A Deal With The Devil | Anchorage Brewing Company

129 Reviews
no score
Send samples
A Deal With The DevilA Deal With The Devil

Brewed by:
Anchorage Brewing Company
Alaska, United States

Style: American Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 17.30%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Barleywine style ale brewed with Galaxy Hops. A starting gravity of 37 Plato. Aged eleven months in Cognac barrels.

Added by HuskyinPDX on 01-29-2013

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 129 | Ratings: 969
Photo of von_kaiser
4.35/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Dec 2014 Batch #2:
A: dark burgundy, ridiculously dense, one finger of head, strong lacing of glass (syrupy)
S: sweet raisins, pecans, candy, slight alcohol sting
T: overly sweet. same hints as scent raisins, pecans, candy
M: so thick and rich. boarder-line syrup. i prefer it chilled rather than coming to room temp. the warmer it got the tougher to drink. mild alcohol presence.
O: glad i got to land and drink this beast. it was an absolute chore to finish by myself. by far the most difficult beer/bomber i've done by myself. this is good but almost too much of a good beer in a sense. HIGHLY recommend sharing over doing by self. don't pass the opportunity to try it. Cheers!

 694 characters

Photo of Back_in_the_Saddle
4.42/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Having lived in Alaska at one point in my life, whenever this came out, it was a nut house in the stores to try and get. Having said that, glad I was able to score a bottle of this and realize why it gets the numbers it does.
This was poured into a snifter.
The appearance was a dark red to having some light brown hues residing along the edges. A one finger white foamy head retained it's edge at the top for a good about thirty seconds and then died off at a nice pace.
The smell started off with big sweet boozy and woody notes sliding into some caramel and toffee with some dark fruits.
The taste was immensely sweet through the previously mentioned flavors and allows a fairly clingy sweet sugary aftertaste to slide into the finish.
The mouthfeel was about medium bodied with a nice sipping quality to it as the booze does end up hitting a bit but doesn't come across too heavy. Carbonation really is under for this one, allowing some stickiness to cling to my tongue.
Overall, while this barleywine sits on top of the world in ratings, I will admit, it is very good personally but does lack a bit with the "hops" side of the wheelhouse to make me feel its an "American" version of one. Still, for some odd reason, its drinkability is quite enthralling and quaint enough to make me want more.

 1,298 characters

Photo of Casey3236
4.81/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Batch #2

Beer #1000 for me! Wanted to make it a special one, and I did. Thick into the glass, aroma made us all cringe in fear. Booze and more booze on the nose. Taste is of plum, raisin, sugar and booze. Very sweet, but that's how I like my BA Barleywine. Thick, almost syrupy mouthfeel. Worth the wait!

 305 characters

Photo of zac16125
4.72/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

750mL bottle into a snifter
Batch 2, bottled Dec 2014

BA review #775, on my way to 1,000!

Thanks to eb1610 for sending this one over in a trade!

A: Pours a dark mahogany, essentially opaque, less than 1 fingers width of tan head dissipates fairly quickly. Leaves no appreciable lacing but does leave some alcohol legs. 4.25

S: Wonderful sweet boozy notes. Cognac is very prevalent from the barrel aging. Base beer characters of huge caramel/toffee, as well as vinous dark fruits. Some booze to round it all out. Fantastic. 4.75

T: Hugely sweet, like the nose theirs tons of cognac. In addition, lots of caramel/toffee and candied sugar. Boozy notes to balance. 4.75

M/D: Full bodied, carbonation very low which is appropriate, a bit syrupy, ABV is noticeable but for 17%+ its exceptionally well masked and drinkability is dangerously good. 4.75

O: Exceptional beer. One of the best Barleywine’s I’ve ever had. 4.75

 937 characters

Photo of carrionricardo
5/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Shared with 3 others so we all got full pours in 5oz taster glasses and I really appreciate that. Beer of this style I feel truly need to be enjoyed in all elements. Poured a dark cloudy brown. Nice thin head that disappeared very quickly. Aromas were toffee,butterscotch,burnt brown sugar, and caramel. Slight vanilla. Your can definetly tell its not bourbon barrel aged but know it's aged in some barrel. Couldn't really pin point cognac but barrel for sure. Taste was sweet butter toffee. Brown sugar. Vanilla. Flavors were everywhere. A little fruity. Like dates or figs. As it warmed the cognac really comes through and everything mellows. The flavors almost seem to seperate. Each sip you taste a different one. First the fruits then burnt brown sugar then Carmel. Wow this one really just gets better each temp degree it raises. Must have sat on my 5 oz pour for an hour slowly sipping here and there as we cracked other bottles. By the time I got to the last sip I was truly blown away. Hands down best ba barleywine I've had!!!!!

 1,038 characters

Photo of EJJ1848
4.61/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Had this at 10am tailgating before the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field, maybe it was the nostalgia , but this beer was everything I expected, thick and syrupy without being cloying. Strong notes of caramel, fig, and dark fruits. This beer drank much lower than the ABV

 274 characters

Photo of W_Des
4.5/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Wow I can't believe that is 18% ABV. The nose has a lot going on especially as it warms up. Lot's of dark fruit, raisins, figs, some toffee, some vanilla and oak. The body is sweet but not ridiculously so. It hides the 18% ridiculously well. But the sweetness of the dark fruit comes out in the body with figs being the most prevalent to me. One of the best barleywines I've had.

 379 characters

Photo of Ciocanelu
4.75/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Deep amber color with creamy beige head. Aroma fills the room with dried figs, dates and raisins. Taste is definitely on the sweet side but not cloying at all. Same dried fruits with the cognac notes underneath. Body is heavy and syrupy. Alcohol is extremely well hidden. I would have never guessed it has such a high ABV. One of the best barleywines I ever had.

 362 characters

Photo of SomethingClever
4.86/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

750ml bottle poured into a snifter

A: very brown brackish in color very hazy small white little head and soapy. When you swirl it the beer has legs looks high alcohol

S: so much vanilla, toffee, caramel, figs, dates, raisins, alcohol some oak this is like candy soaked cognac

T: my....its so silky it has a lot of vanilla sweet candied figs and dates with this like burnt sugar but a good way almost brown sugarish such a nice toasty taste to the finish

M: very soft hardly any carbonation but it has a silky viscous mouthfeel

O: This beer is a must have its amazing the depth of the flavors is insane and the smell is just as good. That little bit of brandy soaked toastiness in the end is worth the price of admission. Let alone having such a beautiful vanilla toffee fig plum and raisin and brown sugar taste. I'm shocked to see this is an American Barleywine because the hops are completely absent to my taste buds.

 929 characters

Photo of Rollzroyce21
4.41/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

- 2014 vintage
- 750mL poured into stemless wine glass on 3-Sep-15

Sweet, syrupy goodness which I appreciate because it's a Cognac barrel aged beer. It would've been off-putting if it were any other barrel (other than perhaps brandy or wine barrel). The heat is dangerously low. Nice barrel notes in the finish.

 312 characters

Photo of Johnct
5/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

17.2%? Tastes like 5.5%. Amazing. Really hard to describe this one. Like cognac barrel aged maple syrup. Extremely viscous. I don't even know. One of the best beers I've ever had.

 179 characters

Photo of tmoneyba
4.24/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottle. Poured a reddish brown color with an average frothy tan head that mostly lasted with good lacing. Moderate to heavy toasted malt, dark fruit and alcohol aroma. Medium to heavy toasted malt, dark fruit flavor with a heavy dark bittersweet and small alcohol bite finish of moderate to long duration. Full body with a smooth texture and flat carbonation. This is standout beer.

 382 characters

Photo of drewone
3.97/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Very disapointing, such high expectstions yet soooo sweet. Makes Black Tuesday look like a pool sipper, anchorage has done better. Wish had more barrel character. Too much sugars.

 182 characters

Photo of kkleu357
4.85/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

Umm, wow is this good. Quite possibly the best barleywine I’ve had. Huge sweet molasses taste. Drinks like a fine Cognac. I’d actually fork over $35 per bottle any day for this. Tons of dark fruit taste. Absolutely no sour notes, which is wonderful. Sometimes you get that from barrels. I’m not really sure what else to say, but WOW!!!

 341 characters

Photo of YodersBeerEmporium
4.59/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This might be my favorite barley wine to date....definitely top three… This is a HUGE BW and you can really taste the cognac barrel in the finish....lots of toffee caramel as well....got another bottle of the stashed away for a special occasion I am already excited about drinking it!!!

 288 characters

Photo of Tele
4.5/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Serving Type: Bottle (Batch 2)
Consumed: 8.8.15

A: 4.5 Pours caramel brown with a bit of red around the edges. Small, light tan head that dissipates rather quickly.

S: 4.5 Nose is very intense with lots of oak, vanilla, toffee, sweet malt, and caramel. Not much in the way of hops on the nose. Smells like a classic, barrel aged English barleywine turned up to 11.

T: 4.5 Starts quite sweet. Not cloying, but definitely a sipper. Flavors match the nose well; there’s more toffee and caramel though, with vanilla and oak a bit more subdued. The barrel is interesting as it doesn’t taste particularly like cognac. Rather, the flavor is reminiscent of a bourbon barrel. As the beer warms to nearly room temperature, there’s a really nice orange peel flavor and some very light hop bitterness. The high abv is hidden incredibly well.

M: 4.5 Rich body but not too thick. Carbonation is low, but it really should be for such a big beer. Drinkability is obviously hindered due to sweetness and intensity.

O: 4.5 Anchorage did an excellent job with this huge barleywine. There are a lot of great, classic flavors going on, but they also successful added a twist with good hop treatment that doesn’t take away from the base beer or barrel.

 1,244 characters

Photo of Immortale25
4.69/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Poured into a Delirium Tremens snifter. Back label says DEC/2014 Batch #2

A- Pours a reddish medium brown color with a 1/4 inch light tan head that retains well before becoming a thin ring around the edge of the glass and some wisps of sheer surface foam. Resilient lacing leaves tiny clots behind.

S- Total dark fruit in yo face. Raisins, figs, plums, molasses, it's all there. Big booze presence as well. Also some burnt sugar.

T- Brings out all the excellence of fortified wine with notes of brown sugar, caramel, toffee and more molasses. Definitely on the sweeter side with some vanilla tones. Pecan/walnut aftertaste. Woody flavor comes through as it warms. All-in-all, still has that American Barleywine flavor profile as the hops are there even after the aging and the malt profile is that of such.

M- Incredibly silky smooth and luscious. Also thick and sticky at the same time, like a fortified wine. Medium-low carbonation and a body leaning toward the fuller side.

O- One of the most complex beers I've ever had. Contains the flavors of both port and barleywine in the best of ways. So dangerously drinkable, you'd better be sharing a bottle with a friend if you know what's good for you. I'd like to see more beers like this where it shares the "wine" aspects of barleywine and fortified wine through barrel-aging.

 1,347 characters

Photo of Bugs318
4.33/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: pretty dark in colour at an ample brown with a thin tan head.
S: wafts caramel, some wood, cognac, some plum, some decent herbal hops.
T: caramel through and through. Sweet and alcohol very well hidden on palate.
M: creamy and smooth with low carbonation. A bit sticky. Fairly hot down the chest.
O: a fine barleywine with well hidden warmth except in feel.

 367 characters

Photo of linnymtu
4.5/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Look: Deep caramel colored, not much head if any

Smell: Picked up a bit of booze on the nose as well as raisin

Taste: Consistent with the smell with regard to the booze and raisin. Not overbearing with the booze though, the raisin dominated

Feel: Pretty thick mouthfeel, a nice trait of the beer

Overall: Very impressed, could have been a bit less sweet for my preference, but overall very good.

 400 characters

Photo of JamesNoBrakes
4.83/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Great beer, complex flavors, hides the alcohol content well. It's very thick though, like oil. It's hard to drink more than one and enjoy it, but it's a great beer. It may be my current favorite.

 198 characters

Photo of woosterbill
4.51/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A: Deep mahogany body with only a thin ring of tan foam. Appropriately intense.

S: Rich, opulent sweetness - cognac, vanilla, toffee, raisin, and oak. Decadent.

T: Opens with candied dark fruits, followed by intense, almost chewy caramel maltiness. Vanilla and brandy from the barrel join in on a warming finish that lasts for days. Substantial burn, but in a satisfying way that suits the beer's strength - never harsh. Delicious.

M: Thick, viscous, and lightly carbonated.

O: A beast of a beer, but one that never feels out of control. Very well done indeed.


 574 characters

Photo of tmbgnicu
4.84/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

One of the best beers I have ever had. Split with a friend who continually asked me to open until I finally relented. I think I could have drank it alone because it goes down WAY TOO EASY. Smoothest 17.3% beer ever for sure. Tons of cognac and fruit, even a nice hop presence. Definitely hunting for another one.

 325 characters

Photo of wordemupg
4.46/5  rDev -0.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

750ml batch #2 bottle poured into brandy snifter a ways back (from notes) thanks alpineclimber for the bottle

A darker then expected, brownish amber when held to the light, a little tan foam but little retention and no lace but at this ABV that's what I expect, some legs and visible bubbles looks like a big one alright

S I get the cognac but not much wood, maple, brown sugar, some fruit I can't place, ju jubes, its boozy but I wouldn't guess its such a monster, some caramel apple, vanilla, honey, some rum soaked raisins, plenty going on

T still lots of cognac, slightly more wood, sugar of all sorts, candy like, there's booze but fairly well managed all things considered, some sponge toffee, fruit liqueur maybe cherry? hard to place the fruit in this one, more toffee, more cognac, its tasty but a sipper no doubt

M very thick and syrupy, a couple bubbles here and there, my lips are stuck together but a little oily on the palate, there's heat but its mellow, booze hits your chest and brain pretty fast though, caramel and cognac linger

O this one will ruin you in a hurry, massive but well executed and surprisingly easy to drink. Its one of those beers that I'd like to try again in a decade, this one could really go the distance IMO.

Its a good thing my wife likes BW because I'm a little over my head trying to take this one on solo, would work well in a 250ml or maybe I should just make some friends.

 1,433 characters

Photo of dmgeng
4.82/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

This is the most expensive bottle of beer I've gotten so far without shipping ($33) so I was really hoping I would like it and I was impressed.

A - Very dark amber color that is somewhat cloudy from the journey this beer has taken. Has a bone colored head that subsides quickly and leaves only a few spots of lacing.

S - Big sweet malt character and a huge dark fruit character accompanied by caramel and some vanilla. The booze is not bad and only adds to the evaporation of the complex aromas. It is quite an amazing smelling beer at >17%.

T - Similar to the smell but much more robust, with a sweet malt character first and then a wash of big flavors takes the tongue. Toward the middle is the rich dark fruit and deep caramel that is almost like candied raisins which I really enjoy. Approaching the back of the tongue is the oak, caramel, and vanilla from the barrel. The finish has the dark fruits and some warmth from the alcohol.

M - High mouth-feel with low carbonation. This just feels right and how the beer should be; soft on the palate, full flavored, and not too cloying. Again it's hard to believe that this beer is so high in ABV since it doesn't really burn on the way down.

Overall, this is an amazing barleywine. I really don't like Cognac but this beer really takes the fruit flavors and ramps it up into a very delicious elixir. It is very complex, flavorful, and a good get but at this price and at this high of an ABV I definitely wouldn't get it more than once a year or even half the volume. If you want to polish your beer resume then you have to try this one if you get a chance but don't expect gold leaf, just gold quality.

Glass- Snifter

 1,674 characters

Photo of ArrogantB
4/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle $38.99 (ouch). Dark brown, cloudy. People won't like this but to me it smelled like aged Bigfoot. Flavor was sugary sweet, brown sugar, and cognac. A good tasting beer but no way this should be priced more than Darkest Hour.

 237 characters

A Deal With The Devil from Anchorage Brewing Company
4.48 out of 5 based on 969 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

    No fake news here. Get real beer content delivered to your doorstep every month.