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Old Knucklehead Barleywine - BridgePort Brewing Co. / Brewpub

Not Rated.
Old Knucklehead BarleywineOld Knucklehead Barleywine

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
89
very good

183 Ratings
THE BROS
98
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 183
Reviews: 92
rAvg: 3.99
pDev: 11.78%
Wants: 38
Gots: 10 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
BridgePort Brewing Co. / Brewpub visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  9.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Todd on 12-16-1998

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 183 | Reviews: 92 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Spaceman_Jer
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of number1bum
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle, Batch 12, courtesy of BeerTruth. Thanks man.

Pours a cloudy brown color with a slight reddish tinge to it. About two fingers of beige head settle to a pretty nice lace, with a splash of stick here and there on the sides.

Smell is quite rich, with aromas of dark fruits, vanilla and sweet caramel. Has a bready quality to it as well, with lots of rich dark caramel.

Taste is also quite fruity, with flavors like plum, apricot, cherry and black currant. There is some darkly caramelized malt sweetness, which like the nose also has a breadiness to it. There is some vanilla and a subtle woody flavor from the barrel aging, but it's not boozy at all. I'm really impressed by the depth of fruity flavor in particular in this beer. Very flavorful and really nice.

Mouthfeel is medium-full, quite smooth and surprisingly clean in the finish for such a big, barrel aged barleywine. Nice.

This is quite good and a very impressive example of a barrel aged barleywine. It's clearly mellowed from the aging, as booze is not at all evident, and it's quite smooth. Quite nice.

Photo of Greels
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%

Photo of Erik-P
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%

Photo of Georgiabeer
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%

Photo of NickThePyro
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%

Photo of rpabst
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%

Photo of Slatetank
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%

Photo of powdersoldier
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%

Photo of JAHMUR
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%

Photo of brandon911
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%

Photo of RoyalT
4.22/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance – A decent barley wine head atop a deep, brown body with a tinge of orange.

Smell – This one has a nice bouquet of deep, ripe fruits rolled in molasses and balanced with sharp hops. The toasted malt lays the groundwork for some strong smells of smashed dates and apricots soaked in alcohol.

Taste – Boy, this is big. The sweetness comes out in force here. There seems to be more sugars than in the nose – brown sugar, table sugar, and molasses again. The overly ripe brown pineapple flavor soaks well in the dark rum. The hop and malt profiles battle to a standstill. This one is complex and fun.

Mouthfeel – Flat and refreshing and definitely full-bodied. You can almost roll this one into a ball.

Drinkability – I doubt that the stern alcohol warning of this ale will slow many. This is one for the ages.

Photo of mentor
4.21/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to someone whoe send this in a trade (but I didn't write the name clearly on the bottlecap, PN???...PisskyNights?). 2003, bottling No 011, stamped 15705 reviewed in April 2005. Hard pour to get a half finger tan head that has already settled to a thin ring around the glass. Beautiful color. Crystal clear and red coppery that's ruby when held to light. Smells caramelly and alcoholic. Really not much else there, surprisingly. Tastes great! Sweet and creamy rich malt with perhaps some hops and a quite guarded 9% alcohol. The mouthfeel is the first thing noticable. Smooth and silky like a rich thick oatmeal stout. Some brighter fruits come in the form of strawberries, peaches, and a hint of cherry sour. This rolls gently into a caramel and toffee pleasantness that's then teased by a rising alcohol. The alcohol rules a gentle reign briefly before caramel returns and lays the foundation for the aftertaste. The aftertaste is sugar sweet malt that's driving me to savor the aftertaste but also get more of this delectible nectar in my mouth. Throughout, the barely detectable cherry hangs around. Quite interesting. The predominant flavor that persists is caramel dipped strawberries. Me likey. Mouthfeel is actually just medium, but it's silky smooth. Carbonation is mild. Nice job, I'd take another any day!

Photo of mikesgroove
4.2/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

thick brown, though you can see some light through it, no head and a nice lace top it off. Smell is hopped for sure, but with a subtle sugary undertone, and a hint of alcohol too. Taste is not very strong at all. There is the natural piney hoppness you would expect from a barley wine, but not too strong, there is also a sugary, nuttiness about it as well. The alcohol is there, and that keeps this a sipper. It is actually nicely carbonated, and not harsh going down, has the warm feeling on the way. Overall this was a good brew, I would not mind having another and certainly kept me warm this evening.

Photo of Mitchster
4.2/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hopped with Magnum, East Kent Goldings, Cascade, and Chinook.

9.1% ABV, OG=20.8, 60 IBU's.

Batch No.11 from 2003. Dedicated to Fred Eckhardt. Pours to a very cloudy deep caramel amber, forming a small yellow head with an interesting cinnamon tint. Retention is poor and quickly recedes to a thin layer of bubbles, and the lacing is sparse. Swirling produces a creamy looking head, but quickly fades, and the alcohol lightly stings the eyes. Carbonation is mild to moderate. Aroma is initially of spiced rum, followed by rum-soaked raisins, prunes, resinous oily hops, and caramel. Mouthfeel is stinging throughout, with a dense, syrupy body. Taste begins with resinous hops, rum and raisins, followed by a thick malt body with a moderate amount of roasted barley/chocolate malt/cocoa powder astringency and bitterness, with lingering notes of tobacco and leather through the finish. The finish is dry with moderate intensity woody bitterness. Alcohol is evident in warmth down the gutter, and has a isopropyl sting/astringency in the finish.

This is one of the better barleywines I've had. The tobacco, rum, cocoa powder and leather give it a lot of character that is sorely lacking in many barleywines, and the woodsy/husky finish pulls it all together. I could do without the isopropyl alcohol, but otherwise, this one's a keeper.

Photo of feloniousmonk
4.2/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2003 edition, with jovial, beret-bedecked Fred Eckhardt raising a glass to us from the label.Appearance: in the light a clear, perfectly rich, bright garnet out, out of the glare, it approaches plum, with a terrifically plush, creamy, eggnog-colored head.
Aroma: potent and sweet, complex, awash with associations of dark fruits, cherries, grapes, but with a wicked, roasted kick. Deep, dark, divine.
Taste: fierce, but friendly, hops, big, matched well with lush, solid malt, mmm, tasty. Full-bodied, long, happy finish, with the alcohol not asserting itself immediately, but ringing in by 1/3 of the way through. Although, at "mere" 9.1%, it doesn't rope-a-dope you like certain bodacious barleywines, Victory Old Horizontal, just of the top of my head...and that's a good thing, for certain. A full-flavored, warmly textured, utterly delicious bw that caresses it's way into your heart, rather than blundgeoning into your braincase.

Thanks to vitriola for this bottle!

Photo of RedDiamond
4.17/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

In comparison to the regular draught, I found the cask-conditioned version of Old Knucklehead slightly more relaxed though less flavorful. The maturity achieved in the cask tempered the taste to more modest contours. The aroma was equally dynamic and comparable to a fruit liqueur in both pours while the mouthfeel of the casked version, with less carbonation, came across as more rounded and plush. It felt like heavy satin to the tongue and did much to take the edge off a late December evening.

Photo of Quaffer
4.15/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

11th bottling, 2003

Appearance: This beer poured a dark brown that actually showed its true, deep ruby color when held up to a light. A light tan head rose up to one finger in the goblet and then settled back into a thin layer of foam that capped the brew for most of the drink. There was not much lace to speak of.

Smell: The main components of the smell were a typical sweet maltiness combined with dark fruit. These were combined with more subtle aromas of bread and yeast. The 9.1% alcohol also started to reveal itself as the beer really started to warm up.

Mouthfeel: Medium-full bodied and very creamy smooth. Occasionally there was a tingle on the tongue from the alcohol

Taste: Upfront, there were flavors of sweet malt (but not too sweet) and cherries. In the middle rose a very vinous flavor that was followed up by a light bitterness on the finish. An alcohol flavor was also present on the finish, but it was not overpowering at all.

A very nice, mellow barley wine. The flavors were good, but this brew was not even close to being a powerhouse barley wine. Long-term aging might not benifit this brew much.

Oh, yeah. My cat liked it, too.

Photo of lou91
4.13/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

1996 vintage in 2004. Wow this beer has aged very well showing an amazing mouthfeel and rich thick malty goodness. The beer poured still with a clump of sediment landing at the end. The color was dark amber brown with little nose. It has a similar profile to thomas hardy with subtle sweet fruit and chocolate notes and a thoroughly satisfying alcohol warmth. This is my last bottle of this great vintage and great to see this beer tasting so good for so long.

Photo of SickBrew
4.13/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The barlywine pours a turbid hazelnut brown and supports a modest head that forms slowly from co2 coming out of solution similar to the way a nitro does but on a much smaller scale. Nose is somewhat timid but has that characteristic rich malts and slightly sour and bready notes that I associate with the style. This brew tastes great and is not as "big" as some of the other barlywines. Flavors are somewhat smoother and mellower than some other bareywines and yet it is still characteristic for the style. Hop bitterness is moderate and esters are light. Mouthfeel is medium to full, is not syrupy and carbonation is moderately low.

Photo of mdaschaf
4.12/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a clear brown/purple color with a small off-white head on top. A little bit of retention, eventually reducing to a thin ring on top. Streaky lacing.

S: Lots of caramel with vanilla and a bit of oak. There is a surprising amount of pine and a little fruit.

T: Good amount of bourbon upfront with plenty of caramel and vanilla. More pine and some dark fruit. Finishes very sweet.

M: Medium to full bodied with moderate carbonation.

O: Better than expected. Lots of bourbon, vanilla, and caramel mixed with a good bit of pine. Really nice fresh, not sure how good it would be with some time on it.

Photo of Braz
4.12/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is No.13. Pours a dark amber with a thin tan head that recedes to an outer ring. Smells very nice. Got hints of pine resin, spruce and even some faint banana. Intense flavors. Bittersweet with a strong alcohol finish. banana, amber, clear, frothy, tan foam, Very bittersweet flavor. Intense. Starts sweet, then a sort of bitter fruit flavor. Strong alcohol finish. Thick feel with average carbonation. Definately a big beer with alot going on. I may have bumped taste just a bit if the alcohol was masked just a little more, but then again this is a barleywine.

Photo of ZAP
4.12/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an orange-tinted brown....nose is sweet dark fruits...blackberries...plums....black cherries...fantastic nose..full bodied....smooth in the mouth..some spicy alcohol bite on the finish...sweet maltiness is in the forefront...but a nice dose of hops enters on the finish along with the alcohol..the taste is sweet dark fruits....but the hops really bite off an over-sweetness on the finsih...a real tight chinook type bite on the finish..works splendidly..

An excellent BW...very balanced and tasty....the nose is really nice....everything else is well above average....can definitely taste the ABV on the buds...this one shouldn't sneak up on you...sip it..savor it...and enjoy it...

Photo of AlCaponeJunior
4.1/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

Pretty good looking, brown with amber notes and clear, not a very large head but good lacing.

Aroma is pretty good, oak and lots of caramel malt, some hop notes, brown sugar.

Flavor is really good, as is the body. The malts chosen for this beer were well chosen, it's got a great caramel malt flavor (but not too much), brown sugar, molasses, nuts, and maybe even a touch of chocolate. Carbonation is low but right at the point where it compliments the other aspects of the beer perfectly (note: I really don't like under-carbed beers, so if I say "low" carbonation, but like the beer, that's saying a lot).

Overall this is an amazing barleywine and I plan to go buy several more bottles before the store runs out of it.

Photo of Rizalini
4.1/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a bomber into my Deschutes tulip...

A - Pours a clear, bubbly amberish/burgundy color with 1 finger of light tan colored head. Very nice lacing left behind while I sip on this.

S - Smells of some slight dark fruits, rum raisins, and some slight earthy hops. Nothing extraordinary.

T/M - Some more of the dark fruits, and some toasted oak notes make this one very tasty! Some vanilla notes are present as well. Nice blend of flavors with a little alcohol warmth. Medium slick mouthfeel, perfect carbonation.

O - This a damn fine barleywine. Has a lot of the same charasteristics of Sucaba. Nice warming feel as it goes down, good malt character. If I could get this regularly, I would more than likely get this again.

Old Knucklehead Barleywine from BridgePort Brewing Co. / Brewpub
89 out of 100 based on 183 ratings.