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Old Blarney Barleywine - Moylan's Brewery

Not Rated.
Old Blarney BarleywineOld Blarney Barleywine

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

311 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 311
Reviews: 236
rAvg: 3.85
pDev: 12.21%
Wants: 13
Gots: 8 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Moylan's Brewery visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Quaffer on 02-26-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 311 | Reviews: 236 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of budsboy


4.22/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Dark, deep amber with a big and sticky tan head.

Roasted malt, dark fruits, piney hops and sweet candy sugar mix with alcohol aromas.

Full, round sweet malt with a balance of piney hop and bitter spiciness. Raisen, prune flavors underneath and a warming shot of alcohol.

Smooth, almost creamy, full-bodied mouthfeel.

I really enjoyed this one. Warming and cozy barleywine. A sipper. All around solid and more balanced than many. Very nice.

Serving type: bottle

01-14-2007 03:58:32 | More by budsboy
Photo of lackenhauser


3.5/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Somewhat muddy in appearance. Hazy, orangish hue to it. No real head to speak of. Muted aroma-somewhat winey and musty. Tinge of alcohol. Dry and earthy flavors dominate. Lacks the burst of hops and sweet malt that I come to expect from a US version-especially a west coast barleywine. More winey and oxidized then anything. mouthfeel is ok-nothing to rave about. A rather ho hum version of a US barleywine. I have had better and better from this brewery.

Serving type: bottle

01-14-2007 01:08:53 | More by lackenhauser
Photo of dblinkhorn


3.65/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance - Pours with a thick and creamy off-white head that slowly dissipates, settling at a thin cap of creamy foam atop the brew. Little lace is left as you drink. The color is a perfect mix of ruby and amber, and it is quite clear, with only slight haziness.

Smell - Lots of sweet fruitiness up front. Most of the fruitiness is of that dark, and somewhat past-ripe variety, such as prune, plum, fig, etc. Prune is a major aroma in this beer. Also, there is a slight backdrop of some lighter and sweeter fruits behind this, such as peaches and pear. Mild tropical hop aromas with slight sour smells as well. A quite musty wet hay, grainy smell, similar to cooking fresh (not instant) oatmeal. Some buttery malt aromas and moderate earthy scents as well. Quite a complex nose on this beer, but mostly subtlelties.

Taste - Lots of hop action here, and deceiving because you wouldn't expect this much from the smell. Definitely some sweet- and tropical-like hops similar to (or exactly) Amarillo and some strongly bitter and slightly citrusy hops similar to Cascade. The alcohol starts to rear up as the initial hop burst fades into the middle, and the beer really opens up with some amazing blends of bitterness, citrus, tropical fruits, etc. Buttery and bready malts tie it all together. Again the beer surprises me with an almost complete absense of flavors that I could smell in the aroma: prunes, fig, plum, etc. These flavors really reserve themselves for the finish, and then only slightly. Strong earthy flavors and lingering bitterness in the aftertaste. Warming alcohol throughout, but really comes out in the middle. Not too bad, actually, considering 10% ABV. Very tolerable for this level of alcohol.

Mouthfeel - Quite soft on the palate from body and carbonation. Has an almost hefeweizen-like body to it. Fairly dry beer throughout, and really becomes a drought after the swallow.

Drinkability - For this ABV and these flavors, this stuff goes down quite easily. Shucks, maybe I'm becoming an alcoholic! I know for a fact this beer would probably make most non-beer geeks gag. Of course, it is a barleywine, and that means strong FLAVOR.

A very good barleywine here. It has a nice mouthfeel with good carbonation. A wonderful blend of hop characters and fruit flavors with a mild yet easily-noticeable malt presence. Definitely recommended for the lover of stronger ales.

Serving type: bottle

01-06-2007 04:55:38 | More by dblinkhorn
Photo of jmz62565


4.03/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep rich clear ruby with a giant head. The head lasts forever leaving great lacing. The smell is strong with dark fruit, alcohol and bread yeast. The taste is rich and creamy with hops, dark fruit, and a "bisquity" flavor. A b/w with more hops than other's. Not bad,but different. The m/f is heavy with all flavors mixing well. A good beer,maybe too hoppy,but still worth a try.

Serving type: bottle

12-25-2006 01:34:53 | More by jmz62565
Photo of CharlesDarwin

Rhode Island

3.2/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Originally reviewed on May 4, 2006. 22 Oz Bottle. Clear ruddied sienna poour, with a tan foam head. All I can reach out of the aroma is a distant waft of an Ecto Cooler juice box, seriously. I would have scored much lower on aroma, if it hadn’t been a memory evoker of my Ghostbuster days. Flavor is a week, dusky sweet malt, with caramel and bananas, then a fairly strong rush of hops, but they don’t really play the role they should, for me at least. They’re distant and amalgamated into a consistent one dimensional hop presentation, mostly in a lemongrasseqsue style. Smack of lemon zest. Palate seems heavily watery to me, but I will admit that it seemed to hide the alcohol extremely well, especially for a 10% that doesn’t seem to have too much depth. Some toffee lingers.

Serving type: bottle

12-09-2006 22:23:08 | More by CharlesDarwin
Photo of kennyo

New York

2.6/5  rDev -32.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

22 0z bottle

Pours like a dark red ale with some brown undertones, big head that settles after a while but there is a fom cover throughout the whole glass. Sweet malt aroma, not a lot tho'. It has a nice barleywine taste but there is too much alcohol in the taste, back of tongue, back df throat. After the swallow, you get a cheap alcohol aftertaste.

First Moylans that I ever had, wil ltry other styles, if I can find them.

Serving type: bottle

11-18-2006 03:58:49 | More by kennyo
Photo of edchicma


3.68/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice dark cherry, minimal head with some lacing. Smell is a combination of plums, raising and cherries...very inviting. Taste is malty onthe front wiith light fruit undertones and a distinct hop presence. Mouthfeel was surprisingly light for such a high abv... a pleasant surprise. Drinkability overall was fine with distinct tartness on the finish.

Serving type: on-tap

11-11-2006 01:18:18 | More by edchicma
Photo of FLAbeergutinMASS


4.47/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hear me now. This beers rating in no way reflects how good it actually is. As a nightcap, it poured a deep brown mahogany color, with a very active head. Slightly piney, with hints of chocolate. Tops for its style in taste. A virtual cornucopia of flavors. Chocolate, orange, rye bread, grapes, hops, malt, bitter, sweet, dry, and the list goes on.

Absolutely one of the best American Barely wines out there.

Serving type: bottle

11-08-2006 00:17:37 | More by FLAbeergutinMASS
Photo of TastyTaste


4.13/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to warriorsoul for the bottle.

Appearance: Big stark white head. Bright red body, lots of carbonation visible.

Smell: Sweet malt, earthy and somewhat boozy.

Taste: Earthy and malty, although not very sweet. Fairly hoppy, sticks around and grows in the aftertaste. Good for the style.

Drinkability: A nice barleywine, although not as bitter as it could be. Enjoyable.

Serving type: on-tap

11-06-2006 02:20:09 | More by TastyTaste
Photo of Wasatch


3.98/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear clean darkish amber color, some carbonation, tiny head, not much lacing afterwards. Scents of sweet malts, hops, and caramel. The taste is sweet and malty, and pretty hoppy, there's is a nice caramel taste as well. Medium body, a nicely blended brew, well rounded, alcohol is hidden very well. Very drinkable, a nice brew from Moylan's, pretty underratate brewery.

Serving type: bottle

11-05-2006 20:16:31 | More by Wasatch
Photo of BlindPig


3.9/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A- 3/4" off white head. Cloudy amber mixed with brown body.
S- Bit fruity with citrus hops and malts. Grapefruit with lots of malts backing it up. Hint of alcohol too.
T- Some light citrus fruit with big malt presence and then fades to bitterness dominating most of flavor in the aftertaste. Some dark fruits also come out but it is mostly citrus fruits. Maybe also spiced a little.
M- Like all Moylan's the body is to thin. Smooth and a bit sticky at same time.
D- I really like this and I will probably be picking up another bottle. Just ashame that the body is to thin or this would be a really good brew.

Serving type: bottle

10-19-2006 02:07:58 | More by BlindPig
Photo of NEhophead


3.88/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

1 pt 5 fl oz brown bottle poured into a goblet.

Thick, rustic amber/dull brown in color. Semi-creamy, lingering tan head that holds as pools of bubbles. Minimal traces of thin lacing.

Rich, sweet milk chocolate, caramel, and mocha tones. Hints of cream, licorice, and vanilla. Dark fruit: plum, apple, and grape.

Mellow caramel and creamy milk chocolate flavors that turn dry and nutty by mid-sip. Very faint hints of plum, grape, and orange peel. Dried nuts: almond, hazlenut are met by an intense pine-flavored hop character. Pine, alcohol, dried toffee linger in the aftertaste.

Full bodied; creamy, rich, dry, and spicy: an odd combination of textures that seems to work.

A darker Barley Wine in terms of flavor; more tame than most. This one is still a sipping brew though, as the 10% abv is felt from beginning to end.

Serving type: bottle

10-01-2006 13:46:10 | More by NEhophead
Photo of Phyl21ca

Quebec (Canada)

3.5/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle courtesy of Hogtownharry: Poured a nice burgundy color ale with an above average foamy head with good retention. Aroma of sweet malt and some powerful hops. Taste has some caramel malt with some sweetness reminiscent of plums with an aftertaste that has some citrusy hops. Body is a bit too light for the style IMHO and alcohol was well hidden. Not bad overall but I generally like my barleywine to be more malt base then a hoppy affair.

Serving type: bottle

09-25-2006 18:22:01 | More by Phyl21ca
Photo of Pooba001


4.03/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I've cleared my palate and think I'm ready to review this beer after another Barleywine that I didn't like at all. Glad to get its taste out of my mouth. On to the Moylan's Old Blarney. Appearance was a dark amber/light mahogany color with an ok head that quickly dissipates. Decent, not terribly promising. The scent of this beer, however is encouraging. I'm getting aromas of sweet citrus fruit, dried dark fruit, woody oak/vanilla aroma, a little whiff of alcohol, and maybe even a hint of cider. Quite nice.

Taste is balanced but understated for a barleywine. There's a good hop bitterness, malt sweetness, and some grain flavors, but I expect more bold flavors from this style. Turn this beer up 2 notches, put the malt and hops right in your face and we'll have something remarkable here.

Mouthfeel's a little thin for style, I want it to be bigger. Drinkability's good for a 10% ABV Barleywine, I'm not opposed to another one :)

Serving type: bottle

09-16-2006 03:40:47 | More by Pooba001
Photo of klewis


3.58/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a nice ruby color with a big foamy head. Moderate lacing.

S: Fruity malt smell with a slight cherry aroma. Alcohol is well-hidden.

T: The taste was a bit unexpected. Still malty, but a roasted nut character has replaced the fruitiness smelled in the nose. Plenty of alcohol and some tannins in the finish.

M: Full-bodied, but seems to be a bit lighter than some other barleywines. Sticky with moderate carbonation.

D: Definitely drinkable, but there are much better barleywines out there. However, a bomber of barleywine for $4 is quite the deal, and may influence me to have this one again.

Serving type: bottle

08-30-2006 22:29:05 | More by klewis
Photo of bwyker

New York

2.63/5  rDev -31.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Poured from a 22 ounce bomber into a chalice. Served slightly below room temperature.

Appearance: A musty golden amber body, with a modest cream-colored head. The clouds of foam in the center of the glass seem to be pulled still by the sticky malt monster below. Faint lacing slides down the glass with each sip.

Smell: A powerful alcohol aroma stands out, as does a heavy dose of burnt caramel and dark fruit sweetness.

Taste: The taste is very similar to the smell. Rich caramel sweetness all around, with a whiskey like finish. Hops are in here somewhere, but hard to detect any bitterness through the heavy sweet malts.

Mouthfeel: Heavy bodied, with a strong alcohol burn in the finish. Chalky at the start, ends very dry. Burning felt in the throat down to the bottom of my stomach.

Drinkability: Definitely an after dinner slow sipper. I don’t imagine too many barley wines score high in this category; however, this one could stand to work on smoothing out some of the malts and alcohol. Maybe some time at cellar temps could mellow it out. Traditionally, Moylan’s isn’t too shy with the hops, so it’s surprising this one doesn’t have more hop character. Not a bad beer, but needs some improvement.

Serving type: bottle

08-25-2006 19:26:17 | More by bwyker
Photo of flexabull


3.7/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dark Amber in color, with an early big slightly brownish head... a lot of carbonation at first, but it settled down, as did the head.

The aroma is very nice, a molasses and baked bread smell.

Taste is a bit milder than other Barleywines I have tried. It is certainly not unpleasant though. Just a bit muted... a bit hoppy and alcoholic upfront, with a hint of sweetness on the finish.

Serving type: bottle

08-24-2006 03:00:50 | More by flexabull
Photo of sinstaineddemon


2.58/5  rDev -33%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A - dark brownish red, too hazy to note carbonation, half a finger of rocky brown head, great retention

S - dark sweet molasses aroma, with a milky coffee sense to the nose

T - roasted malt flavor is dominatn, in fact its solitary, where's the barleywine sweetness? too much roasted malt character, it lacks that molasses sweetness and thicker barleywine typical body

M&D - decent mouthfeel, smooth, but not like a barleywine, needs more sweetness in the balance to make it more drinkable

Serving type: bottle

08-23-2006 03:57:59 | More by sinstaineddemon
Photo of AlexJ

North Carolina

4.35/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A very rich looking brew, this pours a scorched chestnut brown with a tightly knit cap of dense khaki froth that lasts forever, generously coating my goblet with sticky lace.

Aroma is chewy caramel, sweet fruit, scorched brown sugar, butterscotch, light toasty oak and praeline nuttiness. There's a distinct orange and tangerine hop note coupled with notes of evergreen.

Flavor is right on target, dense, chewy malt, buttery toffee, raisins and figs, honey roasted nuts, a touch of woody oak, vanilla, and plenty of citrus tangerine and pine needle hops. Not as hoppy as some others, but this showcases the complex malt structure. Balanced and delicious, no trace of it's strength.

Mouthfeel is full and creamy, with a chewy texture like an oatmeal raisin cookie. Tight carbonation rolls the flavors across your palate with creamy smoothness. A great American Barleywine.

Serving type: bottle

08-06-2006 16:59:53 | More by AlexJ
Photo of Vancer


4.08/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5


Holy crap, had another bottle. Unbelieveable change of taste. This one had a damn fine bourbon, and candied fruits. NOW, I want this again. The taste marks went up 1.5

Oak brown pour with lacey rings of ivory, very nice start. Sweet malts, raisons, and hints of bubble gum in the aroma. But the taste? Damn, this one just doesn’t hit the spot for me. It has a sharp oak woody taste – plenty of nuts and undertones of caramel in there too.

Very rich and robust. I luv BWs with a sour mash bourbon barrel tang, not one with a oak barrel wood flavor. The 10%abv is well hidden, a fairly smooth brew.

Serving type: bottle

07-18-2006 16:01:30 | More by Vancer
Photo of cbl2

New York

3.83/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22 oz. bottle. No best by date.


Pours a medium dark brown speckled with bursts of claret. Topped by a quarter inch of tight tan foam which leaves a faint lace as it slowly settles.


Dark rich roasted nut aroma with a slightly sweet Belgian sugar smell mixed in.


Starts off with a nut brown sensation, that is quickly supplanted with the heady sweet/alcohol combination typical of a barleywine. Mouthfeel is syrupy smooth. As the beer warms in the mouth flavors of ripe tropical fruits appear. A nice representative of the style, but not as exceptional as Moylan's other brews.

Serving type: bottle

07-11-2006 20:15:27 | More by cbl2
Photo of blitheringidiot


3.6/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours out with a dark russet hue topped with a blotchy sandy head cap that holds a tight coating and leaves impressive lace in the glass. A few swirls draws up a fluffy coating.

A slightly smoky hazy scent peeks up out of the mix of some almost burnt danish. Some dark cherries barely make it out. Just a light smokiness overall. Maltiness is really like an English IPA more than anything.

First swigs: A touch of peat moss and almost a wee heavy Scotch Ale aspect. Dry fnish. Some delicate dark fruit of cherry and fig with a brown sugar.

Thick feel with a sugar mix. Soft carbonation. A bit of a tongue coater.

Last swigs: Tastes like a Tootsie Rool. Reminds me of a baby brother to DFH Immort Ale. Glad to try it but I guess I like my American Barely wines with more hop profile and less malt and peat.

Beer is good. Happy big bering.

Serving type: bottle

06-22-2006 04:49:14 | More by blitheringidiot
Photo of IntriqKen


3.28/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Undated 22 oz. bomber.
Poured a deep, deep amber with a healthy tan colored head that last...lasts...and finally melts to thick sticky lacing.
Aroma is toasted malt, canied apples, raisens and alcohol.
Taste not as sweet as the smell...alcohol gets in the way...sweet toasted malts, coffee and heavy fruits (apples, prunes, raisens grapes) make their presence felt but always fighting the alcohol.
Aftertaste not as sweet as I expect from a barleywine and without the hoppiness of Bigfoot...very drying and definate alcohol.
A decent barleywine, but not my favorite and this kind of beer I like to savor, so I'll pass on getting another one. Not sure if I'll finish this bomber...I have a 12 oz 2005 Bigfoot chilling just in case.

Serving type: bottle

05-28-2006 02:21:57 | More by IntriqKen
Photo of WesWes

New York

4.03/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a dark ruby red color with a thick frothy offwhite head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a warm, malty scent that boasts of burnt toffee and caramel malts. It's rich with a mild hop presence. The taste is good. It has a smooth, warming flavor that goes down easy and finishes malty with a nice hop bitterness. It's full of caramel and roasted malts. It has a wonderful burnt toffee taste that is complimented with a nice hoppy flavor. It may be a little too bitter, which lessens the impact of the hops. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is damn good barleywine. It's rich and flavorful and highly drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

05-22-2006 22:11:35 | More by WesWes
Photo of Billolick

New York

4.08/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 ouncer bomber bottle, provides no freshness/vintage indication. Pours a shade of rich, dark honey almond, with a dark tan thin head and leaving just slight, fine lacing. Nose here is vinious and of some dark maple syrup. Rich, thick and flavorful Bwine, notes of honey, maple, sweet malts, with a moderate taste of hops in the finish. Mellow, smooth and worthy brew.

Serving type: bottle

05-20-2006 17:44:51 | More by Billolick
Old Blarney Barleywine from Moylan's Brewery
87 out of 100 based on 311 ratings.