Talon - True Style Barley Wine Ale | Mendocino Brewing Company

BA SCORE
84
good
249 Ratings
THE BROS
81
good
Read the review
Talon - True Style Barley Wine AleTalon - True Style Barley Wine Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Mendocino Brewing Company
United States
mendobrew.com

Style: American Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by rkhaze on 03-11-2004

BEER STATS
Ratings:
249
Reviews:
215
Avg:
3.73
pDev:
11.8%
 
 
Wants:
8
Gots:
12
For Trade:
1
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 249 |  Reviews: 215
Photo of auggie
4.5/5  rDev +20.6%

Photo of skaboom420
4/5  rDev +7.2%

Photo of buckyp
3.5/5  rDev -6.2%

Photo of cliff1066
3.75/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of t0rin0
3.75/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of beerpadawan
3.5/5  rDev -6.2%

Photo of Vierenner
3.18/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a beautiful red color with very little head. Kind of tastes like Redhook Eisbock ... just a bit more flavorful.

Taste is quite syrupy ... caramel candy with a hint of molasses. I think I might be growing tired of sweeter beers as this just isn't doing much for me (a year ago would have been a different story!). There is a very faint bitter finish ... but the sweetness hangs around to the bitter end (pun intended).

 425 characters

Photo of birchstick
3/5  rDev -19.6%

Photo of jtierney89
1.65/5  rDev -55.8%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Murky deep amber/brown color. Potent alcoholic nose already. Can't tell how old the bottle is, got it at a chain liquor store though so I'm sure its been sitting around for a little while at least.

Fodder, caramel and rum covered raisins on the nose. Figs and other dark fruit.

Strangely only a medium sized body.Feels thin in the mouth. Sweet Malted grains upfront followed by astringent dark fruit and caramel flavors. Sharp alcohol throughout with a hot alcoholic finish.

This beer lacks stability and complexity but the flavors go together at least somewhat well. Not a good beer, but at 3.99 it competes with even worse malt liquors for a cheap buzz. Okay for the price, but overall bad.

 695 characters

Photo of Suds
3.94/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I love a barleywine. This one is a murky, dark brown color. It's mostly still, with just a little carbonation and nearly no head at all. The aroma is all malt and alcohol: sweet, grainy, malt-extract-like, toffee and biscuit, caramel and rum-soaked raisins. The beer is warm and has a bite, but also very sweet. Firm bitterness for balance. The sweetness is lingering...it's a sensation that hangs on for several minutes. Firm body. This is a solid, but not particularly outstanding, barleywine.

 495 characters

Photo of enelson
4.25/5  rDev +13.9%

Photo of vonnegut21
4.25/5  rDev +13.9%

Photo of KingRascal
3.75/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of jfcaa193
3/5  rDev -19.6%

Photo of SLeffler27
3.57/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The pint glass fills with a clear ruby, to dark copper beer and surprisingly abundant carbonation. A big, beige, rocky head sticks around for a long while, ultimately leaving patches of lace.

The aroma is rich with toasted dark malts and molasses. Accents of brown sugar, fig, strong alcohol, raisins, nutmeg and cognac.

Alcohol is strong and up-front, but not harsh. Some cherry and molasses notes are complimented by brandy and dark, dried fruits. The finish, while fleeting, is subtle and sweet.

Alcohol is appropriate for the style. The slick texture, medium body and soft carbonation lead to a smooth mouth-feel. Quite dry.

Equally good as a sipper or with a meal. This is a fine beer, however, it falls short for the style.

Aged 3.5 years.

 750 characters

Photo of DavoleBomb
2.91/5  rDev -22%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a snifter. 2009 vintage.

4.0 A: Pours a ruddy brown color. Two fingers of creamy beige head. Retention is pretty good given the ABV and a small ring of lacing is left.

3.0 S: Toffee and caramel. Light plum fruitiness and brown sugar. Simple, but pleasant, and average.

2.5 T: Moderate toffee and caramel. Perhaps a touch of dark fruits. Even simpler than the nose.

2.5 M: Medium to heavier medium body. Good moderate carbonation. Lacking the creaminess that I want from a beer like this.

3.0 D: This beer is completely unoffensive and unassuming. It's boring without being bad. I didn't really expect it to be any good either given the brewer. I figured I could get a spot back in my cellar by drinking this and in that regard, this is a success.

 763 characters

Photo of djrn2
4/5  rDev +7.2%

Photo of DrDemento456
3.88/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Dark murky brown almost black except for a slight red hue and a nice layer of head that has a great sticky lace.

S - Wow that's crazy herbal cherry in the smell! I also get some caramel and wood but hope it doesn't taste too much like cough syrup.

T - Ah thankfully the taste is more balanced than the smell. I get cherry, slightly tart and herbal like a cough drop with a nice bit of oak with very little sweetness of caramel but it's there. I like how the cherry, almost medicine like, covers the ABV up nicely with no burn.

M - Heavy and herbal like cherry tea with a solid bit of tart.

Overall I seem to like this more than others have rated maybe because I like cherry. Certainly not the best Barleywine but well worth the 5 dollars. In fact this is the most obscure Barleywine I have had to date.

 810 characters

Photo of Rochefort10nh
3/5  rDev -19.6%

Photo of psuKinger
2.75/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

22-ounce bottle, aged (I can't find a printed date, but I know it's been in my fridge for probably almost a year, and I have reason to believe it may have sat on the shelf at 6-and-Save for a while as well based on the discounted price) and poured into a standard pint glass. The fine print up by the nose of the bottle indicates that it may have already been aged before bottling, as well, so who knows how old this brew is.

A: Pours a darker shade than I would have expected. A dark shade of Ruby-Red. It's giving off a little bit of a *fizz* on the pour, so it's not completely flat, but virtually no head forms at all.

S: Big, sweet, earthy, and boozy. Almost like a sweet cordial/bourbon mix.

T: Taste follows the nose. This is a big beer. Lots of sweetness, with maybe a touch of cherry? Big and boozy, with some *woody* flavors to it as well. I don't know/think that this was "barrel aged", but maybe it was? I pick up on some caramel, as well, probably from the malt bill.

There's a lot of cherry here. And I'm a big fan of cherry beer (my rDev's for Kasteel Rouge and Bell's Cherry Stout speak for themselves). But there's something about this particular cherry flavor here that isn't working for me. It's almost medicinal, like cough medicine. It's not HORRIBLE, but for a reason that's difficult to explain, I'm not digging it the way I do so many other beers that have a touch of cherry to them.

There's virtually no hops to be found in this glass. I don't know if that's because none were there to begin with or if they've dissipated over the ? months/years of aging, but it is what it is. I don't think *hops* would work here the way they do for Flying Mouflon, anyway.

M: Mouthfeel is below average here. For such a big beer, with the kind of sweetness that it has, it's rather thin and watery on the tongue, and doesn't finish with as much of a coating on the tongue as I'd like.

D/O: I didn't find this beer to be terribly drinkable. Over time this became like drinking a boozy-cherry-toffee bar. It's not in balance at all, and is just too sweet for me. The cherry flavor also tastes *artificial* to me. With no help from anyone else, I didn't finish this 22 ounce bottle myself. Life's too short, and I eat/drink too many calories as it is.

Overall, just not a very enjoyable experience.

 2,315 characters

Photo of smerrell
4/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: resembles root beer in appearance- the head disappears quickly, cloudy and brown

Smell: rasins and dates

Taste: roasted maltiness. Toffee notes and dried fruits- cherries, dates

Mouthfeel: bright attack and a long sweet finish. Even at 10.5%, you can't detect the alcohol

Overall: this is a pleasant barley wine that is not overpowering and would likely be a good introduction to the style. Aging this one might be a very good idea.

 448 characters

Photo of surprenant1138
3.7/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a deep mahogany with almost no head and decent lacing. Aroma is of cherries, oak, hops, barley, some chocolate, vanilla, and a hint of a tobacco smell. Very boozey smelling. Mouthfeel is slightly heavy, but tolerable. Taste is of pretty much all of the aroma, and a good amount of booze. However, sometimes, it feels slightly watered down. I prefer a few other barleywines, but this one at least passes.

 409 characters

Photo of JohnnyBarman
3.72/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

22oz-er from Consumer Beverages in New York. This was the random brew from my New York beer haul; I mostly bought this for the label and the price - never heard of Mendocino before.

Poured into a goblet. Black cherry juice in colour, leaves a half-inch of thick head, which leaves a thin ring after a few minutes.

Nose is malty, quite rich, good caramel and fruit notes. Fresh bread and just a touch of hops as well. Smells like a sweet barleywine.

Sweet, bready, good malty base, with that boozy brandy character I always feel in barleywines. Finishes dry and with a mild peppery taste.

Thick-bodied, smooth, mild to low carabonation, slightly booziness.

While not the most complex of barleywines, it's a rich and enjoyable sipper. The peppery taste was a nice addition. However, it almost got to the point of cloyingly sweet; my wife and I had trouble finishing the bottle.

 882 characters

Photo of Cylinsier
3.98/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22

Pours a deep cloudy brown with a cherry glow when held up to light. Yellowish white head dissipates to lacing.

Smells of rich caramel, cloves, cinnamon, apple, molasses and oak.

Tastes rich as well, caramel and molasses followed by cinnamon and apple and the mildest hint of piney hop without any real bitterness.

Feels thick and syrupy with a mild carbonation on the tip of the tongue.

Very delicious but also rich and potentially cloying, not something to drink a lot of or drink quickly. A little boozy as well. A good treat for fans of English Barleywines (which this tastes much more like despite being called an American BW).

 642 characters

Photo of Thickfreakness
4.47/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Poured with a fervor into my DFH signature glass (for those that don't have one of these... I suggest it highly!!!) A beautiful cherry/mahogany brew sits still as an almost sunburst head floats quickly upon it... and then fades away. Nice traces of sticky lacing drip and drool everywhere.

S- Vanilla, caramel, dark currants, fresh cut figs, licorice, raisin bread, dark chocolate covered cherries, and hints of citrus peel and grapefruit. Sugar coated nuts, burnt wood and maple sap.

T- Caramel-Licorice spicy apple... dried figs and cherries. Vanilla, roasted pecans, toffee and honey. Nice notes of bitter citrus linger. Brown sugar buttered popcorn. Really nice and warming flow of alcohol.

M- Sticky, gooey, and dripping with notes of caramel-citrus goodness. So tongue coating and wonderfully syrupy!!! Vanilla-Orange Blossom honey. Love the citrus pop, caramel sweetness, and sticky honey goodness this brings to the table.

O- This is a fantastic, and way under-rated Barleywine! You can feel it change as it warms up! Gets stickier, citrusier, and deliciousier!!! LOL!!! All kidding aside... for $4.49/22oz., this should be rated WAY higher than it is! It's not hoppy enough to be an American BW, yet not quite sweet and sugary enough to be an English BW... perfect balance, and so friggin' delicious! I know where I'm going tomorrow! Back to my local to buy the rest of what they have!!!

 1,405 characters

Talon - True Style Barley Wine Ale from Mendocino Brewing Company
3.73 out of 5 based on 249 ratings.
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