Mash & Vanilla
The Bruery

Mash & VanillaMash & Vanilla
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English Barleywine
Ranked #35
Ranked #2,111
4.2 | pDev: 6.43%
The Bruery
California, United States
Mash & VanillaMash & Vanilla
Reviews: 66 | Ratings: 295 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of Ozzylizard
4.21/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

$ 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.

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Photo of JohnnyHopps
4.24/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

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.

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Photo of larryi86
4.15/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

750 ml bottle, 2016, poured into a tulip

A- A clear deep ruby red with a two finger off white head

S- Cherries, figs, stone fruits, bourbon, oak, some vanilla, earthy, touch of leather.

T- Bourbon, cherries, stone fruits, some vanilla, charred oak, some earthiness, touch of leather.

M- Smooth, medium body.

O- A nice barrel aged barelywine, not too boozy and easy to drink.

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Photo of evanwoertz
4.66/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

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.

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Photo of MonDak_Joe1953
4.21/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

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.

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Photo of Tony210
3.79/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

2016 Vintage
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.

750ml bottle, 2016 vintage
4 rating

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Photo of q33jeff
4.53/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5


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.


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Photo of mothmanscott
4.25/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

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.

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Photo of RaulMondesi
4.24/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

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, and Vanilla - well, Raul ain’t no dumb dumb, he’s thinking Madagascar. Mix em together? Raul says, “Yes.”Raul says, “Yes,” well and good!

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Photo of avalon07
4.46/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

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.

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Photo of JBowenGeorgia
4.29/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

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.

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Photo of bl00
4.5/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

2016 bottle
A- garnet and chocolate, murky
S- vanilla, whiskey, cake. Not what I expected but smells unbelievably good. I could sniff this glass all night
T- cola, cherry, vanilla. Bitter malty dry finish with whiskey notes
M- some carbonation, dryness. Good body but not sticky or overpowering.
O- totally enchanted by the nose on this, really enjoying the other attributes. Thia bottle is a treat. Thanks to the other ba'ers who posted good reviews of the 2016 bottles and influenced me to spring on this one.

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Photo of Pencible
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: This poured an opaque mahogany with a little light tan head.
S: It smelled like vanilla and nougat and toasted coconut, with some leathery oak and chocolate.
T: It tasted like it smelled. It had a clean and sweet aftertaste with some alcohol warming.
M: It was thick with a little carbonation. Great chewy body.
D: This was a great brew with delicious, bold, and well integrated scent and taste. The body was solid, and the finish was smooth although it was a bit hot, so it was better to sip. It could age well. Fresh is still great. Recommended.

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Photo of Sabtos
3.29/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

Appearance is shiny shimmering dark copper-garnet with a bubbly, creamy tan blanket.

Smell is caramel corn, salt water taffy, hot bourbon and nutty roast.

Taste is cotton candy with Jack and Coke bringing the heat, over a thin body with tight carbonation and a dry finish.

Carnival beer! I mean seriously, this triggers all kinds of youthful memories, walking through a carnival or street fair. It's just not what I was expecting for the style and description. And as usual with the Bruery, it's way too fucking hot!

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Photo of TreyIsWilson
4.08/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a dark brown with a one finger off white head. Light sticky lacing.

S - Aroma is vanilla, caramel and bourbon.

T - The taste follows the aroma with bourbon, vanilla, toffee and caramel. The finish has light lingering alcohol heat.

M -Medium bodied with medium carbonation. Creamy mouthfeel with a soft dry finish.

O - The vanilla adds another layer of flavor to the original base beer. Fun slow sipper.

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Photo of Lucular
4.06/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

TONS of vanilla in this beer. The bourbon barrel aging adds layers of complexity - oak, caramel, and more vanilla - and for being 13.3% ABV it is very smooth.

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Photo of BWood
4.25/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

L: dark brown kind of clearish. Nice 1 inch head.

S: not very vanilla smell. Some Carmel. Bourbon.

T: follows the nose. Bourbon is there and the vanilla. Marshmallow. The base barleywine kicks in too.

F: thin. Smooth but thin. Wish it was a little thicker.

O: solid brew and very nice to have the vanilla with the barleywine. Good job.

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Photo of bluejacket74
4.29/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

750 ml bottle, 2016 edition, looks like it says bottled on 7/13/16. Served in a wine glass (as recommended on the label, either that or in a tulip), the beer pours dark brown with about an inch light tan head that stuck around a little while. There's also a good amount of lacing. I like the aroma a lot, the brew smells like bourbon, vanilla, oak, brown sugar, and some dark fruit (raisins). For the most part the taste is similar to the aroma, but there's the addition of some caramel, molasses and dark bready flavors. I think this is a mostly sweet tasting barleywine, but luckily the sweetness isn't overpowering. Mouthfeel/body is medium/full, it's a bit coating with moderate carbonation. I thought it was a good brew, glad I picked this one up! Definitely worth a try. $20.99 a bottle.

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Photo of Treyliff
4.28/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

2016 Vintage
750ml bottle poured into a tulip glass

A- pours a deep brown color with a one-finger creamy off-white head that has good retention after the pour and leaves a bit of lacing behind

S- creamy vanilla and marshmallow creme aromas up front, followed by melted caramel, oaky bourbon & raisins, hint of cocoa

T- sweet caramel up front laced with flavors of vanilla bean, vanilla cream and marshmallow cream. Mid-palate gives some fruity notes of raisin & fig. The finish gives some bourbon barrel notes, that brings out light notes of coconut and compliments the vanilla, some alcohol on the linger

M- medium body with moderate carbonation leads to a slightly creamy mouthfeel that leads into a warming finish that is quite boozy

O- vanilla is a great addition to the base beer and seems to enhance the barrel notes. This one drinks really hot, even given the ABV. I expected a year to mellow it out a bit, but that wasn't the case

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Photo of TrojanRB
4.01/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2016 bottle poured 6/2/17 into a Bruery tulip

Smells of roasted marshmallow, caramel, sweet bourbon, vanilla.

Taste is burnt sugar, toasted oak, boozy bourbon notes, kind of acrid. Quite a bit different from the nose, surprisingly

Relatively thin tasting for the ABV, but still silky

The nose is fantastic, but the taste is a bit of a letdown

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Photo of cbutova
4.25/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Rattle N Hum West.

A- Baby snifter pour from draft with deep brown body and a foamy cap. Good retention and a small blanket sticks around dropping sheets of lace.

S- Vanilla and Barleywine with big caramel and toasted malts. Raisin. Whiskey. Mostly the beans and grains. Slight bit of cocoa.

T- Sweet but not cloying or overly caramel sticky. Plenty of malts dominating. Toast, nuts, caramel, spiced raisin dark fruits, fresh oak wood, a touch of whiskey and a seriously insane vanilla presence. Dessert vanilla beer. Touch of roast. Mostly the Vanilla the malts and hint of barrel.

MF- Silky and smooth medium to thick body. Some decent alcohol heat in the finish. Oily for sure with medium high carbonation.

Latest Bruery massive beers have only gotten more and more dangerous. Like hardly sweet, low booze taste and insanely easy to drink. Vanilla big malts but low sweets considering ABV and a nice barrel kiss. Too much vanilla?

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Photo of stortore
4.24/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

750 ml bottle into a snifter. Had 12/25/16.

Pours a dark amber, mostly opaque, with a half inch head and some spotty lacing. Terrific aroma- bourbon, vanilla, dates, toffee, brown sugar, raisins, some malt and yeast, oak, a little bready. The malt steps forward a little more in the taste, then bourbon, vanilla, dates, figs, caramel, oak, raisins, a light bitterness. Smooth, a solid, full body, well carbonated.

The vanilla is an excellent addition, even though it masks some of typical characteristics of a Barleywine. Not as much of the dark fruits thing going on here. Overall, it's every bit as good as the base beer, but I kind of consider this as a different beer, as opposed to a being a "with" beer. Well worth a purchase, but it does come with a pretty high price point. Pretty big mark up for the pleasure of having the vanilla.

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Photo of Greywulfken
4.21/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

On tap at the Good Life in Massapequa Park, LI... In a 7 oz. goblet, medium brown color with just a thin film cap... Aromas of molasses, vanilla, and light bourbon... Had sweet brown fruit flavors accented with whiskey-wood and vanilla... Thin-bodied for a 13.3% bourbon barrel barleywine, minimal carbonation, but a smooth, relatively clean finish...

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Photo of Buck89
3.99/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter. A clear chestnut brown color with a modest but resilient tan head. Rich vanilla, bourbon, toffee, and cherry on the nose. The vanilla was definitely up front on the palate, but there was a nice balance between it and the malt, whiskey, and floral hops. Nice chocolate and cherry notes. Overall, a big and enjoyable beer.

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Photo of HattedClassic
4.21/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

The beer pours a nice and creamy slightly off-white head that dissipates quickly but leaves a nice residue on the surface and a creamy ring around the inside of the glass. The beer itself is pretty nice to look at. It is a clear and solid brown.

The smell is fantastic. It consists of a fairly strong vanilla presence but lurking underneath is a moderate cocoa note that comes out as the beer warms. The bourbon note gets lost in the vanilla unfortunately and the dark fruit malty notes commonly associated with the style are nowhere to be found but hot dang that vanilla is something to talk about.

The taste has a fairly strong vanilla note like the smell but the dark fruit note and a bit of booze comes out as well. The bourbon comes out a bit in addition to the cocoa, which gives it a nice chocolate taste to contrast with the vanilla.

The feel is good. It's a heavy bodied beer but is incredibly smooth and scarily drinkable with a light and fuzzy carbonation to give it a little texture to the beer.

Overall, it's definitely an interesting beer worth having. The notes are not what you would expect from a barleywine but it's still interesting and could be much better once it has been aged for a good long while to moderate the vanilla.

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Mash & Vanilla from The Bruery
Beer rating: 93 out of 100 with 295 ratings