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Blue Point Old Howling Bastard - Blue Point Brewing Company

Blue Point Old Howling BastardBlue Point Old Howling Bastard

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

245 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 245
Reviews: 132
rAvg: 3.86
pDev: 10.88%

Brewed by:
Blue Point Brewing Company visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-19-2002)
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Ratings: 245 | Reviews: 132 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of BarleyBeatsGrapes


4.36/5  rDev +13%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

First off, I like barley wines. I've had a few different brands and I overall like the style. Old Howling Bastard ("OHB") is an excellent representative of the style. I agree with other posters here that there are better barley wines out there but this is a great brand to use as the "standard" representative of the style. There will likely be better brands and there will likely be worst brands depending on your taste but the OHB is a great, balanced, everyday barley wine suitable for most palettes. An extremely enjoyable beer!

Serving type: bottle

02-02-2014 23:17:37 | More by BarleyBeatsGrapes
Photo of Dodo2step


3.91/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

P- Wegmans in Mechanicsburg, PA

A- 3 finger luscious head that peaks out above the wine glass I poured it into. that's right, the bottle suggests a wine glass. a light brown with copper tones that is somewhere between opaque and clear.

S- sweet caramel malts dominate the nose at first. it actually smells like a caramel chew candy. alcohol is the other smell I gather.

F- sweet and sour caramel malts with alcohol. brown sugar and raisins/dates comes out on the back end. I also gather some sort of citrus hop as well.

M- booze booze and booze. Warm and strong alcohol feeling as it goes down the throat. In the mouth it feels slightly overcarbonated but the flavors compensate well for that.

O- A good barleywine. it has been awhile since I have had a barleywine and this one I would have again. The caramel really sells me on this beer.

Serving type: bottle

02-01-2014 22:02:01 | More by Dodo2step
Photo of sulldaddy


4.26/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Drinking a 2008 bottle at cellar temp. The bottle is wax sealed capped 750 ml.

I pour the beer into a stemless wine glass and get a rich chestnut colored beer with some ruby highlights and minimal beige head. There is a large sediment bar at the bottom of the bottle so I decant towards the end and leave the sediment behind.
The aroma is dark fruits and malt with toffee and brown sugar, I also get just a little booziness. No hiding that this is a big beer so far.

The first sip reveals a sticky thick body with minimal spacious carbonation. Coats my palate with each swallow and is a fairly heavy beer on the feel.
Flavor is what I got on the nose, with malt up front caramel, brown sugar, plums, raisins, general sweetness. This rolls to a slightly dry and bitter finish, which I attribute to the alcohol more than hops as I havent found them anywhere throughout this sampling.
This is a big robust beer yet somehow I finish my glass fairly quickly and am surprised when the bottle is gone.
I would buy this again and wonder how different it was fresh?

Serving type: bottle

12-28-2013 05:19:00 | More by sulldaddy
Photo of rdilauro


4.13/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

For starters, Barley wines have never been a big hit with me. I've tried a number of them and also felt that the malt just hit you in the face too much.
So, this one started off on the right foot. The pour was clean, dark brown, not black but you could see the fullness of this beer. The aroma no question was of malt and I also picked up a bit of chocolate and something spicy, but could not figure that out.
The initial taste was bold and full. But it was very balanced, there was just enough malt, just enough body and the abv helped balance everything.
The finish was smooth and very satisfying

So now, after about a dozen or so barley wines, I have find another one that I have liked. Thats two for me!

Serving type: bottle

12-22-2013 23:08:50 | More by rdilauro
Photo of jeonseh


4.35/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A - Orange brown liquor color with a small head and light carbonation. Glows warmly

S - Orange, caramel malt, brown sugar, malt sweetness. Light lemon and alcohol as well

T - Caramel sweetness up front with brown sugar and dates. Orange hops and a lemon lemon from the hops, rock candy, and light alcohol near the back end as well as rowok the back end Really a great balance between sweetness of the caramel and dark fruit and the light bittering properties of the hops.

M - Medium body with decent carbonation and a thick syrupy body. Finish is light astringent

O - This was a rather impressive non-BA barleywine that has a great balance between sweet, malty flavors and the fresh hoppiness found in some barleywine. This is definitely one of the better hoppy barleywines that I've had.

Serving type: on-tap

10-22-2013 03:25:31 | More by jeonseh
Photo of facundoCNB

New Jersey

4.05/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

a beautiful clean amber pour with 2 fingers of detergent looking off-white head, slow dissipation, nice creamy looking lacing left behind. smells very sweet, hints of caramel, raisins, barley, oak, vanilla, banana. a somewhat bitter flavor up front.. almost charred wood feel to it.. banana, strawberries, raisins, caramel, honey, barley. full/medium body, easy to drink with medium carbonation.

overall this is a pretty nice barleywine.. nothing out of the ordinary, but it's one of the better local ones i've had. definitely one of the better blue point beers as well.

Serving type: bottle

10-18-2013 00:48:44 | More by facundoCNB
Photo of superspak


4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 ounce bottle into tulip glass, bottled in late 2012. Pours lightly hazy red-orange color with a 1 finger dense cream colored head with good retention, that reduces to a thin cap that lingers. Light spotty lacing clings around the glass. Aromas of big caramel, brown sugar, toast, toffee, biscuit, raisin, floral, pine, light nuttiness, and toasted/floral earthiness; with some light spicy alcohol. Very nice aromas with good balance and complexity of malt, hop, and fruity notes; with good strength. Taste of caramel, toast, biscuit, toffee, brown sugar, raisin, floral, pine, nuttiness, and floral/toasted earthiness. Fair amount of earthy pine bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of caramel, brown sugar, toast, toffee, biscuit, floral, pine, raisin, nuttiness, and toasted earthiness on the finish for a while. Damn nice balance and complexity of malt, hop, and fruit flavors; with an excellent bitterness/sweetness balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Light-medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a creamy, slick, and lightly sticky mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a light warming noticed after the finish. Overall this is an excellent barelywine. All around great balance and complexity of malt, hop, and fruity notes; and very smooth to sip on for the ABV. A very enjoyable offering.

Serving type: bottle

08-20-2013 04:45:24 | More by superspak
Photo of RickS95


4.31/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

22 ounce bomber

Good looking for the style. Muddy brown and thick, looks like nasty river water after a good storm. The head is a dingy white, a finger thick at its best, and leaves a thin lace.

One of the best smelling barley wines, its full of malt with a ryeness to it. Also, there's a hit of citrus which isn't something I expected, but made for a nice surprise. Very floral with a splash of vanilla.

Very pleasant taste for a barley wine, English toffee comes to mind. Again, there's a vanillaish taste. Lots of malt as you'd guess. A caramelly finish. Hops are definitely there, but don't overwhelm.

It's smooth and buttery, and exceptionally smooth for the type. There's a hint of sweetness early on that turns to citrus before the bitterness takes over. Along the way, a buttery feel works in conjunction with the citrus and bitterness for a pleasant drinking experience. Full bodied, the high alcohol is well hidden, though you'll still want to sip it.

Overall it's a good beer, much better than their oatmeal stout I had last night. It's easy to drink and goes down smoothly.

Serving type: bottle

05-12-2013 03:02:07 | More by RickS95
Photo of DevilsCups

New York

3.5/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle to tulip.

A - On the lighter side of the barleywine spectrum. Light brown/mahogany, off white head that dissipates pretty quick. Nice lacing and soapy layer on top. Only slightly hazy.

S - Big bready malts. Almost like a white bread crust. Slight red licorice in the back. Pretty nice. Not hop forward at all.

T - Bready malts with that red licorice taste. Like a twizzler. Very pleasant. Faint hops on the back end.

M - Thinner side, but not overly so. Fairly middle of the road.

O - Not too bad. Worth a try for sure. Tame for a barleywine, so it would be a good beginner brew.

Serving type: bottle

03-06-2013 01:33:26 | More by DevilsCups
Photo of Suds


3.98/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer is a chestnut colored liquid with a very slim head. Mostly still and very clear. The aroma is of malt and some booze. The taste is warming, sweet, and had a firm mid taste of bitter hops. Resiny hop flavor through the finish. Sweet. Full in body. A good, but not great, barley wine.

Serving type: bottle

03-03-2013 05:07:29 | More by Suds
Photo of beerluvr

Ontario (Canada)

3.93/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Nice eggshell white head melts into hazy deep copper liquid contained in the appropriate 0.3l Victory snifter. Deep doughy/biscuity sweetness then the hop makes itself known in the nose...very much the "olde Englishe" style 'wine. The taste is long and complex, more biscuity notes and hefty sweetness here, hops are an afterthought yet noticeably felt on the tongue, not very much alcohol detected given its heft. Finishes long and warming, nice interplay of hop and malt, malt winning out. Very nice authentic English style. I see a malt bomb here with cellaring. Good job Blue Point!

Serving type: bottle

02-02-2013 03:20:48 | More by beerluvr
Photo of Etan


3.5/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5


A: Pours a cloudy light caramel color with a small off-white head.

S: A little cardboard oxidation, treacle, sweet caramel, dried peaches.

T: Cooked apples, leafy bitterness, molasses, brown sugar, some bready malt.

M: Medium-bodied with moderate carbonation.

O: A decent hoppy barleywine, but it's getting a bit of a stale feel to it from the oxidation creeping in.

Serving type: bottle

01-05-2013 03:58:40 | More by Etan
Photo of MickeyCass

4.23/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very nice Barleywine. Poured from a 22oz. bottle into a snifter. Hazy reddish-brown with a nice finger of pale white head. Aroma about ad good as it gets. Fresh- baked bread with a hi t of sweetness and alcohol on the nose. Fairly similar in terms of taste. A little thick but deliciously good. Not THE best Barleywine style ale I've had, but pretty high on the list!

Serving type: bottle

12-31-2012 01:37:54 | More by MickeyCass
Photo of jt31914


4.15/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer was surprisingly good to me. It has a little bit of a light color, but the head and retention is nice. The lacing is beautiful for a Barleywine.

The smell is the best part. Nice Bready aroma that is a bit unusual for a barleywine but is very pleasant and enhances the beers flavor.

The taste is very nice and i was surprised by how delicious the beer was. it is not my favorite barleywine, but it is certainly an upper tier barleywine. A very nice bread character from the Vienna malt and a nice hop presence. The booze is not overwhelming and overall i find this to be a stellar barleywine.

Serving type: bottle

12-28-2012 01:16:14 | More by jt31914
Photo of cvm4


3.85/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a bright amber but murky. Thin, one finger head that's eggshell in color.

S - Malty, candy sweet, spices and slight piney hops.

T - Spices & burnt caramel start you off. Turns fruity with maltsand ends slightly bitter.

M - Medium bodied & medium carbonation.

O - Pretty good barleywine...

Serving type: bottle

12-08-2012 01:49:21 | More by cvm4
Photo of weeheavybutdieting


3.75/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Growler from Ale Yeah, Roswell, GA poured in a Sam Adam's Lager glass

A: Copper penny. Closer to a pale ale than a barleywine.

S: Mostly toasted malt scent with a hint of caramel and spice.

T: You definitely get a full taste of the hoppy spiciness up front. It quickly gives way to the alcohol esters and then rolls into the creamy and sweet malt on the back end. Not an overly sweet barleywine at all. Really quite balanced for the style.

M: A light and crisp feel. Fairly refreshing. Probably from the specific gravity.

O: This is a good well balanced beer. It is a good representation of a not to sweet not to toasted malty barleywine. If you avoid barleywines for the sticky sweetness then you owe it to yourself to have a go with this one.

Serving type: growler

12-02-2012 00:49:50 | More by weeheavybutdieting
Photo of nrbw23


3.88/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours a murky copper color with a faint ruby hue to it. A nice white head pops up, head has pretty solid retention and leaves some really nice layered lacing.

S- Smell is pretty sweet malty and boozy. A good amount of spices come forward and a bit of Earthy hops.

T- Quite a bit of spice up front with some burnt sugars and toffee. A fair amount of tropical fruits too.

M- Medium in both carbonation and body.

O- Not too bad by any means. Pretty solid for the style for sure.

Serving type: bottle

08-15-2012 09:48:19 | More by nrbw23
Photo of jmdrpi


3.88/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle, no date.

appears a hazy dark copper in color, off-white head. good head retention and lacing. smell is nice mix of sweet crystal malt and earthy hops. nice.

tastes of sweet caramel, biscuity malt flavors. a fair amount of spicy hop finish. medium body, medium carbonation. appropriate for the style.

overall - a tasty barleywine, dead on.

Serving type: bottle

08-11-2012 03:57:21 | More by jmdrpi
Photo of tdm168

North Carolina

3.95/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at World of Beer Raleigh. Served in a snifter.

A - dark amber with a soft, dense, off white head that has great retention

S - fruity, citrusy, candy sugar

T - citrus, bread, alcohol, bitter, piny, sugar

M - warm, medium bodied, a bit thin at times

This is a decent barleywine, though a bit thin. It has a nice hop character which helps to counter the sweet sugar. A fuller body would help this tremendously, but I enjoyed it nonetheless.

Serving type: on-tap

07-27-2012 00:46:34 | More by tdm168
Photo of Tobe

3.15/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a ruby color with no head. There is a minor haziness to the appearance.

The aroma is sweet with a nice floral quality. There is a hint of alcohol on the nose. The flavor is full and a bit earthy. The hops are present in the flavor. A dry finish and a mouthfeel of hops coats the palette. A warming effect completes this experience.

After the beer rested there was a taste of fruitiness coming through.

Serving type: bottle

07-23-2012 20:59:30 | More by Tobe
Photo of Greywulfken

New York

4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This solid barleywine might suffer from the fact that I've been finding (and drinking, ...duh) Firestone's Sucaba barleywine lately.

A: deep amber gold, ample head

S: candi sugar, toffee, caramel malt

T: sweet caramel, toffee, some spicy vanilla

M: rich, syrupy

O: great local product, right there with other good American barleywines

Serving type: bottle

05-15-2012 23:40:16 | More by Greywulfken
Photo of cosmicevan

New York

4.5/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

stopped by the brewery to grab some swag and scope out old howling bastard on cask and was pretty surprised that I have no review on this one asi had it many times. brew showed up a deep amber brown with a thin creamy head. has a wonderful caramel nose and taste. the body is super creamy as I would expect on cask. cask really works for this beer. there is a subtle bitterness to the finish that is just right. one of my fav barleys and fav local beers on cask, gotta love it! what a treat!

Serving type: cask

05-11-2012 19:47:28 | More by cosmicevan
Photo of kylehay2004


4.15/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: single finger head with poor retention on a amber with golden hue hazy body.

S: light on the nose for a barleywine with mostly sweet caramel malts and candied fruits. Intermixed floral, toffee notes.

T: This one is very good. The booze aren't too prominent. The malt profile is nice and the tangy candied fruit notes mesh well with the malts.

M: nicely smooth. medium body and moderate carbonation.

Overall: a fairly drinkable barleywine with a complex flavor and the right degree of booze.

Serving type: on-tap

05-10-2012 01:16:56 | More by kylehay2004
Photo of macrosmatic


3.68/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Reviewed from notes. Had on-tap at Talking Pint in Riverview, FL. Served in a DFH pint glass.

A: Copper to brown, quite hazy, with low visible carbonation and a big creamy off-white head.

S: Caramel sweetness, some toasted malts, boozy and sweet, with some toffee and hints of butterscotch.

T: Follows the nose well. A medium kick of booze first, then sweet toasted caramel, sweet malts with a bit of toasted character, and some butterscotch at the end with the alcohol burn. Nearly no hop character in this one - just a bit of resin bitterness. A bit of oxidized flavor at the end as it warms.

M: Medium body, carbonation sensation on the low side. Alcohol presence quite noticeable but average for the style.

O: Nothing objectionable here, but the oxidation and lack of hop character makes me wonder how long the keg had been around (it kicked at the end of my pour). Recommended to try, but doesn't begin to compare to the best in class.

Serving type: on-tap

04-10-2012 02:39:37 | More by macrosmatic
Photo of alk3kenny


3.5/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Overall I enjoyed this beer... Smells sweet caramel notes hops are present... Great ruby color nice thick tan head, creamy... Tastes sweet pretty standard barely wine very boozy alcohol is def present in this 10 percenter Slightly above average barely wine for me not one I'd run back to get but would def pick up if I couldn't find one of my favs on hand.

Serving type: bottle

04-10-2012 00:18:03 | More by alk3kenny
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Blue Point Old Howling Bastard from Blue Point Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 245 ratings.