Midwinter Warmer | Equinox Brewing Company

no score
Awaiting 10 Reviews
no score
Send samples
Midwinter WarmerMidwinter Warmer

Brewed by:
Equinox Brewing Company
Colorado, United States

Style: American Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Beaver13 on 02-04-2011

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 7 | Ratings: 20
Reviews by GilGarp:
Photo of GilGarp
4.07/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

2011 vintage. Pint sized bottle served slightly chilled into a goblet.

Midwinter Warmer is a redish amber color with a slight haze. The head is thick and fizzy at first but settles gradually leaving a thin layer after a few minutes.

The aroma is sweet and malty with a dark dried fruit character. It has a nice apricot and plum thing going on that I like.

The flavor is nice and balanced with a good strong malt body to support a healthy dose of hops. It's plenty bitter like a good barleywine should be but it never overwhelms the flavor of the beer.

The only down side is the overly carbonated nature of the beer. It's medium bodied but the carbonation seems too high for the stlye. Otherwise, the alcohol is fairly mellow for such a strong beer. The year it spent in the cellar has probably helped in that regard.

Overall a very good American barleywine and definately worth picking up if you're in Fort Collins.

 920 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of Beaver13
3.6/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

16.9oz bottle. Pours a murky light brown with a small frothy white head that quickly goes to a thin film.

The aroma is sweet caramel malts and molasses with some dark fruit and some vanilla and alcohol.

The flavor is sweet caramel and molasses and dark fruit with a lot of bitter charred alcohol in the finish. There's a lot of warming alcohol. The mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with almost no carbonation - a little watery.

Overall, a nice big barley wine. It was better on tap than in the bottle. I remember it having more carbonation and less of a charred bitterness. A bit too much noticeable alcohol for me too.

 630 characters

Photo of Gonzoillini
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

Photo of ucsbmullet
5/5  rDev +28.9%

Photo of lillitnn92
4/5  rDev +3.1%

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

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

Photo of kojevergas
2.61/5  rDev -32.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

2011 vintage. 10% ABV. 1 pint .9 fl oz brown glass bottle with unbranded pry-off pressure cap served cold into a Guinness goblet at high altitude in Castle Rock, CO. Reviewed live.

Expectations are high.

No bubble show forms as it's poured.

HEAD: 2 fingers wide. White colour. Creamy, thick, and full. Retention is good - about 7-8 minutes. No lacing sticks to the sides of the glass as the head recedes.

BODY: Vibrant copper with amber hues. Translucent and glowing. Clean; no yeast particulate or hop sediment is visible.

Overall, it's a nice appearance for a barleywine, but isn't unique or special.

AROMA: Ample amounts of fruit - wow. Fruitcake, sweetbread, amber malts, cream. Not the toffee-laden caramel-y English malt profile I expected, but appealing. It's not boozy or yeasty (beyond a trace of spice). No off-notes. A pleasant albeit sweet aroma of average strength.

TASTE: Fruitcake dominates, with a secondary note of fruitcake. Nicely fruity, with some yeasty spiciness. Cream.

I find it imbalanced towards malty sweetness, but there are no egregious off-notes. It's not horribly complex, subtle, intricate, or deep, but I do like it for what it is.

TEXTURE: Smooth, wet, medium-bodied, fairly creamy, aptly thick. Carbonation is about right. Not a texture that elevates the beer, nor is it an ideal complement to the taste.

OVERALL: A downable barleywine but nothing to write home about. I'd try it again fresh, and it's interesting but not ideal aged. Hides its ABV nicely. Not a great or world-class beer in the style. A sipper.


 1,561 characters

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

Photo of superdoopersauce
3.5/5  rDev -9.8%

Photo of pokesbeerdude
3.97/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16.9oz bottle from Supermarket Liquors in Ft. Collins, CO for $10. Into an Epic Snifter. 2011 version. Pretty cool stubby/German pint hybrid bottle.

A: Pours a murky deep copper/mahogany color. An aggressive pour yields a quarter of an inch of white head that disappears pretty fast. No lacing left behind.

S: Straight up malt bomb here, caramel and toffee grainy malts and a touch of booze. No real hop profile in here, just a ton of sweet malts. Reminds me of a more subdued version of a J.W. Lee's. Not bad at all.

T: A lot like the nose leads on, tons of sweet malts a bit of oxidation, and enough bitterness to round things out and make a pretty even keeled beer. A decent amount of hop resins are in here, but they aren't massive and lingering like some barleywines can be. Slightly toasty, and it works nicely. Pretty tasty stuff. I question the seal on this bottle though as there are a few notes of oxidation.

M: Spot on here, fairly thick, carbonation is quite low but enough to break things up a bit. Nice warmth in the gullet, as well. Nice.

O: A decent barleywine, really an enjoyable winter time beer that warms a guy up without being overtly boozy. Pretty good offering for the first beer that I've had from Equinox.

 1,241 characters

Photo of Can_has_beer
3.31/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 2.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of belgbeerdrinker
3.5/5  rDev -9.8%

Photo of beergoot
4.12/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The pour produced a nice penny copper-red color; great clarity. The head was only about one-finger, off-white in color, but creamy and long lasting. Good lacing on the glass.

Caramel and toffee malt notes with a light, bright, citrus hop smell.

A very smooth, velvety malt taste predominates the flavors. Caramel is up front, reinforcing the aroma. A smooth bitterness and noticeable alcohol warmth follow-up on the finish.

The mouthfeel is very, very smooth and creamy. Very fine carbonation definitely contributes to this.

This is a malt-heads kind of beer! Well-balanced flavors do an excellent job of taming the high ABV. I wish I would have picked up several other bottles while visiting the brewery's tasting room. Well, nothing like a good reason to head back up to Fort Collins to get this beer (and try Equinox's other offerings)...

 845 characters

Photo of ManBearPat
4.7/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

I'm confident the previous reviewer had one that was aged incorrectly, too long, or some combination of both, as any of the aged Midwinter Warmers I've had previously were quite tasty though it seems like the sweet spot is about 2 years for this one, in my experience.

That being said- I look forward to this beer every year. Its labeled as an 'American Barleywine', but I think this has more of a subtle hop character than its American counterparts. Lots of fig and raisin flavor with a moderate carbonation level. The booze is certainly present with this one, but definitely in a warming/comforting way.

If I can make a recommendation- drink this one fresh or with up to 2 years of appropriate aging. You won't be disappointed.

 731 characters

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

Photo of jtmartino
4.18/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

2011 Vintage bottle poured into a snifter.

An attractive ruby-hued brown with one finger of ivory head.

Smells of caramel, medium malt and sweet fruit. A very sweet, sugary aroma. Damn, this beer has an intensely sweet smell.

Taste is surprisingly good. Very light in flavor, a delicate sweet body filled with sweet potato and light caramel apple. Almost no bitterness, presumably due to cellaring for the last two years.

Mouthfeel and carbonation are perfect. Hard to focus on mouthfeel with the insanely sweet aroma. Zero alcohol presence.

This is a mild, yet complex-flavored beer. You cannot taste the 10% ABV at all, and it's immensely drinkable for a barleywine.

 673 characters

Photo of redleg411
3.5/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of RuckusDu
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of srgj88
3/5  rDev -22.7%

Midwinter Warmer from Equinox Brewing Company
3.88 out of 5 based on 20 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.