Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2007 | Stone Brewing

BA SCORE
91
outstanding
290 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score
Send samples
Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2007Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2007
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Stone Brewing
California, United States
stonebrewing.com

Style: American Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.26%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Wildman on 01-25-2007

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

BEER STATS
Ratings:
290
Reviews:
239
Avg:
4.13
pDev:
9.69%
 
 
Wants:
4
Gots:
14
For Trade:
0
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 290 |  Reviews: 239
Photo of Atron67
3.98/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- looks good, a light white foam, hazy, medium amber.

S- kinda fruity, with hops and malty, its good, full smell

T- strong taste, complex and very strong, highly enjoy it, starts with the malt and alcohol kinda hitting together alcohol is a little bitter, then the fruit and hops come in, theres alot happening at the same time so its hard to separate, aging some of these will make it better, I do really really like the taste of this beer. Im looking forward to what this will taste like when it ages a little more.

M- slightly dry good

D- the alcohol and strong flavor makes drinking it go a little slow, its delicious but its a beer that is slow to drink. ITs something you ponder over, makes a great sunday afternoon.

 735 characters

Photo of EStreet20
3.93/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Got my hands on two bombers of this year's OG. Figure I'll pop one now and age one for a while.

22 ounce bomber poured into a snifter glass.

A - A nice orange colored beer with two fingers of white head. Really looks great. The head has some staying power. A gorgeous brew overall.

S - Some candy sugar aroma along with a hint of alcohol.

T - Wow alcohol leads the way like crazy. After that a bit of a sugary/fruity sweetness comes through. Hop presence is there but the alcohol is really out in front on this one. This beer begs to be aged before enjoying. Still the flavors seem interesting. I'd like to give it a year or so to balance out a bit.

M - Nice full body to sip on.

D - This is one of the few brews that I can honestly say NEEDS some age. It's a good beer with lots of flavor but the drinkability suffers a bit because of the alcohol. Some time would likely give this beer some balance, and make it a great BW.

T -

 950 characters

Photo of BBM
3.76/5  rDev -9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a vibrant clear orange color, with a rocky white head, nice lacing and a lot of carbonation action. The aroma is syrupy and heavy on the alcohol; notes of earth and flowers do come through a bit.

This is a hell of a big beer, with a stern malt backbone trying its best to mask a surprisingly noticeable hop profile. The alcohol makes its presence felt as well, especially as the beer warms. Piney hops, earth, and barley are the main themes here. Mouthfeel is thick and syrupy. It will take a while to finish 22oz of this, and you'll be satisfied with that.

Generally I love when Stone goes overboard with their beers, but this one didn't quite do it for me. Seems big just for the sake of being big. It's still a quality brew, but I've had better Barleywines.

 770 characters

Photo of zdk9
3.95/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

After my first barleywine I had to try another. Stone's delivered in a great way and proclaimed the diversity of the palatte of flavors a BW is capable of.

A- Pours out of the bomber a dark deep orange with a fingers worth snowpowder white lacing. No lacing on this one. (Should I be suprised? The hops are powerful but the malt is pretty strong on this one too...)

S- Sweet orangy malt hits my nose with a blast of alcohol. This one is quite warm on the nose. There are also notes of peach and some warm pine sap.

T- Sweet and velvety, but with a pop of bitterness on the back of my tongue and a creeping of alchol warmth. Orange and carmel occupy the majority of my tastebuds but there is a great piney hoppiness that also makes its presence known. This is a powerful beer but with a great blend of flavors that I didn't expect.

M- Bitter and alcoholic, but also full and succulent, keeping me wanting more. The syruppy quality is..so-so. In some ways it tones down how well I notice the alcohol, but it also makes me cleanse my pallate more than I'd like to.

D- An excellent beer that I will go back to. Sure it is alcoholic and powerful. But who doesn't like an alcoholic powerful beer when the occasion warrents it? Certainly not me. And I'm sure with time this one will taste even more complex and delicious.

 1,319 characters

Photo of badbeer
3.11/5  rDev -24.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured a nice amber color with a strong head that lasted very well and left good lacing. Smell had more grassyness to it than I recall from last years version. There was still some sweet caramel underneath, but I think the malt would come in more with age. Taste was much of the same, maybe slightly better. Grassy, but did have a malt base underneath, which led me to believe that this one should become much better. Fairly high carbonation with a medium body. This one was not as drinkable as most beers I have from Stone. I'll say it again, I think this will develop very nicely, as the 2006 did, but it's not there yet.

 623 characters

Photo of wingman14
4.02/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a redish orange with a very small off white head. This one has a sweet citrus fruit smell with caramel notes and some hop presence. The very noticable potent taste sticks out at first with the sweet citrus flavors. Somewhat sweet with malty characteristics follow. This one has a very powerful alcohol aftertaste that has a smooth mouthfeel. Some may be turned away by this one especially those that are not fans of a great barleywine. This was an enjoyable beer, and definitely worth checking out for all the BW fans out there.

 534 characters

Photo of Erdinger2003
2.91/5  rDev -29.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

The beer pours a beautiful big head. The head retains quite nicely. The color is brown to amber and looks nice. The lacing let behind i s very very good. The smell is very grapefruity with some dark fruit, almost a plum. The taste is grapefruity with some wet cardboard oxodized flavors. Not much, but enough. The mouthfeel was nice and smooth with only a touch of carbonation fizz. Overall, I would love to have more after a bit of time in the cellar. Last years was better, but only because it wasn't oxodized and it was aged a bit before it was tried.

 554 characters

Photo of oakbluff
4.18/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

2007 vintage bomber courtesy of HogTownHarry. Been looking forward to this for quite some time. Pours out a medium tangerine/chestnut. A little hazy. Head is a cream colour and very plentiful, eventually disapating to soapy lacing. Aroma is piney hops, booze and sweet bread. Flavour- wow- a stong beverage indeed. Waves of warming liquid cascade through my mouth. The booze hits home quickly, but is offset by a hammer of piney hops and a caramel malt truck. Very bitter finish that dries the mouth. I can see how this benefits from laying down for a while. Its quite sharp even with a few months under its belt. A true American west coast barleywine. Its brash, but that’s what I was hoping for. Mouthfeel is actually light compared to what I thought it would be. Given the malt in this sucker, that it quite the feat. Not a sticky sweet mess at all- if anything leans on the dry and boozy side.

 898 characters

Photo of muchloveforhops3
4.5/5  rDev +9%

Photo of TheTrevor
3.8/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This beer poured a dark brown with orange highlights and a bit of a thin head. The smell is barley malt with a big punch of floral and grassy hops. The taste starts off with some malt sweetness that goes into some grassy and floral hops with a bit of alcohol in the back end. The mouthfeel is thick and slightly syrupy with a low amount of carbonation and some warming from the alcohol. This beer is a bit daunting drinkability wise, but that's really my only complaint with it. I haven't had anything from Stone that wasn't powerful and impressive.

 549 characters

Photo of Jmoore50
4.33/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got this 1 liter growler filled on Saturday the 19, 2009 at Stone Brewery.

The appearance is great. The first thing I have to mention is the head and the lacing. Ridiculous. This is absurd, especially for a 11.26% ABV. Great amber color with no floaters. Beautiful looking beer.

The smell is nothing spectacular, but a lot of the smells translate into the taste.

The taste is great. This is an entirely different brew than this years. The recipe was no doubtingly different, but age also puts a great spin on this. Dark fruits are the overwhelming characteristic. Dried prunes, bit of currants, apricot, and dry peaches. A small brown sugar taste with a huge sweet alcoholic flavor. I also get a bit of licorice.

The mouthfeel is great, fresh keg tapped two days ago. What else could you ask for? This is the way they wanted it, and this was great.

Drinkability is dangerously high, almost 12% ABV. I am tossing this back like it is water, shit, probably should save some for later but I cannot stop. Just so good.

J

 1,028 characters

Photo of cynical1027
4.5/5  rDev +9%

Photo of InsolublePancake
4.12/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Nice clear reddish-orange color with about a half inch of head. The head doesn't stick around long and leaves a touch of lacing on the glass.

S- Big malty aromas. Caramel, toffee, molasses, and a hint of alcohol. Hops really aren't very noticeable.

T- Quite sweet up front, almost candy-like. Malt flavors include the aforementioned toffee and caramel. Hops don't contribute to a whole lot to the flavor but add a decent bitterness to the finish that lingers for quite some time.

M- Nice full moutfeel. Carbonation is higher than expected, but still nice.

D- Pretty darn good considering its strength. Alcohol is very well-hidden.

It's good for sure, although not the best I've ever had. The flavors, while nice, just didn't jump out at me. Very solid barleywine, though. Maybe a bit of age will help it. Recommended.

 835 characters

Photo of I2uss
5/5  rDev +21.1%

Photo of CortexBomb
3.72/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Have I mentioned lately how glad I am that Stone is available in Michigan, finally? Old Guardian is an interesting brew, it reminds me a lot of a grapefruity counterpart to Arrogant Bastard, which is a damn fine brew in its own right.

The pour on this one is hazy orange, and the smell is a grapefruity, sugary...malts on the edge as well. The flavour of this carries over similar tones: a strong malt backbone with a variety of fruits with grapefruit, apples, and even some dark hints in the background. The flavour is odd though, I have to mark the beer only a 3.5 here because I frankly felt it was subdued for the style.

A similar sort of story on the mouth, it had a great mouth in general, plenty of hop bite, decently thick, but I still think it's only decent relative to the other beers in this style, which often coat like motor oil.

One thing I can't knock this beer on is drinkability though, very easy to put down (just like Bastard).

Overall: This is a good beer, but it happens to be only decent for its style. I can't complain about the price, but I don't think this one stands out enough to be a repurchase for me.

 1,143 characters

Photo of PatronWizard
4.08/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Was trying to cellar this but damn, daddy gets thirsty. Hope to get another one.

Pours a beautiful semi-clear amber under a huge white head of poorly graded bubbles. Very few bubbles float up so this head won't be replenished. Falls very slowly. Great looking brew.

Smell is good but a little weak. I expected an uppercut, got a little slap. Caramel.

Taste like a sugar daddy. Nice alcohol bite. I expected a little bite since we're at 11.26% and it's very nice when you expect it. Sweet and smooth. This is very good. Thick, but with little or no abrasiveness.

Overall: great stuff

 586 characters

Photo of Stoneman78
4.22/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Appearance is of clear body with a copper red/amber hue. Small, white head that is mostly diminishing. Fair lacing throughout.

S- Nose is mild and sweet malt. Hoppy aroma with tones of caramel, citrus, and a touch of honey. Fairly strong alcohol aroma as well.

T- Initial flavor is moderately bitter and marked by followed by sweet malt, with a short finish of hoppy goodness. Alcohol tones are present throughout, but not overwhelming.

M- Medium body with a smooth, almost creamy, texture. Soft carbonation with a moderately alcoholic finish.

D- Surprisingly drinkable given the high ABV. A very smooth drinking BW with a nice hop profile that is not overly sweet. Great option for a nightcap or after-dinner brew.

 731 characters

Photo of xgrigorix
3.24/5  rDev -21.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Twenty two ounce brown bottle. Dated winter 2007.

Copper hued, bright & clear. Thin tan head holds nicely. Thin lines of easy carbonation.

Fruity aroma - notes of melon & berries. Heavy whiff of alcohol.

A bit of grainy malty sort of flavour to start. Some melon type flavours, along with a taste of Munich malt. Thin smack of herbal bitterness. Slight hint of citrus.

Slick, medium-full bodied. Gentle carbonation.

Not really ready for consumption yet. Hopefully some age will make this the tasty powerhouse that past releases have been.

 553 characters

Photo of drumrboy22
4.2/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Growler obtained from Stone Brewing. Poured into a Stone chalice. Beer was a cloudy amber color, with a one-finger, tan head. Very thick lacing lacing and moderate carbonation.

Aroma was grapefruit, citrus, caramel, malt, toffee and pine.

Taste was citrus, sweet malt, bitter hops and bread.

Has help up really well. Well balanced and drinking very well.

 359 characters

Photo of MrHirschybar
3.88/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From a growler at a Stone Saturday Tap Night recently to go.

A- Murky copper/peach color with an off-white and tan head that quickly dissipate. Almost like a really dark mimosa-like appearance...

S- Initial boozy alcohol smell, followed by light hop scents with a citrus fruit and grape reminiscent smell with a follow through that reminded me of yeast...

T- A little tart initially, with strong maltiness and hops still hanging around strong at the 3 year (January 2011) so almost 4 year mark depending on the original release date. Much better drinkability as it warmed in my New Belgium glass. Reminded me of a lighter tasting North Coast Old Stock Ale in a way..

M- Felt it was light to medium at most, very little coating from drinking it, with a nice little alcohol warming near the finish that lingered nicely.

D- Enjoyed this quite a bit actually, though I definitely would sip and let it warm as I felt it tasted better as it warmed. The girlfriend enjoyed it quite a bit as well. For the growler fill price it was quite nice and would definitely enjoy again as an aged barleywine.

 1,095 characters

Photo of sloejams
4.12/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I don't often partake in Barleywines, except around winter when SN Bigfoot is an annual staple. Aside from a few other various offerings that pretty much makes up my barleywine intake. Every year I buy a few and they always linger. They're big, intense offerings that often scare me when I look into my refrigerator. So in that regard, I find them quite easy to age - not drinking it = best way to age, of course.

Old Guardian is one I try every year. So far, it's been until today nearly August for me to sample Stone's 07 offering, and to be honest, I'm not sure what drove me to try it today, but I'm certainly glad I did.

As expected this is a big beer. Chewy malt characteristics up and down with tons of hop bitterness. Not as floral as my favorite, Bigfoot, but some say that has too much hop character for a barleywine. I like lots of hops so perhaps that is what makes me so comfortable with that. This is far more balanced, which is not to say there are subtleties - everything is there and there in spades.

Wonderful caramel and bready flavors fill out the hops and chewy malts. The body is rich and full with a smooth finish. Quite tasty. Why have I waited so long to try this?

 1,199 characters

Photo of jerz
5/5  rDev +21.1%

Photo of bbothen
3.9/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A -Orangish amber & copper color with a nice bubbly tan head.

S - Smells of sweet caramel & toffee with some fruity hop character as well. Oh, and a big booze presence as well.

T - This is a huge beer. Assertive hop presence balaned out by the sweet malty caramel sweetness. Lingering alcohol & bitter finish.

M - Thick & sticky with a nice level of carbonation.

D - This will get to you. It is huge on all levels.

This is a great representation of a US barleywine. Stone really flex their brewing muscles on this one. God bless them.

I wish it came in 12oz bottles as a bomber is a bit much for one person. Although I did finish it off. Happily.

 652 characters

Photo of umustdrink
4.47/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Received from the generous BA BeerTruth last summer

A - Reddish dark orange color, opaque. Offwhite head fades to a film and a ring. Lacing sticks in small dots.

S - Rich brown sugary bready malts with the dark fruit and all, a slight roastiness, a little bitterness, detectable alcohol. A big smell with lots of dark fruitiness.

T - Starts out with an immediate pungent fruitiness, not dark fruits at all, light and sweet...äußerst merkwürdig... Bready biscuity soaked in brandy maltiness takes over along with the darker fruitier flavors. Bready fruitiness peaks (tons of flavor) and mellows out for a sweet malty fruity finish. Alcohol hides itself relatively well.

M - A good hearty medium to thick consistency with a fair amount of carbonation.

D - A very nice barleywine with some unique flavors on top of the basic barleywine characteristics. A sipper indeed but the high alcohol is masked pretty well.

 918 characters

Photo of ToddT
3.13/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

A- Pours a bright coppery color with a three finger cream head that fades quickly bur leaves a nice ring at the top to the glass. A little cloudy in appearance

S- Notes of fruit and caramel, strong underlying smell of alcohol.

T- Caramel and a quick hit of fruit then the burn of alcohol takes over. Finishes slightly bitter with a warm touch in the back of the throat.

M- Smooth feel with light carbonation. A little thin for what I expect from a barley wine.

D- Not as drinkable as I would have liked. Feels like it needs to age more to hide the 11.26% ABV and develop some body and complexity, since the alcohol taste is somewhat overwhelming.

Review is for a 2007 release that was found on the shelves of the local beer distributor in 2008. Sometimes it is a good thing to not rotate your stock. I really hoped the year of aging would have yielded a spectacular beer, but this was not the case. I would be afraid to drink this one fresh from the brewery.

 965 characters

Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale 2007 from Stone Brewing
4.13 out of 5 based on 290 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.