Devil's Milk Barleywine Style Ale | DuClaw Brewing Company

BA SCORE
86
very good
401 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score
Send samples
Devil's Milk Barleywine Style AleDevil's Milk Barleywine Style Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
DuClaw Brewing Company
Maryland, United States
duclaw.com

Style: American Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.60%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
Our award winning Barleywine will seduce you with its assertive hop bill (that changes each year to make each vintage unique), citrus flavors, and warming 10% ABV. Devil’s Milk is best served in a snifter to accommodate its ABV and allow complex flavors to emerge as it warms in your hands.

Added by farHillsBrewer on 11-02-2003

BEER STATS
Ratings:
401
Reviews:
132
Avg:
3.81
pDev:
11.81%
 
 
Wants:
38
Gots:
93
For Trade:
4
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Ratings: 401 |  Reviews: 132
Photo of acurtis
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

Photo of kylehay2004
4.15/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Single finger head with excellent lacing on a clear amber with straw hues body. Aroma is malty with caramel, candied fruit and light toffee. Very smooth caramel malts, tanginess, candied citrus and light toffee. Moderate carbonation and smooth oily body. This is one of the smoothest and more drinkable barleywines I have had. Very good and highly drinkable for the style.

 372 characters

Photo of spycow
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

Photo of djrn2
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

Photo of Knapp85
4.2/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer poured out as a really nice amber color with a pretty good thin yellowish cream colored head. Thin, not much lacing but stuck around for a while on top. The smell of this beer has a really nice sweetness, grains and malts on the nose. The taste is also sweet, it's got a citrus kick of lemon in the flavor. The malts and grains are really flavorful. The mouthfeel of the beer is smooth, nicely balanced. Overall a damn good Barley Wine!

 446 characters

Photo of t0rin0
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

Photo of nmann08
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

Photo of oriolesfan4
4/5  rDev +5%

Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

Photo of metter98
3.83/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: The beer is relatively clear amber in color but has some fine particulates floating in suspension along with a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a thin layer of bubbles on the surface and a off white collar around the edge of the glass.
S: Moderate aromas of citrusy and floral hops and caramel malts are present in the nose along with some hints of alcohol.
T: The taste follows the smell and has flavors of caramel malts, floral hops, and fruits along with a light amount of bitterness.
M: It feels medium- to full-bodied and slightly sticky on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation. The alcohol lends warming to the finish.
O: This beer hides its alcohol rather well but is interesting enough to sip and savor.

Note: 2016 vintage

Serving type: bottle

 792 characters

Photo of BEERchitect
3.98/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Drier, stronger and certainly hoppier than traditional British varieties, the American yeast uses leads to a higher attenuation rate, highter alcohol, and assertive dryness. But with still a bulk of residual sweetness at hand, the DuClaw attitude is to balance that with equal parts hops for a bittersweet taste with an agressive backbone on both fronts.

Rich with caramel, toffee and pulled candy, its sweet scent is woven together with citrus, herb and pine. Pale amber and richly golden, the ale is capped with a short and sturdy cotton-like froth. As its sweetness slathers the tongue in all-things-malt, those toffee, candy and simple sweetnesses are front and center on the early palate.

As the middle palate acclimates to the powerful flavors and as the ale releases its culinary secrets as it warms, the middle palate shows a lift of sweetness and a fruit-forward introduction of apricot, orange, lemon, grape and berry. As the hops grow, their own grapefruit, orange peel and peppery grassiness begins to offset the lasting sweetness. Eventually trailing into a bittersweet finish of pine sap and southern sweet tea, the beer's taste is gentler on the palate than most other beers of the style.

Full-bodied, rich and sweet, the beer's weight on the palate is soft and somewhat somber; allowing its hoppy counterpart to apply a crisper dryness than is normally associated for the style. Seeming like an imperial amber ale at times, this barleywine lingers with stone fruit, savory toasted sweetness and a smooth bitter grip.

 1,535 characters

Photo of oline73
5/5  rDev +31.2%

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.23/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Bottle: Poured a murky brown color ale with a small foamy head with minimal retention and not much lacing. Aroma consists of deep caramelized malt with quite a bit of green hoppy notes. Taste is also a mix between some overly sweet caramelized malt with some stalled green hops that don’t really mix that well with the malt backbone. Body is about average with medium-to-low carbonation and light apparent alcohol. There is something off balanced in this beer that I didn’t particularly enjoyed.

 499 characters

Photo of zeff80
4.05/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured out a somewhat cloudy, dark amber color with a small, off-white head of fluffy foam that lingers for a while. As it recedes it leaves sudsy lace on the glass.

S - Sweet caramel and toffee aroma lead off then are backed up by piney hops.

T - A great blend of sweet and bitter in a barleywine. Toffee, caramel and butterscotch flavors bring the sweetness while a resiney, piney hop presence balances things out.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A medium to full bodied beer with a somewhat chewy mouthfeel.

D - This is a really good tasting barleywine. I would like to find more beers from DuClaw.

 614 characters

Photo of zestar
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

Photo of superspak
4.03/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle into snifter, bottled on 8/25/2016. Pours slightly hazy medium orange/amber color with a 1-2 finger dense and rocky off white head with fantastic retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lasts. Nice dense soapy lacing clings on the glass. Fantastic appearance. Aromas of big tangerine, grapefruit, pineapple, apricot, peach, plum, pear, melon, white grape, lemon, berry, orange peel, light pepper/pine, honey, caramel, brown sugar, toasted bread, light toffee, herbal, and floral/grassy earthiness. Damn nice aromas with great balance and complexity of citrus/fruity/earthy hops and moderate dark/bready malt notes; with great strength. Taste of big tangerine, grapefruit, pineapple, apricot, peach, plum, pear, melon, white grape, lemon, berry, orange peel, light pepper, pine, honey, caramel, brown sugar, toasted bread, light toffee, herbal, and floral/grassy earthiness. Light-moderate pine/herbal/spicy bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of tangerine, grapefruit, pineapple, apricot, plum, berry, orange peel, pepper, pine, honey, caramel, brown sugar, toasted bread, and herbal/floral/grassy earthiness on the finish for a while. Great complexity, robustness, and balance of citrus/fruity/earthy hops and moderate dark/bready malt sweetness; with a great malt/bitterness balance, and zero cloying/astringent flavors after the finish. Light dryness from bitterness, increasing through the glass. Medium carbonation and medium-full body; with a very smooth, moderately creamy/bready/sticky, and lightly slick/silky/resinous balanced mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is well hidden with a small warmth lingering after the finish. Overall this is a great American barleywine! All around great complexity, robustness, and balance of citrus/fruity/earthy hops and moderate dark/bready malt sweetness; very smooth and easy to sip on for the ABV. A very unique mix of hop flavors with a nice malt backbone. Well balanced with good bitterness, without being overly aggressive. A very enjoyable offering.

 2,030 characters

Photo of Boone757
4/5  rDev +5%

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

Photo of Thorpe429
2.94/5  rDev -22.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle opened by Jared. Served in a wine glass.

Pours a copper color with a minimal off-white head and a touch of lacing, though most of the head fades into a thin color. Some light legs as well. The nose is really quite plain with only a bit of bread and some brown sugar. The taste is mildly sweet and has a bit of light booze. Moderate caramel and brown sugar there as well. Mild cherry in the back end. Medium body with low carbonation and a dry finish. Not bad, but not particularly good, either.

 502 characters

Photo of nickfl
3.65/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A poured with a small white head on a clear dark copper body. Good retention and lace.

S spicy yeast and alcohol with caramel and pine hops.

T sweet rich malt with pine and moderate bitterness. Some mustardy notes in the middle with spicy hops and thick caramel in the finish.

M medium body moderate carbonation and a sweet finish..

D a pretty standard barley wine with a nice balance of hops and sweet malt. Not the most complex, but reasonably well done.

 460 characters

Photo of chinchill
3.96/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle served in a Belgian snifter.
Pours with a clear copper-brown body topped by a thin, mostly short-lived head. Spotty lacing.

Aroma: Sweet and boozy, with hints of dark fruits, apples and toffee.

Flavor. Similar to the aroma, with soft and dried fruits, faint hops and caramel. Modest complexity.

Overall: Smoother and, perhaps, better, than the bourbon barrel aged version (Hell on Wood).

 407 characters

Photo of NeroFiddled
3.09/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This year's Devil's Milk was a little bit disappointing, so I'll have to be sure to try it again next year! Its short head of creamy off-white foam receeds quickly (as might be expected considering its strength), but it still leaves some limited splashes of lace about the snifter. The hazy mahogany body appears darkish on the bar or table but reveals a glowing ring of orangeish gold at the rim as you raise the glass to your lips. The aroma offers some dried apricot and tart baking apples (acetaldehyde) along with a waft of alcohol over a limited amount of malt. The body is medium and it's soft in the mouth with a fine carbonation. Its flavor delivers a well-balanced combination of alcohol; bitterness; and straight-forward, just slightly caramel-touched malt. It finishes dry with some lingering malt, bitterness, and apple.

 833 characters

Photo of ygtbsm94
3/5  rDev -21.3%

Photo of Kegatron
4.18/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Arundel Mills location on 11/15/08. Served in a 10 oz snifter.

Pours a clear but deep colored cranberry with a thin head of fizzy, pale-tan head. The retention doesn't look that impressive at first but once I get the level down some and start swirling this bad boy, it flares up beautifully, leaving a huge and creamy cascade of lacing behind. The aroma is floral hops with a piney edge to it and a sticky smelling mix of bready malts, spice, citrus, and a waft of alcohol warmth.

The taste is an assertive floral hop profile that seems to be a bit more earthy and less "West Coast" feeling than I remember past releases of this being. The hops are propped up by a big backbone of bread, citrus, and spice. Finishes warm, bitter, and sticky. The mouthfeel is medium-full bodied that lends itself more to the beefier side of the alcohol spectrum but never feels stinging. As a matter of fact, the ABV is incredibly well hidden and will creep up on you quickly if you let it.

This is IMHO, probably the best offering that DuClaw puts out during the year. A robust American Barleywine with great strength behind it, yet remaining a steady and warming sipper. My only complaint is that they serve this way to cold. Let it warm up and enjoy. Good stuff that I'm hoping to grab a couple more glasses of this winter before it's gone.

 1,346 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Devil's Milk Barleywine Style Ale from DuClaw Brewing Company
3.81 out of 5 based on 401 ratings.
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

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