Bardstown Brand Ale Aged In Bourbon Barrels - Olde Hickory Brewery
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Ratings: 43 | Reviews: 34 | Display Reviews Only:
3.58/5 rDev -11.6%
Bottle courtesy of yourefragile at last night's barrel-aged barleywine tasting. Served in a SAVOR snifter.
Pours a nice dark copper color with a thin light tan head that falls into a thin cap, eventually dispersing into a nice collar.
Nose carries quite a bit of caramel to pair with the strong bourbon character. A bit of oak and toffee there as well, adding a bit of complexity. Flavor is a bit muted, though the bourbon comes through fairly well. Light booze underneath good bourbon. A touch of oak and toffee plus a good dosing of caramel.
Medium body with low carbonation. Smooth, bourbon-filled finish.
Glad to try this, though not one of the best of the night. Worth trying, but probably not something to really seek out.
08-21-2011 13:44:43 | More by Thorpe429
4/5 rDev -1.2%
Appearance: Pours a crystal clear caramel color with a modest head that fritters away to a ringlet while leaving spotty lace
Smell: Caramel, bourbon and vanilla
Taste: Caramel, up front, with a developing bourbon/vanilla character; despite the age, the hops still appear just before the swallow and linger afterwards; plenty of oxidation due to the age, but this still has a nice blend of flavors
Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with subtle carbonation
Overall: Fours years in, this beer has some nice elements, but clearly needs to be consumed now as it is past its prime
05-09-2011 01:17:38 | More by brentk56
4.93/5 rDev +21.7%
rich brownish color with hints of ruby around the edges. A slight bit of light coming through revealed some haze and a touch of sediment. A towering head of almost three inches glazed over the top of the glass and hung around for what seemed like forever before it finally settled down into a nice one finger layer of impenetrable foam. Rich side glass presentation as well just capped off the entire thing just wonderfully. One of the best looking, if not the best looking Barley wine I have ever seen.
The aroma was a heavy hitter right from the start. Tons of bourbon just wreaking havoc, had to let it calm down, revealing some nice hints of woody and earthy tones. Hints of vanilla and of all things chocolate starting to come through now. Very complex and nice, this was shaping up to be a winner already. The flavor was just drop down beautiful. Loads of rich bourbon and wood flavors coming through in the most wonderful of arrangements. Caramel and molasses seamless blended with touches of chocolate and dark fruits. Really just a whole another level of barley wine.
12-04-2011 03:30:53 | More by mikesgroove
4/5 rDev -1.2%
Appearance: Pours a clear, dark amberish body with a small, thin ring of white bubbles.
Smell: Ah, sweet-smelling bourbon at the fore. Toasty caramel, some hints of fruits, and then it's back to bourbon! Gee, they ain't screwing around.
Taste: As you'd expect from the nose, it's all at once bourbon in the flavor. Warming, yes, but not grotesquely hot. Toasted caramel maltiness and, again, there's that fruit. Medium sweetness. Tastes of toasted oak and vanilla. A tannic pinch leads you to the increasingly warming finish.
Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation.
Drinkability: A solid bourbony barleywine. Word on the street is that this was their very first bottle release. If so, congrats, as this certainly wasn't a bad way to start things off.
10-21-2010 13:24:23 | More by ChainGangGuy
4.1/5 rDev +1.2%
Nickd717 shared this fine tick. 2007 vintage.
Sunset amber, lightly hazy and topped by a thin white head. The head quickly settles to a collar.
Nutty, caramelized nose. Plenty of oxidation in the form of sherry and cocoa powder. No heat left, this is mellow but still very aromatic. A little leathery, musty. Pleasant oak barrel character, though there's little in the way of bourbon.
Pretty nice on the tongue. A lot of oxidation, butterscotch, toasted nuts. Oak and sherry, notes of leather. Medium-full body. Heavy tannins, oak and oxidation in the finish. Only moderately sweet. Enjoyable stuff.
12-07-2010 17:48:14 | More by largadeer
3.88/5 rDev -4.2%
Thanks to sholland119 & vickster529 for this bottle, which came, nestled amongst other fine & fabulous bottles, as the result of a BIF. Halved with my wife, who was coincidentally the other half of the BIF team.
Vintage 2007 listed on the bottle. Pour is a quiet, turgid orangish red. Smell is very domesticated, sweet malts, a little toffee & bourbon.
This is both a subtle barleywine, & a sly use of barrel aging. Whoa. Scratch that second half. Upfront are sweet malts that check in toffee, which is ambushed, upstaged, & ultimately obliterated by the barrel. The bourbon actually hangs back for several seconds before presenting itself like a slow-burning jalapeno, & dominates the scene. It does back off a bit at the end, allowing a healthy dose of oak to shine through, & a bit of not-so-welcome oxidation. But that's quibbling.
Drinkability is good & poor. I feel intoxicated after a few sips, but it's a good one, like if I bounce off something I'll enjoy the bruise tomorrow. I didn't mention the heat in the taste, but it's there, in the barrel & the base both.
Unique use of the barrel, resulting in a beer that breaks out of the pack of standards. Very, very good bordering on excellent. Nice work.
01-15-2011 03:32:12 | More by maximum12
3.88/5 rDev -4.2%
This one came from wcudwight as part of the UGLY duckling BIF. He held up the BIF to wait for this ones release. I was all for holding it up for a new "UGLY" beer to be included in the BIF. On top of that I was the lucky receipent of his package. Let's see if it's worth the wait.
A: Pours a radiant color of amber with an average sized fizzy off white head. The head dies to a simple ring and leaves little to no lacing.
S: No doubt it was aged in Bourbon barrels this one is all about the bourbon. Tons of whiskey aroma with a hint of oak and vanilla. A touch of brown sugar sweetness and caramel malt as well. Rather Nice.
T: Well first and foremost there is the Bourbon. Some of Kentucky best Bourbon barrels must have been used. The sweet caramel malt is able to peak thru as is hints of dark brown sugar. A bit of booze burns in the finish and a hint of vanilla bean lingers in the finish.
M: Nice and thick, somewhat sticky. It has a bit of alcohol burn in the finish.
D: Being a barley wine aged in oak it is a sipper. I did not share this one, but probably should have. It's an awful extreme beer to keep to oneself. If your a Bourbon lover seek it out.
Overall: One of the better barreled barleywines I have ever had. The taste is big on the bourbon without being overthetop. Big bold flavors make this a real winner.
It was worth the wait!
Very thick and sweet/sticky finish, with a strong warming alcohol taste. Excellent beer.
04-28-2008 15:34:37 | More by tpd975
1.4/5 rDev -65.4%
Reviewed on 7/26/08. Bottle shared by goldtwins. Pours brown with no head. Aroma of bourbony vegetables. Flavor of squash, sweet potato, and heavy bourbon. Thick, syrupy, and ick. Drainpour. Nasty.
12-22-2008 00:08:36 | More by LilBeerDoctor
4.1/5 rDev +1.2%
22oz bottle acquired in trade with NachlamSie (thanks!). 2007 Vintage.
Poured a medium to deeper amber color with a smaller sized off white head. Initial pour was clear which clouded up towards the bottom of the bottle. Aromas of bourbon, vanilla, caramel, nuttiness, and some citrus. Tastes of bourbon, vanilla, caramel, some dark fruits, and wood. Some alcohol in the finish.
06-02-2009 13:09:28 | More by hopdog
3.88/5 rDev -4.2%
Thanks to kkipple for this one!
Bardstown Brand Ale pours a slightly hazy copper color. Backlighting gives it a deep red hue. A very light tan coat of bubbles covers the surface, but rises no further. They disappear quickly, and leave very light, sticky strands of lace behind.
The nose is pretty good, but isn't very diverse. It smells very sweet and full of caramel malt throughout. A moderate amount of bourbon is noted. It smells nice, and complements the sweet caramel notes well. Secondary notes of vanilla and oak are noted. I'm not really getting any fruit - dark, golden, or otherwise. Perhaps it's all buried. Alcohol is noticeable, but isn't overwhelming.
The flavor is good. It's definitely a step up from the nose. There's no questioning the base here - tons of caramel malt. It's very sweet, and even a little brown sugary. I don't know how long this spent in barrels, but it was just the right amount of time. The barrel-aging left a moderate bourbon flavor that's very nice. Oak and vanilla are secondary, but are definitely noted. They add nice depth and character to the mix. There are some fruity notes present. I am getting a little apple, but there's some tangy dark fruit there as well. Maybe a little raisin. Alcohol is definitely there in taste. It's not quite hot, but it's warm. Finishes sweet and tangy with a touch of bourbon.
The body is medium. Carbonation is relatively light, and gives it a smooth feel. For a 10% beer, it goes down relatively smooth, but it still feels big. No doubt about that.
Overall, Bardstown Brand Ale is good beer. It's not perfect. Some of the sweetness could be dialed back some. Maybe a little less alcohol. It's good stuff though. It's definitely held up well, and perhaps developed some over the past few years. I never tried it fresh, so I don't know for sure. Good stuff. Thanks a ton, Dan.
04-02-2011 02:45:35 | More by prototypic
4.1/5 rDev +1.2%
Big thanks to Jon for busting out this rarity at an impromtu tasting on 8/10.
a - nice murky orange with a thin off-white vanilla head. some streaky lacing, but not much activity. the color is quite nice.
s - really nice. caramel. toffee. some vanilla oak with bourbon. very smooth smelling.
t - a bit of heat, but seems to have held up really nicely. lots of toffee.
m - a bit of a bite for a beer of this vintage, but relatively smooth for a bourbon barrel barleywine.
o - overall, a reallyl nice treat. still has some heat, but the toffee and the wood is excellent.
08-17-2012 01:58:33 | More by cosmicevan
2.4/5 rDev -40.7%
2007 vintage. Maybe the only vintage? Only one I've seen anyway.
Pours a fairly weak head; bubbles are on the big side and scatter to a crown quickly. Color has the burnt candy-apple red color of many barleywines.
Immediately there is very strong bourbon presence in the aroma. With that comes some wood, but with all that alcoholic whisky-ness, it seems the natural barleywine characteristics have been snuffed out. Maple syrup and vanilla are barely detected through the fog. Still, it's a bourbon barrel-aged big beer, so it can be expected.
Flavor is more of the same, but unfortunately a bit more one-dimensional. Just about any real barleywine characteristic is suffocated under bourbon and wood, wood and bourbon. Some vanilla sneaks in, as does a decent flash of caramel. A bit astringent/green/grassy in the finish. But it's pretty much unbalanced in favor of the bourbon and the barrel.
Good feel here. A mild stickiness, but mostly round and smooth and without the kind of thickness one might expect of a beer like this. Decent carbonation, neither too intrusive nor too laid back.
Okay, it's a bourbon barrel-aged beer, it's going to have some of those characteristics. I get that. But this one hides the barleywine too much, to the point where I'd much rather have tasted the barleywine itself. Bourbon barrel-aging isn't necessarily a ticket to greatness, and this beer proves that. Hard to get down...couldn't even finish.
09-09-2010 21:55:19 | More by Metalmonk
4.43/5 rDev +9.4%
On tap. Orange/amber pour with a creamish head. Quite a bit of vanilla and oak araomas, some sweet malt, raisin molasses. Mouthfeel is quite sticky, but not real thick. A sipper for sure. Loads of malt, caramel and vanilla barrel in the flavors. If you want a west coast barleywine, you will not like this. Luckliy I did not, so I found this to be excellent. An under-rated Enlgish barleywine. Slight char finish. This is the first item bottled by OHB, so I bought a couple as well.
12-18-2010 19:21:17 | More by Bung
4.6/5 rDev +13.6%
2007 vintage. Thanks again to Ratman for another awesome vintage beer experience. Poured from the bomber a nice burnished orange color with a decent white head. Great bourbon, oak, vanilla and brown sugar aromas. Great bourbon flavor on the palate, nicely integrated with the sweet malt, caramel and alcohol. This beer has aged wonderfully, and the bourbon character is still (obviously) very prevalent. I love most of these barrel aged barley wines, and think this style works better than most in the wood.
06-12-2010 23:50:44 | More by emmasdad
3.58/5 rDev -11.6%
Bottle says 2007 vintage. Pours an amber brown with small tan head. Bourbon is quite upfront in the smell, with faint hints of hops. Some of the bitterness is still there, but lots of bourbon. Has a little bit of a boozy taste which hurts the drinkability, but it is still smooth.
08-12-2010 14:00:45 | More by kwjd
4/5 rDev -1.2%
Thanks to scifan for this in a trade. 2007 bottle.
A: Hazy orange burnt color. Minimal white head with a touch of lacing. This was a really nice looking beer and my decription fails to capture that.
S: Bourbon up front. Nice balance of malt sweetness and the barrel. Touch of the pure oak with a little bit of vanilla.
T: Bourbon up front again. Great balance. Nice malt backbone. Little bit of molasses in there as well.
M: Little bit sticky. Well carbonated.
D: I went into this beer with zero expectations and I was really impressed. This was a nice example of how to do a bourbon barrel beer.
04-13-2010 22:47:18 | More by aerozeppl
4.38/5 rDev +8.1%
A: pours a slightly hazy copper with a finger of off-white head that fades into a thin ring with no lacing.
S: lots of caramel and vanilla up front. Oak and bourbon notes follow. Smells great and smooth.
T: similar to the aroma, tons and tons of caramel, vanilla, oak, and bourbon. Super smooth finish with slight yeast and sweet bread notes.
M: thick body with lowish carbonation, this beer is smooth and thick without being cloyingly sweet.
O: a really good beer. Not terribly complex, but delicious and smells great while being super smooth.
02-16-2012 00:56:12 | More by n2185
4.35/5 rDev +7.4%
Cherry wood in color. With some ruby. Somewhat resembles a red wine. Highly carbonated head rises to 1/2" and then quickly falls. One small ring of white lace clings to the top.
Bourbon, bourbon, bourbon in the aroma. Also some sweet malts.
Big thick malty flavor. Raisin bread. And of course bourbon. The bourbon flavor is long lasting and adds to the excellent finish. I love the way the flavor just lingers after each sip.
Big, filling beer. Thick mouthfeel.
It's a slow sipper but I think it's easy enough to drink given the style and type of beer it is.
This is the first bottled offering from OHB and they couldn't have chosen a better one.
03-18-2008 03:02:28 | More by wcudwight
3.63/5 rDev -10.4%
Thanks to Kels for splitting the bottle.
22oz. brown bomber poured into a snifter.
A: Deep amber pour, nearly on the copper side. Moderate head on the pour with some retention. Some lacing.
S: Lots of good bourbon aroma with nice barrel notes. Not a huge, dank barrel aroma but assertive and fitting. Rich malts, light sweetness, and maybe some vanilla.
T/M: Big bourbon flavor... a bit too much. Pretty hot, almost like it's fresh. The barrel is still tasty and in control. Hops are mostly gone but a bit of aged hops stuck around. Rich malts. Body is medium full, maybe a bit sticky, with mild carbonation.
D: The massive bourbon definitely lowers the drinkability quite a bit.
07-26-2010 03:16:50 | More by pwoods
4.47/5 rDev +10.4%
Thanks to uncleJedi for this treat.
I split the bottle with a few friends into snifters. I was greeted with a nice two finger off white head sitting on top of an amber body brew. There was a slight oxidized aroma coming thru in the nose I chalk it up to age even though the bottle was waxed. (so drink them if you got them) you still are getting a nice bourbon vanilla note from the barrel and of coarse you great sweet caramel from the malts. The flavor is the same as the nose only in reverse. You first get the sweetness followed up with a good vanilla bourbon note. The mouth feel is thick and syrupy so it translates into a great sipping drink. Overall I enjoyed this brew and would love to revisit it again.
04-22-2011 15:20:59 | More by joepais
Bardstown Brand Ale Aged In Bourbon Barrels from Olde Hickory Brewery
89 out of 100 based on 43 ratings.