Vermilion Barleywine
Perennial Artisan Ales

Vermilion BarleywineVermilion Barleywine
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Barleywine - English
Ranked #111
Ranked #7,335
4.03 | pDev: 9.18%
Perennial Artisan Ales
Missouri, United States
Vermilion BarleywineVermilion Barleywine
Notes: A big, rich English style Barleywine that, as its name suggests, has tints of ruby around the edges of its brown body, with a toffee, caramel, toasted pecan sweetness that is kept in balance with a smooth, alcohol warmth, and slightly fruity American hop note. This will be perfect around the fire, with a cigar, with a rich meal, or just while cozying up and relaxing with family and friends this season. It may be enjoyed right away, or allowed to age in the bottle. Vertical tastings are encouraged.
Reviews: 48 | Ratings: 279 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of draheim
draheim from Washington

4.09/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750mL (bottled December 2014) into a tulip. Pours a deep mahogany brown with minimal carbonation, just a narrow ring of off-white foam around the rim.

Aroma is sticky-sweet and slightly fruity with notes of brown sugar, molasses, caramel, figs, and dates.

Taste follows nose. Lots of candied sugars, dried fruits, caramel, vanilla, and rum-soaked pipe tobacco.

Mouthfeel is sticky, chewy, slick. Lingers on the palate.

Overall a pretty standard approach to the classic English barleywine (which is a good thing). A very nice sipper of a dessert beer.

Aug 30, 2020
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Buck89 from Tennessee

4.29/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Teku glass.
Look: a somewhat hazy copper-brown color with a medium sized tan head. The foam settled slowly and left some nice tracks on the glass.
Aroma: brighter than expected with caramel, raisins, figs, and dark bread.
Taste: all of the above flavors were there with a richness and depth. Not overly sweet due to an assertive floral and earthy bitterness from the hops. Not as pronounced as in an American Barleywine, but enough to match the malt. The yeast seemed to lend more floral notes as well.
Feel: big as expected, but not cloying. Light carbonation appropriate for the style.
Overall: a delicious British Barleywine. It's bright flavors, bitterness, and ABV lean toward American BW, but this is outstanding. Highly recommended.

Sep 08, 2019
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BarrelchesterHamfist from New Jersey

4.07/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Barleywine with 2 years of bottling age coming in at 13.6% abv.

Pours like dark garnet cream soda leaving a thick espresso foam head. A full bodied brew that is thick and sticky with honey, plum candy, raisins, prunes, and pumpernickel bread crust. The abv does exactly what its designed for, imparting flavor and body. Fantastic... highly recommended.

Jun 22, 2019
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bl00 from Pennsylvania

4.14/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

2012 bottle
Pours dark raisin shade thin layer of head dissolves quickly. Smells of raisin, apple, woody note, candied ginger, alcohol.
Taste is orange, cranberry, chocolate, grape. Lots of really nice nuances here, seems like it developed nicely.
Fairly full body, soft mouthfeel. Slight drying.
As a whole this beer is very enjoyable, its soft but big and nuanced. Very smooth, the notes blend together nicely.

Nov 19, 2018
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HattedClassic from Virginia

4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a fairly creamy looking off-white head the dissipates very quickly. The beer itself is a very good looking brown color that is clear.

The smell is good. It has a fairly powerful overall sweetness to it with deep caramel notes and fig notes as well. There's a fairly powerful alcohol note at the end and finish along a woody bitterness that stands in stark contrast.

The taste is good. The beer's taste is fairly strong with caramel and dark fruit notes along with a sugary note to it that creates a fairly overall sweet taste. There is a slightly boozy note and a bit of cherry tartness along with an unusually strong bitterness that enhances the sweetness by contrast.

The feel is good. It has a slight stickiness in the finish.a The beer is generally a heavy bodied beer that is thick as molasses and very light tingling carbonation.

Overall, a good barleywine but a little too strong and bitter for an English barleywine; rather, it seems to be more of an American style. It still is good grab though.

Aug 03, 2018
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Ciocanelu from Romania

3.9/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Hazy dark amber color with beige head. Aroma has syrupy malt, brown sugar and dried figs. Taste has sweet, sugary notes, bitter dried fruits and earthy notes. Medium body and carbonation, quite sticky on the palate.

Jun 17, 2018
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russpowell from Arkansas

4.09/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 2 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours an effervescent chestnut with 2 fingers of tan head. Zero head retention & lacing

S: Dark fruit, woodyness, raisins, boozeyness as this warms

T: Follows the nose sans the raisins, cakey dryness & a little cherry up front. Woody dryness, figs, a touch of booze, more cherry as this warms. Finishes super dry with a touch of Madeira & fig, plus some leafy hops

MF: Medium body, smooth carbonation up front, turns a little more aggresive as it warms

A very well done take on the style, no real dings on this beer other than the nose & appearance

Jun 02, 2018
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Avitra from Switzerland

4.49/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Really nice barleywine, very true to the style. More chocolaty than most, and obviously a lot of alcohol content, but still pretty drinkable. pretty thick, some raspberry, very!!! lingering finish. Not as warm as some other barleywines, and therfore could be used in summer days as well. Good stuff

Apr 08, 2018
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yesterdayfaraway from Missouri

4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L: pours think murky brown with no head
S: a mild aroma, dark fruit sweetness
T: big dark fruit juices, semi sweetness, still some bitterness that I don't care for.
F: medium thickness, sticky and smooth until a slightly bitter finish.

Jan 06, 2018
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DragonsMilk from Kentucky

3.97/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 2.75

This is everything you expect in a barleywine.

Murky Ruby Appearance

Rich Malty Dark Fruit Aroma and Taste

Fastastic beer I recommend trying it but I wouldn't buy it often unless the price came down to about 10.99 per 750ml.

In comparing Missouri beers I find this better tasting and true to style than Schlafly and Charleville's barrel/Oak aged barleywine style ales.

I docked the overall based on its high price @$18.00 a 750ml or $9.00 per12.5oz. For the money it doesn't stack up to the caliber of some other outrageous priced beers like the Avery line up of Tweak, Uncle Jacobs Stout, and Old Perseverance.

Oct 13, 2017
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Jeffo from Netherlands

4.17/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this one in Buffalo in 2016

From a 750 into a snifter
Bottled December 2014

APPEARANCE: Pours a 1+ finger, medium looking, somewhat fizzy, light tan head with good retention. Head fades to a half wisp and ring. A dark maroon or chocolate brown in color with lower levels of carbonation evident. A splotchy wisp remains leaving touches of lacing down the glass.

SMELL: Toffee and some chocolate malt on the nose. Red fruits, burnt brown sugar and light notes of vanilla and caramel. Lots of sweet malts with some booze.

TASTE: Some alcohol, brown sugar, molasses and toffee sweetness up front. Some alcohol at the swallow with a bold and persistent finish of milk chocolate, some caramel and toffee, brown sugar, molasses and red fruits for sure. A touch of bitterness and some alcohol linger.

PALATE: Fuller body and medium levels of carbonation. Enough weight on the palate, semi-creamy, goes down fine and finishes a bit sticky. Some heat lingers.

OVERALL: Really nice stuff. Fuller, smoother, with a great aroma and flavor profile for a darker barleywine. Would definitely pick this up again if I saw it in Buffalo again. Been pretty impressed with Perennial’s big stuff and this one definitely fits the bill. Cheers!

Oct 11, 2017
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avalon07 from South Carolina

4.24/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

L: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had a medium brown color and thick consistency. There was a small amount of foamy, off white head that quickly dissipated. Not a whole lot of lacing.

S: A solid aroma of hops, dark fruit, malt, and caramel.

T: Tasted of a lot of different dark fruit ingredients (raisins, figs, plums), some malt, a good amount of caramel, a little butterscotch, a good shot of hops, and rum as well. A big, bracing, complex flavor that gets mellower as you go along. Quite tasty and surprisingly easy to drink.

F: An average amount of carbonation with a smooth finish. Medium-bodied.

O: Vermilion has a couple of minor flaws, but it's an incredibly drinkable beer. Well made.

Apr 25, 2017
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ClavisAurea from New York

4.25/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottling date 12/2014 served at cellar temps in a tulip glass.

Poured a reddish copper color with a nice and tall khaki head. Smelled like caramel and hop candy. Vanilla, fig, raisin, tons of malt, low hop character, sweet and malty in both the nose and taste. Slight oxidation but nothing crazy for a 2 year old beer. Very nice representation of the English barleywine. This should be a cellar staple!

Dec 18, 2016
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biegaman from Canada (ON)

4.43/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Vermilion is a brilliant scarlet red colour - like that of the cardinal on this bottle's label - but, despite it name, there's not even a glimpse of it anywhere in the barleywine itself. Quite dark for the style, Vermilion has a shadowy, highlight-free complexion and severely gloomy tone that is not quite black but close enough. Head formed but slowly dissolved.

Pour, smell and let those rich, malty aromatics wash your cares away. Like the best English-style barleywines, Vermilion is mellow, malty, sweet and mighty seductive - and all that can be gleamed standing several feet away, that's how powerfully fragrant it is! Nutty, fruity, sherried notes abound with coffee bean, fig, date, roasted pecan, orange peel and baking spices.

Nothing I write, no description I provide, will come close to capturing the complex characteristics of this beer. Like aroma, the flavour is nothing short of bewildering: macerated and raisiny dark fruits, butterscotch, dark cocoa and roasted nuts, a dash of Christmas spices as well as nuances of cigar boxes or old oak barrels. It's a beer so rich it belongs on Madison Avenue.

Vermilion is very mild-mannered but offers a whole lot of goodness; it's intricate and elaborate but so smooth. Perennial encourages vertical tastings and, indeed, this bottle speaks to the beer's awesome cellar potential; exactly two years after bottling, this 2014 vintage drinks with a complexity and elegance that rivals high-quality port, sherry or single-malt whiskey.

Vermilion Barleywine is the quintessential contemplation beer and demands total surrender. A fantastically soothing, sumptuous offering, it's one of the finest examples I've tasted in years. So very 'fireside', it completely warms the soul at this so very cold time of year - don't go to bed without a glass. Just be sure to treat it with respect or you might suffer the day!

Dec 11, 2016
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SinjaminBentek from Nebraska

5/5  rDev +24.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Look - Dark brown with very little head.

Nose - Rich dark malt, little barrel, little booze and sweet dark fruits.

Taste - This is the highlight of the beer. Really really nice!

Mouthfeel - Rich, thick and chewy. Excellent.

Overall - Highly recommended.

Oct 04, 2016
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jmdrpi from Pennsylvania

4.06/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle, capped.

Hazy dark brown in color, tan head. Rich malty aroma of molasses, rum, raisins. Similar taste, but not too sweet. Sticky mouthfeel

May 30, 2016
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Wasatch from Colorado

4.38/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Bottled: 12/2013

2 Years On This One

Poured into a chalice a pretty nice brownish/grapey color, very nice carbonation, with a quick/fizzy small light tan head, which does leave two medium islands and some sticky lacing behind. The nose is very nice malty, with some very nice dark fruit notes (grapes, cherries, figs, raisins, plums). The taste is very nice malty, very nice touch of dark fruits, very nice sweetness. Full Body, ABV hidden pretty well. Overall, this is a very nice brew. I would buy again. This is my first from this brewery, would definitely like to try others from them.

Jan 31, 2016
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AppaZappa from North Carolina

4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

12/2014 bottle into tulip; pours very dark brown / ruby color with generous head that fades into nice thin sheen. Smell is booze, caramel, toffee, plum, raisin, honey, vanilla, bread pudding. Taste is similar, with thick bread pudding, caramel notes, brown sugar, raisin, port, oak, sweet, but not cloying. The mouth is fantastic, subtle carbonation, creamy, rich.

This is a stellar example of the style. Gotta say I'm surprised at some of the lower reviews. Get one, sit tight on it and enjoy on a snow day.

Jan 23, 2016
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infinitebruner from Arkansas

3.96/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

December 17, 2015

750 ml bottle, snifter

A – Deep brown, thick and opaque. Maybe a quarter-inch of chocolate-tan foam forms and disperses immediately. Some very light lacing remains, but the beer is mostly still.

S – Rum raisin and crème brulee, bread pudding. Raisins and plums, brown sugar, caramel, vanilla, and bourbon. Sweet alcohol esters like pears. Very rich but doesn’t smell particularly heavy.

T – Brown sugar, vanilla, raisins, a bit of cherry and bourbon. Alcohol is present, fruity, almost like sake. Minor hop notes, a bit woody and spicy. Only light bitterness, a bit sweet.

M – Medium-full body, lighter than I expected based on the pour and its overall appearance. Carbonation is low to medium-low, which is NOT surprising, in line with the style. Balance is heavily toward malt sweetness, only light bitterness on the finish.

O – Overall, a very well-done Barleywine, just doesn’t quite hit the mark on the flavor.

Jan 04, 2016
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darktronica from Indiana

3.86/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Edited to reflect a second bottle with some age on it. Way more smoke to it than I remembered from previously. Bringing the score down a bit accordingly.

Nov 21, 2015
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Domvan from Texas

4.53/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark hazy brown/black color, has a nice full bodied mouthfeel that makes this beer enjoyable from the first sip. It was a great example of a barleywine that wasn't barrel aged. The sweetness adds to the experience as well. A definite favorite of mine now

Aug 04, 2015
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MakeMineADoubleJack from North Carolina

4.14/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Very enjoyable barleywine with a lot of properties that I would relate to a good Belgian quad. Pours with a thick, dark reddish hue. A latte colored head, no more than half a finger. Smells and tastes of dark fruits: raisins especially. Get a bit of bitter chocolate on the back end. Nose stands out a bit more than the flavor. Mouthfeel is thick and chewy. Overall, a damn good barleywine.

Jul 25, 2015
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oberon from North Carolina

3.97/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottled in 12/14.My first Perennial beer to try.Pours into an imperial nonic a deep tawny color with a creamy thick beige head atop.Aromas of port and caramel,big rich and sweet,mild nuttiness comes into play as well.Very thick but still smooth in the mouth,near chewy.Cakey and port-like on the palate and it gets a bit sweet in it's richness after awhile,feels all of 10.5%.Maybe not the best beer to drink when in the upper 90's here in NC but it's good and Iam glad I got to try it.

Jun 18, 2015
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mactrail from Washington

3.82/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This may be in the English style but it's still quite bitter at the finish. Very dark and charred grain. Smooth and sweet without being syrupy. The Raisin and prune flavors are quite lovely. Deep fruity aroma of fig jam and boozy fruitcake.

Hot alcohol aftertaste. Kind of a plum liqueur taste and a dose of sweet Vermouth with that herbal bitter finish. From the 750 ml bottle purchased at Special Brews in Lynnwood, Wash.

Jun 14, 2015
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mjpolzin from Wisconsin

3.8/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A good representation of an English barleywine. So many barleywines are now the American version and heavily hopped. This was a nice sweet, malty English version through and through.

Feb 28, 2015
Vermilion Barleywine from Perennial Artisan Ales
Beer rating: 90 out of 100 with 279 ratings