Old Birdbrain
Black Raven Brewing Co.

Old BirdbrainOld Birdbrain
Beer Geek Stats | Print Shelf Talker
Black Raven Brewing Co.
Washington, United States
American Barleywine
Ranked #28
Ranked #1,709
4.3 | pDev: 8.14%
Sep 24, 2023
Mar 07, 2010
This robust strong ale features pale malts and generous hop additions. After primary fermentation, several American rye whiskey barrels are filled and cellared to age. The remaining beer is then cellared in a stainless steel tank. After many months of aging, the barrels are then blended into the remaining batch aged in the stainless steel tank.
Recent ratings and reviews. | Log in to view more ratings + sorting options.
Rated: 4.18 by QuakeAttack from California

Sep 24, 2023
Rated: 4.5 by BEER88 from North Carolina

Jul 22, 2020
Rated: 4.49 by Docrock from Illinois

Oct 13, 2018
Rated: 4.42 by EdwardAbbey from Washington

Jan 26, 2018
Rated: 4 by Gregf51 from Ohio

Jan 16, 2017
Rated: 3.89 by drone from Oregon

Nov 06, 2016
Rated: 4 by Oidmoe from Austria

Aug 29, 2016
Rated: 3.94 by Birdlegs from Washington

Aug 27, 2016
Photo of Bosoxfan20
Reviewed by Bosoxfan20 from Missouri

4/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
12 oz bottle. 2012
Not overpowering barrel notes. Hops still kicking up a a bit of a fuss despite the age. Toffee, charred caramel, and decent about of fruit.
Jul 24, 2015
Photo of rudzud
Reviewed by rudzud from Massachusetts

3.79/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75
Received as an extra in a trade long ago. 2012 vintage.

A - Poured into my Duvel tulip a...well...this looks like a glass of caramel sauce. Little bit of head fades quickly to leave thin wisps and a light halo.

S - Aromas of caramel, little bit of dirt, old hops, little bit of sweet malts, super faint barrel notes, maybe a little vegetative.

T - Taste is similar to the nose. Caramel, sweeter malts, old hops, really faint whiskey notes. Awfully vegetative. Little bit of cardboard, slightly dirty. Ehh

M - Mouthfeel is lightly carbonated, little bright, not really syrupy. Booze hidden nicely.

O - Overall I feel like this just sat in my cellar a year too long. Clearly has hints of a really good beer, however, it's really a shell of that now which is greatly unfortunate.

Serving Type: Bottle
Jun 25, 2015
Rated: 4 by Impfan from Washington

Jun 07, 2015
Rated: 3.65 by gouettn from Washington

May 17, 2015
Photo of mabermud
Reviewed by mabermud from Washington

4.04/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
I had this on tap at Elizabeth Station in Bellingham.

Look: Muted ruby amber with a thin white head.
Smell: Hard candy and sweetness.
Taste: Maple syrup, toffee, caramel, vanilla, and sugar.
Feel: Thick and semi-syrupy.

Overall - Not bad. For me, drink-ability is hindered by overall sweetness. I would like to have this again in the future as my first beer. I would definitely have this again.
May 15, 2015
Photo of Moose90
Reviewed by Moose90 from Washington

3.85/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25
Served On-Tap

A – Pours a deep ruby amber, highly viscous, initially tall tan colored head forms, but resides to a thin layered cap and leaves behind very nice lacing.

S – Smells slightly sweet, cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, pepper, sugar, caramel, very nice.

T – Exceedingly malty, begging for more of the sweet and spicy notes from the nose.

M – Full bodied, rich, thick, long lasting finish.

O – Overall a nice beer, smells nice and has a nice and rich flavor profile.
May 12, 2015
Rated: 4.21 by Bunuelian from Minnesota

Apr 22, 2015
Rated: 4.17 by charlzm from California

Mar 07, 2015
Rated: 4.39 by VashonGuy from Washington

Feb 28, 2015
Photo of jzeilinger
Reviewed by jzeilinger from Pennsylvania

4.41/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
In review is a 2011 vintage.

A - Pours a dark chestnut brown, burgundy color with a very thin lacing ring at the top.

S - Roasted toffee/caramel, whiskey/bourbon, oak, faint vanilla.

T - Blended superbly throughout with not one thing overpowering the other. Roasted caramel/toffee, whiskey/bourbon, vanilla, oak, there's also some orange the surfaces midway through and carries out until the end. There's also a delicate pine bitterness that rounds things out. Alcohol warming is very little to undetectable.

M - Full body, thick, slippery, lip smacking sticky, velvety.

O - This is a superb example of the style, IMO. Seek it out.
Feb 24, 2015
Rated: 3.9 by Hugonaut13 from Illinois

Feb 20, 2015
Rated: 4.41 by poppollutesminds from New Jersey

Feb 11, 2015
Old Birdbrain from Black Raven Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 95 out of 100 with 105 ratings