Olde GnarlyWine
Lagunitas Brewing Company

Olde GnarlyWineOlde GnarlyWine
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Barleywine - American
Ranked #47
Ranked #4,185
4.09 | pDev: 9.29%
Lagunitas Brewing Company
California, United States
Olde GnarlyWineOlde GnarlyWine
Notes: 2011: 10.6% ABV, 69 IBU
Reviews: 763 | Ratings: 1,724 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
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jimmah120 from Minnesota

3.33/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A bottle from 2018

This thing has mellowed out considerably, as it is an extremely hoppy ale when fresh. As it stands the main flavors are dark malt notes: coffee, dark fruits, leather, booze.

Jul 31, 2021
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Samlover55 from New York

4.34/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

22oz bottle into Tulip
2017 vintage
Pours Auburn with thin head
Caramel, toffee, booze,
Burnt carmelized sugar, toffee, herbal medicinal hoppy finish
Feel is medium bodied and syrupy, alcohol hidden well
Overall this is a great Barleywine and cheap

May 26, 2019
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M_C_Hampton from Georgia

4.2/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A: poured from a 22 oz bottle into a pint glass, red copper colored with a short tan head that dissipates leaving some lacing, clear

S: heavy on sweet malt, warm boozy smell, lots of heavy alcohols, bitter lemon hops

T: smooth and sweet up front, caramel, toffee, ending hits with heavy alcohol flavor and bitter pine lemon hops

M: thick and full

O: good American version that mellows nicely with age, this bottle was aged 3.5 years from purchase date

Oct 05, 2018
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illpass78 from Maine

4.02/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bomber poured into stemware.

Appearance: Clear amber with a 1.5-finger-width eggshell head. Medium carbonation.

Aroma: White wine, dark fruits, booze, grapes.

Taste: Vinous character is there along with raisins, bread, and some nice herbal hops.

Mouthfeel: Boozy and strong. Slightly heavy.

Overall: I was skeptical of this beer because it seemed kind of high risk. It all comes together though. A fairly hoppy, flavorful "big" beer. Does not taste like paint in the way BWs sometimes do. Big and boozy, but a nice, approachable effort.

Sep 24, 2018
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polloenfuego from Canada (NB)

4.15/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Look is a deep amber with a lovely thumb of head. Retention is alright, but you are left with a lovely cap and collar. Some lacing.

Smell is deep caramel malts and fruits, followed by a blast of hops. It really works nicely.

The taste continue the aroma. Those malts and fruits are still there, as is a bit of molasses. But then the hops. Not overpowering, but just right.

Feel is really nice smooth and full with a good standard carbonation. The booze is well hidden and the finish is one that lets you enjoy the fruitiness.

Wow, a damn nice beer for $6. I find this a bit closer to an English barleywine than an American, however that may just be me. I highly recommend this beer,for the price,I am not sure there is something better around.

May 14, 2018
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VABA from Virginia

4.1/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

P-Pours a nice very dark copper amber color with a slight head and lacing
A-Aroma has generous malty hints
T-Taste follows the nose with an abundant malty flavor
M-A medium bodied well carbonated beer
O-A well done Barleywine with a strong kick

Apr 01, 2018
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BayAreaJoe from California

3.99/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured crystal clear dark mahogany with a small head that left a little bit of spotty lacing.

Aroma is super sweet malt, raisins & dark fruit to a lesser extent. Smells more like a sweet table wine.

Taste pretty much follows the aroma, very smooth, more spicy and earthy.

Mouthfeel is medium-heavy but it's not boozy, alcohol not overbearing. Smooth and creamy. Solid bitterness.

Overall, a nice changeup brew priced at a ridiculous value - 22oz. bomber was $3.99. Strong and maybe a little heavy, be ready when trying one out.

Mar 04, 2018
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TBoneJones from Texas

3.84/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours clear deep ruby/ light brown body. Nice lacing, medium-rich appearance.
Nose is nicely sweet malts, and background alcohol.
Taste is tea-like malt flavor, somewhat spicey, with no hip presence, yet tasty for what shows up.
Feels medium-thick, with medium-low carbonation.
It wasn’t typical of other good barleywines I’ve had. For example(s), it lacks the hop presence of Bigfoot. It lacks the vanilla/ caramel notes of Helldorado. BUT, this is good. Barley wine. It’s that, carbonated, well-balanced, malts, black tea taste (think how DFH 90 minute malts taste), and for sweetness a touch of honey, and an equal touch of light non-descript spice/ mild bitterness for the finish. The alcohol stays throughout, but it’s more subdued in taste than in smell. It comes through like soft pine.
I think this is a good creation overall, and it comes from a very good west coast brewery, which makes it no big surprise.

Mar 02, 2018
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Ozzylizard from Pennsylvania

3.65/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

$ 5.00/bomber ($ 0.227/oz) from Franklin Beer, Franklin, PA.
No date found, stored at 42 degrees and served at 58 degrees in a hand washed and dried Jester King snifter.
Appearance – 4.25.
Body – Medium amber, clear.
Head – Large (Maximum 6.8 cm, started aggressively, then slowed as the head built), off-white to light tan, low density and excellent retention, slooowly diminishing to an irregular five to ten mm lacy ring and a heaped and rocky partial layer. Large islands of rocky lacing remain on the sides of the glass.
Lacing – None, as expected from a 10.9% ABV brew.
Pour – Light amber, clear.
Aroma – 3.5 - Weak, malty.
Flavor – 3.5 – Distinctly malty and sweet with a slightly bitter aftertaste. No hops flavor but the slight bitterness seems hop-driven. No alcohol, no diacetyl, no dimethylsulfide. No gastric burn.
Palate – 4 – Medium, creamy, soft carbonation.
Impression and summation – 3.75 – Pretty much a typical, unremarkable barley wine. The initial pour is beautiful, although the aroma is weak and only hints at the malty backbone. The flavor is remarkable only in that there is no taste of alcohol but that can be a good thing – this brew isn’t very complex. The palate is creamier than many barley wines and, along with the appearance and the hidden alcohol, makes this a good introduction to barley wines for the novice. The price point, however, is remarkable in that it’s so low - $ 0.227/oz is cheaper than many lower alcohol worse tasting brews.

Mar 01, 2018
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1000lbgrizzly from Illinois

3.2/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Translucent brown/mahogany body with a rich, puffy sand-colored head that leaves a spattering of lace around the glass. The nose contains bread crust, dust/chalk, some alcohol heat... and nearly nothing else. Is this just an imperial amber ale? The taste is immediately stern, offering none of the rich, sweet flavors I would expect from a barleywine. Instead there is dry, nearly burnt bread, grape must, hop spice and pine, and a substantial bite of alcohol. Not welcoming at all. The body is heavy, but the bite of the alcohol and pine, not to mention the heat from both, diminish any pleasure that could otherwise be had.
Barleywine.... the word brings to mind sweet, rich flavors, beer's warmest embrace, full of caramel malts and vanilla kisses. This was not that. This was the cousin that you wish couldn't come to the family party. Dry raw grain, spicy hops, unrestrained ethanol heat, this is the inverse of barleywine. Call it an American Strong ale so at least we're warned before you kick us in the balls and take our toys.

Mar 01, 2018
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Franziskaner from Missouri

4.02/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Amber hued with a half inch of creamy beige on top. The aroma is packed with sweet bready malt, mahogany, and chestnuts. I'm tasting a lot of sweet bready malt, chestnuts, and oak. The mouth is very dry, chewy, and sticky.

Feb 25, 2018
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mudROCK from Illinois

3.92/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

I generally do not seek out barleywine brews, but since this was from my favorite brewers, I had to try it out. It's a very nice sipper, although I think one 22 ouncer is my limit during a session. I will be having this again occasionally. Since I really have no experience with this breed of brew, I can't make any apples to apples comparisons. Although, I will say, "Try it, you'll enjoy it!"

Feb 22, 2018
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dacrza1 from New Jersey

4.17/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

DATE: February 13, 2018... OCCASION: a clean sweep of basketball tonight for the boys... GLASSWARE: Duvel tulip... pours a dark mahogany amber body with a profusion of bubbles driving through its center... head is white, creamy, and displaying good retention... a ring of white coral symmetrically adorns the lip... roasted malts, sweet toffee, light citrus hops, grape and raisin, and that unmistakable phenolic heat... a formidable bouquet... the first sip is robust yet controlled, a full-bodied, throaty, warming presence that is also creamy and welcoming--dangerously so...the teeth tingle with hops presence, but the allure is in its style--a winelike draw, sweet and substantial, with grape, raisin, fig, the slightest hint of alcoholic heat, with the toasted malts reforming at its finish... a wonderful interpretation of the style, with a weighty but surreptitious ABV--like a good wine, it hides its intentions well... still frames nicely at its end, with a swirl of heady haze and a cloak of lace high... does Lagunitas deliver? Is a bomber of this worth the price? Yes and yes...

Feb 14, 2018
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Bouleboubier from New Jersey

4.13/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

(2017 bomber, poured into a snifter, in heats - NOTE: this bottle was likely infected)

L: horseshoe prints left on lip of bottle upon crown removal... crystal-clear, ruby-ish garnet hued liquid; tan moonscape of foam... crusty fingers of lace; thin, broken collar

S: pine, light-medium crystal malt, redolent berry fruitiness, semi-cakey malt, ruby grapefruit flesh... the fruity hops and alcohols dominate, bit of toasted sugars from the malts filling in gaps... potency great, but needing a little more malt depth to emanate... later, a peculiar yeasty cum oxidized pedio note emerges, though I'm wondering if it's more of an oxidized hop note

T: unexpected intense spicy and leafy/stem-y/floral hops pointed on center of palate; peppery, leather, dark dry caramel in aftertaste, as well as having curiously little residual sweetness and little lingering malt dimension aside from a shadow of a toasty cookie note - a bit clipped... second sip reveals some dried grapefruit flesh, dry sultana essence; hint of lingering peppery spice, sultana standing more alone in aftertaste

F: the alcohol releases a supremely-suave warmth; again, the finish clip-fades with a tight, narrow drop... drinkable as hell, kinda like a malty cognac... a little cool flame lifts and hums and the back of the palate... diggin' its svelte flow, but I do prefer to chew

O: rather textbook west coast barleywine but with finely-sanded, honed edges, neatly-tailored construct... haven't had (or happen to see or seek) this one before, but I will definitely take a stab at this next year - probably pickup another bottle when I see it asap, price point is fantastic, scratches a cheap itch

Jan 26, 2018
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GrumpyGas from Illinois

4.02/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz twenty-seventeen release pours an almost-reddish orange clear body with rising bubbles and a 1/2in cream colored, tightly bubbled head disippating to a persistent 1/16in cap with thicker edges leaving sheets of running lacing.

Aroma is sweet caramel, raisins, and bready malt with a hint of flowery hops.

Flavors match with more stone fruit like dark cherries and just a touch of booze as it warms.

Mouthfeel is full leaning medium not quite thick, but rather sticky, and a lasting bitter-sweet finish.

Overall very nice with a cigar.

Jan 26, 2018
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darktronica from Indiana

4.04/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

2017 bomber. Pours an attractive amber with a finger of head and minimal lacing once it subsides. Nice apple brandy and raisin notes on the nose, along with some resin and floral hops. Tastes a bit green and bitter, but still with traditional American barleywine notes, and somehow simultaneously on the sweet side, in turns. A little astringent, but generally satisfying.

Jan 25, 2018
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DVMin98 from North Carolina

3.6/5  rDev -12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bomber. The price was right at $4. Carmel color. Smell is moderate hops and malts. Flavor is moderate hoppiness with some sweetness from the malts. Not overly boozy. I'm not the biggest ABW fan, but this was pretty tasty.

Jan 23, 2018
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tigg924 from Massachusetts

4.48/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Had on tap. Pours clear reddish brown in color with minimal head. Taste is brown sugar, sap, and toffee. Heavy bodied, nice combination of bitter and sweet, moderate carbonation. Nice winter sipper. Could have several.

Jan 17, 2018
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Harrison8 from Missouri

4.01/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Pours a transparent deep burgundy with a finger of khaki foam. Head retention is okay with good lacing at the start. Aroma is herbal and floral hops, and caramel, toffee, toasted malts. Flavor profile is heavy mix of caramel, toffee, and toasted malts with herbal, citrus, and floral hops. It has lots of depth, with a biting quality in the hops. Mouth feel is medium in thickness, with a slightly velvety feel, but otherwise fizzy. Overall, heavy hops and malts without much balance in the center, but it full of flavor.

Served in a 12oz snifter from a 22oz bottle.

Jan 14, 2018
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jkblr from Indiana

4.13/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

22oz bottled 2/19/15 poured into a Duvel glass at fridge temp 10.6% ABV. The beer pours slightly hazy brown amber with sticky light tan head. Lots of lacing and a nice island of head remain. The aroma is the remnant of piney citrusy hops which have faded but are still there. The taste is more dulled citrus and pine mixed with sweet caramel and a sticky bitter finish. Mouthfeel is medium to full bodied, adequately carbonated and sticky sweet. No booze in aroma or taste. Overall, very good. It's been too long since I've had a fresh one. This beer was in my cellar for two years. Probably better fresh but enjoyable now if you're not opposed to extra sweetness.

Jan 13, 2018
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Donco from Pennsylvania

4.17/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Nice piney, hoppy mix to the malt goodness of the distinctively American barleywine. Goes down very smoothly with moderate carbonation. Well balanced all around.

Jan 09, 2018
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andrewh995 from Arizona

4.13/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

2017 Vintage:

Pours a dark red with a small off-white head. Smells of caramel, booze, and malt. Tastes of dried fruits, caramel, light toffee, some booze, and rich malt. Medium in both body and carbonation. Overall a very tasty barleywine.

Jan 07, 2018
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Ob512316 from Pennsylvania

4.48/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Look: brown with a medium white head. The smell conists of a hint of tobacco, caramel, pine and citrus. The taste is similar as it smells, pine and citrus at first followed by caramel and toffee. This beer doesn't feel heavy like a 10% abv should. There is a slight burn. Overall, this beer is an excelent example of barleywine.

Jan 04, 2018
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GoBearsWalter34 from Illinois

4.41/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

It pours as a clear copper with a thin, white head and plenty of carbonation.

The smell is unique which starts with a subdued citrus and combines a malty Carmel. A slight twang of pumpkin.

Taste follows the nose in which citrus hop slides over a malty Carmel. Slight bitterness hangs around

Quite smooth and medium mouthfeel. Alcohol is hidden.

I like this one!

Dec 30, 2017
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Lone_Freighter from Vermont

4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was poured into a snifter.
The appearance was a dark muggy malted brown color with a thin finger's worth of white foamy head that slid off at a moderate pace. Not so much lace, but what was there, just slid into the beer.
The aroma had some fresh tobacco leafy earthy to herbal hop character up front. Light citrus and piney hop character then slides in over top of a smooth clean caramel maltiness. Light cocoa powder, a touch of vanilla, and dark bread rounded out the edges.
The flavor recognized the sweetness of the prior mentioned aromas tightly. There's the vanilla, caramel/toffee malt and tobacco leafiness in the aftertaste.
The mouthfeel was about medium bodied with a fair sipping quality about it. ABV felt as projected by what was matched on the bottle. Carbonation felt good and on par for the style.
Overall, this was a pretty nice American styled barleywine and I'm not one to seek out Lagunitas that much anymore. Price is definitely there for this one, I have to admit.

Jul 04, 2017
Olde GnarlyWine from Lagunitas Brewing Company
Beer rating: 91 out of 100 with 1724 ratings