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Kosmyk Charlie's Y2K Catastrophe Ale - Central Waters Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Kosmyk Charlie's Y2K Catastrophe AleKosmyk Charlie's Y2K Catastrophe Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

473 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 473
Reviews: 202
rAvg: 4.11
pDev: 10.46%
Wants: 99
Gots: 133 | FT: 12
Brewed by:
Central Waters Brewing Co. visit their website
Wisconsin, United States

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-22-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 473 | Reviews: 202 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Rochefort10nh

New Hampshire

4/5  rDev -2.7%

11-18-2011 20:07:07 | More by Rochefort10nh
Photo of Photekut


5/5  rDev +21.7%

11-17-2011 01:24:39 | More by Photekut
Photo of Exiled


4.25/5  rDev +3.4%

11-14-2011 20:07:17 | More by Exiled
Photo of bpfrush


4.25/5  rDev +3.4%

11-14-2011 19:00:24 | More by bpfrush
Photo of Jwale73

Rhode Island

4/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to seeswo for the trade. 2011 vintage (I think). 12oz. bottle served in my Old Stock snifter. Pours a semi-hazy mahogany with a loose, quarter inch, cream-colored head that quickly dissipates, forming a frothy band around the edges and an oily slick across the surface. Some spots of lacing are revealed during the tasting. Nose expresses toffee, a suggestion of milk chocolate, an earthy quality and a trace of booze. Taste follows nose with the addition of faint citrus notes and some hops bittering that comes out in the middle. Mouthfeel is medium-light in consistency with an even carbonation and a slight acidity. There's also a little residual alcohol heat, but nothing significant. Overall, a solid American Barleywine with good aging potential. Having just had the BA version of this beer, I have to say that the barrel aging does a lot for this beer.

Serving type: bottle

10-13-2011 00:28:01 | More by Jwale73
Photo of womencantsail


3.8/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks for sharing this one, Mark.

A: The beer pours a cloudy dark amber color with a finger of off-white head.

S: Nice sweet nose with plenty of toffee and caramel, maybe a bit of brown sugar. Sweet and toasted bread with only a mild citrus hop note. Slight notes of oxidation, too.

T: As with the aroma, plenty of sweet, sugar notes. Caramel, toffee, and brown sugar are prominent. There's a bit more citrus, particularly grapefruit, with some light pine bitterness.

M: Medium bodied with a medium carbonation.

O: Not as good as the world famous Bourbon Barrel Barleywine, but still pretty nice.

Serving type: bottle

08-30-2011 05:22:37 | More by womencantsail
Photo of djeucalyptus


4.43/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

pours a chestnut brown rich caramel hue with a dark ruddy tan one-finger thick head that recedes to a thin collar and leaves bits of syrupy gobby lace.

aroma is potently barleywineesque. potent sweet malt with notes of caramel, honey, and some floral notes. toffee, rum, hints of pineapple.

taste is deliciously rich. heavy malts, caramel sweetness and a good dose of floral hoppiness. pine, citrusy zest. more honey and hints of juniper. complex and interesting. sweet and heavy yet still vibrant.

mouth is thick, almost syrupy but the carbonation is just enough to cut through. lingering bitterness that's slightly drying and almost a touch astringent.

all in all, wow. amazing brew with a complex and interesting flavor profile. maybe this just hits all the notes I'm looking for in a barleywine, but this one blows me away.

Serving type: bottle

08-13-2011 17:28:08 | More by djeucalyptus
Photo of mikesgroove

South Carolina

4.15/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | 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.

Serving type: bottle

07-17-2011 04:50:30 | More by mikesgroove
Photo of AgentZero


4.15/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Amber color with some red notes on the side. Moderate sized head left a little bit of lacing on the sides.

S - Sweet caramel malts, nice dark fruit, a little bit of alcohol to cut through the sweetness, come toffee, brown sugar, some lighter fruits, this really has a lot going on and it smells pretty good.

T - Taste is quite nice as well, with the lighter tropical fruits coming more to the front and overlaying the caramel malt base. Little bit of roast is a nice touch as well as some slight hop finish.

M - Fairly smooth, not quite full bodied, soft carbonation, works for this beer.

O - This was a surprisingly good treat that is an easy drinking barleywine with a good flavor profile. Wouldn't mind having this again.

Serving type: bottle

07-07-2011 15:47:01 | More by AgentZero
Photo of alpinebryant


4.63/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle from Scoot1969, thanks

Pour is a dark chestnut brown with a healthy nearly overflowing head of dark brown.

Aroma of sweet barleywine, sweet malt, piney hops and citrus hop presence.

Taste is caramel central. Plenty of dark roasted caramel malts with sweet specialty malts. Comparably, I would say this is similar in the caramel flavors to Bigfoot except with a clearly longer boil time resulting in more leathery rich lathered caramel. This is a nice thick heavy malt based barleywine that I could really enjoy more of. Considering that this is only 10%, I could have expected it to have less caramel and malt flavors. Really this is a fantastic barleywine that is much thicker and more full bodied than many other barleywines of this size.

Thick body, light carbonation; overall a great barleywine that I can highly recommend.

Serving type: bottle

07-07-2011 01:06:50 | More by alpinebryant
Photo of corby112


3.85/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle courtesy of boatshoes. Thanks a lot Fletcher!

Pours a dark copper color that appears a deep, dark brown, almost black color in the glass with faint mahogany edges when held to a light. Completely opaque with a half finger off white head that immediately fades into a lasting ring.

Sweet leathery malt aroma with boozy sweetness and subtle spice. Slightly peppery with a spiced liquor presence that compliments the sweeter malt notes. Hints of biscuit, toffee, candy sugar, dark fruit and lots of caramel.

Medium bodied with a spicy alcohol presence that gives off some sweetness and boozy heat. Zesty with hints of pepper, candy sugar and cinnamon as well as a ton of sweet, leathery malt and sweet dark fruit notes. Although the ABV is decently masked, it's still a bit to hot for my liking with some nice burn in the finish. Lots of caramel sweetness with hints of biscuit, nut and toffee as well as some dark cherry, raisin, plum and fig.

Pretty tasty and complex but a touch too boozy. I would probably appreciate this more in the winter.

Serving type: bottle

06-16-2011 06:26:35 | More by corby112
Photo of billab914


3.53/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Dogfish snifter. It poured a caramel brown color with a thin white lacing sticking to the edges of the glass. What head was there lasted pretty well into drinking it, and left some moderate lacing as well.

The aroma has a lot of sweeter, dark fruit flavors to it. I get a lot of fig and plum with just a bit of a tropical, pineapple, fruitiness as well. Some malty, caramel and toffee flavors peek through as well. A little on the sweet side overall though.

The taste shows a lot of the sweet, dark fruit flavors that I got in the nose. I get a little more of the sweet, pineapple to it right off the bat. Some sugary coated, fig and plum flavors come out as well. Just a bit of caramel and toffee are there. The finish has a juicy, tropical fruit, orange like flavor to it. Again, definitely falls on the sweet side.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied for the style with carbonation being moderate. Overall, it was a decent beer but fell a little too far on the sweet side for me. It did had a very interesting juicy flavor to it with some orange juice like qualities, which I liked. It could have used a little more balance for me though. Interesting beer and a decent one to drink this evening, but not quite an outstanding one of the style in my opinion.

Serving type: bottle

04-08-2011 01:52:45 | More by billab914
Photo of seeswo


4.4/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

2008 vintage, I do believe.

Pours a cloudy brown color with a huge tan head (I poured it straight down the middle not expected the carbonation to be as good as it is) into my Bruery tulip. Looks delicious. Smells of sweetness and caramel and a bit of breadiness with the slightest twinge of faded hops. Really a balanced, barley wine that stands up to some bigger names. The slightest bitterness in the finish really helps to keep this beer from being too sweet, which i have previously felt has been a detraction from their Bourbon barrel version (though as of this writing, I have yet to review it). Restrained flavors of caramel and bread and the like carry from the front through the middle to a shockingly drinkable barley wine. I have actually never had this fresh, but in it's current state, I could put more than one down, which is unusual for a sweeter barley wine. Again I agree with reviews below that it is maybe a bit thinner than expected and that detracts slightly.

This beer is good people. Much better than the 2007 big foot I had, IMHO.

Serving type: bottle

02-01-2011 03:56:56 | More by seeswo
Photo of DavoleBomb


4.05/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter. Big thanks to czoch75 for this one. Looks like this one might be from 2007 as "07" is handwritten near the barcode.

4.0 A: Murky deep amber brown color. One and a half fingers of creamy beige head with decent retention and a good bit of lacing.

4.5 S: Aroma is screaming barleywine. Tons of caramel and even more toffee. Plenty of fruitiness with emphasis on prune and raisin. Plum, tobacco, and booziness are next. Not overly complex, but very nice and super strong.

4.0 T: Taste is good, but not quite as good as the nose. There's still lots of toffee, caramel, prune, and raisin. Tobacco is more pronounced in the taste and the booze is a bit more apparent as well. Surprisingly, there's a decent bitterness going on that is actually on par with the sweetness. Pretty good.

3.5 M: Heavier body. Good moderate carbonation. Reasonably creamy and smooth, but a bit chewier than I'd like.

4.0 D: Overall a very nice brew. I think this is the base beer for the BBBW (which I absolutely love). Anyway, good throughout with no weaknesses.

Serving type: bottle

01-29-2011 23:08:00 | More by DavoleBomb
Photo of zimmerbloke


4.58/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Picked up two bottles of this about a year and a half ago, drank one and forgot about the other. Time to revisit it and see what some time has done. Poured into a New Belgium globe glass.

A: Even a pretty aggressive pour can't generate much in the way of head on this one. Just the thinnest off-white ring remains about half a minute after the pour. The beer itself is a nearly opaque dark brown with hints of burgundy. Still appears pretty carbonated. Not a pretty beer by any means.

S: Very strong caramel sweetness and just the faintest bit of long-faded hops. Some hints of biscuity malt notes and a little bit of vanilla booze sweetness. Very nice.

T: Hops have faded substantially here. Definitely on the sweeter end, but in a very unique way--dark sugars, hints of citrus sweetness still remain, vanilla; still a hint of booze heat. Malt profile is very complex, definite flavors of caramel and some biscuity flavors, as in the nose, but surprisingly light for a barleywine. Fits the rest of the flavor profile extremely well. Bitterness is overly strong on the finish, probably evidence of once-formidable hopping. At this point, it is stronger than necessary given the rest of the flavor profile, but this is probably my only complaint.

M: So, so smooth. Coats the mouth and just melts off. The carbonation is enough to keep it from being cloying and there's just a hint of alcohol burn; just what I like in a barleywine.

D: Exceptionally tasty and easy to sip one 'til it's gone, but almost certainly as a nightcap/digestif. Stylistically excellent.

Quite good and only improved by the bourbon barrel aging. Most of the success of Central Waters Bourbon Barrel Barleywine starts here.

Serving type: bottle

01-08-2011 04:52:21 | More by zimmerbloke
Photo of cavedave

New York

4.45/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Big thanks to cmswoboda for more Wisconsin goodness.

Hard to tell if this dark brown with red highlights beauty is cloudy, or just superbly thick. A dark beige head stays for a good ride, ending as a permanent skim that keeps the beer look tempting. Crazy lace legs grab my tulip with resiny cling. Take a picture.

Ah the decadence of this beer. It has a refined aroma, a superb and balanced blend of fruit bread and deep caramel, sweet and gentle candy, vanilla, clean and warm alcohol, as well as an edge of soft herbal and bitter.

Despite being aged, bittering hops still play a role at front of sip (and in finish), keeping a rush of sweet candy and candied fruit from turning to syrup. Alcohol plays the role of friendly flavor transport, and also presents as a spicy note at the end of the sip. Well mellowed. As the beer warms it goes through flavor transitions which include very fruity, to sips that are tart, to sips that really zing with alcohol and finish hot and nicely herbal, very complex, lots of underflavors, all the while balanced for it. Nicely blended. The taste is marvelous.

Mouthfeel, rated for style, is very good, not great. One very minor complaint. A bit too thin compared to other favorites, and a yummy but less than stellar finish. Plus side, very clean flavors, and not syrupy on palate. Nice carb., perfect now.

Drinkability is off the charts. Given an endless supply of this, I would take the prudent action of at all times having available a cloned liver.

Impression: In an era of absolutely killer American Barleywines this one is not top of the pile, but an absolute taste treat in its own right. Wish I could get more of this. Advice? Do what it takes to get this.

Serving type: bottle

01-07-2011 00:15:19 | More by cavedave
Photo of drizzam


4.3/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a very hazy and opaque dark wine red in color. Very dark red. This very dark red body is topped by a nice fluffy one finger off-white head. Excellent head retention and very impressive lacing.

S - Caramel and fruit, with more than a hint of alcohol. It smells like this is going to be a big beer.

T & M - Sweet caramel malt plays well with sweet fruit, a plum/cherry hybrid perhaps? The nose did not betray me...this is a big boy. The boozy finish doesn't hide very well behind the big flavors that this brew brings forth. Medium bodied creamy mouthfeel. An alcoholic warmth remains in my throat and stomach after each swallow.

D - Despite the boozy nature, this is a very drinkable brew. I had a bottle in my fridge for quite some time and did not have it labelled, so I don't know what year this was (I have a lot to learn from some of my beer cellaring friends). A VERY solid American Barleywine from Central Waters. A must try if you can get your hands on it!

Serving type: bottle

12-24-2010 04:15:48 | More by drizzam
Photo of chicano4craft


4.08/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark and rich looking red. Bronwish with a off white head that fades into a halo.

Smells of sweet malt and dark fruit. Slighly boozy with a port feel. I get a sense of chocolate. It seems out of place but works for me.

Thick and rich on the palate. There's a syrupy heat of cherry, plum, and a far off bitterness in the finish. Quite complex.

Mouthfeel and drinkability are a touch above average. It gets to be a tad much toward the end and I'm thankful it's only a 12oz bottle. Certainly a sipper.

Overall I was impressed. Glad I was able to find it on my trip to Madison this past summer. So far Central Waters has yet to let me down.

Serving type: bottle

12-02-2010 22:16:29 | More by chicano4craft
Photo of Wisconsinality


4.4/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into Duvel tulip.

Thanks to cmswoboda for this one.

2008 vintage.

A- Pours a deep ruby red with a little light let in around the edges of the glass. A good one fingered yellowish creme colored head that recedes rather quickly but leaves some good lacing on the side of the glass.

S- Big doses of dark fruits. Dates, plums and a little bit of raisin. A little bit of rum comes out and a just a tiny bit of booze. Caramel and malt with a touch of brown sugar round this one out.

T- I think the two years on this one has mellowed it out quite a bit. Dark fruits up front with a hint of sweetness. Black cherries and plums. The is a small amount of malt in the background. The booze has subsided quite a bit and adds a nice layer of complexity.

M- About as smooth as it gets. No feel of carbonation and with its ABV, it surprisingly has no heat on the back of the throat. Full bodied that is rich and creamy.

D- This is a complex beer that is best enjoyed sipped. I wish I had one of these for every night of winter. I am assuming that this beer is pretty hot fresh but I won't know until they release it again this year.

Serving type: bottle

11-16-2010 02:30:40 | More by Wisconsinality
Photo of Thorpe429


4.43/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from notes.

Poured into a snifter. Color is amber with some reddish hues throughout. Slight head and a bit of lacing. Nose is really quite nice with cherries, dark fruits, citrus, plum skin, and some sweet bread. Taste is cherries, sweet malt, hints of booze, and a thy amount of citrus zest. Good feel with excellent drinkability. It's no surprise that BBBW has such a fantastic base.

Serving type: bottle

11-04-2010 16:20:31 | More by Thorpe429
Photo of jlindros


4/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Got this beauty thanks to KeefB. No date on the bottle.

Pours a creamy rich head, frothy, that fades slowly, leaving an outline lacing. The beer lets just a little light through, with a very dark rosy maroon brown, almost a burnt sienna color.

Nose brings plenty of barleywine aromas, lots of malts, lots of malted barley! Seems like some sweetness too, a little maple and hints of molasses, syrupy aromas. Malts include dark heavy crystal, some light roast, and the faintest hint of smoke. Light fruits, with a little raisin and plum, and hints of booze. A light hint of earthy chewy hops in the background as well.

Taste brings more of the same, with lots of malts to start, loaded with malted barley! Slight juicy flavors, little fruit again. Malts include dark crystal, little roast, a little toffee, caramel, maple, a little molasses, and even a little creamy. It's pretty sweet too, with just a hint of warming booze, which builds as it warms. Slightly chewy malt flavor too. I even get a bit of berry flavor. A candy flavor too. Some light bitterness, some light earthy hops, but not a lot. The finish leaves a sticky mouth coating, with hints of warming booze and still pretty sweet. Some lingering malty flavors, and a little fruit as well.

Mouth is fairly heavier bodied, syrupy, and decent carbonation.

The drinkability is a little lower, although it drinks well for 10%, but with some of the sticky syrupy feels, and quite a bit of sweetness take away a bit from it.

Serving type: bottle

10-14-2010 02:37:00 | More by jlindros
Photo of rhodeska


4.3/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Really good beer. I think the taste was a little different than what I expected, the barleywine coming thorugh that im not really used to.

Good solid taste, can really get the barley in there. I didn't really pick up on a lot of different tastes, but a really soild full taste.

Serving type: bottle

10-09-2010 04:08:37 | More by rhodeska
Photo of jwinship83


4.22/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

bottle given to me at DLD. drank from a la fin du monde tulip glass. no dating on the bottle, but i assume it was from last winter.

A- this one pours out a hazy deep ruby colored body with a small eggshell colored head. the head has better than expected retention given the size and leaves behind complete rings of lacing.

S- the first thing i notice is a caramel-y sweetness. theres also some toffee and toasted bread in here. after that come the fruits. plums, cherries, figs, dates, and raisins. the hops dont seem as aggressive as i would have expected, but theres still plenty of grapefruit and pine in here. finally, theres a little bit of smellable alcohol.

T- the sweet caramel and toffee malts come to the front. the fruits i could smell follow closely behind. the grapefruit and pine hops that i could smell come through stronger in the taste and still have plenty of bitterness to them. the alcohol i could smell comes through stronger in the taste as well.

M- full bodied. syrupy and palate coating. a medium to low carbonation level.

D- easy to finish and im very glad this one found its way into my cooler. something ill try to sniff out up north this winter if i get the chance. this one seems like it would age like the best of them.

Serving type: bottle

09-30-2010 00:46:25 | More by jwinship83
Photo of SykDoc


4.1/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2 year old cellared bottle. Poured from a bottle into a tulip. It pours a nice amber/ruby mix and forms a 1/2 inch light tan head that reduces, leaving a fairly full over-the-top lacing. Carbonation is visible and no sediment.

The aroma is very good with an up front hoppiness that is balanced by a nice caramel malt/dark fruit scent making it similar to cotton candy.

The taste has a unique blend of cherries with some caramel malts and piney hops. The alcohol is there and it almost has an acidic component to the flavor.

The mouthfeel shows an adequate level of carbonation and medium/full bodied. It has an early bite that subsides into a nice leathery texture on the tongue.

Overall, this is a solid barleywine and worth having, if you can get your hands on it. It is drinkable but the abv is well enough hidden to warrant some caution as it is well balanced and smooth to drink.

Serving type: bottle

07-26-2010 23:32:57 | More by SykDoc
Photo of e11a627


4.4/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a chimay chalice and enjoyed with hu5om and newk340.

A: translucent, the color of pepsi/coke slushy, wood colored, nice ring of foam.

S: Aged fruit, orange, cherry, plum.

T: Chocolate, plum, cherry.

M: Great texture, no harsh aftertaste - very smooth. Goes down quite nicely.

D: Delish. Easy to drink - I probably could drink a few of these which judging by the ABV may not be a good thing.... depending on how you look at it. ha.

Serving type: bottle

07-15-2010 20:58:46 | More by e11a627
Kosmyk Charlie's Y2K Catastrophe Ale from Central Waters Brewing Co.
92 out of 100 based on 473 ratings.