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AleSmith Decadence 2008 Barrel Aged - AleSmith Brewing Company

AleSmith Decadence 2008 Barrel AgedAleSmith Decadence 2008 Barrel Aged

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

70 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 70
Reviews: 34
rAvg: 3.88
pDev: 24.74%


Brewed by:
AleSmith Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
English Barleywine |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: HopHead84 on 06-15-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 70 | Reviews: 34 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of Huhzubendah
Huhzubendah

District of Columbia

4.43/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Shared by GT. Thanks man!

Bottle 195/433

The beer is cola brown with a small tan head. The aroma brings a potent dose of oak, funk, malt, toffee, booze, vanilla. The flavor offers toast with vanilla, bourbon, oak. Complex and wonderful. Present sourness throughout. Amazingly, this works quite well. I am really surprised how well the sour character and robust barleywine components mesh together. Medium bodied with moderately low carbonation. Light warming alcohol in the finish. Overall, this was thoroughly enjoyable. I could sip on this all night.

Serving type: bottle

11-25-2012 16:11:14 | More by Huhzubendah
Photo of Lunch
Lunch

Maryland

4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

got this one from a stranger that I encountered on the internet, thanks!

This was sampled from a snifter other than one branded with an AleSmith logo as that brewery lacks such a thing and that is damned embarrassing...who wouldn't want one of those? I know at least 1 or 2 people that would get a little hard for one. AleSmith you have been put on notice.

This beer is quite analogous (such a fitting word for what I'm about to say) to ass play... intriguing, but not really my thing.

I'm gonna go with a medium shit brown on this one. Murky yet gentle. Not much in the way of head which is not unlike my life.

Smell is certainly there and it's something alright. Toffee. Taint. Brown sugar. A bit more taint. Some wood. Not a huge amount, but a solid 5 inches.

Taste is perhaps a bit oxidized, but interesting with a slight tartness. This one is rich, but it's got kind of that new money stigma as it's a bit all over the place and not fully realized as to what or who it truly is yet...rich. A little bit of dark fruit (not 100% sure on what "dark fruit" is, but I'm pretty confident that I'm using it correctly).

Mouthfeel is perhaps a tad thin, but not really noticeable like a fat guy with skinny arms, but he always wears a hoodie so you only get a glimpse at them every now and then. You find it odd, but quickly forget.

I respect the shit out of any brewery that takes some risks and tries to produce an interesting and complex beer. This hits the mark in most parts, but it is nothing that I need to revisit often. I enjoyed my time with it, but was not terribly sad when I had to move on.

Serving type: bottle

11-15-2012 02:29:27 | More by Lunch
Photo of UCLABrewN84
UCLABrewN84

California

4.08/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle pour sampled at mrbubbler's tasting courtesy of mrbubbler himself.

Pours a slightly murky dark brown with a tan head that settles to an oily film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of bourbon, wood, dark fruit, and brown sugar. Taste is the same with a slightly sour edge to it. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good barrel aged beer but the sour aspect in the flavor is somewhat interesting.

Serving type: bottle

04-09-2012 03:36:47 | More by UCLABrewN84
Photo of pmarlowe
pmarlowe

District of Columbia

3.98/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle #42/433. Tulip glass.

A: Pours dark amber with reddish tint, smattering of largish tan bubbles. No lacing, so so retention

S: Mix of lush caramel, oak, hint of bourbon, chocolate, gorgeous cherry, and red wine/fruit. Awesome and well balanced. As it warms, a little sharp solventy aroma develops, and it kind of flattens out to a single note. It was a perfect 5 until this.

T: Lots of tart red cherry, some oak chars and chocolate. Tartness is pretty prominent, but not completely overpowering. Bone dry.

M: Light carbonation and medium-full body.

O: Smells phenomenal at first, less so as it warms, and tastes pretty good. similar issue as 2006 BA Decadence, but the tartness isn't a deal breaker as it was there (which was dominated by the single note of tartness). I'll bet this would be great without the infection.

Serving type: bottle

03-06-2012 04:15:10 | More by pmarlowe
Photo of xpimptastikx
xpimptastikx

Texas

4.2/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

bottle received in the Light Whale BIF

A - dark amber, rootbeer, thin sheet of khaki head.

S - cherry, toffee, vanilla, oak.

T - dark fruits, caramel, light sourness lingers.

M - medium body, light carbonation, slight sour and tannic finish.

O - A really interesting "intentional" infection that worked very well. It was actaully one of my favorites at a bottle release tasting.

Serving type: bottle

12-30-2011 01:07:22 | More by xpimptastikx
Photo of srandycarter
srandycarter

California

3.8/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle 64/433.

A - Cola brown, not much head, mostly a ring and whisp of head. Virtually no lace.

S - Best part of this one. Big sweet malt, lush dark fruit, vanilla, heat and wood.

T - Not as lush as smell had indicated. Plus a sour twang at finish that didn't go over well for me. Other than that, cola, brown sugar, wood and dark fruit.

M - Again, the sour twang messes up the finish, and I would have preferred it to be more carbonated.

D - Glad to try, but disappointed to be sure.

Serving type: bottle

12-04-2011 02:00:45 | More by srandycarter
Photo of seeswo
seeswo

Ohio

3.3/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a toffee brown, short off white head. Looks the part. Smells like sweet malts, toffee and a bit of tartness. The taste is oddly a bit tart mixed with a toffee malt sweetness. The finish is a watery tartness that really doesn't work. The tartness is alright at first, but really drags the beer down as it warms up. Decent carbonation and a good body. Would be a lot better without the tartness and the wateriness.

Serving type: bottle

12-01-2011 04:28:01 | More by seeswo
Photo of Urbancaver
Urbancaver

Ohio

3.53/5  rDev -9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a light reddish brown. Nice off-white head. Looks really nice. Smells oaky and raisiny. Sweet and malty. A touch of vanilla perhaps. Tastes tart and oaky. Sweet malty but a touch sour. Well carbonated. Overall the sourness is a bit weird but works. This beer is enjoyable for sure

Serving type: bottle

12-01-2011 01:33:39 | More by Urbancaver
Photo of brew3crew
brew3crew

Ohio

3.88/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Small gathering at Cam's for goodies

A-carmelesque body with white whispy head around the edges...

S-Bourbon mixed with a nice malt backbone

T-follows the nose nicely with a night bit of sour tang towards the end. The sourness works for it. The barrel isn't as distinqueshed as I thought it would be. Sourness comes out as it warms up

M-medium. Body and smooth

O-goes down in taste as it warms up, but not much

Serving type: bottle

12-01-2011 01:32:00 | More by brew3crew
Photo of mdfb79
mdfb79

New York

2.83/5  rDev -27.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

From 10/28/21 notes. HUGE thanks to nmann08 for sharing this one. 2008 version, bottle 53 of 433, poured into a tulip.

a - Pours a murky mahogany brown color with one inch of tan head and moderate carbonation evident.

s - Smells sweet dark fruits, sour fruits and lactic notes, and some roasted malts. Sourness is odd and leads me to believe this will be infected, though it isn't bad.

t - Tastes of very sour dark fruits, bourbon, oak, roasted malts, fruity malts. Unfortunately, this one is definitely infected as the taste is very sour and full of sour cherries and dark fruits. Not the worst thing in the world but not that great and I'm sure not that they were expecting/going for.

m - Medium body and low carbonation.

o - Overall a disappointing beer that seemed infected. I seem to me in the minority on here rating it...not sure if other people got lucky with their bottles or just enjoyed the infection way more than I did, but to me this one is not worth seeking out, especially considering the rarity/what you'd probably have to give up to land a bottle. Definitely go for the BA Speedway instead.

EDIT: Looks like this wasn't necessarily an "infection" or problem and more in line with what they may have been going for. Not changing my scores, but good to know I didn't have a rogue bottle.

Serving type: bottle

11-01-2011 17:40:55 | More by mdfb79
Photo of SpdKilz
SpdKilz

Illinois

4.13/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A big thanks to metallitone1 for this beer. Shared with others at Zwanze Day 2011. Bottle #72 of 433. Taken from notes.

Appearance – Pours into a Cantillon tulip with a somewhat hazy brown color. It looked similar to the BA Cuir we opened up a bit later on.

Smell – A nice malty, bourbon aroma mixed with vanilla, brown sugar and a hint of tart funk.

Taste – The first impression is that this is a tasty BA Barleywine. Oak, vanilla, plentiful bourbon characteristics, plums, cherries, hints of chocolate, maple syrup, and brown sugar. Then, as the sip finishes there is a slight, restrained tartness.

Mouthfeel – Medium bodied, moderate carbonation.

Overall – I had heard this was an “infected barleywine” and was curious to try it. This really was an enjoyable experience. Whereas I have drain poured a few unintentionally infected beers in the past, this one was far from a drain pour. The subtle funk was not a turnoff but added to the beer. Everything was well balanced as of now, though I am curious to see if the funk takes over in the future and becomes overbearing. Glad I was able to get this beer.

Serving type: bottle

10-24-2011 23:48:21 | More by SpdKilz
Photo of MasterSki
MasterSki

Illinois

4.35/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Carleton (SpdKilz) for the share. Bottle #72 of 433. Served in a Cantillon tulip.

A - Quick-dissolving tan foam settles to a thin collar, leaving behind no lace. Turbid orange-brown body.

S - Prunes and dark fruits, bourbon, vanilla, light oak, and some mild tart and sour notes mixed in. You can tell there's an infection, intentional or otherwise, but it integrates pretty well in to the flavor profile.

T - The taste has less of the sourness, although there's still a touch of acetic acid present. More barleywine-esque flavors - burnt sugars, dark fruits, oaky vanilla, bourbon, and surprisingly well-hidden alcohol.

M - Medium-bodied, with a sticky and chewy texture to it. Lower carbonation, tannic and dry finish, and amazingly little alcohol present.

D - This is a very good beer, with the sourness working quite nicely. I'm not sure how it will age, but right now it's highly enjoyable. I'm sad I only had a glass, as I think I could have tackled a bottle of this one over the course of an evening.

Serving type: bottle

09-19-2011 02:13:30 | More by MasterSki
Photo of AgentZero
AgentZero

Illinois

4.08/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to SpdKilz for sharing this at Zwanze Day. Thanks also to TurdFurgison who originally shared this with me.

A - Cloudy brown beer with a bit of read. Off-white head didn't stay for very long and left only minor stick on the glass.

S - Good bourbon and oak with a little bit of vanilla. As far as something barrel aged goes, this has the qualities you would want from something that's been sitting in a bourbon barrel. Brett funk is not distracting, rather complimentary.

T - Nice malt and bourbon profile with good brown sugar and a nice bit of cherry tartness. The vanilla and oak are neither harsh nor overbearing, rather about spot on.

M - Medium bodied, pretty smooth with some moderate carbonation.

O - This is a great tasting beer that I've been fortunate enough to sample two times now. Would not turn this down, and would love to have it again. Drinks pretty easy.

Serving type: bottle

09-18-2011 23:12:14 | More by AgentZero
Photo of billshmeinke
billshmeinke

California

2.08/5  rDev -46.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Review from notes. Thanks to Vahe (...I think).

Decadence 2008 BA 259/433
Ruby colored with a ring of beige head. 3.5
Cheesy, phenolic, weird dark fruits, some mineral, and alcohol. 2
Sweet, ripe, dark fruits (plumbs). Minerals. Cheesy funk. 2
Medium bodied, lightly carbonated. Slightly tart. 2
Fuck this. This is an infected beer. Own your mistake and dump it next time. Don’t pretend you made something cool. 2

Serving type: bottle

09-16-2011 21:45:30 | More by billshmeinke
Photo of Jwale73
Jwale73

Rhode Island

4.1/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Huge thanks to jedwards for sharing this beer (a truly generous BA). Bottle # 209/433. Pours a hazy mahogany hue with a loose, off-white head that dissipates into a cluster of bubbles along the shoulders with a residual soapy slick across the surface. Nose expresses whiskey notes, a buttery quality, caramel and maple syrup all on a malty backbone. Taste follows nose - sweetness prevails upfront with a slight tartness that follows and a buttery character at the finish. All these qualities combined keep it all from being cloyingly sweet. Mouthfeel is medium-light, slightly acidic and there's also a trace of oiliness to the texture. Carbonation is just shy of still. Overall, a really complex and interesting brew. I can't say that I've ever had a slightly sour English Barleywine, but I like it.

Serving type: bottle

09-15-2011 00:36:32 | More by Jwale73
Photo of nickd717
nickd717

California

3.98/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle, thanks to largadeer for this great tick. -Bals, -bals, -bals, I love 'em!

Cloudy dark brown in color with reddish hues and a small light beige head.

Fruity aroma with dark berries, caramel, and a little tartness evident.

Good flavor with sweet caramel, oak, bourbon, prune, fig, and good tartness.

Medium-full bodied with lower carbonation.

Pretty good overall, but not much better than the non-bal aged version.

Serving type: bottle

08-26-2011 15:29:24 | More by nickd717
Photo of drabmuh
drabmuh

Maryland

4.15/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle shared by Lunch, served in a snifter, at the time of this review this is the #9 English Barleywine, awesome, top 10 barleywine. Thanks Paul.

Beer is brown to copper with a thin off white head of small bubbles. Low carbonation, low lacing.

Beer has a mild woodsy aroma with some toffee, dark sugars, mild malt and an overall sweetness.

There is a sherry like quality to this beer, perhaps a sign of oxidation? It is sweet, medium in body and kind of coats my palate with the sweetness of the beer. Interesting overall, I liked it but I think it has probably peaked based on the mild oxidation I tasted throughout the beer.

Serving type: bottle

08-23-2011 03:00:48 | More by drabmuh
Photo of FosterJM
FosterJM

California

4.22/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

732nd Review on BA
Bottle to snifter

Clusterfork7
Not sure which BA brought this

App- A muddled dark auburn with some even darker highlights throughout and a little bit of a pancake like ½ finger of head to it. A nice bit of sliding lace and legs.

Smell- Really wasn't expecting to smell any sour on this but was slight damp cherries on top of the normal barleywine bourbon and malt aromatics.

Taste- This was pretty damn good with the mix of flavors to it. Still retained the barrel notes of the oak and the vanilla but the cherry added a velvety layer of flavor.

Mouth- Medium bodied and medium carbonated with a rich vanilla note

Drink- A very unique take on a classic style. This barleywine is quite large and has some very balanced flavors. I love the barrel notes and the tart subtleness.

Serving type: bottle

08-22-2011 17:44:03 | More by FosterJM
Photo of yourefragile
yourefragile

District of Columbia

4.25/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750 mL bottle shared by Paul that he apparently scribbled on with a sharpie to indicate the barrel aged nature of it. J/k.

Dark brown with thin tan head. Some wisps of lacing and a collar throughout. Very interesting aroma of bourbon, vanilla, brown sugar, cherry, mild tartiness and light funk. Flavor is a little less weird; strong toasted malt base with leather, oak and bourbon and some very mild cherry tart and tang in the finish. Creamy and soft body and a pleasant balance of sweet barley wine and tart sourness in the finish. Weird, but good.

Serving type: bottle

08-21-2011 19:41:30 | More by yourefragile
Photo of Thorpe429
Thorpe429

Illinois

4.05/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Big thanks to Lunch for bringing this bottle to the barrel-aged barleywine tasting yesterday. Big want of mine getting slayed via the SAVOR snifter.

Pours a nice copper color with a half-finger off-white head and some spotty lacing. Thin collar.

The nose starts off with good notes of caramel and brown sugar. Bourbon in the background with slight vanilla. Very slight bit of tart cherry works its way in, adding some nice complexities. The flavor is a great combo of malt and bourbon with oak and vanilla in the background. Cherry comes out more with a very slight tartness as it warms, creating a really interesting mouthfeel.

Very nice brew that I was quite happy to try.

Serving type: bottle

08-21-2011 13:29:05 | More by Thorpe429
Photo of Sean9689
Sean9689

Illinois

4.05/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks, largadeer!

A - Pours a darker reddish/brown, slightly hazy, tan head, thin collar, some whisps on top.

S - Barrel, bourbon, sweet toasted malts, dark fruit, and brett funk. Very strange, to say the least, although pretty enjoyable for all the craziness.

T - Not as sour or funky as I was expecting. Oak, bourbon, dark fruits, light to moderate sour funk. The bourbon is nice and smooth and compliments the beer along with the oak. Hmm, this is an odd beer...but...good.

M - Medium, light carbonation, creamy oak finish.

O - Well, it's like nothing I've ever had, in a good way. The bourbon, oak, and funk play along nicely with one another. Really wasn't too sure what to expect but after it was all said and done, I enjoyed this one. Give it a whirl!

Serving type: bottle

08-18-2011 14:36:00 | More by Sean9689
Photo of thagr81us
thagr81us

South Carolina

4.1/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Massive thanks goes out to thunderroad12 for sharing this one with us during the ORF '11 release! Bottle #178 of 433! Served from bottle into a sampler snifter. Poured a dark red-brown with a half finger off-white head that subsided to a minimal amount slowly. Maintained decent lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, caramel, wood, sweet alcohol, and subtle sour. The flavor was of sweet malt, caramel, wood, sweet alcohol, and subtle sour cherries. It had a medium feel on the palate with medium carbonation. Ovearll this was a pretty good brew. For this one to be known to have an infection it was a pretty nice Barleywine. The barrels really helped this one out and made it quite pleasant. The sour cherry note was quite nice and added to the complexity of the brew, but I hate to say that it would have been a nicer brew without it. Still really glad I got the opportunity to try this one and would do so again and again given the chance.

Serving type: bottle

08-16-2011 11:50:38 | More by thagr81us
Photo of mikesgroove
mikesgroove

South Carolina

4.58/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

one of the last beers i got to crack open before the latest illness. poured into a jackie o snifter, bottle 453

dark brown in color with a huge head of tan that just towered over the top of the glass. Settling down smoothly and evenly it produced a thick coating of lace all along the sides of the glass. Rich vanilla and woody aromas are being picked up almost immediately. Huge notes of oak and subtle caramel and toffee and truly dominating here for sure. Warming only brings this out further, rich and decadent, sweet aromas just building off each other here. The first sip is divine, subtle, and rich and perfectly carbonated it simply rolls across the tongue with a gentleness that is unheard of. Vanilla and caramel merging with oak like notes and such a strong dry finish, it was near perfection.

Serving type: bottle

08-15-2011 01:45:12 | More by mikesgroove
Photo of largadeer
largadeer

California

4.28/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Arthur for sending this rarity.

Dark auburn with some haze. Pours with a finger of tan head that eventually settles down to a very thin collar.

Equal parts malt, barrel and funk on the nose. Bourbon and toffee, old leather, minerals/iron, slight meatiness, figs. Light acetic acid, a ton of brett. Unusual stuff for sure.

Complex and surprisingly nice palate. Not overly sour necessarily, but there's a definite wild element to it. Leathery, earthy funk, sweet toffee, figs, currants - there's an oddly harmonious balance here. A moderate bourbon barrel element, oak, vanilla. Finishes with light tartness, cranberry, leather. A nice accident.

Serving type: bottle

08-13-2011 20:32:13 | More by largadeer
Photo of unitmonster
unitmonster

California

4.97/5  rDev +28.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

On tap at the BA Speedway Stout/Decadence release party.

A - Dark brown, almost looks like a stout. Holding it up to the light you can really start to see its a barleywine.

S - Amazing bourbon notes and a hint of sour to it. I picked up three tasters of BA Speedway and BA Decadence for my friends and I in line, and I thought the Decadence was the Speedway because it smelled so good.

T - All I have to say is wow. The taste blew me away. I was debating with my friends as to which brew was which, and I thought because of the hype that my Decadence had to the the Speedway. Bourbon, dark fruits, oak, and that slight sourness make it a top notch beer.

M - Very light for such a big beer. The tartness really evens things out.

O - I love this beer. I will continue to trade for more of it.

Serving type: on-tap

08-02-2011 01:07:41 | More by unitmonster
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AleSmith Decadence 2008 Barrel Aged from AleSmith Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 70 ratings.