Barrel Aged Hibernation Ale | Great Divide Brewing Company

BA SCORE
89
very good
331 Ratings
THE BROS
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Barrel Aged Hibernation AleBarrel Aged Hibernation Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Great Divide Brewing Company
Colorado, United States
greatdivide.com

Style: Old Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 12.40%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by waltonc on 11-17-2009

BEER STATS
Ratings:
331
Reviews:
95
Avg:
4
pDev:
10.75%
 
 
Wants:
159
Gots:
115
For Trade:
12
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 331 |  Reviews: 95
Photo of cfh64
1.5/5  rDev -62.5%

Photo of bobhits
2.19/5  rDev -45.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 2

You know I'm getting a lot of sour notes, leather, super over oaked beer, citrus coffee beans, brown sugar flavor but not feel. The feel is of a sour ale really in texture and cold I get flavors.

The look is what you'd expect, old ale over oak with move abv, so kinda muddy and sorta flat with less legs than 12% should do.

Mouth feel is about the same too, thinner than you'd want.

But really this was in bourbon barrels? I get oak barrels but ZERO bourbon.

Even as it reaches room temp, less sour but still not bourbon, too much citrus and sour notes. I'm starting to get some vanilla flavors at the finish but nothing indicate this was in a bourbon barre. I'm not sure if I got a bad bottle or if they changed things up.

I'm a know harsh grader but on this one, I'm really being nice. 23 bucks and this is just not good. Even at a buck a beer I'd pass on another. I don't know if I got a bad bottle or what but this is not just below great divide's standards but below professional brewery standards. I'd score it lower but I like oak a lot and I don't hate the over oaked effects but they're completely wrong here. This flavor is more at home with a home brew.

Just to add I know this review is all over the place, I'm sorry but I'm just not sure how to review this one. It's either a bad beer or I have no idea what they were doing or why it tastes so off.

 1,383 characters

Photo of rand
2.77/5  rDev -30.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

Picked up a 2011 bottle from KnB, decided it was aged long enough so I'm pouring it the next day into a snifter

A: An opaque mahogony in appearance, it's complexion seems light and effervescent for the style and ABV. A good amount of suspended yeast floats around the glass.

S: Strong, powerful aromas. Lots of burnt sugar, oak and caramel, driven by hot volatiles of alcohol. Vinous, hop essence around the edges gives the bouquet an earthy aspect. Notes of ripe cherry linger as well, perhaps some phenols.

T: A little more hop-forward than the nose, and boozy as all hell. Splashy flavor profile, with sugary, almost cloying malts driving ripe past the astringent and boozy aspects. The oak notes reflect distinct cherry phenols, a little too medicinal in tone. Alcohol is at the forefront throughout the sip, and carries to a long, sweet finish.

M: Strangely light in its feel, can't tell if it's the carbonation or lack of oily complexion.

This doesn't work on any level. Way too boozy, way to sweet. Flavor profile is disjointed and splashy. Hibernation is a decent winter sipper, nothing to get excited about but satisfying if you're in the mood for such a brew. Barrel-aging renders it almost undrinkable.

 1,219 characters

Photo of pattermj
2.95/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

So I grabbed this even knowing the price as I love standard hibernation. Grabbed a bottle at the brewery, 2011 at $27 +tax + tip so not a cheap beer.

It pours a very nice hazy beer, not dark but definitely a beer which should have flavor. Noticed the same color with other barrel aged beers, not quite the color of unfiltered beers but close. The smell was of oak, bourbon, and dark fruits. I was somewhat hopeful but wondering where the malt and spice had disappeared to from the original hibernation. Some bourbon but honestly not huge compared to the strait barrel. The flavor to me was just flat, very little from the olfactory sense and nothing from the original beer. I was hoping for more and sadly disappointed. Barrel, bourbon, small dark fruits, and nothing else, Mouth feel, it had a little carbonation. Upon pouring a slight head appears but nothing stuck. Could feel it in mouth which was nice but didn't help with the lack of depth in the taste.

Overall I am disappointed. I love hibernation and plan on buying another case when it comes out. Price to flavor I would say this falls flat and I would recommend against it. Maybe with just 1 year on it, it would maintain but not what I had.

 1,204 characters

Photo of Tittles
3/5  rDev -25%

Photo of drummermattie02
3/5  rDev -25%

Photo of hardy008
3.06/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours murky brown with a two finger khaki head. The aroma has chocolate, toffee, caramel, and dark fruit. I am disappointed that I cannot smell any barrel characteristics, especially for such an expensive beer. Hopefully the barrel shows up in the taste.

There is very little of the barrel in the taste. A little whiskey, some coconut, and a little vanilla. That is it for the barrel. Otherwise the taste is much like the aroma with chocolate, toffee, caramel, and dark fruit. I can also taste just a little bit of tartness. There is not a lot of tartness, but I'm sure it would have been very noticeable if I kept this for a few more months.

Medium bodied with low carbonation. This beer is overpriced for what the consumer is getting. I would not recommend.

 761 characters

Photo of 4thelvofbeer
3.08/5  rDev -23%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to my friend for sharing and going out of his way to get this beer, which I am told is somewhat hard to acquire. Popped this bottle on Dec 3, 2012.

I love barrel aged beers. I really expected a lot more from the beer..expectations were high, but at best, this was maybe slightly above average and needs some work by Great Divide. A: cloudy dirt brown. S: nothing special. T: tastes were muted and bland, very average...I really really wished and hoped there were more, but it just was not there...it seems the barrel aging gave this beer a kinda musty taste. M: somewhat weird combined with the off tastes, not that enjoyable. O: a let down...

 651 characters

Photo of Balvenie
3.17/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Really disappointed with this beer, expected better from GD.

Not a very complex beer for having aged for over 12 months in whiskey barrels.

140 characters

Photo of ONovoMexicano
3.24/5  rDev -19%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

2011 bottle.

A- Thin oatmeal-colored head fades quickly. The body is a deep dark brown. No visible carbonation but yeast is floating around. 4

S- Deep caramel flavor and something kind of funky and like feces. Odd, but not necessarily bad. 3.75

T- Still kind of funky and poo-like. Odd but the sweet malts give some redeeming qualities. There's tobacco and oak that I enjoy but this is still off. 3

M- Funky, thick on the mouthfeel, but there's some solvent quality. It's smooth but kind of scattershot in flavors and feel. 3

A disappointment because of the price and expectations.

 586 characters

Photo of ohiobeer29
3.25/5  rDev -18.8%

Photo of GRG1313
3.25/5  rDev -18.8%

Photo of Tash2360
3.25/5  rDev -18.8%

Photo of maximum12
3.25/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This damn beer was on my wants list for almost five years & then I walk into a local shop & there it sits. $25? Who cares! Come home with me, sexy, I have been looking for you all of my life. 750ML bottle split with my wife, 2014 vintage bottle on 1/5/15.

The pour is a dark, bastardized reddish-brown mixed with clay pulled off the bottom of the Mississippi. Just enough carbonation to make this not look like churned-up water. The nose is lighter than Peeps, in fact, there’s virtually nadda flowing up my nose. Caramel? I wouldn’t know this had grazed a barrel if it didn’t say so on the label.

Hibernation – Barrel Aged reminds me instantly of Surly Eight. The barrel is not shy at all. Whiskey violates every inner surface of my mouth, reaching up behind my eyes, basting my brain pan, warming me all the way to my inner thigh. Trying to get past the barrel, one finds alcohol akimbo, but from there it gets pretty quiet. Mild caramel, reduced maple syrup, nice bit of drying wood. Nice & full, but pretty happy that I’m sharing this one.

Eh. This is a disappointment after Great Divide’s fine lineup & their world-class barrel aged treatments of Yeti & Old Ruffian, kind of like looking at before & after pics of Courtney Cox. Pretty good.

 1,262 characters

Photo of Lob
3.25/5  rDev -18.8%

Photo of shirtless_mike
3.25/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Photo of Beaver13
3.27/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

750 ml bottle. Pours a murky brown with almost no head (a vigorous pour produced a little frothiness that quickly went to a thin collar).

The aroma is chocolate and bourbon with dark fruit and molasses. Smells a bit like a decadent rum cake / fruitcake. There is a touch of fusel alcohol. I can smell the original Hibernation but it's been bourbonized.

The flavor is surprisingly subdued. There's some chocolatey bourbon and dark fruits leading to a bitter alcohol finish. As it warms, a bit more flavor comes out - but it still tastes like watered down Hibernation with a splash of whiskey. The mouthfeel is full with very little carbonation and is a bit watery.

Overall, this is not overdone with the alcohol like the bourbon yeti was. Both barrel versions I've had have been very lightly carbonated. I'm surprised by how subdued the flavors were for me, given how complex original Hibernation is. It's interesting to try, but regular Hibernation is better, and this is not worth $25 a bottle.

 998 characters

Photo of Knapp85
3.28/5  rDev -18%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Photo of JackRWatkins
3.3/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

good, not great....trim tab old ale tastes just as good and pretty much the same and is way cheaper I'm sure there are regional equivalents that are equally valid

 162 characters

Photo of rderedin
3.3/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Photo of smaddock
3.4/5  rDev -15%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Photo of StephenCollinsMarshall
3.4/5  rDev -15%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Photo of mulder1010
3.42/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle 128/492 Poured into a Great Divide Globe ( Just had to)

Thanks to Rake for the In person trade

A-- Poured a deep, dark mahogany color. Just touches of ruby at the bottom of the glass. Very little carbonation showing. Light brown head that went to film and stayed at film through drinking. Lots of spotty lacing on the sides of the glass.

S-- Rich and full smell. Buttery vanilla, rum, molasses,
brown sugar, and dates. Just slight bits of oak in this.

T-- Warm, melted brown sugar, butter, vanilla, rum, and dark fruits.

M-- Mid palate is very thin. Kind of sad really. Get just short bursts of what it was. A bit slick and sweet and and a rum spice finish but just lacking zest and too many gaping holes in this. Not much of the barrel though.

O-- Knocking off one of my biggest wants and realize I am getting to this about a year late. Flashes of how good this was does make this worth it for me though.

Edit: Really picked up with a lot of air. Thin gaps disappeared more but still evident, so a slight correction in rating.

 1,047 characters

Photo of brentk56
3.42/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Appearance: A lovely bubble show builds an impressive beige head; the liquid is a hazy chestnut; impressive clumps of lacing

Smell: Caramel, whiskey, fig, molasses, nuts and plum

Taste: Caramel and molasses forward and, out of the blue, a vinous, sour character overwhelms; plum and red wine grape tones in abundance, elbowing out the other flavors detected in the aroma; in the finish, the whiskey becomes more noticeable but the damage to the palate is already done

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with moderate carbonation

Overall: Loved the regular Hibernation but tremendously disappointed in this, particularly given the price

 631 characters

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.42/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle 190 of 492, 2009 bottling; sampled October 2011
A solid pour into my Lost Abbey Teku glass produces a one-finger thick, amber tinged, tan colored head that disappears down to a thin ring fairly quickly. The beer is a murky, concentrated amber color, that shows more of the same just lighter in hue when held up to the light. The aroma smells of sweet, toasted coconut and raisins, and perhaps a touch of sherry at the first. A second pas reveals smooth whiskey aromatics, smoothly spicy oak that gets a touch more spicy once I move away from the kitchen were some food is braising. This beer is clearly dominated by the barrel influence, there are touches of caramel, which mix well with the ample barrel vanillin notes, there is a slight savory maltiness here, as well as touches of toasted whole grain character and even some grassiness / herbal character somehow; though this last seems mainly to be contributed by the whiskey barrel and actually becomes quite prominent after some time (though it also has an ample green, pepper like note)

Up front flavors of caramelized crystal malt, vanillin, toasted coconut, toasted whole grain, touches of toffee and caramel mix together on the palate. The finish is quite spicy, very woody, and even sort of has a green grassy or spicy herbal note to it; this morphs into a green peppery note as well as a lingering tannic bite.. The beer is fairly light bodied for its strength, though I am not overly surprised as that often happens with beers like this that get aged in barrels; there is some viscous character to this beer, and it even manages to linger a bit on the palate, but the spicy oak character ends up wiping the palate clean. After some time, the finish really starts to taste like a whiskey, spicy, somewhat hot from the alcohol, and it even has that sort of fruitiness that I get in a whiskey or bourbon.

Not bad, but I was expecting a bit more; the barrel character runs a bit roughshod over the base beer. If this had a lot more caramelized maltiness and quite a bit of a richer, hell even sweeter, body that could stand up to the barrel influence, this would be a much better experience. The beer actually seems to do well in very small amounts; if I come back to it after a while I can take a small sip or two that maintains a balance to it, but it ends up getting thin, somewhat too spicy, and a bit too hot after any more than this.

 2,407 characters

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Barrel Aged Hibernation Ale from Great Divide Brewing Company
4 out of 5 based on 331 ratings.
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