Pierre Ferrand Billionaire | Clown Shoes

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Pierre Ferrand BillionairePierre Ferrand Billionaire
315 Ratings
Pierre Ferrand BillionairePierre Ferrand Billionaire

Brewed by:
Clown Shoes
Massachusetts, United States

Style: British Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 12.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
What could be more distinguished than our Director of Operations, Matt Smith, gracing a billion dollar bill with a smirk and a neck beard? You! With this rich beer in your belly. The Billionaire is an English Style Barleywine Ale, aged for six months in 30 year old Cognac barrels we got from friends at Pierre Ferrand. Here's to rare beer wishes and caviar dreams!

Added by Patches826 on 03-29-2015

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 315 |  Reviews: 74
Reviews by Jordy777:
Photo of Jordy777
4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

More User Reviews:
Photo of Smakawhat
4.18/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from the bottle into a large snifter glass. Bottled May 19th 2015.

Deep murky and swampy brown, and cloudy orange to the light, almost American like barleywine red in a way. Head creation is a nice creamy light tan a bit yellow to it as well, with some staying power. Settles slowly to a thin an big bubbled collar.

Nice little aroma. Soft hints of grape and wood. Some raisin and plum like fruit comes out also with a bit of candy like spice notes. Hints a little at light grappa/brandy like character, and has picked up well, but also comes off just slightly wet as well.

Real fun palate. Light bodied with not much oak depth or character, but flavors in the mid palate and finish transpire very well. Milky mid palate of grape and some mild toasty brown sugar and caramel. Finishes with grape and brandy warmth, and a real sneaking bit of the stomach boozy character in gut feel, but not in flavor. Small sensing liquid melted chocolate as well with a great fruity character, some nutty hazelnut makes an appearance as well.

Real nice cognac aged barleywine. Not sure if this will get better with age, but drinking very nicely right now.

 1,162 characters

Photo of jlindros
4.3/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

I really hope this is loaded with cognac as I love that stuff, and love nice aged English barleywines.

Pours a nice foamy fizzy almost 1 finger head that fades at a med pace, nice soapy lacing, and nice legs, super dark but somewhat clear mahogany chestnut color.

NOse is nice, a little booze, but once to get past that it's big brown sugar, toasted brown malts, toffee candy, touch syrupy candi sugar like, big candied dates and fig like fruit, with a nice cognac washing over it, little brandy soaked raisins, some candied caramel toffee caramelized sugar, etc.

Taste brings more brown malts out front, candy flavors, soft brown malt character, toasted caramel candies, caramel creams and toffee candy, sticky sweet feel but only a little syrupy, a taste like creamed blended toffee caramel creams. Then fruits again, a fig paste candied date thing, with more brandy soaked raisins, a little warming booze, nice fruity cognac as well, a nice cognac doesn't seem cheap, perhaps even Pierre Ferrand which is one of my fav cognacs. Finish is sticky sweet, hint of booze, big caramel candy sticky feel, more toffee, touch nutty, little bitterness, and more cognac and candied fruits lingering.

Mouth is fuller bod, a touch sticky syrupy, touch of booze, nice carb.

Overall quite nice. Love the cognac flavors, as well as the candied brandied fruits, the nice malts, soft malts, candy flavors, pretty enjoyable for a sipper.

 1,428 characters

Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
4.14/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

22 fl oz bottle sealed with clown shoes pressure cap.

poured into unbranded snifter.

Appearance: mucky and murky opaque dark brown beer with a rusty red mahogany hue. An aggressive pour yields a thick cap that is one full finger tall. The head is a light creme or off white color and leaves behind a moderate amount of the head which klings to the side of the glass. Head drops down to a thin and uneven cap.

Smell: dark fruits, caramel, and toffee notes. A nice sting of cognac that invades the nostrils with ease.

Taste: Very nice balance of sweetness from the malt profile, cognac, wood, and light earthy bitterness. The malt profile is mostly raisins and generic dark fruits with a moderate dose of belgian candied sugar. Also hints of caramel and toffee, but they are not quite as strong as the belgian candied sugar. Perhaps some fruity english yeast like you might encounter when drinking a bottle of Fuller's Vintage Ale. Finish is really really nice; it is full of the woody barrel character, light earthy hop presence, and grapey cognac. This even tastes like it has some dryness about the beer. Nice vanilla and butterscotch notes as this beer nears room temperature.

Mouthfeel: high end of medium bodied beer with a low end of moderate carbonation level. This beer is thick, but not overly so. Carbonation is creamy is quite elegant. This beer has a little bit of heat, but it seems to compliment the beer nicely. The cognac barrel adds some dryness to the feel as well.

Overall: I really like a barrel aged English Barleywine that is full of those caramel and toffee flavors with the spirit barrel accenting those flavors. Pierre Ferrand Billionaire is very different and unique when compared to what I am used to with barrel aged English Barleywines. This is a welcomed change from most barrel aged English Barleywines. The cognac is really well done and everything is so very balanced; in fact, so balanced that it makes me want a little more richness and sweetness from this beer. This beer proves that Clown Shoes has some serious expertise with barrel aging big beers; the taste and mouthfeel of this beer attest to this fact. This beer reminds me alot of bourbon county barleywine.

 2,207 characters

Photo of superspak
4.35/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 ounce bottle into snifter, bottled on 5/20/2015. Pours lightly hazy dark ruby red/brownish color with a 1-2 finger dense khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Nice spotty soapy lacing clings around the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation retaining the cap. Aromas of big raisin, plum, fig, date, caramel, brown sugar, brown bread, light nuttiness, toffee, vanilla, molasses, light leather/tobacco, toasted oak, and herbal/toasted earthiness. Damn nice aromas with great complexity and balance of dark/bready malt, fruity yeast, and cognac barrel notes; with great strength. Taste of huge caramel, brown sugar, brown bread, raisin, plum, fig, date, toffee, vanilla, molasses, light nuttiness, light leather/tobacco, toasted oak, and herbal/toasted earthiness. Light herbal bitterness/oak spiciness on the finish; with lingering notes of caramel, brown sugar, toffee, dark fruit, vanilla, toasted oak, light leather/tobacco, and herbal/toasted earthiness in the finish for a while. Fantastic complexity, robustness, and balance of dark/bready malt, fruity yeast, and cognac barrel flavors; with zero cloying sweetness after the finish. Light carbonation and full bodied; with a very smooth, creamy/silky, and lightly slick mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is well hidden with only a small warmth lingering after the finish. Overall this is an incredible Barrel aged English barleywine style. All around fantastic complexity, robustness, and balance of dark/bready malt, fruity yeast, and cognac barrel flavors; and very smooth to sip on for the huge ABV. A highly enjoyable offering.

 1,635 characters

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.72/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle I brought to share at the LA Beer Talk bottle share.

Pours a murky dark orange-brown with a foamy beige head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of caramel, toffee, dark fruit, cognac, and wood aromas. Taste is much the same with caramel, toffee, earth, candied fruit, cognac, and wood flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of wood bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and dry mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer that comes across and very woody and dry with the 30 year cognac barrel aging.

Serving type: bottle.

 693 characters

Photo of corby112
3.54/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a cloudy and completely opaque tawny brown color with dark copper edges and a two finger yellowish-beige head that quickly settles into a thick, lasting ring. Decent retention, lingering throughout most of the pour and leaving sporadic streaks of soapy lace.

Intense aroma with a very strong barrel presence that's nicely integrated into the characteristics of the base beer. Lots of oak and sweet, spicy spirit along with toasted coconut and silky vanilla bean. A bit heavy on the wood/oak stave and tooth pick but it's doesn't overpower the other barrel notes. Cognac/brandy sweetness stands out as it warms with caramelized fruit and vinous sweetness. Under the barrel, there's some nice English Barleywine notes but the malt bill is slightly overshadowed. A touch of leather and tobacco followed by dark fruit sweetness. Hints of caramel apple, fig, date and raisin. Smells pretty nice with a very pleasant barrel presence but the earthier, leathery malt notes are missing.

Slightly viscous full body with a flavor profile that's very similar to the aroma. Heavy barrel presence that somewhat overtakes the complex malt flavor. Dry, spicy and sweet with strong oak and cognac flavor dominating the palate. Charred oak with nice wood flavor without being harsh or acrid. Very pleasant spirit presence with delicate peppery spice and vinous fruit. Not much heat surprisingly, with dry, toasted coconut and silky vanilla bean sweetness. Under the barrel, there's a really sweet malt bill with prominent caramel, toffee and vinous dark fruit. Hints of plum, fig, date and raisin coming in on the back end. Finishes somewhat dry and boozy. Just like in the nose, the earthier leathery malts are unfortunately completely overtaken. A touch of leather or smokey tobacco would give this beer some depth and balance. As it stands, there's a really great barrel presence but this beer is overly sweet and one dimensional. Flavorful with a well masked ABV but a few ounces is more than enough for me. The bomber could be split between six people.

 2,067 characters

Photo of Ozzylizard
4.24/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Unable to locate purchase records
Bomber bottled on 05/12/15 at 42 degrees into hand washed and dried JK snifter, allowed to warm to 50 degrees
Aroma of caramel
Head small (< 2 cm, aggressive pour), off white/light tan, frothy, rapidly diminishing to partial one mm ring with some short, stumpy legs, no layer
Lacing - none
Body brown, chill haze, slight effervescence
Flavor of caramel balanced by alcohol, slight diacetyl; no hops; followed by definite alcohol stomach burn
Palate full, almost creamy, soft carbonation

Appearance 4, Aroma 4.25, Flavor 4.25, Palate 4.25, Overall 4.25

 587 characters

Photo of tbryan5
4.47/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of SanFranJake
4.18/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of lordofthewiens
4.47/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Loved this barleywine, with the subtle cognac aroma/taste.

58 characters

Photo of tvenne
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Doomcifer
4.71/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Photo of JakerLou
4.56/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of mctizzz
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of pat61
4.75/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Had on tap at the Bulldog during a Clownshoes tap take over.
L: Reddish chestnut with a slight, tan tinted foam cap and slight legs.
S: More cognac on the nose than the regular Billionaire.
T: Slightly sweet attack followed by a charge of sherry and malts with a growing bitterness wrapped in cognac.
F: Very creamy and chewy, with some slight warming.
O: Very nicely done and worth repeating

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Photo of PSU_Mike
3.54/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Photo of kwkdmk
4.33/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Photo of tappangordo
4.17/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of justme
4.39/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of JamesStreet
4.06/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of RBassSFHOPit2ME
4.27/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This is a damn good barrel aged beer. If you're a fan of English Style Barleywines & Cognac, this is right up your alley. It melds the best of both worlds in harmony without the barrel taking over the base beer or the base beer overshadowing the barrel.

Big toffee, caramel and worther's original butterscotch and cognac. Some raisins, dates and figs as it warms, but still stays deliciously caramel forward as I prefer them to. A bit of booze from the Cognac as expected, and from the 12% ABV, but it keeps it at all from being too sweet. Again, the balance between the flavors is phenominal at only 5 months old in the bottle. Only knock it that I wish it were a bit more luscious and sticky, but that's just splitting hairs. Age I'm assuming will only do wonders for this beer, as it does most every BA English Style Barleywine I've ever had minus BCBBW. I prefer that one fresh. Recommended. Enjoy!

 904 characters

Photo of Thedusanmandic
3.84/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Roguer
4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Very nice head production. Dark brown brew.

Woody, sweet aroma; the barrel influence is heavy and unavoidable. Brown sugar, toffee, and caramel tones from the malt.

Flavor follows: it's a malty brown brew, with a strong woody edge to it. The cognac adds an extra layer of sweetness to the malt base. It's thick, sweet, and a little hot, but the alcohol is quite restrained for the ABV.

At two years old, this brew is a touch oxidized, but it is clearly a very good beer. I don't recommend aging it more than a year.

 518 characters

Photo of Snow81
4.23/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

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Pierre Ferrand Billionaire from Clown Shoes
Beer rating: 4.19 out of 5 with 315 ratings