Bligh's Barleywine Ale | Dry Dock Brewing Co.

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Bligh's Barleywine AleBligh's Barleywine Ale

Brewed by:
Dry Dock Brewing Co.
Colorado, United States

Style: English Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by waltonc on 10-08-2011

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Reviews: 125 | Ratings: 545
Photo of Vonerichs
4.06/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark caramel color with a short tan head. Little retention and no lacing.

The nose has nice layers. Caramel, toasted coconut, oak, brown sugar.

The taste is caramel, brown sugar, fig, and heavy wood and booze. Really boozy.

Hefty body, sweet sticky residue left on the palate. Boozy heat.

Really good, but be prepared for an abrasive booziness.

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Photo of GuyFawkes
4.39/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2012 vintage; drank 12/10/15 @ Harvest Hop Haus.

Muddy orange rust appearance.

Almost no khaki head; no lace.

Caramel, orange citrus & molasses notes in the nose.

Thick, flat mouthfeel.

Molasses, orange citrus & caramel flavors up front; oak notes on the finish. No booze heat. Sweet & tasty; the citrus note was unexpected but welcome.

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Photo of Gregaroo
4.19/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

3-5-16 - Damn. On tap at Falling Rock Taphouse in Denver. Served in a tulip with absolutely no head. Quick swirl, and still no head. Aroma is over the top intense. So good. Flavors are smooth vanilla and kind of Bourbony. So smooth. I love this barley wine.

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Photo of zac16125
4.04/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

22oz bottle into a snifter
2012 Vintage

A big thanks to protonw07 for sending this one over via trade!

A: Very murky dark mahogany, small fizzy white bubbles is all that builds for a head, leaves no lacing. 3.25

S: Pretty big nose, lots of dark fruits, fairly vinous, booze, charred oak whiskey notes from the barrel, subtle cocoa. 4.25

T: Lots of sweet characters; dark fruits, caramel/toffee, semi-sweet cocoa, subtle bitterness. Some oaky characters but overall barrel notes are fairly subtle. 4.25

M/D: Medium body, carbonation is very low (I know its has some age on it but its nearly flat), ABV is well masked, drinkability is average limited by the low carb. 3.25

O: Very nice beer. Not up there with my favorite BW’s but very enjoyable nonetheless. The flatness hurts the overall profile though. 4

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Photo of legrandfacile74
4.39/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2012 bottle bought at the Glendale King Soopers 3 years ago. Strong malt, whiskey, molasses, and caramel notes on the nose. Very little head on the pour, and in the glass it has a dark sienna color and slightly murky appearance . The whisky and malt are pungent, which is not a bad thing in my opinion especially this time of year. This is a smooth, slightly sweet beer with a strong finish. There's a hint of coriander and other spices in the aftertaste. Local gossip says that the beer is aged in an unnamed local whiskey distillery's barrels.

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Photo of Jwale73
4.11/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2013 vintage. Pours a translucent mahogany with a head that dissipates into a tight band around the edges. Nose is a bit dull - some butterscotch notes, oxidization and a bready character. Taste is very well-balanced. Not too sweet - toffee and figs muddle nicely. Mouthfeel is light-medium in body (but closer to light) with a mild carbonation and a slightly oily consistency. Overall, very good but perhaps a little past its prime; however, it's still solid.

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Photo of pvtjoker42
4.73/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

I've got the last 4 years of this beer in the cellar, and can't wait for this years release! Smooth drinking, rich brown color with a little haze, no boozy bite, has to be one of my favorite local beers.

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Photo of cbutova
4.46/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Brought back from CO last summer, 2013 bottle. Was extremely pumped to find this bottle as a huge fan of the style.

A- Very dark mahogany pour out of the 22oz into a few snifters. The crown is off white, foamy and rises to just a sheet dying out to a small ring. Rare spotty lacing.

S- For the ABV it is very relaxed and smoothed out in the aroma. Toffee, caramel, coconut flakes, spiced raisin, vanilla bean oak, fudge, relaxed whiskey and a touch of roast darkness.

T- In the league of Arctic Devil of BA Barleywine smoothness. Delivers a lot of complex flavors without overpowering the palate in any way. Balance balance balance... of wet toasted oak, deep caramelized sugars, brown sugar, raisin, vanilla sweets from the barrel, whiskey, nuts, cherry, sweets and slight roast.

MF- Oily and super slick body which hits the palate with a thick overall consistency. Low to medium level of bubbles. Ends somewhat warm.

One of the smoothest BA Barleywines I can think of; almost absurdly so but in a good way. Balanced interplay between the rich base malts and the whiskey barrel that provides a lot of vanilla and aged oak character.

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Photo of Bosoxfan20
4.57/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2013 Vintage bomber
I've heard some hype around this one, and damn, message received. Pour leaves almost no head to speak of. Aroma is outstanding. Oak, bourbon, vanilla, coconut, and a huge dose of toffee. Flavor is for real too. Everything the nose presented, but with a generous helping of brown sugar and a hint of sherry. Just as a warning, it is cloying. Normally, I struggle to get through such overwhelming sweetness, but this one holds up well. Body is slick, drinks smooth, with very low carbonation. Not HoD low, but close.
Overall, top 5 BA barleywine for me.

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Photo of ONovoMexicano
4.43/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From the bomber into a snifter.

Not much head on this but it has the thick caramelly-look. Dark amber body almost. 4.25

Sweet sticky caramel, soy sauce and tobacco. Faint floral hop aroma. Brown sugar. 4.25

Very consistent with the nose. Caramel drips from this as does brown sugar. Tastes oaken and tobacco-like with a touch of port. 4.5

Pretty low carbonation but silky smooth and rich-feeling. Mildly sweet and a touch of faded bitterness. Really it's just a smooth creamy drinker. 4.5

This is an outstanding barleywine. The barrels don't stifle the base beer but rather complement it well.

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Photo of leroybrown10
4.22/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours a hazy amber-brown with some reddish tinges. Slow forming and rather small cream colored head which vanishes quickly.

Whiskey is the first thing to hit the nose. Caramel, bread pudding and maybe a hint of vanilla.

Again, whiskey and caramel on the first taste. Sweet maltiness. Vanilla, dates, toffee and brown sugar as well. Flavors blend well but maybe a touch more of some the back end flavors.

Rich sticky mouth feel. Medium carbonation. Flavors lingers, especially an extended sweetness. Some creamy qualities.

This is a very well done barrel aged barleywine. Whiskey is prevalent but
not overpowering. Sweet but not syrupy and with a smooth creamy feel on the tongue.

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Photo of chinchill
4.06/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Shared bottle at RBWG-2015.
Pours very clear red-brown with a frothy head.

Moderately sweet.
Excellent aroma. Plenty of toffee and burnt sugar in the nose.

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Photo of hardy008
4.51/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

2013 Vintage

Pours a cloudy dark brown with a small tan head which fades pretty quickly. the aroma has caramel, dark fruit, oak, and whiskey.

Has a sweet flavor with caramel, toffee, dark fruit, oak, whiskey, vanilla, and coconut. There is no bitterness for balance, but it is not needed, since this beer is not overly sweet.

Medium to full bodied with low carbonation. The alcohol is well hidden for a 10.5 % abv beer. There is a caramel, toffee, and dark fruit aftertaste. Smooth and easy to drink.
I am glad I picked some of this up in Colorado last year.

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Photo of Rutager
4.34/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

2013 bottle from the good doctor, steasy66.

Appearance. Pours a deep amber-brown that doesn't let much light through, topped with a thin light tan head.

Smell. Plums, raisins, sweet caramel, slight cardboard and sherry oxidization notes but not in a bad way.

Taste. Brown sugar and caramel, dark fruits, toasted oak, lightly tannic barrel and leather, and a touch of whiskey.

Mouthfeel. Full body, a touch sticky on the lips, low carbonation.

Overall. Great stuff that's everything a BA barleywine should be without excessive anything.

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Photo of GregJ
3.6/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I expect sweetness from a barleywine and sweetness from the bourbon barrel aging but this is a bit much for me. Very sweet with an almost syrupy characteristic beyond what I would ever want. Very sad about this as I really like their vanilla porter. Pours a hazy red-orange. Smells of bourbon, sweet malts and booze. Dominant sweet bourbon flavor, caramel, sweet malts. Sweet heavy body with med/light carbonation. Not as obnoxiously sweet as it warmed but still too much for me.

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Photo of kevanb
4.26/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4.5

650ml bottle, 2013 vintage printed on the bottle, poured into a Dry Dock tulip glass. Reviewed from Tasting Journal.

The beer pours a burgundy brown color, very opaque with a fizzy, khaki head that vanishes quickly yielding no film nor lace. The aroma huge on toffee while bourbon oak, stone fruits, vanilla, brown sugar and caramel follow up behind it, very rich and sweet. The flavors pack that same punch, though more rewarding, still plenty of toffee, sweet and rich grain, oak, brown sugar, caramel, bourbon integrates itself nicely while vanilla, stone fruits and molasses linger at the finish, wonderfully complex, each sip brings something to the table. The mouthfeel is a bit thin and lackluster, struggles to coat the mouth however, this does make this beer very easy to drink, void of the usual "heaviness" to a big barrel aged beer. The finish is smooth and leaves a lightly warming sensation behind.

Verdict: A very delicious bourbon barrel aged barleywine from Dry Dock, definitely up there in the pantheon for this style, and definitely an "underrated" beer, although the ratings seem to indicate it's quality, so perhaps it's a "under-known" beer that isn't as heralded as the rest. Perfect for a fall or winter evening to sip on, delicious.

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Photo of pmarlowe
4.17/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

2013 vintage. Tulip glass.

A: Pours a medium copper brown color, with a thin film of khaki head, receding quickly to a ring of large bubbles. Dark but very good clarity.

S: Aroma is very close to a traditional English barleywine, with austere toffee and a touch of dark fruit (raisin), but then some toasted oak, bourbon, and cinnamon comes through as well. Barrel treatment is pretty light handed.

T: Toffee and dark fruit, a bit of bourbon and coconut. Moderate sugary sweetness that approaches flabbiness.

M: Light carbonation and medium-full body. Alcohol is completely hidden.

O: Pretty tasty, and surprisingly close to a good but non-BA barleywine. Sweetness is a tad high, though.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
4/5  rDev -7.6%

650 mL bottle poured into a snifter. 2013 bottle.

Appearance - Deep amber. Small khaki head. A few bubbles in the collar.

Smell - Bourbon. Fruity aroma. A bit of apple. Brown sugar and caramel.

Taste - Just like the aroma. Bourbon. Apple fruitiness. Makes it seem kinda Belgian. Brown sugar sweetness, but dries out just a bit in the end.

Mouthfeel - Medium heavy. Medium low carbonation.

Overall - Very enjoyable. Very different from its other bourbon barrel barleywine brethren.

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Photo of sukwonee
4.5/5  rDev +3.9%

Very sweet but great.

It reminds me of JW Lees Harvest Ale.

Not a whole lot of barrel character but I get dark fruits, caramel, brown sugar, candy, and toffee.

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Photo of GeezLynn
4.31/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Rated based on several tastings since, now that I finally have the opportunity to sit down and write a review, the last bottle is a bit over the hill at 2 years.

A: Pours a cloudy auburn with a brief white head. Not particularly attractive, but typical of an aged barleywine.
S: Caramel, brown sugar, almost a maple syrup-like quality and a light alcohol bite. Faint whiskey once it warms. Smells sweet and inviting.
T: As expected, very sweet – brown sugar dominated with cola and raisin. Whiskey has faded considerably at this point, but there is still plenty of vanilla in the mix. Unlike many American brewed barleywines advertised as “English Barleywine”, I feel this was an accurate representation as the hopping was fairly restrained, even when fresh. Alcohol is barely discernible.
M: Body is medium with light soft carbonation (even when fresh).
This was a very nice beer last fall, but has fallen off noticeably since then. Not really oxidized, but time has lessened some of the complexities, especially the barrel and hops. Still good, but like many barrel aged beers, better within a year of bottling.

Love the name/art work on this beer. No doubt Captain Bligh would’ve avoided mutiny had his ship been well stocked with this fine ale. Will be looking for more.

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Photo of macher0
4.41/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours dark mahogany. Slight head quickly retreats to a course bubble rim. Strong nose of sweet malts, oak, and dried fruits. The bourbon is much more pronounced in the taste. Moderate sweetness is appropriate and balanced by figs and prunes. The beer has a moderate viscosity in terms of the feel. Low to medium carbonation. Very smooth.

This is a fine barley wine that certainly benefits from the barrel. Recommended for a BA ale.

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Photo of Stevedore
4.26/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Thanks to Brian for giving me this bottle. 22oz bottle poured into a Cigar City snifter 4/26/2014.

A- Caramel brown, thick and viscous. Small light off-white head with retention that is average for the style- which is to say it is a bit low. No lacing.

S- Holy caramel batman. This is the most caramel-forward barleywine I've had the chance to try. Sweet caramel, toffee, with a slight earthiness and dark fruit contribution. Slight hints of oak and whiskey, but not very much.

F- Tastes just like liquid caramel. This is not superbly complex, but this is a barleywine that packs a lot of caramel and toffee sweetness, with a small dark fruit component and some whiskey that adds a bit of complexity. Very nice, though I would have liked a little more of the whiskey barrels to show up.

M- Medium bodied, viscous with low carbonation. Very sweet, easy to drink despite its higher ABV. Smooth and resinous but without being cloying.

O- Really good English barleywine. I enjoyed drinking this one a lot and so did everyone else. However, for an barrel-aged English barleywine, this beer lacks a lot of the distinct whiskey character that makes a BA English barleywine what it is.

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Photo of DenverHopHead
3.79/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap; poured into a snifter.
Appearance - a caramel brown, little to no head and that leads to no lacing.
Smell - some sweetness, spice, a tangy alcohol.
Taste - sweet bourbon, some cognac, a hint of brown sugar, cinnamon and spice.
Feel - this is a sweet, smooth barley wine. The ABV is present, but very welcomed!
Overall - an excellent brew, but certainly overrated, especially considering the price point.

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Photo of Jjski
4.48/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2012 vintage obtained in trade. Previous cellar conditions reported to be @ 50f year round
A - brown dark dark amber

S-honey, calvados, apples, brandy leather

T-brown sugar, vanilla, apple brandy

M- a little too thin, most likely age related. Absent carbonation. Drinks like a brandy

0- very very good. Probably shouldn't age longer than a year. It's not showing any oxidation, just thinnish and lacking carbonation. Flavor is beautiful , ala JW Lees

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Photo of zhanson88
3.56/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Bligh's pours out a moderately viscous murky auburn color. Not much in the way of carbonation it appears, as very little head forms on the pour, which is remedied by vigorous swirling of the glass. So there is a bit of carbonation, if not much.

Smell: Toasted caramel, coconut, dark fruits, vanilla, and a hint of whiskey. Seems to be nicely integrated, and certainly complex. While it's complex, it does seem to be lacking a certain richness that the best English Barleywines I've sampled have had. But still, good.

Taste: Toffee, toasted coconut, hints of whiskey soaked raisin, and vanilla. Again, nicely complex, but really lacking a certain something to push it over the top. Flavors are a bit muted for me.

Mouthfeel/Overall: Medium mouthfeel, which seems about right, but almost devoid of carbonation. Certainly a miss there. Overall, some very nice flavors and a good base beer, but for me the lack of carbonation really retracts from most of the other aspects. Add a bit of carbonation and I like it a lot more.

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Bligh's Barleywine Ale from Dry Dock Brewing Co.
4.33 out of 5 based on 545 ratings.
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