Old Ruffian Barley Wine | Great Divide Brewing Company

2,456 Ratings
Old Ruffian Barley WineOld Ruffian Barley Wine

Brewed by:
Great Divide Brewing Company
Colorado, United States

Style: American Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Old Ruffian is a hefty, hop-forward Barley Wine. Seemingly mellow at the start with subtle fruit aromas and complex caramel sweetness, it quickly becomes aggressive with its bold hop flavors and huge hop bitterness. Ultimately, the big body, succulent sweetness and massive hop character come together to work wonders on your palate.

Added by gbontrag on 11-28-2004

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,456 |  Reviews: 1,106
Photo of IdrinkGas
3.5/5  rDev -16.9%

Photo of Bookseeb
4.15/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance is a rusty hazy copper color supporting a thick off white head that dissapates slowly leaving a sticky clingy lace. Smell of thick caramel, light chocolate and some darker fruits. taste is as stated hefty and hoppy having the big citrus grapefruit thats grainy with the caramel in the big malt backbone. Mouthfeel is full and chewy with a good amount of carbonation. Not as rich as some, but then again it does express it's hefty and hoppy and still a good example of the style.

 489 characters

Photo of CrazyOtto623
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

Photo of McLaughlin5350
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

Photo of 11millsown113
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

Photo of lovindahops
4.03/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It's Jan 1st so a pumped up barley wine will hedge against suseptible sadness to come from the cowboys game

A- can you say perfect ruby hue with a cutless red color richoscheing off the glass

S- fruit and caramel syrup are overly impressive on this brew. Some earthy components arise making this a balanced brew with different characteristics participating

T- amazing caramel flavors melding with earthy flavors completely coexist with hearty flavors of Maley earthiness. The brew is intense and hearty

M- thick and syrupy and full and very much bold with flavor

O- great hearty barleywine that is poisotioned as full of caramel flavor and musty earth aromas. Great brew

 675 characters

Photo of rdespain
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

Photo of xdefeatsy
4/5  rDev -5%

Photo of Marti403
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

Photo of Retail1LO
3.51/5  rDev -16.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bomber into a 22 oz. CBS snifter. Pours a brilliant dark ruby red hue with a substantial two finger plus crown of foam. This is by FAR the most hop forward nose on any barleywine I've poured. If I'd been blindfolded on this, I'd have thought this a boozy IPA. The nose is riddled with hops and just the faintest hint of malt. It just doesn't have a nose that resembles what I've come to associate with a barleywine. The first sip and the hops jump right out at you. Some maltiness comes into the picture immediately after the hops depart. Again, there's a subtle woodiness to this, but it's not a mainstay. This is the most bizarre example of a barleywine I've had. At this point, nothing in either the nose or taste points to this being a barleywine. Granted, I don't mind it at all, and I find it enjoyable, but the grades are taking a bit of a hit as I'm grading this to style for a barleywine, and this thing is just...went rogue. The mouthfeel is boozy, with a high dose of bitterness. Again, I personally don't mind it, but I just don't expect this attribute from a barleywine. Overall, this is a solid beer, if it wasn't a barleywine. I feel it falls short of the style, however, and the experience is nothing like what I was looking forward to when I initially cracked the bottle. I can see myself coming back to this the next time I want a bold IPA.

 1,372 characters

Photo of buckyp
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

Photo of jsurfs82
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Probably one of the best examples of the style out there.

57 characters

Photo of Grebdioz
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

Photo of foulhooked
4/5  rDev -5%

Photo of Abrahammer
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

Photo of cdwil
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

Photo of dejrrma
4.25/5  rDev +1%

Photo of GrindFatherBob
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

Photo of jophish17
4/5  rDev -5%

Photo of kenzak
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

Photo of 1Adam12
4/5  rDev -5%

Photo of DaveONan
3.5/5  rDev -16.9%

Photo of CelticAleMan
4.25/5  rDev +1%

Photo of UpToMeBeer
3.29/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I do not get the hpye over this beer. Pours nicely with a mohagany/copper color and healthy head that retains nicely.

The smell is ordinary at best. Nothing pronounced.

The taste is alcohol-heavy with little else to offer... too much grassy-ness and no trace of what you hope for in a barley-wine. As it warms, a hint of caramel comes out, but it's too little, too late. The best thing is the mouthfeel: this is a full-bodied, nearly sticky beer.

 450 characters

Photo of fatmcb1
4.03/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Vintage 2010 poured into a wine glass

Pours a dark amber, reddish color with a khaki head that leaves ample lacing.

Very balanced aroma with plenty of malt, serious hops, and some fruity esters in the background.

This is one of the hoppiest American barleywines I've had. At first it is subtle, but the hop bitterness and flavors hit you. A definite hopheads barleywine.

Carbonation is rich and the body is average of the style.

 434 characters

Old Ruffian Barley Wine from Great Divide Brewing Company
4.21 out of 5 based on 2,456 ratings.
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