Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale (2005)
Stone Brewing

Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale (2005)Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale (2005)
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From:
Stone Brewing
 
California, United States
Style:
American Barleywine
ABV:
11.26%
Score:
94
Avg:
4.24 | pDev: 8.96%
Reviews:
105
Ratings:
19
Status:
Retired
Rated:
Apr 15, 2017
Added:
Jan 26, 2005
Wants:
  11
Gots:
  4
SCORE
94
Outstanding
Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale (2005)Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale (2005)
Notes: None
Recent ratings and reviews. | Log in to view more ratings + sorting options.
 
Rated: 4.25 by Kurzman from Rhode Island

Apr 15, 2017
Photo of drdiesel9483
Reviewed by drdiesel9483 from Ohio

4.4/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
2016:
Drinking this at stone
Look - Amber reddish color with no head or lacing after the aging as expected
Smell - strong boozy sweet slight Carmel smell. It wasn't in a bb but it smells like it.
Taste - sweet carmalized cherries, really boozy taste
Feel - medium body with light carb
Overall - really strong still after all the ageing but still pretty good
Feb 09, 2016
Photo of johnnnniee
Reviewed by johnnnniee from New Hampshire

3.77/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75
Bottle from Mike’s Barleywine tasting, thanks for the opportunity!
Surprisingly still a bit of earthy hop flavor against a sweet caramel fruity maltiness.
Apr 04, 2015
 
Rated: 4 by nathanmiller from New York

Mar 18, 2015
 
Rated: 4.61 by Texaseddie from California

Feb 28, 2015
 
Rated: 4 by zestar from California

Jul 19, 2014
 
Rated: 4.25 by BillRoth from Maryland

Dec 08, 2013
 
Rated: 4.5 by WOLFGANG from South Carolina

Jul 08, 2013
 
Rated: 4.5 by jaxon53 from Connecticut

Jul 07, 2013
 
Rated: 4.25 by t0rin0 from California

Feb 25, 2013
 
Rated: 4.25 by beerpadawan from California

Aug 27, 2012
 
Rated: 4.5 by trancesk8er from California

Jun 09, 2012
Photo of drabmuh
Reviewed by drabmuh from Maryland

3.53/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5
Old Guardian served in an Old Guardian glass, this beer does not really improve with age but it also doesn't get much worse.

Beer is ruby and clear with a thin lazy off white / tan head of small bubbles, some lacing, low carbonation. Looks good.

Stone biting house yeast with nice MO grain / malt aroma, strong throughout.

Beer is medium in body with a mild bitter and hoppiness on the back end, it is a fine beer with a nice finish but there is this underlying faded, musky hoppiness there. I don't like it as much as the newer ones.
Apr 06, 2012
Photo of Thorpe429
Reviewed by Thorpe429 from Illinois

3.03/5  rDev -28.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3
Bottle courtesy of drabmuh at last weekend's Stone tasting. Served in a Stone goblet.

Pours a semi-hazy golden-caramel color with a bit of an orange hue. Short head without much in the way of retention or lacing.

The nose brings some caramel and brown sugar, as well as some older hops. Faint fruits in the background. The flavor has a good deal of sweetness and still just a touch of lingering bitterness. Medium body with low carbonation and a mixture of sugar and alcohol.

This was okay, but it's not something I'd really plan to age all that much of in the future.
Apr 03, 2012
Photo of Huhzubendah
Reviewed by Huhzubendah from District of Columbia

3.53/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5
Shared by drabmuh. Thanks Matt.

The beer is copper orange hued with a small head that leaves sparse lacing on the glass. The aroma offers caramels, malt, light oxidation, even some old basement. The flavor is decent, but I didn't enjoy this one nearly as much as the 2004 version. I was quite surprised by how different they were from one another. Pretty simple and straightforward, with a slightly sweet malt bill leading the way. Hop character is nonexistent at this point. A pretty decent brew and fun to try.
Mar 31, 2012
 
Rated: 4.5 by codynevels from California

Mar 06, 2012
 
Rated: 4.5 by bearisprime from California

Feb 08, 2012
 
Rated: 4.5 by PhineasGage from Iowa

Jan 27, 2012
 
Rated: 4.5 by whartontallboy from New York

Jan 15, 2012
 
Rated: 5 by rab53 from Washington

Dec 09, 2011
 
Rated: 5 by Rochefort10nh from New Hampshire

Dec 08, 2011
 
Rated: 5 by JohneHoodlum from Pennsylvania

Dec 05, 2011
 
Rated: 5 by jerz from California

Nov 18, 2011
 
Rated: 4.5 by nanobrew from California

Nov 18, 2011
Photo of Wadsey
Reviewed by Wadsey from Indiana

3.1/5  rDev -26.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3
Stone Old Guardian, Winter 2005

Served in DFH signature glass. 

A: Pours clear amber with the faintest skim of a head. A light but steady stream of bubble course through beer, which is unexpected. 

S: Caramel and golden raisin notes dominate, indicating a hefty bill of crystal malts. Additional aromas include cherries, alcohol, light oxidation, and honey. Smell is more subdued than I'm describing. 

T: Taste does not follow particularly well. Malty sweetness, alcohol and medium bitterness comprise lion's share of taste. The alcohol and bitterness have undoubtedly diminished over years, but the other flavors have worn away more rapidly; therefore, alcohol and bitterness have no opposition. The alcohol has a solvent-like edge. However, caramel presence increases a notch when beer hits room temperature. 

M: Medium-heavy body an light carbonation. Warming and a little numbing. 

O: This bottle of Old Guardian was cellared properly and would certainly be "drinkable" for many years to come. It has not, however, improved and seems to be well past its peak. Too bad. 
Sep 06, 2011
Photo of dirtylou
Reviewed by dirtylou from Washington

4.32/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
"limited winter 2005 release"

appearance: served in my great lakes chalice, bright clear amber-orange body, cream white head with light retention

smell: pine sap, thick caramel malts, honey, dark fruits, orange peel

taste; for being almost 6 years old, this beer still has a tight flavor profile. the citrus hops are gone but sticky pine remains, along with lots of honey, bitter orange peel, caramel, booze. I was worried this may have passed its prime, but it's still on point

mouthfeel: rich, creamy medium body, moderate bitterness in the finish

drinkability: good
Dec 05, 2010
Photo of DeanMoriarty
Reviewed by DeanMoriarty from California

4/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
2005 Vintage Old Guardian

Had this out of a snifter at Holiday Wine Cellar's special event for San Diego Beer Week 2010: "Stone Vintage Archives & Decadent Chocolate Pairings" hosted by Dr. Bill Sysack of Stone Brewing. Paired with North Park's Eclipse Chocolat - Pumpkin Muscavado Truffle.

A: Pours a reddish/copper hue with a decent head and tons of thick lace from start to finish.

S: Earthy fruit, sweet and malty, finishing a bit boozy.

T: Booze up front that is balanced quickly by sweet malt, the hop that was missing in the nose comes through in the flavor nicely with the booziness mellowing as it warmed up a bit.

M: Medium to full-bodied, sticky but not syrupy at all with mellow carbonation giving it an overall smooth mouthfeel.

D: Wow - enjoyed this one a lot, but man it's only tolerable in small amounts. Heavy duty sh*t here! My wife had a sip of hers and passed it my way, which I appreciated, but I was good after her and my tastings...granted this is not my preferred style.
Nov 27, 2010
Photo of srandycarter
Reviewed by srandycarter from California

4.25/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5
Stone popped this bad boy today.

A - Pours a beautiful deep amber, almost clear, large creamy head that is slow to leave and lots of lace.

S - Heavy malt, booze, some medicinal quality.

T - Sweet heavy malt, caramel, boozy, hard hops hitting it back.

M - Med to heavy body, from very sweet to very harsh. Hard to reign in those huge flavors. Done pretty well, though.

D - I bought the 2 litre growler of this sucker, and I had better find some friends to share, cuz this is not a session beer!
Sep 20, 2010
Photo of gford217
Reviewed by gford217 from Georgia

4.32/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
2005 bottle courtesy of crosling poured into a snifter.

Pours a light, crystal clear amber with a small creamy beige head that recedes to a small collar and leaves some legs after each sip.

The aroma is wonderfully sweet. It's got caramelized dark fruits, toffee, brown sugar. There's not much left of the hops, maybe some orange peel and musty grasses, but the aroma has taken on a brandy-like aroma that's extremely appetizing.

The taste is just as sweet. It's got tons of caramelized sugar, oranges, and toffee. There is a much more prevalent spiciness in the taste, maybe from the remaining hops.

The mouthfeel is medium to full bodied and sticky sweet with a low, tight carbonation that keeps things from getting too cloying.

This one has held up exceptionally well and I think I may prefer this to the fresher bottles I've had. It's really mellowed and turned into a sugary sweet after-dinner sipper. Excellent.
Mar 19, 2010
Photo of asabreed
Reviewed by asabreed from New York

4.35/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
Bomber into a Brooklyn tulip.

Appearance: Cloudy and very hazy. Lighter from the bottom to the darker top. Darker brown top and a lighter copper orange at the bottom. Pretty color overall, but little lacing and only a few thick drops cling to the bulb part of the glass. The color and depth save this one on the eyes.

Smell: Orange peel soaked in honey and drizzled caramel. There's also some leafy citrus hop presence, orange marmalade, and a lot of raisins. In addition, there's a nice peppery and spicy presence from the hops.

Taste: Chocolate nibs soaked in orange marmalade and drizzled with honey. Can't believe it's held up this well, especially considering the spicy and pungent hop presence. Fruit esters are mostly citrus, and there's some raisins and possibly figs in the mix. As it warms, the hop presence is still, seemingly miraculously, extremely strong and lingering, especially for this being five years old.

Mouthfeel: Surprisingly rich and creamy, with good full and prickly carbonation, which was completely unexpected. Doesn't remain cloying at all, which is also surprising.

Drinkability: I wonder how long this could hold up. I'd say for at least a few more years, and that's what bumps this up from my originally planned half-lower rating. A pretty awesome brew overall, and I hope to try more vintages in the future. I'm sure they all bring some great characteristics to the table.
Jan 15, 2010
Photo of Vancer
Reviewed by Vancer from Illinois

4.45/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5
Review 1600, time for one from the cellar.

Oh man oh man, what a classic brew - pure amber pour, even after the years the ivory head still materializes in the Corsendonk tulip.

Perfect barleywine aroma of orange liquor, sweet malt and caramel. I can tell this is gonna be good. And yes it is, sweet lip smacking bubble gum of thick orange booze, but no alcohol bite to be found. This is like drinking an orange cognac that's been aged for 10 years.

A very good brew, now gone forever. Bummer there.
Dec 20, 2009
Photo of LordAdmNelson
Reviewed by LordAdmNelson from Ohio

4.35/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
This one has aged so well! Aroma puts together the normal English Barleywine flavors--figs, raisons, syrup, sweet malt. Flavor is about the same--big sweet syrup, some light malt, some citrus hops, big fig and raison flavor... some spiciness as well. Good stuff here, '05 is drinking well, Oh god this is good... some creaminess, little or no head, some carbonation has been retained, I'd make a good session out of this.
Nov 30, 2009
Photo of barleywinefiend
Reviewed by barleywinefiend from Washington

4.8/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5
Poured a lightly cloudy orangish color with a small white head. Nose is nice and malty, chewy caramel, with some of the floral and ctirus notes still hanging in there. Taste is caramel, deep and malty, mellow and damn tasty with pine/floral notes and it was not near as hot as a nw release OG. Still had good carbonation and this barleywine was down right excellent! OG is one of the best aging bwines I have found to date.
May 03, 2009
Photo of bovinecrusader
Reviewed by bovinecrusader from California

4.54/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5
[On tap @ Naja's Vertical Barleywines. Cheers to you, Martin)

Pours a gilded, brassy note..almost TOO shiny, as one feels inexorably compelled to drink it. Sand-colored head immediately dissipates with a soft off-white sheen.

Mouthfeel? Uber-creaminess front-to-mid palate, but finishes with just enough lifting Fruitcake spice to warn you of its underlying indulgence.

Huge: brandy soaked apricots, undercooked/overspiced ginger bread, and spruce-tip-infused hops bitterness.

Drinkability? Its like liquid peer pressure emanating from a glass. Truly a testament to aging, and its benefits upon Beerdom.
Feb 27, 2009
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Reviewed by BigMcLargeHuge from Arizona

4.35/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
On Tap @ O'Brien's. 2005 vintage. Consumed summer 2006. The aroma was very light. The flavors are similar to the '04 but a bit brighter. There was malt, molasses, a hint of toffee and a full dark fruitiness flavor. Wow, good stuff. I love when beer bars hold back or can get vintage kegs. YES.
Nov 17, 2008
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Reviewed by tempest from New York

4.17/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4
Great beer, but considering this is a Stone brew, I was hoping for a little more. For starters, this is a golden barleywine, peach colored with a slight red tinge. No head unfortunately, but that happens with this much alcohol. The aroma of of sweet, syrupy pineapple and peach juice, like from the canned fruit with grass and fresh ground black pepper. The flavor matches much of the aroma but with more spicy citrus rind and doughy malt for balance. The aftertaste focuses on the spicy hops and reminds me of Italian cooking spices for their earthy taste. The body and weight are reasonably heavy for this type of beer. Finishing a bomber is no trouble, as long as you're sharing. Good beer.
Aug 04, 2008
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Reviewed by Overlord from California

4.35/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
Pours a copperish amber. About a half an inch of white head. Delicious sweet smell.

It could be the age, or this may be a sweeter beer to begin with. Loads of sweet malt, lighter citrus, and tropical notes. The hop content is very muted, with some grapefruit juice mingled with the thick, syrupy mouthfeel.

Very uncharacteristic of stone. I like! Dangerously drinkable. Doubt this will cross my path again, though.
May 06, 2008
Photo of Floydster
Reviewed by Floydster from California

3.75/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5
Few ounces tasted at Stone Winter Storm for two dollars, tasted alongside some other vintages of OG

A-Color was a copper brown, more on the red side, 1/2 inch light tan head, not much retention, minimal lacing

S-Bubblegum, big toffee notes, some caramel, various types of sweet malt, some herbs, pine hops, and some candy-like fruit scents

T-Big malty taste from the beginning with caramel and other kinds of sweetness, some resin-like hops with a tad of grapefruit, also toffee, vanilla, and raisins, nicely balanced overall

M-Medium body, smooth, creamy, taste lasted a long time, good level of carbonation, hoppy mouthfeel at times

D-Strong barleywine over eleven percent alcohol, alcohol is not hidden very well, heavy on stomach, definitely a sipper

One of the best vintages of Old Guardian I have tasted, recommended to anybody that can get a hold of it, seems like it will only get better with age
Jan 30, 2008
Photo of Derek
Reviewed by Derek from Canada (BC)

4.28/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4
Perhaps I should've waited another couple months for it to be 3 years old!

A: Amber-copper, light tan hfead, some retention, nice leg/lacing. Exceptional for its strength & age.

S: Bold, bitter hop aroma is resiny & slightly herbal. Sherry-like alcohol, toffee, cotton-candy fruity esters,

T: With almost 3 years in the cellar, it's still very hop-forward with an assertive bitterness. The piney, resiny hops meld with the fruity ale esters and the toffee, nutty, biscuity malt flavours. Slight vanilla and sherry. The alcohol is very warming, but not at all harsh.

M: Moderate body is smooth & creamy, with a definite hop acidity. Modest carbonation. Very well-attenuated considering it's strength, but it's not too dry.

D: Big & bold.
Nov 17, 2007
Photo of AlexJ
Reviewed by AlexJ from North Carolina

4.35/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
Warm copper with a brilliant crimson cast and thin head of wheat-hued froth that has moderate retention and very light lace.

Aroma is deeply caramelized malt and rich toffee, it's almost creamy like creme brule'. There are layers of warm fruit cobbler and honeyed peaches offset by rustic hop notes of pine and earthy dried greens.

Flavor starts with chewy caramel and scorched toffee, vanilla, and golden raisins. It's hoppier than I anticipated, pine and cedar flooowed by grassy hay and light candied citrus. Balanced and complex, alcohol kick is warming, but not tasted.

Body is just below big, mildly carbonated and has a very creamy, soft texture. A classic and sophisticated example of the style, I really can't wait to try my 04 next!
Apr 10, 2007
Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale (2005) from Stone Brewing
Beer rating: 94 out of 100 with 124 ratings