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Bourbon Barrel Barleywine Ale - Central Waters Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Bourbon Barrel Barleywine AleBourbon Barrel Barleywine Ale

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BA SCORE
96
world-class

1,835 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,835
Reviews: 533
rAvg: 4.31
pDev: 9.05%
Wants: 654
Gots: 520 | FT: 56
Brewed by:
Central Waters Brewing Co. visit their website
Wisconsin, United States

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  11.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
Aged for 1 year in used bourbon barrels.

(Beer added by: Atron67 on 03-02-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,835 | Reviews: 533 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of John_M
4.24/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Last of my central water beers from my trade with Garrett. This is the 2012 version of this beer.

The beer pours a fairly dark brownish amber color with pretty good head retention and lacing. The beer is quite attractive on the nose, as I pick up light milk chocolate, noticeable vanilla, toffee and butterscotch. The flavor profile replicates the nose pretty closely in this sweet, excellent beer. Also, maybe it's from the extended aging in my cellar/closet, but there's a soft creaminess on the palate this is very, very nice. The finish is long as well, and there is a hint of heat from the alcohol on the finish. Otherwise, the alcohol is pretty well integrated into the flavor profile.

Very nice beer from Central Waters (which is what I've come to expect from them). My only complaint is that I really didn't pick up a whole lot of bourbon, etiher on the nose or the palate. Otherwise, this is a very fine beer from CW.

John_M, Mar 03, 2014
Photo of PhatAtUT
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

PhatAtUT, Mar 03, 2014
Photo of Damian
4.33/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Drank from a 12 fluid oz bottle acquired in a trade with surge1311
Vintage: 2013
Served in a snifter

The nearly crystal clear, copper-mahogany liquid was topped by small, light tan crown that quickly faded to a ring of bubbles. Droplets of lacing clung to the glass.

The aroma was really intense and complex. Candied fruits came through strong. Quite sweet and boozy overall with a robust caramel malt presence. Lots of toffee and brown sugar. Good dose of vanilla. As the beer warmed, the bourbon and vanilla notes really intensified.

A stiff, caramel malt backbone led things off in the flavor profile. Toffee, brown sugar and candied fruits were apparent. Bourbon notes hit hard mid-palate. Loads of vanilla as well. The bitter, boozy finish was super hoppy and contained strong notes of pine sap and orange peel. A bit sharp for my liking.

The mouthfeel was somewhat lighter than I anticipated, but the super fine and zippy effervescence lent the beer an exceedingly creamy and smooth frothiness. After every sip, the liquid left a slightly sticky film on my lips.

Central Waters's Bourbon Barrel Barleywine Ale is an interesting and complex beer that makes for a perfect sipper on a cold winter night. I aged my bottle for a year, but I feel that even more time might help mellow out some of the booziness and the bitterness on the finish.

Damian, Mar 03, 2014
Photo of StonedTrippin
4.38/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

so there does exist a barley wine that lives up to its hype, and it is this central waters offering. hazy and rich caramel colored beer with an awesome white head over an inch tall and lasting all the whole time. it smells like caramelized grain sugar, raw sugar, toffee dessert, and booze, but only just enough. the nose and taste both suggest ridiculous barrel influence, i mean, tons of vanilla, tons of char, tons of everything, sugars too but its not too sweet. i get good bourbon all the way through, with that oaky earthen character and all the vanilla in the world, while the booze remains way back, but persistent enough for me to want to let this warm and drink it slowly, although neither the body nor the sugar makes this hard to drink. smooth down, long vanilla finish, like creme brûlée in many ways, to rich for a ton of it, but highly appreciated in reasonable doses. a good twelve ounce to share, and finally a central waters beer worthy of its high praise, this is wonderful barleywine, as good as american made english style gets.

StonedTrippin, Mar 03, 2014
Photo of gkoz
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

gkoz, Mar 03, 2014
Photo of twperman
4.33/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Lots of bourbon flavor, especially vanilla, but the hops cut into the sweetness making it extremely drinkable. not as dry or hoppy as some other american barleywines so it can taste a little sweet, but this is great. almost no head whatsoever. Hopefully i can manage to age a few of these.

twperman, Mar 02, 2014
Photo of ParkbrauFan
5/5  rDev +16%

ParkbrauFan, Mar 02, 2014
Photo of Mdog
4.3/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Cloudy dark amber, good head.

Smell: Big caramel, lots of barrel wood, vanilla.

Taste: Sweet caramel and vanilla. Plenty of barrel influence. A decent amount of citrus hop bitterness gives it another dimension.

Overall: Very tasty, boozy barleywine. The wood and vanilla flavors are offset somewhat by the hops so it's not just a bourbon fest. Nice changeup from the bourbon stouts I've had during this long winter.

Mdog, Mar 02, 2014
Photo of Skillz
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

Skillz, Mar 02, 2014
Photo of oso
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

oso, Mar 01, 2014
Photo of vande
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

vande, Mar 01, 2014
Photo of HoudiniRN
4.75/5  rDev +10.2%

HoudiniRN, Mar 01, 2014
Photo of Docrock
3.89/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2014 bottle

A: nice caramel brown color, minimal head with no retention, not that I expected much.

S: a slight hint of vanilla and just a touch of booziness, not smelling much at all..

T: nice caramel, vanilla, a touch of date. Not picking up much hop character at all.

M: a bit hot. There is a definite burn from the booziness on the roof of the mouth and the throat.

O: overall I enjoyed this beer. I am going to lay several down as I think 9 months to a year will do wonders. I am have been disappointed by most of Central Waters beers but this one is by far the best I have had from them and with a touch of cellaring, this has potential to be awesome.

Docrock, Mar 01, 2014
Photo of dspinler
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

dspinler, Mar 01, 2014
Photo of jabo134
4.25/5  rDev -1.4%

jabo134, Mar 01, 2014
Photo of DaftPatrick
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

DaftPatrick, Mar 01, 2014
Photo of LeeW
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

LeeW, Feb 28, 2014
Photo of Ben7773
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

Ben7773, Feb 28, 2014
Photo of RyanTheLion13
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

RyanTheLion13, Feb 28, 2014
Photo of shredder83
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

shredder83, Feb 28, 2014
Photo of BoJengs
4.41/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

2014 bottle reviewed 2/27/2014. Purchased from Woodmans, fresh... Just reviewed the 2013 a few nights ago and loved it. Lets roll on this one.

A- Lighter appearance than the one yr old version. Has the same color as a typical whiskey, copper, reddish, can see the light of day through the beer (could not see through the one yr old) Good looking brew here.

S- Sweet smells right away. sweet bourbon, vanilla, caramel. sweet

T- Follows the nose. Very sweet. Much sweeter than the one yr old although still complex. Sweet bourbon and vanilla dominate, alcohol is there but still enjoyable. After tasting the one yr old the other night I expected this beer to be harsher. Somehow the fresh beer is sweeter and less resinous than the beer with a yr on it, confusing to me considering the nature of hops.

M- its a good mouthfeel although I feel the beer with a yr on it had more/better carbonation and mouthfeel, although totally subjective.

O- Great beer. I will buy at least 1-2 4 packs of this every yr - consuming a few fresh and laying a few away for good times later. After comparing the fresh to the 1 yr old I would have to say that I do prefer the brew with a year on it. It matured nicely and became a more balanced beer after the year. I suspect this will continue to improve at least to the 3 yr mark and I look forward to enjoying the journey.
___
~~~

2013 bottle reviewed 2/25/2014 after 1 yr in cellar.

A- murky reddish copper. Not much head if any at all. Even though this beer is more red/copper colored, when held up to light, barely any passes through. Looks good.

S- bourbon right away, then maybe a lil cherry. Definitely smell the bourbon radiating off the glass though.

T- Bourbon up front, slight tastes toffee, cherries, and a little vanilla. Can definitely taste the alcohol although it is very pleasant.

M- amazing mouthfeel. Although appearance doesn't lead one to believe there is carbonation the mouthfeel certainly feels like there is, and just the right amount. Very solid.

O- this beer was great fresh, and is still great after one yr in cellar. I have 2 more bottles of the '13 that I will open after 2 and 3 yrs and see how they progress (I am thinking this beer is only going to get smoother and smoother with time). Delicious offering as always from a great Wisconsin brewery. Nicely done Central Waters.

BoJengs, Feb 28, 2014
Photo of brother_kenneth
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

brother_kenneth, Feb 27, 2014
Photo of Houser
4.25/5  rDev -1.4%

Houser, Feb 27, 2014
Photo of markcp
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

markcp, Feb 26, 2014
Photo of ryanpj
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

ryanpj, Feb 25, 2014
Bourbon Barrel Barleywine Ale from Central Waters Brewing Co.
96 out of 100 based on 1,835 ratings.