong metalic taste that runs throughout the body of the beer.

Some beers are very hard to judge objectivley when you can't get out of your mind what you paid for it. This overall is not a bad BW, but in no way would I seek it out again.

Serving type: bottle

10-27-2005 02:11:09 | More by FLAbeergutinMASS
Photo of Chelsea


3.88/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Poured out of the bottle a nice dark reddish-tan color with a small off-white head that left some lacing on my glass.
Smell: Nice, sweet carmelly-fruity aroma.
Taste: Sweet malty taste with some caramel and fruity notes. Just enough hops at the end to keep it from being syrupy.
Mouthfeel: nice, full bodied mouthfeel with a little carbonation.
Drinkability: Definetely a sipper due to it's higher abv. Goes down deceptively smooth and sneaks up on me in a hurry.

Side note: When I first saw the bottle, I thought the jester was giving me the finger! Upon closer inspection, I realized I was wrong.

Serving type: bottle

10-24-2005 20:01:56 | More by Chelsea
Photo of Viggo

Ontario (Canada)

3.1/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a clear orange/brown/red, small white head forms, lots of lace and legs. Smell is alcohol, some citrus, acetone, some raisin and prune character. Taste is caramel, lots of alcohol, raisin and some chocolate. Mouthfeel is full bodied, medium carbonation, very hot going down. Extremely unbalanced in a not so good way, pretty rough on the senses.

Serving type: bottle

10-19-2005 05:41:49 | More by Viggo
Photo of Sephiroth


3.03/5  rDev -17%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

No date to be found on this bottle. I am using the usual tulip. This beer goes from muddy brown to a clearer amber. Minimal foam, but lovely. The nose is of sweet caramel malt. Raisins and figs are strong aromas in this one.

The taste is sweet and loaded with caramel malt and some fruits. There are a lot of sugars running around, and some light hops are felt at the back of the tongue. The mouthfeel is very lightly carbonated. Not as unrefined as the taste and nose. I give a low score for drinkability, only because I intend to age the rest of my bottles for at least a year.

Serving type: bottle

10-17-2005 05:31:54 | More by Sephiroth
Photo of ommegangpbr

New York

4.05/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Creamy, quite malty, a little bit of chocolate in the background... a smidge of hop bite but is dominated by malts. Very smooth and well balanced all around. I was expecting something a bit harsher from these folks but this is a pretty tasty creation. You can detect the alcohol in the taste but its effects are more potent than you would think. Quite sneaky. Kinda reminds me of a doppelbock on steroids.
Very enjoyable.

Serving type: bottle

10-15-2005 03:20:28 | More by ommegangpbr
Photo of BeerBeing


4.33/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 120z brown glass US generic longneck bottle,multicolored on black label

Appearance: reddish-brown in color, huge sort-lived off-white head, no lacing

Smell: strong fruitness (dates ?), brown sugar, alcohol

Taste: full body, creamy mouthfeel, strong malt, very strong alcohol, sweetness and fruitness, minor hoppiness

Notes: very STRONG beer, just watch out if you want to get more thn one

Serving type: bottle

09-03-2005 21:01:13 | More by BeerBeing
Photo of yen157

New Jersey

3.83/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Deep ruby red amber, foamy tan head. Heavy malt nose, very nutty, rich caramel, dusty hops, sticky sweet. Modest carbonation, good body. Alcohol is there, sure, this is over 11% after all, but it doesn’t get in the way. This is a smooth, malt driven barleywine, like a brown ale on steroids. Some toast, cocoa, and touch of pepper, Aftertaste of a brown ale. This drinks better fresh now than it ever has before. I think we have the larger capacity and the better boil of the new brew house to thank for that. This is a barleywine that I turn to several times a week. Good stufff.

Serving type: bottle

08-16-2005 02:13:32 | More by yen157
Photo of Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

3.95/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Boozy whiskey great aroma. Taste sharp whiskey and then mellowed by the barley. Very finishable. Fig date licorice chocolate malt essence and sharp sour plum soaked for a while. Wow, 11% warming. A 55 degree room temperature offering. Amber ruby colour.

Serving type: bottle

08-01-2005 03:31:24 | More by Sammy
Photo of HopHeadKen


3.93/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours deep amber copper color, I love this color; with a thin ivory colored head of fine bubbles.

First taste is sweet and malty, soon followed by a nutty flavor and plumbs & raisins.
Soon after that is a rich alcoholic warmth without any harsh bitterness.
Rich smooth mouthfeel.

Thanks to Steelreign for the trade, I will pick up some of this again if I come across it.

Serving type: bottle

07-30-2005 20:34:19 | More by HopHeadKen
Photo of blackie


4.6/5  rDev +26%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The color of this ale is a dark amber, and the viscous pour into the glass produces an off white head of which 2 centimeters remain throughout the experience. There is only a slight lacing that clings to the walls of the glass. As the snifter is drained, the sides of the glass become all sticky with malty goodness.

First smell is of sweet, dark, fruity barley malts with just the right amount of hops. I have had some barleywines lately in which the hops were kind of overdone, but that is not the case here. Also present are underlying notes of well cured tobacco, slight banana bread, dark tree fruits, red apples, and maybe some yeast. The ethanol is not immediately evident, but upon taking a deep noseful the 11.1 percent becomes apparent; especially as the beer warms.

The carbonation is very well done, low to medium low while being pleasantly effervescent on the tongue. The liquid is slick and silky smooth on the tonge, with a medium heavy body.

The first taste I notice is of course the sweet malt. Then comes the ethanol...not too assertive, but definately noticeable. Very light hints of tobacco are present, along with some of the banana and tree fruits that were also present in the nose. Notes of old leather and wood are present (in a good, earthy way). Finish with a perfect amount of hop bitterness on the tongue shadowed by a lingering dark sweetness. Excellent beer.

Serving type: bottle

07-24-2005 07:01:32 | More by blackie
Photo of robertp1024


3.53/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer poured an amber or orange color, somewhat cloudy, with very little head. What head was there was not too thick and left quite quickly. The scent was citrus, sticky, fruity and somewhat harsh. The taste was the same, quite malty, somewhat hoppy and there was the taste of citrus and dark fruits. The alcohol does bite, so beware. Overall a nice flavor. Quite bold.

Serving type: bottle

07-12-2005 14:09:48 | More by robertp1024
Photo of JackStraw22


2.63/5  rDev -27.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Appearance: Cloudy, amber/orange body, with a half-inch head of off white head. The head didn't stay too long.

Smell: Huge, sticky sweet aroma, very citrusy. Slight hint of alcohol, and a bit of hops in the nose, slightly spicy as well. Really, though, this is dominated by the sweet malt in the aroma.

Taste/Feel: The alcohol is much more present in the taste than the aroma woud suggest. The alcohol can be a bit solventy/astringent at times and it seems to fight with the big sweetness of the malt. Nice mouthfeel. Sticky sweet, really coates the mouth. Not much hop character at all.

A decent barleywine, though I'm not sure I'll try it again.

Serving type: bottle

07-04-2005 01:36:11 | More by JackStraw22
Photo of jimbotrost


3.63/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

reviewed 12-29-04 after being cellared for 9 months. Review taken from notes. Pour is of a cloudy amber to brown with a small head and lots of sediment, non-filtered ? Rich caramel malty nose with a hint of yeasty winey-ness. Syrupy sweet flavor with thick syrupy body. Finish is long and caramel like. Very warming beverage.

Serving type: bottle

06-27-2005 23:24:21 | More by jimbotrost
Photo of board45

New Jersey

4.35/5  rDev +19.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle

Pours a dark brown almost black with a very thin off white head. The smell of hazelnut and fruit are present. With a deep sip and sniff i taste strong hazelnut and slight tast of almond. It has some smoke presents to it too. It does have a medium body to it. The finish is very citrus but not sweet at all. Just accents of it. No feel of alcohol until the finish and it is just for a split second. WOW! just looked at the abv. is is 11%. No signs of this. I will be drinking loads of this.

Serving type: bottle

06-20-2005 19:00:40 | More by board45
Photo of ITK4ever


4.47/5  rDev +22.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Another terrific effort by Weyerbacher. The more I drink their beers, the more I like them. Quick story...I was buying 2 6-packs of the Idiot from Ronnie's. Ronnie doesn't have the widest isles in front of the micros and I was juggling one trying to pull the second off the shelf. Well, it turns out I was the Blithering Idiot by dropping the second 6-er and smashing it on the concrete floor. I only broke 3 of them, but that's when I realized what a great nose this beer has....and the color was a hazy amber, laying in a puddle. Although tempted to do a dog impression, I waited until I got home to drink. It didn't disappoint.

Serving type: bottle

06-07-2005 17:33:07 | More by ITK4ever
Photo of Phyl21ca

Quebec (Canada)

3.98/5  rDev +9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a deep amber looking ale with a medium head that disappeared quickly. Aroma is quite sweet with some great malt also noticeable. Taste is very warming which is probably due to the high content of alcohol, which is not easily discernable. Quite sweet throughout with some caramel and light bitterness at the end. Overall, this is very pleasant stuff and looking forward to try the Insanity.

Serving type: bottle

03-29-2005 19:42:15 | More by Phyl21ca
Photo of ybnorml

Rhode Island

3.13/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A slightly hazy dark copper colored beer. Has asmall beige head. Has the standard alcohol laden aroma with hints of fruit and hops. Ther taste starts with a light hint of sweetness that quickly becomes a bitter coffee and tabacco character. The finish is a prickly combo from the burn of the alcohol and some hops.

Serving type: bottle

03-24-2005 22:57:49 | More by ybnorml
Photo of avylover


4.85/5  rDev +32.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The appearance of this brew is about top notch. Very nice clear mahogony with a 1/4" head that hangs around and provides good lacing. Aroma is heavy the fruit, with peaches, grapes, and a good whiff of alcohol. Actually reminds meof westy12 a bit, to be honest. The similarities don't end there, suprisingly!! Grape taste along with apple, pears - just alot of fruit. The malt is more of an afterthought to this onslaught of great hoppy fruit flavors!! This suprised the hell outta me. Mouthfeel is not to thick, with a light foamy ness that makes for a great drinkability. The best barleywine I've ever had...hands down.

Serving type: bottle

03-22-2005 23:15:38 | More by avylover
Photo of sulldaddy


4.25/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I am sampling a 12 oz bottle bought at the brewery. Pouring into a snifter at cellar temp. The beer pours a clear amber color with a tightly packed creamy eggshell white head. The head fades quickly to an edge layer. ARoma is caramel and red grapes mixing with mild piney hops and a hint of ripe pears. Overall I dig the nose. First sip reveals gentle rolling carbonation with a thick syrupy body that leaves a pleasant coating on my tongue. Flavor is malty sweet with toffee, pears and maple syrup, some caramel and general fruitiness as well. A fairly sweet barleywine that I enjoy. It is very easy and smooth to drink.

Serving type: bottle

03-12-2005 16:19:52 | More by sulldaddy
Photo of warriorsoul


3.28/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2004 bottle served slightly chilled...pours a rusty brown w/ very minimal head, tan in color. A ton or carbonated lace coating the glass...the beer looks quite cloudy.
The aroma is not drawing me in...the "rum-like" alcohol hits the nostrils first and I can actually smell the bitterness. Hints of spiced vanilla also present.
Taste is also bitter w/ a very unbalanced feel to it.
A bit too carbonated and fairly thin, yet the alcohol is almost overwhelming.
I am typically a big fan of Weyerbacher brews, but this one is just not wowing me...I'll let the other age and try it in a year or two.

Serving type: bottle

03-08-2005 01:46:06 | More by warriorsoul
Photo of Fish113d


4.2/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pouring into a tulip glass at room temp, it pours a cherry color w/ 1/2 inch of white, frothy that dissipates to a slight surface layer and a difinitive edge layer. Aroma is mainly of berries and alcohol. Slight carmelized malts found also, but not overly complex. Great aroma however! Taste is cherries on the sip and a feel of smooth vanilla. Full bodied, some sweet chocolate if found on the finish. Carbonation is minimal, but the alcohol whacks ya good on the finish along with the chocolate taste. makes for a slightly dry experience. I'd really like to age this one a year or two to get more out of it. Great brew!

Serving type: bottle

03-06-2005 23:45:03 | More by Fish113d
Photo of Wonka


3.7/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 fl. ozs
(I’d love to see a bottled date)

Appearance – opaque red/brown body; reasonable white head at pour dissolves down to a fine line; sparse lace

Smell – resembles burnt plum; a bit of spice; a bit of the alcohol sneaks in

Taste – fig flavor abounds; ripe plum; hops weave in and out; caramel and a touch bitter late

Mouthfeel – paradoxical oily and full opening moves to crisp and lighter close; there’s a certain Jekyll and Hyde vibe here; enjoyable

Drinkability – the alcohol doesn’t overwhelm; light warming close; pleasant

Serving type: bottle

02-28-2005 23:12:27 | More by Wonka
Photo of goodbyeohio


3.03/5  rDev -17%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

looks nice- red as can be, starts off with a thick, dense head which completely dissapates.. leaves spotty lacing on a tulip glass.

scent is intriguing, aged wood and dark fruits.. plums, cherries. slight hop aroma and some sourness detected as well.

the taste is pretty smooth- not as much flavor and a bit too much alcohol burn. what flavor i can detect is a mix of the wood and a sugar cookie. interesting, just not enough. buttery aftertaste and mouthfeel is a big plus, but the way the alcohol overwhelms the flavor is mildly disappointing.

insanity is the essentially the same beer with more flavor, and its worth the money. wont be buying this again, but ill have one if you give it to me.

Serving type: bottle

02-10-2005 14:37:19 | More by goodbyeohio
Photo of crookedhalo


3.55/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours an orangey copper color with a quick-fading off-white head. A fair amount of fruity esters ranging from melon to fresh fig to plum. Lightly biscuity malt profile, fusel alcohols are at a moderate level. Some flowery hops. Delicately carbonated. Initially sweet on the palate, it has an odd scorchy flavor (like raisins sautéed in rum) in the middle and finishes a little dry from the alcohol burn at the end. Certainly not a bad barleywine, just not my favorite. I seem to recall liking this a bit more when it first came out.

Serving type: bottle

02-06-2005 04:27:56 | More by crookedhalo
Blithering Idiot from Weyerbacher Brewing Co.
83 out of 100 based on 1,678 ratings.