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Irish Walker - Olde Hickory Brewery

Not Rated.
Irish WalkerIrish Walker

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

249 Ratings
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 249
Reviews: 86
rAvg: 3.93
pDev: 9.41%
Wants: 40
Gots: 90 | FT: 16
Brewed by:
Olde Hickory Brewery visit their website
North Carolina, United States

Style | ABV
English Barleywine |  10.14% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: oberon on 12-25-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 249 | Reviews: 86 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of joe1510
4/5  rDev +1.8%

22oz Bomber
$9.99
Brawley's - Charlotte

2014 Vintage

Irish Walker is chestnut brown as it pours with a ruby hue but when the glass is full it's flat out dark, basically as dark brown as brown can get. A frothy milk chocolate crown sits atop the body. The beige foam doesn't grow much but does stick around for ages and leaves puffy drink lines down the glass.

This barleywine is English all the way. Sugary plum and raisins in spades, orange marmalade, black cherry, a veritable fruitcake in a glass. Deep, rich caramel and a drizzle of molasses bring through some sweetness though a touch of toffee is included as well. Soda bread and cashews add more depth still. This beer just keeps getting deeper and deeper. My descriptors barely scratch the surface but are the most noticeable.

The flavor profile is much the same, staggering in its depth. Deep caramel lays the foundation and gets richer as it works through until you're finally left with molasses. Dark fruits; figs, raisins, plums, black cherries all pop up in the front, that fruitcake again. Soda bread and tea leaf hops join the fray mid palate while flashes of stone fruit hit. The finish is a touch boozy which adds to the overall dessert quality of this beer, port like. With the booze comes back the dark fruits. Depth.

The body on this beast of a beer is full and robust. The sweetness, luckily, vanishes fairly quickly and actually dries up in good time. Carbonation is soft and helps boost the velvety feel. This beer, while most safely served in small sample sizes, is so easy to consume I would consider it dangerous.

I thoroughly enjoy a good English style barleywine and Irish Walker is just that. The complexity is immense. The depth, staggering. The....Nevermind. It's good. Go get some!

joe1510, Aug 30, 2014
Photo of lillitnn92
3.25/5  rDev -17.3%

lillitnn92, Friday at 03:03 PM
Photo of DrChadly
3.96/5  rDev +0.8%

DrChadly, Nov 19, 2014
Photo of cfrobrew
4/5  rDev +1.8%

cfrobrew, Nov 18, 2014
Photo of humuloner22
4.46/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Irish Walker (2014)

I had seen this beer around for years and then last spring I decided I would try it and damned if it wasn’t there. So, I waited around and then it popped up sometime around the summer, at least that is when I bought this one. I had read that barleywine’s do better with some age, so I have waited until now to try this one. So, it’s got like 6 months on it. I had only tried one barleywine previous to this one, at least that I was aware of.

Appearance: Pours with a dark rich reddish brown color. Beautiful in the glass. I decent amount of head that settles into virtually nothing. Just a film over the top of the beer once it relaxes. (4.75)

Smell: Sweet, boozey, and dark fruits dominate the aroma. It almost has a boozy prune juice smell going on. (4.25)

Taste: Dark fruits dominate this one. Its sweet, and it is boozy I would recommend that you share this, as it is 10% abv. Not that you couldn’t but this is a very rich beer. It actually says on the bottle to share with friends. I get, a lot of those winter dark fruits, almost fruitcake like flavors going on. This is called an English style barleywine because it has less hop dominance than American styles and I although I have not had many of this style, I would have to agree there is no hops in this one, if there is, you certainly cannot taste them. Plumbs, figs, cereal notes dominate. In the aftertaste you get a bit of hop assertiveness but it is very mild. (4.5)

Overall: This is a well made beer, by one of my favorite local brewers. I may have to grab a few more up to cellar, before they are gone again. One note they have just began the transition to 12/ 6 packs and they have changed the label style. Personally I kind of like the older labels. I noticed the Lindley Park, which was one of their more sought after beers had the wax omitted and I suspect the Event Horizon will too. This may be the last of the, shall I say “reserve” beers from them that has the wax coating around the cap. If that interests you, I doubt next years will have it! (4.5)

humuloner22, Nov 17, 2014
Photo of EuphonicHops
3.65/5  rDev -7.1%

EuphonicHops, Nov 13, 2014
Photo of msscott1973
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%

msscott1973, Nov 13, 2014
Photo of RavenForBeer
5/5  rDev +27.2%

RavenForBeer, Nov 08, 2014
Photo of JamesBell
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%

JamesBell, Nov 07, 2014
Photo of BrahptimusPrime
3.5/5  rDev -10.9%

BrahptimusPrime, Nov 05, 2014
Photo of asams10
3/5  rDev -23.7%

asams10, Nov 03, 2014
Photo of ZEB89
4.25/5  rDev +8.1%

ZEB89, Oct 10, 2014
Photo of st9647v3
4.25/5  rDev +8.1%

st9647v3, Oct 07, 2014
Photo of CBodamer
4/5  rDev +1.8%

CBodamer, Oct 06, 2014
Photo of kjkinsey
4/5  rDev +1.8%

kjkinsey, Oct 05, 2014
Photo of Texasfan549
4/5  rDev +1.8%

Texasfan549, Oct 05, 2014
Photo of MalibuKenny
3.7/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

T: malty molasses sweetness, but as soon as that wears off an overpowering bitterness from the hops come through. Really more of an American Barleywine than English

M: Many detected a medium body, but I detect both heavy body and thin body, varying in between sips

MalibuKenny, Oct 05, 2014
Photo of TheBrewViking
4.25/5  rDev +8.1%

TheBrewViking, Oct 01, 2014
Photo of argock
3.83/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 22 oz wax-sealed brown bomber into a clear glass snifter. 2010 vintage. Purchased at Peabody's (Boone, NC) and cellared at about 60-65F for several years.

A: Fairly clear medium-brown with short cap of light beige head fading pretty quickly to leave a few blobs of lace.

S: Malty aroma with a heavy dose of medium and darker, burnt caramel, herbal and floral hops, not much in the way of fruity esters but a bit of mustiness, faint oxidation but nothing off-putting.

T: Really nice full-flavored English barleywine, not at all hot but very well-balanced. Definintely favors the caramel style of barleywine, not much for fruitiness but a lot of darker crystal malts leaving a slightly sticky burnt caramel character along with some leafy, herbal hoppiness, almost tobacco-like. Alcohol is well-hidden. A shade under medium bitterness. A delight to drink.

M: Creamy medium-full body with low-medium carbonation and reasonably dry finish despite the sweetness and nearly full body.

O: I really enjoyed Irish Walker and it makes me want to look through the cellar to find my other bottle (2011 vintage) and give it a try to see how long I should hang onto this in the future!

argock, Sep 28, 2014
Photo of PhatAtUT
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%

PhatAtUT, Sep 23, 2014
Photo of KG710
4/5  rDev +1.8%

KG710, Sep 23, 2014
Photo of SportsandJorts
4/5  rDev +1.8%

Appearance: Mahogany color. Almost no head but some tan foam forms. Does not stay around. Completely hazy and opaque. Some redness to it. 3.5/5

Smell: Strong caramel sweetness. Strong alcohol. Hoppy bitterness. 4/5

Taste: Starts with maple syrup. Some caramel and sweetness. Lots of barley and bread. Some alcohol. Good strong hops. 4/5

Mouthfeel: Syrupy. Sweet but balanced by bitterness. Some warmth. 4.25/5

Overall: a good english barleywine, on the hoppier side for the style but in a good way. definetly a good value from what I hear it costs and a good year round big beer. it'd be a good beer to throw in the cellar and play around with.

SportsandJorts, Sep 05, 2014
Photo of HookemHoos
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%

HookemHoos, Sep 05, 2014
Photo of atrocity
3.5/5  rDev -10.9%

atrocity, Sep 05, 2014
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Irish Walker from Olde Hickory Brewery
88 out of 100 based on 249 ratings.