The Vermonster | Rock Art Brewery

very good
594 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

For Trade:
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 594 |  Reviews: 243
Photo of plasticfantastic
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of Snellgg5
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of macrosmatic
4.38/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to ActonBrewer for this one. Poured from bomber into CCB pint glass.

A: Pours a very dark brown that is a bit hazy and not quite opaque. Nice off-white head that fades relatively quickly.

S: Roasted malts, sweet, bitter hops. Hints of Christmas-y spices?

T: Very nicely balanced on the tongue with hop bitterness, malt sweetness and the spiciness. Really nice flavor.

M: Nice smooth, thick mouthfeel for a barleywine. Huge alcohol content is very well hidden.

O: I thought this was a very solid barleywine, and one that I would come back to frequently if it was more easily available. My biggest complaint is that I can't find a bottling date or a "drink by" on the bottle anywhere. I didn't perceive this one to be anywhere close to the 100 IBU claimed on the label, so I'm suspicious that the bottle may have some age on it and the hops have faded. Whatever the situation, it was very good, but I would be interested to compare to a bottle that I knew to be fresh.

 979 characters

Photo of ridgeline23
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

Photo of SawDog505
4.23/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a 16 oz snifter, bottle date looks like the 273 day of 2011. Pours a orange red with a huge 3 inch head off white with loads sticky lace. Smell is big carmel, fruity esters, pine, grapefruit, and biscuit. Taste is larger, but amazingly balanced. Body is medium large, plenty of carbonation, less dry than you expect from this style, and excellent drinkability for its size. This is very impressive, a fan for sure.

 426 characters

Photo of Focusf111
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of puboflyons
4.27/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From the 22 fl. oz. bottle. Sampled on June 11, 2012. It pours an amber, copper tone with a tremendous beige head that lasts and lasts. The colors are seen through a bit of a haze. Aromatic for sure with a fabulous collection of sweet caramel malts, wild berries, earthy/piney hops, and just a touch of yeast to meld everything together. Topnotch on the nose. The body is medium to bold but overall smooth. The hops are upfront on the taste with a sweetness taking a slight back seat but never disappearing.I had this one fairly fresh and I like to let Barleywines sit for a bit before consuming. This was incredibly easy to drink and totally enjoyable.

 653 characters

Photo of ejimhof
3.25/5  rDev -16.2%

Photo of JMBSH
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of pveilleux
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

Photo of bigred89
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of burningbeard
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

Photo of andrewinski1
3.52/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured into a tulip. The color is dark brown; appearing black at a quick glance. There is a nice one inch fluffy light tan head.

The aroma has a lot of melony hops. There are caramel and plum fruit undertones as well.

The taste starts out with grapefruit rind, with a subtle followup of malt flavor. I feel like the malt isn't quite enough to hold off the intense bitterness.

This is medium bodied with lots of carbonation.

Not bad, but not great either.

 458 characters

Photo of Bendurgin
3.58/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint tulip. This one pours a dark brown with a little bit of a reddish tint to it. Small cap of beige head.

The aroma is a little bit of the grape side with some hints of toffee. Very sweet on the aroma with a little bit of a grassy hop aroma in the background but this just reminds me of grape juice at the end of this. The flavor is hoppier than I had anticipated. Bitter grassy hops through this one with hints of sweet toffee in the background.

The body is medium with sharp carbonation. Overall this one is solid. The aroma puts me off a little bit but I'll enjoy it enough this time.

 606 characters

Photo of Hawoh
4.5/5  rDev +16%

Photo of ithinkimasofa
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

Photo of BeerKangaroo
4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

After investing in a beer chalice a couple days ago, I decided to get "the Vermonster" ready to be had.

Into my chalice:

A: brown/red colored body with a purple hazy bottom. There wasn't any head even after several aggressive pours. Since I am new to barleywines and the chalice served beers, I am unsure if a head is supposed to surface or not. The carbonation is very light and there are no rings down the sides of the glass. The lacing is very light and spotty. I did notice some sediment at the bottom once the beer was done.

S: some dark fruits, malts and a light roasted chocolate.

T: slightly bitter through hops that come out fairly strong. I taste some of the malts again. The chocolate is pretty non-existent in the taste.

M: medium, subdued carbonation helps to make pretty drinkable.

O: I really can't say too much because this is my first barleywine. Its got the hops characteristics of an IPA, yet some of the malts of a strong ale. I would have this again and would like to explore the barleywine style a bit more to see how others compare to Rock Art's.

 1,076 characters

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 claytong
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

Photo of mctizzz
1.75/5  rDev -54.9%

Photo of rcatalano
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of amnesia85
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of TheRuss9585
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

Photo of movingtrain
3.92/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Label on the bottom of the bottle reads: 7-2010.

Pours amber-red with a thin white head clinging to the edges of the glass.

The aroma is potent, floating from the glass. Notes of cinnamon, wet wood, white grapes, molasses/maple syrup, brown sugar, wet oats, and hard candy. There are some smokey notes in the aroma, too, with notes of vanilla around the edges of that smoke.

Flavor starts bittersweet, with some light smoke, actually. Behind that are notes of caramel, cinnamon spiced hard candy, dried figs, vanilla, and some bitter hops. This also has a bit of a sulphate note on the tongue, a bit chalky and, perhaps, a bit funky.

In terms of mouthfeel, this beer, while hefty in alcohol, seems a bit weak in substance. The beer feels watery and hollow.

Overall, this is, indeed, a monster. It is a bit drier of a beer, and the hop profile has added a unique bitterness to the beer set up against a roasty and sweet malt bill. I'm not sure of the water that is used in this beer, but there is certainly something unique added by it--something that gives this hefty ale a neat, interesting character.

 1,108 characters

Photo of Kelp
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%

The Vermonster from Rock Art Brewery
3.88 out of 5 based on 594 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.