Scratch Beer 4 - 2007 - Tröegs Brewing Company
Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
Ratings: 75 | Reviews: 68 | Display Reviews Only:
4.35/5 rDev +1.9%
Love the looks of this BW. Deep chestnut colored and very dense. Light interaction shows a ruby hue. Poured with an off white head that fades into a thin topping.
Great nose. Thick with date, prune, brown sugar, honey, other dried fruits, a mixture of earthy hops, a zesty acidic smell from a lingering carbonation.
Tasty BW with layers of complexity. Thick with earthy pine induced hops on the middle and bittering hops on the very dry finish. Dried fruit galore with a hint of maple syrup and a fresh date character. Slight fig, and plum with a golden raisin character. Good amount of carbonation keeps things lively on the pallate. A floral bit comes through on the finish now and the alcohol is hidden unbelievably well. Just a find American barley wine all the way.
01-18-2009 22:11:38 | More by mcallister
4.5/5 rDev +5.4%
A - Burnt caramel, good head leaves fast, ring remains. Sudsy, leggy lacking
S - Sugar bomb in the nose. Malty sugar goodness. Beware of flies and bees.
T - Wonderful thick sweet malt core, not cloying at all, balanced with heavy bitterness.
M - Heavy, coating, great carb.
D - ABV not listed, but it must be high. However, I could see having a few of these.
12-19-2008 05:55:13 | More by srandycarter
4.63/5 rDev +8.4%
Thank you Adam (akorsak) for hooking me up with this and other Scratches a few months back. This is one that I had been waiting on for a good cold day.
12oz bottled poured into mini goblet.
Bottle Graphics: 9/10. Not many better than the Scratch series.
A: Beatiful mahogany body with bubbles creating spherical orbs on the surface. Decent lacing.
S: Sweetest of malts. Vibrant alcohol goes right through the nasal passage and into the brain. With all this, the hops still come through, even with the sugar, even with the time. I have come across several beers that I have thought smelled of dates, nothing quite to this level though.
T: Chocolate and dried fruit. Super sweet like a potent barleywine should be. Intensity is awesome and over the top, love the details. Letting it warm smooths it out and had all the best characteristics of a chocolate sugar cookie.
Like the taste, the taste of liquor soaked dates prepping for a quality fruitcake. Time I am sure did it a favor but did not destroy the hop flavors.
Never before can I remember the taste of mango hops coming through in a barleywine until now. That, my friend, is cratfsmanship. Awesome.
M: Medium to heavy body, the website sums it up well with "sweet burn". Marvelously smooth,creamy and delicate.
D: Another fine edition of the Scratch series that the brothers really would do themselves a favor by at least making a seasonal. Yet to have a Scratch I did not like and all have been even better on tap so I could imagine what wonders this would be like in that form.
Well done. Thanks Adam.
12-18-2008 00:17:24 | More by marcpal
4.18/5 rDev -2.1%
I open bottles last year, enjoyed it but felt the anise like taste didn't belong in a barley wine. The hint of anise doesn't seem to be there now. I get toffee, fruit and chocolate. Smooth with a clean finish. This is aging well and the drinkability has increased.
12-08-2008 04:28:45 | More by LittleBreeze
4.25/5 rDev -0.5%
Acquired via trade from Slatetank, so a big Thank You goes out to him. Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.
A: The beer is a murky medium brown color, with a thin light brown head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.
S: The aroma is of brown sugar, dark fruit, caramelized malts and a good amount hops.
T: The taste is sweet and malty up front with flavors of caramel, dark fruit, brown sugar and even a touch of chocolate. There's a strong hops presence that follows and provides a good balance. There's a pretty significant alcohol sting as well. The after-taste is slightly sweet and slightly hoppy.
M: Crisp and very smooth, medium-to-heavy body, medium carbonation, finish is clean.
D: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, strong kick, very good representation of style, this is a good high-octane beer to drink throughout the course of an evening and could be pounded a little bit more than most barleywines that I've had.
11-30-2008 00:11:19 | More by TheManiacalOne
4.35/5 rDev +1.9%
Murky dark caramel with ochre edges. Brown beer doesn't usually look spectacular, but this one does for some reason. The appearance is aided by a thick slice of brown sugar colored creaminess that is currently occupying the upper portion of the snifter. Attractive and abundant lace is icing on the cake.
Darker barleywines have always appealed to me more than paler barleywines. Scratch 4 is of the darker variety, thanks to what looks and smells like a heaping helping of dark crystal malt (pilsner and Munich malt were also used). The nose is reminiscent of caramel-covered fruit. A little more depth and complexity would have earned it the next highest score.
When it comes to Scratch Beer, Troegs hasn't let me down yet. In fact, this has to be one of the most successful series, across a wide variety of styles, in the world of craft brewing. TBC really should consider releasing some of these beauties on a regular (or at least a seasonal) basis.
Flavors include chocolate-covered toffee, dark brown sugar, pecans, tobacco, earthy-musky figs, candied cherries and candied orange peel. Some of the '100-ish' IBUs have most likely faded in the 14 months since the September '07 release. It's still upwards of 80, I'll bet.
Warrior, Chinook and Simcoe hops provide a surprising amount of flavor, especially on the impossibly long finish. The beer is somewhat balanced until the swallow arrives. It's then that the citrusiness begins to ease ahead of the cocoa and caramel of the malt sugars. This is truly wonderful beer that begs to be sipped at fireside.
The mouthfeel either wasn't huge to begin with or took a small hit thanks to more than one year in the bottle. Those of you who like medium-bodied American barleywines rather than fullstickyviscous American barleywines should be right at home. I need more bulk and fewer fine bubbles to break out the big scores.
Scratch 4 is another quality salvo of craft beer deliciousness from the tremendously talented Troegner brothers. If you're cellaring, drink it now. If you don't have any, find some before it's too late. Thanks to barefootbrewer for the bottle.
11-29-2008 14:27:02 | More by BuckeyeNation
4.43/5 rDev +3.7%
Bottle courtesy of akorsak - many, many thanks. Split w/ dkachur and proteus93 - my portion poured into an Allagash flute.
Appearance: Pours a hazy reddish brown, dirty ruby and muddy, with a one-finger head of average retention with nice tan lacing, bubbly. Pleasant looking.
Aroma: Divine. Spicy, grassy hop notes, thick layers, waves upon waves really, of thick, syrupy roasted malts, caramel, roasted breadiness. Faint hints of citrus remain, grapefruit essence, orange zest. It's all wrapped up in a spicy, warming alcohol presence. Very nice.
Taste: So intensely mellow. It's strong, but incredibly nice. You get a strong bitterness that's well-melded with toffee, brown sugar, caramel, and faint butterscotch, but it's not buttery. The hops still impart grapefruit, faint spicy leafyness, which is really impressive. This is a great, complex, multi-layered mouth.
Mouthfeel: Perfect. Fluffy, smooth, even, immaculately fine-bubbled. There's not too much to say about this one. It's just absolutely perfect.
Drinkability: An incredibly smooth, mellow, and well-aged beer. It has a lot of great hop notes, despite its aged, well-hidden and still manageable alcohol, and a fantastic malt profile that ranges from sweet and bready to dark, dry and roasted. If you can get your hands on it, do, by all means.
11-12-2008 05:27:40 | More by CrellMoset
4/5 rDev -6.3%
Glowing metal copper orange with a frothy head of white eggshell whip. Aromas of deep roasted biscuit malts as well as green earth hops that are bit subdued by the malts actually. Taste is hoppy and super malty with great fresh bread qualities and a bit of an earthy spiciness as well. Mouthfeel is medium to thick, but a bit cloying. Drinkability remains good. Solid all the way through, reminded me more of an aged dreadnaught than a barleywine. Would probably be much better fresher or on tap.
09-24-2008 17:13:42 | More by francisweizen
3.75/5 rDev -12.2%
Bottle courtesy of warriorsoul, thanks again!
Beer pours a very dark amber color, kind of cloudy, with a faint off white head.
Aromas are very nice. I mostly notice sweetness, and hops. Lots of citrus, as well as sweet candied malts.
Taste is of dry bitterness, some slightly sweet malts, and boozy sharp alcohol. There is a slight tea like malt flavor, a touch creamy, sweet, and with a pine and earthy, yet weak hop finish. Alcohol pokes it's head up, and leaves a bit of a burn on the finish. Flavors seem a bit scattered, but still tasty.
Mouthfeel is good. It has a nice ful feel, thinkness is about right, and nice subtle carbonation.
Drinkability is pretty good. This is a beer that I can't quite put my thumb on. Some sips I like it... others... not so much. It's complex, but at the same time seems a bit messy. To me, it tastes more like an aged Double IPA. I can see why this one was scratched. Not bad, but needs work.
09-03-2008 04:36:29 | More by flexabull
4.3/5 rDev +0.7%
12 oz bottle
Had this one fresh, and the heat and bitterness were a mess, but one could see the potential underneath, waiting to come out.
well, it has emerged in all its glory. Delicious barleywine.I'll try not to think about the bottles I had fresh that I could be enjoying now.
Nearly emptied into a snifter, the beer is vibrant in the light but retains some mystery in its murky reddisn-brown depths. Head is slow to form in thin, creamy yellowish-tan fashion, but a stubborn ring and uneven cap remain until the bottom of the glass.
Opened several degrees too cold, it is sweet and simple, caramel and ample hop strength. Piney notes, suggestion of the bitterness to follow. Little alcohol noted, nothing of the harshness exhibited when fresh is here. As it warms the aroma opens up to a rich malty brew just balanced by citric and pine hops.
The bitterness when fresh has blended nicely without fading - it would be an injustice to this fine beer if they hadn't remained so prominent. The heat in my mouth is gone, and indeed only some warmth in the stomach as I drain the glass is indicative of the stength of this brew. A little vague dark fruitiness to the malt profile, plenty of caramel. The richness of the brew is something I'd expect after much more aging. Lingering sweet/bitter finish, sticky but short of cloying.
Overall quite sweet but they've retained balance without making it ridiculous. Kind of sticky, but for once I don't mind it a bit. Medium/full body, soft carbonation.
Drinkability is outstanding for the style, but let's not be silly - this is a sipper...a sipper I'd gladly have over and over again. Wait...One-time release? Good god, and now I'm out?...I may not sleep tonight.
08-23-2008 21:28:05 | More by udubdawg
4.33/5 rDev +1.4%
Pours a hazy deep brown/black cherry color with 1 finger of foamy tan head into a snifter. Good retention leaves some beautiful lacing. Smells of citrus hops, caramel and toffee, bready malts, dark fruits, spices, pine, and alcohol; if Yankee Candle made a fragrance that smelled like this, I'd let the future Mrs throw them all over the house. Tastes lightly of citrus rinds up front followed by a nice solid sweetness of caramel, toffee, and butterscotch followed by a nice meatiness of bread with a touch of spices. Finish is strong and fierce pine resins and alcohol. Medium to medium-full in body with good carbonation. Fairly smooth and sweet but packing loads of dry bitterness as well. This is what I think an awesome barleywine should be like. It's a shame I only got a 6 pack of this instead of a whole case.
08-14-2008 02:44:46 | More by HopDerek
4.43/5 rDev +3.7%
Bottle courtesy of akorsak poured into a snifter.
A: Pours a dark, murky amber with hints of orange. The head is small and short-lived, quickly leaving a collar and traces of lacing.
S: Smell is big and complex, with citrus hops up front giving way to a sizable caramel malt backbone. There is also a big dose of sugar and toffee in the nose as well.
T: Like the smell, citrus hops are the first thing I notice. There is an even bigger sugar presence in the taste with dark fruits as well. All of this is on top of the caramel malt backbone.
M: Mouthfeel is medium bodied and has a slight hop bitterness that tickles the tongue. A little on the thin side, but still nice and creamy.
D: Drinkability is very good on this one and I'm glad Adam gave me the opportunity to try this one. Very, very good beer.
08-04-2008 02:15:43 | More by gford217
4.47/5 rDev +4.7%
12oz received in trade with DIM.. big thanks. poured into my New Belgium snifter... Listening to John Digweed Transitions 3.
3 finger yellow/tan head dies back slowly leaving pretty sticky lacing. Brew looks thick.. dark brown with a distinct haze
Smells thick.. alot of hops.. mainly citrus with touches of floral... also more than enough caramel malts... but mainly the powerful hops.
Flavor is very smooth.. more malty than expected with still a big resinous hop palate midway through the swallow.. great caramel mixes perfectly into tongue coating oily hoppy goodness... finishes with an unexpected and pleasant yeasty fruitiness... sorta a mix between a kumquat and an overripe green grape... finish on this one is long and very nice.
Mouthfeel is thick with only enough carbonation to make me really want another sip. One of the best "easily" available Barley Wines out there... and better than many where the hype overruns its actual worth.
This is 2nd time I've had this.. the first was at our Boise BW tasting earlier this spring... I know this was one of my favorites.. but my palate was pretty shredded and I was pretty shredded by the end of the night.
Daniel is an excellent trader.. and I honestly wish I had better beers available to me here in Boise so I could tempt him more often. Huge Props to Daniel and Troeg's!!
06-18-2008 07:22:45 | More by JohnGalt1
4.65/5 rDev +8.9%
Big thanks to DIM for tossing this in with the Wild Devil Growler.
Pours a dark chestnut into my giant snifter with the tiniest head that disappears quickly leaving some lacing.
Smell: The best nose on a barleywine I've smelt in a long time, maybe it's the huge snifter, but I doubt it. Really Earthy, Citrus and Caramel dominate with Rum, Rasins, and Toffee.
Taste: Sweet, Fruity, Caramel, Woody(I'd swear this was oaked), a little bit of Dark Fruits, Pine, Citrus, Burnt Sugar aftertaste. Heavy and Smooth.
I want more!
05-23-2008 02:52:31 | More by TheBlackMallard
3.88/5 rDev -9.1%
Thanks to DIM for the opportunity to try this bad boy! Pours a murky brownish, red color with tons of haze. Thin tan head. Smells of alcohol and some sweet malts. Good bite for a barleywine. Not as smooth as I would expect, but not a bad thing. Nice smooth aftertaste, though of alcohol and caramel or toffee flavored malt. Pretty drinkable for a barleywine, with a semi-slick mouthfeel.
05-17-2008 02:08:55 | More by DrDogbeer
4.68/5 rDev +9.6%
This poured a dark brown and hint of red into my goblet glass. There's some lacing that's light brown and sticking to the walls of the glass.
The aroma is very sweet and malty with a hint of hops and citrus. There are some spices too. When I sip the beer, there's a sweet medium taste with a hint of alcohol on the finish. The carbonation is present but not overpowering. The flavoring is hoppy with a sweet malt backbone. It tasted bready, fruity (dark fruits) and some berries and caramel.
This is an outstanding barleywine - hopefully they will bottle this regularly.
05-11-2008 18:15:34 | More by bgramer
4.45/5 rDev +4.2%
this beer poured a cloudy brown with no head. there is a tan film over the top of the glass that looks like oil.
the smell is citrus hops, malty sweet, clove, spices.
the taste starts sweet and finishes hoppy with a very nice balance and noticable carbonation and alcohol.
the mouthfeel is chewy and oily.
i really enjoyed this barleywine and i'm glad i have a couple more of them.
05-08-2008 15:20:47 | More by deepsouth
4.1/5 rDev -4%
12 ounce bottle acquired in a trade with mymrnngjckt, thanks for giving me the opportunity to try this beer, drank during the Hornets game tonight after a lot of driving today, poured into my Chimay goblet
A-Dark red that is almost light brown, huge 1 3/4 inch inch yellowish off white head that stuck around for a long time, great retention, nice lacing at the top of my glass
S-Piney hoppiness was pretty dominant, also a ton of sweet malt, especially toffee and caramel, some bread too, also dark fruits including plums and raisins, floral accents, and a hint of berries
T-Wow was this hoppy and it did not fade up until the last sip, wish more barleywines were like this, more of a caramel malt taste than anything else in the middle, more pine and resin in the finish, did not change much as it warmed and luckily did not get any sweeter like I was worried about before, nicely balanced and left a nice dry taste consistently
M-Dry and bitter mouthfeel, especially in the finish, aggressive sensation on the tongue, taste lasted a long time, nice level of carbonation, medium body
D-The alcohol is present and could be hidden better, fairly smooth for a barleywine though, could have probably drank another bottle
By far the best of the scratch beers I have tasted, also one of the hoppier barleywines I had, this could have easily passed as an IPA if it was not for its darker color, would drink again, thought I heard somewhere that the ABV was 10.2 % but then again I could be wrong, wish Troegs decided to make this a standard beer, recommended
05-04-2008 06:45:27 | More by Floydster
4.33/5 rDev +1.4%
A- Pours a ruddy, reddish brown hue with a small, off white head.
S- Smells incredibly malty and sweet with caramel and raisins coming to the forefront. Definitely a piney hop character.
T- Suprisingly balanced and smooth. Starts off with raisins, caramel, moves to a sort of cassis flavor followed by a small amount of hops which fades to a lingering maltiness on the tongue.
M- Fairly viscous with a good amount of carbonation.
D- Based on the old reviews i've read, the hops have cooled down a lot on this one. It's drinking really nice right now. I might be inclined to drink it now for those who still have some! I'd be interested to see how the balance is in another 6 months. Too bad this isn't more available or I would seek out another bottle. Thanks go out to risser for this one.
04-26-2008 03:04:19 | More by Lothore
4.35/5 rDev +1.9%
Thanks goes out to davide169 for this brew.
Pours a very nice hazy amber color, nice carbonation, very nice one-finger creamy tan head, lots of nice sticky lacing follows. The nose is malty, a nice touch of dark fruits, and some caramel. The taste is slightly sweet, malty, slightly fruit, and some caramel. Medium body, a different ABW, not hoppy at all, very tasty. The alcohol is hidden very well. Very drinkable, a joy to drink.
04-18-2008 01:26:33 | More by Wasatch
4.72/5 rDev +10.5%
I was lucky enough to get the chance to try this one last night. Broke it apart from my complete set, because I really just wanted to see how it was holding up, and have been hearing this is now drinking wonderfully. Needless to say that was all I needed to here, and away I went.
Appearance - The pour was very nice, with a deep rich brown tinted amber taking the lead on this one and really putting on a show. Lots of cloudiness and haze, so thick making it almost opaque, but enough light was getting through to showcase the honey brown color of it. A nice two finger high head of white foam formed on the top, and gradually settled down into a thin layer that coated the top of the liquid for the remainder of the session. Very nice residual side glass presentation, overall this was looking like it was going to be a beast.
Smell - The aroma was much more hoppy then I was expecting, but definitely well enough balanced to stay within the style. Rich smells of deep citrus hops, which were coated in sugary malts just whiffed off the top of this one. Some candy like sugar smell way in the back, and earthy tones of grasses and grains. Very complex and sweet. As it warmed, some touches of maple syrup like sweetness were coming out, as was the slightest hint of almost what seemed like a color smell.
Taste - The flavor was really top notch, especially for such a young barley wine. Rich, deep, complex flavor profile that came off like I had been cellaring it for a few years. I was utterly shocked by how good this one was. Extremely well balanced, the first notes to hit were a mellowed and subdued citrus hoppiness. Shadows of how hoppy it must have been at first, this was now just aged perfectly. Lots of sweet hints rolling around throughout it, really showing off how good it could be now. Nice grainy malts making up the base of it, and just this nice sweet fruity vibe running thought-out. As it warmed hints of pears, and apples now becoming intermingled with a candy like sweetness and a really nice touch of warming alcohol. This was what a barley wine should taste like. Nice clean finish, with a touch of bitterness and just enough drying to bring you back for another round.
Mouthfeel - A very nice medium, bordering on full-bodied ale here. The carbonation was decent, but it did tend to lend itself to the syrup like side of things. Really quite nice though with never a thin moment to it.
Drinkability - Outstanding on this one. This was dangerously good. It was so ridiculous smooth that it was impossible not to take bigger and bigger sips as the night went on. I would have loved to have had another one of them right after I finished.
Overall, this was absolutely excellent and easily one of the best, sweeter barley wines I have had. I would have no issues at all recommending this one to anybody who is a fan of the style. By far my favorite of the scratch series to date, I would have to tell them to make this one again.
04-15-2008 23:40:58 | More by mikesgroove
4.45/5 rDev +4.2%
A: Cloudy brown with very little head.
S: Malty and caramel with a slight citrus/hop note.
T: Malty initially with a bitter hoppy finish. The alcohol is noticeable, but not detrimental. Great balance in this concoction.
M: Full bodied and supportive.
D: Excellent balance and an alcohol tinge that isn't overpowering make this a great drinking barleywine.
04-15-2008 13:44:37 | More by barefootbrewer
3.98/5 rDev -6.8%
A murky dark brown body pours thick out of the bottle settling into the glass. A two finger spice toned deep brown head is created. Nose is a nice musky mix of sweet hops and creamy qhelonic spices that include molases, cinnamon, pepper and pine wood. A dark spicey richness floods the taste buds with first sip. Unique and complex feel with burnt malt is there but not in a bad way. A lengthy bitter feel is wraped in dark fruit notes and hints of dark chocolate. Spiceness of this beer really swarms the taste buds but it is nicely balanced. Very biscuity also. Big and hearty beer as well as the mouthfeel it creates. Drinkability is slightly edgey due to the spiceyness.
04-02-2008 22:02:38 | More by SPLITGRIN
4/5 rDev -6.3%
Big thanks to fly for sharing this great beer! Nicely hopped aroma, but still balanced enough to distinguish itself from something like a DIPA. Rich almost spicy cinnamony like characteristic in the flavor, and quite well balanced I thought. Starts hoppier in the mouth, and finishes with a nice subtle dark sweetness. I got no heat from the alcohol, so fly's closet must be the perfect aging machine for this delicious beast. Definitely a barleywine worth seeking out.
03-20-2008 03:25:21 | More by JDV
4.38/5 rDev +2.6%
Pours a murky brown amber type color with spots of lacing and an off-white near tan head. Smell is large. Alcohol present throughout along with big bold hops and malts. Piney, sticky, sappy hops. Grapefruit rind. Brown sugar and caramel. Bready and doughy. Raisins, plum, dark fruit. Black cherry. Full bodied, oily and thick. Slight bitterness and dryness. Dangerously drinkable. My second bottle. A little more tamed in the hop department with citrus departing and malts beginning to take control, though not quite yet! I wish I had a couple more for later.
03-19-2008 03:49:19 | More by ncvbc
Scratch Beer 4 - 2007 from Tröegs Brewing Company
94 out of 100 based on 75 ratings.