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AleSmith Wee Heavy - Barrel Aged - AleSmith Brewing Company

Not Rated.
AleSmith Wee Heavy - Barrel AgedAleSmith Wee Heavy - Barrel Aged

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
96
world-class

290 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 290
Reviews: 105
rAvg: 4.32
pDev: 8.1%
Wants: 295
Gots: 114 | FT: 9
Brewed by:
AleSmith Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy |  9.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
This was barrel aged and limited to 234 hand numbered bottles from the 2004 batch of Wee Heavy and released in 2005.

(Beer added by: scottoale on 04-08-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 290 | Reviews: 105 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Arbitrator
Arbitrator

California

4/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2006 vintage. Shared by corby112 at ipa247's recent sour tasting. Thanks Craig.

A: Pours a very dark, maroon brown body. Nearly opaque in the glass. It develops a short-lived white head, with a thin collar and scattered film on the top.

S: Bourbon, vanilla, caramel, toffee chocolate, oak.

T: It's bourbon-dominant, and you get that right up front, but it is not overwhelmingly bourbon-y. It's quite easy to find the base beer underneath, manifesting as caramel, toffee, chocolate. I pick up hints of smoke that I didn't get in the nose. The finish is nicely tannic with a light spice character, and some vanilla. The astringency of the oak makes me feel the beer is slightly dry.

M: Tannic, slightly dry finish. It's very warm, but not hot.

D: Surprisingly drinkable! It was a little sweet for me, but I'd have no trouble drinking more of it and enjoying it.

Serving type: bottle

01-15-2010 21:03:16 | More by Arbitrator
Photo of redsonja
redsonja

Netherlands

4/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A; nice dark brown with a little head on top

S; roasted malts,caramel and a hint of cherrys

T; roasted malts, bitter chocolate, coffee

M; the roasted malts stay long in your mouth
and a nice alcohol bitter in the aftertaste

O; nice wee heavy nice roasted malts, chocolate and cherrys in the nose. the wood i did not find in the taste or smell.

Serving type: bottle

04-25-2011 16:27:37 | More by redsonja
Photo of BullBearHawk
BullBearHawk

Illinois

4/5  rDev -7.4%

01-02-2014 02:57:03 | More by BullBearHawk
Photo of chrisxmartin
chrisxmartin


4/5  rDev -7.4%

11-05-2012 10:58:34 | More by chrisxmartin
Photo of beernads
beernads

Florida

4/5  rDev -7.4%

01-25-2013 10:19:13 | More by beernads
Photo of Tom-Peters
Tom-Peters

California

4/5  rDev -7.4%

04-29-2013 16:34:13 | More by Tom-Peters
Photo of ArrogantB
ArrogantB

Colorado

4/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2006 vintage released in 08, bottle 253/254. The first thing I thought when I smelled the open bottle was bourbon. The beer pours a nice brown color and I am pretty sure it looks like the regular wee heavy but I've only had that once. The aromas from the glass seem to be mostly vanilla and bourbon. The taste is pretty good, licorice, vanilla, nutty,fruits different than I remember the regular version but a hint of smoke and peat which I couldn't detect in the regular version. The alcohol is definitely present in this beer. This is a good beer but really only a twist to a beer that was already good to start with. I would definitely purchase this again if I ever had a chance. Damn you Alesmith!!!

Serving type: bottle

07-26-2008 04:09:24 | More by ArrogantB
Photo of IndyDad
IndyDad

New York

4/5  rDev -7.4%

03-16-2014 11:58:51 | More by IndyDad
Photo of Pete27lax
Pete27lax

New York

4/5  rDev -7.4%

08-08-2012 15:36:30 | More by Pete27lax
Photo of t0rin0
t0rin0

California

4/5  rDev -7.4%

08-12-2012 14:52:25 | More by t0rin0
Photo of gueuzegossage
gueuzegossage

California

4/5  rDev -7.4%

03-17-2014 15:12:53 | More by gueuzegossage
Photo of CoolEthan
CoolEthan

California

4/5  rDev -7.4%

05-04-2013 19:44:08 | More by CoolEthan
Photo of lunarbrew
lunarbrew

Wisconsin

4/5  rDev -7.4%

05-05-2014 14:05:49 | More by lunarbrew
Photo of danieelol
danieelol

Australia

4/5  rDev -7.4%

11-30-2011 03:45:26 | More by danieelol
Photo of bennetj17
bennetj17

Arizona

4/5  rDev -7.4%

11-24-2013 04:18:12 | More by bennetj17
Photo of claspada
claspada

New Jersey

4.03/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

2009 edition courtesy of Ryan from the most recent release.

Pours a typical darker brown with absolutely no head and little lacing around the glass. This is one of the most still beers I have ever seen, usually not my cup of tea, let's see...

Aromas are really boozy and strong initially but not entirely off-putting. Lots of bourbon, sweet caramel and butterscotch. It hard to get any of the base beer as all the aromas are coming straight from the bourbon barrel here.

The tastes begin with sweet dark, caramelized brown sugars. Then you get waves and waves of buttery bourbon and copious amounts of sweet toffee. As it warms the bourbon continues to become increasingly intense. Bourbon bomb, yes indeed. Not hot or alcoholly in the slightest, just tons of bourbon flavors.

The mouthfeel is velvety smooth and slick. Just like silk across the palate. No carbonation; a sipper to say the least.

Overall despite the huge bourbon and booze on the aroma this is surprisingly drinkable. I mean I almost don't consider this beer anymore because the bourbon completely overpowers the Wee Heavy base. I don't think this style of beer lends itself to barrel-aging as well as barleywines and stouts, but that's my two sense. I am torn on this beer because while it was tasty, I could have easily just poured a glass of bourbon and added a dash of the original Wee Heavy with similar results. Probably not worth the time, effort or cost it took to procure and I do not need to revisit anytime soon.

Serving type: bottle

08-15-2011 14:54:48 | More by claspada
Photo of Floydster
Floydster

California

4.03/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750 ml bottle purchased at the Alesmith brewery several months ago for twenty dollars, 2005 bottle numbered 95 out of 225 I believe but the writing was a bit scratched off so I could be wrong, split amongst my girlfriend's family at her graduation party yesterday, poured into an oversized wine glass

A-Deep brown with some reddish highlights, quite a bit of floaties, absolutely no head, flatter than a board, no lacing or anything

S-Lots of bourbon and oak, whiskey was the dominant aroma by far though, cognac, sweet chocolate, vanilla, pulms, brown sugar, burned malts, fair amount of toffee, caramel, and cake

T-Once I got over the characteristics of the barrel this sat in, malt jumped out at me, sweeter than the regular version with lots of vanilla and caramel, was not as roasty as the standard Wee Heavy, started off with a big boozy whiskey flavor, faded into the malt just mnetioned, then the finish was super spicy with more booze and a burning sensation on the tongue, a little sweet and strong for my palate but a nice flavor overall

M-Spicy, boozy, sweet, and hot mouthfeel, thin to medium body, barrel aging on this just killed all the original carbonation, taste lingered for a long time and got more intense as it warmed

D-Could not drink much more than eight to ten ounces, super heavy on the stomach, alcohol is definitely not hidden, smooth though, and it seems like the ABV would be mucyh higher with the way it tastes

After I was done explaining to various people that this was actually beer and not oaked whiskey like they were all claiming, I was able to do my review, I expected more from this brew but it was still good, bourbon and wood character seemed to just take over the original brew, certainly the strongest tasting scotch ale I have tried next to the Berksire for Julio's, might pay the money for another bottle in the future but I am in no hurry to do so, definitely worth trying if you get the chance though

Serving type: bottle

05-25-2008 19:48:43 | More by Floydster
Photo of mulder1010
mulder1010

Australia

4.05/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750 ML poured into a Bruery Tulip 865/972

Thanks to Paytoplay for the bottle

A-- Poured a deep, dark ruby brown color. Very little head with this and not a lot of carbonation. No lacing and some visible ABV to this as quite syrupy.

S-- Insane! Buttered vanilla, buttered Toffee and bourbon. Just a very warming smell. Bourbon was pretty reserved though. Still best aspect of this was the nose.

T-- Really buttery taste to this. Thick vanilla toffee taste.

M-- Barrel really disappeared in the mouth. Really more about toffee and vanilla. Was a little sweet and syrupy. Very little carbonation and some noticeable alcohol to this.

O-- Might be at its peak. Very well done for the style but seems to get forgotten because it is a Wee Heavy and not a Stout. Look and nose were excellent but the mouth dropped off a lot.

Serving type: bottle

08-09-2011 03:57:43 | More by mulder1010
Photo of mdfb79
mdfb79

New York

4.05/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From 03/19/11 notes. Big thanks to Lunch for sharing this one; thanks Paul. 2009 vintage, bottle 584 of 972.

a - Pours a dark brown color with one inch of white head and light carbonation evident.

s - Smells of light bourbon, oak, caramel, fruits malts. Good, but much less bourbon than I was expecting, especially considering it's relatively fresh.

t - Tastes of caramel, light bourbon, oak, vanilla, and dark fruits. Again I enjoyed it, but not a lot of bourbon.

m - Light to medium body and low carbonation, pretty smooth body. A bit lighter than I expected.

d - Overall I thought this was a good beer but I was expecting a heavier mouthfeel and more bourbon. I got to try 2 oz.'s or so of an 06 vintage a few months ago and really liked it and remembered it having more bourbon than this newer batch. Still a good beer, but not their best BA beer or vintage.

Serving type: bottle

03-21-2011 17:39:41 | More by mdfb79
Photo of cpmichael
cpmichael

Indiana

4.05/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2009 Vintage; Bottle 185/972

A: Pours a very dark brown, not quite black, but super dark. No foam. Pour looks flat.

S: Vanilla, malts, bourbon, caramel, hints of oak and smoke.

T: Raisins with smooth bourbon and vanilla, oak, hints of smokiness, but much less than I expected. Pretty sweet.

M/D: pour looked flat, but It had good carbonation, pretty thick-body. Feels great. Bourbon adds a nice sweet element to the base. Solid beer.

Serving type: bottle

04-18-2011 21:40:18 | More by cpmichael
Photo of Lothore
Lothore

California

4.05/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

2004 vintage 164/234

A- Pours a deep ruddy brown hue with a very small fizzy head.

S- LOTS of deep bourbon notes with dark fruit sneaking its way through.

T- The most bourbon i've ever tasted in a beer all the way through, earthy tones, undertones of dark fruit.

M- Thick with low carbonation.

D- A huge, bourbony beer that has held up well these years.

Serving type: bottle

12-31-2009 04:23:16 | More by Lothore
Photo of n2185
n2185

North Carolina

4.08/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

2009 bottle

A: pours a dark mahogany with barely any trace of khaki head that recedes into a thin ring with no lacing.

S: lots of caramel, vanilla, and bourbon on the nose. There are some light smoky aromas in there as well.

T: similar to the nose, lots of vanilla, caramel, and bourbon. Some slight roasted malt flavors with a light bitterness are mixed in there. Smooth finish with no alcohol burn.

M: medium-thick body with low carbonation, this beer is pretty smooth and creamy, though slighly watery.

O: a good beer, though not extremely complex. Stil, it's quite tasty and still bourbony after nearly 3 years.

Serving type: bottle

11-12-2011 22:30:55 | More by n2185
Photo of Sean9689
Sean9689

Illinois

4.08/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Jason for sharing. 2009 vintage. 750ml bottle poured into wine glass (not sure of the # on the bottle).

A - Pours a mirky/muddy brown, small amount of off-white head, some bubbles here and there on top.

S - Sweet dark fruits, bourbon, oak, caramel, vanilla.

T - Sweet caramels, oak, smooth bourbon note. The bourbon is really nice and smooth, which is nice considering this is a recent release.

M - Medium, light carbonation, smooth and creamy.

D - Really enjoyed this one and was glad to try it. I would still like to try an older vintage, but I hear they're becoming oxidized. Def would try this one again!

Serving type: bottle

04-04-2011 17:49:12 | More by Sean9689
Photo of CrellMoset
CrellMoset

Virginia

4.08/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2006 vintage, bottle 152/254. Thanks to a very generous BA who I likely traded a Southampton beer for quite some time ago - damn my poor record keeping.

Appearance: A dark, muddy, turgid brown, rusty and dirty, this one surges out of the bottle quickly, settling in with a half finger of surging, cola-like head, fading in to a nearly imperceptible collar - only a few small clusters of individual bubbles cling to the rim of the tulip, but even they fade in time with successive sips, all the way down to the point where it's a still muddy pool. There's really not too much to say about the appearance, and BAs here know I'm not a man of few words ... it's just a still, muddy, brown mess (perhaps understandable for a barrel aged beer that's seven years old, but, hey, still not the most attractive thing in the world).

Aroma: Probably this beer's best aspect - I can only imagine what it smelled like four years ago. Rusty penny and old wood dominate this one, with flashes of mossy, smoky, notes, hints of sourness, vanilla, and brown paper bag, wet dog, cardboard oxidation. What a robust and varied aroma profile - this one's all over the place, but not in a messy, out of place way. It's balanced and thoughtful showcasing each of its strengths gracefully, and in doing so showcasing its greatest strengths - even-handedness.

Taste: A total caramel bomb, with hints of cinnamon, vanilla, toffee, and only the faintest kiss of bourbon in what is at this point a relatively dilapidated ([adj.] - having fallen into a state of disrepair or deterioration, as through neglect; broken-down and shabby) beer. This one's definitely past its prime - it's oxidized, slightly metallic, but in a way reminiscent of port, aged leather-bound books, and rich mahogany (Anchorman was on TV earlier). Brown sugar, toffee, and a slew of caramel malts - all well-attenuated - make up the backbone of this wee heavy, but this is all complimented by hints of cinnamon from the barrels along with a string of other, nondescript spicy notes, reminiscent of the base beer. Dark fruits are evident, too - raisins (rum raisin, of course, with the interactions), plums, and dates, with hints of sour cherry and fig, though nothing quite approaching domination in that latter category. Barrel notes are fairly restrained - other than the aforementioned cinnamon, only vanilla and hints of toasted caramel and old wood. A little more garbled and messy than the nose, but still a classy, classy broad.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, incredibly smooth, in fact, with very low carbonation in a slick but still crispy (tasting) body. Obviously typical of a beer that's not only spent a lot of time in a barrel but then another significant chunk of time sitting in a bottle. It works well with the flavor profile - I can only imagine how annoying a slew of carbonation would be with the oxidation and sour notes that are creeping in to this one.

Drinkability: It's hard not to both respect this beer but also be a little disappointed in it all at once. I've half a mind to try and get my hand on a 2009 bottle to see what this one's like at the height of its power (should have tried to do a side-by-side!), because the remnants of a great beer are definitely here. As it stands, this one's a shadow of its former self, but in a way that's demanding of appreciation. Crack 'em if you've got 'em folks.

Serving type: bottle

02-04-2012 02:15:05 | More by CrellMoset
Photo of seeswo
seeswo

Ohio

4.1/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2009 vintage. Pours with pretty low carbonation, looks an even brown color with a touch of tan head. Looks fine. The smell is big bourbon, vanilla, brown sugar and wood with just a touch of smoked malts. Bourbon, oak and smoked/roasted malt blend nicely. Finishes a bit boozy in flavor (not heat) and with some oak. Seems like it could use some time to round out the finish. Lower carbonation and medium body. Enjoyable BA scotch ale. Not as good as I thought it was going to be, but still quite good.

Serving type: bottle

04-03-2011 22:59:59 | More by seeswo
AleSmith Wee Heavy - Barrel Aged from AleSmith Brewing Company
96 out of 100 based on 290 ratings.