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Duck-Rabbit Barleywine Ale - The Duck-Rabbit Craft Brewery

Not Rated.
Duck-Rabbit Barleywine AleDuck-Rabbit Barleywine Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

544 Ratings
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 544
Reviews: 339
rAvg: 3.81
pDev: 13.91%
Wants: 111
Gots: 44 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
The Duck-Rabbit Craft Brewery visit their website
North Carolina, United States

Style | ABV
English Barleywine |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: SaCkErZ9 on 12-12-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Duck-Rabbit Barleywine Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 544 | Reviews: 339 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Dubber55
3.15/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Caramel/amber pour with 1 finger of carbonation

Smells like pine, citrus, and alcohol. Lots of piney hops in the aroma.

Taste follows the smell. Loads of piney hops, some orange rind, and booze. Lots of pine resin as well. Pretty sticky. It also seems to be really bready. Must be from the toasted malts. I am tasting a little brown sugar/caramel, but the hops are really overpowering.

Solidy medium carbonation. This is definitely a hefty beer. Pretty chewy and sticky. A little too much carbonation

Overall this beer does not remind me of an English Barleywine. There are way too many hops and no sweetness. Seems to be unbalanced

Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.15/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pomegranate-orange with a frothy, orange creamsicle colored crown that is currently filling the top half of the snifter. The head is now wonderfully melty and is leaving feathery rings of sea foam-like residue on the sides of the glass. Who says that 11.0% is a lace killer?

On a positive note, no alcohol is appreciated in the nose. Unfortunately, the beer smells too much like sour fruit. Sweet would be good, hoppy would be even better, but tart ain't gonna get it done in a barleywine. For what it's worth, I'm almost certain that this bottle is from the original batch (December '06).

Not that it was a difficult call given the nose, but Barleywine Ale is much too sour fruity for its own good. I have no earthly idea why that should be. Go ask a brewer. My hope is that if D-R brews another batch (assuming they haven't already), they rethink things from top to bottom.

Flavors include unripe apricots, oranges, peaches, and maybe even plums, swimming in sugar syrup and caramel. If you like sweet-and-sour barleywines, then Duck-Rabbit has the beer for you. Drinkable? Sure. Enjoyable? Not really. A few months more than one year in the bottle shouldn't have done it that much harm.

Sipping is the only way to go, mostly because of the teeth-rotting sugary sweetness. The mouthfeel doesn't stand in the way of faster drinking since it's thinly syrupy, if that isn't oxymoronic. Little carbonation contributes to a serious shortage of mouth excitement.

Duck-Rabbit deserves some slack since most of their lineup is solid, if unspectacular. Porter and Wee Heavy Scotch Style Ale are the best so far, with only Rabid Duck Russian Imperial Stout to go. I wish the brewers much better luck with the second batch of Barleywine Ale.

Photo of psiweaver
3.18/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured into an oakquinox tasting glass. Shared by Robert from the original bottling of this beer.

A: pours a hazey brown with a soft little light brown head that quickly dissipates.

S: has a nice smell with lots of sweetness. not a ton to the nose.

T: very very sweet flavor with the alcohol nicely integrated. Not really my thing though as the sweetness was cloying and almost overwhelming.

M: very smooth with the proper amount of carbonation but just too much sweetness that was cloying.

overall just too sweet and that overwhelmed everything else.

Photo of cpetrone84
3.18/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

A-slightly hazy dark golden orange in color with an off white head that has a good bit of bubbles on top but looks creamy and relatively tight. The retention is very good, it lingers for quite some time and leaves a very nice coating on the glass.

S-the nose is actually quite hoppy especially for an english barleywine. It is more along the lines of a bigfoot, which I like but is a little off for the style. Grapefruit and apricot come at you right up front and really is the centerpiece of the aroma. A lightly toasted bready malt comes in towards the back with some pale malts lying underneath.

T-the taste is a little all over the place. Grapefruit and apricot are strong up front. Tons of burnt brown sugar and caramel malts set up in the middle. The bready malts seem to hide in the back with a strong bitterness taking hold at the finish. Notes of alcohol seem to kick in towards the middle and really have a warming effect towards the back.

M-this is medium bodied and syrupy. It is pretty smooth and seems to have some carbonation issues in the back, rough on the back of the throat. It is pretty wet throughout.

D-this is a little bit of a mess, its kind of all over there in the taste and really hoppy for an english barleywine. The booze is quite strong throughout and not something I would want to drink frequently.

Photo of Crosling
3.18/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Firey orange color. Big head. The nose doesn’t offer anything of distinction...just a very light smell. Flavor brings some super sweet malt and some unusual fruit flavors. Some nice elements in the flavor, such as the caramel-like finish, but for the most part this is weird and below average.

Photo of drseamus
3.18/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Didn't have much head, even with an aggressive pour, but GODDAMN if this isn't the finest body I've seen on a beer. Brilliant scarlet red. I love me a redhead.

S: A good bit of hop in the aroma. More than I'd expect in an English Barleywine but still welcomed. Not a ton of malt coming though for me.

T: Very rich flavored. It starts off with pretty strong bitterness and the malt only really comes through at the very end. I'd like it to be a bit maltier. It's a bit muddled.

M: Medium bodied but not smooth at all. The bitterness roughs it up.

D: Not bad. It seems more like an American Barleywine but even for that style it's average at best.

Photo of TheFightfan1
3.2/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Another one down from Capone's.Poured into a snifter. Pours a ruby color with a thick off white heading.Does create lacing throughout the tasting.

Smell is heavily malted,A little sour but mostly of plum and raisin.

Taste right off the bat is apple a bit odd but yes a little bit sour.Followed by a heavy boozy warmness taste that drops to the the gut and keeps it nice and warm. As for the rest of the taste just seems a bit too much not enough balance to this.

Mouth is full bodied good carbonation and shit this even warms the tongue as I let it sit and wonder around.

Drink is not to hot. A bit too much warmness and not enough balance to make this sessionable.But then again what barleywine really is sessionable.

Photo of womencantsail
3.2/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: The pour is dark amber color, leaning towards the red side of things. The head is minimal and off-white in color.

S: Sweet oranges and brown sugar are present on the nose as are some light caramel and toffee notes. There's a fair amount of alcohol present as well.

T: Quite sweet and sugary with lots of caramel, brown sugar, and toffee on the front end. The sweet oranges are there again, too, and so is the rather noticeable alcohol (unfortunately).

M: The body is medium, not quite as thick and full as I would expect for such a high gravity beer.

D: I purposely let this beer age a little bit before drinking it because of hearing about the alcohol strength. Even with several months on it, I still find the beer to be on the harsh side.

Photo of BlindPig
3.2/5  rDev -16%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A- Thick tan head on a crystal clear amber body. Great head retention.
S- Toffee, mix of fruits going all across the board, light citrus hops, and caramel.
T- Citrus orange hops blended with toffee malts and some other fruits. Almost a weird blend of flavors in this. Some breads come through also. Almost like some apple juice in there.
M- Medium body with medium/high carbonation.
D- Its just not my kind of flavors. Really strange blend of flavors. Looks good though!

Photo of dirtylou
3.23/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz single, delivered by Blackie who always keeps me up to date on my mediocre NC beer drinking (not you highland!!)

appearance: very nice appearance...shiny amber body, very clear, big frothy beige head with great lacing. It's a nice looking barleywine, thats for sure

smell: odd...metallic, plasticy pungent hops, sharp candied aromas...unusual and difficult to describe

taste: This is just a wierd beer. Its not particularly offensive but its not one of the better barleywines i have had. Hop presence is a tad sour, not too bitter, and difficult to place (its citrusy, not particulary piney)...artifical cherry flavoring. I'm at a loss for words

mouthfeel: pretty smooth, sour, lacking bitterness, moderate alcohol feel

drinkability: eh

Photo of mtnbikerpa
3.23/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a pint glass. Dark amber, brown in color with only abundant head. This beer has a strong hop taste up front, lots of malts along with candied fruits, dried plums, grapes. An overly sweet, juicey citrus bite from the hops. Very strong boozey smell, not very well hidden at all. Mouthfeel is heavy and chewy, this one is a sipper with limited drinkability.

Photo of ChadQuest
3.23/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Had this bottle for a bit now, it's at least one year old but i dont know more then that.
Color is a slightly hazy woody looking, about the color of a light maple syrup. some lacing and a thin collar.
Aroma is spiced earthy sweetness. There is a Nutmeg like spice mixed in a caramel and molasses base.
Flavors are rounded toffee and burnt caramel, brown sugar, and a mixture of noble hops and nutmeg bringing in some earthyness to combat the sweetness.
mouthfeel is coating and sticky, low-med carbonation.

A solid English barleywine that i feel is a bit above average.

Photo of dailyminefield
3.25/5  rDev -14.7%

Photo of Zaphog
3.25/5  rDev -14.7%

Photo of iatethecloudsfor
3.25/5  rDev -14.7%

Photo of claytong
3.25/5  rDev -14.7%

Photo of dfhhead25
3.25/5  rDev -14.7%

Photo of ArrogantB
3.25/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle received in a trade with leftmindedrighty. The pour was red-brown with a very nice sized white head. The smell was dark fruits and alcohol. The taste was the same with an added medicinal quality as well as cherry cough syrup. I was really let down by this as I have loved DR's porter and baltic. Oh well, it was worth a try.

Photo of ThreeWiseMen
3.25/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Acquired this as an extra in a recent trade with hopsleeroy. Thanks again Lee!

Appearance: A fine, tan crown sits atop a cloudy, rust-colored body. Very low visibility, even when held directly to light. Body appears thick and oily, and each swirl coats the glass walls in a thin resin (also excites the head). Head drags sticky lacing all the way down.

Smell: Candied red apples, red currants, tallow, and lemony esters. Caramel/molases notes become stronger as the beer warms, and I even get a little black pepper. Wish this was a bit more potent, but I enjoy the overall aroma.

Taste: Caramel, leather, and earth are the most notable flavors I get. Those, and alcohol - yep, lots of alcohol. If I don't take a sufficient break between sips, I have trouble tasting anything (because of the alcoholic dominance). Before I finish: I also get a hint of lemon.

Mouthfeel: Pretty hot and dry, even for a barleywine. On that note, I'm actually enjoying the sting right now. Full and oily without much carbonation. Lots of mouth-numbing and belly-warming with this one.

Drinkability: "Can't stand the heat? Get yourself from out the kitchen." That's how I'm feelin right now. Alcohol dominates and steals all my candy. Bummer. I finished this beer without a problem, but it was only enjoyable because of the buzz it produced.

Photo of MastaShonuf
3.25/5  rDev -14.7%

Photo of kylehay2004
3.25/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: no head as expected on a hazy to cloudy copper with golden hues body.

S: sour cherry, almost sour beer like, sugar and candied fruits.

T: not your typical barleywine. subtle smokiness. this one is very sour beer like with the malts taking a back seat to the sweetness. metallic after taste.

M: medium body and moderate carbonation. thin compared to many other barely wines.

Overall: very drinkable for the style and hides the alcohol well but this one is strange and may be infected especially considering the recent reviews describing this though I suspected it before reading those reviews.

Photo of TonyTalon
3.25/5  rDev -14.7%

Photo of roundthewaygirls
3.28/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

poured into a tulip glass

A: poured half a finger of off-white creamy head. beautiful auburn, burnt orange color. translucent, a little light gets through. a few bubbles.

S: bready malts. caramel. ethanol. a hint of dark fruit, fig or apricot.

T: surprisingly fruity. slightly sour. deep, smoky malts. hops are only noticeable in the dry finish. booze is well concealed.

M: fine carbonation. medium body. sour going down and sticky on the lips.

O: pretty decent. liked the fruity character. i love the body of most barleywines, but this one was a little thin for me. there's a lot of confused malty character that has potential. could be developed with aging?

Photo of spinrsx
3.3/5  rDev -13.4%

12oz Bottle received in trade with phyl21ca - thanks!

Appearance - Hazy brown colour with a good size frothy beige coloured head. There is a low amount of carbonation showing and there is some good lacing. The head lasted for around 3-4 minutes before it was gone.

Smell - Malts, caramel, anise, all spice

Taste & Mouth - There is a below average amount of carbonation and I can taste malts, molasses/caramel and hops. There is also some vanilla, anise, metallic, and a some dark fruits.

Overall - Bottle says best before 2013, not sure how far out they date their bottles. This one seems like a little past its prime. Some odd metallic/medicinal flavour and a little oxidized. Had higher hopes for this one.

Photo of DefenCorps
3.3/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I got this many moons ago from SaintNathaniel. Best by December 2008, so this is over 2 years old at this point.

Mildly hazy deep ruby red with a dense, beige head that falls off to a wispy disk rather quickly. Lacing is minimal.

The nose has a big sweetness with a blend of caramel, vanilla, toffee and butterscotch. Moderately fruity with dates and raisins, this is enjoyable. Oxidation is minimal, this is just mostly a complex, sweet smelling beer.

The palate, unfortunately, doesn't live up to the nose. A grainy astringency is very strong, husky and palate-wrecking. It even covers up the sweetness to a good extent. Once my palate has had a chance to get used to it, I notice a blend of fruit - dates, raisins and a little stone fruit (peach? apricot?) coupled with a solid sweetness with flavors of caramel, honey and some toffee. Sweet and astringent on the finish, there's lingering flavors of honey and some astringency. Full in body with moderate carbonation, this is decent on the palate. A bit of a sipper, not necessarily something I'd go out to seek.

Duck-Rabbit Barleywine Ale from The Duck-Rabbit Craft Brewery
86 out of 100 based on 544 ratings.