Trainwreck Barley Wine | Phillips Brewing Company

Trainwreck Barley WineTrainwreck Barley Wine
Liked This Beer
3.89 w/ 53 ratings
Trainwreck Barley WineTrainwreck Barley Wine

Brewed by:
Phillips Brewing Company
British Columbia, Canada

Style: American Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
On the ale side of the yeast divide, this year’s barley wine, Trainwreck, is set to derail your holidays in the best way possible. Providing a boxcar of big malts and rich, caramel aromas, Trainwreck will run you around the corner on two wheels. Available for a limited time, so don't miss the train.

Added by BDTyre on 12-06-2010

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Ratings: 53 |  Reviews: 23
Photo of MilkLeg
5/5  rDev +28.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Photo of Shakyamunibrewda
4.83/5  rDev +24.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Beautiful american style barleywine, drank after one year of ageing so the hops were more subdued and allowed the malts and other features to shine.

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Photo of ericj551
4.48/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Trainwreck Barleywine pours a deep red brown with a nice, slightly off white head. The aroma is sweet and malty, with notes of caramel, brown sugar, and dark fruit. There is a slight hint of citrusy hops.

The flavor is sweet, with more rich, caramel and molasses malt flavor. Bitterness is mild, but enough to balance the sweetness nicely. Some mild, earthy and slightly spicy hops show up in the end, along with a hint of alcohol. The alcohol flavor increases as the beer warms, but is mild for the strength.

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Photo of ZachT
4.43/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Converge
4.32/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

650ml bottle poured into a 22oz snifter. 2011 vintage.

A - Pours a deep ruby color with a small light tan head about two fingers high. Minimal head retention, and no lacing to speak of. The color is quite nice though, and the bottle design is fantastic.

S - Cherries, oak, and barley malt upfront. Not much spice and hop presence in the nose, this beer is almost all dark fruits here. Dried cherries, black currant, and light raspberries too. It's got a yeasty character, almost Belgian. Lots of nice toasty malt in the background working with the fruitiness.

T - Okay, now this really reminds me of a Belgian ale. Lots of dark fruitiness, with Belgian candi sugar, cola syrup and yeast. Finishes sweet and slightly bitter at the same time. Big cherry character in this one. Definitely some dried cherries, along with currants, raspberries and plum. Lots of caramel malt and nuttiness as well. Herbal hop character is present but subdued, allowing the malt and dark fruit to take center stage and create a nice sweet flavor profile. For a barley wine, it doesn't have much herbal bitterness or phenolic spiciness in the finish, but the malty goodness is really great here.

M - Nice lively carbonation without feeling prickly, and a smooth and hearty body. This is another area where this one bears some similarities with Belgian ales; it's got a similar smoothness to the body and carbonation. Only con here is that it does get a bit sticky and syrupy, but the alcohol is masked extremely well, and this tastes no where near a 10% ABV brew.

D - As far as barley wines go, this one seems a little off; but I'm not much of a barley wine fan anyways, so I don't really mind. Although this may not be really true to style, I enjoy it a lot. Lots of great malty flavor and dark fruitiness, which I loved. I'll definitely be looking for this one again.

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Photo of Kmat10
4.25/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of KalanM
4.25/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of adhallick
4.24/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Rutager
4.2/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 bomber.

Appearance. Pours a hazy amber-brown with a thin, orangy-tan head.

Smell. Sweet caramel, some floral hops and a little bit of citrus.

Taste. Nice sweet caramel and some smooth caramel malts, the hops have really faded but there's a touch of citrus (mainly orange) and very little bitterness. Alcohol is very well hidden.

Mouthfeel. Medium-full body with low+, smooth carbonation. Just a touch sticky.

Overall. Very nice, easy drinking barleywine. I'm curious how this would taste fresh now, but I don't think it was a mistake by any means to age this one a while.

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Photo of WalterWalter
4.2/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Very powerful, of course. I'm not very familiar with barley wine but the character is quite different from other really strong beers I've had (e.g. Belgian Trappist ales).

This has a nice deep orange-red colour with just a little bit of foamy head with a good pour. Complex smell with suggestions of cider and caramel. Flavour is very malty and thick, with just the right carbonation - not fizzy, but not too flat. Full feeling. Slight hints of wine and fruit hiding behind the stronger tastes; reviewer below says "plums" and I could definitely detect that after thinking about it a bit. Bitter hops shine through after the initial malt attack and persist in the aftertaste; the hops taste is basically just bitter without citrus or cannabis tones (which is good, because it would probably clash with the heavy malty flavour of this beer).

Lots of alcohol, at 10%. The label warns you to be careful not to "lose your caboose!" which is an appropriate warning. I had a whole bottle to myself and it practically knocked me off my seat. I'd recommend sharing it!

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Photo of likeablepaper
4.12/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Voonder
4.09/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

650 ml bottle

A - very dark brown with copper notes. foamy thick tan head, very beautiful, dissipates slowly lots of lace.

S - sweet, yeasty, earthy. some dark fruit flavours (raisins, plum). alcohol isn't evident. good solid nose.

T - very balanced, starts very sweet, almost chocolaty, a lot of sweet malts, chocolate and some caramel. nicely followed by bitters notes, plums and raisins present all the way through. Alcohol is perfectly hidden within this very flavourful beer.

M - carbonation is on the spot, beer is very smooth and balanced.

O - well, I enjoyed it very much. did not have high expectations and really it was very good. Not as yeasty as I would expect from barley wine, I would even say milder than an average barley wine, but very well balanced, smooth, very drinkable for ABV. Definitely having this again - winters in Calgary are cold and long, so probably on more than one occasion. Great job Phillips!

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Photo of JonCorbett
4.04/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The brand new 2016 Vintage... couldn't wait to try it.

Appearance: Dark and rusty red oxide like the body on a 1949 Ford pickup truck that has spent the past half century alone and forgotten beside a 2 century old oak tree in the back 40 of a farmer's field in Perry, Alabama. The head is an average finger of sun-faded white, loose, and craggly with an medium-slow dissipation and the constant and deep that leaves a finely knitted mesh of lace during the swirl, but settles back down onto the surface.

Aromas: Good sturdy oak logs that have been freshly chopped (probably from the big oak tree that was camouflaging the Ford). Some sweet caramel malts, but plenty of fruit vinuous tang as well. The Ford engine that is the 10% is completely missing.

Taste: I think the oak is the shop head here - slapping around the junior mechanics - Malt and Hop - keeping them in line and working together, they like to horse around, giving each other a few friendly jabs of coffee or dark cacao. And Ms. Yeast, the shop's receptionist, drops by in the middle of the work day to drop off some freshly baked and slightly toasted bread. Very delightful.

Palate: The body is still fairly sturdy, though I found a few spots where it's shell had thinned a bit. But the wheels of carbonation have not seized up at all, retaining plenty of fine and smooth effervescence. And once the ol' bitty starts to be roll out of the pasture, there is very nice warming feel, as the sun finally breaks the shade of woody oak to warm up the back of the palate and throat.

Overall: Aesthetically I loved it (can you tell?), though because I had to try it right away I do want to compare what it will taste like in 2 or 3 years. So I hope I will remember this, the next time around - that it was really great, but you can tell as well that it could still use a few more years of maturing.

Pairing: I like barley wines because they are easier to pair sometimes just because of their wine-like demure. So I think just a cheese-focused hors d'oeuvres platter is the way to go with Trainwreck this year.

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Photo of jmdr
4.04/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of BDTyre
4.03/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

New barley wine from Phillips (seems like they either switch receipes or at least re-label every few years).

Dark copper with some mahogany hues. Creamy, desne but low profile head.

Alcohol and malt in the nose; brown sugar, raisins, wine and faint citrus in the nose.

Big wallop of malt taste with a bit of wine, plums and brown sugar. Slight sweet fruit taste. The alcohol is well hidden. Very smooth body, thick but not under-carbonated. A nice night-cap.

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Photo of joemcgrath27
4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - hazy brown amber, thumb of tan head retained respectably with some lacing
S - big nutty malt with some toffee sweetness, mildly earthy with a faint hint of booze
T - strong nutty malt with hints of caramel, an light earthy and metallic hop flavour, high ABV is non existent in terms of flavour
M - medium body with a rich feel, no alcohol heat to speak of which is both a positive a negative in terms of what you'd expect for a barley wine
O - I agree with previous comments that this is a more of a strong nut brown ale than a barley wine, but the 10% is so well hidden that you can't help but be impressed

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Photo of pudoo
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of Vandelayindustri
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of wordemupg
4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

650ml bomber poured into tulip 23/12/11

A clear reddish amber with lots of bubbles of all sizes feeding a large beige head that quickly falls to a thick film leaving a few partial rings of lace

S heaps of caramel with a little booze, some citrus and leafy tea bag with a little rum raisin

T what I smell but somehow there's even more caramel, the booze is completely gone, I'm impressed how well concealed the 10% is, just a little nutty on the finish with a bready aspect

M pretty thick and syrupy, mellow carbonation and a little sticky

O I wouldn't call it an American BW with not much in the way of hops but I liked the intense malty caramel aspect

this fresh bottle already tastes aged with little hop character and quite malty too begin with, also worth mentioning again is how little booze I can taste, very well hidden booze

 843 characters

Photo of EskimoDave
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of 604growler
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of 4ster
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of Svingjo
3.98/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

This poured a nice dark reddish brown with a head that stuck around and laced the glass well. The nose was a sweet caramel, with some dried fruit and malt. Taste leaned towards a sweet brown sugar, molasses with dates and figs coming to the forefront, like a nice plum pudding. There was a hint of chocolate and vanilla as well. It was lightly carbonated and the 10% ABV was pretty well hidden.

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Photo of Jeffo
3.97/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From Rutager in this past summer's box. Always a pleasure dude =)

From a bomber into a snifter.
Vintage: 2012

APPEARANCE: Pours a one finger, medium looking, off-white head with good retention. Rust or maroon red with lower levels of carbonation evident. Head fades to a film and ring. A ring remains and produces some falling dots of lacing down the glass.

SMELL: Bourbon, oak, and coconut with toffee and caramel on the nose. Dried fruit with a bit of booze as well. Bold and enticing for sure.

TASTE: Bourbon, oak and coconut up front and through the middle, into a boozy and sweet finish. Bold aftertaste of bourbon, oak, vanilla, coconut, sweet toffee and a touch of bitter-sweet chocolate. Booze and barrel flavors linger on the palate.

PALATE: Medium body and medium levels of carbonation. Semi-creamy on the palate, goes down fine with a bit of a burn after the swallow and finishes a touch sticky. Some heat lingers.

OVERALL: Pretty good stuff for sure. Good flavor and feel and well balanced between barrel and base beer. Another solid beer from Phillips, and I'll be looking to drink more of their stuff in the future. Thanks again Rutager!

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Trainwreck Barley Wine from Phillips Brewing Company
Beer rating: 79.2% out of 100 with 53 ratings
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