Blunderbuss Barleywine | Cambridge Brewing Company

BA SCORE
93
outstanding
125 Ratings
Blunderbuss BarleywineBlunderbuss Barleywine
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Cambridge Brewing Company
Massachusetts, United States
cambridgebrewingcompany.com

Style: American Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 05-10-1999

BEER STATS
Ratings:
125
Reviews:
45
Avg:
4.3
pDev:
8.6%
 
 
Wants:
97
Gots:
5
For Trade:
0
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Ratings: 125 |  Reviews: 45
Photo of jdhilt
4.44/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a two finger khaki head that fades quickly to a thin layer leaving no lace. Deep brown color, no highlights. Medium carbonation and medium bodied. dark fruit nose and flavor malty, dark fruit, smooth. Higher ABV, now 12.75% is mostly hidden. Expensive at $10.95 for a caged and corked 375ml bottle from Colonial Spirits Acton, Ma.

 336 characters

Photo of darktronica
4.23/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Quite fruity for an American barleywine, innit? Not much hoppy counterpoint to balance things out, but on the other hand, the bottle does not make any claim of American or English style, so I'm inclined to give a pass on that. Brewing notes online mention a mix of American and British malts, with six types of hops, aged in Heaven Hill bourbon barrels: quite a complex undertaking. The nose and palate are both well in line with the brewery's description, with tart berries (I get grape, mulberry, and hints of blue- and rasp-) matching up against some lighter caramel and vanilla flavors, partly from the malts and partly from the barrel. I get some fusel notes on the finish which are a bit of a letdown, but overall, I quite like this as a pretty distinctive take on the style.

 781 characters

Photo of Bunuelian
4.15/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Grinky
4.5/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of qcbrewer
4.45/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of newbeeraday
3.75/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Hopstout
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Durge
4.19/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

It's murky mahogany in appearance with a fair light malt colored head that fades to a wisp with consistent coverage in recession. The aroma is bright sour grape rhubarb with a maple malt blend. There's a neat green hop that melds with an alcohol element. The taste brings a heavy port and cedar hop blend that is accompanied by a pleasant warming as it slides down the gullet. There's a brandy edge as well. Body is medium full with a somewhat viscous feel but there's enough crisp carbonation to keep it drinkable for the style. A very nice offering.

 551 characters

Photo of Petegrieco
4.02/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Masters
4.02/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of jtk21351
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Abe_Froman
4.15/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of mltobin
4.2/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of blisscent
4.28/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Uncwest96
3.03/5  rDev -29.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

Not a big fan of the barley wine. It was way too heavy and fruity. Like a fig newton suspended in a PBR.

104 characters

Photo of ChrisMyhre
4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of brother_rebus
3.88/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Had the winter 2015 version on tap. Beautiful coconut vanilla heavy malted mixture with a smooth middle and crisp finish.

121 characters

Photo of Child_Pugh
3.53/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Photo of Texasfan549
4.21/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of kjkinsey
4.31/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of richj1970
4.31/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of DrJay
4.29/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of snowmageddon
4.2/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Aisha
3.75/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Damian
4.71/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Drank on tap at Cambridge Brewing Company, Cambridge, MA
Served in a snifter
Thanks to my friend OtisCampbell for treating me to this.

The beer poured a slightly hazed, deep garnet color. There was no head but merely a bright white collar atop the liquid.

The nose was both intriguing and intense. My initially thought was that this smelled like apple cider. There were also loads of fruity esters, which reminded me of banana Runts. Malty rich and fairly sweet. Dark fruits came through strong. Quite plummy. Caramel and toffee were also noticeable. As the beer sat, a touch of port was detectible.

Lots of interesting things going on in the flavor profile as well. Rich and robust with a stiff caramel malt backbone. Sweet and doughy. Loads of dark fruits. Raisins, plums and figs were most obvious. Good amount of toffee. A tad oaky on the back end and the finish. Semi-dry with a kiss of alcohol warmth. No hop presence whatsoever.

The mouthfeel was uber pillowy and soft. Velvety smooth. The liquid contained a super fine and mellow effervescence that complimented this beer perfectly.

While many barleywines are either bracingly hoppy or cloyingly sweet, Cambridge Brewing's Blunderbuss fortunately is neither. This remarkably complex take on the style contains a plethora of interesting and unique flavors that balance each other perfectly. I would really love to see this bottled one day.

 1,401 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Blunderbuss Barleywine from Cambridge Brewing Company
4.3 out of 5 based on 125 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.

    Learn More
  • Our Events

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

    Learn More
  • Our Magazine

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

    Learn More