I'm going to say this an American barleywine, bourbon barrel aged. 12% ABV? There are fruit components, apple primarily, that made me wonder briefly about a different barrel, but I'm going to say bourbon. Tons of sticky sweet caramel, various apple deserts, and brown sugar plus rich booze and a nice bite at the finish, oaky vanilla and some hop bitterness. This is really tasty and going down fast!
2019 edition. Received in a trade with @2beerdogs. Poured into a snifter. It pours a hazy, ruby-orange color with a creamy, ecru-colored head that fizzled away quickly. It has a great nose with lots of caramel/toffee, vanilla, raisin, fig, brown sugar, oak, and subtle bourbon. The taste follows suit but with greater influence of vanilla and oak. The bourbon compliments the brown sugar, caramel, and raisin notes to provide significant sweetness. There are also hints of tart cherry and tobacco. The overall flavor is sweet and complex. There is a touch of sour mash at the finish but almost no bitterness. The mouth feel is a tad thin but the carbonation level is spot on. The 13.7% ABV is warming but not overpowering. Overall, Mash & Vanilla is a flavorful and very enjoyable English Barleywine from an excellent brewer. I'm thankful to have the chance to enjoy it.
This is going to be difficult, a share bottle for rudzud and I that we were really exited to try, and was next in our queue. 2016
Pours an off-white smaller fizzy head with lower retention, bit of lacing, nice long legs, dark mahogany brown color with very little light, and some yeast chunks at the bottom
Nose is basically what I was hoping it would be, plenty of vanilla but a nice sweet vanilla and some vanilla barrel as well, with sweet candy notes, caramel, toffee, a light bourbon whiskey like character, some dark fruits like fig and date, brown sugar, soft aged malt
Taste brings more of the same, vanilla out front again, sweet vanilla extract and barrel vanilla notes, a little buttery oak, with light whiskey and sweet bourbon, into dark fruits with more fig and candied date, maybe even a hint of cherry, sweet candy as well, molasses and caramel at first, into brown sugar and toffee, smooth caramel vanilla candy chews, as well as a little soft after malt with hint of sherry wine, light smooth alcohol turning to a little peppery alcohol late, light bitterness at first, but kicks into med gear late, with a med dry semi sweet finish, a bit more perfumey alcohol as well, and lots of the sweet flavors
Mouth is fuller bod, rich almost chewy, med foamy carb, light warming almost tingly alcohol
Overall very nice beer, I think rudzud would have loved it but wished there was more vanilla, given the age I think it stood out well, and had a nice aged character
This beer poured a dark brown to amber color; typical barleywine look. This also had a white-tan colored head which was about a finger thick, but it didn't last very long at all. I'm not sure when this was canned but I'm sure the age and the style had to do with the head, or lack thereof.
The aroma was noticeably barrel-forward as I got a burning aroma of bourbon, oak, and a tiny bit of vanilla in the front. These aromas then mellowed out to notes of caramel and toffee which were in balance with the vanilla. Despite this, I didn't find that there was a good balance overall on the aroma between the barrel character and the malty/vanilla aromas. Since I don't know when this was canned, the age could have caused these aromas to fade.
Despite the lack of balance in the aroma, I thought that there was a nice balance between the barrel, caramel, and vanilla on the front of the palate. The caramel and vanilla notes eventually faded in the middle, where I primarily just got notes of just straight up bourbon. It was only in the end where the notes of buttery toffee and a bit of raisins appeared which were complimented with a bourbon aftertaste.
I found that this beer had a medium body and a low carbonation to it. This is definitely a big and boozy beer and it doesn't try to hide that from you. The bourbon aftertaste is definitely there but it isn't very lingering or over-bearing, and you definitely feel a comforting warmth from the bourbon in your throat and chest which is always a plus for me. That's why I would say that this is definitely meant to be sipped on and enjoyed over time. I thought that the flavors shined through more as the barleywine warmed up in my glass.
I definitely enjoyed sipping on this an appreciating all of its barrel, malt, and vanilla characters. Though balance was a bit lacking on the nose, the taste really made up for it. I would definitely drink this again if offered or given to me, but I'm not sure I would spend money to buy this again as it was on more of the pricier side of beers. Regardless, this was still very good and complex.
$ 24.09 (Including shipping)/16 oz can ($ 1.51/oz). Received 5/5/20 from Craft Shack, San Diego, CA. Reviewed 5/17/20.
Stamped on bottom of can “PKG 10/29/19”. Stored at home at 42 degrees and served at 55 degrees (as suggested on the label) in a hand washed and dried Jester King snifter. Final temperature 62 degrees.
Appearance – 3.5.
First pour – Deep amber (SRM 15), murky.
Body – Brown (SRM 20), murky. Effervescent. When held to direct light, a ruby shade appears where the light penetrates, but only after the temperature reaches 59 degrees.
Head – Average (Maximum 3.5 cm, aggressive center pour), khaki, fizzy/high density with many medium rocks, short retention, diminishing to a 1.5 mm regular crown constantly renewed by the aggressive effervescence and no cap.
Lacing – None, much as expected.
Aroma – 4.25 – Predominately sweet roasted malt with a hint of brown sugar and some bourbon on the back end, no hops, no yeastiness.
Flavor – 4.25 – Begins with a roasted malty sweetness short of cloying mixed with distinct caramel followed by vanilla, no hops, no yeast. No alcohol (13.7 % ABV, as marked on the label) taste or aroma, but an instant gentle gastric warming occurs, which initially was harsh but on subsequent swallows mellowed. There is a hint of diacetyl but no dimethylsulfide. It ends with less-than-overpowering bourbon.
Palate – 3.75 – Medium, silky, lively carbonation.
Final impression and summation: 4.5. A bit thin but the excellent aroma and taste make this mellow example of the English barley wine superior to most others. I could sip this until “QWERTY” appeared on my forehead. Price point is a bit high but for an occasional splurge, well worth it. The label is simple but gives little information.
Appearance - The beer poured a deep copper color with an off-white head. Carbonation was visible amid the darkness of the pour.
Smell - The nose smelled of vanilla. It was not overly potent of even perfume-like. It had just the right balance.
Taste - My first impression was how smooth the beer was. Vanilla was the ability to smooth out a "lumpy" beer. Though the base beer is sweet, vanilla adds a new dimension that creates balances. With the vanilla comes the barely notes, with the bourbon largely hidden. The vanilla lingers in the aftertaste, but does not overpower.
Mouthfeel - The beer was smooth with vanilla but had a good concentration of viscosity and light carbonation.
Overall - I was not expected much from a vanilla barleywine, but I enjoyed this one.
vanilla is strong but not too much. it’s a strong flavor, very well balanced, and perhaps the best in a beer. as a barleywine, it suffers a little because of the vanilla but still a fantastic barrel aged beer.
750ml bottle. 2016 Edition.
Muddy, amber brown colored body. Off white head settles back to a small island and a ring. Leaves behind some small spots of lacing.
Aroma of bourbon, oak, vanilla, coconut, and sweet brown sugar.
Taste of bourbon soaked brown sugar, with vanilla and coconut, and oak. At the end the taste dries out and expresses more oak and dried fruit. Overall the beer tastes like a cooked apple that has been soaked in bourbon and coated with caramel and toffee. The vanilla amplifies the coconut flavor.
Thin to medium mouth feel, with a smooth texture. There is an alcohol burn on the tongue. Decent carbonation.
The beer ranges from sweet and smooth to a non-sweet dryness. There are many flavor aspects from the vanilla addition to the oak bourbon barrel aging.
Pours a dark amber with ample white head. Aroma is vanilla and caramel. Taste is sweet, tangy, brown sugar, molasses, barrel char. Significantly boozy, after aging for 3 years... Good carbonation, medium bodied. Overall an OK BA Barleywine.
Bottle to tulip glass. 2016 Bottle aged almost 3 years. Happy Mothers Day and Go Sixers (Game 7 vs. Raptors).
LOOK: deep dark brown (90%), medium beige head, good retention.
AROMA: bourbon and vanilla dance around like Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers. Super aromatic.
TASTE: Brown sugar, bourbon, oak. Slight hints of leather and tobacco. Sweet upfront with a bitter and very oaky finish.
FEEL: Medium to full body, excellent carbonation for the style (and age to boot).
This is a very good barleywine in my opinion. Maybe the age is helping this project high in my comparisons, but the quality of the taste and mouthfeel suggest a younger beer despite being 3 years old. Probably my favorite Bruery beer yet (will check #'s to confirm).....yup, Melange #3 comes the closest, but this edges it out.
Pours a chill hazed, ruddy brown with a short finger of of rapidly diminishing, foamy, light tan head that recedes to a tiny collar ring leaving a few thin islands of surface cap and no lace. Aroma is malty, dark bread, brown sugar, caramel, dried fig and raisin; vanilla, coconut and a little dankness with notes of bourbon and alcohol. Taste is a caramelized malty sweetness, burnt brown sugar, vanilla and boozy bourbon whiskey, toasted coconut, lightly buttered and toasted pumpernickel with dried apples, earth & floral late in the sip. The butter (while thin) and apple are more noticeable in the finish. Briefly dry at the beginning of the sip it rapidly gravitates to a sweet slightly bitter tug of war until the drying aftertaste where the sweetness disappears. Present in both the alcohol is more intense in the mouth than in the nose. Aftertaste is spicy, woody, roast, burnt brown sugar and bitter with alchol spice. Mouthfeel is on the high side of medium bodied with very low carbonation, warming, more sticky than syrupy it is creamy-slick but produces a little graininess on the tongue. The vanilla was much less than expected but this was my fault as the bottle was cellared for a year. The Bruery's recommendation of drinking fresh in terms of the vanilla it's obviously true. Nevertheless a very fine barleywine.
On fire. Not like Mrs. O’Leary’s cow fire, but more like Nina Agdal walking down the cat walk. So, “Mash & Vanilla,” lets think about that. Mash - Raul is thinkin’ like all that bourbon stuff. Then Vanilla - well, Raul ain’t no dumb dumb, he’s thinking Madagascar. Mix em together? Raul says, “Yes.” Raul says, “Yes well and good!”
L: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had a dark, mahogany brown color and a cloudy consistency. There was a half inch of foamy / fizzy, off white head that lasted a below average amount of time. Not a whole lot of lacing.
S: A big, bracing aroma of vanilla, bourbon, malt, caramel, and dark fruit.
T: Tasted of a good shot of bourbon (and its barrel), a decent amount of malt, some light dark fruit notes (raisins), lots of vanilla, and some caramel as well. Like the aroma, the flavor is a big, complex, powerful force. It's a little on the boozy side, but the vanilla and caramel cut into it nicely. Delicious.
F: A good amount of carbonation with a sharp finish. Full-bodied.
O: This is an excellent barleywine. Definitely drinkable.
Pours a murky reddish brown with two fingers of tan head.
Smells of sweet vanilla, marshmallow, caramel, toffee, some dark fruits coming through as well. Bourbon heat present as well.
Taste is vanilla and marshmallow up front followed with the toffee and caramel. Dark fruits come through, raisin primarily. Bourbon is definitely there but not as hot as the nose implied. Lingering vanilla and tobacco notes.
Medium bodied, good carb level amplified by the bourbon.
Overall a tasty one that seems to pack a punch.