The Vermonster | Rock Art Brewery

The VermonsterThe Vermonster
Liked This Beer
3.88 w/ 599 ratings
The VermonsterThe Vermonster

Brewed by:
Rock Art Brewery
Vermont, United States

Style: American Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
We brewed The Vermonster with 110 pounds of malt per barrel and jacked up the pour into a wide mouth thin glass goblet.

Added by BeerBeing on 09-23-2007

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 599 |  Reviews: 245
Photo of mctizzz
1.75/5  rDev -54.9%

Photo of Vylo
2/5  rDev -48.5%

Photo of tippiecanoes
2/5  rDev -48.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

This is one of those beers where it gets a high score, but to the everyday beer drinker in America it tastes like the inside of a perfume bottle. It's pretty rough on the taste buds. I also got a migraine headache after drinking this one. Maybe the hops in it were a bit much for me to handle? Seemingly so. But there obviously are people that enjoy this beer. Enjoy, but I think I'll move on and drink the Grado Plato Chocarrubica instead.

 440 characters

Photo of Katahdin
2.05/5  rDev -47.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

Where to start other than to say never, ever again As big of a fan as I am of Barleywine I had high hopes for this based on its apperance in the glass and its pleasant aroma but I was quickly dispapointed with the first sip.

Very, very bitter with an overwhelming hop taste that couples with pine resin flavor to drown out any hints of the carmel that appears in the aroma. The texture was horrible, I have never had such a chewy beer before, and the thin carbonation only exacerbated the problem. The body was jsut too big to deliver any semblance of drinkability, and for the first time in 25 years I had to cut it 3:1 with water.

 633 characters

Photo of maximum12
2.23/5  rDev -42.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

I'm having a not-great run with beer. After having perhaps one oxided beer in my entire life, this is the third I've had in the past two weeks that tastes like it's been compromised. What gives?

Vermonster pours a nice, deep, ruby-esque amber (& I don't mean Jack). Smells is sweet, fruity.

This beer is badly oxidized. The sweet dark fruits & malts give way instantly to a nasty wet cardboard taste permeating the senses. I believe there might be a good beer under here...

Blech. Like to try this again fresher, but this bottle ain't that old.

 549 characters

Photo of 2ellas
2.25/5  rDev -42%

Photo of Thorpe429
2.31/5  rDev -40.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

Picked this up at Julio's last March before KTG. Figured Id give it a try after all the press.

Pours a moderate copper with an off white head. Smell is sweet malt, red fruits, alcohol, and a touch of caramel. Taste goes quite a bit downhill with some astringencies and a bit of a metallic flavor. The sweetness comes through, but that's about it. Mouthfeel is slightly boozy and off-puttingly dry. Poor drinkability, which is disappointing as I was quite looking forward to breaking this out with the cool weather.

 515 characters

Photo of Jimmys
2.48/5  rDev -36.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

A: a solid brown. initial pour includes a large creamy tan head that has reasonable retention and great lacing.

S: nose is pretty sweet/hot. deep rich sugary fruits. plums, raisins. molasses in there for sure. maybe even some chocolate. there is some resiny hop aroma in there as well. each time i go to the glass it seems to be picking a side.

T: the first sip starts very hot. correction, all the sips start very hot. i wish i could find a bottling date on this sucker, but it must have been recent. a bunch of sweetness in there comes out after the booze. tastes like caramelized sugar. figs. ant get any hop flavor is this malt/booze bomb.

M: pretty smooth as far as mouthfeel is concerned. huge body.

D: i really dont know what to think of this one besides that it needs more time. too much heat really detracts from some other good flavors. not sure if i got a bad bottle or what cause other reviews are much more favorable. however, gotta go with what's in my glass.

 981 characters

Photo of Hophead717
2.5/5  rDev -35.6%

Photo of DonFrap
2.5/5  rDev -35.6%

Photo of russwbeck
2.63/5  rDev -32.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

A: It pours out of the bottle a viscous brown/red color with sadly some sediment. A few fingers of off-white head, that laces pretty nicely.

S: The aroma consists of dark fruits, roast, malts, some booze, and a slight hop bitterness. I can't say it smells more like a Barleywine or an Imperial IPA. Either way, it's not great.

T: The taste is pretty interesting, but pretty poor overall. Like a hoppy maple syrup. Deep malt characteristics: roast and malt. Yet it has a really big hop note, both in bitterness and fruit. It's disjointed and odd.

MF: Thick body with a nice amount of carbonation. Not all that drinkable.

O: I thought this was an IPA, but turns out it's a Barleywine. Probably my least favorite I've ever tried. It's just very strange and not well put together.

 780 characters

Photo of BARFLYB
2.75/5  rDev -29.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

Bottle poured into a snifter a few times over a couple hours, purchased on a tip from a BA buddy. I tried to hold out on drinking this alone, but nobody bit so here goes,

Vermonster, a dark brown barleywine that looks like it means business, a deep dark brown that sheds some lighter colors(burnt red) up to a light. A nice pillow like condensed dark tan head raises a inch, looking scrumptious. It dies, but is brought back with swirls, loose spider web lacing, weak legs.

The name implies a monster and Rock Art brings it on the nose with caramel, dark malts, toffee and some faint dark fruits with extensive warming. With 135IBU's running through this, piney resiny hops burst through with vigor. A faint sense of alcohol as well, but that's expected in this style.

The taste takes a dwindle in score because it's brought down by the feel which is lacking. All the Barleywine qualities are there but they could be boosted a hell of a lot more with a bigger body, but I digress. Tastes include caramel, toffee, nuts. muted hops with pine, not so much citrus, and a dash of strong alcohol in this 10%er. The alcohol does not bother me, it's well hidden.

The feel on this is a bummer and the worst part of this monster. When Vermonster 1st entered my palete, i was like this is going to be good, then I swirled it around in my mouth and I noticed that the hop kick of 135IBU's was muted, then when I swallowed it, I started to scratch my head. The beer looks healthy and alive in appearance but is dead flat in feel. After 10oz's or so I started to shake my head. Dare I say the weakest feel in a barleywine ever, dissapointing. Also had a muddy feel on the way down and a very watery. It's taking away from what should be a great Bwine.

The drinkability should be higher but I cannot justify it. I will say that the 2nd half of the bottle was better and a bit fuller when some of the dregs made it's way into the glass. The yeast helped to liven things up a bit. I should of just dumped the 1st half and worked with the 2nd half. I'll try it again down the road and revise if I see fit as I see that another reviewer from PA had the same problem in feel. This monster was not scary at all, It did not even startle me.

 2,224 characters

Photo of Sk8sean86
2.75/5  rDev -29.1%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Photo of mrpibb1206
2.75/5  rDev -29.1%

Photo of claspada
2.87/5  rDev -26%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Purchased in October 2010; cellared for anlittle over a year. No bottle date.

Pours a clearish mahogany-hued body with a small, creamy, light beige head.

Aromas begin with sharp lemon, pine hop nose with, as it warms a tad, some basic caramel malt notes coming through.

Th tastes begin with caramel malts with a fairly restrained sweetness. Citrus and pine resin shoot forward with the hops delivering a caustic, citric bitterness. The alcohol really starts to but up against the other flavors. Dry, heat-packed finish with a prolonged, lingering bitterness.

The mouthfeel is medium to heavy bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Finish is a palate wrecking disaster due to the overwhelming alcohol and bitterness.

Overall this was a huge miss for me. The drinkability is low because of the alcohol and brash, overdone bitterness, leaving this one a slow, grumpy sipper. Little malt depth, hop character, and just tons of coarse bitterness and booze. Not my cup of tea.

 982 characters

Photo of ChadQuest
2.88/5  rDev -25.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Body is a dark reddish amber color, some lacing.

The aroma is still pungently hoppy, this smells like a black ipa. I always get a weird(not bad, just weird) hot blacktop aroma from black ipas, and i note that aroma in here.
The flavors are more traditionally composed of a bunch of big C hops and citrus and pine, with some caramel from the malt bill, more dry all around.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied, fades a bit fast as it is a dryer barleywine.

I like this enough that i would drink it again, falls a bit below average, but is worth drinking when you just want to open something on any occasion.

 600 characters

Photo of Ryan011235
2.99/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured into a Darkness tulip on 9/26/11

Split with MbpBugeye

Pours a dull, faded, pond-watery light brown and settles a dark, muddy brown. Not a very pleasant color. The head is almost two fingers tall and drops to a skim and a thicker patch of bubbles. Some ring retention, too. Decent, scattered lace.

The aroma is terse and dry instead of overly sweet. Heck, it doesn't smell very sweet at all. Earthy, leafy hops sit atop notes of caramel, raisins, plum, dry bread and fruit esters. Fairly light overall. It gets a little sweeter as it starts to warm. Toffee and candied malts. Not boozy.

Ugh, this must be in an awkward transitional period between hoppy fresh and malty aged. Dry, piney, earthy bitterness; very one-dimensional. Tastes a bit dirty. Toasted bread middle. Undercurrents of plum, raisins and candi sugar. The taste is not bad but, as is, it's rather disjointed. Perhaps it could come together with more age.

Medium-full body. Carbonation is lively and keeps each sip on the tip of the tongue. Kind of gritty, too. The alcohol is well-hidden aside from a slight slickness.

Most everything going on is something I like in beer but they are not exactly befitting the style. I'd like to try this fresh or aged.

 1,231 characters

Photo of Dirty_chavez
3/5  rDev -22.7%

Photo of chippo33
3/5  rDev -22.7%

Photo of surlytheduff
3/5  rDev -22.7%

Photo of BigRizz62
3/5  rDev -22.7%

Photo of PittBeerGirl
3/5  rDev -22.7%

Photo of tnbeatty
3/5  rDev -22.7%

Photo of GrindFatherBob
3/5  rDev -22.7%

Photo of ppoitras
3.05/5  rDev -21.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

22oz bottle purchased as a single from Julio's, Marlboro, MA.

Poured into a heavy glass chalice, formed a scant 1/4" tan head over the clear burgundy brew. Head is down to an uneven swirly layer of bubbles promptly, with slow-falling lacing. Aroma is sweet, fruity, and alcoholic. Taste is similar to the nose, with the strong alcohol in the latter half dominating and being of the sharp, rubbing alcohol type. Mouthfeel is good until the alcohol over-achieves, and drinkability is limited by same. Probably not one I'd search out again.

 539 characters

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The Vermonster from Rock Art Brewery
Beer rating: 75.3% out of 100 with 599 ratings
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