Thumbprint Barley Wine - New Glarus Brewing Company
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Ratings: 323 | Reviews: 114 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by kojevergas:
2.95/5 rDev -24.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3
Was in a barleywine mood and I had this from a trade with Duff27; thanks again, buddy! 12 fl oz brown glass bottle with foiled over branded pressure cap served into a conical Samuel Smith's pint glass in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are very high; I love a lot of beers from this brewery and Duff27 insists the thumbprint series beers are the best. Brewed with Styrian Goding, Willamette, Columbia, and Sterling hops.
Served straight from the fridge (per label instructions it should be 45 degrees F) and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.
Paired with salted pretzels.
A: Pours a one finger beige colour head of slight cream, okay thickness, and good (~4 minute) retention for the high ABV. No lacing as the head recedes. Body colour is a surprisingly bright pale clear copper. Translucent. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. Looks more like an IPA than a barleywine. Fairly vibrant. It's caught me a bit off-guard, but it's generally appealing for the style. There's nothing unique or special here, but there are no overt flaws. I'm excited to try it.
Sm: Surprisingly hoppy, actually. Floral hop character, juicy citrus, clean bright malts, and some nectary hop character. Boy, this seems more like a wheatwine than a barleywine. There's definite pungent fruit here; mango and other vaguely tropical fruits come to mind - all bright fruits. The heavy malt build I'd expect from a barleywine is not present here; it's surprisingly hop-centric. Light caramel. Sweet, evoking Belgian candi sugar. Sweetbread. Honey. Light orange. Ripe fruit is dominant. Pineapple. A pretty strong aroma, but not at all what I was expecting. Still, I'm looking forward to trying it. New Glarus rarely goes a direction we expect. No yeast character or alcohol is detectable.
T: Ripe fruit and caramel, with the sweet candi sugar body beneath it. Hrm. Tropical fruit is complemented by a large dose of hop character - which feels unwelcome here. I get acidic pineapple (especially on the finish), a touch of over-ripe orange, lots of pineapple, light cidre-like apple, a bit of white plum, lychee, and crystal malt. Seems more like the wheatwines I've had than the barleywines I've had. Lacks a dark toffee-like malty build. This is not what I'm used to - or particularly what I like - in a barleywine. Overly hoppy. Alcohol has definite presence here, but I wouldn't call it hot - just boozy. Little yeast character, if any. Balanced and fruity. Complex and well put together, but it may lack needed subtlety. This is more a fresh blast of hops with a fruity bright malt body than the refined toffee-like caramel build I expect in a good barleywine.
Mf: Good carbonation. Smooth and wet. Rather thick, with a heavy body. Palate presence is good, but it is a bit overwhelming. Crisp. Suits the flavour profile well, but it does have a bit of a bite. It's very filling. Acidity is a touch high for the style.
Dr: It's a sipper. The 12% does hit. I'll have no trouble finishing this one, but I may have expected too much based solely on the brewery. For my specific tastes, this isn't a particularly satisfying barleywine, but it may hit home for others. I got none of the "toasty graham cracker" notes described on the label. A pretty decent barleywine from New Glarus, but not up to par with many of their other beers. I'm glad I got to try this one; thanks again, Duff27! Maybe 3-5 years of age would do this one some good.
Serving type: bottle
03-05-2013 05:54:25 | More by kojevergas
More User Reviews:
3.95/5 rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Bright and hazy golden yellow pour with a froth of white foam. Aroma is heavy caramel, toffee, raisin, crackers, and thick, sweet malt with pine and hop bitterness on the finish. Taste is very smooth with a heavy toffee/english style barley wine malt flavor presenting plum, raisin, etc. that is nicely complimented by pine and hop bitterness with some alcohol heat slipping through on the tail end of the sip. Clean, coating mouthfeel
Serving type: bottle
01-03-2014 21:05:05 | More by jbaker67
Thumbprint Barley Wine from New Glarus Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 323 ratings.