Insanity - Weyerbacher Brewing Co.

Not Rated.

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1,969 Ratings

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Ratings: 1,969
Reviews: 845
rAvg: 4.15
pDev: 11.81%
Wants: 189
Gots: 356 | FT: 16
Brewed by:
Weyerbacher Brewing Co. visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
English Barleywine |  11.10% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
A bourbon barrel-aged English-style Barleywine.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 06-21-2004)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,969 | Reviews: 845 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of martin123012
5/5  rDev +20.5%

Photo of kmwilson76
4/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of OBIrish24
4/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of jlenik
5/5  rDev +20.5%

Photo of acurtis
3.75/5  rDev -9.6%

Photo of vfgccp
4.28/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Dark amber with a tall khaki head. Nice retention and ok lace.

S - A pretty stellar nose. Flavors of sweet oak, Easter bread, and dried bananas are elevated and accented by a warm booze, without being overtaken by it.

T - Rich plumps, sweet caramel, and cognac. Alcohol warms the profile as soft oak adds a tanniny counterbalance to the sweetness. Touch of herbal bitterness and green raisins on the back end.

M - Super smooth, medium-full body. Mellow, semi-sweet finish.

O - Delicious and surprisingly drinkable at 11%. The profile is big and complex, but still manages to show a nice level of restraint.

Photo of McNuts
4.5/5  rDev +8.4%

Photo of jophish17
4.5/5  rDev +8.4%

Photo of danedelman
4.48/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

ok. So I have a friend that had us sample some of his old 1999 Insanity which may be a reason for the high scores.

A-deep mahogany, amber color with zero head but had a nice carb to the beer.

S-Candi sugar, bourbon and good heavenly sweetness. Everything seems very mellow.

T-Holy f'in hell. Mellow and smooth at room temperature. Candi Sugar, bourboun slight but really cannot take this one apart as it blended so well together. NO alcohol heat anywhere and wouldn't beleive it as 11.1%.

M-medium bodied and full of spunk

Wish I could get more from this year. I have 2011's which is good but not like this...

Photo of FightingEntropy
4.03/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A little extra time waiting for friends at the Muddy Pig led to a draft of Insanity to bide the time. No head on the beer, but a light white bubbles around the beer/glass boundary. Blood red beer in singles lighting--more of a brown and ruby held up to the light. Nose is fairly light, but sourdough bread, dark cherries and chocolate on top of a light spice and assertive alcohol. Insanity is the more standard barleywine Blithering Idiot that's aged in a oak bourbon barrel. Taste clearly gives the ghost of barleywine past and has a very familiar blend of dark fruit, oily bitterness, and figs. Departing from Blithering Idiot is the strong oak and harsh alcohol. Warming while reading a book the bourbon shows up full force with an alcohol sting--somehow more balance now. Drink this one slow.

Good, but I prefer Blithering Idiot. In the bottle, the idea of bourbon barrel aging being added to an already fine barleywine should be even better, but this one doesn't add up to more than the sum of it's part. Well worth a try for a night but will look elsewhere for my next barleywine.

Photo of djrn2
4/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of coreyfmcdonald
4/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of MaineMike
4/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of ChrisPro
3/5  rDev -27.7%

Photo of Dope
4.1/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Original review from 12/16/2011

A: A really dark amber pour with a nice dense offwhite head. Decent retention, not much lacing.

S: Big, boozy raisins with a little bit of cherry. Tons of vanilla and caramel. A little bourbon is present but not as much as I would expect. Tingling in the nose from the alcohol.

T: Sweet and thick caramel malt throughout. Some nice vanilla in there to help balance. Fruitiness not as present as in the smell but it's there, especially in the aftertaste. Boozy, definitely a sipper.

M: Thick and smooth with light carbonation. Warms the belly!

O: Big and boozy english style barleywine. No perceptible hops. Just a nice sipping barleywine. Alcohol is warming and can be smelled but doesn't have a typical "bite".

Update: 8/8/2013. Same batch, just been sitting in my cellar almost two years.

A: Murky dark brown pour. Good sized and fluffy light brown head. Almost no lacing, just a little slash here and there. Good retention however. (4)

S: Huge sweet caramel, toffee and raisin. Quite sweet in fact, with hints of cherries. A little bit of alcohol stings the nose. (4)

T: Big caramel and toffee notes up front with heavy oak. Raisin is here but subdued. Lots of spiced bread in the finish. Alcohol bite here as well. Super oaky with lots of toffee in the finish. Drying oak and alcohol between sips. (3.75)

M: Fairly heavy and dry on the back end. (4)

O: Good barrel aged barleywine but I noticed a sort of harsh alcohol flavor and spiced bread in the finish that I didn't quite pick up the first time. I've had other un-reviewed bottles of this and I noticed it in them too. Not quite sure what to attribute it to. Kind of a detracting harsh flavor and drops the score a bit. (3.5)

Photo of Retail1LO
4.1/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a snifter.

You know, I've lived in SE Pennsylvania now since 1992. I've been legal to drink since 1999. Yet, this is the first time I've had Insanity. I suppose a portion of that is due to the fact that I only recently even became interested in beer, and even more recently became a fan of barleywines.

This pours a beautiful bronze/ruby color that's translucent. The beer allows for a faint white head that largely clings to the sides of the glass, with no real legs to speak of. The nose if phenomenal. It has a large caramel and vanilla profile with a booziness that singes your nose with the deepest of inhales. The taste is marvelous with, again, caramel and vanilla being the highlights of the show. This is a sweet beer, and exactly what I like out of a BW. The mouthfeel is lightly carbonated and mega smooth. The finish is quite a bit boozy. I wonder what this would be like after a few years. A little hot now, but definitely doesn't hinder the drinkability in my estimation. My favorite Weyerbacher beer by far. Very well done.

Photo of GoGators
5/5  rDev +20.5%

Photo of Elfastball7
5/5  rDev +20.5%

Photo of alamode
4.5/5  rDev +8.4%

Photo of ShanePB
4.38/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Vintage 2011, only a few months old. I'm not sure how I've never had this beer before! Poured from the 12 ounce bottle into a tulip glass.

A: Hazy brownish/orange body with some minor floating sediment as I poured towards the bottom of the bottle. A thin off-white head formed but didn't last long. The retention is nice leaving a thin ring, and splotchy lacing on the walls.

S: Sweet bourbon, rich oak wood, maple syrup, caramel malts, vanilla and a sweet black cherry note on the end. Wow, this is absolutely incredible smelling. At first it reminded me of Backwoods Bastard, but the Barleywine base is certainly present in this beer.

T: Hot bourbon is up front with a lot of sweet dark fruits, focusing on the black cherry once again. Plenty of vanilla, sweet malts and a nuttiness are mid-palate. The back end has all the matured wood elements, lots of oak and a bit of spice. The bourbon comes full circle and leads you into the finish, with a bit of heat going down.

M: Lower carbonation, fairly smooth but it's a little thinner than expected. Again, it's hot on the way down into the chest reminding you of the barrel treatment this went through.

I'm still shocked that I never tried this beer before after sitting it just sit on shelves. Never again - this will certainly be one I grab a few packs of each year. Simply a wonderful example of a bourbon barrel aged Barleywine, in the right size bottles at the right price. Nice job, Weyerbacher.

Photo of doof116
4.5/5  rDev +8.4%

Photo of JustinMatthew
3/5  rDev -27.7%

Photo of oscplayr25
5/5  rDev +20.5%

Photo of rab53
4/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of Dan3279
5/5  rDev +20.5%

Insanity from Weyerbacher Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 1,969 ratings.