Old Guardian BELGO Barleywine | Stone Brewing

BA SCORE
82
good
572 Ratings
THE BROS
75
okay
Read the review
Old Guardian BELGO BarleywineOld Guardian BELGO Barleywine
BEER INFO

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

Style: American Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 12.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by srroos on 02-08-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

BEER STATS
Ratings:
572
Reviews:
302
Avg:
3.63
pDev:
16.53%
 
 
Wants:
17
Gots:
94
For Trade:
4
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 572 |  Reviews: 302
Photo of kkrez
5/5  rDev +37.7%

Photo of DonDirkA
5/5  rDev +37.7%

Photo of Travisnin
5/5  rDev +37.7%

Photo of ROBSTARR
5/5  rDev +37.7%

Photo of Cookierachas
5/5  rDev +37.7%

Photo of mhaugo
5/5  rDev +37.7%

Photo of mikeczech
5/5  rDev +37.7%

Photo of SDtastentune
4.97/5  rDev +36.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - Nice lighter look, more ipa look & bronze, little head but great lacing.

S - Smells of hops and alcohol, mixed with some malty bubblegum.

T - Bubblegum hops, mixed with alcohol some sweets malts and great beer'ish taste.

M - Great carbonation, larger bubbles and goes down hot & tasty

O - GREAT barley wine! Love this stuff, its like a hoppy barley wine on steroids. Highly recommend this stuff! Thumbs WAAYY UPPP!

 422 characters

Photo of sisterray
4.92/5  rDev +35.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Purchased a bomber at St. Pete Rollin Oats.

A: Somewhere between dark copper and blood orange in color with limited carbonation.

S: Clove, bananas, vanilla, tropical fruity hops, alcohol.

T: I know that I've read that the flavor profile here is a mash-up rather than a proper melding, but that's not my experience. I can detect the cloves, bananas, and juicy hops (as well as alcohol) in turns as well as when they blend together. Floored.

M: Thick, not overbearing. Great template.

O: I read some of the reviews before trying the beer, and Barley Wines are very hit-or-miss for me, so I didn't have especially high hopes, but I love this beer. I like it better than the Double Bastard (don't know if I'm "allowed" to say that). If I can pay this beer an especially high compliment, I'd say this: this is what I expected the Aventinus Weizen-Eisbock to taste like.

Will be purchasing more.

 901 characters

Photo of brandoman63
4.75/5  rDev +30.9%

Photo of Brownsfan13
4.75/5  rDev +30.9%

Photo of RicoFalcon
4.75/5  rDev +30.9%

Photo of ineva
4.75/5  rDev +30.9%

Photo of WVbeergeek
4.7/5  rDev +29.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appears in my Unibroue La Fin du Monde chalice with a semi hazed glowing blood orange tinted body and a very nice thicket of khaki tan head forming thick. Leaves behind fine intricate detailed lacing on my glass.

Aroma contains upfront peppery, spiced yeast inspired notes with a deep caramelized sugar tone going on with ripened plums/apricots and other hearty fruits. A touch of booze crosses the palate as well, what a beer.

Flavor isn't has harsh as I thought it was going to be, big citric/pine/earthy middle from the big hop additions in this aggressive barleywine style ale spiked with a Belgian yeast strain. Juicy complexity of ripened fruits hints of citrus/plum/apricots. Typically big American alpha acid hops don't blend in the Belgo IPA style that Stone has helped popularize, however with all of this malt in this big bruiser of barleywine I'm getting some nice flavors in the mix. Alcohol/booze is there but doesn't burn or hurt me per se. There's almost perfume like flavors with the spices/aromatics from the yeast strain utilized, wow this is a new direction for sure. I questioned when I heard they were going to go Belgo on odd years with some of their famous big beers, but damn this is good.

Mouthfeel as it warms up so does the heat of the alcohol, big body no effervescence in the carbonation. This is the type of beer that might cure your sore throat. Hop oils are there big bitterness but it doesn't kill the palate completely the warm spiced yeast profile with alcohol makes it seem like a mulled cider or fruit infused fortified wine.

Drinkability overall isn't bad at all, in fact it's kind of dangerous the type of beer that empties faster than your liver can metabolize it. 22 ounce bottle tackled without difficulty, not go forth and preach the word of what European Belgian yeast strains can do to awesome stand up American versions of alcohol, this is experimentation that didn't set us back but moved at least a few spaces forward in brewing.

 1,985 characters

Photo of duluoz
4.7/5  rDev +29.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

on cask at Stone.

A - golden orange, beautiful creamy head and lacing.

S - spicy Belgian yeast with piney hops.

T - this tasted like Cali-Belgique but hoppier, fuller-bodied, and creamier. hops were really big on it and there was some Belgian candy/bubblegum, but the bitterness prevailed in a good way.

M - smooth and silky like most good cask pours.

D - dangerously drinkable -- not much hint of the 11.2%.

Pleasantly surprised that it tasted like a bigger Cali-Belgique as opposed to a spicier, yeasty Old Guardian. The cask really rounded this out beautifully, it was pretty amazing.

 594 characters

Photo of RoyalT
4.62/5  rDev +27.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance – This is a bright, rich brown in color with a brown-white head. The head is full and fluffy and offers a terrific compliment to the deep, colorful liquid.

Smell – The big hops and rich Belgian yeast are perfectly balanced. The yeast is like a great BSDA and the hops are like the classic Old Guardian. The wine aspect of the beer is right on as well.

Taste – This is incredibly open for being so young and doesn’t require aging. The yeast is a thing of beauty here and the hops are large but don’t interfere with the malt base. The wine character is crisp.

Mouthfeel – This full-bodied Barley Wine is smooth as can be with some light carbonation and just a touch of bitterness at the end. The sugary nature keeps this going down easy.

Drinkability – This is an amazing drinker for being so young. It’s a big beer but is not heavy-handed. It seems like an impossible task to get all of these big flavors working so well together but they managed to nail it.

 988 characters

Photo of shodrod
4.55/5  rDev +25.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(poured into a snifter)
This beer pours a deep, translucent red with very little head but noticeable bubbles along the edge of the glass at first. The aroma is quite complex with many subtleties all difficult to pinpoint: notes of strawberry, smoke, licorice, wood. The front of the beverage is quite oaky. The finish has obvious notes of the Belgian yeast added to this year's batch; the dryness really adds a new dimension to the glory of the barelywine. A wonderful take on a truly classic style!

 500 characters

Photo of jjayjaye
4.51/5  rDev +24.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Overall...Outstanding. I REALLY appreciate this...scoring points out the butt for imagination and creativity!!! It's too bad that we've got to stick everything "in a box"...but then again, if we didn't and you pulled it off a shelf with the expectation that it would be representative of an American Barleywine you'd be VERY disappointed...but HELLO..."B E L G O" highlighted, BOLD and "in red"...accompanied by "Odd Year Release"!!!! (if that doesn't adjust your expectations then labels are a lost cause). I'm not going to score it to style. I HIGHLY recommend that every inquisitive BA take the opportunity to consider this one while it's out there. Very Complex...and worth the time. ($7.99 at Sam the Beer Man).
Pours hazy and lighter in color than expected... another hint of a departure from style. An aggressive pour yields a double finger antique parchment colored collar with reasonable hang time. Negligible Belgian lacing and circumstantial visual evidence of carbonation (3.75). I love the aggressive earthy Belgian yeast in the nose. The classic caramel and butterscotch barleywine characteristics are there, but they all but buried beneath the WONDERFUL aggressive earthy Belgian yeast AND fruity LeBleu-like brett character..wow!!
The explosive (NEW) flavors are 'out of the box' and the mouth texture may cause a blur. The flavors are bright, tangy and reminiscent of an oily hoppy-malty-sweet-caramel resin (if that's possible). There is also a very significant apple-pear, harvest fruit thing going on with it.
The mouthfeel has a nicely carbonated, refreshingly light texture...which coincides with the anomaly of its lighter appearance. Had fun with this one!!!

 1,682 characters

Photo of cynical1027
4.5/5  rDev +24%

Photo of KevinGordon
4.5/5  rDev +24%

Photo of hyuga
4.5/5  rDev +24%

Photo of Amalak
4.5/5  rDev +24%

Photo of Modernrickk
4.5/5  rDev +24%

Photo of JustinQ
4.5/5  rDev +24%

Photo of Connor
4.5/5  rDev +24%

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Old Guardian BELGO Barleywine from Stone Brewing
3.63 out of 5 based on 572 ratings.
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