Big Worse | Mikkeller ApS

Big WorseBig Worse
Liked This Beer
3.78 w/ 416 ratings
Big WorseBig Worse

Brewed by:
Mikkeller ApS

Style: American Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 12.00%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
Brewed at De Proefbrouwerij.

Ingredients: Water, malt (pils and caramunich), candy sugar, hops (nugget, cascade and centennial) and ale yeast.

Added by Viggo on 11-25-2007

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Ratings: 416 |  Reviews: 249
Photo of FtownThrowDown
3.52/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a very clear ruby in color with just a modest head that disipates before the first drink. Smell is plenty of hops, both citrusy and bittering. Taste is the same. Lots of hops and a little malt to try and help the cause. A decent brew, but not a stand out.

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Photo of TasteTester
3.92/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Been sitting on this one for a while, figured now was as good a time as any.

A-Solid Amber. Very little translucence except around the edges. Pours with a little head, nothing that lasts. No lacing at all.

S-Sour mash right off the bat. Perhaps its raisins and some other fruits. Smells almost as if it would be more like a sour.

T-Bitter, slightly sour. The fruit tones are rather pungent. Not really sure what else to say. Its well balanced.

M-Nothing stands out or sticks to my tongue/mouth.

D-Maybe should have cellared longer or tried it sooner, no way to know now.

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Photo of ryandurka
4.6/5  rDev +21.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

this beer rocks. its 12 percent, so its strong, ie barley beer. unlike most beers this strong, this beer is not rough and has a smooth taste. no afterburn. if you can find this beer its worth the expensive price. you wont be disappointed. stranglely the taste is almost soft and thats wild for a 12 percent-er.

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Photo of Halcyondays
3.77/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12.7 oz. green bottle,

A: Pours a murky red mahogany mix, with a small off-white head, which peters out relatively quickly.

S: Strong smell of aged fermented malt, soy sauce, and lactic acid. Ethanol volatiles can be felt in the nose as well.

T: Tasty brown malt, molasses and raisin form the main flavour, with a dry finish with a mix of malt and spicy hops. Definite alcohol burn, but light.

M: Very low carbonation, I know it's a barleywine, but I still would have liked some more carbonation. Warming, alcoholic finish.

D: This is a good barleywine. It doesn't have a great complexity, but the flavours are good, making it a nice brew to sip. Not really hoppy at all, I'd say it's much more of an English barleywine than an American style.

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Photo of Wetpaperbag
4.27/5  rDev +13%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I was sort of surprised when I popped the top off of this beer. There was no pop. Sort of flat sounding. Hope the beer is still good.

A- Nice dark golden coper colored liquid. Despite no popping when the cork came out, there was a busy head when I poured the beer into the glass. The head is a mix of tightly packed large and small bubbles.

S- The smell is very tasty. A great mix of sweet citrus hops and a sweet honey mead. I'm smelling caramelized dark fruits and vanilla. I also get a hint of apricot, peach, and a touch of pear.

T- This beer tastes hearty, and is very complex. The great caramelized fruits are a winner here. The hops is there, but as a silent partner. The high ABV is quite spicy on the tongue, in combination with a acidic punch. After taste leaves a great honey mead taste.

M- Feels good in the mouth. The ABV and acid like taste does a number on your tongue. Definitely not something you want to start a reviewing session on as it is a pallet killer.

D- Easy to drink, but goes best as a sipping beer.

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Photo of changeup45
4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Cool looking 12.7 ounce corked bottle. Pours a brown/amber color with a very nice initial tan head that settles to a foamy ring. Aroma is caramel, molasses, dark fruits and alcohol. The flavor is sweet raisins and figs, some caramel and molasses with quite a bit of hop bitterness, especially towards the finish. The beer is a little hot, I'm not going to say the alcohol is hidden, but at 12% that's kind of expected and I like the fact that there is never a dull moment here. Definitely a sipper but I like it.

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Photo of kmeves
4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep amber brown with a very small off white head. Aroma is very sweet with cherries, dates, toffee, nuts and alcohol. Flavor is somewhat fruity although the malt does shine through a bit more. Thick, chewy mouthfeel. Finishes long and sweet with a substantial alcohol burn.

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Photo of barleywinebrewer
3.77/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

thanks to Tayner for the chance to try this beer. I've seen it a couple of times but usually after I had spent my beer run budget.

A - nice clear dark amber color with a nice off white head
S - sweet, dark ripe fruits, caramel and raisins.
T - Taste follows the aroma with an almost light belgian yeast quality and a very strong alcohol note.
M - full bodied, nicely carbonated, very hot.
D - a sipper but that should be a given at this strength. I'd love to try one of these with 5 plus years on it.

It's not as mellow aas I'd like it to be but it hints at the ability to get there.

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Photo of John_M
4.02/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A very interesting beer from Mikkeller. Their take on a Belgian style barleywine DIPA perhaps?

The beer pours an orange tan color, with good head retention and lacing. This beer looks rich, viscuous and inviting. While this beer is pretty delicious, the nose on this bad boy had me going "wow." All kinds of stuff going on, but I got orange citrus, butter, honey, vanilla, cherry, butterscoth and toffee. Not all at once of course, but the aroma evolved as the beer sat in the glass, and each sip seemed to bring some other new flavor. The flavor on the palate generally replicates the nose, but there is huge blast of hoppy citrus on the finish. It really gives the beer a dry, hoppy finish, which is pretty surprising after the initial sweet flavor of honey, toffee, cherry and orange. While I felt as if the flavor profile really never came together with this beer, it was still one of the more interesting and intriguing beers I've ever tasted. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, and drinkability no better then fair. The abv. is fairly well disguised (though you can tell it's up there), but the dry hoppy finish hurts this beers drinkability just a tad IMHO.

Nevertheless, this was a fun beer to try. One thing I'll say about Mikkeller, you can count on them to always makes something interesting and fun to drink.

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Photo of AKBelgianBeast
4.22/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle is 7 months old. Pours a deep brown/ruby with a nice off white head that fades quickly. Nose is solid malts and hops. That spicy barleywine nose. Taste follows, very malty with a large hop presence as well. Some nice fruity flavors in here and good spiciness. Alcohol is very present. Mouthfeel is good, viscous and amply carbonated, which always blows my mind after I pop open these mikkeller neo-corks. There is never a solid POP out of them, its always like an underwater pigeon fart. Anyway, drinkability is hampered a bit here as the alcohol is still quite hot in this one. With some age I can see this being an outstanding american style barleywine. I really have enjoyed mikkeller beers, and am glad to see them continuing in the right direction. Good beer.

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Photo of brewdlyhooked13
4.55/5  rDev +20.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance - a murky iced-tea color with a creamy, thinnish head of a scant finger. It's lightly tanned and is putting big sticky bubbles on the side of the glass.

Aroma - syrupy sweet aroma, like fruitcake drenched in blackberry brandy. Dark and fruity, and quite heady.

Taste - sweet, fruity, and hot. A little funkiness and solvent flavor mid-palate. Raisins, figs, molasses, all the essentials. Chocolate notes emerge with warming. Licorice on the swallow and plenty of abv warmth through to the finish.

Mouthfeel - not real big for a barleywine. Ample carbonation is good, and it has a smooth feel.

Drinkability - a delicious nightcap and kudos to anyone with enough foresight to have picked up some of these to cellar, they should be delicious in years to come.

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Photo of barleywinefiend
4.29/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got this in trade from RobotGod.
Poured a deep, deep brown with a small head that fades. Nose was dried fruits and lots of it. The alcohol was very subtle for 12%. Taste was like a deep, well balanced and very mature English Bwine. Lots of dried fruits, English malts, maybe some toffee and even liquorice in there. Mouthfeel was very good. That sweet dried fruit taste was nice. Since the ABV was not so brutal it kept drinkability high as well. Darn tasty!

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Photo of Onslow
5/5  rDev +32.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

wow, what a truly beautiful full delicious brew, why oh why! good i want to cry.. "I wish it were winter so I could freeze it into ice blocks and skate on it and melt it in the spring time and drink it! " ...abv works perfectly ...amazing stuff ..."good blow this is" ..only my second ever perfect 5!

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Photo of Wasatch
4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Silver Foil

Poured into a tulip a amberish color, some carbonation, little fizzy off-white head, minimal sticky lacing afterwards. The nose is malty, some figs/raisins/prunes, and caramel. The taste is slightly sweet, malty, some dark fruits, and some nice caramel notes. Medium body, the alcohol is hidden fairly well. Drinkable, this is a pretty tasty BWSA, recommended.

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Photo of WYVYRN527
3.82/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12.7 oz bottle, corked and caged, the beer is a very hazy amber with a slight head that quickly settles to a thin film over the top. On the nose at first is a huge malt prescence with hints of caramel and candied fruit. A slight, citrusy hop aroma lingers in the backround. The taste is almost reversed from the aromas. It starts with a slightly dry hop prescence, and is then followed with loads of maltiness. Flavors of caramel, fruit, and prune dominate the palate, and goes back to a pleasant dry finish. It's almost as if this is a cross between American and English barleywines. Very full bodied and thick, it's definitely a sipper. I'm enjoying it even though it's 80 degrees here. Big Worse is very drinkable and a unique experience.

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Photo of Crosling
3.93/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark orange, autumn color with a small, wispy head that disappears fairly quick. Nicely balanced nose, with hints of grapefruit-like hops, fruitcake, dough and honey covered fruits. Very characterful in flavor, with a nice honey-like sweetness, some fruits and caramel and toffee flavors. Body could have more texture and body. Still young, but its made some strides in the last six months. It seems to get more flavorful each time I have it. I really think it'll be great in a couple years.

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Photo of peabody
4.47/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours out a very cloudy brown that light is not penetrating. Two fingers of suds with lacing around the rim of the snifter.
Smell is very strong. Sour apple and orange peel with a caramel raisin sweet aroma.
Taste is very sweet and a little alcoholy. A black bitterness that drys out the mouth finishes this off right before the alcohol burn hits the chest.
This is quite a strong drink but a little weak in the mouthfeel department. It seems that the flavor leaves way to quickly even though that fact makes you want to take another drink. Beware of the 12% though.

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Photo of dreadnatty08
4.57/5  rDev +20.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Synthetic cork which I inadvertently wiped off the bottling date. Pours a medium dark amber color, slight haze with a half inch of tan head that quickly dissipates to a covering with some nice tracing. Aroma is such a sticky caramel, toasty malt bomb for sure. Just so deep and biscuity with a bent towards raisin, but not quite so fruity. Esters are rather restrained for a 12% brew. Slight chocolate touch in the aroma too. On the palate, the malts are just overpowering. I don't know what malt they use in their beer but it's just unbelievable, certainly something I've never tried. This is perhaps the richest beer I've ever had if I had to call a beer rich. Minimally carbonated with a smooth mouthfeel and a slight hop twang in the finish really rounds this beer well, in addition to a 12%abv that is well hidden. Regardless of the other reviews, I think this is one of the most solid commercial barley wines out there today.

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Photo of cjgator3
3.7/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Corked and caged 12.7oz bottle poured into a pint glass. The bottle is wrapped in a silver wrapping and is corked with a synthetic cork. 14/08/11 printed on the cork, I am assuming that is the best before date. Pours a murky brownish amber color with alight tan head. The aroma is very malty with some caramel, leather and alcohol soaked fruits. The taste much like the aroma focuses on the malt. There is also a big leather like presence, it is almost like chewing on a leather boot. Finally, the hops make their presence felt in the finish. Overall, Mikkeller Big Worse is a pretty solid barleywine that seems like it would age very nicely. This is a sipper for sure, but the bottle isn't as big as it appears.

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Photo of lordofthewiens
4.12/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer was served in a tulip glass. It was a ruby red color with a small tan head that quickly disappeared. The beer was actually pretty still. It had a dark fruit aroma, as well as a little caramel. Interesting aroma. The taste was fruity, prunes/raisins. A little warming spice from the alcohol. Maybe a touch too sharp for me, but still a nice beer.

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Photo of weeare138
3.87/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to egajdzis for this...
Appears a dark amber with steady streams of CO2 rising to the top of the glass. The small, off-white head slowly fades into a gentle cap. Scattered spots of lacing are left around the glass.
Smell is of caramel, cocoa, yeasty dough, ripened dark fruits, citrus, and dates.
Taste is of the mentioned aromas with a mix of caramel and apricots, along with other ripened fruit coming to the forefront of this barleywine.
Mouthfeel is a little thin with a low level of carbonation and brown sugar lingering. There is also a small level of heat coming from the abv in this one. This one should age a bit more before trying.

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Photo of Atron67
4.47/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

a 375 bottle i got from pimpp in a trade. looks pretty good like the label. not a fan of these 375 bottles for 10 dollars though, it better be pretty damn good

A- come through the tulip glass a ruby red, although it looked tawny colored as it poured. pretty surprized by the color considering the abv and all. probably pretty tought to get something that light for so much alcohol, not the biggest of heads, however its pretty fizzy and a cm or so of head built up and gave it a nice look. faded pretty quickly but stuck to the glass a decent amount. body is pretty foggy as well lots of haze

S- very fruity, strikes me as being brett infused, some dark fruits, figs & cherry, sourness. not exactly the english or amaerican barleywine type of beer, reminds me of the sprecher which uses the forbidden forest yeast to give it a huge fruit charachter. very delicious smelling

T- not so fizzy as it looked, very fine carbonation that was mostly gone by the time it took me to type up the above. incredibly smooth, mellow maltiness where the fruit play over the tongue as the warmth of the alcohol spreads. same fruit nots as above, however a little more muted than I would have expected. the hops almost keep it from being sweet, there is a light sweetness however but i think that is more a factor from the hops not coming in till later while the maltiness is there right away. works pretty well for the beer and is pretty damn delicious. very smooth clean finish, again realy surprizing considering we are dealing with a 12 % abv

M- pretty thick, very fine carbonation, clean palate althogh not excessively so and still leaves some flavor lingering on the tongue

D- pretty damn good, remarkable beer, however considering the trade need and the high price to start, prolly not gonna see this again.

props to the brewer for this one

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Photo of irishkyle21
4.32/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A great Barleywine to have on a cool spring night. The beer leaves some nice traces of lacing as I sip and settle in for the night. Has a brownish copper color.

Smells of fruits, lots of hops (with a good amount of malt to keep it evenly balanced to a certain point), sweetness, alcohol and a woody spicy scent.

Tastes of sweet malts, hops, alcohol and fruits. I was very surprised when my girlfriend brought this back from Premier Gourmet for me.

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Photo of merlin48
3.95/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12.7 oz green bottle pours into a snifter a hazy copper body with a small beige head that quickly falls to a cap. Some sparse spotty lace is left behind.

Aroma boasts bold notes of chewy caramel and fresh citrusy grapefruit.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with subdued carbonation and some spicy alcohol burn.

Taste has a dominant citrus rind bitterness. Some spicy alcohol burn suggests this one might need some maturation. Underlying malt backbone is sturdy and offers up some caramel sweetness. A mildly sweet citrusy orange presence appears midway through but quickly yields to the dominant hop bitterness.

Definitely an American style barleywine with assertive hop bitterness. A bit hot at this stage with an alcohol burn that is a bit distracting.

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Photo of mortarit
3.84/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Well I just found out that this was a barleywine. So it should be interesting because I am not fond of them. However I am fond of Mikkeller brews.

The color difference hit me first. Dark golden amber with a haze that I haven't seen in beers.

The smell is welcoming invite to want to have a drink.

Lacing isn't really there at all.

Taste has a soft burn when applied to the tongue. I taste woody favors.

Honestly, I am not a barleywine person, yet. I do know that this was a great example of one.

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Big Worse from Mikkeller ApS
Beer rating: 63.7% out of 100 with 416 ratings
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