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Burton Baton - Dogfish Head Brewery

Not Rated.
Burton BatonBurton Baton

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,816 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,816
Hads: 6,281
Avg: 4.18
pDev: 10.53%
Wants: 386
Gots: 1,405 | FT: 33
Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Brewery visit their website
Delaware, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Todd on 12-08-2004

This oak-aged gentle giant has been gaining popularity over the past few years and is now available year-round.

For Burton Baton, we brew two "threads," or batches, of beer: an English-style old ale and an imperial IPA.

After fementating the beers separately in our stainless tanks, they're transferred and blended together in one of our large oak tanks. Burton Baton sits on the wood for about a month.

When enjoying the Burton Baton, you'll find an awesome blend of the citrus notes from Northwestern hops melding with woody, vanilla notes from the oak. The wood also tends to mellow the 10% ABV of Burton, so tread cautiously!

70 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Burton Baton Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,816 | Hads: 6,281
Photo of Flyer
4.21/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

One of my very favorite beers. Pours a nice orange-copper color with lots of fine streams of bubbles. Aroma is somewhat lacking. Flavor of sweet grapefruit and maybe a little pineapple throughout, oak, some caramel, with a nice crisp, only moderately bitter aftertaste. Despite the less-than-typical hoppiness, this year's blend reminds me more of Dogfish Head's 90 Minute IPA and seemed to have a little less oak character than last year's batch, but that's a nit. Highly recommended.

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Photo of rayjay
3.96/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brewed and bottled 12-29-05, so this one's almost 1.5 years old. First time I've had it. Honestly I've done so much trading lately I forget who hooked me up, but it was an unexpected surprise and much appreciated. I'd been wanting to try this for a while.

A barleywine in appearance, it's a deep and thick amber that is not a particularly good friend of light. There is a small head of foam and the carbonation looks fairly inactive. Slight lacing, but honestly one of the better lacers I've had in the bottle from DFH. Pouring into a Belgian-style snifter, my trusty 2005 strong beer month glass. The nose is pretty ballsy, with crystal and carmel malts dominating, and some alpha hops, but in the back. Smells a bit oxidized like mud, lets hope for the best. Perhaps this doesn't age with the best of them after all? Time to find out.

Mmm! It's got lots of chocolate malts upfront, lots of carmel malts and faint bitterness in the middle, and finishes with the faint hoppyness and big malt body fading away with some soft water and alcohol. Reminiscant of Old Stock from North Coast. No oxidation present, although I can certainly tell it's a vintage beer. Faint heat. Really a ton of malt in this bad boy. I definatley wouldn't call it a 2xIPA, but I won't penalize it for the classification. I'd say old ale or barleywine for sure, but I'll let the brewers make the call. Great after dinner drink, maybe with a cigar.

Carbonation is neither here nor there. The few bubbles rise extremely slow, almost hanging in suspention, and are a blast to watch every time I stir the glass. This one could be a real challange at room temp...I'd recommend it straight from the fridge and let it warm slowly over the course of enjoying for 45 min or so. There are more drinkable challanging big beers out there, but this one is quite nice. Cheers to DFH!

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Photo of YankChef
4.37/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottled on date 1/08/07. 12 oz. bottle poured into a DFH snifter

Appearance: Reddish amber with peach hues. 1/2 inch fluffy head that quickly dissipates and forms a ring around the edge of the glass

Smell: Sweet fruit like pineapple, peach, apricot and mango. Hop oil and a slightly grassy aroma is also noticable.

Taste: Upfront there is a stone fruit sweetness the quickly gives way to an alcohol bite and a quick hop punch. Very strong malt flavor for a DIPA.

Mouthfeel: moderate bodied with low carbonation due to the oak aging of half the beer. Coats the mouth with sweetness and lives an astringic drying sensation from the high alcohol.

Overall: Truely an excellent beer, simple but original concept from the guys at DFH. Although the presence of the 90 min ipa is very strong, still an interesting and incredibly enjoyable brew. At 4 bucks a pop, it is a rare treat to be sipped and enjoyed with friends.

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Photo of Mdog
4.32/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Clear dark copper, small head but good lacing.

Smell: Very complex for my nose. Citrus, woody notes, dark fruit smells can all be found.

Taste: I'm really impressed by this even though it doesn't pack the bitter punch I'm used to from DIPAs. This beer is quite sweet with a kind of wine-like bite. A complex mix of dark fruits, sweetness, and a little citrus makes this very enjoyable.

Drinkability: This went down really good. I'd like another but it's a little pricey to blow through in one day.

My favorite style is the DIPA, this beer is unlike any other DIPA I've had. But it is an excellent beer and one I'll definitely come back to.

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Photo of macster
4.27/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a crystal clear copper-orange color. Produces a thin white head which reduces to a swirly, paisley pattern of foam. Some dispersed streaky lacing along the sides of the snifter.

Rich, sweet aromas of caramel and butterscotch candies along with honey and maple syrup come immediately to the forefront. More sudued notes of citrus/pine hop resin, vanilla, raisin, flowers, alcohol and freshly cut wood float in the background.

Palate was fairly slick and sticky, but perhaps just slightly on the thin side for such a huge brew.

The flavor department delivers quite a pancreas stimulating sweet malt-monster here with notes of candy sugar, orange blossom honey, butterscotch, caramel and rum cake. Subtle flavors of citrusy hop flowers, spices, vanilla bean and toasted oak come to the rescue to tame the insulin-soaked sweetness of this malty ale.

Finishes sweet and very warm; reminiscent of rum soaked fruitcake. Overall not what one would consider a well balanced DIPA, but still a solid and unique beer well worth exploring.

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Photo of allengarvin
4.15/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beautiful mahogany color, clear, with a substantial head and excellent lacing. Full spicy/earthy hop aroma, with a touch of fruitiness. The taste is quite sweet malt with a little butterscotch. Bitterness is moderate but there's some dilectable spicy hop flavor. Quite estery yeast character. Finishes with lingering sweetness and a tad bit of alcoholic bite.

This would be an odd IPA, let alone double IPA. I would have guessed barley wine would be a much better style category. But it's very characterful and tasty regardless.

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Photo of bluegrassbrew
4.1/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From a 12oz bottle into a snifter.

Pours a deep orange color with just a bit of white head. Leaves nice lacing along the edges of my snifter.

Smells of citrusy hops and sweet fruit.

Taste is very much like that of the other big IPA's from DFH. Hops are not overly pronounced. Has a very lingering sweetness that some dislike but I don't mind at all. Sweet pineapple and tart grapfruit blend nicely.

Well balanced. A blend of their 90min and something oak aged although I couldn't taste any of the barrel aging. Very fine brew.

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Photo of bennetj17
3.44/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear copper with rosey hues. Light tan foam reaches almost an inch and holds up well. Nice appearance. The smell seems a bit faint really, some light hops, with a hint of caramel sweetness underneath. The alcohol fume creeps out some after while.

The taste is a different story, this beer is a complete malt bomb, intensely sweet with sugar, caramel, and raisin. It's definitely too sweet, with a moderately warming alcohol finish. The hops and expected hop bitterness for a DIPA just aren't really there in the flavor. The mouthfeel is light and somewhat thin, with a syrupy slickness. The carbonation is very fine but decently sharp.

The first time I tried this beer I hated it. I waited to review it this time and have realized that it just wasn't what I expected. I should have known better what to anticipate because this is just like all the other big DFH beers, strong and malty sweet. It's not bad, but not great either, just drink it slow and it will grow on you.

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Photo of Bighuge
4.23/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Perfectly clear copper appearance. Slender white bubbly head. Lace is sporadic and web like. Pretty nice aroma and quite unique actually. Nice fresh hop flower aromas, but not like a West Coast DIPA. This is a little more fragrant perhaps but also mutated into something totally different by the presence of the oak barrel traits. It's all good. Upon first tasting this, I realize that this beer has got some character. Very rich malt base of nougat and caramel and toffee. Pretty sweet actually. (But that's not out of the realm for DFH and DIPAs. See 120minute for example.) Layered on top of the decadent maltiness is some spiked fruit punch character and some oakiness. Hoppy?? Not really. Bitter?? No. Good?? Yes!! Very...

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Photo of scorched
4.4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a Michael Jackson tasting glass, this near-red pale ale is a real beaut. A thin head, which quickly dissipates, bit laces the glass and stays put throughout.

The smell is fantastic. Rich, hoppy, malty, oakey.

The taste... almost overpoweringly malty, which is a bit surprising, being a double IPA. The hops are definitely there, being a dogfish head beer, I'm sure the IBU's are pretty high up there. Definitely an oaked beer. VERY smooth and robust.

Mouthfeel, as described in the taste, is extremely smooth.

Drinkability is a bit lower, being so overpoweringly malty and boozy, but an all-around fantastic brew.

Drink it.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
4.67/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a medium brown with a short head that fades fairly quickly but leaves decent lacing. The aroma is of bitter hops, oak, and sweet malt. Very balanced. The flavors are amazing. Perfectly balanced oak, sweet malt, and hops again. The hops are bitter, earthy, and piney. There are also flavors of candy sugar, a chewiness from the malt, maple, and charred oak. A little on the sweet side, but the oak tannins and hops both balance the flavors. The mouthfeel is just the right body for the flavors, and mostly creamy with a touch of tannins. This is one great beer. Its definitely a sipper, but its so delicious you can't help wanting more.

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Photo of Onibubba
3.05/5  rDev -27%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Looks nic. Beautiful clear amber with a short lived beige head. A bit of swirling brings it up again and leaves nice clinging lace. Smells of auslese and carmel. These smell assert themselves in the taste as well. So very sweet. Cloying. The taste gets better and the sips get larger after you let yourself get accustomed to the sweetnes. I think there may be hops in here somewhere, but I can't be sure ;)

Nice mouthfeel, creamy and full. Drinkability is not so good because of the sweetness and the warming alcohol. Not a bad beer, but not one I'll be buying again.

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Photo of BBM
3.57/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This beer poured a deep amber color, very clear and somewhat carbonated. There really was no head to speak of, though there was a bit of white lacing around the glass. Aroma was dark fruits, earthy hops, and a certain bread-like quality.

This is a powerful tasting beer, but perhaps not in the way it was intended. Very sweet dark malts come through, with hints of raisins, dark fruits, caramel, perhaps even red wine. The hop profile is there but overpowered by the sweetness. The oak barrel is especially subtle; I would have liked a slightly more woodsy flavor, I think. The finish packs a warming alcohol kick. Mouthfeel is creamy and full. Drinkability suffers from the sweetness and alcoholic finish.

Overall I had very high expectations for this one; perhaps too high. It is a solid brew, and certainly worth trying, but it was too sweet for my tastes, and the oak-aged IPA didn't come through strongly enough. Personally, I'll take the 90 Minute over this one just because it's a more balanced beer. But this is still solid. Just a bit disappointing.

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Photo of demcorhip
3.68/5  rDev -12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to barleywinebrewer for this one. He's a solid trader.

A nice looking IIPA/DIPA or whatever the hell it is. It has a deep bronzed amber body, with a fairly vigorous, fine level of carbonation. It easily supports is two finger pale tan coloured head, with its sild, whipped appearance. Clingy lacings defy gravity and rest where they formed inside my glass.

Peaches and cream, vanilla, citrus, and a touch of caramel sweetness along with bready malts.

Yup, sweet peaches and cream, along with a good dose of vanilla, and drizzled with caramel. The oak reveals more of its woody character in the finish, along with a hint of oily hops with flavours of citrus and pine.

A very interesting brew with lots going on in it. Too sweet for my tastes, but very interesting nonetheless. A hoppy brew, although the bitterness is almost entirely cut with the sweetness. The oak is evident in pleasing notes of vanilla and a woodsy finish. Just too much sugary sweetness for my tastes.

Again the syrupy sweetness detracts from the drinkability of this brew in my opinion. That being said, this would make a fine desert beer, and would likely pair very nicely with grilled pork, vanilla ice cream or peach deserts. Its a nice beer that im grateful to have tried. Not going to rush out and try to get my hands on more, but probably will in due time if the opportunity arises.

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Photo of BMoney575
3.91/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Sampled on 4-5-07
Bottled on 1-8-07

Pours a crystal clear orange/red with a big white head and good retention.

Not much aroma to speak of, I get mostly hard cider from this.

Taste is a nice surprise! Caramel at first followed by a huge pineapple tasting sweetness. Finishes with a light alcohol warmth and just a hint of oak.

Mouthfeel is good, very thick and resiny.

Drinkability is decent, sweetness and high abv make this one a sipper.

Overall a very good and interesting beer. I've never had an oak-aged double IPA, and thought that the two wouldn't go well together. But, there is the perfect amount of oak, and it balances the beer very well. Too bad it's so expensive.

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Photo of zebulon
3.95/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Had trouble catagorizing this one. The sweetness threw me it is almost in a catagory by itself. A sweet sipping beer.

Color was a dark warm orange, pleasant looking some foam that didn't last.

Bottle openned with an orange/citrus aroma.

It started with a sweet malty or brown sugar taste. Hops didn't appear directly, but rather dried out the sweetness on the tongue which made for a good balance. Fizzy which also helped cut the syrupyness.

I drank this slowly, it reminded me of bourdon, by the time I was done it was room temperature and the fizz was gone. At that point the sweetness was too intense. I felt like I should have started it and finished it colder.

As I said at the start this was hard for me to catagorize. It was cold and windy out and this was a great warmer up. I actually liked the sweetness but can only handle one at a time.

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Photo of JohnnyM2002
4.15/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled from a 12 oz bottle, poured into a chalice at 45 degrees.

A - Pours a hazy orangish/amber color with a beige head that quickly melts away.

S - Juicy fruit and hops with some background spices. Alcohol comes through as it warms.

T - Very strong balance between the peppery spices, juicy hops, and alcohol - doesn't quite strip the tastebuds off my tongue, but the hops are certainly powerful. Again, a very nice balance.

M - Crisp, medium body with a very strong finish.

D - Very enjoyable - gets much better as it warms. Just be careful about the alcohol - it really creeps up.

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Photo of GPHarris
4.3/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

a - poured a one finger thick off-white head into a snifter. the head dissipated quickly but was easily brought back with a swirl of the glass. the body was a clear and bright copper.
s - very malty and sweet, hints of caramel, cake and a floral scent.
t - sweet like honey with a taste of fruits...apricot, grapefruit and orange. it tastes like a 90' and aprihop blend with a little chewy oak thrown in.
m - clean and creamy.
d - highly drinkable, it goes down quickly.

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Photo of BAbaracus
4.55/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a copper laced amber with comprehensive striations of carb bubbles. Miminal but fluffy offwhite head subsides quickly.

Nose is heavy carmel/malt with an underlying hop background and a pretty fucking killer melange of autumn fruit. Some 'nilla wafers too. Nothing too preposterous but definitely assertive.

Frothy and less acidicly carbed than I would have thought from the bubbling - less carb bite than most IPAs but hardly subdued in character. Rich hops melding exquisitely with the malt, with a serious honey blitzkrieg providing most of the amped up sweetness (aah yeah... bitch betta HAVE my honey). You could probably fend off a pretty serious grizzly bear attack with a bottle or two of this fine elixir. Beware: the alcohol bites back.

I'm not the kind of drinker who puts on my jammies and crawls into bed in a fetal position at the first sign of a beer buzz, so with that said: hey DOGFISH! Is a 12-pack too much to ask?

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Photo of Washburne
4.18/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle to a wine glass

A - Clear, deep amber colour with a tan head that fades to a very thin layer on top that lasts to the end. Plenty of lacing left behind.

S - A lot of fruit - certainly some citrus from the hops, but also grapes and honeysuckle. Pretty intense

T, M - Big, rich and powerful, this is a beer that tells you "I'm the only thing you're going to be drinking tonight". The sweetness may be a little overpowering for some, but I enjoyed it, and it is held in check by some bittering hops on the finish.

D - I could go for a second, if only I wasn't suddenly feeling so poor after the first...

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Photo of Padron4KM
3.5/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle, bottled on date too smudged to read.

Clear amber with a two finger creamy head. Good retention, thick sticky lace.

Aroma is sweet vanilla, citrus hops, caramel and yellow cake.

Flavor is sweet also, almost sugary sweet. Lots of vanilla and honey. Hops are in there, but you really have to search. After the initial wave of sweetness subsides you get a slight tingly bitterness, barely enough to keep it from getting cloying.

O.K as a desert beer, but I couldn’t drink more than one.

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Photo of SkeeterHawk
4.08/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a clear red amber color with a 1/4" head of off white bubbles that fades slowly, but was just a small layer on top of the beer within a minute or so. There is some pretty thick lacing left on the glass after the beer is drank.

Aroma: Lots of fruit in this beer with apples and plums in particular. There are some obvious citrusy notes here from the hops as well as a defined spicy pepper thing going on that I believe is as much from the alcohol as anything. There is a little bit of dry wood here that comes across to me as much as a dry roast as from actual wood aging, but I know that it is the latter because of what is written on the bottle.

Taste: The flavor is medium to full bodied and definitely hits the palate a lot harder than I would have suspected by the aroma. There is a boat load of fruitiness to this beer, but the alcohol adds a clean and defined spicy complexity. The alcohol lightens up the overall impression of this beer, but it is obvious that it is a serious brew from the syrupy sweetness that protects your throat from the alcoholic burn. The overall beer is clean with no flaws...but it is huge!

Opinion: This beer is some experience, so Sam didn't disappoint us with this one. I am quite surprised at how drinkable this beer is for being what it is. Though it has some huge body in there, the alcohol and carbonation make it a lot easier to drink. The reserved bittering hops are also welcome to me so that it doesn't end up harsh and chalky on the back of the throat. This beer is pretty velvety and easy to drink now. If one were to age it, I would do so in the cooler than at room temp as you don't want any oxidation taking this beer over. The fruitiness is plenty already from the hops, so you just want the age to meld the flavors rather than adding its own complexity. You can't drink this beer much, but I would recommend it.

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Photo of zdk9
4.13/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A very complex beer. Delicious too

A- Pours out a beautiful rich copper/amber. Head is short and almost tinted green but lasts a lifetime. Lacing is muscleman strong.

S- It's hard to do this beer justice by simply smelling it because the sweetness of the malt and oak just don't come out. What comes to the nose is a typical IPA of citrus and muted floral tones.

T- I love the combination of so many bold flavors. Oak, grapefruit, honey, rose water. Bitter, as you would expect from an IPA, but very sweet also. This is certainly a prime example of American brewers doing everything bigger...

M- The sweetness leaves a syruppy shine in the mouth, which somewhat overpowers the hoppy tingle.

D- If it was my tongue alone I would love this beer all day. But the alcohol isn't very well masked, and the sweetness can be too much at times.

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Photo of jmalex
3.98/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This was a great find at the Candlewyck in Buckingham, PA. Served in a 12 oz. bottle bought for about $4. I'm not sure what to expect from an oak-aged double IPA, but it should be fun finding out.

APPEARANCE: Pours a crystal clear orange-amber with a one-finger off-white head. The head drops somewhat quickly to a thick collar with a few foamy splotches scattered across the surface.

SMELL: The smell is full aromas of sweet and citrusy and floral hops. Nothing too in your face, but big enough so that you can't miss it. Slight caramel aromas lurk in the background, but one must really search for them.

TASTE: The flavor goes so many places. It begins very spicy and citrusy with a huge caramel maltiness supporting it. Hop bitterness starts to accent the other flavors before they drop out somewhat. The finish returns to the sweet caramel flavors, and it's here that the alcohol makes itself known. No real woody flavors, but one can really tell that this is a barrel-aged beer.

MOUTHFEEL: Pretty thick and very smooth. The body throws me off a little bit, but the carbonation is spot on.

DRINKABILITY: Probably not a repeat customer on this one, in one night anyway. The thickness and alcohol content really make this a huge beer. I was surprised this one had the yellow exclamation point cap, but now I totally see why. This is still a fantastic beer to have one of, and it really does go down smooth.

If there's one thing Dogfish Head does well, it's IPAs. And this is no exception. The oak-aging completely transforms this beer. Certainly the maltiest, sweetest IPA I've ever had.

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Photo of ojiikun
4.65/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Grabbed a 12oz issue from this year and served it up in an extra broad french pint. Colour is rusty amber and mostly clear, except for the occasional hazing that comes and goes. Plenty of fanfare on the uncap, but little head. Nice streams of bubbles for the first half, though. Lace is thin and rare, but an incredibly thin single layer of identically sized bubbles. More like foam than lace.

Smell is just indescribable. Every floral and fruit note I've ever smelled from a beer, almost no spice at all. Rose, lavender, strawberry, dark oranges, tobacco, lime, iris, blueberry, and of course, hops. Clearly has a malty base, but the sweetness is downright warm smelling. That'd be the booze, I presume. The scents keep coming. Succulent dark greenery, citronella, a touch of dry yeast, anise.

Body is sweet as hell, but not cloying. Clean light syrup taste, not too much honey or mollasses. Fruits come forward - oranges, overripe apples, tons of sweet pomegranate. Tart on the very first touch of the tongue then smoothes out. Certainly hoppy, but only for a moment before the fruit starts unfolding. Pears, hawiian rolls, ever so slightly smokey meat. Has notes that almost reek of bourbon-casking rather than fresh french oaking - all without being even remotely musty or stale.

Very very clean for the nearly solid body. Heavy on the tongue, but gets out of the way once it's down. Carbonation is subtle but effective at cleaning things out.

Drinkable at first, but the sheer ABV numbs you up quickly. The second half of the glass gets a maltier, spicier character as your nose gets overdosed by the smells and tastes. Different bottles (possibly of different age) have had widely varying boozey-ness.

This was a total surprise. Nothing like any IPA I've yet had. Not really hoppy so much as herby and floral. Sweet like the 90 minute but not syrupy and sticky like it. The least "salty" imperial IPA I've had yet. True, half a glass is what you need to get the idea, so share this one, even if it's a small one.

(original review dated March 2007)

UPDATE: Finally, for my 30th birthday (June 2010), cracked open a bottle of 2005!

I've had a pair of these girls in my beer fridge for ~3 years, bought them in 2008 from Bottleworks in Seattle when they were selling off some vintage stock. Not sure how they were treated before my time with them, but since I got my hands on them they've been at a steadfast 58 degrees.

Bottle is exactly the same as you'd see today - 12oz with the same label as modern vintages. One difference is that rather than the red/gold DFH cap, the '05s have the bright-yellow "exclamation fish" cap.

Said cap popped with a reassuring release of gas. No leaks, no rust. So happy! Poured crystal clear into a crystal flute with just one or two honkin' big flecks of yeast swimming around. Colour is still the standard copper-brown with lemo-yellow edges where the glass ends. About 1/2" of clean, white head that leaves a few circles of lace.

Smell is overwhelmingly of honey and aged malts. Doesn't smell it's age. Smells like most beers do after 2 years, let alone 5. Vanilla/oak is still there, though riding a on more caramel than I remember. Hops are all but gone, but there is something resinous left - amber and moss, some freshly torn leaves?

Taste is an odd mix of sweet and tart. All that's left of the hop acids is a talc-y afterthought that never makes it to quite being tart. More sour notes than I expected. Pencil shavings, tobbacco, cocoa (power, not butter). Hops come back for one last hurrah tasting something like juniper. Beeswax candles.

Mouthfeel is sticky as hell. Carbonation is all still there after 5-6 years, but somehow the heaviness has come full circle. In all, quite a bit lighter in flavour than when young, and in aroma. Tastes more like a distilled beverage than a brewed one in some ways. Creamy as hell when warm.

In all, has held up to half a decade better than most IPAs could dream of, but not too surprising given the stats on it. No weird off-flavours, only a loss of hops and a gain of malt complexity. Interesting as an experiment, totally worth the wait, but I'm increasingly convinced that the sweet spot for this brew is 9-18 months of age.

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Burton Baton from Dogfish Head Brewery
93 out of 100 based on 1,816 ratings.