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Old Backus Barleywine - Free State Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Old Backus BarleywineOld Backus Barleywine

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
95
world-class

157 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 157
Reviews: 73
rAvg: 4.29
pDev: 10.72%
Wants: 171
Gots: 19 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Free State Brewing Co. visit their website
Kansas, United States

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  10.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
Bronze Medal Winner, 1997 World Beer Championships - Barleywines.

Old Backus contains just over 2,000 pounds of malt and 55 pounds of hops. The original gravity is 25.6 P/1092 which contributes to an alcohol content of 10.5% by volume. This is a tremendously complex beer that should be savoured slowly and in moderation. It will continue to change with age as it is served unfiltered.

This barleywine is named after Richard Backus, an old friend to the Brewery.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-29-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 157 | Reviews: 73 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of daisychain
5/5  rDev +16.6%

Photo of Imstillthegman
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%

Photo of Mikevicgates
4.25/5  rDev -0.9%

Photo of SafeAtFirst
4.75/5  rDev +10.7%

Photo of swaghawk
4.25/5  rDev -0.9%

Photo of JasonFromLA
4/5  rDev -6.8%

Photo of zeledonia
4.19/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2011 vintage, on-tap at the brewpub. Tasted 22 January 2013, reviewed from notes. My review is lacking a bit of detail, due to in-bar note-taking.

Pours a medium-dark reddish amber. Clear. One finger of off-white head that leaves terraces of lacing.

Smell pops with spice, hops, and smooth whiskey. Loads of spice, and a smooth, warm burn.

Taste has zip, zing, and zap. Brandy, candy, and more and more spice.

Feel is quite good. Medium body, very sticky, lasting and rounded, smoothly rising and drifting back down. More carbonation than many barleywines, and I like that.

A really tasty, spiced-up barrel-aged barleywine. The barrel is really cleanly integrated, with no obvious lines between the beer and the barrel. Happy I got the chance to try this.

Photo of jrenn
4.25/5  rDev -0.9%

Photo of phishbone23
3/5  rDev -30.1%

Photo of starrdogg
4.25/5  rDev -0.9%

Photo of oline73
3.98/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the growler into a tasting snifter.

Appearance: Pours a cloudy reddish amber with a small amount of off white head that goes away rather quickly.

Smell: This is really sweet and full of caramel and grain. I'm getting a lot of dark fruit along with a mild banana note.

Taste: This is a really sweet barleywine. Lots of caramel like malt. The mild banana shows up here as well. A strong dark fruit note here along with the sweetness. The finish is sweet, but there is a solid hop presence as well.

Mouthfeel: The body is syrupy with a few tingles of carbonation and a dry finish.

Overall: I would say that the main story here is the sweetness. I'd have more if it was offered.

Photo of spycow
3.25/5  rDev -24.2%

Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.05/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to DrAwkward82 for sharing this one at drewone's place.

Pours a murky brown with a foamy khaki head that settles to an oily film on top of the beer. Small dots and streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, brown sugar, caramel, toffee, and citrus zest. Taste is much the same with a semi-sweet finish. There is a mild amount of hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer with a great smell and a tasty flavor.

Photo of drewone
4/5  rDev -6.8%

Photo of rfbenavi80
4.25/5  rDev -0.9%

Photo of DrLaFollette
4.75/5  rDev +10.7%

Photo of Thirstygoat
4.75/5  rDev +10.7%

Photo of BeerHunter76
4/5  rDev -6.8%

Photo of Texasfan549
4/5  rDev -6.8%

Photo of tewaris
4.25/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks Ryan! The growler fill was from a 2009 keg I believe.

A deep mahogany brown colored beer that is relatively still as it should be in my opinion. I do observe some legs. Aroma is slightly alcoholic with notes of toffee and dry fruit. Not too sweet on the taste with notes of wood and roast. Hop bitterness works well. Vanilla and even bourbon like notes although this is not aged in barrels. Medium body and low carbonation. Tastes good, kicks ass; one of the better American barleywines I have had.

Photo of t0rin0
4.25/5  rDev -0.9%

Photo of shebby
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%

Photo of Adidasakh
5/5  rDev +16.6%

Photo of bpfrush
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%

Photo of Duff27
4.25/5  rDev -0.9%

Old Backus Barleywine from Free State Brewing Co.
95 out of 100 based on 157 ratings.