Big Eddy Ryewine Ale - Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company
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Ratings: 121 | Reviews: 23 | Display Reviews Only:
1.93/5 rDev -49.1%
For some reason this has been languishing in my beer fridge for the past couple of months, which is about ten weeks longer than anything involving the word 'rye' usually sticks around. 12 oz. bottle from the Big Eddy series, which I've enjoyed in the past.
Pour is a deep red that wouldn't look out of place in a Silpada party necklace, with a fair amount of bubbles. Smell doesn't rep the name very well, just a straight shot of sweetness right in the brain pan.
Big Eddy Ryewine tastes more like MD 20/20 than a rye or barleywine. Overbearing sweetness brings the palate to its knees, & I can feel my dentist's hands twitching over his wallet. Bit of raisin, perhaps toffee, plum, but it's all drowned in the cradle by the domineering wash of sugary obnoxiousness. Too much to drink, really.
The first miss from Leine's that I can recall in a long time, but this is a doozy. Six times as much sweetness as necessary & no hint of rye. Ony because I have about twenty sweet teeth am I going to finish this.
12-17-2013 03:50:43 | More by maximum12
2.84/5 rDev -25.1%
12 fl oz 2013 vintage brown glass bottle with classy label art (especially for Leinenkugel's!) and branded black pry-off pressure cap acquired for $3.49 at a local (and overpriced) bottle shop and served into an Avery stem-tulip in low altitude Austin, Texas. Reviewed live. Expectations are average given the brewery, which tends to disappoint. Reviewed as a barleywine/rye beer hybrid since the label identifies it as a ryewine. Normally I'd go with the brewery's classification, but this is Leinenkugel's we're talking about. 10% ABV confirmed. From the neck: "12614. A21011228."
Served cold - straight from the fridge - and allowed to warm considerably over the course of consumption as I don't like my barleywines too cold. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.
A: No bubble show forms as it's poured.
Doesn't quite pour a true head, but it does have a floating semi-circle of near-head which is pale khaki in colour, thin, and lacks creaminess. It fades within 15 seconds, leaving no lacing.
All that's left to look at is the unappealing body which is a strange murky amber-brown colour and is painfully dull, lacking any vibrance or glow whatsoever even when backlit. Nontransparent and quasitranslucent. No floating yeast particles/sediment is visible.
Presentation overall is rather poor. This doesn't appear to be alive nor is it appealing; I'm a bit turned off. Appears undercarbonated, but I'm expecting overcarbonation given the brewery.
Sm: Toffee, caramel, marshmallow, the seeds of that stale cardboard note that tend to pop up in barleywines, brown malts, heavy residual sugars and a moderate accompanying sweetness, English biscuit malt, and cream. There's also some prominent prune and a hint of grape.
I search for rye (and/or its trademark subtle spiciness) and don't find it. I also have trouble identifying any discernable hop profile or yeast character. I do pick up some alcohol, but there're no other overt off-notes.
The toffee and marshmallow play well together and are a highlight for me personally, but I have my suspicions about how this will taste. It's a generally inoffensive aroma of mild strength. The aroma suggests a definite fruity stickiness.
T/Mf: The prune and grape dominate the flavour profile, obscuring the marshmallow and toffee notes - to the beer's detriment. The caramel also gets buried beneath the unbecoming fruitiness.
It has a plump, wet, sticky feel on the palate, which isn't a good presence for a style which excels with a lightly dry coarse texture. Carbonation is off, but I can't tell in which direction. It's filling, medium to full-bodied, and thick. Also a bit syrupy. The texture doesn't seem well-tailored to the taste, nor does it suit the style. I will say that it isn't as heavy on the palate as most beers in the style.
I pick up a bit of bread crust/light bready malts. Some vague nuttiness. Plenty of brown malts and a bit of English biscuit malt. I search for rye but the eponymous malt never shows up, nor does its trademark subtle spiciness.
Speaking of subtlety, there is none here. Nor is there much complexity, intricacy, or nuance. What little I was looking forward to after the aroma (the marshmallow and toffee primarily) got buried in the flavour profile. Grape rarely works in a barleywine, and Leinenkugel's sure isn't the brewery to brew the exception to the rule. Below average depth of flavour. Average duration and intensity of flavour.
No hop profile comes through. I don't pick up on any yeast character either. It has some alcohol presence, but I wouldn't call it boozy or hot.
Not oily, gushed, astringent, harsh, or rough.
Dr: Not quite the sipper I expected, but the syrupy thick mouthfeel does restrict drinkability and holds the beer back. I definitely wouldn't pick this beer up again (especially at this price point). Far from Leinenkugel's worst effort, but it's a pretty lackluster barleywine and has little to offer the discerning drinker. Even huge fanatics of the style are unlikely to be satisfied. I'd caution friends against purchasing this and doubt I'll remember it in a couple weeks. It's just a forgettable middle-of-the-road barleywine and feels like a Leinenkugel's attempt to squeeze some bucks from craft drinkers. Hey, they got my money.
Uninspired mediocre stuff.
02-12-2014 03:47:27 | More by kojevergas
3.28/5 rDev -13.5%
Pours a dark amber with little to no head. Boozy and a little bland to the nose. It starts off smooth and finishes the same. It tastes a lot like red wine. It's a little watery for my taste. The 10% alcohol is masked well but the taste doesn't wow me. It's not a bad beer but it leaves a lot to be desired. I guess this is Leinenkugel's attempt at a full-bodied Amber. I think they ought to stick to the fruity beers that made them famous.
06-07-2014 03:43:04 | More by Ryan_Graham
3.4/5 rDev -10.3%
Pours a deep brownish amber, mostly clear, with a yellowish lacing for a head. Dissipates to nothing.
Smells of rich caramel, toasted biscuit, toffee, vanilla, and figs.
Taste follows. Rich caramel and fruity malts with elements of figs, grapes, and pears. Some biscuit malt and maple as well.
Medium body with light stinging carbonation.
A fairly taste rich ale with decent enough flavor. A little overbearing, perhaps. Could stand to have a little more balance. Worth a try as long as it's not too hard to come by.
06-20-2014 22:20:12 | More by Cylinsier
3.45/5 rDev -9%
Ryewine pours a very dark reddish orange color with bright clarity. When backlit it appears more of a dark copper. Creamy layer of surface foam, a little bit of frothy lace forms around the edges. A thin veil of skim remains after the first few sips.
Aroma is mild, some light butter toffee, a vague floral hop note.
Sweet and buttery toffee, light astringency, slippery feel. Vegetal bitterness in the aftertaste, along with some mild alcohol heat, sort of jarring. As it warms it gets a little thin and medicinal. Lacking flavor and complexity, slightly cloying and one-dimensional. Reminds me of Point's Whole Hog Barleywine with a better hidden abv.
07-12-2013 01:20:29 | More by emerge077
Big Eddy Ryewine Ale from Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company
85 out of 100 based on 121 ratings.