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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

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531 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 531
Reviews: 210
rAvg: 4.11
pDev: 10.22%
Wants: 104
Gots: 134 | 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: 531 | Reviews: 210 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of xnicknj
3.58/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into snifter

Pours an opaque caramel brown color with some lighter cherry hues shining through in the light. A thick, two-finger high head retains really well, leaving some patchy lacing on the glass while drinking.

Plenty of smooth roasty malts in the nose with some hints of dark fruit. Raisin and date with a nice dash of spice and faded hops. A bite of sweetness and alcohol as well.

Slight hoppiness up front before the roasty malts roar through. Caramel and bread crust with some hints of burnt sugar. Raisins with some sweetness mixed with alcohol warmth. Very roasty and full on the tongue, finishing a little bitter and warm.

Fuller body, somewhat milder carbonation, creamy and lingering on the tongue. A nice barleywine with a definite sense of age to it...not quite great though.

Photo of GORUM
4.5/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of stealth
4/5  rDev -2.7%

Photo of beagle75
2.75/5  rDev -33.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a half-pint chalice.

A: Murky, medium amber color with no foam head. No lacing remains on the glass.

S: Mild toasty malt is featured, but stops short of the heavyweight level expected in the style. Caramel emerges as the beer warms, but clean otherwise. No alcohol is detected.

T: Begins off-dry, with slightly scorched caramel and strong carbonic acidity. Early astringency seems tied to herbaceous flavors, but then transitions into pure strong bitterness. Husky caramel malt seems roundly infused with English-style yeast metabolites during the second act, but they do not stick around long. A strong note of pure ethyl alcohol develops into the latter half.

M: Medium viscosity, syrupy and very acidic on the palate, with moderate carbonation.

D/O: Recognizable as a barleywine, though not particularly memorable or even appealing, this beer fails to advance beyond mediocrity. Bitterness is the single least appealing quality, bracing in its intensity yet uninteresting in its lack of associated qualities. This beer does not deliver the decadent experience that a barleywine ought to.

Photo of Blakaeris
3.88/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours hazy copper, brown with a slight soapy head.

Aroma is caramel, toffee, hints of orange, and a slight medicinal quality.

Taste is caramel and burnt toffee up front. Then a mild orange peel bitterness makes an appearance. Finishes with an earthy, nutty quality and lingering alcohol warmth.

Mouthfeel is medium full. Quite chewy.

Overall a decent barleywine. Not fantastic, but good.

Photo of bashiba
3.15/5  rDev -23.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured a dirty light brown with just a soap ring of a head.

The smell was full of brown sugar and molasses.

The flavor is very malty and sweet with big brown sugar and caramel flavors, has a big sharp bitterness in the finish. Not much going on here other than a touch of sweet alcohol popping in.

The mouthfeel is thick and oily.

A pretty basic and a bit boring Barleywine.

4.5/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of spoonhawk
5/5  rDev +21.7%

Photo of zeledonia
4.1/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2011 vintage, bottled December 2011. Trying this base beer before the BBBW.

Pours a sludgy, murky brown with one finger of creamy tan head. head fades rather quickly, but leaves nice lacing and and a good ring of foam. This doesn't look all that appetizing, IMO.

Smell is a wallop of dark fruit. Plums and cherries, with some apple in the background. A light hit of tobacco. Finished off by some nose-singing alcohol. Really nice.

Taste is good, before it gets completely overwhelmed by the tidal wave of alcohol. This is not a beer that hides its ABV. Less fruit, more chewy organic stuff. I get the fruit up front, but then something that tastes like bitter leafy vegetables (combo of hops and alcohol?). Interesting.

Mouthfeel is heavy, chewy, and lovely. Fairly low carbonation, only popping up late, but I'm fine with that. The feel complements the beer really well, and that's what matters.

A solid, rather malty barleywine. I wish the bitterness didn't kick in so quickly in the taste, but can I really complain? It's a good beer, and one of the better balanced straight-up barleywines I've had. I'm enjoying it more as I get further down the glass, but maybe that's the alcohol talking already...

Photo of plumcrazyfx
4.5/5  rDev +9.5%

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

Hard to resist barleywine, and picked up this one at the local store.
On the label, it says is was originally brewed for the Y2K survival kit, which I've never heard of before. But, the mention of Y2K brings back memories of dooms day prophets and a New Year's Eve of waiting for the world to explode. Hard to believe it was so long ago that my students don't remember it already.

Light tan head piled high from a high pour over a hazy dark copper ale. High alcohol (10%) floats above strong dark fruit, raisin, fig with significant floral hop over top. Slightly burnt malt with oak continued over fig, dark fruit that fueled by alcohol hotness. Says aged for a year on the website, but doesn't say how or in what. Guessing straight oak barrels because there seems to be wood, but not added whiskey or other flavor. Sweet and pungent off the back. Rough and raw flavor that's fun to drink, but lacks a certain elegance.

4/5  rDev -2.7%

Photo of WankelEngine
3.9/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a snifter

A: Pours a ruddy brown color with a slight red tint. There is a one finger head of light tan foam which reduces quickly.

S: The smell is toasted malt and sweet. I can make out some raisin, plum and a little bit of toffee. Caramel and booze. There is a faint bitterness reminiscent of pine-y hops. As it warms I can make out a molasses, almost maple scent.

T: Similar to the smell, very sweet with some heat from the alcohol. Dark fruit flavors are prominent. The toasted malts add a bit of toffee. Barley/grains give the beer a dry bitterness. The finish is bitter, grassy hops which complements the mild bite from the alcohol. As the beer warms, the grassy hops expand and become present throughout the entire sip.

M: Moderate mouthfeel. The alcohol is well hidden at first but becomes hotter and more evident as the beer warms. A little bit sticky.

O: A decent and drinkable barleywine. Both bitter and sweet throughout.

Photo of Zachtheporter
3.95/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz glass into a brandy sifter.
Dated 2011

A- Appears to be a Rich murky reddish amber. Almost the color of a rose. Has a tin whit yellow-ish head with very small bubbles.

S- Sweet. With notes of grapes and dark fruits as well as hops and barley. A lighter scent compared to some other beers.

T- very rich and robust. Starts off very sweet with a slightly harsher aftertaste. Has a bit of a kick at the end but not too much. Very fruity and beady with a slight gram cracker taste to it at the very end. Not the most Overpowering taste for a barleywine.

M- Starts of smooth and ends with a small kick in the back of the tongue with carbonation.

O- This barley-wine is vary drinkable. Almost session-able (HAHA if that were even possible for barleywines. It is really a beautiful beer in terms of color and appearance. A great barley wine. I would highly recommend this too friends who are new to the style. Besides the tiny kick at the end that it gives (which is hardly noticeable) this is an absolutely perfect beer!

Photo of adrock7309
4/5  rDev -2.7%

Photo of mjtiernan
3.5/5  rDev -14.8%

Photo of jegross2
3.35/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Reviewing the Kosmyk Charlie Y2K Catastrophe Ale from Central Waters Brewing Company. Full and fair disclosure upfront -- as much as I loved King Henry, barleywines are one of my lesser favorite styles of beer (especially fresh).
Score: 80

December 2011 vintage bottle served in a Great Lakes snifter glass and enjoyed in the wee hours of 01/29/12.

Appearance: Pours one finger of tan/cream colored sea-foam head that settles into a ring around the glass and splotchy, thin coating atop the beer. The color of the brew is a brown yellow/orange color that looks like a very murky non-alcoholic apple cider that you'd buy at a Farmer's Market. The murkiness is best described as a bottle-conditioned "yeastiness," and this murkiness renders the beer opaque. When held up to light, Y2K has yellow highlights at the top, while the lower half has amber/mahogany highlights. Excellent lacing. Leaves behind a foamy residue on the side of the glass with solid cling. 4/5

Smell: Malty tiramissu, creamy vanilla cupcakes/cupcake frosting, and caramel. Has a yeasty twang that you usually get with bottle conditioned homebrews, and a very noticeable booziness to it that only accentuates in presence as the beer warms. 3.5/5

Taste: Wow. This is a boozy malt bomb that is very unbalanced in my opinion. Very malty caramel-forward with a moderate tropical fruit/grassy hoppiness and light yeasty flavor. The hoppiness seemed a little out of place and took a few minutes to "pin down." Lots of booziness here, but it is not a "hot" warming booziness until the beer approaches room temperature. This has a lot of flavor similarities to the He'Brew beer Lenny's RIPA, only this is substantially more drinkable and less "hot." I could imagine this beer gets better when barrel aged because the caramel malts would make a good compliment to the bourbon flavors that barrel aging tends to impart. As an unaged, fresh barleywine, however, this one is merely "run of the mill" and drinkable, but certainly neither worth seeking out or shelling out $4 a single bottle. 3/5

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus bodied, light-medium carbonation. Malty-sweet, hoppy finish. Alcohol heat grows as the beer warms. 4/5

Overall: A malt bomb of a barleywine. Drinkable enough, but why drink this when there are plenty of better beers on the shelf? Maybe King Henry has left me jaded.

Recommendation: If you must drink a barleywine, this is certainly a decent one that is much more "balanced" and "ready to drink" fresh than most beers of the style are. Alas, if you are simply seeking a good beer to try, I would recommend trying something else (such as the recently released Peruvian Morning, also by Central Waters) instead.

Pairings: Pastrami sandwich on rye bread with Swiss cheese, drizzled with honey-Dijon mustard dressing.

Cost: $3.99 for a single bottle or $11.99 for a four pack.

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

Appearance: Murky brown, good head.

Smell: Burnt caramel, piney.

Taste: Sweet, lots of caramel, a touch of dark fruit-raisin & fig.

Drinkability: Hides the alcohol well, not too expensive.

This is a pretty good barleywine, the label says it is aged at the brewery for a year before release. I believe them, both the smell and taste remind me of Bigfoot with a year or two on it--not a lot of hops, and more sweetness and fruit flavors.

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

12oz. bottle poured into a snifter. 2011 vintage. Dec 2011 bottled date.

(A)- Pours a cloudy almost reddish chestnut brown color. Produced a nice cap of tan froth and lacing. Decent retention.

(S)- A nice profile of bready caramel and a subtle resin-like citrus. Lots of malty bits.

(T)- Again, a nice malty beer with bready caramel, fig, and subtle toffee. Bits of resin-like citrus from the hops.

(M)- A smooth carbonation level and a nice balance too. Not overly malty or hoppy, but a happy medium between the two. Fairly smooth too despite the ABV level.

(D)- Overall, a solid barleywine. I can see how this becomes the surperior Bourbon Barrel Barleywine. Malty and sweet, but balanced and smooth too. The hop level is quite high though; I think this would benefit from some extended time.

Photo of otrejo
4.5/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of Pellinore1
4/5  rDev -2.7%

Photo of geoffsm12
3.5/5  rDev -14.8%

Photo of pirmannt1
4.75/5  rDev +15.6%

Photo of Khazadum
3.78/5  rDev -8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Dirty, ruddy, yeasty amber body. Has a light off-white cap color... like a decent bread with light toasting. Sticky lacing, mostly full in appearance. Great retention. For a barleywine its looking pretty damn good to be honest. The retention is unbelievable for what I was expecting to see based on the dirty dishwater.

Oooo that is hoppy as balls. Light grapefruit, but mostly grassy, piney, sharp, astringent. Grassy, floral, earthen vegetal hops, not too much in terms of sweet hops. Its all about this near oppressive hopping with a light caramel backing. Its got the astringency of a 10% beer, which isn't too bad. Least it isn't curling my nostril hairs.

Hot, spicy, near burning alcohol right off the start pairs with a deep caramel and molasses sweetness. Bright, sucrose sweetness. As soon as the ethanol burns off, a strong bitter hop character starts to rise. Vegetal, light grapefruit, pine flavor. Finish is pretty much all about the hops. Generic bitterness, earthy nature. Lingers....

Full thickness, syrupy, light carbonation towards the back quarter of it. Sticky biting bitterness combining with hot, sometimes cloying alcohol. Very powerful, very sweet, very hopped, very hot.

Photo of dlello2
4.5/5  rDev +9.5%

Kosmyk Charlie's Y2K Catastrophe Ale from Central Waters Brewing Co.
92 out of 100 based on 531 ratings.