Class Of '88 Barleywine Style Ale | North Coast Brewing Co.

BA SCORE
86
very good
386 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score
Send samples
Class Of '88 Barleywine Style AleClass Of '88 Barleywine Style Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
North Coast Brewing Co.
California, United States
northcoastbrewing.com

Style: American Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by SanFranJake on 04-21-2013

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

BEER STATS
Ratings:
386
Reviews:
74
Avg:
3.85
pDev:
11.43%
 
 
Wants:
16
Gots:
73
For Trade:
4
View: Beers | Events
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 386 |  Reviews: 74
Photo of roblowther
4.48/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

750 corked and caged. A perfect evening plan. The cork pops, which says there is more carbonation than I would expect for a barleywine. And I like it! It is a hazy gold with a frothy offwhite head that leaves a bit of nice lace. The smell is like a candy shop, with oranges, sugar, mint and a nice bready base. It has a nice slightly hoppy aftertaste that balances the sweetness really well. Mouthfeel is slick but with nice carbonation, really fantastic. Overall I really, really like this. Really really, really really. For real.

 531 characters

Photo of Slatetank
4.21/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I picked this up at Stateline, enjoyed chilled form the corked and caged 750ml with Drew and JC, sampled from a teku.

The color of autum, tinges of gold and amber with light haze and a thick cream capping iwth average bead and good retention. The smell is very enjoyable, fruity yeast with a mix of floral and dank herbal hops with some caramel complimenting and a light alcohol ester. The feel is very good mostly dry with semi-bitter and mild caramel texture which verges on sweet with a medium level of carbonation and well balanced presence in the general sense with low alcohol influence.

The taste brings a light pine hop element up front with cherry and other stone fruit from the malt and yeast with some light citrus interplay and a generally toasted grain flavor which also carries a mild sweetness in the malt. The light vanilla and gentle yeast flavor is enjoyable with a light alcohol warmth in the finish which also provides some bitter herbal qualities.
Overall it was a pleasure to sip and share this, I consider this a beer that shows the talents of all the brewer's involved it is better than the sum of the parts as it works in the style, yet has a complexity that makes it stand out from most I have had recently. No heavy handed alcohol or hops, just a great collaboration-Cheers!

 1,305 characters

Photo of Snellgg5
4.5/5  rDev +16.9%

Photo of robbee
3.75/5  rDev -2.6%

Photo of ONovoMexicano
3.59/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into a snifter.

A- This beer pours a beautiful amber color and leaves a considerable head and beautiful lacing on the glass's sides. In the glass, it looks like a dark amber beer.

S- A very fruity profile, something like earthy fruits like prunes and pears. A mild hop and malt profile is present as well.

T- Very similar to the smell, prominent citrus notes give way to piney, earthy hop resins and hints of spice. The booze emerges on the finish, but is not overbearing.

M- A bit more carbonated than would be expected. A bit of burn from the booze at the backend.

O- A good barleywine, but one with some noticeable flaws. Certainly could mellow out a bit and I'm sure aging would do this, so I'd revisit a few years down the line.

 764 characters

Photo of ystazi
4/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of CesarLopes
4/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of 45nDown
3.75/5  rDev -2.6%

Photo of jaxon53
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%

Photo of LiquidAmber
4.02/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured into a Maudite snifter. Part of horizontal tasting of all three versions (North Coast, Deschutes and Rogue) of this interesting project to revisit a classic 1980s recipe. Pours a clear coppery golden amber with a fine half finger white head with good retention and light lacing. Aroma of caramel malt, light fruit, pineapple, mild piney hops, light ethanol. Flavor is sweet caramel, well melded stone and light fruit juice, mild citrus, slightly floral. Finishes with sweet caramel and a hint of grassy hops and citurs. Alcohol is well covered. Medium bodied with light creaminess. Like the others in this series, seems to take the basic form of an English barleywine, but with less of the dark fruit elements and adding an almost Belgian fruit component, without the Belgian yeast and also slightly more intense hopping of the American style. Nicely balanced and interesting to drink, but lacking the intensity of most English or American barleywines. This came the closest to the English barleywine style (and I would personally list it under that style), it has the mildest hopping of the three '88s. This one was my favorite of this series, well balanced and enjoyable. Like the others, I think the lighter flavors do not promise a long, successful aging, although this is the best candidate for aging and if I see another bottle, I would consider it; possibly interesting in a few years. North Coast's experience with Old Stock Ale served them well in brewing this English influenced barleywine, in my opinion. Glad to have participated in this walk down memory lane.

 1,579 characters

Photo of GRG1313
3/5  rDev -22.1%

Photo of acurtis
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%

Photo of LoveStout
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%

Photo of firstlighthiker
3.75/5  rDev -2.6%

Photo of hermit990
4/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of MacStinson
4/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of RBassSFHOPit2ME
3.75/5  rDev -2.6%

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

750 ml bottle, with no apparent bottled on date present. Excited to have gotten my hands on this bottle. Keeping my expectations clear and unbiased. Hoping for a better beer than the Deschutes / Great Lakes Class Of '88 Imperial Smoked Porter.

Poured into a clear balloon snifter glass.

A - Pours two fingers of khaki colored head on top of a coppery burnt sienna orange colored body. Has more of the appearance of a DIPA than it does an American barleywine. No sediment, and hardly any noticeable carbonation. Still, it looks very nice.

S - Smell is nice. Bready biscuit malts, grapefruit hops, pineapple, alcohol fumes, mild earthiness, some cinnamon, & some cream.

T - Taste follows suit of the nose: bitter grapefruit hops, mango, pineapple, oranges, bready malts, some sugary candied sweetness, bit of soapiness, hint of spice, and alcohol heat on the finish.

M - Feel finishes off cleaner than expected with only minimal hop bitterness lingering on the palate. Alcohol heat phenols are noticeable on the finish.

Overall, nothing overly complex or extraordinary, but drinkable. Reminds me more of what a DIPA might be instead of a barleywine, but that's just me. Not a beer I would go out of my way to get again, but it was worth the try, and was better than the Deschutes / Great Lakes Class Of '88 Imperial Smoked Porter. Worth trying once, but that's about it. Happy 25 years to us.

North Coast Class Of '88 Barleywine Style Ale ---4/5.

 1,451 characters

Photo of C_S
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%

Photo of I_heart_beer
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%

Photo of BigJim5021
4/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of StrongAleSkeptic
4/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of gritz147
3.75/5  rDev -2.6%

Photo of ste5venla
3.75/5  rDev -2.6%

Class Of '88 Barleywine Style Ale from North Coast Brewing Co.
3.85 out of 5 based on 386 ratings.
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.